Sunday, June 24, 2012

Sharing on Sunday

I'm stealing a Sunday night blogging catch up here - heater is on, telly is showing something decent, a cup of tea is made and there's pear and chocolate cake for dessert.  We've had a busy week just gone - the last week of school term was full of activities, my parents came for in impromptu visit and to be honest I've enjoyed a little bit of a break away from the computer (but not the sewing machine!).

I'm going to ease myself back into blogging by sharing some pictures of the blouse I made from my own pattern.  The basis of this top was pattern New Look 6892 which is a peasant style blouse.  I've made it a few times before and it's fairly tight fitting.  I wanted to loosen it up so widened the bodice to be more like top B from The Stylish Dress Book, which I made here.

Instead of creating a casing for an elasticised neckline I gathered the front part of the bodice only (which keeps the neckline nice and low instead of drawing it up higher), 

I gathered the top of the sleeves at the shoulders, 

and put some tucks in the back neckline.  

I finished the neckline with bias binding, hand sewing it on the inside.  I also didn't make elasticised sleeves, again using bias binding around the hem edge to finish them off.

To be honest I didn't really know what I was doing here in terms of making the blouse fit around the neck and shoulders.  I took some measurements of tops I already had in my wardrobe and tried to make an educated guess about how much to gather where etc., but it was a healthy dose of luck that got it to fit as well as it did.  I did have a moment of panic when I thought that without the elastic neckline I wouldn't be able to get the top on over my head...but my worries were unfounded.

One thing I was aiming to do was bring the back neckline up higher as I found it scoops down a bit low but had one of those "ah-ha" moments when I eventually realised that such a modification is due to the cut of the armhole and not a matter of how gathered or not the back bodice fabric is.  I'm learning, learning here I tell you!

Then to finish I (rather stupidly) sewed a double hem at the bottom of the blouse.  Once you get a little bit of wonkiness in either of the rows of stitching its super noticable where its not in a single row of stitches. Ergh. I was also thinking I might bring the sides in just a little but, and now I have two rows of stitching to unpick at the hem instead of the usual one, which pretty much guarantees that I'm not going to be making any modifications in that department any time soon.

In the gorgeous Brisbane winter sun I've been wearing this blouse with jeans, boots and a scarf, plus I've had some lovely compliments on it too so I'm further encouraged to modify and merge patterns more of course you know I've got something going in the works already...

Thursday, June 14, 2012

My creative space: operation alteration

I've got a little alteration job to do.  I found this lovely dress hanging on a rack of left over summer stuff at the BigW department store.

Talk about a super special. That's right, the price tag says $5.

The dress is a size 16 though, which I am not, but it's not massively huge on me so a little taking in down the sides, particularly around the armholes ought to do it.

There's always a tie to bring it in at the back.

I've started by removing the side zipper.

Yes, there's a bit of summer sewing going on....because in a month we are heading to the European summer for a bit of a frolic in the sunshine.  Whoo hoo!

For more creative spaces pop on over here!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

From the bottom of my stash

There's quite a lot happening at my place at the moment.  This week in particular is so hectic that it seems to have a life of its own.  Among all the "life" stuff I have a list of sewing jobs that I really, really want to get done in June - both for myself and for my shop.  I don't know why I have suddenly had such a burst of activity to make things for the shop right now, I guess I felt like it had been ignored for too much of this year.

So here's another little pinafore that I have just uploaded - again a size four.  A vintage fabric skirt with a denim and red cotton bodice.

You might recognise the fabric from here.  I still wear my skirt in this fabric, it's a summer staple in my wardrobe, I love it.  I'm so glad to have finally put the left over piece of fabric to good use (and if you've clicked on the link you can calculate how long I've had that fabric in my stash!).

Monday, June 11, 2012

Staying in

A wet, cold and windy Queen's birthday long weekend here.  Three out of the four of us are in various stages of recovery from a runny nose lurgy that swept through our household last week.  We are inside with the heater running and the oven on making chocolate cake, meringues and grilled cheese sandwiches.  Later I'll be putting in some lamb to slow cook with potatoes.  When it's cold go for comfort food I say.

The floor is strewn with Duplo, kid craft paper offcuts, baby toys and sandwich crumbs.  The dining table is covered with sewing, sheet music and recipes and the coffee table is covered with my crochet granny squares.  

This weather is great motivation to try and get to the finish line with my crochet blanket. I've got 18 squares done and I'm aiming for 20 squares to make a small 4 x 5 blanket.

I have to get those spaghetti ends woven in and then work out how to join them together and do a nice edging around the outside border.

I'm also working on my couch dint in the process.

Are you having a cozy long weekend too?

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Shop update

I've added a few new things to the shop lately that I thought I would share with you.  Mostly I seem to do my shop updates on the Maika Creations Facebook page, so if you would like to be more up to date than my rather sporadic updates on the blog, then you know what to do!

Size 4 pinafore dress in blue and vintage green daisy fabric

Size 2 gathered pocket skirt in blue

Size 2 gathered pocket skirt in pink

Hopefully I'll be getting a few more things listed, including some boy's long sleeved t-shirts, during the month of June so stay tuned!

Monday, June 4, 2012

Small, fast and gratifying

I've been struggling a bit with making my new blouse.  It's coming along, just at snails pace, probably because the result I will end up with is still a bit vague in my mind and not concrete like it would be if I was simply following a fixed set of instructions.  To be honest it's kind of annoying me actually.  I need some free time to concentrate on it properly.  A lot of free time I don't have.

While I was cutting it out though the left over fabric suddenly and unexpectedly said "baby pants" to me.  My lovely friend's new baby is already one month old and I had been meaning to make a few baby things for her so I whipped up a pair of basic baby pants and a few bibs from fabrics I had in my fabric stash.  

Nothing like sewing something small as a little side project distraction, then to finish, wrap and pop it in the post gives a satisfied feeling of a job well done.

Welcome to the world Deunan Rose!


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