Saturday, September 15, 2018

Organic Black Cotton Jersey Short-Sleeved Coco Dress

A very simple make that results in a basic piece in my wardrobe. The ultimate Little Black Dress!

Using this wonderful organic interlock I bought in London (The Village Haberdashery) in my last trip. 

I love the hang and touch of this fabric, which combined with the "coco" pattern (my version), results in a perfect dress: comfortable, becoming and versatile.

 I do not understand how could I live with one until now, hehe..

Sunday, September 9, 2018

The Gingham Menorca Dress

 In the first project after my travels this summer, I used the blue gingham I bought in Stoff & Stil, Goteborg. 
I decided to use the same pattern I made for my Menorca dress, which I love and wear a lot in summer, but with some hackering at the back. I made the Menorca dress using the rub-off method with and old dress I made 20 years ago. 

The skirt is cut in the bias and has only one seam at the centre back, where we can put a zipper. In this case, I decided to leave 10 cm open and no zipper. 

The bodice pieces are cut twice to make the facings complete and conceal thus all seams, sewing the bottom interior seam closed by hand. I made an enlargement of the two back pieces to construct the knot or bow at the back. 
As an afterthought, or rather as an adjustment after wearing it one day, I applied an elastic band under the bust, just on top of the imperial waist line, topstitching a line with the machine 0.6 cm over the imperial waist seam, introducing the elastic with a safety pin and securing it by hand. 
Now, it is perfect.

Thursday, August 30, 2018

Red Jersey Sundress

I've had this red jersey in my stash from some time now... I can't remember where I bought it, and that means it is been too long in my stash... I have to be more rational about buying fabric and then not doing nothing with it... Anyways, its day finally arrived. 

I've been wanting a jersey sundress with an elasticated waist for some time... not ideal for my figure, but it this kind of dresses look amazing on petite women I've encountered on the beach, so I did not want to feel excluded, haha...

I used a BurdaStyle magazine pattern without any alteration or hackering. Well, I just shortened it 10 cm or so and placed the elastic higher than it was marked in the pattern, because I wanted it to sit on my waist-waist, no in my low waist as in the picture.

It is a pretty simple pattern to make and the result is good.

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Leather Pouf

This is something I planned to do this summer and... mission accomplished!
We have this Ikea pouf we love and use a lot. Some years back I made a cover with faux leather that was totally worn-out, so I had to make another.
This time I decided to use real leather, so I bought a couple of goat bombed skins online.
I simply dismantled the old cover and used it as a pattern.
My Bernina and its walking foot worked perfectly well to assemble and stitch the pieces together... but for the top-stitching on top, where the bulky leather has to be put under the needle, I needed a professional sewing machine for leather. Fortunately, my neighbour has one and she allows me to use it when I need it. Thank you, Delfina!
The pouf looks gorgeous and strong for a bunch of years to come if we are lucky!

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Fabric and Yarn Shopping in Sweden

I can't say what I like the most: travelling or sewing...?
But definetely buying fabric when I travel is one of my favourite passtimes, I swear!
This summer we visited Sweden and we lived there pretending we were cool Swedes for 15 days. It was awsome. Al I want now is Swedish Hasbeens and Volvos. Really.

Seamstress' shop in SOFO, Stockholm
Frivolities apart, I had to buy emergency linen yard in Stockholm, the first morning after my arrival. I visited three shops, but I totally fell in love with Litet Nystan. All that Nordic Sweaters, FTLOG!!!
Litet Nystan
 I inmediately found a linen-cotton-viscose that was perfect for the skirt I wanted to make. I did not bring my yarn from home, because it was a last-day surprise to find out that in top-down knitted sweters you start the sleeves attached to the bodice, so I could not take a sleeve for my travels. I was very happy knitting around the parks and boats in Stockholm, as I was in the beach some weeks later.

Inspiration... Stokholm

 Going to the yarn shop I discovered that Sankt Paulsgatan was in fact the fabric and yarn district. 
2 cotton jerseys bought at Tygverget
 I bought some fabric in Tygberket, a very well supplied shop at good price, in Swedish terms.
Then we went to live for some days to a cabin in the woods, in the lake. I was happy knitting in that cabin!

