An apron for Christmas?

Remember back earlier this fall when I was babbling about aprons a lot? (Probably not.) I muddled my way through trying to explain how to make an apron out of one or two rectangles gathered to a waistband. Turns out BurdaStyle has published, in its December issue, a full-apron pattern much like the ones I was describing, and the pattern is available for free download. Really, it’s just the instructions, no pattern pieces to trace, because everything is a rectangle or square. They suggest using a fabric with a border print, which would look very cute, but a regular fabric would work well too and use a little less fabric. It’d be a good gift for that cook in your life, or a great way to use up a yard of “what the heck did I buy this for” fabric.

Bursting with Burda

I was impressed with both the September Burda mag and the autumn Burda Plus, so I ordered them both and received them the other day. (Really good, especially for plus – the plus items in September’s issue, some great jackets – are already up on BurdaStyle and purchasable individually, FYI.)

Then, as it happens, when I went to this month’s FabMo distribution someone had donated a whole pile of late 80s and early 90s Burda magazines. I had to bring them home at least to look at – there’s some crazy big jacket shoulder-pad shenanigans happening, trust me. It’s interesting how much more of a lifestyle magazine Burda was in the 90s – recipes, a beauty section, even a sort of advice column in the front from Aenne Burda. There was also an issue of the British magazine Prima in the stack, which I’d heard of but never seen in person. I’ll have to take some pictures of some of the pages and share them with you, because they are really a kick. Thanks, anonymous donator!

Summer & KS

Happy (official) summer, all!

Last week I dropped off the last of my recent visitors at the airport and took the opportunity to visit our only remaining quasi-local Hancock Fabrics on the way home. None of the fabrics spoke to me, but I did spend some quality time with the Kwik Sew and Burda catalogs and brought a few patterns home. (The fact that it was ridiculously hot and they had A/C may have had a little to do with my lingering.) the local Joann’s doesn’t carry Kwik Sew, and stocks only one of each pattern in Burda, so if you don’t snag it quick you’re SOL.

Recently, I find myself more willing to spend the $$ on a non-Big-4 pattern because I’m tired of all the fussing and adjusting I have to do for the Big 4. I’ve always had good luck with Burda envelope patterns, assuming I start with a big enough size. I haven’t used a Kwik Sew top since soon after I started sewing and ended up with a tank top 2 sizes too big, but I really liked the look of 3826 view B (3823 is the plus version; no idea what’s up with the crazy clown colorblocking in view A). It reminds me of the Jalie scarf-collar top, but since Jalie requires a lot of adjusting to fit me, I though I’d give the KS version a try. I was surprised to see it has no reviews on patternreview – perhaps if I hustle I can do the first one.

Two new tops

Yesterday I had a last-minute urge to make something sparkly for New Year’s Eve (and there aren’t many choices for ‘sparkly’ in my fabric stash, or my wardrobe either!). So I pulled out Burda 8265 again, this time using a drapey jersey. I shortened the pattern from tunic to regular length, shortened the sleeves a touch, omitted the back facing and just turned and stitched the back neck instead.

The drape detail at the neck is very pretty with this lighter-weight knit (although harder to baste in the right place!). The jersey is olive with gold metallic on the front, giving a dark bronze appearance in person. I started sewing around 5p and finished it at 7:30 (ok, the hems were just wonder-taped, and not stitched yet). It’s very fun to have a TNT that you can whip out quickly like that, and I got some nice compliments on the top at the party I went to.

I also finally finished the wearable muslin of Simplicity 3692 that I’d been working on. Binding all the seams and hems took *forever*, as the only way I found to keep the seam binding in place before sewing was to use washable glue, but then I had to wait for each seam to dry as otherwise the glue would make the presser foot stick. Surely there’s a better way?

Simplicity 3692 full review