February 27, 2013

Sew: Vogue 1027 in Liberty!!

How can you tell I really, really like this dress? I use a LOT of exclamation marks!!!!!! What's not to love? Liberty fabric - check! Beautiful soft jersey - check! Flattering classic pattern - check!

The fabric is a Liberty cotton jersey that is beautiful and soft but with limited stretch and almost no recovery. It drapes beautifully. It was a toss up between this "red" and a bright blue version. I chose this orange red colour so my mum purchased the blue version. Can't wait to see what she makes up!

I made a straight size 16, with no alterations. I've used a size 14 for this pattern before but this Liberty jersey has limited stretch and recovery. I used a strip of interfacing on the front neckline to prevent the bias stretching out. As usual, I omitted the armscye and simply turned it over 1.5cm and stitched with a twin needle. I finished the neck, arms and hem with a twin needle. I also inserted swimsuit elastic into the back waist seam to keep that firm.

I highly recommend this pattern if you don't already own it. It is a great pattern that is flattering on all body types and is especially lovely in Liberty!

Project Details
Pattern: Vogue 1027, size 16
Fabric: Liberty Granton Cotton Jersey in Red from Shaukat

I love this dress so much, I might just make another. STAT!

L x
February 21, 2013

Sew: Kwik Sew 3149 in Liberty

Being the mother of two boys I get a little stumped when it comes to what to buy for a girl. I was cutting out another Vogue 1027 in this beautiful Liberty jersey when I realised that it would make a great gift made in to a little tshirt for one of Mr N's first friends. Once the dress was cut out, I managed to squeeze the pattern pieces out. Just.

Miss L was turning 4 but is quite petite (I think every child is petite compared to my two bruisers). So I made a size 3 as the pattern is quite wide and simply lengthened it by 2.5cm. I opted to use self fabric for the sleeves and neck instead of contrasting rib binding. I think it looks very sweet.

Project Details
Pattern: Kwik Sew 3149 view B, size 3, self fabric binding
Fabric: Liberty Granton Cotton Jersey in Red from Shaukat
Alterations: Lengthened by 2.5cm

I stitched this up in about half an hour late on Saturday night, finishing the hem with a twin needle early Sunday morning. Nothing wrong with last minute stitching... If you have little kids, this pattern is invaluable for the basics.

I am very grateful for two boys as I don't think I could hold myself back if I had girls. Imagine all the Liberty dresses, shortie shorts and tshirts I would make?!

L x
February 16, 2013

Sew: Simplicity 2444

Another kid's birthday party, another dress! I have summer babies and hence most of their friends are also summer babies. So from November to March we have birthday party after birthday party. We actually have two this weekend. So I whipped up a new dress!! Not that I don't have enough dresses in my wardrobe...

I do love a good summer dress. This is a great basic pattern with a few modifications I've learnt along the way. I folded out the excess in the front and back neckline. A total of four inches!! I simply slashed the darts to allow the excess to be folded out. Simple.

 I also used bias binding for the neckline (and armholes) instead of the recommended facing. Easy as.

This is one of the printed cottons I picked up in Sydney last weekend. It is beautiful and soft but probably a little too lightweight for this pattern. It doesn't hold up well to those front angle darts. We'll see how it goes.

Project Details
Pattern: Simplicity 2444
Fabric: Printed cotton from The Remnant Warehouse
Alterations: Removed 2.5cm from front and back pattern piece using slash & spread method, lengthened by 2.5cm and substituted bias binding for neck facing.

I am contemplating making another of these dresses for work, in the black and white fabric I got last weekend. Or I might use Simplicity 1873, a Cynthia Rowley pattern instead...

L x
February 15, 2013

Table: Simplicity 2444

I threw my sewing plan out the window and decided life was too full of plans. I wanted to sewing something summery and just for the fun of it. So I decided on Simplicity 2444 in one of the printed cottons from my Sydney trip.

L x
February 12, 2013

Winner: Blog Birthday Giveaway!!

