Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Another one...but not for me

It's my turn to shine my halo, I think, after a rash of sewing and knitting for others.

First up is another Crafty Mama's Lovely Layers Top. This time, it's not for me, but a birthday gift for my mum. It's in the size L and made from a gorgeously soft Metallicus knit picked up from The Fabric Store in Brisbane.

I just added a simple neckband, same as I have for all the other tunics, and turned and stitched the armhole hem with my coverstitch machine. You can't see it very well in these photos, but I did a rolled hem for the bottom.

Next, encouraged by my cousin to put more effort in to a fancy dress party that my daughter was attending, I sewed her a skirt. Now that might not seem like much, but this was a box-pleated, LINED skirt, complete with a waistband and invisible zip. The only reason I acquiesed to her request was that it looked like a fairly good wardrobe staple that she would wear more than once.

It was an Alice in Wonderland party and she went as the White Rabbit.

I used an Ottobre pattern (6-2012-32: "Jenkka") and made some modifications. Firstly, it's meant to be a loosely pleated skirt, but Miss10 wanted sharper pleats. That was no drama, I just topstitched down the first bit of each pleat and pressed a sharp crease. The only other change was to shorten it (dramatically from this apparently old-fashioned mother's point of view) by about 4 inches. I used a size 146, drifting out to a 150 at the hips. I tried to do a blind hem on the sewing machine, thinking that I'd be really clever, but it didn't work out so well. However, using the galloping horse test, it was good enough and the experience has motivated me to learn how to do it properly.

The skirt is a little twisted in this photo, the pleats are appropriately centred.

We even found a tail!

Finally, a friend of mine is getting married, and she's an incredibly generous person and a lover of handmade things. I've been working on a knitted lap blanket to give her for a wedding gift. It won't be ready in time, I severely underestimated how long it was going to take me to knit this monster...but I know she won't mind. I'm using Bendigo Woollen Mills Classic Wool in 12 ply in the colour Raffia. I like the colour. I don't mind the yarn, but it's unravelling a bit as I knit with it. I'm not sure whether that's just my knitting style, or a characteristic of the yarn or ply...but it looks fine in the finished product. I just have to be really careful not to split stitches.

I'm still working on a dress that I am sewing for my mother-in-law, then I'll be free to focus on some sewing for ME!

With that in mind, I started getting out my summer weight fabrics and putting them in my expedit shelves in my sewing room. I like to have the appropriate seasonal fabrics out on display (they don't get any direct sunlight). Mainly it's for inspiration, but it's also a means of keeping the stash somewhat under control. This time, I thought I'd try something a bit different. Typically, I organise by fabric type. This time, I'm going with colours. This pile of green fabric contains knits, cottons, linens, stretch sateen, georgette, you name it! I'm really keen to sew my way through this pile as green is my absolute favourite colour. I do have to be a bit sensible and balance it with a hefty dose of neutrals or I could end up looking a bit like Kermit!


  1. Nice top and how cute is that rabbit?

  2. Nice work all round, Kelley! Your finish on your Mum's top looks so good.

  3. The top for your Mum looks beautifully made and I am with Beajay - cute rabbit! Well done on accomplishing so much (especially as it is for others!)

  4. Lovely makes Kelley- the knit you use for the top looks super wearable yet comfy and the skirt is so cute! I love how neat your stash pile is- my fabrics are just shoved in tubs right now...probably why they're not getting used ;)