Friday, July 13, 2018

Notes on a Pattern - McCall 7753

Hi everyone,

This is another installment of Notes on a Pattern.  I hope these notes are helpful.  One thing I'd like to point out "again" is that I understand that we all are different shapes and sizes.  With that understanding, I also know that there are ladies that have a similar silhouette as I do.  The thing that motivates me to post my pattern adjustments is it may help someone with their own fit adjustments like so many other sewists have helped me.  Anyway..,

We are three weeks into summer, and it is hot and sticky in the mid-west.  And before we know it, it will be fall again.  So I'm trying to get as much summer sewing done as possible.  For the most part, I'm concentrating my efforts on separates: skirts, tops, and pants.  Of course, I will include a few dresses too. ;-)

Right now, I'm working on fitting McCall 7753 (among other things).  At first I thought I'd take a pass on this one.  Simply because it does not have princess seams, which would make it easier for me to do the FBA.  I can count on having to do some form of FBA for any upper body garment.  Initially, I got tired just thinking about what the possible fitting changes would be.  But about two weeks ago, I decided it won't be too bad.  So I purchased the pattern at a June JoAnn's pattern sale.

I could see myself wearing views A and B.

Looking at the front and back pattern pieces first, I made on the front a FBA.  I'm always skeptical about huge bust darts.  I hate that weird dimpling affect.  One option is to make two bust darts on each side, and the other options is to do the "Y" technique that extends the spread into the upper chest area.  Doing the later produces a smaller bust dart in my opinion.  After I made the FBA on both sides I moved the darts down about an inch and rotated them.  This adjustment created a lot of width across the lower bodice that I don't need.  So finally, I added waist darts.

For the back, I made a prominent shoulder blade adjustment.  To keep the back pattern balanced added the same width on the right side.  For the left side, I'll add a small shoulder dart and for the left side I'll ease in the access as needed.  Finally, I added waist darts.

Here are the pattern front and back after the adjustments.  Plus you can see markings indicating that I need to raise the top edge of the front about an inch.

The back will not have a horizontal seam.  I was running out of muslin.

Next Step - Make a Muslin

I sewed the muslin together.  As I suspected, there is slight gapping in the neckline, which can be eased.  I need to move the front waist darts over towards the center a bit.  And raise the armhole area of the left side.  I think these additional adjustments will complete the necessary changes for the front and back.

Now, I can make the adjustments on the front and back facings; then check the fit of the collar to make sure it's falls at the appropriate place on the neckline.  The construction is not difficult or confusing.  So, after these last few tweaks, I'll be ready to cut into my fashion fabric.

Happy Sewing!


Thursday, July 12, 2018

Simplicity 8601 - View A in Review

Simplicity 8601 is really a great little pattern.  I like all the views.  My first review is on view A.

The pattern is described as easy to sew pullover tops for misses feature tie waist and sleeve variations.  It comes in sizes 6 to 22.  I used size 16 with a few modifications.

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The top went together with no problems.  And there are no confusing instructions in the guide sheet.

I enjoyed making this top and am very pleased with the results.  I like the center front and back seams, the sleeve variations, the close fit of the neckline, and the tie.

The fabric I used is semi-sheer with a purple on purple polka-dot print woven into the fabric.   It's a polyester silky textile that I purchase in Poland in 2012.   It has lovely drape and falls very close to the body.

I made a small FBA following Sandra Betzina method from her "Fast Fit" book.  This method does not create a bust dart.  I cut the front and back on the bias.  This created some stretch across the body.  Special note: it also create stretch in the armhole.  So be careful when insert the sleeves.  The added flexibility made setting the sleeve easier.  But at the same time you don't want to distort the armhole.  Before hemming the top and sleeves, I hung it on my dress form for a few days to allow the bias cut of the top to settle.

The other small change that I made was to make loop for the button.

I am going to sew it again real soon and I recommend it to all level sewists.

It's cute and easy to sew.  A winner!

