Monday, October 29, 2012

Jalie 2911 - Shawl-collared Pullover

When I pulled out the Jalie pattern I used for my daughter's jeans, I noticed Jalie 2911 and the relaxed, cozy look of it really appealed to me.


I had a length of lightweight cotton fleece that I thought would be a good match for this. The view with the hood looked particularly cozy to me, but I didn't have enough fabric for that.

Jalie 2911

The instructions for applying the shawl collar are good, but those inset corners require some precision. You really want to hit them bang-on the first time. Which is not what I did. Ripping out stitches in this dark, fuzzy fabric was no treat. I was able to get the corners in well, but I was left with a little hole in the corner. A few discreet hand stitches closed it up. The pucker shows up pretty well in the picture, but I don't think it is as noticeable in real life.

Jalie 2911

I added cuffs with thumb holes to up the warm-and-cozy factor. I think the holes ended up a little too small, but I haven't actually worn it yet to say for sure.

A cup of tea and a good book will be the perfect accessories for this top.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Simplicity 2245 - Navy Tunic

Awhile ago I was inspired by this photo via Pinterest. I liked the layers, the simple lines and the mix of neutral colors. I was pretty convinced that her dress was navy, but now I think it's actually dark grey. It took me awhile to get over the "no-no" of navy and black together, but lately I really like it. Same with brown and black. So, this is me combining as many neutral colors as possible:

Simplicity 2245

The tunic is the noteworthy item here. The pattern is Simplicity 2245, a lisette pattern that I purchased awhile ago. I made View B, the tunic.


Based on other reviews and the fact that my fabric had some stretch, I went down two sizes. I also added darts in the back for a more streamlined shape there. There were no changes otherwise - this is an easy project!

Simplicity 2245

The pockets are a great feature of this pattern. The instructions for completing them are great - they look more complicated than they are.

Simplicity 2245

The fabric is a stretch cotton blend with tone-on-tone stripes. I like the subtle texture the stripes create. Just for the fun of it, I cut the yoke piece on the cross grain.

Simplicity 2245

The neckline closes in back with buttons and loops, but I don't actually need them for getting in and out of the tunic. However, I suspect I would need them if my fabric didn't stretch. These two lovely anchor buttons were waiting in the button jar for just such a time as this.

Simplicity 2245

I also made the leggings, sometime last winter from a Burda pattern. They're made from ponte knit, so they're heavy enough to be warm and opaque enough for me to feel sufficiently covered.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Jalie 2908 - Girls Stretch Jeans

My daughter has a pair of skinny jeans that she really likes. I bought them from Old Navy. They are both the tall and slim version of her size. The adjustable waistband elastic is pulled as tight as it can go and then they stay up. She hasn't really liked jeans up until this pair, so I'd been surprised by how much she wears them.

When I asked her about it, she told me that she really likes them because they make her feel tall. She said something like this: "You know how if you have a square and a rectangle that are the same height, the rectangle will look taller? I think it's kind of like that. I know I'm not actually taller, but it kind of seems like it more with these than my other jeans." Very insightful, kiddo.

I was very unimpressed with the quality of those Old Navy jeans. The denim looked very worn after just a few washes and they had a hole in the knee after a couple of months so I wasn't eager to go buy another pair. I had flagged an Ottobre pattern for trying to make a pair of skinny jeans, but knew it would take a fair bit of modifications to make it work. Then I remembered this Jalie pattern and got right to work on it.


I started with size I, tapered the legs so they're skinny jeans, and added 6" of length. The only part of this pattern that I didn't like was the waistband. The instructions would have you cut it out on the bias, but I was skeptical about that so I cut it on the straight grain. I also think it is a little too wide, but it might just look different to me because I omitted belt loops.

Jalie 2908 - Stretch Jeans

While I was making these, I was expecting them to be too small (the pieces all just looked so skinny!) so I took some shortcuts. I mentioned the lack of belt loops, but there are also no rivets, and minimal back pocket detailing and less topstitching than is typical for jeans.

