Sunday, June 19, 2016

My Love Affair with Burda 6988 and Fabricville

I wanted to say thank you for the great feedback on my Sandra Betzina coat. I appreciate each and every comment you leave me. Some asked for a tutorial on the pockets so if you're interested , go here to Diana's Sewing Lessons.

I think we all have patterns that are Tried and True  (TNT) that we use to death. Such is the case for me with Burda 6988.

I've always loved a boat neck and this pattern has the perfect one.
Another thing that made me fall in love with it is that I didn't have to make a Full Bust Adjustment (FBA). When I muslined it I cut size 10 above the bust and size 14 from the  underarm down and sewed the size 14 French dart. I  made  Narrow Shoulder,  Sway Back  and  Rounded Upper Back adjustments and I got a perfect fit.

Here is a composite of things I've made with my favorite pattern.


I'm far from finished because I've made it three more times in the past month.

The black one is so versatile and can be casual or dressy. I love it with white jeans!

Who doesn't love/need a navy boat neck top? The skirt is 10 years old and Sandra Betzina sewed the side seams on it to demonstrate  how to make a bias garment at her workshop I attended.

 The green is the perfect match for last summer's culottes.


This one is part of a set. The shrug was made using McCall's 6559, another favorite pattern of mine.

The fabric I used for each of these tops is the beautiful Milano collection of rayon jersey from Fabricville. This is the most luscious and luxurious  rayon I`ve ever found. It has a silky hand and has a great weight, heavy enough for the  culottes shown here, and is completely opaque. So Canadian Ladies, if you have access to Fabricville or Fabricland, you've got to get some of this one. The regular price is $19.99 but at the moment is 50% off that price and it's worth every penny.

I have quite a few more things to show you including a dress, a jumpsuit and an outfit but it will depend on getting the photos taken . Hopefully by next weekend ,that will have taken place.

It's a beautiful day here in New Brunswick, Canada and I'm going to sit on my deck and read. I hope your weather is pleasant too.

Friday, June 10, 2016

My Sandra Betzina Coat ( V1494 ) at Last

Well, I started this coat the first week in May and it's taken me this long to get it to the wearing stage.

I think the coat genie is trying to tell me I have enough already because my last three jacket/ coats have been real challenges. I have to admit I was tempted to give up on this one . The flared out from above the waist silhouettte isn't flattering my shape, but I wore it today to a luncheon and got raves about it so that gives me the confidence to keep it.

The pattern is V1494  and the fabric is a denim look heavy  drapery linen from my stash.


Here's the coat but the photography and the colour leave a lot to be desired. The top stitching is actually in taupe not white as the pic would suggest.

The collar looks terrible closed up like that. I think the lining is pulling but I don't have it in me to go in there and fix it. I'll be wearing it like this in any case. Isn't it pretty this way?

First about the collar problem. This is what the original collar looked like. Yes it really looked like that!!!

This is what I did to fix it. Plus I took a 1.5 " wedge at center back which ended at nothing at the neckline.

It still looked like this however

but I decided to trust in Sandra and it ended up fine in the end.

For my coat,I changed the pockets because I don't like inseam ones. If you want to know how to make these pockets,
please let me know and I'll post a tutorial on Diana's Sewing Lessons.

The lining is a poly slippery fabric that I thought would look cool and the yellow bias trim is too

A look at the back which is the part I don't find particularly flattering on me.

I do love colour and it feels wonderful on so I will wear my coat

And that's all I have to say about that.

More later from

Sunday, June 5, 2016

I'm Back With Little People Dresses

I've been away from my blog for a while even though I've been sewing lots. Again, it's the lack of  photos that got in the way.

The Sandra Betzina coat is almost finished. I think it's quite pretty but not really my style. I'll show it soon.

I've been making tops out of a beautiful rayon knit from Fabricville and that will be a post after the coat.

Today ,I want to to show you matching  dresses I made for Riley and Poppy. I just got back from Ottawa  to be with Poppy for her 4th birthday. As usual, I enjoyed every minute I spent with my two little cuties and I felt a little bereft on the plane ride home, knowing I won't see them again for two months.

For the dresses, I used a piece of poplin  and a red cotton knit that were a perfect match  from my stash. I designed the dresses myself.

For the patterns for each  , I used an old  , multi -size, child's pattern   from which I copied the  shoulder and armscye. From there ,I drafted an A-line silhouette.  Using this "master pattern", I then added the design lines. I flared out the dresses from the neckline to hem and from the curve (pockets areas) to hem. The back of the dresses are the original A-line. I added pocket bags to the side pieces and facings the shape of the pockets to form the pockets.

To sew, I gathered the neckline and curved pocket areas to conform to the front of the master pattern.
I added neck and sarmhole bidings to finish them off.                                

                                     On our way to get pizza and yes they are the best of friends!

                                                               At the Birthday Party


The little girls loved their dresses which  were a hit everywhere they went. I'm planning more dresses in the near future because Riley and Poppy wore them three of the five days I was with them. Now that's what I call appreciation.

I hope you're having lovely weather where you are and are sewing up a fun summer wardrobe1

More later from

Sunday, May 8, 2016

A New Spring Dress, B5522

Well I'm back ! I really think having to get pictures taken will do me in as a blogger! I got enough pics taken however  today for three blog posts, I hope.

Spring weather is finally here so it was a good day for my new spring dress. I used B5522  (OOP) but simplified the sleeves and that was not easy to do !! I had to lay all those individual pieces one on top of the other keeping in mind the seam allowances and they turned out a little on the small size.

 The fabric is a poly/lycra bought at Fabricville.

