Thursday, November 28, 2019

Long Flowery Viscose Dress

 I bought this viscose jersey in Porto last summer, in Feira Do Tecidos. I go 3 metres thinking about the Sirocco jumpsuit I'd seen around, but finally I changed my mind and opted for a long dress. Jumpsuits can be an annoyance to go to the toilet and are tricky in terms of figure... I have an inverted waist, so I chickened out. And I am glad I did, because this has resulted a wonderful long dress. 

I used an old patten from BurdaStyle magazine (best fitting patterns EVER) I had used in two previous occasions for shorter dresses... I've looked back in my blog, and they are not here, so they must be previous to my blogging. 

I planned to use the wrap bodice for the Sirocco jumpsuit and then some jersey darted pants, so I stuck to the bodice and sleeves from Burda, and used its skirt too, but making it long to my feet and A shaped, as much as the fabric permitted. 

I also added some ease at the top of the skirt, and the gathered it a little bit. The pattern had fitting darts in the back, so I gathered that extra fabric too. 

I added some belt, knotted at the back, put some elastic thread along the neck opening to prevent it from gathering.
The result is a stunning dress, comfortable, wearable, classy, cool... I love it. I wore it to work in my school and also for Sunday activities, like the Barcelona Knit Festival, where I bought some gorgeous wool your hear soon enough about. 

Sunday, October 20, 2019

Green Linen Orla Dress

Big thanks to French Navy for the Orla Dress free PDF pattern!
I've been looking for this kind of casual, comfortable and yet shaped dress, and after some failure, I have finally found the one. 

Similar to the Hinterland dress, but more fitted to the waist, the Orla dress has the perfect amount of gathering at the waist, the perfect waist height and skirt length, at least of my body type and taste. 

I made one small modification: giving a little more ease in the bodice sides, maybe a couple of centimetres in total, and a big one: cutting it at the centre front, and adding a button stand for buttons and buttonholes, to imitate the boho air of the before mentioned Hinterland dress. 
The only thing I don't like about this pattern, and it is not a minor one, is the sleeves. They have too much ease at the cap, and it was impossible to smooth all that into the seam, specially in this thick linen, so I had no other option but pinching it. The angle of the sleeves, how they hang, is totally off. Luckily, linen is so wrinkly. that both pinching and of angles are covered. 

These pictures were made in bad conditions, my tripod missed the piece holding my phone, and they all suffer the barrel effect, I look slightly wider than in real life. Also, I took them after working all day at my school with it, but that is natural! Anyways, the feeling I have wearing the dress (I can't see the back of my sleeves, haha...) is far better than these pictures. 
I totally love it, specially in this wonderful green linen I bought in Coimbra this past summer.

Monday, October 7, 2019

Red Japanese Cotton Menorca Dress

I finally got to take pictures of this wonderful summer make. I made it in less than a week for our trip to Portugal in July, as I listened to the wonderful Where the Crawdads Sing. 
This is the third rendition of a rubbed off pattern I made two summers ago and again last summer. Now I realize I am kind of in love with it. 

I could not say which of the three I prefer, since the three of them are made with lustrous cottons, they are fresh, comfortable, becoming to my figure... perfect. 

This one travelled for 18 days all pressed up in a bag in a cross country trip. I wore it in two or three occasions, folded again and put it back in the bag. When I got home, I took it out, gave it a little shake, wore it again, and it was perfect! 

That is how nice this Japanese cotton is! I bought it, only 1 m is enough for this pattern, in Goldhawk road, in London. There was a small shop with several Japanese cotton at good prices. They are worth the last penny. 

Sunday, September 29, 2019

In the Folds Playsuit

Peppermint Magazine has some free patterns and this is one of my favourites. It is a short jumpsuit, lovely labelled "Playsuit", and the name honours the design, for sure! 

It has a playful, young, relaxed look that inspired summer, travel, and all things lovely.

I used the printed linen I bought in Porto this summer (already sewing my stash, good girl!), which is perfect for the make in terms of drape, hang, texture and pattern. 
I just downloaded the pattern, put it together, took the seam allowance off, and cut the fabric with it. 

This design has such a relaxed fit, that I did not even use with tailor tucks, I just cut 2cm seam allowance all around, just enough to make self-encased seams. 

It resulted perfect at the first fitting, so it was a perfect pattern for me. I only altered the shoulder straps, which were too long. One cannot as anything else to a pattern, to be sure!
Thank you!


Thursday, September 19, 2019

Fabric Shopping in London: september 2019

The excuse to visit one of my favourite cities was a concert. Coffins, from Japan, were playing in London, they never come to Catalonia, where I live, and we had never seen them before. We love visiting London from time to time, and I needed some fabric for next season sewing projects. Sadly, I cannot find good quality fabrics in my area. There is shops in Lleida and Barcelona, the nearest cities, but they are mostly polyester fabrics, and I do not do polyester. 
So, London. I had been shopping here before. I know Goldhawk road and Walthamstow market, which are lovely if you have plenty of time and not prefixed ideas of what you want. But I had only one day and a very specific list, so I targeted the best shops in London (for my budget and taste).
We woke up saturday morning in our small studio in Soho. My boyfriend was to come along to carry the backpack and patiently give me advice when need it. He has very good taste and sometimes I even follow it, ha ha..
Thanks to glorious Google Maps, we moved around London as natives (+looking at my phone screen half of the time!). So, first of all, we took bus 38 and went to Islington to pay a visit to Ray Stitch. 
In my opinion, the best fabric shop in London (for my taste). It has a little of everything and all is selected with great care and taste. Excellent denims, organic jerseys, Japanesse cottons, woven cottons, excellent wools... I bought 4 fabrics and spent 80 pounds there. Before I left, we walked to Sew Over It, only because it was nearby. I do not fancy the fabrics they've got (too much polyester for my taste), but I bought a couple of patterns. 

