Monday, 18 February 2019

fluoro yellow top


This is my TNT pattern McCalls M6612 which I seem to have used loads. This is especially interesting since I bought this pattern by accident. There was an online sale on and I was binge buying.

I must have put this in the basket but did not realise. I was pretty peevved when it arrived but since then I seem to have made absolutely loads from this pattern.

So this top follows my sportswear theme and is stretch polyester crepe reversed. Its nice to wear despite having the texture on the inside.

Its very much a ballet type top.

Its worn here with my velvet yoga pant -

Burdastyle 01/2016 112






I do not wear these much nowadays and was seriously considering recycling into something new but I was not feeling very well on Saturday when these photos were taken and I found they were just what I needed to cuddle up in so they are staying for now.

Unfortunately I decided to learn to do mock flatlock stitch when making this top. It all went fine till I sewed up my sleeves and then the body sides started to come undone.



 I had not even tried it on yet so decided this was a bad idea and resewed with a normal 4 strand overlock stitch so the end results is much plainer than I originally intended.

I have left the mock flatlock across the shoudlers - you can just about see in the photo - and have worn this twice and so far so good but its not quite as good a finish as I wanted.


I really did the flatlock so I did not need to worry about not having matching thread since black was fine as a contrast. All the colours I currently have would contrast rather than match fluorescent yellow and I do not realy want to invest in any more cottons at the moment.

The top would probably look much better without a racer backed exercise top under it but never mind thats how I tend to wear them!



I kind of like the layered look!








If I wear it with work clothes I will try to get a photo taken to show the different looks.




I do not think I will bother with the effort of altering my overlocker again to do mock flatlock stitch though.  Probably due to being only 3 threads its just not strong enough. It does not feel very strong as a stitch at all.
Anyway I like the top very much but expect this will not last as long as I had hoped. I suppose often when you buy clothing you do not expect it to last forever but I am different with stuff I make. I want it to last so I expect it to.
Thanks for visiting and being part of my sewing adventure
Bracken

Monday, 11 February 2019

Valentines Red


I had a strangely productive week this week and finished off several items that have been waiting for me to get round to adding things like hems, so I used my twin needle machine to finish these off.

Black leggings x 2 –
I don’t know about you but I do find making the basic stuff a bit boring. With the recent snow I was cold and decided to make some more black leggings because I can then wear my skirts and dresses for work and not freeze. It is nice to have the option to wear a dress sometimes and not be just stuck in trousers. Generally I am stuck in trousers at work!


I made a pair of these basic black leggings a few months back and I love them. One of the dogs managed to rip a small hole in my first pair at first wearing which was very annoying.

The hole, which is still at the moment small enough not to notice, means that I do not feel comfortable wearing these for work in case this hole gets too big during the day so I need some more. Both of these pairs  are made from the same piece of fabric as the earlier pair because I liked them so much I decided to make a couple more pairs. I was originally going to save this precious bit of black fabric but what’s the point of that?

Its exactly the reason my stash keeps growing. I just feel this need to be precious about fabric and save it for some ideal use at an unknown future date instead of making use of it when I need it now.  Really, I should be happy that I had enough fabric to make a further 2 pairs which will get me through the rest of winter and into spring.

The black legging fabric is a 4 way ( or two way I am never too sure of classifications here?) stretch fabric. Either way whatever its called its very stretchy in both directions and is also relatively light weight fabric so ideal for leggings.

Tulip skirt – self drafted direction here:
I read a blog post that inspired this skirt about a year ago.You can find it here:
http://thelittleststudio.com/blog/tulip-skirt-tutorial


This was called the Tulip skirt but to be honest I always thought a tulip skirt had gathers at the waist and was tighter at the bottom - more like this pattern
https://sewoverit.co.uk/product/tulip-skirt-pdf-sewing-pattern/ but I think this is named such because of the petal like effect rather than the actual style.

I think this skirt does look like a red tulip. Being a red colour I reckon it works well for the looming Valentines day this year.

I like this very much either way. Mind you it would be more revealing to wear without leggings because of the wrap effect. I may make a second layer and overlap them next time for more coverage or even a contrasting circular underskirt.  I think perhaps my skirt overlaps slightly less than it ought to but I can make another to experiment at some point to see if I can sort this out. I am happy enough with this version for now. Though I seem to prefer the wrap more to one side rather than at centre front but that is something to be experimented with.

