Sunday, June 30, 2013

Knitting, knitting...

I have been knitting when I am not sewing and have finished a few different projects.  This is the one I am most proud of, as it is probably 30+ years since I have made a project of this magnitude... knitting wise.

The Miriam cardigan made in Classic 5 ply from Bendigo Mills.  Photos are below, but if you want more detail please visit Ravelry - here.

The other recently finished knitting project is a scarf as a gift for my DMIL who is not very well at the moment.

Pics here but more detail, here for any knitters needing to know more.

before blocking...

and after...

Keep on crafting... another Lekala top to come... Ciao! 

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Linnea top - Ottobre 02/2010-1

A new top - sleeveless, so I thought it might not get a lot of use in this current cool weather, but I think this piece may have found it's place in my wardrobe!

I used a piece of wool jersey bought ages ago from Gorgeous Fabrics and for the life of me, I don't know what I was thinking buying only one yard at the time.  It has sat in the stash since then while I have tried to work out what to make from it.  Eventually I came to the conclusion a sleeveless top that could be worn as a layering piece may be useful in the cool weather wardrobe.  I settled on Ottobre 02-2010-1, the Linnea top.  This top has had good reviews and now I want to rave too.  Why did I wait so long?

This is a cute top layered or by itself.  The slightly cut in shoulder is flattering but still allows you to wear your regular bra.  The high neckline makes it work well under jackets and cardigans.

With my mustard cardigan..

With my jacket...

The fabric was interesting.  After sewing with Merino wool jerseys this feels positively scratchy, but was advertised as a designer piece.  However after sewing it up, I am in love with this fabric.  The quality is great, it handles and sews up like a dream and has an interesting texture.  

If anyone is interested the skirt is a Butterick one - blogged here.

I pretty much followed the pattern, but did not use the clear elastic in the armhole hems.  I tried it as I was curious to see how it would go.  My sewing machine happily basted the elastic on with a zigzag, but the twin needle just turned into a birds nest every time I tried to finish the hem. So no elastic, but I don't think it will impact on this top.

I can see more of these tops in my future (no crystal ball required!) ... Ciao! 

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Waste not, want not - new pj's

I had a lovely piece of soft pink merino leftover from my top in the last post and I really wanted to sew it up while I had the machines threaded in pink.  (I know I am not the only one who hates changing thread colours if it can be avoided!)

So I settled on making a camisole which I paired with pj pants made from a pretty piece of quilting cotton that has been sitting in my stash for far too long.  I did not have quite enough of the cotton to make a full pair of pj pants, so I took some of the height off the waistband and added a yoga style waistband in the last skerrick of pink merino.

The legs are of course both the same length but trying to dress Diana in pants is a challenge!

The camisole pattern I used is Jalie 2564 (which I think is discontinued now).  As a change though I made the shelf bra and added the adjustable sliders to the straps.  

For some reason I had a set of white sliders and purple rings in the stash, so I thought that would do for this project.

The pants pattern is a TNT - Burdastyle 11-2009-131.  I loved the waistband I added.  I took the depth of the waistband off the top of the pants.  I got the details for the size to use from a tutorial - here.  

It did work well and is very comfy but the merino jersey is too soft for this really and stretches out a bit on wearing.  To overcome this I sewed a bit of elastic to the waistband so that it sits inside the fold at the top.  I didn't cut this elastic very tight, I just need it to help hold up the pants for me after wearing them for awhile, while still being comfy to sleep in.

For the hem I played with my decorative stitches as usual and it was a good chance to use up the pink thread (not a colour I use a lot in my sewing).

Sleep tight folks... I know I will in my new pink, pretty pj's!... Ciao!

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Lekala 4042.. # 2 and 3

I outlined in my last post the sad tale of my first Lekala muslin, since then the success rate has been much higher.  I have finished muslin #2 and made the first real top (in more expensive merino wool jersey) .  Not many more words, pics now of successful tops (I think)...

Musk pink merino ... styled to go out shopping...


The top without the extras...

more pics.... IRL the bra does not show this way.... it seems to be the flash making it show...

Now the second muslin - in a gorgeous rayon.... I have to wear it with a merino under-layer to survive the cold so excuse the wrinkles & bumps... (well the muffin top probably can't be explained away...)

I love this pattern and have a third one lined up in a fab electric blue merino (for those not in Australia or NZ, merino is a wool jersey which is gorgeous and soft and if you have access to it, buy it!)

Next post is a waste not, want not... Ciao kittens!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Misc. sewing... trunks, pet blankets & a muslin

I have been doing a bit of practical sewing lately.  Nothing flash, but all needed. 

First up I have made one pair of men's trunks from Jalie 2327.  DH is going to trial these to make sure he likes them before I make anymore.  This pattern is discontinued now - I don't know why as it gets great reviews.  I found some elastic with stripes on it in a grey/black by chance at a closing down sale.  The blue fabric is tee shirt leftovers.

