July is Indie Pattern Month over at The Monthly Stitch. Its a month set aside for celebrating indie patterns. I always the challenges set by Kat and Mel and this year is no exception. Week 1 is dresses and I made yet another Giselle maxi dress using fabric bought from my first Yorkshire Spoolette meet up in Feb 2016 <link here>. Tangentially, I have used all but 1 of the fabrics I bought then and that’s great for me :-). I digress, lets get to it ……..
Can I just start off by saying that I love this dress! OK. So when Kat and Mel announced the themes I was pleased to see that dresses were in Week 1. It didn’t take me long at all to decide on which indie pattern dress to make – Giselle by Kate and Rose Patterns.
I have made 3 of them ( here and here) before but none in a rayon challis fabric. The fabric is irresistibly soft and I very nearly made pyjamas with it. It also gets double points for stash busting as it has been in the stash since Feb 2016 :-).
Since I have sewn this before fitting was not an issue. I made the version with the under bust yoke but sleeveless. The sleeves and neckline were finished with cotton bias binding.
This is a quick dress to sew up. The skirt panels are basically rectangles that are gathered and sewn together. I always add in seam pockets to this pattern as it comes without pockets and that’s my only complaint (a very minor one 🙂). I finished my seams with the overlocker.
Its a loose fit easy to wear dress. Very swishy and its one of those dresses that always has me on my best posture. You know the sort of dress you feel like you are letting it down if you slouch or don’t stand proud :-).
I made this dress using a birdy fabric that I had bought some time ago but was quite precious about it. The challenge was just perfect – it made me brave enough to cut into the birds :-). I had bought the viscose jersey from B&M Fabrics in Leeds.
I wanted a simple pattern with few seam lines to maximise the impact of the birds. Enter Burda 06/2016 #101C dress. Here is the line drawing which shows the simplicity of this pattern.
The dress is meant to be a mini but I maxified it for full impact 🙂 Sewing it up was so fast and took less than an hour to sew up. I opted to sew a neckband for a t-shirt look.
The dress is so comfortable and I love it.
I can’t help but feel like lifting off and flying when wearing this dress. Thanks for this challenge Kat and Mel! Now, I need to go finish my Apron challenge make :-).
Allow me to present another self drafted skirt that I started on in 2015! I have a habit of starting a blog post for a project that has been cut out – that way I sort of have an idea of how long the project took to complete. Well this one has been sitting at the bottom of my 32 drafts queue for a really long time :-). Still better late than never m’kay. The pattern is the same as this A Line skirt here but without the pockets and a tad bit shorter. Continue reading →
“How come they dont prewash their fabric? They seem to be using it of the bolt?” You see even my hubs has learnt, through living with a sewing mad wife that rule number 1 of sewing is you prewash your fabric. So why oh why do they misrepresent sewing like that in the show!!!! I generally watch it as a reality TV show because well the contestants aren’t the best amateur sewers as professed – because why would you pit a newbie sewer who has never made a jacket (or even sewed a bias bound neckline) with a vetaran who has been sewing for 30 plus years? No to me its like a Big Brother of sewing. The other day (60’s week I think – they made the one thing I am buying that book for _ the Mondrian dress that I have coveted since seeing it first on FabriKated’s blog. But what on earth was the new judge wearing? Purely from a curiosity perspective – as a seamster when I see clothes I automatically deconstruct them but I could not figure out what she was wearing. Still its fun to watch.
I have been reading a few books.
Draping The Complete Course by Karolyn Kiisel which I also borrowed from the library. I absolutely love this book and it has been added to my xmas gift list (Mr SNS now knows what to get me ). It explains everything step by step and something I believed had to wait till I had time to go to a night class seems within reach. It has some fabulous looking projects to do and it includes an instructional DVD.
Couture sewing techniques has just blown my mind and changed my finish level. Its leveled me up significantly. I honestly did not appreciate hand sewing before but seeing all the fine gowns that are all made by hand I was like wow! I have been applying some of the techniques n my recent makes and I am not disappointed. I wish I had come across this book sooner. As it is, I bought form the US where it was so much cheaper than buying here in UK.
I borrowed this book by Dennic Chunman on pattern drafting. Its interesting in that it has what I consider to be avant garde projects so very much a fashion design student book. It excelled at explaining some reasons behind why things are done a certain way. Also interesting was his point that pinning on a dress form does not give you a good indication of how a dress looks on a real person (there are example pictures in the book but I forgot to snap them on my phone). He advocates using a real model early on in the process (key back to GBSB and their refashion challenge where they have to pin on a dress form). Though an enjoyable read, I shant be buying a personal copy for my sewing library.
New sewing tools that have bee amazing…….
I bought some beeswax on a whim during a late night phone browsing session as a result of reading the Claire Shaffer book. When I used it at first it was making the tangling worse and I abandoned it. But when I read further I learnt that you had to apply a bit of heat to it so I tried that the next time. Something strange happened and the thread went from being curly to bone straight and did not tangle at all. Its made sewing by hand a pleasure I had never experienced before.
I also picked up a loop turner and yes its worth the £1.81 and 2 weeks I waited for it to arrive from China!
I am also currently obsessed with trying to draft this lowered shoulder dress I saw in an optician waiting room magazine. Its a Peter Pilotto $1800,00 dress. With any luck I might finish drafting it in time for next summer :-).
