Thursday, March 29, 2012

Clover Pants

Well here they are, my Clover pants. The Clover pants, from Colette Patterns are the first pants pattern I have ever made. I did version 1, which are ankle length and have front pockets. I posted my muslin, and I think that I fixed the majority of the problems. I used the same stretch cotton sateen from Joann's Fabric with 3% stretch, on these pants as my muslin, so I didn't have any fitting surprises with the fabric.

The muslin had several problems. The crotch was sitting a smidge too low, which means I have a long torso. I lowered the crotch curve in the back for a deeper curve,and it sits much better. I lengthened the front and back above the crotch, as a result of my long torso. The back now sits better. I also added width at the thighs and rear.

For the pockets I just a bit of muscle car print quilting cotton I had. It gives it a little bit of a hot rodder vibe. I had some problems with the finishing of these pants. I had a temporary brain malfunction and sewed the zipper on the right side, which is embarrassing. And then I went a little serger crazy and made a HOLE on my upper left thigh. I think my last project, the Starlet Suit Jacket, went together too easily so this was my sewing karma payback.

I'm loving the way these pants look with the sweater I knitted. (It's the tie back shell from Knitscene Magazine) I will be making these pants again, once I decide on a color, or even a print, and hopefully I won't serge any holes in them.

ahh VPL! Please ignore this

car pockets!

If you haven't already, don't forget to enter my tailoring giveaway!
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Wednesday, March 28, 2012

It's Time for a Giveaway!

In honor of all of the great feedback I have gotten from my Scarlet Suit Jacket, I've put together a little tailoring themed giveaway. Included in the giveaway:  Tailoring: The Classic Guide to Sewing the Perfect Jacket, a white chaco pen, twill tape and a point turner.

To enter please follow me here, on twitter, or even pinterest, and leave a comment on this post.

Giveaway will be announced in one week: April 4th.

*This giveaway is sponsored entirely by ErikaMadeIt*
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Monday, March 26, 2012

Clover Pants Muslin

OK so right now these are not so cute. This is my muslin for the clover pants from Colette patterns.I bought around five yards to this 3% cotton poplin stretch at Joann's, so I would have plenty to make a muslin and a finished pair of pants.  I cut a straight size ten, and they have a few problems. I'm using the pants pattern cheatsheet from Colette to try and diagnose them.

The first thing I had a problem with was the knees. They are tight, but do I have big knees or am I bow legged? They both sound bad. I think the thighs are tight and are causing the rest of the bunching, but I'm not totally sure. Or many my butt is tight, or maybe both? I never made pants but I thought this would be easy!  I'm trying not to get discouraged. Any other diagnoses?

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Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Starlet Suit Jacket: Finished!

After weeks of hard work my Starlet Suit Jacket is finally finished! I am very pleased with the way it came out. Gertie is an excellent instructor, and I would recommend this course to anyone. I love this pattern, I did a size ten with no alterations and it fits me perfectly. I hope Gertie's upcoming book will be just as perfect as this jacket, and I can't wait until it comes out!
I chose to do all the couture techniques offered in this course including, pad stitched lapels and collar, welt pockets, and bound buttonholes. Even though I have done most of this before, with the exception of the pockets, I learned different techniques which were so much easier than the way i was doing things before. The bound buttonhole, and facing for the buttonhole was amazing.

I used a spring green color wool coating, and a pink rose print silk lining, both from Mood Fabrics. The buttons which match perfectly are from M&J trim, also in NYC. I am so in love with this jacket, and really proud to wear it. Thanks Gertie and Craftsy!

See my other posts about the Starlet Suit Jacket here.

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Monday, March 19, 2012

Starlet Suit Jacket: the home stretch

I'm so close to finishing my Starlet Suit Jacket. I took a little break from hemming the lining, to show the progress in pictures.

Set in sleeve method
I still had to ease in my sleeve to make it fit

Using my sleeve roll to steam the facing seams

collar facing

Silk organza to make the buttonholes on the facing

Cutting the holes is so scary!

silk organza gets turned to the wrong side

weft fused to the hem

inside of the coat after it is hemmed

now it really looks like a jacket!

