Category Archives: pattern madness

December Sews and The Sewing Quarter closes

4D06EE30-065E-4C2B-BF94-C763112BFB35.JPGI don’t know if I can make a December deadline for one last blog of 2019.  I tend to post on instagram (grangoesteckie) these days as I don’t have a bloggers’ following.  Having seen the Tilly and the Buttons blog about how she set up her blogger network and started sewing generally I’m not really surprised that I don’t get many views.  Incredible what she (Tilly Walnes) has achieved.  I remember the first Great British Sewing Bee (GBSB) in 2013 and although I was interested in sewing prior to that it really ignited a fire.  Lauren from Guthrie & Ghani was also on the show (many tears) and Stuart Hillard.  We don’t see much of the others but no doubt they are still sewing strong as once it grabs you it doesn’t tend to lose it’s grip easily.   For the longest while I had all the early GBSB series recorded including the Children in need series and the Christmas special but they have gone with the kaput box that recorded them.  I watch the later series 3, 4, & 5 still!  I did manage to catch the repeats of series 1 that was repeated before the latest GBSB series.  Luckily I also managed to view the 2nd (and best) series via another platform a few times as well.

Of course the big news is that The Sewing Quarter has finished, big disappointment and a hole (waiting to be mended) left in my sewing viewing.  Hopefully Hochanda and create and craft will step up their sewing shows with a little more than bargain Brother sewing machines although even that is better than nothing.  I found SQ frustrating and irritating in equal measure with fantastic and inspiring and it opened up a new world of Indie sewing designers I didn’t know much about.  I also realised the Big Four actually produce loads of great patterns which are just as easy to use as the Indie ones and are more frequently on sale.  Of course YouTube remains a wonderful resource although some of the old favourites have disappeared and there’s been some sad news from some of the current vloggers.  It’s probably pretty obvious that quilts don’t really fill me with passion in the same way that dressmaking does and I do like a bit of craft sewing but not to the extent that I adore making garments.  Goodness knows why as I still flounder terribly with mistake upon mistake.  The adage you only make the mistake once really doesn’t apply to me….I seem to be able to repeat mistakes very easily.

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Simplicity 8613

 

Heres a cuddly fleecy top I made for the mister in my life.  He loves soft fabrics and oversized items, the bigger the better as far as he’s concerned.  The fabric was so affordable that I bought several metres of it but its mostly all been used.  Trying to make a cat blanket with the remnants but cutting straight lines seems to be another challenge for me.  The pieces are getting smaller and smaller.

The above bolster cushions from Dunelm Mill are covered in a fabric from Trago Mills, Falmouth and were made as poor Mister has a bad back and finds the shape of these cushions really help support him when sitting.  We’ve done a lot of sitting since I got ill….not something we really thought would happen but then who does?  Hits you out of the blue.    I made the pattern for the cushions by simply measuring length and girth (adding seam allowance of course) and sewing a round piece (drawn around a plate) in each end.  A zip means I can take the covers off and wash when needed, essential in my book.  I tried to follow a tutorial from the talented Debbie Shore but bodged it terribly so just did what I thought would work instead.  Not perfect but he likes them.

The earlier pictures are Mccalls cowl neck that I’ve made before a few times in a fabric from 1st for Fabrics (online), A Heidi Dress from a sew over it pattern (one of the magazines) in some sea salt fabric and a Mccalls Coatigan thing in the fleecy fabric which I believe I got from Tia Knight fabrics online.  The Heidi dress will never be worn, the Coatigan is soft and snuggly but doesn’t look wonderful ( may be due to poor picture taking) but I like it and the cowl neck is okay with its yoga poses design.    Happy 2020 IBFs …..hope I may be around to blog some more.

