December 18, 2007
December 15, 2007
Sewing at my leisure on a Rainy Saturdy Afternoon - ALSO PRICELESS!
December 9, 2007
I still don't understand why my pictures are so dark, but my top turned out really nice. I had made one just like it earlier this year, but it turned out too small so I sent it to my sister. I made this one of the same fabric, but of course cut the pattern wider. This top has a flounce at the end of the sleeve. I stepped out of the box just a little bit and doubled the flounce this time. I'm trying to get to the point where I can visualize beyond the picture on the pattern envelope. I'm taking baby steps.I also finished the mock wrap dress that I had started and here's a picture of it - however dark.
I took Lisa's suggested and took the side under arm zipper out completely, after installing the zipper twice and still not being satisfied with it. The dress fits quite well and I was able to get into it without the zipper. Thanks Lisa, leaving the zipper out was a great idea!
Lisa also helped me come up with just the right fit on a pants pattern. Turns out that my correct crouch length was almost 2 inches shorter than the patterns I had been trying to use - thus the baggy crouch syndrone. I had also been using my measurements to figure out the pattern size for my waist and hip areas; the size I was using always turned out way to large. Lisa patiently helped me cut out a muslin for my pants and after stitching them up the fit just fine. So now I have my ULTIMATE "TNT" pants pattern - THANK GOD!!! I cut out a pair today in brown with a white stripe. Wanted to sew them up tonight, but guess I'd better get to bed. Lisa suggests that I reinforce my TNT pants pattern with fusible interfacing so it will last a long time. I can't tell you just how happy I am about solving this pants pattern fitting issue. And Yes, Carolyn I can see myself making 5 pairs of well fitting black pants - now that Lisa has helped me with my problem!
As I said I had the greatest day with Lisa, and to reinforce the title of this post I recognize our Sew Along as a true blessing from God. Hope we are able to have many, many more.
November 29, 2007
Here's a picture of my current project - The Butterick Mock Wrap Dress that I cut out on Tuesday and started sewing it on Wednesday and did get the bodice started. I had to work late tonight so I didn't get to sew any. Wish I knew how to make my pictures lighter.I'm going to make a slight alteration where it wraps in the front. If I do the alteration now I won't have a big problem with the cleavage area gapping after the dress is finished. The dress has a biased facing on the front and neck edges. I hand basted the bodice side seams in order to check my fit and think I need to use a 1" seam allowance when actually stitched for a closer fit. Pattern instructions call for set in sleeves but I'd much rather put them in flat but just remembered that the dress will have a side zipper. I think I'll still be able to do the flat sleeve application even with the zipper. We will see.
November 27, 2007
November 18, 2007
I've prewashed all of my knit fabrics (about 10 pieces) and now they are ready to go. I'm taking my SM on Thanksgiving Vacation to my dd's house in North Carolina. I'll be making boxer shorts for the boys while I'm there.
November 11, 2007
1 large bag Hash Browns (cubed or shredded)
2 C. grated Cheddar Cheese
8 Oz. Sour Cream
1 stick Margarine or Butter (melted)
1 can Cream of Mushroom or Cream of Chicken Soup
1 medium Onion, chopped
Salt and Pepper to Taste
Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl stirring well. Place in a greased 9" x 13" oven proofed casserole dish. Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 1 hour or until brown on top.
Excellent served with roast beef and gravy.
November 10, 2007
I have officially run out of pattern storage space. I'll need to take the fabric out of the bottom drawer of the 4 drawer chest of drawers in order to use it as pattern space. Now where will I put the fabric that's now stored in that draw??? Your guess is as good as mine! Now what to sew next??? I've got to get some sewing order organization going on here. I still need a plan.
November 8, 2007
My mother, daughter and friends were my cheerleaders - they always cheer me on with anything I do, and pray for me too. God has given me yet another desire of my heart and I praise him for it. Well, this is a great accomplishment for me and something I have wanted for a very long time. God opened up the door for me for this as he has for so many other things. Now on to other things!
November 6, 2007
I cut it out last night - only 5 pieces. I have a black camisole that I think I will wear under it because the weave is open. Will post results when finished!
Having problems with my camera (see the date?) - it's not the camera, it's me. I'm one of those who hates to read directions on things like this.
October 29, 2007
Hopefully I'll be sewing more, blogging more (instead of just lurking), and going back to the gym. All promises I've made to myself now that I have my life back.
October 18, 2007
She had grandparents who sewed, and although her mother didn't partake in this particular craft, she encouraged her daughter's passion for sewing by purchasing her a sewing machine at an early age. Similarly in my case, I had an aunt who I am told designed and sewed but I never had a chance to meet her since she passed on when I was very young. But I did have a great-grand mother who loved to sew, quilt and embroider and from her I caught the sewing bug when I was very young. I watched my Granny sew hours on end (especially on rainy days when she couldn't do yard work). I sat by her side and threaded the needle on her Singer treadle sewing machine which she forbade me to touch. Who was she kidding? No sooner than her back was turned I was on that thing. I remember breaking the belt on the machine because I couldn't get the hang of making it go forward in a smooth method; I also broke a pair of her glasses and was spanked (at the time I called it being BEAT) for both offences. I was punished, but not deterred.
