The Tour de France started last week and I’ve been staying up until 1 or 2 in the morning to watch the live stages. It’s the perfect excuse to set up the cutting table in front of the TV each night and get some serious sewing time in.
Stage 1: My Image M1253 – stretch pants
This year’s version is made in a cotton lycra. It is from a failed dying session. I had put some French Terry into one of those camping washing barrels, along with jet black dye and water at 60C. I’d taken the lid off to check the colour but didn’t put it back on properly. The next time I rotated the barrel, the lid came off, hot dye water all over my feet and spreading across the laundry floor 😮 Not good. In my race to sop up the dye, I grabbed this fabric to soak up the dye – originally a light blue. When the crisis was over, it went into the barrel with the other fabric. There wasn’t quite enough dye left so they came out navy rather than black.
These pants are just for wearing doing the gardening and other grubby jobs so I’m not too worried the dye marks. Since this piece is more streaked than the other, I did try to use parts of it as ‘design features’, especially in the pleated panels
Stage 2: Butterick 6295 – leggings
This would be one of my favourite leggings patterns and I think this is my third pair from the pattern. They are the same ones that I used for the ‘Match your shoes contest’. The fabric for this on is the French Terry that was in that dye pot. The dyeing is a lot more even than on the cotton lycra and is hardly noticeable. Again, they are just for the house so it doesn’t really matter.
Stage 3 : McCall’s 6614 Sweatshirt
The same pattern that I used for the owl sweatshirt, but this time with some trim down the sleeve and mock turtleneck collar. Same blue French Terry as the leggings.
I’d bought the snowflake fabric to use for the raglan sleeve, but the printing was so off-grain that it was useless. The perils of online shopping 😦
I’ve used strips of the snowflake motif down the sleeves. The collar was cut 30cm wide and the same length as the neckline opening. It is cut off-grain to follow the pattern but hasn’t distorted too much.
Stage 4 & 5: Wool blend polo – self drafted block
Wasn’t quite in the mood for sewing on Stage 6 so I had a try at drafting a slim fit t-shirt from scratch from an Italian textbook. I picked this draft as it had the front drafted differently to the back and has an asymmetric sleevehead. Most of the others I looked at drafted the same shape for front and back with just a different neckline. I’ve subbed in the placket and collar from Kwik Sew 3532 at the last minute. The jersey is quite light so I wasn’t sure how it would go with the placket. Both pieces of the collar and placket were interfaced to give it some body.
The draft fitted really well. I hope to get a photo of me wearing it at a later time, but for now it’s just on ‘Red’. The hems haven’t been finished as yet.
Stage 6 : Revamping Windpro pants.
I made these ages and ages ago (line in 2010)
– basically a pair of leggings with full length double separating zippers down on the side seam and zippered welt pockets. It is a Windpro fleece that cost an arm and a leg. Lovely and warm but the velco tabs at the top of the side zippers left huge scratch marks by the end of a day skiing and one of the pocket zippers had failed.
I had enough of the same fabric in stash to replace them, but because the fabric was so expensive, I decided to remodel them instead. Side zipper and welt pockets were cut off and a side panel was inserted. Replaced the waistband. Sized so I can put them on over tights or wear them under my Goretex overpants.
Stage 7 & 8: Cycling jersey fail
This was the plan, based on a really cool jersey I saw someone wearing. I had a bold black and white stripe jersey in the stash that I thought might work.
I used KwikSew 3567 as the base and drafted in a high/low hem, back pocket and carved up the CF and CB to get the chevron effect.
Meticulous fabric layout ( not bad considering it was after 1am).
Pieced together well.
Don’t like the end result. Mostly because the raglan seam is so rounded and the side panels don’t extend far enough around to frame the stripes better. Also the stripe is too broad. It would have worked better with a 3.5 to 4cm wide stripe rather than the 6cm wide stripe that I was using.
Stage 9: Drafting my own Green Jersey
Rely hard to concentrate after seeing Ritchie Porte crash and having to withdraw from the race. With Michael Matthews also out, I’m not sure who to cheer for. Barguil? Yates? Bit hard to really compete against sanctioned doping but we can only wish that the actual best rider wins
Anyway, I managed to come up with a raglan sleeve draft based on the block that I made for the polo. Bit nervous how the raglan will go but hope to cut it out tonight as I watch stage 10. Fingers crossed