Mobile sewing weekend report

I’m beginning to feel like my draped suit (Burda September 2011 #126 and 127) is dragging on forever, so it’s good that I am making progress in the few snatched snippets of time available to me over the past few weeks. I hope you’re not getting too bored yet!

We were out of town this past weekend, up in Sheffield visiting two very good friends of ours in their new place (a house with his’n‘hers sewing machines! We slept in a room with a vintage Bernina!). It’s about a 3.5 hour drive from London, so there was ample time in the car for handstitching, but it did require some planning ahead to get the suit in a state ready for it.

Going back to my earlier To-Do list from last week, I was able to finish the following on Friday night before we left:

  • Construct and attach the sleeve linings to the rest of the lining
  • Interface the jacket hem
  • Attach the lining to the jacket around the front facings and neck edge
  • Construct the skirt lining and baste to the skirt at the top edge
  • Attach the waistband
  • Machine-hem the skirt lining
  • Machine-stitch some grey lace tape to the bottom skirt edge

I also prepped about 5 lengths of grey and pink thread with beeswax before leaving so that I wouldn’t get horrible tangles while doing all the handstitching. I never used to bother with beeswax, but it seriously does help cut down on the excess tangling, so the time spent waxing and pressing the thread in advance really does save you time and frustration in the long run.

Then, in the in the car ride up to Sheffield and back (and, err, also in the KwikFit waiting room while we had new tires put on) I was able to:

  • Anchor the lining to the seam allowances at the underarm
  • Baste and hand stitch the jacket hem
  • Hand stitch the lining hem to the jacket hem
  • Hand stitch the sleeve lining hem to the sleeve facing
  • Baste and hand stitch the skirt hem

I just love how that hot pink satin piping turned out! You can also see my lace hem tape on the skirt here. This was a pack of lace tape I’d bought at the Amish dry-goods store in Perry County last year, paying 50 cents for it, and with a 1986 copyright on the package!

So, the only things left to do are:

  • Hand stitch the skirt lining to the zipper tape inside
  • Cover and attach two large snaps to the jacket opening

And, err, unpick the machine stitching on the skirt lining’s hem and make it an inch shorter, because it’s slightly longer than the skirt’s hem, d’oh! That’s what I get for finishing the hems out of sequence in order to get all the machine sewing done before we left…

But in any case, it’ll definitely be done by the weekend so I can get a photoshoot done while it’s light out! HOORAY!

We had a fabulous time in Sheffield, and since I’d never been there before, we got the grand tour of the best sights (okay, ice cream mostly!), and I picked up a little souvenir in the Nichols Building antique centre.

I saw Maudella New Look 6126 in a small stack of vintage patterns and I just had to have it:

First of all – it’s a midi skirt, so it’s SUPER fashionable right now, and a silhouette I haven’t tried yet. It’s also a multisize pattern in my size range, it’s in good condition, and it was only £2, hooray!

Maudella Patterns appears to be a Bradford (Northern England) sewing pattern company that, by the mid 1970s, were published under the New Look brand, but the contents were entirely controlled by Maudella (hence the Maudella branding all over the instructions inside!). This is a new-to-me vintage pattern company, and there doesn’t seem to be much online about them or their history (no Wikipedia page! omg!). However, I did find this Radio 4 Women’s Hour programme about them which aired in 2002, so if you’ve got RealPlayer installed, you might be interested in a listen.

I’d love to say I’m going to do something quick and easy after this suit, but I’ve really got to make some progress on a maternity coat for a friend before the weather goes much colder!

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