Having finished McCall’s 8035, I was once again filled with the itch to stitch. However, as the next pattern I was interested in making was a vintage skirt pattern, it required lengths of fabric that I simply didn’t have to hand. And since I am trying not to over extend my budget, I instead looked at what sort of fabric I did have – which was a lot of leftovers from other makes, and thought hard about what I could whip up that would be practical and useful. I scoured Instagram for inspiration, and came across several posts for a rather vintage looking dickey collar as based on the Designer Stitch pattern. This pattern give quite a lot of bang for your buck, offering several different collar variations, and since I know for a fact that I’m not all that good at collars, buttonholes or button placement I thought this could be an opportunity to improve those skills.
Hello friends! These latest makes are something a little bit different for me because I didn’t begin with the pattern and take inspiration from there. Instead I sought out a pattern to make a version of a dress I saw someone else wearing and which I couldn’t stop thinking about. A dress which, in turn, had quite strong 1970’s design aspects to it! This is quite an unusual decade for me as I don’t tend to like a lot of the common design elements that pop up in sewing patterns from the time. However, the shape of the original dress, the bell sleeves and the higher waistline of the wrap-front bodice all struck me as going together so very well that I couldn’t get it out of my mind. After much scouring of the internet I was able to secure a copy of McCall’s 8035 on Etsy, and I knew this would be the perfect leaping off point.
Hello friends. Since I took a big sewing break some months back, it occurred to me that I was happier whenever I got quite thorough use out of each pattern rather than making a single item and moving on. Part of that constant desire to move on was that I would get bored, doing the same thing repeatedly, but it was also certainly driven by a desire to consume the same way I saw others doing, churning out garments like there was no tomorrow. So as a result, I have put into practice a new method for securing second-hand patterns, where I don’t make a purchase unless that particular pattern haunts me and won’t leave my thoughts. I’d also like to use patterns that have different options on how I can construct them, and what I can do with them. This pattern for McCalls 7626 was the first to tick all those boxes, and although it was a little outside what I’m comfortable paying for a pattern cost-wise, I did end up getting quite a lot of value out of it.
Hello friends! After a tumultuous couple of months where I have been more focused on work and things outside the creative sphere, I ended up deciding to take a several week break from sewing to get a complete refresh. I had also been through some sewing disasters that made me feel like I was turning something fun into a chore that I was required to do to uphold a schedule, and that was something I wanted to change. I went through all the sewing patterns I owned, sorted what little fabric I had, and got a friend to help me take new measurements from the waist down. With that in mind, after the break I decided to come back to a particular pattern that I knew I had the fabric and supplies for, and which I had been quite keen to make even before I got into stretch fabric: The Adrienne Blouse by the Friday Pattern Company.
Hello friends! I have become enamored with the idea of challenging myself to create more professional, neater looking garments in recent times. I want to be able to look at these pieces and feel pride in the care I have shown at each step. And while this does significantly increase the time that I spend on each garment I think it has been well worth it, as this version of Simplicity 3301 shows. I thrill each time I look at the neatness of the buttons and buttonholes, and I am so delighted that all the tweaks I made to the fit – and all the unpicking that went into that, have come together to make something so delightful to wear. Even if I finished it somewhat too late to thoroughly enjoy it before it turned too cold.
Hello friends! It’s well into Autumn here now. The leaves are changing into glorious shades of red, gold and brown, and the dark is coming on a lot sooner. With that comes the kind of cold that makes me long for casseroles, soup, doonas and cosy sweaters and socks. So it also seemed like a fitting time to work on a new genre of patterns, using fabric that I’m not all that familiar with – like The Enid Sweater, by Jennifer Lauren Handmade. I purchased the PDF pattern on Etsy as I was intrigued by the promise of a simple construction method, and a vintage look with the V-neck collar. I had some secondhand fleece on hand, and some matching ribbing also purchased secondhand, so it seemed serendipitous.
Although I’m excited about all the things I sew, this pattern of the month is something of a special piece. Not because of the base pattern itself – although Simplicity 3866 circa 1961 is wonderful, but rather because of the fabric I had planned to use. This fun and comfortable summer piece came about because I had stumbled over a single curtain at the Op Shops which came from IKEA, and which happened to match two cushions I have in the house! The thought of matching the furniture had me in stitches, and I knew that if I was careful with the unpicking I could get quite a lot of fabric out of this.
Hello friends! It’s true that I am excited about each pattern of the month and can’t wait to share what I’ve learned while making them, but this particular pattern holds special meaning for me. I have a love of all things overall, romper, jumpsuit and playsuit – which I think comes as no surprise, and it’s been on my sewing bucket list for quite a long time now that I wanted to make some vintage playsuits which would be tailored to me. No cramped crotch, no awkward tightness about the thighs, and I would make them in fabric which doesn’t bother the skin! But patterns of even roughly my size range were either thin on the ground, or would cost so much it honestly wasn’t within my budget to buy them. This was where the miraculous find of McCall’s 3616, a circa 1956 bathing suit pattern, in PDF format by The Vintage Sewing Pattern Company came to my rescue! I purchased it on their Etsy website, after first checking there was some kind of scale marker to help me keep printing accurate.
Hello friends! The New Year is a time for change and fresh opportunities. From what I’ve seen a lot of other sewists are using this time to set new sewing goals, or pick their patterns for the months to come. I’m doing something similar by continuing the theme of pattern of the month, but adding in a seasonal flavour whereby I’ll be picking holes in my wardrobe each season and sewing for those! And since it’s now so hot and I’m disinclined to pull on a button-up blouse, I knew I had to make some basic T-shirts. I managed to find some stretch fabric on sale and once again sat down to learn more about this kind of sewing, using the the Anything but Basic Tee pattern.
I had originally intended for my pattern of the month to be another exploration of bottoms, with a view to making some overalls for summer. In particular I was very keen on giving the Jenny Overalls, by Closest Core Patterns, another go. I had first tried the pattern quite awhile ago before I truly understood how to grade and tweak and fit trousers, and at the time attempted a record number of muslins before giving up. I tried the pattern once again, and – after so many alterations it was no longer particularly recognisable compared to the original, I still couldn’t quite get the fit I wanted. I decided that rather than settle for something not quite as good as my previous makes, I would finally allow this pattern to be removed from my stash and attempt something else.