Monday, October 19, 2015

Very very easy Vogue 9063 - version 2

The fabric is the focus this time. Even the scraps make me happy. I believe that this is Thai Ikat silk. Purchased from Linda Lee at The Sewing Workshop, the blue piece came to me whole. That is, it was a length of fabric sewn into a tube, perhaps to be belted and worn as a skirt. The reds are scraps from Linda's scrap bins. All delicious IMO.

Vogue 9063 is the perfect pattern for interesting fabric, I think.

The back had to be pieced so I covered the seam with a bias strip. I left the finished selvage for the hem but may hem it shorter.

The sleeves had to be pieced too. I just love these colors!

The Ikat pattern seems to glow. The selvages are wide and distinctive. See the pattern transition to solid blue.

And of course I added just a little sashiko to the neckline. Just little red dots, really

The pattern includes an A line skirt and fitted pants, neither of which is interesting to me. But what a great pattern for a beginner! I'm wondering if a third version is in me. This is when sewing is so very satisfying.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Very very easy Vogue 9063

Vogue 9063 is rated Very Easy. And it is, but the rating made me wonder once again what that means. When I googled *What does very easy rating on Vogue patterns mean?*, shams Open Letter to Vogue Patterns was the first article listed. She posits that it may be related to the number of pattern pieces. I also wonder if it is related to the density of instruction.

odd angle, photographer laying down on his hammock

I've been keen to make the top that is part of Vogue 9063 ever since seeing it on BSF, Ginny (see below). Then, like many, saw the painted silk version posted by McCalls patterns. I have just completed my first version, this one made with an inexpensive Ikat cotton shirting from Gail K here in Atlanta.

My version - not too exciting. Maybe it needs sashiko.

BSF's version - so elegant

McCalls version - back

McCalls version - front

The instructions were clear, basic and brief. There was no mention of seam finishing which is a personal pet peeve. In fact the hem instructions strongly imply that you won't finish the side seam edges. But that is OK. I am fairly certain that seam finishes were not on my radar when I was learning to sew.

Changes I made:
  • Rather than hope-to-match my Ikat pattern pieces on the front, I simply omitted the lower band. This was easy because the seam between the front and the front band is strictly a design line. I just placed the band tissue over the front tissue, overlapping by 1.25 inches to account for the seam allowances.

  • Facings have their place in sewing garments, but in this case I was not excited about them. Instead I used a black bias strip to face the front and back neck lines. This was done before sewing the shoulder seams. 
Cut off the corner where the shoulder seams meet in order to use bias binding on neckline

Inside of neckline before finishing the shoulder seam

Outside of neckline

  • Seam finishes: I used a French seam on the sleeve. On the shoulder and side seams, I first sewed the seam RST, pressed open, and then folded the edge under and top-stitched. Does that have a name? And I serge-finished the armscye seams.
Such a simple top. I really like it a lot. This one needs to be in your stash. Maybe it already is? I have several silk pieces I'm considering for my next version. The McCalls version made from that detail of a butterfly wing makes me swoon.

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Revisiting Vogue 9057

Vogue 9057 by Marcy Tilton came out in 2014. It is a tee shirt pattern with lots of variations to the neckline, the hem, the sleeves and interesting layering ideas. I made my first version of view D almost exactly a year ago. I've worn it quite a bit and received a number of compliments.

Fabric for the first version is rayon jersey from Five-Eighth Seams in Charleston SC. Recently I ordered and received some soft grey rayon jersey from The Sewing Workshop. So I decided to make view D again.

It has been a bit of a struggle, operator error for the most part.

First I tried to use Pam Erny's charming split cowl technique on the neckline. That failed because this gray jersey is quite fine and even a little sheer. And it's rayon - too drapey, I now realize. The raw edge was quite prominent and not pretty.

So I unstitched the cowl and cut out the band for view D.  I followed the instructions pretty closely for view D but did not realize the problem soon enough:

The neckband tissue has *extra* length. The neckline tissue measures 26.25 inches on the seam line but the neckband with extra measures 28 inches (!). Even if I had noticed the extra, there is too little difference between the shorter neckband (26 inches) and the neck (26.25 inches). Given the technique described for the neckline for view D and the view D pattern tissue, I was going to be unhappy with the result.

View D band is to be inserted in the round.
Naturally I wondered how it worked out OK in my first version. Now that I revisit that piece, I see that it is a little too large. I probably chalked it up to the different fabrics. Also I cut that neckband on the bias. It still stands a little too far away from the body. But OK.

With this fine rayon jersey, the problems were compounded. Without unsewing the neckband again and risking serious damage to the fabric, I am pretty stuck with some ripples. So next I tried some rows of topstitching:

Some steam and the clapper took out a lot of the ripples.

Still not pretty. Maybe OK.

Meanwhile I decided I really wanted a shorter tee shirt. View D is tunic length and in this fabric, it is too clingy on my hips. It is even a little clingy on the dress form!

View D before cutting off the hem

View D before cutting off the hem - you can really see that it is sheer here!
View A in Vogue 9057 is a standard tee shirt length with a pretty curved line, high over the sides, slightly longer in the back.

View A is a closer fit through the hips than view D. This would not work for me, so I kept the greater hip ease from View D, gently shaping the curve on the sides.

Still not happy, I took needle and thread (#8 pearl cotton) and started stitching the collar. I've left the knots on the outside (DH: cool collar but you missed some threads). And I added similar sashiko to the sleeve hems.

Conclusion: I still like this pattern!

Good layering piece

Saturday, October 10, 2015

This Quilt is Done!

My favorite quilt is a completed quilt. As is usual for me, I became bored half way through the process. It is for my last grandchild. So they say. His room is decorated in gray, taupe and navy. Hmmm...I had to add a little red.

It has two fronts, or maybe two backs:

The quilt-with-legs pose

This started out as the front.

It's a good thing that red is a neutral.

I look forward to meeting this little guy, probably at Thanksgiving.