December 30, 2018


...I love pretty things, especially pretty night and lounging wear.  Additionally, I am always in need of some decent pretty night wear.  I did make a great summer set a couple of years ago (here) that I still love.  This time I decided to jump on the Instagram #sewyourview December pajama challenge and I'm so glad I did.

Notched collar, piping, cuffs on the top and pj bottoms
 I choose a jersey knit curved the shirt hems at the back and front because I prefer a curved hem opposed to a square shape.  I eliminated the bottom shirt pockets and added my own pipped breast pocket.  I also eliminated the pants pockets because I didn't figure I'd be using those.

  I'm totally in love with this pair and do plan to make this pattern again.

December 27, 2018

I'm A Tracer...

...and a Indie Pattern lover too.  Indies are usually not available at $1.99 or even $4.99 as we all know, so I feel the need to trace those that I do purchase.  To facilitate preservation of my precious Indie patterns I started using Swedish Tracing paper years ago after I found out about it.  I love the feel and transparency of the Swedish paper and it can also be stitched up to use as muslins, although I never used it for that purpose, it is an excellent tracing paper.  I usually purchase a small stock of it once a year, but it tends to be quite pricey.

Recently Carol of Carol's Sewing Corner Facebook Group tipped me off about using gift wrapping tissue instead.   The sheets are 19.7" x 26", so two sheets taped together is more than long enough to trace off a pants leg for instance at a fraction of the cost of the Swedish paper (I always had to end up taping the Swedish paper as well). I purchased a 100 sheet package to give it a try.  As you know, gift wrapping supplies are half-priced every where for after Christmas sales which makes the savings even more attractive.  I didn't want to brave Walmart today so I just grabbed a package at the drug store.

Although not as strong, the tissue paper worked very well today...

December 18, 2018

#Decemberbdaysew: Happy Birthday To Me...

...thank God for another year! I've always enjoyed having my birthday just 7 days before Christmas., It has been a very happy birthday indeed, especially since I was able to complete my new top last night.  It always feels good to wear something new on ones birthday.  I went with New Look 6415 again since I had already used the pattern twice before (here and here). 
I chose to work with stretch panne velour again in a different color-way. I went with View C but added long sleeves that I modified just a bit by cutting the bottom of the sleeve in a slight bell shape.

The panne velour provided just the right amount of warmth for this chilly day paired with my Vogue 8859 pants made several months ago.  Now it's time to clean the sewing room again.  I've got far too many loose pattern pieces floating around in here.

What's going on in your sewing world???

December 14, 2018

#89 Happy Fabulous Friday...

I can't even begin to tell you just how happy I am that it's Friday.  I rushed around on a few errands; needed ink for the printer, stopped by my local fist monger, and made a quick trip to the grocer to pick up a few things.  There's a cold, misty rain coming down, and I do not want to venture out at all tomorrow.

Today's the day that I get to corral all the sewing thoughts of the week - there are so many of them floating in my head.  Let's see just what I'm able to produce this weekend...

December 13, 2018

88 #Decemberbdaysew - PJ's For Me...

...early last week I mentioned that I really need several pairs of new PJ's.  I chose my patterns and my fabric and set out to make this simple project happen.  In the meantime, I changed my mind about the original pattern choices - which is quite natural for me. This is what I came up with:

The Kwik Sew pattern is an oldie but goodie, but I've made it several times before from the turtleneck view.  I actually hacked the upper sleeve and the neckband from an old tee shirt I never wear to add a little bit of contrast to the top and to match the gray stripe.  I chose the pant because of the slim leg width and the pockets (like I need pockets in bed). I miraculously ended up with stripes that match even though I cut the fabric double.

I really need a couple more pair, but I'll try to sneak them later...

December 4, 2018

87 #Decemberbdaysew - Never Enough Time...

...I intermittently think about sewing all day long - what I'm going to sew and how much I can get accomplished when I get home - Yeah right!  And then when the clock does strike time to go home, there's always one or two errands to run that seem to alter all my sewing plans.  Today it was State Election Runoff, egad somebody had better win this time!

