Sunday, January 14, 2018

Goals for 2018 and my January MAGAM Project(s)!

Hi everyone!  It's now half way thru January and I have been thinking long and hard on my sewing goals for the year and I have quite a few!  I've broken down my goals into 4 different categories:

Garments to tackle:
- Jeans!  Let's face it - my bubble butt-to-waist ratio is impossible to find in RTW jeans and I am constantly dealing with gaposis at the back waist.  Having a decent pair of nice fitting jeans has been on my to-sew list for far too long and it's finally time to tackle a pair, or two, or three.....
- Pants - Same issue as above - These too have been on the to-sew list for the same reason.
- Bras - I am not a fan of bras, period.  I take mine off as soon as I get home - sometimes even on the drive home!  Maybe it's because I have never had a decent fitting bra - one that doesn't feel like a straight jacket or keeps riding up all of the time.  Is that even possible to find?  Maybe a handmade bra will be answer to my lingerie dilemma!
- Sew something reversible - not sure what - but something!
- Start sewing more Burda patterns!  My wardrobe has been in a boring slump lately and I'm finding myself wearing the same things all of the time.  I have previously subscribed to the Burda magazine for years and have a ton of cool patterns just waiting to be traced and cut out.  Time to start looking thru those mags and add some interesting pieces back into the wardrobe!

Using up the stash:
- Continue to sew thru the stash towards my New York shopping trip!  I plan to sew another 100 yards this year.
- Sort thru all of my scraps and get rid of the teenie tiny ones and the ones I don't truly see myself using.
- Sort thru all of my current stash and if I don't love it, it's time for it to move on.  Those lovely pieces will be sold at this year's Sewing Garage sale which is April 28th this year so that gives me approximately 4 months to complete this task.  Add all of the remaining pieces to the "Cora" app.

Tracking:
- As you are aware, I already track how much fabric I sew, but I'd also like to track how much fabric I purchase throughout the year so truly get a grasp of how much fabric I have and just how far away (or near!) that New York trip is.  I believe the Cora app will help me accomplish this - along with my trusty Excel spreadsheet that I currently use to track my sewing progress throughout the year.
- Track how much I'm spending on my hobby - this could be a scary one.....
- Track my pattern usage.  I have alot of the Big 4 patterns and not so many Indie patterns.  I need to give some of those unopened patterns a try!

For fun:
- Redecorate the sewing room this year.  I have two awesome ideas so far!

January MAGAM Project(s)

My January MAGAM is going to be three garments - all pretty simple and all using the same knit fabric.  I purchased this knit at last year's sewing garage sale and there was a total of 3.25 yards and it was 60 inches wide so there was quite alot of yardage to work with!  Here's the knit:



And here are the patterns I'll be using:


For the Vogue 8918 dress - I'll be making View B - the one with the different colored sleeves.  I have a small scrap piece of black knit that I'll be using for the sleeves.  The Simplicity 1642 pattern will be the top - again, using the black knit for the top yoke portion.  And lastly, I'll use the rest of the fabric to make my trusty two-hour turtleneck pattern that I just love!

Update on Butterick 6377

My current project of the Butterick blouse using up multiple scraps has come to a stand still.  After adding the strips of printed elastic to the seamlines, it seems to be missing something on the side with all of the black.  I'm thinking a pocket or something?  It still needs to be hemmed, but I think she'll hang out on the dress form for a few days while I figure out how to add some interest to break up that vast sea of blackness.



Until next time - Happy sewing everyone!

Star

Friday, December 29, 2017

A quick way to lose 10 pounds (on your dress form!) and V1233 - Another fav dress pattern!

I have finally finished Vogue V1233 - a Pamella Roland design and couldn't be happier with it.  I actually made a muslin for this dress to make sure the fit was just right which is where my dress form's extra poundage was causing me problems.



I cut out my usual 12 thru the bust/shoulders/waist and tapered to a 14 at the hips yet when I put the muslin on the dress form - I couldn't get the center fronts to match thru the hipline.  "Well that's odd" I thought.  So I put the muslin on myself and bingo - the center fronts matched all the way down.  Hmmm, I thought - the DH must be right!

