Sewing, thrifting and the like...

Friday, 14 November 2014

A dotty holly

So my latest outfit is another By Hand London Holly hack!


I loved my previous version, I have worn the trousers heaps and they are really comfy. They go with lots of things and are great for summer. The top, not so much. In fact not at all. It just doesn't feel right. I will wear it, but I need more high-waisted trousers/shorts/skirts to wear it with. You see its a bit high cut, i am 36 and have had five children so my tummy is not in the best shape! I really love the look of cropped tops I just can't really pull it off myself. I decided instead to make something larger and boxier.
So I played around with the pattern:

So for the top, which is actually the bodice pattern from the jumpsuit. I went up two sizes, I took out the back and front darts (leaving just the bust darts). I trued up the seams to make boxier, and less fitted. I increased the length by 5cm front and back. I then removed the button band from the front, and cut it on the fold instead. I then removed the front neckline scoop so it was very high-cut as a contrast to the amount of leg shown :)

So I cut the back as a pair and added a button band.


The shorts are apart of the short version of the holly jumpsuit. I designed a facing and a button band for them. I find facings are more flattering on me, and the button band supports the zip so it doesn't come down.

The fabric is a beautiful, and I mean BEAUTIFUL, dotty spotty polka-dotty chambray from Tessuti. It really is the most divine fabric to work with. I am quite in love with it, and want more more more :) I spent quite a long time pattern matching the spots and have done it successfully in most places. I found it hard where seams curved but the side-seams and the button band are about as good as I can do. Those with better ninja sewing skills can no doubt do better though!

I think I will live in this outfit over the summer. It is so comfy and cool on a hot day (35deg c here today). And really, it is polka dotty, say no more!! I will wear them together but also as separates :) No doubt there will be more iterations of the BHL Holly in my life, but not for awhile, I have a few other WIP's on the go!!

 The rocking chair is one of my favourite thrifty finds ever, gorgeous hand-carved wood... $30 on gumtree. Bargain thank you very much!

 Beautiful location hey? Canberra is a pretty amazing bush city! I do love living here.

Bye x

Tuesday, 4 November 2014

Two became one...

I feckin adore the fabric I used for this top...


My dear friend Kirsty gifted me the Liberty Asaka A fabric after I literally drooled over it at a Canberra spoolettes meet-up awhile back. She was of course making something wondrous with it :). I have never owned Liberty before, and am not likely to again anytime soon!

So the fabric has been sitting in my stash for ages now, because I loved it so much and didn't want to ruin it and really how could it ever compare to a Kirsty make?? It was also only an 80cm remnant that she had left over, not enough to do a whole heap with. So it has been sitting staring at me from the shelf. I really wanted to make the Salme Kimono top with it - something simple that would show off the fabrics design. Trouble is there was not enough by about an inch, no matter how much wiggling I did with the pattern pieces it wasn't to be! Then I had a brain wave and decided to pair it with this beautifully drapey stripey rayon that I thrifted.


It also was a tiny off-cut, not enough for much, but too beautifully touchy to not bring home at like 50c! So in the end they became one :)

I originally bought the Salme Kimono pattern to make a silk top for my m-in-l. I do love Salme designs, she has some beauties! 

This pattern is pretty straight forward. Front, back, facings and cuffs. I stuck with the instructions mostly. Although I under-stitched the facings instead of top-stitching an inch from the neckline, for a cleaner look. I don't trust my top-stitching yet! I matched the facings to the main fabric, so floral for the front, and stripes for the back in-case they showed through. They don't :)

I also left the cuffs unfolded, the instructions had you fold them in half. I left them because I wanted more of the stripe visible from the front.

I am really proud of this top. I know it's very simple. But you see, I accomplished things that I have struggled with in the past. Like cutting accurately so the stripes are actually straight!!

And matching the cuffs so the same amount of white and black stripe was used in the cuff. I know it's a little thing, but for me, it IS the little things that make a homemade outfit look less homemadey and more professional! I even went as far, when hemming, as using black thread on the back and white on the front!! Ha!

I still have a loooooong way to go to make anything professionally, but baby steps people, baby steps!

So I love the top, however, I am not sure it really suits me. I am sure I will wear it to death because I love the fabric and it will be lovely and cool for summer. But just not sure whether its too voluminous on me? Appreciate your critical thoughts and/or suggestions for other summer tops?!

And now onto the million and one other makes that I am itching to make...
Bye x