My First Tiramisu (that didn’t quite work)

If you read here regularly you may be aware that I’ve bought quite a few fabrics with the intention of making Steph’s Tiramisu dress. I’ve never bought as many fabrics for one pattern before (except S3696), especially before I’d even made a muslin, but I really love the idea of this dress as it appears to fit my comfy clothes criteria – jersey, easy to wear, hopefully easy to sew, etc.

Well, I’ve made my first version which was intended to be a wearable muslin, but it didn’t quite work out that way.¬† This is totally my fault, because sometimes I’m an idiot ūüôā

The photos make it look pretty good on Dolly, if you don’t look too carefully.

(ignore the gaping pockets – they are going to be removed)

I did add quite a lot to the length because I like to wear my dresses long, but other than that I cut the pattern exactly as printed.

Unfortunately, I made two stupid mistakes.¬† The first was fabric choice. I knew when I was buying it that it wasn’t really right but hoped I would get away with it (one day I’ll learn). It is one of those thin jerseys that also manages to be heavy, so the whole dress is pulling down from the shoulders. I feel that if I wore it for more than about an hour it would grow in length by at least a foot, and the midriff would end up at my hips! The fact that it includes white stripes makes it worse because where it is quite fitted, such as across the back, it is also quite sheer and would need a slip underneath to be really wearable.¬† I suppose a slip could be helpful because if it grew in length as much as I think it would then at some point I’d probably walk on the front hem, trip, and fall A over T, so a slip would at least preserve my modesty. The fabric is just too stretchy in all directions for this dress.

If you look closely at the photos (actually you don’t need to look closely – it’s really obvious), the underbust gathers that should be there, aren’t.¬† They were there, I did sew them, but they disappeared on me.¬† I did the gathering as I would for any other pattern and then sewed the gathered bodice pieces to the front midriff. At that stage, the gathers didn’t seem as though they were in quite the right place and I was very pleased to discover that they were still adjustable. Now, at this point I should have realised that was a bit strange and wondered why, but I was just happy that I could adjust them.¬† I fiddled around a bit, got the gathers where I wanted them, went back to the machine and sewed over the seam a second time, then serged it.

When I next sat at the sewing machine I though that it was sewing a little strangely, and realised I still had the tension released for when I sewed the two rows of gathering stitches.¬† At this point, I still didn’t think that anything might be wrong with the bodice.¬† It wasn’t until I’d sewn the rest of the dress and then tried it on that I discovered the magic disappearing gathering.¬† Because the fabric is just soooo stretchy and I used a stitch that could stretch out, the front midriff piece simply stretched out enough to encompass the completely unstable, gathered bodice pieces which promptly gave up their gathering. So I now have a saggy, unshaped bodice and a stretched out midriff.¬†¬† One really nice thing is that, even with my complete cockup, the neckline still doesn’t gape, the promise of which is one of the main reasons I bought the pattern.

If the fabric was better and I really though I would wear the dress then I know it would be salveagable, but I honestly don’t think I’d wear it (too thin, too stretchy).¬† However, I absolutely love the chevron effect on the skirt so I’m going to cut the bodice off, fold over the midriff to form a waistband casing, and add some elastic – so I’ll end up with a skirt that I know I will wear.

I’ve been sewing so many TNTs recently that, in some ways, it was nice to be reminded why a muslin is often so useful – especially when it is so easy (for me) to do something that is just plain stupid.


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Comfy Clothes Update

First up, I honestly thought I had written to say that Mr RTS got the job he was going for last time I posted. I must have written the post in my head, but not in reality!¬† Anyway – he got the job. It’s longer hours and less pay than his last job, but much more interesting work, so we’re going to see how it goes.

In sewing news, I’ve made a start on my comfy clothes. None of these are very exciting, but they are all comfy.¬† First is the frumpiest thing I think I’ve ever sewn, but it is really comfy and very warm.¬† It’s slightly on the large side, but I didn’t pre-wash the fabric (I never do with jersey) so I’m waiting until it’s been washed a couple of times before I alter it just in case in shrinks a little.¬† I used, yet again, Simplicity 3696, as I do for nearly all my nightwear.

I had bought two lengths of this fabric because I also wanted to make a PJ top to go with my beige and cream stripe PJ pants.

