Tag Archives: blouses

unpicking pockets (aka, refashioning)

This has become a somewhat muddled accumulation of maybe too many things, and if I ever get all the old links linked properly it will be a minor miracle, which is why I’ve been putting off writing, but here goes . . .

Sewing terminology:
  • Refashion – To make changes to an existing garment, such as cutting a dress to make a skirt, or blouse; or combining pieces of fabric from several different garments to make a new garment.
  • Seam ripper – A small tool used to remove stitches.
  • Unpick – To unpick is to carefully remove stitching, frequently, a seam or seams.

This summer—still considering it’s summer as we’re still having some 80 degree days— I’ve been doing more refashioning than new fashion.

Must say its felt like an obstacle, like an unending pile of repairs to be completed before going on to the fun of sewing something new.

Thus, it’s been surprising to read online that refashioning is so current. What? I’m on-trend?! 😳

What’s being/been chopped up? Basically, dresses made roughly five years ago. I hadn’t been inclined to wear them at all this summer, and needed more tops, so . . .

Also several hems were raised from the waist instead of re-hemming as there were hem features I didn’t want to disturb. Oh, and several pockets got added to existing items. Plus two pockets removed from a dress-that’s-now-a-blouse.

Then along came Love to Sew’s Refashioning podcast, including great suggestions I can use for a certain very holey linen knit. (Intentionally misspelt because it’s faaar from “holy.” 🥴)

Do popover and at least scroll through all the wonderful examples listed. Just looking at them should give you ideas. It did for me.

Then The Fold Line included a very intriguing BBC programme about forecasting trends…

“When the distinguished trends forecaster Lidewij Edelkoort provides her vision of the future in her General Trends Books, her pronouncements are eagerly awaited by those working in the worlds of fashion and design. She talks to Mary about the reasons behind the one forecast she’s made that the fashion world hasn’t wanted to hear – Fashion is dead. However it’s not all bad news as she shares her thoughts about the trends she thinks will be influencing what we’ll be wearing in the very near future…”

Her web site mentions concepts of forgiveness, understanding, comprehension, and compassion.

Li Edelkoort: “We need to trust our instincts to build a better future, full with genuine love towards ourselves and others, even those at fault. . . Desire needs to be embedded in empathy.”

In keeping with her thoughts, I do feel good about my summer’s very different kind of sewing, partly because some old favourites are “new” again, and combine with other pieces for more use.

Now for the refashioning thus far . . .

The rayon top (used to be a dress) works well with the cut offs made several summers ago. I’d like to make another set or two like these, as they are in constant rotation. (Click pic to go to 2013 dress.)

This green cotton print was originally made in 2013 and got a lot of wear. When I decided to cut it off I cut it a bit longer, because of the neckline gathers. They make the waist wider.

That meant I needed to cut into the two side seam pockets. That meant I needed to unpick those pockets. (Now the title makes sense. 😉) However, that wider waist is making me a tad nervous because it can get windy here… we shall see how it works.

The black linen skirt I’ve paired with this is one of the skirts shortened from the waist to save the skirt vent. It was originally a full length RTW dress I cut into a skirt and blouse. (Click pic to see original green dress; no photo of original RTW dress.)

Phew. If you’ve made it all the way you deserve a treat. Your choice! I’m opting for dark chocolate… 🍫

playing

Had a bit of a play lately.

Figured I had earned it after polishing off my black linen skirt and finally getting the handles sewn onto the veggie bag.

So here’s what I did with some wonderful crocheted doilies gifted to me by Ali, who knows the woman that made them. (Thanks again, hon!)

However, I do think they could use a spot of colour, don’t you? Maybe some ribbon to hide the rubber bands. Hm…

Have been meaning to post this update to that peppermint stripe outfit: It started pilling less than a month after I finished it. Good thing I’d mentally tagged the fabric for stretchy muslins.

Oddly, the bermudas seem to be okay. Wait! Better check the seat . . . . it’s okay! Don’t feel so bad now.

click pic for original post

Have been wanting something in a solid green and remembered this from my Chicago days, languishing in the Needs Refashioning pile. Spent quite some time taking the waist apart, trying to figure out what on earth I’d done. It took a couple of long ripping out sessions.

But newly washed and ironed, it’s hanging whilst I gather my courage to cut into a summer dress I’d put in the refashion pile earlier this year. Hoping to use the dress for waistband facing and a sleeveless blouse. Fingers crossed! 😉

Meanwhile, hope everyone is surviving their season! ❣️❣️❣️

ps… The Guardian had an interesting article on craft/activism here.

catching up

Having downloaded the apps for WordPress and Firefox, am beginning to feel a bit more like normal. I must say that seeing the horrid ads before getting Firefox back has made me think more seriously about going to a dot com site instead of remaining on the WordPress freebie.

