Separates

Astoria – my new obsession

Dear reader, I’m in love. I’ve found a new pattern and I’ve fallen big time for it. I downloaded the Astoria pattern by Colette only last Saturday, I printed it Sunday, stuck it together Monday, cut out my first fabric Monday night, sewed it Wednesday, cut and sewed another the same night, and now its Saturday morning and I’ve just finished my third! (Apologies if you’ve now got Craig David in your head!) That’s 3 Astorias in 1 week. I must be in love because I’ve already worn 2.

I know a lot of bloggers have made this pattern, and it does seem to be a wardrobe staple. With an overlocker for Christmas I wanted to spend 2016 sewing with knits, and the Astoria is the perfect pattern. With Me Made May, I realised I needed more tops and casual wear in my me made wardrobe, so another 2 ticks for the Astoria pattern. When I found some Ponte De Roma as a remnant online for only £5, a fabric I had wanted to sew with for a long while, everything came together in a perfect storm to make sewing super fun this week. Due to my very small remnants, I have also found that you can fit an Astoria out of only 70cm of fabric. So here is a run down of my Astoria’s.

Astoria 1 – the fabric was a Ponte De Roma in grey and only 70cm. With some creative folding and cutting I managed to get a a medium Astoria out of my fabric. The sleeves are a bit shorter than the short sleeve pattern piece, but that is fine. I loved sewing with this knit fabric. I sewed this entire jumper up on my overlocker threaded with black thread.

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I have stretched the seams so the thread can be seen from the right side, which I think gives it some great details. The instructions seem to suggest that you need to hem the sleeves, but by the time I had finished all the other seams, I did not want to get my sewing machine out, and thread it up with a double needle, so I overlocked the sleeve bottoms and left it as it was. The fit was slightly snug, as this fabric doesn’t have much stretch in it, but for a first attempt it;s still very wearable.

Astoria 2 – This was another knit fabric I bought online as a remnant, this time there was 80cm – luxury! I originally thought it would make a great tube skirt for work, but I had the Astoria bug and needed to make another. This time I lengthened the body by 3 inches. I know the pattern is for a cropped jumper, but that sometimes really annoys me. When my jeans and my top don’t meet, I always find my top rides up and I spend all day pulling it down. The sleeves again were a bit short, but that’s fine. Again another quick sew up on the overlocker, and I’ve pulled the seams apart so you can see the detailing.

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For some reason this took a bit more juggling to get this pattern out of my fabric. The waistband should be made of 2 pieces, but this one is made of 4, so there is an extra seam at the front and back centres. I then added sleeve cuffs, in a similar fashion to the neckband. I cut strips to the same length as the sleeve openings, sewed it into a band and then folded in in half and used my overlocker to attach it. I loved this finish so much that I went back and added this to Astoria 1 although with the scraps I had left they are really narrow and a bit uneven on my first Astoria.

Astoria 3 – This is fabric I bought from Rosie (@rosie_diycouture) during one of her de-stashes. I think its a fabulous fabric. My plan was to sew the long sleeves on this version, but once again I couldn’t quite fit them on, so I used the short sleeve added about 2 inches onto the bottom (as much as I could get out of the fabric), and then sewed some fairly chunky cuffs on the bottom of the sleeves to add another couple of inches. I took care to make sure that the centre front and centre back had some pattern symmetry going on.

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Check out these fab cuffs to give extra length to the arms!

Overall this felt like worthwhile sewing, and something my wardrobe has been crying out for. I’m sure this won’t be my last Astoria, and I’m really chuffed that I have managed to fit it on such a small piece of fabric. I’ll keep an eye out for more nice knit fabric when I’m out fabric shopping, and I could always splash out on some more expensive fabric as I can get it out of less than 1m!

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