Problems with Pastille

Monday, July 30, 2012
So, it's been quiet for awhile. I'm planning my move to France, which includes among other things selling my apartment and getting rid of my stuff. So, the time for sewing isn't plentiful, but I'm getting something done. The Pastille Dress isn't finished, though. It won't take long to finish it, but I'm not convinced it will look great on me. The skirt part is fine, but the bodice... I've had so much difficulty with it. I even took a picture how it's not great, but since I've needed to clean for the apartment selling (read: stuffed everything into the closet), I can't find the cable that would connect my camera to my laptop. So, there won't be any pictures for this post.

It really looks as if the bodice just won't sit great on me. Also I think I should've lined it, since my cotton seems to be a bit more see-through than I expected. Well, I can always wear a slip under it. And we'll see how wearable it is... Well, I don't think Pastille was one of my favorites to begin with. I tried to fix the bodice with fitting and it's better than the original, but it just doesn't sit right and also, I think it's too short. As in the seam will be too high for my waist. Well, as with the meringue skirt, I have a bunch of fabric left, so maybe I can cut another bodice. I'm just not looking forward to that. So if this doesn't work, it might take awhile before I'm wearing this dress...

The #sewing social tweet chat was earlier this evening (well, yesterday, since it's 2 am here...). Once again, a lot of fun and new cool people (and some that I already met the last time). So, my sewing circle is growing :) Looking forward to August chat!

Oh, and one more thing: there's something else I've been doing... But it's on my other blog. So I'll become a quilter. And I've been also doing this wedding present, but I'll blog about it after the actual event, so that the bride doesn't find out :)

More and more like my grandmother every day...

Thursday, July 12, 2012
So, my grandmother used to have everything in plastic bags, the ones usually put into freezer (the noisy kind). Especially if traveling. I mean yes, I do usually put stuff like shampoo and conditioner into one, so that if they break, it's easier to clean. But my grandmother used to put every bottle, pack of cotton swabs, the nail clipper, each to their own bag. I don't know why I found it annoying when traveling with her, maybe because of the sound the bags make. But I should've been more understanding: I'm sure I'll turn into her one day. Here's why:


I got the idea from Gillian. I thought it was the best idea ever, although I didn't know clear envelopes existed. And I don't know where to buy them from here. But then I thought the mini-grip bags are just as good. And I'm not as artistic as Gillian, so I wouldn't be drawing anything on mine anyway, just the basic info is enough. But isn't it great? And I'm starting to think my grandmother was a genius, too :) And if I'm turning into her, it's not too bad: she was pretty amazing woman and I loved her very much. And she's definitely where I get my nerdiness from :)

My Pastille is coming along. Taking it's time... But I'm confident I can finish it this weekend. Unless I managed to screw it up with my pattern alterations. We'll see. I decided not to correct for my crooked back after all, since I really didn't want to correct all the foldings and I'm also not sure if it would've worked. I'm actually planning on a winter version of Merengue, so I thought I would make a muslin and see how it would work, since the Merengue was so easy to make (except for the scallops, but I mean the fit was just right!).

Pattern shopping...

Tuesday, July 10, 2012
Well, I didn't want to buy new patterns until I made the ones I've planned, but somehow I didn't hold on to my decision... So, I ordered some patterns and since I pay a bunch in postage, I thought I'd buy few at once:



For the first ones the reason is obvious. The pants are something I could wear for dancing if I don't want to wear a skirt. The 40s retro pattern is also bought with dancing in mind, although I just also like the style. The last one is from the 60s and not really optimal for dancing. I've just watched too much Mad Men. 

The Simplicity 1880 I just had to buy because of the sewalong at A Fashionable Stitch. I can't really participate the sewalong, but I've saved all the instructions in my Reeder, and when I have time I can make the dress. Or both. And the Simplicity 2215 is just so cute. And the best part is that it has the skirt and a blouse. I'm planning way too many dresses and I also need separates!

The last ones are just practical. I think I might need some sleepwear in the future, especially since my Moomin pajamas sucked. And these looked quite nice :) Also the top was an easy pattern and really cheap. And I like the knot. So nothing really deep there.

Designer pattern by Luisa Beccaria
But this is not all. I mean these are all the patterns I recently bought. But I realized that Burdastyle is now published in Finnish! I guess the June number was already a second number, but it's still a reduced price (4,75 €), so I thought I'd buy it. Especially since I had been drooling the jacket pattern already (I really like the asymmetrical look, and not just in jackets...). And also the designer pattern by Luisa Beccaria.
So, I thought two patterns in the price of one is not too shabby and there are couple of other dresses I could try as well.

The same day when I bought the Burda Style, I had my new issue of Suuri Käsityö, which is a Finnish sewing/craft magazine. The patterns weren't really that great this time in my opinion, but there were some knits I would definitely want. Especially the cardigan really looks like me :)
















So, quite a lot of stuff when I wasn't supposed to buy anything... But of course I subscribe to the Finnish magazine, so I've already paid for it... And I really think the Burda Style was a bargain. And I think this happens to everyone, right...?

Colette No. 2: Pastille Dress - muslin

Sunday, July 8, 2012
Well, this wasn't really the easiest task. The pattern really isn't made for my body... Luckily I followed instructions and started with the muslin. I got some old sheets from mom for this purpose and I cut the first one up. And then I started sewing the muslin. Well, there were some problems:


In the first picture, there's the biggest issue. The back is just way too big. The same thing can also be seen in the middle picture, but there's the other thing. My back is crooked, so all skirts/dresses/pants look like their crooked on me. I'll try to fix this. And then some smaller issues at the bust area.

