Saturday, 30 April 2016

April round-up, Summer sewing ahead

I am mostly pleased with my sewing this month! I made a bodywarmer (vest), a whole pile of t-shirts, a pink boucle jacket, and an extremely frustrating navy viscose button-front shirt.

Stash reduction-wise, I actually used quite a lot of fabric this month, but alas, the fabric buying gremlins were awake and active and I have ended April more or less at parity for where I started on the first of January. Still, I have plenty of year left to do some stash reduction and lots of sewing plans for fabric I already own, so I am not giving up on the idea that one day I could have less. Yet. /o\

One thing I am managing to do is whittle down my bag fabric stash a little. Over the last couple of days I made further strides in this direction of having less bag fabric by making two simple bags. The first, in blue paisley with a plain blue lining, is literally just some rectangles of pretty fabric sewed together with a boxed bottom -- truly the simplest of bags! I made a little zippered pouch for it to get stuffed in when not in use, and both are going to my mum as a gift as she has unfortunately misplaced the previous version of the same bag & pouch combo that I made for her.

The second bag I made is a pink tote -- because I already made a pink jacket this month, so why not? This is (very) slightly more interesting bag, from a construction perspective. I used a pattern called the LilyBeth Tote (Etsy link, I am not affiliated in any way). It turned out pretty well! The lining of the pink bag is just a plain cream. I've had the pattern for years but never used it, though I've made up pretty much all of the pattern writer's other patterns at one point or another. I really like the LilyBeth and might make some more, as it's a really nice size. It's fun to do a little bit of fussy cutting for the fabric panels as well.
Some tote bags I made over the last couple of days
So that's April all done, and with it all of the sewing I'd earmarked to make and wear this spring that I'm going to get done.

Since it's May tomorrow, it's time to move on to sewing for the summer! :D This seems really optimistic when the temperature is like 8C, it keeps pouring with rain and there's snow on the hills. However, the defining characteristics of the British summer are that it is often short and always unpredictable. You have to have your warm weather wear READY, in case the sudden week of sunshine and warmth in like, mid-June, turns out to be the only summer you get. This is why I like to sew a few weeks ahead of the actual weather, even though then I get all impatient for opportunities to actually wear things!

At any rate, I am pretty well supplied for the essentials of my summer wardrobe (linen trousers, lightweight cardigans, t-shirts since I made a pile of them this month, etc). What I haven't got even one of is summer dresses, mainly because of my continued ambivalence about wearing summer dresses. However, I am determined to make an attempt to both make and wear some summer weight dresses, including shirtdresses which, if you have followed this blog for a while, you will understand appeal to me a LOT since I do love both making and wearing button-front shirts. I also want one more pair of shorts and some summer skirts, some woven short-sleeved tops and blouses, and at least one lightweight jacket.

The first thing up on my sewing table next week though will be a three-quarter sleeve top using a recent Burda pattern, 03-2016-104.
Burda 03-2016-104, images from
The reason I am making a hi-lo hem top is that I will be using a new-to-me fabric, double gauze, and I want something that will show off the inside colour of the fabric as well as the outside. This swingy top seemed just the right thing, though I've had to lengthen it a little because I am very much of the just say no to crop tops opinion for my own body. After my experience with my Ottobre shirt I am also paranoid about the sleeves and must double check it will fit before I cut anything out!

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