First up is the Japanese Top Sew-along concocted by the wonderful and super-stylish Cecili. Cecili wore some seriously gorgeous handmade garments during Me-Made-May (evidence can be sought at the Me-Made-May Flickr group or her blog) and I know I wasn't the only one to become enchanted with her style (to be honest I already was because I've been reading her blog for a while, but MMM reinforced it). Many of her more deceptively simple and always perfectly fitting creations were based upon Japanese patterns, so when she suggested a sew-along with one such pattern, many of us jumped at the chance to get a piece of the action. See that scary looking diagram above? That's what we are going to draft! It comes from this awesome site which has a squillion beautiful pattern diagrams for free download. I haven't yet worked out how the site makes any money, but they must do because of all the good sewing karma they are surely accruing. I'm a bit hazy about how I'm going to turn this is crazy diagram written in Japanese into a wearable tunic, but I have faith and reckon it will all become clear when I get started tomorrow.
The second sew-along I've signed up for is the Summer Essentials Sew-along created by the deeply awesome Ali. It's like Ali peered inside my head and figured out a challenge that actually helps create order from all the mess she must have found in there, rather than just adding to the clutter. To be honest, initially I was at a loss when trying to figure out what would constitute my personal 'Summer Essentials', items that I would find useful when my intensely hectic August rolls around. But then Ali came up with six useful catagories with garment ideas and I was able to mentally make a check list 'got, need, want, got' etc. etc...
The challenge is to make roughly five garments, roughly before August, which are criteria I can think I can handle, so here's my list of things I'd like to make:
- Top using New Look 6808 (that I first attempted for my Chinese Takeaway top) using a hideous synthetic '80s blouse I found on the street (trust me).
- Another top using New Look 6808 but a different view that has a cool collar/bow detail using some incredible mexican heart fabric my best mate bought me. And I'm going to crank out the contrast piping again now that I feel confident enough.
- Tunic top from Cecili's Japanese Top Sew-along (see above) in some stash fabric. I have a couple of pieces in mind, but I'll choose which after the drafting stage.
- High-ish waisted capri pants using a pattern from Burda magazine, issue 07/08 and red fabric, the purchase of which I felt the need to defend here. I'd love to share a link to the pattern, but the Burda site is all skewy at the moment.
- Cute short-sleeved jacket using this pattern downloaded from Burdastyle. It'll be some navy fabric or other (I have quite a lot kicking around) with gold buttons and I'll probably round off the collar and go crazy with some red piping.
Ideally I'll bust out a few more summery garments than this (a light cotton top that gathers under the bust; high-waisted denim shorts; a vintage pattern dress with the blue and white polka dot fabric my boy's mum got me for Christmas.............) but I don't want to pile on the pressure by saying I will for sure. So there you have it. Happy summer (sewing) peops!