I've been watching lots of people making pj's for their entire family, what a nice Christmas tradition.  Decent PJ's are something I always seem to be in desperate need of but never take the time to make.  Today I decided to make a quick pair as part of my #Decemberbdaysew Celebration.

They won't be the tailored type that I'd really like, but I think they'll be sort of cute.  I'll be using this recently donated knit fabric

and combining these two patterns.
Burda 6630 Ragland tee rather than buying another popular Independent Ragland pattern that I'm in love with, and
Butterick 6296 pants even though it's a woven pattern, I'll go down a size for my knit fabric
Now to see how far I can get in sewing these up this week...

December 2, 2018

86 #Decemberbdaysew...

...they saved the best for last - December! There is ALWAYS so very much going on in December:
  • my Mother's birthday (Gift mailed on Tuesday - determined to be on time this year)
  • the end of the semester
  • (TaDa) my birthday!
  • Winter Solstice 
  • Christmas, and
  • New Years Eve
can I cram anything else into this very busy month? - why of course I can!  I've teamed up with Denise Thompson of & @sewlimitless on Instagram
 to doing some selfish birthday sewing (Denise's birthday 12/16 and mine on 12/18).  We'll be posting using #Decemberbdaysew so please check us out during the course of the month.
Today I'm posting New Look 6415, View D sweater that I started in November.

 I had originally intended on making View B - but in my haste cut View D instead. NOTE TO SELF:  Slow Down!  I discovered my mishap while looking at the top on the dressform - the point should have been on the side, not in the middle - I DON'T LIKE POINTS IN THE CENTER!!! - Oh well, I cut those points off and the rest is history shall we say.  I needed something red in my closet.  I sized up  because I thought this fabric lent itself to being a bit oversized.
What does sewing look like for you this month???
I sized up  because I thought this fabric lent itself to being a bit oversized.

November 30, 2018

#BLC 2018 - Day 30: Done.And Done.....

...another 30 days of showing my blog some love, connecting with my community, exercising my mind and my writing muscle.  #BlogLikeCrazy is quite a challenge!  Was posting every day easy?  Yes and No.  The first 15 days or so were easy.  Initially I kept at least 3 posts in queue, but then life happened.  Interruptions, lack of ideas and extended work schedules knocked me off track a little during the later part of the month.  But with determination and  help from those who watched and cheered me on, 30 posts were logged this month. 

A big  THANK YOU  to those who stopped in to read, those who commented, and those who wrote guest  posts to help me meet my challenge quota this mongh!  You are very much appreciated!  I hope that my content was enjoyable, interesting and hopefully helpful to you in some way.  You are the best!  Thanks to Javacia Harris Bowser of See Jane Write.bham who calls me out of my comfort zone by sponsoring this challenge every year. 

So I bid you adieu until December (which by the way is only 15 minutes away)...

November 29, 2018

#BLC 2018 - Day 29: Sew What You Know......


I mentioned last night that I would be using NewLook 6415 because I had had recent success with it using a stretch Panne Velour.  I had never used this fabric before so I was a little timid.  But after figuring my fit (size, particularly through the neck, shoulders and bust) this top turned out really good.  The only thing I'd really change the second one is lowering the neckline just a bit.

 I pre-treated the fabric last night and had all intentions of cutting but ran out of time.

I did manage to cut tonight, but no actual sewing took place.  Well, after all tomorrow is another day...

November 28, 2018

#BLC 2018 - Day 28: Reviving SEWJO - Sew What You Know...

...yesterday I wrote about Claire Kennedy's recent post on retrieving your "Sewjo" - should it go missing in action.  In order to get sewing motivation moving again, one of the things she suggests is making a quick TNT pattern.  Something you've successfully made before.  A pattern that has already been fitted, you've worked out all the kinks and love wearing.

