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Patrones 299, 300, 301, and Costura Facil

I ordered these from a new-to-me Spanish magazine shop, No Pares de Leer. The prices (and shipping) were about the same as Hos Hanne, but the shipping was tracked by default so I could see exactly how slowly it was making its way to me…

Patrones 299

This is the last of the winter issues (sob!), but at least it’s full of what Patrones do best – coats!! I even like the coat on the cover, though I like it better without the enormous bow.

In the first coats feature (on that “Patrones beach” we’ve seen in pretty much every issue), I rather like this big, asymmetrical collar coat, but it does remind me of the Vogue Armani-knockoff pattern so many people have made (and I’ve loved, too).

This topstitched, seamed jacket just oozes cool. The detailing is just fantastic on this, too – they even added a little pouch to the belt!

Asymmetric Plum Lace Top

The latest installment in my post-coat winter sewing plans is the asymmetric pleated turtleneck, Patrones 296 #14.

In this design, you’re given the pattern pieces for a turtleneck top, where the front has been cut diagonally across the front. So if you’ve not got this issue of Patrones, just go and draw a curvy line across your favourite turtleneck pattern!

In the magazine photo, the sleeves and upper front piece are pleated and underlined, but I chose to overlay lace on mine instead. Patrones provide the pattern pieces for the post-pleated fabric (allowing you the fun of working out exactly how much fabric you’d need for whatever size pleats you choose!), so it was super simple to just use those finished pieces to cut out the lace overlays instead.

The plum fabric here is a gorgeous bamboo/lycra jersey that I bought from Ditto in Brighton last month, and it’s so unbelievably soft, and with a nice, beefy weight and good stretch. I loved Wazoodle’s bamboo years ago, but this stuff is even better as it’s thicker and doesn’t wrinkle anywhere near as readily. I am utterly in love with this fabric! I’ve got another of their bamboo/lycras in red and I’m itching to make something from that now, too. The green stretch lace I bought at Tissues Dreyfus in Paris last summer, and I love how the two together give a bit of an antique look….

Saturday afternoon sewing pow-wow

I normally get quite a lot of sewing done on the weekends, but this weekend was particularly fun because Susannah of Cargo Cult Craft came over to the boat on Saturday afternoon for a big, fat geeked-out sewing session!

She brought her stash of ALL the 2010 Patrones issues, plus her assorted stash of Manequims, and I lugged my KnipModes, other Patroneses, and Manequims out of my sewing batcave. You should’ve seen the amount of pattern magazines on our saloon table! It was downright decadent, I tell you…

I ended up tracing two Patrones patterns then and there:

This cape jacket (295-22)

And an asymmetrical, yoked blouse (291-23)

Susannah fell in love with two Knips (a gathered knit dress – April 10 #14 and a long sleeved knit cowl top – Feb 10 #19) and traced those on our saloon floor, too. Poor James could barely find a scrap of carpet to walk on between my brown kraft paper and her Swedish tracing paper!

The Winter Coat

Hooray, my winter coat is finally finished! As you may have seen with all the coat sewing activity going on around the internet lately, making your own coat is no mean feat! While you’re perfectly able to take some shortcuts, it’s still a several week time investment no matter how you look at it. It’s for this reason that lots of us chose to sew them over the holidays, as it doesn’t feel like quite such a long ordeal if you’ve got several full days to devote to it at one stretch.

If you remember, I used Patrones 285 #29, but with the collar from #28 and major changes to the pockets so that I can easily put my hands inside while I walk to work (which I did today wearing it! yay!). After a muslin, the main changes I made were to lower the waist seam to match my natural waist, shorten and widen the front darts, add walking ease to the lower centre front, and change the pocket design.

I’ve already made a lengthy post about the coat construction and hair canvas interfacing, plus tons of HAWT handstitching action, so if you’re interested in the couture techniques I used or some interior shots of the coat shell, please click through before reading on…

Patrones 294, 296, 297, & 298

These issues of Patrones are a few months old, but I only just received them so I thought it was worth a brief whirlwind tour of my favourites (even if it’s only to jog my memory later when I’m looking for patterns to sew)!


(Top: 297, 296. Bottom: 298, 294)

First up is a surprise summer issue – James’s parents visited Portugal in December and I asked if they would keep an eye open for Manequim or Patrones while they were there, and despite looking everywhere, they only found this copy at the airport on their way home! Considering it’s 5-6 months old, I have no idea how it was still around!

Patrones 294

This issue is nearly entirely wispy summer dresses that can’t really cope with our bold and brash English “summers”, but I do think this Hilfiger-esque shift dress would work well in our climate. With a cardie.

The Winter Coat – construction

About a year ago I bought some gorgeous, ex-Burberry wool coating fabric from Ditto with plans to eventually make another winter coat. The muted turquoise wool has a patterned herringbone weave on one side but it’s also very thick and un-drapey but has the advantage of not fraying at all (almost like a boiled wool or Melton).

The fabric is so thick that I knew had to choose my pattern wisely, leaving out coats with lots of pleats or gathers that would’ve meant lots of bulk here.

As soon as I saw the Armani knockoff coat in the September Burda issue, I thought I’d found the match for my fabric, but as you recall, that pattern was just downright awful. So I started looking through my coat patterns again for something suitable, and Claire (Seemane) suggested I combine Patrones 285 #29 with some elements of the other coats in that issue, which is more or less what I ended up doing (though I need to change my tech drawing here to show the applied welt pockets I finally decided on rather than buttoned welts).

The Best Pattern Magazines of 2010 – Nominations

I always look forward to Pattern Review’s Best Patterns of the year, but this year the nominations don’t have a single pattern magazine included. This is really disappointing as I do 99% of my sewing from them, and I feel the shortlist really doesn’t reflect my own personal sewing in the slightest. (And don’t even get me started about the inclusion of some patterns that were just Big 4’s stumbling, mediocre versions of great patterns previously printed in pattern mags!)

So I thought it might be fun to have our own nominations for the Best Pattern Magazines of 2010!

I think it’ll be easier to vote for whole issues rather than specific patterns inside, and also give people a better idea of which back issues to hunt for. If there’s enough nominations, I’ll set up a proper vote in a bit so we can see what’s crowned the winner when I do my own personal roundup of the year on New Year’s Day.

Black Beignet skirt and a bias cowl top

It feels like I’ve been talking about sewing the Colette Patterns Beignet skirt for ages now, but it’s mostly because I’ve just been so busy with life (running, socialising, wedding planning, the boat, and my garden, mostly) right now that I’ve been sewing in tiny increments here and there! But it’s finally complete, and I even managed to sew up the bias cowl top from Patrones 292 (#19) to wear with it!

Even though these go so well together, I’ve actually got no shortage of other things in my wardrobe to wear with either, so there’s no “orphan coordinates” here! And I managed to sneak some mustard and navy into my wardrobe a bit earlier than I’d planned, too!

Patrones 290

I’m kinda going backwards here, since I already reviewed Patrones 292, but Kim ended up with a spare copy of this issue so I got a surprise in my happy postbox!! Thanks, Kim!

Overall, this issue was more summery than 292 despite coming out earlier in the year, with tons of shorts (which I do not wear), but these tops worn with them were pretty cool. The white one uses a knit on top, and wovens for the two lower panels. What a great idea for lovely flowing silks or chiffons…

I love the bubble, cropped sleeves on this jacket…