Sewing for him/ Newcastle cardigan by Thread theory

A few years ago, when he bought me the sewing machine for my birthday  he said: “well, now please sew a jacket for me”.

Slowly I learned to sew and meanwhile the jacket became our little joke. Every time I was to busy dreaming about fabrics, watching  tutorials on YouTube or reading my favorite sewing blogs, and he asked me what I was doing, I said: “Oh, of course, I’m sewing your jacket”.

This winter I decided it was time to actually do it. But since he is not the jacket type of guy I made him a cardigan. Informal and with style

.Pattern: Newcastle cardigan by Thread theory, version v1 (with narrow collar). Last year I bought  “the parkland wardrobe builder” , 3  patterns for a T-shirt, pants and this cardigan. The tee I made last year was worn non-stop (picture below).

Strathcona tee by Thread theory

 The pattern is not very complicated. There is a lot of attention to details: interesting yoke and 2 shawl collar options (narrow or wide), nice facing (the cardigan is unlined) and decorative topstitching. The instructions are clear and accompanied by illustrations to help understand the structure and the process.

The fabric is some sort of medium weight scuba knit, soft and smooth, in heather grey. For the yoke I used denim. I skipped between M and L and I think the size and length are very good. Great piece for layering  and just right for the changing weather.

 

From summer to fall / Alder shirtdress by Grainline

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I made this dress sometime in late August and I love it so much, but somehow didn’t find the time to take pictures and blog about it. A lightweight airy shirtdress is the perfect thing to wear in our hot humid long mediterranean summer. Since I made it this dress, paired with white snickers, became my uniform.

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Now that the weather here is starting to get a little bit colder I thought it would be nice to wear it with tights and my favorite hand knitted sweater20161028_084227_resized_1

 It is difficult to photograph the dress. The fabric has a tiny black and white plaid pattern that confuse the eye and the camera. It’s a shirting cotton with small precent of silk blend I found in a local fabric store. It’s light and soft and feel nice on the skin.  I think the dress is much prettier in real life.

Also, and you’ll have to excuse me, it’s a bit wrinkled. I did iron it but I wore it for a few hours before taking the pictures. Well, OK, I tell my self its real life and not a magazine, right?

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I planned to sew the Alder Shirtdress pattern from Grainline studio for a long time.

In recent months I learn pattern making course and I practice drafting my own patterns. I wondered to myself what to do: I wanted to draft a shirtdress pattern myself but I only had this dress on my mind (you can’t blame me, it is a beautiful pattern). Finally I decided to challenge myself and work without the pattern. I wanted to incorporate all the design details that I love about the Alder: the pockets, the collar and the side panels. My version is without side darts and the A line skirt is a little wider. So I made it and I’m quite satisfied with the result. Now I plan to buy the Alder pattern as a gift for a sewing friend. Think it’s fair.

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I sewed the buttons in fuchsia pink thread and it gives small dots of color that really pop the eye and make it happier.

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The butterfly is  a brooch I received from my grandmother sometime before 30 years or so. It covers a tiny tear in the corner of the front panel that I could not fix. I don’t mind, I think it adds a bit more joy.20161028_084645_resized

 A back photo. From distance it seems gray.

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If I summarize my sewing adventures of this summer, I can tell I’m very pleased I was able to sew two things that were on my wish list for a long time: this dress and the bombshell swimsuit. So even though I didn’t sew a lot  what I made came out good and was worn a lot and I practiced many new skills.

Now it’s time to start thinking about my plans for the coldest days. This is a glimpse to my winter inspiration board on Pinterest.

What about you? Planning something interesting for the winter ?

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I made a swimsuit/ Bombshell swimsuit by Closet Case Files

20160715_185523_smlThis July I finally made my first Bombshell swimsuit.

This pattern was published on Closet case files like 3  years ago, and immediately became a hit. Everyone were sewing a swimsuit and   the whole blogoshere  was admiring it. Really. All around woman were not only  sewing  and loving this pattern, but also publishing their photos proudly wearing their hand-made swimsuits in a big happy celebration of positive body image (some of them with amazement because they never thought they’ll publish a photo in a swimsuit on the internet….)

This was just around the point in my life when I started to sew and fell in love with sewing blogs.