Awesome yarn shop in Goteborg city centre.
When we arrived at Goteborg, I did a little research with my magic phone and I told my love we had to take a bus 10 minutes out of the city to go to Stoff & Stil.  

4 items bought for a total of 60 Eur. (yeah!!!)

It was SO WORTH IT! I hit the summer sale and everything was 50 % off!!! I checked everything out, but quickly... only selecting those items I could NOT leave behind: organic velvet, blue/white gingham, dark blue and dust pink corduroy.
Stoff & Stil in Goteborg
  I did not have space in my suitcase! What a wonderful, well equiped and stashed shop!

Stoff & Stil, yarn section
 Stainless steel counters, they had computers reading the label of a fabric and producing a sticker with all the product data, inlcuding the washing directions. AWESOME.
Very happy with my Swedish shopping!
Now, let's sew!

Inspiration in Prague, summer 2018

Saturday, June 30, 2018

Organic Sweatshirt Jacket For Men + Zip Pocket Tutorial

 This is a jacket for my love.
I used a BurdaStyle pattern, which again was perfect, I did not have to alter a thing. Again, Burda delivers. Yes, the instructions of the magazine are so schematic, one has to be an expert sewist to be able to follow... but the accuracy of the pattern and the good fitting one usually gets are the best.
I bought the fabric online in Ecological Textiles. Wonderful fabric to work with and even better to wear. Very warm and comfy, but also breathable, perfect for a sporty jacket with zips and all. In fact, I decided to make it after I wore my own a couple of times. This was the masculine version in the same magazine. So, it is a very similar pattern, i the same fabric.
The most interesting feature during construction was the front and back facing, which I made following the instructions. And also the pockets, which I made my way:

I cut the two pieces of the pocket bag together, and 5 cm longer for the pocket facing included.

I marked the placing of the pocket in both sides and applied some fusible interlining.
I placed the pocket bag on top of the the jacket front (right sides together) and fixed it with pins.

I stitched a rectangle 1 cm wide and 15 cm long, with small stitches at the corners.

Then, we proceed to cut the pocket with a long straight line and four small diagonal ones at corners.
We turn the bag toward the inside of the jacket, baste the opening and press.

Put the zip underneath, secure with pins and machine stitch it with the zip foot, all around.

In the inside, fold the two halves of the pocket together and zigzag it all around with the walking foot on.

Finish sewing by hand the part above the zip, catching it too.
Secure it to the jacket facing if you like, or leave it flapping around.

Saturday, June 2, 2018

Blue Liberty Blouse

Sometimes I have a certain dessign in mind and I cannot find a pattern that delivers for the life of me. As it was the case with this pattern.
The inspiration came, again, through one of the serials I follow, The Affair:
Resultat d'imatges de the affair

 When I saw Allison, a character always inspiring in her casual dresses and blouses, I though it was a perfect excuse for  buying some liberty fabric. I bought it at Goldhawk Rd, in a shop where they have some pretty Liberty cotton lawns some pound cheaper. Perfect.

I envisioned a classic shirt with breast side darts and waist shaping. I scanned all my magazines and could not find such a pattern. So, I had to make my own. I used the close fitting bodice as a base, moved the breast dart, added waist shaping at the sides and darts in front and back. I added the buttonstand, constructed a shirt collar with separate stand and adapted the basic sleeve block, adding an opening, narrowing it at the bottom, shortening it to include a cuff. I followed Aldrich's book to make this customed pattern.

That last step was an important mistake. Although I trued all the paper patterns over the dressform and they seemed OK, I never checked the length of the sleeves, and that was fatal, because I realized the sleeves were 10cm short when I tried on the blouse in first fitting. Luckily, Liberty patterning allows for any tricks, and makes them invisible... I had to add a 10 cm rectangle at the bottom of sleeves, and the result ins inconspicuous.

Blunders aside, the result is wonderful. Comfortable, pretty, wearable and practical. I expect to wear it a lot, specially for work. I future renditions of this pattern, I will make sure the sleeves are long enough and maybe not so ruffled at the top.