Monday, 25 October 2021

Box Pleat Dress by The Assembly Line: D:101

 Sometimes, you just need some colourful fabric to try and cheer yourself up.  

I picked up the last bit of this 100% canvas fabric from the home décor section of the fabric store for the only reason that I was smitten of the print and colours.  Too bad I didn't test out the pattern before I cut out this project.  I certainly could have gone down about two sizes!  

This is the Box Pleat Dress by The Assembly Line and considering that it is the third pattern that I have tried from their line I should have known better.  Sizing aside (I made this one in a size large), this pattern is lovely.  No complaints.  Only praise!  


My favourite part of this pattern, besides the fact that it has pockets, is the construction of the back box pleat.  The engineering behind the scenes is clever.  

Next version, besides cutting out the correct size, I would like to narrow the width of the sleeves.  Maybe something like the sleeves from the Tulip Dress pattern.  And I'll keep in mind that raising the height of the pockets was a good idea.  


Project Details

Seams:  2.6 straight stitch

Seam Finish:  Serged, neckline was finished with seam binding

Fabric:  2.1 metres

Seam binding:  0.6 metres

PatternD:101, The Assembly Line

Additional Tools & Supplies:  Cutting table, scissors, thread clippers, pins, pin cushion, tailor's chalk, ruler, measuring tape, measuring gauge, weights, seam ripper, sewing machine, threads, serger, tweezers, mini vacuum, iron, ironing board and TED talks.  

Stay Safe and Keep Sewing!  

Monday, 18 October 2021

It Wasn't Meant to Be (Blooper After Sewing Blooper): Butterick 6376

I'm waving the white flag on this one.  I give up.  There has been too many sewing bloopers associated with this project.  My heart is not into it anymore.  


Interfacing was an issue.  I didn't want to go out and pick up new interfacing in light of everything under the sun being affected by pandemic influenced inflation.  My first thought was to utilize cotton fabric that I had in the stash until Bunny reminded me in the comment section that interfacing should be similar in weight to the fashion fabric.  She's right.  I then deep dived into my interfacing stash and found enough of a remnant piece of fusible horsegrain interfacing for the job.  With some creative and careful placement of the pattern pieces I was able to cut what was needed.  

The problem with the interfacing was actually not a problem with the interfacing rather an error with my cutting and measuring.  And then throw in that I used a fusible interfacing. ~sigh~

Not only did it make for challenging pressing, the bulk of it all looked horrible on the right side.  

Did I mention the miscalculations and mess I made with attaching the collar?  Oh boy!  


I clipped one side of the collar at the wrong spot not once, twice.  

I'm not happy with how it looks and I give up.  I'm not going to trash this fabric.  I'll try to salvage what I can, maybe use it for bag making.  Who knows.  But as far as a new denim jacket, this project is shelved.  

I think if I return to the cutting table, I'll be looking for something simple.  Hopefully in bright colours.  Something happy, I could use a happy satisfying project.  I need to find the joy that been missing at the sewing workspace.  

Stay Safe and Keep Sewing!

Wednesday, 13 October 2021

Has the Pandemic Changed What We're Sewing?

Eighteen months into the pandemic and with many of us working from home at one time or another, we all know that we've changed the way we've dressed during this time.  Comfort has ruled king.  Has the pandemic changed what we sew as well?  


Personally, I've managed to sew six pajama sets / nightgowns during the pandemic.  And more facemasks and other PPE items that I care to count.  It was never in-the-plans, life just threw us all a curve ball and a detour happened in my sewing journey.   


When I did sew clothes during this time, it was to accommodate the pandemic pounds that creeped on.  I know I wasn't the only one battling and sewing my way through the quarantine fifteen.  

A recent CBC article, The Pandemic has Changed the Way People Dress.  Should Office Wardrobes Change too? addresses the fact that those lucky enough to work from home adapted a "comfortable clothes like leisure wear, sweat pants, leggings, sweaters and other casual items" (CBC News).  And sewing pattern designers were attune to this desire and need for comfortable clothes.  


Vogue 1833 is a perfect comfort option with elastic waist pants and skirt.  And throw in the loose-fitting pullover top, it's a winning combination for the working from home look.  I don't know if the office world is ready for this look.  It's kind of like paying workers a living wage, nice in theory, but few in the corporate world are quick to embrace it.  


