Crosshatch Denim Collection

It’s not very often I find fabric in my local Fabricland that I totally fall in love with, but this was one. It’s a brown-white crosshatch cotton-poly-elastene lightweight denim that I circled around for weeks until it went on clearance, and then I bought the entire bolt for $5/metre. I can’t remember exactly how many metres I purchased, but I knew it would give me several pieces, none of which I planned to wear together, but would provide a nice collection for other pieces.

The first piece in this collection was a skirt, Burda 02-2006-114sewn last summer. I’ve made four of these, in lime green, black, khaki, and now, brown. I don’t have pictures of the black one, but it’s made from the same beautiful cotton denim as these jeans. I don’t have any photos of my wearing it, so this will just have to suffice. I’ve worn it a lot over the last couple of summers.

Image result for Burda 04/2010 #143Then I wanted some capris, and decided to try Burda 04/2010 #143. These were an experiment in Burda’s plus sizing/drafting, and I’m surprised at how much I like to wear them. They have more wearing ease than a typical stretch denim pant pattern, as they’re drafted for non-stretch fabrics.  I made a curved waistband, not the elastic one as in the pattern.

I love the little tab details on these. The front tab is like a little built-in belt, and the hemline tabs are fun. These have been in constant rotation through my wardrobe since last summer.

Burda 4-2010-143 front tab

I did make up a jacket in this fabric, but didn’t like it much, so I gave it away.  It was my mistake in shortening the back waist and grading it into the side front that caused the fail (I did do a pattern fitting session on my dress form… in my defense…   It was the execution that was subpar…) and in the end I just didn’t like the fabric enough in a casual safari-style jacket.

WheBurda 5-2010-112n I purchased this massive length of goods, I initially thought of doing a safari style set of garments.  This dress is probably the only things that would actually qualify as having typical safari elements: big patch pockets, lacing, buttoned tabs, etc.  The pattern is Burda 5/2010 #112.  I only have a German copy of the magazine, so it was a bit fun translating a word here or there in order to get the gist of Burda’s construction suggestions.  Between reading the instructions aloud (my ear can hear hints of English sometimes) and studying the magazine photo, I managed to put it together without pulling my hair out.

safari dress

I underlined the back of the dress with a cotton batiste.

Burda 5/2010 #112 front detail

The front interior is a bit messier than I like with all the pockets (total of four) and the laced opening.  See?  Mess on the inside.

Burda 5/2010 #112 insides

This is a construction pic, and, no, you’re not looking at it upside down. I’m in the process of doing the welt pockets with the flaps in this photo.

B 5-2010-112 front pockets

And a back view.

Burda 5-2010-112 back

It’s dartless, and I wanted to keep it that way… loose fitting and cool in the summer. And one last view from the side. The sleeves are long, and after playing around with rolling them or just gathering them up into the tabs, I decided I liked the ‘careless casual’ vibe proffered by the latter.  Hmmm…. maybe it could use some shaping in the back.  We’ll see…

Burda 5-2010-112 front

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Vogue 1454

Thank you all for your kind comments on the last post.  You realize, right, that the topstitching on the previously posted trousers is now The Standard, which I shall drive myself insane trying to meet for the rest of my sewing life….. 🙂

Earlier this summer I went on a stash-busting spree. No particular motive in mind, except that I was so sick and tired of feeling ugly and underdressed. It started at Easter back in the spring, and I’ve been sewing up a storm, but never feeling like I wanted to photograph anything when I was wearing it. So I’m working backwards.

In August I took DD2 and DD3 on a month-long road trip to Saskatchewan, Alberta and British Columbia. I grew up in western Canada, and had a deep need to drive for miles under the open sky, wind through the mountain passes, and dip my toes into the Pacific Ocean. Along the way we visited Drumheller in the middle of the Alberta Badlands and home to the Tyrrell Museum. It’s ground zero for dinosaurs. Now, I’m not particularly interested in dinosaurs, but I do love the geography of the Badlands. It’s dry, windy, dusty, incredibly surreal and other-worldly. See?

