Monday, April 14, 2014

Meissa Blouse



Pattern: Meissa Blouse by Papercut Patterns, size M
Fabric: blush pink cotton from Stoff och Stil and black cotton shirting from Moods

Oh Meissa! It was love at first sight when Papercut released it's latest collection. I already had a vision of a light pink blouse and I spent a few months looking for the perfect fabric. I finally found this cotton at the big box fabric store here in Malmö. On the bolt, it was deliciously soft and light and had a nice sheen to it, but it became quite crisp and dull after washing. Still not sure what happened, but it is now not quite drapey as in the vision I had. My boyfriend expressed serious doubts about the color, saying it was the same colour as my skin, so I decided to break it up with some black for the collar and cuffs, which I am so pleased I did. It gives an interesting contrasting element and prevents me from being washed away by the pale color, which is, let's be honest, not my best colour.

What is there to say about the pattern more than it was a joy to work with? Everything, from the beautiful packaging to the lovely details in the style, is just so well thought out and nicely put together. I didn't make any adjustments except than shortening the sleeves, which is standard for me. I am pretty sure the gathering in the front yoke provides some bust shaping and the side seams curves in nicely at the waist, which makes for a very nice fit. Unlike everybody else, I am still on the fence about Grainline's Archer. Don't get me wrong, the Archer is a wonderful pattern, but I just feel that it is not the most flattering on me, because of the boyfriend style (which looks great on everybody except me it seems). I need to figure out how to put darts in the Archer for a more fitted style... Anyways, back to the Meissa, which has the more fitted look I prefer. The gathered details, the double buttons and the rounded collar are so feminine, too, and exactly the kind of details I love. I am now dreaming of another version, in silk, because I still want a flowy Meissa, no matter how much I like this one.






Also, May is approaching quickly, and May means Me-made-May! I participated last year for the first time and struggled a bit because I didn't have that many me-mades that I loved. But it is different this year, as I have been quite productive and learned to make things that I actually love and want to wear. So this year, I am challenging myself to wear at least one me-made item everyday, and to take a picture daily. Eek!! So:

 'I, Joëlle of thehandstitchedfiles.blogspot.se, sign up as a participant of Me-Made-May '14. I endeavour to wear at least one me-made item (handstitched or handknitted) of clothing each day for the duration of May 2014, and to record it daily on Instagram. '


P.S. All the pictures in this post are taken by my friend, Somayeh. She was kind enough to let me play model for her and I now have these beautiful pictures to share. Quite an improvment from my usual set up in my living room... Hopefully we can make these photo sessions a recurring thing!

Monday, March 31, 2014

Ninot in gold



Pattern: Ninot, by Pauline Alice, size 36
Fabric: wool blend lightweight coating from Minerva Crafts and silk recieved as a destash gift

Just in time for spring, I finally made myself a Ninot jacket. I bought the pattern the minute it was released and I was already then picturing it in this gold wool fabric I had previously bought with no plan in mind. The fabric is amazing, with gold lurex strands, so it actually sparkles! It paired wonderfully with the Ninot, even though I probably would choose a fabric with a bit more body for next time. It holds the deep pleat in the back wonderfully though, and it has a pretty texture, so I am happy anyways. I paired it with a silk lenght for the lining (it seems extravagant to use silk as a lining, but it is a colour and a pattern I wouldn't have use as self, so win-win!) and some gold buttons. The fabric frayed badly, so I chose not to make bound buttonholes and went for keyhole buttonholes on my machine.
I love, love, love this pattern. The drafting is great and everything goes together perfectly, the instructions are clear and the sizing is accurate, comparable to ready-to-wear. But what really makes Pauline's pattern so unique are really the details. This jacket has an eye-catching feature in teh back, with the deep pleat, but lots of great little details like tabs, yokes, a collar and a lining. I'm really disappointed every time a jacket pattern doesn't come with pattern pieces for a lining. I would much spend the extra effort and have a lined jacket, but maybe that is just me. Speaking of the collar, I decided to leave it out, which is quite shocking for me, considering my love of collars. But I loved the retro-but-updated the collarless version had and decided to give it a try. I'm really pleased with the result, which is decidedly more modern and polished. Another great pattern from Pauline! The Carme blouse is on already all prepped, but I need to find the perfect fabric first...





Monday, March 24, 2014

Teal Anna




Pattern: Anna dress by By Hand London
Fabric: teal polyester, bought in India

So, I'm late to the party (I am always late to the party), but Anna is my new love. I suspect Flora will soon be, but I believe in polygamy when it comes to sewing patterns! This is the first of two Annas so far, and I see more coming, probably with skirt variations. I would be wearing this dress all the time if it wasn't for the fabric. The colour is gorgeous, but it is a flimsy, almost see-through polyester. It's a shame, but it clings to my legs despite me wearing a slip underneath, which is really annoying. It was also very difficult to work with, being so shifty, and the finishing is therefore not my best work. Other than that, it is a beautiful dress, very classic and feminine.





