This week, I have mostly…


…been making toiles!


I now have three projects on the go.  I’m not entirely sure that this is an intelligent state of affairs, but there we are.

Project 1 is a lovely Sorbetto – the free downloadable pattern from Colette.  The toile came together very well, but I did need to alter the length and make a small sway back adjustment (for which I followed the excellent tutorial at pattern~scissors~cloth).  It has now been cut out in a very soft and lightweight cotton/silk mix:

Eagle-eyed readers will spot the Colette Sewing Manual open at the “make your own bias binding” page.  Ahem, I must confess to a bit of a fail in the making of my bias binding, mostly caused by my inability to see white tailor’s chalk (which is all I have – remember I said I never wear white?) on light coloured fabric.  Hmmm.  Project 1 will be completed after a trip to the sewing shop.  Soon, I promise!

Project 2 is a skirt – Vogue 1247.  Now.  I think this is going to be a salutory lesson in NOT CUTTING OUT PATTERNS WHILE UNWELL.  I was most ranty intrigued to discover this \/  when I tried on my toile (forgive the crappy photo – Mr Suze was elsewhere):


Yes.  That is an 8cm gap in the Centre Back. A little detective work reveals that I had a) cut the four back skirt panels two sizes too small and b) cut the waistband 1.5 sizes too small (don’t ask me how…).  I think the phrase here is “plonker”.  Or maybe “germ ridden”.  So, there is a lot of pattern reconstruction and grading to be done this weekend. Sigh.  The problems don’t end there.  In a slightly odd state of affairs, the skirt is far too large at the front on the hips, so I also need to pinch out quite a lot of the fullness on the hips.  A second toile beckons.  Watch this Space.

And Project 3?  Well, I am lucky enough to go to weekly sewing classes at the lovely Just Sew in Brighton.  For two hours every Monday evening I meet up with a lovely bunch, and have a nice stitch and a natter.  Classes are led by the lovely Melinda, who is a bit of a whizz, and we all take in our current project for help.  I decided that I need to be quite intelligent about my use of the resource that is my sewing class, so I’m going to tackle the more difficult projects I have in mind while at my classes.  Never one to be put off by a challenge, I am tackling a velvet jacket.  I’ve always wanted a velvet jacket, but I have never found one which didn’t seem a little frumpy or boxy.  Just as well I learned to sew, eh?

Here is the pattern on which my jacket will be based, another Vogue – 8543 this time:

I don’t like the bell sleeves, so I’ve altered the pattern to just have straight sleeves.  But I love the shape of the jacket, the collar and the fact that it looks classic and vintagey, without being too over the top.  It has a lovely peplum too, which unusually is only on the back of the jacket:

Yum!  I can’t wait to wear this one!  I’ve heard all the horror stories about velvet, and I am steadfastly ignoring them.  I’ll be fine.  I found some beautiful vintage velvet from (my new best friend) a guy who runs a vintage fabric, button and trim stall at a Brighton street market every Saturday.  It is a gorgeous midnight blue, and soft as you can imagine.  Very reasonable too, at only £4 per metre.  Yay!  Toile has been cut out and I’m going to try and get it stitched before next Monday so I can have some help from Melinda to make sure it fits really well.

So, no finished objects to share until tomorrow night, I’m afraid, but please don’t think I am lazing around!  I am drowning in a SEA of calico, I promise…

Suze x


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