Wednesday, 15 July 2015

Vintage Pledge Pinafore Complete!

Aloha folks! How is your day going? I have finally reached the end of the five thousand social engagements that have taken up my every weekend for the past six weeks. I'm pretty tired, but only have a week and a half of work left so am looking forward to finally taking a moment off before Spud arrives! 

This weekend my plan is to potter, finally make those dresses I needed for work.... so I can wear them in my last week (oops) and sit with my feet up for a bit. We had a baby shower over the weekend, and showed off the nursery to family and friends. I managed to stay up til 2.30am! Pretty chuffed with that as my last hoorah for a while ha ha. 

Today I'm showing you my stretch denim pinafore, made from vintage pattern Style 1156, this is the first ever vintage pattern I have ever used! Can you believe it? People are always saying I have a vintage style, I like to think I like everything and that's why I have a bit of a vintage aesthetic. 

Therefore I have completed my #vintagepledge for 2015, to actually sew an original vintage pattern! Im pretty sure that this is from the '70s. 

For some reason I look a bit unimpressed in these pictures, but actually I'm pretty darn chuffed! I used the stretch denim that I bought for my simple stretch maternity skirts that are now a bit indecent (I didn't realise quite how high my bump would be... it pulls skirts up rather high! :-)  ). You can't tell in these pics really but it's got a lovely flock pattern. 

It looks in the pattern like there is a placket centre front, but in fact this is a small fold which is topstitched with buttons added. Once it was topstitched, and because I added the button tab detail I decided it looks better plain. I'm sure I'll make another one at some point, I might change this so it's a proper button placket for breastfeeding. 

I went to a workshop about breastfeeding on Monday, and am feeling a little better about it all. My only worry is what I'm going to wear? I wear mostly dresses that don't open at the front, so the double layer vest and top thing would basically mean me getting naked? The two dresses I'm making at the moment I'm ensuring have front openings to try and limit this issue but if anyone has any suggestions (that don't involve me wearing solely jersey for the next six months) I'd very much appreciate it. 

I used the original skirt pieces from the pattern, as I figured it would stretch around the bump, and I was right hoorah! This now means that I have something that has a different skirt to the washi in the wardrobe. I mean I love the washi skirt (clearly) but I am getting a little fed up of having the same silhouette every day, especially as I can't wear my skirts.

When looking at the cover art it appears to be a pinafore, but in fact this is a dress with a a full back. I didn't quite have enough fabric to pull this off so adapted the back to be more like a pinafore, with tabs coming from the back, at an angle so that they would sit well on my shoulders.I also used these straps as tabs, adding in the buttons to complete the pinafore look. It was nice to use up some buttons from the stash. I probably should have ironed this before taking pics, but what can I say? I'm lazy these days. 

.Again I've got that sway back problem like with my last make, but I'm pretty sure this is due to bump and will go away once I'm back to relatively normal. The zip is also separating at the top, so it probably needs a hook and eye.

This picture must be about a month or so ago, so imagine this picture, but bigger and you get an idea of how big my belly is now he he.

The pockets are lined with a white muslin with little red flowers that I've used in lots of projects and now have lots less. After talking about trying to get through my stash, I started the process last week, going through my massive bag of excess fabric that is left over from other projects. I separated out all the cottons that I'm likely to make patchwork/ possible kids clothes from, set aside any pieces of material big enough to make big people clothes from, and put all the wools and heavier materials into a bag under the stairs. This is only one bag of the masses of stuff I've to get through, but I feel better now for having made the first inroads on this massive task. Thanks to everyone for your thoughts on my stash stress. 

Sunday, 5 July 2015

Manic Shopping Confession

Dear readers, I have a confession, I have a bit of a shopping trigger finger happening, I'm buying fabric left right and centre, there have been a flood of new patterns over the summer and I want them all! Want to see into my over-filled mind?

I want to make a turia dungarees variation with a skirt (because who am I kidding with that shorts malarkey?) 
I want the Pauline Alice Xerea, I think it will make an amazing showcase for jazzy fabrics, and is a new silhouette to all the fit and flare dresses in my stash. Also, how amazing would it be in blocked light and dark blue chambray?

Speaking of fit and flare I want Sew Over It's new vintage summer dress. I've been looking for the collar variation everywhere and as you may have guessed I'm a bit obsessed with shirt dresses. 

I also want to sew something with a waist, I love my bump, I'm really enjoying my shape.... is it possible I'm bored of the washi?! Surely not! I think I just want something completely different, like the Hollyburn. I really want the Hollyburn! Though not especially seasonally appropriate, I'd probably want it in wool but I've been drafting skirts that are similar to this for ages, but with little pleats. I'd love to have a pattern for this style.

