Monday, 24 October 2016

A little sewing for the whirla-girla!

Hi there! I am finding more motivation to sew recently. I'm so pleased, as it is good for my mental health and general happiness when I have a project on the go.

These two are little makes, but happy ones.  First up is a summer gingham uniform for the whirla- girla. I left it late to buy school uniform and they only had winter clothes in stock, but it was persistently, gorgeously hot in September. So, I thought I'd make her a summer dress uniform.

All of the other girls wear gingham at school, in many different hues of blue and differing styles; I felt a homemade one wouldn't be out of place.

The only issue with this is the lack of collar. I didn't want to buy a new pattern, as speed was of the essence, before the heat of the sun faded away, so I used a trusted pattern book: Sew Chic Kids.

I love this book, and would recommend it to anyone sewing for young children (2 - 8 years). Mainly aimed at girls, it does have a few shirt patterns, trousers and shorts too.

Secondly, I made the darling girl a quickie 'Frozen' costume. I'd picked up some floaty fabrics at the Brighton sewcial fabric swap table. They caught my eye, and practically shouted at me "ELSA CAPE". Sadly for the little one (though not for me) one of the fabrics proved to be silk after a quick burn test, and was deemed too good for dress up! In the end, her costume was made from a slightly too small grey t shirt, an acrylic blue scarf, and some cheapy lining fabric. 

She is happy and that is the main thing. I didn't follow a pattern, just made it up as I went along. It's a gathered rectangle of lining fabric sewn to the t-shirt, which I trimmed to just below the arms in length. I then sewed the scarf to the back neckline to create the cape, and added a bit of ric-rac as trim.

But the crowning glory is the Elsa hair! I had a small amount of acrylic yarn hanging about and I plaited this to create a hairband pony tail. I am tempted to redo this with a full ball of yarn as she loves it and it would look even better thicker. But that's for another day...

How is your sewjo now the nights are drawing in?

Saturday, 15 October 2016

The Keyhole Blouse, sans keyhole!

Sewing is looking up for me at the moment. My sewing room is tidy and inviting, and I am occasionally finding time to squeeze in bits of sewing for myself.

I got the Keyhole Blouse pattern free with Love Sewing magazine and loved the style. It felt very me, and I made it up quickly a couple of months ago with some very old stash fabric, you can see it here. Without a black cami underneath, though, it is a bit indecent due to the keyhole! This time I decided to get rid of the keyhole altogether.

I also added an extra 1.5cm all around to raise the height of the neckline. It now doesn't feel so exposing and is a good height for a statement necklace. Really happy with the result.

I started this make over the holidays, but it was quickly abandoned after forgetting to centre the swans when cutting out! But my lovely IG friends convinced me to carry on, and I am glad I did. It wasn't plain sailing even then: after setting the sleeves, it was straining at the back armscyle.
All fixed thankfully.

I should add that this was probably caused by me, as I did a small shoulder adjustment (the toile top was very big on the shoulders). I was therefore extremely grateful to two Instagram friends, Anne, aka "new_vintage_sewing", and "morrissews", who talked me through how to rescue my top. This basically involved removing the pleats from the back bodice. Now, it fits perfectly.

 Plenty of room now for movement.

The other difficult bit was trying to make bias binding with such fine slippy fabric. But I got around that by blasting my strips of bias with spray starch; they then folded and pressed neatly into shape.  I am glad - the binding is a nice feature of the blouse.

The fabric was bought from Fabricland over the summer holidays and is viscose, which is a fabric I love to wear.  My only concern is whether the feature pleats make me look like I am pregnant?

Even if it does, I shall wear it as I think it's really pretty. If I make another version, though, I think I may stick to style B without the pleats. I have a pretty floral poly crepe bought from TMOS that would make a nice version to wear out for Xmas drinks.