Thursday, March 12, 2015

A White Transitional Jacket

I wanted to make another version of Silhouette Patterns Zoanne's Cape but this time with raised armholes and corresponding sleeves.My sewing group really liked my first version and a couple of the ladies are interested in making one  and I wanted to fix that too low armscye problem.

 I stood in my sewing room staring at my fabrics until my eyes settled on a piece of white quilted in black  fabric I had used for this top and which I bought when I used the rust version for my sister's jacket made last fall. I bought the fabric at Fabricville but it was available at Marci  The white is sold out but there are other colours.

Here is my new favorite jacket. I absolutely love it. The photo just doesn't do it justice.

Of course , as you see I made many style changes to the pattern but the front, back and neckline were unchanged except for the length .

Here is what I did.

I used the armscye  and upper sleeve  from a different jacket pattern (V1264 ).

I  added 7 inches to the  length.

I wanted to  follow the lines of the design in the fabric so instead of the slanted front, I dropped it straight down but  the overlap is the same as the original.

I added slanted patch pockets.

The collar is a a rectangle instead of the shaped one of the pattern and measures 6" by the length of the neckline.I curved the corners and trimmed with self fabric.

For the buttons,I stacked white buttons on black  but instead of buttonholes, I used snap closures.

I used no facings. All the edges were  finished  by wrapping various strips of  fabric ,then  stitching and trimming.

It was  a fairly quick sew . The changes I made to the armscye and sleeves made all the difference. I've worn it and have gotten plenty of compliments from friends and strangers alike.

This is just the right jacket for this time of year which is finally warming up.

And it's roomy enough to wear over cardigans and bulkier tops too.

Next up, I'm working on a really cool faux leather suit that I want to wear to the ballet  (Swan Lake)  next week with my sister.

Happy Sewing from

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Mixing Fabrics, Patterns, and Colours

I've decided I'm not going to show you every little thing I make anymore because some of the things I make are necessarily very ordinary but having said that , I do want to show you a couple of tops I made this winter because I love mixing fabrics and textures together and I think my new tops are a good example.

But first here is a collage of just some of the garments I've made in the past where I mixed fabrics together.

My first top is M6922  and I used 3 fabrics. My rule of thumb is to use each fabric at least twice in the garment so as you see, that's what I did in this sweatshirt which I love.

The cable knit came from a poncho I made a couple of years ago but didn't  wear.The floral is a cotton/poly from Fabricmart and the stripe is from Fabricville.

( I was trying to find a spot in my house that wasn't too sunny! )

In my second top ,I used a piece of very soft faux fur, a heavy ponte, and a pretty textured floral knit salvaged from this top which I just never wore. I used M7093 and I have to admit, I didn't get the fit right on this one but it's cute isn't it. I especially like the cuffs which were my second spot for the faux fur.

But do you know what the best thing about these garments is? The fun I had creating them and finding the fabrics to use for each (all from my stash,BTW) If, like my sewing friend Donna, you are intrigued by mixing up fabrics. prints, etc. , do give it a try. It's just so much fun!

I have a really great jacket to show you next time and I'm working on an edgy suit for an event I'm attending so come back and see me soon, won't you?

Sunday, February 22, 2015

A Little Jacket....Silhouette Patterns Zoanne's Cape

Peggy Saggers recently did a webcast on her pattern, Zoanne's Cape which isn't at all a cape !?!? ??. She showed several versions  of the jacket and I was inspired to try my own since I happened to have the pattern on hand. My goal was to present it as a project for my winter Sewing Group as it is a simple pattern with only four pieces.

 Here is my version.

Peggy doesn't include facings in this pattern but I added facings (scuba knit) which I pressed toward the right side and stitched down to resemble piping. The photos don't show that very well!

I also added patch pockets and my toggle closures with leather ends are from my stash. My Janome sewed through them like butter.

The fabric is from Vogue and is a wonderful quality ,double knit jacquard. I wasn't as pleased with the pattern as I was with the lovely texture of this one and decided to use it as a trial garment not really caring if it ended up wearable. Well ,I've worn it a couple of times and have gotten lovely compliments including from my husband so I have changed my mind about it.

Now, about the pattern. It has a flaw, as far as I'm concerned. I know that Peggy uses one inch shoulder pads and I did add 1/2" ones ( it isn't the 80's after all!) but even so, the armscye on this one is way too low IMO. It comes out being a little uncomfortable through the chest but because my fabric is quite stretchy, I can put up with that.

For this reason ,I decided against using this jacket as a project for my group ,but I made the mistake of showing it to them anyway and they loved it. A couple of the ladies would like to try it so I'm going to fix the armscye, thus the sleeves too, make another sample, (you can imagine I have way too many clothes) , draft a pattern for each of them and let them make one .

It looks oriental don't you think?

That's all for now.I hope you found time to sew this weekend!

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Layering Pieces or The Weather Out There is Frightful

We've had four feet of snow in two weeks1 Two weeks ago I made the mistake of saying "It looks more like spring than January !" and then all hell broke loose, namely five big snowstorms in 12 days! Needless to say, I'm constantly reaching for a sweater so what better items to sew than cardis?

