Sunday, 11 March 2018

Style Arc Blakley Stretch Jeans.

 This is the first pair of jeans I have sewn and they  might not even be the last. When I read an email from Style Arc in November selling the pattern / fabric bundle for the Blakley Stretch Jeans I pounced quickly and bought it.

 It came with the Winnie Top which I hope to make very soon. The jeans have a skinny leg style ,wide waist band with elastic , faux front pockets and a faux fly.

On the back though are fair dinkum , dinky di functioning pockets !

It is that time of year where we all complain about how dry it is and we wish it would rain. One advantage is that you don`t have to mow lawns and even the weeds have trouble growing. This year though we have enough feed for our sheep. 
I have already blogged about those pockets which were the hardest part of this project.
The jeans were relatively easy to sew. I did not follow the order of instructions which say to sew the pockets on first before constructing the jeans. I sewed them on last to get the best looking placement I could - I attached them just under the angled back yoke rather than the 2 or so cms gap recommended as that looked too low. I also sewed the front and back waist bands to the front and back pants separately so I could sew up the side seams last.

It did take me three goes to put in  the elastic - the first time I attached it  to the wrong part of the inner waist seam and the second time I got the insertion correct but the elastic was too long so the waist band gaped.
I also had to look up  a tutorial on how to do the faux fly as I could not quite understand the directions although the rest of the instructions were easily to follow.

The only changes I made to the pattern were to lengthen the legs by about an inch . I could find no reference to what height the jeans are drafted and I did indeed need every little bit of that extra length ( I am 169 cm tall).
I have never sewn jeans before because I have not had the need to . I don`t really wear them so much these days and bought ones fit fine. However the main advantages to me of making my own were the fun of decorating those back pockets . If I am not careful I might starting embroidering everything that doesn`t move ! I also liked having the choice of double stitching my seams with plain navy blue rather than the usual gold threat and there is always that satisfaction of making your own clothes.
I  might make these again but using some of the Style Arc Bengaline or other stretch woven. I would highly recommend this pattern as a great easy way to sew jeans.

Wednesday, 7 March 2018

New Comey Vogue 1503 and Old McCalls 2094 and How Long Do You Keep Your Clothes For ?

I love the colour red and in particular red tops . This is the fourth summer red top / shirt I own !
I finished sewing this red  rendition  a few weeks ago and was initially disappointed in the outcome but I have come to realise that the bottom piece I wear with it is essential to its success.
The pattern is Vogue 1503 and I made view A . There are lots of lovely details . The back pieces extend over the front shoulders and the front has a gathered peplum but the back piece is plain so avoiding extra width in this area. The sleeves are finished with bands creating a  neat look. The front and back necklines are finished with self made bias binding.  The instructions include french seams and  bias binding covering exposed seams so the inside looks very professional.
I used a very fine red dobby polyester with small white and green dots and black dashes which Mum gave me over three years ago. A fine drapey fabric is needed to make that gathered peplum work.
Image result for vogue 1503

These photos were taken with me wearing a loosish pair of linen pants and the combination did not look good . However later on I tried a pair of skinny navy pants  and I liked my peplum top much better.So for now it is a keeper and it will match up with newly completed embroidered skinny jeans ( have to get photos taken of those yet ) . As an aside I really love the long sleeved version too and will make that one day !
I should say there was one small mistake in the instructions. They forget to tell you the finish the back  neckline with a bias strip after staystitching. The pictures show the bias binding though. Apart from this the instructions are fine and the pattern is easy to follow.

I have been reading  a few  blog posts about how many times we wear our clothes and the number 30 seems to have been chosen as representing environmental value. It seems a quite random number and I am not sure if there are any studies which proves its worth.

The above red and white floral broderie anglaise shirt would fulfil the 30 wearings number ( as would my other red tops) .
I made it using McCalls 2094 in 2007 which makes the shirt 11 1/2 years old. It is probably one of the best fitting shirts I own and I still love it. In all honesty the upper back is starting to get a bit yellowed as is under the arms but nothing that can not be covered with  a cardigan or jumper .  This is not the oldest shirt I own though. 
 Also using McCalls 2094 is this sleeveless shirt made using some cotton lawn . I sewed this in 2001 so it is now 17 years old ! The cotton is so soft and wonderful to wear on hot days. It is not stained or holey.I simply can not bear to get rid of it and I can see no reason to . 
So am I weird to have clothes for so long ? Does anyone else have clothes this old which are worn over and over ( past the magic 30 number !)