Sewing

My finished sewing projects and plans including sewing pattern reviews.

Lessons learned using the Butterick B5789 pattern

The Butterick B5789 is a fast and easy pattern with 5 different views for a draped vest or jacket. It can be sewn sleeveless or with long sleeves.

I used the Butterick B5789 pattern to sew a winter jacket. Because I sewed it in the winter of 2018, I had a chance to wear it a few times. I chose view D which has a draped front and long sleeves. The fabric I chose was a heavyweight stretchy cotton. Because it was a heavyweight material, it kept me quite warm. I used a brooch to pin at the top to keep it closed rather than sewing a button. Truth is, I still need to learn how to sew a button and a button hole on a sewing machine.

The lesson that I learned from this sewing pattern is to follow the directions very carefully regarding what fabric material to use. I used a heavyweight cotton that did not drape very well. The pattern called for a lightweight two way jersey material.

This jacket can also be worn open which showcases it’s draped front. Because I chose a heavyweight stretchy cotton material, it did not look very good worn open. Now I understand why this pattern calls for a two way jersey material. Even though I used a heavyweight material rather than a lightweight material, the end result was not too bad and I was still able to wear it.

Being that I am fairly new at sewing (I’ve only been sewing for 3 years now), the biggest  lesson that I learned from this sewing project is to use the correct fabric for the pattern.  Especially for a beginner, this is important. I’ve learned this lesson many, many times. I sewed many nice dresses using the wrong fabric, which is really unfortunate because I could be wearing those dresses had I chosen the right fabric for the job. I know that learning to sew is all trial and error. Those errors are welcomed because it is helping me learn and grow in sewing.

All in all, this pattern was a simple pattern to use. It was labeled fast and easy and I agree with that. Now that I have learned my lesson on choosing the right fabric, I will plan to sew the sleeveless draped vest for the summer season using a lightweight two way jersey fabric. The sleeveless vest will make a great cover up to wear with a tank top or summer dress.

New Look D0721

One of my New Year’s resolution is to sew more clothes. The new year started off right because I sewed another dress! I started this project during the winter break. It started out as a dress for my daughter, but actually ended up being a shirt.

We were in Joann’s and she saw this pattern and asked me to make her this dress:

New Look dress, so hip

She asked me to make View D (the one the model on the envelope is wearing). She picked out a black knit fabric. It had speckles of white in it. It kind of looked like splatters of white paint. It was the perfect fabric for her dress.

Sewing this pattern started a little rough since it was my first time sewing with knit fabric. I had a little bit of difficulty cutting out the pattern pieces. There was so much stretch in the fabric, I had to make sure that it didn’t stretch out too much before cutting it. I just let it sit for a little bit before pinning the fabric to the pattern and then cutting it out. Luckily, it all turned out well and I was able to start sewing. Sewing the dress together was not as difficult as I thought it would be. Mostly because I finally purchased a walking foot and what a difference it made!

The cowl neck was easy to sew. The sleeves were also easy. I was happy with how everything was turning out until I got to the gathering at the bottom of the skirt. I tried gathering it the old fashioned way but I wasn’t having any luck. I was having difficulty because of the stretchy knit material for some reason. After that, I remembered that I have a gathering foot so I set out to use that. I have used it before without a problem, but this time around, I ran into a lot of problems. For one thing, it wasn’t working properly. So I spent a lot of time trying to fix the gathering foot. Eventually I gave up and decided just to sew the bottom without gathers. That didn’t work out too well either. So I told Sabrina she would have to settle for a long sleeved cowl shirt. She liked it. I even made made her a matching scrunchy for her hair. I was able to finish this project before she left to go back to London. But I promised her that I would make her a dress, just without gathers.

I used the same material and it turned out great. I pretty much sewed View B but with the tight sleeves not the bell sleeves.

Here’s how it turned out:

I did a test run of this dress and wore it to work. I was surprised to receive a lot of compliments on it, even from strangers. My friends were surprised that I sewed it. I guess I did a good job on this homemade dress.

I hope Sabrina likes it too. I’ll just have to wear it a few times first (wink, wink).

Today I am grateful for pretty dresses, creativity, sewing, compliments from strangers in the elevator and homemade dresses that pass off as store bought dresses.

Simplicity 1355: A short story of a short jumper

I sewed something new! Okay, I sewed this back in April and it was my intention to wear it on my trip to Hawaii, but it never happened.  Why? Because there was a slight wardrobe malfunction with the jumper which I will describe later.

Simplicity 1355 is described as an easy-to-sew pattern which includes the option of choosing a long dress or a long or short jumper. Neckline options are V-neck or scoop with sliding tie. The back is either a crossover or a slit.

I chose view D for this pattern which is a short jumper. It has a scoop neckline with a sliding tie. The back is a slit. The waist is an elastic waist.

Simplicity 1355

This was my first time ever sewing shorts. I have never even sewn pants before so it was a learning experience. It wasn’t as hard as I thought it would be. The length of the shorts was a perfect length. I like the back slit. I chose a cotton fabric that was not too thin and was easy to sew with. Fabric options are batiks, challis, chambray, cotton types, crepe de chine, soft lightweight linen types and jersey. I think if I decide to sew this again, I will use chambray.

Now onto my slight wardrobe malfunction. I had a difficult time making the sliding tie. I made a fabric belt before in this way, but the belt I made before was thick. This sliding tie was so thin and I found it really difficult to sew together. This was the reason I didn’t get to wear it as planned.  I had no tie to keep the dress together at the top. I tried to hack the tie by using a black elastic. I thought an elastic would be a good idea since you need to untie the the tie in order to slip into the jumpsuit from the top part of the outfit. The elastic stretched enough to slip into the jumper but it didn’t look very good with the black elastic showing. Later, I found a black thin tie that I had from another dress. It seemed to work well, but of course, I didn’t pack the black tie in my suitcase so I didn’t get to wear my new outfit as planned.

But I will someday.