The first is a  second version of one I made many years ago and that I've named my grandfather sweater. Here is the original which I still wear a lot

 and here is the new one

  The pattern is Simplicity  3634 now out of print but an excellent pattern to try if it's in your stash. The sleeveless top is my TNT for when I need a shell to wear under a jacket or cardi.

The fabric is a medium weight sweater rib knit bought at Fabricville a few years ago. I made the shorter length  and added pockets and buttons.

I'm wearing it with a teeshirt made using V8670  out of a cotton knit from Only thing to say here is I don't love this pattern. I was wanting a turtle neck but the picture on the pattern envelope is not accurate.  I checked it out on Pattern Review so I knew in advance that it was more of  a  cowl .
 so I altered the neckline a bit but I didn't get it right so added the band instead.

My next cardi is my new love in my wardrobe. I combined  the back of M6996    with  the front of
 M 6844 and  by making it one size bigger. I added length and width at the bottom like this

I added p[ockets and I made the collar/band narrower.
 Here's what I ended up with . Isn't it great?

The fabric is a sweater knit from Fabricville in oatmeal but it can pass for grey too. I love this thing and I can wear it with jeans ,a dress, or dress pants. It is very versatile and so comfy and pretty, don't you think?

I have a few other things made but they'll keep for next week.

I really hope you had time to sew this week.

Sunday, February 1, 2015

About Scuba Knit and a Big Thank You

Happy Sunday to all. We are in the midst of cleaning up after a foot of snow fell yesterday and more to come tomorrow! I love Canada ! But I really do love Canada, winter and all!

I first want to thank all of you who left such lovely and helpful comments on my scuba knit dress. They were helpful because you convinced me I won't look ridiculous in this dress and also I've decided to take Vicky's, Sharon's, Sarahliz ', and Jean's suggestion to take out the black back section . I think I will be happier with it that way.

And now about SCUBA KNIT. The one I buy at Fabricville is 95% polyester /5% lycra. It has about the same weight  and drape as ponte knit but is smoother and maybe a little bit spongy. It holds its shape very well. It is perfect for yoga pants, jackets and dresses. I haven't tried it for tops although I plan to make a sweatshirt out of it soon.
Scuba knit has been compared to neoprene which is used to make scuba suits. I have a feeling it isn't as firm as neoprene but I'm not sure as I've never been anywhere near  scuba gear or neoprene.
One thing for sure. I absolutely love the stuff. If I'm going to sew with polyester it may as well be a luxurious feeling and looking polyester. Here's another look at my scuba knit dress

The pants in the pics below are scuba knit as well.


Jeanette  asked me  if I know of other bloggers who are in their 60's or there abouts. I'm not good at guessing any one's age, but I will mention a few "mature" bloggers and hope no one minds. I'm guessing these ladies are 50 and above.

Carolyn of Diary of a Sewing Fanatic , Margy  of A Fool For Fabrics, Sharon of Petite and Sewing, Faye of Faye's Sewing Adventures, Linda of Seams Well, Shams of Communing With Fabrics ,Sarahliz of SarahLiz Sew Style are some that come to mind and probably enough to get you started.
I'm so happy to hear of a fellow 60 something who has rediscovered her passion for sewing. This hobby of ours becomes more and more gratifying as the years pass for me. so Happy Sewing  Jeanette.

 I'll leave you with a couple of photos of scarves I've been making to raise money for our local Food Bank. The fabric is  double sided and so beautiful and just right for infinity scarves. Each colour way has a metallic copper splatter throughout . I've made many of these, (didn't keep count)  and have sold them to friends, family , fellow retired teachers, sewing buddies, etc.  They`ve  flown out of my hands and I`ve  had to take orders. I've made over $200.00 for the food bank with this project and I only charged $8.00 for each scarf and I took out the cost of the fabric!

I wish I had a photo of someone wearing one but I don`t and I haven`t been able to keep one for myself as yet.

I have several pieces not blogged yet so check back later to tell me what you think.

Happy sewing from

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

A New Dress, Marci Tilton's V8817

That's right. I said V8817 and it seemed like a good idea at the time! I made a great fitting top that I love and reasoned it would make an equally great dress but  I'm not so sure about this one.

Here is the top

and now the dress

I finished the neckline with a narrow band

I added another narrow band of black here to outline the curved seam.

I used black cuffs

and I guess this wasn't such a great idea. What I wish I had done was to add an exposed zipper and make the back minus the curved upper back piece. I could still make that happen but I probably won't.

The fabric is scuba knit. I LOVE SCUBA KNIT ! ! ! ! !
I could do a whole post about SCUBA KNIT !
I first used it for yoga pants and absolutely fell in love. There will be more garments made with this wonderful fabric. I buy mine at Fabricville It is smooth, doesn't pill like ponte and wears exceptionally well

To take care of those wrinkles , I added a light shoulder pads and that made all the difference ( no pic).

So, can I have your honest opinion ? What do you think? Is it ugly or am I obsessing ? I would really appreciate your opinions.

More later from