Stylearc Winona Knit Top

This was a freebie pattern I got with another order from Stylearc.  It looked like a quick sew, and it was...I have made it up twice already.

This pink striped cotton knit is from The Fabric Store in Brisbane.  I have bought this fabric twice now; once for my daughter and once for me.  I used larger grommets than the pattern specified, because that is the size I have.  I was interrupted by a visitor just before installing the last grommet, and when I returned, I had lost concentration and put the last one in upside down...it is the most visible one as well :(.  The folds in the sleeve are trickier than I expected, because of the angle of the seam in near the armhole.   For this version, I interfaced the inset corners at the bottom of the neckband, because I had so much trouble getting nice corners on my first version below.

This mocha fabric was in the remnant bin at The Fabric Store last time I visited.  It is a silky soft bamboo and was only $7 for the piece.  I didn't put the grommets in this version,because I thought it would be dressier without them, but really, the neckline is probably a tad too low without them.  There doesn't seem to be any gaping though, so I'll wear it few times and see how it goes.


Starry Tank

I have been sewing a few garments for the patternreview sudoku wardrobe contest.  I haven't reviewed or blogged any of those garments yet.  This tank was a bonus sew...quick to sew because the overlocker and coverstitch machine were already threaded, and quick to blog, because there is not much to say.

The fabric is from Emmaonesock.  It is a knit, but not all that stretchy.  I used the leftovers, combined with some black, to make a tank for my daughter at the same time.

The pattern is self drafted, only not so much drafted as evolved.  Evolved from my running singlets, which I think are my most worn self sewn garments ever! I made the following changes to the running singlet pattern;
- took the sides in
- raised the armholes a little.  The armholes are still much lower than my Jalie tank patterns, which makes the tank both cooler and more comfortable to wear.  They still cover my bra.
- scooped the back armholes in less, which means that I can wear it with a bigger range of bras.  Only on this version though.  I made another tank at the same time that I scooped in more.  I really do need more racer back bras or to get some of those hook things to move your bra straps closer together.
- shaped the hem to be lower at the back than the front

 I think that this pattern will become a favourite basic.


VPL inspired sports bra

I love the look of the VPL insertion bras, and have been wanting to create a pattern for something similar.  I drafted my own pattern last year, but it didn't quite work out.  I had literally pushed it to the side of my sewing bench whilst I got distracted with other sewing projects.  Then, when I was looking for something else, I came across a bra pattern that I had never used, but I thought had good potential as a starting point. Ezi-Sew 104.  This pattern has horizontal cup seaming, but when I get all the kinks worked out, it shouldn't be too difficult to change it to the vertical seaming used in the inspiration bra.

I changed the back band closure to a fold.

I trimmed off the strap portion of the upper cup, and after a muslin, changed the angle of the front neckline slightly.

The resulting bra fit pretty well, though I think it would fit me even better if I removed some of the cup depth for next time.  Sadly, the bra pictured at the top of this post is too small for me.  The power mesh I used on the back is much stronger than the lycra I used for my muslin.  Which is a shame, because it would have been the perfect match for my last running capris.  At least I don't have to worry about unpicking the twisted straps and resewing them.

This next one was made using power mesh on the back (I increased the back band pattern) and wicking cotton spandex for the front.  I dyed the power mesh.

It is a bit tricky working out where to sew down the elastic that wraps from the front strap round the side.

Of course, the defining feature of this bra is the wide coloured elastic used for the strapping.  Locally, I don't have a lot of elastic to choose from, and mostly it is polyester, and I have not bought dyes suitable for polyester.  Then I found this "fine lines" nylon elastic in Lincraft, which I presume is an underwear manufacturer discard.  It dyes well with acid dyes.  I used this elastic in my first version (not pictured) and have been wearing it for a few months and the ealstic has held up well.

I was going to continue with my bra sewing, but in the meantime I have been distracted by the Sudoku Wardrobe challenge aver at pattern review.  It sure is hard to maintain focus in the sewing room!


