Burda 10/2014 #144 – tween tunic dress

This was an impulse sew.  I stumbled across Burda 10/2014 #144 on a sewing forum somewhere, and immediately thought of some scraps in my stash that were idling in my stash.

Burda 144 tween tunic (from October '14 issue)

Burda describe this as follows: Girl’s dress sewing pattern available for download. Available in various sizes and is produced by burda style magazine. The perfect dress for school because it’s as comfortable as it is cute. This sweater dress is made with cool contrasting panels and leather accents. An easy project with a little edge. Recommended Materials: Knits or jersey. Combine with imitation leather.

Burda 144 tween tunic (from October '14 issue)

Clare just fitted into the size range. The pattern started at size 140cm (they are sized by height). This pattern was originally published in the October 2014 issue of Burda magazine, but I bought the pdf via their website. If you do download one of their pattern remember that they don’t include seam allowances – make sure that you add them!

Burda 144 tween tunic (from October '14 issue)

I combined striped fabric from the Darn Cheap Fabrics $2 table (previously used for a Finlayson Sweater for my husband and for a shrug for me) with some grey ponte scraps and dark red (is it Marsala?) pleather. Clare thinks it hilarious that there is a fabric called pleather. I think that the pleather came from a fabric free-for-all at a sewing get-together I attended a while ago. I decided not to include the back zip, or to use a band to finish the neckline. Instead I used a strip of fabric sewn to the right side then turned over to the wrong side and secured, a bit like a facing.

Burda 144 tween tunic (from October '14 issue)

This was a fun garment to sew. I used the overlocker for most of it, but did hems with a zig zag stitch on the machine. The pleather wasn’t too difficult to work with. Let’s see how it washes! The same pattern pieces can be used to make dress #145 from the same issue in a woven fabric. I might give it a go at some stage too. A great tween pattern, and Clare definitely approves.  I think I’d like a grown up version.

Burda 144 tween tunic (from October '14 issue)

Sewaholic Pendrell the second

Ah, the bargain table floral rayon from Darn Cheap.  This is the last of it – and I have to say that I am rather sad to see it all gone.  However, this was a worthy project – a Sewaholic Pendrell top for my cousin Freya.

Sewaholic Pendrell blouse in rayon from Darn Cheap Fabrics

Last time I made this blouse for Freya I used a less draped cotton. This one seems to have come out slightly larger, despite making the same size 10.

Sewaholic Pendrell blouse in rayon from Darn Cheap Fabrics

This is such an easy blouse to make. The neckline and armholes are finished with bias binding, there are no closures, no darts, and it just slips on yet still has an element of shape. And those self-lined, pleated sleeves! I love them!

Sewaholic Pendrell blouse in rayon from Darn Cheap Fabrics

Just a little sewing tip – rayon like this is prone to stretching and shifting and moving around when you sew it. I stabilised the neckline with this knit fusible tape that I bought from Stitch 56 once the top was cut out. Well worth it.

Emma Seabrooke Knit Stay Tape

I use stay tapes like this around necklines and along shoulder seams. I don’t use them for everything that I make, but I definitely use them a lot – usually in places where the instructions will say to stay stitch. I use double sided fusible tapes a lot when sewing with knits to secure hems in place. And to finish, a quick snap of the top when Freya was finally able to try it on.

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Yes, it would have been a good idea if I’d given her the summer top in the correct season…

Vogue 8950 tunic

This garment came about after I was pulling fabrics out of stash and spotted these two fabrics side by side.

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The bugs are a cotton knit from Darn Cheap Fabrics (although I’m sure that I’ve spotted it at Rathdowne Fabrics as well) and the stripe is from Clear It. The two together really appealed to me. So I rummaged through my pattern stash and came up with Vogue 8950.

MISSES’ TUNIC: Semi-fitted, pullover tunic has yokes, side slits and stitched hems. Back is longer than front, wrong side shows. Front, back and sleeves C: cut on crosswise grain.
FABRICS: Two-Way Stretch Knits: Rayon/Spandex, Cotton/Spandex. Also Contrast A, B: Stretch Mesh, Sheer Knits.

This pattern has similar style lines to the Papercut Patterns Ensis tee with the contrast yoke and upper sleeve.  I chose to make view B, the shorter length, and shortened it further still by petite-ing it at the shorten/lengthen here lines.  Without checking the cut pattern I think that I used size 12 but cut size 10 from the armholes up.

