Tuesday, February 27, 2007


I need help on this top. It's not closed at the moment I just have a pin holding it closed and I can't decide if I should:
* add a button
* Make a tie that goes around the body like in the original design ( burda 8122)
* sew it closed
* hidden closure?
I pined the sleeve to the front so you can see it has a bell sleeve, I also need to finish the bottom and of course the sleeves. What do you think ?

I finished another top for swap kwik sew 3039 ( I should have pressed it before the picture)

Monday, February 26, 2007

My Burda Magazine finally came today as well as the Marfy patterns I ordered. I picked this one I thought the belt on the top was a fun idea and this one . I just like it. It will be awhile before I get to these. They are not fast quick patterns, no Seam allowances no instructions (although I have a habit of not reading them anyway) I think they will be fun though.
I'm working on another top for SWAP today. I spent sometime this morning looking at last years swap examples and I feel like me Rayon skirt is out of place with the rest of the pieces. I think I need something like a denim skirt butI want something kind of fun and trendy. Very casual so it goes with the other pieces. If you have a suggestion I would love to hear it.

Back to sewing

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Pirates and kitties

I'm participating in a swap on crafster and I needed to make a crochet hook roll for my swap partner. Normally I just decided what I'm going to do and send it off. I like it to be a surprise but this time I had 2 sets of fabric that would be perfect so I made both. I'm going to give my swap partner the oportunity to pick the one she wants. I actually made 2 of the "Hello Kitty" ones because when G say what I was doing she had to have it. She is a nut for anything ANime, Manga. Japan etc. She won't be putting crochet hooks in hers, she will use it for her drawing supplies. So here they are rolled.

This is the Pirate one open. The red is much more red in person and the ribbon matches.
Here is the pirate print. You can't see it very well from the rolled view.

Here is the Hello Kitty open.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Finished pants

So even though the pants fit me almost perfectly ( tiny bit too big in the waist) I can't get them to look right on the dressform. I'll have to keep working on her. So instead you get a down on the floor shot. This is my very first pair of pants, except for Pj's they don't count. I picked a super easy pattern, Simplicity 4500. It's one of thoes Threads wardrobe patterns. I used a linen fabric that has something else in it. ( not sure what) It doesn't wrinkle as badly as 100% linen would. It washed well. Here ia a picture of the cuffs.

I probably won't make them again. I'm not loving how wide the legs are. They feel like Pajama pants when you wear them. If I did make them again I would narrow the leg and make the waist band shorter.
This is my last Bottom for SWAP.
Total so far
1. Pants : turq linen( simplicity 4500)
2. Skirt: tan cord (McCalls 3830)
3. Skirt: brown rayon ( Vogue )
4. Skirt: Dk Brown with buttons ( modified Vogue)
5. Jacket: striped twill ( kwik sew 2895)
6. Top: teal suede ( burda 2561)

Extras wool skirt (McCAlls 3830), Teal cord jacket ( Kwik sew 2895)
Back to sewing.


My dressform arrived yesterday evening. Iwas very excited to see it so quickly. I am having a little trouble adjusting her but I'm sure I will get it figurde out with some more fiddling. I also finished all the projects, except for one that I was working on last weekend . In this first picture you see the wool plaid that was my original SWAP fabric. Skirt McCAlls 3830 TNT. I picked all my fabrics to match this. I still love the plaid but I ended up loving the stripe from EOS more so I took this out and replaced it with that. This is the Teal corduroy jacket ( KS 2895) that would have been the jacket for SWAP. The cool thing is they still match it just doesn't work with the SWAP plan. Underneath is my reversible disaster, a white tank ( KS 3497)
(In the picture the skirt isn't hemmed but it is now.) Oh.. and I lined the skirt with a bright turq linning fabric.
Here is a close up of the striped jacket fabric that made me switch my plan. I love this jacket and get lots of compliments whenI wear it. I know you have already seen it but it looks so good on my new dressform.

This is Burda 2561. This is a SWAP garment. It is made with a suede like fabric from joanns. It's so soft and comfy to wear. I'm not in love with the buttons but I couldn't fins anything that was the right color so I went with silver. Maybe they will grow on me. They have apretty design on them. The top could use a little pressing in th eshoulder and hem areas.

