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My idea is to show everyone that they can make something cute and fashionable without spending a lot of money. Read more »
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Pick the right pattern and a fabric you love, and with a little time and effort, you’ll be creating a wearable item and there will be no looking back!
Make this beautiful dress for her to wear to the Easter Egg hunt. Just think of the photo opportunities to go along with it!
Like many people, I have trouble sticking to a new year’s resolution for 12 months. Last year, I was quite vociferous about my new year’s resolution which was to make ALL my own clothes. Needless to say, it was pretty unrealistic and although I did make many new things for myself, by about June or July, I was (less vociferously) back buying store bought items. I think the problem was that I aimed too high and expected too much of myself. Some of the things I made last year do get worn regularly, but there are other things that I will probably never be happy with and will likely end up back in my fabric scraps pile because I didn’t take enough time to finish them perfectly.
I am starting 2012 with a new resolution and more realistic expectations; I intend to make myself one essential wardrobe item per month. My emphasis will be on creating some timeless, well- fitting pieces that I will be able to wear for years to come, not just the current season. By the end of the year, I aim to have 12 beautiful, handmade items in my closet.
Whilst I consider myself to be an intermediate level sewer, I am self-taught so there are many gaps in my skill and knowledge. With each pattern I complete, I find myself learning something new; a new trick or technique that I can store away in my brain for future use. This is one of the things that I love about sewing – it is a challenge, I have to work hard at it, and for every perfect, easy seam I sew, there’s a tricky zipper or impossible pocket just lurking around the corner. So, as well as some new clothes in my closet, I hope to end the year with some new skills under my belt!
Southern California doesn’t get very cold in winter but I did want to make myself a new lightweight jacket for my January project. I wanted it to be smart and tailored but casual enough to wear on the school run, so when I noticed the coat pattern in the new Burdastyle Sewing Handbook. I knew I could adapt it to fit my requirements.
First and foremost, I wanted this jacket to fit me well, so I bought a roll of Swedish tracing paper and traced the coat’s pattern pieces. Swedish tracing paper is a thick, fibrous material that can actually be sewn together using long basting stitches.
This was extremely helpful to me since I wanted to make some changes to the original pattern. After cutting out the pattern, I was able to baste the tracing paper pieces together and easily make my adjustments before cutting out my main fabric To save time, I only sewed one half of the jacket together with the tracing paper.
I chose to make my jacket in a green/gray corduroy with a light stretch and an eye-catching cotton print for the lining. When pinning my pattern pieces to my fabric, I made certain to align them with the grain of the corduroy. It is also important to remember that this pattern has not been drafted with a seam allowance, so you must add that in by hand before cutting.
I found the pattern and instructions very easy to follow, which ultimately gave me the confidence to make my alterations. I lengthened the top bodice by 3” because I am tall and I shortened the bottom section and added gathers at the back.
I also made a band around the waist instead of making a belt as the pattern suggests and I sewed long sleeve cuffs because I prefer the look of them over plain sleeves.
Once the outer part of the jacket was complete, I then needed to work on the lining. Having kept a written record of all the seam adjustments and measurements I made, I could easily make the necessary size changes to the lining pieces.
The last step was to sew the button holes and add the buttons. I decided to use the same corduroy to cover some buttons myself.
I am so very happy with this jacket and because I took my time beforehand to think about how I really wanted it, it came out as beautifully as I imagined and even better than I hoped.
It is extremely comfortable because I took them time to get the fit just right and I am glad I had the confidence to customize the pattern to suit me. This jacket is sure to have a permanent spot in my closet.
Burdastyle Sewing Handbook – coat pattern
Pins and needles