February 28, 2017


...the SewMuchTalentgr Facebook group has a sewing or crafting challenge each month of the year.  Due to my work life it's not easy for me to participate in the challenges every month - but when I can, I do.  This month's challenge was workout gear.  Even though I'm not currently doing "that gym" thing, I can always use another knit top, and I wanted to participate in the challenge.

I've been eyeing Burda 6630 for sometime now and although it's just yet "another" knit tee shirt pattern I was drawn to it.

I've never made a raglan sleeve before.  I'm  always just a little bit intimidated when it comes to techniques, designs or styles (and Burda patterns as well) I've never tried before - this top was no exception. So I thought, might as well go ahead and try.  It wasn't bad at all. 

My review:  VERY form fitted.  So I will add needed adjustments the next time I use the pattern.  I love the little raglin cap sleeve.
In the meantime, this will do just fine for a workout top - that is whenever I can make myself get back into the gym...

February 26, 2017


...I completed my second Henley shirt this weekend.
McCall's 6747

I think I have it out of my system now - at least for a while...

February 23, 2017


Dear Johnsonville,
I know for a fact that I am one of the BIGGEST fans of your Italian Sweet Sausage ever.  Can you imagine my surprise when I discovered this week that you now make the PERFECT roll to accompany them.  I jumped at the chance to purchase them, and find that they are just the right texture.  They really hold up to my sausage w/peppers, onion and sauce without becoming soggy, crumbling and falling apart.

Of course there are six (6) rolls in the package.  I have ALWAYS wondered why sausages always  come in packages of (5) leaving me with one lone roll.  I thought I'd ask, "could I please have just one more sausage to sort of even things up a bit?".   I'm just saying.

Linda Faye Lewis

February 20, 2017

HENLEY # 1...

I ordered the McCall's Henley pattern from Esty last weekend but it still hasn't arrived. After completely searching through two drawers of McCall's patterns 3 times, and reorganizing them according to pattern types I still was unable to find the pattern that I was so sure I had purchased.  While multitasking during a phone call on Saturday cleaning my desk I located 2 patterns - and guess what?. Lo and behold McCall's 6747 was one of the ones I found.  My sewing room needs a COMPLETE organizational overhaul!  When the other pattern arrives, well, I'll just have two of them.  I promise you it won't be my first duplicate pattern.
I hurriedly pretreated my fabric and got the top cut out.  The print of the fabric is a large repeat that posed matching challenges.
Although this shirt was really a trial run just to see if I could successfully handle the front placket and installing buttonholes on a knit fabric, I did stabilize the shoulders with my 1/4" twill tape - I'm so glad I have this roll of twill tape, it saves me from trying to find the tiny tape at the fabric store.  The roll has lasted a long, long time.  I've talked to people who say they never bother stabilizing should seams - but some how it makes me feel more secure(???).
 Although the sleeves only match at one point due to yardage restrictions, but I still love the shirt and it matches every where else.  The only change I made was to decrease the length by 2 1/2 inches.  I will make the shirt again very soon, but next time I'll also shorten the front placket because it seemed a bit long proportion wise - I guess because I shortened the length.


February 15, 2017


...as you may have guessed, I am currently dealing with a bit of sewing project procrastination - we'll just call it the SPP Syndrome, if you will.  I have really been wanting to make a few Henley knit tops since Fall of 2015. That's just how far behind with my "Things I want to Sew" list.   I even ordered an Indie Henley top pattern but have been too lazy to tape it together.  I promise you comfortable knit tops like this really suit me - I'm really a simple person. Cute Henley tops would be a staple of my weekend dress code; I could even make several as pajama tops.  I just discovered that McCall's has a jiffy little version of this type top
McCall's 6747
but, of course it's out of print.  I searched and searched my pattern stash and cannot find this pattern.  I could have sworn that I bought it.  I would have made at least two this past weekend had I found the pattern.  I did track it down on Esty so it's on the way from Canada.  