I also managed to squidge another simple t-shirt from the remnants. I keep making this t-shirt from remnants, but forget every single time that the pattern is slightly too small for me. I must find a new simple t-shirt pattern, or alter this one.

I also made my crazy prints lounge outfit using Simplicity 2289 (top) and 3696 (pants).¬† The sizing on the top was strange. I originally sewed a size M, and this was huge in the body, but surprisingly snug at the cuffs.¬† There wasn’t much I could do about the cuffs, but I did take about 3cm off each side seam to make it not quite as sack-like as it came out originally – this brought it closer to being a size S.¬† I also doubled the fabric for the collar piece because the wrong side of the fabric shows when worn and the jersey I used was plain black on the back.

I’m still reserving judgment on this outfit and haven’t worn it yet, but Mr RTS loves it. I think it’ll get dug out the next time we have one of those horrible grey, wet days that we get so many of in the UK. My change to the side seams meant I had to move the pockets, but they are better positioned as altered than they were originally. Also, look at my pattern matching – there’s a pocket hiding there:

Next is another faux dress (same as the black and white polka dot version I made ages ago). I managed to squeeze this out of 1.5m of fabric and I was really impressed that I was able to nearly match the vertical pattern through the skirt and top even though I had so little fabric.

The fabric for this is very strange (and I have some more cuts of it in different prints). My local fabric store calls it “warm jersey” and it has a strange, almost velvet or moleskin-like, texture. It clings to itself horribly when trying to pin and sew, but not so much when wearing. I’m not really looking forward to sewing with it again, but it comes in such amazing prints that I can’t resist.

I’ve also sewn my first version of the Tiramisu dress, that didn’t work out too well (my fault, not the pattern’s), but I think I’ll give that a separate post.

Because Mr RTS got the job I’m not on quite such a fabric fast as I thought I would be and when I was in town a few weeks ago a few more managed to sneak their way into my stash.¬† Quite a few of them are for, surprise, surprise, PJs using S3696! I don’t tend to sleep in the PJs – I prefer to wear a nightie for sleep, then get up in the morning and change into PJs to doss around in :).

This first one is a fabulously warm, double-faced (one side check the other plain purple), cotton. I think I may have squeed when I saw this. The check side of it looks and feels almost like linen, but the plain side feels like brushed cotton.

I love the look of linen, but can’t wear it because it prickles my skin unbearably, so I’m always happy to find a linen look fabric.¬† I’ve already cut PJ pants out of this. I bought 2.5m because I wanted to be sure about matching the check and I also managed to squeeze a Vogue 1247 skirt out of the remnants.

I also bought some purple lycra jersey to make a matching top.

My camera is rubbish, but in real life the purples in the jersey and the check fabric are a perfect match.¬† Purple is probably my all time favourite colour, but doesn’t really suit me that well in clothing – but for PJs anything goes. Again, this is already cut out using the same pattern as the red, long-sleeved top above.

More checks for more PJs. This one is a really soft, lightweight cotton that feels as though it has already been washed a million times.

(The check is square – I photographed it on a non-flat surface). The darkest lines in it are a navy blue and I have had a cut of navy lycra jersey in my stash for ages. It was one of those fabrics I bought because it was such good quality and then realised that I never wear navy. I worked in legal offices for years and years and navy is, to me, too much of an office colour so I never wear it now. It will now become a short-sleeved t-shirt to wear with these pants.

Last PJ fabric. This is another really lightweight cotton.

To go with this I have a cut of chocolate brown jersey that I originally bought to make a top to go with my beige and cream stripe PJ pants.  Again, these pants and the top are cut out waiting to be sewn.

I didn’t only buy PJ fabrics. I got another cut of the strange “warm jersey” to make another faux dress.

See, even though it is a bit of a pain to sew, the prints are just irresistible!

I got another jersey for, possibly, another Tiramisu.  I like simple black and white jersey because it is so easy to wear, especially as a dress.

The next one is a strange, textured, stretch fabric. I’m not sure if the fabric itself is stretchy, or if it’s just the ruching that makes it so. This will probably be a very simple loose summer top.

