Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Australian Stitches - Stylish Sewing with Stitches

Here is the latest Index for Volume 23 for Stylish Sewing with Stitches.

You are more than welcome to download a copy.

One of the benefits I can see with Open Drive is that I can see how many of you are downloading the files which is wonderful e.g. 284 downloads of the Index for Volume 22.

If you want to find the Indexes for Volumes 12 onwards, they are here.

Enjoy.

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Skewed Cowl Collared top


The other weekend I want away for a 3 day sewing retreat with the Australian Sewing Guild at The Tops Conference Centre.

I had taken a top that was cut out which I wanted some help with fitting and then fabric for another 3 tops.

On the 2nd evening I pulled out this camel coloured knit which I purchased during my US trip back in 2011 and had plans to make the cowl neck version of KS 3740 my TNT knit top. Unfortunately there wasn't enough fabric for the cowl from the pattern, but as this fabric had fantastic drape I really wanted a cowl neck of some sort.

You can see the fabric on the table.
Thankfully one of the ladies in the group had brought along her copy of Knits for Real People by Palmer Pletsch (my copy was in my bookcase at home) and I found the instructions on how to draft a skewed cowl collar (wow I just found this link) which as long as I didn't want it as deep and happy for an extra seam it worked perfectly for the amount of fabric I had.

The best bit I was finished by lunchtime the next day, very happy indeed.





How I wore it to work the other week.

Now to get photos of the other two tops I made prior to this one!


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2017 Stash Out: 6.1 m
2017 Stash In: 4 m

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Vale Roscoe



This is so hard to write.

Over the years my long term readers have come to know my beautiful boy Roscoe.

He came into our lives as a 9 week old pup, our fur baby in January 2004.


Since then he has been my constant companion, always by my side, we have trained together and even drove around Sydney doing Agility training which he still loved to do at our local Off Leash Area


Roscoe was very accustomed to seeing me taking photos for my blog in the backyard for many years and then for some reason at 6 years of age he decided it was time for him to be included where he managed to be in a lot of my photos from then on. 


Our mornings started with the alarm going off and then being bombarded by Roscoe until we got out of bed to go for our morning walk. This was the first part of a morning ritual, breakfast and coffee (frothed milk) with a possible yogurt container to lick and play with were just the mornings. Around 5pm or when we got home another walk and play time was had before dinner and then cuddles until we all went to bed.

He loved catching ball, playing soccer, chasing and catching the Frisbee and of course, a stick was always a great play toy.


One of the treats Roscoe really enjoyed was a trip to the beach playing in the surf and rolling in the sand.

It took days to get all that sand out!
Last Christmas we realised Roscoe had lost a lot of strength in his back legs when he wasn't interested in playing in the surf or even capable of having a good roll in the sand.  He had also developed some breathing difficulties.

Last week it all came to a head, Roscoe struggled to walk even half a block without rushing home very distressed. A trip to the vet confirmed our worst fears and we had to say goodbye.

He will be missed!


Sunday, June 4, 2017

Me Made May 2017 - Another Year



has passed and I do find that May does make me look at my wardrobe in a different way, not just grab the combinations I am familiar with, but to try and change them up and wear garment combinations that I haven't or don't normally wear.

One of the garments that I was very pleased to wear was my couture dress which was finished to wear on Day 5 but at this stage that is the only photo I have managed to get so I promise a lot more information and photos will appear.

An item that Jean from Sew Jean Margaret talked about were her merino layers and as a cold frog this is something that I need to look into further.  In fact I know I have the pale coloured merino in the stash and my TNT knit t-shirt will be the perfect base.

Once again May has highlighted that I need more tops, either to replace those that are finally getting too old or plain tops so I can wear my denim jacket and those two jackets from Dilliander which now the weather is getting colder will certainly come in handy.

In part I did get 3 tops made in May, one striped and two plain so I am on my way to fixing the top issue.

Finally if you would like to see any of the photos in more detail, here is a link to my Flicker album and I also now have in instagram account petitieandsewing  where I posted my daily outfits.



Sunday, May 28, 2017

Charlie's Cardigan


I am so happy with my new cardigan for a couple of reasons.

Firstly I found out about Amy Herzog a few years ago over at Stitcher's Guild and have since purchased her 3 books as well as her Craftsy classes.

As soon as I started to read and listen to Amy I loved the way she spoke about Fabric, body shapes and styles to suit your body all based on your knitting.  In fact Franklin Habit from Mason-Dixon Knitting wrote a great post about Amy's 3 books.

Now I struggle with maths, whether it is drafting a pattern or working out how to increase or decrease my stitches for my knitting it just gets me so flustered that I choose not to do it.

This is where Amy's CustomFit has come to my rescue.

There are a number of steps, in no particular order.

Essentially you and a friend take all your measurements, which I found to be more comprehensive than what I have previously done for sewing.  The measurement are entered into the CustomFit site (once you have joined).

