Thursday, 14 July 2016

Liberty McCalls 6696

This is my third version of the ever popular McCalls  6696, and it is certainly the best fit.    My choice of fabric is nothing new, Roisin has made a sleeveless version and Gertie's shirtwaister in her first book used the red version of this fabric.  The fabric is Liberty Carline and before you think I have spent a fortune on this dress, this fabric was one of my bargains from Standfast and Barracks in Lancaster who sell Liberty seconds.  This cost £6 per metre and I used just under 2 metres .... a bargain.

So to the fit.  I love this pattern because it has different cup sizes and I went for the C.  My last 2 versions I cut a 14 at the bust and graded to a 12 at the waist, but this time I just cut a 12 in the bust too.  I took 5/8" from each shoulder for my narrow shoulders and raised the waist by 1" overall and then by 3/8" extra at the front centre (because I noticed that the waist appears to droop a little on me).

The pattern illustrations do not show a back view of the dress and I think that is probably because the models have the problem of "poofy" backs.    I took a whole 2" out of the centre gathers.  Even so there is still a bit of "poof" and what I think I need to do is to also take 3/8" from the back centre line (like the front).
Insides; French seams everywhere except for the sleeve attachment (where to be honest I couldn't be bothered!)

Not much more to say about this one, except I must try the straight-skirt version some time!  I'm sure this won't be my last.

I had the most lovely Saturday when I met up with Ruth from CoreCouture and we had a lovely shop in Minerva.  I really enjoyed watching Ruth shop, she has such an eye for combining patterns and colours and I ended up totally copying her with the berry coloured fabrics below.  This whole haul cost £45 which will make 2 skirts, 2 tops and one pair of trousers.  I think I am usually a bit of a fabric snob, but Minerva does have some lovely fabric at really low prices.

Wednesday, 6 July 2016

Delpine and Morisette: Les Brunes

First a very warm welcome to new readers.  There were quite a few of you and I think this is because of my Great British Sewing Bee Colour-blocked dress.  This week's post is very different so I hope it isn't too much of a disappointment (and I will be back to vintage again next, but the 50s). 

I do love a little bit of French style and I particularly like reading Jolie Bobines and BMade blogs.  This year both blogs have featured some ruffles and, although this is not my usual style, I had a bit of a hankering to make my own.  I like a challenge so I duly ordered a pdf French pattern, Les Brunes,  from Delphine and Morissette.  Good value at 8 euro.  You order by email and get a very quick response and can transfer the money through PayPal.  Now just to warn you the pattern itself looks like it has been drawn freehand and there are no illustrations with the instructions.  This wouldn't have been a problem but the instructions are in French and with no illustrations this made it tricky!  An hour on Google translate didn't help at all  ..... you add the wheels to the wings!!!  So I ended up winging it, and it turned out OK.  It's a pretty straightforward pattern, though inserting the frill into the shoulder darts is definitely fiddly.

(The strange hairy thing in the corner is Rosie's tail!).  Worn here with my ginger jeans.  The fabric is a really soft rayon which drapes nicely but still presses.

The pattern itself has a straight sleeve and I decided I wanted some extra frill and added a gathered oblong to the sleeve which I do like.  I also reduced the size of the shoulder frills which I felt were a little too wide on the pattern by almost an inch.

I have worn it tucked in for work.  I love the neckline, it fits really well to the body with no gaping.  Just big enough to pull on without any zips or buttons.

The best part about this pattern was being able to use my rolled hem foot.  I used this for the shoulder and sleeve frills and it is fantastic.  It gives a beautiful finish.  It is a bit difficult to get started and to control throughout, and I didn't try it on the hem because I haven't mastered how to get it to work over seams.  So I was pretty pleased with this, managing the frills and the French instructions, about to give a final press and I realised I had attached one of the sleeve bottoms inside out (and I had already overlocked it), rooky error which involved a lot of unpicking and restitching with small seams.  All done now though and I like it.  I also really like the look of WearLemonade's Fabala blouse pattern which has a double frill at the cuff.  I also love their little videos showing the making which would be a big help if I go for any of their patterns, or maybe I should just learn French.  Have a great week.