Sewing for a rainy day

It’s a beautiful wet day. Perfect weather to hunker down with some sewing.

I’m in slight danger of becoming obsessive about Worldwide Friends. Some might say it was already too late…. But rather than press on and on, and then get a bit fed up with it, I’m giving myself a slight break.

Screen shot 2014-05-07 at 3.33.42 PMOne of the things I haven’t done anything with (apart from get it out and stroke it occasionally) is the beautiful Amy Butler Lark fabric I bought with a gift voucher I received from Factotum of Arts last year. I need more light cotton tops – shirts with sleeves are fine when it’s hot and dry, to help keep the sun off my arms, but when it’s hot, overcast and wet, something sleeveless is more comfortable.

Screen shot 2015-01-07 at 10.24.35 AM

All my favourite colours in one place

Using the same pattern as for my lawn nighties but shortened a fair bit, I’ve made a top out of one of these gorgeous fabrics. I don’t have quite enough of it to make the pattern in the suggested way, so it has seams up the centre front and back, but I can live with that, even if it does mean the diagonal fabric design doesn’t match up down the middle – the fabric is gorgeous enough to distract me from that. I hear horrified intakes of breath from the purists, but once again I say Finished is better than perfect… I don’t have enough of the other two fabrics to do the same thing, but I’m sure I’ll think of something equally lovely to make with them.

Screen shot 2015-01-07 at 10.24.59 AM

I like adding small, hidden details to personalise a garment

This will be Project #1 of A Year of Finishing, Finally (YFF).

Amongst all the planned new quilts and ‘official’ sewing projects, let’s see how far I get down the list of UFOs, using up scraps, knitting, crochet and dressmaking before something new interposes itself!  I have plenty to be going on with. (And by the way, projects for AHQ don’t count, they’re Sewing for A Cause and can be introduced at any time).

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27 thoughts on “Sewing for a rainy day

  1. cecilia says:

    I love little cotton tops like that, I have a white one that is quite 50’s. And very cool.. I wish i could sew – your work is lovely. c

    • katechiconi says:

      You have so many other skills! I wish I could take photos like you… But this was a very easy top to make, and was the perfect introduction to a protracted period of finishing things off, since I was able to get it done in a couple of hours.

  2. tialys says:

    I like your fancy machine stitching on the binding – I do love a nice detail 😉

  3. ordinarygood says:

    That does look a comfy top to wear in the heat and I love your little “secret” feature!

    • katechiconi says:

      It’s lovely, so much so that I’m planning to make a couple more with fabric from my stash. The only thing I’ll have to buy is some more bias binding; life is too short to make that stuff by hand!

  4. I can no longer bear the sight of my elderly arms in sleeveless tops, but should heatwaves become more common, I may have to follow your example. When living in the tropics, I was teaching in the Polytechnic, built by Chinese (who didn’t understand the effect of heat) mainly of glass, with no aircon. I needed formal wear (having taken a wardrobe of shorts and T’s, so I made by hand 7 dresses of floaty cotton (about £1 a metre) which touched the body only on the shoulders. Perfect!

    I like your fabrics. If you don’t have enough, how about gussets of plain down the sides. in the tradition of patchwork.

    • katechiconi says:

      I have lots of bits of fabric which aren’t quite large enough, and want to make more of these tops as they are wonderfully comfortable. I’m getting over the problem of too-short fabric by making the yokes of something different but complementary. Two more in the pipeline soon. Your tropical dresses sound beautifully comfortable, and I have a favourite pattern for that sort of style which is going to get hauled out and made up soon.

  5. claire93 says:

    if you hadn’t mentiond the seam down the front, I would never have noticed it ^^ I fully agree, a finish is better than perfection and this top is gorgeous.

    • katechiconi says:

      It’s such beautiful fabric, isn’t it? I couldn’t let it hide away in a box any longer! And now that I’ve made this one, and remember how quick and easy it is, I’m going to make some more in different scraps and leftovers!

  6. what a nice top ! that is one goal I have for this year, I want to sew a few curtains, that should not be too difficult I think …?

    • katechiconi says:

      It’s not hard, just lots of material to manage. There are hundreds of blogs and websites that can tell you how to do it, and I’m pretty sure there are some YouTube video tutorials as well. But I taught myself by looking at an old curtain and working out how it had been made. Good luck, and don’t forget to show everyone what you’ve done, the encouragement will help you persevere with sewing.

  7. Carole says:

    It’s gorgeous! Pretty fabric and I do love the detail stitching. I really must try and get a few finishes myself this year 🙂

    • katechiconi says:

      I’ve found it gets things moving if you get out some of the unfinished lovelies and pile them in the middle of your work table. That way you just can’t start something else till you’ve cleared a space by finishing something. Tomorrow I’m going to start machine piecing some squares for the long, long overdue quilt for my younger sister. It’s her birthday soon, which also helps with motivation, not that I’ll be able to finish it in time, but I’ll have something to wave in front of the camera when I Skype her!

      • Carole says:

        That would be a great plan if I didn’t have a very inquisitive kitten 😛
        I currently have the makings of a snowball quilt on my desk, with a couple of hundred 2″ squares. I often find them scattered all around my craft room.
        Maybe if I got on and finished it I could remove the temptation though? I shall step away from the internet immediately and do some sewing 🙂

      • katechiconi says:

        Go, go! Assemble some snowballs! And don’t forget to show us what you’ve got sometime soon! I’ll be waiting…. no pressure….

    • katechiconi says:

      Such lovely fabric. Amy Butler is a very talented designer and rarely produces a range I don’t immediately want to buy. Fortunately, my local quilting shop doesn’t stock much of her stuff, otherwise we’d be a LOT poorer and my stash would be, well, uncontrollable….

  8. Kirsten says:

    I’m not saying anything about the seams . . .

    Love the decorative stitching on the inside, such a pretty finishing touch. I must remember that. I am hoping to make some sleeveless tops in a few months (when the weather should have warmed up a little and I feel like wearing them).

    • katechiconi says:

      Something like this is perfect for really hot weather, you can just pull it over your head and get on with the day. I’m planning a couple more in either the same or a very similar style because when it’s this sticky, you don’t want fabric clinging to your arms.

  9. pattisj says:

    I like all those pretty colors, too. It looks cool and comfy.

  10. […] sewing projects: Grey & white Riley Blake dress Blue floral Amy Butler top Lilac top Black spot dress Laptop cover for me Tablet cover for the Husband Crochet tool kit, […]

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