Hello Goodbye

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This week the wonderful Jewel is hosting a pop up sew a long over on the Sew Alongs & Sewing Contests Facebook Page to encourage us to finish up some UFO’s (Un Finished Objects, aka abandoned projects). Her enthusiasm is infectious and my 3rd finished UFO this week is this Jalie 3132 .

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Scuse the wet hair, this was a rather rushed “while you’re on your way to work could you just take a pic of this” photo shoot this morning, the reason being so that I could take it with me to a coffee date to donate to a friend.

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This top is just too tight for my liking (see concertina effect on my inner elbow). Yes, I can wear it, but I don’t find it comfy or flattering and rather than keeping it in the hope it’ll fit better at some stage in the future, or to wear as a base layer, I’m liberating it so that it can find a forever home where it is loved and appreciated.

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I got this fabric about 2 and a half years ago on a tourist visit to Guthrie and Ghani thinking I’d make something for my then 6 year old with it, but when I got the pattern from Katrin in a CSC sewing swap I decided to use it for that instead. I got as far as tracing the pattern and doing a FBA but only cut out the back. The reason being that this fabric is thin and shifty and I was struggling to match the stripes up. Well, this week I commenced Operation Lower Your Standards and Get On With It and the top was duly cut out. The make itself was fairly straight forward, I even managed the binding on the V neck as per the instructions without any tears.

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With such a big gap between tracing the pattern and doing most of the cutting out and sewing up, I can’t really comment on if the sizing issue was my fault in choosing the wrong size, the pattern drafting, or my shape changing in the meantime. The pattern came together nicely and had a sensible amount of notches for matching up. It’s drafted with a 2″ hem, wider than the markings on my sewing machine, so I had to use masking tape to help me line it up for sewing! The sleeve is cut on the fold, which is slightly unusual and I must admit as someone used to asymmetric sleeves I’m a little skeptical that this is the best way to go. My main conclusion about this top is that pretty as it is, I don’t like working with this fabric. It’s a bit see through and not that fun to work with. However, I think it’s made up into a lovely top and I hope it gets lots of wear with my friend.

Hello Goodbye it is then.

RED-y to go

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My model was not being terribly helpful

Pattern: Semper Sweater from Sofilantjes patterns.

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Fabric: Thick spongey mystery knit from my local fabric shop (probably containing some synthetic fabric) with slightly shiny right side and a stripey reverse (used here for contrasts). The same stuff (in a different colour) to my top.

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Size: Age 11, chosen after comparing the finished garment measurements to an existing top. (Tops are more compliant when you want to measure them than boys can be). It has come out wearable with growing room for my lanky 10 year old. Perfect.

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Modifications: The hood is unlined. I thought about binding the edge in knit bias tape but in the end I just turned the seam allowance over and topstitched it down with a fake coverstitch. (A bit of fudging was required where the hood piece turns a sharp corner as the front cowl-y bit starts).

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Additions: Lots of topstitching in my favourite stretch “coverstitch” stitch (including sewing down the trimmed seam allowance where the two hood pieces meet).

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Well drafted? Yes, everything came together perfectly.  Even attaching the made up sleeve to the scary looking U shaped underam hole. (Topstitching that seam however, was not so easy, I managed to catch the neckline and had to unpick it. That however is a mess entirely of my own making due to my current topstitching addiction.)

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Most confusing bit? Trying to use the table provided to work out how much fabric to buy (it’s designed with colour blocking in mind, showing you how much you need of a given fabric for different elements of the different views in different sizes, less helpful if you just want to make it all in one fabric like me.)  In the end I just bought an overly cautious 2 m.  After washing the fabric and cutting out I still had 80cm left of 1m60 wide fabric (plus extra wibbly bits), so I could’ve got away with buying 1m20.

Review? It got a thumbs up. Literally that was all the comment I got.

