Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Animal Print Dress

Hello all! Hope your holidays were fun and relaxing! After all of the family gatherings, I've been able to relax and watch movies with my husband and son. Alas, I must return to work tomorrow.
I swore I would never do animal print but this year I'm taking the plunge into the ever popular Fall/Winter trend! I have to say, it's kind of fun! Hopefully the Flinstones do not come to mind... LOL!
I used Butterick 5247 (sorry for the blurred picture). I don't remember purchasing this pattern that long ago but apparently it is OOP. This is a 1-hr pattern (took me close to 2 hrs) for a dress or tunic with a cowl neck and tie belt.
I used a poly/lycra blend jersey from Gorgeous Fabrics. It was a splurge for me- spent $27. But it is the perfect weight knit for this dress. It is beefy and not sheer at all. Plus I have just enough to squeeze out a top if I want.
This was very easy to make. It took me almost 2 hrs because I use a conventional sewing machine and not a serger. The design has quite a bit of ease. I made a 14, which is 2 sizes smaller than recommended by my measurements but I still have plenty of room without it looking too big. The tie belt cinches it in to make this a rather simple, but flattering dress.
I paired this with black tights and faux suede wedges (Merry Christmas to me!).

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Self Drafted Tee

Here's my version of the basic tee I drafted while participating in the draft-along at Sew Country Chick. Drafting your own patterns isn't as difficult and time consuming as I had originally thought. It does require some trial and error but I'm happy with the outcome.
I made a muslin with some cheap knit. For the most part, the body of the tee fit great but the sleeves were almost too narrow for me to squeeze my arms into (can we say wearing ease, anybody?). I also ran into the same problem as Justine  did with some extra fabric bunching and sleeve cap issues. She warned us- but I guess I have to figure it out on my own sometimes! So I scooped out the armhole on the front and back body of the tee to create some negative ease- worked like a charm!
For my finished project, I used an ITY jersey print that has been hanging out in my stash for a while. It's the perfect weight for this tee. I really like the geometric print. Although I added width to my sleeves, they are still a bit narrow for my preference. So next time around, I will add a bit more. Otherwise, I'm very happy with my basic tee pattern and can see myself making several of these in the future.
In other news, I owe a special thanks to Adrienne for her nomination for the "One Lovely Blog Award". It's always nice to be appreciated by other bloggers and helps motivate me to keep my little blog going! Check out her blog Stitching on the Edge for all sorts of cute projects!

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Do you want the good news or...

Bad news first... my little black dress turned into a wadder. It hurts my heart :( I used Butterick 5710, or Pippa's Knock-off Dress. I was making the shorter version for my LBD. I used a beautiful black crepe de chine from Mood. The whole dress was lined with black ambiance from The dress is relatively simple to construct but does require some finesse. The problem is  that every piece except for the sleeves is cut on the bias. Extra care must be taken to not stretch out the fabric all to Hell.  I thought I was doing a very good job of this until I got to the step of inserting the zipper into the center back seam. You of course will interface all seams immediately after cutting to avoid my problem- advice I found only after it was too late. The first time I inserted the zipper, it buckled into an awful wavey line- it screamed homemade. I must have sewn and unpicked the back seam at least five times. I tried pressing the bias back into original shape. I tried interfacing the back seam allowances. I tried small gathering stitches to try to eliminate the wave. All to no avail. I showed it to my husband who said "it's not that bad"- code for "I don't want to hurt your feelings". Being the man that he is, he also had no knowledge of the original Pippa dress and said he didn't understand "the diaper in the front"- referring to the infamous draping neckline. Ugh- men! I decided I spent way too much time trying to make it work and it just wasn't going to- so I am moving on!
Now for a bit of good news. I received a nice cheer me up from Diya at The Hobby Harbor. I met her during the draft-a-long we are both participating in. She's very creative. I am jealous totally love her chevron print A-line skirt she made as her first drafted project. Anyway, she nominated me for the Liebster award. Thanks Diya!
"The Liebster Award is given by bloggers to up and coming bloggers who have less than 200 followers. It is to show new bloggers that they are appreciated, and to help spread the word about new blogs"
Diya requested that I answer these questions about myself:
[1] What are a few blogs that you read on a daily/weekly basis? I read all updates from blogs that I follow on an almost daily basis. I need to get better at commenting but if I'm following you- I'm reading what your posting.
[2] Which is your favourite sewing pattern? I can't say that I have one favorite sewing pattern because my tastes and mood change so quickly. However, I'm really into sewing independent pattern designs lately.
[3] How long have you been blogging? According to Blogger, since February 2009- I can't believe it's almost four years!
[4] What project(s) are you currently working on? I am currently working on a muslin of my self drafted basic tee pattern. I'm also cutting out a long sleeved shirt dress.
[5] What is one of your New Years Resolutions? In regards to sewing/blogging, I hope to be able to post more regularly and frequently in the upcoming year. I've struggled to find sewing time with a toddler running around but I think I've gotten into the groove lately. I also have a large stash of uncompleted quilting projects that I would like to work through.
[6] Did you write a tutorial on your favourite project you made? No, I don't generally do tutorials. I've received some great emails asking me how I did something and I am happy to personally respond to these and offer assistance. However, there's so many tutorials and great advise out there that I don't usually feel compelled to make my own.
[7] Do you have pets? I have had a calico cat since I was 18! She frequents the sewing room often.
[8] Where do you buy most of your clothes? I don't buy a lot of RTW items. When I do, they are usually basics from Target or Kohls. I love looking at the LOFT. I think this store best resembles my style, or what I wish it would be!
[9] What is the #1 item on your holiday wish list? It was actually really difficult for me to think of a wish list this year. The problem is, if I really want something, I usually just go get it! But I've asked for some cooking tools. Cooking and baking is another one of my favorite things to do aside from sewing.
[10] Your favourite project you made till date? Perhaps one of the items that gets the most wear is this wrap dress. It is very flattering and I can dress it up or down. I love the floral print. (Love the flashback- I hope my photo skills have improved, LOL)
[11] What inspired you to start a blog? Before blogging, I had sewn off and on since my early teens. But I was never too excited about it because I really couldn't talk to anyone about sewing as none of my friends sew. A few years ago I discovered the wonderful world of the online sewing community! I love the ability to see what others are sewing and gain tips and advice. This is what inspired my to blog- just to be able to share what I am doing with everyone else. It has really improved my sewing skills as well!
Here are some bloggers that I have been following that I would love to nominate:
Frogs in a Bucket
I Heart Fabric
made by meli88a
Sew My Time