Here is the teal jacket by it self. ( KS 2895)This time around I did some topstitching on the front where the pockets are to help hold the pockets down. I like the way it turned out. I was going to add a bottom band to this one but changed my mind. I also used bigger buttons then the pattern called for. I think on the first jacket the buttons get lost because they are so small.

I still have to take a picture of my pants also finished. So I'll go do that next.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

So yesterday, I had to pick G up at school because she wasn't feeling well. This morning 4 am I came down with the same stomach flu that she had yesterday. My husband als ostayed home from work today but I think it was mostly to care for the two of us. Being sick
has pretty much cancelled out all my plans for today. I was hoping to go out and watch The Tour Of California, pass my house as well as finish up my white simplity sew stylish shirt ( I forget the #, it's in a previous post) I was also going to write up reviews for my finished skirt, pants, jacket and top. Instead I am sitting on the couchand sleeping mostly. I am taking a few minutes to see what's happening in the world and was happy to see so many people are posting sewing room pictures. It's fun to see where everyone sews.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

my sewing space, mess and all

G got sick at school this morning so I had to go pick her up. I'm trying to be quiet so she can rest. That means no sewing today. So I have plenty of time to take pictures. So, as promised
her is my sewing space. It's not a room, its a U shaped space in the family room. I used to have a much smaller chair but it died after years and years or work. I got this one around Christmas time and it's very comfy. It's also so big that I can just turn around to get from the sewing machine to the serger.
Here is a picture from the front view. I pile all my WIP on the table with the serger.
The topic of organizing notions has come up a few times lately. Here is my method. It mostly works. I have one of the drawer on wheels things from an office store. Mine has 6 drawers. Originally I had everything just stuffed in the drawers but that didn't work. So a few years ago I started putting drawer dividers or small plastic containers with lids in the drawers. It seems to help. This is the button, hardware, stuff drawer.

Here is the whole drawer stack. It sits under my desk, near the sewing machine. There are not usually so many wires hanging down there but I am charging 2 cell phones and the battery recharger is also plugged in.

Thenon my desk next to the sewing machine I have this tote. It has a ton of pockets. The idea is that all the things I need for the current projects or things I use all the time should be in here. I try to put the next pattern, buttons and zippers in it. It's suppose to keep my from losing things.
The container sitting under it is a floss organizer I use it to hold the presser feet for my machines. I have each slot labeled with the foot and the machine. The viking actually has enough storage space that I keep all the feet with that machine but the PFAFF doesn't have any extra space at all. I also keep sewing macine needles in here as well.

O.k now it's your turn. Show off your space and don't clean it first.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

The dressfprm is comming

I just found out my new dressform is in the mail. I can't wait to start using it! If UPS is right it should be here on friday.

Monday, February 19, 2007

lots of sewing progress

I'm so excited ! I was able to get alot of sewing done this weekend. It helps that it was a 3 day weekend. So what did I do?

1. Teal corduroy jacket, ( Originally for SWAP)I used the same pattern that I used for the striped jacket. Kwik sew 2895.
I just finished sewing fronts to back and have the sleeves topstitched and ready to go in.

2. Teal suede button down shirt.( For SWAP) I used Burda 2561. Just need to sew on buttons.

3. Wool plaid skirt ( Originally for SWAP) I used McCAlls 3830 this is a TNT( tried and tru) pattern for me. I lined it also. This needs to be hemed.

4. Kind of a blue turquose color, linen pants ( for SWAP) I used simplicity 4500. These I need to check for size and then put in the zipper.

5. I started an experiment with a sweater knit piece and a jersey knit. I only had a small amount of the sweater knit I'm also not sure how I'm going to finish off the edges on this thing.
(Burda 8122) This will go in SWAP if it works.

