June 20, 2011

Fabric Markets in The Netherlands

Hello, I know a lot of you must be wondering what on earth I mean when I keep mentioning that I get my fabrics at the markets here. As with everything else in Europe, rental you can imagine is very high, so to cut cost, the local council allows fabrics suppliers to ply their wares at the weekly markets in all the towns and even set up a fabric market that goes touring round the Netherlands. This has been going on the last few 100 years, about 600 I believe! So the result is an amazing choice of fabrics in one place at good prices. 

I first stumble upon this fact when I bought the local dressmaking magazine, Knipmode. Inside it listed all the places that these markets were held at the specific dates. So, your's truly have been diligently hopping on trains touring the Netherlands to get to these markets :) I think I've even been to towns that the locals don't even visit ! For those happening to be in the Netherlands, here is the fabric market site, stoffenspektakel and stoffenbeurs, truly an experience ! 

Here are some pictures of the markets, (made them super large !)sorry, not many as I'm always rushing to catch the train back home not to mention the frantic buying sometimes against the wind and rain :)

There is also a permanent fabric market in Utrecht saturday mornings and Amsterdam Monday mornings

Just wanted to share some of my market fabric finds :)

I always head straight to the notions stall, can't get enough of these pretty ribbons

This is what my craft shelf looks like, ermm just went thru a major reshuffling for this photo shoot :) Its my stress reliever, looking at the riot of colors gives me inspiration and just the contentedness to daydream. Shuush , don't look under the bed and in the cupboards !

If touring the Netherlands, a visit to the Saturday Markets is a must, my favorite towns are Leiden, Utrecht , Amsterdam and Dordrecht. The variety of things you can find is amazing and its just so colorful. There will also be a few fabric and craft stalls too :)

There seems to be no listing after June, I'm hoping they are just going for summer break, I need to start planning the kids winter wardrobe :) Hope that satisfies fabricholics out there .

June 14, 2011

Sewing with Stenzo Jersey - Ottobre

I just can't seem to stop myself from reaching out and grabbing these pretty jersey fabrics, arghhhh! Here's one I made last week , pattern from Ottobre Spring 2011, the 'tangerine top' and 'Cocos' tiered skirt. The skirt is from the awesomely beautiful Stenzo Jersey , aren't those colors just gorgeous ?! The top is not tangerine I know but the sriped red seemed to work , what do you think?

Somehow all my ready made applique's did not seem to work on this, so I made my own butterfly applique and made a running stitch using brown dmc floss, and of course the cute buttons, what do you think? I stitched the hem with a stretch zig zag with contrast white on my normal machine, very decorative I think.

From my one meter of red stripe jersey I had enough to make her 3/4 leggings, matched !

After many experiments this is the stretch stitch I use on my seams. Its a zig zag combined with a straight stitch. Its pretty stretchy and you don't need to serge the seams. 

Hmmm where was she when she wore the above? Hehe, another story for another time I think. its muffin baking time for tea. Today, banana walnut honey cream muffins with streusel topping :)

June 7, 2011

Sewing with Jersey - The Secret

Pretty cotton and viscose jersey fabrics are coming out by the bolts right now, and I'm so totally in love with them. But have to admit, sewing jersey is a nightmare, they keep puckering. Then I keep reading in Ottobre and Burda the tip of using a bias facing. So I asked the sewing notions stall and yippee they had it, a thin strip of bias facing that you iron on the shoulders and armholes to stop the fabric from stretching when sewing, it worked like a dreamm:) 

Here's my first project of sewing with jersey, really loved how it turned out

Can you see the white strips on the shoulders and armholes? Thats the bias facing which needs to be ironed on the stitching lines. 

The completed dress and I adore that matroshka applique 

The dress in action, has a really swingging skirt and is so comfortable, its now her 'go to' dress :) If you notice the neck binding is a bit wide, after intense studying of Ottobre tips, when using stretch binding, the length of binding is only 0.75% x the length on the pattern. So I did it again and turned out really well.

The original model from this book

Tip when sewing with jersey ; prewash is a must! I didn't and after the first wash the length shrank by 2 inches!! Wash at 30C max and line dry. The bias facing gets softer with every wash. I used a straight stitch but stretch the fabric as I sew and slightly loosen the upper thread tension, so in its relaxed mode the fabric will be a bit elastic and the stitches won't break. The pattern has a really dropped shoulder and is a bit larger than usual but the skirt is beautiful.

Hope you'll share some tips with me of sewing with jersey, so love it because now I don't need to iron Shasha's dresses :)


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