WhooHoo! Blue batik tunic

It feels like a long time since my last ‘WhooHoo’ moment, but after much pattern-adjustment and alteration, I’ve finally finished my first dressmaking project of the year!bluefishbatik2

Now, as I’ve not done any dressmaking for a while, I thought I’d begin with something *simple*.  Enter New Look 6086, a relatively straightforward tunic pattern that I’ve made before.  Only trouble is, I’ve gone up a dress size and changed shape a bit since I last made this.  Dim problem (as we say in Wales): enter Barbara Deckert’s ‘Sewing for Plus Sizes’, everything the curvy girl needs to know to make things that fit her.deckert&NewLookWell, except… having altered EVERY SINGLE seam apart from the centre back, doing an FBA, altering the length & position of the darts, changing width and length of the sleeves…

bodice alteration

…I’d trashed the pattern so much I ended up having to trace off a new one.  I wish I’d just bought another and cut it the right size in the first place!  I was so fed up fiddling with the pattern and itching to get on with making the actual top that in the end, I forgot to do a crucial little ‘petite’ adjustment above the bustline.bluefishbatik top

So as you can see, there is a bit of bagginess going on in the upper chest, but overall I’m pretty happy with this as a first sew of the year.  So much so that I wore it last weekend’s World Textile Day, hence the slightly creased look as I took the pics when I got home!bluefishbatikagain

Now if we could just have a bit more of that lovely sunshiney stuff, I can pack my jumpers away and get on with the summer wardrobe!


Vintage Sewing Pattern (and fabric!) Pledge

Vintage sewing pattern pledgeThis month, the super-talented Marie over at A Stitching Odyssey has thrown down an irresistible challenge to all us vintage sewing pattern lovers – to make 2014 the year we get those patterns out of the stash and turn them into finished projects!

So I am pledging not only to make at least three of my vintage patterns this year, but also to use at least three of my vintage fabrics (not necessarily on the same projects, though).  My first picks will most likely be these Simplicity dresses from the 60s and 70s, given to me by my mum.  Luckily we’re the same size, so no major pattern redrafting required!70s simplicityAnother pattern I’d love to make up is this funky pant suit, very similar in fact to one my mum had in a deep plum worsted wool back in the early 70s.  Cool or what??70s PracticalAnd then there’s this baby, which belonged to my gran.  I found out recently it’s quite a famous Vogue original from 1964 – and yes, that really is Jean Shrimpton modelling.  I’ve had it for maaaany years, so maybe it’s about time I got it out of the envelope and gave it a go!50s VogueDo you like my 70s floral cotton/terylene in the background there??  Sadly it’s a bit faded but I’m thinking of using it to line a dress, hmm, not sure if that counts towards my pledge though!  How about this, a small piece of psychedelic synthetic jersey from the 70s?  I thought I’d use it to make the front panel of this 90s lace-up dress.  (Anything early 90s is now officially ‘vintage’, by the way – see this post from Gertie.  I’m not sure how I feel about that, myself!)70s silky with patternI also have this fabulous 70s soft cotton lawn that I’ve been wanting to make up for ages.  I only have a scant 2 ¾ yards though – I’d love to make my mum’s maxi dress with it but it’s only 35” wide, too narrow for the skirt.  Any suggestions or ingenious solutions gratefully received!70s green paisley with patternAnd finally I thought I’d leave you with my ultimate 70s fabric gem, gifted to me by my lovely friend Helen.70s pixie fabricand just to prove I’m not all talk, this really did become a (fancy) dress…pixie party dressAre any of you joining in with the Vintage Sewing Pattern Pledge this year?  I’d love to hear about your ideas for makes!