Saturday, October 10, 2015

Slow fashion October

After this post a few months ago I've really caught the knitting bug!
I really love learning new skills. I absolutely love dressmaking but with my current changing shape I'm sewing more out of necessity and there are some patterns I'm desperate to try (Alder and Roberts being two that immediately spring to mind) but can't just yet. I'm missing taking on new challenges, as I'm sewing a lot of easy makes, mainly out of jersey!

Being pregnant has kick started my interest in knitting, I've been desperate to make this jumper for at least a year now but needed some small, fast projects to get me from a total basic beginner first.

The first thing I knitted was a tiny baby hat, which still needs the bear ears attaching so is technically unfinished, the second was an obvious choice of a tiny cardigan. The pueripeum cardigan was recommended to me and it's just a brilliant pattern! I absolutely loved knitting it, it really stretched my knitting skills and increased my confidence. It was just the challenge I needed!

I've nearly finished the last sleeve and whilst definitely not perfect it has given me the confidence to try another knitted project, this time for me. This cardigan in a gorgeous mustard yellow. I've been searching for a mustard cardigan for ages and just couldn't find one that was perfect, so I'm going to make my own!
After making my own clothes for two years, it's really hard to get out of that mindset and it may take me 6 months to knit this cardigan but it will be so worth it

I was really good and didn't cast on until I'd finished the baby cardigan. I'm absolutely obsessed with knitting at the moment so I'm hoping it won't take as long as I think! 

Alexandria Peg trousers

Myself and ole Alexandria did not get off to a good start.
I ordered the pattern from Backstitch shop who I HIGHLY recommend for patterns, they have such a wide range, more than most online shops. It arrived the next day, thanks Backstitch!

The first thing that annoyed me - and bear with me here if you already know this - but Named patterns come overlapping on one large pattern sheet. I don't know if they all do, but considering a trouser pattern has 3 pieces plus pockets it seems unnecessary, especially for the high end price of £15.
The second thing was that they don't include seam allowances?! So not only did I have to trace out a few pieces (I rebelled and cut the others out) but I also then had to add seam allowances!
All I hear about Named is how wonderful they are and yet these seem to be very basic expectations of indie patterns, or have I been spoilt?
The THIRD thing was the pattern pieces aren't labelled with how many you need to cut like most indie patterns and you have to refer to the instructions for that.

The instructions also seem quite basic in comparison with other companies. Attaching the pocket bag had me scratching my head for a while but I got there in the end.

Considering all these problems happened before I'd really gotten much sewing done by the time I was in the process of putting them together I hated them. Has anyone else done this?
If I'm ever taken longer than a few sessions to make an item I start to detest it.
I'd pretty much given up on these trousers but then I figured I'd try them on for fit at least....OH MY GOD. They're THE most comfortable pants I've ever worn and that's including leggings!

I think I need to go down a size at the waist, or reduce the amount of elastic used, however this might just be the drape of the fabric.

Despite the problems I had at the beginning, I absolutely love these trousers and I can't wait to wear them once they've been washed!

I've been wearing them all day today and didn't even need to change into comfy clothes when I got home!
As soon as I'd finished these I cut another pair out in a double sided jersey. One side is your typical grey jersey and the black side is like a light fleece material. Super cosy for winter!
I reduced the seam allowance on the waist to try reduce the excess fabric but I didn't want to go down a size in case the was just the drape of the fabric causing the baggies at the front (and having to wear them so low). 

Please excuse the terrible photos, I wanted to see how they looked on!
You can see the front is still baggy and the waistband isn't tight enough. 
Check out the fit at the back though! 

Somehow I managed to cut the front leg off grain and so it twists, which is odd because I distinctly remember measuring the grain line!
I can't decide if these are a total fail or not. The leg does twist but I only make these for the next few weeks at work but I feel they just look like fancy jogging pants!

Oh well you win some, you lose some. 

Maternity makes

After this post about dropping the dress, all I've made since have been dresses! Although in my defense I did just cut the Morris Blazer out...

The first two have been modified plantain tops, a free pattern from Deer and Doe. This one I lengthened the front and gathered the sides using my overlocker to create extra bump room, I based the waist and hips on an existing RTW pattern but wish I'd made it a little tighter.

This dress was inspired by instagram and a dress Katie had made

It's basically the plantain top with added gathered waistband, I asked Katie the width and she just used the full width of her fabric. It's similar to the Moneta except the neckline is lower.
The fabric I used from mine came from Guthrie & Ghani but really it's too thick for a dress which makes the skirt stick out a little too much but it makes a good winter dress. I also cut the bodice too low (I'm not used to so much bust!) and it pulls up too much. However it will also be an excellent addition to my maternity wardrobe!

I also made another Merchant and Mills Dress Shirt, this is the third I've made which may make it my second most popular dress (the first being the oversized bodice/gathered skirt combo). I really took my time with this dress and I love it so much more than my quickly overlocked together jersey dresses. I made the bust and waist a size bigger and left the original hem, my bump pulls it up and makes it the perfect length. I can never seem to find time to take a picture so you'll just have to take my word for it!

And last but not least is another Moneta, this time I made no changes to the pattern and just cut my normal size. Thank god for forgiving fabric!

I absolutely love this dress it's my favourite! I almost don't feel pregnant in it and it makes me feel like my old self.
I also cut and sewed it up in less than 3 hours!
As my bump grows I seem to be needing more separates now that it's getting colder, a couple of Alexandria trousers and a few Lark t-shirts should keep me going!