Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Kwik Sew 3472 - another green knit dress

There are some really cute Lady Skater dresses out there in the blog world. I was going to give the pattern a go when I saw the line drawing and recalled a Kwik Sew pattern that has been in my pattern stash for years. I can't even recall when I bought this it was that long ago.
Kwik Sew 3472 has two views. View A is a turtleneck, long sleeved, longer skirt version. I made view B, the half sleeved, shorter skirt with the jewel neck. Obviously you can mix up the views as you like.

I used a rayon elastane knit which my coverstitch hated. I actually had to sew strips of fabric to beef up the sleeve hemlines, so that it would not skip the stitches. I actually left the hem raw because I did not want to have the same problem with the hem.


Below is how the pattern sewed up. What a let down. the pattern is described as having a drop waist, but it was not was I was envisioning.
I sought feedback from the ladies over at the Crafty Mamas Forum who suggested taking in the side seams as well raising the waist seam and taking up the hem. Well, first I chopped 10cm off the bottom hem before deciding to bite the bullet and cut the waist seam out, shorten the bodice, reduce the width and reattach the skirt. Hardly rocket science, I just prefer to unpick and keep the integrity of the pattern as much as possible. The side seams of the skirt had to be fudged to match up with the smaller bodice piece.

I will be transferring the changes to the pattern for next time though, it ended up being a great little dress for work althought it was a little windy today. This is how I wore it to work.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Vogue 1194 in emerald knit

In a quest to try new things, I bought a couple of $5 patterns in a certain Australian chain craft store. I think I bought 3 of the Vogue designer ones, since they are so exxy. I have admired many knit dresses across many blogs, so I picked up a couple with some interesting details.
This is Vogue 1194, which has gathers and pleats on the bodice, pleats at the front skirt, gathering at the back skir and a twisted front band. Hmm, I am just studying the desription on the back of the pattern and the pattern describes the bodice as being loose fitting. That makes me feel better. When I tried it on, the wedding dress fitting scene from The Proposal movie came into my head. It is a little looser that I would normally go for, but it is not too bad (I don't think).

 I roughly compared my basic tee pattern to the bodice patterns and I decided to trace a size smaller than indicated on the pattern. If I made it again, I would have to do something about the bodice front, as it fits great everywhere else. I am actually thinking about adding a plain top and using the pleated/gathered skirt for next time.

I really love the twisted front band - the pattern says to match notches but unless I traced the wrong ones, I could not match the notches without it being in the wrong place. I just made sure that the front and back bands met at the side seam.
Green is my favourite colour and apart from this in a very similar fabric, I don't have many other green garments. I do have some other green fabrics, including a very recent fabric purchase, so maybe I should change that soon.

It has been very spring-like weather here the last few days. It has made me think of spring sewing, which I hope to include some more dresses.  As long as the skirt is fairly full and has some type of shoulder coverage, I plan to wear more dresses to work. I have been in a real pants/shorts for work rut and I just need to have more fun with my clothes.

Having said that, I do have plans to make some shorts from the yellow linen I bought recently, inspired by Carolyn and Bernice. And a white blouse.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Simplicity 1802

I rarely buy patterns from the larger companies. I actually find the pattern books overwhelming and just have to walk away. I bought this pattern after seeing Sew Brusnwick's wonderful version. This dress was actually completed in May, but I was only finished it the night before I had to hand it into the local show so never had time to do get decent photos. For some years now, I have been entering a competition held through the local show, with the finals held at the Ekka (Brisbane Show). The judging at the Ekka was held on Saturday, and I am pleased to have placed Second in the Adult Daywear.
 I actually hadn't planned to enter this year. However, the steward phoned me and asked me whether I was planning to put something in this year, so at the last minute (with less than a fortnight to go), I started planning my entry. I was drawn to the piping and the rounded godets in this pattern. I was really hoping to find a black, white and one other colour cotton print to use for the dress, and I found this print at the local fabric shop.