The last one I bought with absolutely no idea what I’m going to make. It’s a cotton and slightly on the stiff side. I don’t buy many cottons any more, mainly because they tend to not drape well, but occasionally I can’t resist a print. This one seems to want to be a shift dress, but shift dresses don’t really suit me so it’s going to have to gently age in my stash until the right project shows itself.¬† I only bought 3m (of 115cm wide) so I am somewhat limited as to what I can make with it. That was deliberate though, because I have far too many unused 4m and 5m lengths already. Worst case scenario – more PJs!!

One thing that really made me laugh was that when I got home with these new fabrics and added them to my fabric notebook it brought my total stash column to 399.90m. When I was buying them I’d commented to Mr RTS that this haul was bound to break the 400m mark and I was wrong – just :).

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Comfy Clothes Plans

(Thanks for your good wishes about Mr RTS’s job interview – he’s gone back today for a second round.¬† I’m writing this while he’s out, so won’t know anything until later today.)

After my last post I had a sort through my patterns and previous sewing plans and now have some tentative sewing plans for the first part of this year.¬† Continuing with my idea of tracksuit clothes, these are all either sewn in jersey or are a style that I’m fairly sure I will find comfy.¬† If you’ve been reading this blog for a while, some of the plans may be familiar because they are unsewn projects from last year.¬† Others are new either because I’ve bought new fabric, or I’ve change my mind about the use of a fabric.

I like to get some plans posted because it means I don’t get completely overwhelmed by my stash – I can forget everything except my current project, or two.

This first top has been gradually moving to the top of my sewing pile and I think this will be one of the first things I sew.  The pattern is Burda 03-2010-128.

I keep putting this next project off because I am a little short of fabric (bought the end of the bolt), but want to try to match the plaid, at least on the skirt portion.  I think I need to just bite the bullet and get on with it.

This tunic keeps dropping down my sewing pile, I think because I can’t decide which size to make having only made one MyImage pattern in the past. I’m also not sure what I would wear with it as I don’t own any leggings (and I’m not sure I want to, having worn them far too much the first time around!).

I love twist-front tops and own a couple of RTW ones that I’ve worn a lot.¬† I have yet, however, to find a pattern for this style that works for me.¬† This one seems to have a lot of positive reviews on PR so I need to give it a go.

I originally bought the following fabric for a skirt, but it is sooooo soft that I think it might be better suited to a top. I’d like to make the cowl-neck version of this top, but I’m a little short on fabric.¬† I am, however, also a little short so I may be able to shorten the top but still keep it looking tunic length.

Three fabrics for potential Tiramisu dresses.¬† I bought the red/white stripe because of the stretch/weight and it was just a happy coincidence that it’s the same colourway as the pattern envelope.

(I also have other potential fabrics for the Tiramisu, but haven’t decided which to use yet.)

The next dress is a woven, but it fits my comfy criteria.

I need to do a trace-off pattern of a RTW skirt for the following fabric.¬† This will probably be one of my quickest projects so I’m putting this near the top of my sewing pile.

Although the next fabric is in wintery colours, it’s also quite thin and lightweight so I’m thinking it might be nice for spring.

The following four are all summer dresses so it’ll probably be a while before I make them.¬† The first one doesn’t look like much in the magazine, but I love CherryPix’s versions. In fact, I hadn’t really taken much notice of this pattern in the magazine until I saw her three fabulous makes.

The next one was inspired by Sew Skate Read’s gorgeous black and white version. I don’t know if it shows in the photo, but the fabric is pleated with teeny-weeny pleats.

The last two are just dresses I like, and fabrics I already had.

Next, PJs and nighties.¬† I originally bought enough of the first fabric to make a nightie, then when I got it home I realised it would make a perfect top to go with my beige/cream PJ pants, so I went back and got another length so I can make both :).¬† These two projects have jumped to the top of my sewing pile as I don’t have any long sleeved nighties or PJ tops and I always wish I did during January and February.

The next set I posted about before, but I want to mention them again so I don’t forget. (First fabric for top, second for pants.)

The next is a chocolate brown jersey for another top to go with my beige/cream PJ pants.

And yet another nightie.

(Although I have approximately a bazillion (!) patterns, Simplicity 3696 seems to sneak its way into a lot of my sewing plans.)

