Sunday, 27 June 2010

Pattern Review - Burda Style 03-2010-106

Here is the second of the three garments I finished on the Friday Night Sew-In, a pencil skirt with welt pockets.  The pattern is number 106 from the March Burdastyle (sorry I cannot be bothered looking online for the technical diagram - please sort out the archives Burdastyle!), the same issue I used for the black a-line skirt.  That makes this issue a bit of a winner in my book, while I might love a number of patterns in any given issue I rarely get around to actually making two!
I must apologise for the dim photos, it is hard to catch the sun at the moment!

Behind me you can see the future site of my backyard veggie garden - I just have to figure out how to get the soil into it when the only access to the courtyard is through the house, hmmm probably should have though of that before!

Anyway, back to the skirt.  It's your run-of-the-mill pencil skirt but with welt pockets front and back.  These were tricky on the stretch woven fabric, but they came out passable.
I'll have to sew the back pockets closed - not that I would ever use them anyway!  My primary sewing machine has been in for a service and I couldn't be bothered getting another one out, I promise I'll do it before I wear the skirt to work.

Please just look at the skirt and not my ratty courtyard!

As for my previous skirt I cut a 42 at the waist and a 44 at the hip and the fit came out great.  For once I didn't lengthen the pattern as this design is longer than the standard Burda skirt.  It's a smidge shorter than I would normally make but I think it's fine. 

Instead of making the front fly (which always looks a bit wrong when I sit down), I put an invisible zip in the centre back.  I also added a kick pleat so I can actually walk in it.  I took photos of my lovely kick pleat and mitred hem but dark grey doesn't photograph well on a winter's day so you'll just have to trust me that they look really neat!

There is not much sewing going on here atm.  My sewing room is not heated and it is COLD in there!  Instead I have finished knitting the dressage jacket (blocking it today) and am working on a crocheted baby blanket as a gift for a woman at work.

Tuesday, 22 June 2010

Pattern Review - Burda Style 03-2010-105

Here is the first of the three garments I finished up in last week's Friday Night Sew-In.  It is not very exciting, a black a-line skirt, but I have to say I am very happy with it.  The shape is really nice,  not too triangle-y and it is seriously easy to put together.

(I wouldn't normally wear all black like this but I just slipped the skirt on with the blouse I wore to work today!).

I cut size 42 at the waist blending to 44 at the hip.  The only changes I made were to lengthen the skirt to 65cm so it finishes just below my knee, added a lining and moved the zip from the side seam to the centre back.  My hip curve is quite extreme so zips never sit right in the side seam.

I think I've found my new TNT a-line pattern!

Saturday, 19 June 2010

Friday Night Sew In Results

My Friday night sew-in started slower than planned.  I got kept late at work and having had a trying day I had to unwind a bit before I could start sewing.  Fortunately the April BWOF (or whatever) arrived in my letterbox so I was able to wind down with a nice (sewing related) read.  Ever since I saw Eugenia's version of this skirt I have been saving a piece of black fabric so now I have the pattern in my hot little hands then guess what will be coming soon?

I had every intention to start and finish a project but instead I finished off three jobs I've had on the go for the past few weeks.  Full reviews and a proper photo shoot will be upcoming but it's been a grey old day today, I've been to see Prince of Persia with my friend Kate and I am quickly posting this before dinner and then the Australia v Ghana game.

So photos on Dion will have to suffice, bearing in mind that s/he is a little less well padded than me so in reality the curves will be better filled out.  BTW, Dion is my dummy.  The brand name is Diane and I was given him/her as a gift by my former co-workers.  When they handed him/her over one of my workmates said 'now I know this is something you've wanted for a long time...' and another one piped up 'It's a husband!'.  We all laughed and since then my dummy has had a male name.  That was seven years ago and I am still not married but Dion and I have had some good times!

So enough of the ramblings you say, what are these projects you finished?  Well, it was two skirts and a frankendress.  I have been making them on a production line as I thought I'd get done quicker but I am not sure that's true.  Last night I set in all the linings and did the hand finishing.

Skirt #1 is a basic black a-line.  Not much to say here, it's just a basic black skirt, but it is something my wardrobe has been lacking for some time.