And then there's the stash of fabric... I usually buy too much fabric per project, and so I end up with excess. I have now reached the stage where my excess is reaching epic proportions. I don't want to do anything with this leftover stuff, I've already made what I wanted, but I can't throw it away. All I can think to do is patchwork blankets, and I can't really be bothered. I've already made a cushion for the nursery chair, and I love it. But patchwork has never really been my thing and when I contemplate cutting one hundred rectangles it makes me want to cry.

I also want some classic washis, with the little cut out like my first ever one in some cotton sateen. I'm running out of work clothes, though I'm running out of days where I need to be in work so that shouldn't be an issue for much longer. How am I supposed to resist these fabrics? (Side note: I did not resist these fabrics).

Maybe it's because I haven't been able to sew for so long. I got the sewing room into a complete mess before all my trips away, I feel guilty if I'm not sewing for baby (count the baby clothes... 0) I'm sure once I get going with it I'd enjoy it but at the moment I just don't really wanna. And last weekend the sewing room was converted into a nursery with all my stuff being put into corners around the house, there is so much stuff!

I think I just need to take a step back, calm down and sew something. Once I get back in the chair I'm pretty sure I'll stop behaving like a maniac. All I need is time, but I'm quickly running out of that!

Friday, 3 July 2015

Red Gertie Hack

Happy Friday everyone! We've been having a heatwave here, I bet you're bored to death of hearing about it by now. Last night the humidity broke and it poured it down, so today it's a beautiful day with a light breeze, perfect. I've been getting a lot of sympathy due to the heat, which is lovely. However, the office isn't actually that hot it's just walking about that is warm, I am running low on work clothes now which I'm going to have to rectify sometime soon... in all that free time I have (?!)

I finally got a free evening to try and go swimming last night so off I trotted to the aquatic centre to give it a go. Mostly I went to feel the weightlessness of the baby in the water, as it is amazing! So I mostly just floated (whilst trying not to get in the way of the super serious guy who decided to swim fast in the slow lane that me and a lady were happily occupying). I was a bit surprised when I got out of the pool and felt the weight I'd been carrying around, no wonder I'm so slow getting about.

This top... no longer fits. Neither does the skirt! Ha ha! It's under a little bit of strain in this picture, and it only got worse I'm afraid. But I absolutely love it and can't wait to get it out of the wardrobe post-bump. 

The original pattern that I started from was the Gertie vintage blouse. I know there's actually a blouse really similar to the one that I made in the book, but I'm lazy, and as I'd already traced off the one below I just made changes to that. 

I scooped out the neckline, left the sleeves as they were and left out the large darts at the sides. I also left out the button closure at the back as I wanted this to be a very simple top. I was left with a roomy, comfy plain top. 

Construction on this was crazy simple, I followed the instructions for the BHL Anna, whereby you stitch the shoulder seams together first, hem the sleeves, and then hem under the arms. This means that you don't end up with tiny arm holes to hem all the way around on a delicate fabric, hooray!

PGP Update: I overdid it with the holidays (mixed with a bunch of unusual/ uncomfortable beds) which meant I was pretty sore last week. However, I saw the physio on Monday and have been much better since. I had my first full week in work this week, without having to work from home once!! As a note on what happens with PGP, just look at how crazy misaligned I was at this stage!! (This must be over a month ago now) Look at my shoulders! This is me thinking I'm standing straight, no wonder the physio said, ooh yes you are quite twisted ha ha!

Those of you with amazing memories may remember I talked about the embroidery on this blouse in my Sew magazine column a while ago. The plainness of this top made me want to add a little something, as you know I struggle with plain. Instead of trying to make flowers with any fancy stitches, I freehand drew the design I wanted onto my blouse and stitched this in tiny back stitch, sometimes simple is best. 

If you'd like to learn the art of embroidery, then come along to my next class at the ministry of craft, new dates to be published very soon. Ministry of Craft

I reinforced the section to be embroidered with silk organza, which worked perfectly, however I should have zig-zagged the edge of this as it has frayed as you can see here.

The neckline has also been faced with bias binding for a clean finish on the inside. I love bias binding, I know everyone says that but this a true and deep love that dares speak its name. It just makes things like this hack, (where I have drafted the neckline) so much easier as you don't then need to draft a co-ordinating neck facing.

I hope the weather holds for you this weekend, I'm going back to Blackburn for a family do and also going to a Brian Cox stars talk type thing on Sunday, looking forward to it! Though... not sure what happened to 'I'm definitely done with going anywhere' ha ha. Apparently I don't believe in taking it easy. 

Side note: my ankles are massive, that is all.


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