Thursday, March 17, 2011

Dress for Tamara S2247

It's been a long time since I've made DD anything so I guess it was high time. I'm going to Ottawa next week ( I just can't go any longer without hugging Angel Baby Riley) so I thought a garment for Tamara was a good thing.

She mentioned a while ago that she would like a gored dress with a cowl collar. I knew I just had to find a princess style dress and I could use my cowl collar technique with maybe a little tweaking. I found S2247

I used the body of the dress ,rounded the neckline,and drafted a cowl by measuring the neckline.I didn't use the sleeves from this pattern. I have a sleeve pattern that I know DD likes so I used that.

The fabric is a poly/rayon ponti knit. I used a small zigzag stitch for most of the seams with a universal size 12 needle. I machine stitched the hems on the skirt and sleeves after serge finishing.

The only problem that I encountered was the collar which proved to be too thick when I doubled it. After over an hour of taking out the zigzag stitches and twin needle stitches, I recut the collar as a single layer . I finished the seams joining the two parts of the collar with flat felled ( is that the correct term?) seams and the edge of the collar with a quarter inch hem and it looks fine I think.

I used an invisible zipper (for once I found one that matched perfectly) but closed the seam at the top just above the zipper so I wouldn't have to split the collar at the back since there are already two seams on my version of a cowl.The dress still goes on very easily this way.

That's pretty much all there is to say about Tamara's dress so here it is.

As for the pattern, it's one of Simplicity's Amazing Fit and I intend to use it for myself. I really like it. There are many opportunities to achieve a really good fit with these patterns!

And here is a photo of Tamara in the dress! It ended up a bit too big through the hip area but otherwise it looks good on her.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Wednesday is my BIG Sewing Day

I've probably mentioned the fact before that Wednesday is my guilt free sewing day and other than a quick tidy up of the house, sewing is all I do on that day.And do you know what else? I have popcorn ( a big bowl of it ) for dinner with a glass of wine. Isn't that decadent?

On Wednesdays, my husband goes to the city to do errands ,groceries,etc and to do chores for his sister who lives alone. So I'm left completely free!

I LOVE retirement!

Yesterday (being Wed.) I started early and using this pattern, McCall's 6164 View A which is the pink one

...and made this.

The fabric is rayon jersey. I usually avoid this knit because it is thin and readily shows all bumps and accentuates the bust too much. I really liked this swirly,tie-dyed print so I decided I would double the body of the top and that's just what I did.

How did I do this?

I should have left the shoulders open as in when lining a vest but I don't like the results of that method on knit fabric so I started out by sewing the shoulder seams of each layer and then joining the two backs and two fronts at the hemline.

As you see in the above illustration,I then joined the side seams of the two layers in one continuous seam.

The next step was to turn the whole thing right side out, and to pin the necklines together and to check that everything was smooth and it was so I took out the pins and from the armholes I reached in and re pinned the neckline from the wrong side.(This was easy to do) and sewed the two tops together at the neckline. After trimming the seam I pressed carefully,pinned the armholes together and top stitched the neckline.

The sleeves were then sewn as usual and serge finished.I ran a row of stitching at the bottom where the hem stitching would usually be. ( I sewed and stretched a little instead of using a twin needle as I didn't have much thread left).

Here is the top from the inside.

The shirring on the sleeves is formed by threading elastic through a casing in the seam allowance.

About my Full Bust Adjustment on this one. I spliced and spread the pattern an inch in the usual place about 4" below the underarm. But instead of adding a dart, I ran a row of stitching for about 4" and pulled in the threads to form a slight gather

I then sewed my side seams with the front down against the feed dogs and this is how it ended up.You can barely see the gathers!

I really love this top. It's fun and rather youthful but I think I'm OK with that.
Maybe my grand-daughter Jessica will like it and I'll make her one.

More picks here.

Hope you're having a nice weekend and that you got some nice relaxing sewing done!

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Two Quickies

I'm definitely feeling like my old self again and my sewing mojo is back full force. I decided after working so long on my coat that I would make a couple of easy pieces. I've had this cardi pattern for a while and have been dying to try it.

I also bought this bright and fun argyle knit and I knew I'd have to choose carefully what it would become.

This is what I came up with. I used my favorite sleeveles sweater pattern S3634 for this and just added a cowl collar using the procedure I described here. the only problem is that I forgot to center the darker rows of the argyle but oh well,if I don't point it out to everyone,it might go unnoticed.

I think pairing it with a black topper was a good way to tone the brightness down and I'm happy with the two pieces together.

The cardi is made of black rayon/poly ponti knit. I think the pattern and fabric work well together.The faced front drapes well thanks to the weight of the fabric. I secured the facing by stitching in the ditch at the front and back shoulder/sleeve seams. I used Steam-a-Seam to close the facing along the front.

All hems were machine stitched. I ended up facing the sleeves because I found them too short even for 3/4 sleeves.
I took off about an inch from the back bottom because I found it a little too long. Although the back of this piece is loose ,from the front it looks semi fitted.

I'm very happy with this combo and will likely make it again.

More pics here.

I hope you found time to sew this weekend. Have a great week!