Comments on yesterday's post revealed that other sewists also use the TNT method to ignite their sewing passions again.  For my next project I'll be doing the same - sewing what I know.  I had relevant success a couple of weeks ago with New Look 6415.  I've already worn it twice which means I really like it a lot.   Other people like it as well.

I'll be making View D with long sleeves rather than 3/4 length sleeves again, in this red variegated sweater knit (Hancock stash).
I'm cutting tonight so hopefully this top/sweater it will be completed before the weekend, so stay tuned.
I am very interested in knowing what TNT pattern you use to coax you Sewjo back home - do tell...

November 27, 2018


... every since I started sewing again (circa 2006), I've heard sewists ask the age old question, "What Happened to my Sewjo?"!  Returning to my passion for sewing after being away from it for so many years, I just couldn't imagine not wanting to sew! - until it happened to me!  Thereafter I'd lose my sewing motivation at least once a year - usually after returning from a vacation away from home.

I hated those times! And then it seemed to start happening more and more; at least two or three times a year.  In it's absence I was lonely and miserable, and would have tried almost anything legal and moral to get it back.

I tried forcing it back, but the results were not always successful.  I worried about it like a woman with a lost child.  Some people even suggested "just relax and take a break from it".  But I really didn't care for that solution at all.   What's a sewist to do?

Last night I read a post at written by its author Claire Kennedy.  Her post explained in full detail:
  • what Sewjo actually is
  • what happens to Ms. Sewjo
  • why (she) up and leaves
  • what coaxes her back, and 
  • how to convince her to  stay!  

Claire Kennedy is an excellent writer, sewist and teacher.  I highly suggest paying her a visit soon at the to learn more about nurturing your Sewjo and many other interesting things...

November 26, 2018

#BLC 2018 2018 - Day 26: My Happy Place...

...I've sewn in many areas of the different houses or apartments that I've lived in.  I've sewn in a closet of my bedroom.  When that closet started closing in on me I moved a six foot table on one wall of the carpeted bedroom that took up an entire wall.  I use to tell people "enter at your own risk because there may be pins that stuck in the carpet".   My bed became my cutting area (that was a pain in the back) after I could no longer take cutting on my knees on the floor.

I've sewn hoovered over a coffee table while sitting on a couch.  My kitchen table became my sewing area for four entire months once while my now sewing room was being renovated.  That table was cramped and crowded but I made it work.  I actually made my first tailored jacket in that kitchen.

 I am now blessed to have a dedicated ROOM as my sewing area.  Of course I don't think it's big enough and it is constantly spilling over into other rooms; BUT it is better than that closet!😊

Why scrolling through an archive I ran across some pictures of my sewing room (in a really clean state no less).  I thought I'd share some pics of my happy place, the place where I create...


As sewists it really doesn't matter WHERE we sew; what matters is THAT we sew!  My motto is "have electricity, will sew"...

November 25, 2018

#BLC 2018 - Day 25: Eye Candy and Sewing Inspiration...

Marc Jacobs

when we look around we can find fashion inspiration everywhere we look.  I look forward to monthly sneaky peeks of Burda Style Magazine.  Since we are headed into the Christmas season so of course the December issue has a rather festive flair about it.  I've included a video of that issue here for your Sunday afternoon viewing pleasure.


November 24, 2018

#BLC 2018 - Day 24: Another Simplicity 8557...

...before I put the pattern back in the drawer I thought I'd make another a-line knit dress combined with the sleeve flounce from Vogue 9123 - this time as a gift.  Different fabric this time, a solid ponte that actually gave me a bit of a fit.

This ponte did not want to be sewn, and gave me a problem with skipped stitches.  After much trial and error the solution was: change machines, a stretch needle, increased machine presser foot tension, and Guterman thread.  I don't usually buy Guterman, but I was blessed to have just a few spools of it in the sewing room.  Maybe I should invest in a few spools to add to my bag of tricks...

November 23, 2018

#BlogLikeCrazy 2018 - Day 23: NOTABLE MENTIONS 9...