V1454 B 1-2016-135

I’m wearing the second version of the slim BurdaStyle trousers mentioned in the last post. The fabric is a stone-coloured stretch denim from EOS that’s been languishing in my stash for I can’t remember how long. It was a roll end, I believe, and there was just enough for these jeans. (Trousers? I always want to call them ‘trousers’, even if they’re made of denim, because they don’t have all the traditional ‘jeans’ details…)

This is a softer, stretchier denim than the peach denim in the last post. This was actually the first iteration of this pattern.

Burda 01/2016 #135 details

The top is from the last set of Donna Karan patterns that Vogue put out. I purchased it just because it was a Donna Karan pattern, and I’m glad I did. I love this top. It’s boxy, but it’s so comfortable and so fun to wear. I made it up from a linen blend from very deeeeeeeep stash. I honestly cannot remember where I purchase the fabric, and that’s saying something, because I always remember where fabric comes from.

Now, I really dislike fabrics that show the outline of undergarments, and this wasn’t quite opaque enough for me. So I self-lined the bodice, and used flat-felled seams to ensure nothing will ever get shifty.

Vogue 1454 flat-fell seams

But it didn’t quite work out in my favour at the hemline… lack of planning, I suppose, in terms of which direction the ‘fell’ went in the flat-fell. 😀 But it’s not really noticeable while I’m wearing it, unless you’re a fellow seamstress looking closely at details. Yes, this is the right side of the garment, looking at it from the front.  oooopsie…

Vogue 1454 hemlines

It was windy on the photoshoot, which worked in my favour, because it shows how the back flounce moves on this top.

Vogue 1454

Here’s another photo to show how much ease is built into this design. It made for a cool top in hot weather!

Vogue 1454 back

And a last one from the front. Like I said, it’s boxy, but I’m somehow liking this at the moment.

V1454

Marfy 1913: Pretty In Peach

Marfy 1913

I’m finally taking pictures of my sewing projects since April.  This is Marfy 1913, the blouse that everyone made a few years ago when Marfy released it as a free download.  I’ve made several for other people, including modifying the pattern so it’s dress length, but this is the first one I’ve made for me.

The fabric is from EOS.  It’s a silk crinkle chiffon with the prettiest floral design. There was just enough fabric that I could make the blouse double-layered, and match the colour design of the fabric.

Marfy 1913

Like everyone else who has made this pattern, I have plans for others. It’s not difficult to make, requires very little fabric, and is simple to alter.

peachy

The trousers in this outfit are Burda 1/2016 #135. https://i.pinimg.com/originals/31/96/bb/3196bb8eb848d56817516c5184f12091.jpg I’ve made three versions of them, which I’ll be sharing with you. I love the details, and I love how they fit. I’ve always shied away from slim fitting trousers, being a curvy shape. I dread looking like an inverted pyramid, but these seem to fit perfectly and they’re fun to make with all the seaming details.

Burda 01/2016 #135 seam details

The denim is an Italian denim is from EOS. This also was a roll end. I was pretty pleased with the quality when I made these purple jeans, so I jumped when I saw this roll end available. There was just enough to squeeze these trousers out of 1.3 yards.

B 1-2016-135 back

This denim has a lot of body to it, and feels quite different from the softer fabrics I made these trousers in, which changed how they fit. You’ll see this next time when I post pictures from Drumheller! I went on a road trip through my childhood haunts in Western Canada. These pictures today are at my grandmother’s farm in Alberta. It was a great trip, although I didn’t purposely photograph what I packed and wore. Anyways, it’s great to be back!

