Monday, July 20, 2009

BWOF 2-2009-121 or my version of it

When I first laid eyes on this lovely dress in BWOF 2-2009-121, I wanted it. I bought some lovely polyester fabric from Hancock's. As you will see later, thank goodness I didn't buy silk. I had my eye on the red with small white polka dot fabric for awhile, and got it on sale. The dress was extrememly easy to make. I followed the instructions exactly. The sleeve instructions made me scratch my head, but I got them figured out. I could envision myself walking into choir on Sunday morning at church as this dress floated along with me. I imagined everyone saying, "That dress is so lovely, did you make it?" To which I would respond, coyly, "Well, yes." I wanted it so badly! Well, as my mother-in-law used to say, "Want in one hand and spit in the other and see which one fills up the quickest."

Here is what my version came out looking like:

It makes me look like a giraffe. My legs look a mile long, and not in a good way. The elastic is too loose in the waist as you can see in the pic. I made a mistake in cutting out the dress, but I actually think it saved the dress from being worse. The instructions said to cut the fabric for the front and back on the bias, but on the pattern pieces "cut on fold" was written. I could not figure out how in the world you could cut something on the fold and on the bias. Well, I just cut in on the fold. If I bad bothered to look at the pattern layout (NOT!) I would have seen how to do this. Can you imagine how badly it would have looked cut on the bias???--then I would have looked like a pregnant giraffe. I decided that nothing could fix it.

I did not want to waste the beautiful fabric, so I tightened the elastic at the waist and just cut it off and hemmed it to make a top:

I haven't decided if I am going to make the sash to go around the waist, yet.
On another note, I am ready to start sewing for Fall. My Spring sewing mojo has just flown out the window. I just ordered two beautiful brightly colored wools from I am imagining brightly colored skirts, a la J Crew. Happy Sewing!!

Friday, July 10, 2009

New Look 6429 - a Pucci-esque dress

I have long been in love with New Look 6429. When I saw this gorgeous ITY jersey on, I new I would use it to make this dress. It made me think of Pucci fabric, which I love. Let me tell you that it gave me fits. It was terrible about rolling up on the edges. Anybody have any hints on how to deal with that? I hope this is not the norm with ITY fabrics. This is the first one I have ever sewn and they are so pretty that I want to sew more. I have one more sitting in my closet in my stash. However, if they all roll up that way, the next one may be my last. Here is a closeup of the fabric.

Upon reading reviews of New Look 6429 on patternreview, I was concerned because so many people had fitting issues with it. I usually never make a muslin when I am sewing jersey, because I just measure across bust on the pattern to get the finished size. Then I make the same size as my bust measurement. I decided to make a muslin and I did not have any sizing problems. I cut a size 10. I did not make any alterations to the size I cut. I sewed it straight from the pattern instructions. I serged the hem and the sleeve edges and turned them under and stitched them down. I always use a walking foot when I sew jersey because it feeds evenly through the sewing machine. I love this dress and it is a good addition to my church/work wardrobe.
Here is the back view. I love the way it comes to a point in the back.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

BWOF 10-2008-107 & 5-2009-108

This picture is so fuzzy because it was misty the morning I took the picture. My shoes are Steve Madden "Magnolia" from several years ago. The skirt is BWOF 10-2008-107 and 5-2009-108. Sewing this outfit was an interesting experience in that I worked with one of the easiest well-written BWOF patterns I have ever seen and one of the most confusing I have ever tried to decipher.

Let's start with the well-written one first: 10-2008-107, the skirt. This pattern was very easy to follow. I cut a size 40 and worked straight from the patten, except for some minor modifications. I did not do pockets at the side zippers. If you unzip them you see inside the skirt. I also did not do that fabric strip they describe putting on the inside of the front separating zipper. Also, I used 3/8" elastic at the back skirt hem instead of making those drawstrings. I purchased the snaps at Walmart. My husband had to put them on the skirt for me because I could not figure out the instructions. I used the same fabric I used to make these pants. Here are some up close shots.

upclose of back hem

side view

Here is my 12 year old cat (his bday is this month) watching my sewing process.

Now for the not so well-written pattern. I have not sewn very many BWOF patterns, but the waist coat instructions (5-2009-109) were HORRENDOUS!!! I got some help on Stitcher's Guild and also read some reviews on it on Patternreview.

I used some white, 100% cotton sateen that I bought from and lining that I got from my local sewing shop. I cut a size 38 and followed the instructions exactly without any modifications. Deciphering the instruction was the problem. Here is the finished product:

My problems began with the 2nd line of the instructions:

Stitch shoulder seams on waistcoat and facing (That is perfectly clear to me now, but when I first read it I was trying to figure out how stitching the waistcoat to the lining was going to work).

Once I got that figured out, I read the next set of instructions and they were even worse:

Stitch top sleeve seams on waistcoat and lining. (see pic below this paragraph for interpretation) Lay sleeve lining right sides together with satin sleeves and stitch lower edges together. (I didn't get the satin part until I realized they were talking about the fabric ---ahem, I am using sateen, not satin). Lay lining down and stitch to seam allowances close to seam (this means understitch the lining)

The real doozy came about about halfway down the 7th bullet of instructions:

...Lay lining right sides together with waistcoast again. Stitch edges of armholes together from side seam edge to sleeve joining. Trim seam allowances. Stitch lining to seam allowances close to seam (again, this means understitch).

For the life of me I could not figure out how I was supposed to stitch the armholes. A very nice lady at Stitcher's Guild straightened me out and, also, BWOF 5-2009-109, a variation on this waistcoat, is the sewing course. What you are supposed to do is on page 30, Fig 6 of that sewing course. You have 4 separate seams where you have stitched a lining armhole to the main fabric armhole from the armhole edge to where the sleeve ends. Here is a pic:
I used some buttons from my stash:

I really did enjoy making this waistcoat, but after it was over, I felt like my two dachshunds--like taking a nap.
Doc & Taz