Project in progress: JSK pattern

12.5.08 - 22:19
The new pattern I got seems to be going okay. I extended the skirt flare (as per usual)and it was really quick to put together. I think if you had all the materials on hand, you could do a simple dress in a day.

It would probably be finished now if I had a zip the correct length.

When I make this pattern again I'm going to take an inch or two out of the bodice to make the waist a little higher. And maybe add an inch or two to the waist to make a bit more room when you wear it over a blouse.

Also I'd like to try some of the other variations on the envelope.

This one has the waist alterations and I am quite pleased with the pintucks - BUT it looks really bad on. Very frumpy. So I think I'm going to give up on this shape.



Making a rectangle skirt

10.5.08 - 10:24
This skirt is easier than a circle skirt and can be made without a zip. It has about half as much flare to it and gathering at the waist band which while it can be less flattering gives a more cupcake-y shape.

The main thing to remember when making this skirt is that the waist band will have to fit over you hips.

You will need: 2 1/2 - 3 metres of fabric (the hem of the skirt should be around 3 times you waist measurement) some elastic about an inch wide - enough to stretch around your hips.

Measure out a piece of fabric about -3x your waist- long and as wide as the length of your desired skirt plus a couple of inches for seams. Either by hand or with a loose machine stitch - sew a line across the top of the fabric for gathering (don't tie it off).

Measure you hips. The casing for your waist band should be this measurement plus about 5 inches in length and 5 inches in width. It is a good idea to use a little interfacing to make this part a bit thicker (don't worry about this if you are new to sewing). Fold the piece in half lengthways and iron it. Then unfold and fold in the edges half and inch each and iron these.

Next gather up the main fabric so that it is the same length as your waist band. With the right sides together - sew the gathered edge onto the waist band at the first ironed line.

Fold the band back up.

Then we need to sew up the back of the skirt. With the right sides together - sew up the back of the skirt up to the second ironed line of the waist band.
Fold the band over the top of the raw edges of the skirt. Now very carefully sew through all the layers of the waist band about 3mm from the bottom. You have now created a casing for the elastic - see how there is a little hole where we didn't sew up to the top?

Next is the elastic. Measure a piece of elastic that will stretch over your hips but fit un-stretched or just a little stretched around your waist. You can test this by putting it around you waist and securing it with a large safety pin. Try removing it over your hips. Cut it with a little overlap so we can join it together.

Attach the safety pin or a large paper clip to the end of your elastic and thread it through the waistband. The band with start to gather to the size of your waist. Securely sew the two ends togther when they meet and poke inside the waistband. Hand stitch the gap using a tiny slip stich.

All that remains is to hem the bottom and its done!



Reprodepot review

9.5.08 - 11:16
Since I have improved somewhat in my sewing skills I decided it was time to start looking for some nicer fabrics. Recently I have been using basic solid colour cotton to try out patterns and shapes without spending a lot of money.

I found a pretty print on the reprodepot site. I think it might be a bit winter-y as it really looks like snowflakes... but its a beautiful colour and has a nice edge that will be great for the bottom of hte skirt.
So, shopping at reprodepot. This was surprisingly easy. A lot of these places seem to sell fabric by the half yard so you have to remember that 3 1/2 yards is a quantity of 7. The shipping costs were reasonable and the fabric came out at around £5 a yard. It took about 10 days to arrive (in a flat rate envelope with a resealable platic bag inside).
They also had no problems sending it to a different address to the billing address.
Good news all round. I am thinking about making a JSK from it - after I have tried out the new pattern I am working on.