Monday, November 28, 2016

Undershirts - Hits and a Miss or Two

I mentioned a short while ago about shirt extenders - or undershirts as I like to call them.  Made from cotton jersey on top with a lace trim that hangs down beneath a top or cardi.  And I love them so I made some more . . . . want to see?

White cotton/spandex jersey with a rayon print trim.  Yep, regular fabric works just as well as lace.  I made the skirt 3" longer on most of these.

Grey cotton/spandex jersey with a brown checked fabric.  I also used some pink trim on the arm and neckline.

A 'tartan' check on grey jersey with a little bow on the neckline (shorter skirt).

Apparently this is Royal Stewart tartan.  I think that it looks very dramatic and I have matched it here with black cotton/spandex jersey and black arm and neckline trim.

Charcoal cotton/lycra jersey, charcoal lace and an organza ribbon trim.  For this version I used different lace and it frayed a bit so I edged the bottom with black organza ribbon, folded it up and sewed it to the right side.  Done.

And sometimes I add a lovely little patch on the back:

Please excuse the Merchant and Mills type photography.  The weather is pretty cold right now, and I didn't fancy lots of costume changes!  I think that you can see the details a bit better as well when the undershirts are flat.

Well - how do they look as part of garments?  Let me show you :)

Here is the Royal Stewart version with a charcoal grey McCalls 6168.  I would wear this with black Peg Legs or some Tina Givens jeans.

And it works equally well with the cardi open, a pretty necklace and a scarf.

This time a burgundy cardi and my undershirt is under a light grey linen drapey top.  Pearls and a short infinity cowl made from rayon fabric and done!

I think I will be wearing these two outfits to work next week.  I remember that Carolyn from Diary of a Sewing Fanatic used to plan out a week's worth of garments including accessories (I can't find the posts now) and they were very inspirational, and such a great idea.  No pondering what to wear in the mornings.  Bonus!

So, what were the misses?  Well, with one version I used some different black lace that I think had lycra or spandex in it.

Can you see all those little threads?  I think that they are the spandex/lycra/elastane/whatever and washing and wearing had made them degenerate.  That's a shame, but I'll take this lace off and add something else so not all is lost.

Here is the other one:

It is a little hard to capture in a photograph but the neck trim doesn't lay flat (this is one of my pet peeves).  It is a matter of lovely trim, wrong application.  It looks great on the neckline of a bra, but does not have the stretch for this jersey.  Oh well.  I'll cut this off too and add a different trim and this will work too!

I'd like to think that I am 'undershirted out', but let's be realistic - that's not going to happen!

Sunday, November 27, 2016

En Provence with Bonnie Hunter

I'm not too sure what the deal is with the end of month and writing up posts - quite often multiple ones, but it has happened again!  So much to say!  I have to admit to being a little lazy - firstly I do do a lot multiple sewing (much to my husbands' consternation!).  Why make just one top when you love the pattern so much?  Why not make three or four?  What I then forget to do is to make a note of the changes that I have made - add a bit here, lengthen this, scrap that etc.  I do keep a notebook that has measurements in for elastic lengths to use on vest tops, or sizes to cut when making little pouches which is useful, but not as useful as referring back to my notes and photos on my blog.  Time to catch up.

So, lots of sewing happening in my part of the world, and today I am going to start with another quilt that I have started.  Well actually, there are two, so get a nice steaming cup of tea, put your feet up and read on!!

Somehow I heard about a quilter called Bonnie Hunter (and I am so glad I did!) who is obsessed with scraps of fabric (in a totally good way) and thought that I'd have a go at her mystery quilt that she starts this time each year.  I think that this is the third or fourth that she has run.  She starts off with a tempting photo of her inspiration (in this case the lavender farms in Provence.  This link will only be live for a few months) and then suggests colour combinations.  Now this is pretty smart - as computers vary, she actually goes into a paint store and selects a number of paint chips to help you make choices.  I can only imagine how daft quilters must look, running into hardware stores to get their paint chips and then raiding their stashes for the appropriate fabric.  Of course you can make your own colour choices, but I am happy to be a sheep!

Very pretty indeed.  These are the main colours that will be used with lots of low volume neutrals.  The first clue came out on Friday, and involved making over 200 of these (see below) four patch squares (here is the first clue.  Bonnie has asked that folks be redirected to her blog rather than copying and pasting the details on your own blog).

So this is what I made:

I've included a couple of close ups to show some of the very lovely fabrics like cute little birds and sewing paraphernalia, 

the dragonfly above,

Delicate pink flower fabric as well as the two Christmas fabrics with firs and berries, and the stars with writing.  There are some cute little birds and fabric with sewing machines on too.

And the compass fabric with paw prints in.

So there we have it - clue one completed.  Clue two comes out next Friday . . . . . can't wait to see what we will be making next!

Have you tried mystery quilts?  I know that some folks really don't like committing time and fabric to a project where they don't know what the final item will look like, but I really like the freedom of not having to think - just instructions - use this type of fabric, cut your fabric in this manner etc., and if you look at her other quilts, they are rather lovely, so I am sure this one will be just as good.

Clue 1.  Sitting waiting . . . .

Do take a look at the progress of my fellow mystery quilters here.

Is it Friday yet?