Tag: patterns: helen’s closet

Somehow I keep getting behind on posting my makes here. Not sure why I don’t do it at the same time as Instagram – probably because Insta is so easy, and tends to get more engagement. But! Of course I’ve been sewing.

I’m not much for New Year’s resolutions, but I did decide that I’d like to work on sewing the patterns that I already own but have yet to make. There’ll be plenty of time for TNTs and even new patterns, but I have quite a backlog of patterns that I keep meaning to sew.

So right now I’m on a five-day vacation, and I’m making it a sewcation. I’ve sewn two tops and a skirt in two days, and now on day three I’m working on a dress.

Both tops are Ashton by Helen’s Closet, and I’ve found a new favourite woven shell pattern. It fits my smaller top half coupled with larger bottom half quite well, and I like that the fabric at the shoulders isn’t a thinner strap. I prefer something that aligns closer with ‘sleeveless’ rather than ‘tank top’. Either way, I’m sure there’ll be more of these, and I’m anxious to try out the sleeve expansion as well. Those tulip sleeves!

My first try was in quilting cotton, and the second, this blue one, is in a mystery fabric from an unlabelled bolt in an out-of-town fabric shop. It’s light, semi-sheer, and has a bit of texture with a lovely fluid drape. The colour is amazing and I love the print, too. I anticipate this one getting a lot of wear.

Next up is a Megan Nielsen Veronika Curve skirt. I love circle skirts, but for the longest time I thought I couldn’t wear them. Turns out all I needed was to make them a bit longer, as knee-length doesn’t quite work for me. I’ve made a few in the past, but this is the first one without an elastic waist – and therefore, also the first one with an invisible zipper. I may actually have invented new curse words while inserting it, but it’s done. Not quite invisible, but I’ll chalk that up to a learning experience and do better on the next one.

Really like the shape of this, though, now that I’ve gotten the length right, and how it falls. There’s a version with beautiful scalloped pockets, and that’s going right on the to-sew list as well. I feel like it needs a solid or semi-solid colour, though, and that’s not something I have a lot of in my stash.

Oh no, I might have to go fabric shopping. What a shame.

Catch-All Finished! Handmade Sewing

A brand-new York pinafore in the snow, today. I’ve really been on a sewing streak, lately, but I need to set aside my own projects tonight and tomorrow evening to finish some dance costumes so the kids can try them on before winter break.

If anyone’s looking for something cute and quick, York is great. It feels like it just flies from start to finish. The fabric is cotton that has been sitting for a few weeks waiting for me to turn it into this. I didn’t have enough fabric to match the pocket, but let’s be honest: I probably wouldn’t have tried to match it anyway.

Not sure why I always groan internally at patterns that have significant applications of bias tape – when it comes down to it, I never mind sewing it on and I do really like the clean, simple look of bias-bound edges. The inside edges of the kangaroo pocket are red, but I used white tape for the rest.

So I sewed a size 20 according to the measurements chart, but I ended up taking in each side by two inches, so four inches total. It was a bit much – I should have left it at one inch for each side – but it’s still cute and wearable so I’m not concerned.

Catch-All Finished! Handmade Sewing

It’s a dull, washed-out kind of day but at least I have a bright red York pinafore to make up for it.

It’s kind of ridiculous how long I’ve waited to make this – I tagged the pattern for future sewing when it first came out, but was convinced that it just wasn’t going to look right on me and waffled back and forth for literal months. Not sure what made me decide, yesterday, to just dive in, but I’m glad I did. I kind of love it. Even the slight cocoon shape works.

Alterations were simple – I shortened the yoke by 1.25″ at each of the two lengthen/shorten points, and I graded from a 22 yoke to a 26 waist/hip. It works well with the thick corduroy, but if I make one in a thinner fabric I may go to a 24 waist/hip instead. I might try the other pockets, too, just for fun.

I used much less bias tape than the pattern called for – I’m guessing the estimate was generous. I made my own out of a scrap of red/green/white tartan and it’s super-cute on the inside. I always seem to convince myself that I don’t like the process of sewing a bias facing, but every time I do it I conclude that it’s not at all the pain in the butt I told myself it would be. Good thing, too, because the neck, open sides, and pocket openings are all entirely finished with bias tape.

I’m not sure how much time I spent on this but it seemed like a fairly quick sew. It’s not a dress but I’m tagging it as one anyhow, because I’m not likely to need a ‘pinafore’ tag anytime soon.

Catch-All Finished! Handmade Sewing