Tag Archives: hobbies

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.

5A20C4C0-B4D9-4FE1-816E-5E4140FB1B98

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.

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.

Selfless Sewing and Simple Sew Shannon Collection

The non selfless bit!
Finished measurements and fabric

Well life so far goes on dear IBFs. From your comments or lack of them I can see my recent life changing news has just not touched you at all…ah well let’s keep it simple and just sew. My alliterative title would have been brilliant if I’d made the Shannon shorts but no I had to ruin it by making the wide legged sailor trousers. Saw people wearing them out and about…..( possibly Seasalt bought ones?) and just had to try and make some! I duly cut out the pattern after studying the garment finished measurements on the packet and rather than trace the pattern I went straight to it and cut the size 12 but I did photocopy the smaller pieces (cut out but with all the sizes intact) just in case. I also kept the bits I cut off the main pattern pieces as I have been known to stick them back on to the pattern if needed (with okay results). I had some calico ( bought from BST fabrics ltd) so made a toile in the size 12 which came together quickly and immediately I could se that the size 10 would fit much better.

Shannon Collection trousers

So this is the finished article. They are slightly large but as I’m going through radiotherapy at the moment my appetite is decreased due to the the mouth ulcers and taste changes and I’m a bit smaller than I hope to be post radiotherapy. Also I expect although I washed the linen pre sewing it there may still be a bit of shrinkage. I’m hoping to wear them later in the year. The buttons I struggled with stylistically as hubby thinks bigger statement buttons should be used. I quite like the smaller understated look but feel free to disagree ibfs.

Simplicity 1563a (it says on my pattern)
Selflesssewing for the mister
Stand up straight hubby!

So this is hubby in simplicity. He wanted some lounge around in trousers. These came up a bit large to the size chart but I sliced a couple of inches off the large size in the upper thigh and around the hip area and took out some fullness in the crotch area. He was pleased with them and wears them in the evenings. They were very easy to make, just two legs with grown on waist which is turned down to form the casing for the elastic to thread through as the waistband. He is really fussy about not having a tight waistband so this always has to be tried on then off and adjusted a couple of times at least. No outer leg seams just inner leg seams for this pattern which makes it a very quick sew. The hems have been left long and at some point he will let me know how long he wants the legs left. In the meantime all raw edges have been overlocked with my Lidl bought Singer overlocker. I keep threatening to upgrade to a more plush model but holding off in view of my recent health issues. The fabric is a soft cotton with a brushed cotton feel on the underside, it washes beautifully and was nice to sew. I bought it ages ago from myfabrics.co.uk when they had some reduced prices.

Well that’s all for now IBFs. Fingers crossed that I can make it through radiotherapy. If anyone needs some advice on how to cope with radiotherapy post parotidectomy and facial nerve sacrifice just ask. It’s tough so be ready for it. You never know I might be around to blog some more soon. Happy sewing.

Sewing and another journey

img_20190126_142255-1-e1553636723124.jpg

 

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😀.

Shall I shan’t I?

 

summer-makes-20186125.jpg

Cat in houses pink cotton fabric from BST ltd. shorts butterick 5044 medium view C/D with pockets from A and shortened

Well I don’t know…. shall I continue blogging or not?  It seems there aren’t too many other people interested in my meanderings but strangely I quite like the fact that no one’s very bothered about my sewing journey.  It sort of reflects my life really and I feel I can be quite honest as I’m not upsetting anyone.  I hate upsetting people and don’t like being upset myself.  I often (not that often) open my gob after I have bottled stuff up for ages and then a load of mismanaged, poorly formed ranting and abuse pours out which I instantly regret but obviously it’s been released, heard and hurt, causing no end of upset and consequence.  Anyway so what, that’s not what I’m blogging about….honesty re sewing is more what I want to write about as it sort of documents things somewhere where I can find them.  I do document my makes with notes but not in a consistent place so I often can’t revisit my notes quickly for reference.  Di of Daffodiledger vlog  showed a lovely sketch pad journal that she had received as a prize from Sewstainability@wordpress.com which is actually what prompted me to think about doing a blog update. If you read this sewstainability I couldn’t see all the pictures on your July blog or comment to tell you!  I don’t think you will see this so never mind!  Anyway I think I might try to source the sketch pad journally thing.

