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Posts Tagged ‘sewing with knits’

DSC_0051Well, so as it turned out the poor boy did not get to celebrate his birthday because he fell sick. He got swine flu! And while the worst had passed by the time the big day came around, he was still very tired and cranky and not up to much. We still did a few things to commemorate the occasion, had cake, and of course he got all his gifts. DSC_0037

DSC_0046And so, in effect, I did not get to finish the sewing I had started for him (It’s just about getting done only now….). But since we are here, I thought I might as well write about some of the stuff I finished a while ago, and which in fact comes from the same book that M’s birthday clothes come from. DSC_0042And so to change the topic…

These pants for Ms. N got made way back in May. She wanted orange pants at the beginning of her new school year, and orange she got. With some blue pockets…DSC_0093The fabric for the pants is mangalgiri cotton with thin orange stripes on it, and being mangalgiri, it is perfect for summer. I bought it in Pune, but really quite easily available in Delhi too I am sure. The pockets come from scraps of a Lotta Jansdotter fabric that I used previously for a skirt. The pattern tried and tested several times before, comes from one of my all time favourite Japanese pattern books. As you can probably tell, these are pants with a lot of style (slightly flared bottoms) and come together in no time. They are incredibly simple to sew. There isn’t even a separate waistband, which means there are essentially only two pieces of fabric, three if you include the pocket.

This time I made it in size 120 cms with length at 130 cms, but she complained about some tightness at the crotch. Next time, I will definitely need to size them up. Uncomfortable or not, she is still wearing them, and four months later these are very much a part of school wear. And while she loves them, I have actually been surprised as to how many adults have come up to me and swooned over these. I suspect it has something to do with the brightness of orange. Or, perhaps it’s such a unexpected colour in pants? I really have no idea.DSC_0056And now the top. DSC_0077It wasn’t particularly made to go with these pair of pants,, but somehow both happened around the same time. And, can I just say, I love this slightly large, slouchy shirt. It’s been my favourite and most fulfilling bit of sewing in a while. I like the shape, it’s swing-iness, the fabric (knit from Okadaya, Shinjuku), and how in general it looks on her. The pocket was a bit of an afterthought (yes, I did sew it after the rest of it was made) because it looked like it needed a pocket. The fabric is a scrap from her old favourite pair of tights,so it seemed like a good way to hang on to those tights too.

The pattern appropriately titled “big silhouette t-shirt” comes from this book (I am currently using it for both of M’s shirts), and has a good bunch of patterns which are unisex. Most of the patterns are in the 100-150cms range, but a few also run as small as 80cms, so it’s a good book to have when one is sewing for both a boy and a girl, who are quite a few years apart. This was one of my earlier “tries” from this book, and was a easy sew (no different in effect than other t shirts that I have made). The length is on the shorter side, despite my adding a good 10cms to the 120cms size–it rides up a bit as you can see, but she is not complaining. And it’s pretty wide–no worries there that it will fit her for some time to come!DSC_0082

DSC_0060DSC_0078That’s about it…looking at these photos taken on an outing during our Pune vacations not so long ago, makes me feels like it happened many moons ago. This summer, has been particularly hard and somewhat long (it still continues to be hot in Delhi despite intermittant rains, unending in the humidity, it seems), and I have at times been relieved that I have had some chance to do sewing.

I am not sure, if we get another opportunity to celebrate the boy’s third birthday–he has had his cake and received his gifts, and is a bit confused now at the mention of a birthday party, thinking perhaps that there is endless array of cars still waiting for him. So, while we are skipping this yea’s full fledged party, I am posting here one last photo of his taken during the same outing.DSC_0076IMG_20170614_084125843As with N who turned nine, at the beginning of July, I can hardly believe M is three. And he is marvelous–with his incredible energy, quiet sensitivity, and beyond everything the sweet love for his sister.

Asmita/xox

 

