I know we have talked about sewing out on the patio in the sunshine…….yes, well that sounds lovely but anyone who has tried to read their iBook at the pool or on the beach will know that LCD screens don’t show up well in brilliant sun. Right? So I am all for hibernating in my sewing room which is cool and everything I need is right there. Yes, I’m not out in the sunshine but there is always time for picnics and ice cream cones……when I am done sewing. And, of course, we all know Vancouver is not always sunny so why not sew when it is raining outside….like today as I write?
What have I been up to over the last few weeks? ……….Trying to add some much needed t-shirts and tops to my wardrobe as well as get a head start on Fall garments. I know very well that once Labour day rolls around, time for personal sewing will have definitely flown out of the window so it is now or not during 2016!
I’m almost ashamed to admit that this is my very favourite pants pattern. I have tweaked it with slimmer fitting legs. It has been used so many times, I have totally lost count – Gotta be close to a few dozens of times. The choice of the fabric, colour and details can completely change these pants from pj’ style or yoga pants to smart pants for the office. I make notes after I sew a particular pattern as I know I won’t remember what went well or not so well and what changes I might like to make next time. Sometimes I snip a piece of the fabric and staple it to my notes so that I remember even better.
This is Kwik Sew 3115 made up in a lovely soft and quality grey knit which I bought at Mood Fabrics in New York. Yes, and they laughed at me at the train station in the morning when I arrived with my very empty little suitcase for my purchases….Guess who had the last laugh? Man alive, I bought fabric until my little suitcase was totally full and i did not have to carry my purchases over my shoulder all day! I’m still sewing up the fabric I bought this time last year on that wonderful trip to the Garment District in NYC. These grey pants is the latest. I topstitched down the outer seam on the legs. I used the triple straight stitch on my Janome Horizon MC8900 and the Acufeed Flex foot VD to feed those layers of fabric very smoothly & efficiently. I like to lengthen the stitch to the max 5 and first press my serged seam to one side on the wrong side of the pants. I do this BEFORE I sew the inseam as it is so much easier at this point. Once pressed, flip over the right side, audition the thread colour you wish for the top stitching and away you go. It looks so much smarter and only takes a few minutes extra for this small detail. I like to select a thread colour for the top stitching that I can actually see – otherwise why bother? I believe I used a charcoal, almost black, thread on these pants. Notice that I have a wide elastic encased in the same grey fabric for a comfortable waist line and my Janome Coverpro CPX 2000 did a great job of the hems. Quick, easy, neat and the stitching won’t “pop” if I accidentally step on my hem.
Same Kwik sew pants in a lovely red grape colour
OK, I have made this pattern up after several people at different Janome stores told me how fabulous it was. It is definitely more work than the pants above which I can cut out make in just over an hour. These probably took me about 5 hours to make though it will be quicker next time. The first pair of Jalie 3461 Eleonore that I made in a stretch denim turned out pretty good. I did have a bit of a fiddle as I must have taken leave of my senses and cut it out about 4 sizes too big. Big mistake so I had to cut the pieces down and keep tweaking until it no longer wanted to slip off my hips. Seriously, what was I thinking?! I have another pair cut out in a lovely printed stretch twill in black and cream. This has been cut out in the correct size (I hope) so second pair is coming up soon.
Remember the janomelife post on 4th July? Well this is another maxi skirt I made from a store bought maxi dress which I hardly ever wore as the scoop neck was just a bit low and I kept having to yank the fabric upwards for modesty. I am so much happier with the skirt now – great for both summer and winter (when I will probably wear a pair of leggings underneath the skirt). And yes, the waistline looks big in this pic…..sadly my waistline is not as tiny as this annoyingly tiny dress form!
Ok this is 2 things: The skirt is another store bought dress which I never wore even once as I did not like the bodice at all. You may wonder why I bought it in the first place?! So I cut off the bodice entirely and kept the bottom part as a skirt. I have teamed this up with Jalie 2449 which is a really lovely pattern. I can definitely say that this lime green top will NOT be the last one I make with this pattern. I did lengthen the short sleeve a little and cut the front straight as I was not keen on that asymmetrical point. The fabric is a bamboo knit, wonderfully soft so I was sure to use stay tape for all applicable seams. I am planning on a janomelife post coming up in the next month or 2 where I will do a step-by-step make of this top.
Jalie Pattern # 2449
Notice my test sew piece of bamboo knit as I checked that my coverhem on Sleeves, neck and hem was going to be perfect. I always advise to do a test stitchout before putting the garment into the serger or coverhem machine. If I’m in a hurry, I might not have threaded up 100% correctly and I would much rather discover this on a scrap than on my garment!
Ok, that is enough for this post. But wait…….there is more, so stay tuned. I have been sewing up a storm. In fact, I have made such a dent in my fashio fabric stash that I will have to seriously contemplate a return trip to NYC or to some of my favourite fabric stores in Canada!