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Showing posts from October, 2007

Miscellaneous: pants fitting 2 / Vogue jacket / answers

Pants fitting 2
It seems that I finally made the right changes to the back of the pants pattern. See the left leg on the picture. AND see all ripped stitches. Never used my seam ripper so much as this week.

The solution in the end for me is basically this:
1. Add more body space by taking space away from the center of the back pattern (see my first post on pants fitting) and adding the removed space to the side seam
2. Make the crotch a bit deeper
3. Lengthen the back crotch line a little in the waist (in my first pair of pants I already added 1 cm, now I added 1 cm more. This last point has nothing to do with the wrinkles, but with appropriate moving space and being comfortable)

In the picture on the right you can see the changes, the black line is the line that was used on the pants on the left. The seam ripper was not intentionally photographed, but it shows how near it was to me.
So in the end no fish eye dart or diagonal wedges for me. Though the site of Debbie was very helpful in under…

This item does fit

Thanks for the positive comments on the pants fit. Yesterday very late at night I tried the fish-eye dart, but it dit not solve the problem. Most probably I need to do a diagonal wedge, but my DH is not the best judge in these matters (I showed him the pants and he said not to fuss any more, they were much better already, and certainly better than anything rtw). Sweet, but I want them to really fit. Tomorrow I'll be seeing my mother, and will ask her to pin the extra width away and try to solve this fitting issue. Keep you posted, as from the comments I've seen that more people are strugling with this.

In the meantime I've something to show you that does fit: my new bra. I've started taking a few lessons again, so every two weeks on Thursday evening I'm trying to extend my knowledge of lingerie making. This is one of the results. This item has perfect fit, and I wanted to make it symmetrical, with good result.
Special about this one is the (non stretch) lace that goe…

Pants fitting, part 1

First, I'd like to thank all who commented on the fitting issues for my pants. I did look at Debbie's site and somehow thought it would not be the "one" answer to my problem, as I've become convinced that there is no one-step solution for me. But I think I have found part of the solution there. Tonight I spent adapting my pattern and making a muslin.

My starting point, after reading all the information was the Threads issue of January 2006, an article by Joyce Murphy Adjusting pants from waist to seat. In this article she describes "body space" as an important point in fitting pants. And it does make sense to me, as women have very different shapes. One needs more space in the front, and others (like me) more in the back.
The picture above shows the body space in my pattern, which is 15 cm. I tried to measure my own bodyspace by taking two rulers, and it is 19 cm, which means that 2 cm more is needed (half of the extra width in the pattern). The article d…

Patrones pants

Today I was able to get some pictures for the Patrones pants on me, which I finished yesterday.
The PR review is here.
In general I'm quite pleased with these pants: the front is good, the pockets went in smoothly and the fabric feels very soft on my skin.

I'm not so pleased with the back. This is an issue I presumably always had with pants, but that I only became aware of because of taking pictures for my blog. I will stop making pictures from the back ;-).

Look at this picture of the back. Wrinkles, and though I have read a lot about fitting pants, I'm not sure what to do about them. Is it just taking pictures and am I being too critical or is this a problem that can be solved? If you know what could help, please let me know. I would like to make a pair of pants without these wrinkles.


Carolyn asked me to write about the problem I have with the jacket relating to the swap plan. For those not knowing swap=Sewing With A Plan and I want to join the Timmel contest that is held the beginning of next year. This contest requires 11 garments, 1 jacket, 6 tops (not all tees) and 4 bottoms that all must be matched. Extra is the rule to use a wardrobe pattern, of which you must make 3 items at least.
My problem with this jacket is that I'm afraid that the neckline will not work with every type of neckline underneath. A blouse with collar might be a problem. This restricts my choice of tops.