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shirtsWe are in Pune where we always come for our annual summer and winter vacations and I am yet to find my way to the sewing machine corner here. But, before this year ends, I thought I’d write about the last bit of sewing that I did before leaving Delhi. dsc_0036I have been eyeing the Mini Hudson pants ever since it came out, but I wasn’t feeling very sure about whether I could find the kinds of fabric she recommended locally, not even being very sure what exactly they were (french terry and sweatshirt knit). So, I averted my eyes and sewed other stuff. But clearly, like all good things it stayed somewhere at the back of my mind. Because, when I went to Sahni fabrics in Nehru place a few weeks ago, I spotted this stuff. I was told it is french terry; I suspect it’s not very good quality (the weave-is that what it is called-seems to not be the greatest), but I brought it anyway, followed by purchasing the pattern the same day. Lo and behold the pants were ready two days after that. From start to finish, I think this has been the fastest sewing has gone, in the last two years! dsc_0059dsc_0019dsc_0028I made it in a size 7 (for the 8yr old Ms. N) and as always extended the length but 1.5″. It hits right at her ankles, which means I could have gone a 1″ longer. I also think I could go down a size for my next make. In case of N, they are more loose on the thighs and hips than what I think the photos by the pattern designer suggest. The instructions are very clear, as I had found previously as well, although to be honest, I did not look at them carefully beyond the pocket making. There is also a sewalong for any extra help needed. The only change I made was to drop the button holes and consequently the cord in the waistband since I figured N didn’t need it. dsc_0039All in all, I think I can count this one as a major success, and sadly none of my photos really do any justice to her delight. But it would be fair to say that N likes, or I should say loves all aspects of it–the fabric, the ankle cuffs, the colour grey (apparently her favourite is grey these days!), and above all the fact that they are so so comfortable. Interestingly, I am actually finding out that she likes my experimenting with different types of fabric, rather than plain old cotton every single time!

And since we mostly find her upside down these days, here is a shot that she insisted I put on the blog. dsc_0066I think somehow if I could magically make 10 more of this she would be delighted!

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After all this, of course, I had to make #2. But, this time it’s for the baby!dsc_0077As it so happened, toddler M was in need of a nightdress. And since I was itching to make another version of the pants, I thought why not this with a t-shirt. (Never mind that fact that we were leaving in two days and there was really no time for this!) So, this time around it’s the same pattern in size 3 (he is 2 1/2) but without the pockets. I cellotaped the pocket piece to the pants front to make one piece, and did the rest exactly as pants #1.dsc_0060The pattern for the t-shirt comes from Rae, who is one of my favourite pattern makers. I made the shirt in size 2 (with added length), but really should have made it in size 3, because as the patten states it is a fitted tee. As you can see it rides up his stomach a bit, and while it is a cute cute tummy, I have to admit the shirt is also a bit short, with not much space to grow even around the chest.dsc_0118

dsc_0034But of course, he looks beyond adorable in it! Or, at least so we think. Adult M, thinks he looks like Elvis. Whatever it might be–two pants, one pattern, less than a week of sewing. I think I am feeling pretty accomplished.

The fabric here is what I had for a while from my New York days. It is by the designer Anne Kelle (I think, but sadly I didn’t save the selvedge). It’s (again, I think) a jersey knit, which is very stable and nice to sew with. It didn’t have as much of a stretch (only 25%–so less than what the pattern asks for), but it worked in this case. I somehow like the fit more on him than her, but it could because the fabric is simply better quality.The pink ribbing is really nice and comes from here (something I have had for a while). The cuffs are wider than I had hoped them to be (I cut them wider than what the instructions asked for, but I didn’t go back and check). Rae’s instructions are impecceable and worth following closely if you are making it for the first time. The tee turns out exactly as she describes it to be -a really slim, and fitting shirt , which means it is important to follow the chest size and sew accordingly. dsc_0061M is growing so quickly, that in all honestly I am not sure for how long he will wear it. But right now it’s perfect. And, while he doesn’t seem to have noticed his new clothes we are all oohing-and aahing over how nice they are.dsc_0016So that’s about from me. The year is almost over. It feels like much has happened, but that is for a different post. I still miss Christmas in New York and going to Chinatown for our Christmas dinner, even more so this year than before. But well, for now we are still here–in Pune and Delhi. I hope you have happy holidays and a good beginning to the new year. Thank you for visiting.

Asmita/xx

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dsc_0163Hello again!

So, on our aforementioned trip N wore her new dress. I had finished making it a few days before with no particular intention of packing it for our trip. But as things go, she decided she wanted to take it, possibly because, well, it’s the newest thing in her cupboard and super comfortable.

And to think that I had almost abandoned this one half way!

The original plan was this: to have the bodice and skirt from the same print that you now see in the skirt. The bias binding was to be in shocking pink. Neither fabric, both straightforward jersey knit (or so I thought, still think) presented any particular problems because I had sewn enough t-shirts, and binding seemed like something I could do in my sleep. Well, the lesson learn here is never to be over confident. I am still not sure what I did to get the waviest neckline, and why I continued to proceed thinking somehow that everything would work itself out. It didn’t, of course. When the first neckline went bad, I should have stopped. But, instead, I cut off that neckline, bound it again (if you can believe it) and made her try it on, sans skirt and sleeves. I could see half her chest, and I think she was clearly wondering if this was somehow going to be a swimsuit of sorts. Or god only knows what. It is almost sad, I don’t have photos to show of this, because once I got over it, it was quite funny!

