Friday, November 21, 2008

Yellow Blouse Finished

This blouse was started for the July Sew Along on Stitchers Guild, however it just didn't want to play and I finally finished it last week. I'm wearing it with the skirt and jewellery from the JCC contest.

This is the same blouse pattern Vogue 8572(OOP)that I made for the JCC contest and this time I wanted to try a piped neckline and shortened the sleeves to 3/4 to wear under my Channel jacket. I am reasonably happy with my first attempt of using bias strips and "rats tail" to make the piping and then getting it to sit nicely around the neckline.

I had a wonderful teacher at the ASG Convention in Brisbane last October who kindly sharerd some of her tips on piping so I am keen to try another as I really like the look of piped edges on necklines and sleeve hems.

This fabric is heavier than the Oyster Chamois I used for the JCC and somehow the top has ended up tighter (don't think the gym sessions would be making this much difference) so not sure what has happened here.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

SWAP 2009

Story Board

Well here is what I have decided so far:

A number of the patterns are TNT's and the two pants patterns have been toiled although this was before I gained the extra weight from the gym.

As you can see there are two pieces of fabric that don't have a pattern with them so far. I'm desperate for tops and really don't want to make the same 3 styles all the time, so am trying to find new patterns.

The red woven is partialy completed and hope to have it ready to show by the end of the weekend.

I then think I will do a wearable toile of the casual pants in a mustard colour stretch cotton that I picked up in Brisbane during the ASG Convention.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Australian Stitches - Volume 13

Here is the Index for Volumne 13

I have also sent a copy to Lynn Cook, Editor of Australian Stitches.


Tuesday, October 21, 2008


Okay the stash has been spread around the sewing room and as most of my sewing buddies will tell you there is a lot of brown in there LOL.

Working on the twist of “Real Life Week” I can say that my week is working in an office full-time (although not corporate) and then on the weekends I sew with my sewing buddies or go to the Australian Sewing Guild Meetings as well as shopping. We enjoy going to the Sydney Theatre Company’s Plays on a regular basis so I have included this as well as this area is lacking in my wardrobe.

On that basis, I have chosen the following fabrics:

Now to go through the pattern stash and work out if I have any TNT patterns for these fabrics or whether I need to get moving on some toiles.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Sewing with a Plan

A Challenge to make 11 Garments in 5 months!

I’ve been reading about the Timmel SWAP over the years (first saw it in the Australian Stitches magazine Volume 14, Issue No. 7) and have often thought I would like to do this as it was based on the article by Lynn Cook in the Australian Stitches magazine Volume 5, Issue No.3 titled the "Perfect Wardrobe".

Just as I was getting caught up in the internet world of sewing buddies, I found out that Julie from Timmel was resigning and that she wouldn’t be running the SWAP contest again.

In stepped the lovely moderators from Stitchers Guild who posted last week the Rules for the 2009 SWAP and here they are:

Each SWAP must consist of 11 garments, which all work together to form a basic wardrobe. All garments must be handmade. You may knit, crochet or weave if you please, but they must be your own creations.

The garments are:

4 bottoms - jeans, pants, shorts, skirts or kilts.
6 tops - t-shirts, shirts, blouses, or camisoles.
1 jacket - a tailored blazer, jeans-style jacket, sweater or shawl will do, as long as it looks right with everything else.

* A dress will qualify as a top, if it can be worn with all the bottoms (tucked in or worn as a tunic) *

* Recycled garments are fine, as long as the new item is entirely different than the original, such as old jeans made into a jacket, or a wool coat made into a skirt. Before and after pictures are required, if you do this. *

All the tops must work with all the bottoms; and the jacket must work with everything. Dressier clothes require a dressier jacket, and vice-versa. Traditional clothing such as salwar kameez qualify, too.

2009 Twist: A wardrobe which reflects a week in your REAL LIFE. If you're a stay-at-home mom who lives in jeans and tees, that's what you'll be sewing. If you're a rock star who lives in zebra stripes and pink hot pants, that's what you'll be making. The finished wardrobe should consist of the pieces you'll be grabbing to wear for the rest of the year. Whether you work in an office, or spend your days eating bon-bons, your SWAP should reflect your current lifestyle and weight.

All garments must be made between November 1/08 and April 30/09.

The fact that we have been given an 2 extra months to complete this and the fact that I completed 3 garments in the month of June, (so at that rate I should be able to complete 15 garments) I am going to do it!!

The mind is going overtime trying to work out what I’m going to do so:

1. The notebook has been purchased
2. I plan to pull out the fabric stash (not so large) tonight and see what I can come up with.

Australian Stitches Magazine Indexes

I have been MIA recently, not sure where the time has gone, and thought I had better let you know that the Index for Volume 13 is at present being proof read and the Index for Volume 14 has been started, so they are on their way and haven't been forgotten.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Not quite sewing!

When I was completing the JCC I found it extremely frustrating that the Index for the Australian Stitches Magazine wasn't current or had enough information in the Index for me to find what I wanted so I have been busy typing up an excel spreadsheet with Issue, Volume, Article, Section, Content and Author.

If you want to take a copy of Index 12 you are more than welcome as I am more than happy to share with you all.

Don't worry I have given Lynn Cook, Editor of Australian Stitches a copy as well.


Friday, July 4, 2008

I'm Hooked

I am finding the internet community such an inspiration, I think about sewing, am seeing what garments I want to make amongst my stash, sewing instead of watching TV and also to challenge myself with new techniques.