Last in my current plans is a faux dress the same as the black and white polka dots I made last year.¬† I only bought 1.5m of this fabric, but I managed to squeeze the last version out of a similar length, so I’m keeping my fingers crossed.

I’m tired just writing about these, but I’m going to pick out one or two projects and forget about the rest knowing I can come back and look at this post when I next need some inspiration. At least sewing jersey is a lot quicker than wovens – no zips, rarely any linings, easier pressing, etc.¬† I may even start sewing some of these straight on my overlocker.¬† I tend to sew a stretch seam on my sewing machine, then finish the seams on the overlocker because that gives me more control, but perhaps I should just steam in with the overlocker, especially with TNT patterns.

I suppose that as it is a new year I should at post at least one stash update (especially as I am going to try to sew as much as I can from my stash this year).

At the beginning of 2012 I had 250.50m.  During 2012 I sewed approximately 74.15m, and ended the year with 390.90m which means I must have bought at least 215m! (These figures exclude linings, and second hand quilts bought for muslins.)

On a positive note, I bought very little clothing last year: 2 or 3 second-hand skirts, 2 second-hand tops, 2 new sweaters, and a new black coat that I really needed to fill a gap in my wardrobe. These cost me a total of less than ¬£100. I also bought two pairs of shoes (new) and two bags – one second-hand and one in a sale. Again, these cost less than a total of ¬£100. I’m hoping to continue the trend of not buying much new this year – although I currently have two gaps in my wardrobe – black, low-heeled, knee-high boots, and a cream sweater.

I’m not going to pretend that I won’t buy any fabric this year because I’d just be lying, but I am going to attempt to end the year with less fabric.¬† I’m going to give myself a tentative target of owning less than 300m by the end of 2013.

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2013 – Sewing Clothes I Want to Wear

It has taken me a few years to realise that the clothes I want to make and the clothes I want to wear are often, but fortunately not always, two different things.

I’ve been looking at my wardrobe, seeing what clothes I actually wear and have come to the conclusion that “comfy” is the most important criterion. I’m now calling certain combinations of clothes “tracksuit outfits” – comfy as a tracksuit, but more stylish. If I can potter around the flat, cleaning (ha, ha!), playing with the cats, sewing, crawling around on the floor to cut out, etc, without fiddling with my clothes then it’s a good tracksuit outfit (a lot of my PJ sets fall into this category).¬† If I can then simply throw on a pair of boots and coat (sandals in the summer) then it’s a perfect tracksuit outfit (obviously PJs don’t count for this!).

This means I probably need to sew more jersey/knit garments. Not all of my tracksuit outfits are jersey – for example my 50s’ style dresses (including the cherry print) fall into this category because once I’ve been wearing them for a few minutes I just forget about them.

With the above in mind, I did go on one last fabric splurge last week and bought some more jersey/knits for my stash. I did see a couple of wovens that I liked, but I already have far too much in my stash already so I stuck with knits.

Two of them are for potential Tiramisu dresses.

(although I may change my mind about the second one).

The other two were bought just because I liked them and don’t have definite plans yet. The first one will be a top when I find the right pattern,

and the second probably a skirt.

I’ve also had a sort through my stash today and found that I have a total of 32 cuts of jersey/knit ranging from 1.5m to 4m. The majority were bought with plans in mind, but some of those plans may change now.¬† My plan for the rest of today is to go through my patterns and plan my next few projects.

We moved our PC back into the living room yesterday (it’s been out on the landing for a long time) and it’s now in a much nicer environment to sit at and type, so I’m hoping that means I will blog more often, especially if I sew more often.

I hope you’ve all had a great start to the New Year.¬† It’s the first working day of the year here in the UK (January 1st is always a holiday) and Mr RTS is currently at an interview for a job that sounds promising!¬† Even if he doesn’t get it, it’s a good start :).

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Update – Sewing and Other Stuff

First – I apologise for being a bad blogger for the past few months.¬† I haven’t sewn very much since August (except the few items in my last post, and the couple in this) and there’s been some personal stuff going on that made me stop the world and get off for a while.¬† Most of the personal stuff has now been sorted out and I’m hoping to start sewing and blogging regularly again in the New Year.¬† I have been reading all your blogs on a regular basis, but not commenting as much as I’d like. There are two reasons for that – the personal stuff, and I got a tablet and is it really annoying trying to comment using a tablet!