...  nifty sewing and other DIY information that I ran across while exploring the net this week:

 @kingdomdaughter from Instagram shared this YouTube video series called The Beginner's Guide to Sergering with me today because one of my sergers is giving me a fit with stitch width:

This E-Book might be helpful to all us who are looking for more information on pants fitting:


 There was an interesting article at Grainline Studio on the "Anatomy of a zipper"
Diagram courtesy Grainline Studio
Fashion yourself some fabulous DIY Faux Fur Mittens just right for the season.  Complete tutorial at

Photo Courtesy of
There is so much information available to us and I love it!  I think adding them to my posts and Pinterest boards is a great way to catalog my finds.  I hope that some it proves valuable and helpful to you.  I always include links...

November 22, 2018

#BLC 2018 - Day 22: HAPPY THANKSGIVING DAY... all my loved ones and friends both near and far may the Good Lord rest, rule and abide with you this holiday season

From Faye's Sewing Adventure

November 21, 2018

#BLC 2018 - Day 21: My Very First Mimi G Style Make... name is Linda Faye Lewis and I am a collector of patterns (much like many other sewists I know)!  I especially hoard collect Big 4 Designer Patterns.  To name a few: Paco Peralta, Kay Unger, Michael Kors, Cynthia Rowley, Leanne Marshall, Kathryn Brenne, Bagley Mischka, and Mimi G Style.  Although I have managed to make up a few of these, they mostly just linger patiently in my stash.  A few of them do make it to my inspiration board to act as constant reminders that one day, they would like to get made.

This week I was stopped in my Instagram scroll by a simple but distinct Mimi G Style knit top made by @1oh6vintage.  I really liked her top a lot.
I had seen the pattern but had not really noticed the unique asymmetry of the shoulder design until I saw it on Instagram.  Since I have a good stock of stripped knit fabrics on hand I thought I would give this pattern a whirl.

I honestly didn't know that I had this many knit stripped fabrics stashed.  There are probably a few more tucked back in hidden places that I will run into one day.

I thought this would be an quick and easy make, and it was except for my fabric. This knit turned out to be the kind that "loves itself" just a little bit to much - meaning that it sticks to itself.  I didn't realize this until I began cutting.  It was an uphill battle all the way, but I did the best I could to complete the top.

This is a brown and white stripped (some kind of knit), sorry but I just don't know which.  Simplicity 8750, View A is comprised of 5 pattern pieces. The front is one single piece that is gathered and attached to the yoke to create the right shoulder seam and complete the right armscye.  My stripe matching is not perfect, however, I did the best I could.  I'll count my first MimiGStyle pattern a success, and it will get worn...

November 20, 2018

#BLC 2018 - Day 20: Make it Simple, But Significant...

...I'm glad no one has ever asked me to define my personal style.  I would have bounced back and forth between dressy casual, to business casual, to I don't even know what else.  Truth be told I've never really done the work to find out what my personal style aesthetic is.  I am; however, a true admirer of fashion.  I love to gaze at beautiful and glamorous clothing all day long. I like many different designs of style, but liking them doesn't always mean they are well suited for me.

 WHAT PROMPTED THIS PARTICULAR TRAIN OF THOUGHT:  Several weeks ago I saw a lady wearing a simple A-lined dress with long trumpet sleeves.  I admired her dress and of course immediately thought "oh, I can make that".  So I set out to make this "simple" A-Lined dress.  In talking about the project with Andrea of SewtoFit, she suggested that I add a little something, something to make the dress stand out.

When it was time to think of a title for this particular post I needed something other than I made a simple dress.  Then I happened to run into this quote by Ron Draper...
This quote expressed exactly how I felt about my dress!

To give my dress a little something, something,  I used a black and brown animal print pontederoma from my stash.   I frankenpatterned Simplicity 8557 by using the flutter sleeve from Vogue 9923.        Added piping to the flutter sleeve, and when the piping didn't work the way I wanted at the neckline, I substituted fold over elastic as a trim that worked like a charm.

