Simplicity 2446 Blazer with Contrast

I asked Tony what I should sew next and he picked blazer so that’s what I did! I used the same Simplicity 2446 pattern as I did for my Chocolate Wool Blazer, this time I was inspired by view B and picked up a 1/4 yard of black velvet for the contrast collar and pocket flaps.

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I felt like my last blazer was a bit too long waisted ( I did add 1.5″ to just as standard practice) so this time around I removed the extensions and went back to the original pattern length. I did however keep the arm length adjustment from before. Unfortunately this blazer was not as enjoyable to sew, both the plaid and velvet were a fraying nightmare. Mostly I just wanted to be done with it….now that it is done I love it!

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I remembered to snap a picture of the insides this time before I turned it right side out. In an effort to not make another trip to Joann’s I made my own shoulder-pads this time out of batting and some remnant material. Also in the shot is the fleece that is used as the sleeve heading which gives the shoulder a nice roll.

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Even though the velvet in the collar is interface bottom and top it not as crips as I would like. I did a line of invisible hand stitching in the seams where the collar attaches to the blazer to keep it from looking baggy.

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For the front I sewed button holes in but I don’t think I will be buttoning this so I didn’t cut them open. For the front leather buttons I used small black buttons to secure them on the back side to make it look clean and professional.

 

For as much of a struggle as this was to make i’m still pretty pleased with the results…but I have decided to put off any more jacket/coat sewing for awhile. I just want to make a satisfying girly dress next.

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Trial Run of Simplicity 1070

I have purchased all the fabric to make the complete outfit on Simplicity 1070 ( Skirt, crop top, and jacket) but I thought I would try out the skirt first to see how it goes.

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I cut and sewed up this skirt on one afternoon and then wore it on a business trip the next day. On its first outing I realized that the knit interfacing I used was not going to work so its been sitting in my closet for a few weeks for me to think of what to do. I finally just removed the facing and cut a new facing this time using just a woven interfacing instead.

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Its weird that the pattern very specifically says “Knits Only” but the skirt has a back zip and I think would actually work better in a woven because you wouldn’t have that stretching out on the waistband throughout the day.

The woven interfacing certainly help it fit a little more snugly but I am still having issues with the facing rolling over to the outside despite under stitching. I will have to go back to the drawing board and think of a way to resolve this before I  set out making the complete outfit. One thought I had was to do an encased thick elastic waist band that you fold over to the inside so that you still have that same smooth line on the outside and no zipper. The only issue with that is this is supposed to sit 2″ above the waist and I have a feeling that elastic would slide down and sit at the natural waist.

 

 

Self Drafted Vest

After sewing a cushion for uzzi out of the wool remnants from my blazer I figured I had just enough left to make a vest. With no pattern that I liked I decided to try and copy a RTW vest from my closet. For my first copycat it didn’t go too poorly though I did make it a wee bit too small. Guess its time to lay off the cookies 🙂

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I also had enough of the original red lining to do the whole vest so other then the buttons this was a complete stash buster!

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The insides have a wool facing along the front center and the rest is bemburg

 

I think it looks really great with the blazer, though I need to make some higher waisted pants (I’ve got my eye on you Ginger Jeans!).

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I had every intention of going full steam ahead on the blue taffeta dress. Then I didn’t. I couldn’t deny the draw of an easy skirt pattern and I already had the fabric for it!

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I combined the curved waistband of view B with the oversized pockets on view A. Also on the model and directions they have you sew straight to the top of the waistband but if you look closely in the original 1950s drawings you can see a line of topstitching that goes around the waistband curve and connects to the center front stitching. I decided I liked how that looked better.

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The fabric is a yard dyed cotton flannel with a grey and black herringbone pattern. I like the weight of the fabric but if I were to do it again I would chose something thinner for the waistband facing as this has way too much bulk around the center front and zipper.

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This was my first time doing a lapped zipper. I’m not sure i’m sold on it. I may rip it out and do a centered or hand picked application. Again there was way to much bulk around the waistband and it doesn’t want to lay flat.

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My favorite part is the pockets. Rather then being in the seam its a separate pieces topstitched on to the skirt.  I really love how they turned out. I took some pictures with my hands in my pockets and its not the most flattering but who cares!

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Unfortunately I didn’t think to take a picture until after wearing it for a few hours so its a little wrinkly. The length is longer then the dresses I have been sewing but its nice and warm for the cooler months especially with a petticoat underneath.dsc_0090

All in all this was a fairly easy project depending on how much I wear it this winter I may make a version in a cotton for warmer weather. I would also love to make the bolero that comes with this pattern but I think that would be a little less wearable so its going to have to wait.

 

 

It’s settled, we need bigger doors.

I have been wanting a darker petticoat to wear with my  fall/winter attire. I have been lusting over Malco Mode ones but I just couldn’t justify the cost.  I thought it might be fun to try and make my own. I picked up Simplicity 1427 a few months ago and I thought view B (shown in brown) might work.