Thanks for stopping by, do you have a book recommendation or sewing tool? Please share I learn so much from your collective experiences.
As always thanks for stopping by. I’ll be back soon. Happy sewing!
My last ever entry into 2016 IPM! And what a month it has been. I have thoroughly enjoyed the challenges set this year. This one more so, because I got to really look through all those pins on my Pinterest boards and get to choose something I could make using my stash items.
This particular outfit came about because I love nautical stripes . Its really a combo of these 2 Pins……
I can hardly believe June is almost over and IPM is coming an end. This is one of my entries for the last challenge : RTW copy. Here is my picture of a fashion blogger outfit I have loved on Pinterest for years.
I am back with this super quick post about a simple hack I did for IPM2016. This turned out to be a rather wearable muslin actually. OK SO for my final IPM garment I needed a cropped cardigan to go with it. In all my sewing pattern stash I couldnt find exactly what I envisioned so I tried hacking a Renfrew top. Continue reading →
Happy Monday! And its a good one for me because I get to post about a dress I am super excited about sharing. Made for Indie Pattern Month Hack -It, its a hybrid of the excellently drafted Moneta bodice with the striking drama and flare of the Gabriola skirt.
Say WHAT!?! Yes I combined a Colette and a Sewaholic to make a super Indie pattern dress. Continue reading →
If you follow The Monthly Stitch you will seen these already. You can scroll though to the bottom where I have added detail pictures :-). I was late posting them here because there are other details I wanted to talk about here that I didn’t have time to on the other post because of the deadline. Yes I know I shouldn’t wait till the very last minute to finish and post. In my defense I did not realise that for the competition you could start on the items after the IPM announcement in May! All along I thought it was like Pattern Review where you have to cut, sew and write up in the time frame of the competition. Ack! At least now I will start on my final week garments this weekend.
Anyhow back to the Carmes at hand.
I love Pauline Alice’s Carme blouse pattern. I have made it twice before already in a grey and white cotton here and linen Sashiko version here. Its a simple chic pattern with a loose fit pullover style. Its certainly one of the tops I first made to a reasonably decent standard by following the video sewalong which is great for beginners. Continue reading →
Just a quick post to share what I am getting up to. Spring and Summer usually mean a burst of sewing events, challenges and competitions. And I do so love a challenge! I have picked up a few things to do in May and June.
Its nearly the end of August eek! Must get on with finishing my summer projects – my head cannot stay buried in the sand forever. I will have to say “Good bye summer I hardly got to know you this year“.
Anyhow, allow me to present another self drafted skirt. This one is a taffeta lined, high waist A line skirt with pockets. It’s nearly the same as this one I made in Feb however it has a waistband instead of a facing. Drafting it took about 45 mins because I faffed around with whether I was going to keep the front waist darts or not. This was important because of the pockets. The positioning of the pockets is in the dart area. In the end I just kept the darts because I wanted a fitted look. I lengthened the skirt by about 6 inches to hit my knees. The pockets were split into 2 pattern pieces – one of the pocket bag lining and one for the visible part of the skirt. I did this to reduce bulk as my fabric was a cotton canvas. A Cath Kidston cotton canvas…
Say WAHHHHHHH!!!! Yes I bought 1m of Cath Kidston ‘Birds’ fabric. For months I had been looking for something to make for the Monthly Stitch Put a bird on it Challenge (I had voted Foxes and have plenty of foxy fabric in the stash but no birds). Took a while of searching but I finally found this birds fabric as something I could get down with. Unsurprisingly I first saw it on InstaGram (Thanks IG…for a free app you are turning out to be quite expensive!)
The fabric came in this lovely spotty packaging (which I still have). It was so exciting! – the thrill of receiving a fabric package. Waiting till I had enough time to savour opening it (little people having naps ;-). My next issue was the lining. I went shopping specifically for lining and found this red taffeta and I knew it was prefect.
All things assembled cutting was next. Took longer than normal because I had to get the optimal pattern placement. I did not want decapitated bird heads. So everything was cut single layers. Because cotton canvas frays it had to be overlocked straight away. I also overlocked all the lining pieces as well since I was at it.
Sewing it was quick work. I use an 80 sewing needle which made a nice difference to the stitch quality. For the waistband there were a few options for me and I tried the fold a band which was a first for me. It creates a crisp sharp waistband without a lot of work. I also did a button waistband for the first time and used a hook and bar.
To maximise length I went for a bias hem and it looks so neat on the insides. Its a very nice skirt – I feel very To the Manor Born in this. Love it very much, all that’s missing is a wide brim sunhat and Daiquiri with me swanning around saying “Dahlin…”.
Overall I am very pleased with this skirt …Despite the invisible zip not being quite invisible (DONE is better than PERFECT)– I enjoyed taking my time over the new techniques and getting a neat finish. Plus, the fabric is lovely, it has pockets and I think that the shape of this lends itself well to a few more skirts in different fabrics/colours that could become easy wardrobe staples.
In all honesty, I’m immensely proud of how far my sewing and dressmaking skills have come. To think just over a year ago I was tentatively dipping my toes into sewing, now I am designing, drafting and creating my own clothes!