Sew My Stash Sunday – 15

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Today I made a start on sewing a shirt I cut out a few weeks ago.  It is a piece of material that was given to me some time ago and I am making a shirt for my daughter.  This is an illustration of the pattern I am using.

003I am using flat fell seams wherever possible on the shirt.  This is the type of seam that is generally used in purchased business shirts, boxer shorts and jeans.  This article explains the method very clearly.  I like to use them as they provide extra strength and there are no raw edges inside the garment.

Here is a close-up of a section of the finished side seam.  The triangular section on the right-hand side is the side dart on the front.

006I have sewn the side darts in the fronts as well as long darts in the back which will create a nice fit.  The shoulder seams and side seams are done.

004The shirt has a two-piece collar – collar and band, but I think I overlooked drafting the piece for the band.  I got side-tracked while I looked for the other piece and the sewing ground to a halt.  Hopefully, I will get some more done this week.  In the meantime I will need to buy some buttons as I do not have anything suitable in my collection

Sew My Stash Sunday – 10


Another week has flown by and the sewing had not been touched.  Before I could start sewing I had to do the ironing and there was quite a bit as I did not do it last weekend and had just ironed a few things during the week to keep us going.  I got it all done early this morning and then we headed out for a few hours with our overseas guest.  This afternoon has been wet so it was a good excuse to sew rather than being out in the garden.

I could have finished the hand sewing on the green skirt or finished making the denim one but I decided that I needed a change of scenery.  The first thing I did was cut out a white shirt for my daughter from the pattern I had drafted a couple of weeks ago.

Then I moved on to drafting another pattern.  I have given quite a bit of thought to what style I would use for this piece of fabric.

2015-03-08 02I drafted the top from this ensemble but with a few modifications.

2015-03-22 01The neckline will be a ‘v’ rather than square.  The lower edge of the sleeves and body will have a few rows of shirring elastic rather than being gathered into a band.

I decided to make a prototype before cutting into my new fabric that I bought especially to make this top.  In the spirit of using up my stash, I found a pretty piece of lightweight fabric which was given to me a year or so ago.  Despite much thought I had never been able to come up with an idea of how to use it and there is just over 4 metres of fabric.  So at least some of it is now the prototype.

To get an idea of how it might look I decided to simply baste the pieces together in the first instance.

2015-03-22 02This is not a particularly flattering photograph but it gives an idea of the style.

Things I discovered:

I can easily get it over my head
The neckline is perfect
I will cut the sleeve a bit longer next time
I am going to recut the front body as there is too much fullness in the front
When I cut the pattern in the good fabric I will straighten the side seams and take out the little bit of shaping at the waistline

Even though this is just a test run, I really like the fabric and I am sure it will earn a place in my wardrobe.

Sew My Stash Sunday – 9

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I have made steady progress this week with my sewing.

I cut out and have started sewing my next skirt.

2015-03-08 01The pockets, side seams, yoke and facing are stitched.  I had hoped to get more done today but Miss O and Izz came to stay.  It is pretty well a full-time job to keep them fed and entertained so sewing took a back seat.

The green skirt now has a zip.

2015-02-22 03I actually added to my stash early in the week when I bought this piece of fabric.

2015-03-08 02

The photograph does not really tell the full story.  It is lightweight with a variable texture and is 100% cotton.  I paid $35/metre which seems a lot but for $52 I will have a gorgeous quality blouse to wear with the green skirt.  This will be my ‘good’ outfit if we go out in the evening when we are in Singapore.  I have not made a final decision on the exact style of the blouse yet.

My other achievement was to draft the pattern for a long-sleeve shirt for my daughter.  I hope the cut it out next week.

Sew My Stash Sunday – 7


Here we are back at Sunday evening again so it is time to share what sewing I have done this week.

Firstly, this is what I have finished.

A pair of bloomers as part of summer pyjamas – Size 4.

2015-02-22 01A pair of boxer shorts for pyjamas for me.

2015-02-22 02

I have been working on my next skirt.  I can’t do anymore until I get the zip.  Then it will just be the facing and hem that need to be handstitched.

2015-02-22 03 I mentioned in this post that I had discovered that the polo shirt I was making for The Duke was too big so I would have to recut it.  I tried that today but unfortunately it was not successful as even when I got the width of the body right, I was not happy with the shape of the armhole and sleeves.  I decided to cut my losses and that is going to the op shop in the hope that someone else is the right shape for it.  In the interests of my sanity, the pattern is going as well.  If it did not work this time it will not be any better in the future.

My next foray was more successful.  This is a piece of fabric I bought about 6 weeks ago so it is not strictly part of my stash but if I don’t make it up soon it will end up being added to the pile.  I bought it to make a top for myself.  It is a knit fabric but not super stretchy.  I found a basic pattern to use in the pattern-making book. and here is the result so far.2015-02-22 05The original pattern had a round neckline but I prefer a vee.  I have done the basic construction and now need to finish the neckline and hems on the sleeves and lower edge.

All in all, I am pretty pleased with the results of my sewing for this week.  I wish I had more time to sew as have so many things planned and I am just itching to get started.

