Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Oh Lisette,you are a bad influence!

The daughters are not happy,because ....... Mummy has found a new friend and her name is Lisette!

First there was the Portfolio Dress ...
And now I have discovered the Portfolio Pants.

My first pair was too small,thank you for all your sweet comments while I sulked!

These pants are lovely and so comfortable.

And I am being very brave and 'tucking in'.

And I am NOT wearing my Bridget Jones knickers!

I love them,Hubby loves them,Everyone is happy 

(Except the Girls)

Portfolio Pants-How to do the zipper

Firstly and(it should be obviously)put the zipper in on your left hand side!
I plead a poorly child,wakeful baby and lack of sleep .....

Today I finished my second pair of Lisette Portfolio Pants. This pair fits me!
I did have to tweak the pattern a little,I went with the size 14,but took the waist into the size 10 and tapered out to the 14 over the thigh.

Cutting out a third pair-the adjusted pattern front

For the back,I went back to the 12 at the side seam and took a little from the centre back and made the darts a little larger. Not a great deal of change,but it made such a difference to the fit.

Just a little adjustment to the back.

For those of us used to the lovely instructions in the oliver+S patterns the zipper instructions may appear a bit wanting .....
This is my interpretation-following the pattern.

Fold and press your seam allowances as directed by the pattern and stitch the first side of your zipper in place. It should look like this(but remember,I put my zipper on the wrong side)!

Stitching one side of the zipper.

After this step,following the pattern,pin and then baste the other side in place.
Now I am not a huge fan of basting,but I would really recommend it for this step!

The basted zip

Zipper neatly under the flap
When sewing in your zipper,use a zipper foot and stitch halfway down with the zipper open

Stitch halfway down and stop and lift your presser foot.
Lift the presser foot,close the zipper and then keep stitching.

Finish stitching with the zipper closed

The finished zipper

Basting removed

I hope that is useful to someone ..... starting my third pair tomorrow,must get my zip in the correct side this time!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Winter Wardrobes for Little Ones

Have you ever had a friend who is so good and kind and sweet one has to be very careful not to take advantage of them?
Well that is my Missy L.
Obviously she winds up her siblings-thats every little girls job after all,but what ever I ask her to do the answer is always 'Yes Mummy' and she skips off to do it.

So,when it came time for her new clothes I wanted to make it special!
She desperately wants a blue silk School Photo dress,we had a look in the box room but all I had was a vivid cobalt in a heavy thai silk. I could tell it wasn't quite what she was after,so a quick search on E-bay found some vintage silk which was just what the Doctor ordered.
I was able to get some lining from the same lovely seller and some vintage taffeta to make a rustle worthy 2+2 skirt.

Big smiles from blue eyes!
Some little blouse were next.
A white Music Class blouse would be a necessity! Also a second in the lovely City Weekend fabric,Ice Cream Shop blue.
A 2+2 in City Weekend Tree Tops blue was chosen. Miss L loves the collection as much as I do.

Finally,a suit.
I had hidden this lovely piece of polished cotton sateen in creamy gold from the twins. When I presented it for inspection,there were squeals of joy,we both agreed it was perfect for a Sunday Brunch jacket and skirt.

A few pieces of corduroy went into her basket for trousers(if I have to have them,Mummy)in soft blues and creams. Possibly Sandbox Pants with velvet ribbons for the ties.

We had such fun,my bonnie girl and me!

There are days when we shouldn't sew .....

And I had one today!
I've not been well this week.
Neither has the baby.
High temps,sore throats,achey joints,
I should have stayed in bed.

I will cheer myself up.
I will make some pants.
Groovy Lisette Portfolio Pants!
I should have stayed in bed.

Size 14 measures perfect!
But that waist looks really big,
I will fit the waist and taper down,
I should have stayed in bed.

These pants sew up so quickly,
Zipper in,facings done!
Funny that waist was so big ... Oh bum!
I wish I stayed in bed!

Clearly written on the pattern,
NOTE:Pants are worn 1"below the waist.
Why didn't I stay in bed!

The finished pants are beautiful,
On the hanger,they are beautiful,
On me,Not so beautiful!
I'm going back to bed!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Miss E's Moment in the Sun

It is time for my darling Miss E to choose her winter wardrobe.
Her colours?  Pink and Grey.

During my last birth I was unlucky with an epidural procedure,this has left me with back pain. It's not so bad,but making beds and vacuuming  are two jobs that I just cannot manage. I had a cleaner briefly,but then my twins asked if they could take over.
They have and they do a fantastic job,so they split the money and get a bonus $5 if they don't squabble.
You probably wondering what that has to do with new clothes?
Well,with her hard earned cash,Miss E has bought herself a long skinny cardigan in grey and pink stripes,and is she proud of it?
Thus pink and grey are the colours de jour!

