Thursday, 8 September 2016

Ooh look, another Maria Denmark kimono tee

I'll keep this short as you've seen a thousand of these on me lately - it's another Maria Denmark "Kristen Kimono Tee".

The fabric is an 85cm remnant picked up from Tessuti for the bargain price of $9.35. The fabric is the same as that used for this Mandy Boat Tee - just a different colourway with narrower stripes. It feels nice to wear and was pretty easy to sew with.

Even though I thought my last kimono tee was a bit...small, I decided not to go up a size and this one fits okay. Not sure what that's about...but I'll take it. I shortened the length by about 1" as I've felt my others were a big long. I could probably go a bit shorter. Again, much pooling on the back but, whatever, I can't see it!

...and I also sewed this one with a neckband and I'm pretty happy with the way it turned out (though next time I'll make it a tad wider). I thought I'd try top-stitching the neckband with a triple stitch rather than a small zigzag and I HATE the way it looks - so heavy and messy. Won't be doing that again. I have seen someone on Instagram just use a long straight stitch for neckband top-stitching so I'll give that a go next time. I did zigzag the arm hems and my machine decided to skip a few stitches so this top is not as "neat" as I'd like, but it's very wearable so wear it I shall. Once the weather warms up!


Pattern: "Kristen Kimono Tee" by Maria Denmark
Size: size 3XL (no seam allowance added); with size 4XL at the shoulders
Modifications: none
Fabric: Remnant from Tessuti (Viscose + Elastaine)
Changes for next time: none

Saturday, 3 September 2016

Moneta/Lady Skater mash-up

I started this toile back in February and finally finished it today - talk about a slow make!  I bought the Moneta Dress pattern when it was first released and sat on it for about two years - mostly put off by the "gathered elastic waistband" which seemed tricky and destined for failure.

In February I decided to give the Moneta bodice a try with the circle skirt from the Lady Skater Dress (that I've made a few times but the bodice is just too small for me). I cut the Moneta bodice in an XL and it was, really really small. Ugh. I had enough fabric to recut the bodice in a 2XL (despite my measurements firmly putting me in the XL camp) so I cut it out last night and sewed up a rough toile today. The dress is unfinished but I have a good idea of how it fits.

Well, it fits so that's great! BUT...the neckline on the front bodice is higher than the back which is fine, but I feel like I'm choking, so I'll lower the front. The armholes are also really high - like right up in my armpit which is kinda uncomfortable so I'm going to lose 1cm from the bottom of the front and back armhole and subsequently will add 1cm to the front and back of the sleeve piece. There some excess fabric under the arms (on the bodice) but I think I'll leave that alone as I don't know how to fix it. I don't like the shape at the hem of the sleeve piece either as it's tricky to overlock so I'm going to copy the shape of the sleeve sides/hem from the Lady Skater as well as the length of the Lady Skater sleeve as I think this will be a little too short when hemmed.

I think it looks "okay" from the back and I don't need to loose any length from the bodice even though it does catch on my bum a bit (big bum problems = don't care). The skirt length is good - it has 1" added to the length of the hem from when I tried to make a Lady Skater.

I've not finished the dress because as it is I won't wear it and it's not 100% comfortable. When I make the real thing I will add a neckband to the neck rather than turning under and stitching as that finish never works for me. I also didn't add elastic to the waist to stop it stretching out as this was a toile, but will do so for the "real deal".

From all the changes I've listed it sounds like this is a total dud, but it's a good experiment and "if" I can implement the changes mentioned above it might become a good TNT pattern.


Pattern: Moneta Dress by Colette Patterns (bodice) + Lady Skater Dress by Kitschy Koo (skirt)
Size: Moneta Bodice = 2XL + Lady Skater Skirt = 8
Modifications: so many (see above)
Fabric: thin ponti-like fabric from Girl Charlee USA
Changes for next time: so many (see above)

Sunday, 21 August 2016

A test run of the Marianne Dress

I have had this pattern in my stash for AGES...bought when Christine Haynes was having a sale. I snapped it up and it sat unused for about a year. I guess I was having my love affair with the Gaby Dress (sewn in a knit) so this got pushed to the back.

Initially I was going to sew the Maria Denmark Kimono Tee as a dress, but them remembered this pattern is similar in shape, just slightly more flared, and with a sleeve option. The fabric is a thin ponti-like fabric, bought for $7/m from a store in Cabramatta. I decided to add the sleeves this time around, even though for summer it'll be sans sleeves.

Overall this dress is not bad although it is going to get cut up and made into a Mabel Skirt.

The dress fits which is always my number 1 criteria for success. I did find the sleeve piece required a little bit of stretching to attach to the cap sleeve which I think has created some pulling/stretching on the sleeve piece making it not very comfortable. Next time I would add a bit to the sleeve piece so I don't have to stretch it to make it fit. I might also add 1" to the length...cover those knees up. The neckline is WAY to high for my liking and have already made an alteration to the pattern piece to drop it down I bit. I actually added 2" to the neckband and if I hadn't the neck would've been even smaller *chokes*.

I'm sure this dress looks OK in the photos (minus my standard fabirc-pooling-above-the-butt-thing) but in real life the colouring of the fabric does not suit me at all....I think it's all that beige up near my face. It will make a nice skirt though worn with a grey marle tee for summer.


Pattern: Marianne Dress by Christine Haynes
Size: 18
Modifications: added 2" to the neckband
Fabric: thin ponti-like fabric from Cabramatta
Changes for next time: add 1" to the hem line; add about 1cm to the sleeve piece (at the highest point); lower neckline, add at least 2" to the neckband.