Wednesday, November 25, 2020

From disaster to acceptable

As we all know you sometimes want to get a little outside your comfort zone and try something new. For me this now meant sewing a different style t-shirt. The basic picture of this one is just a slight variation: v neckline, dropped shoulder but not too much, little accent line center front. The pattern is from Ottobre issue 5/2016. Let me say there's nothing wrong with the pattern, but it doesn't suit me.

Dropped shoulders are not my favorite, but felt I'd try again and thought they were not too much dropped. Wrong conclusion, the result was horrible.

I do have narrow shoulders and a full bust. Not a good combination for this.
On a positive note: I love the accent line center front. 

When I pinned the sleeve higher up, the look was beter already, even if done only provisionally.

The next thing I did was using a basic Ottobre t-shirt pattern (from a 2007 issue) and compared.

Quite a difference. I cut all the seams from the shirt, kept the hem on the bottom and on the sleeves. 

Better, although I think that the original width of the body was slightly better. For me the fit is a bit too tight in the back now and there's still a little pleat forming above the bust. It's a nice layering piece and I'll wear this version. 

The neckline was finished with a small strip of the same fabric. The construction of the original pattern was quite different and the center line a seam stitched inside out. I've cut it on the fold and stitched a very narrow "pleat".

A little detail on how I did that (I know a lot of you like this kind of detail!):

  • I pressed the center front
  • Put in a strip of water soluble material (tip: don't press with steam afterwards, it will wrinkle, look bad and give you a fright. When it's all solved it will all be straight again though! How I know.....?)
  • Stitched a straight line only a few millimeters away from the center front
  • Removed most of the soluble material
  • Continued further construction

That's become quite a long post.
Enjoy your day!

Friday, November 20, 2020

A top by my daughter

 It's been so nice to hear some of you just like to read my posts. I do realise I've been here before in the past years, which is probably something that happens occassionally when you have been doing something (in my case blogging) for so long. Sorry to have bothered you with my uncertainty and indecisiveness. 

There are a few things I will change in the near future but I'll come to that when I do it. Let's start with showing you a project that has been made recently. Partly by me, partly by my daughter.

My daughter is one of my "students". Of course she's not a paying student and it's not a weekly thing but she really likes to learn to sew. My son's girlfriend too, lucky me! I like to pass the sewing bug along and we've been sewing together a bit lately. 

She selected this top from an older Patrones magazine.


It was labeled "Couture facil", which means it should be an easy sew. Really? With this button placket in the back? This kind of button placket even makes me a little nervous. It's about very precise sewing and cutting and if you do it wrong, you really can see it or worse, even be so bad you want to throw the pattern piece in the bin. There was no fabric left, it had to be right first time round.

Perhaps needless to say that I did sew the placket. My daughter watched the process clearly and said she could not (yet) have done it. But the rest, from tracing to cutting the fabric pieces and finishing the neckline was done by my daughter (with a bit of guidance). She's ever so pleased with the result and has worn it with pleasure. Receiving compliments for it too!

The placket before finishing the neckline and completely sewing with buttons


The sleeve with pleats

Sleeve with pleats
My daughter wearing the top


The fabric is from Atelier Brunette and bought in a shop in The Hague. What's nice about this brand is that they have notions matching their fabric. In this case the buttons!

Monday, November 16, 2020


 Hi, it’s been a very long time since I posted anything here. Hope you are doing well in this strange year with the pandemic all over the globe. I’m fine, have been sewing but not blogging. I have also started a new adventure and started giving sewing lessons in the small town I live and will soon start at another location too. Exciting and love to do that. It’s great to share the love of sewing in real life too (as long as lockdown does not prevent classes, as at the moment, hopefully we can start again next week). 

I’ve been doing a bit of housekeeping and have removed quite a few of the tutorials I had here because I think they need better photos, better instructions and/or a better layout. 

In fact I’m thinking about what to do with the blog: keeping it or not? Start afresh with a bit of different content (still sewing!)? Start another blog that I can more easily adjust visually? Re-do the tutorials and have an English and a Dutch version? Make them in video format? PDF format? Talk more about the different pattern magazines I use? Make a pattern from a magazine each month from one of them and share the experience?

At the same time I feel there’s already so much information to be found online, what would I add that’s not already there in many variations?  

I invite you to share your thoughts. If you look for a tutorial online, what are you looking for? Can you find it? What would you like to see on this blog? Any other ideas? 

Looking forward to read your input. Even if it’s just a hello it’s great to hear from you.