Showing posts with label stash. Show all posts
Showing posts with label stash. Show all posts

Sunday, 25 October 2015

Why You Should Not Stash Fabrics !

  
I have had this piece of light weight denim for about  20 years now . It has been either stored in a covered basket ( when my stash was small ) or in various cupboards ( as my collection grew ) . It has always been kept away from the light . 
Check out that serious fabric foldline fading ! 
This was leftover from making a shirt that well never made it to a shirt. I  kept on sewing the patch pockets unevenly and was so totally frustrated I threw the project out . I remember that so well such was the frustration ! However I kept the large scraps and the sleeves which are in pieces ( I don`t know why ) because it is lovely soft smooth fabric and I paid a decent price for it. 



I was going to sew a knipmode tunic out of this . The tunic is made up of lots of pieces - the sleeves and back are from two pieces and the front from three pieces so I was hopeful that I could juggle all these small pieces onto my irregular scrap. Alas despite my best efforts I could not get those pieces to fit the fabric. Sigh. So again laziness made me turn to an  old pattern that I have made many times and I knew did not take much material. 



I may be trying to reduce my fabrics but I keep hold of old patterns. I bought this one about 10 years ago because I loved the white lace version on the front . Of course I have not recreated that look but I have now made this pattern up three times and I still do intend to make the white lace top. 



To get all the pieces on I had to cut the back from two pieces of material and I barely had any seam allowance. Trying to overlock that seam nicely was impossible so I used a fancy stitch and matching embroidery thread to sew down those seams. 
Then I repeated the stitching along the front neckline and bodice seams. 





I know some people would think why bother sewing with such faded fabric but it really is lovely and soft and as I have probably written before  I do not like waste . I am just calling this my shabby chic top :).
So this is just about the last of my really old fabric I have now . 
But please learn a lesson from me - do not stash fabrics ( well at least not for 20 years ) .

Wednesday, 23 September 2015

The Essential LRS - New Look 6896.



LRS being The Little Red Skirt.
Earlier this year I sewed up a really old stash inhabitant , the pink and blue plaid , and I love the end result. This got me thinking about other similarly elderly pieces of fabric. I do not subscribe to the theory that she who dies with the most fabric wins . I think about the lost opportunities , unfulfilled sewing dreams and not to mention the plain waste of resources . So I feel a bit ashamed to admit that I have  more 20 + year old fabric  languishing in my cupboard.
 This red crepe was actually a two metre  remnant ! I originally bought 5 metres to make a 3/4 length dress with multiple gores - very much a look at me dress - so not me ! I ditched that plan and  sewed another dress up but it was what I now know to be a wadder . I did wear it but  my sewing was less than stellar so I  turfed it after just a few uses.


I was skimming through pattern review a few weeks ago and saw a really lovely looking skirt . I then googled more images of the same pattern made up and the cogs started slowly turning until bingo I realised this would be a great way to use my red crepe . However after accumulating sewing treasures for 30 years I  knew I would have a similar pattern in my collection.


I found New Look 6896 in my French pattern magazine which was very much what I wanted . I really like this magazine because although I do not know the french language all the patterns have clear construction diagrams which are helpful in trickier areas.
The skirt is a simple wide yoked semi-circle style with belt carriers and pockets . The zip is on the side which was the only real difficulty because I added pockets from another view to my skirt .
I used some tips I found in a Vogue magazine to hem the skirt - first sewing a long gathering stitch to gently bring in some of the fullness of the hem before hand sewing the hem in place . I then removed the gathering stitches , gave the hem a press and it looks pretty invisible to me ! I added some cotton tape to the top of the yoke to stabilise this area and I think this does help a lot .




I have so many tops that coordinate with this skirt that it is a wonder that I never thought before  this was an essential garment to have !


I have worn my new skirt with a new top as well using  a long narrow remnant that Mum gave me . I used Kwik Sew 2695 which has become a favourite pattern to use up small pieces of fabric . It is so quick and easy but I managed to make more than one mistake in sewing this up . And now I have just realised looking at these photos that I have achieved the dreaded bulls eye effect so I don`t know if I will keep it or not now.
As I was sewing up my red crepe I felt quite pleased to be using up all my really old fabric until I realised that no there are still a couple of pieces left that are 20+ years ! So I predict a denim tunic coming into my life in the near future but the other piece is only good for night wear so that will probably reach its silver anniversary.

Happy sewing , Janine.

Saturday, 29 August 2015

A Bloggy Catch Up and Ramblings about Fabric .