Piped flutter sleeve
Fold Over Elastic neckline trim 
I know, I know its a mannequin picture!  I will post pictures wearing this "Simple but Significant" A-Lined dress when I return to work next week... 

November 19, 2018

#BLC 2018 - Day 19: Let Them Eat Cake!!!

...maybe you've seen me post about my sewist friend Marjie who lives in Pennsylvania.  We met in sewing blogsphere and have interacted throughout the years.  She been a participant in many of my Top's Sew-A-Longs  and I've read her blog MODERN DAY OZZIE AND HARRIETT for years.  Thanksgiving and Christmas are my favorite times of the year to peek in on her and her marvelous family and all their festivities.

A Sewing Gourmet like myself, Marjie wrote a post for me during my 2016 BlogLikeCrazy that detailed her magnificent Thanksgiving that year.  In case you missed it you can read it here.    Marjie took time from her busy schedule again to help me with this years 30 day blogging challenge.  I asked her to share one of her favorite holiday cake recipes with me; and she shared not one, but two of her delicacies - one chosen by her boys and one chosen by her girls (9 in all).

 "2 Color Cake":  Selected by the Boys

1 box yellow cake mix, divided in half
2 boxes of jello, regular or sugar free, different colors
3/4 cup water, divided in half
1 stick of butter, softened, and divided in half
2 eggs

Beat together half of the cake mix, 1 box of jello, 6 tablespoons of water, 1 egg and 1/2 stick (4 tablespoons) of softened butter.  Beat slowly until combined, then at medium speed for 2 minutes, until the batter is smooth and creamy.  Pour into one greased 8" round layer cake pan.  Repeat with the other half of the ingredients, and pour into a second pan.  Bake at 350F for 25 to 30 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean.  Note: the tops of these layers will be flat or even a little sunken.  That's OK.  Let the layers cool, then assemble using whipped cream between the layers and as frosting.  Refrigerate until it's ready to be served.

I usually use orange and yellow or orange and red jello for the layers at Thanksgiving, and then always red and green for Christmas.  The colors don't look to vivid when you look at the layers, but when you cut it, it's just a burst of color!


 Lemon Sponge Cake:  Selected by the Girls

4 egg whites
4 egg yolks
3 tablespoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons water
1 cup sugar, divided
1 teaspoon lemon extract (optional)
1-1/4 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder.

Beat the egg whites with 1/4 cup sugar until they're stiff, and set aside.  Beat the egg yolks until they're light yellow, then beat in the remaining sugar, water and lemon juice.  When it's smooth, add the flour, salt, lemon extract and baking powder; beat another minute until smooth.  Gently fold the egg whites into the egg yolk mixture.  Scoop the batter into a greased bundt or angel food pan, then bake at 325F for 30 to 40 minutes.  Let it cool, then sprinkle confectioner's sugar on top of the cake.

This is really light and fluffy, which is why I love it.  Also, with this recipe, since you have baking powder, you don't have to worry as much about the egg whites falling and thus the cake not rising.

No one should be without the proper deserts for the holiday seasons - so I say, let them eat cake - Compliments of Marjie McDonald...

November 18, 2018

#BLC 2018 - Day 18: The Glam Doll...

... every year the weekend before Thanksgiving is a very exciting time for me.  It's the time that my friend Ebony, creator and owner of "The Glam Doll" comes to town.  I met Ebony about 10 years ago when her husband was stationed here at Robins Air Force Base.  Our  unique friendship began after we were introduced by a mutual friend.  Ebony became an amazing inspiration to me; always full of new ideas and dreams of entrepreneurship.

I watched year after year as she formulated her plan working through one trial after another until she was able to launch her successful business "The Glam Doll".  She has a beautiful Esty Shop that is stocked with wonderful 18" doll clothes made from patterns she designs herself.  Now Ebony and her husband make the long trip from Oklahoma to set up her store at the annual Mistletoe Marketplace.

 It was so wonderful to be able to see my friend again this year and look on as she had three successful days of sales...

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...