I also had an aunt made the most beautiful garments for herself and her daughter. I even asked her for sewing assistance once I started taking Home Ec, but her patience was not long enough to do anything but frustrate me. I remember saying to myself, "you just wait and see, I will be a better seamstress than you one day". When I finally did get pretty good with my sewing it was her calling me for assistance (sweet revenge - lol).
I think I remember Cidell mentioning during her interview that there was a period of time that she didn't sew, but later picked it up again. Another similarity, because I stopped sewing for about 13 years and have picked it back up again. So there is hope for me. I really helps when you find out that others have had struggles like you that they overcame.
I also listened to a podcast interview at http://www.adrienneslittleworld.typepad.com/ on Erica from http://www.ericiabunker.com/. I think I first found out about Erica from Carolyn's blog at http://www.diaryofasewingfanatic.blogspot.com/. (Found out about Carolyn at http://www.artisanssquare.com/.) I had been lurking around Ericia's blog as well as Carolyn's since January of this year. I'd even emailed Erica with questions and she promptly answered me back, so it was really nice to be able to hear her voice too since I felt like I already knew her anyway. Found out about Adrienne on Erica's blog and now I am getting to hear her voice too since she is doing a weekly video spot on her blog now. Adrienne I haven't missed a show yet, he he he and I'm loving them. Adrienne has recently shared her sewing library list with me - Thanks Adrienne! As you can see this is quite a sewing circle; you find one good site and it leads you to another then another. I have learned so very much from the ladies I have mentioned here and it brought to mind a saying that I have often heard - WHEN THE STUDENT IS READY - THE TEACHER WILL APPEAR. And they really have. When I was ready to start sewing again a year ago, I jumped on the Internet and searched out information and the Teachers appeared! These young ladies are sooooo talented! Not stuck up but sharing. So just so you know ladies I am watching, and I am learning from you and being inspired by you. (Although I still have not been brave enough to order that Burda Magazine. For right now I've decided to work on these patterns from the big 4 for a while longer - still getting my feet wet so maybe I will order it later. Another blog that I've been looking in on cause this girl can really sew too is http://www.themahoganystilist.blogspot.com/.
I've been slowing building my fabric and pattern stash, and will be able to really get back into sewing, fitting, designing again around the first of November. Until then I'M STILL LOOKING AT AND LEARNING FROM OTHERS!
October 9, 2007
I have been studying Nancy Zieman's Fitting Finesse which is easy to understand and makes a lot of sense to me.
I am particularily interested in learning to fit pants properly. The problem I currently have is that if I get the pants to fit in the waist, the hips are way to large and the crouch sags, and neither is very comfortable or attractive. According to this book the solution is to pick my pattern size according to my hip size (size 16) then alter the pattern to fit my waist (size 18) adding the suggested ease. I had taken all of the measurements that I could comfortably take by myself, but of course needed help with others. So I took the book with me when I stopped by my friend's house this afternoon and she took all of the measurements for me as suggested by Nancy's book.
I am hoping that I am smart enough to follow the information in the book and finally come up with a TNT pants pattern or patterns that will help me MAKE PANTS THAT REALLY FIT!!! Now I can already see where my sagging crouch problem comes from. My crouch measurement is close to 4 inches shorter than the pattern so to fix that would really help. Of course I will be making a muslin before I cut my fashion fabric and will post results when it is done.
October 6, 2007
Ice Coffee Latte
1/3 cup instant coffee
1/2 cup boiling water
1 can sweetened condensed milk (low fat)
2 cups cold water
4 cups chocolate milk (I use Latose free)
Mix instant coffee with boiling water until dissolved. Mix in the remaining ingredients and serve over ice. It makes a whole pitcher full so just store it in the fridge.
October 1, 2007
September 30, 2007
There are several blogs that I read almost daily for sewing inspiration. One of them is Carolyn's at Diary of a Sewing Fanatic. Carolyn has been reviewing books from her sewing library and I've been tuning in to find out what she has. I am a real book fiend so it's really hard for me to resist adding a new resource to my library. I keep planning on thinning out my books by selling them on Ebay (BUT NOT MY SEWING AND FIBERARTS LIBRARY THOUGH). Here are several of my latest purchases.
Added 12 old Threads Magazines to my collection. This is now my oldest issue - #8 Dec. 1986/Jan. 1987. I now have a total of 34 issues. I just discovered threads last November (remember I had been on a 15 year hiatus operating a business and had just put my sewing way back on the back burner), so I knew nothing about Threads Magazines. I have since subscribed to the magazine as well as it's little sister Sew Stylish which is already being discontinued. (Last issue yet to come, I think). I spent some time this weekend going through 10 of the issues and flagging interesting articles with post its. I think that I will stop tracking down older issues and stick to the current subscriptions ones for now. I think I have an adequate collection at least for now.The Claire Shaeffer book "High Fashion Sewing Secrets" is really a good book with lots of details. I picked this book up at Hancocks when they had a book sale several weeks ago. Claire Shaeffer is becoming one of my favorite sewing authors - he books are great and when I found out she was born and raised in Georgia it make me like her even more. There oare several others of her books that I have on my to get list.
