Aside

Mcall’s 7778/7834 Shoulder Tie Sundress

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I made this sundress a couple of weeks ago and took it for a spin this past weekend. The fabric is made from a Donna Karen Stretch shirting which, although  fairly thin,  was no match for the swampy humidity we got slammed with this past weekend. Even though I feel ok about how this dress turned out, it wasn’t my original intention. Continue reading

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McCalls 7542

I’ve had this pattern in my stash for a while but fitting woes for 2 dresses got me  down and I needed to sew something that didn’t make me feel so frustrated. I decided I need something super easy. I pulled out this pattern and matched it up against my bodice sloper and made some changes to the dart placement and armhole but other than that it was pretty straightforward. I do think I would like for the neck to be a smidge lower though. The pattern is naturally kind of cropped  but I accidentally cut more than I should’ve  which made  it shorter than I wanted. I decided to wear it out anyway… risky, I know…  I made it using this popular embroidered cotton from Joann Fabrics. The fabric is really thin and I think it probably should have been underlined  but I just wore undergarments that disappeared underneath and I didn’t feel overexposed. I used white bias binding for the neck and sleeves and finished the hem with the serger then stitched it down.  I also serged the back seam and added a 1/2″ peach colored button for a pop of color and used the bias binding as a button loop. You can never have enough white shirts in my opinion. It was an easy make and I love the way it turned out. I would definitely make this again but maybe in another one of the views. Glad to report I got my sewing mojo back!

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Fall/Winter Sewing Plans 2018

Hi! Sooo, I’m still chugging along on this pencil skirt that I’ve been working on for MONTHS off and on. I feel like at this point I’m just making it up as I go along. I got caught up in learning how to line a vented skirt which I’m sure  I did wrong. I lined the vent and skirt before inserting the zipper and waistband and it’s been tricky to work on.  The zipper and waistband are finished now but  they also look a. hot. mess. Well, the  zipper not so much but the waist band is terrible. I tried it on and it was so tight that I split the lining in one area so I know it won’t be wearable. Knowing that makes me not want to finish it but I am making a conscious effort to finish more projects regardless of the outcome so here I am. Continue reading

Vogue 9253 African Print Kimono Dress

Like practically every other sewing blogger out there, I made a version of Vogue 9253.  This turquoise and pink African Cotton Print I picked up in New York wasn’t my original idea for the dress but I wanted to make it before summer was over and decided to start with this fabric.   I didn’t want the  v to be as deep as the original pattern so I heightened it by a few inches and created a facing to finish it.  I forgot the pattern has a seam down the middle skirt and that did throw me for a loop since my fabric kind of needed to be matched due to the print. Things didn’t add up perfectly for the front and back  but I’m working on embracing my sewing imperfections. I could have shortened the back just a tad now that I look at the photos of the back.  At first I thought this dress looked like hospital scrubs on me. It was too long and the sleeves were just not a good fit. I cut off about 4-5 inches from the hem and a few inches from the sleeves and I like it better this way.  I made this dress about 2 months ago and have worn it 3 times. Each time I wear it  I get so many compliments! I do like it and think I would use the bodice again for another dress sans kimono sleeve as  the bodice fit really nicely. I’m not quite sure if I would make another one of these but for now I’m pretty pleased with the outcome.  I paired the outfit with from shoes from Ann Taylor and my Kate Spade bag.

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Reboot

I’ve decided it’s time for my blogging break to be over. I’ve learned so much since my last post almost 2 years ago and it’s so exciting! Honestly, I’ve just been too lazy to post anything and I’ve been sewing at such a slow rate. Also, my computer has been giving me the blues, so there’s that too. Anyway, the only way to get better is to sew, post and get/give feedback so here I am! Thanks for reading!

Butterick 5950 with some type of jersey knit

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Butterick 5950 Back view. No pattern matching happening here…

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Foray into baby clothes with African wax prints.

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Simplicity 1803 with a very thin/sheer cotton from Mood Fabric

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Butterick 5601 View A in White cotton eyelet, lined. Photo credit: JusPose Photography

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Butterick 5901 in White Cotton Eyelet Photo credit: JusPose Photograpy

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First version of Butterick 5950 in some poor quality ponte from Joann Fabrics. After 3 iterations and altering the pattern, this is now my first TnT!

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Close up of B 5950

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My most recent make ( March 2015) is Vogue 8787 with sleeveless modification in brown ponte.

