I have been spending all of my free time sewing lately.
Some of my latest creations:
I used Simplicity 1666 to make a top and a skirt. I liked how the top turned out but knew that I would need to make the skirt a bigger size. Unfortunately the way the patterns are sold the one I bought (6-14) does not have larger sizes… so I guessed and tried to cut it about a 16 or 18, and even so, the skirt was tiny and I fear I may bust a seam when sitting!
I used some fabric I ordered online from AliExpress that looked quite different on the computer than it did when it turned up… for a while I hated it but I decided I should try to make something with it, and actually I am loving the top. It’s pretty colourful but not too overwhelming when worn with black trousers or jeans.
There’s a fairly good description of the construction here.
I found that the zipper is probably unnecessary unless you are particularly big busted (and need to do some bust adjustments). However this project did make me really appreciate the importance of stay-stitching, a step I usually skip. Never again! It really made the neckline turn out much nicer, and only takes a few minutes.
Once again I broke out the Burda 7486 and made some trousers-
this time I ended up making 3 pairs – one in a black silk it the turned out also too small (curse my damn big booty!), one in rayon, and one in fluro orange with a slight stretch that I also added a fabulous reflective piping detail to when the cuff is turned up!
These are my new cycling trousers.
I’ll post more pictures when they come out of the wash.
I also spent all day Sunday working on my first Colette pattern – The Cooper. There’s a great sewalong for the Cooper, and a companion book that complements the pattern instructions.
This was particularly helpful for some of the more difficult aspects of this project.
The biggest challenge with this bag was finding all the supplies! It took me a visit to Spotlight, and Made on Marion, and extensive internet searching to figure out what I needed and where to get it from!
I could not figure out what Jiffy Rivets were at Spotlight (they had all different sorts of eyelets and etc. but none of them looked right), and lobster clasps were $5 a pair! I got a few d-rings (which later I discovered were cheaper at Made on Marion) and a magnet clasp (also $5 for 1!!) which they did not seem to have at Made on Marion. The best option is probably to go to the Dump Shop (Trash Palace in Poriua or Second Treasures in Happy Valley) and buy a 2nd hand laptop bag for $3, and then you get 2 lobster clasps and 2 d-rings that can be recycled.
So… bad construction. I also learnt quite a lot here. For example – fusible interfacing will not fuse to waterproof synthetics! I bought 1 metre of “waterproof canvas” from Spotlight, and also had a bit of vinyl lying around that I used to make the bag. The interfacing would not fuse to either, and the “canvas” in particular has very little stiffness, so my bag is very floppy, which especially in the flap is annoying.
However, I discovered that this makes the bag easily tuck-awayable into my other pannier, so I can have it for an emergency pannier bag rather than always lugging around a 2nd pannier basket in case I decide I want to stop at the supermarket on the way home.
On a side note I am so sick of my workmates always commenting on how I look like a hobo with all my bags and gear… I keep trying to explain to them all I usually am carrying is my lunch and my gym gear but I like to have an extra bag in case case I want to do some grocery shopping on my way home… but they still act as if I am some crazy weirdo. Please, just leave me alone workmates.
Anyway here is my finished Cooper, which I am happy with as a first go, but have some definite ideas about how to change it in a 2nd version. Notice the lining is the same fabric as shown above for the Simplicity outfit.
A few other comments about construction –
I am concerned about the durability of the bike-rack clasps here, because the straps attaching them to the bag are quite narrow in the pattern (25 mms), and short. I don’t think as written this pattern could handle carrying a very heavy load. if you are like me and you buy 2 kgs of chick peas and cheese by the block you really need a bag that can handle some weight. So, for this version I increased the width of the fabric straps holding on the d-rings an the lobster clasps. For a future creation I would also lengthen the d-ring attachment straps, making them go all the way to the bottom gusset seam, and possibly add some rivets to help secure them.
Also I like the modifications Squishy Lab made – adding a cross body strap and shortening the height. Also the wool is beautiful! So, some inspiration of my future creations.