October and November – sew sew sew

Well here I am again IBFs and still sewing.  I’ve even had an overlocker as a pre birthday present- super dooper new one.  Seems extravagant but YOLO so going to use it when I can.  On the health front, The Marsden disagree with my local hospital on the scan results.  I can’t take much from that as its not just the current scan that counts but each appointment brings a fresh anxiety and I have to learn to get on with it and do what I can to enjoy whatever life I have.    So having bought some lovely Stenzo jersey fabric from the Sewcial Studio online I decided it should be made into a McCalls 7432 with a slightly modified neckline and pockets.  I had earmarked the fabric for a top so didn’t have quite enough to do full length sleeves in one piece so  I cut cuffs and added them on to the sleeves I could make.  I added a neckband, inserting it with the lt shoulder open rather than as a circle and dividing it into quarters etc.  I prefer it as you can just chop any excess off and you get the join at the left side of the neck rather than at the centre back (or centre front if you get it wrong…..) as you finish the left shoulder and neck together.  I’m not sure the pockets really work as they hit the hips at the flare of the skirt but I wanted them so in they went and I used form band at the seams where they are joined (under stitching the seams to keep them inside) as well as on the shoulder seams. I inserted the sleeves on the flat and completed the side seams, pocket bag seams and arm seams in one continuous sew.

 

 

 

I had made another M7432 as well as I used some Poppy EU ltd jersey fabric bought in a shop approx 10-14 miles away from me.  I fell in love with the feel and look of it and normally only use this shop as a reference point as they have been rude personally to me on more than one occasion and I’ve witnessed rude behaviour toward another client in the shop in front of several shoppers.  I try not to buy anything from them but every so often as I can’t help going in and schmoozing around the shop loveliness I find something  I can’t be without and have to buy it there and then.  This M7432 was made with a high neckline and no pockets and the drape of the skirt is better without the pockets.  I really like wearing it, surprising as its not really my style.  Its simple to make and quick to come together.  I really want to try a v neckline next but will have to wait to use the fabric bought at 1st for Fabrics online for my birthday (not for a few days grrr and it will have to be washed first!). The lovely package arrived but its been hidden away with my overlocker cones and grandchild friendly fabric……its going to be awesome!   Karina from lifting pins and needles has posted a YouTube tutorial on how to do V neckbands so thanks to her I’m determined to give it a go and either use this pattern or the one she uses Simplicity 8548 which I think is the same as New Look 6298.  Thanks for the inspiration Karina.

 

 

 

Well I did some other sewing as well:  Love Sewing magazine had a threadcount 1902 pattern not too long ago so I gave that a bash.  I’ve got a few t shirt patterns and have been fixated on the Coco recently (TATB) after hating it initially when I tried it a while ago.  Although Im not the best sewist around I think I have improved a bit over the few years I’ve been sewing and found the coco neckline less of an obstacle recently.  Time to try another pattern I thought so gave this one an outing…..well its massive.  I went by the finished garment size and found that I needed to reduce the armscye, shoulder length, side seams ……ooooh annoying.  I used Stuart Hilliard jersey bought from my new favourites….Ist for Fabrics who always package the fabric beautifully and send a lovely message with thread and just general loveliness.  I don’t know why it took me so long to find them.

 

 

 

I can’t leave it there, hubby needed a warm fleece quickly and we couldn’t be bothered to drive to the shops or even online shop so having a bit of techno fleece in the cupboard from several moons ago I quickly ran up a jacket for him with instructions to wear it in garden and home as it was less than brilliant.  I didn’t have a long enough separating zipper and there wasn’t really enough fleece in one colour way plus the arms were going to be too short ….oh my goodness…. no end of worries over this one but it got sewn and ‘ere tiz’as we say.

 

 

 

You can’t see the pictures well you complain —ah sorry, rubbish photographer.  I also made two Jalie 3137 polo shirts.  – one for a 5 year old and one for the hubby.  These went down better than expected and the bigger boy wears his a lot.  His was made from Girl Charlee fabric (online purchase) and little uns was made from free gift jersey from 1st for Fabrics also from online order.  I won’t post a picture of the little chap but his had a pocket on the front and it was an easier sew than I expected but not without some difficulties.  I found YouTube videos that were helpful and haven’t linked them but they are easily found.

So I think thats your lot lovely IBFs.  Another blog is done, not sure how many more there will be but just for now ….Keep Sewing.

September Sews

Well poor news on the health front, not the scan results I wanted at all. Time to use up the stash

So let’s start with the Tilly and the Buttons Coco top- all size 4 grading to 3 at the waist and hips.

TATB Coco
TATB Coco
TATB Coco

Wanted to try out the Jules Fallon Sew Me Something Hero trousers with double welt/jetted pockets. Not incredibly good but I learnt a lot.