First up were some tops,We found some charcoal knit to make into Hopscotch Tops with a pink graphic print stencil.
While shopping on E-bay I bought some very stretchy textured white knit,it is nice and thick for warm winter tops,so this was selected for Hopscotch tops as well!
I made those up,the flat front ones are Hopscotch tops with two backs.

Next we moved on to a 'suit' and she fell in love with some self stripe grey drill. We decided that the Lisette Passport jacket would be perfect and if it is a little large it will be good for layering over jumpers.
For bottoms she chose the Oliver+s Sailboat Pants which she thought would look groovy lengthened and  widened at the hem.
Other choices for bottoms were pale blue denim for Sketchbook 'jeans',creamy coloured drill for a Music Class skirt and,surprisingly,a chocolate brown taffeta for a swishy 2+2 skirt.

Some soft grey flannel was selected for a Nature Walk top(Mums choice,but I am sure she will like it)
White linen and a pretty candy stripe cotton for Music Class blouses and a floral pink for a 2+2 blouse. Miss Z found some orange in the same pattern and also requested a 2+2 blouse,I am very pleased as I felt they needed a 'girly' touch.

Both twins then were very busy labelling their fabric and choosing buttons and trim and I have now have to baskets of beautiful fabric to get busy with!

Next up Misses L & M .....

Thanks for reading

Monday, March 21, 2011

Check out my Portfolio!

I know,terrible title,but I am making a curry,reading a story book and I have to walk down to meet the bus or the driver will report me to DECS!

I have finished another Portfolio,this time a tunic with red stitching(thank you Cindy)to wear over black leggings(not made yet)!

This time I stitched down the pockets to use some more of the lovely red thread,hopefully it won't make it uncomfortable to wear.

As usual,I sewed the neck piece back to front,the opposite way to the instructions. I was given this idea from a young designer and I use it for most attachments.

I prep the front yoke by folding a 3/8'' seam allowance.
Stitch your button loops in place,following the pattern instructions.

Stitch your neck yokes together and trim the seams.

Rolling the seam so that it is nice and even,give the yoke a good steamy press and pin in place.
Top stitch s l o w l y !


More Ta-dah's

When I told Jed I was going to wear it with black leggings he looked a bit blank. I am not generally a knit fabric girl,but I have seen a lot of women wearing them,that perhaps,well,shouldn't .....
So I figure I can too!

Thanks for reading chaps!


Friday, March 18, 2011

Celebrate MY Boy!

Son&Heir hadn't had anything new for sometime and I wanted to sew a few more Oliver+S  outfits for him,before he grew out of their sizing.

I really like the Nature Walk top and pants but unfortunately the biggest sizes only just fit him.

Although designed to be made in woven fabric,for some ease,we decided to make it in City Weekend knit with scant 1/4 inch seams.

The pants are made from a red,stretchy denim. As comfortable as track pants,but a bit smarter.
I added width to pants piece and yoke as they did not allow for a older boys 'bits'.

Son&Heir is very much a shirt and trousers fellow,so I am very pleased to find a casual outfit he feels comfortable in.

To give it a sporty look I silk-screened EGLINGTON across the back yoke.

He really likes the lettering!
I think I spaced out the letters too much ..... oh ,well,I know for next time!

Taking Rupert for a Nature Walk.

This weekend I hope to enlarge the Sketch Book shirt again so I can make him a few more.
Son is very keen on the Modern Work Shop fabric.

I am very proud of my beautiful son.
Never more than when I read our latest school newsletter.

Now thats better then any gold cup!

Thanks for reading
x N

Monday, March 14, 2011

More Sewing for Mummy!

Ooooh,I am enjoying myself,sewing for me!(my twins are getting just a little worried)!

I finished up another Lisette pattern today,my second,this time a Portfolio dress.
I used some more of my denim(43 metres to go) and made a wearable toile/muslin.

After a lot of  thought and reading the forums,I went with the 12(I wear an AUS 10/12). It was a super fit from the hips down but I did take 3/4'' extra off the seam allowance form mid sleeve tapering back to the hips.

Now,I am sure if you are tall and willowy,the fullness would be lovely.
As I am short and cuddly,some shape was required or it looked a little maternity(wash my mouth out)!

It is lovely to wear,it skims the body beautifully and one just feels so smart!
Anyone for Cibo's?

Constructing the dress,I reversed the instructions for the cuffs and neckline. I sewed the inside first and turned and topstitched from the outside.
Apart from that,I followed the instructions to the letter and they are good instructions!
Definitely more oliver+S then standard Simplicity.

This is my first Lisette pattern,but there will be many more!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Oliver+S for Mummy!

If you read my blog regularly(or even not so regularly)you will know that I am 'crazy in love' with oliver+S patterns. I have barely used another brand since finding them 12 months ago and as I have hundreds of patterns(no,I am not exaggerating) that says something in it self!

