October Round up

So I totally flaked and forgot to write up my monthly report on the 31st! Whoops. Here it is, two days late…



October was another five make month, so I managed to finish…

A pair of Tessuti Suzy pants (though these were posted on the first, so were technically made in September. I’ll count them anyway!)
A new lining for my favourite RTW blazer
Another Sewaholic Renfrew
A petticoat for a vintage dress
A By Hand London Holly playsuit with the cross over Flora bodice

Quite a busy month really! I was also nominated for a Liebster Award, and took part in a Blog Hop. I don’t think I learned any new techniques, aside from the proper way to bag line a jacket, but I have branched out with attempts to modify and adapt patterns. I changed up the waistband on my Suzy Pants, hacked my Holly playsuit and Renfrew, and more or less made up the pattern and method for the petticoat and blazer lining. I’ve entered my playsuit in the By Hand London #patternhackathon competition on Instagram, just for fun! There are some pretty awesome things under that hashtag, go and check them out!

Finally, happy halloween to those of you who celebrate it! Its a bit of a non event in Wellington, but I used it as an excuse to make some gingerdead men šŸ™‚


Now for something completely different!


…just kidding, it’s another Sewaholic Renfrew! I hope you aren’t sick of seeing me in this pattern yet, cos I’m not sick of making or wearing them! I’m a tee shirt sort of girl at heart, and its hard to get too worked up about dressing nicely for the trip to and from work (I wear scrubs when I’m actually working). The fabric may be familiar, its made out of the scraps of Lyocell from my last Renfrew, and the stripy cotton knit from my first Grainline Hemlock tee. I’ve been hoarding the stripes for ages because I love the fabric so much, but I didn’t have enough to make a whole other top out of it. When I realised that it matched the grey Lyocell knit almost exactly, I decided to chop my (traced!) Renfrew pattern in half and use the two fabrics together. This version follows the pattern pretty closely, with my standard adjustments. I cut a size 6 with 2″ of length taken out of the body because of my short torso. I drew a line two inches under the armscye across the front and back pieces of the pattern, and added 3/4″ seam allowance before overlocking them together. I also added a pocket, to break up the stripes a bit (no pattern piece used, just cut it out freehand). I also skipped the hem and sleeve cuff bands, as the striped knit hems nicely with my twin needle, and nothing I did worked at all on the lyocell, so I left it raw! (Hah, I’ve just looked back over the post I wrote about my hemlock made in this fabric, and I complained about how hard it was to hem with my twin needle! Am I more practiced now, or is it just the way I was holding my mouth..?)


I like it! Its not spectacularly adventurous, but its comfy and cute, and it fits well into my wardrobe. Its also not my best piece of sewing, I realised yesterday when I was wearing it that I somehow managed to cut the grey lyocell on the cross grain, so the stretch is going up and down instead of around! Happily it has some stretch on the cross grain as well, which is probably why I didn’t notice when I was sewing it… I think that might be why I’m getting those diagonal pull lines between my bust and waist in this version. The only thing I’m wondering about is making the sleeves one stripe shorter, so that they end at the same point as the transition line between fabrics on the body. Would that make it look more cohesive, or does it not matter? Overthinking it, maybe? I’ll ask you, internet oracle, for your thoughts!


I love both of these fabrics, so putting them together has made me happy! I didn’t realise I had my sunglasses still perched on my head until I looked at these photos, it was really sunny on Saturday when I took them. Too sunny for me to take them outside, I was just getting glare and pictures of me squinting in a very attractive way! This week is my final week of university, only one more assignment to hand in, and I’m done for the year! Bring on Sunday…or earlier, if I get my arse into gear and finish my essay earlier. I have so many large-ish sewing projects i want to get started on, it’ll be nice not feeling guilty for sewing instead of studying.


Back to Basics

To kick off my spring sewing, I’ve started super simple (how’s that for alliteration?). This is my third Sewaholic Renfrew tee (the first two are here), and this time I made a few modifications…


I made this up in the most deliciously soft and drapey Lyocell knit from the Fabric Store. I had to look Lyocell up, its a natural fibre made from wood pulp, like rayon. Anyway, its amazingly silky and I pretty much just want to wear it against my skin all the time! I also bought it in pale pink, and then when I was back at the Fabric Store the next time I snagged some out of the remnants bin, so expect to see more of it! (Also, if anyone can tell me the correct spelling for drapey I would be appreciative. Drapy? Drapey? Both look weird)


I wanted a bit of a looser look for this fabric, so I traced out the renfrew pattern, and then measured about 7″ down the side seam to the narrowest part of the waist. I then drew a straight line out from there at about a 15 degree angle (I just eyeballed it, there was no protractor involved!), and drew in a curved hem. I sewed the whole thing up as per the instructions, except for the cuff bands, which I halved in width, and the hem band, which I left off entirely. In fact, I haven’t hemmed it at all, I just couldn’t figure out how to do it without the hem becoming all wavy or bulky. Looking at these photos now, it looks like a very similar shape to a Deer and Doe Plantain. I should just have used that pattern!


I really like it, but it is a bit thin and clingy! I’m wearing a tank top under it for these photos, but I’ll need to get a nude seamless bra if I’m going to wear it without a singlet. Otherwise, I like that its fitted but not tight over my tummy, and I really like how the curved hem turned out.

So there we go, a very basic basic tee to start my spring wardrobe! I was going to add some embellishment, using some of the leather left over from my merino and leather Briar or something, but in the end I decided that plain was good. It works with jeans or shorts (I think it’ll look cute with shorts, actually) and it will work tucked into skirts too. I also like how it looks with my braided beads necklace!


Also, I’ve finally figured out how to use Instagram properly! Im kirsten52fancies, if anyone is interested. I think I almost understand what hashtags are about…