Bianca 1 and Bianca 2 – skirt and shirt upcycle

I have been sewing a lot, and blogging less.  Some of my sewing has really been going in circles – normally I like to make something, finish and move on to the next but the last few months I have been sewing a few things at the same time, and dawdling on the finish.  Bianca making

I started these Bianca’s ages ago.  I used the Wear Lemonade Free Bianca pattern and thought it would be a cute update for this ‘blackwatch’ plaid skirt, which ultimately I think it is.  I cut the plaid as usual for the main body, but had not enough to plaid match sleeves fully so I only matched them on the cross grain.  Personally I don’t mind this as it looks even.  I did not like the Bianca collar and perhaps its because I don’t wear shirts (?) but eitherway I tried doing a more casual collar with notches.  I still think the collar is too tight but other than that its a sweet blouse.

bianca finish

 

At the same time, I decided I really needed a white blouse with peter pan collar so I upcycled a white shirt to make this.  To add a bit of interest I tried out a lot of the decorative stitches in the machine in a grey thread.  I have yet to put a button and loop close at the back but at least they are both now FINISHED!

white bianca shirt upcycle

 

Simplicity 3636 – plaid skirt to plaid over blouse

I have now decided that overblouses are the best ever……… now that winter is coming, and jumpers are beckoning, an overblouse is a lot smarter (than some of my jumpers anyway) and I just love the pockets.  The style of this overblouse is not unlike a ‘kinsale smock’ (or fishermans smock), and its perfect ‘transitional’ wear, when its too warm for a jacket, but too cool to not wear one.  I had hoped to use up a red plaid from stash but there wasn’t enough (but I have a plan for that) so I decided to use the plaid from a pleated wool skirt I got a long long time ago, adored the colours but couldn’t think of what to do with it. 

Plaid is a tricky one.  Its not the hardest to match off once you decide where the match points should be, but when its off – its really off  (the last worst match plaid I saw was ‘Wolf of Wall st’, Leonardo diCaprio’s Prince of Wales suit).  When learning factory cutting, we had to do plaids, and cut them in layers of 20 plus careful laying and planning is key and then it should all work out fine.  I cut this top on the fold, but I can understand some people prefer to cut plaid on one layer only, the reason I don’t is that I am more afraid of cutting 2 left fronts or something by forgetting to turn pattern pieces over.

simplicity 3636 plaid skirt upcycle refashion to plaid blouse



I decided to put the main dark stripe as centre, as this gave the most fabric and I suppose ‘technically correct for plaid’ , however the side seams would be three square sides but it looked fine at that so I cut in. 

So when I was cutting this, I matched my centre front and centre back lines at the same plaid point for the vertical and then worked up from hem lines, checking then, the underarm match lines and the lines at the shoulder each side of the neck.  As this was a simple cut, this was straight forward enough but I had to pin it plenty for sewing to make sure the squares didn’t stray.   

So after all of this, I must have been a bit slap dash with darts and then one of my darts was slightly off, and fixing a slightly off dart is a lot more difficult than fixing the one that is miles off!  (and ironically you could spot the slightly off dart a mile off). 

simplicity 3636 plaid skirt upcycle refashion to plaid blouse


The buttons were from the button tin, originally from black coat …. .  I was going to include a collar, but the collar for this was designed to sit flat, and it looked a bit off, if there was sufficient fabric I may have tried one that stood up a bit, in the end, I used the collar as the facing.

skirt upcycle to long sleeve tee




I made a long-sleeve-tee to wear underneath – its a funnel neck.  I did a basic pattern draft for it, and used a viscose jersey skirt -the weight and drape of this fabric was divine.  Its was very quick, draft, sew, wear and I will be making more of these.