Vogue 1828 sample in white dressed up with heels and maybe covered up with a tailored blazer, Butterick 6862, could make it past security without raising an eyebrow in the corporate landscape.


Simplicity 9383 is another casual option offered by Simplicity patterns this fall.  I agree with the CBC article that highlights when we dress comfortably we preform better.  I'm not sure the corporate world is ready to let go of some of their dress code standards.  But then if we've learned anything in the past eighteen months, stranger things have happened.  

Stay Safe and Keep Sewing!  


Monday, 4 October 2021

Sewing for Others: More Bibs

There is some good advice over at sewing.org before starting this project.  Before cutting keep in mind that, "the bibs must withstand many types of food spills and many washing and choose fabrics accordingly."  

The decision to use cotton terry on one side was not even debatable but became an issue when considering the cost.  Have you seen the price of fabrics lately?  Natural fibre fabrics not that polyester blend stuff?  Online prices vary from in-store, but it became evident that I would have to look for an alterative.  Ah, towels!  This pandemic-has-made-everything-so-expensive era calls for plan B.  


The reverse sides are various 100% cotton fabrics found in the stash.  This yellow and white printed fabric is a quilting cotton I had once-upon-a-time picked up for microwave cozies.  

The only polyester found in this project is found in the store-bought seam binding.  I was trying to save time and get this project done in a timely manner.  If I can part some advice when picking up store-bought seam binding, not all packages marked 3.65 metres are actually 3.65 metres.  I was relieved when this shortage happened that I had picked up an extra package.  An angel must have been looking over this charity project.  


There were six made and are ready to deliver.  The banana print is a quilting cotton left over from a face mask project and the blue chambray is left over from a shirt project.  

There are two yellow and white printed quilting cotton (one not shown here with white seam binding) and two spiral print Japanese cottons.  I hope they will be well received once they are gifted.  


Project Details

Seams:  2.6 to 2.8 straight stitch length

Seam finish:  Seam binding

Labels:  Handmade

Fabric:  5 metres + 5 towels

Seam binding:  18.35 metres

Pattern:  Free

Additional Tools & Supplies:  Cutting table, scissors, pins, pin cushion, sewing machine, thread, tweezers, thread clippers, iron, ironing board, love and coffee.  

Stay Safe and Keep Sewing

Sunday, 3 October 2021

In Sewing News Today...

This weekend, CBC's Marketplace episode was another glimpse into the impact of fast-fashion.  


This is a screen shot from the episode.  And that little red purse contains "over five times the amount of lead..." [Yup, I typed lead.]  "that Health Canada considers safe in children's products."  

The show really just scratched the surface suggesting that this is a online shopping phenomena.  It would have been interesting as well if the show storyline also tested items found in regular stores.  I wouldn't be surprised if the same would be found at in-person shopping venues.  I found what U of T professor, Miriam Diamond had to say about the impact of toxic materials not only on the consumers who purchase the items brought in for testing but also the health consequences of the workers producing these products and impact on the global environment.  I really wish the interviewer followed those pieces of information that Diamond shared.  

For more on this topic check out this Tedx talk as well.  

And how exactly does this relate to sewing news you might ask.  Easy, sewing our own wears provides us with quality control that is missing from fast-fashions.  

Stay Safe and Keep Sewing!


Friday, 1 October 2021

Sewing for Others: Bibs

The latest project to come off the sewing machine is an item to be gifted.  I found this pattern over at sewing.org under their charitable sewing and craft projects section.  


It's a feeding bib, and I really like the length on this one because it covers the front and down to the lap.  I used the pattern as a guide for the neck opening and the velcro closure idea.  The width I was inspired to adjust based on the width of a towel I used.  It was only slightly wider.  


The other side is a layer of 100% cotton and the two fabrics were attached with seam binding.  I couldn't find any white seam binding in the stash, so I just went with what I had on hand.  

I'm defiantly go to revisit this pattern and make some more.  I'm not sure how many towels there are to sacrifice for the project but I'll check what other suitable fabrics might be hiding in the stash.  


Project Details

Seams:  2.6 straight stitch length

Seam finish:  Binding

Fabric:  1 towel + 1 metre 

Seam binding:  1 package / 3.65 metres

Pattern:  Free

Additional Tools and Supplies:  Cutting table, scissors, pins, tailor's chalk, sewing machine and tweezers.  