Jalie Jeans x 3

I’ve made three new pairs of jeans using the unbeatable Jalie 2908 pattern.  It’s not the only pattern I’ve used to make jeans in the past, but I think it will be my go-to for now. You see, when I decided I needed new jeans, I had three different styles in my wardrobe: the Jalie’s, a GAP 1969 pair and an unblogged indigo BurdaStyle pair based on this pattern.  I love the fit of the GAP and the BurdaStyle pair more than the Jalie pair, mostly because I made the low-waisted version way back when.  And in order to decide which I wanted to make three times, I took pictures of myself wearing all three pairs.  To see which was the most flattering….

Jalie won, hands down.  Maybe it was pocket placement, but I just liked the fit of them from all angles better than the GAP or the BurdaStyle pair.

I made the “mom” style (waistband sits at my natural waist) with the following adjustments:

  • lengthened them by 4cm so I can wear heels, or mules.  Nothing bugs me more than when the back of my jeans catch underneath my heel while I’m wearing mules.
  • +1.5cm full inner thigh adjustment
  • lowered the front waist by 1.5cm
  • 1.5cm high hip adjustment on both front/back side seams
  • add 3cm to side seams as fitting insurance, particularly on the black and purple pair as the denim has less stretch than the teal pair

Just a note on styling: I won’t be wearing them with tucked-in tops, but I wanted to show you what they fit like through the hips/waist for this post.

First pair was made from a glorious Italian black denim from EmmaOneSock.

Burda 04-2015-103 front

The denim wasn’t pre-washed, but it hasn’t shrunk and it doesn’t bag out.  It’s the most-worn pair so far.

Burda 04-2015-103 top

The next was a purple Italian denim, again from EmmaOneSock. It’s a bit on the stiff side, but it doesn’t bag out after a day’s wearing, either.  And I love the colour.

Jalie 2908 purple front

But I forgot to lower the CF – you can see the front crotch depth is too long – so I have removed the waistband and will re-attach it later. Thank goodness I didn’t use any rivets on this pair.

Jalie 2908 purple back
Here’s a view of the inside, with some batik (EOS, again!) salvaged from an older project. I love putting these on because of this fabric!

Jalie 2908 purple pockets

And lastly, a dark teal blue pair using a cotton blend denim from…. you guessed it! Emmaonesock, of course. These are straight legged.

Jalie 2908 blue front

These are the stretchiest of the three, so I didn’t need to make use of the ‘fitting insurance’ 3cm extra width down each side.  The fabric is amazingly soft and comfortable.

Jalie 2908 blue

I love the length of all these new jeans. I have to turn them up when I’m wearing slippers around the house, but they are the perfect length for my heeled boots. So far, so good! The old GAP and BurdaStyle pair were sent off to the thrift store, but I still wear the original brown jeans. The fabric was from EOS again… a designer denim from somewhere in the States.  I have worn these jeans constantly since I made them, and they are still looking good, as you’ll see in my next post.

Bronze Jeans: Burda 1/2010 #136

Warning: there’s a lot of pictures in this post, and, well, no amount of tweaking can make my 40-something mother-multiple-times exercise-free butt look younger, childless or hawter. Don’t say you weren’t warned. 😉

Burda 1-2010-136 frontI did it.  I crossed into the world of the unknown and I did it!  I cracked the jean mystery, peeps, and I am so EXCITED!  I have long scoffed at the idea of making my own jeans.  Whatever for?  What a hassle.  That’s just sewing geekiness.  Not interested.  bronze jeansBut the idea of making jeans has a way of getting under one’s skin and wandering through one’s sewing plans, and more than once I was coerced by Linda at EmmaOneSock to buy stretch denim.  For no reason except that it’s nice to have stretch denim in your stash, right?  No plans for jeans here.  Stretch denim can be used for a LOT of other clothing items besides jeans.  So you see it’s really not my fault that I made a pair of jeans.  The entire sewing universe has been conspiring to convert me.I’m so glad I did!  I feel like I’ve taken one major sewing step forward.  As I sewed this up, Burda 1-2010 #136cracking the big jean mystery one seam at a time, it was amazing to learn how simple jean construction is.  I used this model from Burda 1/2010 #136.I did not make a muslin specifically for this pair.  After sewing up my one and only pair of skinnies from the Burda block, I had a pretty good idea of what needed to be altered, so I measured myself from various angles very carefully, and then measured the pattern very carefully.  And re-measured.