The winner of the Sew Brunswick turns 1 giveaway is Sew Busy Lizzy!! Congratulations Lizzy. Send me an email at ohsewbrunswick@gmail.com with your address and I'll send it all out. Got to make room for the epic Sydney fabric haul!!
Thanks to everyone who commented and entered. Here's to another year of blogging!!
L x

Sew: McCalls 6611 Drape Jacket

It is done! My beautiful lurex-coated linen drape jacket!! I am beside myself with excitement on this jacket. I pushed the boundaries of my sewing knowledge, both in drafting a lining pattern and fitting. Even though this is a very happy ending, the start was not pretty.
It didn't start well at all. I originally had planned on a cropped jacket without the peplum. Omitting the peplum and lengthening the bodice by 10cm was disastrous. The hem sat at the top of my hip and was pulling rather than skimming across my hips. The hem finishing at my hips just made me look wide and boxy. There was also a lot of excess fabric on the front side panel, particularly in the upper bust area.
So I pulled the pattern out and cut out the peplum. I removed most of the additional length taking it back to the pattern specifications. This seam really needs to end on your natural waist. Adding the peplum completely changed the look and style. The way the peplum angles out is a nice feature that is flattering on the hips.

My grandmother helped me fit the upper bust and side area by removing at least 1cm from the side front panel all the way from the peplum seam to the armhole. This was a complete game changer! Originally the princess seam was too pronounced and sticking out, preventing the front of the jacket from draping nicely.  
Project Details
Pattern: McCalls 6611, size 18
Fabric: Champagne lurex coated Linen from Tessuti, beige goldliner lining from Clegs
  • Lengthened bodice by 2cm
  • Removed 1cm from front side panel at princess seam (from peplum to armhole)
  • Added sleeves heads
  • Used a 2.5cm seam at centreback
  • Shortened sleeves by 10cm
  • Drafted lining pattern using Grainline Studio tutorial

It's not perfect, but neither am I! The pattern is not high quality and certainly not in the league of a Vogue jacket pattern. It is however quite simple to sew and assemble. Just don't alter it too much!

The fabric is beautiful and luxurious. It flicks from a simple beige linen to a sparkly champagne linen with a slight change in light. The fabric is lovely to sew but a bugger to press. I was hoping to take it to the drycleaner for a good press but I don't think I'll bother as after one wear it is beautifully crinkled.

I lined the jacket body and sleeves with a beige lining after drafting a lining pattern myself. The pattern calls for you to simply sew the lining with the same pattern as the outer jacket. I knew I wanted more ease of movement so followed the Grainline tutorial to draft a pattern. The inside peplum is the same as the outer jacket. 

Overall, I am very happy with the jacket. I know it's not perfect but I'm ok with that. Life is too short to worry about over fitting!

L x

Sew: Vogue 1250 in Pink Leopard Print

Yes, another Vogue 1250... I do love this pattern. It is super easy and quick to sew plus easy and flattering to wear. There are at least two more of these dresses on my list.

Project Details
Pattern: Vogue 1250, size 16
Fabric: Eruption polyester/elastane jersey from Tessuti
Alterations: 4cm sway back adjustment, lengthened by 7.5cm

I bought this fabric from Tessuti last year but saw it in The Remnant Warehouse on Saturday. It was less than half the price I paid in Tessuti. $9/m!! Oh well, you win some, you lose some. I bought my mum a few metres so don't be surprised if you see another Vogue 1250 in this print. A fun dress for summer and shopping!

What?! Don't you all match your dress to the fabric in the store??

L x
February 11, 2013

Meet: Sydney Sewing Social

Rachel (aka Boo Dogg) & I had a fabulous weekend in Sydney!! Of course we went to the Sydney Sewing Social but we also did some shopping and sightseeing. It was fantastic to spend a weekend away in good company and without the boys. Plus there was lots of Prosecco!

On Saturday morning, we had breakfast with the trendies (and my good friend Kate) in Surry Hills at Four Ate Five before taking Kate on her first ever fabric shopping mission at The Remnant Warehouse. For a beginner she had an exceptional eye for good fabric. I bought a few pieces on her advice and I am so happy with them.

