Sunday 29 April 2012

My sewing space

I've organized my sewing area! For me, the purpose of the Ikea-trip earlier this year was to get the last things needed to put the final touches on my sewing area. Some small things to organize it and make it user-friendly. Since then I've been torn whenever I've had a day over: organize or sew? Last weekend I finally set the sewing aside, and re-organized my stuff.

I started with taking out all my fabrics, and only keep the ones I have a planned project for (and a small pile with fabrics that I have a few different ideas for, but haven't decided on which idea I prefer). The rest, about 1/3, went to the storage room in the basement. Some of it I know I want to keep, but have no immediate use of (like 12 m of white linen. For example), other stuff I'm more uncertain of. Ah well, later problem =) The fabric above is what I kept in the appartement...

The fabric all neatly(?) stashed in my vintage linen cupboard, aka the fabric closet. See, there's even room for more! Yay! Does mean I can go fabric shopping? ;) Before, I've sorted fabric by content, now I tried something different: sorting by type of garment it will become. The jersey's got their own pile, though.
I know a lot of people store their fabric on open shelfs, which is very pretty and inspiring. However, I've had some of these pieces for more years than I care to admit, and keeping it safe from sunlight and dust is a priority. Hence, doors are a must.

Overview of the fabric closet, the sewing bookcase, my hatboxes, and how I store my pressing table. Easy to reach but away from sight, just how I need it to be to have the energy to put it away between sewing sessions!

I cleaned out the bookcase rather good to, all my sewing books actually fits into it now! And my boxes for supplies/thread/special scissors etc (notions and haberdashy). My patterns also lives here, in the white+grey boxes.

I had some problems of what to do with all the toille fabric (I bought 25 meter at Ikea...). I made the underbed storage box a pure toille-supplies box with fabric, tracingpaper etc. The other box is for all the non-sewing related craft supplies, like yarn for knitting, knitting needles, lace-patterns, crocheting supplies and so on.

Where the sewing actually happens: the desk. Made a lot easier to use with all the small thing out of way and up on the wall. The wall hanger is actually an Ikea kitchen tool, very handy. The computer's on the small hutch, and when I spend more time in front of it (like now, writing a blog post) it takes 5 sec to lift it up on the desk. I find having it like this means I don't get stuck in front of the computer so much.
The thing on the right of the desk is a closet that one can spin around, on the other side there´s a full length mirror. Very practical when fitting! It holds the project boxes I got at Ikea, plus pressing supplies and my UFO-pile (which is safely hidden out of sight). It's so easy to have it all in a box, pattern, fabrics, toille, and then a lid on it so it doesn't get dusty.

Over the desk: a print of 19th century outfits. I did realise when mounting the handle on the wall that I had bought too few hooks. Don't worry, it will be remedied this summer!

So there you are, a full tour of my sewing area! I don't have a cutting table, but one of the best things with this huge bedroom is that I can place 4 metres of fabric, 150 cm wide, flat on the floor and there's still room to walk around it. Without moving any furniture or so =)
Hope you enjoyed the look! How do you sew, do you have a separate sewing room (oh, in my dreams...)? Or a designated area? Do you store lot's of fabric "that can be useful in the future" or do you only buy for one project at a time?

Love, Erika

Tuesday 24 April 2012

I'm sewing jersey!

A while ago my mom visited for a weekend. Always such a treat to have her here! There was plenty of good food, late talks and of course our Saturday morning special: Scones to the music-crossword on the radio. With the phone nearby so we could call my aunt for the questions we didn't know... =)

Umeå dancefestival was the same weekend, so we took the oppurtunity to test some new dances during the taster-classes daytime, and then we lindy-ed the night away. Lucky for me, mom's an amazing and experienced dancer who regarded joining her daughter for an evening of lindy hop as a fun experiment rather than a terrifying nightmare =) I had the best lindy social so far this year! Great dancers, great floor, swingin' band and oh boy, I was in the mood =)

Besides from being a wonderful dancer, mom has a lot of experience in sewing the material that fills me with dread: jersey. Ehum, yes, I'm one of those "I can't remember when I started sewing, mom taught me the basics when I was a kid" =) I wish I had paid more attention though, as a lot of the so called "couture sewing techniques" is what my mom calls regular home-sewing. My hope is to one day equal her skills and her attention to details! In the mean time, I sprung on the oppurtunity of having her here to hold my hand for my first real attempt at sewing a jersey top. I used my bodice block/sloper and made changes to adjust it to the stretch of the jersey. Made a toille, laughed a bit, analyzed it with mom, and then made a second attempt on my own. This is what I came up with:

And from the side/back:

This jersey is a bit too heavy for such a fitted top, my next attempt will be in a lighter weight jersey. Also, mom was right. A real shocker, right? ;) Looking at the toille she figured I could take out a total of 4 cm on the width to make it fit better. I thought I knew better (doesn't kids always?) and doubled the reduction. Look at the front, at the dent in the bust-area: She was right. *Sigh* Next time, I'll listen to my mother! =)

Right now, I'm working on a blouse in a pretty floral fabric that keeps trying to slip more fabric layers beneth the sewing machine feet than I want it to.

I'm hoping though that this blouse will show me that my pattern is finally ready for the gorgeus italian silk I've had in stash for over a year...

 The silk fabric with last years pattern laid out, for an idea of the size of the print.

 A close up of the fabric. Look at those structure lines, they're actually woven into the fabric and therefore 3-dimensional.

And of course, there are many more adventures with jersey planned! After all, now I have a working sloper and there's no end to the possibilities. Dresses for summer/comfy homewear/dance practice ispretty high on the list...
Wish me luck! =)
Love, Erika