Dahlia Top

Eucalypt6I sewed something – I repeat – I SEWED SOMETHING!!!

So I started this Eucalypt tank ages ago, in June to be precise, just before I sewed this dress. But my poor choice of bias tape had me think I had ruined everything and the tank was not worth finishing.

Eucalypt1I don’t know the composition of the fabric (I got it at a fabric swap), but I’m pretty sure it’s a natural fibre seeing how nicely it presses and how soft it feels against the skin. And what I’m absolutely sure of is that it’s very lightweight, so I shouldn’t have used that awful stiff store-bought bias tape to finish the armholes and neckline, what was I thinking?!

Eucalypt2The neckline especially was looking as if it was trying to escape as far away from my body as possible, ugh! I tried to arrange things as much as I could by pressing the heck out of that neckline tape, but I was not convinced by the result, so I hung the unfinished tank on a hanger and proceeded to give it the side eye every time I passed it in the next three months.

But last weekend, desperate to sew but feeling hampered by the unusual number of UFOs hanging in my sewing space, I thought I should finish this tank (it was only missing its bottom hem) and, worse comes to worst, wear it as a pyjama top.

Eucalypt3I didn’t bother finding/making lightweight bias tape for the hem (ruined for ruined…) and used the same stiff bias tape I had used for the neckline, only in a different colour because I had no more white bias tape in my stash and I didn’t feel like going out and buying some more. So the hem tape is lilac while the rest of the bias tape is white, so what?

Eucalypt5Not only is the stiff bias tape much less of a problem at the hem than at the neckline, but I also pressed the neckline again (and again!) and finally got a decent result! It’s still far from perfect of course, but it’s now inconspicuous enough that you don’t notice there’s anything wrong with the neckline unless looking for it specifically.

Eucalypt4The armholes are still gaping a little, depending on the way I’m holding my arms (see the first picture of this article), but once again, I don’t know who’s going to notice that when I’m wearing the top. So I’m definitely glad I finished it; it would have been a shame wasting that beautiful piece of fabric, even if I got it for free!

And I can see a lot of Eucalypt tanks in my future! If not for my stupid mistake, it was a very nice pattern to work with. It’s simple but not simplistic and it could look smashingly different depending on what fabric you use or what detail you add.

Dulcinea Skirt

Dulcinea1Like a lot of my projects it seems, this one almost ended up in the trash. I had this idea in my mind that it would be a quick and easy project, and where could I go wrong fitting wise on such a simple skirt?

Well, for starters, I forgot to take ease into account when picking the size of my waistband, so I cut one a little smaller than the XS, which turned out to be a little on the tight side. Nothing horrible, but I doubt I could eat a big meal without it becoming uncomfortable.

Dulcinea6When I first tried the skirt on, I also noticed the weird horizontal pucker you can see in the picture above on each side of the top of the hips, as if there was not enough room for my hips. But what is even weirder is that these two puckers also appear when the skirt is on my dressform whose hips are, to say the least, less well-endowed than mine. So I don’t really get where those come from. Any ideas?

I also realised I had sewed the waistband so that the nap of the corduroy doesn’t go in the same direction as on the skirt itself, but I must say I don’t even see the difference (I can only feel it with my fingers) with such a short pile.

Dulcinea2But the straw that (almost) broke the camel’s back was when I saw one of the pocket seams had started to unravel. I chose to use pinking shears to notch the curve of the pocket seam allowances and I don’t know whether I went too close to the seam or whatever, but it began to show signs of unravelling in one small place, which almost had me throw up my hands and cut the partly finished skirt into a thousand pieces out of rage. I decided to go to sleep before making any rash decision and the next day I decided to hand stitch the small patch of unravelling instead, which doesn’t look perfect, but I don’t think anyone will notice when I wear the skirt:

Dulcinea7So I’m not really in love with the finished skirt, but there are things I like, such as the fabric and buttons, for example. The fabric is a thin whale cotton corduroy, which was a dream to work with, and I LOVE the antique pink colour. What’s nice is I used much less fabric than what the pattern recommended, so I still have about a meter left if I ever feel like making another skirt in the same fabric.

The buttons are some “Anorak” press fasteners from Prym, which were very fun to put in with a hammer (my boyfriend who was trying to work downstairs does NOT agree) and look nice and sturdy.

Dulcinea5Also, I put a lot of effort in the finishing techniques: I tried not to use unnecessary topstitching because I don’t think it would have looked nice on my fabric (other than that I usually love topstitching), so I understitched the pockets and invisibly hand stitched the inside of the waistband. And where I had to use topstitching, I don’t think I’ve ever sewn a line that straight.

Dulcinea3So not everything is negative about that skirt. Even though it’s far from perfect, it would have been a mistake to throw in the towel too soon. It clearly won’t be my favourite skirt, but I still can see myself wearing it a lot, and it would have been a shame for it to end up in the trash. I really have to learn not to make a mountain out of a molehill when something doesn’t go according to plan on a project (which, let’s face it, is every single time).

Dulcinea4