Saturday, 27 February 2016

A pretty in pink pencil skirt

Despite not having blogged about it, I have made this pencil skirt three times now and wear them regularly to work. They're a bit of a staple in my wardrobe. I traced the pattern from The Great British Sewing Bee: Sew Your Own Wardrobe. The instructions are clear but not extensive. I definitely did a little bit of google searching the first time I made it!
I made the skirt in a wool from Walthamstow Market. I'm not sure what kind of wool it is but it has an almost felted quality and feels gorgeous to the touch.
The fabric was very thick, which I didn't really account for. Luckily, the previous skirts were slightly too large so it does fit. If I hadn't had this ease though it definitely would not have fit! Because the fabric was so thick I used a scrap of Liberty lawn for the facings (it's actually a scrap left over from the top I'm wearing!)
The thick fabric supports the vent nicely at the back of the skirt but my darts could be better! I need to either invest or get sewing a tailors ham so that I can press out my darts neater. Has anyone made one before?
I decided to make a bow for the front of the skirt which runs from one dart to the other. I absolutely love the bow! Although it means that I will have to tuck tops into the skirt I think that it's worth it. This pencil skirt will definitely become another wardrobe staple like the others!

I've been dreaming of sewing all week so I'm happily off to sew a Liberty Print Emery dress. What are your sewing plans for the weekend?

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Thursday, 18 February 2016

Simplicity cape 8017

This week I have been busy making my first piece of outerwear and I am in love! I'd go as far as to say that it's my favourite item of clothing I have ever made.
I made the cape using a wool merino mix fabric from the man outside Sainsbury's at Walthamstow Market. I made no alterations to the fit or construction and found that it all went together beautifully. The pattern has pockets on the front but I decided not to include these.
I decided to make a velvet bow to put onto the front of the cape, it is stitched one side then fastens using poppers on the other side. I have to admit this is not an original idea and was inspired by a Kate Spade cape I've had my eye on! The cape is fully lined which means no overlocking! Hooray! I originally decided to line it in a silk mix fabric but I just couldn't get it to behave itself so I decided to use the rest of a rather gorgeous piece of Liberty Tana Lawn I bought from Abakan.
This will definitely get lots of wear in the coming months!

Friday, 12 February 2016

Some very unseasonal sewing...

I bought the Merchant and Mills Workbook after visiting the Merchant and Mills stall at The Knit and Stitch show and falling in love with the simplicity of the Bantam top. I bought a metre of their tea rose wool which is beautifully drapey but also very sheer! Because it had such a loose weave the fabric was very difficult to work with and near on impossible to unpick.
The Bantam is a racer back vest with a dipped hem. You make your own bias binding, which was very tricky with such a loose weave. Merchant and Mills patterns are known for being generous on their sizing and I had to take the top in a lot at the bust but I definitely took it in slightly too much, which I feel has detracted from its drape.
I always use bias binding for any curved hems but sadly I didn't have enough fabric left to make any using the tea rose wool and I was concerned that shop bought binding would stop the drape of the top. I found it really difficult to do the curved hem neatly without bias binding and the result looks untidy. Any tips for curved hems without binding?
All in all, I like top but my struggles with the fabric have made it sloppy around the edges. I will definitely be making it again though and learning from my mistakes.

Saturday, 6 February 2016

A little bit of sofa chic?

This was one of my UFOs I blogged about just after Christmas. I have been steadily trying to work my way through them!

I think that one of the reasons I took so long to finish it was because I have reservations about the fabric. It kind of reminds me of a sofa I had as a child...

Whilst I love the style of the skirt the fabric still hasn't necessarily grown on me...I'm just so undecided about this one!
I made the skirt using the Sew Over It Betty dress pattern and drafted a waist band to go with it. The skirt took just over a metre and a half of fabric which I bought from a local market. It's quite drapey yet is also of a medium weight which works nicely as a wintery full circle skirt.
Full circle skirts have to be my ultimate favourite style. I love how the fabric moves...
Perhaps if I wear it a few times the fabric will grow on me.

Happy sewing!