New Look 6150 Ruched Top

 

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Here come some grainy pics! This cute top is a very deep eggplant cotton/lycra jersey, it just doesn’t photograph well. So I lightened everything 🙂

Yes, New Look 6150, one of the Best Patterns of 2013 on Pattern Review. It only took me 5 years to find it – it really is a nice pattern:

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I love how well this top tucks and stays in place!

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It’s the top I was wearing with the high-waited linen pants in my last post:

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Sewing notes:

  • I sewed View A, size 12, with no changes.
  • I marked every single notch and circle from the pattern – and used them all.
  • Just to share, I use a piece of calico as a pressing cloth for knits, and I seldom get pressing lines.

calico pressing cloth

  • A tip – those long front edges are curved and have a narrow hem. It’s tempting, almost natural, to stretch it out as you pin and sew…but don’t! You’ll end up with a distorted and wavy edge. Kind of shake out the fabric so it finds its way, and let it guide you.

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Like so many people before me, I’m hooked on this pattern. I’ve already sewn it in black jersey, and I have a cream jersey to start in the morning. I’m sticking with the fun stuff 🙂

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Late breaking news: Preston’s soccer team won their league championship game today, and he scored a goal!!

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Ciao! Coco

Favorite Brenne Pants

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Every once in a while (usually Jungle January time), I start craving a bit of animal print in my wardrobe. I ordered this cotton/lycra leopard sateen from Fabric Mart in December, and I had a good laugh when it arrived. I had sewn it before!

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Vogue 9114, post here
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Vogue 9217, shorts!

The stretch sateen is a perfect weight for these pants, Vogue 9217.

Brenne pants line artI’ve sewn these pants 5 times now, and as usual made just a couple tweaks. Every fabric is different, and so am I after losing a lot of weight.

  • I took 3/4″ from the side seams, back and front, at the hip curve.
  • And took about 1/2″ out of the curve in the back rise.
  • Because I used a straight hem and wanted a longer length, I added 3″ to the hem allowance.

For the topper, I looked through all my patterns for something that would tuck nicely and be a little form-fitting. The Lark Tee is perfect, and, strangely, I haven’t sewn it since I made the cardigan variation a couple years ago (post here).

Lark cardi

Lark Tee Line Art

 

 

This is my first Tee version, and, gosh, I really like it! I used the crew neck version, top left in the line art, with long sleeves.

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I made just a few adjustments, but nothing extraordinary:

  • The tee has 1/4″ seam allowances (read that as use a serger). Because I do flat-felled shoulders on all my garments to make them comfortable, I added 3/8″ to the shoulder seams.
  • I didn’t use the neck band, opting for binding instead. I just like it better.
  • I knew from sewing the cardi that the sleeve pattern is a bit short for me, so I added 1″ to the length.
  • And the tee is long! I raised the hem by 3 1/4″ – tucked in, it finishes midway down my hip.

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Here are a couple pics with my black batwing tee, M6203 (post here). I think I like black more than white with these pants.

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 Ciao! Coco

A copycat blouse…

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Miss Impatient here. I’ve managed to sew my stash down to only 4 fabrics, all of which are most suited to winter – not to our very warm and humid Florida summer. The good part, I do have some fabric on order. I just have to maintain… If anyone wondered, the hard part of retirement is paying attention to a budget – being on a pay-as-you-go plan. Two crowns, a new hot water heater, yard cleanup, and sidewalk repairs have left me wistfully window-shopping fabric 🙂

Not to be deterred – I still had a couple yards of Michael Miller Cotton Couture, the last remnant from the 10 yards I ordered in 2014, to muslin my DD’s bridal gown (in the end, and really to my relief, she got a beautiful tea dress from David’s Bridal). So I decided to take a stab at a top that I really like, from Vivid Linen:

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How perfect for hot weather!

I started with the Grainline Scout Tee, a great pattern that I’ve altered quite a bit over time, to fit my wide shoulders and narrow chest, and to add bust darts. On this version, I modified it a lot more!

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But first, another pic of my top…

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The big changes are to mimic the hi-low hems and slit sides of the inspiration blouse. First, I decided how long to make the front. Then I modified the back to be longer than the front. And, last, I drafted the side seams to support a slit. I already had a ‘cropped’ cutting line on my pattern, from past versions, so the changes were fairly easy. Here’s how I managed the side slits and hems. Finished, the back is a bit over 2″ longer than the front:

Side seams

Inside view:

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And outside:

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That was pretty easy. I also had to think about the ‘balance’ of the top – finishing the hems, sleeves, neck facing (my add-on, instead of a neckband), and so on. I decided to use the same width for all of them, which I think looks really nice:

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To complete my copycat look, I needed to add pockets (in the end, I only added one). So a tip – cut, measure, trim, and mark pockets. I use Frixion pens, and I stay-stitch all my fold lines to ensure an even turn and application.

