Friday, 17 November 2017

Quick pompom hat - DIY update for an existing hat.


Hello,
Hats with a pompom seem to be everywhere on the street. I was given this purple pompom last Christmas. It is meant to be used as a keyring or a handbag embellishment and I used it on the front of my rucksack as a bag an embellishment last winter.

I realised when going through my current winter hat collection that I still have this early 2000’s faux suede hat. 

It is nothing special but by adding my no longer used pompom I get a new winter hat that is on trend and it costs nothing. 


 Superdug was even giving away pompoms not so long ago if you bought 3 makeup items so I am pretty sure lots of people hve these. I even saw some in the Pound Shop. Even if you had to buy the elastic and needle used to attach the pompom it would be very cheap to make this. And very easy as well.
What you need is a pompom, a hat, some thin elastic and a bodkin or a needle with a large eye and scissors to cut elastic. 

The hardest bit was making a hole to thread the needle through.
First take the keyring off your pompom if you have a key ring and locate the piece of elastic that the keyring was threaded through. 

Loop hidden in fur


It’s a tiny loop of elastic. 


You can just about see it here if I thread the needle through it - see right












Decide where on your hat you want to put your pompom.
On this hat which is made in segments I went for as close to the centre point as I could get the needle to go through the fabric.

 Then thread the elastic through your needle, push through from the inside to the outside of the hat and thread the needle through the elastic loop on your pompom, where you removed the keyring.

Inside of hat


Thread the needle back inside the hat keeping as close to the centre of the hat as possible.
Pull both ends of the elastic inside the hat and tie securely in a knot.






And that’s it. Enjoy your updated hat.









 My purple pompom is a slightly different purple to the original hat fur but it does not show much I think and really for a old hat thats been hanging around for about 10 years and a pompom I got bored with having hanging off my bag its a great upcycle I think.



What do you think?
Thanks for dropping in,
Bracken









Saturday, 11 November 2017

Shirt Dress part 3 = completed

So I have been putting off hand sewing on my buttons on this shirt dress for two whole weeks now and decided last weekend that I really do have to get round to finishing this garment.

It’s very far from being a perfect shirt but as a first attempt I am reasonably happy with it. I do think I will wear this and it is really a prototype, since I am going to attempt several other shirts, but in more interesting fabrics. I bought lots of prints in the summer but it has taken me so long to finish this I still have them uncut. This has worked – kind of.

the front bands are imperfect. I managed to somehow get wrinkles in the fabric when I top stitched. I really do not know how I did this because I thought it was OK for two weeks and then suddenly noticed them. I made sure it buttons over these so they are not very noticeable.

I have no idea which way female shirts do up as opposed to male and since I am a fan of army surplus I tend to wear both male and female garments anyway and really what a stupid idea…….that girls do up differently to boys. I mean who came up with that? Whats the point? How stupid can you get? So as far as I am concerned with this shirt and every other fastening I ever make I am going to do it however I feel with no rules. I really cannot see the point of a mans top doing up the opposite way to a womans. Equality etc! So what I am rambling on about is I am going to always make my clothing button up so it LOOKs the best it can rather than follow any rules. To be honest this may do up the girls way. I really do not know.

And then at the bottom of the other button band I have a sort of turned up bit. Despite much steaming this does not really get much better. Possibly if it was a non-stretch woven I might have made a better job of this because this is a very lightweight stretch woven which is probably cotton which should make it very comfortable to wear but not so easy to sew.

 Unfortunately, as you can see I wore this before taking the photos hence got the back all creased. This is real life though, not a fashion blog!

Then the wrist openings ( no idea what the correct terminology is here) are clearly different lengths with one side being shorter than the other. Maybe that is why I get a small wrinkle in the right sleeve at the front when I wear it?
BUT I still am happy with this.