I didn’t make any adjustments to the to the front, except to leave off that weird front patch between the front thighs.  Why it is there?  It looks…. well, uncomfortably embarrassing. Maybe their designers thought it would be interesting, but I didn’t like it.  Besides, can you just picture it in this bronze denim with dark purple topstitching?  *shudder*  Wrong visual.  BTW, the front crotch depth is good, but I’m not sure if the little extra fabric at the front crotch should be left or adjusted.  I need to think about that more.  It’s not uncomfortable and I don’t think it looks bad, but I still need to think about it from a “perfect fit” perspective.  Any opinions on this would be lovely!frontI lengthened the back by one full inch by extending the crotch curve.  This was a mistake because the inseam of this pair is 1 inch forward of where it should be. forward inseamThis is a good lesson to learn!  I should have left the crotch alone and slashed and spread the length of the CB seam instead to get the length I needed.  This would have left the inseam in its proper place. I did need to taper both the CB seam, the yoke and the waistband to fit the curve of my lower back.  backThis was no big surprise, and since I was anticipating this adjustment as a last little fitting tweak, I constructed the back in such a way that the CB seam was the last to be stitched.  I attached the waistband to the jeans and fit the CB seam, taking in about 3/4″ at the waist and tapering it to the hip level.  Burda’s instructions suggested stitched the CB seam and topstitching it prior to attaching the waistband.  Well, I knew that was going to be an un-picking nightmare, so I went down a different construction street quite happily.

left sideright sideMy side seams are almost perfectly perpendicular to the floor, which is a good thing, and I don’t need to tell you fellow sewistas that I’m very happy about that.  After taking these pics, however, it’s obvious the back thighs need to be shortened – probably a good 4cm – so the wrinkling under my butt goes away. I have some thoughts on this and will share them next post.

The pockets have a decorative self-fabric binding, which I wasn’t sure about.  That could mean too many layers of denim to sew through, but after a couple of test runs on scraps I went ahead with it.  It’s a unique detail that I’ve never seen on jeans before.  Not that I’ve seen a lot of jeans in my life.  But anyways… Burda 1-2010-136 pocket binding I used a denim needle for this project, and it stitched through all 5 layers of denim at the turned-under ends of the pocket binding with no complaints.Burda 1-2010-136 pocketsThe topstitching pattern for the back pockets is all Burda’s.  I claim no credit for creativity.  But I like these pockets.Burda 1-2010-136 belt loopsThe belt loops were the other area I discarded Burda’s instructions.  I was supposed to stitch a long tube and turn it.  Uh.  Right.  I hate turning tubes of fabric on the best of slippery fabrics, so why would I want to do that on thick stretch denim?  So I serged both long edges of the belt loop piece and turned the edges in on themselves in thirds, exactly like all the RTW jeans I inspected.  It turned out to be a little wider in width than typical belt loops, so I took the opportunity to use one of the decorative stitches on my machine instead of just straight topstitching.bronze denimI didn’t use studs to reinforce any pocket corners on this pair, although I studied every single pair of DH’s and DD1’s jeans to see where the studs were used.  I wanted to keep this project simple without a lot of extraneous detail or embellishment.  The only new-to-me hardware issues were the stud button and shortening the metal zipper by hand, neither of which was difficult or stress-inducing.And I added 2 inches of length.  I may be vain, but IMHO, the added 2 inches give the illusion of longer legs than I really own.  😉 After finishing this pair and wearing them for a day, I can tell you I have more in the queue.  Thanks to all of you sewing bloggers who have documented the process of making your own jeans.  Without all your posts and pics and details and FO’s I would not have crossed the hurdle of jeans.  You know who you are.  😉 Burda 1-2010-136 back