To continue the story, at that point it didn’t feel so entertaining. But, thankfully I decided to take a short break  and come back to it the next day. To start over, I realised I needed some new fabric for the bodice, and so what you see is the remainder of yoga pants that I had made earlier. I still had plenty of pink, but decided to stay away from that too, to not jinx this dress any further. So, the green binding comes from an old t-shirt of mine. The rest is what I had originally cut into from a lovely knit that I have had for several years now.dsc_0066 The dress, if I may say so is actually really simple. I have made one from the same pattern before (you would think I would have gotten it right, since I had no problems whatsoever the last time around). N had loved the last one, and I thought it would be fun to make it in a different print this time. I didn’t take a look at the instructions this time, but I remember that were very clear when I had taken a look for dress no. 1. It can be sewed up fairly quickly, if you do the binding carefully, and there is a fair bit of that. I made it in a size 7 based on her measurements, while adding 1″ to both the skirt and bodice.

I am happy to say both she and I are pretty happy with the fit. I think she likes the fact that the pockets meet, so it’s not two really separate pockets but one continuous one. (Does that make sense? Perhaps its clear from the photo below.) For me, it’s an elegant looking dress, which seems more complicated to sew than what it really is. Plus it’s in a knit fabric. The comfort level is hard to beat. dsc_0170

dsc_0178N wore it happily on the first day of our trip. And, I must say, I am so glad I did not send it to the to-do pile.  Knowing me, it would have sat there forever, and by the time I would have got to it she would have definitely outgrown it. dsc_0080

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Asmita/xx

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DSC_1154After making pants, it was time to make a few shirts. She certainly doesn’t need them right away, since t-shirts are almost exclusively for worn for school…and summer holidays have just begun. But one led to another and before I knew it I had finished three. What can I say?

#1 is from a pattern I used just a few days ago.DSC_1224

DSC_1161This is a Heather Ross knit. I made it exactly like the last one, but unfortunately this is a big tight at the neck. She is not complaining as yet, because she loves the print, but it is hard to get in and out of a bit. I should have checked the stretch factor before. Oh well.

#2 is also from the same pattern but a far more comfortable fit. DSC_1184The fabric is from a hand me down that I have had from years ago. I thought I was paying attention when I cut it, but in fact, it seems that that was not really the case. The design is slightly off centre–do you see it?

DSC_1168Initially N was not too keen on the sparkliness, and I was ready to put this down in not-going-to-be-worn pile but she now claims to love it 🙂 The rib knit with years of use is soft and very comfortable. In fact we are taking it on our summer trip!DSC_1165

And, finally #3.DSC_1168A complete and a total hit! The pattern is this one. I tried the simple tee, but I am dying to make the twisted kind. I have long wanted to try some of their patterns and there are some really nice ones to chose from. The fabric comes from my old hardly worn t-shirt, and I am feeling quite happy because this could not have found a better use.

DSC_1209N loves everything about it, the blue stripes, the pink ribbing and most importantly the pocket.

We are definitely taking this one with us.DSC_1164We leave tomorrow for our annual summer vacation for seven weeks. I am carrying some sewing, embroidery, lots of book plus this, that, and the other. And we are planning to have internet there. So I hope to write soon from Pune!

Asmita/xo

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A few weeks ago I had a busy weekend full of fun and quick sewing with knits. I managed to make two teeshirts back to back from the flashback skinny tee pattern from Made by Rae.

The first one to be made was this in size 5T with length extended by 2″ throughout.

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N loves this fabric. My sister bought it for her from Sahni Fabrics (Nehru Place, Delhi) a while ago and I made a frock out of it right away.  But then recently it got a torn which was kind of unrepairable and N has been pestering me ever since that I make something for her out of the leftovers. I had just the right amount left for a t-shirt and so this became my first attempt at the famed “skinny tee.”

Alas, N nor I was too happy about the fit. She complained that it was too tight at the elbows and upper arms, and I was, well, just not too taken by how it looked. So enter pink.

Same size but I widened the upper arm part through the elbow by a scant 1/8″ and look at the effect.

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I am still not happy. 😦 But she is. 🙂 And that too for exactly the same reasons!

I don’t think I meant for it to be slouchy. Of course she loves exactly that “falling off my shoulder-almost covering half of my palms” look. And my hemming is at an all time low, but of course she doesn’t care for that.

I am thinking that the fabric has made all the difference. The pink and black knits both had an almost 40% stretch and they are old recycled teeshirts. Comfy and nice, but not exactly the skinny flash back tee I was envisioning.

Still happy to have made these. The brown one is getting plenty of wear despite initial protests and its just the thing she needs for school on cold days.