This is not a cardigan

It all started with a dare. After a lot of dithering I finally took the plunge and asked for a Sewing Dare.  And the reply I got filled me with dread…

You said you desperately need warm tops in your life – so I dare you to make some kind of cardigan! So many great patterns out there… or hack a tee-pattern into a fitted or waterfall cardi. Go forth and sew cosy!

Nooo, not a cardy!  I simply don’t wear cardies. But a dare is a dare. Suffice to say I have been overthinking my knee jerk reaction to the cardy challenge, what constitutes a cardy and whether there is a style of cardy that I might actually wear ever since I read this.

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In the mean time, while I muse on this, I have made one of my wardrobe staples that I wear instead of a cardy, a long sleeve t shirt. I decided to make another Coco Top as the last one that I made gets a lot of wear. And I even remembered to read the blog post that I wrote about it before starting and I tried it on (double organisational points for me) resulting in me raising and bringing in the neckline still further (it’s annoying when my long sleeve top has a lower neckline than the top underneath and I have to make sure they match each other as well as matching my bottom half), making  a small sway back adjustment (which I’m not sure I did effectively) and lengthening the sleeves by an inch at the three quarter length line.

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What’s that up in the sky?

I think I bought this spongey thick purple knit with a subtle flecky sparklyness to it with a coco in mind. (I’m now kicking myself that I didn’t buy some of the charcoal grey colourway too, sold out now). And it will match more things than the last one (big flowers may be ace, but they’re not always much easier to match to the rest of my wardrobe than my stripey tops are).

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Why it’s Super Mum                                                                                                                                                 (as photographed by The Boy, accessories photographers own)

Have you noticed the decorative stitching yet?

 

Yup, the neckline, cuffs and hem are hand finished in herringbone stitch.

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This wasn’t the original plan. It started due to laziness. Last time I made a facing to finish the neckline as I thought the pattern as drafted was a little on scruffy side for a neckline finish. But I’d just altered the neckline, and I couldn’t be bothered to alter the facing too, so I decided to try some knit bias tape that I bought (online, then found locally, sigh).  I stitched it on to the right side, pressed, turned, tacked down, then wondered how to sew it down. Straight stitch would pop (the new smaller neckline definitely needs stretching to get over my head), as in my experience does a twin needle. Stretch straight stitch (aka lightening bolt) looks awful as topstitching, and I wasn’t sure that zig zag nearly an inch out from the neckline (as the pre bought bias binding is quite wide) would look ok. I don’t have a coverstitch machine. I tried to search for a knit bias tape finish but was unsuccessful, I only rediscovered the excellent grainline one for wovens, and realised that I should’ve undererstitched. While pondering what to do next, my mind turned to sashiko style stitching, inspired by all the lovely mends I’d seen on the Make do and Mend group. I tried out a zig zag (hmmm), a straight running stitch (not stretchy, as predicted) and a herringbone stitch and decided on the latter, using some white cotton that had belonged to my grandmother in law (so presumably is for quilting in some manner).

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I was a bit worried that it looked too homemadey (I don’t usually do handstitching on anything as I’m a bit slapdash and scruffy at it), so I started with one cuff and worked my way up. LSH was very impressed, he thought the top had looked too plain (not used to seeing me in solid coloured garments obviously!) and the herrbingbone lifted it. Today I just happened to call into my local fabric shop and I was asked by one of the lovely assistants how I got thread that thick to go through my machine 🙂 So it passes that test! Now fingers crossed it washes and wears ok! (And no, I will not normally be wearing an entirey purple ensemble, but I have perilously few pairs of trousers and these were the ones that were clean today).

What’s your favourite finishing technique?

Bits and Bobs

It’s been one of those sorts of weeks around here. A chipping away at stuff kind of week.