What do you think, Lovely Readers? How do you feel about ads??

As you can see from the above photos, getting out last winter’s makes has brought up several issues I hadn’t settled last year. Like how long is too long or too short a sleeve? And how much is too much knit curling?

(It also reminded me not to sew a stretchy knit with a straight stitch. Zigzag, del. Remember to zig zag those seams that need to stretch.) 😝

Have been making appropriate ‘adjustments’ to these two pieces from late last winter. And finally discovered where I carefully filed the cut out yoga pants to match the top photo’s green knit top. Duh!

It shouldn’t take much time to sew up on the serger. But I seem to be doing more procrastinating these last few days before Tuesday. Perhaps I’m not alone?

The weather seems to be in a one or two day shift between 70’s and 50’s,which means windows are opened the safety-locked three inches whilst the air con is also set at 72. (So when the place starts heating up too much the air con will start and I’ll remember to close the windows. . . . . . . Maybe?)

Please may I revisit Margo and her glorious 1970’s wardrobe once again? Lovely Tialys had written that she couldn’t imagine Margo in a onesie. Well, you know what had to happen right after that. . . I watched the remaining Good Neighbors/The Good Life year 3. And so. . . .

“Of course I’m cleaning, Jerry. But I don’t have to look like I’m enjoying it.”

😂. ❤️. ❤️. ❤️. 😂

yesterday’s squidgy package, or thought processes for summer clothes

Oh happy day!

A squidgy fabric package arrived yesterday from out West and made my week.

In the spirit of ‘when copping a plea, go for the gold,’ I’m blaming it on Mrs. Maile (a.k.a., Tanya Hughes).

Being much taken with the fabric she’d used in her post (previous link), I’d meandered across her conveniently provided link to her fabric source – The Confident Stitch.

As one does, I wondered what else they had, and wandered around a bit, eventually looking at all their barkcloth (or bark cloth). I was surprised to be more drawn to a different fabric, which made me pause, wondering why.

click to go to The Confident Stitch

Being thorough, I’d also noticed their stock of independent pattern makers, including the Closet Case’s Charlie Caftan that Tanya used for her barkcloth dress. Then I remembered seeing it several times last year on Karen Ball’s Did You Make That?

Fast forward a bit:  Having finally acknowledged the sad state of my summer frocks ~ 3 made at least 3 years ago ~ and also having resolved to remedy the situation, I’d contemplated enlarging my pattern stash. On that note, I spent some time reviewing both ladies’ posts on the Charlie Caftan (Karen made several).

Everything looked okay from my perspective, so I ordered the paper pattern, plus a couple of swatches, including that other barkcloth.

Oh yes, somehow a piece of cotton lawn got into that first squidgy package.  Which will be discussed at a later date because I decided it was a bit too sheer for a Charlie and I’d ordered the wrong yardage anyway.

#   #   #

Meanwhile time passed and because hot weather is arriving down here I was looking forlornly at my summer tops and sighing. Actually, doing a great deal of sighing, and wondering how to remedy. I had that lovely cotton lawn, which just needed matching thread… and a pattern…

Just to relax last Sunday (really!) I went browsing on The Confident Stitch site. Up popped a pattern sale: 25% off through 28 April (Saturday).

Divine Intervention!

Which is how the cotton lawn’s matching thread and Grainline’s Hadley arrived in yesterday’s squidgy package, along with that barkcloth, which very possibly will become a Charlie.

Do tell if I’m the only one making such convoluted decisions.

culottes and maybe a Grainline Farrow dress… and 2 sweet labels sneaked in!

P.S./ Almost forgot. A couple more swatches also arrived yesterday, which look like great next additions to the summer wardrobe. Final decisions in a bit…  you know how that goes.😉

curing the monday blahs

click pic to go to photo on The Rain Shed site. the web site has the true colour – this is a bit dark.

It has been a nasty, gray, rainy Monday so I’ve holed up with my newest find: BBC’s A Stitch in Time and the presenter Amber Butchart.

U.K. Lovelies can view on their iplayer, but ‘usins’ everywhere else must resort to an alternate (youtube).

Having watched the second episode last night (they’re about 28 minutes each) I decided to start at the beginning and not get distracted…

But alas, lunch did it. Plus a growing list of Things To Do that will include a spot of long distance natter and tea with one of my Yorkshire friends. (The Atlantic is a bit of a drawback, but Edison and the internet make it easy.)

