Wardrobe basics

Birgitte top and NL6843 skirt
Birgitte top and NL6843 skirt

It’s still early days in my sewing life but so far I feel as if I have been building up a set of everyday clothes that I will get lots of wear out of. I love all the pretty dresses and amazing prints that are out there in the bloggersphere but when I think about what I really want to make and wear and what I have been most happy with I seem come back to the basics.

So – in line with my autumn sewing plans – I have made a long sleeved top and a skirt – I told you it was basic… They were really straightforward makes and you will have seen them or similar makes on a hundred other blogs but I am really pleased with how they came out and most importantly I have been wearing them all a lot already.

First – the top – I needed a long sleeve knit top that was a bit more work suitable than my very comfy Hemlocks. I was choosing between Sewaholic Renfrew and Maria Denmark Birgitte and I went for the Birgitte T – partly because Maria had 20% off her patterns a little while ago, but also I read a review which mentioned this top has a close fit and I wanted something quite fitted. I have already made her free Kimono T pattern, which came together really nicely so I was keen to try another one of her patterns. I don’t have an overlocker so I used a narrow zig zag on the seams and I didn’t bother finishing the edges as I wanted to get it done quite quickly! I think I cut the neckband very slightly too long so it didn’t have to be stretched out to fit onto the neckline and it doesn’t lie as flat as it should. I used the full length sleeve pattern which is narrower and cut it to three quarter length but otherwise I didn’t make any changes, it was perfectly straightforward and I love the result! How often does that happen? This is definitely a pattern I will return to.

For the skirt I re-used my basic New Look 6843 pattern and made the pencil skirt style again – view B in a size 12 at the waist out to a size 14 at the hips..

6843birgitte back

I got really lucky and picked up the most gorgeous piece of charcoal grey wool in Abakhan remnants – the woman who cut it for me said it was cashmere and it does feel amazing – so soft and comfortable – I wish I had bought the whole piece instead of just over a metre (fabric is sold by weight in the remnant section so this beautiful fabric only cost a few pounds!) – after I finished this skirt I was imagining a winter Kelly skirt from it.I love the lucky dip experience at Abakhan – sometimes there isn’t anything I want but often you find a few metres of something fab and if you don’t snap it up you won’t see it again! The only drawback is that there is no information about the remnant fabric so I mostly have no idea what I am sewing with.

I pre-washed a square of this fabric and it came out fine so I pre-washed the whole lot – I am not someone who does dry-cleaning so things do need to be washable. Later I managed to cut my skirt back over the missing square resulting in one side with a bit missing at the top – thankfully I had enough fabric to re-cut the piece!

6843birgitte side

This is my third go at making this pattern and it also went together very quickly – I added a lining of grey satin which I am super pleased with – it feels very luxurious under the skirt and I have enough left over to make a slip to put under non-lined skirts. I have worn this skirt several times to work already and I really love it -and it fits better than if I bought it RTW!

3 Comments Add yours

  1. Liking your basics. I noticed you mentioned Abakhans – so I guess we may live close? I’m based in North Wales. Happy sewing in 2014

    Sarah @ Sew Drastic!


    1. mrszandstra says:

      Hi Sarah

      Yes I am in Liverpool – love Abakhan – can always find something I like the look of!


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