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Showing posts from 2017

A Tale of Two Jean Jackets, Part I - Style Arc Stevie

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The one sewing goal I set for myself for 2017 was to make the Style Arc Stacie jean jacket, a pattern that has been on the sewing queue for ages. However.  I have a teenage daughter, who has been wanting for a denim jacket just like the Style Arc Stevie for a while. And because I already have a RTW denim jacket, albeit a borderline vintage jacket - well, how does a mother refuse? ( Full disclosure time -  This is where I acknowledge that as we wear the same size in Style Arc, it is quite likely that I may have to borrow this jacket from time to time. :)) The first step I took to make this jacket was to borrow my mother’s sewing machine. This jacket has miles of topstitching, and the second machine was a sanity saver.
The fabric is an Ermenegildo Zegna  stretch denim  purchased quite a while ago from Tessuti. Kudos to me for buying 5 metres of it, because I have enough left over from this project to make the Stacie Jacket for myself. It turned out to be a great denim for this project…

MBM - Tessuti Berlin jacket

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Here is my Winter Blah Averting Jacket, Tessuti Berlin in a mustard yellow.


The coating was purchased in early April at Pitt Trading, with a Style Arc Mickie cape in mind. I needed 1.5m for the cape and zippety-doo-dah, there was 1.5m left on the roll. But when I brought the fabric home, I had second thoughts about making it into a cape. The cape needs drape, as it were, so this coating was designated as unsuitable for the intended pattern. But what to do with 1.5m of coating, pray tell, when most coats would need far more fabric.

Fortunately, around this time two blog posts brought Tessuti Berlin to my attention – one on the Tessuti blog, and Siobhan’s make here. And guess what? Berlin needs 1.5m of non-fraying wool. My fabric was non-fraying. Yay. We have sewing plan lift-off. Non-fraying fabric is non-negotiable here. The edges are raw all over. The seam allowances are overlapped and stitched up the middle, which makes this a really quick, easy sew. And when you come to think of i…

MBM - McCalls 7200 kimono jacket and Style Arc Evie

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At the beginning of April I picked up two drapey summer weight fabrics, among other things, from Pitt Trading. My initial thought was to stash the summer fabrics until next summer. When I got them home and saw them side by side, though, I decided not to wait but squeeze in one more summer make.
McCalls 7200 kimono jacket has been kicking around the queue for a while. I’ve had a few likely choices for fabric in the stash but nothing that enthused me overly much so it kept getting reshuffled down the queue. The fabric for the main body is a rayon, while the collar and middle back piece is silk/cotton. Clearly, the sewing gods were waiting for these fabrics to come to my attention!


This pattern is made up of a number of mix-and-match pieces that make up one of four views on the envelope. I made none of those views. This is the short jacket with sleeves, and the plain middle back .




This is a size Medium. By my body measurements I should have made a Size Large, but knowing McCalls definit…

MBM - New Look 6351 and a big fat fail

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Today's post brings you a modest success and a big fat fail. Let's get the fail out of the way first, shall we?
As soon as my husband saw me wearing these pants he asked me "Did you make those?" when I replied "yes" he informed me "They look homemade". (He is an amateur winemaker and "homemade"is shorthand between us for "go back to the drawing board on that one").  And in pointing this out, he was pointing out something that was already patently obvious to me.




These pants are my second version of Style Arc Tessa. The first version was a big success, and have been worn multiple times. Soon after making the first version, I was on the hunt for linen to make another pair. I ordered some linen from the Tessuti website, and almost as soon as it arrived the fabric was in the wash, dried and cut. It wasn't until I was midway through construction that it dawned on me that while the colour and fabric content was good, the textured…

MBM - Style Arc Olivia dress

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So two months ago or so, I bought some Tencel fabric from Spotlight. I made one length in to Style Arc Autumn, but before that I made Style Arc Olivia.

I was after a simple dress that I could wear on summer days spent around the house doing household stuff, but would also look presentable enough  to venture into the shops after I put on some shoes and brushed my hair!

Style Arc describes this as an "everyday dress",  which is just what I had in mind.

As far as fit was concerned, as ever, I did an FBA, and lengthened the skirt 7cm. I didn't bother with the optional belt (I never wear belts - I always seem to have to fiddle with them to keep them from riding up and placing themselves under my bust - not a good look. I would just rather not bother).