Why so many projects? Well I cut them all out on Friday and saturday afternoon. Then when I was sewing I tried to work on things that were the same color. so anytime I needed to change the thread I would just switch to the next project that was the same color instead. Also anytime I needed a notion that I didn't have ( zipper) I would stop and work on somethng else. I saved the hems and buttons for later too. I always like to hem several things at once instead of one at a time.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

found time to sew

I wasn't planning on doing any sewing this weekend but much to my surprise I have.
We finished putting in the new window and now we are expecting rain. The same thing happened with the last window we replaced. It was a beutifully warm sunny day and then the next day it rained.
So I have been sewing. I am working on SWAP. I did take a breack to buy groceries and while I was doing that I went to the fabric store to get more thread and a zipper.
This pattern followed me home. McCalls 5314

I had looked at it when it first came out but didn't have any plan to buy it but they had one made up at the store and it was really cute. They made it out of a cotton print. It was a "Heather Bailey" print I think. They made the long sleeve version and used contrast fabric for the cuffs and collar. I would probably not do that.
I didn't buy any fabric though just the notions I needed and this one pattern, that was on sale.
I'm trying really hard not to start any new projects untill SWAP is done and my BR dress is done. Crafty projects and gifts don't count.

Friday, February 16, 2007

another must have jacket

No sewing today. I had to work. I had planned on doing a little sewing after work but I made the mistake of checking my email and a few blogs. One of them was Stacy . She had a link to this site
of course I had to check it out. What a cool site. I spent all my extra time tonight plugging in my numbers and looking at all the clothes. The only problems I had were with length and color. The measurements for length are a little tricky to do alone, so they might have been a little off but probably not enoght to matter. But.. for the color palette I have red hair and they don't really cover all the possiblities for redheads so I'm not sure the colors were right. I was surprised to find that most of the styles were things that I am drawn too in stores. So that's good to know. So why is there a jacket in this post? This is one of the styles I should wear and let me tell you I LOVE LOVE LOVE this jacket!! I have to figure out how to make this.
I probably won't do any sewing this weekend. We have some big home improvement projects planned.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

It's been a few days

I hadn't realized how long it had been since my last post. I did some sewing:

I sewed the plain brown buttons on my shirt from my previous post.

I made some pillows for G's room out of super soft minky.

I made the tank from Kwik sew 3497 and adjusted the shoulder lingth so it wouldn't be as low. I also tried to make this a reversible tank but I didn't like the way it turned out. I feel like there is way to much bulk on the shoulder seam and at the hem. I did use a crummy fabric for this but it's not at all thick. I think honestly I'm just not a reversible clothing type person. The reversible garment is the challenge element for SWAP this year so, that's why I was working on this. I'm going to trash this tank and try another idea. I have been sketching out some vest ideas.

Vests Look what's back in style. Here are a few examples from runway.

What else have I been doing?


I ordered my first Marfy patterns, I can't wait to try them out.

I also bought a cool handbag at Target. (above picture)
Know I'm waiting for the mail to come, hopefully with my feb issue of BWOF.

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Practically done

This weekend I made this shirt. It is kwik sew 3039. I didn't finish it because I have changed my mind about the buttons I bought for it. I love the buttons just not for this shirt. I think I want something plain and brown. These are a really prettygreen but they are too fancy for the shirt. I went ahead and made the buttonholes. (I know it's a BAD IDEA to make holes with out the buttons but I was all ready for making buttonholes.)
The pattern is a little strange. It doesn't have any facings, instead it has a strip that you sew ontop of each side, so at the top unless you were to button it all the way you will see the inside of the shirt. Also, you need to get that ironed just right before you top stitch otherwise you will have a bit of the inside showing along the front edge. These things wouldn't be a problem if your fabric looks the same on both sides. They also have you sew the colar on backwards from what I normally do. Then you top stitch on the outside to finish it up. It looks fine It's just different.
I like the sleeves and the style fits really well. I was trying this pattern out for SWAP.
I think when I make it again I will figure out how to change that front part. I think I should also lenghten it. It seems short to me.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Sew stylish magazine review