Happy Sewing,

Monday, July 9, 2018

Summertime Fun Skirt - Mood Exclusive Coffee and Cars Cotton Voile and 6326-C

This is such a fun skirt!   It's trendy, light and floaty.  Perfect for summertime.  When I first saw Mood's Coffee and Cars Cotton Voile, I simply had to have it.  I did not know what to make at first.  But it didn't take long to figure it out.

The online video clip suggest a blouse with a high weighted pair of shorts.  A shirt was a typical garment.  And that's usually cool with me.  But I decided to make a skirt.  Now, this fabrication is very light and transparent.  I lined it with a White Cotton Voile, also from Mood.  The two of the them together add body and modesty.

For my skirt, I used B6326, view C.  I used my usual size, lengthening it a few more inches.  I didn't make any other changes.  It was easy, easy, simple.  Nothing confusing or difficult in the construction.

I paired my  new skirt with one of my shirts from "The Shirt Project" (last year).  This is the first time posting pictures of the completed shirt.  It's also made with Mood fabric, Italian White Stretch Cotton Shirting.  Sorry it's no longer available at Mood.  There are many other options still available.

I used Vogue 8747 for three of my shirts.  Here is a link.

Sorry, no outside photos.  I did the photo shoot just as the sun was starting to set.  So I took the pictures inside.  And I forgot to  change my shoes.  Oops.  Anyway, the close-ups shows off this really cute print.  It's a winner.

Happy Sewing!

Sunday, July 8, 2018

New Summer Floral Maxi Dress - McCall 7775- View C

I'm pleased to post the second half of my review on McCall 7775-View C.  A few weeks ago, I shared my initial thoughts on this dress.  That post also included some fitting adjustments.  You can read about it here.  I thought I would finish my review a week earlier.  But I had a few hiccups that slowed down the completion of the final dress.  The first things was I didn't buy enough fabric. So I had to go back to the store.  After returning home, I got distracted and didn't get back to it for a few days.

I don't always make a muslin; but this project I thought it would be best to make one because of the neckline and the possibility of gapping along the upper bust and underarm areas.  Good call.  There was just a little gapping, about an inch on either side.  I pinned a little tuck in the muslin, took it off, and then measured the length from the shoulder seam to the side seam.  Finally, I marked where I wanted to ease in the access.  I also had to do a little easing on the facing; not as much though.  This adjustment gave me a snug fit.  Happiness..,

For this first dress, I purchased this floral tropical print from JoAnn's.  It is a rayon/polyester blend.  The hand is soft and it's floaty drape falls close to the body like most rayon.  It doesn't wrinkle as much a 100% rayon, and the polyester content may also help preserve it longer than 100% rayon.  Another thing I like about the fabric.

The construction of the twist can be a little tricky.  One of the illustrations is the opposite of what it should be.  The facing needs to be the reverse image of the dress.  See picture below. I decided to save sewing the side seams of the facing and dress for last.  That was easier for me.

Once I conquered the fit issues, the dress was pretty easy to sew together.  And I like it well enough to make it again.  So, you'll see another version of it soon. ;-)

Happy Sewing!

Friday, June 29, 2018

Burda Flounce Top 6428 and McCall Pants 7483

Happy FRIDAY!  It is super hot in the Chicago land area.  I'm talking upper nineties, feeling like 105 degrees and very sticky.  I think I'll spend a little time sewing this weekend.

Today, I'm reviewing McCall 7483 (pants); also I'm wearing my new Burda flounce top 6428.  NOTE:  I used steam a seam on the hem of my top.  It created puckering all the way around.  I hate that.  I'm going to try to correct it.  Wish me luck.

The pants are wide leg with a deep yoke, front pleats and back invisible zipper.  I used size 16 with minor changes.  There's not a lot to these pants: front and back yoke; front and back pants.

