Thursday, November 19, 2009

Sewing Workshop Bells and Whistles Shirts

I made this back in late August or September but since then my life has been crazy so I forgot to review it. There are two cool shirts in the pattern. The Bells shirt which is the one I made is described as a semi-fitted shirt with a collar and collar band, curved front band closure, left shoulder coverlay and back darts. Below elbow, set in sleeves with a split band and cuff. Floating front band provides buttoning options. Curved shirttail hem. The Whistles shirt is loose fitting in two lengths with front and back placket wedges collar long sleeves and partially concealed button closures.

Pattern Sizing: The sizes range from XS (6) to XXL (22). I made the Small with no alterations although my measurements are on the high side of the Medium. So my garment is probably closer fitting than intended. I usually make the smaller size for a good fit through the shoulders and the larger size at the sides. But I could see that there was enough ease for a comfortable fit.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? Yes.
Close up

Were the instructions easy to follow? The usual excellent Sewing Workshop instructions.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?I don't wear shirts often but when I do I like it to be unusual. This filled that requirement.

Fabric Used: A shibori looking fabric from FabriX in San Francisco. I'm guessing it is pseudo shibori and, although it feels like cotton, perhaps it is not because all the crinkles and shibori looking knot texture stays in after washing. Here's the really freaky thing.... I discovered when looking at other reviews here on PR that reviewer sfshaza made this same shirt using the exact same fabric at about the same time I did! She must shop at FabriX also. But to pick the same pattern for this fabric stunned me. Here's her review.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made: I tried switching around the grainline so the stripes would go different ways but it doesn't show up very much.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? I definitely recommend this shirt. I'm looking forward to making the Whistles version.

Conclusion: I love it.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Burda 7594 "Missoni" tunic

A quick and easy tunic which is fun for stripes. The bodice front will have the stripes run diagonally, the back vertical and the lower part around if you use the selvedge as the hem. Burda shows it using contrasting fabrics for the top and bottom sections although it is hard to see in the illustration.

Pattern Sizing: Sizes 36 through 50 in one envelope. I used size 44 which corresponds most closely to my measurements but took out at least 4 inches from the bottom section and overlapped the bodice top and extra 2 inches. So I guess you would say it runs large.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? Yes. Here is the back, without the scarf, and the scarf as a sash.

Were the instructions easy to follow? Excellent instructions with some extras that you don't usually see. They include specifics for using sweater knits such as chain stitch to help stabilize the neckline and hand stitching or double needle stitching for hem finishes. I did the hand stitching on sleeves and neckline. This took a little more time but it still sews up quickly even with the hand stitching.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? Like the simplicity to show off a showy fabric and the ease of construction. Also I liked that it was very easy to alter.

Fabric Used: A Missoni-like open weave sweater knit made of Viscose and poly from EmmaOneSock. It has a double scalloped selvedge which I used for the lower hem on the top and the edge of the scarf. The tunic uses very little fabric but to have the stripes match and the scalloped edge you need two yards. This leaves about 15 inches of unused fabric along the other selvedge. Logically one must make a scarf from this long piece. I cut along the zigzags on the none selvedge edge to have the scallops on both sides of the scarf.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:Reduced size as mentioned above and cut the bottom section sideways to use the scalloped edge as a hem.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? I definitely recommend this one and may do it again.

Conclusion: A trendy and easy to wear look. My fabric is a bit springlike so I may have to make another quickly in a more wintery fabric to wear now.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Hot Patterns 3 Graces Cross front top

I made the cross front version of this popular new Hot Patterns top. It is described as having a slightly cowled neckline and a cross-over wrapped front. I choose the extra-long sleeve that is designed to be scrunched.

Pattern Sizing: Sizes 6 thorugh 26 included in one envelope. I made a 10 as that cooresponded most closely with my hip and underbust measurements. My full bust is closer to size 14 but this design is quite generous through the bust so no FBA was needed.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? Mine seems to be looser especially through the center front tummy area.

Were the instructions easy to follow? Uh.... no. The on-line video helps a lot but I don't think a pattern should be dependent on that source. Even with the video this top is confusing to get the criss cross right. I'm not sure that I don't have an extra twist in there.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? Love the drapey style. Don't like the excess of fabric in front

Fabric Used: Rayon jersey.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:None.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? I probably won't make this style again but I plan to try the looped front version. If you like something a little different try it.

Conclusion: I like this okay although it seems a lot of fabric on my front. The back fits well. The rayon jersey is super comfortable to wear. Here is a view of the top in in action.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

The Devil Family

Life has been crazy for the last couple of months.... the trip to Israel/Jordan (fantastic), trips to Oregon to care for DFIL and finally for a memorial service (he was 91), a trip to Jackson Hole to see the kids/grandkids and last but not least, a trip to the ER for me after a nasty fall off a ladder. This caused a concussion, torn back muscles, and a bizarre cut at my mouth from the pruning shears. Stitches were required inside and out as the edge of my mouth was sliced open. Eek. This happened on DH's birthday. What a way to celebrate....7 hours in the emergency room.

Now after a month I am almost healed and finally back in the sewing room. The only thing I have sewn in 2 months because of all the craziness is halloween costumes. Here they are.... the devil family.