Last week Ali (AKA Thimberlina) blogged about her Woodland Stroll Cape, it looked lovely and so easy to wear. It’s a pattern designed by Liesl & Co and available to download from Oliver & S. I must admit I’ve not used a digital clothes pattern before, I’ve done little things like bags, but not garments. I purchased it straight away and printed off the pattern. So thanks Ali for the inspiration!
I spent an enjoyable 10 minutes with scissors and sticky tape, sticking the pattern together, though I was rather puzzled at the end that I had one piece left!! Still not sussed that one out! The instructions were great, easy to follow with just enough pictures!
The pattern recommends wool, corduroy, velveteen for the outside and something silky for the lining. Last year at Goldhawk Road I bought some corduroy, it is beautiful, with a very fine cord, but you know when you buy something on impulse and then think Why oh why?? What was I thinking? Don’t get me wrong, it’s gorgeous, but it’s cream…with cording and sequins on…I have dogs and chickens…I just don’t have the lifestyle for say a cream winter skirt! I decided it would make a perfect cape, maybe more for a stroll to the theatre than a woodland stroll though! The lining is one of the few remnants I’ve bought on ebay that I’ve been disappointed with, it just wasn’t as pretty as it looked on screen. It was cheap so it wasn’t worth returning but it’s sat in my stash ever since. This was it’s moment to shine!!
I cut the corduroy out first. I was very careful to position the pieces so I didn’t have sequins and cording along the hem, or where the buttonholes would be (that was more tricky!) I also cut the back neck facing from the very edge where there wasn’t any embroidery. I removed all the sequins and excess cording from the seams, the sequins are clear ones, not too blingy but very well stitched on with three stitches each, none of this one snip and four fall off!
The lining proved a very slippery customer! It was one of those fabrics that moved every time you looked at it, never mind when you tried to cut it! It was such a slippery customer that having stay-stitched the necklines and shoulders, I returned to it having stitched the outer fabric together. The two fronts had completely disappeared! I searched the sewing room, the overflow on the landing, the ironing board area…in the end I cut another two fronts out! And no, they still haven’t appeared!
Stitching the outer fabric to the lining is the tricky bit with this pattern, it recommends lots of pins, I nearly ran out, it’s a very long seam!! I laid it out on the floor to get it as smooth as possible then checked the hang on Florence, my muse!
It’s turned the right way through the shoulder seam in the lining, I decided to edge-stitch round to reduce the risk of the lining peeping through. The pattern calls for 1″ buttons, mine are about 3/4″ as I couldn’t find any I liked the right size at a price I was prepared to pay! £1.30 per button was a step too far! 30p for these was much more like it!
I have a buttonhole attachment for my sewing machine which does make life easier. I always have a debate with myself as to which buttonhole to do first, obvious ones, or less noticeable. I usually plump to do the obvious ones last, thinking I’ll be in the swing of it by then, inevitably they are the ones I make the mistake on as I’m so into the swing of it I lose my concentration! So it was today! The final buttonhole, the bottom one on the front, it looks perfect from the front, but the lining decided to move and ruck up, I said it was a slippery customer! Very frustrating!
I’m really pleased with it, although I think I need to get used to the look, I feel somewhat large in it at the moment, maybe it needs a straight skirt with it. I think it’s be rather nice to wear on my next trip to the theatre to see the musical Calendar Girls next month.