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I accidentally made some Edwardian Drawers.

18 Nov

Yanno, as you do!

Inspiration: I was perusing Wearing History’s patterns when I came across this one

 

I thought to myself ‘Oh I think that’s a circular trouser draft, like the Sunkissed Sweethearts pattern‘ (which also happens to be a Wearing History pattern). Then I thought to myself ‘Oh, but wait! I have a LOT of white broadcloth and voile, I could make one of these using the Sunkissed Sweethearts pattern!’ Then I thought ‘And I could use up all that white lace I keep collecting from op shops. Stashbusting!’

Next thing I knew I’d whipped out the Sunkissed Sweethearts pattern and my copious amounts of white fabric, and had cut out my own rendition of the Edwardian Drawers.

How?

I removed the gathers on the Sweetheart shorts draft (very easy to do) and cut them out in the broadcloth with the curve to the side and extra fabric in the back so I didn’t need closures. The lower part I simply used the curve of the hem on the top part, and cut-and-spread to create a circular ruffle to fit on it.

It was a tiny step from it being cut to having it sewing up. They’re basically elastic-waisted shorts with a fancy ruffle. Too easy! Sewing on the lace took twice as long as it took to make the drawers up. Oh, and unlike in the original pattern description, which has the drawers open in the crotch, I sewed mine together because, like, modern living, like. And I wanted to wear it as outerwear, not underwear!

I put elastic in the front to get it to hug my figure, and a draw-string white ribbon in the back, which ties at the side coz I was silly and put the openings for the drawstring accidentally on the side. Oops!

Around the curve of the upper leg.

Around the lower hem. I need to cut out the fabric from behind the lace. Taking the photo on a darker background might have made it clearer…

I then wore them styled with a white top and a pretty blue sash. The only real FAIL was getting a photo without a silly expression!

You can have me squinting against the glare…

Or me laughing with my eyes closed!

Or a nice expression except my face is turned away from the camera to show off the back.

Back home again, this is to show what it looks like without the top over it. I think they really do look like vintage drawers! *smug*

I love this view. They really do look like so many pictures of Edwardian ladies in their drawers I’ve seen on pinterest. No butt-hugging happening here!

Verdict:

They’re cool, they’re very comfy, they’re very pretty, they’re easy to get on and off. I love them 🙂

Sunkissed sweethearts shorts

2 Aug

My first make from Wearing History patterns and definitely not my last! I’m going to use the questions used for the Vintage Pattern Pledge as a template for the post, coz I liked them 🙂

Pattern details

Wearing History 1940’s Sunkissed Sweetheart separates

A top, sarong-skirt and shorts. Here’s what the website says about them:

This pattern is for playful 1940s tropical separates including tie top, shorts, and a sarong skirt.  This pattern was inspired by an original 1940s pattern and has been built on a vintage block but has been updated for an improved fit, easy to read pattern pieces, and brand new step-by-step illustrated instructions.

The blouse has short sleeves with gathering along a curved seam forming a faux yoke. It ties at center front right below the bust.
The shorts hit at the natural waist and have the same accent gathering along the curved seam at each hip. The extra gathered fabric creates a graceful and playful line, perfect for warm summer days!
The sarong skirt is a wrap skirt, and at the front, tying at the inside hip, then wraps and ties at the left hip. The gathers create graceful draping. This can be made in a short for daytime or long for evening.

And it’s pretty much what it says on the packet. I bought the e-version of this and printed and taped it together. I made up the shorts, but I had a good look at the sarong-skirt and top too. I plan on using the top as a base for a button-up shirt one day.

The shorts are made using a semi-circle draft, which makes them much more swishy than the piccies make them look.

The pattern was well-drafted, well thought through, with easy to follow instructions. And the design so cute!

What attracted you to this pattern?

Well funny enough it was the top, not the shorts. As mentioned before, I want to make it into a button-up top, but keeping the gathered-yoke effect on the shoulders. So pretty! But in my life, shorts tend to be in high demand. So this image from the Wearing History site ended up being the one that really caught my eye.

