Work in Progress

Remember the gifts the fabric fairy brought me?  Well, I’ve been inspired and busy!  One of the fabrics is a lovely dark blue abstract print from Cotton + Steele.  Seriously soft cotton lawn.  And, can I tell you, it sews up beautifully too.

I decided to give the Sewaholic Http://www.sewaholicpatterns.com/Granville-shirt/ Shirt another try.  This time, I went to a size 6 and graded the hips down A LOT.  I’m also making a long sleeved version.

Here are some photos of the work in progress:

 
I also am super excited that I’ve done my first set of sleeve plackets.  Eeee!  

   

More to come….should be able to show you the whole shirt soon! 

Made Me May – reflections on my sewing

It’s Made Me May, and I always use this month to reflect on my hand sewn wardrobe.  I won’t be posting daily outfit posts, but instead, a weekly recap of life and my sewing habit.  Shall we begin?

May 1 marked the first day of a new job with my current employer!  We created a new group and I am tasked with defining and building it.  Very exciting!  What did I do on my first day on the job?  I took a vacation day!  And instead, ran a 12 person, 206.8 mile relay with my best running buddies.  Doesn’t get much better than a bunch of grown people in a van for 36 hours, sleep deprived and stinky.  You can only imagine the convos!  And, tmi, I’m a super pooper – we’ll leave it at that.  Nope, no made me running wear.  Yup, that’s a hole in my sewing wardrobe.  

The remaining days, I found that my made me items were staples.  Shorts, skirts, a dress.  Which I am glad and kinda depressed by.  After almost two years of not buying clothing, I’ve found that my made me items are pretty basic.  Perhaps it’s my style.  Perhaps it’s me not venturing outside of my comfort zone.  I also noticed that tops are lacking in my made me items. Soooo.  What’s a girl to do?  Talk to the fabric fairy!

  
Some pretty lawns and twill.  Just wait.

I also remade my trusty Cynthia Rowley t-shirt dress recently.  The old one was pretty ratty and I decided to retire it.  It was one of the first items I made.  I basically made it in the same color as my original.  I find this blue very versatile.

A quick pic before work: 

  
I hate my hair right now.  Growing it back out.  

Week 1:  Good staples.  More excitement.  Venture into something new.

Happy spring!  

Flat felled seams…

Wow!  I didn’t mean to be MIA for so long.  It’s been a crazy first quarter at work – and 15 days of travel in March away from home – have made me a little road weary and missing my family.  Sewing hasn’t made it into the picture, sadly.  But, I’m hoping the spring will change all that!

This week, I took a few days off of work for spring break.  My youngest daughter needed more space/different space in her bedroom. This prompted a three bedroom swap.  Did I mention I took time off work?  To move furniture?  Dressers, desks, beds, cabinets, and yes, sewing machines.

My tiny craft closet was sadly turned over to my eldest this week.  My office and craft room was moved to the youngest’s room.  Which is the smallest room in the house.  Sigh.  I thought it would be terrible.  But, it’s turned out really great!  Bay window with beautiful natural light.  A downsized fabric horde, super organized now.  Yea!  Everyone won.  Even the hubby, who has been spinning vinyl while I sew.  Double bonus!!  And the girls?  Well, they both got rooms of any kids dream.

So, on the sewing front – some exciting news – Meigan from Get My Stich On is moving to my city!  Yea!  Another sewing blogger!  Super excited. 

I also finally got some long awaited sewing time in.  I purchased the new shirt pattern from Sewaholic.  I’ve had a white cotton polka dot fabric in my stash and it was screaming to be a shirt.  The pattern came together very quickly, once all the cutting out was done!  Whew, shirts have A LOT of pieces.  The pattern was great and the instructions are very good.  I made a few modifications – raised the bust darts, omitted the pockets and shortened the sleeves.  In addition to that, I used Grainlines method for collar sewing.  I find the method in the Sewaholic version easier to understand, but doesn’t come out as neatly.  Oh, yeah, I did flat felled seams throughout.  Took a little mental calculations, but it came out beautifully.

WARNING:  DORK ALERT PHITOS BELOW.

