Tuesday, 18 February 2014

Made By Rae Ruby Top

Sewing for yourself after a long drought can be scary, but not with this pattern! Rae of Washi Dress fame, has done it again with this pattern. The Ruby top is a simple, flattering top that is incredibly quick to put together.

The design is such that there are no tricky fitting bits to contend with (and no closures either). Although next time I think I would take it in at the sides a smidgin, depending on the fabric. The yoke is a cotton poplin and the bodice is a voile from Spotlight. It actually works pretty well for this top.

Apologies for the dodgy photos, but with a broken camera and a 6 year old photographer, things were never going to be stellar! It is much nicer to see clothes worn though, so I have included the blurry shot anyway.

The only problem I had was with the bias binding. This was a personal problem. I have actually never made bias binding before and thought I had developed a cunning folding technique that would give me one long strip with minimal effort, because it is likely that I would develop a brand new technique that no one else in the sewing world has ever thought of...Anyway, I ended up with heaps of short strips that had to be inexpertly sewn together and made very wonky binding. (I have since discovered the right way to do continuous bias binding - totally life changing, will blog later)

I would also recommend following the pattern and doing the stay stitching around the neckline before applying the binding. I didn't, (because I know better than Rae?!?) and I regretted it because the neck stretched a bit and was harder to deal with.

Anyway, all in all a great pattern and I will definitely be sewing it again. I might use the free yoke lining video tutorial here next time until I regain my bias binding confidence!

How have your Ruby tops gone?

Friday, 7 February 2014

Possibly the easiest handmade gift ever

Right, this is just a quick one and there are approximately a million tutorials out there on how to sew your own fabric coasters.

But now I know why! They are incredibly quick, easy and surprisingly satisfying when stacked up in their little piles of neat, handmade goodness.

Details and tips:

1.       I used cotton and cut my fabric 5 inches square, this worked well with a 1/4 inch seam allowance. Obviously it doesn't matter that much as long as it's squareish!

2.       I would definitely recommend using batting - it gives the coasters a bit more body and they look quite professional! Next time I would try cutting the batting slightly smaller than the other fabric; because I suspect they would turn more neatly.

3.       Place your fabric right sides together  with the batting on top and sew together around the outside leaving a 2 inch gap in the middle of one side for turning. Don't forget to clip the corners and any excess fabric from the seams.

4.       DO NOT leave a gap smaller than about 2 inches for turning. A smaller gap will not make it faster, improve the end result or have any other benefit. Trust me on this one!

5.       Turn the fabric so the right sides are together and the batting is on the inside. A chopstick works well to turn the corners out. Adults are better suited to this task than 3 year olds, although they can do it after a fashion (remain calm and let go of your need for perfection).

6.       Iron, iron, iron, then edgestitch around the whole coaster, then iron some more.

Enjoy your coasters!

Sunday, 2 February 2014

KCW Day 8

OK, I realise that strictly speaking Kids Clothes Week does not have a Day 8. But I missed a day and given the time zone difference, I thought I might just be able to sneak an extra day in.

This is the Oliver + S Reversible Bucket Hat. Unsurprisingly, it is a great pattern!

The striped fabric is a cotton drill I had left over from making some tote bags and the reverse side is a plain cotton. I did interface both sides of the brim and I think it would have been a bit floppy without the extra interfacing.

I used Jessica's amazing tutorial to avoid any hand sewing! I you haven't tried it this way, I would highly recommend it. It really simplifies things.

The stripe direction on the brim caused me something of a dilemma... In hindsight it's a bit odd, but at the time I was so thrilled with the way they matched at the seam that I couldn't resist it!!

I hope that you've had a great KCW. I've been so impressed by everyone's creativity and productivity!!