Finished Star Light Jasmine

When I was organising these posts I wanted to have some sort of order to them, so decided that I really ought to post them in the order they were finished.  So here’s my Jasmine – the first item that I finished of the four I revealed yesterday…

I am wearing this top to death at the moment!  I love it so much.  It’s comfortable, it looks elegant but is quite effortless when getting dressed in the morning.  It has some personality but is still work appropriate.  Taking the time to sort the fit was so definitely worth it!

Another bonus is that the cotton shirting I made this from is becoming softer and softer with each laundering too – a quality I’d overlooked in the fabric having made my decision  primarily based on the fact it had stars on it and that the pattern placement was random so I didn’t have to do any pattern matching!

Oh, and it also has the Boy’s seal of approval as the first time I wore it he commented “Mummy pretty”!  Yup, I love it.

The construction was straight forward (another benefit of making a muslin!).  You really do need to grade the seams at the shoulders though as you end up with a lot of layers there so fabric choice is also important.  Cotton shirting is about the limit of what you can get away with in my opinion.  Another option would be to omit the facing and use bias binding instead as the top stitching securing it would be hidden by the collar and ties.  I may be a little odd though as I quite like facings on a garment…

I also used organza as an interfacing on the facings and cuffs – thank you Annabelle!  I have to admit that I don’t think I’ll be using a lot of fusible interfacing going forward now unless its in a bag!  I much prefer the the hand of a sew-in interfacing and fabric combination.  Plus you don’t get that weird ripply, bubbly effect that fusible interfacing can give after a few washes (my hand mades go in the machine unless the fabric says otherwise).

This pattern has so much potential.  I’ve got some vintage anchor print rayon cotton blend that I think will be turned into a Jasmine, possibly with the short ties though.  I would also love to do one with a white bodice, navy collar and ties with red flat piping around the collar edge and also between the cuffs and sleeve.

Adjustments Made:
My usual FBA
Broad back adjustment

Adjustments for Future Versions:
Shorten the sleeve length by about 1″.  The cuffs get scrunched up in the crook of my elbow when my arms are bent – for instance when I’m typing.

Make Again:  Yes!

Whilst I’m not taking part in one week one pattern hosted by Tilly, I may do my own week at a later date and this pattern would be a serious contender…

There’s a lot of Layers in them there Shoulder Seams!

As the Minoru sew along is proceeding at quite a sedate pace I made a start on my wearable muslin of the Colette Jasmine pattern.  And I have to say I’m pleased as punch so far!

Colette Jasmine Neck Line

First up, I had a bit of a crisis when I sewed the side seams.  Basically I couldn’t see how it would ever fit, but sew them with the full 5/8″ allowance I did and (drum roll here) it fits!  A size 14 Colette pattern actually fits me (after a FBA to accommodate the girls)!  You have no idea (well, probably a bit from the over use of exclamation marks…) how happy this makes me.

So far, I’ve attached the collar (turning that the right way out is a right royal pain in the  butt) and the facing.  The inside is an unbelievable mess as I haven’t finished any of the seams.  I did overlock the edge of the facing though?!  No idea why when I haven’t finished any other raw edge…

But there are some serious layers in the shoulder seams.  You’ve got the fabric and seam allowance from the bodice (2 layers), the same times two for the collar (4 layers), and the fabric and seam allowance for the facing (2 layers).  That’s 8 layers at the shoulders!  6 at centre front and back.  I have to admit that getting the facing to stay put inside the top, even with the understitching and some heavy duty pressing is, erm, interesting.  The instructions do suggest hand stitching it to the seam allowances though which will help.  I may well have been hindered though by the fabric as whilst drapy it does have some body to it, due to the textured weave which may well exaggerate any minor issues with that aspect of the construction.

So all I need to do now is construct and insert the sleeves, an absolute first for me!  I’ll try and get some more photos once this step is done…

New Zip

As for the Minoru, I rejected the planned zip and bought another today in my lunch break that matches the one destined for the front.  But as it’s a separating one with quite chunky teeth I haven’t sewn over the ends of it, just edge stitched above and below it.  Which you can only tell if you’re about 4″ away from the collar!  I’ve also basted the completed hood to the collar as per today’s step.

They told me to pull and gather them...

I have scooted a little further along though and pinned the hooded collar to the top of the jacket and drawn up the gathering stitches…  What is it with gathering stitches that just make you want to draw them up?

Three rows

I did three rows of stitches, the seam line will be between the yellow and matching thread.  It makes the final gathers a lot more controllable.

I do love the gathering detail with this jacket though.  It’s starting to come together for me now.  I’m trying to be really good and not just keep going as I know that I’ll get a better result by staying with the sew along.

A Bit of This, A Bit of That

Nothing really specific to today’s post really, I just need to talk out loud as it were to get some thoughts straight in my head – the sewing ones anyway!  I won’t bore you with the others!

Annabelle's Silk

First up is pre-washing fabric and fabric care.  I mentioned this before in my musings about whether or not to sew Pastille in wool.  With your encouragement I’m going to!  I still need to pick Annabelle’s brains on the best way to pre-wash and care for wool as she seems to have it sorted.  Speaking of which she’s done a really interesting post on pre-washing and caring for silk.  Silk is one of those fabrics I’d love to sew something from, but am a little intimidated by.  Not so much the actual sewing as I have yet to get over the hurdle of 1. buying any and 2. pre-washing it and working out how to care for the finished garment!  Annabelle’s post has at least solved point 2!

Seamless' Wearable Muslin - How Cute is She?!

The other is the age old question of to toile or not.  Seamless mused on this (with regards to Colette’s Meringue) and made a wearable muslin of a self drafted pencil skirt.  The reason why I’m thinking about this is that I’m about to launch into the lovely Colette Jasmine.

Colette Pattern's Jasmine

I have a wonderful fabric with a random star pattern that is destined for the final version, but as I’ve gone down two sizes on the Colette chart since I started sewing (Huzzah! Slowly but surely…) I feel I ought to do a test run of at least the bodice and sleeves.  I’ve checked the flat pattern measurements post FBA and it should be OK.  So do I use some cheap blue textured drapey poly-cotton I’ve got in the stash, use up some more old caravan curtains which are uber crisp (i.e. completely the wrong hand for this top), or launch straight into my stars?  I think I’m going to go for the wearable muslin option…  What would you do?

The other consideration is time!  OK, I can hear most of you saying ‘well, duh!  When isn’t time (or the lack of it!) a consideration?!’  This is wear my in progress Minoru comes in to the equation.  Do I trundle on and carry on with the sew along posts or do I just crack on?  There are pros and cons in my mind…

The pros of staying with the sew along are:
1.  It’s a SEW ALONG!  It’s the whole point.  If I was just going to get on with it why did I hoard my materials for at least a month?!
2.  I think I’ll get a better finished item by staying with the sew along and picking up little tips from Tasia and other sew along-ers.
3.  There’s no rush

The cons are:
1.  It’s going to take longer
2.  I’m going to have to keep re-threading my sewing machine as I move between my garments (not really a biggie, but a slight annoyance!)

Ha!  The Pros list is longer and the cons really aren’t that great.  I’ll just have to re-thread my machine between projects and get over myself!

And last, but by no means least, is the subject of interfacing.  I’m starting to dislike fusible interfacing in garments and am erring towards sew-in.  The question is this:  do I go for a synthetic sew in, or do I use some silk organza in my Jasmine?  Or do I go synthetic for the muslin and silk for the stars?!

Right, I promise I’ll shut up now and let you get on with far more important stuff!  If you’ve got any advice on any of my ramblings though – or can provide some clarity I’d love to read your comments!