My First Simple Sew pattern - The Lottie Blouse and Skirt.
In order not to bore everyone that just wants to read the current post - and I know there are lots of you that like to do that as well - I will be putting my replies to blog comments at the end of each week's post. After my sign off - so you can skip this section if you are not interested. I'll see how this system goes over the next few weeks, because no doubt it will need some sort of modification, a bit like sewing sometimes does.
- Back to this weeks post and the Simple Sew Lottie Blouse and Skirt:
This pattern was included with a sewing magazine that I found in my newsagent - Love Sewing or Simple Sew, I can't remember which, and the magazine is gone as I only wanted the pattern. The magazine cost $13.95 and if I purchased it from Simple Sew in the U.K. I would have had to pay quite a lot more, plus postage, so it made sense to do it this way.
The fabric for the blouse came from an Op Shop - a piece of poly cotton seersucker, 1.5 metres /115 wide, about $1-50. The pattern recommended 1.6 metres of 150 wide. I did have to put a seam into the collar at the back, but 1.6 of 150 does seem a bit generous.
And the skirt is made from cotton drill - a remnant 1 metre piece which I was lucky enough to find at Spotlight for $2.00. I love cheap fabrics for pattern try outs, especially if I don't do a muslin, which was the case with this pattern. If you are lucky you will get something you like at the end!
With the blouse, I cut size 12 because this gave me the ease I like in summer tops. I used a 1 cm seam. I altered the dart by adding an inch to take it closer to the bust apex. I though the sleeves were a bit strange - long, wide and shapeless, so I shortened then and tapered the sides by half an inch both sides. As for the skirt, I could see from the measurements that this pattern was designed for a pear shape figure, and size 8 had a hip measurement of 36 inches. I thought that the ease in this pattern would be less than the Big 4 (just a hunch). The waist was far too small, but I added to the side seams and took a bit out of the darts. As I only had a small piece of fabric I had to use a walking split instead of the kick pleat at the back.
Simple Sew Patterns are designed for beginners. I found them simple enough to sew, because I do have sewing experience, but I think that the instructions were not as detailed as some of the Big $ simple patterns. And I really did not like the neckband finish - the instructions suggested folding the two edges of the collar/band together, then attach to neckline and stitch, then finish. That would leave an unsightly zig zag stitch or overlocked edge. So I applied it as I normally attach a collar: attach the outer collar to neckline, and then turn under seam allowance inside, pin and stitch - which gives a much more finished look. Unfortunately I can't show you with a photo as the flash washes out all detail in a white garment. The sleeves were set in, with two pleats at the top. I don't think this really looks wonderful on me, but probably looks nice on a pear shaped figure as it would add width at the shoulders. I also think it looks a little "beginner" but then, this is a pattern for beginners! Strangely, the pattern did not show a hem allowance for the blouse. So I just hemmed to the length I liked.
The skirt - I usually do not have much luck with skirts as they have been designed for figures that are ideal and have more curves. But after I altered this pattern, I was pleasantly surprised when I made it up to find it works better on me than most skirts. Not perfect, but I think really that straight skirts do not really work that well for me. But I want some anyway! So I am happy to accept less than perfect because I am less than perfect too, but perfect for me, if that makes sense! And this skirt hangs better on me than straight skirts from the Big 4. So I was quite pleased, and this is just a fine addition to the casual wardrobe.
I used a lapped zip instead of the pattern's suggestion of an invisible zip, and a skirt hook and press stud inside to finish:
- And as usual, I finished my walking split with a button to stop the seam from splitting:
- Some quick look sees:
Well, I like this little outfit, although I think I would prefer a set in sleeve instead of the square pleat at the top of the sleeve - this makes my look too square, although I think it would be flattering on a pear shape figure, adding width and squareness to smaller shoulders - that would balance the wider hips.
Next week I will show you the last of my current back log of garments :
All the details then, so for now, I'll wish you a happy weekend, probably very busy with Christmas looming.
- REPLIES TO YOUR COMMENTS ON LAST WEEKS POST (Saggy Baggy Pants,Vogue 8836)
- Anne, yes, it can be awkward dressing for both indoors and out. And I will try and post a little more about trousers during 2017 when I make a pair of more structured pants. Good luck with your plans.
- Lisa, ditto - next year I will try and show more detail. And elastic in the back or the sides works wonders. There are patterns around that have semi elasticated waistbands.
- Louise - securing a button with a button underneath is a good technique. It's used in all sorts of garments to stop the button pulling through. My husband's RTW good winter coat uses this technique. But it is not suitable in all situations - again, pick the technique to suit the problem!
- Janine - op Shops, are great for experimenting - and I dare say a few of us do this. It seems to me most sewers really enjoying hunting for bargains in op shops!
- Accordion 3 commented on my productivity - I have to tell you all that I do not watch any television at all, preferring to prepare sewing in the evening, or do some marking or whatever. And I am an early waker, so I often get sewing done early. I also fit in a little after I finish work, or whenever I get a spare moment. And I have been making simple garments.
- And Summer Flies, Sharon, Sew, Jean Margaret, Sew Blessed Maw (Judy),Mary, The Sewing CPA and Star: thank you for your comments - and Star, I had been wondering what had happened to you - look forward to your return to action.