2013 ESSENTIAL TOPS SEW-A-LONG FINISHED PROJECTS

April 25, 2010

STUCK - IN THE SEWING ROOM...

not that I can't get out, but this weekend I just found myself in a precarious place that I call stuck. I had a really hard time trying to decide on what my next project was going to be. Mind you, this doesn't happen often because it just works out that I have so many sewing projects planned that the process usually flows pretty smoothly. During my last frenzy I cut out three tops and a dress. The results of that cutting frenzy has kept me busy for two weeks - I put the finishing touches on this Butterick wrap dress on Friday night.

So by Saturday I needed to make a decision on my next sewing projects, and just couldn't come up with any ideas. I finally decided to give New Look 6936 a try. I was able to get this dress done in a day as it went together easily and without a hitch.

The Spring Month of Tops Sew-a-long is in its final week. Initially, I committed to making 4 tops - but I was able to get 5 done. I'm now thinking that I might be able to squeeze in one more top this week. So I cut it out today and hope to complete it by the weekend....

April 17, 2010

IT AIN'T EASY BEING DOWN.....

I've been down the past few days, and it was no fun! I didn't realize just how much I really depend on the internet until I couldn't get on. It was miserable! But I have been sewing and have three finished projects to boot:

My favorite TNT t-shirt pattern - New Look 6735. Isn't this the most gorgeous knit you've ever seen? I love it so much that I stopped several times during the construction to give it a little hug. I purchased this from my friend Ebony the end of last summer and it's so soft and just the best knit ever. I'm currently working on a dress from this very same fabric - I thank God for Ebony (and KEITH for the internet).

New Look 6901 surplice top that has a little ruching on the side. I've tried this type top several times with no success - others have gapped really bad in the front. This time I prayed and took a chance on yet another version - AND IT WORKED OUT FINE! This is another Ebony fabric that you will be seeing again in an upcoming dress.

Finally, I used New Look 6940 with my Vogue Expo fabric. The top looked much better on the pattern envelope, and I wish I had selected another pattern for my fabric. Hind sight is 20/20, right? The top is too low cut - Thank God for safety pins, ad has too much ease overall. It is however wearable.


Not a bad sewing week after all.......

April 10, 2010

THIRD SUMMER DRESS, SECOND SPRING TOP...




Well, my quest to add cool dresses to my summer wardrobe is going quite well. My third one is another Butterick, 5456 that I fell in love with when it first came out. I liked it first because it was a cool knit, and secondly because of the key-holed back detail. When I saw that Susan made it up for Easter and I knew it was time to jump on it. I did a little scrap box dive and came up with two lengths of fabric that worked out perfectly for this dress. This is the second garment I've made this month from leftover scraps. Why scrap dive?...Why not! I try not to save too many scraps because I sew a lot and they pile up so quickly. But if it is a large enough piece of fabric that I really like, I save it in hopes that I can add it to something or make it into something later.
This dress is so comfty! And fits very well coming to just above the knee. Thank goodness I increased the length of the band at the hem, because without it this dress was just a tunic or mini dress. If you decide to make this one pay careful attention when connecting the shoulder area. That was the only problem I had when putting it together besides the understitching in tight places. This will make a great (jump in) dress this summer as our temps continue to rise. And because knit dress don't really stay on hangers very well I'm glad I learned this tip from EM - instead of hanging, just roll the knit garment up and place in a dryer. Most knits don't need ironing, so to wear just unroll and jump in - viola - ready to go.
I also completed my SECOND Spring Month of Tops project - Simplicity 2422. I wanted something colorful, cool and quick so I chose this pattern. Easy to put together project, that fits really well especially I decided to stop being scared of patterns and go ahead and cut the right size according to my bust measurements rather than going up a size. I love the feel of this colorful fabric and the fit. The only thing I didn't like about this pattern is that the ruffle does not connect to the shoulder seam. If I make the pattern again, I'll just alter the pattern to do just that.

Well I'm off to select patterns for new projects - another top, and another dress....

April 5, 2010

SECOND DRESS, FIRST TOP...

On Saturday I worked on this dress that I had started the week before. Although the SPRING MONTH OF TOPS officially started on April 1st, I have this UNWRITTEN RULE that I must try my best to complete anything that I've already started before embarking on a new project. So I finished what started out a wearable muslin late Saturday afternoon AFTER A THIRD ATTEMPT TO HEM IT. That's right three hems! There was something really different with this knit that I couldn't get a decent hem - the stitching was just wonky. I even tried doing a zigzag hem and it was wonky too. So after talking with my friend Lisa, I took her advise and used Steam-A-Seam Lite and then got a perfect hem.

Like I said, initially, this was to be a wearable muslin just to try the pattern out before using it on some of my Vogue fabric that I picked up at the sewing expo last month. Well, that will never happen with this pattern. Although I call myself an advanced beginner, I had the hardest time deciphering the pattern instructions. The instructions for the tucks/pleats just didn't make sense. I ended up JUST DOING IT MY WAY, and making up my own directions. Although I was able to produce a wearable muslin - suitable for a run to the store, a shopping trip, or maybe even a back yard cookout, I will not be making this pattern again.

This is a picture of my first Spring Month of Tops project. It's made from McCall's 5884, a pattern I bought last year but never got around to making up. I used a piece of fabric from the scrap box that I made a top from last summer. Since that top was gifted to one of my Sisters, I thought I'd make up another style for myself.

This top went together easily, and was a nice one day project - which I need some times. I didn't have enough fabric to cut the collar/tie on the bias, but I had no problems getting it attached properly. I also liked the self fabric bias cut facing for the armholes. I really like the style, but was surprised at the amount of designer ease in the pattern. I think I would like to make this pattern up again - maybe one of the sleeved versions, but I think I'd remove just a little of the ease.

Now I'm off to choose patterns and fabric for dress #3, and top #2......

BOOKS ACQUIRED

  • Pants Sewing Guide
  • Denim Revolution
  • Pants for Real People
  • Jackets for Real Peopls
  • Easy, Easier, Easiest Tailoring - Palmer & Pletsch - Gifted
  • The Sewing Machine Attachment Handbook
  • Ribbon Crafts
  • Professional Sewing Techniques for Designers
  • Successful Serging
  • Making Trousers for Men and Women
  • Couture Sewing Techniques
  • Singer - Perfect Plus
  • Cool Couture
  • Couture, The Fine Art of Sewing
  • Singer Sewing Reference Library - Tailoring - GIFTED
  • The Perfect Fit: The Classic Guide to Altering Patterns - Creative Publishing International
  • Fit for Real People
  • DK-The Complete Book of Sewing