SMS Hero Trousers
SMS Hero Trousers
SMS Hero Trousers

Then I wanted to ring the changes with a sew over it Molly top from the City Break e book capsule wardrobe.

Sew over it Mollytop

Well that’s it for September, October makes coming if I’m still able dear IBFs.

Mid July sewing

Okay, some more to share with my delightful IBFs.

Burda 6525 in Seasalt sale fabric
Burda 6525

Couldn’t resist the print and colour of this lovely Seasalt fabric that was in the sale. Had to buy two separate metres for best value. Burda had a sale, my local fabric shop Sew and fabric run by the everso nice Rachael…. who must wonder what happened to me and my half paralysed face…. had the patterns, I needed summer tops… a match made in heaven. So dear IBFs I decided to sew the size 14 which allows for the pattern to have enough ease to match my measurements and a bit more. Being windy on this though, as in reality a 16 was closer to my actual measurements, I decided to cut a 14 with an ince wincey bit more… maybe a 15. I wanted the sleeveless flounce version but knew the sleeved flounceless version would suit my older lady arms better. I had enough fabric to make the top with some over so cut some sleeves just in case the flounces looked dreadful but although I dislike my arms I like the sleeveless top. What to do with these sleeves? No doubt I will put them in another top if I can……well they’re cut out now 😁😁. The top was easy to sew and the fit is okay. Think I could have cut a straight 14 okay but I do like a bit of ease.

Okay next up….the shirt dress… now have been waiting to sew one of these for a very long time. Prompted by fabric purchased from The Sewcial Studio online. Amanda Wyatt of Sewing quarter fame (see Youtube if for some reason you like sewing but haven’t watched The Sewing Quarter) runs and co owns this shop. She posts on Instagram and Facebook and looks gorgeous in her makes. I had the Simplicity 8014 pattern for ages but thought the max size of the pattern I had might not be big enough so had put off sewing this.

Simplicity 8014
Simplicity 8014

As you all follow me so closely, you know due to illness I am less meaty so I thought you know what….I’m going to take a chance. I had 2 metres of this cotton twill and could only make view D but with view C hemline. It was a great pattern. I used a couple of tutorials to do inseam pockets and a different collar construction for the collar and stand.

All the above tutorials give some excellent other tutorials as well. Gotta love the sewing community for the love and help. Couldn’t do it without you.

Sewing in June💕

Okay here we go with the vogue V9244 – made this before in blue camo jersey. This one is double faced jersey with stripes on one side and dots and crosses on the other. Bought from the sewing quarter when there was free postage or some such deal. You all watch the sewing quarter and wonder why they don’t do dressmaking programmes back to back…right? For some reason quilting seems to be popular ha ha! Would love to give it a go but not sure if I will ever manage that first small step! In my current ill health situation I’m not really looking to build up yet another addictive hobby.

V9244 size 16 view B I challenge you to spot the difference between A&B on the line drawings of the packer
V9244

I thought it fitted better in the lighter weight jersey and perhaps should have added length in body and sleeves with the thicker jersey. It’s a nice pattern and comes together quickly. My button holes worked first time for a change which I was really surprised about but I used the stabiliser plate on my janome buttonhole foot and this seemed to make a difference. I think I used it correctly by placing the fabric (sandwiched) in between the white plastic foot and the silver metal plate. Well anyway it worked. I find the machine overestimates the size of the hole when you place the button in the back of the foot so I tried to size it down a bit. I used a button hole chisel to make the hole (instead of a pin at the end and the seam ripper ) and fray stop adhesive stuff to neaten & finish the buttonhole edges. For attaching the actual buttons I used the button foot, dropped the feed dogs and selected the button attachment stitch …tested it by hand cranking the first full stitch (so you don’t break your needle) and getting the stitch width adjusted, then zoom with the machine to whizz through several nice secure buttons. Have used zig zag stitch the same way in the past with a normal foot which also works well for secure buttons and none of that hand needle threading malarkey. Eyesight never good enough and can never find the needle threader when I need it.