I wore loads of my latest makes on a recent holiday. I have been trying to make more tops as this is where I need more practise in fit and design.  I’ll insert a few pics to help highlight the problems.  I was ever so pleased that I managed to wear something me made every day and even elicited a positive comment from a store assistant in Corfu Town regarding my me made (very hastily pre departure) cross body holiday bag.  I was delighted but also highly embarrassed as the stitching was definitely not the best although she kindly said, “ trust me, the stitching is fine”. She had commented on the unusual design and how nice it was…..ooh I have been waiting a long time for a comment like that! My Hubbie found it funny but he was quite chuffed for me.  I’m keen to show you the things I made and some will be quite old ( circa 4-5 yrs when I first dipped into the wonderful world of sewing).

summer makes 20186135

The above are quite recent makes

1. Butterick culottes size 14 B6178 Black linen  (myfabrics.co.uk online) with simplicity 1693 green floral lawn like cotton from Sew Fabric size 14 view c without an overlay

2. Butterick culottes 6178 blue linen my fabrics.co.uk & sew over it London Susie blouse size 16 (adjusted as it was too big to closer to 14/12 fit) using seasalt cotton voile fabric

summer makes 20186134

Butterick 6178 & soi london susie blouse

3. B6178 and simplicity 1693 (blue and black viscose Minerva crafts)

summer makes 20186139

4. B6178 black linen with Peppermint Mag in the folds Ruffle sleeve top free pattern Size 16 graded to 14 blue viscose with yellow flowers -Minerva crafts

summer makes 20186143

B6178 &in the folds ruffle sleeve top

5. Butterick 6178 blue linen – myfabrics.co.uk and sew over it Lulu top – blue cotton fabric with ? Birds -Sew fabric

Butterick 6178 culottes & sew over it London Lulu top

6. Butterick 6178 black linen with simplicity K1467 size 16 view A – purple tana lawn not completely sure from where but it will have been heavily discounted!

summer makes 20186144

Simplicity K1467 & b6178

 

 

Same deal left to right working across:

1. Simplicity 6210 knit fabric (very first dress shortened from maxi to just below knee) Truro fabrics and my cross nody handbag with adjustable straps and 2 added pockets and top zip. Also has a key fob.  Elephant print cotton (BST ltd I think) and green faux leather(crafters companion).  Strap adjuster applied using Debbie Shore’s helpful YouTube vlog.

2. Burda 7062 view b- bengaline stretch fabric from BST ltd online

3. Sew over it London Lulu dress with pockets removed when dress made smaller at side seams and a tie belt added in the same fabric to help give shape. Blue floral cotton – eBay

4. Lulu dress again.

5. New look 6500 view c cut size 16 but reduced to 14 ish top and blended to 12 ish waist and hips.  Seasalt floral linen I metre used.  Facings cut from blue linen

6. New look 6500

7. Tanya whelan – sew many dresses sew little time book. Excellent mix and match bodice and skirt options in this book.  Blue paisley cotton from Sew Fabric

8. Butterick 5044shorts in grey polka dot cotton from Truro fabrics – elasticated waist & pockets so comfy

Left to right again

1. Sew Over it London Zoe dress blue cotton fabric not sure where from but possibly Minerva crafts or myfabric.co.uk

2. Zoe dress again – pockets elevated in side seams, sway back adjustment, narrow shoulder adjustment and added 2 inches to length

3. Orla dress by True Navy free pattern – cotton from the Sewing Studio

4. Sew over it Lulu top that needs the gathers and bias neckline adjusted and reworked ASAP.  Fabric- Sew Fabric . Trousers -M&S RTW.

5. Tanya whelan book :Sew many Dresses Sew little time mix and match bodices and skirts in poppy print cotton from somewhere

6. Tanya Whelan again with a lovely soft drapey fabric from eBay and paired with a handy light weight cardie

 

Well I hope you enjoy this blog my lovely IBFs xx

 

Getting more and more fed up

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Well it hasn’t stopped raining and I am seriously fed up.  Sat in the lounge last night unpicking my overlarge coco top I spied a small scurrying creature emerge from behind the tv and make it’s way across the room and under the sofa.  A bloody field mouse.  Hubby having let the cat in some hours earlier had neglected to do do the very necessary ‘eyeball the mouth check’ that is required whenever the cat returns home for food and warmth top up.  She must have brought it in to terrorise and forgotten her plaything when confronted by the delights of home. It must have waited, frozen in fear for several hours for its bid for freedom.  Anyway all hell lets loose as we come together (I call very loudly for back up) for the urgent room dismantle to hunt down rogue mouse 🐁 .  The upside is a super clean lounge and a mouse freed intact from the confines of a 🐈 cat’s playpen, the downside….this could easily happen again so vigilance required at all times and strict eyeballing of  afore mentioned cat’s mouth to be performed on re-entry to human habitat.

Back to sewing…..really happy with pink striped TATB Agnes top and blue camouflage jersey Vogue V9244 Marcy Tilton hooded Sharks fin hem jacket but totally sad that TATB coco top is a right mess.  Issues with size and neckline and also tension with sewing machine.  I’m quite fed up that a pattern I had so much problem acquiring and so wanted is causing so much grief in the sewing.  Fed up with PDF downloads….never seem to be able to stick them together properly, although Angela Kane does brilliant PDFs where they just butt together with no trimming.  I know you can get AO format and get it printed but I may as well have bought the printed pattern, I was trying to save money.  Anyway saving money has not worked as my fabric so lovely and soft and snuggly in a lovely muted orange and brown stripe is now chewed and distorted and in the wash pile awaiting a miracle to transform it into something wearable.  Am I the only person to think a good wash with a warm tumble dry will reshape and save a totally wrecked sewing project?

