Saturday, January 30, 2016

True Bias 4101: Hudson Pants


These have to be the ultimate weekend pants, they are just so relaxed and comfy. I've been wanting a pair of casual trackies for a while and it came between these ones and the StyleArc Shelby pair. But it was this review of the 3/4 ones by Cookin' & Craftin' that made me download the pattern straight away!

 We are off to Japan this year (!!!!!!) so I've been quizzing my daughter about what everyone wears and flicking through the La Farfa magazine she brought me back after her student exchange last year. The biggest thing that's stood out to me is that you don't see many women wearing tight leggings, Amber took some over for sports and said she was the only one wearing them. So I'm on the hunt for comfy pants that I can walk in around Japan, wear to the Karate seminar we are attending and still look neat but that are a looser fit than I might wear normally.

These fit the bill perfectly and I plan on making many more :)

Pattern details;
I graded up to a sz 20 (my fabric has bugger all stretch in it)
Scooped out the front crotch curve
Added 2" of rise to the centre back, grading down to nothing at the side seams. I did this by 3 horizontal cut and spreads like what is shown in this great post (number 9 of alterations).

The main fabric is a terry that I got at a garage sale. The black highlights are a Ponte from Spotlight.


I love the pocket details, I added some topstitching to keep the bulky seam under control.

Anyway, great pattern with a couple of adjustments and really quick and easy to sew.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Simplicity 1783: pants


They may be boring, basic and black but I live in cropped pants at work over spring/summer. So while I had this pattern out for the denim skirt I thought I'd make up the pants too.

Not much to say, I've made these a couple of times before (1 and 2).

Pattern details;
Size 18
Pull-on waistband
Added pockets to the front and back.
Took the legs in for a more fitted look.
Added cuffs with a side split as I ran out of fabric and the legs were too short. Used this tutorial for the side splits

Fabric Details;
Bengalene from Spotlight

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Simplicity 1783: Denim Skirt

My last version of this skirt stretched out over time and I donated it in the last big wardrobe cleanout. For a skirt I didn't wear that often I've really  missed having it.

This pattern needs bugger all fabric, I squeezed this out of just over 1m of denim leftover from a pair of jeans. This denim is thicker than my first version and sits a bit stiffer but it wears well and I know it will soften up with a few more washes.

I made the skirt a pull-on, not just because I'm obsessed with pull on bottoms at the moment, but the first waistband stretched out at least a couple of sizes and at least with an elastic waistband I don't have to worry about that happening again!

Pattern details;
Size 18
Tilted waist adjustment - removed 2" from front rise
Changed the vent from the front to the back

I really love the vent on this pattern, very easy to sew and sits really nicely while wearing.

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Colette Macaron 1001: Macaron dress


This poor pattern has been totally hacked and changed from the original this time. I sit a lot in my job and I found the original skirt was quite poofy when I was sitting but I also hated the full circle skirt version I made (I never even wore it after the photos, gave it to the salvos instead). This is maybe a 1/4 circle skirt and it seems to work really well.

I had trouble fitting this dress, it seems the combination of a changing shape and using a knit that has 4 way stretch made it too long. I'd basted it together for a try on and I'm glad I did because I ended up unpicking it more times than I'd like to admit to get it to fit better!
I changed construction order too - so the side seams were the last to be sewn up. This is my new favourite technique, makes it so easy to adjust at a later date.

Pattern details;
Size 12 knit yoke (got the idea from Patty the Snug Bug)
Size 18 bodice with the darts converted into princess seams
Skirt is from Newlook 6390

Fabric details; Sateen is from Spotlight and the knit is from GJ Discount fabrics. I'm slowly sewing through my stash!

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Rainbow quilt

My Mum lives on a few acres outside of a small country town and a few years ago she painted her front fence in rainbow colours. People either love it or hate it, but it certainly suits my Mum and her extroverted personality!
I've been wanting to make her a quilt for ages and it had to be a rainbow one. I started to make her the Wavelength quilt out of Modern Quilting but after I started it, I just didn't like it so did some panic googling to find another idea to use the fabric for.
I found this awesome quilt by buttontree lane. I had enough different shades of fabric and already had the dark charcoal for the background.

I wanted it to end up nice and big so used fairly big hst (6.5"). The quilt is 96" x 96" (240cmx240cm) finished. I didn't get any photos but the backing is the left over grey and the binding is a black and white stripe.

I had help basting it from our new kitten!

Its kind of huge, I free motion quilting the grey sections but left the colours unquilted. I found it tends to dull out the colours a bit when they are quilted and I wanted it as bright as possible, plus the effect it has looks cool, lol.

All in all, I'm really happy how it truned out and Mum loves it!

Friday, January 1, 2016

2015 Year in review

I've left it too late this year to do the top 5 makes or top 5 fails so thought I'd do a bit of a mixed review post.

This year has been full of ups and downs in both sewing and life.

I lost my beautiful little boy cat in January.

I made this in February and still wear it all the time to work. McCalls 6754

Around March/April I got diagnosed with depression and social anxiety, its under control now but I had a few months where I didn't even touch my sewing machine.

I finally started to feel like me again and started sewing regularly in the last part of the year. In September I made the Cascade duffle for the second time.
I'm pretty proud of this jacket, its one where I feel I nailed it on matching a fabric to a pattern perfectly.

October saw our daughter turn 16 and get her Learners

October also saw my worse quilting disaster. I got a homespun from Lincraft, made 2 cot quilts and when I washed them the dye ran so bad I don't think it was ever set. I used a total of 10 colour catchers which it saturated and tried 2 dylon colour run savers which didn't do anything.....I complained and made sure they removed that bolt from the store but at the end of the day I doubt I will ever buy fabric from Lincraft again.

This is a scrap of the same fabric sitting on top of the washed quilt, shows how much colour had washed out
In November the daughter went on a school camp to the Grampians. Now this is a kid who has competed in Karate for 4 years and had just returned from a student exchange overseas without a scratch. Well she managed to fall over and broke her cheekbone. Luckily it didn't need surgery and healed up really quickly.

I've been pretty busy with karate, attended 3 seminars and 2 gradings this year. Started coaching a lot more too. I had a seminar in December in Melbourne where I got to meet Jesse Enkamp (it was so hot I am barely functioning in this photo! It reached about 45 degrees celcius in the dojo...)

I also finally listened to my doctor and lost some weight this year (I have osteoarthritis in my knees and for the first time in a couple of years am not in pain). I had to do a big clean out of the wardrobe and will be madly sewing in the new year to replace a lot of basics.

We got a new rescue kitten just before Christmas, she's called Neko (Japanese for cat). She's currently sleeping on my chest as I type this!

So onwards to 2016! I have an overflowing stash I want to sew through. We have booked tickets to Tokyo in August so all available money will be going towards that instead of new fabric anyway. I'm finally starting to get a better feel for what I need and wear, it's not exciting or glamorous clothing but it gets used a lot.

Happy New Year to everyone!