Friday, July 25, 2014

Deer & Doe Datura

I think this is my favorite and most useful pattern... I've made five versions now and the fit is perfected. The pattern is great for leftovers and small bits of fabric,  and will look intentional if done right. (I didn't do it quite right on a few below.)

Too many shirts?

1) Paisley pride

This was my first datura and I wear it the most often. I used a scant 1.5 yard of a Liberty of London paisley print that was briefly on sale.

The armcyes are a little high cut, and the bias tape neckline had to be manually pinched and stitched to lay flat on my chest.

(Hint, the middle triangle folds in slightly when the shirt is worn, making the tape too long)

Also, I put the buttons on incorrectly in the back (they are evenly spaced, but it's better if they hit the top 2/3s of the shirt back, leaving the bottom third of the shirt without buttons), but otherwise, I love it. 

2) Linen + leftovers

This one is a little silly... I used leftover linen with a scrap of Liberty of London floral print (the rest was made into a colette sorbetto shirt)... and then I got weird with the bias tape and hemming. It is wearable and with the french seams I found myself wearing inside out by accident once. I've received compliments on it, but I do always feel a little clownish when I wear it. The back is sewn in place, no buttons.

3) Voile & silk

I tried a peter pan collar on this one. I used a Robert Kaufman silk/cotton blend for the yoke (yay, ordering 1 yard or less of something). The bottom is a cotton voile that is cute, but surprisingly stiff and too sheer for worry-free use without a lining... and it turns out I HATE peter pan collars. Which is good to know, they always look so cute on other people. I will skip them in the future.
This shirt is really only good for the office with a tank top underneath.

4) Voile leftovers

This is my favorite... I bought a scrap 5/8 yard of Joel Dewberry Notting Hill Pristine Poppy Poppy voile. It is lovely and soft (not stiff like the one above). For lining, I used a soft grey voile and for the back panels, I originally tried a white cotton, but it came off as too "I ran out of fabric" and not enough "I did this on purpose" so I used a matching red swiss dot voile. The fasteners are nice matching green cowgirl snaps.

I love this shirt! It's a little wrinkled from use yesterday. 

Cowgirl snaps on the back! A freaking nightmare to put in using cheap dritz pliers.
5) Rayon challis leftovers

Last night, I realized I had enough scraps of Anna Maria Horner's Sinister Swarm to make a shirt with 1/2 yard of cream challis. I skipped the bias tape neckline AND peter pan collar to make a plain yoke. It took me just over an hour to complete it... I've grown very comfortable with this pattern.
I'm very pleased with the result- the fabric is soft and drapey and the print goes well with the plain challis.
Ok,  I do have too many shirts. Time to get measurements from family & friends.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Chardon Skirt in linen

Pattern: Deer & Doe Chardon skirt
Fabric: Parson Grey Osaka Tin "Utility Linen"
Sizing: 46 straight cut, could be a little smaller next time.
Details & deviations: This is a very simple pattern- only a few cut pieces for either version. I choose the quickest version without a band at the bottom. I cut the skirt pieces long by about 4 inches, which is good because the high waistband pulls the skirt up and I adore skirts that end just below the knee.

I should have spent more time doing matching - the pattern on the outer waistband could be a little better.

The instructions were vague such as "finish seam" so I chose to bind all seams with some leftover pre-made bias tape. It looks very nice and neat inside and out!
The zipper is metal and 7 inches, shorter than suggested, but it works well.

Originally, I choose this fabric for Evan's next Negroni shirt, but he thought it was too itchy on the inside. It is a linen, a little rough, but not to bad for a skirt where the only contact will be the inner waistband until I sit down. So, no sitting and all is dandy.

I multi-tasked and used the photo sessions as dog training sessions.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Hawthorn in linen

I love this dress!

Pattern: Colette Hawthorn dress, version 3 with sleeves from version 1, rolled up.
Fabric: Kaufman Brussels washer linen blend, midnight blue and brass 1/2'' buttons.
Size & Cut: Bodice size 12, graded to 16 at the hips.
Details and deviations:
My first successful FBA! I added 2 inches of volume, making two darts per side instead of a giant dart. The result in the bust is good... but the best part is the back: it fits! This is the first back I have not had to modify by trimming length or width. Instead, it was cut the right size, and the front was adjusted to add in my extra bust inches, rather then the other way around. Smart, huh.

So it turns out the grading to 16 at the hips was unnecessary, 14 would have sufficed with room to spare. The pattern has a lot of ease after the waist and I should have trusted the "finished garment" measurements on the pattern. The result is some puffiness right on the top of the hips where the grading is too steep, probably not too noticeable to anyone but me.

I did not use interfacing, instead I used simple cotton lining, with an extra layer sandwiched in the collar. The result is fine, but the button holes are too far from the edge, which occasionally flares up and reveals the white fabric. It's not terrible, but not what I was expecting. I'll use a cool but not so contrasting fabric next time. Maybe something shiny.

The sleeveless version of the dress is not appealing or flattering to those with already wide shoulders so I added the short sleeves from the peplum version. Then, I added rolled up cuffs to the sleeves which looks good in linen, nice and informal. 

Lastly, I sewed the facing down on both long sides of the button placket in super long rectangles. It is more secure and neater than the pattern directions. The stitch line on the outer layer looks fine to me!

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Belcarra blouse from Sewaholic

1. Butterfly Belcarra

Pattern: Belcarra by Sewaholic
Fabric: Alexander Henry Oxford Butterfly Lawn, Black from Greys Fabric & Notions
Cut Sizing: 14 top to 16 waist
Details & deviations: All seams are flat felled- side vents added. Neck finished with bias tape.
Notes: Baggy, large crease from armscye to bust. Butterflies in headlight position... wearable.

2. FBA muslin attempt

 Unsuccessful. Dart was inches too low for bust. Must be steeply angled up to work. Gave up for now.

3. Galaxy Belcarra

For this attempt, I wanted a baggy, drapey shirt! I had a lovely galaxy print chiffon that is extremely sheer... I will be wearing a tank under the blouse. :)

Pattern: Belcarra by Sewaholic
Fabric: Digital galaxy print from Mood Fabrics, 2 panels.
Cut Sizing: 14 top to 16 hips (graded steeply near the bottom)
Details & deviations: All seams are french seamed, including sleeves (!).  Neck finished with bias tape.
Notes: Chiffon is hard to sew (but easier than habotai), new needle helped, pintucks are not quite aligned, sheerness works well with dark background, poly fabric generates static electricity and becomes clingy as well as sheer... annoying... find anti-static solution!