Wednesday, 28 February 2018

The Burda Style challenge Feburary; The Tunic Dress

The second challenge of the month!  I'm taking part in Hila's BurdaStyle challenge #burdachallenge2018, so this is my second garment, this time from the February 2018 magazine.  I love Hila's blog and Vlog (SaturdayNightStitch), if you don't follow her what are you waiting for?

I have actually never made a tunic before, because I'm not sure I like the shape on me (I really like fitted garments), so I'm not sure why I picked this pattern.  I think it was partly because after the January difficulties I thought this would be straightforward but mostly because I had this fabulour Nano Iro fabric in my stash and I thought it would be just right.
The pattern recommended fabric with some body and this is quite a stiff fabric (actually I think it will soften with washing and it might look better then).

The other thing I wouldn't normally do is mix patterns, but I have to say I love this combination.  I used another Nano Iro for the placket, cuffs, hem and inside yoke.  Because this fabric was a little thinner it really helped with the bulk, and I think the darker teal really lifts the main fabric.

When I said straightforward, it wasn't, I found the placket instructions difficult and I've come to the conclusion that I really miss diagrams on instructions and that it's much better when I don't need instructions.  In this case I did the placket my way and it seems to have worked.  The rest was straightforward.

I cut a size 14 (for a 36 1/4 bust).  I'm a 37 1/2" bust, but even so I think I could have gone down a size.  There is a lot of fabric in the body.  I took over an 1" out of the shoulder width (I usually need 5/8"), so I think the yoke is particularly wide.

So overall, love the fabric, not as sure about the dress, though as I look at the photos it is growing on me, so I will definitely wear it.  I was hoping to get my March BurdaStyle today to pick next month's choice , but no post due to the snow! 

Friday, 23 February 2018

The Rumana Coat; Sew My Style

Well this was an epic effort and not one I really enjoyed.  In the main this was due to the fabric, it is Lux melton from Fabworks and when it arrived I thought it was going to be great, but I just don't think I like melton.  It just has a feel like felted carboard, and I think you can see in the photos that it just has a peculiar look.  Plus I found when I was trying out my fusing that it really easily pilled.  So I felt put off by it, but I had bought 3 metres and I so I carried on.  This is the By Hand Rumana Coat and it was the Sew My Style challenge which I had decided to join in.

Given how much work there was I'm not sure it was worth the effort.   First there was printing and sticking the PDF then I had to make changes, raising the waistline by 1", reducing the shoulder width and taking first 4 3/4" from the length and then later another 2".  Given the number of pieces and that there were no lengthen/shorten lines that took considerable time.

The instructions weren't always clear; the diagram for step 4 is actually incorrect, the collar took a little figuring out and I had a nightmare with the lining.  At certain points there was so much thickness that I thought my machine might struggle, particularly sewing the facing/collar, thank goodness my trusty Pfaff coped.  The sleeves were difficult to ease in and I have seen some others found this.    I bought a gorgeous button from Akahban, but it was 1 1/4" inches wide and my button-hole foot didn't make button holes that big, so I went for a  bound button-hole.  I thought the wool would be too thick for this so made the lips from some silk.  Not sure that has really worked and from the photos it also looks a little high.  I added shoulder pads to fill out my rather narrow shoulders.

Sorry there is a lot of whinging here.  As you can see I didn't really enjoy this make  (and because I was trying to finish it for Sew My Style I did it in a week).  I'm not really pleased with the result, mainly because of the fabric ... but .... I may try it again.  I do think this coat has potential.  I love the shape, love the easy welt pockets, look the topstitching and in the right fabric could be great.   Also there is a sewalong currently happening, which will clarify any difficulties.   There are changes I would make:  the sleeves seem a little big, narrow slightly, lower the button hole, perhaps put an inch back on the length, and length the lining to avoid pulling and the welts would benefit from light interfacing  By the way I love this lining!

Monday, 5 February 2018

#burdachallenge2018 the drape top

Firstly welcome new readers and I am very excited to now have over 400 followers on Bloglovin and I will shortly be having a give-away. 

I'm a little late posting my latest make which is part of the Burda Style Challenge organized by Hila.  I posted on my dressform in time on Instagram but didn't get any photos of me wearing it ... so here it is!  The drape top from the January 2018 issue.

This is a sort of hit/miss make.  I do like a garment where the front is quite plain and the drama is in the back, but in this case I'm just not sure how wearable it is.  You wouldn't wear it to exercise in as the drape would flop about!  It was much more complicated to make than it looks.  I used some lovely bamboo jersey from Ray Stitch, which is lovely though expensive at £15 a metre.  But I'm really not sure what is the right fabric for this top because the weight of the drape means it is pulling at the back.  I cut a size 40 and thought it might be a little tight so added a tiny bit at the fold, and in retrospect that was a mistake as it had added a bit too much fabric around the waist.  I shortened the sleeves because I didn't want the thumb holes.

Making the key-hole and drape was a bit of a nightmare.  Burda have you make the drape as a closed-ended piece and there is just no reason for this as it adds an extra 2 layers of thickness at the side seam (which makes 6 layers), so I just cut that seam off.  You can probably imagine the weight at the bottom here (and the bamboo is quite weighty).

On the left hand piece here there are multiple thicknesses to cope with and there was a problem with the size of the facings and key-hole,which may have been my mistake or the pattern.  Also the bit of interfacing at the bottom of the key-hole still shows which I don't like.  Here are the insides.

You can see the problem I had below  .... definitely a dog's dinner.  So not an entire success, but I can still wear it, though in retrospect there were better choices to have made from January's issue.

I am much happier with my progress on making leggings though using Vogue 1517.  I have had a Marks and Spencer pair and have worn them to death, and they don't seem to make them anymore, so I am desperate to be able to whip up replacements. My first version was above my ankles and unwearable.  This is the second and almost there, if I can just sort out the lines at the crotch (any ideas?), but I'm pretty pleased and wouldn't wear them with tops tucked in.  When I make my next pair I'll give more details.  Just to say they come up big, I'm usually a size 14 in Vogue, these ended up around a 12- and there is still a little more to take out.    These are made in Croft Mill ponte roma at only £7 a metre and its lovely, really soft, though for leggings something less soft (and thus showing lumps and bumps) is probably better.