Myself, I have not been so prolific this year. But I do have a finished project to share! For Christmas I wanted to sew my mom something special, and I decided on a robe since it's something that will keep her warm and get a lot of wear.
|Mom looking glamorous in her loungewear|
The pattern is Vogue 1060. It's supposed to be a coat pattern, but I think it lends itself very well to a robe.
I don't much care for the standard bathrobe look - it doesn't really say "elegant loungewear" to me.I think this pattern has a lot more style. It has rows of darts on the front and back for shaping. Plus, it features kimono sleeves which allowed me to make the most of my limited yardage.
|wrinkly, but you get the picture|
In fact, I think I was able to cut this out of only two yards of 60" wide wool, although I did have to do some piecing at the collar to make it work and use different material for the facings. The outer fabric is a medium weight felted wool which I got off eBay. It was a fantastic find. A guy sold me a bunch of pieces of wool at just $4/yard. This soft green is my Mom's color, so I knew it was destined for her.
Both these fabrics were super shifty while cutting. The cream colored silk was definitely the worse of the two though. I can't believe how much it can shift off grain while still lying flat. As a result, my facings ended up way longer than the front edges of the robe that I was supposed to line them up with. I made it work by doing a whole lot of easing, but it probably would have been wiser to just re-cut them, using spray starch this time. Lesson learned. On the bright side, I think the fabrics go beautifully together, and they do make for a very luxurious feeling robe.
When I took this home to Montana for Christmas and fit it on my mom, I discovered that the dart placement was just not working for her. I ended up picking all the darts out. The directions wisely recommended using basting stitches for the darts and putting them in last, but of course I did not listen. Another lesson learned. Once the darts were out, though, the robe fit much better. We decided to leave them out entirely. It does take away some of the shaping, but it's okay to sacrifice style for comfort for a project like this. Still, I'd like to make this robe again in a larger size and use the darts. I think they really add to it.
The final challenge for this project was inserting the lining. In fact, I had to bring it back to Indiana with me to finish the job, because I ran out of time in Montana to work on it. I'm a little disappointed that there's not a place online where you can find a complete, well-illustrated guide to bagging a lining. If found several that were good, but it was only by consulting four different sources that I was finally able to put it all together. Here's the four I consulted:
- Threads Magazine, Bagging a Jacket Lining
- Grainline Studios, Bagging a Jacket Lining tutorial
- Sewing.PatternReview, forum discussion
- Gigi Sews, duffle coat lining
That last one in particular was helpful for figuring out what the heck is going on in the area where the facing meets the lining meets the hem. I'll admit mine do not look so nice as Gigi's, but next time I'll know to look there instead of just fudging things.
|the trickiest part of bagging a lining, in my opinion|
Despite its imperfections, my mom was very happy with it. And I'm happy to know it will get a lot of wear on those cold Montana mornings.