At the time when I bought it, I did not realise how sheer it was and I had to go back to the shop to buy some fabric to underline it. By this stage, I had 5 days until the dress had to be in, and all I had was fabric. I cleared my weekend (and DH cleared the house of children). I was hoping for a smooth ride but ended up with a lot more challenges.
I muslined the bodice and decided I would make it in a size 10, a size or two less than the size my measurements should have been. I had read there was plenty of ease but I ahd my fingers crossed that the skirt had enough ease for my pear shape. I made a trip to the fabric store to buy rat's tail and piping cord for the piping. I bought I few different widths to experiement with. To be honest, I can't even remember what I went with. It was black and with the ribbons if that helps. It was not piping cord though. I had to make another trip to the fabric store to buy more since I had not bought nearly enough (I was not piping the godets, so had to estimate what I needed - I was off my a lot!). This is the first time making piping, so I am glad the seams were straight. I can't remember but I think it was from the Cherub's Kiss blog or maybe a tip L from Cherub's Kiss put on a sewing forum, but it was useful. You sew the piping to one side of the fabric right next to the piping cord, then stitch along the stitch line when sewing the other side of the fabric. Perfect piping. Well, it is a little lumpy at the neckline since I found I did not remove enough of the ends of the cord. Lesson learnt for next time. That was just amatuer hour from me.

The dress has a small zipper inserted into the side seam. I found the was not adequate and just could not get the dress on. I had no idea what to do, since the side seam finishes at the waist. I seriously considered binning the dress at this point. I could not wear it. After some frustrated crying and discussion with my husband, I went to see if I had enough fabric and underlining to cut a half godet plus seam allowance. I cut the other half godet from the original godet. I had to buy another zipper but I could choose a long one that would make it easy for me to fit into without too much trouble. I actually did not have enough underlining, I had to use the original underlining cut int half and not have a seam allowance. I finished the edge with the overlocker and you couldn't really tell when the side seam was folded back.

the zipper was probably the most shoddy I have put in, ever. It is not invisible but at least I can do the dress up past the piping/thick seams. The hem is finished with purchased bias binding. I  had just enough from the 5m packet. The hem is invisible as the slip stithes are attached to the underlining. I sewed the dress across a weekend and hemmed it over three nights. A lot of work went into this sucker and time does heal my pride, which was hurt over this dress. Not my greatest work but the competition is about the impact of the design as well the the workmanship. I promised the competition coordinator that I would be entering next year, I just need to start a little earlier I think.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

I feel like a fabric hog

Summer Flies from her Sew Darn Tired blog recently posted about a fabric sale being held in Brisbane. I managed to sneak down after work on the first day of the sale and here is my loot.
 Black and grey knit - ponte I think. I wanted 2m but there was only 1.2m left on the roll. I will have to think of how best to use this. 
 Yellow linen. This has been on my list for ages, I haven't found any all year until now. I got a little over 1m - I want to make shorts.

1m of a black and grey wool blend. Again, this was the last on the roll. It was an end of roll kind of sale, the business actually making clothing. I will make a skirt out of this.
 A little of 2m of this green crushed knit. This will be a dress.
2m of green sweater knit. I wanted sweater knits and I got heaps. Obviously this will be some type of jumper.

Birdcage print knit - 2m. Oh look, there are peacocks on there too. The print is quite large scale. I am thinking a dress or maybe a skirt.
 Now, the remnent table. It was choc a block full of yummy fabrics. I picked up 1.4m+ of a lovely blue sweater knit. Enough for a jumper. That was $10.
 There was about 1.4m of this black textured sweater knit. Will be some type of jumper, maybe a cardigan. $5 for this piece.

 1.3m+ of this purple marle sweater knit. $10 for this piece too.
 I picked up this gorgeous purple sweater knit for $3, but it is only 50cm at its narrowest, and 85cm at the widest. I think I might make a little cropped vest.
The last remnent was 60cm for this yellow textured fabric. I have no idea whether it is a knit or a woven, but I am making it into a scarf. So bright and cheery.

So that is my haul. I had a lovely chat with the lady working there. I only sewed 1 piece that I bought last year, but my goal is to sew all pieces before the next sale. All up 14.55m.