Friday, 10 April 2015

Recess Raglan #1

Some more children's sewing from me - a Sew Kate Sew Recess Raglan tee.

I am so happy with this one. I love the colour combination and the fabrics are both really nice and soft. Also they're both left-overs from t-shirts I made myself, so good for the environment & for my wallet. I would really recommend this pattern as the instructions were clear, it's a bargain price at $8 for ages 18 month to 8 years, and there is so much scope for exciting fabric combinations.

I sewed up the 3/4 length sleeve with sleeve bands option.  My only issue with it was the neck band piece seemed very small and once attached it was too small to fit over his head.  I went up one size for the neck band plus an extra couple of cm and after 3 attempts, and some tantrums on my part, I finally got it to fit. This pattern works well as a sweatshirt too and I'm sure I'll make lots more versions of this. It felt so nice to sew something for my boy and see him wearing it. I know he's too young to tell me whether he likes it or not but if I'm sewing him things that are comfy to wear and bright and cheery then I'm sure we're both happy!

I'm really looking forward to Kids Clothes Week and would like to try and sew something to tie in with the Wild Things theme. The 'In the forest' post on the KCW blog particularly appealed, I love the applique foxes! I'm sure most readers here read So, Zo... what do you know? but in case you missed it she did a brilliant two part post on independent children's clothing patterns, part 1 and part 2.  I also love Elena's DIY mini-Hemlock tee for her wee boy so I might need to try that too!  Any other kids sewing patterns you'd recommend?

Wednesday, 25 March 2015

Vintage Pattern Pledge 2015

I loved seeing all the beautiful clothes sewn up as part of last year's Vintage Pattern Pledge hosted by Marie of A Stitching Odyssey. This year's is even bigger and is co-hosted by Kerry of Kestrel Makes.  I've not got many vintage patterns but the ones I do have I'd love to sew up so this year I've decided to take part! Are you joining in?

I posted this pic on instagram of my four options and I still can't decide what I'm going to try first. Definitely one of the dresses but I'm not sure which one yet.  The bottom right dress got the most votes (5) followed closely by the top left (4) then the bottom left (3).  I'm torn between the top left and bottom right so I think what I'll do is look through my fabric to see what I would use for each then decide.  Are you taking part in the vintage pattern pledge? Have you sewed with a vintage pattern before? This will be my first vintage pattern.

Friday, 20 March 2015

Music class skirts

That's me just signed up for Kids Clothes Week Spring 2015 - who else is sewing along this time?
In the spirit of getting more organised I thought I'd try and blog my backlog - all of three things that it is!

First up - some kids sewing.  These skirts are the Oliver + S Music Class skirt pattern. I traced the pattern and cut out the first skirt back in summer 2014, then forgot about it for ages. More recently I cut out the other one and got them both sewn up and posted off to their wearers in January.

They didn't take long to sew up at all - once I got started!  As I've already found with Oliver + S patterns the instructions were brilliant.  The only bit I struggled with was making the pocket on the side but by the time I made the second version I'd worked it out and both skirts came out good. I'm really pleased with them. The red cord is lovely, I took time to overlock the seams, I added lovely trim to both the hems, and I put little tags to mark the back of the skirt.  I used a different trim on each skirt, which you can see in the photos. I think I got the trim from The Cloth House in Soho, and the red cord is from a Peter Jensen fabric sale a few years back (also used to make this pouffe).

I'd definitely recommend this pattern. The pleats and side pocket make it a bit more unusual and the good instructions mean it's still possible for a beginner to do without too much stress.  I'm sure I'll be making some more this summer! Has anyone sewn any other Oliver + S patterns? Any you'd recommend? I'm quite tempted by the Sketchbook shirt & short set.

The side pleats and pocket
Hem trim
Tab to mark the back of the skirt

Tuesday, 3 February 2015

2015 sewing plans

Happy (belated) New Year to anyone out there who's still reading! I've really enjoyed reading everyone's reflection and forward planning posts but it feels a bit late for one of them now. I'll just say that 2014 was a brilliant year for me! I got to watch our little baby become a little boy and feel so lucky to be a part of his life. In addition I've made some pretty special new friends in Walthamstow, spent lots of time with family and friends, and visited new places including a lovely week in Cornwall.

January has whizzed past in a blur of family time and returning to part-time work.  It's been hard to make the time to sew but I've realised that 10 minutes here and there really do add up, and that these creative minutes are important for me. Already this year I've finished up 2 little girls skirts which I had cut out last September/October. I'll do a separate post on them as it's such a great pattern.

Last year I aimed to take part in the Stash Diet, in Me Made May and in the end did neither. This year I'm not going to set myself too many goals but I thought it might help me to have some short term plans. I'll probably just stick a post-it note above my sewing machine with a list of potential, and realistic, sewing goals for the following few months.

My goals for January were a long-sleeved Plantain t-shirt in pink jersey which I've finished and absolutely love! In fact I'm wearing as I type - just need to get some photos now. I've also started sewing a purple jersey skirt which is almost finished. Oh, and the 2 skirts I mentioned above. I'm very happy with that,especially as I've just started back work this month to.  For February I'd like to finish the jersey skirt, draft a t-shirt dress pattern using the same jersey skirt pattern (drafted by a friend) coupled with either the Plantain or the Scout tee. I've also got some See Kate Sew raglan tee's to sew for my wee boy and for gifts. And if I have any time left after that I've got a burgundy lace jersey Scout tee all cut out and waiting to be sewn up (it's been ready to sew since last summer!).

Plantain in progress, and my first time doing flat insert sleeves

Does anyone have any tips for sewing in short bursts of time? or sewing with a baby? My sewing machine is right outside Harris's room so I don't tend to sew at night in case I wake him up, which means sewing is restricted to weekends, bringing the machine through to the living room, and the occasional 10 minute sew with Harris playing happily beside me in the hall. I might just need to brave the night-time sewing and see if he gets used to the sound of the sewing machine - I guess it could be like white noise?!