Okay so next up, a Mcalls cowl neck top, also one I’ve made before but although it’s meant to be really easy, guess what, I struggled with the neck cowl bit last time so I looked back at the sewing quarter YouTube archives and found the hour where Amanda Wyatt from The Sewcial studio (thesewcialstudio.co.uk) made up this little number (20/10/2017). She alluded to how easy it was and I note on patternreview.com they all agree….grrrr. Well anyway it’s easy once you do the neck bit so give it a go! I bought the John Kaldor polyester jersey coincidentally from The Sewcial Studio online. She does lovely fabrics and a great instagram/FB post of her makes. All really wearable stuff.

M6963 size 14 view D
M6963 size 14 view D

Now of course if I were a proper sewing blogger I would show you pictures of the line drawings on the back of the packet so you could um and aww my ibfs over what style you would choose….nope if you want it go and look for yourselves. I’m way too busy trying to find a sewalong for my next project:

Let’s see what I can do with this one!

In the meantime I must make a couple of key fobs for the various keys we have. Have fun IBFs and see you soon…I hope.


Claysue

June 4, 2019

Nothing as yet! Radiotherapy dominated. I did make an NCW (Emmaline bags) following Sian from Kittenish Behaviour sewalongs (otherwise it would never have been bought or made) to match the city backpack (?simply sewing free pattern and a few videos on sewing quarter). I made for carrying my necessary bits and bobs to and from radiotherapy for 30 gruelling sessions.

City back pack and necessary clutch wallet

The first few days after radiotherapy were hell but I had been warned. The consultant that I saw said good days and bad days…..there were few good moments in the first 5 days then more good bits over the next few days before feeling quite a bit more positive by day 14 post DXT. Day 17 today and after a horrendous sobbing day yesterday I feel okayish. I am in the middle of making: da dah

But it’s slow progress. The bag fabrics are from BST fabrics ltd for the cork and Sew and Fabric (I think) which have been in my stash forever!

Well that’s me for me made may…..I have worn me made things such as a deer&doe melilot shirt and SOI Carrie trousers virtually non stop whilst coping with the burns etc. Been watching Karina from lifting pins and needles on YouTube. So generous with her sewing skills and some lovely makes. There doesn’t seem to be a hidden agenda with her either. Getting a bit fed up with promotional product placement vlogs and sorry Lisa you’ve gone too far from your core business for me. Happy sewing IBFs.

Sewing and another journey

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It’s been a bit of a difficult time as I was diagnosed with cancer just before Christmas.  Of course I needed to keep it quiet over the Christmas and New Year to minimise the impact on other people but it was tough.  I’ve had an op and now have radiotherapy to contend with over the coming weeks.  It’s one of those that they can’t necessarily eradicate but you have to hope for the best and wonder if something else will get you first…..  The operation severed my facial nerve so you definitely won’t be seeing mug shots but I’m grateful I can eat, drink and communicate.  I can’t blink or close one eye completely so that makes life difficult for sewing, reading etc so that’s not cheering me up any.  The gel I apply makes vision difficult and I worry about damage to my eye but there are so many things to angst over they have to take their turn in coming to the fore.  A moan, a cry, various swear words and on again.

I went to The Royal Marsden for pre op assessment and had a chance to look around at fabric shops….Goldhawk Road, Shepherds Bush market, Sew-over-it, Williams Gee (don’t go there to browse… fantastic online to order and collect or deliver or if you know what you want but gave me a laugh getting there and realising my mistake….glad I saw it just the same).  Maculloch and Wallis ….fantastic, Liberty…all good.  Would have liked to enjoy it more but a bit of a cloud over me.  So glad I did look around though, would do a lot more if I went again but life is difficult now I can’t smile.

So anyway I’ve tried to keep sewing.  A fake fur jacket…… never again, furry stuff everywhere and what a pain getting stuck in the presser foot!  2 A Line skirts with pockets, a city back pack and sew-over-it Carrie trousers.  I’ve also made a necessary clutch wallet but quite sure I wouldn’t have managed it without Sian – kittenish behaviour sew-a-long videos.  I made it with various scraps so if I tackle it again I will be a little more stylish!

And of course, The Great British Sewing Bee…… 😁 Hooray…. something great to watch.  My winner is still there for now.

 

Fake Fur Simplicity 8218 unlined jacket – could have gone down a size methinks.