So what’s been laying on my sewing/cutting tables seems like forever, whilst my sewing mojo is MIA?

Up top it’s a crazy print from The Rain Shed bought last January & designated for exercise togs. Don’t laugh! My idea is more yogic so the trews will be very loose, and I’m using the renfrew pattern for the top. Again. (I’ll get it right eventually.)

Just to liven things up I got this tissue rayon knit cut last week, using the free Hemlock pattern

from Grainline.

wonderful soft tissue jersey with very subtle colours of navy & dark green

Granted, I’ve had this pattern ‘aging’ and I understand they withdrew then reissued it. This is probably the original. Heigh ho, we’ll give it a go.

Meanwhile, am enjoying these from last week’s mini-Galentine’s Day celebration and hope they brighten your Monday as well!.

Mwah-mwah!

catching up..and Happy New Year!

This didn’t get published last month, so am putting it here.

Happy New Year, all! I spent it tucked up with Hamish Macbeth, a creation of author M.C. Beaton, and due back at the library.

yes, there IS a santa … er, a lot more of this fabric stashed away

Meanwhile, back in Renfrew land . . . .

I found a nice little stash of leftover bamboo fabric and made a new neck band. Ta-dah!

Although now I’m noticing a crossed eye effect if I look at the pattern across the front for very long.

I left the sleeves extra long so I could roll them up easily when doing dishes, etc. Wound up cutting off those wrist bands when I discovered how long was too long.

Might have enough to make a sleeveless version for summer… will have to decide which way I want those lines to go. On second thought, as this isn’t 4-way stretch, better keep them as is.

Which brings me to another Renfrew that’s just gotten fixed. I discovered the bottom band of my very first orange Renfrew wasn’t cut with the maximum stretch going around the body.  (Me conserving fabric. NOT.)

That lack of stretch made taking it off a pain. So it didn’t get worn. And it was just a tad too short, so it really didn’t get worn.

However, I discovered more of that same fabric too, and effected a fix: I cut off the offending band after cutting a wider one using the stretch of the fabric. In the end, no fabric got saved, but I have another wearable Renfrew. And another good lesson learnt.

click to go back to the 2015 version

Oh, the things we gotta remember whilst trying to be smart. 😳

 

 

can you guess?

a long-sleeved renfrew that somehow escaped from the sewing table last january and was found lounging amongst the ufo’s

D’you see what’s gone majorly wrong here?

Don’t remember doing this, so it musta happened in the almost-year it’s been “resting,” right??

Seems somehow the neck band didn’t quite get cut out properly…

Uh-oh-h-h  . . .

ickle trees in an ickly sled

Time for a rummage in the scrap drawer. Or maybe a substitution.

More anon. 😉

 

don’t ask . . .

shoulda stopped with that centre back seam . . .
shoulda stopped with that centre back seam . . .

Hello, Lovelies ~

Between grotty weather   ☀️  ❄️  ☔️ ⚡️ and other  gottiness, it’s been a tad diffy to stay focused on what’s important.

Sewing.

Lest anything be taken amiss, our personal sewing. 😉

Focus, del.    F-O-C-U-S.

no-washerDespite a washing machine getting swapped out for one that would admit warm and hot water, not much has been happening on the home front.

Yes, a new low water machine is currently in place, doing its thing for towels using hot water. Nice!

That top Renfrew doesn’t look too good at the mo, but crochet is coming along, with the blue marl (big hook for 2 strands of worsted acrylic) hat about to be finished off.

Have had a good run lately at the library, with a couple audio books (whilst sewing) and a new-to-me author, Carola Dunn. Haven’t tried but one of her Daisy Dalrymple books and found it a bit slow going. However, have raced through her three 1960’s Cornish mysteries, waiting for the high winds to subside tomorrow so I can pick up the current and fourth in the series.

And I’ve finally maybe begun (?) a Midsomer collection, in sheer desperation at what’s not available over here. But that’s a rant for another time.

Meanwhile, may your seams be straight as a ruler, and everything fit just the way you want ~ 💘

 

fluid sewing thoughts

“Fluid. n. A body whose particles move freely among themselves, and yield to the least  force impressed…

”January isn’t the time for me to be making resolutions, ’cause all I want to do is rest up from a hectic December. But…

There are some patterns sitting on my cutting table, so I’m sharing them with you. They’re things I’ve seen and admired on Ruth’s (Core Couture) and/or Felicia’s (Older Babe Sews Clothes) blogs.

