I made a swimsuit! The pattern is Soma swimsuit by Papercut Patterns. I made size XXS, with the only alteration was shortening the bottom part about 1 cm. Instead of elastic strap, I just use the foldover elastic for all the binding and straps. The fabris was lined with skin-colored swimsuit lining.
It was an easy sewing and I love how little fabric are needed for this swimsuit. I still have enough leftover for another swimsuit, but I guess one is enough for this year.
I see that some people inserted swimsuit bra cups when making this swimsuit, but I didn’t do this. I don’t really have problems with nipples but then I saw everyone around me has cups under their swimsuit. Maybe next time I’ll put the cups. Or maybe I just have to stop looking around 😛
Actually I made the swimsuit to go to the beach this summer holiday, but then things happened and we had to cancel the plan. Bummer! So we went to a nearby swimming pool on the last day of summer holiday. It is far from the beach but the most important thing is that we were having fun together!
Here I am wearing the suit pretending to be in a real beach. There are several pools in one place, this one is a fake beach complete with waves. One of the funny thing about Japanese swimming pool is that there is a mandatory rest every one or two hours. The lifeguard will announce that it is time to get off the pool. People will usually start to walk around buying drink and food. During this rest, the visitors are not allowed on the water. After about 10-15 minutes, depending on the pool, there is an announcement that the pool is opened again and everyone run back to the water. Only in Japan!
Pattern is Soma swimsuit by Papercut Patterns, size XXS.
Lace Brazillians panties
These lace panties look so weird when not worn, but they actually fit really well on me – surprisingly quite comfortable too! These are a couple of quick things that I made yesterday with a new pattern. I\\’ve heard about Booby Traps patterns before but this Australian-based company only ship to Canada, England, America, and New Zealand. Until recently I found out that they have digital patterns!
For my first try, I chose the simplest one (in my opinion) which is the Lace Brazillians. This pattern only needs some stretch lace and cotton jersey for the gusset. Although the pattern and instructions are in PDF format, they are not instant download. They sent me a dropbox link a day after I placed the order. The pattern is in A2 format, so I had to tile-printed it. I wish that they will format the patterns for A4 in the future.
As I\\’ve thought, this is a very quick and easy pattern. After finished cutting the pattern, it only took about 15 minutes to make a pair of panties. Because it only uses stretch lace, you don\\’t have to fiddle with attaching underwear elastic like usual panties.
For the constructions, I only use sewing machine to make the panties. I use straight stitch for all the center seam, then topstitched from the right side using wide triple zigzag stitch the keep the seam allowances flat.The waistband is attached to the back and front piece using triple zigzag stitches. The cotton jersey is attached last, again using triple zigzag stitches.
I have lots of stretch lace bought on sale or left over from past projects, so this pattern is perfect for them. I\\’m happy with the result and now intrigued to try other Booby Traps patterns!
Pattern is Lace Brazillians by Booby Traps, size 8 (PDF pattern).
I’ve often heard about Merchant & Mills patterns and sewing supplies, but have never found the patterns here in Japan. The closest that I can get was several T-shirts by Uniqlo when they collaborated with Merchant & Mills. So I was very happy when they contacted me to review their newest book, Merchant & Mills Workbook.
The book has six paterns for vest, dress, skirt, top, jacket, and trousers. Four of the patterns have style variations so you can get more from this book. Although the patterns are simple, they are aimed to develop new sewing skills. So it is perfect if you are beginner who wants to learn more.
Merchant & Mills also offered to send me some fabric to make something from one of the patterns. I decided to make The Strides pants with Aizu fabric, medium weight Japanese slubby cotton in charcoal. For the pocket lining and fly facing, I used Indonesian batik fabric.
Grading down the pattern
The patterns are in sizes 8-18, and unfortunately the smallest size is still too big for me. So I graded down the pattern one size to size 6.
The trousers are full length with style variations for shorts, but I decided to cut the hem about calf length. I also shortened the seat around 1 cm.
Instead of making the trousers the way I used to do, I followed the instructions quite closely. The instructions are quite clear with hand-drawn diagrams. I love the hand-drawn pictures!
Here is a few notes about the pattern:
- – no grainline mark on the back piece.
- – no grainline mark on waistband pattern but probably not necessary as it is a straight piece and there is fabric placement diagram.
- – there is a pocket back piece in the pattern sheet, but it is referred as pocket facing in the instructions.
- – instead of being mentioned, the seam allowances are marked by notches. I think the reason for this is because it may vary. However, I prefer the seam allowances are mentioned as well in addition of the notches. For these trousers, the seam allowances are 1.5 cm all around.
Other than those things that I mentioned, I’m quite happy witth how the trousers turned out! My favorite part is the fly facing with button inside that is similar to men’s trousers. I’ve never made this kind of fly facing before, so I’m happy that I learned some new things. And of course I should wear the tousers with my Uniqlo Merchant & Mills T-shirt!
Pattern is The Strides – Merchant & Mills Workbook, graded down to size 6.
I am happy to once again have Scarlett from CorsetTraining.net here! This time she will show you how to attach bias binding on corsets. There’s a few tricks for finishing the end, especially when the binding ends in angled shapes.
Thank you Scarlett for the tutorial!
I was so excited to find out I’d be guest blogging for Novita, I’m always in awe of all the beautiful clothes she makes. So I had a real think about what you, her readers, might find really useful. Something that could be applied not just to corsetry but to other items of clothing.
