Monday, 25 July 2016

Blue leopard spotted fabric

I recently bought this lovely blue leopard spotted fabric from Ikea. The first lot I bought was £16 but then just before leaving the store I always check their Bargain Basement part and there was a similar piece of fabric for just £6. Originally I assumed it was ex-display but looking at it it has a printing error on the edge of the fabric. Still a serious bargain for just £6! I just need to place my pattern pieces to cut round that bit so I miss it out. In total I bought 6m of this stuff.

Anyway I was very happy with my purchases but then I went back to Ikea just a few days later and the last two pieces of this fabric ( it comes in 3m lengths) were reduced to £5.00 and with the Familly card discount that came to just £4.50. So I bought another piece so have 9m in total to play with.

So I have absolutely LOADS of this lovely fabric. I have lots of ideas as to what I am going to do with it. I cannot blog here yet though because I want to finally achieve a Monthly Stitch Post. I am pretty sure you have to put the things you make on there first. Gotta check their rules in fact. Every month I consider taking part and every month for one reason or another I do not get round to it. My last serious attempt back in April I never finished the coat I was making
which has become a UFO. I will get round to finishing this at some point because it will be a useful item for autumn. Right now I would not wear it anyway since its just too hot. Wonderful weather right now in the UK though!

I have also invested in 9 vintage Burda magazines. Some from 2012 and 2011 which I love the patterns for and since I bought them for just £2.99 + postage each off ebay they are a bargain. And some from 2008 and 2009 costing 99p + postage and one form 1983 costing £2.00. Great patterns in them all. Except for the 1983 one which turned out quite tatty depsite the description and the pictures - although all patterns are there and in good nick, the others are just fantastic condition. Better than some new ones I have received through the post. AND they came wrapped in a box and in wrapped tissue paper. I think the person I bought them off was probably having a clearout having already traced any wanted patterns but she obviously cared greatly for them so I am very privileged I think to have won these at such low prices. Possibly in fact they are better than any of the magazines I have recently bought new! But I have saved lots of money buying these and have got just about all the older patterns that got me interested in Burda in the first place.  Then though I did not have the money to invest in sewing patterns so I was just dreaming.

Though it will now mean I have to trace rather than simply print out of course which is what I would have done if buying individual patterns from the website.  My partner has also been wonderful in lending me his debit card to buy these since my payday is not till the end of the month and as usual I have not much spare cash for such items.  I am actually not sure which I prefer - taping together A4 sheets which often do not quite fit right ( for me anyway!) or tracing and trying to see which line I am actually meant to be following! I am currently enjoying my evenings reading each one from cover to cover and dreaming about what I can make each item I want out of. Anyway as soon as I decide what I am making I will let you know. I think its going to a be a very exciting few months after buying all these.
Thanks for reading

Wednesday, 20 July 2016

57:Upcycled vest dress

I bought a strapless maxi dress from a thrift shop for £1.00. It was the type with a bandeau front and shirring elastic at the back. It was OK but the top just did not feel safe for me to wear anywhere. I am not really into boob tube type tops but prefer to have the security of a strap or boning at the very least. I think most people wear with a bikini by the pool on holiday. I should have taken a photo but forgot. Anyway it started off something like this:

So having decided I like the fabric which was a bargain at just £1.00 I needed to make something I can actually wear. The front has what is a princess type construction with three panels. The back is just one panel but has shirring elastic at the top. I chopped off the top completly then used this pattern to cut out a vest type of dress using view C but without the sleeves.

I wanted to achieve a vest dress which was fitted like the pattern but with a slightly more A-line skirt.

To do this I first cut the front and back of the original dress appart at the side seams but left the princess seams of the front intact. I folded each piece in half at the centre. Since the dress was second hand and had been worn and has no elastane I now found that in order to keep the grainline straight the side seams were a little squewed. This did not matter since my pattern pieces were quite a lot smaller than my fabric pieces. If you do this you just need to make sure your new centre front is flat and has no folds and that it follows the grain of the fabric. Also that the princess front seams line up as well as the grainline being correct.