Next, we took an overground and made a beautiful trip to The Village Haberdashery in West Hampstead. I love the C. Pauli cotton jerseys they have there, but I found the shop was not very well stocked. It has got the same fabrics it had when I visited it 3 years ago, nothing new (booooring). They had run out of organic black interlock (whaaaaaaaaaaat?????!) and did not even know it. So, I was a little bit disappointed, although I bought 2 gorgeous fabrics.
Then we took the underground to go back to Soho to have lunch in our studio. After one hour, we went to Liberty to drool over the spectacular designer clothes. I fancied some Missoni pants, but they were 3000 pounds, and I did not carry change, haha...

Then we spent one hour trying to decide about what fabric I bought (typical in Liberty). I was tempted to buy some silk for a blouse, but it was 80 pounds and I was starting to feel guilty. So I bought some cotton and we left. 

MacCulloch and Wallis has an excellent website, but the shop is chaotic. I do not like how they have the fabric exposed... or maybe we were starting to feel tired... but some of the products they have on their site are not there anymore... and it is really difficult to get inspired by hanging swaps and mountains of fabric rolls, that you can only see the tip of... I wanted some nappa leather, but they did not have light brown... and now I regret not buying some other colour, since that is lovely. I finally bought some twill for my saint of a boyfriend. 
We visited The Cloth House, and I could not buy anything in spite of loving all their fabrics. I could not find organic jersey, though.
Finally, we visited Broadwick Silks, but they were also out of red or blue silk jersey (apparently, their website is not up to date neither!), so... saving more money there! 
Well, I had a glorious day fabric shopping in London. It is a great excuse to move around the city, which looked great with its parks, trees, gardens, gorgeous houses, interesting people, pubs, shops.. I love London and its culture. 
Clock wise: Naomi Ito Cotton (Ray Stitch), Liberty Tara Lawn, organic purple sweatshirt (The V. Haberdashery), organic ribbed jersey (Ray Stitch), khaki twill (MacCullock and Wallis),  red gingham and black stretch denim (Ray Stitch), Lady MacElroy Checked Wool (The V. Haberdashery).

Saturday, September 7, 2019

Wrap Black Linen Dress

I am super happy with my new creation!
I got this black linen fabric (awesome drape and softness, 12 Euros the metre in Coimbra) and I got an instant inspiration just when we got back home from Portugal.

 I saw this Bellbird dress and I thought it was just a perfect match. Of course I was not going to pay 20 dollars for a pdf pattern, so I started to think how I could copy it. (I am a pirate sewist, shoot me).

That night, I went to sleep and then I had another inspiration. I had this robe pattern, which I had rendered three times, in woven and jersey fabrics, because it was perfect. I had just the perfect amount of fabric, so I went ahead with the project.
First of all I removed (simply folding it) the folded neck band. I cut the fabric with 2 cm seam allowance all around, giving some more flare to the skirt sides (the fabric did not allow much, but it resulted enough at the end). I also cut some pockets, to be inserted at the seams, and a long 4 cm wide belt that was several pieces assembled, since fabric was sparse. 
It was a fast project to make, a wonderful fabric to work with. It was perfect at the first fitting, and I wore it happily to work. 
Linen wrinkles like crazy, and I think this design is very forgiving, it even goes well with them.
I love it!

Sunday, August 25, 2019

Red Recycled Nylon Bikini!

Well, I needed a bikini.
Since I make all my clothes (but bras, socks and stockings), I had a project. 
First thing was to get the fabric, and it was middle July, all my bikinis seemed to have started dying (I.E. Stretching themselves out of control), and I had to swim + get hold of by flying away bikini to keep it on. I tried to think up a way to make a bikini with natural fibers, which I always use, but even a crocheted bikini requires some elastic in the yarn, so to get the proper needed stretch, I had to go plastic. Then I was tipped about recycled fabric at Thefoldline FB group, and found Carvico's Recycled Vita fabric and Funki Fabrics, where they sold it. I bought 2x 0,5 m for a total of 32 Euros... The fabric is absolutely gorgeous... if it gets to be the durable they promise, it is a gem.
I used the free Acacia underpants pattern, with I love love love!
...and for the top part, I rubbed an old bikini off. I had to make two pieces of each to get it almost right. Bottom is perfect. I used organic thin cotton jersey for the inside gusset, but I did not line the rest, this fabric is thick enough to be discreet when is wet.
I had to repeat the bra because it was small and it squashed my boobs... and that was because the old bikini was veeery stretchy, but this new fabric was tighter. Then it was OK, but the elastic band I'd stitched along the V neck was too tight at at a -25%  rate. So I had to replace it by a -10% new band. 
Now it is almost OK... the only problem being that it either feels to tight at the neck tie or the elasticated V seams turn outwards (damn!), probably because I stretched a bit the fabric when attaching the elastic band with the machine. 
It is perfect when I swim, though... so I can forgive it not being 100% perfect.
Next one is going to be.