Dislike

Dislike

First the bad news, I made another Day to Night T shirt and I hate it. I used the same pattern iteration as last time, so in theory it should work. But I hate it. I got this fabric to got with the lovely bundle of stuff that Crystal sent me (don’t ask for a progress report on that right now, ok), it was the best colour match in the shop, but its a horrible colour on me, what was I thinking of?

case in point

case in point

Also, its a slinky fabric that clings to every lump and bump and does nothing for me. I’m putting this photo up here to remind Future Me never to buy this kind of fabric again. I hate it. I know this. What was I thinking of?

check out that wavy collar

check out that wavy collar

Next up, in mixed news, hubby has been wearing his new waistcoat and doesn’t the colour look good with this shirt. I got lots of lovely comments about it, thank you and I know it’s not that bad, but you can see here, the trouble with the collar, which likes to roll up on itself.

gape

gape

Also, despite understitching the seam, the lining is still starting to bag out and I keep seeing flashes of it. It’s not as bad as on the last one but I’m wondering how I stop this happening in future. Do I need to topstitch this bottom hem? Or have a facing of main fabric along the bottom of the lining maybe?

scrap buster

scrap buster

Finally, on a good note, we have started a long process at home of swapping some rooms round, which will mean I get a better sewing space eventually. At the moment I’m sorting through some of my mounds of stuff and as part of that process I made a couple of “buffs” from scrap jersey. Now to find a child with a head small enough to wear them.

knickertastic

knickertastic

I also got myself some more psycadelic underwear to brighten up grey autumn mornings. This photo was taken indoors on a grey day so really doesn’t show you quite how bright they are. This pair are flowery at the back, teal at the front and have hot pink ribbing bands. I had to squeeze them out of the fabric so a bit of the margin printing shows, but I don’t care. Amazingly the flowers are still symmetrical a the back.

action shot

action shot

Finally, my new bag has been getting a lot of use and I’m particularly tickled by how it looks in the box on the front of my bike.

Nothing like a deadline.

Ta Da

Ta Da

Life is busy sometimes. I’d been planning this a little while, but only started tracing the pattern yesterday afternoon. Finished in the early hours of this morning for his birthday today. Cutting it fine.

too busy opening presents to pose

too busy opening presents to pose


I’m not going to look at it too closely, cos I’m sure the sewing could be better (the seams are fine, it its the more visible pocket application and bindings that have room for improvement). But it is finished, it fits, and he’s worn it all day (despite it not being school uniform, not sure how he managed that).

side seams inside and out

side seams inside and out – you can just make out the reverse of the red fleece is looped

The idea was to replace a snuggly hooded fleece top that he’d grown out of. The pattern is a mash up of two hooded tops from Ottobre 4/2014, mainly the older boys top (number 39) but with the hood (and hence necklines too) of the girls top (number 37) as I couldn’t be bothered with plackets and buttons I preferred the look of the cross over hood. I also extended the sleeves by the length of the ribbing and left that off, and added a kangaroo pocket.

topstitching the seam allowance down

topstitching the seam allowance down

The skull and crossbone fleece was a holiday purchase. I can’t remember which came first, the decision only to buy a precut 1/2m length, or the choice to mix it with a contrasting solid. The red came from my local fabric shop and has a looped back. I knew the fleece wouldn’t fray so didn’t need a seam finish, but I was worried the seams would be bulky, so I topstitched the seam allowances flat (everywhere except the sleeves, as that wasn’t possible). I used black thread throughout, as I was feeling lazy a design feature.

binding

binding

I bound all the raw edges with strips of contrast fleece as if it was bias binding (not that it was cut on the bias mind). This is how the original hoodie was finished. Some worked better than others, probably as some were different widths than others.

Overall, I like this a lot, but would never enter it for a competition. My main issue constructing it was sewing the hood binding to the bottom edge (the one that gets sewn to the main jumper) by mistake, rather than to the front edge. I always struggle telling which way up an unattached hood is. That was 2 rows of stitching to unpick, stitching that had sunk into the fleece. Gah. Overall the fit is really quite skinny, even on my beanpole, maybe that’s bad fabric choice, the model looks to be wearing more a thick t shit fabric. It’s fine for now but I worry he won’t want to layer it over long sleeved tops and that it’ll be too tight before the arms are the right length.