Jalie 3131

The Jalie 3131 set that I made back in 2014 is still on high rotation, even though the back band has always been too big.  The cotton lycra bra is comfortable on hot, sweaty days when I am working outdoors.  Usually I prefer underwires, but this bralette has more support than many bralettes, possibly because of my addition of underwire casing (even though there are no wires).  I have finally got around to making a new version, with a shorter back band.

The main fabric is remnant from a dress that I haven't shown you yet.  I made the dress late last year, and wore it a couple of times when I traveled a little further south in December, but since then, it has been way too hot to put it on.  I do love the dress, and can't wait to show it to you when the weather cools down a little.

I am really proud of the dyeing that I did on this set.  The parts I dyed were the pale blue fold-over elastic used on both the bra and the knickers, the pale blue lingerie elastic on the knickers and the hook and eye.  I only have a handful of dyes and nothing in the way of pale blue.  Actually, now I can't remember if I used True Turquoise, or Caribbean Blue, but I massively diluted it and then used quite short dipping times.  It worked out a better match for the fabric than I was expecting.  The fold-over elastic is from Lincraft.  It is quite wide, and possibly meant for sewing elasticated bed sheets.  I had to improvise with the straps.  It seems I have a lot of 10 mm elastic strapping, but no 10 mm rings and sliders.  Consequently, these straps are not adjustable.

The pattern for the knickers is traced off a RTW pair of Calvin Kleins.  This fabric is not as stretchy as that used in the RTW pair, so these have a much closer fit than the RTW pair, but are still totally wearable.  And now that I have finally blogged them, I am looking forward to wearing this set!


Vanilla Cream Polka Dots

I have a large box of lingerie supplies.  Mostly it has been collected ad hoc and is more what I could get hold of rather than what I may like.  I don't feel like I can go and buy beautiful kits, because I have this large box of stash (not to mention, shipping from distant lingerie suppliers can be exorbitant), but often I look in the box and wonder how I could possibly come up with something that I want to wear from its contents.  I bought a bunch of acid dyes a while back, which helps me tie different bits and bobs together.  This set is courtesy of the colour "Vanilla Cream".

I dyed the lace, and some of the elastics, and paired them with ivory mesh and some ivory elastics and findings.  I am worried that I have just about bought my local Lincraft out of their supply of white piping elastic.  I suspect that it is not something that they will restock when I buy the last of the roll.

The bra is my own pattern.  The cups have a vertical seam. 

I often admire sheer bras, both in RTW and on other sewing blogs...they require such precision sewing...but I have never worn a sheer bra before.  After I tried this on, I thought that maybe I didn't need the matching knickers to be quite so sheer, so I lined the lace with a nude lining.

For the knickers, I used the Orange Lingerie Montgomery Brief

I made a few changes.  My lace did not have a scalloped edge, so I added a seam allowance to the top of the lace panel.  I changed the construction order to be more like my Elle M knickers, so that all the seam allowances were enclosed. 

Sadly, these knickers are a bit too big, which will be fine under skirts and dresses, but not so much under jeans (I tested...they bunch up).  The size chart for this pattern is a little odd, in that the measurements for one size do not match up seamlessly to the next size.  My hip and waist size is bigger than the measurements given for M but smaller than those for L.  I went with L, but my mesh is very soft, so perhaps M would have been a better choice.  I would have had enough fabric to cut a smaller pair, but I made a cutting boo boo with the lace and can't fit another front out of it.  I might  take in the side seams, which will result in exposed seams when I was so careful to enclose them, but will make them more wearable.  I haven't given up on this pattern though, and want to test it again with some fitting changes.

I'm really happy with this set and my previous set.  I don't have as much time fore sewing these days, but am finding that bra sewing fits in quite well in 10 minute blocks, so my limited sewing time is still fun.  For this set, I gathered the bits together and did the dyeing on the weekend, with cutting and sewing during the week.  Of course, it helps to have TNT patterns and not to have to muck about with fitting.