Skirt #2 is a grey pencil skirt with welt pockets front and back.  This one needs a tummy and a butt to fill it out.  Luckily I have those, unlike Dion!

I think I'll sew these back pockets shut!

Finally the frankendress is the bodice from one pattern and the skirt from another.  I worry it looks a little prim but if I can find the right belt I reckon it'll be fine (hmm shall I prune the roses or shop for a belt tomorrow?)

So there is my night's efforts.  I am quite proud of myself for finishing all these things off, I'll try to get full posts on each of the garments done this week.

Tonight I am hoping to finish the first sleeve of my dressage jacket.  I love knitting while the football is on - I don't really need to look at what I am doing and when I get excited I go really fast!

Friday, 11 June 2010


Thanks everyone for your lovely compliments on my houndstooth coat. I am really pleased with how it turned out.

Also, thanks very much for your helpful feedback on the rose tunic. I agree it is completely the wrong length, and I would make this pattern again in the shorter length, but I wanted a longer top for those 'can't be bothered' days. Fortunately, as suggested by Gail, wearing it with sleek black pants and high heels helps a lot and it looks quite presentable. I can live with it anyway!

I have been doing a bit of production line sewing so I have a number of garments in the making but nothing finished to show. This kind of sewing really is more efficient but it does take a lot of the fun out of it. But I NEED new clothes! I hope to finish two skirts and a dress on the weekend.

For the past few months I've been wanting to join in with the Friday Night Sew-In but every time it comes up there is somewhere else I have to be. Not this month, so I've signed up. It is on Friday the 18th of June and I have already told my fella I have a date with the sewing machine that night. Now I just have to think up a project to work on.

Finally, the World Cup starts this weekend and I can't wait. Unfortunately the time difference means that all the live games will be on at 9.30pm (not too bad) or 2am (terrible), but the good news is we have Foxtel IQ so we can tape the games and watch them at our leisure. The only problem being having to avoid EVERYONE at work the next day so they don't spoil the result! I dare say there will be a few bleary eyes at my work over the next month. I love football, but not enough to miss precious sleep! GO SOCCEROOS!Especially Lucas Neill.

Saturday, 5 June 2010

McCall's 6120 - Rose print tunic

This is one of the other projects I finished while on holidays.  It's okay but I am not wild about it.  The pattern is McCall's 6120.

Wow, I look really broad at the beam!  Here's the review.

Pattern Description:
(from the website) Tops A, B, tunics C, D have front pleats, self-faced front midriff and sleeve variations; top A has armhole stitched hems; top B has short sleeves; tunic C has three-quarter length sleeves; tunic D has self-drape and purchased jeweled applique.

I made the tunic length but with cap sleeves.

Pattern Sizing:
I cut a 12 to the bottom of the armholes, grading out to a 14 at the waist and 16 at the hip/

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?
Yes I guess so.

Were the instructions easy to follow?
The instructions were fine but I don't understand why they have you turn under and hand stitch the lower edge of the midriff facing - in a knit???? I just pulled the facing down so the cut edge matched with the outside midriff piece then caught the two pieces in the seam together.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
I admit I don't love this top. There is something not quite right about it. The length was dowdy and even with a good inch taken off the bottom I am still not sure it's flattering. By contrast I made Simplicity 3678 in February 2008, which I have subsequently cut off to tunic length and it works so much better.  I can't find the pattern on the Simplicity website, so maybe it has been discontinued - anyway, it was one of the Threads patterns. I don't know what it is, the two styles are pretty similar, except the lower front of the Simplicity has gathers. If I was to do this again the Threads pattern would win hands-down.

Initially I cut the longer sleeve but it just looked ridiculous on me - like my hands were floating in a ginormous sea of roses. The cap sleeves work much better, I'll just have to layer for winter!

I must say the neckline does sit nice and flat without any fiddling, so that is a plus (I fused bias tape on the inside and stitched with a twin needle.

Fabric Used:
Polyester knit, nothing fancy, I got it cheap from Spotlight.

Pattern Alterations or any design changes you made:
As usual I narrowed the upper back, shortened the back above the waist and widened at the hips. I don't usually need an fba in knits.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?
I won't sew it again, I'll use the Simplicity pattern as above. It might work better on a different body type though.

It's okay, I'll wear it to work and still look presentable, at least it is comfortable!