Tag Archives: Simplicity 9816

Unexpected compliments!

27 Sep

I was in Spotlight yesterday. I know, what a surprise eh? Buying up big on some sagey green cotton lycra sateen. Lovely fabric. Destined (so I think at the moment, I reserve the right to change this at any time) to be a skirt with a bit of a circular ruffle at the hem.

The lovely lady behind the counter asked me how I was going to use it. I explained, and she exclaimed in delight. “You have to come in and show us when it is done. I love seeing the things all made up!”

I realised then that I was wearing these trousers, blogged here,

So I gestured to my trousers and told her I’d made them. “From that ribstop cotton you guys have had for ages that keeps ringing up at $2 per metre.”

At which the woman in the queue behind me said “WOW.” As the sales assistant was looking very impressed.

I said “AND I got the pattern from an op-shop for 20 cents. It’s the same vintage as me. 1976!” All the while thinking “The crotch is a bit funky. I know how to fix it but I haven’t gotten round to it. But I’m definitely not going to point it out, and I hope they don’t notice.” *

They certainly didn’t seem to notice anything untoward about the trousers at all. Hey, I tell you, they were both looking pretty impressed by then. And I felt extremely well complimented about my sewing (and thrifting) skills.

Thanks guys! You totally made my day! And made me feel great about myself 🙂

(It occurred to me on the way home the crotch seam looked fine, it’s just been feeling a bit odd since I started with pilates and built up plenty of muscle tone in my legs. It just needed taking out a bit. Which, of course, I did the moment I got home!)

*This determination not to point out my (or my clothes, or more usually my birds nest hair’s) perceived flaws comes from my mum. When I was a teenager complaining about what I was sure was a huge zit in my face that the entire world must be staring at, mum would say vaguely “Oh, do you have a zit? I hadn’t noticed till you pointed it out.”

Did wonders for my self esteem. I’m planning on doing to my darling little girl when she is old enough to get zits.




Work shirt conundrum

4 Jan

>As a total aside to my post subject, I so love the way when I type a pattern company name and pattern number into a search engine it often turns up vintage patterns as well as the current ones.
This are the patterns I found for Simplicity 9816:

I have taken to checking online for reviews of patterns I am about to sew for the first time (if I was really organised I would do it before I bought them, eh?) The most frequent site that comes up is the wonderful Sewing Pattern Review, then come individual blogs, (found some fantastic blogs through doing this).

I need a few boring boring boring but practical, simple, easy to wear and look after work shirts. For the past few years I have been getting rtw shirts from op-shops. But I am tired of the back, and often the waist, being too long, and the sleeves too tight. Worst of all I am sick of the little safety pin I often have to use to combat gaposis.

I am making my own! Years ago I bought a Vogue “Today’s Fit” pattern, V7903 for these kind of shirts. (Before I got sidetracked by op-shopping.)

I love the 3 darts at the waist (you’ll just have to believe me that they are there!)
I googled the pattern reviews. A review by kbenco proved very helpful. She had tried the pattern and had a lot of trouble getting it to fit. Happily for me she supplied photos. I took one look at her wearing her 3rd(?) attempt at the blouse, and it was still ill-fitting, and went ‘uh oh’. She has a very similar build to me. From the comments on her review, I learnt “Today’s Fit” is drafted upon very different lines to the usual patterns of the “big 4” pattern companies. This fact isn’t clear either in the pattern book, on the back of the pattern (which I always check before buying) nor in the instructions inside. I found this online when I went looking, that explains the draft after reading the comments. Apparently it is based on a study of the body shapes of 7000 American women. I commend Sandra Betzina’s efforts to make patterns that are more accessible to the home sewer, but it didn’t look like her efforts worked to fit kbenco’s figure, thus unlikely to fit mine either.

(I wonder if there is any significant difference between Australian womens’ overall body shape and American womens’? When living in NZ it seemed to me there was quite a noticeable difference between NZ womens’ body shapes generally, and Australian.)

Anyway, due to kbenco and a number of other women’s generousity with their experiences, I sadly put the three darts blouse aside. I have two other possibilities in my stash:
Simplicity 9816, the first pattern pictured in this post, and Simplicity 8872

(sorry, couldn’t resist 🙂

They blouses are quite similar in look and I had no idea how to choose.

Mum came to the rescue! She said “The collars are different, one is made to button right to the top[the second blouse], the other is obviously made to be left open at the top [the first one]. Which would you prefer?”
Aha! A direction. Phew. I never button up to my neck. I am not sure which would kill me sooner – heat exhaustion or choking.
The thing that put me off the non-button-up blouse is that it isn’t standard sizing. After discarding the Vogue Today’s Fit pattern for that reason I am leary to use another one with non-standard sizing. It may have taken me most of my sewing years to work out how to fit a “standard” pattern (And I am still learning) but DO know how to adjust them to get a passable fit from most patterns I attempt nowadays.
It was the dart options that swayed me in further favour of the non-button-up blouse. It has a bust dart. I have a bust. I have a waist. I have hips. I need bust darts or my clothes stick out the front and (inexplicably) slide back over my shoulders. A properly fitting bust dart fixes this.
The reviews are mostly positive, some have had trouble with the sleeve being too big, some with it too tight. But everyone seems to like the fitting of the bust etc. I couldn’t find a review for the button-up-to-the-neck pattern at all.
So I am going to take a deep breath, get an old sheet to make a muslin, grab the tape measure, and try it out. I reserve the right to make a post tearing my hair out if I have trouble getting it to fit nicely!
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