Vogue 8950

Construction was mostly on the overlocker. I used the twin needle on the machine to finish hems and to secure the neckline. Hems were stabilised first with double sided tape. I really wouldn’t want to sew knits without tapes – they make such a difference to the finished product.

Vogue 8950

I’m still on the fence about the finished garment. It is comfortable to wear and fits well, and I love the two fabrics together, but maybe it’s the tunic thing again. Or maybe it’s just the jeans that I am wearing it with. I’m planning on sewing some Style Arc Misty jeans in indigo stretch denim soon and when I do, this pair of op-shopped Target jeans will be going back to whence they came!

Vogue 8950

I still have some of both fabrics left, and may give a raglan style a go and see how that works out. I wore this with an orange scarf and a cardigan. I only have a blurry phone photo to share but you get the general idea.

What Im Wearing May 2015. 10 - Sunday.

Yes, the more I look at photos of these jeans, the more I think that it’s time to say farewell to them.  As a good friend has been known to say, “Lara, you can do better”.

Butterick 5925 tunic

I have made Butterick 5925 before, but last time sewed view C/D, the v-neck version of the pattern.  This time I tried view A.

Butterick 5925 view A without the pockets in poly crepe knit

The fabric is a vibrant green polyester crepe knit from Spotlight. It has drape that works beautifully in a tunic. No cling, just falls gently. I left off the pockets, because they added another step to construction and wouldn’t really show up as a design element in this solid colour. I don’t tend to use pockets in my clothing – I always carry a bag – so it doesn’t matter if I don’t have them. I can always shove a hanky up my sleeve if needed!

Butterick 5925 view A without the pockets in poly crepe knit

I sewed size Medium and petite-ed the pattern through the body at the shorten/lengthen lines. I could possibly have sewed a Small in this pattern.  Most construction was done on the overlocker, and I used a simple zig zag for hemming. The pattern illustration and description from the website are as follows:
MISSES’ TOP: Pullover top has neckline and pocket variations, seam detail, and shaped hemine. A: slightly draped neck and pocket bands. B: pocket binding. A and B: semi-fitted, stitched hems. C and D: loose-fitting, hem band, and narrow hem. B, C and D: neck binding. Wrong side shows on hemlines, and C and D pocket openings.
Designed for lightweight two-way stretch knits.

The neckband was interesting. After seaming it at the centre back, you fold it in half wrong sides together but rather than having the seam line up you shift one layer around about an inch, then line up and baste the edges together. This gives the neckband that rippled effect.

Butterick 5925 view A without the pockets in poly crepe knit

This top had been in my cut-out box since last year. It was easy and comfortable to wear, in a colour that I love. I realise that I am currently moving away from tunics to shorter tops. I always like a tunic for it’s tummy and waist downplaying properties, but am now enjoying shorter tops for the different take on proportion that they provide. It can be difficult to judge true proportion in my blog photos as it depends a lot on which photographer I’ve had and their height, as well as the distance that the photos are taken from. That’s where the daily snaps in the mirror help – all from a consistent distance and height. I think that I’ll end up with more of a mix of tunics and shorter tops in my wardrobe.

Butterick 5925 view A without the pockets in poly crepe knit

Lekala 4412 – tunic from knit fabric

Hello there!  Here I am again.  Churning out those blog posts while I have the opportunity and the inclination!  This time I bring you Lekala 4412, subtitled “tunic from knit fabric”.

Lekala 4412 technical drawing

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I am calling this one a success. It fits just as I think that it should. Hooray for the protruding belly adjustment! The fabric is a double layered, textured knit that was in my stash. It was very soft and has worked nicely in this style.

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Construction was all on the overlocker, so it was very fast. It’s also a straightforward design. I think that it would lend itself very well to colour blocking. Choice of fabric is important. You want something soft, but not thin.

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The only thing that I’m not too keen on is the high roll neckline. It’s not too tight – and in fact it’s pretty much like the fashion illustration on the Lekala website – but I really don’t like high necks. Which is a bit weird because I am more than happy to wear scarves around my neck and do so on a regular basis. I wonder what is going on deep in my psyche there?

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This is one of the Lekala patterns that I ordered with a narrow shoulder adjustment. It really doesn’t make much difference in this style, but after having used a few patterns with that adjustment now I am quite sure that I can skip that adjustment completely.

