Silhouette Patterns – Jorja’s wrap

I have talked before about how I love Silhouette Patterns and how inspiring the webcasts and YouTube videos that Peggy (the pattern company owner and designer) produces. In a recent YouTube video, Peggy talked about how she had gone to a workshop and one of the ladies had sewn a wrap based on one that Peggy had demonstrated in one of her earlier videos. The lady who had sewn the wrap had done something different to the original instructions. Since Peggy didn’t recognise it, she and the ladies in the workshop worked out how to reproduce it. Peggy then explained it on the video. I think she called it Jorja’s wrap, after the innovative lady who had sewn it. The instructions start at around the 40 minute mark.

Since I am on a quest to use up more of my stash than I purchase, I immediately thought of a piece of lightweight knit fabric that I only had half a metre of. It was 150 cm wide (~ 60 inches) so perfect for this project since I had yet to find a better use for it.

1 fabric

As Peggy mentioned in the video, it was difficult to picture how it was going to work, but I simply followed the instructions and it worked perfectly.  I won’t explain it here, because it is far better for you to view the video yourself. You will see Peggy wearing her version but the sewing instructions are towards the end at about 40 minutes into the video.

Here are some work in progress shots.  It is basically sewing one seam, once the edges of the fabric are finished to your liking.  So I straightened the edges, then overlocked them, fiddled around with the seam as demonstrated by Peggy with her piece of paper, sewed it and voila!

2 overlocked edges3 folded and pinned

It is the middle of winter here in Melbourne, and I was surprised how warm the wrap is even though it is only lightweight fabric. So I now have a use for any more random half metre fabric pieces I find in my stash.  I highly recommend you give it a go, let me know if you do.

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Until next time, Lyn

Out and About Purse

Sorry it’s been a while since I blogged, but happily that means I have been spending spare time sewing a few things that I can blog in the future.

I have made up another pattern from Studio Mio that I bought at the Stitches and Craft show in April. I bought the mini shoulder pouch and the “Out and About Purse” which I loved even though it is probably impractical as I doubt I would fit my glasses in it once my phone is inside. Never to be put off by impracticalities, I made this cute purse up anyway.1 PurseKit

I followed the instructions which were quite easy as I have made purses before. With only 2 pieces, the outside and the lining, it is quick to make too.  The fabric I used came with the kit.3 fabric

After fusing some thin wadding to the main fabric, sewing the side seams then the bottom corners, it’s nearly done.

I then sewed the lining to the main fabric. As instructed I sewed some twine around the top of the purse to help it stay in the purse frame but in later steps found that the twine was too thick and I couldn’t get the fabric into the frame. So I unpicked it and inserted a slightly thinner braid (but forgot to take photos of it).

Once it was turned through to the right side and pressed I was able to get the fabric into the frame, so I got out the glue and carefully glued the purse body to the frame.  Once it was dry I added the strap to the frame and all done!  Love it! Might have to go places where I don’t need to see anything too closely though, so I can leave my specs at home!

Until next time, Lyn

Colourful Beach Boxes

The brightly coloured beach boxes on denim that I did for the Photo to Fibre exhibition in 2016 were a favourite of mine.  So I thought I would have another go at doing them for the Made on Monday Challenge Lyn and I are doing this year.

The 5 inch pieces are a bit more limiting than the beach bags and fabric buckets I did for the exhibition so I created new templates in a smaller scale.

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Cutting up small pieces of coloured fabric and fusing it onto denim is very therapeutic – but by the end of the fourth piece, I started to wonder why I felt I had to make four of them?

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The initial reason was to experiment with quilting techniques, but as you can see, in my haste to finish them and not really wanting to compromise with the design too much, they ended up looking very similar.

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However, piece number 5 is my favourite.

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Now to the next challenge piece…..

Made on Monday – joining the challenge

A few months ago I saw a post on Facebook by Kate Bridger showing some 5 inch square pieces that she and others had done as part of a “Made on Monday” Challenge.  What a great idea to keep the creative juices flowing – the pieces were small enough to make the challenge achievable.  Lyn and I agreed and we decided we would participate.

I have included the link below for anyone who may be interested

http://katebridger.wix.com/madeonmonday

Lyn created a spreadsheet – we both love a good list and the challenge began with the first piece finished on the 26th of April.