Make it Your Own is als a good design book that is leading me into daydreaming about changing all of my purchased patterns up if only just a little bit.
I'm hoping Nancy's Fitting Finesse book will help me with my pants pattern fitting issues.
September 8, 2007
June 11, 2007
June 5, 2007
I read several sewing blogs regularly: firstname.lastname@example.org, www.ericabunker.com and email@example.com. There are may others that I check out when I have extra time, but these are three sewists who's work I admire. Each has a different sewing style and style taste, but what I admire most about them is THEY DON'T MIND SHARING INFORMATION AND KNOWLEDGE. I started sewing again 9 months ago after a 13 year hiatus, and sometimes when I look at the work of others I feel inferior about mine. I have had some trying times with my sewing process during these 9 months; however, I have had some really happy times too. I want to be pleased with the work I do and I also want to be confident. I realize that the important thing is to take my time, do my best and ask questions when I don't know - even if the questions sounds silly. If you don't know, you just don't know. I find that somebody out there in cyberland does know and someone will share information with you. Another place where I learn a lot and get help with sewing questions is at THREADS MAGAZINE DISSCUSSIONS. There are a lot of really helpful people there too.
I finished my dress, I did my best and most importantly of all I ENJOYED THE PROCESS! This dress turned out to be a little more detailed than I had wanted. I wanted a stylish summer dress that didn't call for a lot of work and could be finished quickly. THIS WAS NOT IT! Although I would make this dress again, it is not the quick project that I was looking for. If it had called for facings instead of a lining I think it would have gone a lot faster. I have to get brave enough to use my self drafted facings. Getting better with sewing is a process, as is everything else. So on with the process....
June 2, 2007
Maybe I'll be able to finish it sometime tomorrow - (fingers crossed). Next I'm thinking about making a white jacket to go with this dress because the office I work in is a freezer.I also wanted to post the two skirts that I finished last weekend. I wore this beige one to work on Thursday with a RTW top, and felt quite comfortable in it. After being away from sewing for so long, I'm feeling a bit self conscious about wearing things that I make. But little by little I'm building up my confidence about this.And here's the denim one made from the same pattern...
I also added another book to my sewing library this weekend (yes, I'm a book fiend). This one is "More Fabric Savvy". It list lots of different types of fabric and gives their fiber content, care, tells you what size needle, presser foot and method of marking the fabric. I had been looking at it for months now and when I was at Hancocks on Friday and couldn't make a fabric selection, I went ahead and bought it. The book is by Sandra Betzina. I already had two of her books (Power Sewing and Fast Fit) and since I thought both of them were EXCELLENT!!!, I felt the third one would come in handy as well as enhance my knowledge of fabrics. It also has some really good sewing tips.
June 1, 2007
May 19, 2007
STILL DETERMINED, I started on my next project this morning. Fell in love with this pattern after I saw one that Erica Bunker (www.boundbymyhook.blogspot.com) made several weeks ago -McCalls 5330, View A. I already had the pattern but had not done anything with it, but after seeing her skirt made up from the same pattern, I craved it...so I made it. This girl is so inspiring, positive and such a great sewist! I love her site and visit it often. I have learned so much from reading her blog. Even emailed her a couple of questions and she emailed me right back. She is so helpful. Anyways, I'm making View A in a kakhi sports weight poplin. As a matter of fact it's all done (took me all day long) but sewing on the buttons. I am going to make a denim one by view A also which will be my next project. Might start it tomorrow after Church.
I'm going to be making this top (View B-bottom left) to go with it.
Until next time....FAYE.
May 11, 2007
I love a side zipper so I made these crop pants
and they are still to large. Like I said before, I made the muslin, then tried to make the proper adjustments on the pattern, then cut my fashion fabric. Of course it's hard or next to impossible to make adjustments once the zipper is in. So that I am about to embark upon tonight is taking the facing out, removing the zipper and redoing these to try and make them fit...a real bit job but someone has to do it. But them again would it be worth all that time???? Will they be Trash or Treasure - I'll have to decide.
Anyways, I think this will be the next pattern I will try. I still want the crop pants (atleast that is what I call them) but this pattern is different in that they have a front fly zipper and a traditional waistband rather than the side zipper and waist facing. Well I'm off to sew now, will let you know how it turns out.
...last night while sitting under the hair dryer conditioning my hair (I would have much rather been sewing ya'll) I entertained myself ...
...Sewing information and tutorials that recently caught my eye: An interesting conversation about choosing the correct pattern size, from...