A Toile Toile

How annoying is that title? Hahaha. These shorts are actually a wearable muslin. My little sister’s birthday is coming up and she wants a pair of shorts for her present.

We went to the Pendleton Mill Outlet with the intention of getting some wool to make a winter short. But, that’s not what caught her eye. We picked up a super fun, snakeskin print twill.

She wants a menswear inspired short (honestly, Thurlow would be perfect). I have McCall’s 5391 in the stash and gave it a try. This pattern isn’t quite what she wants. On her version I’m going to add patch pockets to the rear (I think), and she definitely wants a cuff.

These are a straight make of view A, with the buttoned belt loops from F. Her measurements are just about the same as mine so I cut these in a size 12. I haven’t be en able to fit them on her yet, but I like them on me.

I inherited a small fabric stash, as well as my sewing machine, when my friend Leslie moved across country. I have tons of this home decor cotton toile fabric (about 4 yards) in the above mentioned stash. It is the perfect weight for a pair of pants, so I made these as carefully as I would on the final version. I really like how they came out. They’re super preppy :).

I made no fitting changes and these were a fairly fast make. I spent about 4 hours total on them. The only difficulty I had was on the zipper.

The pattern calls this a “mock fly”. I’ve never made a fly before, so I’m not sure what the difference is. The instructions were very confusing, and the illustrations weren’t very helpful either. I had to read them aloud a few times, and I’m not sure if I got it right. The zipper looks good enough, so I’m not too concerned. I’ll consult a book when I make my sister’s, so I can make her a proper fly.

The only other “issue” is that, as drafted, view A is hella short. When I make these again for myself, I think I’ll add 2 inches. Even my husband said they were short! You know men, nothing can be too tight or short for them. My sis is almost 4 inches shorter than me, so they should be perfect on her.

All in all, I think this pattern is a winner. It feels like wearing a RTW short. I’m working on getting used to things at my natural waist, but I never wore them before I started sewing. This has a comfortable low to midrise.

xx, Cynthia

Ceylon Muslin 2

First of all thank you so much for all of the advice on my last muslin post!!!!!

Since I had only attached one of the sleeves to my muslin, I used the other side to experiment with raising the armscye. According to an article I read in Threads if you hold a ruler under your armpit it will show you how high up the armscye needs to sit. I did this and saw that I had about half an inch I could raise it. I added the corresponding amount of fabric to my muslin/toile, then added the sleeves. Since the sleeves were tight on my bicep I cut a slit in both sleeves. Then a funny thing happened when I lifted my arms. There’s not much difference in the amount it rides up. It’s not very bothersome now. The side with an “X” drawn on the left is the unmodified side. The right side has the armhole raised. I think the real problem was just the sleeve being tight. I’m going to slash and spread the sleeve pattern piece to give my guns some more room. I’m undecided if I need to modify the armscye on my actual dress. Do you think I should?

In other news, I found the *perfect* navy linen at the thrift store that I had in my head to make this out of. Don’t you love when you find just what you were looking for in a charity shop? I want to make a nautical version of this dress with white piping and brass buttons. I’m hoping to have it completed in time so I can take photos with cute sailors (le sigh) during Portland’s fleet week. Tangent: I <3 fleet week!

Muslin Issues: Ceylon

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So lemme tell you a secret. Ceylon by Colette patterns was the first sewing pattern that made me say “Hot Damn, I want that!” It’s special and mos def not something you can find in RTW. It was the first pattern I bought and I’ve had it put away for over a year waiting until I was good enough to make it. I decided that my skills are ready and I made a quick mock up out of a thrifted bed sheet. I made a size 4, which is sized for nearly my exact measurements (35″-27″/28″-38″ FYI). Colette designs for a C-D cup bust, so the fit on this should be perfect, right?