If this is true, I could make a jacket with an easier to match neckline. The rules of the contest don't say that the jacket must be from the wardrobe pattern. But:
1. I don't have any other wardrobe pattern
2. Big 4 patterns are expensive here, and I buy them only when the patterns has something very special to me, like the jacket of no 2987, which I won't find elsewhere.
3. Ju…


My Patrones pants are not finished yet. I sincerely wanted to go on with it, but got sidetracked by the black pants because there was black on my serger. Good reason, isn't it? So I started serging the black pants (BWOF pattern) and went ahead with that one instead of the Patrones pants. The black one now only needs hemming, show you pictures soon.

Then I got sidetracked by a fabric that I bought recently and was hanging to dry (seldom use my dryer). So when I went upstairs last night to my sewing room, I was hanging there (dried) and ended up not sewing pants, but this Jalie top. The review is here on PR. Very easy, instant gratification, but as said in my review, the fabric must have more stability for this one (or would fusible interfacing help, what do you think?).

This is the pattern picture.

I bought the fabric for this top because it will go well with the Knip skirt I made earlier, and with the dark blue pin-stripe fabric that is my third pair of pants.
Further I plan to make …

Answer to question

As a reaction on my last post Besosmom2 asked me how I would change the waistband for a RTW pants that is too big.
It's a lot of trust in my knowledge (thanks for the compliment) and I would like to answer, but my knowledge on alterations is not very good. I confess to prefer making new clothes to altering existing ones.
But what I would do is try to take out the extra width in the center back, and make an extra seam in the waistband. That is how I attach a waistband anyhow, with a seam center back.

If anyone who reads this has a better solution, please mention this in the comments.

Patrones pants

As said in a previous post, I really need some new pants and I managed to get three cut. And instead of sewing the most easy one first, which I originally wanted to do, I started sewing on the most complicated one. That's the Patrones pattern. As in BWOF the pictures just don't show the details clearly. I would think you want to see the single welt and the detail in the back, but a large belt hides these details in the magazine pictures.

For me this is the most complicated because it has
a. Single welt pockets
b. I've never made a Patrones pattern before.

The single welt pockets are not so difficult, but just a little more work than any other pocket.
Though the pattern seems quite in line with BWOF pants, (laid the pattern pieces on top of a TNT Burda pants) I cut with large seam allowances and traced the seamlines like I always do with tracing paper.

Other changes
The back yoke (?) I made smaller at the waist by folding the pattern piece together. I took the BWOF pants and took …

Problems with pictures

Laura brought to my attention that the pictures from my last post could not be seen. This must be due to the fact that I abusively posted the same post twice, and deleted one. The pictures for both posts were removed from blogger :-(
Now I have restored two of the three pictures, but have difficulty uploading the third. Too bad, but I stop trying, want to get some sewing done this evening.

I still want to thank several of you for the "thumbs up" on my post about the mistakes. It certainly helped to finish the coat.

And Tany : I ordered two Patrones magazines, and received only one, with a message that something had changed in the distribution of the magazine and there were some problems with delivery. So I'm hoping that I receive the other ordered copy at sometime.

Marfy coat finished

Finally I managed to finish my coat. Pffff, it took some time but I think it was worth the time it took. It's not perfect, there are some details I would do different another time, but it was quite a learning curve. On the picture the front seems uneven, but this is not so. I think the coat needs a fifth button, now it tends to be open at the bottom. It's wide enough around the hip area, that's not the problem.
When I move in this coat the sleeves seem better then in these pictures, though they are not perfect. Must give that a bit more attention next time I make a jacket.

I like this coat, and think will wear it often this winter.

A picture of the inside of the coat, before lining was inserted.

Now on to a bit less time consuming projects, I really need a few basic bottom items. And I hope to cut 2 or 3 pants this weekend. Two patterns I made before and should be no problem, the third is a Patrones pattern. I ordered an issue for the first time and received it yesterday. What…

Sewing books

When I started again sewing seriously for myself last year I started to buy sewing books . In English, as in Dutch there are only basic sewing books. I do have the Knip book, and it's fine, but it doesn't tell you about advanced techniques, like inserting a sleeve head, or adjusting a pattern for example, or the little tricks for doing something.

