Monday, 29 December 2014

Autumn Skirt

Now, I know that autumn is quite a long way past, but there is something about this skirt that just screams autumn to me! Maybe it's the colours, and the texture, and the shortness, and the wear with tight-ness, but something about it just makes me think of kicking through leaves in a park, and the new feeling of being cold and wearing more layers than summer called for. Autumn through and through!

Well, after a hint a few weeks ago, here is what happened with Lekala 5048:
I apologise for the awful faces - the winter sun was low low low and shining in my eyes!

I envisioned a little sixties skirt - short and cute and flippy, and I've got pretty much exactly what I wanted. The pattern was nice and easy to follow, and the pdf went together nicely. I knew from the start that I didn't want the belt, however, there was no way of printing the other pattern pieces without the belt so all 20 pages were printed out.
I was worried about how it was going to come out, as once you put your sizes into the website, the pattern comes with no option for other sizes. As it was, it was fine. I have pulled it in at the waist a little bit, as it was a little too big, but it seems fine now, and I've worn it all day today with no issues.
Even though the pattern never called for a lining I added one to the bottom of the facing as I knew that I would prefer to have one. With a wool skirt, I can't see myself ever pulling on a slip to wear it, so I just don't think I would reach for it if I couldn't wear it with tights. The lining I already had (it's the lining for the non-stretch bridesmaid outfit that never happened. I am going to be lining stuff in that purple lining for the next 40 years, I have so much of it!) and it was fine. A bit fray-ay (word?) but not too bad. The zip was one I already had, and it's the first zip I've shortened, which was fun! The end is now encased in a pretty bit of fabric, finished before I realised that I would never see it again once the lining was on. Ocht weel, maybe it's the same feeling as wearing really nice undies - at least I know it's nice!
It's so easy to wear that I am delighted with the skirt really. The fabric was interesting to work with, shall we say. Some (all) of the darts are pretty chaotic, and the zip is just plain bonkers as the thick felty bits did not want to sew straight. The same with the hem. It's kinda crazy, but I don't think anyone would notice while it's on, so it's fiiine!
I'm going to try wearing it to work tomorrow so hopefully it will last the day. I don't know what I'll do when it comes to washing it - hand wash definitely, and then a very delicate spin? I never prewashed the wool (I know, I know), so I don't know how it will react. I'm a fool! I think I was expecting not to like the skirt very much, but I do, and now I wish I'd taken the time to prewash the wool and to make sure that it would go in the machine okay.
And bonus: it goes well with my woodland cape!
(Apologies for the face again!)

Thanks for reading, I'd love to know what you think!

Sunday, 28 December 2014

Trousers of Comfort and Doom

Doom? Well...there should be rule to having the most comfortable pair of trousers known to mankind, as it can lead to wearing them every day for the rest of your life (or until they fall apart).

Tis these (I apologise for the shockingly bad photograph):
 McCall's 6514. I love these trousers so much that they have become my go-to for sitting in front on the telly of an evening. They are worn shopping when I can't be assed to be uncomfy, they walk dogs, garden, do pilates... They have never been slept in (too precious for that, heh) or properly hiked in. That's all.

They're loose, and comfy, and very badly made and just wonderful. My first garment (made before I heard that trousers can be tricky), but they used only very simple techniques. The elasticated waist means there's no fastenings. The pockets are a dream to behold, and they are long for my legs (an absolute luxury for my legs are longeth).

I made them in the summer last year, and when I say that they have become my go-to item of clothing I do not exaggerate. I wear them many evenings, to the extent that the derrier is now starting to go rather thin (the beautiful cotton is probably not hard wearing enough for this kind of wear). I am bereft when they're in the wash, and nothing else is quite this comfortable, and they are what I wear to sew. Overall, I love them.

Their faults:

Due to french seaming the interior (I'm nothing if not ambitious), when I needed to take the leg width in, I couldn't work out how to do the crotch again, cut into it by accident, and so I now have a hole instead of a crotch. You can't see it, but it does make me slightly ashamed to wear them in public...though it certainly doesn't stop me!

The rear is becoming rather shiny and thin due to too much sitting.

The fabric drops wrongly on the outside of the leg due to me taking fabric away from the inside, but not wanting to mess with the pockets so leaving excess fabric on the outside leg. It's okay, but does make them look rather homemade!

Overall, for a first garment, they are my favourite thing, ever. I will wear them to their death, and love them forever. My most worn item is also my least photographed. Never mind! That's just the way it goes.

Hope you all had a lovely Christmas. :)

Saturday, 6 December 2014

Lekala Pattern-ing

Wow, it's the weekend!

I've started a new job which I am absolutely loving, but because of that I haven't had a proper weekend for at least a few weeks. Now, I am planning on relishing this weekend like nothing else and what does that mean? Hey baby, let's get creative!!

I have bought (though at those prices, it feels like stealing!) a personalised patterned for skirt 5048 from Lekala, who I have never used before, but I am very excited about this! I found this incredible (felted?) wool fabric in the Cloth Shop in Edinburgh about a month ago, and knew immediately that it would make an incredible winter skirt.
Wowawowee, don't ask the price (because a. I don't remember
and b. I remember it being sliiiightly more than I would normally
spend on fabric!)
I normally wear skirts, especially for my new job, and all through winter skirts and dresses with tights are my go-to outfit. I see this fabric becoming a kind of short, 60s style, but we'll see what happens. I am planning on lining it as well, because the wool would just stick to any tights, and also I love a lined skirt!

As my current knitting pattern, the Anemone, is coming to an end (well, just the bottom ribbing and the sleeves to do...so almost done, yeah?) I'm planning my next. I've loved knitting Anemone, but it has pushed me almost to the point of quitting so I am looking forward to making something simpler. Please welcome the Cable Plait Hottie Cover (snappy title...) from Erika Knight's Simple Knitting. I have just ordered the Debbie Bliss Eco Fairtrade Cotton from Serenity Knitting, the first time I've ever used this site, but my normal go-to (Love Knitting) doesn't have this particular wool available, and I love it. I've chosen the Corn colourway, but I am worried as normally I would go for something brighter. I'm knitting Anemone in bright orange so it might be calming to work in a more relaxing colour! We'll see...


I am excited about all this! I've also been making a masquerade mask for my brother, and I'm almost finished a knitting bag for my sister's birthday. I'll write about it when it's completely finished, but in the meantime, here's a wee sneak preview (it's okay, she's already been gifted it ;)

And that's all from me just now, I still have tonnes of projects to be photographed and written about. I am really enjoying all the crafts that I am undertaking at the moment and am feeling much more comfortable in what I'm wearing. As a tall person I have sometimes been a bit too inclined to try to merge with the crowd, but I am really enjoying dressing for my shape and finding greater freedom in what I can make and wear now...Hooray! It's all good.

What have you been making recently, and do you find being able to make your own clothes makes it easier to follow your own style?

Heather