Sparkly Rigel Bomber

I wasn’t going to get involved in this sew-along. Ginger Makes, along with Mel at The Curious Kiwi and Kat at Modern Vintage Cupcakes decided that the Papercut Rigel Bomber was something they needed to make and did anyone want to make it along with them? and so RigelBomberJanuary was born.

I figured I am currently mid-rehearsal (again) and don’t need anything extra in my life at the moment. I didn’t have anything in my stash that seemed right for this and I didn’t have the pattern, so I couldn’t make it anyway. Then Mel posted some inspiration photos. Pretty!And I saw this one on the left and I was hooked. I tried to ignore the call of this siren but a week later it was still sitting in my head, a fabric sale started and I just had to give in.

Sequin fabric is expensive! Especially considering you also need to underline it.My pretty.... I headed to the Fabric Store sale and hummed and haaaed over what one to get. I ended up with this one (which is more black than it looks in this photo) for only $29 a metre (less 40% because of the sale!). It had the look I liked the best, but I don’t think its going to be the most robust sequined fabric I could get to be honest. I don’t know if the others would be less likely to shed sequins, but its something to learn if I ever sew with sequins again.

I got some black acetate to underline, which had a nice solid hand to it. I traced and cut out a size Large for this jacket (which is the size I made for my other Papercut pattern), which given I had main fabric, and underlining, and interfacing and rib took its time. Then I needed to baste the sequins to the underlining. I just used the acetate for the facing of the jacket, and decided not to line the jacket given there were already double layers of fabric (though Kat has done a great tutorial on adding lining here).

This counts as hand sewing right?

You can just see the hand basting at the end of these sleeve pieces….

Previously whenever I’ve underlined anything I’ve machine basted the pieces together, but this time as I wanted to make sure all the pieces were flat and there wasn’t any bunching (which is what I’ve had before) I hand basted it with the pieces sitting against my cutting table. It took time but I was much happier with being able to manipulate the fabric as I went so I think I’ll keep hand basting up. I’m yet to work out the best time to take out these basting stitches before they get caught up in the garment construction – any ideas on this? At what stage to you folks take basting stitches out? I also learned that you should use a new piece of cotton for each line of the pattern then you can take all the other basting stitches out and still leave the hems etc basted.

The construction of this jacket is really easy, though the first thing you do it welt pockets (first time for me!). Weirdly enough cutting into the middle of the jacket front to make the pocket itself filled me with terror, which I don’t think it would have if it was later in the sewing process – I know, makes no sense, but there you have it. But that was the only thing I struggled with. Though I did do a lot of top stitching to get everything looking right.

I finished the seams and the facing with pre-made bias binding. Because a) you have to do something to hide those ugly seams if you don’t put lining in right? And b) you have to cover the sequins on the seams cause they’re all scratchy. Trust me.

In the end this is a locally made jacket. The fabric comes from one of our local (well Kiwi owned) stores The Fabric Store, the pattern is from Nelson, only a boat ride away and the metal zip (which I love) came from my local haberdashery Made On Marion. I don’t always manage to make it all from small, local companies but I try.

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I’m really happy with this jacket – I like the way the ribbing and the style makes it more casual, and therefore more wearable. It’s actually too big – I think I could have gone down a size? And if so, that’s the first time I’ve ever had that problem! Also the sleeves are a smidge short… which, if I’d searched the interweb before cutting I would have known in advance (do your research kids). Its yet to have it first wear other than getting photos taken, but I’m sure it won’t be long. Who of you have made a Rigel – I have a suspicion there are more in my future? What else have you been sewing?IMG_4635IMG_4624IMG_4592

P.S… my denim bed thingee is still being used. Now I’m back up on my feet it was relegated back to its home on the spare bed. Normally that room isn’t used, but Sewing Cat George came off worse for wear after meeting a car last week. The poor thing has a broken pelvis 😦 He will be a-ok but is banished to a cage for 4 weeks. As the spare room is the coolest room in the house (and its currently summer) we’ve moved him down there, and Mr C and I have set the room up as an alternate front room for the next few weeks to keep him company. Which means the spare bed, and the denim bed thingee are doubling as a couch. Poor man....

While Sewing Cat George may LOOK miserable in his cage, he seems to be having the time of his life having discovered he can reach both his food bowls without leaving his bed! So far he’s been a pretty cool customer with the whole thing… so far…

Meanwhile Sewing Cat Samantha is ignoring him – looks like sewing cat duties are all her for the next month…

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Wow… halfway through 2013

Hey Happy 1st July…

jeepers this year is racing past isn’t it. At the start of the year I had set myself the challenge of sewing 12 items in 2013. At the start of April when I started this blog I had made none. Oops.

BUT things have changed people, I am up to 7 items – over halfway!!

1) orange skirt

2) grey wool skirt

3) Watson jacket (finished!!!!)

4) my wearable muslin for the dress to wear to the wedding

5) the bed rest/leaner thing

6) black boat neck top (a bit boring so unblogged)

7) Forest friends quilt

AND I have just finished my By Hand London Charlotte skirt…  today so I’ve not blogged it yet. Soon dear reader soon.

So I think I’ve done pretty well so far. I’ve discovered the unbelievable support that is the world of Sewing Blogs, particularly the Wellington girls. I have almost doubled my fabric stash, AND my pattern stash. I can’t wait for the rest of the year, I have SOOO many things planned to make.

So thanks for reading  my blog all you lot. I really appreciate it! Hope you have a great creative and productive rest of 2013!

A big hug from me to youl!!!

A big hug from me to you!!!

Watson jacket – completed!!

All done!Aah the Watson Jacket by Papercut patterns. I have loved this jacket since I first came across it nearly 18 months ago.

Papercut is New Zealand based company, and I was so excited when I came across them. I ordered my pattern and when it came it was beautifully packaged and presented. A really detailed (I thought) sewing guide.  I brought the fabric (not sure what it is, sorry)  and a light blue lining (both the jacket and the cape are lined) and was all set. I cut it out and started.

All was going well until I had to sew the cape across the top of the shoulders. Then I lost it. Could not make head or tails of the instructions, couldn’t work out what bits to sew together… and gave up (are you seeing a theme here? It gets confusing and I stop.) I picked it back up late last year and gave it another go… it became a little bit clearer but only kinda.

BUT I am a determined type. I was going to finish this jacket come hell or high water. All I can say is thank goodness this jacket has a cape and a collar – they cover a world of sins! thanks goodness for collars!!!At one point I was left with weird gaps in the shoulder seams so I just topstitched it across knowing it would be covered! (look how ugly and puckered it is!)

Finally after a long long time I got the jacket almost done. The lining was in, all (well most) of the pieces were attached to each other, I turned it the right way around…. and one of the sleeves was sewn in the wrong way… bugger.

Righto. Sorted that out and carried on with getting this jacket done. And here we are. The end.

I love this jacket. At the same time it is the most frustrating thing I have ever made. I think there are a couple of gaps in the instructions, but I am sure most of the problems was from this being my first ever jacket. In fact this is my first of a number of things… full lining, buttons, sleeves… and it looks pretty good!

I have worn this jacket all week whenever I’ve been outside (I’ve been waiting for some sunshine so I could get photos) and have had lots of comments. Every time I see it I smile – I made this!!

smile for the camera         side view - with a peek of blue under the capepop of colour on the inside artistic gazing into the distance shot