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Showing posts from February, 2012

A wrist and a splint

This is a non sewing post :)

You might know I started sewing at the same time I stopped playing video games. I had to stop playing because my wrist is giving me quite a lot of grief. I've been doing investigations throughout all of last year, but that didn't really amass to anything. Well, I know I've got no arthritis or arthritis markers. I did a steroid shot in August and for a few months all was well. Then the pain came back in December.

So I went to see someone else last week: he said my joints are naturally flexible, which makes my wrists slightly unstable. Although this is something I'll have to live with, and the pain will flare up from time to time, he did say that hand therapy is very likely to help, so he referred me.

I am now the owner of a splint, which I need to wear when (and only when!) I actively use the keyboard. I also need to do weight training for my lower arm and squidgy ball exercises for my hand muscles. But the support is great, and if all goes w…

My Little Black Dress

I have finished it. I haven't had a little black dress for about 10 years now, and I'm very happy I made this one.

I didn't bother with changing the pattern in the end, as the drape of this fabric is different from the drape of the muslin fabric, and with a body shaper it works fine. Looking at these pictures I do wonder if I should not, in fact, change it to a size 8 in the bust area. Still, it looks good and I'm very happy with it!

I even got compliments from Mr T!

Squeezing the pieces into a 1.20m piece of fabric was a bit of a challenge, but the feel of this black knit is great! It's a viscose/elastane combo. Also, brownie points for being completely opaque. Less brownie points for not having any black tread and having the seams in every color in earth. The hem & armhole seams are teal, which I think works well with black. Still, I might revisit this when I get around to going to a notions store.

This dress shall henceforth be named "My Swiss Dress&quo…

Weekend plans!

I finally put the black knit I bought in Zurich into the washing machine today. This means I'll be able to re-draw the Vogue 1250 pattern tomorrow and cut + sew. Unfortunately I have forgotten to buy black thread so it will either be red thread or (I think) teal thread.

I'm  planning to re-copy the pattern - I originally cut a 10 all around, but I think I need an 8 in the top (the neckline is a bit too low for me), and a 12 around the waist. The original would have worked too but I prefer to see less bulging. :)

I'm not actually sure I'll be able to properly do a 12 waist, 10 hips, so the hips might have to be a 12 too. We'll see.

The second plan for this weekend is to make a tablecloth + napkin set. I've bought fabric for this a month ago so I really need to be less lazy. Yes. Less lazy.


This is a longish post about sewing magazines. You might want to skip :)

Remember how happy I was to find Threads magazine in the UK? Well, that's not the only sewing magazine I sampled this month.

Readers in the UK are probably familiar with the sewdirect website. They are basically the English leg of McCall's. They even have a "club", similar to the BMMV (?) club in the States, which comes with a magazine subscription and half price for the Vogue, McCall's and Butterick patterns. Now, I don't order that many patterns so I didn't get the membership last year, but this January they had a 2-month "taster"  for 2 quid and I wanted to order a new pattern so I got the membership. It's not actually 2 months, more like "2 months since Jan 1st". It actually expires next week if I'm not mistaken. But I digress.

The taster came with 2 issues of Sew Today (a work colleague said it would have been funny had it been called "Sew Yeste…

Quick, quick

I'm in Zurich right now, taking a class on Python (programming language). I travelled a bit early yesterday so I was able to walk around for a bit in the evening - although it's quite cold out here. I managed to score a 1.3m black knit which will be the fashion fabric for my Vogue 1250, of which I've made a muslin over the weekend:

I'm sewing... really, I am

However, I am sewing with knits, and not doing a great job. The past few nights have been occupied with making a t-shirt for Mr T - it was never going to be more than a house t-shirt, but it is quite disastrous. I have no idea how not to get it to curl up:

If anyone can tell me what I'm doing wrong I'd really appreciate it. This neckline turned out quite daft because I think I did something wrong with the notches - I matched them up (as described in the instructions and in the pictures), but the back was too tight and the front too lose. Now I've worked from this pattern before and didn't have this problem, so this is one of two things:
1. I didn't follow instructions last time, and matched notches to arm seams
2. The fabric is waaay too different and should be treated as such (but ... how?!?!)

However, the curling of the fabric was visible last time as well - so I'm definitely doing something wrong there. The one good thing that I did with this T-shirt was the…

Threads magazine in the UK

This is what I picked up this morning at the WHSmith in Victoria.

It is an American Threads magazine. I've been meaning to get my hands on one for ages, but short of begging my coworkers to get one for me when they travel to the States there's nothing much to do.

Not any more though :) this is definitely an import since the subscription flyers inside all quote US dollars.
I'm happy with the find, and can only hope I'll find future issues too.

And the winner is...

Comment no 4, Kestrel:

She said,

KestrelFeb 7, 2012 02:00 PM Hello there, I found your blog through Debi's Sew Grateful Giveaway post. Such pretty fabric - I would maybe use it to make something for my friend's wee girl.
Thanks for the giveaway!
I hope you'll enjoy the fabric! I'll be getting in touch soon to get a shipping address!

In other news, I've bought a helluvalot of fabric (and got gifted some as well!) - my sewing table has some t-shirts for Mr T on it right now. And I've ordered some Vogue patterns which should be arriving soon.

Brooch bases: the tutorial that almost wasn't

I was going to make a brooch and post a tutorial for it but ended up with this:

And I don't really like it so ... I guess that's down to my embellishing skills, but I figure getting the base right would make for a good tutorial, so here goes:

1. cut large circle from base fabric (some stiffer fabric recommended); here's a picture with a safety pin on it for a good guess on size (yes, I initially messed up the attachement of the safety pin - you'll see I've removed it in one of the following pictures):

2. hand baste the edges:

3. gather said basting to the maximum:

4. cut a round patch from something like leather or felt
5. glue said patch to the back of the base fabric (the one that has the gathers)

6. attach  a safety pin to the patch (I use safety pins, but you can also use fancy brooch closures)

Embellishing can either be done before step 2 or after step 6. In the picture I embellished after step 6, but if you wanted some embroidery on it or something that doesn…

Sew grateful (&giveaway)

I have been somewhat busy at work and barely able to do anything in the evening or at weekends. What I did do (on Friday) was buy tracing paper from John Lewis. I was going to trace the dress from my previous post. That didn't happen, nor is it likely to happen this week (Monday - pub, Thurs - DnD, Fri - friend's bday, Sat - drinks at pub). Yes, the pub is a common occurrence. I say this without pun: the pub is one of the great things about the English. There are lots of other great things, but ... pubs? I love 'em. But I digress.

To recap: no mood for doing anything other than falling in front of the tv when I get home. I was wondering what to do to get out of that when I saw that Debi's Sew Grateful week starts today. I was going to do a giveaway for my birthday(3^3!) anyway so well... the first post sounds doable :)

So here it is. I am giving away 2 yards (bought in the States :P) of this lovely fabric  Nancy Mims, called Blossom Stripe in Sunflower. This is the fab…

An Update

Lots and lots of work this week, plus the winter bug kicking in :) However, good news: this Sunday's DnD game has moved up to tomorrow, which gives me 2 whole days of weekend to actually sew something.

Since it will be my birthday in February, I think I'm going to get started on a blouse for said celebration day. I'm going to brave the Burda magazine again, and try to make this:

It's a dress in the magazine, but I thought it could work as a blouse too. I start tracing on Saturday morning. I looked over the instructions a few times, but they stop making sense at some point. Maybe it will be clearer when I have the pattern pieces - not many cuts on fold in this dress.