   

 

I like it, but I’m likely to take the sides in – I’m a square and Tashia definitely designs for pears.  I may go down a size too.  It feels fine, but looking at the pictures the shirt appears rumply and baggy.  

I gotta say, I am super proud of my sewing on this one.  The finishes are soooo good it could be reversible.  I can tell that my skillz are gettin madder!  Ha.  I crack myself up.

A year in review…

As always, I am running late. I know it’s the end of February and I haven’t posted much through the holidays. But, it’s not like I haven’t been sewing, thinking about sewing or writing blog posts in my mind. I have so many ideas, thoughts I want to share…time has eluded me and I haven’t formalized my fleeting ideas into words. Until, tonight. 

Here we go…

I began this blog a little over a year ago. Wow. It goes by quickly. Fast. Warp speed. I wanted to go a year without buying ready to wear clothing. For the most part, I succeeded! One moment of weakness when I felt fat & uncomfortable in my pants lead to a skirt purchase from Target. I think I bought one skirt, three sweaters, two tank tops, and two pairs of running shorts. Pretty good. Everything else this year was hand made. I accomplished what I wanted to…more sewing, better clothes, and a whole lot of learning!

So.  Where does that leave me for 2015?  Well, let’s talk about that.  At the end of January I culled my closet of all that didn’t work for me.  I was ruthless.  My hand made clothing was spared no mercy.  A lot left my closet.  A LOT!  RTW and hand made.  I took some time to reflect on why my handmade garments didn’t make the cut.  Basically, two reasons:  poor fabric and bad fit.  So, that will be my focus this year.

I am also working through Colette’s wardrobe architect – and really trying to define my style.  I’ve come to realize it’s classic, fitted, conservative with a little flair.  Check out my style board on Pinterest….you get the gist.

More projects and photos to come.  Just wanted you to know I wasn’t gone off the face of the earth!

Ginger and spice and everything nice…

I’ve owed you my Ginger post for a few weeks now. I have made two pairs since purchasing the pattern from Closet Case Patterns. After vacation, I plan on a few more. Best. Pattern. Ever. Swoon. Total love.

Let’s get down to details, shall we? I made the first pair in a lighter weight denim with approximately 4% Lycra. I did not make any adjustments except to shorten the length. I cut a size 6 – and thought it was a little too tight – but my DH thinks the fit is juuuust fine. I did not interface the waist band, which I feel is a mistake. Don’t skip that step if you don’t like the expanding Jean waist.

A picture at the EMP museum in Seattle. My sis was nice enough to play photographer.

IMG_1726.JPG

Like my model pose? Seriously, look at my bad ass top stitching! Oh, yeah. I got my hair cut.

My next make was a size 8 with a little heavier denim. I was worried they would be too tight, but I think I will stick with a size 8. On the second pair, I altered the waist band by pinching put three wedges – making more of a curved waist fit. Much better. I also interfaced the waist band.

I gotta say, the fly instructions are excellent on this pattern. Similar to Jaile. Overall – I love this pattern!

I also made some Hudson pants from True Bias. So comfy!!! I will make more of these. Like others, I don’t think they are particularly flattering, but let’s face it, who cares? They are still cute and stylish. I wore them to a girl get together recently, and all my girlfriends loved them. Here is a shot at the Chichuly Gardens in Seattle.

IMG_1600.JPG

Well, back to my vacation. See you all soon…will leave you with a pic of the exhibit.

IMG_1577.JPG

IMG_1442.JPG

Helllloooo! And Pattern Review Contest

I am a glutton for punishment. Amid all of the other stuff I have going on, I decided to enter the PR contest.

The Great Pattern Review Sewing Bee - Round #1

My first entry was the Maria Denmark Yasmin Skirt. Y’all know how I love that pattern. Love! I didn’t make any changes except to add lining. I did add the pocket, but I gotta say, my gut doesn’t like them (must cut back on beer!).

IMG_1485.JPG

IMG_1490.JPG

BTW, I did make the Ginger Jeans and LOVE them!!! I have two more planned. I haven’t photographed them yet, but here’s a sneak peek!

IMG_1446.JPG
I want to give the post the love it deserves for these jeans!!

October – or where has the time gone?