So I have signed on for another Sew Along.

Before I go any further I want my wonderful real life sewing buddies (and you all know who you are) to please understand that you are very dear to me and are great friends, and I couldn’t do as much sewing without you, however your contact on a daily basis just isn't there, although I have noticed that two of you have joined me in this Sew Along.

It is on the Stitchers Guild site once again and the rules this time are:

  1. JCC sewers who completed the JCC but want to sew some additional pieces. These must co-ordinate with AT LEAST ONE item from the JCC.

  2. JCC sewers who DID NOT complete the JCC but want somewhere to sew along and show their pieces so they don't lose momentum. Yes you can finish here :-)

  3. JCC lurkers who love the capsule idea but didn't take part in the JCC for whatever reason. As you have no JCC to add to, you need to choose something in your wardrobe that you sewed or purchased as a starting point, the first item you sew in July must co-ordinate with this, and the next with either.In any of the above cases you need to sew two items in July, and post photos or links in this thread so we can cheer you along.

    I'm in two minds about the no black, I'm all for continuing the ban as I think it has been very liberating, but I think we might say you can include black as long as its in a print or weave

I will Sew Along under No. 1 as I really want to make the shell top that I had planned for the JCC in the silk I purchased in China in April, but before I do this I want to fine tune the pattern I used for the Oyster Shell Top and plan to do this with a fabric I purchased (amongst a heap of others) at Kerryn’s Fabric World in July last year which will go with the skirt in my JCC and matches perfectly to another Channel jacket that is in the wardrobe.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

June Capsule Contest 2008

I did it!!!
I have been visiting the Stitchers Guild blog for some time now and one of the ladies suggested a "June Capsule Contest" for those that hadn't completed the 2008 Timmel Swap, or those lurking to join in, so I decided to join in and see how I went. I had always thought about the Timmel Swap however the number of pieces was just too daunting.

The contest rules were:

  • 4 garments and 1 accessory
  • No black
  • There must be at least one top and one bottom
  • All items must co-ordinate
  • One item can be made before June
  • One item can be purchased

Here is what I planned to make and the accessory hadn't been finalised at this stage.

I really procrastinated for the first two weeks, not a good sign and then started on the Oyster Chamois shell top just before the "Roberta Girls" headed to Ferndale for a weekend of sewing and good food.

On the weekend at Ferndale I managed to sew the Brown Wool Crepe Skirt, including the lining up to hemming stage. I then put the sleeves into the Oyster Chamois and this didn't look good, pulling around the armholes which I didn't know how to fix so instead of wasting my time I decided to put this on hold and get on with it. I started the Coffee Knit top and had this well underway by the time we left on the Sunday afternoon.

One of Alison's friends Susan joined us for the weekend and she does some lovely beading. I showed her my fabrics and this is what she designed/made for me:

I am absolutely thrilled with it. This is officially my purchased item and my accessory.

It is now the 23rd of June and not one items is finished!! The shell tops don't look like they will be made as there are some fitting issues that I can't quite work out by myeslf.

I finished the skirt and lining hems during that week.

On Saturday (28 June) the Rhodes Fashion Sewers (ASG group at Rhodes) had invited Angie Zimmerman to join us to work on our pants. Luckily Angie had some time to help with me with the shell top fitting issues and the oyster shell top was back on track.

Unfortunately domestics took over on Sunday so on Monday 30 June as soon as I arrived home I locked myself in the sewing room as I was determined to finish. The oyster shell top had the side zip to be put in, sleeves and hems. DH regularly bought in the chocolate and tea to keep me going.

As I didn't make the 2nd Shell Top, I was very thankful for the rules allowing a "made before June item" so I substituted this with the Channel Style Jacket that I made earlier. This co-ordinated with all of my pieces so worked a treat.

Now here is the completed ensemble: "Brown is my Thing"

Top:Coffee Knit tee from Kwik Sew 3378 view A.

This was made from fabric purchased in January this year from my local sewing shop. I am wearing a purchased cami underneath.

Brown Wool Crepe from Vogue 7937 view A-B without the belt loops.

This was made from fabric that I purchased from Lincraft and has been maturing in my stash.
The pattern is not lined, however I always line all my garments and then attach lace to the hem for the finishing touch. The back of the skirt has back vents which I have used Hong Kong finishes on the self facings and extensions of the skirt (shown above).

Jacket – Made before June
Brown, blue and green Tweed Jacket from Vogue 7975 view A.

I made some minor changes to the sewing of this jacket e.g. I sewed the tape on the front of the jacket before finishing off the neck or hem edges (I had sewn the jacket front and facing together, trimmed and under stitched so I had an edge to line the tape up to). I didn’t use the ribbon as the closure, I sewed 6 large black hooks and eyes on the jacket so I could close it. The photo doesn't show the colours in the jacket very well, this is much better

Worn with the Top and Skirt from above.

Shell TopOyster Chamois top from Vogue 8572 (OOP) view C.

This was made from fabric purchased from Martin & Savage the fabric suppliers here in Sydney on an Industry Day with the ASG 3 years ago.

I made some adjustments to the pattern, creating fitting darts both front and back, bust dart and an invisible zipper in the side seam to enable me to get the top on/off.

Worn with the Skirt and the Jacket is draped over my shoulder.

I'm so thrilled to have completed the 3 garments in such as short time as my sewing is usually a lot slower than this.