Monday, March 30, 2009

Jacket ...cont....

I have finally settled on a button for my Vogue 8124 jacket. So now I could actually make the bound buttonhole. Once again, I made a sample and then made the buttonhole on my jacket. This is the buttonhole in the real jacket pictured with the button I have chosen next to it. (Looks like it needs a good press yet.)

On the week-end I sewed my BWOF 02-2009-115 up to the stage of adding the pockets and finishing the buttonholes. I had to put it aside to work on the Vogue jacket for my sewing class. I got a little stuck at the collar stage but slept on it and that seemed to clear the block. I am really pleased at how it is coming together. Hopefully soon I will have two new jackets to add to my wardrobe!

Next to do is to start assembling the lining for the Vogue jacket. Next lesson is this Thursday and I want to be as well prepared as I can be.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Don't you love a day off...

Now that work has started again, I have not had much time to sew. In fact I have not sewn anything since I last posted last Thursday... shocking!

As well as work sucking up time, I went away last week-end to Brisbane as I had to drop my hubby off so he could fly to Melbourne to attend a Management School for the week. This however did give me the chance to shop. I was supposed to shop for buttons but of course ended up with more fabric! The first two fabrics pictured below are from Sckaf's. The first is a lovely stretch knit in caramels and browns which will coordinate with a plain brown Cavalli jersey I have in my stash. I pan to make the dress from Vogue 8138 from this fabric and use the brown Cavalli for the jacket. The next jersey fabric across will be used to line the dress as the print fabric is too light for a dress. Then the last fabric is one I picked up at Gardams by chance last week - dirt cheap but with a lovely feel, I plan to make a pair of pants - probably the Alice & Olivia pants I have made previously (V1059).

Well, today I did get to sewing. I had a really quiet day at home. Youngest son went to a mate's house, elder went to the Show (it is a Show holiday here for us) and hubby is still in Melbourne (coming back late tonight). So I planned a day sewing. I was going to keep working on my jacket but I am dithering about the choice of button so put it aside for the moment and traced off and cut-out Burda wof 02-2009-115.
This is to be made in a sage green linen pique I bought from Gorgeous Fabrics. My colours shamelessly copy the ones in the magazine. Today I cut it all which took all day and did a sample of a Hong Kong seam as that is how I plan to finish the inside seams as the jacket is unlined. Here is my sample - I used a pretty left-over from my quilting days which matches the green really well. Having never done a Hong Kong seam before I was surprised at how simple it was.

Purdy, ain't it????

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Jacket on it's way!

I have done class 3 of my jacket class today. I think they thought I was a bit anal as I did so many samples before I attempted the real thing in my jacket. I am actually relieved that I am finally achieving that level of patience that I can hold out & make the samples rather than just going for it .... I made a sample last week of a double welt. This week I did a sample of a double welt with a pocket flap. Then I repeated the exercise in the fabric I am using for the jacket. When I got home from the class, then I made the made the actual pockets. So now I have a double welt pocket with flaps on each side of the jacket. There isn't actually a pocket bag behind the pocket. It is only about 1/2 inch deep. I will never use it as a pocket as I wouldn't want to spoil the line of the jacket. Plus I am a girl and I always carry a handbag!

I should probably mention that this jacket is Vogue 8124. In the pattern,the pocket is totally faux... just a sewn-on flap. I have made a double-welt with flap and I am so pleased as to my eyes it still looks better to be a 'real' welt pocket.
Next challenge - bound button-hole! I have a button chosen from my button box but as I am heading to the big smoke (Brisbane) on the week-end I will have another look for a suitable button. Then I will make the button-hole when I am certain which button I am using.
Just for your info, we are using the book 'Jackets for Real People' and it has all the the details of how to make these pockets - a real winner!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

More tops and reviews done.

Today I wore my Ottobre waterfall top and found it very comfortable. I did put a black camisole underneath it this time and as you can see it was much better - thanks for the comments on this top!
I also reviewed it and the review can be found here.
I also have completed two other tops. They are both Burda WOF 02-2009-108, the bateau neck top which has been very popular. I made the first one in a good quality black knit fabric using the pattern without any changes. I didn't follow their instructions, but sewed in the sleeves flat. In the instructions, though it does say to use vilene bias tape on the neck-line edges, the shoulder seams and the armhole edges. I did put some on the neckline edge and was very sorry as it pulled the neckline in too tightly and pulled the shoulders up. I consulted with my sewing guru BFF who advised me to tug on the neckline until it 'popped'. This I did and it did help a bit. Hopefully it will relax some more as I wear it. This black knit is quite tight so I would not use bias tape interfacing on the neckline again, unless the fabric was flimsy.
However saying that, the second fabric is more flimsy but I used no tape and it worked much better. (Next time the only part I will put interfacing on is the shoulder seams to help stabilise them).
The second one was made with a mesh fabric. I doubled the fabric for the front and back and left the sleeves as a single layer. I also did not hem it but trimmed the hems even and left them raw. I have seen this done with RTW.