And then I realised I had the perfect fabric for it, someone sent it to me as a stash-buster which was so lovely of them. It is a lilacy-pink rayon/linen blend with pretty same-coloured embroidery on it, with a lovely soft drape. It was a bit pinker than I thought it was based on photos of the stashbusting offer, which kind of put me off the fabric for quite a while.

But you know how it goes, the pattern and/or fabric can sit in your stash for ages and ages and suddenly, the moment you know exactly what you want to use it for, it practically sews itself up while you’re still going ‘Heeeeyy!!! Great idea!’

And this was the case with the shorts. I don’t have just the right fabric for the top yet. I presume when I do, it will be sewn up almost before I finish thinking how great that fabric will look in the top pattern ;-P

Wearing History 1940s Sunkissed Sweetheart shorts.

 

Me stretching in the shorts. Showing the entirety of the front of the shorts. The subtle fullness created by the gathers is so pretty.

Wearing History 1940s Sunkissed Sweetheart shorts

 

As you can see, there’s a bit of pleating and excess fabric at the sides. Since it’s a circular draft, where the fullness of the circle falls is dependent on the shape of the waist seam. In other words, next time I’ll make the curve of the waistband over the front and back legs a bit deeper and the sides a bit shallower, which will help drape some of that fabric more evenly around the body. I am not sure if they’re drafted to get the excess at the sides, or in not putting on a proper waistband the waist of the shorts don’t sit on my body the way they were designed too. Don’t get me wrong though. These shorts are really lovely just as they are and on high rotation in my wardrobe. So is the (unblogged) shirt I’m wearing in these pictures actually. I’m so behind in my blogging!

Wearing History 1940s Sunkissed Sweetheart shorts

Sewing it up

I simply bound the waist in bias binding rather than do a proper waistband like the pattern has. It’s cooler that way.
Ok, so I was Nervous about the faux yoke, but it was well-drafted and the pattern instructions perfectly clear. It turned out to be ridiculously easy to sew. A note though: you can’t do much fitting of the side seams without mucking up the pretty yoke effect. Luckily the measuring I did of the flat pattern and comparing to my own measurements had worked well so I didn’t need to fit the sides seams, but I thought it would help to know that if you’re sewing the shorts yourself.

Also, see the pretty embroidery on the fabric? Nice!

Wearing History 1940s Sunkissed Sweetheart shorts

 

I used a pair of well-fitting trousers to fit the crotch seam. The original pattern’s crotch seam is low, and fairly shapeless, really, in keeping with the kind of crotch shapes used at the time. I prefer the modern sort!

I did another pair in a knit, and they just didn’t work, and weren’t going to work. I had changed the style from semi-circular to more straight-legged and that, and the combination of the fabric, made them look like dowdy little old lady shorts. *shudders*

Of course, in this photo the shorts look just fine, *rolls eyes* but I felt so dowdy in them there was no point finishing them. They’re now re-cut and half-made up into a pair of capri-length leggings!

Wearing History 1940s Sunkissed Sweetheart shorts

I have to laugh at my pose. Look at the outstretched arm. Yes, I do dance ballet!

Verdict

I love this pattern! I’m sure I’ll end up sewing all three items eventually. And probably more than one pair of shorts from it as they are, like the pattern description says, ‘perfect for warm summer days’ and thus perfect for the tropics! The yoke is very feminine while still maintaining practicality in the best of 1940s style. And I’m very impressed with Wearing History patterns. Which is good coz they have heaps I want to buy and make up one day!

Vintage pattern pledge makes

7 Dec

I’ve been diligently sewing vintage patterns all year, but have barely blogged about them. I want to include pattern reviews in my posts about them, but at the moment I’m so confused as to what I’ve sewn, I’ll just line them all up here. That way too, it’s easy for me to pin the pretty piccies to the pinterest vintage pattern pledge board.

Taking it from the top: Folkwear Russian Settler’s sarafan, blogged here.

