Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Somebody stop me...

I just spent more than I would like to admit on fabrics at Gorgeous Fabrics! Ann is having an anniversary sale of 24% off everything through today. So I just couldn't resist stocking up on some beauties I've been eyeing for some time. Hopefully the package comes on a day that I am off and DH is at work. Then I can sneak them to the sewing room without being detected:)


Sunday, February 22, 2009

A couple of projects

This shirt was NewLook 6407. I used a cotton shirting that I got at Joann Fabric.

This was McCall's M5711. Just finished the hem on this jacket this morning. Might have to save it for the next fall/winter season though... it's almost 60 degrees out here. It came out really cute. Check out my review to the left for a full pattern review.
This next week I will be working on some knit tops for the warmer weather. I also would like to knock out my muslin for the vogue dress. I got my fabric in from Gorgeous Fabric and I love, love, love it. Take a look at it here.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Slow Going...

Don't you hate when life keeps you away from doing what you love? My lovely father-in-law flew in this past weekend to visit. I've got papers due for school. I just got done working 12 hour shifts four out of the last five days. And on top of all this I've got some sort of stomach bug I've been dealing with for the past several days. Needless to say I have not been sewing like I want to. So I am going to crank out my paper that is due this next week and get back to the sewing room in the next couple of days. Byrdie

Thursday, February 12, 2009

I'm Not Happy...

I am working on my muslin for the Riviera T-shirt from Hotpatterns. I have experienced first hand what everyone is talking about when they say "paper-sack" when referring to Hotpatterns. I was so happy with my pencil skirt that I purchased three more patterns from the company. This t-shirt pattern is basically a rectangle for the front and back with a strip of fabric for the sleeves. On the pictures above I have taken in 1 1/2 inches on each side seam... that's 6 inches of fabric total! I have not decided what to do with the neck line. As you can see from the above pictures, it's basically just a slit with no shape. I am sucked in to the stylish patterns of the company but I can see that this will take a lot of finagling to come close to the envelope picture. I'm wondering if it is even worth it. This shouldn't be the case for such high-priced patterns:(
I don't know... I may pick another pattern for my recently purchased rayon jersey fabrics.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Some Projects I am working on next...

I got some beautiful blue charmeuse from Gorgeous Fabrics that I am going to make the sleeveless top with. I am going to make another HotPatterns pencil skirt (the one I reviewed earlier in denim) in a black stretch sateen to go with. Should make for a sexy, dressy, outfit.

I love this dress... it is so sweet looking. I am eyeing a fabric (at gorgeous fabrics again) to use. Gonna do a muslin first.

Along with my charmeuse I got a couple of jersey knits. I'm going to make a couple of t-shirts from the Riviera pattern. I think I like the simple short sleeved version with the chest pocket.

I have this coat cut out. I am using a gray wool and am making the full length sleeve version.

Still searching for the right fabric for the Riviera jacket. Calls for a stable knit. I'm keeping my eyes open for a double knit.

I love the cap sleeved dress (shown here in gray). I have read some mixed reviews on PR
so will make a muslim first to make appropriate adjustments to the pattern.

So I am actually just about done with this jumper. I am making it out of a navy linen blend. I was afraid it was going to end up maternity looking but let me tell you it's really cute. You'll just have to wait until I have made a top to go with it before you can see it...

Here is the pattern I am going to use to make a top to go with the linen jumper. I like either the sleeveless version or the 3/4 sleeve version. Maybe I'll do both:)

What are you working on now? Shoot me a line:)

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Pattern Review: Hot Patterns Pencil Skirt

Here is the finished view. My legs aren't that white... they are actually whiter! I've been using my fake tanning lotion so am actually a couple shades darker than usual. Pitiful, I know.

Pattern Description: From hotpatterns envelope: "Loving these groovy, stylish skirts, designed for any and all skirt fabrics, from denim to broderie anglais, from suede to cotton, from tweed to crepe. Fitted Skirts finish *just* below the knee and have front & back darts, a center back invisible zipper, optional lining and a contoured waistband that sits right at the natural waist. A-Line skirt has a gentle, controlled flare and a bias-faced hem; Pencil skirt is ever-so-slightly tapered with a deep hem and a concealed back slit. Try these hard-working pieces with a matching jacket as part of a chic suit and as indispensable co-ordinates for your everyday wardrobe. These great skirt styles will showcase a gorgeous fabric, or act as an inspirational blank canvas for all your favorite trim and embellishment ideas and techniques."

Sizing: 6-26. My measurements indicated a size 14 and this is what I made with a few minor adjustments.

Did it look like the photo or drawing when you got through? yes, very much so

How were the instructions? This is my first pattern I have purchased from the company. I love all of their contemporary and stylish fashions. This was a very simple skirt for which I did not consult the instructions much. However, I did notice that there were few detailed instructions and pictures to go with the pattern, so the absolute beginner might get frustrated.

Construction Notes: I made the skirt out of a medium weight denim I had in my stash. Again, this is a very simple skirt and pretty straight forward as far as construction goes. I did take a tip from Ann in her gorgeous fabrics blog and made the inner waistband from a thinner material and made it about 1/8"shorter so that the facing rolls to the inside of the skirt. I did not line the skirt because I chose to make it of a fairly sturdy denim. For a more formal or dressier version, I will line it. I inserted an invisible zipper in back.

Adjustments: I am only 5' 3" and ended up shortening the skirt by about 2 1/2 inches. I did do a muslin first. I also lengthened the front darts only by about 1 inch. For a more pegged version, I took in about 1/4" on each side about halfway down the side.

Conclusion: I really love this pattern and am very happy with the style. I think it is very flattering on my curves. I plan to make some more- perhaps in a stretch sateen for a dressier look. The denim is nice though because I can either dress it up in heels or go casual in flip-flops.


I have been sewing off and on since I was 12 years old (I am now 27). I am mostly self-taught, with just a little guidance from my mother. Lately I have been frustrated with fashion sewing due to the lack of other sewing enthusiasts in my circle. Also, I have been disappointed with the lack of quality apparel fabric in my area. I could never get the fit right and was always disappointed with the results...

I sort of stumbled into the world of internet sewing which has changed my world! Blogs, online pattern and fabric stores... they all have contributed to the much needed improvement in my sewing skills. Would you believe, in all my years of sewing that I had never heard of a "muslin"? Who knew you could make a style in ratty-tatty ugly fabric to get the fit right, before cutting into your real fabric? Although a simple concept, it had never crossed my mind to do this. Boy, have my creations improved since then. I also discovered online fabric stores such as gorgeousfabrics.com, emmaonesock.com, and denverfabrics.com. And I absolutely love the patterns at hotpatterns.com.

I have learned a lot from reading other sewing blogs. This blog is new and is pretty skimpy but I hope to make it into another blog to get pattern reviews, successes and failures, and make new friends!