On her way back in to the city, Kate dropped us off at the Dinosaur Designs Extinct Shop. This is the outlet shop for Dinosaur Designs and has lots of discontinued and excess stock items. You should all know by now I LOVE Dinosaur Designs. I have a large collection of necklaces, bangles and earrings. On entering the shop my heart was bounding and I was beyond excited. I ended up with a few pairs of earrings and some salad servers. Perfect!
From there it was on to The Fabric Store for a quick scope of the 50% off Sale before meeting everyone at Tessuti. I am so glad we did this as I found the most divine Lisa Ho red wool coating for my upcoming Lady Grey coat. It wasn't on special but it was beyond perfect so I decided to buy it then and there. Thank goodness, as it was all sold out by the time we returned a few hours later with the Sewing Social ladies.

We had a fabulous time with the Social Sewing ladies. We met in Tessuti before heading to The Fabric Store. Most people left us in The Fabric Store but the stayers all headed to The Clock Hotel for a well earned cold beverage and a good chat.

At the end of the afternoon there was Rachel of The Two Windmills, Christy of Little Betty Sews, Rachel of Boo Dogg & Me plus myself. We headed to Bills for dinner and some more Prosecco! There was great debate over which dessert was best. I think the lemon curd & raspberry trifle won. Overall it was a fabulous day!!

Sunday saw us at Adriano Zumbo cafe bright and early for pastries and coffee. With our 12 pack of macarons in tow, we headed to Circular Quay and the CBD for a wander.

We stayed at The Sebel in Surry Hills which was great. It was between The Fabric Store and Tessuti. What more could we ask for?!

I suppose you are all wondering what I bought on this epic trip to Sydney... I had a well defined list and bought all but one thing on the list. I also picked up two extra pieces which were too good to leave.

This is the beyond beautiful Lisa Ho red wool coating from The Fabric Store that will become a Lady Grey coat.

The denim is a lovely soft denim with a bit of stretch from The Remnant Warehouse for a pair of Juniper pants. The stripe will be a shorter McCalls 6559 with or without sleeves and the black/dark aubergine is for another Vogue 1250.

These lovelies are from Tessuti. I got a brilliant red lycra for a vintage inspired swimsuit and the She Read Red jersey for a draped Vogue 1159

These beauties will all become dresses. A few Simplicity 2444's (the black/white cotton from Tessuti and the purple/green from The Remnant Warehouse) and a few undecided patterns. I bought extra of a floral silk to line a future Anise Jacket.

So overall a beyond fabulous weekend which may have to become an annual event.

L x

February 06, 2013

Plan: SewcieTea Dress

Melanie from Seamstress: Poppykettle is hosting an icing event, Sewcie Tea, in April. The only condition is that we all have to dress up. I am beyond excited! In preparation, I was mentally shopping my fabric and pattern stash recently and came up with an interesting combination.

I am thinking Vogue 8723 in an interesting wool blend remnant that I snatched up at Tessuti at the first Melbourne Sewist's Meet Up in August. I'm going to use a contrasting Mokuba grosgrain ribbon in a rose pink or lavendar colour for the straps and possibly to make a removable belt.

What do you think? Can I pull it off?

L x
February 05, 2013

Celebrate: Sew Brunswick is 1!!

A year ago today I started blogging! I never knew that blogging my life, mainly my sewing life, would be so rewarding. I have met so many lovely people who share my passion for all things handmade. I've even made really good friends, who I hope to keep for a lifetime! So thank you all, for coming along to read my little part of the sewing blogging world.

In the interests of freeing up space for my upcoming trip to Sydney, I thought I would have a bit of a stash clean out. I have eight pieces of fabric to give away and one copy of Colette Patterns Sencha blouse. There might even be some surprises! All pieces of fabric are enough to make a garment. Some will be enough for a dress, others for a t-shirt or simple pencil skirt. One piece is an Indian tablecloth with a cool border print. Simply leave me a comment on this post or send me an email at ohsewbrunswick@gmail.com if you want to be in the draw. Any one can enter, blog or no blog, international or fellow Australian. You have one week!

Thanks again for reading and supporting my blog over the past year.

Happy 1st Birthday Sew Brunswick!!

L x
February 03, 2013

Sew: Grainline Moss Mini Skirt

This skirt has been in production for well over 3 weeks. It doesn't normally take that long but it got pushed aside by the Drape Jacket and life in general. Despite my extreme exhaustion due to the week's events, I was determined to finish it last night so I could get my sewjo happening again. It only took an hour to finish up and I'm super pleased with the end result. I feel another Moss Mini Skirt coming along soon. Possibly in a polka dot denim. And a winter version would be good for layering with tights and boots.

