Sunday, June 27, 2010

A change

It’’s very personal, but I don’t like home decoration sewing. When we moved into our house six years ago I said I wouldn’t sew curtains, and I never did, where we wanted them I had them made. But now we are changing our sitting room, there were two chairs that really didn’t match any more. They were never a lucky buy and didn’t fit in very well in the old setting, but I didn’t want to buy other chairs now. So this time I did some home decoration sewing: I made cushion covers. The first chair was last done last weekend, and yesterday the other was finished. I’m glad I did it, the look is so different now and very much as I like them to be. And a great addition to the black couch (can you imagine the original together with black?)

Another layer of paint is necessary, that’s more clear in the pictures than in real life.


No other sewing done at all. 

Wednesday, June 23, 2010


Thank you all for your congratulations on my 400 post.

I wish I could give you all a pattern, but I had to draw: the winners of the bag patterns are:

Weekender bag: Hilde

Sophia bag: Rose

If you let me know your mailing address (my e-mail address is in the sidebar) I’ll send you the patterns this week.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

400 posts


In a little over 3 years I have posted 400 times. Time flies, as it certainly doesn’t feel like 3 years, and 400 posts sounds a lot too.

I still like to blog about my projects and have comments and ideas from the international sewing community. My sewing has evolved a bit during that time too. When I look back at my first posts (or the reviews in my first year on PR) I see garments that are no longer in my closet, either for fit reasons or for style/fabric. When I first found Pattern review and blogs, I certainly got carried away with projects I liked, and bought and made patterns that really were not my style. Gradually I have been sewing more things that I really like and actually wear. Of course it still happens, buying a fabric or pattern on an impulse and regretting it later, but not very much any more.

Give away! (not possible to enter any more)

One of the things I tried during these 3 years is making bags, but I found out this is really not for me. I still have a beautiful piece of dark red leather in my collection and keep one pattern specifically for that, but I will give away my two Amy Butler bag patterns: the Sophia bag and the Weekender bag. Leave a comment on this post if you would one of these indicating which one you would like (note: the weekender bag is difficult to make and needs a lot of fabric/interfacing etc. I never made the Sophia bag but it looks less complicated).

One little caveat: you must have left a comment on my blog in the past year or be a follower of my blog to participate in the draw.

image image

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Fitting pants

My last pair of pants were a bit high waisted, and in general felt a bit too wide. Could be the linen, as that fabric tends to get bigger, but I was not completely satisfied and convinced that I had the right pattern.

I had spent a lot of time and muslins (didn’t blog about those this time) and still the end result was not quite what I wanted. Then I realized I have one pair of linen pants that I continue to wear in summer, it’s wearing/washing/wearing and I just feel very comfortable in them. It’s a pair I copied from RTW a few years ago. I put it on and evaluated it more critical: fit was good, fabric still in good shape, so not to be taken apart, only the back was perhaps a bit too high in the waist (which does not keep me from wearing it). The back in general seemed allright, with no strange wrinkles.

Conclusion: time to make a copy again. Unfortunately I had thrown the pattern away in a cleaning frenzy, so I had to make a pattern of the pants itself.

I started this before my little vacation, and finished it today. Think it’s one of the best I made. The first picture shows the color the best. It’s a linen too, a fabric I simply love in summer, the wrinkling is just a part of it.

For the waistband I used Petersham that received from Veronica: a big thank you again!

I didn’t interface the front side of the waistband, it’s not very firm, but just the right thing for these pants.

Before inserting it I put it into hot water to make sure it wouldn’t shrink any more and then pressed it in shape, as described by Sandra Betzina in her book Power sewing. A great way to finish the waistband.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Random prize

Such nice news on returning home: I won the random prize in the formal wear contest on pattern review.  I did not expect to win the contest, there were far more beautiful entries, but it’s nice to win the random prize.

You will remember the dress:

Monday, June 14, 2010

A room with a view

It’s very quiet at my blog, nothing to tell sewing-wise: I’m not sewing, but enjoying a few wonderful days in the UK. After quite a stressful year DD thought it a good idea that DH and I would go away together for a few days. My mother is “taking care” of our children. Not much to take care of at their age, but just a bit too young to be on their own.

Now DH is enjoying one of the games at the football (soccer) World Cup tournament, a good time for me to write a post and share a few pictures (I’ll resume the usual sewing topics next time).

Our bedroom in the little cottage we have has this view, I would like to have it at my place.


We’re enjoying walks and gardens (there will be a few more plants in my garden next week). A few impressions, and back to sewing next time.


New walking shoes were bought today, after a lot of kilometers and many years this is was happened yesterday, the last half of the walk wasn’t very comfortable, but a bit of the sole was left.


I simply love to walk here and see these views and those lovely gardens (and of course have a cup of tea with homemade scones in a tearoom afterwards).