 

 

New Look 6106 A Line skirts with pockets.

 

Simply Sew City Back Pack (pas demo’d on sewing quarter several times since July 2018)

 

Sew over it Carrie Trousers

 

Emmaline bags – necessary Clutch Wallet

Well what’s next…..sew me something Kate dress with frill hack.  The last one was a disaster with my choice of fabric so…..lighter weight drapier fabric and size it down a bit.

Keep sewing IBFs and be glad of what you’ve got …you never know when it might change. Oh and don’t I take simply the best most flattering photo views😀.

Making for me

 

 

Decided to start using up some seasalt fabric and use a couple of patterns from the pdf stash that I haven’t got round to sewing yet.  The seasalt fabric I splurged on when it was on sale during the really warm summer.  As usual I didn’t have anything in mind but thought it was worth a trial for a bargain price.  Although I keep saying I am going to stick to the big four patterns I still have several indie PDF patterns I have not yet sewn.  The SOI Clara blouse style seemed too hot for this year’s summer but perfect in a lightweight cotton for autumn/ mild winter/ layering option so out it came.  I don’t think I am suited to understanding any words pictures or instructions of most kinds on sewing pattern directions so the neck pleats were sewn incorrectly as were the sleeve placketty things but this is a lovely weight shirt that I can wear.  There’s not much point in me saying what you should or shouldn’t do but if you even sort of follow the gist of the pattern then it comes together and is pretty wearable.

Obsessed with all things sewy and watching The Sewing Quarter, I bought the PDF version of Julia Fallon’s Sewmesomething Kate dress/tunic.  Loved the posted pic versions I saw and made my version in some  midweight cotton but …..

 

I don’t like the stiffness of the fabric and it feels too rigid and country kitchen aprons for me.  I wanted soft drape and relaxed elegance.  The gathers just look like poor fitting (not a million miles away from the actuality) and poor picture taking does feature in making it look even worse.  The fit was very generous and I did size it down three sizes but the pattern does direct you to make a size based on the finished garment measurements rather than actual body size. The finished garment measurements are very easy to find but being the first garment I have made from this range I cut a size allowing for adjustment.  Next time, the smallest size and drapier fabric (and probably more of a tunic length as that tends to be more wearable for me) will be sewn.

Next… a couple of alterations to my Chloe coat which I have worn before making the alterations but felt it would benefit from a bit of tweaking

Now you might think ‘mad cow she thinks this looks good’ but I am fully aware that it’s not of most peoples’ high standard but I can’t seem to take a good picture and all the small flaws that you wouldn’t see in the wearing stand out like massive sore thumbs in my pictures.  I feel the coat is now much more wearable and I am glad that I sized it down a bit.  I did struggle when I was making it originally and was on the verge of binning the lot so at this stage I feel much more relaxed and pleased with the coat and could even consider making another.

 

Used up some spare cotton jersey for a plain TATB Agnes and some panda print cotton jersey for another Agnes worn with the Silhouette Capri pants in linen, from the last blog.  Yesterday I finished the Vogue V9057 knit top which I chose to make up in view B size large but had to size it down by 4 inches in width and next time I will make it at least 2 inches shorter.  I couldn’t find the finished garment measurements otherwise I would have sized it down ahead of making it but I really wanted to use some fabric from the stash and chose a pattern that was uncut from the pattern pile. Unfortunately I only had the larger size ZZ packet so the smallest size I could cut was the large.  With vogue patterns I personally find there is a lot of ease and a medium would have been a better starting point.  Fitting my shoulders,  back and bust tend to be tricky as I often need to fiddle with darts and shoulders to get rid of gaposis but need to leave enough room for the girls and middle back.  I’m toying with a smaller high bust size and FBA but it makes it sound too involved but just as you abandon rtw sizes when you come to dressmaking you also have to abandon worrying about what you call whatever it is you do to make that perfect fit garment.  I never think of myself as busty so FBA sounds too industrial for purpose but I have this sneaking suspicion that this what I need to consider and it will only be a slight FBA but the shoulders etc might just fit better….who knows, I’ve tried everything else!