I tried to follow the instructions on the book and I think the back got a whole lot better when I did the sway back alteration. I didn't have to correct the skirt part, since I really don't have a sway back, the back was just too big. I know Lladybird at least had the same problem. Her's turned out really awesome... For the skirt looking crooked, I cut more from the side that looks longer, I think it does look better (no pictures from the later fittings...). I think I got the bust area corrected as well, but we'll see. Mainly I just made the darts a bit bigger and this seemed to correct the problem and I also took in the side seam a bit. Hopefully this will look good in the final dress. It seemed to work on the muslin at least. And if there's as much leftover fabric as with the meringue skirt, I can always make the bodice again... I think I will try to cut the real dress tonight, but the sewing I will do next week.

We'll always have Paris

Wednesday, July 4, 2012
I was in Paris for a week for an interview and was able to take some days just for fun. So, of course I went fabric shopping... The fabric area is close to the Sacre Coeur and there are few big stores, but there are bunch of little stores that sell 'coupons', which are 3m pieces of fabric. You can get these very cheaply, but most what I was looking at were 20 - 25 €, so mostly on the higher priced side (I have an expensive taste, I know...). But I did make couple of finds that I actually bought.


The yellow fabric was surprisingly only 1,5 m and consequently 5 €, so I just had to take it, since yellow is pretty much my favorite color. Then I looked and looked and didn't see anything for awhile. Or did see, but they were too expensive to buy without having a plan what to make of them. But then,  at the last store I went to, I saw this perfect fabric, that was so 1940s. The first one I saw was with blue flowers and I was contemplating on it, but then I saw this one with red flowers and I was sold. This is what I think when I think about the 40s. So, this will become a swing dress. Hopefully very soon.

Pink = Summer!

Monday, July 2, 2012

Well, about a year ago I was helping to move my dad's aunt (over 90 years old) to a old people's home. Lot of her things had to go and I got this old nightgown she had done herself. She had also crocheted the lace.

Well I didn't want to use it just at night, since the color was so pretty, and the lace too! So I decided to cut it to a new summer shirt. I'm not sure if I should make it more even, but I think I'll just use it like this with no worries :)















Well, it actually looks better in real life than in the pictures, but today was not a good picture day and I was sick at taking pictures... And I don't know where those charleston hands came from, I swear. Anyway, I think it's a fun summer thing to have. And I know this is not the most flattering style for me, but I think I'll wear it anyway :)

Colette No. 1: the Meringue Skirt

Sunday, July 1, 2012
Well, I traced the patterns to my pattern paper, since I want to keep the original intact. Just in case. And then I started planning how I should cut it. And I realized I have way too much fabric. I mean it's what the book says to get, but in the book they assume that you fold your fabric in half and cut all pieces from there. Well, I'm not used to wasting that much fabric. If I learned something in the crafts class at school, it was not to waste fabric. So I cut my front and back skirt pieces next to each other and from my original 2m of fabric I think I have more than 1m left. Well, I guess I can make another skirt or a blouse to go with this one or... And if I can't think of anything for me, I'm sure my nieces would love the color.
My traced pattern pieces: tracing was quite hard,
since the paper was so thin and the lines weren't that dark.
Here I have already cut the skirt, so you can see: lot of extra fabric.
So, that was yesterday, the tracing and cutting, I mean. Today I did the actual sewing. The instructions on the book were fairly clear, so I really had no problems. Except doing all the darts except one twice, since first time I managed to get them a bit wonky and doing the other side of the zipper twice as well. But I think my skirt is better for it. Because if it's not nice enough, I won't wear it. No problems with the invisible zipper this time either (I did one for the Charleston dress already). And now the finishing is even better with the book's clear instructions. I used the youtube tutorial again (I'll include it here, since the last time it was on my other blog):


I was so excited about sewing, that I forgot to take any pictures of the process. Well, here is the finished product, which I think turned out pretty well:


Although sewing the scallops wasn't a piece of cake... And they definitely aren't perfect. They were tugging the fabric a bit, so I added the small bows to cover it up. But I think it doesn't really show in the end. I was having a too narrow pivot, so it ended up tugging the fabric, because I couldn't cut as far as needed. But at least I know what went wrong and can do better next time.

Also, taking photos was quite hard, I don't own a tripod or as you can see not great at posing either. But I managed to get sharp pictures in the end (the problem was I was standing in front of the camera and it focused on me and then when I went further, of course it was out of focus... live and learn...).

Sewing facts:
Fabric: poplin (100% cotton) 9,90 €/m
Pattern: Meringue Skirt from The Colette Sewing Handbook
Year: 2011
Notions: Interfacing, invisible zipper, hook & eye
Time: 8,5h
First worn: for the pictures
Wear again: definitely, probably to work tomorrow, although I have to get another shirt (I don't like it when my stomach is showing).
Total price: 31 €, would be 21 € with only the amount of fabric I needed, but since I bought the fabric for this skirt, I will add it to its cost. And it will be free for any future project.

I also heard that people are still posting pictures to the flickr group for the Sew Colette Sew along, which I sadly missed. So, I thought to add mine there as well to feel like part of the community.