Vintage Simplicity 7454

Once again I’ve taken a little inspiration from another blogger to make this frock. Well… maybe I just copied herĀ šŸ™‚

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You see RachelĀ put out a call for Vintage Simplicity 7454Ā on Instagram. She got a traced off copy from Colette at Tessuti. When I asked to borrow it from Rach once she finished, another IGer – Emma – Ā said she had a copy in her stash that she was happy to send it to me. Yay! Sewing peeps are the best!

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Now as it happens, I actually have plans to make three different autumn garments at the moment, but naturally as soon as I received the pattern I needed to make it NOW! Those pockets are EPIC!! If only you could see them in this print!!!

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This fabric was a happy find from Pitt Trading that I purchased last year during a fabric diet. I needed only swimsuit lining, so naturally I purchased lining and this vintage piece. I guess I don’t regret it now. I think it might beĀ viyella, though I’m no burn test expert. It was only 90 cm wide and just over 2.5m long which was perfect for this true midi length dress.

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I think this is a great pairing and I’m super pleased with the fit. I was concerned about the sizing, but found that sewing slightly deeper seam allowanced kept the fit trim. I also omitted the back tie and added buttons to create a more streamlinedĀ look.

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Now that I’m finished with this pattern, it will now make it’s was to Jillian. It will be cool to see what she makes with it and Rach should have finished her’s too. Maybe we need to start a travelling pattern project with this beauty.

Liberty Sketch

My Liberty love continues! I snapped up this print from the latest Liberty collection as soon as it became available.

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Every teacher needs a dress with little pencils on it right?

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I wore this dress on my first day with my new kindy class. Clearly I was trying to impress the parents šŸ™‚ The shoes were dumb. I never normally wear high heels to school, even wee ones like this, but I did and my feet were sore by the end of the day. Never again!

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I used Vogue 8028, view D, to made this new shirtdress. I’ve used this pattern a coupleĀ of times before (here and here), but each time have modified the skirt. Those box pleats are a nightmare to fine tune so that they don’t stick up. This time I kept the box pleats at the front of the skirt, but changed them to darts on the back.

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I shortened the sleeve and added a folded cuff to them. I also added pockets using the pattern piece from the Grainline Alder dress pattern, but the pockets and the cuffs are practically invisible in these photos. They look good in real life though.

I intentionally left this frock a little longer than many of my other dresses. I don’t know if I’m getting older šŸ˜‰ or my taste is changing, but longer styles are appealing to me more these days.

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As Liberty tana lawn does not have any stretch, even mechanical stretch, the dress is not overly fitted. I need to wear a belt to add shape to the dress and it is held in place with thread belt loops.

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The buttons were purchased from Pitt Trading after a very unsuccessful button shopping trip to Spotlight. What is with those crappy button cards that they sell these days? Crap, crap, crappy! Such a poor selection and absolutely nothing if you don’t want black, white, gold, red or pink.

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Now I have made quite a few shirts in my time, so I thought I’d share a tip to neatly top stitch collars, cuffs, plackets and collar stands if you don’t have an edge stitching foot. If you own a Janome, you may have foot “g”, which is used for blind hemming. I use this foot for my edge stitching too. Simply set your needle position to 0 or as far left as it will go, align your fabric with the black fabric guideĀ and stitch away.

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With the black guide on the machine foot you will end up with stitching that is perfectly straight and perfectly aligned to the edge of your collar or whatever. Enjoy!

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Basics

One of the things I committed to these past school holidays was to force myself to sew a stack of new basics to get me through the next 6 months.

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There isn’t anything exciting here, but they are very much needed and I like that I was able to customise my tanks and tees to look exactly as I want.

IMG_5105I prefer my tank tops to be cut higher around the neck to ensure that they don’t gape when I bend down. No kid wants to see that!

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I also like them to be loose, but not super loose. That way I can wear them out or tuck them into a skirt.

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The navy marle fabric is a poly cotton blend which cost onlyĀ $4 pm and the grey with gold geometric design is a cotton/something knit from Spotty.Ā My magenta and black tanks were made with a cheap poly knit that I also purchased for only $4 pm. So costing a total of just $4 each tank, they are pretty much Kmart price but without the sweat shop. I also made an olive green version with the same fabric, but forgot to photograph it. I’m sure you can imagine what it looks like though, pretty much the same, but olive šŸ™‚ While many people steer away from poly fabrics, I don’t mind them sometimes. They wash and wear beautifully, have great recovery, never pill and last to the point that you are bored with them, not because they are scrappy. The down side of this fabric is that itĀ can be hot to wear, but I just work with the weather and don’t wear these garmentsĀ on hot and humid days.

Now I don’t use a pattern when I make these tank tops. I think you know that I am rather gung ho with my pattern drafting and for these I simply cut around an existing tank top that I like. I fitted the first tank as I sewed and changed the others accorgingly. As the poly knit is rather slippery to sew and I worry about the neck and arms stretching out, I drafted a facing for them. I sewed the facing and outer right sides together, turned them and cover stitched in place. I then trimmed away the facing close to the cover stitching. This is an unconventional way to construct a garment, but it just works. It creates a neat and very durable finish.

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My t-shirts are based on theĀ Grainline Scout pattern and again, I’ve raised the neck. With this grey and gold version I also added side splits and cuffed sleeves.

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While these certainly aren’t exciting makes, they are work horses – my go to items for weekend and day to day wear. The best thing about stocking up on them is that I now don’t need to make any more basic tees and tanks for quite some time šŸ™‚