Catching up on sewing

I’ve been a bit light on the sewing blogging lately, I know. It’s not that I haven’t been sewing, it’s that I haven’t been photographing the results. I’ve blamed the weather already so lets not revisit that monster except to say we are due for a cooler break tomorrow and even some rain (something we haven’t had a single drop of for 60+ days…and I’ll believe it when I see it).

So this weekend I am planning a little fashion parade come photo shoot in my backyard to catch up on all my creations. For two of these items I have documented their construction and I am excited to share that with you soon, it just feels wrong (and bit of a tease) to post the details ahead of the final photos.

Last weekend my friend J invited myself and my other friend S over to her place for some social sewing. We set up our machines outside under the patio roof with some fans and away we went. Even though it was a hot day it was bliss being able to sit in the fresh air and sew (and gossip).

Outside sewing

Believe it or not we were exceptionally productive. J is fairly new to sewing and she’s started off by jazzing up some of her cute little kiddies clothes, how sweet is this?

Too cute!

She added the bows and lace and the little appliqué on the front. It’s a great way to take something basic and really personalise it.

I worked on a new clothing item, something quick to get my sewing mojo back on track after a couple of sewing set-backs and I also cut out the pattern for this top that I mentioned a couple of posts ago. I find taking my time to cut out the pattern really helps me understand the construction since the instructions aren’t in English. I love the drafting of this pattern, it has some really interesting seaming over the shoulder and down the back and should be really fast to put together, once I decided which fabric to make it out of. The item I sewed is not finished yet, it just needs a quick sewing tweak and buttons so I’ll be photographing it this weekend but here’s a sneak peek, I love the fabric I used.

Love Ikea fabric

One of the set backs mentioned above is a dress I started working on two weeks ago. I t was supposed to be a quick project for some instant sewing gratification but it turned out that it just looked terrible on me. It almost killed me and if it wasn’t for my being totally in love with the fabric it would be in the UFO pile right now. Instead I pulled it apart 4 times and eventually re-worked it and now I love it.  More on that in a another post but here’s a sneak peek of the fabric that saved it. It’s a light weight cotton boarder print I bought in Wellington when I visited in November 2009.

The dress that fabric saved

The second set-back I had was in regards to re-sizing a Manequim pattern. I did eventually solve the drafting problems and will post about it shortly. A blouse will appear one day, I just needed a break from the maths for a bit but it’s something I’m going to have to get my head around if I want the subscription to be worthwhile. In general Manequim only produce a pattern in one size. Occasionally there are a few multi-sized patterns in each magazine but of course I fall in love with the items that aren’t drafted in my size. So I have been trying a few experiments in re-sizing these patterns. I started a muslin of a blouse from a recent issue and it worked maybe 80% and part of the 20% that didn’t work was something really basic that I didn’t even think about. The next attempt should go better and I’ll share with you my process when I am sure I won’t jinx it. For now here is the sleeve, since it doesn’t need any re-sizing.

Scarlet models the mysterious sleeve

It looks pretty funky on Scarlet but I needed some serious help from Sandra working out how it came together. We cracked the code in the end and even if the overall blouse body doesn’t end up working I’d love to use this sleeve on another garment.

So I have a big weekend ahead of me, a few niggly things to finish off then some fun photos.

See you then xx

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3 thoughts on “Catching up on sewing

  1. What a great patio! So you love IKEA fabric? Do you use it for clothes? The IKEA store near me seems limited but maybe I should look close. Most of the fabric is heavy cotton, almost like canvas, a bit rough. I thought it was more fir home Dec projects like outdoor pillows or a table cloth. But maybe I will look again! What have you found there and what do you use it for?? Thanks!

    • Ikea fabric is great! They have a few different weights but I like to use the medium-weight canvas prints for skirts as it has good body. Their prints are beautiful and interesting and they wear and wash really well, no colour fade. They are also good for aprons and bags.
      Here are a couple of other projects I’ve used Ikea fabric for: Ikea hack & Twinkle twinkle I recommend you grab something fabulous and give it a go 🙂

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