The I positioned the front pattern piece on the folded front panel and the back piece on the folded back panel. At each centre fold at the bottom edge I added 1cm extra however I kept the pattern right on the fold at the top and down to the waist to make a slightly A-line skirt but not to add any extra ease through the top part. I cut it out and simply overlocked all seams. Then because I did not know if it was going to work out to be wearable at all I overlocked all the edges too.

Anyone who is a regular reader of this blog will know I am quite into the punk look so for me overlocked hems is just fine and I like that. I decided it is wearable just as it is but if I decide to I can still go back and twin needle stitch a hem at arm holes, neckline and hem later.

So here is the final dress again. I am quite pleased with the end result and wore to work already.

Thanks for reading my blog

Friday, 15 July 2016

Finding ways to wear me-made clothing

 Finally I found a way to wear this top. I really like this top but its so difficult to find anything I can wear with it for "normal life". I made it here: 35: Bardot style top pattern and playing with my serger but its really something I cannot seem to get to go with anything. I mean it will be great at Christmas but what about the rest of the year? I do not really go in for Christmas clothing and like to have stuff I can wear all the time.

Well I never have, all my life, worn ripped jeans despite them coming in and out of fashion every few years. Bearing in mind I grew in the days of Punk rock I still refused to wear ripped jeans with the exception to wearing them when they really rip naturally rather than me ripping a  hole in the knee to look cool. I kind of always thought it a bit sad to destroy a good pair of jeans. But then by the time jeans rip naturally they tend to simply fall to bits so you never do have the "real ripped jeans" look it seems.

Well stupid me. I had these jeans for ages., they started off pale bleached blue and I dyed them black but I just could not get into them. So at the ripe old age of 52 ( it was my birthday a few days ago) I finally decide I had better get round to this fashion because soon I am going to be far to old to carry it off. Its already debateable if I should wear something like this. But then a rock star would so why not a normal mortal like me? So I got out the scissors, put on my jeans and decided where to strategically rip my jeans. I did three holes in one leg and four in the other but let them just rip a bit more by kneeling down in them. Then I got out the sand paper and sanded them down along the rips ( I took them off for this bit since did not want to sand my knees!).

And low and behold my difficult to wear top is really very good with these. Who would have thought it?

Thanks for visiting my blog

Tuesday, 12 July 2016

56: two mesh dresses

I decided to make these dresses for summer. I have seen lots of RTW mesh dresses though really none quite like these. They have an almost 1990's feel to them. Vintage maybe?

The first is a paisley floral mesh and the second is a plain cornflower blue one. Both are power mesh type of fabric so should hold their shape well.

What can I say? cool on a summers day. I am wearing a satin thrifted dress underneath.

Both dresses are simply overlocked and have rolled edges

Thanks for visiting my blog

Sunday, 3 July 2016

55: red Burda style top

This needs ironing!
I made this top from the June 2016 Burda style magazine

I really like the jumpsuit type of look but could never get on with them so this for me is a similar look but without the annoyance of being all in one.

Its the same fabric as the trousers I made here: 50: 05/2015 Burdastyle trousers 114/115
Construction was a bit weird and ended up quite messy on the reverse with some unfinished seams so when I make again I will change things a bit. I have never made a loop with a button closure before so that was new and the top is designed with really strange shaped panels so does not go together at all like you expect. I thought it would be a really simple design and it is not difficult. I just had to concentrate to work out what went where and how.The way Burda say to attach the straps could be much simpler. Anyway I am a bit rushed today so more on this when I make the next one. I will do step-by-step photos.

The main problem with this top, which by the way I love, is the centre front panel which I somehow managed to get the print upside down. So it kind of works but could be better.
I shall make a second one that I get the print right way up now though. Its a nice enough top pattern and I can happily have two in the same fabric made from it. Its definitely a cute top and nice and comfortable to wear. I think it goes well with the trousers I made from the May 2015 magazine.

I am off to make another top now in the same fabric!
Thanks for reading