Sewing a Woven Tank Top – aka the one where I make ALL the fit adjustments!

Welcome sewing friends – I’ve got a post full of sewing geekiness today detailing the many fit adjustments I made to the Gemma Tank Top by Made by Rae. Let me say from the off; this isn’t to imply there’s anything wrong with the drafting of Rae’s pattern, not at all. It’s simply that the Gemma Tank Top is a semi-fitted woven pull-on top. The operative words here being ‘woven’ and ‘semi-fitted’; i.e. there’s nowhere to hide in terms of fit. So off I went on my merry way to the drawing board.

The plan was to make it in a silk-blend Lady McElroy voile, that had been gifted to me by Minerva Crafts, so I wanted to make sure I got the fit right before I cut into the precious fabric!

I’m puzzled as to why I always look so … puzzled … in photos, haha!!

One adjustment I didn’t have to do was a Full Bust Adjustment as Rae has thoughtfully drafted the pattern with two cup options – an A/B and a C/D. However, the list of the other adjustments I made is fairly extensive …

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My #2019MakeNine Plans … it’s about more than just sewing!

My revamped sewing space – ready for a clean start!

Writing my #2018MakeNine sewing review post highlighted how I’d put sewing for comfort and practicality above anything else last year. One of the reasons I’d placed comfort so highly though, was simply that I was actually very uncomfortable in my own skin. Reaching what my Doctor refers to as my ‘mature years’ and dealing with the subsequent hormonal changes, hit me unexpectedly and hard. Some days I really struggled to get dressed – I need to wear breathable fabrics and can’t abide anything compressing or overly fitted; even wearing underwear can drive me to distraction. Always an insomniac, it got out of hand; my joints started to seize up and I was wracked with pain most days. I honestly felt like a woman in her 70s, not her 40s.

My weight fluctuated quite dramatically over the course of the last year too and, if I’m honest, I had this unhealthy internal dialogue that would assert that, given the way I felt, it was pointless to sew anything too ‘nice’.

So what’s different this year? Well…

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My #2018MakeNine Sewing Review…err, it’s not quite as good as I thought!

Hello! I thought it timely to do an end of year review of my #2018MakeNine makes, since I’m planning my #2019MakeNine Sewing! In short, this year my plans seem to have started with a flourish, gained some solid middle ground and then, surprisingly, dwindled to absolutely nothing, as we shall see! Unlike the previous year, I still stand by #2018MakeNine plans; what I haven’t sewn yet, I’m absolutely sure I’ll sew at some point soon. Gah! I was absolutely convinced I’d nail these projects but, in fairness, I think I’ve good reasons for not doing so yet. Reasons? Or Excuses? You decide!

Anyhoo, in no particular order, let’s start with the projects I did complete…

The Melilot Shirt by Deer & Doe

I’ve made two, quite different, versions of this top – the one in this picture is in a cotton lawn and I’d class it as a shirt; the other I made in some soft viscose which is more ‘blouse’ like – is the only difference between the definition of a women’s shirt and blouse; the fabric it’s made in? Does anyone know or shall I ask Alexa?!

Of the two, I prefer the look of the lawn one but much prefer the feel and wear of the viscose one. I think what I’m saying is, my ideal version would be this print in a viscose! You can read my full post and review of the pattern HERE.

Next up, we’ve got…

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Sewaholic ‘Minoru’ Jacket – Sewing my first fully lined coat!

Hi!

Thanks for joining me…I’m so excited to share this make with you as I’m incredibly proud – and somewhat relieved – to have made it! Making a fully lined coat has been on my ‘skills list’ for ages. Y’see, to my mind, it had always seemed like one of those highly impressive and unfeasibly difficult sewing projects; something only a ‘real’ sewist makes. And now I’ve done it, I’m happy to report it’s really not that hard at all! We can all make one! This is the ‘Minoru’ Raincoat / Jacket by Sewaholic...

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Making the Deer & Doe ‘Luzerne’ trench coat recently, which is finished with bias binding internally, gave me the hunger to step up and tackle a full lining. No handstitching, I wanted to learn to do it all by machine. The Minoru Jacket seemed like a good option as it has also has some other great features, most notably the hood which can be hidden inside a zipped compartment in its high dramatic collar, as well as having inside breast pockets. Unfortunately…

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Easy Pull-On Jeans – the Eleanore Stretch Jeans by Jalie

Hello…I feel like I’ve been mentally writing this post for sooo long, having sewn up four pairs of these Eleanore Jeans by Jalie since the earlier part of this year; a pair for my young daughter and three pairs for myself. If you’re looking for an intro to sewing trousers, or jeans specifically, I think this faux fly pattern is a really good place to start. The pattern has a lot of standard jean details, like the yokes and the finish of the inside leg seam. If you’re simply looking for a quick sew that results in a pair of pants you’ll wear constantly – if you’re anything like me – then you’ll also find this pattern a winner!

topstitching jeans how to

The pattern size range is extensive – starting at a child’s size 2 up to a women’s size W 44″ H 53″ – and calls for a denim or twill with 20% cross stretch. I’m quite sure I will make many more of these just as long as I can get my hands on …

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