Today I found out that Mimi G has a new Simplicity Henley dress pattern for Spring,
but of course I'd need to wait for a pattern sale to get my hands on that one.  So I'm sitting around procrastinating on what I really need to be working on - that being Pants Fitting.  Yes, I do need to get back to that over whelming task.

In the meantime, I've added a new touch to The Sewing Gourmet's repertoire
I had my favorite butcher block counter top cutting board digitally engraved compliments of the Engineer at school.  I'm serious about my culinary tools.  It's a one of a kind and I love it. 

Hope you're not suffering from SPP SYNDROME...


February 11, 2017


...I can hardly believe how busy my week was.  Busy work weeks have the ability to sidelining my sewing plans completely if I'm not careful.  While watching this week's episode of Project Runway Junior (which I must say I've enjoyed much more than previous seasons), I did get a chance to cut out and start stitching my second Sew House 7 Toaster 2 Sweater.  I finally decided on using a deep brown french terry fabric that I felt would support the funnel neckline of the sweater.  I have to mention that the fabric was gifted by Ebony of The GlamDoll Esty Shop.
I call it Chocolat Toast because I thought the name was cute.

I pulled out my Janome coverstitch machine (which I so rarely use, and often think of as a waste of money because I actually use it so infrequently - last time was summer of 2015, but oh well what's done is done, and hindsight is so 20/20) for the hems this time around.  The coverstitched hems add a bit of sportyness to this warm toasty sweater, but as you know, I could have just as well gotten the same effect by just using a double needle on my sewing machine.

Will make the sweater again?  I'm sure I will maybe early next fall because it seems as though for me this winter is almost gone. And there's still the Toaster 1 that I didn't try yet.

So with this finished time to move on to yet another sewing adventure...

February 6, 2017


...what attracts me to so many Independent patterns (besides the fact that so many of them are really cute) are particular details.
With the Toaster Sweater 2 the details that interested me most were the funnel neckline and the mitered side splits.   I've learned that I'm quite fond of the fit and look of a funnel neckline.  Additionally, I wanted to see just how they went about forming the mitered side splits.  Since I couldn't quite make up my mind on just what fabric to use for the sweater, I opted to make the pattern as a muslin first.  I know lots of people dislike taking the time to make muslins, but I actually make a lot of them.  That way if I don't like the style or the fit at least I haven't messed up the good stuff, and it gives me a chance to test drive a "new to me" pattern.  Besides, sometimes I just WANT TO SEW SOMETHING - right now!

I used this novelty print medium weight knit for the trial run.

I added 2 inches to the length of the pattern, but I will not make this length adjustment when I make it again. (Mmmmm this picture indicates that my inspiration board has gotten out of hand again.  Got to do some about that.)

  At first I thought it would be hard to do, but the four mitered corners turned out perfect.   I learned something new, so this might be a technique I could incorporate into other garments.
 What Independent patterns have you purchased or have an interest in????

February 4, 2017


...everyone talks about "WHAT'S TRENDING?", and it's so hard to keep up with it all!  With so many fashion designs floating around in my head, and it seems impossible for me to get enough sewing done.  Oh, I wish I could sew like the wind!  This morning I'm thinking about: "What's Trending for Me?".

In January I saw Sew House Seven Toaster sweaters floating all over the internet.  Some I liked and some not so much, but I do love the pattern's simple boxy features.  I really thought that I had talked myself out of it, but it kept popping up again and again.  If you are interested Sew House 7 is offering 25% off the Toaster Sweater pattern until midnight, Feb 6, 2017 using the code TOASTERROCKS.
I promise I searched my pattern stash and really couldn't come up with a similar design.  (Murphy's Law will dictate that after I've purchased someone will know of just the right stashed pattern I could have used.  If you know, please tell me about it below.)   This sweater is trending for me, so today I'm deep in the throes of PDF assembly.
Almost done!  I meant to time my assembly but forgot.  I'll let you know how it all turns out...

Paying Homage to Black Pattern Designers...

...for years February has been set aside as a special time to learn about and recognize accomplishments of African Americans and other peopl...