Jun 23, 2010


We have only one more week of TAFE to go before the end of the term. I am sitting here finishing off my last assignment but you know how it is when you have a dead line there are always distractions!

So thought I'd do a round up of what I made this term. Since my initial plan was to blog much more often than I have about this course, but it's just been so full on. Maybe I'll be more organized in the second half of the year. Maybe.

So here we go: I've already shown you the bag, head scarf and the needle case. From there I made a pair of Pyjamas using Vintage Brazilian voile-like cotton with red and white paisley design. I made an elastic casing from vintage grosgrain and yes I made the pattern. The paisley fabric was a dream to work with.

The Pyjama top is made from Bamboo single knit jersey, that came from here. It's beautiful fabric to work with, soft and silky on pretty easy to sew but it takes a long time to dry. This is the first time I've used any stretch fabric I've never been game. I'm here to tell you it's a cinch!

What did I stuff up? well I learnt that when you divide the neck binding into four matching up with the neck divided into four - don't assume that the soulders are the natural half measure! I did and ended up with gathering around the front of the neck, it still works but it's not correct. I also found this fabric extremely hard to unpick, so hard that I decided to just leave it.

Actually I think on the day it was a bit more stressful than that sounds, we had a very short time to do the pyjama set in and it was the very first time we had ever; used stretch fabric, sewn in a sleeve, hemmed anything with a twin needle. We had to present the set in a nice package with swing tags and include our patterns - yes made the patterns too. The packaging was fun.

A bias cut skirt with lining and an elastic waist, made patterns to fit from body measurements. This simple skirt is a fantastic shape though it takes a bit more fabric than a regular skirt. I borrowed fabric from a friend for this one because I had accidently left mine at home. I like the skirt not too sure I'll wear it though because I'm not terribly fussed on the print but I appreciate it being available at the time.

I made this cushion using vintage cretone with a little deer print for the front.  For the back I used a vintage woodgrain-look furnishing fabric and a vintage antique satin. I used interfacing on all pieces so it maintains that nice shape even after washing and I put two large buttons on the back in a different but co-ordinating fabric. I like it and have already made another to match. These are a product I'll be thinking about selling. What did I learn - always pre wash vintage fabric before use!

Lastly we had to make a Japanese inspired wrap skirt that incorporated our own printing. I handprinted some crushed vintage cotton using the end of a block of wood so the print has a nice organic look. The fabric was already printed with red spots and a white star motif - the black over the top worked well I think.

I used this fabric to make a sort of obi. I wanted to make a skirt that I would wear so the obi is optional but fulfills the brief. 
The fabric for the skirt I grabbed off the shelf as I was running out the door, it's gray gingham with a red stitch then at the last minute I added some used barkcloth on the bottom. I made the pattern but it changed in the details along the way and I think that's the way I work sort of more intuitive I don't feel the need to stick to the plan, the skirt evolved and still worked. I used grosgrain trim, large vintage buttons, tied a bit of cotton tape in the middle of them, fringed the hem and added grosgrain ties and large vintage pressstuds at the waist. I love the skirt!!

Things I learnt - AGAIN always pre wash fabric. As I said I grabbed the gray fabric as I was running out the door, I was not expecting to like the skirt so much, so wasn't fussed. However, after inspection and with no time to wash it anyway I found the fabric had some spots and was a dusty white colour. I've since given it a good wash, all the colours stayed where they were meant to and it's come up nice and clean. Infact I'm wearing it now!

Can't wait for next half of the year, some of us are already thinking about doing the next certificate, if we can convince the school to make it two days a week instead of 4.


  1. Well, I am just LOVING that Japanese inspired skirt! So much! In fact, I want one! Love it ♥ Monique xx

  2. You must be exhausted! I'm really loving that last skirt with the obi, works really well. Also the deer cushion is perfect!

  3. When You see it all laid out like this it does look a lot. On top of this lot were many many samples, theory bits and pieces, a 10 minute presentation and two fabric libraries. So yes I think I am a bit exhausted. Thanks for the lovely comments alicia! cheers elizabeth

  4. Hey Monique! Great I'll put you down for one. One of the girls in the class is already making things for all the women she works with. sewing is a wonderful thing! I'm so glad I too the plunge. Thanks for the lovely comments! e