Whilst the challenge is “Made on Monday”, ours are actually made on Wednesday as Lyn and I follow our creative pursuits on most Wednesdays

We work shopped some ideas and noted down themes and techniques in order to have as many options as possible to kick start the pieces.

The first theme we both agreed to do was flowers

My first piece has a spray painted background which I did last year and now have an excuse to use and some minimal applique.

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I have used freestyle machine stitching to create the flower petals and stems using rayon threads

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The next 3 pieces will use the rest of the spray painted fabric, but more about them next time…… Cora

Cardi-coat

In my efforts to reduce my fabric stash I decided to make a new coat using Silhouette Pattern #1819 which is really a jacket.  I decided not to adjust for my height (I’m only 5’2”) so it is a good length for a coat.  We have had some mild autumn days lately where a heavy coat is not necessary but it’s nice to have something to keep warm.

0 Silhouette 1819

I used this double sided fabric which I got on sale recently.  The pattern is unlined so I wanted to use the black “wrong side” as the folded back lapels.1 fronts

I wanted to do this pattern partly because the finished measurements are the same as another pattern for a trench coat which I am going to try next. I will still do a muslin but it gives me a size as a starting point. For those not familiar with Silhouette Patterns the size is chosen by the finished measurements.  I measured a couple of RTW coats at the bust and hip lines to arrive at my size. The only issue I had with cutting out was that I only had 1.5 metres of fabric, so I decided to piece the sleeves at the shorten/lengthen line. A new “design feature”! The pattern is only 4 pieces – front, back, and 2 piece sleeves.

Here are some process photos:

The collar is part of the front piece so once I stitched it together at centre back, and after sewing the shoulder seams, I pinned along the neck edges.

2 collar cb

At the pivot point you make a cut up to the pivot point to make it easier to turn the corner.

And the finished seam before pressing. I must admit I was slightly terrified but the neckline seam worked brilliantly.6 corner on neckline

I applied tie interfacing to the sleeve head as per the pattern instructions.  I have done this before and was thrilled with what a difference it makes and how easy it is to insert the sleeve.  Once the interfacing is basted in you can really see how it makes the sleeve head rounded and has eased up some of the fabric.7 tie interfacing basted

I was then able to insert the sleeves really easily – first go! How it should be, right? The edges of the lapels have been overlocked (I considered bias tape or fold over elastic but thought the overlocking looked fine) and so I did the same to the hem.  One large button on the front with a loop and done!  When rolling up the sleeves to get the correct length I decided I liked the look of the black cuffs, so I left them long and folded back. You can see the join where I didn’t have enough fabric, but I can live with that!

Sort of a cross between the long cardigans that you see in the shops now and a coat.  Even my 17 year old daughter likes it, so I consider that a raging success!  Off to clean up the sewing room and decide what to make next.

Until next time, Lyn

Australia Bag/Tote

I recently had friends here in Australia visiting from Italy.  Whilst they weren’t staying with me, they did bring me gifts and I started thinking……. What do I give them in return?  Something from Australia, of course, but what?

I decided to make something and started searching for Aboriginal print fabrics.  I found some and made a sample shopping bag/tote.

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However, on another fabric shopping trip, I found the perfect print.  Using the same pattern, I made another two and am very pleased with the results.

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I hope they give them fond memories of their time in Australia when used.

Till next time……Cora

Favourite patterns

Although I have been sewing clothes for myself for many years, I only started using Silhouette Patterns about 5 years ago. I love the webcasts and all the free information Peggy provides and find them very inspiring. Unfortunately my sewing ambitions far exceed the time available, but I have managed to produce some garments.

One of my favourite patterns is the Sweater Set #195.  Just take a look at the condition of my pattern envelope.  Well-loved indeed.

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I have just made the cardigan top again, this time with press stud closures.  I should have been careful what I wished for, there are a LOT of studs to do up if I want it closed!  AND, the first time I carefully stitched the press stud tape onto both sides, only to try it on and realise that I had stitched both sides of the tape to the right side of the fabric! So yes, a bit of swearing went on.  Then I got out my well used quick unpick and took it off one side and sewed it correctly.  Luckily because of the thick kind of furry properties of the fabric, you can’t see the stitching that much (or the un-stitching!)

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I really like the fit of this pattern and love that it’s sort of a cardigan, but can be dressed up or worn with jeans.

These are pictures of the same pattern, but using zips as a closure:

I have also made the sleeveless top at least twice that I can remember, and will post pictures of those in a future post.

Until next time, Lyn