Folkwear Russian Settlers' dressFolkwear Russian Settlers' Dress | Jumper, Blouse & Apron Sewing Pattern # 128 #Folkwear #RussianSettlersDress:

This blouse is a vintagey style pattern from a Burdastyle mag. Not sure if it counts for the vintage pattern pledge or not.

Folkwear’s Edwardian Underthings camisole (in silk/cotton Mmmmm!!!! With hand-crochet edgings too Mmmm!!!!)

Folkwear's Edwardian Underthings camisole Folkwear's Edwardian Underthings camisole

A nightie in a pattern I just HAD to get, because my mum had it when we were kids and she made my sister and I nighties and a robe to go with it. Simplicity 8198 The grey smudge is my new kitten, Ma’at 🙂

Simplicity 8198Simplicity 8198 Misses' Nightgown and Robe in two lengths Size 12 UNCUT

And a top from the same pattern…

Simplicity 8198

Burda 7977 Not sure this counts either, as it’s more historical than vintage, and again, from a modern pattern. However I’m so glad I finally made it up, having long wanted a surcoat. Here’s my tropical version. I throw it over my dance or pilates gear going to and from the studio.

Burda 7977 surcoatBurda Misses Medieval Dress Costume 7977

 

Why yes thankyou! I do indeed have an ongoing love affair with vintage nightie patterns. This one is Simplicity 6047 made into a top.

Simplicity 6047 Vintage 70's Sewing Pattern Mod Babydoll Pajamas, Puff Sleeve Micro Mini Dress, Blouse, Panties, Nightgown, Maxi GownSimplicity 6047 Vintage 70's Sewing Pattern Mod Babydoll Pajamas, Puff Sleeve Micro Mini Dress, Blouse, Panties, Nightgown, Maxi Gown

And this one is Style 3010

style 3010 sewing patternstyle 3010 sewing pattern

Yet another version of Style 2172 which I’ve decided after goldilocking so many vintage nightie patterns, is my most fave of all…

Style 2172Style 2172

A lounge-dress out of Style 2363

Easy Nightdress 80s Sewing Pattern Style 2363 Vintage NightgownEasy Nightdress 80s Sewing Pattern Style 2363 Vintage Nightgown

A top made out of Simplicity 5030

Simplicity 5030 Vintage 70's Sewing Pattern Lace Yoke, Lacy Hem Shortie Babydoll Pajamas Set, Bloomers Panties, Nightgown, Long GownSimplicity 5030 Vintage 70's Sewing Pattern Lace Yoke, Lacy Hem Shortie Babydoll Pajamas Set, Bloomers Panties, Nightgown, Long Gown

Another version of the retro repro Burda 7109

Burda Misses and Women's Sleepwear 7109 Burda Misses and Women's Sleepwear 7109

(Not a nightie this time :-P) I’m so pleased I made this, too, even though I don’t like it and have plans to redo it into shorts. My version of the 1920’s 1 hr dress, with some pockets inspired by Tina Givens Marcella sewing pattern.

Tina Givens Marcella Dress sewing patternTina Givens Marcella Dress sewing pattern

Style 4890 for me in a wearable muslin, and my mum in Burda 8379 (not vintage!)

Burda 8379 and Style 4890

I’m still working on a few, such as this top from McCalls 4574. Goodness me, that isn’t a nightie pattern!70s Smock Top or Dress, McCalls 4574 Sewing Pattern70s Smock Top or Dress, McCalls 4574 Sewing Pattern

Finish off this version of Style 4890 (not the purple bit at the bottom – that’s the skirt I was wearing the day I was checking the fit.)

Style 4890

Finish off these knit wearable muslins of Wearing History’s sunkissed sweetheart shorts, and the actual shorts themselves.

Wearing History Sunkissed Sweetheart tropical separates - shorts wearable muslinWearing History Sunkissed Sweetheart tropical separates

Hopefully get a picture of the couple of pairs of undies I made using this Vogue 9230

Vogue 9230

Finish these gorgeous trousers from Decades of Style in an olive green linen.

illustration for 1930s sewing pattern for trousers from Decades of Style with wide, gently shaped pant leg

And last but not least a pair of shorts and maybe even a matching bra using Anna Depew’s Pauline tap pants and bra pattern.

