Wednesday, March 31, 2010

One Per Month - March

Edited to add:  Thank you to the lovely commenters who have been emailing me with your comments!  Oops, my comments have been switched off again somehow :{  Should be all fixed up now.

This month I chose Heather Ross' Weekend Sewing for the One Per Month Challange, hosted by Chaletgirl.

Half way through March I realised I still hadn't chosen a book for this months challenge,
so I wanted something fairly quick and easy.  I settled on the Summer Blouse as I've been wanting something light but with longer sleeves for the coming cooler months ahead.

I was browsing through a small fabric shop not far from where I live when I happened upon this gorgeous green lightweight cotton.


I have no idea what it's called so if you can shed any light on it please share. 
When I asked the shop owner all she divulged was that it is 100% cotton!  I could see it was cotton but it has little bobbly bits all over it, surely this has a specific name??  Anyhow............ 

As soon as I saw this fabric I knew it would become my new blouse.  I am always professing that green is my favourite colour and yet I own very few items of clothing which are green.


I cannot tell you enough how happy I am with how it turned out - it is, dare I say it, perfect! 

Exactly how I envisaged it!!! 

I have to confess that although I love to sew and do make clothes for both myself and my girls, clothes making isn't my favourite kind of sewing.  But now I get why some people love to make their own clothes.  If you get the fit right, the colour, the style, the cut you love, well it really makes it worth while.

Now if you are at all familiar with the version of this blouse in Weekend Sewing, you will see that mine is somewhat different. 

After deciding on this project and buying the fabric I decided to do a little search to see what other sewist's/blogger's had come up with.  To say I was dissapointed is an understatement.

Most looked nothing like the version in the book, and many of the lovely ladies who had blogged about their Summer Blouses commented that the pattern/instructions were, how should I say it, in need of some tweeking.  Hmmmmmmmmm......yet I was determined to go on.  I had a picture in my minds eye which I didn't want to let go of.

So, I compiled a list of the various comments/issues others had about the pattern and set to work improving on them. 

So in short, I changed the neckline, moved the darts, took in the sides by about 5cm each, shortened the placket by half, bound the neckline differently than instructed, shortened the sleeves and finished them with bias binding as per the neckline and finally I finished the bottom hem just by overlocking the raw edge and turning a 6mm hem to keep as much length as possible. 

Phew, I know, can you believe it?? I'm almost tempted to rename it the Autumn blouse it's so different!

And yes dear friends you did read correctly up there, I overlocked the edges.  Thats right I now have an overlocker.  A Janome MyLock 204D to be precise.  Actually I've had it a couple of months but have been a little frightened of using it.  I decided this would be it's maiden voyage and boy oh boy am I happy.  I used it to make almost the whole blouse, only using my machine to sew the binding and placket. 
While that baby was humming along I felt love I tell you.

So I love every aspect of my new blouse, right down to the vintage, self covered button which I found amongst my button collection, passed on to me from mum.  So this little button, covered by my mother some forty odd years ago for some forgotten project has now found it's way onto my new blouse - finishing it off, well, just perfectly!

I also want to mention that I've just bought the make it perfect lazy day hat pattern from modern retro textiles.  

My nephew has reqested a hat for his birthday and I've heard only good things about the make it perfect patterns. 

I did a search and found that modern retro textiles not only had it the cheapest I could find but they also had free postage within Australia and super quick delivery!  As an added bonus Samantha also threw in ten little fabric samples from the Sandi Henderson Meadowsweet line - lovely!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

The weekend that was

I finished crocheting a scarf I've been working on

and for the first time ever, blocked it as per The Happy Hooker.

Whoa!!!!!!!  What a difference a bit of water makes.
I'll post better pictures and more details after this gift has made it's way to it's new owner. 

a)I live in one of the most beautiful cities in the world
b) I wear the things I make (my dress), as do Miss A (the hat) and Miss B (the skirt). 

I do feel really chuffed every time I use something, clothing or otherwise, I've made with my very own hands.............

and finally, new loves. 

