It’s done and possibly better than ever before! This is made with all french seams, bias binding on the bottom edge, and a few seams where everything is tucked in before sewn down. You could almost wear this inside out!
This was a wonderful weekend of tennis, brunch with friends, some chores, and sewing!
I got into the zone and so I kind of forgot to take more pictures. Opps.
Sometimes unexpected events come up and things take longer than expected. In these times, it can be hard to make time for sewing while balancing everything else. This is when it’s important to focus on little things. Last night I tackled this placket! These are tough and include a few tricky details. I had about 30 min before bedtime and it was really nice to do just a little bit. I forgot to play music this time. Sometimes it’s just nice to hear the hum of the machine.
After getting everything cut out it was time to start putting things together!
Let’s talk about necklines and collars today! Collars were initially tricky for me but I am starting to feel more and more confident in my abilities. In fact, I am actually pretty proud because it sounds like collar shirts really weird some people out but I find them to be a pretty fun project that includes a nice mix of shapes of fabric and sewing techniques.
Once you complete the back panel and attach the front body pieces, you then have this funny shape that you could wear like a hanging Cape. At this point, you can open and layout the pieces such that you have a nearly straight edge if fabric for the whole neckline. This is where you take the bottom pieces of the fabric and pin them right sides together onto the shirt. This is what you see happening above.
It is easiest to start by aligning the center notches of the collar and back shirt neckline. From there I pin out towards each edge. I also start by pinning down one collar piece and then adding on the second by taking out each pin and layering on the extra piece. This is what you see above.
From here you can sew this down by slowly working along the raw edge and taking out the pins as you go. The pins really help make sure all three pieces stay together and help you avoid any unusual wrinkles.
From here, you sew these little J shapes on the edge of each collar, only through the collar material. You then flip these up from the shirt and press them flat! This makes the neckline of the collar with a nice bit of flappy extra fabric which the outer collar gets attached to.
I have started to skip adding in the collar stays feature of these collars and the nice part about that is that I can choose which side has the best print alignment. I am sure there’s an official technique that I’m missing by doing this, but it does really help me get the best print alignment.
I am continuing to be about on par with getting though the collar approximately on weekends and having the sleeves left to finish up in second and third sessions. Buttons are always usually a 4th session. This will be a long sleeve shirt so it will take longer than the magical Chicago shirt.
Today, sewing music was a little more hardcore and 90s/rock inspired:
System of a Down: Toxicity (very good for threading a bobin!)
For this project, I transitioned back to my existing fabric collection and broke out a small circle print fabric I had purchased with the second laundry disaster. This fabric had survived and it was time to bring it to life!
I started out by trying to get everything I needed together first. This involved a quick trip to F S Fabrics and I finally bought some real fabric scissors and nice buttons.
I will use the white buttons on this shirt.
By the end of the night I was here:
Boy oh boy it is a lot of cutting and honestly, these new scissors are EXACT but also heavy. I may switch back to using paper ones lol.
With all that cutting, something has to pass the time right? I will try to start featuring this more for fun:
I had so many things for myself planned, I wanted to mix in one thing for D before it started to get too cold to wear a few of the summer fabrics we bought in Chicago.
It was time to try and make a short sleeve Liesl + co shirt! This is a really nice feeling cotton/linen and if I remember right it was only $3 a yard on clearance at Fisherman’s Fabrics!
It all came together quite nicely!
I took one picture… here was the inside of the collar about to be flipped right side out and have the pointy part of the collar attached.
I think the back lines up pretty well too!
Last but not least I used bias tape to finish the sleeves and bottom. This really made the shirt hang nicely. You can see the detail on the sleeve (a few of the stripes appear diagonal aka “on the bias”)! This sleeve is rolled up here to show this detail.
Next time I made one of these, I am going to start playing around with making the inner placket and underside of the collar different colors. I see a lot of that on the train and I want to give it a shot. I also ran into my mood-train-friend George the other day and we were talking about techniques to make things fancier. He is working on an awesome reversible grey shawl collar jacket. One day I’ll be like him!
My loud scrap busting sewing continues with the poodle top!
This was the leftovers of the blue squares blouse that was too loud… and I think I’ve transformed it into something else that is also… kind of loud
Here’s where we left off. I was finalizing the fit and it was SO MANY poodles!
This peplum used only a forward facing pleat and not a box pleat. That made it have a little less volume as a box pleat includes two pleats that face in toward each other.
From here, I sewed on the peplum and decided to drop the neckline into a v-neck. I think this makes the outfit a little less busy.
This also inspired me (who are we kidding? D totally said I should just make this) to make a basic black pencil skirt. I used the skirt block we developed at Mood U. That pattern is the ULTIMATE pencil skirt and I’m so happy with it.
I am so proud of D! One night we were talking and I asked if he would ever want to try to see how it worked and he agreed that it could be cool.
With that in mind, last night I started to make the poodle peplum to expand further my Carolina Herrera print wardrobe. At first I was working on all the bodice seams for the front and back panels. It then became time to attach them at the shoulder and when I looked at the very straight seam it occurred to me that D could do it!
I grabbed him from the other room and picked up a scrap of I folded in half. From there I showed him how the presser foot went down and then how to hand crack a few stitches forward. I also briefly lifted up the fabric to show how the shuttle circled around to pick up the thread. From there, it was pedal time! He did a great job going forward and then we backstitch a little!
It was time to try again on the final pass on the french seam! I had already sewn the inner seam and so we flipped it inside out and d sewed it down!! I’m so proud of him! See below for more bodice pictures.
After I made this first white blouse from Joannn’s by tracing a shirt from JCrew, I really liked it but when I made it I forgot to account for seam allowances. It was a little tight when it was done.
One day in Chicago it was so hot and humid and I started to go crazy. My sister in law let me borrow a tank top and when my shoulders were free I almost wanted to start buying all my clothes again (omg stretch fabrics are so comfy and I dont sew with them that often)
Something had to change with that white top. I still wear it all the time so I figured it wouldn’t hurt to make a second. I found a white cotton in the eyelet section of mood -it basically has little puffs of threads kind of in a polka dot pattern.
It was time to try and make a new – slightly bigger – shirt!
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.