Vintage Sewing Pattern Tap Panties Pdf Printable Copy 28 Waist Depew 2005B -INSTANT DOWNLOAD-

Oh, oops that isn’t the last one. That reminded me I started the Anna Depew bra sew-along (hoping I’ll have enough remnants of the silk/cotton of the Edwardian camisole to make into the final bra. Mmmm!)

THIS is the last vintage sewing plan, honest! Honestly honest!

2013 new art

 

*phew* That’s quite a lot there! (Maybe some of those things I want to finish might end up in the 2016 Vintage Pattern Pledge 🙂

Birthday cake. Mmmm!

29 Aug

Butterfly birthday cake even! I recently joined The Monthly Stitch, which is having its birthday this month. Happy Birthday Monthly Stitch! So lots of TMS members are sewing cake.

My TMS cake sewing is birthday cake too. A very close and beloved friend demonstrated just how well she knows me by giving me a birthday gift voucher to my most fave shop in all of Darwin. The moment I saw this fabric I knew it was for me. Technically although it’s a craft cotton, it’s a very fine weave, making it feel more like a soft poplin. Very nice! though a touch too light for shorts. But hey, I got them to work and I love them! I love love love love LOVE them!

So thankyou Kite, for my gorgeous birthday present 🙂

Covered in coral-coloured butterflies…

(As a total aside, this photo totally cracks me up, coz I look exactly like my mum in shorts from the back 🙂 Guess which side of the family I take after huh?)

All ready to go for a walk on the beach, paired with my favourite top that I haven’t really blogged about yet:

Of course, no beach walk is right without a cute doggie to share it with.

Construction notes:

The pattern is from an old Burda mag, 4/2004. Simple but elegant wide trousers with pleat and yoke. I’ve made them a number of times and they’re definitely a TNT pattern.

My weight/size has been going up and down like a yoyo lately. I’ve found over the years the crotch curve doesn’t really change with weight changes, it’s really only the total circumference that does. So I built in some easily-accessible wiggle-room by increasing the seam allowance to 2cm, then sewing each yoke section to the corresponding main trouser piece. I then sewed the side seams of both main piece and yoke all in one seam. I did the same for the back, pictured below. (A trick I learnt from RTW men’s trousers when my beloved but presumptuous younger brother bought a pair of trousers that needed letting out at the back seam. Rather than cough up $20 to have the store tailor do it, he said ‘oh no, my sister’s a seamstress, she can do it.’ Ahem. Well ok, so I learnt how to construct trousers in a way that made them easy to adjust, and coz he was my bro I kindly didn’t charge him $20 to do the job myself…)

Also note the pretty ‘seafoam’-coloured inner yoke. I didn’t have enough of the main fabric, and this co-ordinated very nicely.

I’ve found top edges of yokes can stretch and become too big during the day’s wear, even with some interfacing, so I added in some waistband stabilizer into the top edge stitching line. This doesn’t stretch and it really helps to minimise the yoke top edge stretching.

Pretty buttons! From my stash even 🙂 They work beautifully, which surprised me, as red and coral pink aren’t obvious bedfellows, until I realised there’s just a touch of the same red in the butterfly wings.

Here’s the front pleat that makes them so slouchy and comfortable. (The back has a dart.)

My thighs are quite full on the inner thigh, and I can have problems with shorts creeping up when I walk. Usually employing all these tips I gave Laurwyn of Quirkyprettycute works well enough. But this fabric was just too light for them to work. I tried adding interfacing along the inner seam. It was an experiment and I can report that it worked. Too easy! I’ll be doing that with all my lighter-fabric shorts from now on!

(As a side note, if you want to learn how to be quirky yourself,  this wiki that came up when I was looking for Laurwyn’s blog, tells you how :-D)

Conclusion:

I’m so in love with these shorts 🙂 Happy Birthday me!

