Sunday, May 31, 2015

Python on Stretch Cotton Sateen - Butterick 6169 and Burda 6879

I'm simply loving Moods stretch cotton sateen fabrics. The selection includes gorgeous silky smooth solids to audacious bright prints. The coloration is flawless. These beauties are versatile and are great for summer dresses, pants, skirts and jackets. I recently ordered five different yardages to perk up my spring/summer wardrobe.

By now it's clear that I love a great bold print.  For my jacket, I used beige/brown python printed stretch cotton sateen.  I couldn't pass it up. Wink, wink.  The warm beige solid sateen was perfect for my pants.  The online photo does not do this buttery fabric justice.  It almost looks off white in the photo.  It actually has a soft yellow under tone, which is a great hue against my skin.

This is the first time I used Butterick 6169, jacket and Burda 6879 pants, view B.  There are several things about both I'd liked to point out to fellow sewists who are thinking about trying them.  Let me begin the reviewing process with Butterick 6169.

It is described as semi-fitted lined jacket with shoulder pads, seam detail, welt pockets, exposed zipper and two piece sleeves.  The sizes are from 6 to 22.

This moto style jacket is very popular.  I have a few similar patterns, but I chose this collarless version to test the construction process.  I agree with the average pattern rating.  The construction process was not difficult, but did requires a little more time to install the zipper. There was an error in the instruction #5.  It stated .., pin remaining zipper tape (face down)..,.  It should be face up as the other zipper tape instruction #3 should be installed face down.

After I installed the zipper, I tested zipping it up and down.  It kept getting stuck.  So after I constructed the jacket, I understitched both sides.  This stopped the facing from getting caught in the path of the zipper pull.  The understitching does show, but is not unattractive.

When I was done, my jacket did look like the drawing.  I had to make several adjustments based on my body shape.  I also made a few other changes, my preference. Changes include:

  • Full bust adjustment
  • Sway back adjustment adding the amount of the tuck to the hem of the back pattern pieces
  • Decreased the top of the sleeve by 1/4" to 1/2"
  • I interfaced all four pieces of pattern 1 with a lighter weight interfacing.  This works better for me.  It keeps the sizing and flexibility of all four pieces the same.  It's easier to work with in my opinion.
  • The pocket bag falls below the hem.  So I trimmed off some of the seam allowance to avoid bunching up the pocket between the jacket and the lining.  I posted this on Facebook a few days ago and Kenneth King stated to allow the pocket to sit in the jump pleat at the hem of the lining.  Next time.

  • I only ordered two yards of the python sateen.  So I ended up "piece milling" the front facing.  This is something my grandmother shared during one of our many conversations about sewing years ago.  It does not look too bad if I must say so myself.
  • Added an inch to the length of the sleeves.
I really like how my jacket turned out. The python print is definitely the speaker in the jacket, but the neutral color will allow me to get quite a bit of wear out of it.  I can pair it with neutrals, brown, off-white, orange just to name a few colors.  This jacket is a winner.  I may make it again, possibly in a faux or genuine leather.

Now for the pants.  Burda 6879 offers some interests to the pants leg and the back yoke. See my latest installment of "Notes on a Pattern" .  

These pants have a slim pant leg with over-lay option.  Top open front pockets, three piece back yoke and belt loops.  The sizing is from 8 to 18.  It is recommended that you use stretch fabrics:  cottons, gabardine, lightweight wools and imitation leather for the contrasting fabric.

My pants did look like the drawing.  The instructions easy; nothing difficult or confusing. My likes are noted in my Notes on a Pattern post.  No dislikes.  I really like this pants pattern and will definitely use it again.

With all pant patterns I need to make a few changes starting with lengthening them at least 3 inches.  For these I added about a 1/2 inch to the side seam allowance.  I was afraid the sateen did not have enough stretch in it.  I made a small crotch adjustment for the front pant and slightly changed the curve of the crotch on the back pant.  For the back yoke I increased the width of the seam allowance for a closer fit at the waist.

I like these pants and will use the yoke and pocket for other pants.  And I recommend the pattern to others.  You may need to tweak the pattern a bit as they fit close from the waist to the knee.

The overall outfit is a success.  I love the stretch cotton sateen offerings at Mood Fabrics.  So you will see a few more garments sewn using them.  I recommend the sateen.  There is a sizable online selection to choose from.  The colors are vibrant and the hand is smooth and soft.  No fussing with sewing or pressing.

Try them.  That's all for now.

Happy Sewing!

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Preview of Simplicity Dress 1103 - Three Dimensional Flowers

Here's a preview of my newest Simplicity Dress 1103.  It includes three dimensional flowers. This is not something that I would have previously considered.  One of the Haute Couture Club member, Andrea is the inspiration/encouragement for this dress.

Also, I been the embellishment in current online runway photos.  Review later.

Happy Sewing!

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Notes on a Pattern - Burda 6879 and Vogue 1436

Last week I finished my wearable muslin for Burda pants 6879 (will review soon).  I bought this pattern because of the pockets, the overlay on the front pant and back yoke design.

The Pockets -

The pockets are much like the pockets you see on jeans, the opening is below the waistband instead of at the side upper hip.  In recent years, I've had issues with pockets that open at the hip.  The small "pot in my belly" causes the pocket to stand out.  I hate that look.