I should back up here...  A few years ago, I went to a class to learn how to pad my dressform so it would look exactly like my shape.  In the class we took multiple measurements of ourselves and using batting, you would then "pad" out your dress form until those measurements were the same as your own.  Then you make a flesh colored cover that zips over the form and the extra padding and voila - your dressform looks like you!  Well - as soon as I brought my new body double home from the class, the DH said "Your a## doesn't look like that!" and of course I didn't listen to him.  Bless him!  The muslin though proved him right!

Determined to get the two of us looking the same, I unzipped the cover, and removed about 1/2" layer of padding from the backside from hip to hip (along with a few other small adjustments), put said cover back on and now, NOW, two years later,  it finally looks like me and the muslin fits the dress form too.  I tried to get the DH to compare our bums with a little hand cupping, but he wouldn't do it (Chicken!).  Oh well, I did and they pretty much felt the same to me now.  No wonder my clothes have been running a little on the large side lately!


I did make a few changes to the pattern based on other sewists comments on PatternReview.com.
  • Fellow sewist's mentioned the front covered placket area seemed to gap when sitting down so I decided to eliminate the placket all together and continue the line of buttons down the front instead.  I prefer the look and continuity of the buttons this way too so that was a win/win for me.  To eliminate the placket, I just cut out the left front facing piece twice and eliminated the right placket piece.  It was super simple!

  • I also eliminated the sleeve.  I figured that small piece they call a sleeve would end up annoying me and seemed to serve no real purpose so I just left it off.  Because of this change, the shoulder line was way too long so I ended up cutting the top of the shoulder seam 1.3 inches shorter and tapering around the entire armhole.  I finished the armhole with bias tape.  


  • The front upper princess seam was taken in 1/8" each side from the bust to the armhole.
  • The back upper princess seam was taken in 1/4" each side from the mid-back point to the armhole.
  • I used size 12 thru the bust and waist and tapered to a size 14 thru the hips.  Here's the muslin after all of the changes:
  • My buttons down the front vary in size by 1mm, starting at the waistline but can you notice?  As they say "If you can't see it from a galloping horse - don't worry about it!".  After all, the buttons on the pockets are smaller than the rest too!

I love the collar on this dress - isn't it fantastic!  


Don't think it can be worn up though - it's just too tall!

I forgot to mention the lining fabric.  It's a cheap polyester print that I purchased at the sewing garage sale too.  It matches quite nicely though!


I can see another one of these dresses in my future - in fact, I have the fabric already selected and ironed.  It's just hanging out on the back of the couch until I can get it cut out.  It's a fabulous cotton that I purchased at Robert Talbott's outlet in Carmel Valley a few years ago.  It has been in the stash patiently waiting for the right pattern to come along and it has finally presented itself!  I actually had the fabric in the "For Sale" pile for last year's garage sale, but took it out at the last minute and thank goodness I did.  I think it will look FABULOUS sewn up into this dress!  Here's a preview of the fabric.  The pattern definitely makes your eyes go crossed when you look at it so I may need to sew this dress in small increments of time to save my eyes!  It was hard to look at just on the ironing board!

Ok, so on with my stashbustin' stats for 2017.  As this is probably my final garment for the year - let's see if I hit the 100 yard mark.....

Yardage for muslin = 2.375
Yardage for dress = 2.75
Yardage for lining = 2.375
Total YTD = 100.66 

Whoo! Hoo!  I barely stitched my way passed 100 yards, but I made it!  Whoo!  Hooo!

So - What's next on the cutting board? 

My next project is going to be a simple one since this dress took me quite a long time to sew.  I'll be using up some scraps to hopefully make a wearable muslin of Butterick 6377.  You may recognize some of the fabrics from The Bristol Dress I made a month or so ago.  I only have small amounts of each fabric left and just couldn't bear to throw them away so I'll see how this combination turns out. 


Until next time - Happy sewing everyone!


Saturday, December 23, 2017

Some Christmas Projects

Hi everyone!  It's been a few weeks since I've posted and life has been very busy!  I have managed to squeeze in a few sewing projects for friends and family so I thought I would share them with you.

First up is a sewing wreath I made for our local sewing guild's Christmas party and gift exchange.  I have been saving my old thread spools for a number of years knowing that I would use them for something and finally, I came up with that something idea!  I wrapped the empty spools using quilted Christmas themed scrapbooking paper and then hot glued the spools to the wreath.  It was still looking a bit plain after adding the spools so I thought adding some buttons would spice it up a bit.  Of course I did buttons stacks too.  I think it looks quite cute!  So much so, that I might just make one for myself!  Every sewer needs a wreath for their sewing room door don'tchathink!