I’ve made a short set!

A few weeks ago I attempted a short set/lounge wear from some unidentifiable knit material I had hanging around. It needed to go to make room for the fabulous new eyelet material I just got from fabricmart. Can I tell you that I LURVES it??!! :-).

OK,back to the short set:



Anyhoo, So I used Simplicity  pattern  2317. I thinK I cut the smallest or next to smallest size.   I immediately ran into several problems:

  1. The shorts were entirely too short for my liking so I attempted to make them longer ( they ended up slightly uneven)
  2. The tee, as cut, was too big in the chest area. I guess I thought b/c it was knit, it would conform to my body. It did not.
  3. The crotch is too short! UGGGG.  ( I think the last time I attempted pants or shorts of any kind was in high school and I can see why now.
  4. I had trouble with the elastic waistband. I may or may not have cut the wrong size elastic. Who can tell? Regardless, it could have been  much looser. I followed the pattern measurements and instructions ( albeit loosely) but I can’t figure out if I need to use a different pattern or if it really was my error.

There were more problems but those were the major ones. Even so, I washed them several times, put them in the dryer ( what was I thinking? Now they are even shorter. Oye.) and wore them.  Anyway, I wore them all day a few days ago and as long as I was sitting, everything was comfy but that dern crotch gave me the blues. I’m still glad I made it. It felt good learning new skills. I will definitely attempt this again as I need more comfortable loungewear.

Skills  I learned:

  • How to make a mock fly
  • Sewing a crotch for shorts
  • Working with a different type of knit ( this material unraveled very easy and did not have a ton of give- IDK what type of knit it was).
  • I learned that I should serge all my pieces up front regardless of what type of garment it is. You’ve probably gathered that I did not do this :-/.
  • How to make a racerback tee.

I will probably keep wearing the top even though it’s a little too big. The shorts tho? Err, prolly only as a last resort :-).

Have you made loungewear before?

~M

Pink Peonies Skirt

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I finished this skirt several weeks ago, just didn’t get a chance to photograph it til now. It is my second make of the Full Gathered Skirt Tutorial from Gertie’s Blog.  I’m pretty pleased with how it came out. After wearing it all day, I noticed the waist was still gaping a little at the front similar to how the waist gaped in the first iteration of the skirt (here) but not as bad. This is weird because when I first tried it on, I thought the waistband was just a tad too tight. After being in the skirt all day ( walking, sitting, lounging), I can say that is held up pretty well. It kept me pretty cool in the hot weather. I originally got the fabric from B&J Fabric in NY lat year and I believe its cotton. As far as new skills I learned:

  • I learned to thread my SERGER!  ( All of the rainbow colored thread the machine came with ran out leaving me in complete panic. LOL. Thank you youtube for helping me b/c the DVD tutorial was COMPLETELY useless. Brother, you should be ashamed. Very ashamed).
  • Improved upon my catchsticth for the hem
  • Improvised the pattern with a limited amount of fabric
  • I’m closer to perfecting the invisible zipper
  • I tried a new waistband technique in which encloses the zipper in the waistband at the back. I got the tutorial here. I really like this technique and think it makes the skirt look more professional.
  • I got better with lining up seams
  • My serging got better ( I serged all seams and bottom of the garment)
  • I stitched in the ditch for the waistband.

Overall, I’m pretty pleased with myself! Next up is a short set/loungewear that I recently completed. Oh, and I almost forgot- I JUST got my Cambie pattern in the mail and I’m SOOO excited! Stay tuned for more makes 🙂

~M

bright pink peonies.

Currently working on another full gathered skirt. This time I didn’t use the exact measurements Gertie gave. I had some fabric I wanted to use and I did everything I could to make it work. Here’s  a pic of the fabric.  I got it  from B&J Fabrics in NY last summer. Once I’m all done I’ll post the finished version. I feel  a little scared now that the flowers are too bright. ummmm!

0~M

The Full, Gathered Skirt

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I recently finished the full gathered skirt. Yaaay for completed projects! I got this pattern from Gertie’s Blog. You can find the post here. It was fairly easy to make.  Just 2 large rectangles and 1 skinny small one.