My plans would include lighter weight fabrics, and V- or scooped necklines. And elasticated waists. And pockets, inseam or elsewhere.

So, with all that in mind, let’s look at some piccies, and please don’t hesitate to share your thoughts afterwards!

Vogue 9193 (click to go to pattern)

Vogue 9193       Love the hem on this top & would do whichever version I’ve linen enough for, but sleeveless. Felicia reports problems with those dolman sleeves, and solutions. As I’ve had similar thoughts about similar styles, will have a long think before tackling. Fabric: Linen (summer), knits? (winter)

Butterick 5655 – “Fast & Easy” (click to go to pattern)

Butterick 5655 – “Fast & Easy”    Hm. Am thinking a short version from some viscose in stash. Although it might be fun to play with the sleeves
& that front insert… Hold thought for another season. Fabric: Rayon or maybe linen

Vogue 8813      Still pondering what to use with this one… cannot locate a decent knit is the main problem. Or excuse. 😉

Vogue 8813 (click to go to pattern)
Vogue 8813 (click to go to pattern)

Vogue 1508      Like the shape of the top’s hem very much. Trousers are too slim for my taste, plus the back is contrasting fabric from the front. Not my style. Fabric: Linen

veravenus-cpat
photo of my downloaded pattern page
Vogue 1508 (click to go to pattern)
Vogue 1508 (click to go to pattern)

VeraVenus Cardigan Coat (free)    (Click link to go to pattern.) After seeing this several times on people & reading how comfy they found it, I decided to switch my plans for a mustard wool to this pattern. Have a rayon piece cut out now, to check fit, etc., before cutting into the wool. Fabric: wool (winter), rayon (summer)

Butterick 6377  Will change neckline as I don’t do anything that tight round my neck. Fabric: Any stash stretch fabric to pair with V9193 trouser (above).

Butterick 6377 (click to go to pattern)
Butterick 6377 (click to go to pattern)

SUMMER

Vogue 8975    Liked the jacket on this, but the dress is also a possibility. Fabric: Linen, rayon.

Vogue 8975 (click to go to pattern)
Vogue 8975 (click to go to pattern)

Farrow Dress, Grainline    Have not purchased yet; keep trying to talk myself into it. Needs neckline re-do, but that back fascinates me, along with the longer length. Fabric: Almost anything from stash.

McCall’s 6083 Lounging ONLY, in the green version. Fabric: Rayon from stash

Grainline's new Farrow dress (click to go to pattern)
Grainline’s new Farrow dress (click to go to pattern)
McCall's 6083 (click to go to pattern)
McCall’s 6083 (click to go to pattern)

sunday sevens #34

sunday7LOGOIt’s Sunday and time for Sunday Sevens, thought up by Natalie, of Threads and Bobbins. Anyone can participate whenever, so feel free to join in.

Where has the week gone? It’s already past the middle of September!

Last weekend was Last Night at the Proms and I was so preoccupied with breakdowns I forgot to listen. AGH!!!

But the entire 3 ½ hours are available for listening, and a little for viewing, depending on what country you’re watching from.

And no, you don’t have to listen to it all in one go. Above the line in the Iplayer are little squares, indicating where each piece starts. Hover your cursor and titles appear.

Nothing like the zaniness of the second half to put me back on track. (Yes, I sing along.) Only available for 3 more weeks, so listen soon. ⌛️

I attacked the UFO/alteration pile last week, and managed to overcome a reluctance to use a twin needle as well as reduce the pile, and am feeling quite chuffed. Below, the pale green is a men’s silk shirt re-do, liberated from a charity shop. The rest are updates to existing makes.

Am also debating my next project, and what thread to use. I’d thought white originally, but looking amongst my blue  spools saw variegated. It looks tempting, and as this is another lounge around home project, only my eyes would be offended. What do you think? The fabric came from a trade with Anne/Compulsive Seamstress, and the pattern from Ali/Thimberlina.

Lastly, my UK DVD of Agatha Raisin finally arrived. Am a fan of both author  M.C. Beaton’s series(es?), Agatha Raisin and Hamish Macbeth, so was delighted to see Agatha being made for telly. The U.S. compatible version isn’t available yet, so am very grateful my hardware/software plays PAL.

img_8835
meet the adorable Hodge (and Ms. Jensen)

However, the movie raises two questions:

  • Why can’t I find frozen breakfasts like Agatha’s over here?
  • Is everyone flipping back & forth doing video calls like Agatha, her therapist, and Roy?

Hope everyone has a lovely week planned, and we all survive the regional weather shifts!

  🌈  ☀️🌈