It is a lovely Sunday morning here - the rain has stopped ( our sheep at one stage had their own personal olympic sized swimming pool with a Murray River run off in their paddock  - I put a stop to their backstroke lessons when I unclogged the roadside drain ) and it is sunny.
I have had my breakfast carefully supervised by my food taster . If he does not drop dead one millisecond after eating my toast ( multigrain BTW )  prepared for me by my husband then I proceed to enjoy. My fitness instructor has taken me for a walk. The fitness involved depends entirely on how many fitness instructors have preceded us. Sometimes we need to inspect every single blade of grass and other times a quick sniff of some select trees and fence posts will suffice. Now my bodyguard will allow me to sew whilst he pretends to curl up and sleep . However I see him opening a single eye now and again to check for any potential assassins .

This year I was making a concerted effort to really sew down my fabric stash/ collection / hoard or whatever you want to call it. I made a policy that if I bought fabric then I would HAVE to sew it up straight away.



This policy works really well. I bought the mesh knit for my knipmode scarf top  from my previous post .
I bought this cream cable rib knit above  for my practice run for my black lace bonded knit . The bust darts are too low and the sleeves are too short but I was happy otherwise.


I bought this border print from an op shop - a bare one metre and sewed up Simplicity 4368 again . This is such a nifty little pattern - to be able to get a top with sleeves from such little fabric ( I use size 12 )  . However it seems the fabric buying policy expired in late July.
My excuse is my daughter had an exam in a regional town a couple of hours away. I rarely go there and I had 3  1/2 hours to spare . So I went and looked at an op shop . And found a mother lode of fabric . In the end I limited it to just under 20 metres - taupe  tropical wool, cream rayon, floral dotted swiss , cream rib stretch, cotton-silk ( I think ) floral , lemon and rust coloured crepe de chines and a pale grey mystery . Yes so in one swell swoop I bought the amount of fabric it has taken me to sew for the year . Sigh - there is always next year yes ?


I will finish with a word about my  food taster / fitness instructor / bodyguard. Just in case you are jealous or think he is perfect , well he is not . I have given him several dissertations on how to make the perfect cup of tea. He knows the theory well but has yet to put it to practice.

Happy Sewing Janine.

Saturday, 8 August 2015

241

Just updating my personal sewing diary.
One of the things I really enjoy about having a blog is being able to document my sewing endeavours.  Most of my sewing has long disappeared and exists only in my mind. Not that it was spectacular or special just that I sewed it and and can see that I am getting better even if I still know just about zilch on fitting and totally nothing about drafting.
Another thing about having a blog is actually having a photo of myself wearing the clothes which sometimes even includes a back view. There are very few photos of me except on this blog. That doesn't  matter to me at all but it has been interesting to me to see what  clothes , colours  and styles might suit or not. Because that is another thing I am relatively clueless on -style etc.  And until this blog I didn't actually know what my back view looked like ( and perhaps that is information that was better that way ) .


Last month I finished sewing another burda style henley T.
This was a sewing project that I needed ,  not just wanted. A basic cream T .
The fabric is a fine ribbed knit bought on a lovely fabric buying day in November 2013 with the lovely girls from the monthly sewing group ( sadly this year it has been an annual sewing group for me ) . The month before had been a stashbusting sewing month - pure genius ! The fabric was from Rathdowne Remnants and the first piece I have made up from that day ! I thought it would be difficult fabric to handle because it is so fine  but it sewed up quite easily and I was delighted there was just enough to make  another kwik sew singlet as well - hence the two for one blog title .


Friday, 10 July 2015

Kwik Sew 3026 or How Not To Sew Plaid.

Pattern used - Kwik Sew 3026. I love this pattern having now made it 5 times. It is a great basic pattern for either a button up or placket shirt. It has separate pattern pieces for the under and outer collar pieces and a gently curved hem.
Fabric used - pink and blue textured plaid cotton. This has been in my stash for 20 years ! It feels  sturdy and soft  and I had trouble working out which were the wrong and right sides . Overall a great quality fabric which is hard to find these days.



 From memory I have  not sewn a plaid shirt before. I did make a plaid dress  20+ years ago and I am certain there were no thoughts about pattern placing going on then  This time there were plenty of thoughts but I still managed to muck up!

1. The front placket is not cut on the true bias - I thought it was but I must have been wearing my foggy glasses .
2. The front main plaid is cut slightly off centre .
3. I cut the pocket pieces on the bias and the pocket flaps on the straight grain. I carefully matched  the pocket flaps to the shirt front and then sewed them on the wrong sides so the pockets are lower and closer to the placket than intended. Annoying but the end result is fine .
4. The back of the collar plaid pattern is meant to align with the main back piece. Mine doesn't because I didn`t know .


No back view of the shirt because. 

Much loved and much used Kwik Sew 3026. 

However I did manage to cut the cuffs and yokes on the true bias and matched my side seams really well. I used larger buttons than originally intended on the placket to cover up my mistake :).

The Verdict - I love my new shirt !







Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Stash Building and Australian Rules Football.

You see when you sew all roads lead back to sewing ( at least in my narrow sewing mind ) .
This year I co-won the Footy Tipping Competition at work ( I suggested to the other winner that he could take all the glory of winning if I take all the money :) - he tactfully replied that he wanted to share the glory of winning with me ) . My family thinks it`s a scream that I won because frankly I know nothing about football and just got lucky although towards the end when I thought I was in with a chance I did use some tactics .
I would like to point out I would have won but put my tips in late a couple of times  for those Friday night games and the person running the competition wouldn`t  let me have those points ( nothing to do with the fact she was coming third ! ) Anyway hopefully you can judge by this that the Footy Tipping Competition at work is fun and we enjoy some good natured banter  about it.

I wanted to spend my lucky winnings on fabric especially some printed cotton lawn to make a tunic . I have been inspired by Camp Runamuck`s happy bright tunics she makes ( not to mention I adore her  pack  of dogs ) . Of course Murphy`s Law means I have bought everything but cotton . So here are my acquisitions.

On the left is some royal blue sweater type knit and denim look knit. Both from the Darn Cheap $2 table. I don`t often get to go to Darn Cheap and usually don`t have much luck with the famed $2 table but I was lucky when these turned up.
Then there is some patterned blue knit and not showing up very well some cream paisley embossed fleecy - both from different op shops. The cream has a couple of brown spots on it but hopefully these will come out or I can cut around them to make a simple windcheater .
On the right is some Daniela  ponte knit from Knitwit. I have read so much about ponte and seen so many great makes out of it but also read that it can pill easily . I have bought a few pieces from Knitwit in the past and generally found their fabrics to be good quality so I now have my first piece of ponte in a pattern and colours I love ( and hopefully won`t pill ).
In front is an interesting piece of fabric - a thick cream  sweater knit with black lace somehow embedded on one side . It was from Clear It . I took my mother to have her cataracts operated on and was able to walk to Clear It from the opthalmologist`s rooms . For the next surgery I took Mum to Clear It prior to her procedure and noted that that fabric was already gone so I am glad I bought it then and there.
So there I was going so well with my stash busting this year . Oh well there is always  next year .

Happy Sewing , Janine.

Tuesday, 25 February 2014

My Stash.

What is the saying - If life gives you lemons, make lemonade.
My eldest daughter left home last week to start university after a gap year mostly spent overseas - in Japan and Peru.
I am very happy for her - It is a wonderful thing for a parent to see their children mature into adults . My daughter is happy and confident and has a very bright future ahead of her. I could say a lot more about her but she would not like it so I will respect her wishes here.
However it does leave a gap at home and I am missing her .
So I took over the central part of her wardrobe and for the first time ever I have all my fabrics together placed on shelves.

I have sorted my stash according to fabric types . It is far from being a SABLE but with my current snail paced sewing this will keep  me out of trouble for a few years.
On the top shelf  I have a few pieces of flannelette , sweater type knits and garment toiles.
The second shelf has bottom or jacket weight fabrics on the left and various types of knits ( including another sweater knit proving I am not as organised as I think I am ) on the right. In the middle are some polys ( with one rolled up piece of cashmere wool on top !)
The third shelf has various cottons on the left, silks in the middle ( with some Japanese cottons on top ) and again proving my organisational skills are lacking pale fabrics of all sorts on the right .
The second bottom shelf has bags of remnants divided into small pieces and large pieces. There is a plastic tub and another bag of patchwork /crafty type material.
The bottom shelf holds my old sewing machine and over locker and the embroidery attachments for my Pfaff.

The rest of the wardrobe still has some of her clothes and bits and bobs she does not need so I have not been entirely awful in taking over the wardrobe :)

Work and helping my daughter move has taken up more time than I expected. SO far this year I have only sewn two garments ( my T shirt project was actually all completed in 2013). I have also made toile after toile for my youngest daughter to sew up some gorgeous ombre lace bought in Paris last year . I am so nervous to cut into this but we almost have the toile right - I am waiting for her to try on the latest version . I tell you trying to fit her simple top has almost made me want to give up sewing - except then I look at the above photo ! I have also made some home dec projects for my eldest DD and have just started on curtains as well - ugh.  I have four more projects to blog about - I would like this blog to be fairly complete sewing diary for me but I have just spent ages trying to get that above photo upright ! I think I may have learnt how to rotate photos so they stay rotated in blogger - fingers crossed.
Anyway Cheers Janine.

Sunday, 1 December 2013

Tee for Two or Three ?

I have been informally sewing along with a group of ` Stashbusters `this year  . Each month was a different theme and February`s was using small pieces of fabric . I embraced this idea and ran with throughout February and then just kept on going .

