Sunday, 17 August 2014

August make complete

For my August make I have made my second ever pair of trousers.  Using Butterick B5614, the same pattern as my July make, to prove the first pair was not a fluke - these are once again comfie and practical and I'm sure I will make more.   I'm hopeful that this cotton fabric will not attract as much fluff etc as the first black pair do.  

Although I never wear my tops tucked in I thought I should be brave and show you the top of the trousers too.

Once again I added pockets.  The only changes were to include the split at the hem as per the pattern view c and also add shell heart shaped buttons.  I borrowed Sarah Liz's tip for adding a button to stress points and added them at the hem and pocket edge.  Thank you Sarah. 

I'm not sure how much time left there will be to wear these trousers this summer as the weather has turned and it's definitely getting cooler in England - and as you can see from the photos more windy.


Sunday, 3 August 2014

August make

The theme for the August make a garment a month challenge is stash busting.   This caused me a dilemma as although I have some lovely fabric in my stash I am going to have limited sewing time this month and I had already brought fabric and decided to make a second pair of cropped trousers.  After much thought I have decided to carry on with my original plan as the bigger plan for this year is to develop some tried and true patterns.

This pair of cropped trousers will be in a summery blue cotton.  

Sunday, 27 July 2014

Lace knitted top

This is my next knitting project.  After several basic projects to get my confidence back I am feeling the need for something a bit more challenging and this certainly will be. I have never knit a top down pattern and have had mixed experiences in using circular needles.  The yarn will also be a challenge.

The yarn is a Rowan fine lace, so this is unlikely to be a quick project.  Having only used chunky or double knitting wool for the past couple of years this is going to be very different.

  I brought the yarn while on holiday in Cornwall.  Visiting St Ives for the day we took the shuttle bus from the car park to the town centre and at the town bus stop there was a small shopping arcade with some interesting shops.  At the back there was a lovely little wool shop called The House of Bartlett which had an impressive range of wool and very helpful shop assistant.  One advantage of using such fine wool is that it takes only 3 x 50 gram balls to make.  The yarn cost £7.50 per ball, total cost £22.50.  

Luckily I had taken pics of a few patterns and the yarn requirements and stored them on my phone just in case I stumbled on such a shop.

The pattern is from the big booking of knitting by Dorling Kindersley (DK) Ltd.  with over 100 patterns it was a bargain from The Works at  £9.99.  

Sunday, 20 July 2014

Success my first pair of trousers

I'm really pleased with how easy these came together.  

My mum had already made the pattern up for me and sorted a lot of the fit issues out.  So this was a straight forward make using Butterick B5614 pattern.  The trousers have a side lapped zip.  

The only additional alterations I made were to add non roll elastic to the waist to eliminate any potential gap at the back and add patch pockets to the front - pockets are a must for walking the dog.

 This is my July make a garment a month challenge.

It's difficult to show the detail but below is over exposed to show one of the two top stitched front patch pockets

Sunday, 13 July 2014

July Make

This month I am going to have a go at making cropped trousers using Butterick B5614.  I have never made trousers before - dresses are more my thing - but I felt the need for a change.

I was given the fabric by my mum as a present.  I'm not sure what it is but it has a bit of stretch in it.  

Along with the fabric my mum also made up the pattern for me and gave me a pair of trousers and the amended pattern.   So thanks to my mum this should be a fairly straight forward project.

Sunday, 6 July 2014

July dress finished

Here is my second version of vogue pattern v8828.  My Make a Garment a Month July challenge.

In case you wondering - the black shadow behind me is Tia.  My dog is never far away from me.  Particularly at the mo as she has been feeling poorly lately but I'm glad to say she is now on the mend.

This version is using a printed cotton from my stash with Bremsilk lining.  The cotton was brought a few years ago from Barry's Fabrics Superstore in Birmingham for a very reasonable £4 per meter (I used 2.25 meters). The lining at £10 per metre (I used 2 meters) and thread from Watson and Thornton, Shrewsbury and the bias binding fron Hobbycraft at Bridgmere and the invisible zip from my local Dunelm store. In total the cost was approx £35.

Building on version one I extended the shoulders, added contrasting piping to the neck and armholes and made the skirt less tapered so there was no need to have the skirt back opening.

On the plus side - I like the Bremsilk lining it makes the dress feel light, it slips on and feels special on.  I also like the print and colour of the cotton and the contrast piping.  Although Mr S and my daughter have suggested a bigger print may looked better.

Areas for improvement - , The cotton creases and it may be better to use a crepe fabric that has a bit of stretch and drape for a future version.  I like having the tops of my arms covered but to get rid of the creases around the arms I will have to make a set in sleeve pattern rather than simply just extending the shoulder and drawing down to the side seam.  A fabric with stretch may also have helped.

In addition to the armholes the back is showing drag lines at the bodice sides and the zip.  I think the drag likes at the side are related to the extended shoulder design which could be fixed by having set in sleeves.  I will try pressing the area around the zip better but suspect that as this area has quite a lot of curve it may be better to use a fabric with some stretch or drape or consider having a side zip.

Sunday, 29 June 2014

June knit finished

This my second easy knit top using pattern Sirdar 9290 and it was even easier and quicker to knit than the v neck 3/4 sleeve version - taking only 2 weeks to complete.

This time I made the round neck short capped sleeves in Patons 100% cotton. The cost was £14.40 for 4 x 100g balls in Jade.  I knit the same size and again omitted the side shaping but I did increase the length by 2 inches.

Using the cotton gave the top a lovely light feel.  It came out much looser fitting than the first version which used yarn with merino wool.  This is fine for what a want - a chill out top for weekends at home and for taking the dog.  

On reflection I prefer the extra length but think that it would of been better to have included the side shaping.

Not surprisingly, from the pictures below you can see the same fit issues that I am having to consider in my sewing.

Forward shoulders, meaning the shoulder seam is too far back.   Too much fabric in the back and more needed in the front shown by the side seams pulling forward.  Full bust causing the front hem to rise up higher than the back (I knit this a size smaller than my chest measurement to get a better fit in the shoulders and armscye). 

Oops looks like I've got branches growing out of my head but it's the only pic of the back.

I was hoping that with knits being stretching I wouldn't need to worry too much about fit but looks like I will have to reconsider if i want to make knits that can be worn for more than just slouching around at home.  I have just enrolled in the Craftsy fit to flatter knit course.  Hopefully this will help me to improve my knitting going forward.

Happy knitting