In bad news – Mr RTS got made redundant last Saturday (22nd). It wasn’t totally out of the blue – the work at his place had been very slow for a few months and they had laid off about ten people a little while ago – but it was still a bit of a shock. The entire depot he works out of was closed down. He works in an industry that traditionally goes very quiet in January and February so this isn’t the best time of year to be looking for work.¬† I don’t work due to illness so we suddenly have virtually no income coming in. On the bright side, we do have savings and there are a couple of other money juggles we can do, so I’m not going to panic for at least a few months. Also, even though this is the worst time of year to be looking for work, he has already managed to pick up a couple of days’ work through a temp agency so he’s working today and tomorrow. Every penny he brings in doing temp work is money we don’t have to take from our savings.

The good news is that over the past couple of months I’d been coming to the conclusion that I really need to buy very little next year.¬† I have a huge stash of fabric (added to just two days before Mr RTS lost his job); I really don’t want to buy any more patterns until I’ve used more of those I already own; I had already decided to let my Burda magazine subscription lapse; and I have a wardrobe and boxes full of clothes, shoes, bags, accessories, etc, that I love but have hardly worn.¬† I may go and have one more little splurge at my local fabric store, because last time I was in there I let a couple of fabrics I really liked stay put, but after that it will all depend on income whether or not I can buy any more for quite a while.¬† Again, I’m not bothered about this because I had already planned for 2013 to be as little spendy as possible. My plan had been to make some overpayments on our mortgage, so now the plan has changed slightly, but not the reductions in spending.

In sewing related news – since my last post I have only sewn two garments, plus a failed muslin.

I made yet another version of Simplicity 3696 PJ pants.

I don’t have a top to go with these yet, but have already bought some chocolate brown jersey to make a long-sleeved top to wear with them.

The other garment that worked is a long sleeved t-shirt using, again, Simplicity 3696. I think this is officially the most used pattern in my stash. I use the PJ pants pattern regularly, I make nighties and PJ tops using the size L version of the pattern, and normal wear tops, both long and short sleeved, using size M.  This version is for normal, rather than night, wear.

If the fabric looks familiar, that’s because I used it for a dress posted about here.

The only other item I’ve sewn is a muslin for Steph’s Tiramisu dress. This was a disaster because of a terrible fabric choice on my part. For stretch muslins I usually use a cheap polyester stretch velvet that my local shop sells for a couple of quid a metre, but I forgot to allow for the fact that this particular fabric only stretches on the crosswise grain, and has absolutely zero stretch in the other direction. As the Tiramisu dress is cut on the bias, this fabric was completely useless.¬† I do have three other fabrics for this dress, so I think I’m just going to have to bite the bullet, use the one I love least and hope that I get a wearable muslin.¬† The three fabrics are:

I think this will be for version one – the muslin.

The second is:

And the last is:

The purple stripes are darker in real life than they look in the photo. This one I am most concerned about because although it has great stretch on the crosswise grain, not so much on the lengthwise. Still, I’m probably a few months off wanting to sew this version, so I’m going to ignore it for now.

I also bought a few other fabrics with no definite plans.  The first three were remnants.

The first is a very thick faux fur.¬† Apparently this usually sells for ¬£12.99 per metre, and this remnant, 1.16m, was priced at ¬£2.50! I’ve absolutely no idea what I’m going to do with it, but it felt so snuggly that I couldn’t leave it behind.

The next two are less than a metre each, but they are both jersey so I think they will both become simple skirts. The pink/black is only 0.8m long so I will probably copy an above-knee RTW jersey skirt that I wear a lot.

This one is just about 1m long so it’ll probably become a calf-length skirt.

It looks quite brown in this photo, but in real life it’s more of a greeny-browny-grey(!) colour.

The next one was the first fabric for ages that I’ve bought off the bolt with no immediate plans.¬† I got 2m because I think it will be a skirt, but wanted to leave my options open.

I’m not sure what the colour looks like on your screen, but I would call it a winter white. I think there are a couple of Burda skirts this could be perfect for, so I need to have a trawl through my magazines.

