A couple of shifts

Actually these are the two Avid Seamstress shift dresses I made in August.

Envelope_image-shift-01_2_1024x1024Above is the line drawing for the shift dress. The two test versions I made use bold fabrics but this will give you a better idea of why I tested this pattern to achieve a decent fitted dress.

Can you see how I was able to adjust the dress for a better fit?

The first version uses a cotton spot fabric from Spotlight.
P1110508This pattern has no darts at the waist so it looks baggy if you have curves.
P1110499Here I’m pulling at the pockets so you have see the roominess it has. I added those 3 buttons at the neckline to give this a more retro feel. If you don’t fix the waistline, just add a belt to it.

P1110502While there are pull lines on the back, there are darts that allow you to tweak the fit. The back neckline finishes above the bra line but I did raise the back neckline on the next version just to be sure.

P1110613Now this fabric was fun to work with. My curvy back allowed me to match a lobster or two across the centre back seam. That was fun.

P1110612Here’s the win I had once I added some darts at the waistline.

I added blue piping at the neckline and at the skirt seam to match the lobsters.

P1110616Here’s to wearing corporate lobsters to work.

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Pitt Trading stash

My sewing mojo kicked in this week although I would thank Pitt Trading for reigniting this with their recent Summer Soiree last Saturday (Pitt Trading Instagram).

P1110632There was just enough fabric in this fabric remnant from Pitt Trading last year for most of this shirt except the facings.

img_1966The buttons were also bought at Pitt Trading on Saturday.

img_1967I managed to position the print at the back across the shoulders.

img_1968I used Butterick 6407 and because of the print, I only used the bust darts for shaping.

Now I hope Summer decides to show up again.

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A new chapter

Technology is great when it works for you. When technology impacts your life changes mean you move on and that’s what I’ve done.eea78-img_20180905_130620

Moving to wordpress basic has now happened and I’ll morph more features here over the coming days.

When I looked at my IG account I saw that I do more than sew and this new blog will feature recipes to sew and recipes of food I love. You’ll also read my recipes for being active and enjoying life.


Quick layers
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Travel jeans: Minerva Crafts project

Jalie 2908 are my go-to stretch denim jeans I’ve again used with Minerva Crafts 8oz denim. Is it odd to say this denim smells great? It has a denim smell that made making these jeans a sensory joy.

Yes I did wash this denim. It did soften so I could work with it easily.

One ‘trick’ I’ve read about to making jeans is to soften the denim with various solutions. I didn’t need to do anything more that wash it with a load of clothes and dry it on the clothesline.

Another ‘trick’ to make jeans is to cut each pattern piece as single layers. Have you ever made your own jeans and the legs feel like they are twisting away from you? I’ve always read that you should cut each pattern piece as a single layer. Well these jeans demonstrated that this ‘trick’ works. I was also aided using these large Prym scissors.

This final trick uses the front pocket piece extending to the centre front seams to act as a front stay. The Prym curved ruler helped me shape this front stay smoothly.

No wrinkling at the front.

While low rise jeans are not in fashion, I prefer wearing these low rise jeans because they sit just under my natural waistline. This is a comfortable style to wear when travelling.

Technically speaking, I made a few adjustments for my sway back.

The photo above shows how I needed to raise the centre back yoke while taking out the fullness.

This photo here shows the added thigh width on the back leg but also the butt curve lowered because that’s my new normal.

The secret to make the jeans topstitching accurate came down to the tools I used. Prym have a chalking pen that comes with a multitude of colours. I used the pink rose colour to mark my topstitching line. I also used the Prym marking ruler to recheck these lines before I started sewing.

Oh. Here’s the back pocket photo.

Have a close look at the topstitching.

I did a row of topstitching on the jeans and around the pockets just for a different look.

I’ve also used tab stitching on the base corners of the pocket.

Here’s the resized pocket pattern. I’ve cut it back so that it’s 3/4 size – slightly smaller – so I could experiment with topstitching.

I lived in these jeans while we travelled through the Canadian Rockies last month.

The pink top uses pink ponte that Minerva Crafts also stocks.

This denim has a slight amount of stretch so they were great for driving, sightseeing and a wee bit of hiking. I’m convinced this denim is perfect for travel. 

Make some for yourself and find out how great you’ll feel in jeans you’ve make for yourself.

I chose the blackest colour. What colourway will you choose?

Thanks again Minerva Crafts