My Sewing and KnittAntics

Frenzied Sewing and Hand Knitting Antics jazzed along by Machine Knitting.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Sewing for Pleasure 2007

Sewing for Pleasure Exhibition
The National Show for all Textile Crafts
29th March - 1st April 2007
Birmingham NEC , Hall 12
Show Details
The best of the UK Sewing /Craft Expos for dressmakers.
I will zipping up to Birmingham on Saturday with a quick detour to Giesse Scampoli

Work In Progress.
I have been working on my third winter coat of the season.
It is great to get them done( well into Spring but who cares)
The pattern is Burda WOF September 2005 # 101 amended

The coat is actually completed, lined and just waiting for closures.
The original coat was done in two versions, aboucle tweed with snap closures and the camel coat above with functional buttonholes and buttons.

Popular opinion may indicate bound buttonholes or nothing for coats ( Not my personal view, as I dont do dogma)
I have sent samples of fabric scraps to two local , very experienced sewing friends to test and make bound buttonholes , machine and hand worked ones.
Okay , bad results ........................................... If Joan cant get great bound buttonholes, then they wont work for me.She had even offered to do them freebie style for me.
I am going to let the coat stew for a week whilst I get on with other pesky sewing
Burda tweed jacket coming up pronto.

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Monday, March 26, 2007

FO: Vogue 2954 Donna Karan Shirt

Patter: Vogue 2954 Donna Karan Shirt Jacket
Fabric: Satin face Cotton Lycra Broadcloth

By hocus pocus I picked out the size to make.With dropped shoulders and a presumed very loose fit , horizontal flat measurements didnt provide a lot to work with.
There is no finished body measurements on the pattern pieces except for the sleeve width.
Alterations are possible as the waistline is marked.
The instructions: Well with sawdust between one's ears , who knows?
I didnt read the instructions properly ( to my peril I add) and with imperial measurements , I messed up a few seams.
Purists may find the instructions for the yoke treatment a tad outdated.
Caution: The belt is the same size for sz 14-20 so one may need to alter.I made the belt san fringe( too lazy) cutting on the cross grain instead of bias because my fabric had lycra.
A fun project in the genre of vintage Issey Miyake patterns with felled seams and loads of topstitching.
The final garment looks heaps better on moi , even with the knockers I cant do anything about.
I would make agin in a heavy silk dupioni or tafetta.
Planning to wear with stretch linen long skirt ( dont ever wear trousers)

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Friday, March 23, 2007

FO:Burda WOF 9/2006 # 126 Wool Coat

Project Details

Pattern:Burda WOF 9/2006 Style #126 A

Description:Knee nipping coat , fitted and tailored true to style , with flared hemline wide notched collar and revers/lapel.Giant non functional buttons and covered snap closure.
Fabric: Blue wool/cashmere felted boucle
Lining: Twill satin

Reasonabley easy to put together coat.Great pattern for small yardages.I used 2.5 metres to get a 104cm length coat.
Alterations done for figure xteristics , the coat version A was 92 cm , too short for my requirements so pattern lengthened to 104 cm.
Soft/Speed tailoring techniques as in the UK Terry Fox et al method.
I used super soft superior ( suit weight weft type fusible interfacing) The satin weave which is a heavier coat weight type didn't fuse well so parts of the front had a double layer.
Back upper view shows the collar edge fold( last post re: turn of cloth)
Coat was completely lined on the machine above picture shows the front facing/lining hem interface.This is completely finished on the sewing machine using the instructions which has been featured in Burda WOF past issues from the late 1990s.The article I currently refer to was the Pro-tip from BWOF 8/2000.There is a comparable article in Threads magazine issue # 108.The Burda article is better to grasp the concept as the illustrations are made up of line drawings depicting the exact stitching paths.

Sleeve heads used .There are a few more varieties( will take a pic with the next coat) I used the upper precut version in this coat .
Buttons are non functional and yippee no pesky buttonholes to make .I didnt want to get the mgea big ones depicted in the magazine , so I ysed 27 mm size ones .
The snaps were covered with lining.Made them in the prescriptive method , only change is that I cut out the circles with pincking sheras to reduce fraying.

