Saturday, July 31, 2010

How to make a jumper for an Ompa-Lompa

First up before that almighty important lesson I want to show you my muslin (so far) for Burda 7579. I only need to add the sleeves (or sleeve as it only a muslin).

So far I am very happy with the fit straight out of the packet. I will probably need to shorten the sleeve but I will see after I get around to making it.

The funny part of this was that I made the muslin, tried it on (over my clothing) and it fit... put it on Diana - it didn't fit. Diana hasn't been keeping up with the program! I needed to drop her hip size and bust size to match mine. Funny how these things sneak up on you!

About the ompa-lompa jumper...

When I was in Warwick for the Jumpers & Jazz festival, I saw some bags made from felted jumpers and had to try one myself. So I purchased this lovely 100% wool jumper from the op shop.

I like the cream colour but it is not very practical for a fabric bag (for me) so decided to dye it olive green at the same time I was putting it through a hot wash to felt it.

Well, olive green it ain't and shrink! ...eek!... I expected it to shrink but not this much...

DH commented that I had made a jumper for an ompa-lompa...

Now I hope I have fabric left to make a bag. It is also very thick so I am not sure how it is going to go. Maybe it should be a hat?

Oh - and for anyone who may be interested I have resurrected my fitness blog - Fit & Forty *mumble*.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Pants and jackets

I have been working on making some simple double knit elastic waist pants. I want these pants mainly to wear under long slim-line tops. Well so far I have made 4 (one muslin - now PJ pants, one already packed off to Vinnies and two 'not so great' but 'will do' versions) and have now thrown my hands up in horror! This should be simple but obviously not!

Here is #3 version in black DK.

They are made from Vogue 1020. I bought this pattern mainly for the top, dress & skirt but decided to use it when I decided I needed DK knit pants in my wardrobe.

Well I think the front looks fine but I have all sort of issues at the back and I am so over it I won't go into it here. I have learnt:
  • all knit fabrics behave totally differently so give up on muslin-ing a knit pattern!
  • the Vogue crotch line does not work for me
  • Pattern Reviewer's can give great advice on fit issues but go in with a thick skin...ouch!
Anyway I have a black and a dark brown pair in the wardrobe that are not a brilliant fit but no worse than a lot of RTW, so I will wear them for the moment until I feel brave enough to go down the pants-fit road again.

My next major project is a black jacket which I need for work. I have bought a bargain priced piece of 100% black wool from Bargain Box in Ipswich and this pattern with Alison's help.

I think this pattern fits the bill - for a work jacket - long enough to fit over the new uniform shirt top. Casual but still dressy enough with enough cute features to keep me happy.

I have the muslin cut, the silk lining prepared and the the wool is fused to a lightweight quality interfacing. This pattern has 20 pieces (more when you realise that some are cut from the main fabric as well as the lining) so is going to be quite a challenge, but I am looking forward to it.

Here is the silk charmeuse from Gorgeous fabrics that I plan to use as the lining.

It feels beautiful, has no black in it and probably cost more than the outer fabric but I love it and am looking forward to using it for this jacket. Keep your fingers crossed that the muslin fits without too much heart-ache!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Jumpers and Jazz

I went with a couple of quilting buddies to the Warwick Jumpers & Jazz festival on the week-end. We had a lovely day attending a quilt airing and then wondering the main street of Warwick to look at the trees decorated for the cold weather.

Pictures of some of my favorites ....

This one was done by the Spinners & Weavers Association - a fabulous rain-forest tree transposed to a cold climate...
The Spinners & Weavers had a store and Vicki tried on this great felted vest made by Helen Stumkat.

I couldn't resist buying this hand spun and dyed yarn to make another scarf!

The jelly fish tree...

Even the statues were rugged up against the cold...

More trees in jumpers...

This cactus was a particular favorite...

Interesting buttons on the back of the cactus jumper...

Hopefully more sewing soon...

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Bobble Scarf

I have finished crocheting my bobble scarf. I bought the kit from the Art Textiles Show - so I am pretty happy to have made up 2 of the three items I bought on the day. I need to try the hot-fix studs next.

