Friday, March 23, 2012

Finally a finished item and some nice awards

I feel a little larger than life in this blouse - a signal that my weight gain is getting out of control - start walking home from work.  The fabric was bought in London and I had something else in mind, so only purchased a metre.  I compromised and cut the Collette Jasmine on the straight rather than bias grain.  It works well enough, but if you are doing this be sure to add an extral centimetre of ease.  I didn't do this and feel that it is a little clingy over the bust.  The pants are from Burda, blogged about here.

I'll let you in on a secret. I'm not a big fan of Collette patterns.  The designs are nice but they are not that well drafted and not true to size.  This blouse is a case in point.  I had to nip about four centimetres from the neckline and the should have taken a little more out from the armhole.  My other issue is the unnecessary facing around the neck.  A far better result is achieved by using biased binding.  Join the binding in a vee shape at the centre front, understitch then sew inplace.  It sits very neatly under the collar and you have no concerns about ironing the facing down or having it pop out.  I've used French seams, bound arm hole seams and attached the cuff with a seam and a hand finish on the inside of  turning so the overall finish of the garment is very neat.

Now the awards which I confess to being tardy about recognising and sharing.  Apparently I'm a Versatile Blogger, according to Diana from Canada and Judith from Australia.  I have another award from Becky which I'll tell you about next posting.

To accept you follow these rules:
1.  add the award to your blog
2.  thank the blogger who gave it to you
3.  mention 7 random things about yourself
4. list the rules
5.  share the award with 15 other bloggers.
6.  inform them.

So 7 random things about myfabrication.
1.  While I love Australia, it is an island I have to get off.  I love to travel.
2.  I have an unrealised ambition to speak French
3.  I love receiving comments on my blog
4.  I see sewing and revival of domestic arts as a feminist pursuit
5.  Both my parents are still alive, but only just
6.  I have two brilliant and ambitious daughters
7.  Apart from sewing, my passion is theatre .

I'm meant to choose 15 bloggers, but despite following hundreds I find this hard. I don't want to hurt anyone's feelings, so instead I single out five of my favourites from around the world.  There are a few others I'd add, including Sherry from New Zealand, but I know that they have already been given the gong.
1.  Alison in Hong Kong - a talented seamstress with a great sense of style
2.  Marie-Noelle my gracious host in Paris who makes beautiful clothes for herself and others
3.  Handmade Jane who showed me the wonders of Goldhawk Road in London
4.  Paco, an absolutely charming gent from Barcelona who designs clothes that everyone should be making
5.  J.Kaori designs from the US who isn't sewing as much as she used to but when she does, you notice her work.  Check out her snakeskin parka.

I cut four other blouses when I cut the Collettee. Right now I'm working on a plain white cotton blouse from my TNT McCalls 5433.  I have a navy blouse silk from the same pattern.

Happy sewing ladies! 


  1. Turned out very nice! I myself, having just gotten back into sewing, am hesitant to try a Collette pattern myself, as I have seen many problems with fit on all the blogs I read. My body is so oddly out of proportion these days that I fear I would never be able to make them work. Someday I might, but for now, just sticking with the big 4.

  2. You are on a blouse binge at the moment - 4 more cut out and ready to go!!! I like this one on you, the black trim really sets the fabric off nicely. I haven't tried any Colette patterns other than the Sorbetto - and with just 2 pattern pieces you can't go wrong..

  3. This looks lovely and is so beautifully finished. You certainly made good use of your small amount of special fabric :)

  4. Your blouse looks gorgeous Gail - I so love the fabric and would have to buy some too if it crossed my path!

  5. Sorry to hear the pattern didn't work out for you! (Especially since I'm the one responsible for you getting them!) It does look nice as a finished project, though.

    I've had mixed results with them so far--although everyone's in love with the Sorbetto, I feel like it looked like a sack on me and I'm glad I only tried it as a reconstruction. I don't think I'll sew it again, but it's still better than the original shirt, so half a win. I did have very good results with the Licorice dress from the book, though, with minimal fitting tweaks. I have the Beignet and Clover patterns in my stash now, with fabric and notions paired with the Beignet and ready to cut out and go, so I'm hoping it will work...

    p.s. French wasn't an option in my high school, and I took two semesters of Italian in college, but I kind of wish now that I'd taken French instead. I justified Italian as the language that most music markings are in, but I already knew what nearly all of those meant. And flute music has a rather large collection of pieces by French composers, especially the early 20th century stuff. And those guys insisted on putting all of their markings in French instead of Italian. Snobs. So I never understand what they mean and had to buy a French dictionary just to try and figure them out, which is not always successful and therefore problematic for when I need to learn them or teach those pieces to my students!

