Monday, 10 June 2013

Made: New Look 6911 (again) and the Earth & Spring collection is DONE

New Look 6911 in beige embroidered linen: front, buttoned up; back, inside out to show the bias taping
This little beige embroidered linen jacket is what I made this weekend. Again, sorry for the extra-awful photos.

The pattern for this is the same as I used for the wedding outfit jacket, New Look 6911, with basically only one change to how I made the last one: I fixed the problem with the armhole being too low. I took some time over it because I chose to bias tape all my seams again and there is a good couple hours of handwork in the hem, sleeve hem and slip-stitching the front facings to the princess seam at the bust. The latter is not mentioned in the instructions, but when I made the first one I decided it was absolutely essential if I was going to avoid great flapping facing problems. Even so, I started and finished this over the weekend. There is one thing left to do: the buttons and buttonholes. I'm stymied at the moment because I'm waiting for the World's Slowest Buttons which have yet to arrive. Since I bought two sets and the other set is supposed to go on my turquoise jacket which I am meant to be wearing for the wedding THIS SATURDAY, all I can say is that the World's Slowest Buttons had better hurry the hell up.

The fabric of this jacket is a beige/natural coloured linen with little embroidered swirls. You can't really see from this photo, but they're in a mix of red, orange and purple. It came from eBay and I had about 2.4m of it. Like last time, I found the linen incredibly easy to work with and a joy from that perspective, but I was actually really disappointed when it came to cutting out. The fabric had huge margins, for a want of a better word, where there was no embroidery so even though the actual width was around 140cm, it was more like a 110cm wide fabric.

Originally I thought I'd figured out a way to cut the pattern and just squeeze out view A, the version with the collar, but then I found a mark right in the middle of the fabric that I had to cut around. This caused so much swearing and annoyance, you have no idea. In retrospect, maybe I could have been more inventive with my cutting. I ended up with my front facings cut partly into the blank area of the pattern and I actually really like the effect of the embroidery starting just where the buttons are, with the button section blank. By the time I thought of it, it was too late though. The other issue with the fabric was that it is actually a slightly awkward weight. It's heavier than I'd like for a shirt, but it's actually probably too light for anything but the most summer-y of jackets. I'll have to get some wear out of it while it's warm!

As before I bias taped all the seams, and I used another Liberty cotton. This time it's a purple and burgundy swirl pattern on a white background, although you can't see much of the white. I got it from the factory shop as a 75cm remnant along with the same pattern in shades of blue that I liked much better. I've used the blue one for bag making -- or specifically, for bag linings -- but I didn't really like this one as much. I thought it might make nice tape -- which it did -- but I still don't know that I like it all that much.

I'm a bit concerned by the fit of the jacket above the neck. It seems to gape a bit awkwardly as I move around, although it's fine when I stand still. I'm going to see how it wears but I have a feeling I needed a bit of a shoulder adjustment to make it fit a bit better. On the other hand, I love the bust fit, and you're never going to hear me say that about any RTW jacket EVER, so that is a definite plus! Other than that though I was pleased with how the sewing went. There are a couple of tiny pleats in one of the sleeve heads, though the other sleeve went in fine despite the fact I did nothing different, and I am not altogether happy with the rounded shaping of the front of the jacket. I've done a lot of rounded sewing for bags and I am quite disappointed with how hard I found it it get a really nice, even, consistent shape for the jacket hem. Still, it's not BAD and I can live with it.

The pattern version of the collection
And with that jacket, I've completed my first mini-collection. It started off very different -- six pieces rather than five, and I think I changed my mind on every single pattern and fabric at least twice.

The Earth and Spring Collection
I am actually pretty happy with how everything turned out, although I have to admit it doesn't really co-ordinate as well I'd like. The two tops go well with the beige Ottobre skirt but their shape is all wrong to wear with the brown full skirt -- too baggy and loose. On the other hand, the jacket looks terrible with the beige Ottobre skirt -- too much beige/natural and not the same shade -- even if it goes nicely over the two tops. Luckily, I have a few items in my RTW wardrobe that turned out to blend in nicely with what I've made, so I've not really created any wardrobe orphans, however neither can I be said to have created a mix and match capsule. Still, it was a reasonably good first attempt at one, I think. In total, I used just over 9m of fabric to make the 5 items. I've worn the red and white tee once, so far, but none of the other items yet. I think my favourite item is the pink floral top (second from the right).