After the Black Friday Haul, I vowed to refrain from fabric shopping until the New Year. All was good until Fabricland’s Buy 1 Get 1, 2, 3 Free sale. The deal is this, you buy 1m of fabric and depending on the tag, you can get an additional 1m, 2m, or 3m free. So if the tag says Buy 1 Get 1, you pay for the price of 1m and take home 2m. With a sharp eye, you can find the Buy 1 Get 3, pay for 1m and take home 4m in total. Imagine buying a fabric that’s $18/m in Buy 1 Get 3, it all comes down to $4.5/m. Continue reading
At Fabricana’s New Year sale, I asked Andrea for fabric suggestions. (Andrea has been my go-to fabric cutter since I started sewing. She introduced me to Sewaholic Patterns and is a major Lady Gaga fan) She picked out a $9.98/m navy cotton-blend with a bit of stretch. Decent for a dress with little ease. For the contrast collar, I picked an orange quilting cotton with a paisley/spiral design. This would match nicely with the orange piping.
From experience, I have to watch out for several fit issues:
- Sloped right shoulder
- Excess fabric on right-side of back bodice
- Shorten dress by 1-2″ (depends on style)
- Grade up a size in waist area (I’m a 6-8-6, bust-waist-hip, on this pattern)
I made a wearable muslim from a pair of oversized pants. (Why not reuse something that doesn’t fit)
There are 3 | 3 darts in the bust area. When I tried on the muslim, the darts looked like they were facing the wrong direction. Instead of lying nicely under my bust, they are all turned outwards. I ironed it again to see if it would make a difference, same problem. I’m guessing it is more suited for a bustier/wider person. Then I tried the size 0 darts on the size 6 piece. The darts are in the correct position but it the fit looks bumpy. Will see how it is on the real fabric.
There are 1 | 1, two mini darts on the back bodice piece above the midriff. The darts are roughly 2″ long and are much shorter after attaching the midriff. For a moment, I thought the back piece was the front. It could pass as a front bodice with the positioning of the 2 darts. There was too much fabric in the back. I extended the darts by 1.5″ and sewed them with a slight curve. The results are better than before. I wonder if the excess fabric was intended to support any ‘back ass’.
The dress is in 4 pieces right now: Front/Back Bodice and Front/Back Skirt. I pinned the pieces together as if I had sewn a 5/8″ seam. My initial reaction was just how cute the orange piping is on the pockets. As for fit, I’m worried about too much fabric around the hip area. Might take it in a bit.
This neckline is W I D E. I fear the shoulder would drop off on the side if I sew it at 5/8″ seam. Maybe sewing it at 3/8″ will be better off. Have to consider hiding my bra underneath the dress, don’t want any bit peeking out.
Alterations so far…
- Size 0 front bodice darts
- Extended size 6 back darts by 1.5″
I have been using Bloglovin since Google Reader was discontinued. Many bloggers suggested it as a replacement to the reader. Bloglovin acts as a personal mini-newspaper; showing new posts from blogs I follow in a streamlined format; no more jumping through multiple blogs. Best part, it even works on Mom’s hand-me-down iPad 1.
After months of use, I discovered many others who are, like me, taking up blogging as a form of diary writing. Seeing others’ creative work inspires me to take up new challenges. I’m thankful for people taking the time to share their story with others.
2013, 2247, Alma, Best of, bias tape, buttonholes, clips, clover, Colette, Crescent, fabric weights, french seams, garment bag, IKEA, Laurel, laurel extras, lladybird, pins, Renfrew, savoury stitches, Sewaholic, Simplicity, Technique, tutorial
2014 is upon us! This is a good time to sit down and reflect on the 365 days of 2013.
These are my Top 3s of various categories. Lots of products/blogs/sewers deserves a mention but these ones made an impact on my sewing experience in 2013.
Best of Patterns
- Sewaholic Alma – Quick count off the top of my head! There are 5 Almas in my closet. You cannot go wrong with this pattern. There are 3 different sleeves, 3 necklines, and a belt option.
- Simplicity Amazing Fit 2247 – This was the first dress I made. This year, I made 2 more, a sleeveless and a short-sleeved.
- Colette Laurel – This is Mom’s fav. She has more Laurels than Almas. (I have 2 Laurel dresses) The ebook, Laurel Extras have loads of information on bias tape use.
- Magnetic Pins – Go buy a box of magnetic pins. My fabric caught on to the box of pins and it scattered all over the floor and carpet. To make it worse, the pins were not magnetized, making it harder to spot and pick up. I promptly went to buy a new box of pins with a magnet on hand to make sure they will attract.
- Clover Wonder Clips – You know the feeling when it is near impossible to pin through many many many layers of fabric… These are a game-changer. Easy to clip, spot on the floor, and keeps a good hold without denting.
- Fabric Weights – I used to pin the pattern to the fabric when cutting but noticed some shifting/floating of the fabric. Fabric weights at the fabric store were ridiculously expensive!! (~$30 for 4 weights) Instead, I went to Home Depot and found some 2-3″ flat washers for under $20 a dozen.
- Notions Hanger – Similar to the Umbra Jewelery organizer, mine is double-sided with multiple pockets. It hangs over a door for easy tool/notion storage.
- IKEA SKUBB Garment Bags – The 2 short bags are used to store all my finished garments. One bag can hold 4 dresses. I have them sorted by season. The longer bag holds my work in progress. I place all the extra pieces/trimmings inside as well.
- Mooncake Box – I save mooncake boxes during the Mid-Autumn Festival, they are sturdy, comes in a variety of sizes, and most have a magnetic closure. I use them to hold all my threads.
Best of Technique
- French Seams – Invaluable seam finishing technique. This finishing is usually used by high-end/luxury garments; Oscar de la Renta, Dolce and Gabbana, Valentino, etc. I learned it through Gertie’s New Book for Better Sewing.
- Buttonholes – No need to fear the buttonhole! There were 8 on Colette’s Hawthorn. The garment looks more expensive with buttons (sans zipper).
- Bias Tape – On a somewhat short Alma, I used bias tape to hem, keeping the length. When in doubt, use bias tape to finish a seam.
- Sewaholic Crescent Skirt – This sew-along is well-written and covers slash pockets, french seams, and ditch-stitching. I followed this sew-along when I made my 2 Crescent Skirts.
- Sewaholic Renfrew Top – Not officially a sew-along but there are lots of tips on sewing stretch. Again, I followed this series for Mom’s Renfrews.
- Colette Laurel Extra – Answers how to make and use bias tape. Best part, it’s FREE.
Best of Blogs
- Sewaholic – This is where it all started. The girl at the fabric store suggested I start with Tasia’s Sewaholic patterns and read the blog. The blog is informative and easy to navigate. Whenever I’m stuck on something, I would search it there first (Google is second). Plus who wouldn’t want to support a local girl and from the same alma mater.
- Savoury Stitches – Mika is based in Brooklyn, New York. I was drawn to her ‘made by me’ office-appropriate wardrobe and the modifications on her 4 Laurels.
- LLADYBIRD – I learned of Lauren from LLADYBIRD through Sewaholic’s network of pattern testers. A lot of her garments look like they were off the rack from a high-end department store (only to learn they are handmade).
This is a good list of Top3s. Thank you to everyone and everything for helping/inspiring me to sew in 2013.