The weather has heated up, the semester is over, the house move is done, the chaos has (mostly) settled, and I’m already sick of how much washing I’m doing. Time to make more summer clothes!
In terms of fabrics, I’m probably going to be working in linen and linen blends a lot. I’m finding that cotton just doesn’t cut it for the heat, and I am skeptical of the claims that lightweight wool is comfortable in the heat. I’ve invested in some extra-wide linen from The Drapery to make kingsize bedsheets with as well (and I sincerely hope that they do Slate in the regular width, it is a gorgeous colour) as I’m finding that there’s just no good balance between durability and suffocating-ness with cotton sheets.
As a tip for the interested - I worked out that those extra-wide linens would be cheaper to buy and make into fitted and flat sheets than it would be to buy them pre-made for queensize and above beds. For a double bed, it’s not a major saving, and I couldn’t find pricing on single bed sets in linen. I’ve been considering investing in making some linen sheets for a while now - my toile fabric is my worn-out bedsheets, and while it’s partly because I buy the cheapest sets and don’t look after them too well, I’m very annoyed by how rapidly they wear out. I’m told that linen sheets will last practically forever, and if linen clothing is anything to go on they’ll be much more comfortable in summer. (And all that ironing is a good arm endurance workout.)
I have one pair of blue cotton pants to finish hemming and adding some nice pretty cuffs to (I want to make use of one of the sari silk borders on it too, but I haven’t quite worked out how yet). I want to do some kind of vest top to go with it, but I haven’t looked into that at all.
I’ve also recently bought a pattern - Thread Theory’s Jedediah chinos - to make for my SO. I don’t know how they’ll adapt to my body shape though, so I’m going to finish deconstructing an old pair of jeans to compare them.
For this, I’ll have to learn how to blend two different sizes on the pattern together. My prevailing theory is that the reason my SO’s jeans wear through very quickly on the inner thigh (towards the crotch) is that the seat and butt area don’t fit him correctly. It seems easier to blend the correct size of seat onto a size down in the legs, but I have yet to see if I’m right about the fitting - it could well be that I need to size up somewhere else, or do some kind of butt adjustment. (Is that a thing? It should be a thing.)
As to skirts…I was eyeing the Sew Liberated Gypsum pattern, but I could likely just make a panelled skirt with pockets. I just want something for roadtrips ahead of Rowany 2019. (It’s a bit of a story…)
I still haven’t gotten to fixing up my 14thC cotes’ sleeves - I’ll get to it eventually, the craft room is still being unpacked - but I do have three dress patterns to work on.
Arum is the easiest and should need the least alteration; I already have a toile underway, for a size 38 (I fall in between 36 and 38, but since this is a pattern for woven fabric I’m leaning towards the larger size) but I’ve hit a snag with the sleeves that I’ll hopefully post more about later. (The sleeves feel both too big and like they’re sitting too low, but I haven’t yet done enough research to figure out what kind of adjustment I need.)
At some point I’ll need to add to this toile to figure out adding a hood; I feel like it’d look really good with one, plus that would be useful for inclement weather and keeping the sun off.
I actually finished the toile after I took this photo, but I don't have a photo of the finished toile and it's still in Adelaide.
Fielder is going to need some changes; I don’t like ribbing (and it can be hard to find) so I’m planning to use bias binding instead. But, that means lengthening the sleeves and raising/tightening the neckline accordingly. Factory is the one I’m feeling the least confident about making it look good; it’s very close to the kind of dress that’s usually in school uniforms, and those just never look good on anyone. I also picked up the Papercut Meridian wrap dress (for wovens; another wrap dress pattern I had found was for stretch fabrics only) which I’ll likely leave until last.
I haven’t yet figured out my vest top to go with the blue pants, or found a pattern that I can work with. Something like a blouse with no sleeves might even work, though I want to add very light and loose sleeves as well. I also won’t say no to a poet-type shirt in linen, though perhaps sans the ruffles.
Aside from that, I have the T-shirt option from the Arum pattern, as well as this ridiculously complicated shirt pattern.
Yes, that’s right - the front is made in six panels, the back in four. That’s what happens when you want to get fabric to fit nicely around a curve. Oh, and those are inset sleeves. Again.
I’ll be making the Harrison on-size for my Mum (she fits perfectly into the range for a 12C) and then working out how to grade down about 3 sizes almost everywhere to fit myself.
I’m always on the lookout for lightweight linen remnants that I can use to make napkins or another teatowel, while I work on my (mundane) dining kit. I have a knife, fork, spoon, and enamel mug; I’m hoping to add to this a reusable silicone straw and a teaspoon, and some reusable fabric teabags. I’m looking for an ultra-light but durable open-weave cotton or linen that’s fairly cheap; I’ll be making (effectively) some drawstring pouches big enough to fit 1tsp of tea leaves plus plenty of room to circulate. Ideally, I’d like the fabric to be smooth enough that the leaves can be washed out easily, but I doubt that’ll happen.
I also need to work on some non-breakable but tiny loose-leaf containers. I was thinking waxed cotton envelope-style pouches; plain fabric tends to end up with the leaves getting more stuck to it than anything else, and leather would need to be lined to avoid the same. The tin from the Tao of Tea that I bought years ago is doing alright for holding sugar cubes for now, but too big and bulky for smaller bags. I want to make waxed fabric wraps anyway (they’re $25-$40 new per pack, so I’d rather make them) and some small drawstring bags for bulk dry goods. And a waxed bag for my snacks.
Lastly, I want to make some more belt pouches - open, foldover, and drawstring - for regular use. If I can get some nice leather, I might try making some more and nicer wide belts to go with my dresses.
In the meantime, I’m whipping up a quick alternative to my veil and wimple from some lovely linen gauze from The Drapery, and when I find my linen Skjoldeham hood I’ll hem it so I have that. The place I now live at has room for us to set up archery butts as well, so at some point I’m hoping to make a quick set of arming caps to go under my archery helmet, so I can start getting used to wearing that. I can also use the arming cap pattern to make a cap to go under my bicycle helmet so it stops tangling my hair, and so it doesn’t touch my face (since it’s easier to wash a cap than the helmet).
I have a lot to do, and it’s already December.
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