Saturday, 23 November 2013

Stalking the Plus Sized Pattern Pyramid??

Well if you are you are in for a real treat.

It now resides with 3 bloggers that I know of so the chances of winning are BIG..

Check out these blogs

Sewing with Cats - Have your comment in by 30th November to be in to win Alison's loot.

Bea's Sewing Adventure - Bea's draw finishes on 1st December so get in to have a shot.

Chris Lucas - Chris has another PS Pyramid drawn on 1st December on her blog.

This is a great opportunity to get your mitts on a pattern you don't have and also to spread the plus sized love!

Friday, 22 November 2013

New Buttericks and December One Garment a Month Plans

I don't normally do new pattern release posts. A lot of the people I follow do them and I just enjoy their posts - however there is a dress pattern I. MUST. HAVE. MUST. HAVE. MUST. HAVE. MUST. HAVE (better stop before they come and take me away ho ho he he ha ha)

Look at the lines

I even know what I am going to do with it........ (imaging dreamy face with a thought bubble)

Now on to December Plans for the Sarah Liz Make a Garment a Month Challenge.

I actually finished 2 garments in November - my tea dress (official challenge garment) which still needs a few tweaks and the StyleArc Pleated Pia top.

My December plans also include StyleArc (what else!!)

I purchased some of the Mint coloured Bengaline from StyleArc which will be transformed by the magic of sewing (hopefully) into the StyleArc Barb Pants

That is my official Garment for December. I also want to make (time permitting) a tunic top and depending on what colour the mint bengaline looks in life (Aus Post has it in their custody at the moment) the tunic will either be in white linen or in a gorgeous blue chiffon I purchased from Denver Fabrics about 2 years ago.

Till the end of November I will be finishing off some pillow cases for Rhonda's wonderful drive.

Have a good one.

Monday, 18 November 2013

Pleasing peerless Pleated Pia

I LOVE my new StyleArc Pleated Pia top. It is just lovely and I am so happy with how the neckline ended up and really like the "scoop" shape of the neckline.

Here it is on Babs

Close up of neckline

The pleats kind of get swallowed up by the fabric - but they are there.

I purchased the fabric from Sawyer Brook's online. It is called eco tourist and if you look closely at the pattern you can see why.

I can't decide if it looks like a whole lot of amoebas:

Or some hot mud springs

But whatever - it looks alive - organic. It is lighter weight than I was expecting. It is a viscose / elastane jersey knit. It will be great for our summer but I would have liked a bit more substance to it. Maybe that is my ignorance over what a viscose / elastane jersey knit is. It does feel nice on. I shall make more Pia's I am sure.

Here it is on.

BTW - thanks for all of the nice comments on my haircut. Unfortunately the rain has got to it and it has gone FRIZZ.

I started this top on Saturday at Tessuti's Sewing Day but was having trouble with the neckband. I always have trouble with the neckband. The fabric is quite a fine knit and it kept getting swallowed by the feed dogs (hungry little critters they were). After unpicking it 3 times I decided to have a break from it and I finished it successfully last night by using my walking foot.

Can I say that the walking foot is never coming off my machine. If ever I have to do a zip or a button I will have to buy a new machine. I love the walking foot. I purchased it for a sewing workshop on knits that I attended (it was on the required equipment list) but really didn't get it until yesterday when it fed this fine knit through like it was linen. That foot was certainly made for walking. Love it.

And the Pia - as you can see in the title - I didn't have any successful me made tees in my wardrobe. I can't count the StyleArc Creative Cate as it doesn't have a neckband and the sleeves are cut on the front and back. Not really a tee and very easy peasy. That is why I am calling the Pia peerless - so far.

Adjustments to Pattern:

- Purchased one a size too small and added 2 cms to each side seam = 8 cms in total. That way the shoulders and arms fit better. It is still a bit big in these areas but it could be the soft knit used too. Found out about different knits the hard way!

You can just see the 2 cms added to the side of the sleeve to match the 2 cms I add to the side of the pattern. I then grade that down to zero about half way down the sleeve.

- Added 2 inches in length to cover tum tum.

- Cut some off the sleeve length. Next time I will another inch or so on the sleeve. I don't like short sleeves and not keen on long. I like 3/4 sleeves.

- I made the neckband a tad wider - about 1 cm.

No other adjustments (which is really great for someone my size).

Overall - very happy.

Things I learnt during this project:

- Even if your fabric is a very fine knit - using interfacing on the neckband is not a good idea if you want to stretch it between the quarters!

- Every good sewing machine deserves feet - and a walking foot is worth the money. I am going to check out if I can get one for the Elna Overlocker....

- Suzanne Gray says you should always sew a sleeve in and not sew it in one go from the hem to cuff. I am starting to think she may be on to something there.

Review on Pattern Review

Next post will be details on the tea dress.                                                                                                                                                         .  

Sunday, 17 November 2013

Sit and Sew at Tessuti's Sew Inn

Well what a day yesterday was. Seven dedicated sewists landed on the doorstep of Tessuti Fabrics in Surry Hills (at their invitation - thanks Dilliander for organising it with Tessutis) for a wonderful day of sitting, sewing and chatting and of course - fabric shopping!!!