The final fabric I bought recently is for yet another Simplicity 3696 nightie.¬† The oranges and lemons version I made back in April didn’t survive being washed more than a few times. I knew when I bought the fabric that it was a bit thin, and might not be ideal and I was right. I think it must also have accidentally been put in a wash with a black sock or something because the white on the fabric became a horrible dirty grey colour. Mr RTS threw it out one day without telling me because it has become so awful!¬† I’ve had my eye out for a fabric to make a new one and this one popped up in my local shop last week.

It’s a much darker red in real life, closer to a burgundy, and has a lovely feel.

So that’s my update and a few plans.

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and, in case I don’t post again this year, I hope you have a wonderful New Year!


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Do you have my sewjo?

Both my blogging mojo and sewing mojo seem to have disappeared at the same time.¬† I’ve noticed that a lot of other sewing bloggers have mentioned a lack of sewjo recently, so I hope mine is keeping yours company – wherever they are hiding.

Just after my last post (nearly two months ago!) I came down with whatever it was that Mr RTS had over my birthday weekend, and it took me a couple of weeks to even begin to feel normal again.¬† Then, on 30th September, the bobbin case on my main machine got damaged.¬† I ordered a new one, but it didn’t turn up until yesterday.¬† I ordered it from a fairly local shop (about 30 miles away) and presumed it would turn up within a few days, even allowing for second class post, but they neglected to inform me that they didn’t actually have the bobbin case in stock when I ordered it and they were “waiting on their supplier” and it would be delivered “within a week or so”.¬† This information was only given after chasing the order a couple of times via email.¬† When it finally turned up, it was with a receipt and a compliments slip – no apology for taking nearly a month to deliver an item. Their excuse in one of their emails (after I’d chased) was that they state that items are “subject to availability” on their website – seriously (!?!?) in this day and age. I definitely won’t be ordering anything from them again – especially as I bought my “fully serviced” Singer featherweight from the same shop and there were bare wires hanging from the foot pedal, and the tension wasn’t working at all!!¬† (If anyone wants to know a shop to avoid – it is the largish sewing shop in Bournemouth with the intials SW.)

I know I have loads of other machines I could use, but if I just want to sew a pair of PJs, or a jersey top, or a TNT skirt, I really don’t want to muck around with one of my more temperamental machines.

In between being ill and my machine breaking, I did sew a few things from the pile I already had cut out. I’ve had them photographed for ages, but couldn’t get around to blogging about them until now.

First up was another pair of PJ pants using Simplicity 3696.

I already had a t-shirt that I don’t wear anymore to go with these so I am very happy with the complete outfit, and have already worn it a lot.¬† The t-shirt was one of a set of three and a green version now gets worn with my green check PJ pants and a lilac one with my muslin of these PJs.

It may sound odd, but in six+ years of sewing I hadn’t once used a fabric that needed a pattern match at the seams. The above PJs were the first, and I’m happy to say that the pattern matching at the side, front and back seams is perfect. It doesn’t look that way in the photos because I think the front seams is folded, but you can see how the pattern runs across from one leg to the other, right down to the hem.¬† This makes me happy ūüôā

Next is a very boring item – a slip.¬† I used a fabric that my local shop calls “evening jersey” and some wide black elastic.¬† I have a few long skirts and dresses that I haven’t lined because I want to wear them in the summer, but would also like to be able to wear in the winter and can’t because they are either a bit too thin, or would cling to tights. This slip gives me more wear out of quite a lot of my wardrobe.¬† Because the fabric stretches I was able to make this quite fitted so it doesn’t add any bulk under the skirt/dress I wear it with.¬† I think I’ll be making a white one at some point in the future.

Two belts to go with my cherry print dress.¬† The first one is from the pattern for the dress itself (Simplicity 2888) and the other is New Look 6067. This is only the second time making my own piping and although it isn’t perfect, I’m very happy with it.