Jalie 2908 - Stretch Jeans

Jalie 2908 - Stretch Jeans

I did add buttonhole elastic in the waistband because I thought the waistband might gape (and it does). The elastic does help with that.

Jalie 2908 - Stretch Jeans

Here are the modeled shots:

Jalie 2908 - Stretch Jeans

Jalie 2908 - Stretch Jeans

Jalie 2908 - Stretch Jeans

Doesn't she look tall? ;) I'm curious to see how this denim holds up after a few wears and washes. I'm sure I'll be making more of these.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Burda 9564 - Corduroy Dress

The majority of the clothes I make for my kids are for my older daughter. My son gets hand-me-downs from some other families and my younger daughter gets hand-me-downs from my older daughter. So, my older daughter usually has the greatest amount of need for clothes. The other two do notice this pattern, so they get extra excited when I do work on something for them.

My daughter was pretty excited about the idea of a new dress when I started this one, and she was really excited when it won first prize in our local fair* but now she won't wear it.

Burda 9564

I love the fabric - the trees, the squirrels, the dark red background, the fact that it's corduroy. She doesn't like the fabric - "it's not girlish" is what she says. Bleh. If the squirrels were pink and sparkly (ick), she'd like it. I'm not sure if I should be frustrated with her narrow views or commend her for having a firm grasp on her own sense of style.

I also really like the pattern - Burda 9564. I think it's a great play dress pattern and I find it hard to find long sleeve dress patterns. The instructions about how to finish the neckline were somewhat unclear for me, so I just used bias tape. I also used bias tape to make elastic casings at the wrist. The instructions would have you just stitch the elastic right to the sleeve, but I find that hard to adjust for fit. The buttons I chose were smaller than recommended, so I used six instead of four.

Burda 9564

Even my "The buttons are made from coconuts - isn't that cool?!" speech didn't sway her toward liking this dress. It's a shame that she wouldn't even put it on for a picture, because it's really cute on her!

*This dress really didn't deserve first place. The second place winner was a dress with smocking, hand embroidery along the hem, and bound and piped armholes and neckline. It was all quite well done and I'm sure it took oodles more hours to create than this one did!

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Ottobre 4/2012 #29 - Denim Jumper

This jumper pattern from Ottobre seemed like a good one to use with the second pair of huge jeans passed on to me. Seams at the sides, center front, and center back made it easy to make good use of the jeans legs.

Ottobre 4/2012 #29

The jumper pattern has pockets, but I left them off and added some flower appliques.

Ottobre 4/2012 #29

The buttons are tack style jeans buttons and one of them bent as I was hammering it on, so I'm curious how long it will last. All of the topstitching is done with the triple straight stitch and you can see I had some difficulty crossing over seams. This denim was pretty thick and heavy.

Ottobre 4/2012 #29

Overall, I'm not that excited about how the jumper turned out. I should have taken in the CF and CB seams, but I had those all topstitched before my daughter tried it on. Those triple stitches are really awful to rip. The denim was just a little too heavy for this pattern and the jumper stands away from her body a little too much. It's wearable and my daughter likes it, so I don't think it's a failure. The leggings are Burda 9615 - a winner every time!

Friday, October 5, 2012

For the Record

It's hard for me to believe, but it looks like I still have followers! Thanks for hanging with me through my very sporadic posting. It's been mostly "work" sewing happening around here lately. Some alteration items and then a few pillows and angels for the shops:

Whoops. Try to look past the camera lens smudge that shows up on every picture. 

Sunflower Pillow

Sunflowers Pillow

Leaf Pillow

Leaf pillow

Pumpkin Pillow

Pumpkin Pillow

Bathroom Angels

Prior to these things, I made a dress for one daughter and a jumper for the other, but haven't been able to get pictures yet. Now I'm really looking forward to some sewing for ME! My want-to-sew list is much too long, but plotting and planning is part of the fun, right? Right.