Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Couture techniques


I was not the one to discover this video. I saw it first at The Sewing space

Great video sharing techniques and showing the finished garments. Eye candy!

(and making clear why these clothes are so excessively expensive)

Sunday, January 27, 2013

One pattern, many looks

A few days left to finish the last blouse that I planned for this months “one pattern, many looks”  contest at PatternReview. I’m not worrying about the deadline, it’s just that I promised myself to finish these 3 blouses. Entering the contest is not a goal per se.

I’ve just spent almost an hour on the buttonholes of the second blouse. Normally my machine does buttonholes very well, but this time two went wrong for no good reason. Of course the two wrong ones were the most visible buttonholes of the blouse. I started with the least visible ones and those were sewn easily. Then it went wrong and it took me more time to unpick them than to sew all of them. It just happens sometime. I’ll be sewing on the buttons tonight.

The third blouse is a white one again, and like the blue shirt the fabric is from Acorn fabrics. I had a special lace attachemnt in mind for the collar, which was not working as planned. Not having too much lace to experiment with I chose to just cover the collar and the stand partially with lace.


Friday, January 25, 2013

New fabrics and sewing plans

The second blouse is almost finished, the only thing to be done is buttons and buttonholes. It’s been in this state a week now, I hope to buy buttons tomorrow so that it can have a final press and declared finished. The third and last blouse for now is being planned, and will have a little lace embellishment.


I’ve been working on some lace things as well and have accumulated a little more lingerie stash by going to Kantje boord in Amsterdam with Valerie and buying online at Lijfgoed. Which was a first for me and a positive experience.

This is what my sewing table looks like, the white blouse fabric on the left, the rest is all lingerie stuff. Addicted? I think so.  There are worse addictions…



I’ve used this lace before and it’s one of my favorites. Just another bra.

A detail from the panty with the new lace bought at Kantje boord. They also had the same lace on the bolt. And as I like making bra’s better than making panties, I started with the panty.

The fabrics bought at Lijfgoed, very soft and beaufiful. I look forward to working with them.

Though I intended to buy only light colored, “spring”  fabrics, I could simply not resist this lace. There were shoulder straps to match too.  Recently I tried on a few bra’s in a department store, and I think this lace or something very close was in the rtw collection. Needless to say I didn’t buy any bra’s.

Now I have to find time to sew more. In any case I plan to sew a lot of lingerie in the next few weeks. I’m not too happy with some of my bra’s. Some are too old, some don’t fit as well as I would like. My body must have changed. So I want to clean out the lingerie drawer and fill it with new sets. Will be fun I hope.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Fabric makes a difference

My next blouse will be a very basic one without any embellishments in a pale blue color. Just one of those blouses I like to have in my closet. Normally a bit boring to make but this fabric makes it a real pleasure.

I have been looking for good cotton shirt fabric for a very long time. It’s difficult to get here, often it is more a quality you would use for sheets, not blouses. Somewhere in December I googled for it and found a fabric supplier in the UK that was apparently known for its shirt fabric, which is the only fabric it sells: Acorn fabrics. I made an enquiry for white fabric suitable for women’s blouses and they advised me the malham quality and sent some samples. The quality is wonderful, think Liberty fabric but than in plain colors, beautifully woven stripes in it etc.

I ordered a white and sky blue fabric and started the blouse tonight. Like I said: a pleasure to work with.

The fabric comes with a label with the details of the order. I’m a happy customer!

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Blouse with trim / blog layout

The first blouse is finished. While editing the photos I noticed I had not a proper front shot and the little red button detail is not that clear in the photos. I’ll make photos on me later when the other planned blouses are done. For now it’s dressform shots.
I had bought 2 meters of this trim, which was just enough to do the trims as used in this blouse. I think only 15 cm is left. As a detail I used one red button and made the buttonhole with black thread. Hindsight makes me think it would have been nice to do all buttonholes in black, but I was not going to change that anymore.
All seams are French seams. Quite easy really with the 1 cm seam allowances I had cut. I started them because I was too lazy to change the thread of my serger. It makes such a nice finish! The yoke is a double layer of fabric in which the seams are enclosed.
With Burda blouse patterns I often have trouble with a bit of extra ‘puffyness’ in the back . I shaved off a bit of the sleevecap and then it was relatively easy to get the sleeves in smoothly and without the puffyness. These are also French seams.

On another note: I’ve changed the layout of my blog
Changed it again to a more conventional layout. Still working on it but information is visible without extra clicking. As I said I was not sure about the style. I liked the different view possibilities, but having no visible sidebar was not helpful.

Friday, January 4, 2013

First steps on a blouse

As I mentioned in my last post I plan to enter the “one pattern, many looks” contest on Pattern review. I haven’t entered a contest for a long time and as I already planned to make a few blouses this is a good incentive. I know I’ve had plans for entering a contest before and not completing anything, therefore I have chosen a relatively easy project: a classic blouse. I plan to make 3 variations this month. One of them will probably a completely white version, one a printed or striped one and the one I’m working on is a white version with trim. Nothing spectacular but nice to do.

I’ve used the pattern before, it’s April 2010 Burda, number 114. The blouse with flower print that because of the colors and print I have hardly worn. But the pattern is good.

The trim and buttons (Chinese knots) I bought in Paris at “Le droguerie” last October. It’s Liberty fabric bias tape that I’ve pressed in two layers instead of four and use so that only a small strip is visible. There is a little structure in the fabric that once pressed shows these little threads at the edge. I had not noticed it when I bought the trim and was a bit disappointed. I’ve got used to it and accept the irregularity it creates.

Strange as it may seem, I sewed the sleeves first. The following photos give you an impression of what I’m working on.


The center front and collar stand in progress.

No sewing on Saturday, too many other things to do and a dinner out. Hope to have some progress on Sunday.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Wallis pants

I’ve started the new year finishing a ponte knit Wallis pants from StyleArc. I had basted this together with a large stitch a few weeks ago and was not so happy when I tried them on. The fit was quite good, but the seam on the front to me looked like I had my legs twisted. The line drawing from StyleArc suggests that the whole side seam is moved to the front, creating a more or less straight line in the front. This is certainly not the case. The seam is curved from the side to the front, quite a different look.

Yesterday I finally had some time and sewing mojo. I didn’t want to start with adding a ufo so tried it on again. It wasn’t as bad as I remembered and the positive comments from my daughter made me finish it, which didn’t take very long. The fit was quite good again, StyleArc really is true to size. It’s won’t be my default pants pattern, for me it’s only suitable with long tops, and even then it’s critical. The color is a beautiful dark turquoise shade, the photo doesn’t show this very well. I won’t show you the photos without the top over it, they are not suitable for the internet ;)

One of my intentions done (not specifically new years resolutions): no more than 2 or 3 garments in progress and finish before starting something new.
The review is here.