Sewing Adventures

By Susan | Comments: 1 | December 2, 2013

I have been trying hard to not show any of of my handmade Christmas presents pre Christmas but this one is too cute not to share.

Figgy etherealLast week on Twitter I saw a link to the new release of Figgy’s Heavenly Collection. The Ethereal dress and blouse just stood out for me so I snapped it up and thought it would make a brilliant present for one of my nieces. Plus isn’t that red headed little model just the cutest?

Of course this meant finding the perfect piece of fabric. I couldn’t find anything in the stash that seemed right so I headed to Spotlight. I found a sweet stripe with little cherries all over it, a pretty floral, a stripe basically a whole bunch of stuff and none of it felt right, I even called my brother to see what he suggested (that’s a first right there). I had seen this pale lemon printed with large metallic yellow dots early during my search but it felt a bit stiff. However I just kept coming back to it, so I decided it was the one. The photos don’t really capture the metallicness of the dots but they have a real shimmer to them.

After some quick phonecalls to my mum and my brother to determine my nieces current size I assembled the pattern and went for it. The construction itself was quite straight forward but I made a number of changes to the Figgy’s construction method.

– added the gathers to the lower skirts and then attached them to their respective tops using french seams

– double turned the frill outer edge eliminating the overlocking/serging as I thought that the extra stitching would show through when pressed

– machine basted the frill onto the front neckline and armhole

– added the button loop using some patterned bias binding and bused the same bias to finish the back slit

– french seamed the shoulders

– bound the armholes using the patterned bias

– french seamed the side seams

– double turned the lower hem

– bound the neckline using the patterned bias

I did all the binding as the top is meant to be lined but this niece is in Queensland, and summer in Queensland is all high temperatures and humidity. The thought of extra layers was all just too much, so I just took them out. The added bonus of being able to use a patterned bias binding on the inside was also a factor as I totally love bias!

The french seams was mostly because I could but also because the printing is a little stiff. It will totally soften with a few washes but if I had just overlocked/serged the edges I was worried a small person might find them scratchy (and seriously who wants to be the person who gave the kid “that scratchy top”). Plus they look all pretty and professional.

french seam

Overall I am pretty happy with it and I  hope my niece likes it too!

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Hi, I'm Susan. A designer living in Sydney, Australia.

Here I share tales of my sewing, my pattern collection and insights into what it's like to work as a professional fashion designer.

Other recurring themes include cat photos and an ever changing hair style.



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