Monday, November 21, 2011

November Meeting: Making Turbans

At our November meeting, Janet Breslin from the Cancer Council met spent the afternoon with us walking us through the 'how to' of turban making. Very simple once we got through the first one.

Here is all the preparation that Janet and her sister Helen had done for us. A choice of four colours which was fortunate as there were only four members present as well as one of Sandi's friends.

There are only three pieces required to make a turban: the single piece of fabric, one small piece of fabric for the tab, and a piece of ribbon.

First step: sew the two darts using a 6mm seam.

Then join the two long edges and sew with a 1.5cm seam to about 2cm from the folded edge, seen here marked with a pin.

Shown below is that seam sewn.

Sew the longer edges of the tab together with a 6mm seam then turn right side out. Sew one short edge of the tab to the opening of the turban.

Slot the tab end inside the turban and thread the ribbon through the two channels of the long seam anchoring it around the tab, making sure to attach safety pins or bodkins at the end of the ribbon to enable you to thread. Seen here are the safety pins peeking out of the channels and the ribbon pulled tight.

Anchor the ribbon with a pin about 2-3cm from the bottom edge.

Then sew a 2-3cm hem with a zig-zag stitch.

Here is the finished turban.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

October Meeting: Sewing with Sheers

October was a great meeting! Only a few of us present, but it was wonderfully planned and delivered by Elizabeth and Genevieve.

To start the ball rolling - or should we say start the machine sewing! - we examined some recent 'failures'. Needless to say, with Stella's first garment, all we could think of 'where's the failure?' It looked pretty good to us all.

Here is Stella's lovely cowl neckline on a recently made top.

No doubts about this failure from Karen! Perhaps it was due to the shonky insertion of elastic at the neckline more than the pattern adjustment.

Patterns that tie at the waist invariably tie much higher than that in real life, so a lowering of the pattern pieces seemed to be in order. The advice of everyone present was to unpick the elastic and include a much more relaxed fit of the cross over sections. Unpicking?!?!? That decision will be left for another meeting.

Genevieve showed us a gorgeous dress with pockets situated at the hip line. With Genevieve feeling decidedly uncomfortable about pockets allegedly gaping, a quick line of stitching to hold them down did the trick.

Some gorgeous patterns ... but maybe not the right style for one's body type.

Working with Sheers

The main body of the meeting was about working with sheers. Genevieve showed us some garments and discussed the techniques she had used to bind the neckline and arm holes with a combination of machine stitching and delicate hand stitching.

Then, an inventive method for avoiding a zip closure in a sheer garment - buttons and loops. Brilliant! It was a gorgeous finish and just perfect for the garment.

Another view of the neckline binding.

Elizabeth also had a variety of garments to show.

Show and Tell

Anne had been making a dress with careful use of the design as a feature.

Stella had made a gorgeous floral embellishment.

And a lovely shawl from some intriguing but very delicate fabric.

And a fabulous bag complete with embellishments.

Stella has combined an idea for cowl necklines from a magazine with a recently made top seen below that incorporates a design feature.

Some various items from Elizabeth Morley's workshop.

Maureen has been experimenting with textiles and embellishments.

And Elizabeth's spectacular feathered cape.

Monday, July 18, 2011

July Meeting: Garments with Embellishments and Patterns

Sunday 10 July was one of the coldest days we have had this year and the heaters in our meeting room were cranked up to 'HIGH' in an effort to thaw us out. Only Anne, Elizabeth, Genevieve, Stella, Linda and Karen braved the cold to be at the meeting.


Stella showed a couple of tops that she had painted and sewn embellishments on.

Stella has also been making trims from ribbon and other fabrics.

Machine patterning that Stella did on her vest by sewing from the back.

Linda's embellished tops.

Genevieve's embellished bag.

Patterns: Must-haves and those that are tried-and-true favourites

Show and Tell

Elizabeth found a gorgeous necklace to complement her blue dress.

Elizabeth also asked for feedback about which pattern would go well with her blue silk velvet.

Genevieve has used the 'Jazzy Jeans' book to give her some inspiration to deconstruct/reconstruct some garments that she picked up for a song at a thrift shop.

Here is a reconstructed skirt.

A reconstructed bag from a store-bought pair of jeans, complete with coin embellishment.

A reconstructed skirt with different coloured denim for the flounces.

More coin embellishment.

Anne's been knitting.

Stella's top

And another of Stella's gorgeous bags done by using braid to create designs.

A painted scarf.

Another embellished scarf.

Genevieve bought some interesting new bamboo fabric that we can't wait to see made up into a garment.

Our next meeting in August will see the culmination of our 'personal challenge' for the year.