Wednesday, May 29, 2019

Striped Shirt Burda 6/2012 #103

I had 2 m of the striped drapy cotton I used for the pants, so I had enough fabric left to squeeze out a sleeveless shirt. As the fabric is so fluid and draping, I wanted the shirt to be loose and long. I had bought two patterns for this type of shirt - an old Burda issue from 2012 with a simple straight cut sleeveless shirt with a pleat on the back and a bit more sophisticated pattern - Burda #6840 from their autumn/winter 2018  catalogue. I didn't have enough fabric for the latter pattern, so I opted for the shirt from the old magazine.
I narrowed it a bit to make it size 34, shortened the arm openings by 1 cm, as I could see from the magazine shot that they were rather roomy and added a rounded hem, as I wanted the shirt to have a tunic like length. I had to make a lot of compromises on the cutting of the pattern, as my piece of fabric was really limited.

First - I cut the stand and the collar lengthwise and not across, as I would have preferred. Nevertheless, as far from perfection as it is, this is the best collar with a stand I've managed so far - mainly due to this video tutorial by Diane Deziel.

I also made the pockets as close matching and invisible as was possible, given the pieces of fabric scraps I had after the cutting of the main parts. However, I rather think the little discrepancy between the fronts and the pockets makes them even more interesting and just a little bit noticeable, but not in an obtrusive way, as they would have looked if I haddn't matched the stripes.

The fit is very loose and despite the downsizing I did on the pattern, I could have narrowed it further and I could have made the arm openings smaller - they are still gaping a bit. I didn't have any fabric left to make the bias straps for the arm openings, so I made a bias strap from the fabric remnants of another shirt I made for Gaby recently. As it is on the inside and not noticeable, I'm not bothered by the discrepancy.

The yoke is single layered, as in the pattern. Wear will show if this is a good idea for thin drapy fabrics, I don't know the canon on this topic :)
All in all, it's not a hit, but it's light and comfy, so I believe the shirt will be quite wearable this summer.

Monday, May 27, 2019

Mitered Square Blanket Finished

Yesterday morning I finished the last stitches of the I-cord border of my mitered square blanket and took the blanket with us to photoshoot it on the meadows near Zlatnite mostove. The blanket is big - 190 cm long and 120 cm wide and taking a decent picture of it does require space :) According to my Ravelry notes, I started the blanket on January 6th last year, so it took me almost a year and a half to finish it, or rather to stop knitting it, as I had been considering it finished for the last month and then continued adding rows and columns of squares to it to enlarge it in length and width. And I could have continued doing so happily, but I ran out of yarn and I didn't want to spend any more money on this project. As Leonardo da Vinci put it - art is never finished, only abandoned (me being cheeky :)))

Although I didn't work on the blanket for long periods of time, it was always there as an easy project to revert to when I was feeling down on a current project or in between projects and I honestly feel somewhat sad and empty-handed having finished it. And for the first time in ages I don't have a WIP, not even an abandoned one - I'll have to think of something quickly, as I seem to have forgotten how to function without my knitting :)

The blanket weighs about 1250 g and is 24 x 15 squares, 35 stitches each. The yarn is YarnArt Jeans, 50% cotton 50% acrylic, about 90% of which is hand dyed. When I started the blanket I had just found cotton dyeing and I wanted to play with a few balls of this cotton acrylic blend I had in my stash. However, while knitting the blanket in winter I found that it was not very warm, not even close to wool warm. In terms of practicality it would be definitely wiser to choose wool, maybe some wool/nylon sock yarn. However, in terms of pleasure to knit and dye I would always choose this soft and easy to care for cotton/acrylic blend.

Pattern: Mitered square blanket
Yarn: YarnArt Jeans, 1250 g, hand dyed
Needle: 3 mm
Time to knit: 1 year 5 months

Peak Kamen Del 2019

Yesterday was the day of the European elections in Bulgaria. The results are what they are for ten years now, corruption scandals and blatant theft of European funds could not deter the majority to vote for more of the same, so there it is.
We decided to leave the voting for the afternoon, so we got up early and went to Zlatnite mostove on Vitosha. The trail from Zlatnite to peak Kamen Del (1862 m) is one of the more popular trails in the mountain, but we hadn't walked it until yesterday; we had climbed Kamen Del twice before, but coming from other directions. Kamen Del is the most scenic peak on Vitosha, as it overlooks the entire city and the mountains surrounding it - from Lulin to the west, the Balkans to the north to Lozen and Plana to the east. The hike was fairly short - it took us about three and a half hours with a long rest and a snack at the top and we were back in town with plenty of time to have a rest and go to the voting section.

Thursday, May 23, 2019

Peasant Skirt Burda 3/2013 #123

The third project I finished these days is a peasant skirt. I actually made two of these, based on Burda 3/2013 #123 pattern. The "pattern" is mostly a description of the straps of fabric you need for each layer, which I totally ignored and calculated on my own, based on Gaby's height and I only used the drawings for the upper part of the skirt. Although the pattern is marked as easy, I found it quite labour intensive and the double upper yoke with the zipper had me banging my head over it the whole evening, until I figured the correct sequence of putting it together. Nevertheless, this particular feature of the pattern - the fitted yoke, makes the skirt very elegant and draw me to the pattern in the first place.

The skirt in the pictures is a wearable muslin I made out of a piece of fabric I was gifted. I am not quite sure of the content of the fabric, but the burn test showed that it is mostly if not entirely artificial. Still, the muslin turned out quite well fitting and the skirt might even get some wear later this summer. I missed the opportunity on Tuesday to take pictures of the second peasant skirt I finished this weekend and which Gaby already wore to Uni. I made it out of cotton poplin and I'm truly pleased with how it turned out, she even got some compliments on her outfit :) I hope I'll be able to take a picture or two of it some day.

And I'm carrying on ... I bought more fabric and more Burda style patterns and magazines, I'll be busy sewing this summer :)))

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Pants Burda 5/2013 #117A

My next sewing project is a pair of pants out of very drapy cotton fabric. When Gaby was in Thailand and Vietnam, she bought a pair of very colorful light cotton pants with quite a loose fit, which she's been wearing about the house for three years now. She finds them extremely comfortable and she wanted me to sew her something similar. I browsed through the Burda Style site and chose this pattern, as it seemed loose enough and it also had a picture tutorial on how to make, which was a plus. 
I bought the magazine issue specifically for this pattern and the striped fabric looked ideal for the pants. However, when I sewed the pants, I found that they are quite fitted at the hips and the loose fit is only at the waist, which is regulated with the string. The design is more suitable for a city walk than for lounging in the house. I've bought another fabric and a new pattern, which seems more close to what I was looking for, and these pants may actually get some wear out during the summer. I like their fit on Gaby and they seem comfortable and wearable.

Features about the pattern I like - the fit around the hip area and the back. The drape is nice and flattering. However I find the waist band, which is formed by folding the back and the front together with the pockets, to be too bulky and the regulation of the waist just by the string is a bit flimsy. I think it would have been better to cut the pattern at the waist and add a separate waist band with some elastic and add the string more as a decoration.