Monday, October 28, 2013

Jersey Blazer

Before I begin this post, maybe you will join me in mourning...It was a double-blow day. First was the email from Chez Ami announcing the end of their 35-year contribution to the fabric world. Then came the postcard from my favorite local fabric store: after 45 years, they are going out of business.

*** moment of silence ***

carrying on....

I was planning on letting the peplum craze pass me by but, as you can see, I succumbed in this case. It's a very subtle peplum, isn't it?

I loved this pattern as soon as I saw it in the magazine (Ottobre 2-2013-12), but the right fabric eluded me. Finally, I settled on this ponteroma. I was always intrigued by ponte di roma - not to be confused with ponte knit, or double knit...actually, I still am confused. If there is some consistency in labeling and fiber content, I haven't figured it out. Anyway, the synthetic-y feel put me off.

But....while shopping at our local fabric mega-warehouse, I ran across this lovely red pontesomethingorother, conveniently unlabeled altogether, and decided it could be perfect for this cardigan.

Since I spent 10 sweaty minutes prying the bolt out from under 23 other bolts, I thought I might as well buy the blue colorway, as well. Make sense?

 The fabric is beefy, yet lightweight and quite stretchy. Here I've layered it over some bulky garments; a smoother layering piece might work better underneath.

There's a long facing piece that runs along the center front and back neckline. The raglan sleeves are split (and sewn as darts.) Getting the shoulder darts to lie smoothly in this stretchy fabric took a few tries. I did a square shoulder adjustment (which I will try to document at some point).

I wish I had interfaced the garment at center front and not just the facing pieces, as the buttons want to pull and stretch out the buttonholes.

Otherwise, I love it and have found it to be very comfortable, even layered over my Lisette shirtdress.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

14-piece wardrobe

Flakes have been falling off and on this week. Before long, this ideal photo-taking spot will be inundated for 6 months with piles of white stuff. (Oh wait...last year we had snow here October through May, uh, 8 months?) So I'm enjoying the green grass and fall leaves while I can!

I made a wardrobe for big sister this summer, so now it was middle sister's turn. (Although sister's summer wardrobe is now useless....)

I pattern-traced, cut out, interfaced, and stitched these all assembly-line style. There's not a whole lot of variety and moving through efficiently is the only way to sew this many basics and still avoid death-by-boredom.

I made three styles of tops:
Girls' t-shirt (Ottobre 4-2004-36)
Blueberry Choco Hooded Sweatshirt (Ottobre 4-2009-17)
Linen Blouse (Ottobre 5-2006-14)

and two styles of bottoms:
Neat Beat Pants: (Ottobre 6-2009-17)
Jump Sweatpants: (Ottobre 1-2008-19)

The pants are much-used patterns for me and much-worn garments by my girls. When I'm going assembly-line style, why not stick with the favorites?

The blouses were an excuse to use up some quilting cotton. Grace was not too impressed with getting button-up shirts; she likes the fabric but envisioned something a lot more...well, a lot less "button-up shirt style".

Grace was thrilled with the rick rack embellishment, though. And who wouldn't be, right?

Monday, October 7, 2013


This is my second version of the Lisette Traveler dress and, I have to say, I like this one even better. I tested the pattern in a red and white striped seersucker. For this round, I used a lightweight denim from S.R. Harris (the daunting mega fabric-warehouse of Minnesota).

In the first version, I had flattened and removed the ease from the sleevecap. Here, I kept that alteration, and made those 3/4 sleeves longer and with cuffs. 3/4 sleeves are cute, but having long sleeves with cuffs makes the dress about 10 times as wearable for me. It seems that, where I live, it's either hot or cold. There's not 3/4 weather.

You can see the dress has plenty of ease. (The back doesn't normally bunch quite that much). So, I guess I could technically have gone a size smaller, but I do like extra ease with the stiffer fabric. In fact, I'm imagining a corduroy dress in this pattern....

This dress was part of the mini-wardrobe I stitched for the PR contest so, for fun, I lined the cuff placket with the fabric from the shirt I made for the wardrobe.

In another post, I'll detail how I changed the sleeves from 3/4 to cuffed and flattened the sleeve caps.


©2009 21 Wale | by TNB