The review is here if you want more detail on how it was made.

I had my second jacket lesson and we practised welt pockets as well as discussed the next steps to take. My pattern has fake flap pockets, but I plan to make real welt pockets with flaps as well as a bound buttonhole to get the most out of the lessons. That will be next week, this week I need to sew the darts and side seams so that I can be ready to put the pockets and buttonhole into the jacket at the next lesson.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Fitness Blog

For anyone who is interested I have started a new blog based on chat about health & fitness. It can be found here - Fit and Forty*mumble*. Pop over and have a look!

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Ottobre waterfall top

I started a jacket class on Thursday with Felicity of 'For Frock's Sake'. Her website is coming soon so I will link it when it is available. She is a fabulous local lady who is a qualified Palmer-Pletsch teacher with years of experience of sewing and tailoring. Felicity has recently started her own business and this class is the first of a series of classes that are being offered. She also offers a sewing service as well as supplying sewing products, including a beautiful interfacing we used on the jackets. The website isn't live yet but will be well worth a look when you can. I will give you more details on the jacket as I progress with it. So far it is tissue-fitted, cut out and interfaced.
This week-end I decided a simple project was in order so I have made from Ottobre 2-2009, the waterfall top (5). This is my first go at doing an Ottobre pattern. I found the tracing out slightly more painful than the burda wof magazine. The instructions were fine however so it didn't take long to make the top. The fabric is a lovely cotton/poly jersey from Gorgeous fabrics. It is very light weight so very suitable for this top. However I didn't realise until I saw the photos how transparent it is so you can see my black bra under the top. I will have to be careful what I wear underneath it. I quite like it - the only issue is that the sleeves are very tight so if I make another one I will have to watch that.

On the fitness front I have downloaded podcats of the couch to 5k running program and have completed week one - so far so good. I am also serioulsy considering doing my Cert III & IV in fitness so that I can work inthe industry. I will let you know how I go. I am considering starting a different blog to track my progress but haven't come up with a name for it so nothing has happened as yet.

Monday, March 2, 2009


I needed a plain simple t-shirt with a sleeve so that I could do a walk in the sun without burning my shoulders. It should be simple to buy something like this but I didn't want to spend a lot of money and the inexpensive one (still Au$25) fitted terribly in the shops, so I decided it would be easier to make it myself. I even had a piece of black cotton interlock left over from another project, so I got out the very successful Jalie 2566 and quickly whipped up a simple t-shirt that cost nothing (as it was a left-over piece of fabric). I was really happy with that and it really makes me understand why we sew - even simple t-shirts!

I needed the top to participate in a fun run called Peak to Park. I did the 4 km walk but would love to try the run next time. I am planning to use this year to improve my (fairly non-existent) running skills. It was a very hot morning (for the first day of Autumn) but they raised over $25,000 for local charities. Their other aim is to encourage people to exercise and it has really sparked my interest in running. I have started running on the treadmill at the gym and when I feel more confident that I won't collapse in a screaming heap on the ground, plan to try running out doors. There is another fun run locally in two weeks that has a 5km and a 10 km option and I am seriously wondering if I could tackle the 5 kms. Is two weeks enough time to at least get to the stage of running the 5km most of the time? hmmm... maybe not....

I have also made another top from this Jalie pattern. This time I did the view with the mock turtleneck and drafted the sleeve to a three quarter length. This lovely fabric was gifted to me by a good friend who bought it thinking of the black McCall's jumper I made recently. I think it goes really well with it. I am thinking I may have to make the cardigan to wear over this top also, perhaps in a black fabric to give it more options for use. (excuse the stern face - kid photographer's aren't renown for giving you warning before they press the button!)
And as it took so long to prepare this post (waiting on the photos), I managed to finish Burda 10-2008-119 Wrap Top. I am a bit neaaahhh... about this top. I thought I was going to love it but I don't. I don't know if it is the fabric I chose or maybe you need a bigger bust to fill it out or what, but it isn't really working for me.
I had even purchased more fabric to make a second version before I finished this one, but have decided against it and will save the fabric for something else.

Note if you make this top - I spent two days mucking about to get the zipper in just to find I could easily pull it over my head. Maybe if you have a larger bust you may need the zip. I also had trouble with pulls in the fabric so found I needed a brand new needle (I used a ball point as it is a stretch satin) and that improved the situation. Of course all the unpicking while I was trying to get the zip in did add more pulls in the fabric also... neeeaaahhh!