Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Sewing, I hates Sewing

Again, this site went dark as school prep ramped up but today I give you an A-line skirt from
Laura Marsh Designs.
This pattern is free and comes in two size ranges8-22 and 22-36.
Given this is a UK based site I think that sizes run one larger than a US size. If anyone has a better or more specific conversion please let me know.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Dropping the Ball (of Yarn)

Summer has kept the Dubh House incredibility busy this year. There have been summer camps, home improvements (now 1/2 done which means each one is 1/2 done not that we have accomplished 1/2 of them), a family vacation and the inevitable worries about how fast it is all going. All this to say that PFF has been updated solely by the lovely custardfairy. No more I say. ;)

Today I want to talk about knitting magazines. Most of them are worthless to me unless I want a specific accessory pattern. The reason is that most of them do not have a significant number of plus sized patterns to warrant the price (Vogue Knitting about $10.00, Interweave $7.00). But I often find myself buying knit simple. In the Spring/Summer 2010 issue a full 7 of the 14 sized women's patterns are 3X. 3 more go up to 2X which means the majority of patterns have sizes that I can consider. Highly recommended!

Some of the things I am thinking of making from them include:

Friday, June 18, 2010

Strapless Summer Top

I am on the Craft Mag blog all the time, and today I came across this pattern and tutorial for a really easy summer top made with elastic thread and a big rectangle of fabric. I'd need to add straps (more on this later) but I love the blousy look accomplished with elastic shirring on the top and bottom.

This is yet another "use your own measurements" project. Handily, the blog includes a pdf link that shows where and how to measure, as well as the math you'll need to do to get the right amount of fabric. Easy! The tutorial has a lot of pictures and instructions to make this project a breeze.

Once you get the hang of a top like this, you can easily lengthen it to make a dress or cover-up. Add more shirring at the bottom for a nifty 80s throw-back or more at the top for a form-fitting chestal area. See the shirred dress tute link below to see what I mean.

If, like me, you need to add straps, just measure your shoulder area where the strap will be placed and cut a three inch wide strip of fabric to your measurements (plus 1 inch for hems. I like three inches because it results in a wide, sturdy strap (perfect for keeping bra straps neatly tucked away). You can find instructions for making tidy straps in this shirred dress tutorial if you'd like a little visual assistance. How you attach them is up to you; you can sew them directly to the inside of the dress or you can create buttonholes on the straps, then place buttons at the top front and back of the dress (both sides) so that they are removeable. Buttonholes can be a little tricky, so practice on scrap fabric first if you've never made them.


Monday, June 14, 2010

Crochet Leg Warmers

I am so excited about this pattern from Lion! It includes a plus size option, with measurements (unstretched) given at the top. It looks like you can play with it a bit to make it bigger if necessary with some simple maths. Again, the key here is knowing your measurements.

While the color scheme here isn't my cup of tea, I'd love these in red or orange stripes.

Note: you do need a Lion account to view the pattern, but signing up is free. Found via the Craft Mag blog.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Fashion Patterns by Coni

Fashion Patterns by Coni includes patterns from 2X to 6X. I really liked this cute flared skirt.

She has a whole range of patterns from skirts, dresses, and blouses to basic underpinnings and sleepwear.

She produces patterns for Butterick in addition to her own line.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Halter Top with Built-In Bra

I'm really excited about this tutorial! Sewing Dork provides instructions for making a halter top with a built-in shelf bra, similar to those used in bra camisoles and tanks.

I love the look of halter tops but my rather large bust makes wearing them...rather difficult. Instead of a strapless bra, I might try this tute. Now obviously, the larger your chest the heavier it will be so a halter tie might bother your neck. You might also want to reinforce it a bit to make sure it can do the job.

Still, the pattern can once again use your own measurements (I think a post on taking measurements is in order) and you can modify it as needed for your own body type. The seams are simple and no fancy stitching is required. Another option? Instead of halter ties, cut a longer piece of material for the straps and attach either end to the back top. That removes the pressure from your neck.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Bernat Knit Sleeveless Top Pattern - up to 5X

Did you know that all of the patterns on the Bernat web site go up to 5X? That's a 62" bust, if you were wondering.

I found this cute little sleeveless top, done in a bamboo yarn that would be light enough for wear through the summer. The web site says the pattern is easy, and a peek through the instructions show that with some careful counting this can be accomplished by even a beginner. The simplicity of the design means it would be a cinch to size up if necessary, which is always a bonus for those of us who have chests that go beyond the largest circumference.

One con might be that it takes 15 balls of yarn (at 60g each) for the largest size. If you need to size up, it'd take even more. Save this pattern for a great sale at your local yarn or hobby store, or try it with a less expensive cotton yarn that will make it very easy to wash & wear.