Sunday, November 13, 2011

Sewing Along

Patricia at Perfect Sew And Fit  is hosting a mini wardrobe sew along. Six items: simple skirt, pants, loose-fitting blouse, fitted blouse, unlined jacket and lined jacket. The timing couldn't be better. I'm excited because this is all about the fit. Patricia guides you through pattern alts with meticulous detail. Other members chime in with suggestions too.

So after much deliberation, I have settled (sort of) on patterns and fabric. One of my goals was to use as much of the stash as possible.  Of course I decide I want one of the colors to be rust/burnt orange and I have none of that here ...

Where there are multiple patterns, my first choice is first. Where there are multiple fabrics, the muslin is first. If there is time, I'd like to make both skirts and the first two fitted tops.  I have two lined jacket options because V7975, well it's a Vogue and I'm intimidated. I'm using Simplicity for backup directions.

I have some real fear about the first fitted blouse pattern (expensive fabric, my first buttonholes, my first tailored shirt) and the lined jacket. Strangely enough, I'm not that worried about my first pants (too excited by the prospect of having pants that fit to be scared). Just a little concerned because I want line them and the pattern doesn't call for that. I'll be experimenting with lining the skirt too. 

KS3617 I've made before. I'm kinda skipping ahead now and trying to fit that on my own. I put some knit tops out of their misery recently and I need replacements fast.

Now that we've chosen our patterns, we have to take our measurements. I've gained weight :-( since I had mine done in May, so I'm doing them over. It is a very sobering process. I want to have those done tonight. 

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Book Review: Vogue Sewing

Vogue Sewing, Revised and UpdatedThis book should really be called the sewing bible. It is a must-have for any sewing library -- beginner, intermediate and advanced. At about 450 pages, there is little it doesn't cover. Best of all, it's dedicated to fashion sewing. No pillows and towels here!

This book takes the fashion part seriously. The first chapter is all about fashion and explains things like color, prints, texture, proportion and balance, body profile, etc. I've never seen all of this is a general sewing book before.

Construction Basics (darts, pleats, tucks, etc.) and Construction Techniques (bindings, collars, cuffs, pockets, etc.) are where the book starts to get really good. This info is very similar to what you'd find in the Reader's Digest sewing book and The Complete Book of Sewing. Best of all is a section on pressing. Everyone tells beginning sewists how important pressing is, but there are few resources to tell you how to do it right. This book is one of them -- eight whole pages!

Chapter 8 is Advanced Pattern Alterations. You won't get this in any other general sewing book. Those 30 pages are jam-packed. They are sectioned into "Dresses, Skirts, Bodices," "Pants," and "Fitting As You Sew." This will not replace a specialized fitting but, but it's a great start.
Fabric That Require Special Handling is a wonderful chapter. It covers leather, suede, synthetic suede and fur in addition to the things you'd expect like knits, sheers, etc. Plaids are handled elsewhere in the book.

The Tailoring chapter is very detailed. It's almost 30 pages.  It covers the skirt, jacket, interfacing and lining.

I love that the book explains what Couture is. It also has sections called "The Shapekeepers" and "The Finest Fastenings" that I really like. However, I think overall, The Threads Sewing Guide gives you  better info on how to make a couture garment (among the general sewing books).

An added bonus in the book is "The vocabulary of Fashion." It's a glossary of fashion terms and has illustrations of the different types of collars, dresses, jackets, necklines, pants, skirts and sleeves.

If you are brand new to sewing, this may not be the book to start with, but you'll need it eventually. The Reader's Digest book takes a much more basic approach. This is a book that will grow with your skills.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Winter/Holiday Butterick

Woo hoo! New Butterick patterns. I like quite a few.  

B5714:  Love the drama.

B5716:  Swing jacket? Sold!

B5712:  Love it!

B5711:  I need a belted top

B5727:  I've been inspired by the snow we got in Chicago yesterday. I'd like to try the neckwarmer. Vest too.

B5725:  Every choir member needs one.

B5709:  Still on the fence about the sleeves.