This was a easy, straightforward sew. The seam allowances at the bottom of the bodice and top of the skirt make up the casing for the waist elastic.  I concur with other reviewers in that the seam allowance  is not really wide e…

MBM - Style Arc Autumn dress

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Almost as soon as the notification for Style Arc’s  new Autumn pattern arrived in the inbox, I was ordering my copy.    Jean and Lara have featured Tencel makes on their blogs recently, which reminded me of how much I loved a pair of Tencel jeans I had back in the day. So I went and bought a couple of metres of Tencel at Spotlight  and waited for  inspiration. The Tencel’s drape works really well in this pattern. It is actually one of the recommended fabrics (and it looks like Style Arc made their sample in the same fabric).
Style Arc's description of the pattern:
AUTUMN DRESS: You will love this versatile dress that can be worn on any occasion. The knife pleat down the front and the crossed over knife pleat falling from the back yoke makes this dress a flattering alternative to add to your wardrobe. The extended shoulder line along with the stitched front detail, shirt tail hem line and inseam pockets really sets this great dress apart from the rest.
This is a pattern that doesn&#…

MBM - Another go at Tessuti Frankie

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After the first version of Tessuti Frankie, I looked to make another quickly, to see if I could address the issues the first version had. That is, the high front neckline, and the narrow shoulders. Here is the result:

There is a big improvement in the comfort factor with this version. To address the neckline issue,  I lowered the centre front neckline by 1.5cm and blended. To lengthen the shoulder seams, I slashed from the midpoint on the shoulder seam over to the armhole, leaving a hinge, and added 2cm in length.

I experimented with fusible web to support the twin-stitched hems on both my Frankies. On the thick cotton jersey of the first version, this worked fine. On this version, the web was a bit too stiff. So for the sleeve hems I just blind stitched, which I’ve decided is now my preferred knit hem option. It’s easy to do, you don’t have to muck around with ironing on the webbing, and it stands up to wear.
The other improvement was to use a knit with a bit of drape to it. This is…

MBM - Tessuti Frankie

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The Tessuti Frankie pattern has been high in the queue, pretty much since it was released last year. It’s taken me a while to get to the point of posting a result though.  The first attempt failed, because I mistook a PDF joining line for centre back, and cut the back about 5cm too narrow. When I took the piece to the sewing machine, it was immediately obvious it was too narrow, but it took me ages to figure out why. There’s was no going back from that one, especially I had no fabric to cut another back. I'm blaming my husband. He printed the pattern off for me at work, but because of some printing kerfuffle, the print came to me out of order. So I was confused (or more confused than normal :))  So this is the second attempt.
The fabric is quite a thick cotton jersey from Spotlight that I picked up on a 40% off sale. The jersey is probably a bit too thick for this pattern, but I liked the print so I went with it.
The Frankie comes in three dress lengths, and four sleeve lengths.…

MBM - Style Arc Talia Woven Pant

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Hello again! Things have slowed down somewhat in the sewing room lately, due to the ridiculously hot run of weeks we’ve had this summer. Hot weather always hampers my sewing somewhat. I sew in a loft built into the roof of our house. It is not adequately insulated, so on hot days in summer, it gets really hot, to the extent it is impossible to last up there for longer than say, 10 minutes, before running up the white flag and retreating downstairs. So in summer I generally do my sewing in the early morning. But this summer, we’ve had hot days combined with hot nights, and my sewing room could have easily doubled as a sauna day in-day out, so sewing has been impossible. (I could bring my sewing gear downstairs, but I don’t really have a great place to do this at the moment. The most likely spot, the dining room, has terrible light, so I would just rather not bother). I’m not a hot weather person. I was talking to someone recently who was telling me that hot weather energised her. It’s…

MBM - Liesl + Co Gallery Tunic, Version 2

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My first Liesl + Co Gallery Tunic proved to be a bit of a hit, so it wasn’t long before I was planning another. And here it is…
The fabric is Liberty Tana Lawn in The Atrium Pink. From a distance the design looks like an abstract floral, but up close it is covered in 20s flappers, apparently in the atrium of Liberty’s London store.
The pink colour choice is not  usual for me – I have no other pink in my wardrobe. I'm just not a pink girl. However, I really needed a pink item, as I was invited by a friend to go to the Members stand on the third day of the cricket Test between Australia and Pakistan. The Sydney Test has become known recently as the pink Test in support of the Jane McGrath Foundation, a breast cancer support charity. And the third day of the Test is when everyone (women and men ) is encouraged to wear pink, so I really needed a pink item to “get with the program”. This version was as straightforward a sew as the first version. I made no fit changes whatsoever. The …

MBM - Burda 06-2013#120 shirtdress

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Reading the recent round of New Year’s sewing resolutions for 2017, the intention to sew from the blogger’s back issues of Burda was mentioned a few times.  This is a resolution I definitely identify with. I’ve intended to make this shirtdress, since I bought the June 2013 issue of Burda in Rome. So, like, 3-and-a-half years.  And I’ve done it! Finally… I really liked this shirtdress, especially the curved pockets. Here is the technical drawing. I added a centre back seam, for swayback adjustment purposes. The fabric is a cotton poplin I bought at the Remnant Warehouse quite a while ago, specifically with this pattern in mind. I cut a 40 bust and 42 waist and hip. Then I made a 1”FBA and a 1”full bicep adjustment. Then I added 12cm length, as ever with Burda. This was a fairly straightforward sew, but there were a few tricky new-to-me constructions, particularly around the collar. Having bought this in Rome, my issue is in Italian, naturally. So I got to practice my somewhat rusty I…