Then you decided on what wool you want to use, yes you can choose any wool, linen, cotton that you have and that you want to knit a garment with.  You knit a swatch of at least 30 stithces by 15 cm (6 inches) and work out your stitch and row gauge and then this information is entered into CustomFit.

Thankfully my knitting stash is not as large as my fabric stash but I had purchased this Bendigo Woollen Mills 8ply Rustic in Sienna back in May 2015 and decided to use this for my first CustomfFit cardigan.

Here is my 3rd swatch, I wanted fabric that I liked the feel of and it was achieved with 4.75mm needles.

Amy Herzog has a huge amount of information on swatching

Next you choose a pattern, add your swatch information and then your measurements are combined and you have a pattern made just for you.

My pattern page.
You are not limited to the Customfit patterns, there is a whole board over at Ravelry on how to Customfit non CustomFit sweaters.

The other reason I am so happy with this cardigan is as you know I have changed my knitting style to Continental and was completely blown away that I could knit this cardigan in 7 weeks!!  Normally it takes me at least a year to knit the pieces!


But then it did take me another 7 months to finish it as life got in the way and this was my first button band and then summer was upon us.  I finally got motivated to do the neckband and button bands which I also stablised with Panda Petersham purchased from Torb & Reiner in Melbourne.


and it was finally ready for the cooling weather.



The only change I know I need to make to my measurements is the sleeve length for long sleeves, these could be longer but are quite wearable as they are.

Expect to see a lot more CustomFit knitting!

Saturday, May 6, 2017

V8648 - The Coutre Dress progress

is very slow, especially when you have been laid up with influenza for the last 6 weeks.

Our first day started with Susan Khalje discussing with the group what we were going to make and what fabric we were going to use.  I had purchased some wool crepe for my dress, but found in my stash some wool with a twill texture which I also took along as it was larger piece.   The class nominated I use this fabric which I was happy to do as I had now decided I wanted sleeves.

Next up Susan had us putting on our toiles and doing the first round of adjustments.  Thankfully my 4th toile was pretty good but still some minor tweaks were made.

These are then marked in another colour marker on your calico and the seams are then unpicked and the pieces ironed flat.






Everything is then laid out on your silk organza and cut out, then this is laid on top of your fashion fabric and you are ready to start hand basting each piece together.


For the next fitting, I used every pin I had and felt like an Echidna whilst Susan did the next round of tweaking.


Then it was more thread tracing of the adjustments and sitting down at the sewing machine and sewing it all up.

The midriff panel gave me some grief and you can see below the different adjustments I had to do to it.


By the time I left the class 6 days later, I had:
  • the dress bodice, midriff and skirt all sewn together.
  • hand picked the centre back zip.
  • the right sleeve was basted in place, and the left sleeve was waiting it's turn.

There is still a lot of work to do, I only finished the catchstitching of all the seam allowances over the Easter break and I am now in the process of making sure all the adjustments are on the pattern pieces so I can cut out the lining.


More to follow.

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Navy linen t-shirt

There is not much to tell about this new t-shirt except that I made it back in February as I was in desperate need for new summer tops.


Using my TNT t-shirt pattern KS 3740 this was a very quick make with the linen knit I purchased in Cairns in July last year.

One of the things I did differently was to use my Juki overlocker to sew the tape into the shoulder seams as I had never done this before.


I also used the binder on my Coverstitch to add the neckband but I forgot to take a photo.

The rest of the top came together quite quickly and after I had glued the hems in place I used my Coverstitch to sew the hems.


This is how I wore it to my ASG meeting at The Remnant Warehouse today,


and Roscoe was very happy to see me home and was demanding a pat.




******************
2017 Stash Out: 3.3 m
2017 Stash In: 4 m

Monday, April 10, 2017



It is time again to make our pledges for Me-Made-May and mine is as follows:

I, Sharon from Petite and Sewing sign up as a participant of Me-Made-May 2017. I endeavour to wear clothes made by me, or made and gifted to me, each day for the duration of May 2017.

I have received two hand made jackets from my very good sewing friend, Dilliander which fills one of the holes I found last year, layers.

Are you taking part in MMM this year?  You can sign up here



Sunday, March 5, 2017

V8648 -The Couture Dress with Susan Khalje

Wow February was an exhausting month and the dress isn't finished but I thought I'd share my preparation for this course.

In our detailed pre-class notes Susan asked us to bring to class "a fitted muslin/toile" and as I shared my plans for this course I did have my 4th toile ready for Susan to fit on our first day of class.

The reason for the 4 toiles is that all of my sewing of late has been using TNT patterns so it has been a very long time since I have tried to get a pattern to fit me.

Therefore this is a very long post about pattern adjustments.

1st Toile

In preparation for my first fitting with Anita from Studio Faro I started with size 6 using my high bust measurement as the starting point.

