My boyfriend James has a RTW fleece that he loves, but it’s getting scraggly and it’s a bit too thin to be useful when we work outside a lot. He’s been bugging me to recreate him a new one for a while now, and I recently picked up KwikSew 2561 which I thought would be easier than just tracing his old one. He bought the fleece from cheapfabrics.co.uk since we knew how nice and thick it was from our earlier fleece adventures. After the mental gymnastics of the Pendleton wool jacket, I decided it was time to make something simple!
What better way to kickstart January than with activewear, amirite?? Especially if it’s a pattern you’ve sewn a thousand times before, in a fabric you love, and made entirely with stash fabrics. Bonus points if it’s also essentially a clone of a garment you already own so you’re pretty much guaranteed of success!
In the years since launching our Tessellate Tee pattern, I found myself wearing the turquoise, yellow, and claret hoodie sample (featured on the pattern cover) for nearly all of my coldest runs – I can’t even tell you how many early morning run commutes this came along on! The key here was that I made it in Funkifabrics’ “thermo” fabric which is essentially fleece-lined lycra. It’s stretchy with great recovery, and has a smooth exterior, but the interior is fluffy and fleecy like the inside of a sweatshirt, which makes it really warm. I often paired this hoodie with a pair of Steeplechase Leggings I’d also made in black thermo, and the combo is one I’d wear on my coldest and wettest runs or cycle commutes.
Recently I’ve been doing more batch tracing rather than tracing one pattern, sewing it up, then tracing the next. I find my sewing bottleneck is often in the tracing step (even though it doesn’t take much time), so by doing a bunch at once I can always have something on the go to work on in the mornings and evenings.
I’ve been mentally matching up my patterns to fabrics in my stash and tracing an awful lot the last few nights. Here’s what I’ve got coming up in the next few weeks, though you can see my plans have had to change somewhat to focus more on comfortable knits…
If you’ve been following along, you’ll remember that my grandmother visited the Pendleton woollen mill in the 1960s and bought two 2 yard remnants of 100% wool navy blue suiting fabric for $6 each (so $12 total). In August, she gave these to me, saying she’d never got around to sewing up anything with them and she thought I’d make better use of it.
I’d already finished the jacket portion of this tuxedo-inspired suit (the show piece from my F/W 07 Collection), and you can see the first photoshoot of that here.
The trousers were far more straightforward than the jacket, however, so they didn’t take nearly as much time or seam ripping to complete! I wanted to tie together the satin accents of the two pieces so I opted to add a thin stripe of navy blue satin ribbon to the outside seams of each trouser leg, which I think gives a subtle sheen as I move. The integral belt/waistband of this pattern really evokes a sort of cummerbund, too, and raises this design above just a normal trouser suit.
This is the first year my boyfriend and I will be in our own place for Christmas, so we’re starting from scratch as far as ornaments and decorations go. We bought a string of lights and two packs of shiny baubles from the store, but apart from a few candy canes, the tree was bare.
I started with some festive bunting, by cutting triangles of fabric from an off-white curtain sample (donated by my boyfriend’s mother) and sewing them all together in a long strip of dark green bias binding.