Another quite boring garment.¬† This dress is Vogue 8764. I made a red and black version at the beginning of the year and wore it a lot last winter.¬† I don’t like this version as much, due to poor fabric choices.¬† The outer fabric is a weird jersey – it’s much thinner than it looks, and has very little stretch. It’s also already trying to pull apart at the seams, before I’ve even worn it – it’s almost as if the needle holes have damaged the fabric even though I’m fairly sure I used a stretch needle.¬† Because the jersey was too thin, I fully lined this dress using the same “evening jersey” I used for the slip above.¬† However, this lining fabric is heavier than the outer fabric so the two seem to be fighting each other.¬† Because of this I had to sew closed the slit that is supposed to be at the neckline.¬† I am reserving judgment on this dress until I actually wear it.¬† I also managed to not realise until after I’d cut it out that I actually had enough fabric to match the pattern across the waist seam between the bodice and skirt.¬† I think I might have liked it more if I’d done that pattern matching. Oh well, live (sew) and learn.

On a positive note Рmy shopping for fabric mojo ran off with my sewjo.  All I have bought since my last post is a 99p quilt cover that will become a skirt of some description (probably with the stripes running horizontally)

and three metres of striped jersey that is destined to be a Tiramisu Dress once Steph gets the pattern posted out.  The purple stripes are somewhat darker in real life than they look in the photo.

I’m really looking forward to making this dress because it appears as though Steph may have designed a dress with a cross-over front that doesn’t gape. I have about a bazillion patterns with a surplice neckline, but have given up on trying to sew any of them because I haven’t yet made one that doesn’t gape.¬† I know that an FBA might solve that problem, but, if I’m completely honest, I’d rather just keep sewing other patterns that don’t need an FBA because I can’t be bothered to learn how to do one properly. The Tiramisu Dress pattern has different cup sizes included so hopefully Steph has done the FBA work for me ūüôā

On a completely non-sewing related note, I seem to have picked up a new shopping habit:

Yep, they are all nail polishes.¬† I was completely unaware until quite recently that there are so many amazing nail blogs out there.¬† I only discovered them back in around May when I only owned about ten polishes and was researching an upcoming QVC TSV.¬† Since then my polish collection has increased just a teeny bit (!), along with my Google Reader subscriptions.¬† This, along with having a wardrobe full of clothes that I like, is one of the reasons that my sewing has stalled.¬† Nail art is creative but painted nails don’t need to be stored anywhere, although the polish does – but it takes up a lot less room than fabric.¬†¬† Don’t worry, this blog isn’t going to turn into a nail art blog – I’ll start a new one for that if I can ever get my nail art and photography good enough.¬† I only really mentioned it because it’s a another creative pastime that I was completely unaware of until not that long ago and I wish I’d discovered it sooner.

Posted in Finished Projects, Sewing | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

I will never clear my stash!

I keep adding to my stash faster than I can sew from it. I had really good intentions this year to attempt to keep my stash under control, but more keeps coming in than going out.¬† (I just smiled when reading this just before hitting publish because it sounds as though fabric is just sneaking into my home when I’m asleep, or something. Yeah, that’s what it is – it has nothing to do with me going to my local fabric shop far too often.)

I have sewn a couple of things.¬† The first one is yet another Burda 02-2010-104 (this is definitely the second-from-last of these because I am bored with them – I have one more already cut out and once that’s sewn I’m going to hunt for a new simple skirt pattern).¬† This is another of those cut down from a longer skirt.¬† I had finished this before my last post, but hadn’t yet taken photos.

It’s made from a fairly stiff cotton that I’ve lined so I can wear it with tights this winter.¬† I love black and red for the winter because it’s wintery, but cheery*.

I’ve also sewn one item from my last post.¬† I was hoping to sew myself a new dress for my birthday (Friday just gone), but by Thursday evening I hadn’t got around to it and then Mr RTS came home from work with some sort of bug (something stomach flu-ey) and although I’ve seem to have avoided catching whatever it was, there wasn’t much point in having something new to wear when we wouldn’t be leaving home all weekend.¬† (He seems much better now and will probably be going back to work for tomorrow (Monday) morning.)¬† I am really pleased with this dress and I think this pattern is now officially a TNT.¬† It’s Simplicity 2615.

The photos make it look very orange, and although it is very orangey in artificial light, it’s more of a very bright red in daylight.

