Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Christmas gifts

reversible aprons for good friends, with quilting cottons that to me speak of these friends' personalities. Let's see what they say.

Of course, now that I look at the pics, it becomes obvious to me what's wrong with the pattern: empire waistline with ties that tie in front? Well, hello, that cannot possibly work. And as the pics show, it doesn't. Oh well, live and learn.

I modified the pattern to have only one long continues tie made from bias band: and included contrast bands at the side of the bodice, making a tunnel for the ties. That part worked quite well. AS to the empire waist: ah well, let that be for another time. By the time I have included all my modifications into this pattern, it's not a modified pattern but my own pattern all together. Never mind, I still think the aprons are neat, and pretty, and usable on both sides.

a child's version -- with no waist, and thus better-fitting. And knee-high socks for my son, as he loves these, and his last two pairs became too small more than a year ago.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Ten Things on Tuedays

yes, I sometimes sew, I sometimes knit -- and I am posting today

This week: 10 things you buy every week! May or may not be groceries.

1. Fruit: organic and local is my favorite, often it's either or, and sometimes neither

2. Veggies: as above

3. Bread: lots of different kinds, we both love the variety, mostly whole grain

4. Eggs: don't really need them every week, they don't sell them in less than 12 here, even though there must be other two-person families out there, I'm sure!

5. Pasta: don't really buy it every week either, I prefer whole grain, and pasta that only has wheat (grano duro, if I can find it) and not three zillion additives. I find it really hard to shop for food in North America, really miss the strict food laws of the European Union.

6. Poultry or Fish: not every week. I usually prepare one meat dish a week, sometimes none. I try to find organic and ethically slaughtered meat: hard to find, have to go to a different store to find that. Again, I miss that high quality food is available at lots of stores, and not only at the special high-end organic shops. Well, trying to overcome my missing France.

7. Takeout meal: Pizza or Sushi. Again, not every week, I just like to keep it as an option for those days when everything just didn't go right ;)

8. not every week: gas --- what with my knee troubles right now, unfortunately, I drive more than I usually do, and actually ended up buying gas almost weekly. Yikes.

9. not every week: transit passes -- again, no real biking, so more transit passes needed right now

10. Babysitter services: yes, I need them every week, as I go to choir every week. Yeah! My one fun me-only activity (that is, if I don't count work, which is fun most of the time, too, lucky me).

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Sewing in the New Land

My first project in our new home, aside from the interminable repairing of J's pants, was such a complete wadder that I chucked it in the wastebasket without even taking a photo. It was a dress from a La Mia Boutique pattern. You can see a succesful version on Fehrtrade's blog here.
Suffice it to say that the dress is cut all wrong for my body, not flattering to my A-shape. So sorry, no photos, just a bit of frustration. Now on to more repair work on J's pants.

-- And I desperately need more summer dresses, and another pair of nice summer pants: as I wrecked one of my first succesful ones, that I wore a lot. Can't get rid of a stain, so they went.

Let's see, if I'm reasonable (find a pair of pants and a dress in a thrift or consignment shop -- and go on to sew a top from my stash) or follow my wish (order fabric and make some pants, and order some more fabric for a dress, in both cases using tnt patterns).

Thursday, March 04, 2010

Catch-up blogging on pre-Christmas knittin

This is a catch-up on knitting for Christmas presents... -- just and mainly because I'm sooo behind that I thought I'd restart the blogging thing the easy way.

Warm mittens in a fun color for a very dear friend:

Bookmark for a friends' kids, who've decided he's "Kasperl" -- and not Nikolaus, as the pattern (and I) had assumed.

Sunday, December 06, 2009

Kid Sewing: year-round long-sleeve shirt

BuBWOF 07-2009-138rda World of Fashion Magazine: 07-2009-138 (Kasack / Tunic)

Pattern Description:
The tie-dyed cossack-style shirt and shorts literally make a cool outfit! They'll be a favorite on hot summer days.