But against my better judgement, last year I made another pair of side pocket pants.  And the unattractive pocket opening stood out like a sore thumb.  Quickly, I added a buttonhole and button to close the gaping pockets.  Their must be a better way to resolve the gaping side pocket.

So Burda 6879 is one quick fix solution.  I came up with the "idea" of transferring this pocket design to other pants that I like.  My first attempt is with Vogue 1436.  I'm making these pants next week.

Overlay on the Front Pant -

The overlay is just another design element to jazz up a pair of pants.  It gives you the option to use lace or stretchable leather/suede in a contrast fabric.  Great design option.

Back Yoke -

There two pattern pieces for the back yoke.  The finished yoke has three sections: two sides and a center piece.  It's another great design option as well as an opportunity to make no hassle adjustments.  With most jean or back yoke patterns the back of the pant stand away from my waist.  The side and center york are join wear you would make a dart.  So it's easy to make deeper seam allowances without distorting the look of the yoke.  This is another option I will use for back yoke pants.

That's all for now.

Happy Sewing!

Friday, May 22, 2015

Black and White

I love the combination of black and white. This year alone I've already made two dresses. More to come later this year. In the meantime, here is some inspiration from the runway.

 Enjoy! Cennetta

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Boldly Waiting for Spring in Red and White Cotton Print

Oh My, I would love for spring to come and stay in Chi-town for at least a week.  But I guess Chicago weather is what it normally is.  We have two seasons:  summer and winter.  The week before Mother's Day we had temperatures in the 80's.  But on Mother's Day is was cold and damp.

I was ready to show off my big hat and new dress when all hopes were dashed by the cumulative clouds and the strong trade winds of my fair city. But I braved the chill to take a few photos on Monday and Thursday. 

This cotton twill has a touch of lycra for easy wearing.  It's great for jackets and skirts too.

This was the second time that I used this pattern.  I made view A several years ago.  It's been so long ago, I had to up the size a bit.  For this version (view B),  I hand picked the zipper (no beads this time). 

I really like this pattern and will probably use it again for the fulls skirt version.  It does have options and it is very easy to make.

So I'll have to wait for a bright sunny day to wear my new bold  print frock.  Summer will be here soon.  Wink, wink.

Happy Sewing!


Monday, May 11, 2015

Paulette Bell of the Ball in Butterick 5557

Good evening all,

It's good to finally blog.  The Haute Couture Club of Chicago fashion show was May 3rd.  I'm happy to say it was a great show.  The show was at a different venue this year:  Fountain Blue Banquet facility in Rosemont, Illinois.  In January we had to form a fashion show committee to replace the removed show chair.  So I will stop at that; the story is too long.  Anyway, today I'd like to review Paulette's pastoral annual dinner dress.  I used Butterick 5557 .

Here is my review:

Pattern Description:
MISSES' TOP AND SKIRT: Fitted, lined tops A, B have neckband, below elbow kimono sleeves and back zipper. A: sleeve and lower bands, self-fabric bow. Semi-fitted, straight, lined skirts A, B, mid-calf, have waistband and side zipper.

Pattern Sizing:
6-20 I used size 18 with lots of modifications.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? For the most part.  The pattern was true to the line drawing and pictures on the envelope.

Were the instructions easy to follow?   There is nothing difficult or confusing about the the construction techniques or the instructions.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? This was a pattern selected by Paulette.  She loves vintage and usually picks a vintage style for the pastoral annual dinner.  Paulette likes the style lines of the top, but wanted to add a inch or two to the length of it.  The skirt of most vintage patterns that I have worked with tend to be on slightly on the "A" shape.  Paulette preferred a tapered skirt. 

I thought the style was okay too.  But I probably would not select it for myself.

Fabric Used: Paulette and I made our usual trip to Fishman's Fabric near downtown Chicago.  The fabric is a red stretch shantung blend; the lining is ambiance.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:  There were a lot of changes with this one.  For starters I made two muslins trying to get the fit right and to incorporate any style changes.  Even after the two muslins there were more changes after the second garment fitting.

Alterations:   This is a fitted two pieces dress.  I should have started with size 18 upper body and size 20 for the rest.
  - Decreased the back neckline at the center by 1".  It was too big at the center back neckline.  My fix was not perfect.  After the change, I noticed a few drag lines.
  - Added 2" to 4" at waist and high hip on the top.
  - Added 2" to 4" through the waist and hip areas.
  - Tapered the skirt from the below the hip to the hem.
  - Added side slit to skirt.
  - I used the longer version top and added a 2" lower band.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? I probably would not sew it again as it was a client project.  I do recommend it to others.  This pattern has nice style lines.  But you should make a muslin before cutting into your fashion fabric.

Conclusion:  With a little extra work, I was able to make a beautiful two piece dress for Ms. Paulette.

Parting Shots:  This is the vintage dress made for last year's annual dinner.  Paulette was so kind to model it at the Haute Couture Club of Chicago annual fashion show on May 3rd.  She was a hit on and off the runway.  It was so funny when she said to me, "People know me."  I chuckled and replied, "Some of the members read my blog." 


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