Great coat , one that I wll make again.

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Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Rendevous in Town, Sewing in progress

Last week Tini and spouse were in London on a break , and I had the privilege of catching up with them mid week.They were absolutely charming.
A pit stop for caffeine , then a visit to Liberty yarn department.Despite the small snarfu we came away with purchases.Moi the princess enabler assisted Tini with her purchase of some yummy Rowan yarn and pattern book , I got a couple more mini pattern books, Bamboo Tape and one of the new RYC books.We were even able to squeeze a detour into R D Franks before they had to go.
Lucky me , Tini gifted the above Burda Easy Fashion S/S 2007 and Online knitting book.
Thank you very very much Tini for taking the time out for a rendezvous

Enabler Alert
Earlier on in the same week a trip to the Westend had me in RDFranks .The ultimate shop for fashion books, magazines and pattern drafting texts.They had the above pictured drafting tools on closeout.
Ivorine1/4 and1/5th scale
Neck and Armhole Guide copyright MRohr.
Each at £1.00 each.Well worth if local to London snagging them up , or find a crafting pal to help purchase

Project: Burda WOF 9/2006 #125
I am sewing quite a bit but the lack of time and dodgy computer gizmos( no change anytime soon) means blogging is waaaaaaaaaaaaay down the pile of things to do.
The Burda WOF coat is done and will put up dodgy pictures sharpish.

The fabric used: Felted wool cashmere boucle, somewhat friable .
No real suprises in the construction just a few things to think through because the fabric whilst light is still bulky.
Apart from deciding the choice of interfacings and how to deal with interfacing or not in seam allowances to try and reduce bulk , the lapel/collar edge seams usually needs drafting adjustments.l
One could guess the amount of tolerance needed for the top collar to completely cover the under collar aka Turn of Cloth.
Burda WOF in recent times dont have a separate pattern piece for the top and under collar Probably best as any pattern company draft will not work for all agrment weights

Calculating for Turn of Cloth
I work out the amount of fabric need to add to the top collar edge to completely cover the under collar prior to cutting , and adapt the top collar and front facing lapel pattern pieces accordingly.
1.Cut two rectangle of fashion fabric and two pieces of the interfacings .
I used supersoft superior and medium weight silky couture.
2.Sew the interfaced pieces together.

3.Three point press( on each side of the seamline and then open the seam for third step)
4.Bevel and grade the seam , fold and press favouring the outer garment piece.
5. The facing/under collar piece is now shorter and the difference in measurement here 3mm is the amount needed to amend the draft for undercollar and front facing lapel.

Why bother? For me it save stopping whilst putting the component parts together to jugggle pinching out , taking blisters and whatnot, and works well for all weights of fabrics .Saves me five to ten minutes I reckon.

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Saturday, March 10, 2007

My Fabric London

I had taken these pictures todo a write up a few months ago .Oh well at least it is getting done The question of fabric shopping in London comes up often, and while there are resources from search engines to reviews to magazine articles some of the gems are oft omitted.
This is my town , so there is very little about shopping in London I dont know.
The usual responses would probably include West End Crawl , Berwick Street and environs, Edgware Road/Church Street for the couture quality fabrics.
Street markets like Walthamstow, Roman Road , Church Street, S Bush, Borough .
Ethnic type fabrics in Brick Lane, Southall , Ealing Road Wembley.
Old Brompton Road for Libery Prints, Camden Town , Ladbroke Grove blah blah blah

My London underground Fabric Sources
Material World
13 Market Place
Acton London W3 6QS
Tel: 0208 993 1068
Open Mon- Fri
Cash and Cheques.No mail order

Also known as the dive.The pictures tell the whole story.
The fabrics are sourced from design studio , jobbers high street sample studios, even vintage fabrics from defunct shops and costume makers.
Price range from £1-10 with most of the fabrics between two and five pounds.
Regularly designer ends of lines as well as fabrics from M &S***ks, H**bs and a host of UK high street and bridge clothing collections.