WOW. This opened my mind. Just like that. I didn’t realize there were people in this world that were sewing swimsuits for themselves.

Since that moment this became a little thing to aspire to. Something that I thought I might do sometime in the future. Maybe after I’ll have more sewing skills or be more confident and experienced or have more time to sew. So for a long time this pattern was on my sewing wishlist, but it was too “intimidating”.

And then I heard this inspiring podcast on seamwork radio (Thank you Heather) + we were planning a vacation to Costa Rica + I have an unsolved issue with finding a swimsuit I feel comfortable to wear so I didn’t have one. Apparently the time was NOW.

So I made it. And I totally love it, and I traveled with it to our dreamy vacation to Costa Rica.

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The pattern is great. The size is good. The instructions are very clear and the sew-along series of posts were helpful. It wasn’t a piece of cake I’ll tell you, but also not at all difficult as I feared. True: it has many steps, need to work slowly with a lot of attention. But I realized that working with Lycra was actually fun for me. And so what if I  screw up a little with sewing the elastic? it is on the inside and no one checks. Right? And so what if the back has a little too many gatherings because I’m  shorter than average and didn’t take it into account? I made it and it worked out. And I like it and feel very comfortable wearing my new swimsuit. WOOOHOO.

If (when) i’ll sew this pattern again, I think I’ll  try the version without gatherings in the back. Otherwise I would not change anything.

I sewed the swimsuit with my simple sewing machine that has functions of straight and zigzag stitch only. So, to all of you that are not sure: it is totally doable!

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Moji pants, #1

For quite some time now I’m planning to learn to sew pants. So finally I had some time to make my first try. Not something complicated, just a little experience. For starters I chose the simplest thing: pant with a very simple construction, no zipper or other possible complications, just a drawstring waist. Ah…. and pockets, of course.20160214_101551 20160214_101942 20160214_102230

The pattern is Moji pants from seamwork magazine. Well, in the past I made some leggings, pj pants and a few shorts for my kids. In other words: very practical but not very challenging. This pattern construction is very basic so it kind of felt like sewing  pajamas. Anyway, my main goal was to experience with fit issues.

The fabric is some cheap jeans I found in a small store in Tel Aviv. It has a very interesting texture and  I love it.IMG_9490_3

 I’m between sizes, size 4 for the waist and a smaller size for the hip. So I made some modifications but decided to keep the waist in size 4. I had some concerns about the waist being too wide but I did not listen to my instinct. I thought the drawstring would fix that. Mistake… as you can see in the pictures there is too much fabric in the upper area and the pants (although should be relaxed) are too relaxed around the waist. IMG_9493_2

Yet, I love the fabric, the pockets and the pocket lining, and I think I like the style of this easy casual pants. If I can fix the fitting problem, that is to say: take the waist 2 sizes down, I think this pants can certainty be a nice choice for me.

Coco top by Tilly and the buttons

It is cold and I felt I didn’t have enough winter tops. So this week I made myself another Coco top.Screenshot_2016-01-23-21-33-19crop

Coco top and dress pattern by Tilly and the buttons is definitely one of my all time favorites. I made this pattern so many times in the past two years since it was published, and I love it. Do you know this kind of patterns? I have a few of this favorites. Usually for me they are very simple designs, but have something that makes me want to sew them again and again. Is it the pretty neckline, or the comfortable sleeves, or the way the garment fit me? I don’t know but I keep coming back to Coco. And it is a staple in my wardrobe.20160124_074030

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Coco by Tilly and the buttons

This time I made the top with the funnel neck. Since I didn’t want it to be stiff  I used a very soft medium weight knit fabric found in my mom’s stash. Think it is a sort of viscose knit. And even though the print is pretty bold compared to what I usually choose to wear, I like the result. I actually think the bold print makes the top a bit more sophisticated then a plain t-shirt. What do you think? Screenshot_2016-01-23-21-32-28crop Screenshot_2016-01-23-21-32-50crop

The Coco pattern is so versatile and can be made for all seasons. I have some short sleeve Coco dresses that I wear all summer long. Plus, the instructions are very clear and the pattern is friendly and most suitable for those who want to start sewing with knits. If you plan to sew some Coco’s for yourself you can hop to visit tilly’s pinterest coco board for some inspiration.Screenshot_2016-01-23-21-33-00crop