Sunday, October 28, 2012

Left-over garment

While rummaging through my scrap fabrics a couple of weeks ago for jeans patches, I found a large scrap of coral coloured linen, left over from a suit made in the late 80’s (yep, boxy jacket with gigantic shoulder pads and super short, tight pencil skirt, all class back then!) With a little clever cutting, (ie, seams in the facings) there was just enough fabric for a capped sleeve summer jacket.
I used a couple of different patterns to create the jacket. The body is “Retro” Butterick pattern (6241) - without the peplum and waist darts. I also included a button loop, and curved the front edges away from this. The pleated capped sleeves are from this pattern (again! I know).
If you’re using pattern piece from different patterns like this, check the paper pattern pieces against each other to make sure they’re going to fit together. In this case, I needed to use the sleeve pattern piece for the next size up to fit into the jacket armhole. As builders say “Measure twice, cut once.”
The mother-of-pearl button is Victorian, I bought a long, long time ago (for what seemed like a horrendous price at the time) from a vintage store in St Kevins Arcade, Auckland, but it has been used and re-used on many garments since then, so feel I can justify the money spent on it. It flashes beautiful iridescent teals and corals in different lights. The striped lining is from The Fabric Warehouse, and ... I now have no idea where the linen came from.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

My little helpers

Had to chuckle when I read of Erica at Recycled Fashion sewing under the watchful eye of Her Royal Catness. I have exactly the same problem help from my furry friends.
(Clockwise from top left - Madame Velvet Paws checks the pattern; Sootstar (x2) pressing fabric; Mr T (x3) making an adjustment to the thread tension.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Leaf Patch for Jeans - free pattern!

My comfy old jeans have for some time now been relegated to wearing only while gardening or cleaning the house. They recently got a hole in the knee, but because there’s still life left in them, I’ve patched them.
I made the leaf template/pattern myself by scanning a leaf I found in a park, then tracing over the image in Adobe Indesign. Feel free to download the attached jpg (simply click on the image and copy/drag to your desktop) to use for yourself - its scaled to fit an A4 page.

Patching is a great way to use up your favourite scrap fabrics, and you can pretty much use any fabrics (ok, probably not chiffon!) - simply fuse lighter weight fabrics to give them more body, and if you do this before you cut them out, you halve the amount of cutting you’ll need to do.
Using heavy duty machine thread in a contrasting colour, attach upper leaf bits to lower leaf bits using a zigzag stitch on a regular sewing machine. I set the stitch length fairly short (2 on my Elna) and the stitch width at the widest setting (4 on the Elna) because I still wanted it to look like zigzag, but be tight enough so the fabric wouldn’t fray too much.

Make it easier to attach patches to the jeans by splitting open the side seam (the one with no top-stitching).
(At this stage, I put a patch on the back to make it super strong for kneeling down in the garden, etc, but you can skip this bit.)

Hand baste the patches in place. Once your happy with the placements, zigzag around the whole outside, then zigzag any raw edges inside to complete the leaf shapes.
Finally, re-sew the side seam, and enjoy!

Time = 3 hours approximate.
Let me know how you get on - I’d love to see your results!