I can’t comment on the sewing instructions as I ignored them, but the pattern was just fine, just be aware of the skinny fit. Oh, and I love the fabric combinations, my favourite bit, the two together are better than the sum of the parts. Slightly more grown up than his last top, but still fun, and me made this time.

I shoul Coco

June is upon us and what better excuse than this months stashbusting knit theme is there to break into some of the pretties I’ve been aquirring this year? (OK, this is a lie, I’m not sewing really sewing to the theme, it’s just the theme has rolled around to what I want to sew!).

back view

back view

I decided to use some lovely stuff that I acquired from Kitschy Coo to revisit the Coco Top from Tilly and the Buttons. I made this pattern twice last year and I was so pleased with myself! But the ponte fabric that I used quickly pilled and now that my sewing has advanced a little I notice that the fit isn’t the best on them, plus I’m not convinced by the turtle neck on me. However, they still get worn a lot (especially the colour blocked one) due to a lack of long sleeved tops in my drawers (and specifically non stripey ones).

embarassed side view - with the slight gapeyness at the neck showing

embarassed side view – with the slight gapeyness at the neck showing

This time I remeasured and cut a size smaller (6 not 7) but I did a Full Bust Adjustment. For some reason when I went to cut it the front piece was not playing fair at having the pattern lining up. Four or five attempts later and I called it a day – it’s pretty straight. Also, the piece of fabric was no where near as big as it was in my mind and I only just squeezed it on and the back and the front don’t have the same colour flowers along the bottom (but considering some of the badly matched patterns I now find myself noticing in RTW clothes I don’t think anyone will notice). Anyway, my plans for using the leftovers to make a skort (skirt with combined shorts underneath) for the girl will have to go out the window. There is a smallish piece left though, so watch this space….

well, if I'm going to look stupid I might as well make it look intentional

well, if I’m going to look stupid I might as well make it look intentional

I decided that I wanted to up my finishing on the neckline, as Tilly’s instructions are basically turn and stitch (with the aid of hem tape). I can live with unfinished seams on knit tops, but I wanted a neater neckline. Luckily the stashbusting facebook page came to my rescue yet again and I used Heather’s tutorial to cut a facing for the neckline. However, I don’t have a coverstitch machine, so I sewed it to the t shirt with a stretch stitch, then understitched it before flipping it under. Then I folded the raw edge under and twin stitched it from the front. I decided to narrow the seam allowance when sewing my facing on as at a trial try on I was finding the neckline quite wide and I didn’t want to increase it by 5/8″ (I still used 5/8″ at the shoulder seams so that my facing was the same size as my t shirt!). This was fine, except in a couple of places you can now see the stay stitching I’d done at 3/8″ right at the beginning before I’d decided on this course of action. Oh well, the colour match on the thread is good so it doesn’t show too much. (And the reason there’s no photo of the facing is not due to embarassment, rather ineptitude on my part (i.e. I forgot to take one, sorry)).

How the devil are you supposed to turn corners with a twin needle?

How the devil are you supposed to turn corners with a twin needle?

I used Pandora’s tips for threading my twin needle (and I discovered that my machine had a thread holder bar above the needle along the way, suppose I should be using that all the time, whoops) – I’d already worked out for myself to increase the stitch length to 3. Still not sure if I’m using the best way to turn corners, like on the side splits here. The best way I’ve found is to treat the needles like a single needle, leave them down as if it was a single needle, raise the foot and pivot. It’s not perfect but it’s the best I’ve come up with.

aftermath of the tissue paper approach

aftermath of the tissue paper approach

I decided to try Jessica’s tissue paper trick on the hem. As I suspected although a lot of it pulled away, there was quite a bit of tissue paper left behind. I couldn’t be bothered pulling it out, so I left it there and I’m hoping the rest comes out in the wash.

with/without tissue paper hem comparison - above is without

with/without tissue paper hem comparison – above is without

It didn’t seem to make much difference so I did one hem with tissue and one without, for a comparison. I suspect it makes more of a difference on a thiner knit, this Kitschy Coo stuff is really thick and lovely. Also, it would be easier to remove the tissue paper afterwards if you weren’t using a twin needle.