I think the pattern twinning looks worse in the photos than it does when I try it on (and it’s probably one of those things that only other sewists would notice anyway).¬† The orange patches also seem to “pop” more in a flash photo than they do in real life. I did try to avoid pattern matching as much as possible but I didn’t have a lot of extra fabric to play with, and I couldn’t be bothered to fiddle around with single layer cutting for something I knew was going to be a casual, dossing around the flat, dress.¬† It may not be the most sophisticated of dresses, but it’s really comfortable and I know I’m going to wear it a lot.¬† I like, and wear, my previous version a lot, and I like this new one a lot more.¬† The previous version was supposed to just be a wearable muslin, and became a wear all the time dress, but I think it’s now going to be relegated.

I’m now considering making another one, possibly using the fabric that is my current blog header.

I’ve had this fabric for quite a few years, waiting for the right project, but I don’t think that a perfect project is going to turn up, and the above dress could possibly be a good one. (In case it isn’t obvious from the photo – this fabric is flat with a wavy, eye-watering print.)

Over the past few months I haven’t posted about every new fabric acquisition (because that would just be boring) but I bought a few fabrics over the past few weeks and want to mention some of them here because re-reading my own posts after a couple of months often brings projects to the top of the queue.

First up is a different colourway of the peacock print above.¬† I was really pleased when sewing my newest dress today to discover that this fabric handles really well, and holds a crease (somewhat), because it is a poly crepe-de-chine.¬† I was worried that it might be horribly slippy and/or shreddy and/or all the other things that can be horrible about polys, but this one isn’t at all bad.¬† This makes me happy because this colourway of the print also makes me happy.

I have been good about not buying random fabrics recently, and this one was bought with the intention to make this fabulous dressing gown/housecoat/robe or whatever you call it in your part of the world.

I was going to say this will be another dossing around the flat garment – but I think it’s more of a “swanning around the penthouse, darling” garment.¬† We do live on the top floor** so once I’ve made this I think I’m going to start referring to our flat as “The Penthouse” whenever I wear it.

The next one is a teal/black, tiny check, lightweight suiting.  The plan for this is a long-sleeved version of my TNT Simplicity 2888. The pattern does have a long-sleeved version that I seem to have managed to crop out of the photo! The only minor difficulty with this is that I seem to have perfected inserting an invisible zip, but this fabric is probably going to need a centred or lapped zip and I hate, hate, hate putting them in.

Next are two silly fabrics for a definite dossing around project.  The fabric for the top is a jersey

and a cotton fabric for PJ pants to go with the top.

And, yes, I am aware that they don’t really match – but they go together in a “Nope, I am not leaving the house today, and you can’t make me!” kind of way, which is the entire intention of the outfit, so there!

Last is a fabric for a dress that no-one in the world, except Anne from Pretty Grievances, seems to have made.¬† I don’t know if it’s the 80s vibe, or what, but it isn’t appearing on Pattern Review or anywhere else in the blogosphere. I loved the pattern as soon as I saw it (and before I’d seen Anne’s version, which is fabulous) but have been waiting for the right fabric.¬† I spotted this fabric a few weeks ago, but passed it up because I didn’t know what I’d make with it.¬† I was sorting out my patterns a week or so ago and when I came across my copy of Simplicity 1939 I knew that the fabric I had seen would be perfect for it.

It’s yet another poly crepe-de-chine. I intend to make the view in the photo on the pattern envelope, but without the strange black bits at the hips. There is a danger of this running into beer stein or muu-shroud territory, so I will muslin it first.¬† Of course, making a muslin means that this fabric could end up just increasing my stash.

I suppose as I’ve mentioned my stash more than once in this post I should post a proper update.¬† At the beginning of the year I had 250.25m.¬† I have sewn 65.15m (feels like I’ve sewn more but that’s what my notebook tells me), and my current stash stands at 365.90m which means I appear to have bought about 180m this year. My notebook tells me I have bought around 170m this year, but I’m not going to worry about a 10m discrepancy when I have too much fabric!

This week I am going to attempt to sew all the projects mentioned in my previous post, so that I can start cutting those mentioned in this post.¬† The dress I made today was probably the most complicated of all those projects (and it wasn’t really remotely complicated) so I have a fighting chance.¬† Wish me luck!

* hands up anyone who thought of a dwarf when they read that word. (If you did – you know what I’m talking about, if you didn’t – never mind.)

** of two floors ūüôā

Posted in Finished Projects, Patterns, Sewing, Sewing Plans | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments