February GAM – Turning Japanese!

Well, I managed to complete the garment for January in good time so I feel fairly chuffed. In addition to that I succeeded in staying out of the stores and didn’t but any RTW clothing at all in January – not even tights or other small sundries – so I am very happy. The Minoru jacket I made was almost entirely completed from stash  fabric. The only purchases made for that project were the Thinsulate interlining, the NIKWAX wash in waterproofing, and some seam sealing tape. Very satisfying.

Now, on to February. I have long enjoyed looking through all of the Pattern Magic books, and now the Drape Drape options which are growing on my bookshelf. I have been slightly put off making from the books because they seemed somewhat unwearable (particularly for a lady of my size and vintage!) but after spending all that money on the darn books, and doing two courses at Morley College (which I can strongly recommend by the way) I really feel it is time to make something I will actually wear. So….

A very wearable draped t-shirt.

A very wearable draped t-shirt.

Odd - but nicely so.

Odd – but nicely so.

For February I am proposing to make two garments. GASP! I have decided to make the strange but lovely ‘Two peas in a pod – A’ from the Pattern Magic Stretch Fabrics book (don’t ask how long I have had this!), and Model 4 ‘One piece scoop neck asymmetrical top’ from Drape Drape 2 which my sister bought me for Christmas. In fairness the bulk of the work is in the patterns with these tops – once the patterns have been drawn out the sewing should take very little time. Again there is a however. I am nowhere near the dinky little Japanese sizes. Nothing like.

Thankfully ‘The Management’ is very mathematical as I am useless and he has shown me how to work out how to work out how much I need to have the patterns included in the Drape Drape 2 book I was given for Christmas need to be enlarged. This means that I can just trace off the largest size and ask for them to be reproduced at a larger % at the copy shop. Easy. I hope.

For anyone else mathematically challenged with the same size difficulties here is the way I was shown to get the size to ask for.

Divide your actual measurement by the pattern measurement and then multiply by 100. This should give you a number greater than 100 which will be the percentage to ask for from the copy shop. For example: (Increasing 2 sizes from books largest option)

Actual measurement (98)                 ÷ 100   = 109%

Pattern Measurement (90)

In principal this should be easy to do, tracing off only the size you want to use. Don’t forget that any included seam allowances will also be increased by the extra percentage so it will be worth drawing in the pattern excluding seam allowances pre  copying.

The Pattern Magic Stretch Fabrics isn’t quite so easy as the patterns aren’t included. The blocks included suffer from the same ‘tiny model’ problem that applies to the pattern in Drape Drape. I have spent an afternoon grading them up to my enormous size (seriously – this makes me feel like something out of Gulliver’s Travels!) and the pattern adaption is very simple once you have a block that is your size. Again this needs to be taken to someone who has a clever copier that can make the increase/decrease needed for each piece. The calculations are given in the book to enable you to do this yourself but I am more than happy to pay for this to be done. It is more likely to be somewhere close to where it should be if I don’t do it!

I haven’t done any stash diving yet but I know that there should be a few options available to try these out. Only 24 days left to do this 🙂

Especially for Rhonda who asked me to flash the Minoru lining…..

Flasher!

Flasher!

….(The Management says I look like a Vulcan bomber preparing for take off. Beast.)


Garment a Month Planning – January

This month is an easy choice – I have had this waiting in a little heap to make a start almost since I bought the pattern on my trip to Stratford in June last year (details here). I admired the Sewaholic Minoru in multiple blogs and couldn’t wait to make my own. Only I did.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe main fabric is 100% Polyamide and is slightly showerproof. Because of this I thought it would probably be worth washing in a bit more waterproofing (hence the NIKWAX sachet) and it is in the machine as I type. The lining is a silky polyester inherited from an old lady who used to sew and couldn’t take all of her stash into a residential home. Could this be my future? Anyway, the pattern was one that I would never have worn as a main garment fabric but it will make a brilliant lining. I have ordered the Thinsulate I intend to use as a warm interlining today – hopefully that will make the whole jacket much more useful. I already have a (potentially cold!) weekend away that I hope to have this jacket finished for.

I am making only minor changes to the basic pattern – I really need pockets on the main body – where would you find the wonderful treasures you find on a walk? Also, I will be lining the hood, which after a quick scan of the pattern appears to be left unlined. I have no good reason other than I would like to.

I managed to cut the lining pieces out whilst I was waiting for the Management to get home from work so I hope to be able to get this started very soon. Sadly I do have to get on with some client work tomorrow. Darn.