Sunday, October 10, 2010

Sewing Convention wrap up

I am supposed to be tidying up the sewing room so it can be a guest room for the in-laws when they arrive on Wednesday, instead I am blogging :)

At the end of September Alison, Velosewer and I drove to Ballarat in Victoria to attend the 9th National Convention held by the Australian Sewing Guild at Ballart Grammar, arriving just in time for the first dinner on Sunday night and we would be there until after breakfast on Saturday.

We were looked after very well, our rooms were tidy and ours was very warm compared to others, but I'm definately not complaining, and the classrooms were heated as well. There was plenty of food, just wondering why the dining hall is not heated?

I had elected to do 2 x 2 day workshops and Wednesday was left free.

Monday and Tuesday was spent with Sue Marriot who was teaching us how to use our TNT Pants Pattern to design and construct a pair of jeans learning the following techniques - topstitching, traditional fly front, jean pockets (including pocket stay), belt loops and hems.

Monday morning I started with my TNT Pants Pattern Vogue 9537 (OOP) as my base and with Sue's guidance and great notes created the Jeans Pattern. I managed to cut them out in a black woven denim from Spotlight and the pocket pieces from a fat quarter. By the end of Monday I had:

• Stitched and topstitched the front pockets
• Inserted the Metal Zip and more topstitching
• Used the design from Margie T’s Jeans for my back pocket and had these stitched and ready to be placed on my jeans.

Tuesday’s first job was to stitch the back pockets in place and attach the yoke. At this stage I basted the legs together for a fit. This is when Sue took out quite a bit off the back leg (sorry the excess that Sue cut off, I cut off the pattern and didn’t take measurements) and I had to cut off 1.5cm from the waist so this is why my front pockets look like coin pockets. Once we were happy with the fit I finished off the leg seams. I then attached the waistband and ran out of time before I could get Sue to check or topstitch which turns out very fortunate. This is where they were left until I got home.

Last week I tried them on and oh dear, that waistband gaposis, it is not much but enough to bug me, so I have unpicked the waistband and again work has got in the way and they are still at this stage but thought I would show you how they look (well as good as you can see them in black).

Front (minus button)



Note the back waistband is not attached here.

Wednesday saw the three of us getting back in the car and heading to Melbourne to check out some more fabrics shops and Jimmy’s Buttons. It turned out to be the wrong season for me to purchase fabrics, nothing wanted to come home with me.

Thursday and Friday was spent with Pamela Kerr, who promised that those Perfect points on shirt collars wouldn't be so daunting anymore. Tips for edge stitching around the collar as this can also be hard work and often ruins an entire shirt because it can look poor quality.

Thursday was essentially the fitting day. We all started with McCall’s 5433 Palmer/Pletsch Classic Fit pattern. I had already cut the paper pattern out (size 8, View D), drawn in my stitching lines and taped the curves so I was a bit ahead of the others when class started on Thursday morning. I soon had it all pinned together and was ready for my first fitting and discussed with Pam about making this a shirtmaker style (View D just needed the hem allowance added).

I was ready to cut out my fabric after we had lunch. By the end of Thursday I had the front and back darts sewn, side seams and shoulder seams sewn and everything was pressed.

Friday morning started with cutting out the interfacing x 2 for the collar, collar stand, cuff and button band and fusing these.

Then disaster struck, I was busy overlocking my side seams and

I put it on to see where it was and it is sitting on my waist, which is fortunate.

I made the decision to ignore it (well sort of) and continued to sew the collar stand, collar and button bands on the dress and this is where it is up to.



Side view

Now Pamela did suggest that I add belt loops so I can wear a belt. I’m not a huge belt wearer and then I got to thinking about adding a self fabric band (probably stitched the same way as the button band is) around the waist and this is what I have played with very roughly this afternoon when I decided to take the photos.

I will share further details about my adjustments when I finally finish these items (note In-Laws in sewing room for 1 week at least).

I had a wonderful time at the Convention, catching up with others that I don't see from Convention to Convention, meeting new people and learning lots of new things through my classes but also through the generous nature of all those who attended. I will admit that by the end of the Convention I was exhausted, however, I am now trying to work out how to get my sewing machine to Launceston!

Now I had better get back to packing up the sewing room.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Possum Yarn

I am someone who has to have something to do with her hands and as I can't always take my sewing machine away with me on holidays or during lengthy road trips I cross-stitch but last year I decided to take up knitting again once I saw this Shawl Collar Jacket at the Turramurra Drapery stand at the Craft and Quilt Fair held at Darling Harbour in June 2009.

It is knitted in double moss stitch and uses TOUCH Possum Yarn. I'm so happy with how it fits and the design is so simple but classic.

I stopped off at All Buttons Great and Small in Newtown on the way home from work on Thursday and got this gorgeous hook and eye clasp.

I wore it in Thredbo last weekend and was surprised at how warm it was and can see that it will get a lot of wear next winter.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Australian Stitches - Volume 16

Here is the latest Index for Volume 16 for Australian Stitches, please take a copy if you want.

I have also sent a copy to Lynn Cook, Editor of Australian Stitches.


Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Simplicity 2648

This is the dress I had fitted with Alison Wheeler during my Fitting Weekend.

I chose to work on this dress with Alison because it had sleeves and as you read here it was the main issue I wanted to work on.

This is the first time I have used a pattern that has choices for cup sizes and whether you are slim, average or curvy. The decision for the cup size was easy, I used a B cup, Size 10, but it was when I had to work out whether I was slim or average that I got myself in a bit of a dilemma. I ended up using the average pattern size 12 for the skirt which turned out pretty correct.

Again I had my normal adjustments done:

* Round shoulder – 1.5cm added
* High round back - 1cm added

* Round shoulder - 1.5cm removed
* 1.5cm gaposis taken from the front neck edge

The first thing Alison did was check the sleeve cap height and got me to add 1cm to the sleeve and blouse armholes before she looked at any other adjustments.

Then further adjustments were made which then made my total adjustment list as follows:

Back Adjustments

* 1.5cm added back shoulder
* 1cm gaposis taken from the back neck edge
* Added 1cm to armhole edge
* High round back of 1cm"

Front Adjustments

* Round shoulder - 1.5cm removed
* 1cm gaposis taken from the front neck edge
* Added 1cm to armhole

Sleeve adjustments

* Added 1cm to the side seams to match the armholes on the bodice

I had taken some brown linen that I had purchased from The Fabric Store with me for this dress and DS was rather horrified that I would use this for a toile, however with the adjustments we had done and the other fittings that we would be doing, I convinced her that it would be a very wearable toile.

DS then proceeded to cut this dress out, whilst Alison and I worked on the Marfy Skirt.

Between DS and I we got the dress basted together with the sleeves in for Alison to check. It was here that we noticed that the side seams needed to be straightened at the hips (I'm fairly straight there) and there was 2cm of extra fabric at the centre back seam, even though the side seams were falling correctly so this extra fabric was removed and then we played around with the darts and seams to match the bodice and skirt.

This is where the dress was up to by the time I left Brisbane and I cut out the lining and had the construction finished with the hem being sewn during our 10hr drive to Ballarat for the ASG National Convention so I could wear it to the Gala Dinner.

Here I am outside our accommodation (jacket off for the photograph, it was too cold to go to dinner without it!)

Here is the back view (in my backyard a week later)

and here is how the dress has been worn so far, under my Chanel Jacket. It will be a great dress for Spring.

I am very pleased with this dress and can see other variations being made. Alison also pointed out that I now have a good fitting skirt and top pattern as well.