If you can see past the little beauty posing for the camera, behind her is my new overlocker (love) and on the ironing board my March one per month project - the Summer Blouse (love, love, love) from Weekend Sewing.  Just scraped in with this one.  Couldn't get a decent photo today what with the rain and everything.  I'll post about it tommorrow.

Till then...................................xo

Friday, March 19, 2010

What the????

Cass kindly alerted me to the fact the comments were off for my last post - huh???? Don't know how that happened but it's all fixed up now so feel free to have a squizz and leave a comment if you feel so inclined.

Today's post is about the below top, which I made a little while ago when Sydney was going through a horrible, hot and humid patch back in February. 

Inspired by Sophie's desperation sewing I whipped up this summery top, only for the weather to turn! 
Yesterday was the first opportunity I've had since making it to actually wear it. 

It's Simplicity 4589 which I purchased as a download from here.  I made it with some broderie anglais a sewing friend gifted to me.  The armholes are a little gape-y, I made a size 10 but always find the size guidelines on patterns sooooo misleading (I measure more like a size 12 apparently). 

Anyway it makes a lovely and cool, comfortable top.  

I took these pictures yesterday in a near-by park using the timer on my camera (I was alone) - afew people were staring!!

close up of the broderie anglais (love)

Not the shot I envisaged but I love it anyway..............

In different news, today I finally went to see the Olafur Eliasson exhibition on at the MCA.

Wow - what a fantastic experience. 

Go and see it if you can, my sister and I enjoyed it just as much as Miss B did.  In  fact I'm considering going again one weekend so I can take Miss A along to experience.

Thanks so much Suzy for putting me on to this.  Today we found the staff to be very child friendly!!

We loved the Inverted Berline Sphere exhibited in the foyer

and even though we were advised No Photography I couldn't resist snapping this picture of Miss B discussing the art works with my sister - seeing my three year old really enjoying and being immersed in the art gave me a real buzz.

Happy weekend to you and if you live in Sydney, you might just take a trip into Circular Quay for a look-see.................

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Pink and proud!

I've been sporadically working away on this quilt, started back here, inspired by the squares I made for the 65 Roses Quilt Project.  I finally finished it last night and am really pleased with it. 

Yes it's decidedly pink and girly but I like pink and I'm a girl so I guess thats ok!  Pink and green is one of my fave colour combo's too.

The finished quilt measures 1.2m x 1.2m (48" square).  I haven't washed it yet to see how much it will shrink up, I'll keep you posted.

edited to add: after machine washing and drying in the tumble dryer the quilt now measures around 46" square, that's some shrinkage!  But it looks and feels sooo soft and cuddly I'm almost wishing for the cold weather...........almost!

I machine quilted it, on the diagonal for the centre squares and a squared off spiral around the sashing and border.  I love how the quilting pops out on the solid.

I love the pieced backing. 

Most of the fabrics where from my stash collected over the past couple of years. 

I picked up the clematis fabric ages ago at Spotlight.  It was on sale for something like $3/m so I bought afew metres of it.  Clematis is one of my most favourite flowers. 

I bought the solid pink especially for this quilt though - a dusky rose - love that colour.

The binding is store bought bias binding which I hand stitched for a nice neat finish.  I started sewing the binding on at the last Inner West CraftRoom meet up, but with all the chatting, laughing and eating going on not a whole lot of stitching got done! 

Makes a great throw sized quilt - good for snuggling under when the weather cools down,

or having a snooze on!

A whole lot more crafting has been going on in the little sweetpeas sewing room..............
more to come soon.

Thursday, March 11, 2010


Take one plain white lamp shade,

a lamp shade base made by Mr. lovely little sweetpeas in high school woodwork class (we're talkin' twenty odd years ago here),

add some felt flowers and butterflies handstitched by mama (that'd be me),

some swirly green stitching and beading,

top it off with some electrical wiring know-how by Papa (Grandpa),

put it all together and what have you got?

A one off, never to be repeated little sweetpeas lamp shade, made especially for my little sweetpeas - that's what!