New year re-sew-lutions 2019

As tradition goes, January is the month when we make New Year resolutions and for a month or two try really hard to stick to them. Or are you one of those people who actually manage to go through the entire year without a fail??? If you are, I’m so proud!!!

Last year I didn’t have any specific projects in mind so decided to work more and expand my sewing skills. I divided my re-sew-lutions into two categories:

  • first time
  • space for improvements

In each category I had picked six different skills I want to learn or improve and for most of them I did pretty well. The first category included french seams, piping, fabric covered buttons, snaps, bound buttonhole and zip with lining. I use french seams in majority of my makes now and had a go at practicing snaps attachment and bound buttonhole. I also made a skirt and dress with a zip and lining. What I failed to learn in the past 12 months I am hoping to learn this year (fingers crossed).

The second category included improving already known skills such as: collar corners, sewing darts, inseam pockets, top stitching, buttonholes and welt pockets. I can say that apart from making welt pockets I had successfully practiced and got better at on all other skills. So happy!

Re-sew-lutions 2019

This year I want to do something a little bit different. As I already talked in my previous post I had picked nine ambitious projects to make in the next 12 months, so I decided that my sewing resolutions will interplay with those plans.

1. Use that fabric stash

I had chose at least two out of nine projects for this year based on my fabric stash. I will finally use this lovely boucle fabric for Chanel jacket and brown stretch denim for Erin skirt by Sew Over It. I had made a conscious decision to use as much of the fabric I already own as possible, so hopefully will not make any spontaneous purchases for the next few months.

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2. Different fabric

My second new year resolution is to learn and understand the difference between fabrics, how they behave, sew, drape, their quality, structure etc. I believe with more knowledge will come easiness to pick the right fabric to the right pattern. This way I will reduce the number of makes that will end up in the FAIL pile and saves me a ton of money, time, effort and disappointment.

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3. Draft a dress

Pattern cutting is something that I want to expand my knowledge even further this year, so I will draft my Dressmaker Ball dress! This is something new to me, as so far I only  drafted shirt and a jacket. I need to start this as soon as possible as the time is ticking fast!

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4. Male fitting

With each new make and each new pattern I try I have a bigger understanding how to better fit for my body, but with one of my projects being a classic male shirt I will have to learn to fit for a different body type entirely. I want to widen my horizon a little bit more this year and I think this is something that will teach me and surprise me a lot!

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5. Use that pattern stash

Every month there is a number of new patterns available on the market that I would really love to try, but sadly there is not enough time to sew them all up. Similarly to ever growing fabric stash, I have a bunch of patterns that are waiting to be used. Instead of buying a new pattern ( no matter how gorgeous), I want to use my existing collection as much as possible! Out of my nine makes that I am planning to do, I most probably will only purchase a pattern for Trench Coat, as there are so many little details that I think it would take me forever to draft them myself.

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6. New techniques

With all the drafting and fitting out of the way I really want to carry on improving and expanding my sewing skills wherever possible! My main focus for this year is to learn and try some couture methods and techniques. I have a number of books that am currently reading to educate myself on this subject. Planning on sewing Chanel style jacket and Trench Coat will definitely give me plenty of opportunity to try and experiment.

 

 

There you go! My New Year resolutions ! A lot to learn this year!!!

~ do you have any plans or resolutions for this year?~

Monika xxx

Estelle by Style Arc

February

The last Sunday of the month is the REVEAL DAY for Sew my style 2018 challenge. This month we had an opportunity to choose from two different patterns, which were totally different in style. The first option was the Rumana coat from By Hand London. It is a beautiful long coat with princess seams, however due to this being the shortest month in the year I opted for the other option.

Estelle Ponte  Jacket by Style Arc company seamed like an easier and faster make compared to Rumana coat.

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Estelle jacket includes a waterfall collar, which drape beautifully with the right fabric.

It also comes with a in-seam pockets, raw edges and mid leg length.

 

 

 

 

 

What drew my attention to this pattern is the front waterfall collar. It looks so effortless and I really like this style. I am not a big fan of raw edge look, so my fabric choice for this pattern was a little bit different then suggested in the instruction.

The pattern calls for a Ponte Roma knit or any stable knit to achieve drapes in the front collar, however I decided to use a fabric I had in my stash for a while. I got it from a local Fabric shop few months ago and I had in mind some sort of a cropped jacket. Not sure exactly what type of fabric it is, but my guess would be some sort of faux suede?20180226_162652[1]

It was the first time I had the chance to work with this type of fabric and I have to admit it was not so easy. I had no idea how to sew it in the first place, so had to look online for some advice.

As you can see my version of Estelle looks a little bit different then expected hihih but I absolutely love how it turned out in the end. It comes without saying that the process of making this vest took me longer then should…..seam ripper got involved….that is why.

I had a go with original version first, but as you may guess with this fabric it looked awful. See for yourself and try not to laugh…

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Did you laugh?

Ohh boy, what did I think ????

Anyway, I have learnt another lesson working on this project, which is totally fine by me. I have tried to sew this fabric in two different ways. The usual way, when you put both right sides of the fabric together and sew within your seam allowance. This is pretty straightforward, right?

This fabric cannot be pressed so I had to top-stitch all seams. I decided to trim on side of the fabric to reduce bulk.

The other way is to do sew one side on top of the other, kind of like a sandwich,  so seam lays flat.

This was more time consuming because I had to first mark the seam allowance and cut it  on one side. Next, had to place the smaller piece on top of the other piece (both right sides facing up) and top-stitch it. I found, this way to be more difficult, but I like the final look more. I could not use pins to hold two pieces together, so fabric kept sliding. I had to unpick some stitches, which left holes in my fabric. Note to myself, next time use some specialist glue.

Final thoughts

This pattern is great, and can be used and adapted for different looks. The only difficult part when sewing is attaching the collar. The instruction is limited and not very clear, so beginners may find it confusing. If you need more details, read Maddie’ blog, where she gives step-by-step tutorial. It is fantastic and it makes everything much simple.

On top of that what took me by surprise is that when you purchase a PDF pattern it ask you for a specific size and then you get size up and size down of your chosen one, so make sure you measure yourself right and do not make my mistake by assuming it will be fine, as they come a bit too big.

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~happy sewing everyone~

Monika xxx