Next up more left-over fabrics, pretty lace elastic and fold over elastic made up this cream set for me.  Another Jalie pattern - 2564.  I have made this before and love how it uses up left-over bits and pieces.  The striped pair are cream on the back and have foe for the elastic.  This is another discontinued but highly recommended pattern.

Another pattern I have made before - Tanga pants.  I made the x-small this time, as I thought the  small was on the large size last time I made them, but now that I have made these and trialed them, I am thinking small is the right size for me.  I think this lace elastic may not be as soft as the last lot I used.  Thank goodness for stretch I can and will still use these, but think I will go back to small next time.  

I am trying to clean out some clutter and this polar fleece was never going to be used as the piece was probably too small for most things.  So I have cut it up and hemmed it into 4 small blankets.  One has been given to my cat, and the other three are going to the RSPCA.

... and last but not least, I have made a muslin of a Lekala top - 4042.  This is actually the second muslin.  The first one I used a fabric from  First up I put the yoke piece in the wrong way and didn't work it out until I had sewn the whole top!  Why I didn't realise when none of the pieces matched properly I don't know?!  Anyway I unpicked the yoke pieces and  put them back in.  The top was on the smug side but not too bad.  Then I washed it and it shrunk (I had pre-washed too) and to top if off it developed a hole!  Unpicking rayon always leads to disaster!  That one is in the bin now which is a shame as the colour was really pretty.  

This is the second muslin.  A lovely rayon from Gorgeous Fabrics.  I think this one might have more stretch in it.  I found it so much easier to sew now that I sewed the yokes the right way!!  I sewed the side seams a little narrower to give me a little more ease and viola!  

Not hemmed as yet as I have run out of Steam-a-Seam, but I wanted to show you the end result.  

The collar is a little floppy but this fabric is very soft and I think it can work with a slight roll-over.  Now that I have this pattern sorted I plan to make a pile of these as I really need some higher necked tops with long sleeves.  I have some real pretty merino jerseys I plan to make it up in as well as a glitter fabric for after-five wear!  Can you have too many of a good top??

BTW the instructions and pattern are pretty good but it does not mention when to sew the centre front seam.  I have sewn it after the collar both times so far, but am wondering if it may be better sewn before the collar.  If  anyone else has made this top please let me know what you think about when to sew the CF seam.

ETA - I have contacted Lekala patterns and asked this question - they replied really quickly - sew CF seam first, then move onto the rest of the instructions.  They also said they would correct that on their patterns - very impressed with the customer service!


Monday, June 17, 2013

Ponte jacket... Vogue 8795

OK, it might not be ponte, maybe it is a double knit???  The fabric was bought from Gorgeous Fabrics yonks ago so I cannot remember what the blend is.  However it is lovely and drapey with a gorgeous stripe/texture to it.  It worked really well for this pattern - Vogue 8795 a Marcy Tilton pattern for a lovely relaxed shape jacket with a really interesting front detail/collar thing going on.

Not much to say, I shortened the sleeves (maybe not by enough?) but otherwise it is true to the pattern.  Photos follow.  Credits for the photos to my buddy Kelley taken on a field trip to New Farm/Fortitude Valley which has a great fabric store and a great yarn store.  I bought heaps but have no photos of that. 

Photos now - tell me what you think of the style...

Ciao kittens... more soon!

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Vogue 1197 ... ponte pants

I love me a good pair of ponte pants - elastic waistband and all.  Comfy like pj's, but smart enough to wear out.  The last two pair of ponte pants I made have worn out and I wasn't a big fan of the pattern I used.  This time I tried Vogue 1197.

The pattern gives a good outline of how to adjust the pants for fit and the adjustments I made were a full front thigh adjustment, shortened the leg length and lowered the waistband.

These pants have a lovely leg line...

and I love the hem detail...

This pattern is a winner - two pieces, easy to sew and great instructions on how to make the adjustments you need.  I have also made a black pair which I left slightly longer than this pair.  This pair was hemmed to the recommendation in the pattern and work well with flat shoes.

Two days, two posts... don't expect this to keep up... Ciao!

Monday, June 10, 2013

Mustard cardigan ... Burdastyle 03-2013-107

Wow - a post once a month at the moment.  I really need to pick up my game!  I have made a few things, but getting them blogged about has not been happening.

A while back I made the Burdastyle cardigan 03-2013-107.  It has been a popular pattern and I did read the reviews and went up a size, but think I could still go up more!    Not much chance of buttoning this sucker up!

I have not worn it much since I made it as it has got too cold.  I think it is more suited to wear over a sleeveless top and I have photographed it here over a very long sleeved top and it shows every wrinkle from the top underneath.  I had to spend a bit of time tugging and smoothing to get these photos! 

The fabric is a lovely wool jersey bought at the Fabric Store in Brisbane.

I am picturing wearing it over my blue spotted silk top - pictured in this blog post.  I do like this cardigan and think I will use it a lot as the season starts changing again.  Sometimes garments take a little while to work out what they go with and how they fit in the wardrobe.  

Ciao!  I have my photos to show soon .... at least sooner than another month :)