On the subject of saving money which always makes me think of Minerva fabrics, latest discount codes and calico from BST fabrics ltd, along with avoid Indie and buy the big four only when discounted  (high degree of organisation required), I broke my own rules as I was struck by the stylish lines of the Style Arc Ziggy Biker Jacket and just had to have.   No doubt I shall live to regret this choice as my skills are not great and I  will now have to devote time and dedication to tracing the pattern before wrecking my fabric (Minerva crafts again) and then moaning about it here to you my lovely IBFs but still excited for the chance to produce a fabulous garment that will look just like the other lovelies I have seen (pattern review.com and pinterest etc).   Well signing off now….watch this space for the demise of some lovely fabric in the misshapen form of a Style Arc Ziggy…..

Festivities on hold whilst sewing continues

 

Well I started to make the Colette Moneta in a purple ponte roma as I have been keen to make this for ages – well yuk and double yuk is all I can say – its a nice pattern and nothing wrong with the instructions but I really dislike the shape on me and also the ponte roma – just not keen at all.  The size XL bodice was not really big enough – it really pulls on the shoulders.  I had to make it with sleeves as I would never put my upper arms out for scrutiny and I think they make it look worse (sleeves I mean).  I am hoping I can use the pattern with more drapey fabric at some stage as I don’t like paying so much for a pattern ( a birthday present from hubby which means it comes out of our money!).  I don’t think it is flattering on me and also I had an issue with the neckband ( I drafted a separate neck band) and I must have stretched the clear elastic on the front skirt as it didn’t gather properly just in the very front where you notice it most….wouldn’t you know!  I tried it on back to front and hubby said it looked better but the neck band had the join in the back so you see it when I wear it the wrong way round.  I put the neck band on 2-3 times so I can’t really take it off again as the last time I dared myself to really tiny stitch it on with stretch stitch to last!  We’ve all done it my IBFs so don’t roll your eyes at my stupidity, I’ve already had strong words with myself, I need no further disapproval from you.

I’d like to show you my Bettine skirt – all nicely improved and salvaged from the Bettine dress – not yet……..but don’t lose faith, maybe soon or ….oneday.

Burda6534 jeans patternF5551Should probably be sewing the Deer and Doe melilot shirt (another birthday present) but crisis of confidence with shirts, bodices and the like so thought I would sew some trousers as I wear a lot of trousers and my M&S staples are on their last legs really or at least have been seen so often by all of the people that know me that I feel I should get an extra couple of pairs that are wearable into the wardrobe to show that I have more than 2 pairs of jeans that fit and relieve the amount of washing the favourites have to endure.  Have just acquired the Closet Case Files Mid-rise Ginger Jeans pattern but not quite ready for the intensity of effort that I shall put into those so thought I would sew the Burda 6534 skinny jeans with yoke, front and back pockets in View A, size 14.  Used a mid pink stretchy denim (myfabrics.co.uk – when this denim was heavily discounted – enough discount for me to call these a wearable toile).

 

My measurements aligned with the size 14 so that’s what I cut and when I basted them together at the outset I thought that probably it was a reasonable starting point.  Once I had put them together though I realised that the stretch of the denim meant I should probably have cut a size 10/12 erring on the 10 side rather than 12.   I really like the style but would make a few adjustments to the pattern before sewing again.  The yoke is far too deep for me as I have sway back issues with most patterns and the depth of this really added to the pooling of fabric.  The waist was too big and gapey so that needed extra attention – the waistband was cut with a CB seam so that was helpful but I think I would add side seams as well to help adjust it further (due to never knowing how stretchy the denim will be and toile’s only helpful if using identical fabric and I don’t like pink enough).  Also I find that the Fly zip front is often too long compared to RTW so it always seems to look a bit odd on fly front trousers and jeans patterns.  Would really consider reducing that length next time.  Also I could have been neater with my fly front zip and pocket facings. Any top stitching I did was a bit ropey although I didn’t do too much as I knew I had to make fit adjustments and this would get hacked around. Thought the instructions were okay, although I did check with a couple of other tutorial instructions to be very sure regarding the fly front!  Oh what the heck – I like them – they’re comfy and I had the presence of mind to put usable belt loops on (all included in the pattern) and with a belt they stay up just fine.  Wore them today and no-one stared – result!

On a sad note – The sewing belle ltd did not deliver my Tilly and the Buttons Coco dress pattern or my Orla shirt pattern so thumbs down to them.  Had to work hard to get any response from them by email or messenger.  I eventually went through PayPal resolution.  Have not had a problem with them before and a bit disappointed that they couldn’t just respond to my query.  I note though that they no longer stock Tilly and the Buttons.  Hey ho hopefully a refund will be in the offing.

Well IBFs I’m off to put up the deckies – fibre optic tree already twinkling madly in a psychedelic frenzy.  Merry Christmas and happy sewing to you all.