One of my newest sewing projects uses a new simplicity pattern from the sew stylish series. This set of patterns is designed to go with the new Magazine from threads. I had originally seen the advertisement in threads magazine and thought this was going to be a special publication, but after purchasing the magazine it looks like they plan on this being a regular publication.
I have been sewing for most of my life and have already on several occations said "hey that's a good idea" and I haven't even finished reading the magazine. There are lots of little tips that maybe I never knew or things that I was taught but had forgotten. This would be extremely helpful to someone who is new to sewing. Do you need to know how to hem, press or install a zipper. They have an article on each. How about hand stitches, sewing darts or buttonholes they have thoes too.
The magazine has several projects that they call "How to get the runway look" there is a handbag and a jacket a dress and I think a pair of pants. They also have projects in the starting to sew catagory that are super quick projects.
Overall I would say, I'm happy with the magazine and I will buy the next issue as well. I probably wont make any of the projects, although I might. I will take the tips from them and use them in my own sewing. I think every new sewer should buy this magaizine and I think there are enough handy tips in it that experianced sewers will find something as well.
I also was kinda excited to see the pattern I am working on is right on the cover and they didn't even use the tie.

Friday, February 09, 2007

Fabric and magazines

I was ay Borders today and was excited to see the "sewstylish" magazine was there. This is the special publication from the makers of Threads magazine. Anyway, I was so excited (and in a hurry) that I didn't even flip through it. I just glanced at the price (didn't want any surprises) and went to pay. I also picked up the "new cutting edge"" and "Adorn" magazines. I'll look at the stew stylish tonight and give you a review.
For the Banana Republic dress from a couple of post ago I have picked up Vogue 8110.
Mostly because of all the patterns that were similiar this one wasn't just the dress it has a trench coat with it. More for your $$. That and this morning out local paper had a whole article on how Trench coats are the "in" thing for spring fashion.

Then, because I needed some thread and buttons for the shirt I was working on I went to Beverlys fabrics and they were having a huge fabric sale, $1 a yard fabric. So I bought two pieces of some mystery fabrics. I also bought a flat fold piece that I am sure is a wool blend of some type in a navy blue, it's very soft and I think it will work for the BR dress. The girl at the counter was sure it was a denim ( your kidding right ?) so she charged my the sale denim price and then it was %50 off so it ended up costing me $5.87 for 2, 3/4 yards of this really nice fabric.
I tried to tell her I thought it was one of the wools which still would have been a great price but she was sure she was right so I got this fabric for practically nothing. I paid more for the pattern then the fabric. The pattern has 1/2 price. My Br dress will end up costing less then $20 to make compaired to over $100 to buy. How cool is that?

It's supposed to rain all weekend so hopefully I will be productive and not lazy.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Finished stuff SWAP update

I finished my striped jacket using Kwik sew 2895. I also finished skirt #3 for SWAP Vogue 7859 and the handbag from simplicity ....can't remmember I'll have to go look. The bag isn't really done it needs a buckle to finish the handle and I haven't found one. So, I may do something else to finish it off.

I have the bodice done on the simplicity top but I'm starting to worry a little about the amount of gathers and pleats going on in the middle. The tie probably helps to hide some of that.
As for a SWAP update I have finished
1. Tan skirt (mcCalls 3830
2. Brown button skirt ( Vogue #)
3. Rayon brown skirt (V 7859)
4. Striped Jacket ( kwik sew 2895)
need to finish:
5. Another bottom ( pants pattern ?)
6. Wrap top ( vogue 8151) The muslin came outgreat
7. knit tee (Jalie 2566)
8. Button down teal top (Burda 2561)
9. Jalie cross over top
10. white simplicty 3867 (maybe) not sure about my Simplicity 4112
11. Reversible tank (kwik sew)
threw out the plaid skirt to use the striped jacket.
Might use a flower print that I threw out earlier for the plaid to make a tee .
extra pieces:
vest, handbag, hat. simplicty 4076,wrap top, brown velvetten jacket from RTW knoick off contest. And the plaid skirt.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Patterns and RTW

I want this dress from Banana Republic. There must be several patterns I could use for this. This is the look that was showing up quite a bit on the runway this season. Simple, clean, ready for anything.