Thursday, March 13, 2014

Denim Thurlows and a cotton blouse



Patterns: Sewaholic Thurlows, modified to a straight leg and Stil 8271
Fabrics: black denim for the trousers and a cotton lawn for the blouse

Another double today, with two items I am especially proud of! First up is a little blouse from a vintage swedish Stil pattern. What really makes this bouse really is the fabric: a soft, flowy cotton I purchased at Moods in New York during the holidays. It is probably the nicest fabric I have ever worked with, which made sewing up this blouse a real treat. The drape of the cotton works very well with the cap sleeves of the pattern, and the geometric print makes it very easy to wear.

The second make I have to show off today is a pair of denim Thurlows. People, I made a legit pair of pants. With a working fly and beautiful welt pockets and everything. I did get very friendly with my seam ripper while trying to sew the fly, but I got there in the end. The fit is far from perfect, but these are straight from the envelope, apart from the obvious modification to the width of the legs. I am pretty happy to have these as a starting point to perfect the fit in future iterations, and will happily wear them. The fit is actually not worse than RTW pants, so I am pretty pleased.






Sunday, January 26, 2014

Chardon and Audrey

An old project and a new one, today. First is the Chardon skirt, by Deer and Doe. A super cute, easy skirt that I made in black linen-look cotton from Minerva to fill a gap in my wardrobe. A skirt that I reach for everyday, with it's shape that flatters me and neutral color. The second is actually my fisrt make of the year! I startedknitting it around Christmas and finished it yesterday. So it took me exactly a month to knit a sweater, which i think is a record for me. I did a lot of knitting during the holidays and my sewing machine is packed up as i redecorate my sewing room, so i have been compensating my desire to sew with knitting. This little cardigan is Audrey in Unst and it was a fun knit with a pretty bib detail. What i like the most with this cardigan is the yarn, though. I used a merino/cashmere/silk blend from Sublime my dad bought me as a late birthday present. It feels very luxurious and the color is just amazing. Ravelry project notes here!







Sunday, November 24, 2013

Pencil skirt à la Gertie

This is my third iteration of this pattern. I can safely say it is my most repeated pattern... There is something so satisfying in sewing a pencil skirt. Once you have the fit sorted out, it goes together very quickly, especially if it isn't lined and it is such a wardrobe staple. At least for me! Even paired with a simple long sleeve tshirt, like here, I feel polished and grown-up. And what can I say more about this print than I love it? It's just gorgeous. It a slightly stretchy cotton twill. I bought it a while back at the sewing and craft convention here in Malmö, and I got 2,5m thinking I would make a dress out of it, but it felt a bit overwhelming. So it became a pencil skirt, and now I have enough left for another item. I'm playing around with the idea of a bag... So that I could have this print with me all. the. time. Ha.



The pattern is the pencil skirt from Gertie's New Book for Better Sewing. I really need to crack on the other patterns in this book. I love them all! But I think the shirtdress has to be next. Shortly followed by the coat. Ohhh.






Also, I turned 30 (!!) two week-ends ago, and I received the BEST birthday present from my boyfriend and his family...


Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Belladone

I have been sewing up a storm, but I don't have much pictures to show. Days are getting increasingly shorter and finding daylight is proving more and more challenging. I have also been quite absent from Instagram and blog commenting, although I am always avidly reading and getting inspired by all of you!


I haven't quite followed through with my sewing plans either. I am one skirt, a shirt for Erik and two refashions short. But as I have completed 7 of the 8 garments I had originally planned, I'm going to call that a success and make the skirt later. I did make a little Chardon that I hope to share soon!





So here is my Belladone. I'm really late to the party, as usual, but better late than never! I'm really liking this pattern, simple but with a striking feature with the open back. It was fun to make, quick (as it is not lined) and it's really easy to wear. I made a straight size 38 and other than lowering the bust dart a little for my next version, there is not much adjustments needed. The back opening is gaîng a bit depending on how I stand, but I'm afraid I'd restrain my movement ability if I made adjustments there. I did sew strips of selvage on the bias edge, so I'm pretty sure that they did not stretch. About that, the pattern instructions suggests that you sew strips of bias to prevent the bias edges of the back opening from stretching, which I find really odd. Any thoughts on that?

The fabric is a cotton from Minerva Crafts. It's a bit stiff, which works well for this style, and well, dots! Makes me happy. Also, it seems to me that Minerva has lowered their shipping prices, which makes it that much more fun for me to order from them, and the selection is huge, and I loove the blogger network. It's just so great seeing the fabric in action and getting some thoughts on it.