  6. Bonjour Gail,
    Honestly this blouse is charming and a perfect match with the Burda pants.
    I know it is naughty but I am glad not to be the only one to struggle with weight issue !
    I am surprised concerning Colette patterns and that's why I have not tried their Sorbetto yet.
    As for your Award I am very honoured and you who you can ask for French lessons.
    Have a nice week-end. Spring has come in this part of the world and the sun feel so good.

  7. I ment I am not surprised ..... and you know who you can ask ...
    I wish Blogger comments were more user friendly

  8. I love the print of this blouse and I think you look lovely in it. As I am the only person on the face of the earth who has not used Colette patterns, I can't comment. I'm trying really hard to use some of unsewn patterns in my stash before I buy any more!

  9. Lovely top. I like the contrasting collar and arm bands. I've been wondering about the Colette patterns. I always have to alter patterns so much to get them to fit that I can't decide whether I'm better sticking to my Vogues/Burdas or trying something new.

    I just cut out the McCalls faux wrap dress and appreciated reading your notes on it.

  10. A really beautiful top Gail, and you did a fantastic job with such a small amount of fabric!

  11. I love your fabric choice. You did a fantastic job and it looks great.

  12. So many people are crazy about her stuff it's interesting to hear your take on the patterns. I have never sewn with them as I don't find the designs all that appealing. It is however a pretty top and I love the fabric.

  13. I love the contrasting fabric on the sleeves and neck tie - it's those little details I never think of but I think they really make a simple top stand out. I've not sewn any Colette patterns either - I agree with Nancy K in that the designs aren't that special, but I want to try the Sorbetto since everyone is raving about it. What can I say, I'm a sheep!

  14. Your top is lovely.

    I have only sewn the Beignet skirt, though I have several other patterns from Colette. Oh, I've just remembered, I did make a muslin for some Clovers but it didn't work out well. They were too big in some places and too tight in others so I didn't go for it. Too many fitting issues. And I found the Beignet HUGE. I know they are designed for a more pear shape than I am, but even so, the bottom area was very very large on the Beignet. I must admit, I am not thinking of attempting any of the other Colette patterns I have, due to fitting issues on the ones I've tried.

  15. Love the colors and the print as well and I think you look great in it. Perfect for summer.

  16. Very pretty top and your finishing is lovely.

  17. Very nice Jasmine top Gail - I do like them with the contrasting bow. Thank you so much for the Versatile Blogger award, I'm very flattered! I'll think of you every time I go to Classic Textiles on the Goldhawk Road and see all the beautiful Liberty fabrics and wools! x

  18. Thank you so much for nominating me for an award and for your kind words, When the weather warms up, I'm going to throw caution to the wind and wear that python parka to work! Your blouse is lovely -- the print is so cute. Interesting observations about Collette patterns. I've never tried them, but they are extremely popular with newer/younger sewists.

  19. Aaaaw I like finding out those 7 things about you! Lovely post and I think you are way too hard on yourself, that blouse looks beautiful! :)

  20. Lovely to hear more about you ...

    Interesting views on the Colette designs . I love hearing people's real opinions on patterns ...
    The blouse is cute on you.. Love that fabric xx

  21. The tie on that blouse is a cute detail. I have never been inspired to sew up a colette pattern, and I thought I was missing out, so it is good to hear your views. This blouse would look swish with a red pencil skirt as well.

  22. Nice blouse and congratulations on the versatile blogger award. You are the featured blogger on Rhonda's blogger.

  23. Your blouse looks lovely Gail, the style is really nice. I note the comments on Colette patterns, I haven't tried one yet, they are packaged beautifully but if they are a bit difficult to fit I may avoid them for a while longer (until that 'must make' style comes up). Commiserations on the feeling that you've put on a bit of weight, I'm having the same issue and am studiously walking everywhere. It's a bit of a sewing demotivator too.

  24. Just wanted to answer your question and it would be quicker here-- yes, the convertible dress is a pattern. It's Butterick 5606 (though I can't find it on their website-- I guess it's already out of print? Kind of crazy, since I got it pretty much as soon as I saw it a few months ago!)

  25. Thank you very much for the award Gail. So far I had not noticed this post. Congratulations everyone. Cheers !!