Partly its cos finally its finished and it has taken absolutely ages for me to make this. Also, though, I really will wear it. It’s the only shirt dress I have, but also because I actually quite like it. I did intend for this to be finished in the summer when in May/June I was dying of heat in my much thicker clothing and now its November and freezing cold but there that’s me. If I start another couple of shirts now maybe I can get them finished in time for next summer eh?
Also I have managed to use some of my vintage mother of pearl buttons. I inherited these from my Great Aunts who died when I was about 6 so approximately 1970. Well I know they are not vegan, and I do try to be a good vegan, but they are lovely and in the end I have not bought them, they are very old vintage buttons and what would happen if I threw them away? More than likely they would go to landfill and what a complete waste! I think there has to be a balance here. I would never buy mother of pearl, but in the end when its inherited, or even freely given or recycled why not? The planet matters too, and these buttons are very old and very beautiful.  And they make my shirt a bit quirky which I think it needs, else the imperfections would be even more obvious that they actually are.

I think for the patterned shirts I want to make, I would prefer not to bother with the pockets since I do not really use them and maybe to find a pattern with no front yoke cos without the pockets it becomes a pointless extra bit of sewing. Especially with a very patterned fabric since the front yoke will not be seen. I do like the fact there are no darts because one of my dislikes of women’s shirts is those darts they always have to put in. Men ‘s shirts just do not have them. Obviously if you are very curvey you may need this but I have a very straight-up-and-dow igure so I really do not need that extra shaping.

What I may do in fact rather than trace a completely different shirt pattern is use this one but join the yoke onto the bodice and add an inbuilt button band or should that be stand? I think it sounds familiar so probably yes it’s a stand. No idea why!

So anyway then retrace it all as one piece and make it simpler because I do like the fit of this very much. It does actually fit me properly in fact and I am wider over the shoulders than most patterns allow for but actually quite small everywhere else so when I buy RTW shirts unless I buy army surplus I usually have to buy one or two sizes bigger to accommodate my shoulders. This of course means the body of the shirt hangs off me. So it’s a very rare occasion I find a nice fitted shirt hence my intense dislike of them.

Of course now I am making my own I can probably learn to make it fit.

Right now though if I can just aim on getting the other bits – sleeve openings being identical and button bands/stands not wrinkling that is all I need to do. I can worry about the actually fit on a darted fitted shirt next year once I have perfected the rest. So anyway all in all I think this a success because I am going to make more.
Thanks for visiting
Bracken



Saturday, 4 November 2017

Autumn leaves DIT pot pourri


Yesterday, as I was leaving work I found a pile of the most beautiful leaves. I am not sure what trees these come from but they make lovely pot pouri as you can see here.






 Most English trees have leaves that dry to brown or yellow so I can only assume these are not indigenous species.

 Either way if you are looking for cheap (as in free) pot pourri and do not mind collecting a few leaves these type of fallen dried leaves make a lovely display.

 
 I mixed a few dried rose petals In with them which I saved from a bunch of lovely roses bought for me by some ex-colleagues when I left a temporary job in the summer.


  I was particularly moved by the nice people who bought me the roses ( after all I was only a temp!) so I saved a few of the flowers before they were totally gone and dried them on a wooden plate in a conservatory in the sun.




They do not have much fragrance and the leaves have none that I can decipher but all that is needed is a few drops of essential oil and I have this lovely and naturally pretty pot pourri.

  I know it should be highly scented and contain Orris root and such to help retain the scent but half of the effect of pot pourri is actually visual. I am also not that fussed about it being highly scented, but am more interested in the visual effect.  


Anyway as far as I am concerned I love this. I intend to keep a look out for a few conkers (horse chestnuts), acorns and pine cones and add these as I find them. The most surprising thing about these leaves was I only collected a few handfuls and when I got home and put them in a bowl I had far too many, so I also used a vase to hold the rest. Not the most obvious receptacle maybe, but it works, and looks very pretty as an autumn decoration, and will lead us nicely up to Christmas I think.

 As an after thought if you had some silver or gold spray paint or glitter you could also decorate a few leaves to make this more like a bought pot pourri. I do not have any paint right now so am sticking with the natural look.
Thanks for reading
Bracken

Friday, 27 October 2017

Three into One Patchwork Hoody - Stash Smashing


I am still on a stash smashing trail but in a slightly different way this week.