When making up the skirt, I thought the first waistband ( made following the instructions exactly)  would be too small after adding seam allowances  so I made a bigger one. That one ended up being too big so I went back to the first one.  I made the skirt out of a heavy navy blue linen. I don’t think that was a good idea because the gathers were bulky and the seams were hard to press flat around the waistband. Also, the fabric stretched (A LOT) while pressing so the skirt ended up being  too big. It also  looks uneven when really it’s just too big and heavy. ARGH.  Despite these issues, I am really proud of the skirt. I plan on sewing another one a tad shorter in a bold floral print ( I’d also love to do it in tafetta like Gertie). I think next time I will try  this tutorial from Coletterie  for the zipper/waistband insertion instead of the one Gertie uses. I want to see if it’s an easier and more professional looking finish. Overall, I’m pleased with the skirt  as this was my first time making it. I probably won’t wear it much though because it’s simply too big and I don’t have the heart to pick it apart and start over.

Let’s throw a party! Cuz why you ask? Well, this was the first  time  I used my new serger! ( Suuuper excited -can you tell?). I purchased  a Brother 1034D  and so far I lurves it. I’m scared as all get- out to change the thread so yes, my seams are finished with the rainbow colored thread the machine came with! Haha.

Full, Gathered Skirt

Front View. You can see the fabric was too heavy/loose as the waistband is sagging down in the front.

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The zipper- Somehow the iron stretched out the waistband so it’s not completely even. Bulkiness prevented me from making the top of the zipper invisible.

Full, Gathered Skirt

Full view of the zipper. Mostly ok except for the waistband.

Full, Gathered Skirt

(I love how my face looks so confused/concerned here!  Ha). Had about an inch of extra room in the waistband.

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Back view

I think for the first time and wrong fabric choice that it was not bad! I wore it to work that day and got several compliments before ever telling anyone I made it!  😉 I know, so tacky.  😛

 I’m ready for my next project!- perfecting the fit on shift dress with princess seams. Stay tuned for an update.

Vogue 1314-Tracy Reese Knit Fitted Dress

Why have I not posted anything since February?  Hmmm, well, let see;- um, life happened. LOL. Anyway, I have not one but TWO completed projects that I’m super proud of! This post  is  about  the Vogue 1314 Tracy Reese knit dress. I’ll do another post on my gathered skirt.  So let’s get into details. I’ve had this Tracy Reese pattern for over a year I’m guessing. It wasn’t on my mind until I saw the version that Mimi G sewed on her blog. ( I can’t get the link to the actual dress but the post is dated August 20,2012). I realized I had the pattern and thought it seemed like an easy project to do. I should mention that easy things take me forever to complete and hard things. This was my first time working with knit fabric. I didn’t have a serger at the time and this fabrics cut edge was seriously curling up on me. I did a little research and realized it would sew better with a stabilizer. The pattern calls for stay tape which helped. I think my material was a little too stretchy though.   I liked it without sleeves but added the sleeves just so I could follow the pattern exactly. I thought it would be a good experience.  It was!  I learned the new skills of how to sew ruching, long sleeves and a neck facing  thanks to this project. It took me about 2 weeks to make this dress- because I’m  so S-L-O-WWWWW . I took my time and did a little bit every few days. There was plenty of seam ripping as well as lots of dirty looks given to my machine. Getting the tension right was torture. I finally gave up and decided a  good enough stitch would have to do.  Overall, I like the dress and I’m proud of myself.

The  pattern instructions were pretty easy and besides getting used to the fabric rolling and stretching  out all over the place, it wasn’t too hard. I wasn’t so fond of the fabric I used for this dress. I feel like if I wear the dress out, I may be mistaken for someone out of the  101 Dalmatians movie but it is ok b/c this fabric was purchased so I could practice sewing with knit fabric. I  didn’t cut both pieces on the fold because I didn’t have enough fabric so there is a center seam down the back. Grrr. Oh well. There is a little pooling of fabric in the back or swayback anddd it’s  a bit clingy for my taste. The biggest concern is that  there is too much ruching which makes my tummy and waist look bigger than they really are. No bueno! I realize I just made that sound so much  worse than it is, actually.   I would  definitely make this dress again with a few changes. First,  think I would reduce the amount of ruching, second, I’d make it sleeveless, third, I’d  use fabric with a little less stretchiness in it and fourth-  use a serger to finish the seams. Did I mention I’m super proud of myself ( boast much?)!! Heh.  I  have to admit, I was close to finishing and just got tired and almost left it as yet another 1/2 finished project.  Something told me to  keep going and not be a quitter. So glad I did!

🙂

Vogue 1314
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