Tuesday, 25 August 2015

Made Up: Sewing for good causes and a finished project

Hello all,

As a primary teacher, reading and literacy are two things I believe are incredibly important - I'm also a book lover myself so it's doubly important to me! Which is why, when I saw Love Sewing Magazine and Karen over at Did You Make That? were launching the Made Up initiative to raise money for the National Literacy Trust, I just knew I had to take part - although having been away, it's taken a while to blog about it!
If you want more convincing, head over to Karen's site and read her blog entries about the cause.

Anyway, I donated and pledged to make something by the 8th September. And here it is! I pledged to make a Grainline t-shirt - nothing particularly fancy or challenging, but what with having a house in total chaos because of decorating (and therefore limited access to my fabric stash) and being 7 months pregnant so wanting something practical, it seemed like a good option to me.

I bought the insect fabric a few months back with the intention of making a Megan Nielson maternity top out of it, but decided I'd prefer it as a t-shirt instead.

Not much to add in terms of making it as I haven't made any alterations since the last proper Grainline t-shirts I made here and here. The only difference is that this is a stable knit fabric rather than a woven fabric, which means there's enough stretch to fit over my ever expanding mid section! I made this in a morning and I have no doubt it'll be a well worn piece of my wardrobe!

So, that's me done with my pledge! If you haven't joined yet, please consider it - it's such a good cause! And well done Karen for setting up such a great fund raising activity!

Friday, 21 August 2015

Finished Project: Megan Nielsen for Simplicity 1469

Hello again!

Another finished project again! And another that was made back in the summer half term break. Somehow, despite wearing the purple version of this dress loads I haven't actually got round to photographing either version. This time a Simplicity pattern - by Megan Nielsen. It's her maternity top / dress.

I used this jersey for the first version. I bought it from the Birmingham at the rag market, knowing that it would be good to make something stretchy and accommodating out of!

This dress has a lot of different pieces but it was really straightforward to make and put together. I managed to make it all in a morning and still had time to put together a quick self drafted, elasticated, gathered skirt as well. Not bad for a day's work!

This pattern is however, really loose on me (even with the increased bump size since making it). As with all maternity patterns, you have to base your size choice on pre-pregnancy measurements, which I did, but it's way too loose still. Maybe it will fit better towards the end of the pregnancy? As a result, I haven't actually worn this version at all. Although putting it on to finally take pictures showed that it fits better than it did so it might be brought out of the closet for the last few months. It'ss see me into the winter with some leggings / tights and a cardie so I can't complain.

I machine sewed everything on this dress including the hem as I find catch-stitching jersey to be a bit of a bugger sometimes. This made the whole process very quick and easy!

Because the original blue version was so large, I decided to make the next size down in a purple ponte knit I had. This second version fit so much better and has been in constant rotation since making it. Plus, it still fits well even now and will no doubt fit up until the end. The bonus with this pattern is that it's also a nursing dress as the cross over top allows easy boob access so it will get lots of wear even after Bean arrives.

The second version was even quicker to make than the first since it was familiar so I managed to make it in a couple of hours. The great thing about jersey too is that you don't actually have to finish off the raw edges so it's great when you just want a quick make with no hassle.

I've ordered this fabric:

To make the top version of this pattern too and I've got some nice red and white stripe jersey which I plan on making some comfortable t-shirts and vest tops out off as well. Although, as mentioned in the previous post, I have no sewing space at the moment, so who knows when this will happen!

Friday, 14 August 2015

Vintage pledge #3: 1970's maternity top: Style 1107

Hello hello!

Another finished project for you today and another item to add to my vintage pledge. This is the third of the 5 vintage patterns I pledged to make this year. When I signed up for the pledge, the plan was to use the patterns I already have in my stash. However, my plans were thwarted by me becoming pregnant 5 1/2 months ago so I decided to buy a couple of vintage maternity patterns to see me through the next few months and also hit my pledge too.

So, this pattern is from the 70's and, although I will probably never make the dress or trousers, I really liked the swingyness of the top. the pattern was a bust size 34" which means I should have sized up to 36" but it looked quite a loose pattern so I decided to leave it as was. And I'm glad I did! It's massive on me even at this size! :-) I actually made this top way back in summer half term when the bump was virtually non-existent, but even now with a much larger bump it's still pretty spacious!

This was such a quick make plus it's made with swapped cotton I scored from my first ever Birmingham sewing meetup so that's an added bonus - no new purchases necessary.

The original pattern calls for a zip up the back. No idea why given the looseness of the fit, so I decided to ignore the zip, sew up the back seam and just leave the back yoke open to add a button. This is more than enough for getting the top on and off so I'm glad I didn't waste a zip on this pattern.

So that's pattern #3 finished. The next vintage pattern on the list is this one: Simplicity 7363. I love the dress in this pattern and I may make the top as well. No idea when I'll get round to making it. Our house is currently in complete upheaval mode while we decorate so I have no sewing space to speak of! :-(