Saturday, August 13, 2016

Bettie's Pullover

I recently finished knitting Bettie's Pullover. The yarn is Knit One, Crochet Too Batiste, one of my favorite yarns. It's made of merino/linen/silk and very comfortable most of the year, although the higher crew neckline makes it a bit too warm for summer. It may turn out to be one of my favorite pullovers. It has a very vintage-y 40s look to it -- I call it my Bletchley Park sweater.

As usual, I made some mods from the pattern.

  • I wanted short sleeves, and I ignored the instructions for knitting and attaching sleeves as you go. They looked too complicated and I wasn't sure about the fit. I just bound off and decreased for the arm holes and knitted standard set-in sleeves.
  • I only used one needle size smaller for the lower ribbing and didn't cast on that many extra stitches. For the body shaping, I used a smaller needle size for parts of it and did side decreases for the narrowest waist section since I had stockinette stitches at the sides.
  • I aimed for a slightly wider neckline and also a slightly lower one in the front. I would have liked it lowered a bit more because I'm not a fan of high crew necklines.
  • For the neckband, I did the ends as K1P1 and converted to double knitting for the main section. The double knitting gives it a lot of body. I skipped the button hole and just sewed the button through all layers.

Thursday, August 4, 2016

McCall's M7381 - Maxi Dress

I was recently bitten by the maxi dress bug because I kept seeing them in shops and on the blogs. I don't think I've worn one in over 30 years, so I figured it was time to try again. I wanted something really light and airy for hot weather. I chose McCall's M7381 and my fabric is this silk and cotton voile that I bought from denverfabrics.com. The color is a bit subdued but I love the feel and drape of the fabric.

I did make some changes from the pattern instructions. The pattern calls for a lining for the bodice, but I wanted to keep it really light so I omitted the lining and finished the openings with bias tape cut from the same fabric. I changed the shape of the front bodice pieces to be a little higher on the front neckline and I slanted it across the front for a wrap look. My goal was to prevent wardrobe malfunctions but it didn't help so I ended up sewing the pieces together for about one inch at the top of the overlap. The side seams are sewn with french seams. Since the fabric is thin, I lined just the top half of the skirt. The lining encases the seam and serves as a casing for the elastic.

I've worn this dress a few times and I absolutely love it. I photographed in on a breezy day, which helps give the skirt that floaty look. I have plans to make this again in the shorter length.

Monday, July 4, 2016

Anemone

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I finished knitting this Anemone sweater shortly before the weather got warm, so I haven't really worn it much. My yarn is Katia Cotton Merino, which is 70% cotton and 30% merino. The yarn doesn't feel like cotton at all, and it's incredibly soft and warm.

As usual, I made a few changes to the pattern. I used the stitch pattern only on the front and just did the back as stockinette. I did this partly because I was lazy and partly because I wanted a less bulky sweater. I also changed the raglan ratio a bit to have more stitches on the sleeves and less on the body. I made the center stitch pattern a little narrower because I wanted more stockinette on the side in order to add some shaping. And finally, I just went with short sleeves because that's generally how I roll. I'm happy with the fit, but I'll have to have more wearing time to see how the yarn holds up in the long run.

Sunday, July 3, 2016

Hoot Hoot! 3D Printed Numbered Owl Stitch Markers

I added these cute owl stitch markers to my Etsy Shop. The markers are embossed with beaks and feathers on one side and the numbers from one through eight on the other. I have them in yellow and pink and will be adding some orange ones shortly.

Friday, June 17, 2016

Forest Weave Sweater

I recently finished knitting a sweater using the Forest Weave pattern. I used Cascade Ultra Pima cotton yarn, which is one of my favorite all-cotton yarns. It has really nice drape and feels very soft to knit with. I love this sweater -- it makes me feel like I should be hosting a show at an art gallery or something like that. I did make a few mods, as I usually do. I reduced the circumference by 8 inches. It is 40 inches as compared to the 48 inches for the pattern's smallest size. The sweater is knit side to side for the front and back pieces, so I reduced the number of rows and scrunched the cable pattern down by having fewer rows between the cabling rows. It still feels a smidgen too wide, but the drape seems to improve with wear, so it's looking narrower with more wearing time. I also did not knit sleeves but just added some rows of garter stitch onto the armhole opening. I did some decreases at the top to prevent the band from poking upward.

Sunday, June 5, 2016

The Cutest Shop Ever

Until last weekend, I had never shopped before in the Presidio Heights neighborhood of San Francisco. I went strolling through there last Friday and I stumbled upon one of the cutest shops I've seen in a long time. It's name is The Ribbonerie and it specializes in tons and tons of ribbons. This shop looks like something you might find in one of those narrow streets of Paris or Tokyo. It's got ribbons for sewing, ribbons for wrapping, and ribbons for any other purpose you can think of. I didn't buy anything because I couldn't think of what I might need. I did take some photos though.

It's got some other vintage items for sale like these cool hats.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Vogue V9079 in printed stretch denim

I recently sewed up Vogue V9079 in this printed stretch denim I got at JoAnn. I loved this print as soon as I saw it. It felt a bit too stiff on the bolt, but I washed and dried it twice and that softened it up pretty well. The denim is sturdy enough so that the dress holds its shape and the stretch makes it really comfy. Since it's denim, I decided to top-stitch it to death. I put double rows of top-stitching on the neckline, the front curved seam, and around the armholes. I used orange thread which both matches the print and contrasts really well with the white and the blue.

This dress is unlined so if you're going to make it, it's best with a fabric that has a some weight to it. It's not a tight fit, but a bit of stretch definitely makes it easier to wear. One of the things I like about this pattern is the shape of the back pleats. The top of each pleat goes up to the neckline instead of ending at a point. For some reason, this is a better fit for me and also makes for easier alterations if you want to adjust the shape of the upper back.