Pattern Sizing:
Children's sizes 110 to 134 cm. I used 110.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you
were done sewing with it?
yes, except the part where I messed up the underlap (?) under the front opening.

Were the instructions easy to follow?

yes, except, again, the part where I messed up the piece that goes under the front opening.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
I liked that it is a pull-on shirt made out of woven fabric. (but I might have taken a softer, lighter fabric, really).

Fabric Used:

printed cotton.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:

none. Except the above mentioned boo-boo for the opening.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?
Yes, actually, I might get this out again next summer to make him another one, one size up.


He loves it. (but he loves most things I make for him). And another learning experience: should have taken a lighter-weight fabric. Actually, I think this might also look nice made out of a shirting, for a lighter take on semi-formal wear for young boys.

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

More jersey: a dress

Ottobre Stream DressPattern: Ottobre Design Magazine: 02-2009-14 (Stream Dress)

Pattern Description:
(my description, because my Ottobre mag is in German)
cowl-neck dress with empire waistline, waist darts in front and back of bodice, 8-panel skirt, angel sleeves, length to mid-calf/below knee

Pattern Sizing:
34 to 52
I cut 38 on top, tapering to 46 at the hips.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?
yes and no. Yes for general shape, and for the neckline.
-for the sleeves (because I substituted the 3/4 sleeves from the top)
-and, for the waistline:
From the photo and from the line drawing, I didn't really notice, before looking at the actual pattern pieces, that the dress had and empire waistline. That's ok, and I think it looks ok -- but it makes it harder to wear a belt with the dress, because the belt has to go on top of the seamline, otherwise it would look very awkward.

Were the instructions easy to follow?

yes, very.
I did use a tutorial from "Off the Cuff sewing" -- click here and scroll down! to fully understand how to attach the shoulders and the facings.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
I chose it because of the interesting neckline, the A-line silhouette, and because it's very easy to sew.

I really like how well the pattern fit together, and I like the endproduct.

Fabric Used:
unidentified poly/rayon jersey.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:

used 38-42-46 sizes, tapering from top to bottom. Also used the size 46 sleeve, and made the armhole bigger by cutting it out deeper.
- oh, and obviously, I took the sleeve from the top, the 3/4 sleeve, instead of the short angel sleeve.
-also, I shortened the skirt by something like 10 cm (I tissue-fitted, and put the seamline at my usual spot, just below the knee).

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?
Yes, I think I will sew it again out of a warmer knit for winter wear. I just looove simple dresses for workwear.

I really like the dress. It is suuuper wearable, for work -- and I could easily dress it up a bit for evening wear, too.

Friday, November 27, 2009

More success sewing with jersey

Ottobre 2-2009-2 Wind TUnicaI got very frustrated in the shirt sewing, I might just stick with jersey tops for the time being: this came together so easily, and the fabric does all the work.

Pattern: Ottobre 02-2009-2 (Wind Tunic) 

Pattern Description:
(mine) Tunic with boatneck, 3/4 sleeves and flared hemline at slightly below hips length

Pattern Sizing:
I cut a 38 on top, tapering to 42 at the waist and 46 at the hips.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done s
ewing with it?

Were the instructions easy to follow?

yes, very.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
I chose the pattern because of the boatneck -- and I thought I could always change the hemline, if I ended up not liking the flare.
Turns out I loooove the flared hem. I got lots of compliments on the top when I wore it for the first time.

Fabric Used:
Fabric is three layers: white mesh on top, then loose white threads, and black jersey, all three stitched together with the swirly lines. -- I bought it at Stoffekontor in Leipzig (they do have an English version of the sitem, too), and I got lovely service from them -- NAYY.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:
Apart from tapering across different sizes, none.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?
I don't think I need another one of these, as the shape is quite distinctive. I highly recommend the top to others. Most of the knit tops and dresses of this Ottobre issue can be mixed and matched: different sleeve lengths, different neck openings, different hems. I'm sure to make at least one more top from one of these patterns. I looove the fit.

I am very glad I tried the unusual shape, as it turns out it is supremely figure-flattering for my A-shape.