Saturday, October 25, 2008

Fleece jacket (Simplicity 4029)

I wanted to make something for my Mom. I though that a nice, less sporty, more fitter fleece jacket that she could wear with woven pants or jeans would be nice.

I had not done many set-in sleeves, so I decided to experiment with the gray fleece I had at home. If it turned out well and fit her, I could make her another one, as I am a little worried that the fleece I used might pill.

This was the first time I used my dressform to make clothes for someone else. I hope it will fit.

Pattern: Simplicity 4029
View: A
Size: 12 (for my Mom)
Fabric: Gray fleece, black fleece doublefold bias tape, ladybug buttons

Things I learned:

* I was very precise with the seam allowances in this pattern, and it wen together like a dream. Precision pays off: fewer worries.
* I used the serger to finish the edges and take away some of the bulk; cut off about 1/4".
* Then I used the walking foot at 3/8" to total 5/8", and it made beautiful seams.
* I set in the sleeve with the serger as described in one of the Threads magazines. I hand-gathered between the indicated dots, and then ran it through the serger.
* Then I sewed a row of regular stitches, but ended up running it through the serger again to trim the seam allowances even more.
* I paid special attention to the way the seam allowances lay.

* I am looking forward to working with more knits!!!

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Chair cover (McCall's 4404)

I made two chair covers out of this pattern already. I like it.

Pattern: McCall's 4404
View: F
Size: one size
Fabric: Natural muslin

Things I learned:
  • You need a lot of fabric for this chair cover, but it looks nice. It can be made much cheaper than the ready-made ones.
  • I used a ribbon to tie the back.

Hat and collar-scarf (Simplicity 4848)


The hat turned out very nicely, but it's a bit too warm and a bit too fancy. I still love the color.

Even though the collar-scarf is fun to make and nice to loo at, it's not the most comfortable scarf-alternative to wear.

Pattern: Simplicity 4848
View: C, I, K
Size: one size
Fabric: Fleece, broadcloth for lining, black fleece, rattail

Things I learned:
  • A regular scarf would be better.
  • The brim lies more flat on the side of the hat than in the picture.
  • Making a good pair of gloves is very tedious, especially in very small size. I did it, but they didn't firt me. I gave them away. I ended up buying a black pair of chenille gloves for 2 bucks, and added the fleece flowers to it. Much better.

Sporty scarf and hat (McCall's 4681)

I made both the hat and the scarf, but they turned out too big and bulky. I gave them away.

Pattern: McCall's 4681
View: B
Size: L
Fabric: Antipill fleece

Things I learned:
  • I could choose a lighter fleece next time.
  • I could also choose one size smaller.

First set-in sleeve (Simplicity 7086)

This turned out nicely, but I chose the wrong color fabric. This was my first set-in sleeve, and I was really proud of it. It was beautiful. Unfortunately, I had to give the blouset away, because the fabric color washed me out completely.

Pattern: Simplicity 7086
View: E
Size: 8
Fabric: Shirting

Things I learned:
  • I could lengthen the shirt a bit
  • I need to find fabric that does not need ironing. The one I chose needed a lot of ironing before it looked remotely wearable.

Empire dress (McCall's 5039)

This pattern didn't work so well on me. I gave the dress away.

Pattern: McCall's 5039
View: D
Size: 10
Fabric: Cotton woven

Things I learned:
  • Size 10 proved to be too big for me.
  • The skirt part was not as flared as I had thought it was.
  • Also, I should know by now that cap sleeves (even if poofy) don't look particularly flattering on me.
  • (I could use sleeveless, short sleeved, 3/4 sleeved, or long sleeved patterns.)

Dress with no darts in the front II (Butterick 3020)

This dress didn't look too good on me; I ended up giving it away.

Pattern: Butterick 3020
View: G
Size: 8
Fabric: Beige woven

Things I learned:
  • Beige is a terrible color for me. I pretty much had an idea befor,e but now, I am totally certain that I should avoid anything beige near my face; it washes me out.
  • I need to add darts to this dress if I make it again.