It looks like it’s pulling and wrinkly in places on these pictures but that’s more to do with the poses and poor camera work.  It’s lovely and comfy but a bit too long for my preference.  There are other style options which I may also try in the next makes.  The other styles are on separate pattern pieces so they can also be tweaked before cutting out now I know the large is too large.  Anyway IBFs off I trot to watch some Vanished by the lake… not exactly riveting  but I’ve watched up to episode eight so I may as well watch this last one.  See you soon for another round of ‘what I make doesn’t fit and anyway I can’t photograph it’ or ‘Invisible Blogging Friends delight’.

Pattern fitting

 

My first try of a silhouette pattern, the #3009 Capri pant.  I love Peggy Sagers YouTube videos and thought I would give one of her patterns a try.  Great instructions and lovely pattern but I’ve got a funny crease/weird bit on the front crotch area on my right side.  Not sure if it’s bad sewing or a fitting issue.  If anyone can help please feel free to comment.  It’s a damn shame you are IBFs or there might be some help forthcoming!

However the Capri trousers are so comfy to wear.  The material is a linen mix and I could see myself wearing these a lot in the summer and if I fix the crease/wrinkle thingy I shall make more and change the leg width and length etc for a few style options.  The recommended size to sew is taken from a sitting hip measurement and the waist adjusted by darts and the four piece waistband.  The pockets are lovely and there are some great fitting tips in the instructions.  I would highly recommend the pattern and am encouraged to buy more Silhouette patterns.  The pattern packet photo is not greatly inspiring but the end result is very pleasing.  This was the easiest fly zip instruction and insertion I have ever done.  The postage and pattern cost approx £15.00 in all and it took about 5 days to arrive.  It was very easy to trace and huge amount of sizes to choose.   Sorry about the photos but I rolled my TATB Agnes top up so the waistband of the Capris could be viewed, I am never properly ready for photos.  Be grateful I try to hide my weird grimacing face which tends to be my normal photo look!

My other make which I am a bit cross about is a Nina Lee Carnaby dress

Now I love this pattern and used my seasalt needlecord to make this version but I must have done something weird as the fit is off.  It bunches at the neckline and shoulders so I think it must be tight and I must have sewn or cut badly at the pocket side seams as it pulls into an odd shape there rather than falling straight.  Anyway I shall still be wearing it.  I’m always optimistic that if I wear and wash anything enough it will miraculously mold itself to my shape.  Ever hopeful.

My last make I havent even photographed, a farfar cardigan by Wardrobe by Me.  It’s hubbies and he wanted it large.  It’s a better attempt than last time but not sure I want to share it yet!  Okay I relent……

It’s not going to win the cosy cardi challenge that’s for sure!  Love you all IBFs, happy sewing!

update ****

advice from the lovely Peggy Sagers

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The pant crotch is too wide for you as I suspect the whole pant is a bit
large…but you can have it that way…however, to fix the crotch, scoop
it as shown in this drawing and that will fix the center wrinkles, only
take enough out to get rid of the wrinkles…too much will cause other
issues…the depth of the scoop should be about 1/2 inch…let me
know…thanks, Peggy

Thanks Peggy not perfect but improved.

Closet Case Patterns – mid rise Ginger Jeans

 

Well they are not ginger and they are perhaps not perfect but this was a lovely pattern that came together easily and quickly.

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Lets start at the beginning.  I had my eye on the pattern last year and persuaded hubby that this was a great birthday present (he always likes ideas for gifts and never sticks to just one present).  I have got used to the idea of PDF patterns as being a great idea although I nearly got caught out by my computer failing out of the blue at the end of last year.  Belt and braces being my middle names saved the day there.  So I duly printed and stuck the pattern together, ummed and aaahhed and got on with sewing everything but the gingers.  I think I was a bit in awe of them, all those perfect top stitched, flat felled, well fitted, happy jeaned people on social media flashing their skills and joy at me, dissing RTW as poor fitting cousins, hardly worthy of a second glance.  The thing is I seem to fit in to ready to wear jeans okay and find them good value for money.  I also think the fabrics that they use in RTW are often far superior to my ability to source the perfect project companion.   I just like/love sewing.

