A New Jacket

I had some leftover fabric from some old projects and I decided to make a new casual blazer.

This pattern is from a cool Canadian brand called Helen’s Closet.

This was fun! I used a series of sewing techniques to complete this. The sleeves are finished with a blind hem, the collar is prick stitched, and I hand finished the back hem. The inside is mostly serged.

I liked it so much I started to make another one!

Big Blouse Weekend – return of the Blue Squares

After working through a series of fabrics that I had accumulated in my summer fabric pile (the podcast I listen to calls it a fabric collection) I felt like I had gotten to a place where I could think about some transitional pieces for fall and winter and try to make some nicer work dresses with sleeves. I got a few things at mood… stay tuned.

First though, I also wanted to make a few more basic work tops that I could match with all of my skirts and continue to use all of my fabric as resourcefully as possible.

I try to bring some balance to my sewing with this approach too. So if I buy new fabric, I need to make sure I’ve used most of the earlier stuff. Similarly, I try to keep an eye on old fabrics and see if there are cute projects I can use for the leftovers.

A while ago, I had discovered that my blue poodle Carolina Herrera fabric seemed to match the blue squares. I had said I’d make a top. Before I dig into my new fabrics, I decided I needed to make this top so that I still had time to wear it in the summer. From there, I could make another blouse with something new.

See below for the process and final look!

Continue reading “Big Blouse Weekend – return of the Blue Squares”

Sewing with Friends part 2

We met again and finished cutting out the pattern and started to sew!

We explained all the details like the graineline and “on the fold” symbols. From there we tested the tension of the machine and started to sew the first pocket in the side panel!

We finished it with french seams!  We are going to finish the second pocket separately and get together to work on the bodice.

Also, there was a moment where her machine jammed and she mentioned it was getting really tight in the bobbin area. I looked at the bobbin, then looked at the top thread holder that moves up and down. The string had popped out of there!! Just like my epic sewing jam of the past. I fixed it like a pro and tried to explain how I only new how to do that after so much research when it happened to me in the past.

This has been so fun to do with a friend!

Part 5: Blue Squares continue!

Today I’m going to try and alternate between 1hr of sewing and then 1 hr of chores and by the end of the day I’ll hopefully have completed a lot of both!

I started with kicking off some chores and going through my closet to pick out old clothes that I can donate because I’m just now wearing them anymore. I have a nice pile to send to Goodwill. I also pulled aside a few pieces that I’m going to try and remake into something new!

10:30am time to start sewing! First I will tackle the plackets for the sleeves. These are something that I’ve definitely gotten much better at over time.

Similar to a welt pocket this is something that you flip around a cut in the fabric
Here it is flipped through with the inner side sewn down. From here I just have to sew the main outer part. This creates the gap in the arm hole that you can use to roll up your sleeves.
All done! Also – this fabric is officially too random to have a hope of matching the lines. These squares go in different angles all over the place.
I then added the pleats in the sleeves too

11:45 stop and break for chores and lunch and life things… until 4:36pm start sewing again!

At this point, it was time to attach the sleeves to the body of the shirt. I decided to do all of this with french seams which means all of the raw edges will be tucked away within the seam. I think this leads to the garment lasting longer and also being the most comfortable.

This edge of the inner arm becomes the inside of the arm seam. Remember always sew the wrong sides together first so that you can flip it inside out to finish the shirt seam next! (I’ve learned this the hard way lol)
Here is the finished arm hole!
And full sleeve. Also a peek in the corner at my new red ink peckled working shirt

5:26 break to cook dinner with the eventual shirt receiver 🙂

8:00 start! It was time to do the cuffs. Oh boy they are always a hurdle because it feels like you’re so close to being done but they require quite a bit of sewing in the tight space at the end of the sleeve. Going slow is key! I think I’ve learned I sew pretty slowly. No lead foot here.

Haha I didn’t even really take pictures of doing this lol. I think I’ve taken photos for other shirts in the past.

Last for now I hemmed the bottom of the shirt and here’s what we’re looking at as of 10:00pm:

I will do the buttons soon and this shirt will be done!

Total sewing today: approx 4hrs today

Total project time: 8hrs 40 min

Part 4: Sewing Jam Investigation & Solution! Blue Square Shirt continues!

After all of the research last night to try and fix my machine, I woke up with some new knowledge but still uncertain of what was going wrong.

Of course this is the project I’m trying to time too lol

9:35am start – I watched this very interesting video about fixing the timing of the inside of the machine.

Inspired, I went to look at my machine and play around…

Dun dun duhh!!!!

O.M.G. this little guy at the top had lost it’s thread!

Here it is fixed:

I think this means that there wasn’t enough tension on the top string to pull the string on the bottom off the shuttle. This may have been causing the double-loop-underneath situation.

Next time, I will rethread the top of this machine sooner in the investigation process.

It’s interesting to know how everything works now!

9:57am – it’s sewing time!!

Yay! This collar is going to look so nice!

11:20am: time to take a break for tennis, lunch, grocery shopping, unfortunately dishes, & some baking ahead of visiting friends.

Hanging out with friend was awesome! I may actually have a future sewing buddy! Stay tuned for possible updates there in the future.

Sewing time today 1.5 hrs

Total project time: 4 hrs 40 min

Blue Squares – Shirt Part 2

9:30 PM start! And the new Love to Sew podcast is blasting. These are two joyful women from Vancouver! It is so wonderful and a pleasant mix of detail and fun. I am really looking forward to continuing to listen and learn more. Maybe one day they’ll visit NYC or I’ll try to visit their shop in Vancouver – too bad I learned this after I was just there…I happened to listen to an episode about taking care of scraps! This is perfect timing because tonight I cut out all the pattern pieces. An interesting piece of advice included not being afraid to cut off some of the really small stranger pieces. This helps make a shape that’s easier to store and use in a future project.Good bye to this little straggler.This pattern involves 10 pieces and I’ve used it many times now (see menswear shirt category)By 10:10 I had finished cutting all these pieces out – Ta da!At this point – it was time to go to bed. I was staring at the front panel and thinking about starting to iron down the placket but a little voice in my head again said “nope time to go to bed on a work night” But! There was still time for one fantastic discovery! Look at how this matches. I think I will make a color blocked peplum to match my poodle skirt! I can’t wait!

Total project time so far 1hr 10min