I started with sewing two T shirts using four pieces of fabric that has been festering in my stash for years .


Using Simplicity 7692 - a very old basic T shirt pattern I slashed, cut and re- taped the pattern to recreate the above tops. 
Top one has an asymmetrical neckline with a matching asymmetrical two pieced front. I used three pieces of material to complete it - a small remnant of maple leaf print poly knit in the colours of navy, black, teal, violet  and  gray and matching teal mesh and navy cotton lycra . There was not much of the maple leaf print left and I absolutely loved it . I was determined to use it but it did take some thought on what to do . This project was certainly stretching my creative side and in the flush of success - yes I can do something a little different ! - I went and melted the top of the front while ironing it -duh . ( Oh well it was just going to be a wear around the house top anyway ) 


 Top two is a shameless knockoff of a vogue pattern released last year I think. Well it is just a variation of a simple T and for $25 plus for a vogue pattern  why not? I used a remnant knit of a blue/black/ gray/ white stripey soft knit  given to me from Mum and the remainder of the navy cotton lycra from Top one. Again there was not much of the stripey knit so some care was required.  I also took more care with the ironing !

This was a fun project. Using an old pattern and remnants ( the exception being the navy cotton lycra ) I had nothing to lose so I just kind of went for it . I ended up with two wearable tops from fabric too small to do anything else with. I would recommend others to have a go at this as well. 

And then as mentioned I kept on going with the remnant stashbusting . I sewed more short PJ bottoms for my middle daughter using material left over from her Kwiksew circle skirt. And then I made another Kwik Sew top from more remnants but that can be another blogpost for another day. 

Wednesday, 25 May 2011

Phew 2

Phew - 2 posts in one day.
However this is a momentous milestone for me. I have finished cutting out my `muslin` butterick pants and by doing so I have reduced my STASH to under 200metres.
Before I discovered sewing blogland I thought I must have the most material in the whole world. Boy was I wrong. I then actually measured and documented what I had and this amounted to over 200metres. Not alot for some people but overwhelming for me. So like alot of other people I too have a resolution to sew this down to at least 1/2. Don`t get me wrong I enjoy having a stash just not a large one. There is also a practical reason for this as we are building a new house and I have elected not to have a sewing room as realistically someone will be moving out in the next 2-3 years ( sob ) .I have been told emphatically that I am CRAZY not to have a sewing room but I want to downsize and have less fullstop.
Anyway I am quietly celebrating my material milestone, happy to  watch my ugly fabric pile go down and use previously unloved patterns. These butterick pants should sew up alot quicker than my previous jacket effort so hopefully I will be back soon.
Cheers Janine. PS The weather is still too horrible to garden - what a pity.

Saturday, 30 April 2011

Ugly Fabric Purge




My mother keeps on getting fabric from her her sister-in-law who gets it from who knows who and then passes it on to me. I keep on saying yes but this year I have started saying no to the uglies. However I can not get rid of the above , I have a compulsion to use it and  I can not abide waste. Therefore I am going to muslin the above patterns which I have never used. Two birds with one stone - get rid of my ugly fabric and use these patterns that I have bought and never used. Once I have sewn the above I will be pretty happy with my remaining stash. I expect I may only actually end up wearing 2 of the above projects.
I have already cut out Style 3741 - the pleated jacket - I got this pattern back in the 80s and am only just using it ! My mother made one of these and I used to occasionally wear it but it was way too big - so I got the pattern in my size and then it has just sat there. I am using a butter yellow textured something and lining it with some beige poplin.  .
The next fabric is a purple and orange and maroon knit with gold sparkles - the photo does not do justice to the ugliness - I will muslin the Issy Miyake skirt - test the length and whether or not I can away without inserting a zipper . I bought this pattern many years ago on the strength of the positive PR reviews and again it has just sat there. I even paid an extravagant $11.00 for this ( on sale ) . If successful I will have to  buy fabric as there is nothing appropriate in the stash.
The next fabric is a rainbow striped cotton twill - the fabric is good in itself but I am not going to any dress as a clown events anytime soon. I will muslin the Butterick pull on pants - if they look decent I have some dark grey subtle herringbone fabric which will  be good for work.
Last but not least for ugliness is the royal blue crepe - again quite good quality fabric . It is actually not that ugly but it reminds me of the 80s and early 90s and isn`t really a popular colour anymore ( I think ) . I will muslin the popular Simplicity Jacket . ( I was given 4metres of this wide material and have already make a skirt and sleeveless dress - I wore the dress to work and someone said I looked like an air hostess ! Haven`t worn the dress again - not that there is anything wrong with being an air hostess - they work hard and I don`t envy their job at all  )
I hope I am not wasting my time too much but I will be glad to get this material out of my sewing room.
Cheers Janine