September 17, 2012

Market Skirt and Jasmine

Filed under:Blouse,Sewing,Skirts,Stash Down — Aileen @ 08:00

Another in the summery series! Unseasonal I know but hey, these summaries might be of use to others. Here’s an outfit, the Market skirt and Jasmine.

Patterns: Market skirt from Lisette and Jasmine top from Colette.

With the top tucked in, you can see the skirt in better detail.

I made the skirt as per the pattern, complete with tabs and buttons. I think it’s really cute but you only get the effect if you tuck your shirt in.

Fabric: Exactly 1m of cotton from Ikea, about €5. Nice to work with, nice weight for a skirt, perfect cost for a summer skirt.

I played it safe with the sizing so the skirt is a little big. I also didn’t line it and just finished the waist band with some bias binding I had to spare. I didn’t do a lapped zipper and found the invisible one really easy to put in, since the the waistline is quite low and the hip curve not severe.

As for the top, I’m sure you remember my sleeve woes from here. I used about 1.5m of polycotton and so, it too, did not break the bank. Something like €10 from Murphy Sheehy’s. If I were making it again, I would interface the main part of the collar (not the ties) and not the facing.

I may not make it again because even though it’s pretty and looks lovely tucked in, you might notice that the collar is very wide for my narrow shoulders. I can’t wear anything over it. I had hoped to wear it with a V-neck cardigan but the neckline is just too wide. That said, the main body of the top fits very nicely and there is potential to make it again in a drapey fabric such as satin or silk, minus the collar and the sleeves. Maybe it’s just me but solid basic patterns such as a bias tank top are hard to come by… so the pattern may live on as such.


September 16, 2012

Passport Dress

Filed under:Dress,Sewing,Stash Down — Aileen @ 14:33

I finally got around to taking photos of all those summery things I whipped up. Here’s one that I’m most pleased with.

Pattern: Passport Dress from Lisette. The pattern also comes with a jacket; the two go really nicely together.

Fabric: About 1.75m of floral cotton from Ikea. It cost maybe €15 at the most. I will admit, it does float around the line of curtain fabric but I love its mix of reds and pinks. It’s the kind of dress that is appropriate for many situations and I hope to wear it with a blouse as it gets cooler.

The pattern was very straightforward. The only modification I made was to add a lining. The armholes are faced with bias binding so I basted the fabric and lining together before adding the binding. The main problem I had was with the zip. I like to give invisible zips a little press with the iron so I can sew quite close to the teeth. Unfortunately my iron was too hot so it curled like crazy and I had to buy another one. Apart from that, the pattern has you insert the zip about 5cm below the armhole. This would have been fine had I used a lapped zipper as recommended in the pattern. I thought an invisible one would look better – which it does – but it was a pain to get it to sit properly at the top. I ended up opening the binding under the arm, easing in the little bit of excess I had and sewing it back down. Probably would have been easier to run the zip right up to the underarm.

The only other thing I would probably adjust in hindsight is the depth of the armscye. I have exceptionally shallow armscyes and as a consequence, the bodice does not sit exactly right and there is a little bit of gaping at the underarms. If I pinch out the excess at the top of the shoulders, it sits better. It’s not so bad that I can’t wear it but for the next time, this is a change I will make.


September 14, 2012

Friday colours

Filed under:Cardigans,Lace,Stash,Works In Progress — Aileen @ 11:49


The inside of my current colourwork project…


…and the outside. A simple cowl I started more than 2 years ago and
rediscovered when sorting stash for HandmAid donations. The yarn is Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino: delicious.


Striped seersucker that I’ll be using to line my navy linen jacket. Just cut it out yesterday so looking forward to working on it.


A quick ‘panda’ shot: kidsilk haze shawl, ‘Violet’ blouse, cardigan from Benetton. Not pictured, pair of ‘Clover’ cigarette pants in charcoal wool suiting (ilovethem).

Currently feeling a little sorry for myself as have dratted start-of-term cold and had to cancel my place at the This is Knit Yarn Tasting tonight. If you’re going, I insist you channel my spirit, drink too much tea, laugh too loudly and buy enough wool to fill your bag.

But really, not feeling too sorry as it has blown into a beautiful day outside and there’s no overestimating the comfort of a hand knit shawl.


September 13, 2012

FO: Wool Dress

Filed under:Dress,Finished Objects,Sewing,Stash Down — Aileen @ 10:53

After the fix I talked about in my last post, I was able to finish this up pretty quickly. (Apologies for the not-so-fantastic lighting; it was this or not take any photos at all).

Pattern: McCall’s 7129, from 1963. Simple dress in 3 pieces with the zip down the centre back.

Fabric: About 1.5m of wool with something similar of lining, both from Murphy Sheehy’s about a year ago.

So yeah, even though the pattern is for a size 35-36″ bust, my finished garment was 40″ around! I took it in 2″ on each side and thankfully it worked it out. Even though you can’t see the fabric very well in these photos, you can see the shape and fit of it I think. I love the shape of the skirt and I’m very pleased with the fit of the bodice.

Apart from taking it in, the only other modification I made was to line it. Facings were included so I cut them out of the wool and cut the dress full dress from the lining. I turned under the seam allowance on the facings and top stitched them on to the lining pieces. Then I trimmed out the excess lining from underneath the facing. The instructions for finishing off attaching the facings to the bodice weren’t amazing. I think if I make the pattern again, I’ll plan a better way to do it.

I’m glad to have finished this up because the weather is already starting to turn cooler.


September 10, 2012

A leeson and a rescue

Filed under:Epic disaster,Sewing,Stash Down — Aileen @ 17:06


I did nearly finish my dress at the weekend, like I said but it wasn’t how it hoped. Four inches wider than I’d hoped! You can imagine my frustration considering that I’d made a muslin! …but doubts crept into my mind. It was last winter I’d made the muslin and I didn’t have a clear memory of any alterations I’d planned. I have also lost weight since cutting out my fabric. So my lesson is this: if it’s been a while, to re-measure the pattern pieces and keep notes of what adjustments I made. Sounds obvious, right?! Anyway, I left it hanging for a day and refused to do anything until the heat of my rage had passed. The following night in bed, I realised that I could just open the side seams and take it in. Now, I’d be a bit more wary if this wasn’t such a basic pattern. I was really happy with the fit across the back as well as the princess seaming on the front. There really was just an excess at the sides. It was an easy fix and I am thrilled with how it fits now. In other news, I’ve been planning my autumn and winter knitting, crochet and sewing. This year is my most organised yet! I hope to integrate my favourite hobbies to make a few interchangeable outfits.