Thursday, 26 January 2017

Grainline Studio Lakeside Pajamas v.1

After a little spree of sewing for my children, I managed to fit in something for me...the Grainline Studio Lakeside Pajamas!

The lighting isn't great (too lazy to wait until the morning to take pictures!), and I can't bring myself to model pajamas for a blog post, so the 'flat on the bed' look will have to do for now.

This is a practice run for the actual pajamas I want to make. When in London for the holidays, an uncontrollable force drew me into Liberty, and that same force made it impossible for me to pass up the chance to buy some HALF PRICE Liberty tana lawn! They were 1m pieces (presumably from a past season?), and it was hard to stop at just 3 pieces. I wandered around the store wondering what to do with this amazing fabric, when it hit me...pajamas for ME! So I bought 2 pieces of one print, and a single of a second print (I have yet to decide what that will become). Before I cut into the precious Liberty fabric, I thought I'd test the pattern and the construction techniques on some cotton I picked up in Chinatown.

I'm pleased that these are a perfectly wearable trial version. I did make a small mistake with the bias on the shorts, but hopefully no one will notice. I usually attach bias from the wrong side first, then top stitch it on the right side, but due to the way the shorts are constructed, I really do have to follow the instructions in this pattern (the first seam is on the right side of the fabric, then you turn the bias to the wrong side). Despite needing nearly 7m of bias for this pattern, I think I might just make my own for the Liberty version - I can't bring myself to put scratchy store-bought bias on such lovely fabric!

Pattern: Grainline Studio Lakeside Pajamas (Digital PDF)
Fabric: Japanese cotton from Chinatown (in Singapore)
Modifications: I used 1" elastic, instead of 1 1/4" and did a line of topstitching at the top of the waistband to help keep the elastic in place

Another knitting project

I mentioned in an earlier post that I'd picked up some lovely yarn from the Beehive Wool Shop in Victoria, BC. One skein was for a cowl for my great-aunt, who lives on Quadra Island, BC. I took the skein and my needles to London this Christmas, hoping that I'd find the time to knit something small while on holiday. Thanks to long car rides and traffic jams on the M25 (ugh!), I managed to finish most of this cowl over 2 1/2 weeks of our Christmas holiday. 

The pattern is 'That Nice Stitch' by Susan Ashcroft, and is free on Ravelry. It's a lovely pattern that shows off the colours in variegated yarn really well. The best part is that the pattern can be used on any weight of yarn, and the suggested size of needles for each weight is provided. I used the entire skein, so the cowl is quite long, but I'm sure my aunt will find a creative way to wear it!

Yarn: Zen Garden Serenity Silk Single in Feisty

Needles: 4mm circular (although you can use straight needles too)

Sunday, 22 January 2017

An Oliver + S sewing spree

It's January. Kids are back at school, life is in a 'normal' routine, and the anticipated start date of a new job has been pushed back by at least a month. AND my parents are visiting for a month. So what does this mean? An unexpected extra month of guilt-free sewing time. With the two little ones spending all their free time with their grandparents, I can happily spend time holed up in my sewing space, undisturbed.

And I've been on an oliver + s sewing spree...

Oliver + S Family Reunion Dress

Close up of the front (pardon the bad ironing crease!)

Badminton Skort 1

Badminton Skort 2

Contrast fabric for the shorts on the Badminton Skort

Sketchbook Shorts

Sketchbook Shorts - finally got the pleats right!

I bought 1 yard (54" wide) of the navy blue polka dot fabric (a Japanese cotton) and it was enough for one skort, plus the shorts and waistband on a second pair. I have enough of the mushroom fabric to make a contrast yoke on a dress or tunic, or a small skirt. 

My first pair of Sketchbook Shorts were a bit of a failure - the pleats didn't come out in the right place, I did something wrong with the faux fly, and couldn't get the waistband to sit properly. My son still wears them (thank goodness for long t-shirts that cover up these mistakes!). Thankfully, this second pair seemed to sew up without any issues - I probably just paid a more attention when I was sewing! They're quite long, so I put in a wider hem and turned them up for a cuff. If my son keeps growing taller, and not wider, they should fit for a while.

There was also a pair of (un-photographed) linen pajama pants for my husband. On to some sewing for myself...a Grainline Studio Alder Shirtdress, and the Grainline Studio Lakeside Pajamas. Let's see how productive I can be in the next 10 days!