‘Sewing for Summer’ Plan – Starting With A Couple Of Easy Tees

This year is really speeding along and summer is practically here. I have so much I’d like to make but not enough time. When I should be working I get out my notepad and scribble down sewing plans week by week. I’ve even done a typed template where I can get the satisfaction of crossing out what I’ve done in red pen.

Navy kimono tee and striped Renfrew

Navy kimono tee and striped Renfrew

I started with a couple of easy makes. A navy Maria of Denmark Kimono tee and a Sewaholic Renfrew.

The fabric for the tee was the same cotton / lycra single jersey remnant from Abakhan that I’d used for the bike bloomers. It’s a lovely weight with a slight brushed finish. This piece of fabric only cost £1.50.This is the 4th kimono tee I’ve made. My first was a grey marl one which was my first real attempt at sewing with knits properly. It still looks good after nearly 18 months and gets a lot of wear. That fabric was also a remnant from Abakhan. The second two haven’t been quite as good. The fabric was a single jersey from Calico Laine which after a few washes soon went limp, I still wear them occasionally but feel they are a little bit scruffy.

Navy Maria of Denmark Kimono tee

Navy Maria of Denmark Kimono tee

The single jersey for the Renfrew is a viscose / lycra  red and navy stripe from John Lewis, on sale reduced from £16 to £8 a metre. I used the V neck when I made a pyjama top last summer and trimmed with lace but this is the first time I’ve added the neck band to the V neck. I knew it would be a bit of a challenge and nearly went for the easy round neck version. I liked the effect of the stripes mitring at the centre but getting the shape of the V was a right faff. I stabilised the V with a small piece of stretch iron on interfacing then tacked and re-tacked numerous time until it looked ok. I got there in the end.

The front V on the Renfrew was a bit of a challenge.....

The front V on the Renfrew was a bit of a challenge…..

I sewed these two tops up together using the 4 thread overlocker. On the Kimono tee I got out the twin needle for the hems and surprisingly worked out ok, no tension issues for once.

I’m trying to be realistic about what I can get done and not plan too much in.

I have that lovely Hemingway Designs fabric to use, out of the 3 pieces I have I’m going to use the red print and make a shirtwaister dress. I googled for a pattern and the blogosphere came back with McCall’s M6696. I saw some great dresses so  didn’t bother to look any further.
Dolly Clackett
Polka Dot Girl

McCalls M6696 with Hemingway Designs fabric

McCalls M6696 with Hemingway Designs fabric

I was also inspired by this outfit in the Sunday Times Style mag a few weeks back. I just love that Marc Jacobs skirt. I started looking on line for some cotton twill in the right colour green. I could find forest, bottle, moss, khaki but none looked right so I bought white and a packet of Dylon in olive.  It could all go horribly wrong! I also picked up tangerine jersey for a top, now it’s arrived it’s not quite as vibrant as the top in the photo so it may get put to one side.

Marc Jacobs cotton twill skirt - a snip at £280

Marc Jacobs cotton twill skirt – a snip at £280

What’s next on the list for sewing up is a pair of bike trousers. I’ve been inspired by these Outlier Women’s Daily Riding Pants. The idea is that they don’t look like biking specific trousers but have features such as 4 way stretch and a water resistant finish. A lot of these type of trousers are made from schoeller fabric which is really expensive and not easily available to the home sewer.

This is the swatch of the soft shell fabric. When water hits the surface it doesn't soak in, it just rolls of the face, this is due to the WR (water resistant) finish on the fabric.

This is the swatch of the soft shell fabric. When water hits the surface it doesn’t soak in, it just rolls of the face, this is due to the WR (water resistant) finish on the fabric.

It’s generically know as ‘soft shell’ and I found some on UK fabrics online. I’ve ordered the fabric after getting a sample . I didn’t want to spend too much as I’m not sure how these are going to turn out. The plan is to slim down the leg on my jeans pattern – which looking at my sewing schedule I should have done by now. arggh I’m already behind!

sewing schedule - I like to do the crossing out in red pen.....

sewing schedule – I like to do the crossing out in red pen…..

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9 thoughts on “‘Sewing for Summer’ Plan – Starting With A Couple Of Easy Tees

  1. I love crossing things off a to-do list, but then feel bad if I haven’t kept on schedule! I used that Mccalls pattern for my prsewing bee shirtsdress, I took some of the fullness from the back as there seemed to be too much. It’s a lovely pattern, and I plan to use it again.

    • When I my schedule gets too far behind I just start it again – all nice and neat.
      I’m planning on the full skirt and short sleeves for the dress. It seems like a really versatile pattern.

  2. I am such a crosser offer too! You have a lot of work on here. Fantastic mitred V, and thank you for information on that water resistant fabric. Will it be nice to wear? And I love the colour combination from the Sunday Times magazine. Really nice deep warm shades.

    • I’ll let you know how the fabric goes… it’s a bit of an experiment.
      White twill is currently in the washing machine being dyed olive, in it’s damp state it’s looking darker than I hoped. It needs washing again then I can see what it’s like when dry. It may not be exactly Marc Jacobs green but I’m sure the colour will be fine.

    • Well, I’ve come a bit unstuck with the trousers, not quite working out as planned… so I need to put to one side for a re-think. I dyed the twill for the skirt yesterday evening and will look at doing a pattern for it this week.

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