Friday, 4 April 2014

Kwik Sew 3334 - 3 Jackets - Linen, Lace and Velour. Mmmm, velour.

I've been suffering severe blogging burnout of late.  I haven't been motivated to post but have been sewing continuously and have made several dresses and also three versions of Kwik Sew 3334, which I decided to post up today.

Kwik Sew 3334 is a nice fitted jacket, unlined, with two shawl collar options.  I made the "fake notched collar" option for all three versions.  I prefer a "real" notched collar but this is a really easy cheaters version and is very fast to sew.

Here is the pattern envelope for K3334

From left to right in the top picture:

Linen.  I hand dyed this linen in my favourite navy blue and then underlined in silk organza to reduce wrinkling and give the lightweight linen a bit more body.  I then lined in a nice japanese cotton lawn from stash.  The pattern does not include a lining so I drafted my own using this tutorial and this one and this great one for getting a professional finish on that tricky corner that I learnt when I made my Jackie Jacket.

I made a size small (it goes to an extra small and the sizing is generous but not excessive, if that makes sense).  For adjustments I did the usual small, narrow, sloping forward shoulder adjustment, graded out to medium at hips, plus a slight small bust adjustment (so easy on princess seams).  I also shaved a bit of width from centre back seam at neck grading to nothing at waist (essentially taking out the upper back curve which I don't need).  

Sewing pattern review is here.  I noted that despite taking a fair wedge from the centre back neck the collar still fit perfectly, which seems to me that the collar would have been too small otherwise.  I found this on all three versions so perhaps that is something to note. 

Lace. I have a lace jacket I wear constantly but it showing the signs of old age so I used this stretch lace from to make up a spring jacket version.  I only had a yard so that is why the sleeves are elbow length but the length is actually great.  I sewed a size down to account for the stretch (an extra small) and ended up triming a fair bit off the sleeve width and side seams when I sewed it up.  I love this version and wear it constantly. Love it.  The dress I am wearing with it I might get around to blogging but it is Simplicity 1873 in a vintage gingham and I love it too.

Sewing pattern review is here.

Velour.  This is a very snuggly fleece from Spotlight that has a nice texture that makes it look a bit velvet-like.  I lengthened the size small an inch (to the medium length) and made the straight front version instead of the curved front and otherwise made it up as per the same adjustments to the linen, with a little more taken off the back armsyce.  And I added simple patch pockets and cuffs to lengthen the sleeves.  It feels like a track suit but looks like a jacket.

Some more pics from my flickr photosteam: 





Have a great day everyone.  And now back to the grindstone of real life for me...

Monday, 3 February 2014

Sew Serendipity Dress

Back in 2011 I purchased Sew Serendipity: Fresh and Pretty Designs to Make and Wear*.  It has taken me this long but I have finally made something from the book, and I really love it.  It certainly is fresh and pretty and also very very easy to make (cut it out yesterday, sewed it up last night and this morning and wore it this afternoon - that is very fast for me) and comfortable to wear.

Dress from Serendipity Sews

I made the XS top with the medium sized skirt and sleeve band.  Other than that I made no other alterations to the pattern other than an adjustment to the sleeve pattern as when I was checking my tracings I noticed the seams were not "true" (the seam on the sleeve for the front bodice I think was a seam allowance short in length so I just added the extra when I was tracing) and one of the notches seemed to be in the wrong place.  Easily fixed but worth just checking before cutting out.

Dress from Serendipity Sews

For the skirt part I cut a medium and graded to a small at the waist.  I also added a bit to the length as I wasn't sure how long it would end up on me but I think I may shorten it a couple of inches after seeing these photos.  It is just a little too "midi" for me.

I lined the skirt with some lightweight cotton but left the bodice unlined.

Dress from Serendipity Sews

There is a side seam invisible zipper, which I used an old one recycled from an old cushion.

I also completely changed the order of construction.  I wanted to check the fit as I went (rather than make a muslin) so I sewed it up in this order (which is very different to the book, although the book instructions are excellent and nicely detailed.)

1. Facings
2. Bodice to skirt
3. Sleeves to bodice (in the flat - not sewing up sleeve seam)
4. Facing to bodice and shoulder elastic added.
5. Pinned side seams and tried on for fit, expecting to need to make adjustments, but made none.
6. Side seam zipper inserted.
7. Side seams sewn up including sleeves
8. Sleeve bands
9. Hem.

