Binging on Basics

I spent the last week or so binge sewing, making up some easy basics after the challenges of making a couple of coats. Still, everything was an experiment, of course!

It started with this:IMG_1047

It’s the Grainline Hemlock Tshirt, which they were giving away as a free download. I don’t like it. I liked a picture on the Grainline site, of Jen wearing a very nice version. Since her bust measurement is much smaller than mine, I added four inches in width to the tshirt by placing the CB and CF an inch away from the fabric fold. It wasn’t enough. I think to make this work I’d have to add another four inches, plus an inch to each side of the sleeve cap. I don’t know if I want to bother.

Then I went back to an old Butterick 5372 tshirt pattern that I used for a couple of tshirts a few years ago. It was a perfectly good pattern, but I found the tshirts boring. But I need layers for winter and tshirts are good for that. This time I bought yards and yards of white cotton lycra, plain and pique. And I decided I wanted to make v-necks, which necessitated going to youtube to watch videos.


I like the tshirt! The neck is perfect, and I made the sleeves too long for a bit of dash. The pants are an older version of my self-drafted “my favourite tight pants” pattern. Good for layering, this shirt, but why stop there?


I think my camera got star-struck by this outfit. How can an automatic camera be out of focus?? I didn’t notice the lovely red eyes until it was too late. Sorry about that.IMG_1054

How do you like it? I just added about 8 inches to the tshirt pattern. I’m calling it a tshirt/ dress/tunic/slip. I love it — so much so, that I rushed back to the store to get some other kind of fabric for sweater dress sweaterdress2

You see it can function as a dress with leggings, or as a tucked-in tshirt. Cool, eh? An all-in-one garment. I made the leggings out of stretch velvet. Seriously, I have found what I want to wear as a daily look. I could see making half a dozen of these in different fabrics and being set for the year.

But I wasn’t done binging yet. I pulled out a fabric remnant of unknown provenance and “my favourite tights pants” pattern for a different kind of basic.


It’s actually a dark chocolate brown fabric with some stretch in in. Maybe a wool and acrylic blend? It’s light as air and feels almost like nothing.

So that’s it, that was my week. How was yours?

transitional jacket

I’d like to have followed up on my success with the pink coat by making another coat, but a lack of sufficient fabric for sleeves prevented me. That’s okay, as a sleeveless jacket will make a good transitional item in this westcoast climate. I did want more practice with coat-making, though, so when I saw some pretty heavy duty fabric at My Social Fabric House, I decided to snap it up, even though there was less than a yard of it.

The pattern is Burda 6989. I was most attracted to the long version, but thought the short version showed potential for some kind of in-home cardigan.


This was a pretty easy project. The fabric, a smooth felted wool, was really easy to work with. I thought originally that it could be left unhemmed and unbound, as specified in the pattern, but slowly decided that wasn’t going to work. I bound the armholes in the fabric of the jacket, and then found some chiffon to bind the collar edges. I stitched the bottom with a coverstitch.



I added fairly large patch pockets for a bit of interest (and convenience), and added a button and buttonhole.



There is one thing I don’t entirely like, and that’s the width of the shoulders. I cut off quite a bit, scaling back from a size 14 to a size 12, and then cutting off the seam allowance too, as the pattern instructed. Still, I find them too wide.


I’ve thought about cutting off another inch or two. Then I’d have to rip off all the binding and make fresh strips. But I wonder if I would like the shawl collar to extend beyond the shoulders. I’m not sure, so I’m just going to take this puppy out for walks this autumn and let it tell me whether to make changes or not.

Good thing I just made a red scarf. The Canadian election was today and red (liberal) won. So I’ll be taking my walks under a fresh government. The new Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, just said things in his winning speech that I’ve never heard a politician say. It’s a new era, I think.