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This is a snug dress and would be even better for winter with the sleeves lengthened. As it is I can easily layer a thin long sleeved top underneath. I am calling this dress a win.  And thanks for the brooch Mum – I love it!

Twirl To Me

It seems like a long time since I test sewed the Lily Sage & Co Twirl To Me Dress.  I intended to get better modelled photos of it before sharing it on my blog, but the weather has changed and it’s going to be a long, long time before I can persuade Clare to wear a summer frock outside in the cold just so that I can take photos.  These ones were taken right at the end of the day and there was barely enough light – but you can still tell how lovely this dress is.

Pattern test - Lily Sage and Co Twirl To Me dress

The dress is described on the pattern page as follows: This dress is made for twirling. It is fitted through the chest, but volumes out into a trapeze shape. The hem is graduated to give the dress a beautiful shape from all angles, and the front bow fastening is a unique detail you won’t see anywhere else. There is also the option of using a button instead of a bow. The dress can be made in two length options; as a dress or a tunic/top. Suitable fabrics: Most light-medium weight wovens, including lawn, quilting cotton, poplin, Broderie Anglaise, silk dupioni, silk crepe de chine, taffeta, silk satin, rayon, wool crêpe

The pattern comes in sizes 3 – 10, and I sewed size 10 for my slim and small 12 year old. This is the test pattern dress length.

Pattern test - Lily Sage and Co Twirl To Me dress

We used a couple of vintage buttons from stash for the back closure, but Clare could get the dress on without undoing them. And yes, the dress really does twirl!

Pattern test - Lily Sage and Co Twirl To Me dress

Pattern test - Lily Sage and Co Twirl To Me dress

I used a quilting cotton that was in stash (originally from Spotlight) as Clare liked the colours and print. She wasn’t overly enamoured with the bow at the centre front. She thought that it looked pretty, but felt that it was a little young for her. Well, she is twelve and at high school!

Pattern test - Lily Sage and Co Twirl To Me dress

The pattern now comes with the option of a button closure at centre front instead of the bow. Clare definitely likes this option and has asked for her next Twirl To Me dress to have the button. She loved the slight high-low hemline, the twirl factor, and the overall comfort level of the dress.

Pattern test - Lily Sage and Co Twirl To Me dress

This photo shows the fabric colour and print a little better. Construction wise, I found the instructions to be very good. I’m not sure what changes Debbie made between the test and the final pattern, but overall I have been quite impressed with her drafting and instructions. There was a nice mix of written instruction and diagram. I used the sewing machine for most of the construction but the overlocker where appropriate. The hem is finished with bias binding, which gives a nice detail considering that with it being a high-low hemline you can see the inside of the skirt at the back.

Pattern test - Lily Sage and Co Twirl To Me dress

Unsurprisingly, Stella wants one too!

Lekala 5749 coat

Another Lekala project for you.  This one was started back in 2014.  Yikes!  It languished for some time waiting for a zipper.  For a long time.  For months, in fact.  But eventually I rummaged through my zipper stash and found something that would do.  It took me about 20 minutes to sew in the zip and finish a project that had been a UFO for a long, long time.  I bet that I am not the only person who does that!  So, on to Lekala 5749.  This is described as a “raincoat with stand up collar”.  I was drawn to the interesting exposed seemliness and darts.  The whole thing is sewn “inside out”.

Lekala 5749 technical drawing

Lekala 5749 coat in wool from Super Cheap Fabrics

Okay, first thing. This clearly hasn’t been sewn in raincoat fabric. I used wool from Super Cheap Fabrics. It is a beautiful fabric, tightly woven, and an amazing colour. And yes, all the seam allowances and dart are on the outside. I finished the edges with pinking shears. Still not certain that it was the best idea.

Lekala 5749 coat in wool from Super Cheap Fabrics

It’s an unlined coat, but it’s very warm due to the fabric composition and weave. All construction was on the sewing machine.

Lekala 5749 coat in wool from Super Cheap Fabrics

There are elements of this that I like, and elements that didn’t work as successfully. I like the raw pinked edges along the front edges and cuffs, but not along the slashed and opened darts. And the collar collapses a bit in this type of fabric, whereas I think that if I’d used the recommended “whipcord” it would have had more structure. Either way, it’s a warm winter coat, and I do wear it. Although I think that it is soon to fall victim to my next wardrobe purge as it is likely to be replaced by some of my upcoming Sewjourn plans.

Lekala 5749 coat in wool from Super Cheap Fabrics