It was a bit shorter than the one pictured but that one may be from slightly different yarn. However I am still very pleased with it. The colours are gorgeous and the bobbles were fun to make and to wear. This top is not the right one for this scarf but I wanted to show it to you (and I wasn't going to change my outfit for a scarf!)

Jenny King paraded her designs at the show and they used nice wooden stick pins to hold the scarfs together. I looked on the web to see if I could buy one but the ones I found were much more complicated than the ones they used so DH volunteered to make me one.

Wasn't that nice of him?

Friday, July 9, 2010

Sewing fun, shopping and Vogue 8597

Busy week but lots of sewing fun!

First up a day trip with the girls to the Ipswich Art Gallery to see the exhibition called 'The fabric of Society': Australia's Quilt Heritage from colonial times to 1960'.

It was fabulous and I highly recommend it to anyone within a reasonable drive to go and see it.

After the Art Gallery, we shopped at Bargain Box at Ipswich also and got some absolute bargains! After a lunch break we went to Sumner Park to the Fabric Collection (I think it used to be called the Fabric Barn??) and also got some lovely fabrics. Here is the obligatory photo of my haul...

L to R: 100% wool in black for a jacket, gorgeous stretch in a terracotta, snakeskin in a polyester jersey, a lovely sweater knit and a nice denim style fabric in gorgeous brown self-stripe.

I was most flattered when we got to the Fabric Collection to be recognised by the girls in the shop as they read my blog. Hi Vanessa!

I have worked a lot this week but shopping has been arriving at my door. First up I finally got some labels done.

These are an eBay purchase from a seller in Hong Kong. I paid $54 Aud for 200 woven labels - much cheaper than anything I could find locally. They took about two weeks to make and then I received them about a week after I was notified that they were sent. I am very happy with the quality of them and may order some more in a lighter colour.

Here is my first label sewn into a garment...

I also received books from Amazon. They all look great...

And even though I worked a lot this week, I scored a Friday off (rare for me) so I got to finish a top I started last week-end, using the fabric I purchased at the Textile Arts Festival. The fabric is gorgeous, soft and the most delicious colour called 'Warm Blackberry'.

I made Vogue 8597 View A.
You can see it is long and this is the shorter length it comes in. I am going to leave it for the time being though and see how it goes. The hem looks a little stretched out but this is hot off the sewing machine and I think it will settle down when I press it.

I did want long sleeves but did not have enough fabric, so 3/4 they are...

The review is here.

All up a great week full of sewing related stuff! I am still on a high as I got the day off and as well as catching up on a mountain of laundry, grocery shopping and tidying up, I sewed!!!

I am off to the gym soon to try a new PT group session called MMA and strangely I am looking forward to that too!

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Michelle O dress

I have jumped on the bandwagon to make my own version of one of Michelle Obama's sheath dress.


The pattern used is Vogue 8593, View C. I prefer the 3/4 sleeve but have decided to be practical and made the full length sleeve to make this a dress for the coldest days. However the sleeves can be pushed up to get the 3/4 look.

Fabric is from Kerryn's fabric World and is a thick spongy blend of rayon/nylon/spandex. It may have been a little heavy for this pattern as the pattern calls for a lightweight double knit. However the neckline still seems to sit well, even with all the thickness of the pleats and the fabric means it is a lovely warm dress for the coldest days. The fabric was not loved by my machine either, I think because of the sponginess.

The only real variation made was to widen the sleeve at the bicep. I made a size 12 and it fits really well except for the sleeve width. However this seems to be a common alteration for me lately.

I was very happy with the invisible zip. We snapped these photos this morning before the Saturday chores started and my DH tells me I really need to wear hose with this dress as my legs look so white with this dark dress. When I wear it out, I plan to try a pair of skin-tone fishnet stockings.

I like this dress and think it will be a good, useful addition to the wardrobe. It is comfortable to wear and warm. I plan to wear it to a work dinner and a photography club dinner (DH's hobby) this month and think it will be vastly suitable for these occasions. I don't think the neckline is the best line for me but that would probably be my only quibble with this pattern. Not sure if I will make any more. If I get to like the neckline as I wear it, I may make a summer sleeveless version.

Review here .