baby kimono top:
- pattern: free pattern from the purl bee,
- fabric: printed cotton (quilting),
- notions: bias binding, snap fastener
From the tissue fit I made the following alterations:
I was going to make this jacket in green with white piping and white buttons for a graphic look, but I came across some wooden buttons with small flowers that looked really good next to the fabric and which changed the look - it made me think of English fields of lush green grass (the rain is good for something) with a scattering of flowers.
This pattern was straightforward to make up and the instructions simple to follow. I really appreciated having diagrams to refer to, especially after my last couple of Burda Style magazine makes.
This jacket is unlined so I made sure that the inside was really neat and all the seams finished nicely. I like to use up fabric scraps for interfacings. For this jacket I used a cotton gauze with purple flowers that was left over from making the ruffle dress. If the facings turn over - you get a peep of flowers (instead of fusible interfacing).
I’m going to look out for a rose print fabric to make something to go with this jacket, as I think it will pair up well.
I had some cotton left over from the red 1970s dress, and I thought it would be a good idea to use it to make some shorts to wear at home. The shorts pattern is from the December 2011 issue of Burda Style magazine.
There are only four pattern pieces and it is a really simple design. The cotton that I used would not normally be used for shorts, as it isn’t really heavy enough, but it’s not sheer either - so it’s fine. I thought it would be a good exercise to see how I get on with fitting shorts, as there are other trouser patterns I would like to try from the same issue. (In fact there are many lovely things that I want to make from this particular issue.)
From the tissue fit - the first try was too big at the hip and sides. So I used the smaller size according to my hip size and the next size up for my waist. I also cut the pattern at the hip line and extended it by 1.5 inches, as I found from the tissue fit that there wasn’t a lot of ‘coverage’ - a bit teeny tiny for me. I also added 3cm to the hem to make the leg length longer.
There isn’t a waistband to these shorts. It means they sit very well at the waist - following the natural curve.
This pattern is like a blank canvas. I can imagine making it up in corduroy with a lining, or even in satin with buttons or snap fasteners instead of a zip for sleepwear. It would also look great with a print or embellishments.
I thought it was a good time to tackle bodice alterations by making a simple top. I chose New Look 6808 as the bodice has a nice fitted shape, and a variety of different sleeves, necklines and collars to choose from.
I decided to make this into a summer work top and chose a cool blue and white paisley patterned cotton.
I did a tissue-fit with the following pattern adjustments:
All these changes were worth it, as it means this top fits me well, and looks flattering.
The tie and peter pan collar details are very cute.
I will be making more tops from this pattern, as it is very wearable and lovely.
One of the things that I wanted to make this year was a dress that can look like separates - one that has a contrast to the bodice and skirt. I’ve seen many lovely ones including Mena’s statement necklace dress and what I wore’s ray of light dress.
I cut the bodice from a Liberty Tana Lawn, which I bought in Edinburgh (Crafters’ Ceilidh). The print design is very busy, so I thought a block of colour for the skirt would be a good contrast. I found a cotton that perfectly matched the lovely teal colour that can be found in the print design.
The pattern is a contemporary one - Simplicity 2444 from the Project Runway series, but the shape of the neckline and full skirt has a retro nod to 1950s/early 1960s shapes. The diagonal pleating detail in the skirt is really lovely - ‘architectural’ almost, and the plain colour fabric really sets it off well. The skirt is my favourite part of this dress.
I always have to redraw the waistline when I make dresses - as there is a one size difference between my bodice and skirt size. I’m learning slowly what I need to do to try and resolve fitting issues with bodices. I moved the point of both sets of front darts one inch higher.
There are still some improvements I can make to the front bodice pattern to make it fit better, as I’d like to use this pattern again to make other variations of this dress. I found some good instructions on how to eliminate darts, so I might remove the outer darts as I don’t think I need the extra shaping. I think also I could also redraw the centre front line about 1cm in at the neckline to eliminate a little excess fabric there.
This is the first garment made on my new Singer sewing machine - which is lovely.
Spring will be here soon, and I’m really looking forward to wearing this dress.