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The only problem is that it calls for 35 yards of tulle, I knew if I was going to make this economical buying from Jo-Ann’s was not going to cut it (no pun intended). It took some internet sleuthing but I was able to find a bolt of 40 yards for $9. It took a lot of self-control not to buy a bunch of different colors so I could have color coordinated petticoats for my entire wardrobe. Ultimately logic prevailed  and I decided I should try it out first before I went hog wild. I settled on a navy blue that should work with my blue taffeta if this was the only one that I made.

I always like to research a pattern a bit before I make it. I ended up on the blog of the pattern designer herself. I sure am glad I was it because there are many things that she intended but for some reason the instruction writer completely missed.

  1. Don’t even bother with the pattern pieces, just cut the tulle rectangles directly off the bolt, all  the pieces are designed to use the full 54″ width.
  2. Gather each layer separately. For some reason when they wrote the instructions they have you sew 4 layers together and then gather it which defeats the purpose of having all those layers in the first place
  3. Don’t hem the inner circle skirt lining until after the dress has hung for a day. For some reason the instructions have you hem the skirt before it hangs before any of the tulle layers are even added to it.

The sewing wasn’t very hard, just extremely tedious. Streight lines and gathering the whole way. It took 3 days and multiple spools of thread and I have myself one fluffy cupcake of a skirt.

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I can’t help but feel like it’s a grown up Toddlers in Tiaras skirt. Too big really to wear with my  day to day dresses but I think it may still work for a special occasion dress. Also, Uzzi loves hiding in it.

Just look at all those layers! They trap a lot of air so it’s very insulating to legs in the colder months.

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The skirt has 7 layers of tulle and an anti-static circle underskirt.There is an inner yolk that has 4 layers to help keep some of the bulk out of the waistband.  Then three outer layers that are attached directly into the waistband, 2 with bottom ruffles and one non-ruffle layer between them.

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As is I don’t think I will make this again. I might want to try out one of the other views instead for a little less volume and effort. Those ruffles were the worst, each one is 29 yards long so a ruffle a day was all I could handle.

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Wool Blazer: Part 2

I am happy to be able to share my finished Wool Blazer/ English hunting coat.

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Tony has already declared this the best thing I have ever made. Despite the long and tedious preparation process, sewing this was a breeze. Things like the collar and sleeves which I expected to be troublesome came together with no issues. I thoroughly enjoyed making this coat as it managed to challenge me and boost my sewing confidence in one fell swoop. I wish I had gotten some pictures of the guts before attaching the lining but I was just too eager to get it finished.

These are two part sleeves with sort of a faux vent. They have a 1/4″ shoulder pad sewn into the lining and some fleece as a sleeve heading to help fill out the shape of the sleeve cap. That’s a lot going on under the hood!

We have a notched collar that lays very well if I do say so myself.

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The pocket flaps are non-functional but there is a pocket in the princess seams below the flap. I found some plastic buttons that do a brilliant job of looking wooden and really tie together the English feel for me.

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The back has some gentle princess seams for a slight bit of shaping. I wish I had done a sway back adjustment but its not too obvious.

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My favorite part is the silky rich red lining. It really makes this coat feel like a luxury.

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Needless to say, I am pretty satisfied, though I don’t think I will be making another anytime soon. I learned a lot of tailoring  while making this and I feel like I can bump my skill level up a notch.

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Wool Blazer: Part 1

I have decided to start sewing my ‘English’ style blazer. I took my inspiration photo with me to the store and I found  a Simplicity blazer pattern that I think will work.

Im pretty sure the fabric is wool. Its one of the cuts that I got from the Denver Sewing Guild sale. I did a burn test and no hard plasticky bits formed so at least  I know its not synthetic. I know that the lining of a blazer needs to be slightly slippery  to help get it on and off and I was dreading having to use those awful polyester linings that Jo-anns has. It feels like wearing a plastic bag. Much to my surprise they now carry bemberg lining. I didn’t know what it was but it felt like a dream and is rayon so it should be breathable. It was $9.99 a yard but I had a 60% off coupon so I decided to spurge. It would be a waste to have such a breathable outside shell and stick a poly lining underneath.

When I got home I looked up bemberg, turns out it is the lining of choice for most bespoke tailors due to its durability, soft hand, and breathability….translation: I did very well.

So far I have spent a week on this blazer and I haven’t even started sewing yet. In order to make my standard waist lengthening of 1.5″ and arm  an lengthening of 1″.  I had to redraft 7 pattern pieces (darn princess seams). Then I cut it out. With the wool, lining, and interfacing we are talking 56 individual pieces. That took 3 days.

Day 4: Can’t get any of my chalk or pencils to mark on the wool. So I spent a day doing 72 tailor tacks.

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Day 5: Iron on all that interfacing. I decided to use the “Amazing Tip” from the pattern and add interfacing along the bottom of all the pieces and the neck as well. After all this cutting I want to make sure this turns out as best as it possible can.

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Whew..thats a lot of prep work. Hopefully I can start sewing it soon and see this thing come to life!