Lining body is in, now to hem it and put in the sleeves

OK, back to work for me. I'm getting really excited and can't wait to wear it!
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Saturday, March 17, 2012

Lauriel Cardigan

Even though I've been busy with the starlet suit jacket, I put the final touches on my red cardigan. This is the lauriel cardigan from Ysolda Teague, featured in the book Little Red in the City. I used the recommend yarn: manos del uruguay silk blend in the color tomato. My buttons, which I love, are from M&J trimming in NYC. I got a gift certificate for Christmas, which I also used on a bit of matching ribbon for the button bands.

I've knit with the yarn before but for some reason it was FULL of knots. The yarn had been broken at least once per skein and then the ends knotted together. So I had to weave in a lot of extra ends, which is annoying. 

I'm not all that happy with the fit, I made a swatch, checked my gauge and tried on as I went and it still seems a little big. I made some slight changes from the original sweater. I omitted the extra pattern details on the waist, and the sleeve, for a simpler design. I made the sleeves 3/4 length as well, I like my sleeves that length.

I also tried a different finishing technique, I hand sewed grosgrain ribbon to the button band, after attaching the buttons. Just a simple slip stitch to attach the ribbon, and it gives the buttons a clean look and a little more stability.

The pattern was very clear and well written, as well as had a great range of sizes: 30-58. I suspect that the sizes run a little big, the other sweaters that I have seen seem on the larger size too. If I make another sweater from her book, I will definitely make the next size down.

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Monday, March 12, 2012

Cherry Macaron Shirt

I've been eyeing up this Anna Sui silk cherry print in my local fabric store for a while, but there was a little over a yard of it, which I couldn't think of anything to make with it, and it was kind of expensive. When it appeared on the remnant table for $10 a yard, I quickly snatched it up, and felt very lucky. I've been contemplating what to do with it for a while and finally envisioned the perfect blouse, made from Colette Pattern's Macaron dress.

For the sleeves and upper neck I used a black cotton shirting, which also served as underling for the silk bodice. This was one of those projects that I had a lot of trouble with, and not for any particular reason. I had to sew and and seam rip over and over. I cut the peplum bottom way to short the first time, and had to re cut and piece the back together. For the bottom I used the original pattern and just cut it at the 9" mark. I think I was nervous about cutting this fabric I was so in love with that I was making a lot of dumb mistakes.

It work out ok in the end and I finally have a blouse out of my favorite fabric, and funnily enough it will look perfect under the starlet suit jacket. The jacket is the same color as the leaves in the print! Perfect addition to a custom sewn wardrobe.

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Friday, March 9, 2012

Starlet Suit Jacket Update: Tailoring

Happy Friday! I've been hard at work on my Starlet Suit Jacket. I'm already on chapter 8 out of 13. I've taken lots of pictures on my progress, so many of you were curious about the craftsy course. Here is what I have done so far.

I learned a new way to make bound buttonholes, so much easier and comes out much better than the old way I was doing them.
They look like bow tie pasta from the back
Padstitching and twill tape on the lapel, steamed and drying over a hand towel

What a difference the padstitching and steaming makes, the lapel make a nice curve now.

The undercollar with padstitching

ready for steam on the ham
The padstitching works and the collar will curl around the neck

Welt pocket! Another new skill for me. It was a bit confusing at first, but the second one came together easily
Shoulder seams and sides together, looks like a jacket now

I love the nipped-in waist

back stay out of muslin

Inside of the welt pocket
 Yesterday I started working on the sleeves, the dart looks great. I am having a problem with the easing. I have used this method before on my houndstooth coat, but it just wasn't working, it was eased far too little. I have to go back and pin, pin, pin to ease it. Sometimes it's best to walk away when I get frustrated. That's it for now, maybe if I'm lucky I can have it done for St. Patty's Day.

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Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Scrappy Spools

It's craft time! I have been saving up my scraps from each of the sewing and knitting projects I made in the last few months. I was inspired by this Modcloth garland, I received for Christmas. It's a simple garland made from wooden spools, wooden bead and twine. The spools are available on eBay, among other places in bulk quantities. I got out my glue gun, and dabbed some glue on the spool and then wrapped the fabric around a few times, and secured it with another dab of glue. Super easy.

This is a great way to use your scraps and to keep track of the things you have made all year. Then every year when the Christmas decorations come out, you can remember the things that you have made. So every few projects, I will get out my glue gun and add to my finished spool collection and when Christmas comes around I should have a really cute, and pretty long garland! Pin It Now!