My other half has been collecting lots of jumpers that he does not really like and never wears. All were presents over the last 6 years or so and all were taking up room in his wardrobe and all were unworn and brand new. He just did not like them. So he was going to send them all to the charity shop but I decided to intercept and make a new top for him. Its inspired by the lovely Nepalese tops you see at festivals but is made from a mix of dark grey/black marl chainstore boring jumpers of various fibre mixes but all quite thick and warm.


For this I used 3 jumpers all from chainstores/supermarkets and all having either a full zip or a half zip up the front which he did not like. They were all a bit "old man". Whilst cutting out the top I had to make it patchwork because it turns out that although every jumper was actually too big for him they were all more fitted than the pattern I used.

I used New Look 6142 for this but instead of making a zip front jacket style hoody like the pattern, I made an over head hoody instead. It took some working out and I ended up making each half of each front and then sewing the two halves together. The same for the back because the jumpers were different textures so I needed to try and get some sort of balance to the design.  I used the longest sleeves off just one jumper so the sleeves are not patchwork and the hood is made from a fishermans rib type of texture so is just the one fabric.


I overlocked everything on the right side to give it a crafty Nepalese look and it is actually reversible really but I intended for the overlocking to be shown. I have seen some similar stuff on Pinterest as well as at festivals and had something like this in mind for a while now although I was not thinking of my other half. I think it worked out very well although I wonder how long it will actually last. It does not really matter because these jumpers would have been sent to the charity and although 3 became one I think at least it is wearable for weekends and doggy walking and slobbing around so now the jumpers are going to be used and keep my partner warm when otherwise they would have just been wasted which is a shame.

It was great fun to make this. I am not too sure how often he will wear this because he does not buy festival style clothing normally so its a bit unusual for him but it is still closer to his style than the starting material was and he says he likes it. Either way its an improvement on the unworn old men jumpers he had in his wardrobe for the last few years. I very much enjoyed this make. It was a challenge getting the top out of those three jumpers. Three into one sounds like lots but it stretched me making this.

Thanks for reading
Bracken

Saturday, 21 October 2017

Fish tail skirt or high high low skirt - Stash Smashing

I found this blog post a while ago now:
http://www.deliacreates.com/easy-diy-fishtail-circle-skirt-tutorial/

Its an adult version of skirts from other blogs. Well it is not really something I would normally wear but I have the fabric and why not. I will wear it if I own it because that's life but as with the multi-media T shirts

I would not shell out hard earned cash to buy one.

But as I am realising more and more when you make your own clothing YOU CAN HAVE IT ALL!

Yay!

So following the directions from Delia Creates I made this skirt using black powermesh. I originally followed the exact pattern but in the end I decided to chop a further 7 inches or about 18cm off the length because once made it was trailing on the floor. When I went back to the original blogpost yes it is there as well so it is not just me being too short.

Much as I like a skirt with a train it does not fit into my world. I already have two makes with trains here:
http://brackencrafts.blogspot.co.uk/2017/04/95-and-96-skirt-and-top-for-tms-bright.html

and here: http://brackencrafts.blogspot.co.uk/2017/02/85-simplicity-1772-dress.html

and I do not wear either of them often because of this.


Delia lives somewhere summery and hot and gets to take photos on the beach with her feet bare on the sand. I live in the UK where it is usually damp and often downright pouring with rain. Also you think its a nice day when you get dressed at 06:00 but by the time you get to work by 08:30 it can be the most horrible weather imaginable so no, skirts with trains do not work well in my world!

 

I am still undecided whether to do a rolled edge with the overlocker around the hem of this, but so far have resisted because actually I quite like the raw edge and it looks fine and very dancerish.

So for this as directed I used 2m of fabric. Mine was wider than Delia Creates used so there was more wasteage but I really could not make it any longer than the original and in the end as already explained I chopped the edge off after finishing. By the way best to do this before you make it really because the elastic gathers it in a bit and means you have to be extra careful if you do it at the end as I did.

