Thursday, 23 July 2015

A tale of two tops

Back in May  when I bought fabric for my birthday I planned to make a pair of cotton tops.  I had been eyeballing the Painted Roses tee in summer 2014 Ottobre for a long while.  It is a simple woven tee shirt.  Oh, how I thought I was so clever, filling wardrobe gaps with simple tops.

First up I made the tee shirt in grey dotted liberty fabric.  This fabric was inspired by a painting in the National Gallery.  It is called Melanie Atai and it is lovely.
But, but, but I cut out a 38 and although it fits okay on the bust it is too big on my shoulders.  I also put the sleeves in very messily.  I am torn now, I like the shirt but also think it looks like a 1980s building society uniform.  (It's in the shoulders)  I am cross with myself for my sloppiness.  I wore it a lot after making it but only with a cardigan on top, hiding my sleeves of shame. Now I have bit the bullet and begun unpicking those sleeves. I am a naturally careless sewer and it can take a huge amount of effort to slow down and take more care in my sewing. I know I should, I know I can but sewing seems to pull out my slipshod, hasty self. In part this is down to having only small snatched moments to sew in, so I rush to cram in as much as possible.

The Riley Blake geeky fabric was narrower so I had no room for sleeves. I went down a size and I am happier withthe fit, especially round the neck and on the shoulders.  I cut the back slightly longer and curved the hem.  I have been wearing this top frequently, it filled a wardrobe gap, replacing worn out holey tops.
So, my two woven tops have not been the instant success I expected. I need a bit of sewing calm and patience to get the grey top right. Insert laughter here, those are not abundant qualities in summer holidays. Anyone else feel their personal qualities are reflected in  their
sewing approach?

Sunday, 12 July 2015

Work in progress

 As summer rushes on I am swept up in the current of parties, school and nursery events.  I have a back log of finished makes to show, but I am not going to show them now.  Instead this is what I am currently making.  I was inspired by reading about the
Vintage Pattern Pledge to finally make up a vintage pattern.  This 1972 Style 3590 pattern was given to me by Phillippa.   It was last year I think.   I like the square neck shape, the buttons and the yoke with gathers.  The pattern is labelled "Sandra" and I cannot help but wonder who Sandra was.  She had carefully cut out the pattern for the short sleeved tunic.
 I am making View A, the dress version.  I  hesitated for a long time over the puffed sleeves, not sure if anyone over the age of ten should wear puffed sleeves.  But then my upper arms are not what they used to be and I want some coverage some days.  So I am going to test the puffed sleeves by making and wearing them.  If people shout and point in the street, well then I will know the true power,horror and affront to scoiety of middle aged woman in puffed sleeves.  But most likely no one will even notice except me.
You can see I have gone wrong stitching the sleeve insertion and caught a bit of the yoke, creating an annoying tuck, so the next stage will involve my unpicker.  I am sewing it up in tiny stages when the littlest is at nursery or asleep, in between taxi driving the big two around.  I have a list of jobs as long as can be but I am steadfastly ignoring them to finish my dress for holidays.