Saturday, June 24, 2017

The Remaining Plaid - now made into Vogue 9018.

Hello everyone,

My latest make is a rather rustic and homespun looking PollyAnna Practical meets Margaret Howell, but I rather like it! I'm wearing leggings and socks, but I think really, except for Autumn layering, I would  wear tights.  Except on those really homespun and cosy sort of days, of course.  I mean, Margaret Howell often puts socks on her models, quite unashamedly.

I am still a bit behind in replying to your comments but hope one day to be a little more disciplined in transition in the SLSS household, so I am a bit preoccupied with what that will mean in practical terms.  I will tell you more next week. 

But for now, on with this weeks post:

Last week I showed you my recently made plaid shirt (post here):

The backstory - I had purchased a piece of cotton flannelette from Spotlight when it was on sale - $2.50 per metre.  I purchased 2.5 metres (150 wide).  After I made the shirt, I had a leftover 1 metre piece plus a piece about 25 wide by 60 long.  I don't like having leftovers that are not really big enough for much, because invariably they go to the bottom of the stash, never to be see the light of day again.  So I decided to use it. Rummaging though my patterns, I though I might just squeeze out a tunic dress or something.  When I spied Vogue 9018 I figured that I might just about squeeze the garment out:

I figured I never have anything to wear in Autumn, where it gets warm in the day, but cool in the afternoon and evening.  And so you take off and put on leggings as the day changes.  Plus, I never have the right garments for Me Made May, as I don't really focus much on transitional wear.  Or cold weather clothes, our season is not cold or long enough.  So I thought a layering piece might come in handy.

The first thing I noticed about this pattern was how shapeless it was - no darts of any sort.  And it was oneof those two size increment type of patterns.

I settled on size M with size S shoulders and neck.  I  wisely made a quick toile, which showed the garment to be as shapeless as I thought it would be.  While I liked the idea of a roomy pinafore so I can move around and put any sort of layer under it, I did not want it to be totally shapeless. I took in about 1 cm  on the side seams  and added front and back  darts - which makes the waist  about 3.5inches smaller in total - and the finished garment is still very roomy!  Right side in this picture is the pinned side:

I also did a half inch total horizontal narrow back adjustment across the upper back area.

I didn't have enough fabric for the inseam pockets so I used a piece of navy poly cotton for them.  My small strip of fabric was enough for the front and back facings - with a seam through the CB of the back facing.  The pattern suggested facings for the armholes, but I had no spare fabric for that, so used binding instead.  It's a bit of a contrast and much more voilet than it seems in this picture but it was in the stash, so it got used! :

Otherwise it was a straight forward make.  I must show you the front dart, which is barely visible except for the indentation of the pattern:

Buttons and buttonholes to finish, plus a snap at the top as the neckline wanted to pull open a little:

That's it.  Very few scraps left, which is what I like!

I'll quickly show you the front, side and back views.  Got to love those pockets:

Actually, I quite like my Pollyanna Practical Pinafore.  It's quite fun, really, and certainly looks nicer than lots of things I could wear for doing chores.:

But then, I always did look a bit like an overgrown schoolgirl...

That's it for now, will share more with you all next week.

Take care everyone,

Sarah Liz. 

Sunday, June 18, 2017

I'm back blogging - In Praise of Imperfect Shirtmaking - Burda 2561.

Hello Everyone,

I'm back blogging after a tedious patch in life that my husband and I had to navigate.  Not interpersonal issues, but a staff problem.  My husband works solo, and his secretary was ill.  100% staff absence is not really a very good way of operating.  Plus he is overloaded at the moment.  I stepped into the breach where I could.

Anyway, for now, the problem is resolved, and I have thought of a number of ways we can function should this situation arise again. As I suspect it will, in one shape or another.

So, by the time I got back sewing I was quite stressed and frustrated.  And decided to make a plaid shirt is a loose weave flannelette.  Nothing quite like adding to the frustration levels!

So thank you all for your lovely comments. This week I hope to get back to normal and actually reply again to your comments.

So, on with the shirt:

I decided to use a simple style with minimal seamlines and a bit of shaping, so rummaged through my patterns and settled on Burda 2561:

I usually always make a muslin to check fit, but I know that Burda size 38 usually works quite well.  So on this occasion I settled for a wearable muslin, basically because I wanted to get on and ease my sewing frustration.

The first problem happened cutting out the shirt.  I could not get the side seams to easily match, no matter how I tried.  I later figured out that it was because the dart was on the diagonal, not straight.  That was after I had cut the shirt fronts out - I had decided that I would be a little RTW and not worry about the plaid matching.  I just wanted to sew.

I also noted that the shirt was designed to have a small shoulder pad, but the depth was not specified. I did not want a shoulder pad, but I also did not know how much to take out, so I decided that as this shirt was just a really casual wearable muslin, that I would proceed and work out how much to remove if I make this again.

I did notice the the shoulder seam was way over the shoulder on the picture - so I removed 1/8 inch from that.

I also made a narrow, erect back adjustment of 1/2 inch.

Now, when I came to sew the front dart, I think that was really the point that I worked out why I was having problems with the side seam matching back and front : the diagonal slant of the dart out towards the side was quite marked, although they look quite straight on the trade sketch:

So I sort of straightened the dart up as much as I could.  I used the loose weave of the fabric to help, and eased the slightly longer side to the slightly shorter side.  I was prepared to have slightly mismatched side seams, but the front darts really had to look seamless as they would be so noticeable - side seams are more hidden. After a few attempts, I succeeded:

Other than that, the shirt was an easy sew,  but the fabric did want to stretch and move a lot. The shirt has taken on a life of it's own, though, with an interesting droopy effect.  Partly because of the way I manipulated the front dart, and partly because of the excess fabric in the shoulder and sleeve head that I did not remove because I did not know how deep the shoulder pads were.  If I make this shirt again, I think 3/8 inch needs removing.

But the other reason the shirt droops is because I am very straight through sides and have a very high chest.  So I need to split the chest, alter any dart point, and perhaps even lift through the sides.  So the straight lines of fabric have made this an ideal fitting muslin - it shows just what I need to do in the future for all patterns.  

Strangely, for all the hassles and imperfections in this shirt, I love it!  Maybe because of those imperfections.  And I am going to wear this a lot around the house.  I'll even wear it out in the right situation - I doubt anyone will notice the droops, which are not so obvious if I choose to wear this as a jacket shirt:

(and, I can see that worn open, the shirt is not catching on the high point of my sternum, so does not look so droopy).

Before I show all views, I will just show you the button detail:

Before I go, I'll just show you the front, back and side views:

As you can see, the back lines are fairly straight, with a slight droop to the side. So I think altering the high chest area will pretty much fix any fit issues with my high chest/erect and narrow back.

So, I shall wear this imperfect shirt with pride.  It has taught me a lot.

The fabric used was a cotton flannelette.  I had 2.5 metres of 150 wide.  I was left with a 1 metre piece and a strip about 25 by 60 cm.  

So, next week, I am going to show you what I did with the remainder...

Until then, bye for now,

Sarah Liz