Above are Kristy on left, moi in middle, Sharon on the end with Wendy at the cutting table. Velosewer and Margaret are missing in action from the photo - probably roaming the aisles drooling at the fabric - I know that is what I was doing in a Zombie like trance when I first arrived). Dilliander (from Pattern Review - and winner of Tessuti's gridlock competition) took the photo.

It was a great set up - no need to lug our machines as Tessuti's had Berninas set up for us and a couple of overlockers. This is the area where they normally hold classes. They will be putting up next year's classes soon and I am hoping to join the "bring your own project" class. It was amazing how many customers came over to check us out and see what was going on - and asking us for advice!

The stunning Colette from Tessuti Fabrics made us feel more than welcome. Check out the blog she and Lisa write about Tessuti, their fabrics and patterns. We really couldn't have had a better hostess. She was on hand to help if there were any questions about the machines, showed us where we could get tea and coffee, chatted to us about our sewing and offered us a lovely on the day discount.... as if the fabric wasn't tempting enough..... and yes *sigh* a couple of gorgeous pieces came home with me. (And I know I wasn't the only one from our group who had a little splurge or two) I really had to restrain myself. Their fabric is of such a fine quality. This is what I purchased.

On the top is a most exquisite 100% silk chiffon with a self stripe. Underneath is an amazing faux suede. I say amazing as it feels so much like suede I can't believe it isn't. It has a wonderful weight to it and was initially going to be a skirt - however there was a bit left on the roll so Colette threw that in too so I am thinking my TNT dress may get another edition.

I was initially drawn to the silk as I was lucky enough to get in quick and get some of the paprika coloured stretch bengaline from StyleArc before it sold out (yes - it went in the blink of an eye) and I wanted some fabric to match the Barb pants I am going to make with the Bengaline. Then I saw the suede and I was in LURVE. So these items have been re-homed in my stash until my skills are up to using them....

I managed to finish a Style Arc Fay skirt and half of a Style Arc Pia top at Tessuti's and am hoping to finish the top today (if I can drag myself away from stroking the suede!!)

BTW - Anne over at Pretty Grievances has announced Jungle January mark 2 ... how exciting. Purr Purr. I did look at a beautiful peach leopard silk at Tessuti's. Glad I hadn't heard the announcement before going as I am not sure I could have resisted it had I known..

What are you up to today?

Sunday, 10 November 2013

Two birds - one scone

I suppose that title only works if you pronounce Scone as in Stone not as in gone. I know in the US a scone is somewhat different to what it is here in Oz.... Down under it is something to have with jam and cream and tea.

When the fabulous Velosewer announced that there was going to be a high tea to mark Pattern Review's 12th birthday then I thought - time for a tea dress! So combining the Make one Garment a Month Challenge with High Tea I came up with the below dress which was still being hemmed (I use the term loosely as I only used steam a seam and no stitches - I am now in love with the stuff) an hour before I arrived at Parramatta at Adora Handmade Chocolates.

I must say the last High Tea I attended cost over AUS$100 and we didn't get much more for our money than we did for our AUS $15 at Adora, It was however at the Ritz Carlton in London. Andora was delicious with not a scone in sight.

I decided to pair Simplicity 1586 with a lovely floral sateen that I purchased as a end of roll from Spotties for next to nix a couple of years ago. After all - doesn't a tea party call for flowers? This is my November garment for the challenge that the lovely Sarah Liz is hosting (Yes I made it this month - does that classify as a pun - made it!!!?? as in got it done!) This is the first step in my Princess Seamed TNT dress.

The cardi I wore with it was made in September but not blogged about as it was really just a copy of a favoured RTW cover that was wearing out. You can see the originial here. I just used Style Arc Abby as a base but didn't use the "collar" waterfall and made it less "flaired".

It brought a smile to my face to see a table of 10 women all wearing lovely self made clothes.Gorgeous. The power of the sewing machine. A lot of the sewists there are part of my ASG sewing group and it was great to see them all frocked up. It was also wonderful to meet others. It was great to chat to Lena Merin of The Sewing Space who's gelatin method is legendary and who's blog is full of great tutorials. She is in the midst of creating more patterns. I have been following for ages but never had the pleasure of meeting her before. I was lucky enough to sit next to Janelle of Sew Hopeful - a lovely lady who's bright and cheerful personality was a delight. It will be great to read her blog now that I know her. It was also wonderful to meet Ryn who doesn't have a blog and had heard about the get together through Pattern Review.

There was a specially made cake for us - which was a "smash cake" where you smash it and inside are chocolates. Most appropriate for a chocolate shop.

And here is Velosewer wielding the hammer of THOR and cracking the cake (guess what I watched last night :-)

Thanks once again to Velosewer for arranging a great afternoon. If you missed it, pop over to see her review of the day.

I will review my dress once I get a picture of it without the cardi so that I can catalogue the changes I need to make for the next version. They are hidden under the cardi.

Whatever you are doing - where-ever you are - have a great day / night.