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…

Patrones two-tone jeanskirt

When I first saw the tech drawing for this skirt (#13) in Patrones 292, I assumed the curved upper back section wrapped around seamlessly into the angled front pockets, and it’s what initially drew me to this design.

But on closer inspection of the pattern pieces, I realised this wasn’t the case and that there were side seams on the upper portion as you’d expect in most skirts. So after tracing the pattern, I went about transferring the curved side seam “dart” into an area that would be hidden by the pocket, went so far as cutting out the piece…. and then realised it seemed like a kinda stupid amount of faff just to remove a seam line on a colour-blocked skirt where the seam would be so overshadowed by the overall colour-blocking anyway. So I reverted everything back to the pattern as drafted, recut the nude fabric pieces, and made the skirt as intended.

Comfort stashing

I’ve had a bit of a bad day today, so instead of stuffing my face, I went and did a bit of online comfort fabric shopping.

(Full fabric stash viewable here, with new stuff at the bottom)

I’m definitely most excited about the mustard + navy combo right now. I saw two different people on the street wearing mustard tops and navy bottoms within the space of about 15 minutes yesterday, and both times I did a double-take at how great it looked (one was a casually-dressed Shoreditch man and the other was a smart City lady). So I’m definitely making a top out of the goldenrod cotton rib knit and pairing it with a pair of slim-cut stretch navy twill trousers (Patrones 290 has some amazing slim trouser patterns in it but more on that in a bit!).

I like to think I was quite sensible with my choices, buying things that a) I can’t easily buy here, like the quality stretch wovens, b) I’ve got mental plans for already, and c) will work for Fall and Winter, which is when I’ll be seeing what I’ve just bought. And I’ve kinda noticed that I don’t wear loud prints anywhere near as much as the solids in my wardrobe, so I’m trying to keep those to a minimum (both prints in this order are for gifts!).

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.

Post-coat winter sewing plans

Now that I’ve got my big winter coat sewing out of the way, I can turn my attentions to filling in a few gaps in my winter wardrobe. Sewing these things now means I can get another good 3-4 months of wear out of them before moving on to short sleeves and lighter jackets (no really, for the past few years we’ve had flurries and hard frosts in April or May).

So I’ve gathered together the patterns I’d most like to sew along with fabrics I’ve got in my stash that would help fill my wardrobe voids…

Starting at the top of this collage, we’ve got:

Winter coat shortlist

With the Burda/Armani coat firmly OFF my list for my winter coat (a few of you suggested I could change/fix/alter the pattern but sorry, my time is too valuable to throw after a bad pattern. I know when to cut my losses and choose a better one!), I’m now in the process of picking a different winter coat pattern for my luscious and very thick ex-Burberry wool coating.

Since I scan all of the “At-a-glance” pages for my pattern magazines and store these in a private online gallery, looking through these and creating a shortlist is much, much easier than wading through each and every one of my magazines! I went through the gallery, and when I found a coat pattern I quite liked, I took a small screenshot of it (on Macs you can Shift-Apple-4 to draw a small square and only capture just that area), and renamed the screenshot to the pattern issue and number so I wouldn’t forget where it came from. Then I pasted all these into one big image so I can see all my choices at once.

This is the same process I used to narrow down my wedding gown pattern shortlist, but I cleaned the collage up a bit nicer in Photoshop this time around!

(click to see it bigger)

Do You Speak Sewing?

I finished hemming the Pendleton wool tuxedo-inspired trousers last night, using the very, very last of my navy blue thread, so we should hopefully be able to have the photoshoot tonight and you’ll see the completed suit tomorrow!

In Patrones news, I’ve been very busy tracing off a bunch of patterns from the December and October 2007 issues that my wonderful East London benefactor has lent to me. So far I’ve traced off 6 patterns and scanned and cleaned up images for 11. My Type A personality is really shining through here, but what I’ve done is put the traced pieces (I usually use brown kraft paper but for some reason the same paper in green was half price so who am I to argue?) plus a scan of the fashion photo plus a scan of the technical drawing and instructions all into a gallon-sized ziploc bag. Hopefully this means I won’t lose pieces or forget what I have when I go to choose a project…

Going through all the instructions made me yearn for something like Naaipatronen’s Dutch sewing terms list that I’d be able to use for all these Spanish sewing terms. I don’t really need much, but I found it necessary to at least know the type of fabric required before starting off, so knowing things like punto means knit is invaluable. Using a variety of online sources I’ve managed to cobble together a small list of Spanish sewing terms, but it’s nowhere near comprehensive and, not being a native speaker, probably has a bunch of errors in it. But I can keep it as a work in progress, so if you speak Spanish and have any corrections or addition, PLEASE send them over and I’ll update the file.

Download my Spanish – English sewing terms translation list (in pdf format)