Setting in 200 zips?

29 Jun

Well it was only 5 this weekend. But it reminded me of when I was about 11 or 12, shopping for fabric with my mum at a very fondly-remembered fabric store in Parap, one of the older suburbs of Darwin – and home to the wonderful Parap Markets. The fabric shop woman taught me a lot about sewing simply by giving me good customer service. She also sewed professionally, as well as running the fabric store, her little workshop up the back behind the back rack of fabrics, but open to customers.

This particular day, she was setting is a zip as we came in. I said to her ‘oh, zips are so hard to set in!’ She gave me an ever so slightly stern look over the top of her sewing glasses and said ‘Not after you’ve set in 200 of them.’

One of the most important lessons I’ve learnt, not just for sewing but dancing, and music and pretty much everything else in my life. Do it enough times and it’s no longer hard or intimidating. Except Pilates, where the moment it gets easy, the teacher makes it harder.

However 5 zips in one afternoon was a lot, even though I ‘m sure I hit the 200 zips mark long ago.

Why was I sewing 5 zips up all at once?

Well I’d been working on these items of clothing and kinda crawled to a stop with each of  them because I had to set the zip in. In the end, after they’d all been sitting there unzippered and unsewn for a while, I collected them all up, set up the iron, got out all the zips, found all the colours of threads I needed along with their matching bobbins, dug out the zip interfacing from the bottom of the interfacing draw, and set them all in!

And look! Here’s the proof! They’re all done! Woohoooooo!

Here’s what they all are…

The red one’s the skirt from this retro pattern:

Simplicity 4044

The light blue chambray is a pair of shorts and dark blue chambray a pair of trousers, both for my mother from Simplicity 2700. It’s her latest TNT trouser pattern. She’s totally in love with it. So am I, because the fit for the curvy figure trousers was almost perfect for her straight out of the packet.

Photo

 

Speaking of chambray, I looked it up to check I had the right spelling and found some interesting stuff on it in Wiki. I had thought it was the same as cambrik, as in the Simon and Garfunkle song. But I was half right and half wrong.

The coral butterflies (which didn’t photograph too well, it’s way nicer in reality) are to be a pair of shorts from some trousers in a Burda magazine that is over 10 yrs old.

And the green and black shot fabric (Although I’ve just learnt, presuming the Wiki article on them is accurate, it could also be called a chambray!) is for a pair of 3/4 length trousers based on this pattern (Previously blogged about here)

 

However I adjusted the pattern by basically cutting it as wide as I could, trying to approximate this recent burdastyle pattern. Although now I look at it again, I think my green ones are going to be a whooooole lot wider than these 😀 :

120_0514_b_large burdastyle cullotes

 

Well, now the zips are all set in, I’d better go sew the rest of the clothes, right?

Halp!!! Opinions please?

11 Nov

NEVER cut out when you’re tired. We all know that. So why did I do it? *heavy sigh*

A friend in Florida sent me 1m of lovely flamingo-themed fabric in February. (I just had to add in the month for the alliterative affect 🙂 She said she could imagine me out in my garden working there in shorts from this fabric. I agreed. And of course, there’s no more fabric available 😦

A while back I was really intrigued and inspired by the Weekend Designer blog’s cuffed shorts.

Rather than drafting a pattern from scratch I used my TNT shorts pattern, adjusted it as per Weekend Designer instructions, then cut it out.

And forgot the fabric print is very definitely a one-way design. I’ve cut one side with the flamingos upright, and one side with them upside down. Kinda like this.

And it would have been so easy to have cut out with the birds the right way up. I just didn’t think. Ok I was tired. See why I have that rule? WHY oh why didn’t I obey said rule???

Anyway, I’m asking for opinions on what to do now. My mother reckons no one would ever notice them sewn as is, as the pattern is so busy. (Well, no one but me, her and everyone I’ve asked opinions of, including half the internet!) But my bestie reckons I’m such a neat person and a perfectionist it will annoy the hell out of me if I sew the shorts up as cut. My fiance just keeps laughing.