Next on the gift list was some napkins for the Christmas party host.  Using some linen I've had in the stash for years, I edged them with red woolly nylon on the serger.  

I made two of the Fat Quarter Gypsy's Pop-Up cans.   Here's what they look like fully open and then flattened.  Do you recognize this fabric?   It was remnants from my ironing board cover.



And lastly I have three Sew Together Bags and a set of potholders.

Here's the total yardage counts for these projects:
- Napkins = 1.5 yards
- Pop up cans (2) = .75 yards
- Sew Together Bags (3) = 3 yards
- Potholders - .5 yards
Total for all of these projects = 5.75 yards

That brings my YTD stashbustin' yardage total up to 93.16 yards.  I'm getting close to the 100 yard line and I think I might hit it!  My Vogue 1233 dress is almost finished - just need to do the hem and the armholes and it's finished. 

Happy Christmas to everyone and I hope Santa fills your stockings with lots of sewing goodies!

Star


Saturday, December 2, 2017

My Two Minutes of Fame and Some New Projects

Fame - the condition of being known or talked about by many people, especially on account of notable achievements!  Whoop!  Whoop! Hahahah!


The most recent Love to Sew Podcast Episode 17: How Big is your Pattern Stash? plays my voicemail that was almost 2 minutes long!  Yippee!  I encourage you to click on over to their website and listen to the episode (along with other episodes).  Episode 17 not only plays my tips for pattern organization (starting at 26:43), but the episode is almost 1.5 hours long and chock full of pattern organization ideas, Indie vs. Big 4 question (or I guess it's the Big 1 question  now), paper vs. pdf and Helen and Caroline comment on how many of their patterns they have actually sewn (something I dare not even think about!).  I think I'm more of a pattern collector rather than active pattern sewist - I would hate to think what percentage of my patterns I have actually sewn.  And if their opening jingle doesn't put you in a good mood - I really don't what what will!  It's just the cutest tune!  Also - here's a link to my blogpost a few years ago that talks about how I use Tap Forms for on-the-go pattern organization.  


Some New Projects

I must admit that I've been bitten by the "Clean Out" bug and the "Home DIY" bug recently and my sewing projects have been progressing along slower than normal.  But that's ok.  It feel great to get rid of stuff we no longer need and look at clean and organized closets and cupboards!  And I've had a can of paint for two years now that was bought to bring some new life to our master bath's cabinets and it has finally been opened and applied!  So in-between waiting for the paint to dry and piling stuff in the car to take to the charity shop - here's what I've been up to.

Some new pajamas!  Two pair to be exact - using my favorite pj pattern - McCall's 3017.

Both fabrics I recently purchased at Joann's when they were having a sale on flannel.  I'm a sucker for cute pj flannel prints!  This first one features VW vans with colorful banners.  I thought the overlapping rick rack on the collar mimicked the banners. 

And I used different colored buttons down the front to match the VW vans.  

The second print is so stinkin cute I can't stand it!  It features London icons!  I couldn't pass this print up at the sale!  

For the collar, I trimmed with some black piping I had in the stash. 

 I had to make room in my pj cupboard for these two new additions which meant getting rid of a few older pairs.  That's ok - they were pretty worn out and let's face it - if I'm not going anywhere on the weekend, I will stay in pj's all day long!  I just love them!

Next, I've been sewing on two new pairs of Jalie Cora's. Both of these crazy prints have been in the stash for awhile.


And I practiced more with the coverstitch machine and wooly nylon thread.

Here's the back view where you can see the mesh fabrics at the calf area.

Every seam except the inner leg seam (the last one sewn) is finished with the coverstitch machine.  That's a whole lotta wooly nylon on these!

So with these two latest projects - where am I with the Stashbustin stats?  I'm getting closer to the 100 yard goal.....

Pajamas = 5 yards each so that's a total of 10 yards
Jalie Cora workout pants = 1 yard each and that's a total of 2 yards
Adding 12 yards to my total brings me up to 87.41 yards to date!

What's Next?