Sew My Stash Sunday – 6


The only problem with having a commitment to a weekly series is that the weeks fly by incredibly quickly.  This week has not been completely devoid of progress as I have cut out the mint green linen skirt.

2015-02-15 01Belle was here today and was most impressed with the skirt I had completed.  I showed her the pattern drafting system and some of the pattern choices.  She commented that she wanted some long-sleeved shirts for work but that she finds that the ready-made ones are not long enough to stay tucked in.  We delved into the stash and found a piece of fabric which would be suitable and she has chosen a pattern so that has been added to the list.

2015-02-15 02Meanwhile, I had a couple of bits of mending to do so I completed those jobs and can now get back to the skirt.  I darned a sock for The Duke.  There is nothing fancy about my ‘darning’.  I use a zigzag stitch on the sewing machine  which is not particularly pretty but is effective.

2015-02-15 03Then I patched (yet again) a pair of his trousers.  These are his stylish weekend wear when out in the yard and there are now patches on the patches!

2015-02-15 04This is the inside of one leg with no fewer than 3 patches!  I guess there will come a time when they are more patches than trousers but in the meantime they remain perfectly serviceable.

The Week That Was


I have been making good progress on several fronts here.

Yesterday I spent the day sewing so have something to show for it.  I started by drafting a pattern using an existing purchased skirt.  I had some fabric that had been given to me and this is what I created.  I have yet to do the hem and the handstitching inside the waistband but you get the general idea.  I am not entirely happy with the fit over the hips and also the side pockets are not sitting perfectly but that will improved on in the next attempt.

2012-11-30 01I will still be happy to wear this as the shirt I am going to make will cover the less than perfect area.  This is going to be the top (also gifted fabric).  The colour match of the yellow flowers with the top is much better than the photograph would lead you to believe.

2012-11-30 02The other project has been slowly but surely working through the various piles of ‘pending’ paperwork.

2012-11-30 03This is some that I had been carrying around in my bag for a couple of weeks.  Today I actioned most of it – emails sent, phone calls made and most of it now shredded.  There is still a little to go back in the filing cabinet.

2012-11-30 04This pile is on the small table in the guest room.  It is mostly from our USA trip from over 2 months ago so my goal is to get it sorted out this weekend.  I have finally culled and sorted they photographs from our trip which has been quite a big job.

Tomorrow we are having lunch with friends and are looking forward to sharing the photos from our trip with them.

Have a relaxing weekend wherever you are.

Rescued & Re-homed

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Although we did get our dog from the Animal Welfare about 8 years ago, he is not the subject of this post.

It may seem strange to bring something into my home when I am constantly decluttering but I rescued this ring binder from the rubbish pile at my office yesterday.  However, it was brought home with a specific purpose in mind.

2012-04-18 01When I was sorting out things on my sewing table last weekend I was confronted by a number of loose pattern pieces that I had drafted from my Enid Gilchrist pattern books.  I put each pattern in a separate plastic sleeve (I have a box a spare sleeves in the stationery pile) and wished I had a spare ring binder.

My wish came true when I saw this brand-new folder containing obsolete training information destined for the rubbish.  I put the contents in the confidential recycling and brought the folder home.

2012-04-18 02Here it is with the pattern pieces in sleeves (on the left) and I have also placed the pattern books each in their own sleeve as they are rather fragile from age.  I still have some more to sort out but this will help to streamline the paperwork in the sewing room.  It is good to know that I will easily be able to find the pattern pieces when I need them.

2012-04-18 03Here are all of the patterns stored on top of the sewing cabinet.

What storage methods do you use for sewing/craft books and patterns?



I haven’t posted for a few days as I was determined to clear my sewing room of some of the unfinished projects.  Some of them were physically started and not completed and others were just in my imagination and not even started.

Anyway, here  are some of the finished items.

Shorts for Izz.

And a pair for Miss O.

This is another pair of shorts for Miss O using a different pattern.

This playsuit is one that I didn’t finish when Miss O was a baby (I did make 7 others) so it will be donated to charity.  Perhaps they will be able to use it in Christmas gifts.

A tiny blouse for my niece for her birthday.

And a pinafore to go with the blouse.  This is made from the leftovers of the pinafore I made for Miss O earlier in the year.

A summer blouse for myself.  I have had the material for 2.5 years and started making it last summer.  This is a tried and true pattern that I made from a purchased blouse.  I have made several using the same pattern.

This is not strictly something that I made.  I bought this dress for Miss O a few weeks ago at an op shop for $8.  It is ‘Fred Bare’ brand and in excellent condition.  There were a couple of small stains which were removed using Sard Wonder soap and a good wash.  The hemline is scalloped at the sideseams and had a facing which was pulling away in places.  I removed it a replaced it using plain fabric.  I salvaged the facing fabric and used some of it to make this matching shoulder bag.

It is a great feeling to have a collection of finished items ready for use rather than half-finished projects and fabric taking up space.

I still have several things to do including a pair of summer pyjamas for Miss O, dress for Belle and 2 polo shirts for The Duke.  I have drafted the pattern for the pyjamas from an old Enid Gilchrist pattern book and am about to start cutting them out.

What unfinished projects do you have?