So,you can imagine my great excitement when I discovered the Lovely Liesl and Co were developing women's patterns.  Lisette patterns are everything I could have hoped for. Fun,cute but classic garments with that little whimsy that Ms Gibson does so well.

Sizing is a issue so I shall be making up a toile in each pattern with some lovely soft denim I purchased in bulk.
Today I made this The Portfolio Top and I am very pleased with the results!

I cut out the size 14,but after a comment from Liesl in the forum I did fit it before sewing the side seams. I am glad I did as it was a little full,so,starting at the sleeve edge,I took an extra 1/2 inch of the seam down to below the bust and then tapered it out to 1/4 inch extra off the seam allowance.

Next time I shall definitely make the 12 and If I make it in a stretch fabric I may go back to a 10(with tummy allowance).
I normally wear an AUS 10-12,so I hope that is a bit of help in choosing your size!

I really like this top in a solid as it has snappy features they would disappear in a patterned fabric. The curved yoke is very attractive and flattering to ones face. I did take a slightly greater seam allowance at the neck to lower the neckline,but afterwards I wished I hadn't.
It certainly didn't need it!
I substituted the dress cuffs to the top as well and I was very happy with those.

I think I could have nipped in the waist a little and I may try this with the dress.

However,the pattern is lovely and I am so enjoying sewing for me!


Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Tears and Triumphs

This having pre-teen girls is hard!
I love being groomed and nicely dressed so I guess I shouldn't be surprised that my twins are similar.
I don't wear much make up,even when I go out,but I am pretty fussy with skin care and I do wear mascara when ever I am having visitors.
Misses Z&E are desperate to wear make up. Their friends do,gaudy,tarty muck-I just can't bear it. I am struggling with this as they are so lovely they don't need it.
However,whenever we go near a chemist,they make a beeline for the cosmetics.
So today,after their dentist appointments,I went into a pharmacy with them and told them if they asked themselves,they could ask the young woman at the makeup counter for some tips.
I explained that they had to be twelve before they would be allowed to wear it,but asking a few questions would not hurt.
The twins were so excited,but a little embarrassed,not Miss L,up she goes to the assistant,''My sisters would like to ask you some questions but they are too shy''!
The lovely young shop girl was delightful,she chatted to the girls and showed them some pretty neutral colours and explained that natural was so much better then bright shades.
After spending 20 minutes or so with them she took their names and our number and said to come back when they turn 12(September) and she would show them how to use eye make up sparingly,to get a nice,natural look.
Finally,she sent them off with a tiny sample of tinted sunblock to try for themselves.
Their feet did not touch the ground all the way back to the car!

''Too young''! you may say, I know and agree,but it was about this age I drifted away from my own mother and I don't want that with mine.
I am doing my best!
But this having pre-teen girls is so hard

Monday, March 7, 2011

Birthday @ The Beach Part 2

After morning tea a little light shopping was deemed desirable.

Three sisters finding treasures ...

First up was 'Holiday',where we drooled over beautiful silver jewelry,baskets,beaded headbands,scarves,lovely oils and all those gorgeous things that men really don't understand but (mine) are very tolerant of.

Ohhh,Mummy! Look at this!

This shop smells divine ....... How I wish I could capture that in my blog! But I did purchase several bottles of lime and passionfruit oil to try and recreate it at home ..... mmmmm,bliss!

This time I took ALL THREE big girls in at once,normally I do it in shifts,but they have proven to be careful and the owner is very relaxed.
OOOOH Mummy,may I show you something?-How many times do you think I heard that?

Now Miss Z was terribly keen to keep moving,she had something to show me as did her twin. I was a bit cross they had forgotten their hats,however I soon found out why!

It turns out the last time we were in Robe(Miss L's birthday)the twins spotted these hats in a rather posh little boutique. I was wondering where the orange inspiration came from.

It also explains why Miss Z has been so helpful the last month wanting to do all those horrid jobs(like cleaning the fridge).

Miss E had money put away from house cleaning to buy hers,so she gave her sister a little extra to help her buy hers.
The lovely owner remembered the girls from last time and very kindly knocked 20% of the price for them!
Very Lucky Girls!

Missy M finds her twin!

All that shopping had given us quite an appetite.


Unfortunately the birthday girl was suffering from too much sugar and not enough sleep so we decided to grab our pizza to go and head back to our cottage.
When we got back a visitor was waiting for us!

A frill neck lizard

Miss E desperately wanted to hold it.
I said 'No'!
I am sure I can remember Harry Butler getting his nose bitten ......

A new hat and a close encounter with a lizard ..... what more could a girl want?

After a quick swim,we had to head home early the next day. Farm jobs to do. Don't know when we will head back,my birthday is next and thats not until the winter solstice!

Thanks for reading!