It has an almost dancer quality to it which I very much like and made me feel good wearing this this Saturday. It has a simple black elastic waistband and is made from football shirt type of fabric so it has a slight texture and a small amount of stretch but no lycra so this is a very stable knit fabric. Unfortunately ( or perhaps really I should be thinking fortunately) my weight has fluctuated and I am smaller this week than a couple of weeks ago when I made this meaning the waist band is a little too large. I will more than likely find I fluctuate back up again though so I am not too bothered if this is a bit big for now. Then with the red tulip skirt I am wearing a T-shirt that I started for Christmas – hence the red/green colourway, but have not till now got round to doing the hems.

T shirt - free pattern here:
http://www.itsalwaysautumn.com/2016/02/15/long-sleeve-raglan-sweatshirt-free-pattern.html

Personally  I reckon this is as good as any reglan Tshirt pattern paid or free and believe me I have tried loads of them because I love raglans!

The red/green T shirt is made from a light weight silky ribbed fabric. I really bought these fabrics for hems and edges but they work just as well as a top. The red is the same ribbed fabric as the green that I used for my Goth dress. The pattern is my TNT free pattern from here. Though I did not make a good job of the neck band this time around. It does not lie quite right.





Finally I made this sweatshirt a week ago and have worn it to work and its very warm and cozy.
This sweatshirt jacket looks just as good with work clothes but maybe even better over my red tulip skirt. See last email here


So,  I made 2 new pairs of basic black leggings, finished my floaty tulip skirt, finished my Tshirt and it all goes with my sweatshirt jacket as well.


And I actually wore this out to the shops with no coat in the snow and did not feel cold. 
Bonus!
You can see how frosty it was here:



What a productive weekend!
Bracken

Monday, 4 February 2019

Red sweatshirt jacket



This is the jacket from the leggings pattern McCalls M7446.



I made this a couple of weeks ago now because I needed a nice warm top for work. I work in an office where one annoying person ( mentioning no names of course) has to have the window open even in winter.
And its cold!

As in frosty/snowy cold. But then its me sits right in front of the window she just gets the "fresh air" on the opposite side of the office.

I do not feel I can complain. I am a temp and she has been there a couple of years. As a temp ofcourse the real reality is I have no rights. Under UK law yes, I do!

But I know from previous experience that actually no I do not.

So if I want to continue in my joib which I do then I must just put up with freezing to death each day. The person who opens the window gets in half an hour before me (we have staggered start times to keep the office covered) so she opens the windows so I feel unable to do anything other than wear more clothing.

I do eventually manage to shut it most days because there are building works just below us so it gets very noisy which is a brilliant excuse for shutting the window. Anyway back to this top.


Its red sweatshirt fabric. I made some trousers from it at the start of my blogger journey from a Lekala pattern.

I loved these but wore them out some time ago so sent the shabby remains off for recyling. But I still have loads of this fabric which I bought as an end of roll off a company that was shutting down. Its a very warm cotton /synthetic mix. Classic sweatshirting.

I also made a shrug.





I never intended to make this top really. I bought the pattern for the leggings and tops but it was just there in front of me on my table and I thought why not. Its not my usual style at all but as it turns out has been a real success.


Construction was pretty straight forward until I came to the fronts. I decided to try to avoid my wavy zip effect by adding interfacing to the fronts. You can see my wavy zip effect in this jacket
 which is also made from a knit fabric so stretchy:

 
Then I sewed the zip to the interfaced parts which worked well except I somehow sewed one zip on inside out so then needed to take off one side to rectify. I resewed and again had it wrong way round so I was getting very confused at this point and I unpicked for the second time and made a small hole in my fabric. I stopped and had a coffee. It was a great shame because the jacket had until now gone together really easily and it is not a difficult design. After a bit of a rest and caffeine I tried a third time but now my front panels were both slightly smaller due to me unpicking three times in total. Never mind. I figure so long as both sides are the same size approximately it should still work. I should have also interfaced the facings because I could nto believe just how much they stretched!

Then the collar did not quite work either because I ended up with something more like a bike jacket. It does not matter because I very much like my red sweatshirt jacket. I may have to have another attempt at this pattern though.

