Tuesday, 23 September 2014

V1419 Sewalong

So, when I first saw this coat I barely gave it a passing glance...

But as a follower of the McCall Pattern Blog, it was brought to my attention and I began to admire it and appreciate it's detail. 

This coat is just so not practical at all for my lifestyle. My kinda coat needs to be rainproof, windproof, trees and hedge-proof, brambleproof, bung in the washing machine proof, suitable to be worn with wellies proof, and all those other practical proofs you can possibly think of!

 But it's the pattern that The McCall Pattern Company have chosen for their first Sewalong, of which I have decided to be brave and participate!  I have made advanced level sewing patterns before but never a coat. I've made plenty of jackets in my time and OK I did make a coat once back in the 80's but it was with the assistance of my wonderful Mum and she even did the bound buttonholes for me.

The pattern arrived yesterday and OMG the instructions are intimidating! This is going to be one major task for me. But I am looking forward to it and it's done over a timeline of several weeks starting more or less as of now up until 17 November.

Next week is all about buying fabrics. I've already been on the hunt for mine and pretty much decided on THIS terracotta English Wool Coating

 Meg from McCalls asked if I actually wanted an unlined coat made from wool, which made me think about that? Yet I can't find anything else in this colour that I like as much! And besides, for me, this is all about the challenge and participating and not about wearing it lol. I mean, can you really see me wearing this lovely coat with my wellies and woolly hat, being blown across the seafront...?!!

Wish me luck, I think I'm gonna need it...!

Happy Sewing :)

PS: anyone interested in taking part in the sewalong, check it out HERE it's not too late!

Saturday, 20 September 2014

McCalls 6788 ~ Fashionstar ~ A little bit of old, turned into new

Over a period of several months this pattern went through the process of 3 different fabric combinations, which is why it has taken me this long to make a pattern I bought 12 months ago.

On purchasing McCalls 6788 it was with all intent to buy some tweedy looking jersey matched with some beigey looking jersey. But hey ho I couldn't find any at the time to compliment one another so on the back burner it went. 

I am a member of the MAGAM Challenge  and the challenge for last month was to make up an item of clothing using up fabric from your stash. I already had a project I wanted to complete for last month but the stash buster challenge led me anyway to sifting through what I already had. I came across some fabulous crushed velour in bright burgundy which went perfectly with some ponte roma I also already had.

 This dress would have looked amazing in this! Yet when I checked the fabric quantity I had nowhere near enough of the velour (groan). Having had the fabric that long (and when I say long, I mean loooooong! It's so old I've had it 20 years!) I had totally forgotten it was only 90cm wide and McCalls 6788  requires a minimum width of 150cms for the bodice of this dress. So that was that idea also blown away and back to the drawing board I went once again.

As it turned out I also had this red and black (viscose?) jersey (also 20 years old!!) in just the right amount of fabric and this pillar-box red Ponte roma (only last year old), also in just the right amount! 

I didn't particularly want to make this pattern in black and red; especially as my last sew was red, but I was determined to use up what I had. And you know what...? Not a bad selection of fabrics after all!

As you can see from the pattern diagram above, the pattern calls for a shoulder bow which I omitted as it made it look to dressy for my casual look. And to make it even more casual, this is a great dress pattern to throw on a long sleeve top underneath for those cooler autumnal days

If you have seen any of my previous makes, you may have noticed that I tend to chop the skirt length off to above the knee. Mostly for autumn/winter dresses. It's just a personal preference as for me they are easier to wear this length and with tights for winter they look better on me this way. Almost cut the length off this one, only when I tried it on for fitting I just thought "you know what... I'm going to leave this as it is. Just for a change!" So I did!
**UPDATE**  the length has been chopped!! For an every day dress on a straight skirt, knee length is not practical for me. I live in a hilly area and walk a lot!!**

I love how the armholes are actually made from leaving part of the shoulder seam open. And it fooled me. Before I read through the instructions my mind was telling me the armholes went in the side seams. Just goes to show... don't ever assume you know best lol

I often wonder why Pattern Companies add zips to jersey dresses? Err it's jeresy...?! This pattern also had a zip but in this case, the pattern has a waistband. I didn't want the zip (they rarely look nice in stretch fabrics anyway) so I made it up without the waistband and threw a belt on instead. Job done!


Thanks for stopping by and taking time to read :)

Happy Sewing!
Dawn :)x

Wednesday, 10 September 2014

Vogue 8648 ~ Hey look it's Pac-man!

Anybody recognise these little chaps...?

 These were the social phenomenon of what is now an icon of 1980's popular culture. I'm not a gamer myself, never have been, but these little chappies definitely make an eye catching and colourful fabric that I couldn't resist.

The pattern is Vogue 8648, A perfect pattern for colour blocking. Or in my case, pac-man blocking! I made View C (yellow dress on the pattern envelope)

The pattern calls for you to cut this pattern on the cross grain. (Well from memory at least some of it, if not all...?) Not sure why? Didnt think the little chappies on the fabric would appreciate being lopsided anyway so I went with the straight grain for the most part and just did the waistband on cross grain. Well it worked for me!

I have no idea where I bought the fabric from but it's a quilting cotton that was beautiful to work with. I didn't have a huge amount (1m) so I just had to play around with pattern pieces to see what fit. 

Ok, I can see that the photos aren't that great and you're having to take my word for it that these are actually little pac-men and not just coloured in dots so how about a bit of a zoom in....

Oh look, there they are!

 I love that Vogue Patterns add lining to a lot of their dress patterns. I just love the finish of a lined dress not to mention the comfort of wearing it! And yet I never wore this dress other than for these photos. My sister-in-law is now the proud owner of it. Well, perhaps I am being rather over confident in the word proud lol but owns it she does, proud or not! :)

Thanks for stopping by!

Happy Sewing 
Dawn :)x