Thursday, February 5, 2015

Summer sewing: Emma & Diana

Hi! Despite my lack of blog posts - January was the first month I didn't post in the almost 5 years I've been blogging :-(  I have been having fun sewing as usual, just not taking pics and writing!

So here are two things I've made over summer that I'm enjoying wearing... Emma pants and Diana cami from Spit Up and Stilettos (formerly Sewloft). First the pants...

This is the first time I've made pants with a fly/zip opening, though I've been wanting to for ages. I've tired all sorts of pull on trousers and also fly front shorts, but not actual trousers, so I'm excited that I've tackled it, and I'm pretty pleased with the results.

What attracted me to this pattern was the shape of the trousers: slim fit, side slash pockets, lowish waist and cropped leg. I  found the instructions easy to follow and the techniques quite sophisticated. For example I hadn't used this particular method for pocket construction but loved it and found it very professional looking and well finished.

I used a light weight cotton with some stretch from Remnant Warehouse. It's a neutral grey colour and light weight enough to be worn in summer when I'm feeling like pants over a skirt or dress (shorts for me are relegated to home or beach wear). The fit is not absolutely perfect (the crotch could do with some slight adjustments), but overall they're fine and certainly fill a gap in my wardrobe. I suspect that as I make more trousers I will get more picky about fit (and possibly look back at these and cringe!), but I think that's OK - as sewists we build on our knowledge bit by bit and improve with time and practice.

Next time I would try a heavier weight fabric, as I think it would sit better, adjust that crotch slightly and also lengthen the legs a bit as I had to turn the tiniest of hems so that they wouldn't end up shorter than I wanted for my average height (I'm 5'6" or 168cm).

When I downloaded the Emma pattern I also downloaded the Diana cami and thought it might look nice together so tried it. I used a scrap of fabric thinking that it might be a wearable musline to wear to bed with pyjama shorts, but I like it so much that it's gone to the ordinary wardrobe :-) The construction is just 2 pieces, front and back, no bust darts or shaping, the neckline and armholes are bound with self bias binding and the straps are thin spaghetti straps from the same fabric.

I love the racer style back and also the boxy fit. It would obviously look different in differently draping fabrics, and I think would look fabulous extended to a dress. On an underwear note, I think this pattern deserves a strapless bra, if you can bear it, to show off the lovely back without distraction.

* Having said all that and stated how much I like both of these pieces, I struggled to decide whether to publish this blog post, as I learnt just yesterday of the copyright dispute issue happening around this pattern company (I don't think these designs in particular but am not sure). I don't know much at all about it but it always saddens me to hear of copyright issues. I would love to think that someone would not knowingly take the design/s of another and call them their own to profit, but who knows really what happens. All I'll say is that I hope the issue is sorted out as this sewing community in general is so fantastic.
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