The only difficult bit with this skirt is keeping the slippy fabric from moving when you are measuring for the waist and the skirt edge and of course you then must fold it to make it high-low but its still a very easy skirt pattern and I would say well worth making.

This skirt will also look good with the two tops made using this powermesh which you can see here:
http://brackencrafts.blogspot.co.uk/2016/12/74-quick-party-top.html

and here:

http://brackencrafts.blogspot.co.uk/2017/04/95-and-96-skirt-and-top-for-tms-bright.html

Thanks for reading and if this is your kind of skirt I would encourage you to make one. I am very impressed!
Bracken

Monday, 16 October 2017

Multi Media T shirts - TMS October 2017 Stash Mash




I am a bit late blogging this week since am enjoying this months challenge. Smashing my Stash is a brilliant way to update my wardrobe for winter - fast!

I seem to have fabric and patterns everywhere in little piles with patterns on top while I work out what to do with what. Sooooo exciting!

So what to use from my stash next? I was at the hospital the other day and noticed there were several people wearing long sleeved T shirts with mesh sleeves. Well I like!

So I cut out 4 different tops - all from my stash. I have not had time to make them all as yet but these are the first two. So challengwise, first heres my pink scuba and big mesh sleeved top.







Stashwise heres the pink top:


Stash Smash Project Points
Pink scubaMeters Used0-1 m5 pointsYardage magician
Stash Time2-3 years25  pointslike fine wine
Preciousness10 pointsI like it but won’t cry if it’s a fail
Black wide meshMeters Used0-1 m5 pointsYardage magician
Stash Time2 months10  pointsBuried under new pretties
Preciousness10 pointsI like it but won’t cry if it’s a fail
POINTS TOTAL:65 points 

 
Then I made this black version using some 4 way stretch black silky fabric which I have made a nice top from previously so I know I like wearing this as a top and in this version I used black powermesh for the sleeves. It is hard to see in the photos but the sleeves are slightly transparent.

 These are both made from Butterick 5562 View D which I have owned for ages but never used. I really bought this pattern for the different sleeves variations but have ended up using the ordinary non- gathered, non-puffed sleeve and missed off the wide cowl neck as well. Its got a very nice boat shaped neckline which I love and is more wintery somehow than my more used T shirt patterns.



 For the black T shirt stashwise:

Stash Smash Project Points
Black silky fabric Meters Used 0-1 m 5 points Yardage magician
Stash Time 2-3 years 25  points like fine wine
Preciousness 10 points I like it but won’t cry if it’s a fail
Black powermesh Meters Used 0-1 m 5 points Yardage magician
Stash Time 2-3 years 25  points like fine wine
Preciousness 10 points I like it but won’t cry if it’s a fail
POINTS TOTAL: 80 points 



I have previously made other projects from most of this fabric which will make for nice "outfits" though to be honest I very rarely wear outfits really. In reality, I find things work best mix and matching rather than wearing as "suits".

In case you want to see though the pink scuba type fabric leggings are here:

http://brackencrafts.blogspot.co.uk/2016/05/38-side-panel-leggings.html

I used the black reverse of this fabric on the side stripes for this look which I have not bothered with in my new top.

and the black silky fabric has previously made some yoga pants here:

http://brackencrafts.blogspot.co.uk/2016/02/22-plain-black-yoga-pants-made-in-rush.html

and a top here:

http://brackencrafts.blogspot.co.uk/2016/12/74-quick-party-top.html

Oh and I nearly forgot this top here made from the powermesh:

http://brackencrafts.blogspot.co.uk/2017/04/95-and-96-skirt-and-top-for-tms-bright.html

I suppose this is the good / or bad side to bulk buying fabric. You end up with lots of items made from the same materials and although they do "go" together often you do not want to wear them that way.
Well I am very much enjoying this months challenge. What to make next?

Thanks for visiting my blog,

Bracken