Saturday, June 5, 2010

Burda, this is what I’m looking for

Ann-Marie posted a comment with a link this morning, that I want to share with you. Thank you so much Ann-Marie, I didn’t know this one.
Someone called “Peacock couture” has made a Flickr photoalbum with just what I would like to see (and probably many more of you) on the Burda website as shown in my last post on this subject. Peacock couture has already done something similar. It does not contain all issues, but this is a wonderful link:

The flickr album is no longer available, just before I went on holiday, I understood from Ann-Marie that Burda sent a legal notice to remove the pictures! I am so sorry to hear that, it was such a wonderful resource. Though I somehow can see Burda’s point not wanting this, I would suggest them to make an accessible, user friendly site themselves. Then they wouldn’t have to bother so much about this (my personal opinion of course) and get more positive attention for their own site.

You can click on a specific issue to see pictures and linedrawings, but also search on tags that are added to the photos.
When searching this collection for the words “top knit” you get a screen with all pictures with these tags. A small screenshot:
When you click one of the pictures, the “this photo belongs to” tells you from which issue it is.
Whoever she/he is, Peacock couture made exactly what I was thinking about. I even considered making something similar, but dismissed the idea as being too much work.

Friday, June 4, 2010


Well, I’m pretty pleased with all I achieved in a little over a week. This didn’t happen for a very long time. No spectacular things, but 5 garments is a lot, even if 3 of them were just plain simple t-shirts. (just realizing that plain has another meaning, these t-shirts are not plain fabrics!) I like them as nice additions to my wardrobe, but don’t really like sewing them. I used an Ottobre pattern I’ve used before for these.

The last t-shirt belongs to the plans I showed earlier.
And I also finished a pair of linen pants and a blouse from the plan. The pants are ok, but the pattern still needs some tweaking. I think the waist is very high now, it could be a little lower. The blouse I love.

Instead of just pressing the pleats in the sleeves, this time I used topstitching (edgestitching?) for the pleats both on the outside and the inside. It gives a bit more defined pleat and hopefully it will be easier with pressing.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Burda WOF/Style

As long as I can remember in the Netherlands Burda World of Fashion (the magazine), was always just called “Burda”. It’s the same with Knip Mode, if someone would ask you where you found the pattern, you would answer “the Burda” or “the Knip”. In the past year the magazine has changed the name to BurdayStyle and on the internet the old links from the English site are now redirected to

I love the archives and tried to find them, using a link someone gave on a discussion thread on PatternReview. The English version of the archives is (still) here:

They can be found on the German site in the new style here: Not all issues work with proper links to pictures, apparently it’s a work in progress.

The magazines from 2006 till July 2009 are in the tab Burda Modemagazin (the former German name), from August 2009 till now in the tab BurdaStyle.




And I’m still hoping (in vain most surely) for showing the fashion picture and line drawing together in one screen and  a search function. What if you would get a list of possible patterns like this when searching for a coat pattern for example:



This is copied and pasted by taking screenshots and pasting them together. Too much work to do that for all the issues I have, so it would be nice to search the Burda site for it.

But there’s one thing  I hope even more: that they go back to being a pattern magazine with inspiring patterns that you long to make instantly. I haven’t seen that for a long time. Let them not got the way of only making patterns available through downloading (it seems to me that they are experimenting more and more with downloads) or a magazine with a focus on craft items. You know my opinion on their crafts probably and I just don’t do the downloading and taping together of patterns. Too much hassle.  Then I’ll have my beloved Burda back.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Cutting collar in one piece

I’m working on my blouse (actually it’s almost finished) and have cut the upper- and under collar as one pattern piece. I did this before, didn’t use it last time, simply because I didn’t think of it. This way there is only one small seam at the under collar, the sides of the collar have no seam. This reduces bulk.

In the Burda pattern I use the collar is half a collar, that must be cut twice on the fold. For this way of working you need two of these half collar patterns.

For my previous blouse from the same pattern, I had added  1 cm seam allowances to the pattern. At the side of the pattern this will have to be removed.

The next picture shows the two pieces that are taped together at the seam (pointed side of collar), you see the seam allowances overlapping the pattern. At the right side it will be cut on the fold (center of upper collar), on the left part (under collar) a seam allowance must be added.

The point of the pattern piece is straightened.

Fold the fabric and place the pattern on the fold and cut. As you can see the under collar will be on the bias. How much will depend on the angle of the collar.

Mark the corners by clipping there.

After cutting and in one layer:

Interface the collar with a thin interfacing.Both upper and under collar are interfaced, so the interfacing mustn’t be too thick. Of course you can interface only the upper collar, or not interface the seam allowances (which I will do next time again, as I mostly do).

Sew the center back seam and press open..

Stitch the long side of the collar and trim the seam allowance. Cut the corner in a diagonal (not in the picture)


Press the seam open till the point (I love my tailor board for this!)

Turn the collar and press (preferably the upper collar seam a bit over the edge, so that the under collar will not be visible.


Topstitch the collar


The back of the collar, you can see that the front is visible at the top, just a tiny bit so that the under collar is not visible.

Hope this is helpful to some of you.