Looking nautical

Looking nautical

I’m glad I did a FBA, I think the fit is a lot better. Next time I will alter the neckline too. It is a little wide and low for my taste, as it shows any t shirt I’m wearing underneath (and I want this top as an item to layer to help me with dressing in our variable climate) which restricts what I can wear it with. Plus it seems to be gaping a bit at the front of the neckline, despite stay stitching it. Maybe its something to do with how I did the facing? Also, it’s been suggested I try a slopey shoulder adjustment and it’s probably about time I worked out how to do a sway back adjustment too.

And what's more nautical than a hornpipe?

And what’s more nautical than a hornpipe?

Overall, this top is definitely a winner (even if my mum thinks it’s garish, but as she said, it’s not her that’s wearing it). I think of it as my new “seasalt top” as I have a few tops from there that I love but don’t want to buy anymore as they are nearly all stripey (I love stripes but a girl can have enough) and the new ones have low scoop necklines that I don’t want. The fabric is at least as thick and lovely as the sea salt ones and I’m hoping it wears as well too.

Oh this sewing malarky is good when it works. Being able to make the tops you wish your favourite shops made and add a bit to the length while you’re at it, bliss! Anyone else out there improving on the brands they love?

Ambling along

Hello there, how are you this fine spring evening?

I’ve had a bitty few days sewing, things have been getting done, but not that much to show for it yet. The boy and I are supposedly working on a joint project but I can’t do much on it until he gets his bit finished. Currently he’s about half done and stalled.

concentrating on a bit of embroidery

concentrating on a bit of embroidery

I did a bit of mending/adjusting/finishing yesterday. Including hemming my second attempt at the Day to Night Drape top and finishing the last bit of seam allowance on my Tova. (Left at the time as I was considering pockets.) Both are now with the same friend who got my first attempt at a Day to night Drape top, along with the dress she asked me to take up the hem on at the end of last summer (it was pinned and took approx 5 mins to my shame). I decided, after having the Tova on my “alter it in some magical way so I want to wear it pile” for about a year, just to give it to someone that’ll wear it. I’ve also given the copious amount of leftover fabric to another friend.

So today I started work on the Jalie 3132 top I got given in the Curvy Sewing Collective Christmas swap. I’m making the (shorter) hip lenth, with 3/4 length sleeves and v neck in some pink and grey stripey fabric from my Slightly Seasoned Pretties layer (bought back in November with a birthday dress for the girl in mind). If it turns out well I have a recently purchased something from my Pure Excitement Layer in mind to make a second one.

FBA done, just the bottom curve to smooth out

FBA done, just the bottom curve to smooth out

However, I got frustrated trying to get the stripes horizontal and have now started some modesty shorts for The Girl to go with the extremely short nightdresses someone gave her for her birthday (I’ve had longer tops).

Speaking of which, I might try and put a quick waistband on one in time for bedtime.

See you later, happy sewing!

First Swallow of Summer

I’m not sure if finding a bargain second hand item that you know you can transform is luck or judgement, what do you think? Either way I don’t usually have the knack.

before

before

However, this time, I could see the potential in this adult top which was £1 and we both liked the fabric. We even saw sandmartins (which we thought were early swallows) the day I finished it – which made the fabric even more special for us.

jump for joy

jump for joy

I found some co-ordinating quilting cotton bought for a project that’s fallen off my list and I was away.

back view

back view

I just made it up as I went along, cutting the top across just below the button placket and reusing the original side seams and hem. I gathered it slightly into a blue band I made with A line sides. A navy waistband as well seemed like it would be a bit too much navy, so I added a strip of flat piping in the seam from the bird fabric to break it up. It’s slightly wobbly, but I think I like it.

pockets

pockets

That just left pockets, an essential for a girl to keep her stones/tissues/hairclips/treasures in. They needed to overlap the colour change to be at the right height, so I couldn’t work out if I should make them navy or birdy, I felt either would look wrong. Eventually I hit on this combination, with a little help from this tutorial and I really like the result.