Almost… I can’t lift my arm and it’s super tight on my bicep. Fixing the sleeve issue won’t be a problem. However, what about that pesky problem I have lifting my arms? The whole bodice rides up when I lift them even slightly. Not attractive. I had my mister take a few photos to help me figure out the problem. I’m thinking a broad back adjustment might be needed. Or perhaps raising the armscye? What do you think?!?!? Any help offered is greatly appreciated :)

Vogue 1227: Bodice Version 2

I think I’ve got it in the bag friends! You just got up close and personal with my girls. I made some revisions to the bodice of my upcoming dress and I’ve got the fit dialed in. The only issue is a little bit of gaping at the top of the cups that needs to be dealt with. All in all,  I think I look pretty bodacious in this top. This reminds me of the bombshell dress by Gertie. Maybe I should take her course for guidance. Anybody taken it? I’m a cheap-o and $30 could buy more fabric :)

When I made this per pattern directions I had about 2 inches of excess ease in the bodice. The bra cups, however, were my size. I increased the seam allowances to 7/8″ in the bodice and yoke pieces, while leaving the bra cups as they were. This did make easing the cups into the bodice a little more tricky, since the bodice was the much smaller. I tried something to help me ease them on one side. I made a line of basting stitches just inside the seam allowance all the way around. then I clipped just shy of this line. This helped me clip *deeply* enough to aid in easing to make easing without clipping too far. I’m not sure if this is a good technique though, I sort of just winged it.

You should also check out this song. I’ve been listening to this (and the whole album) on repeat for the last month. Obsessed!

Vogue 1227: Muslin #1

So I pulled out Vogue 1227 to make a muslin for my birthday dress. I was nervous about this because the only review I found was by Lladybird (only one person has made this in the whole blogsphere?!?!?) , she made this sound like a bitch to sew up and alter. I’m a little skurred. It is supah dupah cute though, so I’m going to give it the old college try. I’m having a 90’s dance party and I want to be fly.

I have tons of this ugly batik print I purchased at the thrift store, so I decided to make the whole dress as opposed to just the bodice. Practice makes perfect ya’ll. I had some concerns that the dress would be too short. This isn’t hemmed, but it will only be about half an inch shorter when completed. I’m okay with this length, (but I did get myself some matching boy short panties to wear just in case I get too tipsy to remain a lady).

This dress calls for tons of top stitching, so I pulled out some hot pink thread to practice. I don’t want to have a wonky mess on my final dress. I was able to, more or less, sew all of those parallel lines straight, but I had a hard time matching up the top stitching at the seams. Any tips on on how to do that other than, if they don’t match, rip out and try again? I don’t want to shred my fabric.

The bra cups were a little tricky to sew; very curvy and small. I just need to remember to go sloooooooow. I think I also put the top band in upside down so I’m going to flip it and reverse it for try #2. I practiced inserting the boning under the cups, just like in a bra. The cups fit mah boobies fine. The edge of the cups, don’t match up with with fabric in between my breasts. In the picture they do (poorly drafted or user error?), so I might need to do some finagling.

The only adjustment that needs to be made is to take ease out of the bodice. I cut a size 12, even though I measure at a size 14, but it was still huge. The top of this dress was so big that it gaped and showed all of my bust (not ladylike at all). My husband helped me out by pinching out the excess and marking it with a chalk pen. I need to take 2 inches out of the bodice. There are 8 seams in the bodice and yoke, so if increase all of my seam allowances by a quarter of an inch, that should take out all of the excess. Is that an acceptable alteration or should I change the pattern pieces? That sounds scary to me.

I have midterms this week and it’s been dumping snow on the mountain (I love love love skiing), so it might be a little while until I can mock up the bodice a second time. If that works out, I have some calico in my stash to make a wearable muslin that is fully lined, interfaced, and boned. I think it will make a cute country-girl summer dress. I want to try out all of the techniques required in this dress, before I cut into my expensive silk. I have a month and 2 days until my birthday, so I should be fine.

Yeah, I still went back there. What?