Crap! I can’t believe it’s the middle end of October already. I am still alive, though life and work and kids and school are getting in the way of blogging and sewing. Seriously, I started this post on the 18th. Sigh. Damn kids. Just kidding. Sorry y’all get the short end of the stick in all this balancing.

Ok, let’s start at the top. I am taking a class. Yup. As if I don’t have enough on my plate. And to make it worse, it’s Financial Statement Analysis. WTF, what was I thinking? Dumb ass.

And then, there is my running. Good stuff, except I’m injured. Ugh. There is honestly nothing worse than an injured runner. We are a whiney baby lot. Wah. I can’t run – which sadly means I haven’t seen my running partner in far too long. I miss our running therapy.

Then, the kids. Well, I can’t really say anything too bad about them. Except they are rotten & that is fine by me. Love those rotten things.

Sew, let’s talk sewing. Haha. I have been sewing some. Thought I would catch you up on a recent make.

One of my new faves, a black Coco. This dress is simple and adds a great basic to my wardrobe. I made it in a heavy knit, which means it’s comfy too! What can I say about this pattern that hasn’t already been said? There is a reason why we all have girl-crushes on Tilly. Simple, well drafted patterns that look great. Yeah, it’s a good one.

IMG_1395.JPG

I probably should invest in spanx.

And, a little photobomb:

IMG_1388.JPG

IMG_1392.JPG

IMG_1394.JPG

Yeah, she’s cute like that!

More to come soon – just downloaded the new Ginger pattern from Closet Case Patterns!

IMG_1432.JPG

Crazy for Coco Puffs!

Haha! That makes me laugh.

Ok, let’s get down to business. I purchased Tilly’s Coco dress pattern some time ago. But, for whatever reason, it languished in my stash. I also had this awesome ponte stripe knit that I had slated for a jacket. It also languished in my stash. And…that’s where being on a fabric diet gets ya. You get hungry and you just need to sew. Something. Anything. Coco puff anyone?

IMG_1307.JPG

My attempt at striking a model pose. Oh, yea, I’m hot. Do you see my quad muscle? Damn!

Seriously though. I absolutely adore this pattern. Simple, cute, and I can imagine it in a lot of different fabrics. In fact, inspiration for my next Coco came via an Armani ad today – I can just see it made up in a lovely black wool blend. I may do a woven fabric hack in the near future.

Let’s talk shop at bit. The pattern goes together quickly. The style lines are very flattering. I did shorten the pattern, but I could probably add the length back in. Pattern matching the stripes was a beyoch. It took for-ev-ah to get the sleeve matched up. But, I think my efforts paid off, if I do say so myself. What can I say, I’m a bad Betty.
And…here’s a better pic.

IMG_1322-0.JPG

Not a very flattering pic. My hubby was the photographer. He’s fired. May need to re-hire my 6yo.

Great Gingham Goodness!

I feel redeemed. My Great Gingham Goodness Archer saved me. I have been stalking gingham shirts on Pinterest. Obsessing about a version for myself. And perfection came together in the form of fabric and an Archer pattern. What can I say? I L-O-V-E this shirt!

However, I cannot lie, the shirt did give me a little heartache. Shall we discuss? I cut this out several weeks ago. Part of my binge and purge weekend. It sat a few weeks and I sewed it up last weekend. I *tried* to match the plaid, but alas, it’s not perfect.

IMG_1191.JPG
This fabric was a PITA. I did not like sewing with it – sort of a light weight cotton poly blend. Neither of my machines liked it very much. I redid the collar twice – didn’t like how the collar stand was sitting. That’s the thing about sewing – my perfectionist tendencies get taken out via my seam ripper. I am anal retentive – I would fixate on that collar stand – and we can’t have that, can we?

IMG_1194-0.JPG
I did modify the sleeve. I made it short sleeved. I extended the cuff piece by a few inches and made it flip up. I think it came out pretty cute. You can see I did pleat the sleeve a bit – that was pure laziness as I cut the cuff a smudge too small. What do you do? As Tim Gunn would say, “Make it work.”

IMG_1196.JPG

I made my 6 yo play photographer. She wasn’t very helpful. Alas, good help is hard to find these days. I did get a sort of a decent pic out of the bunch. I promptly fired her afterwards.

IMG_1174.JPG