Tuesday 11 November 2014

BurdaStyle 08/2014 - 120/121 T Shirt with shoulder pleat

It wasn't so long ago I would have thought making a white t shirt instead of buying one to be bonkers, but increasingly I find they are either made from poor quality see through material or they are expensive.  So when I found some decent white jersey at a great price I picked some up.

Still I couldn't make myself make a plain white t and wanted something with a bit of interesting detail - enter BurdaStyle 08/2014 - 120 / 121.  I made a mix of the 2 views, the curved hem from 120 with the short sleeves from 121.

I really enjoyed making this, the drape detail and back shoulder seams are great details.  However wearing it, the extra fabric in the drape tends to distort the neckline as you can see below and even on the dressform now I look at these pictures, which is a shame.  (Or perhaps I stretched it out while sewing?)  Maybe this is one t shirt that would benefit from a more lightweight fabric.  Oh well, it's a white t shirt, it will get worn!

Friday 7 November 2014

Burda Style 05/2013 - 103 twist top

Generally when I see fabric I have a vague idea what I want to do with it, even if it's only the type of garment.  However I also have a bit of a magpie tendency and will pick something up simply because it is pretty or unusual.  The places I shop for fabric here are cheap enough that taking a bit of a risk is not going to break the bank.  (Incidentally next time I go fabric shopping in the best place in HK - Sham Shui Po, I will document my favourite shops and do a post on it.  I'm also more than happy to meet and shop with anyone visiting, please just drop me a note!).

Anyway that was the case with this thin burnout jersey, once I got it home I wasn't sure how to use it, there is a lot of transparency and underlining would be tricky because it is so drapy.  Finally I decided to try this Burda top which is designed to be worn layered.  I will grow out of twist tops one of these days....

This is a very simple top to put together especially if you have made a twist style before.  I think it is a good use of this fabric but I must admit I am tempted to fuss with this top a lot when I am wearing it.  It's a very deep neckline which shifts around and the lower wrap layer has a tendency to hang down.  The best solution would be to add retainer straps at the shoulder seam to wrap around the straps of the camisole under layer to deal with the first problem and to just get used to the second!

Thursday 6 November 2014

Catch Up and Blog Hop

Well I've had an awful few weeks, can you believe my other cat, Barney, got sick and also had to be put to sleep.  We estimate he was around 18 years old which is great going for a cat, but the timing is terrible and I have been incredibly upset about it.

Barney in his younger and fatter days, RIP my friend x
I've just returned from a fitness retreat weekend in Koh Samui, Thailand (thank goodness for all the workout gear I managed to make recently!) which proved to be a good tonic and I hope I can move on now.  All in all 2014 has not been a great year and this has definitely showed in my blogging and sewing output and quality - while doing something I love should provide comfort it seems that I need to be in a place where I can properly focus and enjoy the process.

There are worse places to do a workout!

Fabric shopping in Hong Kong (where I live in case you don't know!) is another matter though so I am all set to welcome the return of my sewing mojo.  On that note "couture a la mode" asked where my print workout fabric came from - this is not helpful I'm sure, but it was from the fabric stalls on Ki Lung St in Sham Shui Po, Hong Kong.  It's total pot luck what you will find and tends to be mill ends so you have to get it while you can, that one has already gone I'm afraid.

Before I get on and post the things I have made this seems a good time to respond to the meme that is going round (or gone by now!) on blog writing and reflect on the process a bit.  I was nominated by two bloggers I follow - Tia Dia at Mezzocouture and Elle from He Cooks She Sews.

What am I working on now?

Right now I am just finishing up more Fehr Trade workout gear and have traced a dress - Burda 10/2014-101 and pulled fabrics for a bunch of cardigans.  The weather here is starting to cool down so I am thinking about garments for fall, but with a summer holiday planned over New Year I want to make some resort wear too.  Be warned my blog will be all over the place in the next few months!

How does my work differ from others in the genre?

I'm not sure it does really, I'm certainly not trying to be different, teach, or to monetise my blog.  I focus on the finished product with a few details here and there if I think it might be useful. I mainly use Burda magazine patterns with a sprinkling of Vogue designer patterns.

Why do I write what I do?

I remember when I first discovered Pattern Review years ago, 10?, I loved seeing other interpretations of patterns.  From there I found sewing blogs which I loved even more because you could get to know the personality and style of the sewer behind the blog a bit.  After a few years lurking around I decided I wanted to give a bit back to the community and my little blog was born and I started commenting ang getting involved on a small scale.  Through this and despite living a long way from most of the bloggers I follow, over the years I have been lucky enough to meet many fellow sewers which has been fantastic.  On a more practical level, thinking about the blog post is in the back of my mind while I sew which I think helps me when I am problem solving or find something particularly brilliant - or stupid!

How does my writing process work?

Ah, I started answering that above! In addition, I might take photos mid construction, otherwise it's usually all about the finished garment.  While I don't use a template, my finished garment posts tend to all have the same basic structure - I am not a creative writer at all so this helps me get off the starting blocks.  The post title is always the pattern name or number, there is always a picture and link of the pattern and photos both on the dress form and on me.  My photography skills are down there with my writing skills so this last step is what always holds my posts up, but I think it is invaluable to show most garments on a body, I certainly appreciate it in other blogs.  Then I slot the words in around that, sometimes I will have jotted down some notes while I was sewing, other times I refer to the mid construction and detail photos to remind me of key points I want to get across.  

In summary it's just "I made this and here it is, I do/ don't like it"!  Thank you all for reading it and making me feel a part of this great internet community.