As for me, I’m hoping sleeping on it will bring some clarity.

Here are some options I’ve thought out so far.

1) Sew it up as is, upside down and all

2) See if I can make a crazy mistake into a great garment by turning it into a skirt with totally upright birds, and make shorts out of a yummy apple-green-with-white-polkadots fabric I have in my stash.

3) Make the fabric into a Heather Bailey’s boho cloche hat. (I’m halfway through making one of these out of grey rose poplin Mmmm. I’m totally in love with the pattern). A hat in this fabric would be … very pink… but hey, very funky too methinks.

4) Buy a different hat pattern (As a consolation prize for having been so silly, you understand) like ooh say one of these from Mrs Depew’s Vintage, and make the fabric up in it. (Or even a nice lingerie pattern from the same site?)

5) Make the upside-down flamingo shorts AND the green polkadot shorts AND buy a few new vintage patterns AND get some other fabric to make them up in and throw a sewing party?

What do you think? Any other options are welcome too 🙂

 

Pattern Love

10 Oct

Thurlow Trousers…

Sewaholic Patterns Renfrew Trouser pattern

The pattern description: Finally, a modern trouser pattern designed for curvy hips, fuller thighs and a narrow waist! The Thurlow Trousers sit below the waistline, with a slightly flared leg. Pockets in front are subtle slash pockets that won’t add bulk to the hips.

Did you read that? Curvy hips, fuller thighs and narrow waist. Me me me. That’s me! Me!

Look at how lovely Dana_knockouts’ linen trousers look. Mmmmm. I could do the Thurlow Trousers in a linen like this. Mmmm…

 

 

I’m intrigued and inspired by these Zoot Trousers by Weekend Designer (who wrote 100 awesome blog posts then sadly went on to other things.) They make me want to dance in them! The author makes it look so easy to draft your own. However if it isn’t so easy after all I have a Plan B. I’ve got some beautifully-fitted wide-legged TNT trouser pattern. I can adjust that as per his directions.

A friend sent me some real Liberty of London fabric, actually from London. So soft and fine! Exquisite. And it is such a lovely subtle floral design.How lucky am I? Thanks Josie!  I think I’ll use it for my version of these.

Weekend Designer's Zoot Alors

Weekend Designer also showed how to design some pleated shorts. We’re heading straight into shorts and tiny singlets weather. I’m thinking I might make a pair.

Weekend designer cuffed shorts

And I have the perfect fabric for them, sent to me by a friend in Florida. Thanks Jackie! Funky Flamingos or what? I’ve only got 1m of it, so I found some blue with white polkadot fabric to co-ordinate with it. I’m thinking pink for the main shorts, blue for the cuffs. Maybe a co-ordinating plain pink for a tie belt, too.

Flamingo cotton fabric

Pleats have really been grabbing my attention lately. This entire dress is lovely. I like the shoulder pleats and the neckline, but it’s the side pleats on the skirt that really drew my attention.

McCalls 4633

Then I saw this New Look pattern and realised for my leafy green cotton lycra sateen, it was perfect. View C (what the model is wearing). I’ve used a TNT skirt pattern, and made the hemline slightly asymmetrical (Good for short people like me!) and the ruffle not as full. Almost finished it.

However I can’t seem to let go of the idea of a pleated skirt. I love this patternless skirt  made by kbenco for her daughter.  I have some red cotton/lycra sateen burning a hole in my stash …

 

There isn’t a pleat at all on this hat, but the shape is so divine I had to have it. My excuse is I live in a climate where hats are almost mandatory, even if almost no one wears them but me. The Heather Bailey Boho ClocheGlam up your wardrobe with Boho Cloche hats. Reminiscent of the flapper hat of the roaring 1920s, this cloche (French for “bell”) offers a comfy design that flatters every face shape. Perfect for a day in or a night out, the Boho Cloche embodies French flair in a carefree style that is très magnifique!

This one is in the mail as I type. Hurry up Mr (or Ms?) postman!

Heather Bailey Boho Cloche pattern

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