Sunday, July 27, 2014

Instant gratification

I haven't blogged for a long time because I've been busy making 3 sets of curtains and sheers for the enormous windows at the front of the house. I just have to buy fabric for the last one and then make it and I'm done. Even though curtain making is not exactly difficult, there is a lot of measuring involved, and tedious sewing of loooooooong, straight lines, so it's taken longer than I would have thought. I wanted to break up the tedium a bit with some quick, easy projects.

I've made a couple of Sewaholic Renfrew t-shirt dresses, so I thought it was time I tried the pattern as it's intended- a t-shirt. I made the long sleeved version with the gorgeous snugly cowl.

For this project, I did something I rarely do. I went out and purchased fabric specifically to make a certain project. Usually I just grab whatever is cheap and it languishes in my stash for years because I have no idea what to do with it.

This slinky jersey knit was on special for a good price (can't remember but probably under $10) so I grabbed the exact amount I needed to make the Renfrew. It's such nice stuff- really soft and slinky, and not that cheapo stuff that's transparent when you hold it up to the light.

This top took me about 90 minutes to sew, using only the overlocker. It would have been quicker but the onverlocker and I were not seeing eye to a for a while. This is a lovely make that I am going to wear heaps if our winter decides to come back. Our weather is really shitting me this year- we had no autumn, with a summer that lasted until the end of May, and we had some lovely cold weather at the beginning of July and now it's hot again! Gah!

I just whipped this up for my girl and it took about 45 minutes including cutting. I had 3 pieces of coordinating fabrics that were too small to do anything with, so I cut them into strips, sewed them together, added some waist elastic and ribbon trim, and voila- a cute skirt! She loves it.

What's your favourite quick make?

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Sewaholic Renfrew dresses

I made these babies a while ago but hadn't had any opportunities to take photos of me wearing them yet. They are quite far removed from my usual dress style, being quite slinky and clingy, but I finally got the chance to wear one last night to my mother-in-law's 70th birthday party.

For my test run, I chose some super slinky knit that I purchased about 5 years ago when I first started sewing, thinking that sewing with stretchy fabric would be easy. Derrrrp. I traced the Renfrew pattern on a size 2, tapering up to size 4 at the waist, and made it dress length by continuing the angle of the side seam for an extra 13 inches.

I knew I wanted to have a lining so that the whole world wouldn't have to look at my undies outline, and also to give it more warmth (our climate is far too hot to wear poly knits with long sleeves except from June- August). I used some unknown knit that a friend gave me a while ago. I lined it by basting the lining to the shell and treating them as one layer. This mostly worked well, except when it came time to add the bottom cuff. The two layers were behaving differently and there is a bit of kinkiness going on down there.

Another dumbass thing I did with my first version was to cut TWO BACKS instead of a front and back like normal people would usually do. The dumbest bit was I didn't even realise until I finished it, put it on, and noticed the neck was far lower than it shoud be. Oh well- lesson learned!

The second one was much easier. I left out the cuff, which in hindsight I should have kept, as I discovered last night that I am flashing way more leg than I am comfortable with (my husband loves it, of course). I only sewed the lining and shell together at the neck and armholes, and this worked much better than the last version.

I constructed the entire garment on my over locker, and I seriously can't believe how fast it was. Guys, I believe I have conquered my fear of knits! I know the fit is not perfect, but look at that cowl. Gorgeous! 

I bought some slinky black jersey to make a normal t-shirt length one to go with the black Thurlows that I intend to make soon. This will be my new orchestra uniform. Hopefully I will get it made before our next concert.