 



Hope you are all keeping warm and cozy
Bracken

Monday, 28 January 2019

Fluorescent orange and black leggings

After the success of the diamond leggings made from my cheapo crepe fabric I decided to make more. I had quite a bit of fluorescent orange left over from this jacket.

I was really pleased with this when first I made it. It was a serious achievement for me but when I look at it now I just see what is wrong with it eg. look at that wavy zip!

 Anyway I mixed this with some black which is a lighter weight but definitely does have lycra in it. I used the black before for my Yoga pants and this multi media T shirt top.

Again like my colour blocked diamond leggings there is no elastic in the waistband but this time I was even more sure they would not work due to the lighter weight of the black fabric and nearly gave in and added it.

I did forget to sew in the pocket on these which is a shame. I jumped in and started to sew late at night and did not read the instructions and had already overlocked them - front side to front. The pocket is meant to be sewn into the seams on top of the black parts. So you are meant to sew the side panels before joining the front and back!


Still I have now cut out a second pair of these in cream and black and they have not one but two pockets to make up for it. I will show you them once I have them sewn up. Right now they are sat waiting on my table.


Again these leggings have so far stood up to everyday life perfectly and I love them.

They are very warm and cozy and I think stylish, though my other half did say I look like I am doing some kind of H&S exercise which was a bit off-putting to my brightness and maybe I will not wear my jacket and leggings at the same time!









The orange panels are not perfect as you can see below but they almost line up. They are slightly off set, but as a first pair I am happy enough with these.

One problem I do have with this fabric is it gets dirty so very quickly because fluorescents by their nature are pretty pale even while being bright.


Again imperfectly lined up panels!



So, so far, so good with making leggings. I am starting to feel a bit more confident with the sportswear patterns now.. 
Oh and by the way this is the leggings from pattern McCalls M7446.

Thanks for visiting
Bracken


Pink wheel-barrows for pixies

 
I just have to show you my new wheel barrow. I needed a reasonably priced well made wheel barrow and I wanted a plastic one because they are much lighter than the metal builder's barrows so I went looking and I found this. Well in the local garden centre they had green or lilac but neither were well made and the green was £50 and lilac was £70. This though is from the equine centre and was just £46 so a real bargain. It also has a metal plate to make it stronger on the bottom of the plastic bit which the garden centre ones did not so I think it should last longer. My old metal barrow has just about had it but was bought, I reckon, around 2001 so its very old. Its also very heavy. This is far better. 
They also did this in blue but the pink was just calling to me!

Of course really this post is about my Pixie dress which is the same pattern as this one: 
 You can read about that here:


The blue velvet version was the top rather than the dress. I find it does not work well really. It looks great, fits well but the hoody if not worn up on my head drags the neck back. Its of course due to the velvet pile which is the same direction nap when up but opposite nap when down. Anyway it does not work as well as I had hoped - in comfortable way. I spend the whole time I am wearing it, fiddling with it, which is rubbish really.
I love the point at the back of the skirt!
This time I used a light weight lycra-synthetic exercise fabric so it has slip to stop the hood catching on the neck and body. This dress was meant to be made for summer 2018. I cut it out in February and never got round to sewing it up until this week so its a bit too thin really for the time of year but will give me  a bit of a head start for this years summer wardrobe collection.

The fabric is a pale pink with black and gold but my barrow is so bright it dulls the look of my dress. I never even tried to pattern match since did not have much of this fabric. It does not worry me. I did place the front and back so they will almost match but the hood had to be cut from what was left and similarly the sleeves.

This is Simplicity 1251 which is meant for fleece but works perfectly well in any stretch fabric. This time though I cheated a bit and just overlocked the neck and turned it under and sewed with a twin needle rather than add bias how the pattern says. Its more T-shirt like as a result but works fine and to be perfectly honest about this, this dress has been sat taking up room on my sewing table for a year and I was sick to death of seeing it. Several times I have lost one or more parts of it to my stash and had to find them so its well over due for me to get round to sewing this. The sewing then needed to happen fast between several other projects just so I can get rid of this. As it happens I am very pleased with the final result - even though its unlikely I will wear it till April or May but at least I finally got round to making this. It would have been a waste not to as well because its a nice little summer dress.

And finally here is one more of my lovely bright pink wheel barrow 😁


Thanks for popping by
Bracken