You may have to develop the stashing personality.I always have danger money in my car so if a visit coincides with the delivery of say interfacings, bemberg linings , lingerie findings , We( as in the west london sewing cartel) clear them out.
End of rolls, may not have enough metres for project, may be missing care labels .
Fabrics often ahead of season , eyelets for example were available last year before they even hit the shops.
Some knowledge of fabric quality, trend forecasting is helpful.
But with savings of up to 90% off for often sensational high end gear , its a no brainer
My last visit I scooped silk satin from Amanda Wakeley , spring boucle and some microfibre knit.
What I left behind this week included a stunning brown and pink mesh fabric with embroidery overlay and fabric flowers, giant dogtooth coating from fall 2006 M & S range, lingerie findings and a very pretty print silk chiffon.

Linings , notions , interfacings shoulder pads , corsages often available.
Italian suitings, VPL(viscose poly lycra) , tweeds , coatings.
Faux furs , raincoatings , quilted linings , even real leather and suede on occaisons.
Impressive selection of prints available all year round.
The secret source for the best quality knits IMHO from some of the top mills in Italy.These are piled high in the wooden box bang in the centre of the store.I have purchased knits that have been seen in J'''''***** for £30-40 a metre.

Full Picture Tour
Well worth putting on your Fabric map , or a hike if local or visiting London.

Jersey Vogue Fabrics
14 Station Road
Edgware Middlesex
0208 952 7751
Open Mon-Fri, Sun .Closed Saturday
Cash and Cheques.No mail order
Similar to the dive. Probably have the best selection of linings in a gazillion colours and weights .They have interfacings in a myriad of colours.Above( mid project) is a small colour samplings of the fusible tricot interfacings they stock.The only place I have found silky couture interfacing in colours other than black , white and nude.
They clear Frank Usher , Windsmoor, Mulberry ends etc and have a very good selection of silks, blends and knits ( mainly poly types).
Many fabrics dont have care tags , but they will sample if you have your pyrotechnics kit on you( fabric burn test bits n bobs)
Small selection of regular priced sewing threads, notions.

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Yarn Shopping in London

Tini asked about yarn shopping in London.Mmmh I only buy the British brands locally and all foreign brands(Phildar Phildar Phildar GGH GGH GGH Lang Lang Lang) from source

Polly on All Tangled Up has an excellent review bar the newer shops.
Polly's Yarn Shop Review

Regent Street
For Rowan Jaeger Gedifra, Kaffe Fasset patchwork fabrics.

John Lewis
Oxford Street
4th Floor
Yarn Dept for Rowan Jaeger Debbie Bliss Noro Sirdar Patons Louise Harding yarns and books
Adjacent haberdashery department with fabrics notions etc and pattern counter for Vogue, Simplicity and New Look patterns

Peter Jones
Same as J Lewis concession
Sloane Square
Close to Sloane Square Tube station

Carries the more exotic US brands
213 Upper Richmond Street
SW15 6SQ

Newish shop with online sales.
Carries GGH, Colinette, Alchemy and a loads more difficult to source yarns in the UK
41 Cross Street
London NI

Husqvarna Studio in Putney carry Gran studio and Adriafil yarns and the prices are competitive.Useful to see and try the yarns as the Garn Studio have the most amazing knitting patterns which are free and have been translated to many languages.

I am not recommending any of the newer yarn shops , for me Liberty and John Lewis are just fine.

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Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Catch up sewing update???

The picture above was taken almost two weeks ago , something along the lines of loving the postie with brown envelopes and the blue sticker bearing par avion or Airmail usually indicates goodies.And no exception this time.More poignant as the Patrones magazine and Vogue Miyake pattern landed with a wishwashyesque Interweave Knits and worse , more ghastly( not really) professional titles.
Thank you very much Marita &Sue.
Well mandatory medical journals added to the almost tottering pile meant catch up in the real world beckoned.
Have done a fair amount of sewing over the winter , mainly basics and replacements.
Dodgy Internet access and a dressmaker dummy recovering( or not) from a botched nip and tuck and the lack of time to post drivel......................
Brown/pink plaid bias skirt with back fishtail .Pattern OOP McCalls
BWOF 10/2006 jacket

Sunny sunny day in London , but wool boucle coat needs to be finished

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