Project Details
Pattern: Grainline Moss Mini Skirt, view A, size 16
Fabric: Italian Denim (with slight stretch) in a deep indigo from Tessuti
Alerations: Lengthened by 20cm, 5cm hem, graded in sideseam from hip to waist by 1cm.

I wore this skirt to the markets this morning with my floral tiny pocket tank. I can see this skirt getting a lot of wear!

L x

Award: Liebster

Rosi of Rosi Button and Giggles in the Sun have both nominated me for the Liebster award. Thanks ladies! Both commented that they like my blog for the everyday garments that I make. I never really realised that I do make everyday garments that I wear all the time and that I don't make a lot of "cake". I suppose this is a good thing as I get to wear my creations almost every day. I would like to make some more "cake" this year with a little black dress number one on the list.

I am going to totally break the rules, as I was nominated for this award last year, and only do the facts about myself.

11 random facts about me:
1. I am 30 years old.
2. I grew up on a carrot farm in southeast Queensland.
3. I am married with two boys.
4. I have lived in Melbourne for 7 years.
5. I am a pharmacist.
6. I LOVE to travel. Domestic or international, it doesn't matter. We have backpacked around Japan with our two boys, we've been to Fiji to do the resort thing and we campervanned from Darwin to Alice Springs. All fabulous trips!
7. I still use a travel backpack when travelling. No suitcases in our household.
8. We backpacked around India for our honeymoon.
9. I was given my first sewing machine as a wedding present from my grandmother. 
10. My husband travels a lot for work, so that is why I get to sew so much. My machines are good company!
11. I love blogging and didn't even imagine the wonderful people I would "meet" and become friends with via the extraordinary sewing blogging community.

You guys rock!

L x
February 02, 2013

Knit: GAP-tastic Cowl

I did it! My first ever hand knitted item!!  After multiple unravels and attempts at casting on, I finally found my groove. The combination of a broken foot, torrential rain and a stint in the kid's hospital for a tooth vs lip altercation* made this a rather quick knit.

I used two balls of Lion Brand Wool-Ease Thick & Quick in Navy that I bought online from Yarnover, along with a set of Hiya Hiya 40 inch 9mm bamboo circular needles. I wouldn't go any shorter on the circular needles. I started with the 24 inch and it was too tight and awkward. The 40 inch were perfect. I casted on 121 stitches instead of the recommended 131. Purely because I was lazy and had casted on so many times before. The two balls of yarn resulted in a 10 inch wide cowl. 

Next time I'm going to use 3 balls of yarn and cast the extra stitches. I really want to use a mustard yellow yarn next time. I'm a bit torn between using the same brand, Lion Brand, which is a wool/acrylic blend (but has the perfect colour) or using a 100% wool yarn (but I can't find a mustard yellow). What to do?!

Project Details
Pattern: GAP-tastic Cowl by Jen Geigley
Yarn: Lion Brand Wool-Ease Thick & Quick in Navy
Needles: Hiya Hiya 40 inch 9mm bamboo circular needles

All up, I am extremely pleased with myself in completing this project. I'm not a complete convert to knitting but I will make another cowl or two for winter.

*We finally got home from Queensland late Wednesday afternoon and Thursday morning I was doing a bit of baking with the boys. Mr H got a bit excited about an apricot and slipped of the stepstool hitting his chin. Blood everywhere!! The next 14 hours were a whirlwind of solo-parenting logistical skills (Mr Sew Brunswick was still in America) culminating in theatre at 11pm to stitch up the inside lip, fix the outside chin and examine his teeth, plus or minus remove his front teeth. He came out with 7 stitches and his teeth intact!! We got home at 10am, after picking up Mr N from a friend's house, only to re-present to ED at 9pm that night as the stitches had fallen out and the wound had opened. Thankfully they decided against taking him back to theatre. We now just have to wait to see if the wound heals and if his teeth are ok.

Talk about one hell of a week?! I am so looking forward to Rachel and I's trip to Sydney next weekend. Who's coming along to the meet up?

L x
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