Thursday, 5 July 2018

A wafty Kalle shirt

I know some of you live in hot climates and I also lived a few years in Italy, working in 44 degree heat, and this statement will make you laugh but yes, we're having a 'heatwave' in Scotland! It seems to be consistently at least 22 degrees or more and we're having a proper summer. Hurray! I love it and I'm also loving all the shirts I've made too. See what I did there? Here's another shirt I'm enjoying wearing...

It's a Closet Case Kalle shirt, I think it's in the tunic length. I haven't added any length and I'm 5' 9" tall. This pattern is a size 14 and no alterations made to pattern. The fabric is from Cloth Spot and seems to be sold out as I can't see it on their website. It's more of a lightweight viscose, and has all the lovely drape and hang you'd expect. It's lovely and wafty and cool to wear!

Getting the interfacing right was an interesting experience and a lesson in patience. But it's paid off and the collar sits beautifully. As the viscose is lightweight I used black iron-on ultra-soft interfacing. This still didn't have enough body for the collar to sit right or to provide enough reinforcement for the buttons and buttonholes. I cut another layer of the ultra-soft and ironed it on and that was perfect. It's sometimes a difficult thing to get right.  

This is a better image of the print even if the blue isn't blue enough. Nice horizontal stripe pattern matching in the front buttonhole band. I wasn't even going to try and pattern match the tiny motifs. Preferred to keep my sanity! It's good enough. The buttons were given to me by my mum and are a pearly white irridescent colour, set in antique dull brass coloured surrounds. I have no idea where she got them from and her button collection included some I remember seeing in the 1970's on clothing she sewed for me. There were only eight buttons and I'd love another one to put on the bottom of the shirt but they're such a good match to the shirt I really wanted to use them. 

I think there's still one more shirt to tell you about. You have been warned! I thin I made the black trousers I'm wearing in these photos. They were from a stretch cotton fabric from Cloth Spot. Using the Ultimate trouser pattern from Sew Over it. But no point in photographing them. They get an honourable mention though. 

Till the next time! 

Thursday, 28 June 2018

This year's new short sleeved Melilot shirt

Yes folks, I'm really on a roll with the shirt-making this year! Here's another shirt I made a few months ago that I've been wearing quite a lot recently. It's another short sleeved Deer and Doe Melilot shirt just like the one I made last year. I've been wearing that one a lot too.

This one is made from a cotton sateen with a bit of stretch in it. I bought it last year but can't remember where I bought it from. I used iron-on lightweight interfacing for the collar and button/buttonhole bands. I bought buttons from Edinburgh Fabrics, they're shiny fish-eye black buttons, small but perfect for this shirt. I'd had a good look-through my button box but nothing looked right. What can compete against the animal print, eh? Especially as that animal print has magenta coloured 'accents' in the print! Unfortunately you can't see the magenta bits in any of these photos, but they are there.

And here's the back view showing the perfectly aligned stripe down the centre of the back but I think I put the sleeve bands on the wrong way around with the angled seam at my armpit and the straight seam on my shoulder. Nothing's perfect!

We're currently having a heatwave in Scotland (words I don't expect to say very often...) and I've been wearing my new shirts loads. They're just perfect at making me feel smart enough for work but I know I'll still keep cool with the natural fibres. The world is divided into people who feel cold and people who feel warm most of the time. I'm the former so these are the perfect garments for working in the warm weather. How do you keep cool and look work-appropriate in the summer? 

Monday, 28 May 2018

Monday bonus shirt day!

I know, I did say I'd be bringing you my new black corduroy quilted jacket I recently finished...but here's a bonus-post on my other favourite shirt pattern of the moment. Yes, it's the Closet Case Kalle shirt. Or to be exact, it's the tunic length. I just happened to take very quick photos of it on Saturday so here it it!

I absolutely love this pattern! It's so dramatic with the high-low front and back hem, the kimono sleeves finished with their tricky bands - got to match the notches and seams. I am 5'9" tall and I have not lenghthened or adjusted the pattern in any way. Just so you know if you're planning to make this and are not as tall as I am. Or perhaps taller than I am, either way! 

The fabric is a magnificent viscose bought from Clothspot, of course. This is such a lovely quality of fabric and is opaque. It's a medium weight viscose and I think it was under £10 a metre. I bought 2 metres and have a little bit left which will become pocket bags. I've been wearing it loads and if it's not in the wash or ironing pile, I'll be wearing it! 

The thing about a great pattern like the Kalle shirt is that you can make it may times and never get tired of it. I really like how different it it made in a draping fabric like this viscose, compared with a 'fabric with personality' like linen. I made a linen version last year and currently have a forest green length of linen which I've just pre-washed and ready to become a Kalle. So much fabric, so little time!

Thursday, 24 May 2018

Shirts beautiful shirts!

...and I'm back! It's been such a long time since I blogged but I've still been sewing. I just don't like taking photos in winter and then get out of the habit altogether. So what have I been sewing? Lots and lots of duplicates. I seem to be on a shirt marathon at the moment. I love a good shirt! Especially the Deer and Doe Melilot. I've made lots of short and long sleeves versions but I'll restrict the fun today to the long sleeved ones. And reveal my latest addiction. To Clothspot. I found a link to them on the Diary of a Chain Stitcher's blog and of course clicked through, keen to find out about a new online fabric shop. It's marvellous! All the fabric I've bought from them is lovely, good quality and reasonably priced. Also, they have a lot of breathable fibres and also some good bottom weight fabrics that can be difficult to find. I've found that if I order before lunch, they'll post it out that afternoon and I usually get the fabric the next day. Brilliant! Nope, they haven't paid me to endorse their products etc.

Back to the shirts. This first one I call my 'Semaphore shirt' because it looks like lots of tiny semaphore flags. I bought this from...yes it was Clothspot. It's a lovely, medium weight opaque viscose that drapes beautifully. The buttons were from my button tin and are the same size but different shades of  dark mud. Whatever the colour, they're craftily hidden by the semaphore print. Along with the wonky stitching on the sleeve placket that you can't see even in the close-up below. Result!

I think I added an inch to the body length of the shirt and probably 2 cms to the sleeve length #sewingtall. I was feeling they needed a little more length and I think this was a good call. I'll do the same for future versions. Let's face it, I'm not going to stop my personal 'Melilot factory'. I love when I get the adjustments right and can just run off another garment without adjusting.

This green cotton lawn version I made with a fabric from John Lewis. I think it was about £16 a metre and not quite 150cms wide when I bought it last year. The colour in the above photo is true to life, the close up below is just weird! Anyone noticed how the fabric department in John Lewis Edinburgh store has plummeted downhill? I rarely go now, there's no incentive of great fabric to make the journey worthwhile. 

Anyway, this version was made before the semaphore version and obviously before the lengthening adjustments. It doesn't stop me wearing it as I love the print and the colour. Why is it so difficult to find green fabric?

Coming shortly, the black corduroy quilted jacket, perfect for the Scottish summer!