Monday, 17 July 2017

A couple of Sutton tops

Not the most flattering photo I've ever taken but it demonstrates exactly how much I love the True Bias Sutton pattern. So much so, that I made two black ones before going on holiday to Spain last month. Yes, I was on a bit of a sewing-production-line! I bought two meters of black viscose fabric from Edinburgh Fabrics and cut out a plain black Sutton. I have coveted this version for a few years so of course I decided to copy it! That's how the two black Suttons came about.

The only really fiddly bit is sewing the bias binding onto the lace around the neck. That takes some patience and some time to do correctly but the effort is worthwhile. I sewed the plain black Sutton using french seams throughout. 

For the lace version I used french seams when sewing viscose to viscose but if lace was involved I overlocked those seams. I felt that trying to french seam lace was just too much of a challenge!

For the sleeve hems I overlocked the hem edges, then turned the overlocked edge to the wrong side, and straight stitched the hem. Job done! I absolutely love these two and have been washing and wearing them almost weekly. The thing I love about this pattern is that it sits where you put it. There's no adjusting it through the day when you're wearing it and the v-necked front doesn't make a dive for the floor when you bend slightly over. It just works. That surely must be the sign of a great pattern!

Thursday, 6 July 2017

The tale of the second pair of PJs...

Here we go folks, I said on Tuesday in my Tale of Two PJs post that I'd made another pair of pyjamas...and here they are. I'm smiling in the photo but...I just don't like them. There, I've said it. 

For this pair of pjs I used the Closet Case Carolyn pattern for both the top and trousers. I used a 100% cotton poplin bought from Edinburgh Fabrics and prewashed before cutting out. I love the green! I also bought pre-made satin bias binding so I could add flat piping. The five buttons were chosen from my button tin. 

Where do I start with this? Maybe the trousers as I sewed them up first. I've already made the shorts previously so I knew the body part fitted well size-wise. I'd already added a good few inches to the rise and didn't alter that for the trousers. I added quite a few inches to the trouser legs #sewingtall. I added the bottom bands from the pattern and added flat piping too. But...I don't like how thick the band is (I didn't alter this, they're cut as per the pattern). 

I absolutely love the pockets, though! The waistband is cut separately and sewn on. I don't like having a wide piece of elastic in a wide waistband like this so sewed two channels and added narrower elastic in each channel. I wish I'd made the waistband 50% narrower and used one length narrower elastic but this is just a personal preference.

But the worst crime of all is that they are too short. Just half an inch too short. But enough to be flappy...*shudder*. This is the stuff of nightmares for me. This was my fault as I trimmed too much off the leg length before sewing on the bands. Nobody else to blame here!

Now, moving on to the top. I hate the collar. It's just too wide and sits too high up my neck (I have a long neck). I like how the two piece undercollar is cut on the bias. I also have to say that I absolutely, totally and utterly HATED (yes I know I'm shouting) the instructions for sewing the collar and front facings on to the body. I think it is overly-complicated, has too many little steps in it and there are far easier methods out there. 

I added a 1" FBA to the front just to make sure there would be enough room. That worked well and there is a small dart. The front and back body of the top fits well and I really like the shirt tail curved hem shaping. The flat piping is a little wide for my liking but that's probably because there isn't any piping cord inside the take up the slack. I have to say, the piping does meet perfectly at the inner corners of the collar. 

By this point in the pyjama sewing journey I was fed up and just wanted to finish the damned things! I cut out but didn't bother sewing the sleeve bands. The buttonholes went in ok and I sewed the buttons on. Gave it a final press and tried it on.

Oh dear! That's when I found out the trousers were too short and the collar wants to sit it's own way. Taking these photos, I noticed that the sleeves each have a huge vertical wrinkle. Have you got any idea why? I haven't. I sewed the sleeves on flat as instructed by the pattern and also because that's how I do them, if I can. I matched all the notches and the dot at the sleeve top and shoulder seam. So why the big wrinkles? And what's going on with the top button and lower collar? Nothing I do makes it sit properly. 

I wanted to bin them there and then. But I decided to see if they would grow on me after a few wears. They haven't. I went back to my favourite pyjamas sewn using Kwik Sew 2811 last night and the green pair are lying on the bedroom floor ready to start their probably quite quick journey to the bin. I will remove the buttons first though!  

Tuesday, 4 July 2017

A tale of two PJs

You're going to need sunglasses for this post! The colours and prints are going to sear your eyeballs. Before I went on holiday to Barcelona a few weeks ago, I decided to sew up a pair of pyjama shorts and sleeveless top as nightwear. I've fancied trying the Closet Case Patterns Carolyn Pyjamas so I clicked 'Buy' and started printing and taping. I don't trace so I made my adjustments to the pattern and then cut out the pj shorts.

I love a bit of piping on my pyjamas so made some bias binding and added flat piping to the shorts cuff. I also prefer the waistband to have two channels and use two lengths of narrow elastic. I just find it comfier that way.

I used the Colette Sorbetto sleeveless top pattern as I wanted something sleeveless and quick to sew. I did an FBA on this but can't remember how much I added. I finished the armhole and neck edges with my self-made bias binding...not that you can see it. There's also a pleat down the front which you can't see either! I was scratching my head for a while over that pleat, I just didn't understand the instructions at all but lightbulb must have gone off at some point because it all worked out fine.

The fit on the shorts is good, it's roomy but that's how I like my pjs to fit. I love having pockets! The Sorbetto is very, very roomy, I could do with sizing down but it was fine in the heat of  the Spanish heatwave. I used a 100% cotton poplin purchased from Edinburgh Fabrics for both the shorts and top and construction was with the overlocker and sewing machine so all in all, a quick sew but something I needed for my holiday!

Why the title 'A Tale of two PJs?' Well, I made another pair of Carolyn Pyjamas but I'm keeping those for another post...I'm not entirely sure about them so I'm wearing them to see if I'll get to like them...