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A cosy new shirt

19 Oct

A few weeks ago I made several muslin of Burda 7136 in my first proper attempt at a full bust adjustment. After four attempts I got what I thought was just the right fit: grading between size 10 for the shoulders down to 12 for the waist – plus 1.5″ FBA. And so last weekend I started on my newest shirt.

I bought this brushed cotton from RayStitch two years ago as in the winter there is nothing I love more than a cosy shirt and my timing this year is perfect!  And I got the 8 buttons at a shop in Edinburgh last year when visiting my BFF. But alas when I was buying the buttons I didn’t know what pattern I’d use and for this one each sleeve would require a whopping 6 buttons!  So I’ve forgone the top button at the front (I never do shirts up all the way anyway) and only use one button on the cuff. Note to self: don’t skip the extra buttons on the cuff and sleeve vent as it does gape a wee bit

The results I have to say are pretty bloody good. I am so pleased with how it fits – shoulders, chest and stomach. The arms are a bit long in length (but I like that especially in winter) but they feel a bit big across my forearms so I’ll probably take them down a size next time. I’m ready for winter (and more bright plaids).



Muslin of burda 7136 – FBA

8 Oct

Seeing as the fabric for my next, and very special, project hadn’t arrived in time for the weekend, I decided to work on a full bust adjustment. I made a short sleeve version of Burda 7136 (size 14) a few months ago, in a really fun print. While I love it, the fit wasn’t perfect and I had to take in the back quite a bit. I figured that if I made size 10 and did a full bust adjustment it might just fit perfectly.

And so I have spent the weekend making muslins and testing my theory out. First I made a mock up of size 10 out of this garish fabric I won in a bundle of fabric.  It’s been sitting unused for 2 years now, and while I intended to give it away to someone that might actually like it, it works perfectly for a muslin of the shirt (minus sleeves of course).  And lucky I did! Size 10 worked perfectly for the upper bust and across the back yoke. But was too tight across my belly and hips. So I decided to do the full bust adjustment on a  merged 10/12.

There are tons of tutorials online for full bust adjustment but I’ve found most of them are aimed at bodices for high waited dresses (which means there is a much shorter side seam to correct). In the end I found this tutorial of Melly Sews to be most helpful. I figured I would add 1.5″ per side and it was initially quite fun drawing and cutting, moving and taping my pieces around. But once that was all done, I still struggled to redraw the side seams. But in the end I think I got a really nice curve.

So I sewed up my second muslin. Perfect fit  on upper and full bust but the bust dart wasn’t quite in the right place – a wee bit too low and too long (leading to pointy nipples). So I re-positioned it up 1/2″ and reduced its length by 1″. Instead of redoing the whole front pieces, I just unpicked part of the side seams and redid the darts. And no, still not in the right place.

At this point I retraced the original pattern piece and started again, but this time with the dart re-positioned in the correct place. And the result, my third muslin, appeared to be just right! Phew. One weekend down and three muslin and four attempted full bust adjustments  later and at last I have my pattern pieces all ready to cut out my nice fabric (and not this atrocious stuff).

Straddling summer & autumn

3 Sep

On Tuesday this week the air changed. After an amazing bank holiday weekend of sunshine, summer retreated and autumn to set in, but its still warm. We seem to be straddling summer and autumn right now and I think my newest Biscayne blouse is perfect for the season.

I bought this fabric a few weeks ago from Saeed’s in Walthamstow – its a lovely Italian crepe and was only £6 a meter! It felt so lovely and I was drawn the the vibrant color. But its slippery nature made the welt pocket and  the button placket tricky to perfect. Looking at it now, I think I should have avoided the welt pocket – not only because it was hard to get it even, but because of the fabric is so clingy it really shows the pocket.

That being said I am really pleased with the top – the color is such a perfect pick-me-up.  I’m thinking that I might make a few long-sleeve versions  (once I identify the right sleeve style) and maybe a dress hack of the pattern.

Lago Tank

5 Jun

A few weeks ago I saw a beautiful pile of fabrics on Raystich’s Instagram account. I especially liked one of the fabrics: a cream organic cotton knit.  The softness, color and design reminded me of childhood undershirts (not that I was ever posh enough to have organic undershirts). And so yesterday, while shopping purely for thread, I thought I’d have a quick little peak at the fabric. And somehow 1 metre of it ended up coming home with me. Oppps.

I knew I wanted a tank top/undershirt of some sort and was pleased to stumble across Itch to Stitch’s FREE PDF Lago Tank. I’ve  blended sizes: size 4 for the armholes/straps, size 6 for the bust, back to size 4 for the waist and again out to 6 for the hips. I’m not sure whether it was the recovery/stretch of the fabric or the ultimate fit of the top, but I’m certainly glad I didnt choose a bigger size! But I’m pretty pleased with it – it’s not going to rock the world of fashion or anything but it’s comfortable! I think it will make an ideal tank top for wearing on lazy weekends or under button down shirts (which can be then stripped off in the sun!).







16 May

Seeing as I had the Bonnie top pattern still out, I thought I’d quickly whip up one more. This time out of a lovely jersey (I think 95% cotton 5% elastane) I bought last year at Raystich. My me-made wardrobe doesn’t have many plain tops but that’s what I often reach for on lazy days. They’re also handy for putting together me-made outfits.

I’m really pleased with how the top turned out and love the color.

Bonnie Top

13 May

I really love the Bonnie Top from Blue Ginger Doll and my previous versions in yellow and crazy geometric print get worn a lot. Because it is such a comfortable top I often reach for it in the morning, but at the same time I think it looks ace and often wear them out in the evening. So it was Bonnie I had in mind when Dragon Fly fabrics had a little sale in November and I purchased this beautiful print. It’s 95% cotton 5% spandex and it feels just wonderful.

There’s not much to say about Bonnie – I found the best fit is size 10 for chest and above, grading out to 12 at the hips. I also tried to reduce some of the gathers in the sleeves but I wasn’t overly successful.


Beatrix top

10 May

As soon as I saw the Sky print from Monaluna’s Wanderlust collection I had to have it. I also knew that it would need a simple pattern to best show off the fabric. So I was quite pleased to stumble across the Beatrix top from made by rae which  was available as a paper pattern from the Village Haberdashery – bonus! It did however require tracing as the pieces were printed on both sides of the paper. But the shop sent me some great tracing paper for free and I have become a total convert.

The first thing I love about this pattern has different bodice pieces for A/B cups or C/D cups. After carefully considering the sizing chart and finished measurements for the blouse I ended up making size small with the C/D cup bodice. FYI my measurements are at the top end of the small sizing. And I was so pleased when I based the back together – the fit is perfect!

Due to the placement of the print’s repetition and the exact length I had, I wasn’t able to match the colors at the side. But I quite like how it looks. And I love how the print joins at the shoulders (totally unintentionally).

The instructions were brilliant and quite straightforward. I made the process more lengthy by using French seams to finish the insides, including in the armhole (which was tricky given the gathers).  The instructions has a few little tips which I really apprecaited such as stitching in the dip along the shoulder seams, to tack the facing down.  I am chuffed with how it turned out and the fit is just lovely.


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