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Oh and I almost forgot, I have one more thing to show. And this is my favourite…

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I have been meaning to make these yoga pants for the entire year and I am so very glad that this pattern has finally seen the light of day.

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(Apologies for the crumpled look and water stains on the front. Hands were wiped on pants before I could say “No-no-no! Photo shoot!”)

The pattern comes from the all time trustworthy Oliver+S. I made them in size 6 with 2″ length extended. But as you can see they barely make it to her ankles. It means I suppose that he legs are longer than her torso, something to keep in mind for the many many yoga pants that I am dreaming of for the future.

Yes! We both love them so much!

Here is one final photo of her in the cold.

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Incidentally, that’s the fit I want for the aforementioned skinny tees, but this one is from a shop and not made by me.

In any case, I see many more knit pants and teeshirts in our future. So I shall keep trying.

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Thanks for stopping by! I have only one more thing to show from my backlog now so I will be back again soon.

Asmita/xo

 

 

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At the start of winter I made a few long sleeved things for N that were put to good use through our relatively short Delhi winter. Now as the daytime temperatures are climbing and I am getting ready to put them away, I thought it would be good time to show them to you.

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This little top I made back in December is from lovely cotton fabric that I got in Pune. The pattern comes from here and while I am never much looking forward to tracing Japanese patterns and adding seam allowances later, I am, as was also in this case, very happy with the end result. So despite the enormous time it took to getting to the actual sewing, I love everything about it–the pintucks on the yoke, the sleeves and the general fit.

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The only change I made was was to add  slits on the side because I think it looks better that way…

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Once the cutting was done, it came together quite easily despite the pin tucks. Lots of great option with pretty good pictures to help one along the way.

The pink was not my first choice, but N is getting back into pink again. and that could not be ignored when I gave her fabric choices. And as I have seen her repeatedly wear it over the winter months, I have really come to love this little thing including its colour. I am hoping she can use it for a few more weeks until long sleeves and a stand collar become unbearable.

Around the same time as this I also made a raglan tee. (And as the following photos will tell you…these were taken right after the haircut, while the ones above were clicked very recently. Someone here needs a haircut very soon again 🙂

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This is in size 5 (with longer length, as usual) from one of my all time favourite Oliver+S. I love making t-shirts, and despite the fact that more work went into the pink blouse,working with knits always feel like a major accomplishment. N loves anything in knit fabrics ( I think we all do!) and I wish I made more of these on a regular basis.

But the truth is that I am always a bit terrified too. For one, different knits react differently to the whole sewing process…(yes, I know that that is the way it should be, but I am always being too lazy and in too much of a hurry to figure out the differences between various types.) So with this one I messed up the hem. Oh and the pocket is absolutely terrible. Unpicking the stretch stitch seams were a pain, and so the t-shirt ended up being just the right length which means it may be too short for the next cool season.

The fabric here is all re-cycled, but I have some lovely new knits that I am not feeling all that confident to cut into. blue tee 2

blue tee 1

Still, I am glad that the t-shirt too has gotten plenty of wear. I know I shouldn’t complain….still, don’t you feel a bit sad when something that you loved gets relegated to the storage, probably never to be worn again?

It’s a bit like feeling sad to see them grow up so quickly.

What are you sewing these days? I am looking forward to some summer sewing, though not to the summer itself. What about you?

Asmita/xo

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barasa dresstee 2tee 1summer hat 1summer hat 3at three weeksrakhi 6Has it really been three weeks? The last few days feel like a blur…

Thank you dear friends for your loving wishes. We are doing well and settling into a new life with a new baby.

There has been a flurry of activities (naming ceremony of baby M–i.e. when he was officially named ‘M’ and wore his new kurta and the tiny pajamas made by my friend, and raksha bandhan where N tied a rakhi on M and then got one for herself at school). And, then there have been plenty of visits from friends and family, all here to see the baby. So it’s been a pretty nice and hectic time!

In the midst of this, I have even got a tiny bit of sewing done. The tee-shirt is from recycled knits and the pattern is a free one from Danamadeit. The tutorial is excellent, especially if like me you continue to be a bit nervous around knits. Finally I figured out how to attach ribbing to the neck, and though I did not do such a great job of it, it is no fault of the instructions but mostly my currently tired self. Right now I couldn’t be bothered with redoing the stitches, and I’m happy that it is done and wearable.

The sun hat is from an Liesl Gibson’s book. N was badly in need of one since she lost her last hat and I hope this one stays for a while, also since I made it in a size too large. The instructions of course as usual nothing less than perfect.

So that is that my friends. I have been missing sewing and writing, but for now my visits here are going to be a bit sporadic. Still, do drop by and say hello! And I hope your sewing and summer is going well.

Asmita xox

 

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