In corsetry, like with most home sewn garments, the finishing touches can elevate something to couture or make it stand out as homemade (we like to tell people we made it ourselves not have them guess!). With corset making the binding is one such ‘make or break’ detail; if you apply it badly it shows, especially at the centre front and back.
So I’ve put together this tutorial to show you exactly how to apply bias binding to a raw edge with a corner (which any garment with a closure has, the bottom edge of a button up shirt for example) and then I go over how to get those crisp corner edges, no matter what angle the corner is; for example at the front opening of the corset pictured above, the top edge slopes inward to meet the front and the bottom edge points out, creating two very different angles.
There’s also been a special 30% ‘Summer Fun Purple Discount’ in my store since last week when Novita kindly reviewed my corset making video course. It ends in the next few days so take advantage and learn corsetry this summer by clicking through and using the special PURPLE30 discount code before Monday!
The first thing I want to point out is that this is ‘bias binding’ which, you guessed it, is cut on the bias so the grain goes diagonally through the binding allowing it to ‘bend’. Don’t be tempted to use any other kind as you’ll get wrinkles if there’s even a slight curve in the fabric edge.
Place the binding with the opening face up, unfold one of its edges and line it up along the raw edge of your fabric, then pin as shown above. Leave about an inch hanging over the cornered edge.
Now sew along the crease in the binding, staying just to the side of it that’s nearest the raw edge. When you’re done it should look like the picture below.
Now fold the binding up along your line of stitching and flip the fabric.
Cut off any excess binding so you have about half an inch hanging off the corner and fold it in as shown below.
Now fold the binding down so it covers your line of stitching and pin. Do the same at the other end of the binding.
At this point you can hand stitch the binding to the wrong side of the fabric for a truly couture finish by taking a long stitch through the crease in the edge of the binding and then a tiny stitch through the garment fabric and repeating along the entire edge.
To machine stitch, turn back to the right side of the fabric and continue with the steps below.
Butt your machine needle up against the edge of the binding, one stitch away from the corner edge as shown above. We’re going to sew through the binding that needs securing on the back. This is why we pinned it below our first stitching line, so check your needle will catch it if you don’t think you pulled it down far enough on the back.
Now backstitch to the edge and sew a careful line along the fabric where it meets the binding. When you get to the other end, backstitch once to secure. It should look like the picture below.
And here it is from the back. I’ve used a very thick thread in a contrasting colour to make it easy to see but in a normal, colour matched thread it blends in nicely.
Here we have a pointy corner that needs binding, I’ve already sewn the first line on the front and flipped it over.
The trick to getting perfect corners, no matter what the angle, is to fold the edge of the binding so that it matches the edge of the fabric. In the image above you can see my folded bias binding continues the straight line of the fabric edge. You can place a ruler next to the fold to check everything lines up if you don’t want to eyeball it.
Now fold the binding down as before, preserving that folded edge by letting any excess flap out on the back (just make sure the binding fold looks nice and straight from the front). You can then tuck in any pointy bits on the back, as shown in the picture below.
Once you have any excess binding tucked away at the back it should look like this.
Flip back to the right side of the fabric and secure as we did before. Here is the stitching on the inside.
And here’s the stitching from the right side with its perfectly pointy corner binding. I hope you’ve enjoyed this tutorial and learnt something new. A massive thank you to the lovely Novita for having me! 🙂
Since Sidra entered junior high school, he became very busy with all the school activities. Even on weekends, he often has to go to school for sports practice. I suddenly found myself with lots of free time, so I started taking a couple of jobs recently.
One thing that I do is working with a designer in developing a product. The company makes bags for outdoor use like backpacks, photography bags, and such. I’m very excited with this job because I get to work with materials that I’ve never used before (do you know what a gatekeeper is? I didn’t know either!), and make something that I will probably never use. It’s like taking a peek into a completely different world.
Last week I just wrapped up a development stage and sent the bag to the designer. I had been working with the bag for a couple of weeks and needed some refreshing time, so I made a skirt for myself. You might think that it is somewhat strange that my idea of refreshing myself after a couple of days sewing a bag is to sew another thing. But these are completely different things to sew!
The fabric is polyster knit in medium weight that I found in Okadaya, Shinjuku. You wouldn’t miss the rolls of fabric when you saw it on the shelves. I was considering between yellow lime, shocking pink, or neon orange before deciding on this one.
The pattern is Hollyburn skirt by Sewaholic. I tested the pattern before and made myself a short skirt. This time I made view B which sits below knee. I made it in size 4 with no alterations, a size bigger than what I usually wear. I find that I’m not really comfortable with skirt that sits exactly on my waist because my body has an asymmetry.
Dresses are fine because they hang on the shoulders, so are pants because they follow the shape of the legs. But skirts that hang on my asymmetrical waist will cause asymmetrical hem, so I prefer a high-waisted or low-waisted skirt. Of course, I might exaggerate a bit in my mind. The asymmetry looks so obvious for me, while people often don’t notice. It’s funny how we see our own body.
As usual with Sewaholic patterns, everything goes smoothly. Tasia from Sewaholic always makes well-drafted patterns with good instructions. That is why I chose this pattern for my refreshment project. I didn’t want to think about taping PDF patterns and decode some unclear instructions.
When I said neon orange, it is really neon! The skirt reflects every bit of light that falls upon it, so it looks like it is shining. My husband was a bit hesitant to see such a bright color. Everyone made a double-take when they saw me walking down the street in this skirt. Actually it is not a color that I usually wear, but why not? Life is too short to never wear neon colors!
Pattern is Sewaholic Hollyburn skirt view B, size 4.