Thursday, May 22, 2014

Me-Made Panties: a Trial Run

Yep, that's right, I spent a rare day in my sewing room.  I've been itching to get in there for a while now, so you can probably imagine the contented smile on my face right now.

Sadly, only half of the last 5 hours was spent sewing.  This morning was spent digging out my sewing room from the epic storm that seemed to blow through.  Cripes, how does it wind up such a disaster without any sewing going on?! 


I've been wanting to make more of these suckers for a while.  I'm still wearing two of the pairs I made back in 2010 since they're the most comfortable panties I own and I don't ever want to give them up!  Yikes, that's a long time ago.  Definitely time to make some new ones!

I'm not going to go into much detail about the construction or tracing the pattern, as they're very similar to how I did the last set and I added some useful links in that post.  I did spend some time yesterday reading through Zoe's (of So Zo...) series of blog posts on making panties, and she has a free pattern available if you don't want to try tracing your own.  Really helpful stuff!

These were really just a trial run of the pattern I traced this afternoon from a pair of beloved-but-sadly-unwearable La Senza panties.  This time I was smart and traced them onto some stiff muslin fabric to create a more durable pattern.

For the trial run, I cut up an old comfy-but-indescribably-unflattering top I originally found at a thrift shop and has been hanging out in my To-Be-Reconstructed Bin for years.

This was the first time I've sewn elastic like this, first stitching the elastic and fabric right sides together, then flipping the elastic under and using a three-stitch zig-zag overtop.  Boy do I need practice keeping a straight zig-zagged seam on wiggly elastic! 

All in all, I'm pretty pleased with them, other than the horrible job I did on the elastic.  And you can't really see once it's all said and done - at least, not from the front.  I've learned to use a light coloured thread when using a light coloured elastic - boy does the underside look horrible.

The traced pattern turned out to be really comfortable!  I love how odd the leg holes look flat, but they have good bum coverage because of it, yet doesn't dig into my legs in the front.  Though one thing I'll need to remember in the future is to tighten up the elastic as it goes over the bum area of the leg holes.  The elastic wound up a bit too loose in that area, and tightening it up should snug it up to my bum a bit more.

Things you all obviously need to know.  You're welcome.

So yeah, I'd call these a success.  Time to start cranking these suckers out, assembly-line style!

Have any of you converted to me-made panties yet?  I sort of want to replace all of my current stock with them!

Monday, May 19, 2014

Camp Knitting and Project Plotting

Between a trip to Manitoba, a busy rotation in camp, and a fantastic camping weekend in the middle of Nowhere, Yukon, I've been far away from the sewing (and knitting) community.  Heh, I'll probably be popping into quite a few blogs in the coming days, making comments on all sorts of old posts as I catch up.

Got one twist repeat finished on Saturday...

...and completed (nearly) another repeat on Sunday.  This photo was taken at 11:20 pm, btw, and in natural light too.  I love living in the North.

 Inspired by Michelle, I worked on my Just Beachy while sitting around the campfire.  (I definitely did not get as far as she did during her camping trip!)  It's definitely a project you park yourself to do, because there's so many balls of yarn to handle.  This was great because my boyfriend kept refilling my drinks!  Sadly, it meant sitting in the rain while I dropped down stitches to correct a cable twist direction.  The Boyfriend and our Buddy were laughing pretty hard at that.  Jerks.

I'm so happy to be back home now though, mostly because there's so many projects I want to work on. 

My favourite cousin is getting married this summer, and I'm helping her out with her wedding favours.  I'm sewing up a ton of little burlap, cotton, and lace bags.  I have lots of ideas on how to make these up, so be prepared to see these in the coming weeks.  So stoked to find a use for my vintage lace collection!

I'm also hoping to do some home dec stuff for around our house.  I really want to put my person touch on our home.  Although first I need to do some serious spring cleaning!

And part of that spring cleaning is going to include digging out all of my clothes and getting rid of most of it.  Seriously, my closet is in dire shape, and I need to see what I need to replace (hopefully by sewing).  We'll see.  I may take you guys along for that ride.  :)

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Finished Project: Eastwood Cardigan


Although sadly for the wrong season.  Seriously, have you ever seen a sweater that screams FALL!!! half as much as this one does?  I doubt you have!

That's okay, I love it anyways.  Even if I have no idea what to wear with it.  Might need to experiment with my closet when I get out of camp!  Perfect timing too, because hello spring cleaning!

The pattern is Eastwood Cardigan by Allison Dykhuizen, knit up in size 40" (based on bust size) using Knit Picks Wool of the Andes Tweed in Autumn Heather and Prussian Heather colourways.

I didn't make any changes to the design, although I might consider lengthening the body a bit more if I were to make it again.  It was frighteningly short in the back before I blocked it, and while it's much longer now, I think I'd like it another inch longer.  But this is a knit, so it'll probably still lengthen with wear.

It's kind of hard to see the striping in some of these pics because my camera is a utter prick, but they were fun to do.  You knit both front panels first, the pick up stitches along one side of a panel and knit side-to-side in stripes, and then pick up stitches for the pockets and sleeves.  It only started to get boring when I got to the sleeves, and that's only because...well, sleeves.  The only difficult part was detangling the two balls of yarn in use at all times!  Oh, and seaming, because I had a heck of a time getting the second panel seamed onto the body.  GRRRR!  Need to practice that more.

But look at those nearly-jogless stripes!  Seriously, I didn't do anything special to get that.  AHA so proud!

Probably the best part is the pockets.  And also the ribbing, which just makes me happy to look at. 

Love the neckline, especially at the back!

I don't know if it's the most flattering garment on me that I've ever made.  Those panels add bulk to my hips and draws you eyes right to them, making me look even hippier than I am (and I'm happily hippy to begin with).  Even when I wrap up the front, the pockets add a lot of bulk to the high hips and makes me look wider.  But you know what?   

I don't care one bit!  This sweater is the best fitting one I've made to date, looks fantastic, and is so comfy it's like wearing a blanket with pockets!  And I managed to knit it in 12 weeks, thanks to the Holla Knits KAL I've mentioned a few times before.  I even won a free pattern of my choice from the Holla Knits line-up.  I picked Just Beachy by Emma Welford.

Which, of course, I cast on immediately.

And I thought two balls of yarn was annoying to work with.  Let's try three balls at once!  ::headdesk::
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