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How does the back look? It’s just where I wanted it 🙂

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Of course I’ve styled this top with a very fun pair of True Bias Hudson Pants, sewn in funky ITY knit, from way back in 2014, and still a favorite pattern (blogged here).

So – I’m really pleased with this muslin. What next? Well, I prefer to wear knit tops. They don’t wrinkle, they’re light, and they work well in south Florida – so I’ll be adjusting my pattern draft for knits. Among the fabrics I ordered from Girl Charlee are 8 yards of lightweight modal/cotton/rayon jersey. Should keep me out of trouble for a while.

Ciao! Coco

Time for a knit duster …

Who can resist a fun unstructured duster when the weather turns cool…

Not I! I’ve spent hours in the past few weeks, just cruising duster patterns and lots of wonderful makes by sewists in the blogosphere.

Irresistible. I especially like the new Berlin Jacket by Tessuti and the Esme Maxi Cardigan by Named Clothing.

But I didn’t particularly want to invest in a new pattern. Trawling through my stash, I pulled out an oldie but goodie, the Heading for Adventure coat by Louise Cutting.

I made it in linen way back in 2010, but it was very large on me, even thought I sewed the size Small. And the linen really bugged my skin – I never wore it.

Nonetheless, the design details are so appealing. I love the piecing and topstitching. And Cutting’s techniques, which are beautifully articulated in the pattern instructions, are incredible.

 
It was a great starting place. But I wanted to go with the lines of the dusters I mentioned above – a softer neckline, an attached band, and slim-ish sleeves. And I wanted to use a knit fabric – a very lightweight rayon/spandex French terry that I purchased recently from Fabric.com. 
I was impatient to do all the re-drafting at one go, but I decided to be cautious. I actually sewed this in three steps. First, I cut out and sewed the entire coat from the Cutting pattern, using the size XSmall this time. And then I changed it, using the Jalie Cocoon Cardigan to redraw the neckline and draft an attached band, 
and the Grainline Studio Driftless Cardigan to alter the sleeves (I removed almost 6″ from the width at the upper arm – the sleeve was voluminous). 
This sounds like a lot of tweaking, but it was not difficult, because the Cutting coat is all right angles. It was easy to lay it out and draw on it with chalk.

Time for pics (this gray is hard to photograph – it almost shimmers here. Squint, please)…

I love the back drawstring! It looks very similar to the back of the StyleArc Winsome Designer Dress (posted here), but the construction is not the same, due to the placement of other pieces in the back.

The patch pockets are very over-sized and long. Fun! 

I’m off to JoAnns now, to get supplies for Christmas gifts. And I have to remember to tell my kids to stay off my blog for a couple weeks 🙂 Check out this adorable cat house from SeeKateSew! My weekend project…
Hope everyone enjoys a safe weekend, with lots of sewing therapy time…bye for now, Coco

Morris and Sabrina…

Or what to do with 5 yards of ponte de roma! I picked it up at a very good price at Fabric Mart earlier this year, thinking I would make a long cardigan for the change of seasons. But I’ve been on the fence about it. A long cardigan would be an almost zero-use item for me, wearable on maybe a few days in January or February. So it’s been sitting in my stash, while I’ve been sewing down the fabrics around it. (I’ve been on a bit of a fabric fast for most of the year – my stash was getting out of hand. I will totally break out during the Black Friday – Cyber Monday sales!)
So, I decided to go with a second Boyfriend Cardigan as a compromise. Only one pic, because I just don’t love it. I do have other plans for it – hopefully I won’t re-cut and sew it down to nothing. 

A note here about my hair: it came up blonde in this and two more pics because I took them with the settings I had been using to photograph the moon. Clearly my camera still has the upper hand. I’ve become very vain about my gray hair – I love it!

With the cardigan behind me, I decided to make another Grainline Morris Blazer, but with a concession – I sewed it to the original drafting, with none of the little changes I made previously to the bottom edge. And I cut it with long sleeves, a simple change. I thought I might like it better than my two previous versions. It’s such a cute jacket, and I’ve seen so many terrific makes of the pattern – the Grainline Flickr group is a lurkers heaven…
 Actually, this one’s pretty nice. The fabric works really well, and the fit is spot on. On Emile, pending sleeves:
To keep the facings – neckline, front edges, and hem – nice and fluid, I used tricot knit lining for all my interfacing. The pattern suggests fusible tricot interfacing, but I did not want to risk ‘freezing’ the fabric, as fusibles often do. 
I hand-basted the interfacing/facing just outside the seam line and removed the basting once the facings were in place. I enjoy hand-sewing, so basting is right up my alley. I baste all the time!
I’m really happy with the result. By the way, as before, I top-stitched along the edge of the front facing. This seems to prevent the fabric drag, between the shoulder and bottom point, that haunts so many Morris blazers.

Added top-stitching, red lines

I could not believe I still had enough fabric to make one more thing. An easy choice – the Love Notions Sabrina Slims are one of my favorite pants. Absolutely like wearing PJs.

And the ponte is all used up, gone, done!
Ciao! Coco