Stay Safe and Keep Sewing!


Thursday, 30 September 2021

September in Review...

National Sewing Month

It's hard to believe that another month celebrating sewing has come and gone in a blink of an eye.  There once was a time when National Sewing Month meant something special and there was a feeling of wanting to share the excitement.  Not this year, this year festivities and excitement were non-existent.  Life didn't leave much room for such things.  


And then throw in there being on a low-carb diet, there weren't even celebratory sewing theme sweets.  


Bye, Bye Pandemic Pounds.  Hello, long missed me-made wardrobe! 

I've been wearing more of my pre-pandemic wardrobe.  It could be thanks to the low-carb diet, fitting more walking into my week or a lack of appetite.  Who knows?  I'm just glad that I'm able to revisit some me-made items that I haven't seen in a long while.   It all happened when I put this dress on and realized that it was quite loose.  I haven't worn it in awhile as it sat in the ironing pile while ironing fell to the bottom of the priority list.  So that incident sent me on a search if, dare I dream?  


This jumper has been packed away for a couple of years.  I couldn't imagine parting with it because of the quality of the fabric even though I had out-grown it.  And would you believe it fits?  I can hardly believe it.  The fabric, it's a 100% wool suiting.  


And this skirt made me so happy when I was able to zip it up.  I haven't been able to do that in years!  It is a favourite fall piece that I can't wait to wear again this autumn.  Another item that I could part with because of the quality of the fabric.  I kind of feel like I have a new fall wardrobe.  



Sewing & Mending

Sewing projects took an unexpected turn.  The denim jacket is sitting in a state of being unfinished as Kwik Sew 3663 took over the sewing space.  


Would you believe that the sewing space has never looked so tidy deserted?  Twenty-twenty-one doesn't seem to be the year that my sewing mojo has returned.  Even though, a denim jacket has typically been a fall and spring staple I just don't have the sewing mojo to finish it right now.  


I did have enough sewing mojo to work on some socks that need mending.  


I've been cutting up patches from a shrunken 100% wool sweater that is working out better than I could have imagined.  And look, wearable socks!   


Thought-provoking Reads

Instead of enjoying time at the sewing machine, sweet sewing-themed treats or window shopping the latest fall fabrics, I've been diving back into reading.  I started this book ages ago and recently picked it up again.  



This is a heartbreaking and disturbing tale that will make you examine your clothing labels and think twice about the viscose / rayon we find in our environment.  Stay tuned for a full book review.  


Output

Fabric:  10 metres (September) + 54.2 metres and 1 recycled skirt (previous months) = 64.2 metres + 1 recycled skirt

Zippers:  0 (September) + 1 - 20 cm regular zipper and 1 - 55 cm invisible zipper (previous months) = 2

Buttons:  0 (September) + 35 (previous months) = 35

Seam binding:  0 (September) + 10 metres (previous months) = 10

Knit 'N Stable tape:  0 (September) + 9.5 metres (previous months) = 9.5 metres

Elastic:  5 metres (September) + 14 metres (previous months) = 19 metres

Twill tape:  0 (September) + 0.5 metres (previous months) = 0.5 metres

Spools of Thread:  1 - 100 metres (September) + 4 000 metres (previous months) = 4 100 metres

Sewing machine needles:  1 (September) + 5 (previous months) = 6

Hand sewing needles:  0 (September) + 1 (previous months) = 1

Sewing Labels:  0 (September) + 1 (previous months) = 1

Sewing patterns:  1 (September) + 2 (previous months) = 3


Input

Fabric:  2.5 metres (September) + 54.6 metres (previous months) = 57.1 metres

Elastic:  4 metres (September) + 0 (previous months) = 4 metres

Buttons:  12 (September) + 10 (previous months) = 22 

Sewing patterns:  2 (September) + 7 (previous months) = 9

Seam binding:  0 (September) + 3 metres (previous months) = 3 metres

Stay Safe and Happy Sewing! 

 

Box Pleat Dress by The Assembly Line: D:101

 Sometimes, you just need some colourful fabric to try and cheer yourself up.   I picked up the last bit of this 100% canvas fabric from the...