A great inspiration was Power Sewing by Sandra Betzina. Great instructions for so many things that make your self-made clothes look better. I only wish that some pictures were clearer, as imho a print or dark fabric don't show very well in pictures with instructions, and in a book I expect that is taken into account. Fast fit by her is also great for adjusting patterns.

When Carolyn posted on her ten favorite sewing books I was triggered to find the book Decorative dressmaking which she mentioned and to find a few other books on my wish list.
I found the dressmaking book which really is a source of inspiration (thanks Carolyn).

The tw…

Marfy coat - Mistakes!

My Marfy coat is now nearly finished, the vent in the back and the lining still to be done. But it were a couple of difficult days for me, with quite a few mistakes.

It started with the cuff. I knew the sleeve length was fine on the muslin, so I thought to make the cuff before inserting the sleeves would be easier.

1. I cut the cuffs of fabric, stitched them and they were too small! The sleeve width was definitely larger than the cuff width. What happened? I widened the sleeves, as I widened the whole pattern after making my muslin. I widened the cuff too. But I forgot that there were two seams in the sleeve, thus two times made the sleeve wider, but the cuff only once. There was just enough fabric left to cut new cuffs, which I then drew to the pattern of the sleeves, while Marfy made them just straight.
2. I used the method described in Sandra Betzina's book "Power Sewing" to insert the cuffs. Worked great. But then I realised that the lining should be there first. This w…


I've decided to join the Timmel SWAP contest. I read about this SWAP before and this week read about this new contest on the blogs of Carolyn and Laura.
I'm fascinated by the idea of sewing a wardrobe. Earlier I published my own storyboard for a personal wardrobe plan for this autumn.

Regarding this contest I thought it would be too much work and planning, and I decided recently to stop buying fabrics from so far away as the US (or Canada in this case) as the shipping charges to Europe are high.But after considering the fact that you are allowed to make two things before the official start of the SWAP on January 1, I thought this might be done. As it has to be finished in April, this means that it must be a late winter/early spring set of clothes for me. Seems so far away!And as to not buying from vendors located outside Europe, I'm allowed to make an exception to my own rule :-).Which colors to use? I have no idea yet, but would like it to be something original for me, as I…

Where to start

A few things to share.

1. Answer to question:
Nancy asked me a question in the comments section on the use of Power mesh in the side panel of a bra. I sent her a personal reply, but think this might be of interest to others too. This is a copy of the reply on the subject of Power mesh:

For the sides I just use lycra when it is not too thin. Another method (besides the power mesh you mention, which is hard to get here too) I saw mentioned (but did not try myself) is taking two layers of lycra, with the stretch of one layer different from the other.
I've tried the two layers of lycra with the same stretch direction in the latest bra I made for the undercup (the blue one I posted). This was a new technique for me, and worked wonderful.
Another thing I've done in the past is using tule (a thin, stretch type) as under layer. Remember the side panel needs stretch to close the bra properly.

2. A first picture of my Marfy coat.

Steady progress on this one, but it takes a huge amount of time.…

Burda 09-2007-105

This jacket/top is for my daughter, I posted on the change of the front pattern piece last week and this is the result. When I can get DD to show I'll make a picture, but 14-year olds are not always in the right mood :-).

But she is very happy with it, and so am I. Great fit in size 38. I love Burda! They have great fashion forward patterns, and once you know what changes you need, it's always the same (like Summerset mentioned in a comment).

In the comments on my last post Alex mentioned Jalie patterns to have a great fit too. And I wholeheartily agree with that. Through reading reviews on Pattern Review I got to know Jalie patterns and first tried the jeans jacket with great results. Since I have tried several others, and they are true to size! One of my next projects will be a Jalie top.