Friday, September 27, 2013

Boston's Sweater

This is a Silhouette Pattern by Peggy Sagers - The Boston's Sweater. I made this awhile ago using some fabric I already had in my stash.  It's a sweater knit (I say knit very loosely because it has very little stretch) that I got on a sale rack for $1.00 per yard.  What a deal! 

The finished garment

My bargain fabric purchase

This pattern is supposed to be made with a very stretchy knit so I needed to do a few things to accommodate the lack of stretch in my fabric:

1.  Make the next size up to allow for the lack of stretch.
2.  Increase the circumference of the arm quite a bit.  I measured my bicep and added about an inch to that measurement and altered the sleeve accordingly.
3.   Practice, practice, practice on the serger to get the stitch width and length correct.  The entire garment, except for the ties, is constructed on the serger with 3/8" seam allowances so there is no room for error!  And, the seams are supposed to come out with a ruffle look to them, but again, since my material had no stretch, I knew that wasn't going to happen. 

Back view
I think the jacket came out quite nice!  Note to self - must make a black turtleneck to match my pants better!  Would I make this pattern again - absolutely!  I've purchased some wonderful black knit - with a lot of stretch to it - to make another one.  I might do a variegated thread on the next one to highlight the seaming - not sure though - will need to practice, practice, practice on that one as well!

Front view
Happy Sewing!


Friday, September 20, 2013

Vogue 1214

Vogue 1214 is a close fitting lined top with a shawl collar, snaps in the front, side front pockets and back detailed seams with godets.  Handmade belt as well with a covered buckle. 
Front view with pockets
I made this awhile ago out of some wool fabric in my stash.  There are quite a few styling seams in the back along with the godets. Sometimes I feel like a duck wagging my tail in this top, because of the godets but it's all fun. 
Back view with godets

 Side view showing the length of the godets.  Sorry about the blacks not matching in my shirt and pants - I think my other black shirt was in the wash at the time.  I don't think I will be making this again, since it is sort of a statement piece, two in my wardrobe would be too many. 

Side View
If I were to sew this again, I would lower the waist about one inch.  It seems to be just a little high in this side view pic. 

Happy Sewing!

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Simplicity 1539

This is a brand new pattern from Simplicity and when I first saw it on, I knew I had to make it. I honestly think, this is the first time in my sewing history, that I have managed to make a pattern within the same few months of it being released.  I am very excited!
Misses' Knit Tunic or Top and Peplum Tops
I do plan on making this blouse a few times.  My first version is View E modified in a few ways.  I will not use the peplum this time, but instead extend the length by 8 inches.  Also, I want full length sleeves instead of 3/4 length.  I knew I wanted to use a stripe and also highlight the front contrasting panel with a different color so my first step is to start with a stretch.  Forgive my drawing abilities, but it gives me a basic idea of which direction I want the stripes to go.  
My basic drawing to determine stripe direction
And here it is!  I think it turned out quite nice!  With a little help from the drawing and a little draping before hand, I can't wait to wear it!
For the contrasting layer I used some knit swimwear fabric I had in my stash and doubled the layer instead of sewing just one (as the pattern suggests).  The double thickness has a nice drape to it and it also helped stop the stripes from showing through underneath.  Also, I tacked the pleats in place underneath the bow in the front.  This helps to maintain the shaping of the front. 
Close up of the contrasting panel in front

The matching of the stripes took some time.  This material has come bumps in it so I tried several different techniques to get them to somewhat line up.  It was similar to sewing on a velvet material.  First, I pinned every single stripe and hand turned the wheel on the sewing machine by hand, carefully removing the pins as I went.  This seemed to work ok, but a few of the stripes were still a bit off.  Next, I tried basting the side together and then sewing.  After an aching neck, I decided the pinning version worked just as well. 

Side view
 Stripes look better at a distance!

Stay tuned for my next version.  It will have the peplum and I have a wonderful teal knit in my stash that will work out great.  It has been aging for awhile so it's time to sew it up!

Happy Sewing!

Friday, September 13, 2013

Vogue 8307

Elvis anyone?
Front View
I call this my Elvis Jacket.  I feel like I should wear this in Las Vegas to an Elvis impersonation show or something.  The pattern is Vogue 8307 and I made it a few years ago.  The main fabric is a wonderful felted wool that I picked up during a vacation to Austria.  The fabric had been aging in my stash until I found the perfect fabric for the collar on another vacation - this time to England.   I love the collar on the jacket - it can either be worn standing up (as in my pictures) or laying down for a flatter look.  I like it standing up.
Back view
The buttons on the front are made up of 4 different layers.  The gray base layer is actually a stone meant to be used for a necklace, but when I saw it at a craft fair, I new it would work for my jacket.  The base gray stone piece is then followed by a basic black plastic button, with a white button on top of that, finished off with a smaller black button on top of the white one.  The buttons are sewn to the jacket all at one time - working the needle thru the different holes in the buttons.  After sewing the first few stitches, it gets easier to sew them as one unit. 

Button Stacking
 The fur collar is acrylic with black swirls in it.  It feels wonderful against your skin!  Beware of sewing fur though - I had black fur fuzzy bits all over my sewing room when I was finished. 

Close up of fur collar
The lining is a plain white polyester fabric that I already had in my stash.  I figured the outside of the jacket is so busy, I needed something plain for the inside. 

Side View
Now - I just need to move somewhere where it's a little colder in the winter and I can wear it!

Happy Sewing!

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Simplicity 3503

What ever happened to the 70's?

That's what I call this dress.  My 70's dress.  Being a child of the 70's myself, this dress brings back memories of my childhood with it's weird, psychedelic print.  The fabric was purchased at the ASG sewing garage sale a few years ago for about $2.00.  I remember people commenting on my strange fabric choice in line and they were wondering what I would make with it. 

The fabric is a very thin knit - similar to the thickness of an old vintage t-shirt that has been laundered one too many times.  It has a wonderful drape to it and a maxi dress fit the print quite nicely.  I had been wanting to give Simplicity 3503 a try so for $2.00 - I couldn't go wrong. 

The armhole is quite low.  I would probably raise it 1 inch if I decide to make this pattern again. 

The front neckline is lower than I normally wear, but with the abalone necklace, it tends to fill in the low cut v-front and hide some of my non-existent cleavage. 

This dress is very comfortable to wear and always draws compliments when I wear it. It's great on a hot summer day, or if it's a little cooler at night, I wear a jean jacket over the top and it looks great too!

Happy Sewing!