And as an added bonus, I found out half way through it fits with the April Put a Bird on It challenge over at the Monthly Stitch.

Anyone else putting a bird on it this month?

I did it

I did it, I cut into my precious holiday buy fabric and made a dress.

Peekaboo

Peekaboo

I was so happy wearing my turquoise dress (and so disappointed it had to go in the wash) that I decided it would be a “good enough” pattern for my nighttime city scape fabric. After all, if I waited for the perfect pattern I could have the fabric in a box forever and never wear it at all. So, I overcame my fears of messing it up and the fabric stretching out over time (as I had to cut it at right angles to the way I should) and went for it.

My 8 year old has upped his game

My 8 year old has upped his game

I dithered a little about pattern placement. The fabric has a symetric design, brown with thin rectangles in the middles, going through pink, yellow and orange to brown with the rectangle size increasing as it approaches the border, which had a horrid print I was determined not to use. I’m not sure I got it quite right, I thought the dark on my full bust would help reduce it’s size and the pink would be nicer near my face than the yellow, but now I have a yellow band round my widest part. Oh well, I don’t care.

back shot as directed

back shot as directed

I didn’t have enough fabric to get the sleeves to match up with the main dress, but I think they look fine. I made the cowl with orange nearer my face and a flash of yellow on the undercollar to lift it.

Other than that I made it exactly the same as before, but used a strip of interfacing (normal stuff, I can’t get jersey interfacing locally) to stabilise the shoulder seams.

look, a fushia, in flower in November

look, a fushia, in flower in November

The fit is a little tighter as the fabric has less drape, but I’m fine with that.

I LOVE THIS DRESS. I’m so proud of it. I’m in my second day of wearing it and wondering if I can squeeze day 3 out of it before washing it. I have told anyone who glanced at it that I made it, I’ve probably been unbearable.

he wanted to show you a close up the lovely fabric

he wanted to show you a close up the lovely fabric

And it sort of only cost me £8 (I say sort of, as I used the Birgitte pattern, but I’ve also used that for t shirts, so how to cost that, plus I made the Lola dress as I was experimenting with what to do with this fabric and that cost a bit in paying for the pattern and printing it). But it would cost me at least £30 to buy, and I couldn’t buy this dress and did I tell you I MADE IT!

I’m so proud.

reverting to type

reverting to type

New Dress

Props help photo shoots, right?

Props help photo shoots, right?

I made a thing! Ok, so I make things all the time, but I’m really pleased with this one. It’s so much nicer than it looks in the photos. (Photo shoot number one, in park, entirely reliant on children. Photo shoot number two, had husbands photography skills to hand, but due to rain it was indoors and I managed to pull even more silly faces than usual, sigh).

I'll just casually turn this light off...

I’ll just casually turn this light off…

It all started with a trip to pick up a cleat for my mum for her roman blinds. The problem is, the blind supplies came from my local curtain shop, which is also my local fabric shop. I was trying to be strong, but a chance item in the remnants bin near the till led to browsing the fleece fabrics and then looking at a grey rib knit with an eye to another Lola and the assistant noticed and realised the rib was in the wrong place and led me round to the knit section where she and another assistant softened me up by competing to show me all the lovely fabric available and then they swapped with their colleague who came and gave me the hard sell, man she was really pushing fabric on me. I left with 3m of a lovely turquoise knit with black flecks in and 2m of some chocolate brown stuff, which was less than half of what she was trying to get me to buy. The assistants immediately started on the rest of the turquoise for themselves before it ran out.

Just act casual...