Then I did the following adjustments:
  • FBA of 2cm
  • Raised the hips by 5cm
  • Raised back neckline by 9.5cm
  • Added 0.5cm to each of the seams of the skirt and back to zero at the bodice.
My first fitting with Anita was on 4 December 2016 and as you can see the bodice was snug so Anita suggested I add 0.5cm to every vertical seam on the dress so this makes me wonder if I should have started with the size 8 but then those vertical seams did not affect the shoulders.


2nd Toile

So the width was added to all the vertical seams for my 2nd visit with Anita on 8 January 2017 and Anita marked the following adjustments:

Bodice

  • Took 1cm out of the width of the centre front bodice
  • Smoothed out the bust curve by 7mm
  • Took a tuck from the bodice side front side seams of 11mm to nothing at the bust curve
  • Took a tuck of 7mm above the bust on bodice side fronts
  • Dropped armhole by 1cm
  • Bodice back side took 7mm tuck right across 

Midriff pieces

  • Added 3mm at waist edge of Midriff Front and Midriff Side Front taking to zero at bodice edge
  • Took 1cm from bodice edge of Midriff front to zero at waist seam

Sleeves


  • Biceps adjustment on sleeve back of 1.5cm at hem edge using Fit For Real People on page 171 
  • Added 9mm at back side and front side seams
  • Added 6mm to sleeve centre seam starting at the sleeve hem taking taking back to zero level at the underarm for both front and back patterns pieces
  • Shortened the sleeve 3.2cm
  • Dropped the armhole by 1cm 
Skirt

  • Added 3mm on the front and side front seams from the waist back to zero 13.5cm below
  • Took off 1.5 cm from the front centre back to 1cm at side seam
  • Took off 1cm at side back skirt to zero at side seam

3rd Toile

At my final fitting on 22 January 2017 Anita took a further 0.6cm from the centre front bodice,


and for both the bodice side front and back, reshaped the armsyce and adjusted the shoulder seams.

V8648 Bodice Side Back

4th Toile

Finally my 4th toile was ready for my fitting with Susan Khalje on 6 February 2017.



More to follow.



Monday, January 23, 2017

Coral necklace



There are a few coral outfits appearing in my wardrobe and I decided I needed a different style of necklace for them, so I headed back to Zilchbeads and found another inspiring spiral necklace using long Magatama 4x7mm beads, together with size 8 and 11 seed beads.


Photo from https://www.etsy.com/market/rainbow_rose_seeds

The beads are quite cute, and I was told that one way they looked like a "boot" and the other way a "shoe" so when stringing you have to make sure that they are all facing the same way.  I chose the "shoe" orientation,


and I had fun making the earrings using both orientations,


and here is the full set!


They are getting quite a bit of wear this summer with my cold shoulder top and my watermelon frilled top.



Sunday, January 22, 2017

Cold Shoulder Top



Back in December during my first lot of toile preparation for Susan Khalje's classes I decided to make myself a new top for summer.

To start with I pulled out my TNT knit pattern, KS 3740 and then thought I would add the cowl from the ASG Cowl Neck Knit Top Sew-along, so I traced of a new pattern and followed the great instructions and had a new front pattern.

Then I dug out this fuchsia knit that I had purchased at The Remnant Warehouse that worked with this skirt that is an orphan in my wardrobe now that the knitted top no longer fits.


I merrily cut out my top, stitched the shoulders and overlocked the side seams and tried it on!

Did you notice above the words "no longer fits", well it was a complete disaster, partly due to the fact that I have gained some centimetres and the stretch of the knit wasn't what I thought it would be.  The top has now had its side seams unpicked and I am trying to work out a way to salvage it.

However I was determined that I would have a new top by the end of the year!

Back to the drawing board, this time I pulled out some Coral Cotton Knit that I purchased from Pitt Trading back in 2015.


First I checked the amount of stretch and it was better than the fuchsia knit, so I went ahead and cut out and sewed another top but this time I only basted the side seams before I tried it on.  A bit snug but wearable so the sleeves were basted in.

Looking in the mirror it was very apparent that I hadn't made the forward shoulder adjustment to my knit TNT pattern, and with the knit being rather thin it was really noticeable.

It took me a few days and then it dawned on me, what about a cold shoulder top!

I undid the top of the sleeve and then put it on, turning down what I thought looked good, pinned in it place and then took the sleeves out, stitching the new top hems on my coverstitch and then trimming the seam.


I hemmed the sleeves and then stitched the sleeves back into the armholes.  I added Lite Steam-A-Seam2 to the remainder of the armsyce


turned it under and coverstitched it in place.

After a few washes
Back to the sleeve pattern, I pinned what I had cut off and it was 6cm.  So for the next version I will create a new pattern and straighten the curve at the top 1cm of the sleeve so that I when I turn it to hem there is solid fabric all the way across.


The back view


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2017 Stash Out: 1 m
2017 Stash In: 4 m