My next project is going to be a lined dress - Vogue V1233 - a Pamella Roland design.  Both of these fabrics I've had in the stash for a long time and they were both purchased at the sewing guild's garage sale.  The one on the left is a polyester that I'll use for the lining and the one on the right is a wool blend for the outside.  I love working with wool, but my skin doesn't like it so we'll see how this one turns out.  I've already opted not to include the sleeves as they just look too tight to me so I'll either wear a long sleeve turtleneck underneath or a dickie to keep that neckline from itching me to death!  I may have to make a dickie because I'm not sure they even exist anymore!

Close-up of the fabric.  It's a blue/black weave that's hard to see, but it's there!

That's it for me today!  Back to organizing and sewing in between!

Happy sewing everyone!

Star



Friday, November 17, 2017

The Sewing Workshop Bristol Dress

Hi everyone!  It's been awhile since my last post so here goes!  

This is The Sewing Workshop's Bristol Dress.  All three of these knit fabrics were from my stash.  The circle print I purchased at Truro Fabrics in Truro, England last year while on vacation.  The plain gray has been in the stash for awhile and the black crinkle fabric came from this year's sewing garage sale.


I made a size Small, but I think I should have made the XSmall version instead.  There is alot of ease in this dress - as you can see in the photo below - that's why I added the belt.  Now - if I were visiting an all-you-can-eat buffet, then this dress would be perfect as it would allow for multiple trips to the buffet and the stomach expansion thereafter.  However, since I don't tend to eat at such establishments, it's a bit roomy for my liking.

It's hard to see in this photo, but there are no side seams on the dress so taking it in proves to be a bit of a challenge.  I might sew some rather large fisheye darts to each side, or, I could just leave it as is and continue to wear it with the belt.  We'll see if I'm in the mood for altering in the future.....

I'm not sure about the back view - it's lookin kinda sketchy back there. 

I wore this dress to work the other day and had a friend snap this pic.  I knew the dress was quite roomy along the bustline, but I didn't realize just how much until I saw this picture.  Just look at all of that room!  Also - it's funny how the gray fabrics match perfectly indoors, yet when venturing outdoors, the solid gray seems to be just a shade different.

I do love the neckline though and the top yoke.  Of course when I had finished the dress, it looked a bit plain to me so I added these buttons along the neckline.  I like how they pair so well with the circle print fabric. 

All in all - an ok dress - just not as fitted as I normally wear.  The pattern comes with a top version as well so I might make that up in the XSmall size and see if it makes a difference.

On with the stashbustin stats!
Yardage for this dress = 2 yards
Total YTD = 75.41

Will I make it to 100 yards sewn this year?  Time will tell!  With only 1.5 months left to the year and 25 yards to go - it's looking pretty slim, but I'll still try!

Happy sewing everyone!

Star

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

New Look 6139 PJ bottoms

Just a super duper quick post today!  Another pair of PJ bottoms using New Look 6139.  These are from a lightweight cotton print I had in the stash.  I only had one yard of this fabric so it was perfect for these pj's.


I used a trim with little birds on it for the waistline treatment.  As mentioned in my previous post on these bottoms, I really like this waistline feature.

Stashbustin quest info -
Total yardage for these pj bottoms = 1 yard
Total YTD = 73.41 yards!

Happy sewing everyone!
Star


Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Vogue 8793 - a Katherine Tilton blouse

Another completed project!  Yeah!  This is Vogue 8793 - a Katherine Tilton blouse.  Not sure I like the look with leggings - jeans would be better.


I added a pocket to the front of the blouse because - well - who doesn't like a pocket!

The fabric is a doubleknit that I purchased at this year's Sewing Garage Sale.  It's polka dot on one side and stripe on the other.

I really like the neckline on this blouse.  It uses a double collar that is edged with a zipper!

Close-up of the zipper tape used as an edging.  

Cutting out this blouse took a bit of thought to make sure I had the dots on the correct side and the stripes on the other side.  I did find the arms to be a bit snug from the elbow to the wrist.  If I make this again, I will widen the sleeves just a bit.

I decided to edge the pocket with the zipper tape too.  Kinda cute!

Sorry this post has random thoughts here and there, but it was a random kinda day!

Here are the stashbustin' stats:

2 yards of sewing garage sale fabric for $5.00

Total YTD = 72.41 yards!

Happy sewing everyone!
Star