Just act casual…

It really is a lovely fabric. I’m sure the roll said 97% cotton, 3% lycra, dry clean only. I have no idea why it said dry clean only, I wash cotton and lycra all the time, so I prewashed it and it’s fine. It feels almost wool like, in a sort of fluffy way. Maybe it’s brushed knit cotton – is there such a thing? The black flecks are very subtle, they just give it some depth, reminiscent of a shot cotton. But it frays when it’s cut. Hmmm, most odd. But lovely. There were two other colour ways, bright red and magenta. I keep thinking of the magenta. Watch this space…

My son was mainly interested in taking close up shots

My son was mainly interested in taking close up shots

I had an idea of what to make, some kind of knit dress, cos I’m currently obsessed with them. Plus something for my daughter from the leftovers as she really suits this colour and will like the softness of the fabric. My original intention was to make a dress length version of the day to night drape top – but that didn’t turn out so well so I had to think again.

another close up

another close up – that sleeve is hemmed honest, no idea why it looks like a raw rolled edge in this shot

There are plenty of tutorials for making a tunic dress by copying a t shirt that fits, such as this cool recycling one, so I was confident that I could extend a t shirt pattern to tunic dress length and that should work ok, after all, that’s what the Coco dress is too.

action shot, I could've entered the sporty sewalong if I'd made this earlier

action shot, I could’ve entered the sporty sewalong if I’d made this earlier

In the end I went with my Birgitte with “proper” FBA pattern as that is my best fitting t shirt to date. I traced the front onto some greaseproof paper and then marked off the length of a tunic dress I own that seemed appropriate. Then I just extended the line of the t shirt downwards to the hemlength. I dug out my Coco pattern and traced of the curve at the edge of the hemline up to sides. But what to do for a neckline. I didn’t fancy a scoop, I wanted it to be a bit dressier than a t shirt and something that I could wear over a t shirt.

and for the sake of fairness, this is his sisters attempt at photographing my dress

and for the sake of fairness, this is his sisters attempt at photographing my dress

So, I dug out my Amy top pattern. I may not want to make it again as I now think I need a smaller size with a FBA (and being a Style Arc pattern I just have a single size), but I could steal the neckline. It wasn’t quite a straight trace as the shoulders of the Birgitte were further apart than those of the Amy. So I traced it angled in towards the centre front and then straightened it off for the bit in the middle (hmm, hard to explain, hope that makes some sense). I wanted to make sure my neckline was the same length as the Amy so I could use the cowl piece without adjustment. I even remembered to check seam allowances, 1cm for my Birgitte but only 6mm (eek, small even for me) on the Amy, so I actually traced the seam line then added a 1cm seam allowance to match the Birgitte portion.

luckily my friends son has a bit more of a clue than my two

luckily my friends son has a bit more of a clue than my two

Then I did the same for the back – the neckline ended up a few mm shorter than the Amy top but I figured using a 1cm seam to join up my cowl piece would balance that out. The sleeves are the Birgitte 3/4 length, a straight size L (like the top) without any extra fabric added for gathers. I think they work really well on this, but if I was making a t shirt I’d like the ends a bit less baggy.

Making it up went fairly smoothly. Well, until the end, when I was trying to get it finished to wear and the kids wouldn’t leave me alone. It was sort of my Grumpy Dress at that point. So don’t look too closely at the hems on the cuffs and the bottom of the dress, and the inside of the cowl isn’t caught by the stitching in places so I need to go back and hand stitch those bits down.

But since then I’ve worn it 3 days straight and have now reluctantly put it in the wash. It’s so soft and snuggly and comfy to wear and I love the colour. I’ve worn it with leggins (full length would look better than capri ones but both pairs of full length are on the darning pile, grr) and over baggy trousers and I think it’ll work with jeans too (but it’s too short to wear on it’s own). I also tried tying a scarf around my waist (as I don’t have a wide belt) – but I’m not so sure of that. The only thing I don’t like about this dress is the fact I’ve put a couple of inches around my abdamon in the last 6 months, but no tailoring will really hide that, so hopefully it’ll motivate me to do something about it!

my favourite shot that my 8 year old took

my favourite shot that my 8 year old took – maybe he was wanting to show you the fit of the FBA?!