Common sense prevailed re making these little puppies up and I had some geometric stretch denim (ish) material which was a bargain price in the stash and for the life of me couldn’t think what  else I would use it for.  It’s original purchase purpose escapes me, truth be known it was probably the price that attracted me.  I thought I would make the gingers out of this material as a wearable toile (my get out of jail phrase for anything that might go wrong).  The material was stretch but not so much across the weft but more down the vertical line (warp?) which I thought was a bit odd but even more reason to use this stuff and try it out.  According to my measurements I cut out a size 10 in pattern and fabrics for the stovepipe design. I decided to sew the pockets and stays in lining fabric, budget priced cotton lawn and faced the waistband in the same. I interfaced the fly thingys but not the waistband.   I never think of this type of finish being jeans as all my jeans tend to be all over denim but it matters not what you call them as far as I am concerned.

All the fiddly little bits are dealt with first in the pattern directions, the pocket assembly with facings and lining and interfacing bits and bobs before attacking the fly zip insertion.  Now because usually you have the right side of the lining in the pocket it made me doubt myself more than once making these up with the right side of the lining facing into the inside of the jeans but I did as I was told.  I struggled a bit with the idea of having the lining wrong side showing inside the pocket but it does mean that when you look inside your jeans the right side of the lining smiles back.  I used the instructions that come with the PDF but belt and braces again I used the blog on the closet case site and watched a YouTuber video that a vlogger had made to help with getting the construction right.  I tend to cut out one day and start construction the next which I find suits me otherwise I tend to skip transferring the notches and markings properly as I get too impatient with myself and inevitably bodge the lot.

When it came to the zipper fly construction (in spite of making trousers and skirts quite successfully with them previously, I have never really understood this type of insertion) I read the accompanying blog post and didn’t really get it however I totally got it when I got near the end of making these up. It was a proper job light bulb learning and I now understand why you position the zip where you do and the effect it has on the depth of the fly to the trouser or skirt front.   The waist size is not affected. Consequently these do not have much of an overlap on the fly but I now know how to avoid this in the future (wearable toile only for this pair).  I didn’t worry too much about flat felled seams but overlocked and did two lines of top stitching on the overlocked seam (from the right side). I think this is known as a faux flat fell seam. I did it in a similar colour to the fabric rather than in a highly visible contrast stitching where every stitch is a potentially glaring error . I made a small slit at the ankle on the outer seam having seen a Mimi G tutorial for a pattern I haven’t got ( I think it is an Autumn 18 new release one) as I liked the finish. 007369d1-243b-4d28-8101-9b5c0e570d2b-e1537730107245.jpeg

I did have to look up how to do a blind hem and I think this is the first blind hem I’ve done on this machine. For the waistband I decided to insert the belt loops under the lower end of the waistband for strength  (tack them in position right sides facing before attaching the waistband) as I often end up using a belt when the jeans loosen up during wear.  I attached the waistband facing  and when all constructed and top stitched I flipped the belt loops up allowing a bit of play at the lower end and top stitched the other end of the loops in on the top of waistband using the existing topstitching as a guide.  I forgot to interface where the button and buttonhole will go on the waistband and jibbed out on doing a buttonhole just in case it all went wrong cos as things stood these might be worn. Instead I did a hook and bar closure more in keeping with a fitted trouser and I didn’t do rivets on the pockets either.  The back pockets were too low which a few people have made comments on so I did these at the end of construction, a little higher than the pattern markings. My fly shield was not brilliantly placed but as the fly was not my best work I didn’t fuss.

My biggest surprise was that these fitted with no fit adjustments (other than about 2 inches off the length and trimming the excess off the waistband) as normally I have to faff about quite a bit especially with the yoke pieces and crotch depth as well. Heather Lou comments on how she adjusted this after pattern tester feedback and released an updated pattern. I love the pocket stays but not sure how they would have turned out in denim (maybe a bit bulky?) and I love the waistband being faced in lawn. Really happy with these and if I didn’t have so many pairs of jeans I would make another pair right away.  I think I will probably will buy the Megan Nielsen Ash jeans as well as I can’t resist something everyone (?) else comments on favourably but so glad I made these and would highly recommend them.

So it seems the big four patterns will have to wait a bit longer, I’m still sewing the Indie ones! Okay IBFs ….see you soon, just off to cut out a proper Nina Lee Carnaby dress in needlecord. Let’s hope it turns out okay. Happy sewing.