Sunday, November 11, 2012

Un chapeau rouge...

...sounds classy in French, non?  But no, I'm not one of the Red Hat ladies -- just a sewist with a piece of red velvet left over from an infinity scarf.  Waste not -- and there you go -- a jaunty beret!

Pattern is Vogue 9082, an OOP (I think) Patricia Underwood design.  Fabric is rayon velvet from FabricMart, a fairly recent addition to my stash, so there may still be some left, if anyone is interested.  Lined with Ambiance rayon, and brim (only) interfaced with silk organza, as I wanted to keep a loose, floppy effect.  Very easy pattern to sew, but lots of handbasting. 

Now, I just need to figure out just how I'd like it to drape, and just how to arrange the hair, and hopefully it will see the light of day!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Basic Chic

Somehow, with all the strange weather we've been having -- hot, cold, hurricanes, etc. I never showed the latest cardi.  It's turned cold again, but too cold to go outdoors for a modeled shot.  So, here it is hanging.

Pattern is from Chic Knits -- the Basic Chic V-Neck Cardi.  Yarn is vintage stash - Tahki Donegal Tweed, 100% wool, 183 yards/167 m per 100 g skein. 

I like it well enough, but I think I didn't do the yarn justice with such a plain pattern.  Somehow such a rustic, tweedy yarn cries out for cables.  Still, it will be a useful piece, and I'm happy to have made a teeny wee dent in the stash.  Onward!

Friday, November 2, 2012

Fe, Fi, Faux...

...fur, that is.  It seems to be all around this season, so how about a little faux fur collar to add some zip to a sweater?

Some leftover scraps from a pillow, and Butterick pattern 5727, a nifty hint from the latest issue of Altered Couture, and voila!

The pattern calls for fabric ties, which are sewn into the collar.  That's perfectly fine, but a little limiting, style-wise.  Perhaps you don't want a floppy tie or bow, or maybe you'd like to coordinate the color to something else in your wardrobe.  Well, now you can -- thanks to a hint from the article "Nifty Thrifting" by Tracy Schultz in the Aug/Sep/Oct 2012 issue of Altered Couture.  Instead of sewing those ties, simply sew ribbon stays onto the back of the lined collar, and then -- presto, change-o, run a scarf of your choice through the bands and tie.  Here's a shot of the back of the collar --

How clever is that?  Now you can switch out scarves or ribbons to your heart's content.  Like so --

Of course, maybe you don't want any type of tie at all.  No worries, you could also simply sew a hook and eye to the collar's edge.

These work up really quickly, and use very little fabric.  Might even be a quick, simple gift idea for someone on your holiday list.  One other little hint I'll leave you with -- the pattern has a center back seam.  The pattern instructions would have you sew the center back seam in the fur, sew the center back seam in the lining fabric, then sew the two pieces together -- leaving an opening along an edge for turning the collar right side out.  That would certainly work, however, I find it easier (when hand sewing the small opening closed) to leave an opening in the center back seam of the lining fabric instead.  Actually, I only sew about an inch of that seam on either side and leave the rest open.  Then, simply sew around the entire edge when you've placed the fur and lining together.  That way, your hand stitching is lining fabric to lining fabric -- plus it's hidden underneath the collar.  The other way, you'd be stitching faux fur to lining fabric along a more noticeable outer edge.