Dress with no darts in the front (Simplicity 5559)

The shape of this dress didn't work too well on me. I ended up giving it away.

Pattern: Simplicity 5559
View: B
Size: 8
Fabric: Stretch

Things I learned:
  • The dress had no darts in the front. That does not look very good on me.
  • I need to add darts if I try this pattern again.

Lace bolero (Butterick 4739)

This borero had a nice shape and fit well, but I didn't much like the fabric, so I gave it away.

Pattern: Butterick 4739
View: A
Lace, ribbon for tie

Things I learned:

  • I could buy a nicer lace and coordinating fabric.

Making a skirt out of jeans


I gathered the fabric using dental floss and the widest zig-zag stitch. Much easier!

Fabric: Calico prints (2 yards), 1 package of jumbo rickrack

Friday, June 13, 2008

Remnants top (Simplicity 4951)

This is a remnants top. There was just enough fabric to sqeeze this out of the remainign fabric from that of the Hawaiian dress and shirt.

Pattern: Simplicity 4951
View: A
[Cotton, gathered lace]

Things I learned:

  • I barely had enough fabric to make a bit of a lining of the bodice.
  • Next time, I could make one size larger.
  • I could also lengthen the top a bit.

Nightgown and warm fleece robe (Simplicity 4794)

Nightgown and fleece robe, both with trumpet sleeves.

Pattern: Simplicity 4794
View: E, A
Knit, antipill fleece, gathered lace, ribbon, beads

Things I learned:

  • Altering sleeve pattern pieces was somewhat challenging.
  • Next time, I could make the nightgown a little longer.
  • It is more comfortable to wear the night gown without the elastic at the bodice.
  • The sleeves of the nightgown have great lines.
  • Fleece makes great robes; it's so warm. I could use a little thinner fleece next time.
I also made some running shorts for T (size S), out of the PJ pants (view D), with separate elastic casing and 2 rows of elastic. I could have made size XS for him, because this proved to be a bit too big.

Bias-cut skirt; first attempt

This was my first attempt to make a bias-cut skirt. Interestingly enough, I managed to find the true bias. I altered Simplicity 5173, primarily, because I didn't want to hem the curved edge. The bias-cut wool started stretching, so I was afraid that due to the bulk and curved edge, the hemming would stretch the skirt.

The vest is an altered version of a top.

Pattern: Simplicity 5173, ?
View: [?]
[Wool, washed]

Things I learned:

  • It takes a while to find the true bias of the fabric. In order to make absolutely sure, you need to check both sides of the fabric.
  • After this one, I used a solid wool for a different project, and I could not find the bias in that fabric. I guess the plaid was not there to guide me.

Long seersucker dress; very comfy (Simplicity 4640)

This dress is based on a summer dress pattern, which I legthened. The skirt part has a nice flow. I lined the bodice with white muslin.

I am making the original, knee-length version in red broadcloth. It looks great, with 2 big black buttons in the front. I lined up all the seams on this dress. I tried to be very precise.

Pattern: Simplicity 4640
View: A

Things I learned:

  • Lengthening the skirt took longer than I anticipated. I triedto make sure that the lengthening line is following the original direction of the pattern lines.
  • While I don't think it matters a lot in this dress that the bodice linig peeks out just a tad here and there, I would like to learn more about the turn of cloth techniques.
  • I omitted the tie, and it still looks great. I don't think the tie is really kneeded in the back.
  • The neckline of this pattern is fabulous.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Thrift store skirt re-engineered and embellished

This was a gathered skirt that was very unflattering. I took of the waistband, straightened the gathers, and put in 2 darts in the front and 2 in the back. I added a narrow, contrasting black fleece waistband, and embellished the skirt with black yarn that I got from my friend, and some flower shaped buttons that she also helped me pick out. The buttons match those of the matching jacket (no photo of that yet).