I used a lightweight cotton from Spotlight and it worked beautifully for this pattern, although it creases badly.  It's actually the same fabric that BusyLizzieinBrizzy used to make a Cambie! Woo hoo. Fabric twins.   Kay Whitt uses quilting cottons ALOT in her designs but don't let that put you off if you are not a quilting cotton fan, you can certainly use any kind of fabric appropriate to the pattern you like. 

This book includes a jacket/coat pattern (awesome versions here and here) which I love and also a lovely a-line skirt pattern (pictured on the front of the book) that lends itself to some great fabric combining possibilities as well as the peasant style dress which can also be shortened into a tunic or top.  I'm glad I finally cracked it open and made something from it.

Sew Serendipity by Kay Whitt, one of my many sewing books.

* These are Amazon affiliate links and in the interests of full disclosure I may earn a few cents commission from these links which I will then immediately spend on sewing books.

Sunday, 2 February 2014

Lace Yoke Tee Revisted* and New Look 6813**

* or what happens when your iron is too hot and your melt the lace.
** a dressy knit tee.

I had this tee I made last year sometime.  The lace I used was a bit scratchy and I made the same mistake I made nearly all year which was make the armholes too high/tight (adjusting for sloping shoulders all year but forgot to lower the armscyce by the same amount - took me year to notice nearly all my clothes are too tight under the arm, true story). 

Anyhow, as I result I never really wore it but pulled it out of the wardrobe the other night to try and fix it.  The first thing I did was apply the iron to the lace while it was set on cotton/linen and melted a large hole in the lace.   Okay then.

So I fixed it.  I  took the body of the tee in by quite a bit to make it more fitted, the resulting curve on the pattern looks really exagerated.  I added a new, much nicer lace with a couple of tweaks for a better fit, using the old cut off lace as my muslin/pattern.  I lowered the armscyce about 1/2".

Self drafted lace yoke tee

It is now much more comfortable to wear and the nice lace makes it feel more special (I do normally wear it with a flesh coloured bra though so please excuse the hot pink bra straps)

While I was in the mood for making dressy tops I also made New Look 6813 View B in a very stretchy knit crepe.  I made it up two sizes smaller than my measurements (actually one and a half as my measurements put me between a 12 and 14 and I cut a 10) as I read this pattern runs very large.  I can't remember if I graded it out at the hips or not - late night sewing session.

Other than that I made it up a per the pattern and am very happy with the overall fit but found the yoke band totally the wrong angle for my narrow sloped shoulders.   

New Look 6813 View B

When I tried it on the shoulder seams stood up like horns.  I wasn't in the mood for serious unpicking so I just chopped the offending excess fabric off and covered the resulting hot mess of a seamline with a large bow.  It makes me feel like I am wearing footballers shoulder pads and a bit ridiculous, even for me with my love of OTT girlishness.  Time will tell if the bows come off (I'll just stitch a neat band over the exposed seams instead) but I'll see how I feel wearing it first.

New Look 6813 View B

I think this pattern may be OOP as it doesn't come up on the Simplicity website but the top is a great raglan sleeve basic tee with two neckline variations and the skirt has nice pleating too so I will revisit this pattern again when I want to make a t-shirt again.  Other than the sizing issue, I really recommend it for a good knit top pattern - just cut one or two sizes smaller.

A Border Print Skirt

It's been a busy month of sewing, and all of it stash busting. 

First up is a simple skirt using a small length of cotton border print.  I would have loved a dress in this fabric but only had a metre to work with.

Border print A-line skirt

I ended up going with a simple A-line skirt using my trusty vintage simplicity (Simplicity 7142) as a base, then I added a self drafted shaped waistband.

I fully underlined in a cotton voile as the fabric is very lightweight and as a skirt I wanted it to have a little more body.  It transformed the fabric so beautifully.  I am a massive fan of organza but I decided that simple cotton would work better for this fabric.

The seams are all serged, the hem is hand stitched to the underlining and the zipper is a 8" one from stash that I inserted as a lapped zipper, my favourite method for a "normal" zipper.

To keep the lovely print unbroken as I didn't have enough to pattern match I cut the back piece on the fold and moved the zipper to the side.

Border print A-line skirt

I've worn it "dressy" with the black top and heels but also found myself wearing casually with a coloured t-shirt or singlet top and casual sandals - the lightweight cotton makes its very cool and comfortable to wear.

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