This is the pattern for the white top I started a couple days ago. I just got an email from Anthropology with

this white summer top in it. Doesn't that look a lot like that simplicity top ( 3867) I'm sewing right now? I hope mine turns out as well.
Link to Banana RepublicBanana Republic.
If you have any pattern suggestions for the black dress please post.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

read the envelope CAREFULLY

On Super Bowl sunday I started Kwik Sew 2895 (Denim Jacket in a striped fabric from EOS). I would have finished it on sunday too if I hadn't run out of topstitching thread. Who would have though it would take so much? It's done now. I just need to post a picture and write a review forPR.
I also washed and cut out the fabric for Simplicty 3867. Here is where todays title comes in. Because I have been sewing for a long time, and I used to work in a fabric store I get a little over confidant and so I often just glance at the envelope. Ususally this isn't a problem, you find the fabric amount for your size, you make sure you don't need any unusual notions, maybe get some thread and then run home to start your new favorite project. Well, Simplicity 3867 uses a contrast fabric for that tie on the top. I didn't notice that, otherwise I would have bought more fabric so I could make the tie. So, Stephanie's sewing tip for this month is "READ THE ENVELOPE CAREFULLY"
I also cut out Simplicity 3828 using the faux leather I bought at Joanns. I need to get a needle before I can start this one.
Hopefully I will get some finished pict's up here tommorow.
For now I'm off to go find where the cat hid my seam ripper. I can't figure out why he keeps stealing it? Is my cat the only one who does that?

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Pirates and cookbooks

I have a friend who is really into Pirated of the caribean and she sent me this link.
Check it out

Today my brother gave me a gift certificate for Borders so I bought an Alton Brown cookbook. Now ,I think I own a cookbook from all my favorite food network people. I looked at the new Butterick ,McCalls magazine but I didn't really see anything in it so I put it back. I also looked at the new CRAFT magazine but at $14 an issue, well that's alot. I have the first issue and most of the things I really liked didn't have instructions so I decided to wait on this one.

Friday, February 02, 2007

Wondering through the internet

I was watching uncommen threads last week and they were making a knitting bucket out of a pair of Jeans. I was thinking " I've seen that before maybe I have been to her blog" I was write I have so I was checking it out today to see what other things has she made.
Here are a couple of fun thing.
Do you want something quick and easy to make try these. There from Split yarn. Or how about
these. I can see G and her friends wearing these with their favorite Anime/ Mange charachters in them. There is no tutorial for these writs bands but I think you could figure it out. I t looks like two pieces of denim sandwiched together. I'm thinking for the image you could use a plain cotton and use the image transfer paper that Stacy used on her PJ's. I'll have to go bug Stacy and find out how that worked. I think she probably has all the details on her Blog.
Then just sew them together and snap.

I went to the fabric store today to get thread, interfacing, and more pins ( where do they go?) and was surprised to see they were having a huge sale. Lots of $1 a yard fabric but nothing I liked. I did get some $3 corduroy and a nice black/grey denim. Then I got two Knits that were $2 a yard. I also had the oportunity to look at the new simplicity patterns. Some of them look much better in the catalog. I came home with 3828 the bg from yesterdays post as well as 3867 which I never would have picked from the website but in the catalog The white shirt is really cute. This one is part of the new Sewstylish line that threads is comming out with. They have a special magazine due out after Valentines day that I'm looking forward to checking out.
Hopefully this weekend I will get some sewing done. Hope everyone has a productive weekend.

Thursday, February 01, 2007


I spent all day cleaning out my closet. I had planned on working on the closet this morning and then sewing after lunch but... After I finished in the closet I decided to clean out the dresser and that led to the chest of drawers which led to the sweaters and well you get the idea. I lost alot of weight last year and so I had a ton of clother that were too big. I wanted to clean things out before I finish SWAP.That way I know what else I should sew. It was funny to see what colors I tend to buy. I always thought I had a wide variety of colors but really, 90% of my clothes fit in one of 3 color ways. I love how organized everything is now. I did have several things that I LOVE but they don't fit. I still couldn't stand to get rid of them so I set them aside to think about. Then while I was at PR I saw that they have a new contest starting "recycle reuse" So, now I'm thinking maybe I should try to make them into something else. After all it's realy the fabric I love in most cases not the actual garment.

Today I see that the new Simplicity patterns are up. I really like this purse pattern 3828
And I think I might get 3833 as well. I know what your thinking but I think it's really fun. My Mom probably made a ton of thoes in the 60's. She used to sew all her clothes. You could make it in a nice calm fabric and it would'nt be so retro.
I really don't nee anymore patterns right now.