Skip to main content

New Rooibos version done

I've taken a few days off this week and got around to finishing a new version of Colette's Rooibos. I really wanted an autumn/winter dress that could be worn with jumpers and similarly thicker clothing.

The major problem here was that my initial version of Rooibos actually was just wide enough to wear during summer (even so, I suspect that if I get my weight down to 52kgs it will look ages better on me!). I tried wearing it with a jumper while I was in New York but it made a bunch of lines in the midriff area. I can't wait to get the Colette Sewing book to figure out exactly what went wrong - initially I suspected that there wasn't enough width but I wore the new version yesterday and it made similar lines - only fewer - even though it does not feel tight at all. Perhaps it's something else, maybe I didn't properly clip curves? Or a combination of some sort.

In any case, I eyeballed a size 2 for the bodice sides (I cut the pattern bodice in a size 0) - and left it at 0 underneath. Funnily enough it does not look horrible! The only issue that I see is that the darts at the back aren't flat - the ones in the original version were. It's a bit unfortunate, but hey, it is still quite wearable.

I also used a smaller seam allowance when sewing. My sewing machine doesn't have the 5/8 marker (!!!) so I just used the smallest next available (1/2?ish?). All in all, a good effort but for another summer version I would definitely go back to size 0 and just sew the smaller seam allowance.

The other "stupid" thing I did was not to interface the facing. It looks weird and it's way too thin. Lesson learnt. I don't know what I was thinking really. I should have used a medium interfacing too, since the facing is very flow-y batiste and the main fabric is quite a heavy wool.

I was going to take pretty pictures yesterday but I got home late, and was cold and my feet were wet (London weather!) so I didn't have it in me to take the camera out. I have to leave you for now with the poor quality pictures I took on my phone yesterday. I promise another "proper" post soon though.

Looking at the second picture, the skirt looks a bit too wide right now. Perhaps I should fix it in a future version?


Popular posts from this blog

How to make silk bias binding

I promised this tutorial a while ago, but was too busy with work to get to it. This tutorial will focus on how to iron and fold the binding, rather than how to cut it. I have three links to good tutorials about how to do the correct cutting.

Here goes: a tutorial for properly making bias binding. Apologies for picture quality, I was using my phone.

Tools needed:
* silk square for the bias, sewing machine and scissors to make the continuous bias strip that will be ironed into place
* a 2-inch (5cm) wide piece of cardboard
* some sort of vaporiser, filled with water
* bias tape maker - for these pictures, I used a Clover which makes 1/2" binding (starts with 1" strips), but if I were to do this again, I'd use the one which makes a 1" binding (out of 2" strips)

* left-side: bias strip not yet passed through the bias maker
* right-side: bias strip which has been folded by the bias maker


1. Cut bias strips out of your silk square. I like this tutorial…

Birds dress

Just another sheath dress from me today, from my TNT pattern. This one is all about the fabric:

I got this bird fabric from Plush Addict, and it seems to have been the last fabric purchase pre-baby (Cosmo - Nihonkai - Budgies On Oxford Cloth if you are interested), so didn't cut into it for a long time. In May, after finishing my coat, I finally took the plunge.

The pattern, as I said, was my TNT sheath pattern, pretty simple. The biggest challenge with this dress was fabric placement, I didn't want any weird bird cuts at seams, nor did I want any other sort of weird placement. 
As i had 2 meters of this fabric, I thought I should be able to get all that, so I spent a lot of time moving fabric pieces around, until I got it. I'm pretty happy with myself, the seams meld as much as possible, I'm particularly proud of the center back:

Construction wise, this dress has 6 darts and 5 seams, so it is all relatively straightforward. I stabilized the neckline and armholes with…

A new shirt

I made a white shirt. I cut this out sometime in late September, and I used McCalls 6035 again. I managed to finish it around Christmas. I wanted a nice white shirt, with a bit of a twist, so I added grey embelishments to it.

I am very pleased with how the embelishments turned out. I did a few things:
- embroidered the collar with French knots
- added grey/white twill tape to the sleeve seams
- used mother-of-pearl-with-grey-tint buttons

The effects are subtle, but they are there and I like them.

I embroidered the collar using two shades of grey, in a "burst" pattern. I tried to be relatively consistent about density of the French knots, but I think a bit of difference isn't very bad.

The collar was the first thing I finished, and it stayed there for a long time, until I found the time to get back to sewing.

I used a lot more interfacing on the collar than I normally do, and I think it shows. The buttons and tape on sleeves were added later and they're not very speci…