I used a light weight polyester suiting that was gifted to me some time ago.  It has a crisp hand and stands slightly away from the body.  It's charcoal in color.  Good to wear in the fall and cooler spring/summer days.

The instructions were pretty typical of the big four.  And I didn't see anything confusing or difficult in them.  The construction was easy enough for a beginner to sew.

I only made very minor changes:  lengthen them about for inches and shorten the front pant about 1.5 inches at center front and tapering to 0 at the side seam.

I could have added maybe .5 inch to the center back and added a bit to the hook of the crotch.  If I make them again, I will.  Another change I'll make to this pair is to sew the pleats together through the mid hip area.  I don't like the way they open.  It's not neat to me.  That's my only dislike about how they turned out.

I can't say that I will make these again for myself.  But that remains to be seen. ;-)

These are a basic pants with a pleated front that all level sewists can make.  If this is a style that you like, I recommend that you give them a try.  Make a muslin first to make sure the fit is right.

Have a great weekend and happy sewing!

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Mood Fabrics Swatch Club

Every once in a while, I request swatches of a few fabrics I'm interested in just to see how they actually look and feel in person before I decide to buy yardage for a sewing project.  Yesterday, I was surprised to receive a box full of beautiful fabric swatches.

The first thing I notice was the cute sturdy box.  It looked like a gift.  When I opened the box, inside there was a gift, a set of 25 "big" swatches to gaze at, to feel, and to decide how much of each I'd like to purchase.

There is a wide variety of textiles, my box included a mini sequins, silk chiffon, two weights of denim, knits, and some polyesters and viscoses.  Just a beautiful array of fabrics, something for every occasion and lifestyle.

I mentioned "big" because I never received swatches this large before from any swatch club.  There was no newsletter type booklet included to staple the swatches to.  But the little gift box did include a coupon, booklet of potential ideas.

If you are interested in joining the Mood Fabric Swatch Club click on the link:  Mood Swatch Club  for details.  There are three subscription options that you can enjoy.

Happy Fabric Shopping!

Thursday, June 21, 2018

Cute Flounce Knit Top - In Review Burda 6428

I finally got around to making my "first" top from Burda 6428.  This is the same top made by Ms. Faye of Faye's Sewing Adventures.  Her top inspired me to give it a try.  I even selected a similar color to her inspiration top.  Here is my review.

Pattern Description:  Burda describes this as a fitted t-shirt pattern.  I'd like to add with neck variations.  Looking at view 1 on the pictured model, it a little loose to me. 

Pattern Sizing: It is available in sizes 8 to 18.  I used 14/16 with modifications. 

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?  Yes, it did look like the photo.

Were the instructions easy to follow?  Everyone knows that Burda can be a little vague with the instructions.  But they were fine for me.  I didn't see anything confusing.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? I like the neckline, the flounce, simply the look of the t-shirt.  It didn't look like your typical T.  On the construction - I like the finishing of the neckline and the lower armhole.  It looks clean and RTW.

After my few modifications, the neckline is still a little wider than I am accustom to.  Next time I'll bring it in a little more. 

Fabric Used:  I purchased this knit from Marcy Tilton.  It kinda of slinky and has great recovery.  It's semi-opaque.  I did experience a little stitch skipping even though I used a microtex sewing machine needle, size 10, which works for me with most knits.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made: 

  • I cut size 14 at the neck and 16 through the bust area and tapering back to size 14.  
  • Swayback adjustment - added a center back seam, tuck at lower back,  scooped out excess at lower back and adding the amount of the tuck at the hem.  
  • FBA - I used Sandra Betzina Fast Fit FBA.  I saw Ann of Gorgeous Fabrics' Blog use this technique for one of her projects.  Sorry, I can't remember which project.  Her post post reminded me that there was alternative to creating a FBA.  This one does not produce a bust dart.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?  I'll give this one another try.  I like the cut of the t-shirt.  Next time, I'll reduce the opening of the neckline.  I do recommend it to others.  It's easy and it's cute.


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