Things have been slow on the personal sewing front since having my second baby in the summer. Several factors are hampering my stitching – lack of time, demanding baby, the usual…I’m sure many can relate to this! However, the main issue is breastfeeding and the very negative effect that it has on my daily wardrobe. I can’t wear my dresses unless I want to strip to feed – no thanks – and while I could be stylish in a nice top it is all too easy to reach for a comfy jumper in the sleepy haze of morning. Oh and it doesn’t help that it is currently freezing outside! Now this shouldn’t really stop me from forward planning – I do have some ideas in the pipeline for the Colette Peony and Moneta dresses, McCalls 6696 shirtdress (love it!) and a pencil dress in african wax cotton (I got loads from my lovely friend who works in Kenya) – but there is no point in trying any new patterns until I have stopped nursing and my body has bounced back to normal. I made that mistake two years ago when I fitted a Burda jacket – FBA and all – only for it to be too big in the bust when my body changed post-nursing.
Now…as sewing is highly addictive and one must continue to sew, the best way around this is to sew some repeat patterns.
I made this first one a couple of years ago out of an old French Connection tunic that was headed for the bin. It was intended as a muslin and and I had plans for others which never did materialise. Although a muslin it is very wearable. The fabric is a nice, soft chambray and despite the hideous painted plastic buttons (which I have bought replacements for) it is not a bad wee top. I think I cut a size 6 and did an FBA of around 1.5 inches however I can’t be entirely sure since I traced around the modified pattern pieces and didn’t write down the changes I made. I’m pretty sure I also dropped the bust dart by a couple of centimetres as I normally do with Colette patterns.
The following two were made recently. The first is a beautifully soft viscose with a lovely drape and an infuriating unwillingness to stay crease-free. Ironing it is like painting the Forth Road bridge – by the time I have made it to the back the front has crinkled again. I’m sure I could spend my life standing at the ironing board trying to tame the thing and for this reason it may not get that much wear however lovely it looks. The second is a shiny polyester – much more practical from a washing and ironing perspective but probably not so good on a hot day! On this version I did a slight dipped hem at the back. It looks incredibly wonky in the photo but it is not in real life.
Both of these tops were stash sewing but I like the pattern so might invest in some summer appropriate fabrics. It might be January but I live in hope that the frost lifts eventually. And at least in the meantime I am sewing something – anything – for myself. There will be more to come…