Sunday, 24 January 2016

Seamwork Rio

I sewed my first Seamwork pattern!

 Once I discovered Seamwork I showed amazing restraint in not subscribing immediately after I saw the patterns available, and I love that you can choose any two each month. I was only able to refrain as it was so close to my birthday and Christmas. In the mean time I drooled over the patterns planning what I wanted to make first!

When I finally subscribed, the latest Body Issue was out and after seeing the pictures of the Rio on the beautiful real model Seamwork used I knew I wanted the Rio to be my first project. I loved the look of the drop hem at the back and the split hem.

I purchased two lots of fabric that was going to be either used for the Rio or a Santa Fe by Peekaboo Patterns. As I have already made one Santa Fe I wanted to start with the Rio.

I loved, loved, loved making this t-shirt. I love the pattern instructions, I have only made one other (so far anyway!) Colette Pattern, the Wren, and I found the instructions just as consistent and perfect for a sewing newbie like me.

I did have a couple of "Hmmm" (aka problem solving) moments with sewing the split hem and attaching the neckband.

Before, looks a bit messy
I found with the material I purchased (from Spotlight) curled a little on the raw edges. So I reinforced the split with some iron-on interfacing, which worked a treat. I also found I needed to add a little interfacing to bar-tack the top of the split hem to ensure the stitching would not come undone. I also double stitched the bar-tack as well.

With interfacing from the wrong side, prior to the bar-tack

My best twin needle stitching to date - Go Me!!

When attaching the neckband the instructions suggest lining up the seams of the neckband and the left shoulder. However I found with such a large scoop neck it was difficult to get the neckband even. So I put the neckband seam at the centre of the back and it was much easier to pin the raw edges evenly.

As I was in between two sizes I adjusted the pattern. This was not something I had tried before and I wanted to ensure a good fit. The instructions suggest making the bigger of the two sizes but I had already cut out my pattern pieces before I read that suggestion. Luckily I think I got a better fit by adjusting the pattern, so I don't regret my reading oversight!


I used the following Tutorial by The Sewing Geek to adjust the pattern. I found the diagrams used in particular helpful as I admit I didn't read much as I was in a rush (ok I was being impatient due to limited sewing time).

I really enjoyed sewing this t-shirt and I may make a second one with a contrasting coloured fabric for a patch pocket and neckband.

Thanks for reading!
SJ x

Potential for casual wardrobe?

Sunday, 17 January 2016

A little about me

Hi there!

Thank you for taking the time to pop by my new (and first) blog.

I thought I should start with a little information about me.

My name is Sarah-Jane, but my friends call me SJ. I am a married mother of two in Adelaide, Australia. I have recently learnt to embrace my crafty "urges" and just have a go at a few things.

Me and Hubby 

Last year a brilliant friend taught me to crochet, which once I got the hang of it, I found it very relaxing, as it made me be in the moment more.




Soon after, the same wonderful friend inspired me to attempt sewing again.

I had not sewed since high school. I elected to do an additional term of sewing at school because I was interested in dressmaking. I vaguely recall the hideous velvet hooded dress, and I think it was a black and white spotted short jumpsuit (it was the beginning of the 90's) that I not only made, but modelled at a school assembly to Right Said Fred's "I'm too Sexy…". Ooh yeah, I was deeply scarred!

In 2010 I got tempted again, and got a shiny new Brother sewing machine for my birthday. I got it home, I read the instructions, wound a bobbin and threaded a needle. I purchased a stack of lovely fabrics to make nappy bags, burp cloths, bibs, shorts etc… Maybe it was Right Said Fred's fault, but I couldn't gather the courage to use my machine.

But 2015 was a turning point for me, and I finally got the courage to lower the presser foot and start sewing. Despite the time that has passed, and the humiliation of my high school assembly…I find myself remembering things my teacher Mrs Creasy used to say, and I remembered my hate of "tacking" (or basting), but I can actually see why it is important now.

My first sewing project was a kwiksew skirt for my daughter, which she loved, and now I have more patterns and projects planned than I have time!

Colette Wren, version 2 but sleeveless

Peekaboo Patterns Santa Fe T-Shirt, 3/4 sleeve option

Peekaboo Patterns Janey Jump Around


But one thing I have come to realise is that I love sewing, and in particular with knit/stretch fabrics. I often get green with envy at the choice and variety available in the UK and the USA. I wish we had the same options in Australia. Shipping makes it cost prohibitive, but I may need to make an exception soon. But thank goodness at least for PDF patterns!

I hope this blog helps me to connect with the sewing community out there, and if possible, I hope I can inspire someone else to "lower the presser foot" too!

My kids keep asking me what is a blog? My husband explained it as keeping a diary about something that interests you, and sharing it with others. And so, my diary begins!

Thanks for reading,