I also changed the neckline for my dress to utilize part of the fabric's border print but I can't say I love the result. I think I should have lowered the neckline some but it's OK I guess.

I used a different part of the border for  the sleeves.

I really like the freedom of this A-line silhouette and the way it glides over the figure. It's so much easier to wear than a sheath dress although  I love  the slim fit of  a sheath. I had used this pattern for the body of this dress a couple of years ago and I've pulled it out of my closet many times. I don't love this one as much, I have to admit,  but both are really comfortable to wear.

It's very windy today so the dress is billowing out a bit.


What am I working on now? I'm agonizing over the collar of Sandra Betzina's V1494. I tell you, that collar makes no sense! Has anyone else made this coat?

Happy Mother's Day to all you Mums out there. I'm a happy one because each of my three children have called me today! They always do but I have this fear that one of them will forget me which is silly because they never do!!

More later from,

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Vogue 1493 , My Way or A Relaxed Denim Jacket

I loved Vogue 1493    as soon as I saw it.Then I watched this  irritating video on the McCall's website and loved it even more. But I knew that to justify buying the pattern and making the jacket , it would have to be something I would wear more than once or twice. I shopped my fabric stash and came up  with the beautiful shirt weight  denim in a watermark print that had been waiting for years to be used.

I never really entertained the idea of the bias strip trim shown on the pattern, however. My idea was to instead quilt the front and  sleeve bands. I tried , using cotton flannel  between the fabric layers but that proved too stiff. Instead , I sewed multiple rows of top stitching and decided, for whatever reason, to use matching thread which doesn't show up at all.

As you can see, I opted for patch pockets after sewing the  inseam pockets  and not liking the result.
I was trying to copy these pockets which I had pinned to my pockets board  on Pinterest.

When that didn't work ( I really missed the mark there, didn't I ! )  and I had no  fabric left, I turned them upside down because I liked them better that way and they seem to mimic the sleeve bands.

This garment is very different for me. I like it a lot but every time I catch a glimpse of myself in it , I think choir  or graduation gown and hubby thought artist smock !

Now about the pattern. It has a princess seam and when I tried it on the seam was way below my bust. As a matter of fact , everything was too low including the waist and pockets. I ended up  raising the whole thing by another 3/4" at the the shoulders and then cutting the extra small sleeves.I had cut a size Medium and that was way too big.  ( I'm 5'4 1/2'' tall and weigh 135 lbs if that helps anybody on what size to make for this one. ).A lot of draping was necessary to get this thing to look right.
The side seams were curved at the waist and that didn't seem to jive with the design of the jacket so I straightened that out.

This was a very time consuming project because of the extra fitting issues, the weird sleeves which each took one hour to construct and also because I added Hong Kong finishing to most of the seams
before I put the jacket together. That's why you see such wide seams in there. I didn't trim away excess after taking everything in to a smaller size.

How weird  is this part!!!

I've worn my jacket to good reviews and I regard it as a fun and casual piece. It will take the place of cardigans  this spring and summer. I can see it with white jeans , or with a simple tank dress too. I'm glad I got this one out of my system and can now go on to simpler things. However, I've run out of hangers and will have to give some things away first !!

I do hope you had time to sew this weekend and that you all have a good week filled with lovely spring weather.

More later from

Sunday, April 3, 2016

My Easter Outfit and Surefit Designs

I hope everyone had a great Easter, I know I did.  And yesterday I spent the whole afternoon with Ann of  Ann's Fashion Studio now called Ann Made . We have become very good friends and enjoyed lunch and fabric shopping together. Spending time with sewing friends is always so special, I think.

I didn't get my Easter outfit finished on time but it didn't matter because Winter had made its appearance again last week but I have it ready now to show you.

 It consists of three pieces. The first two are a funnel neck top  made entirely from my SFD sloper and by following Glenda's instructions on a funnel neckline in the Dress Kit book on page . I admit I didn't lower my neckline enough and it fits rather tightly but is still wearable.


The skirt is yet another Rachel Cowlan  ( V1247 ). Look here to see the changes I make to the pattern.. the fabric is a textured polyester knit from  Fabricville but not available online.

The jacket is made with a quilted look textured knit also from Fabricville. This jacket was a real challenge because the fabric is spongy which resulted in bulky seams and it easily snags  but I love the result.

I designed it by first using Sally Silhouette from Surefit Designs which is a great tool and is free. I use it a lot when planning my seasonal pieces and when I get overwhelmed by all the fabric I have and continue to buy ! Lol.

I used my SFD sloper, Burda 6988 and Silhouette Patterns 1825  to draft my pattern. I used the shoulder  armscye , back and sleeve  of my  SFD sloper, the French dart and side  from 6988 and the neckline, collar  and front opening of the Silhouette Pattern,

Do you like my buttons? I couldn't find large navy buttons so I covered two mismatched ones I had on hand. First I padded them and then I used a rayon knit from my stash that matched the navy of the jacket perfectly. I didn't add  a shank to the buttons but merely sewed them to the jacket . I wanted them to lie flat. The real closures are snaps.

I lined the jacket with poly charmeuse.

I had lots of fun coming up with this outfit and designing the jacket using Surefit Designs as my starting point and I can't wait to do more.

Ooh ! The princess lines aren't attractive in the photo and I think it looks better in real life.

The spot you see on the jacket is the snap which I didn't get in the right place so I left it unsnapped.
I never get the snaps right! Never!

My outfit isn't perfect but I like it and will wear it to church first chance I get. I'm making a navy rayon knit top to go with the skirt and I'll wear the jacket with white pants later in the spring. As for the funnel neck top, it will probably only get worn as this outfit.