Friday, November 30, 2007

Simplicity 3624

Pattern Review

Pattern: Simplicity 3624
Description: Misses’ Tunic and Top. Sleeve variations and length variations.

Sizing: 6 to 22, I made a 10

Instructions: Basic shirt construction instructions (wow, rhyming). I followed Simplicity’s instructions for the bodice and after that did my own thing

Likes/Dislikes: I liked the tunic look without the fullness of a tunic. Loved the shirred bodice and the sleeve variations

Changes: Let’s see:
*I added piping to the bodice seam. I thought my Missoni style fabric needed some solid fabric. A bit easier on the eye!
*I basted the piping to the bodice and then gathered the lower front. I pinned these two pieces together and stitched along my basting. Note: no sewing past midnight for me anymore. My gathering was all on one side. Talk about a lopsided top! I went to bed and the next evening, I did some frog-stitching. I decided a pleat might look better and I do think so.
*If you notice on the pattern drawings – the shorter shirts (D-E-F) have back ties. I liked this look and thought it would help if my tunic was too full. I used the solid black to make small ties.
*I added length to the lower front and back and also to the sleeves. I didn’t need to add it to the body of the garment. Easier to cut it off is my motto.
*I added ½” to the neckline but should have gone a full inch. Also, my shirt’s neckline appears to be wider at the shoulders. I would add more to the entire front neckline for a bit more coverage.

Fabric: Great Missoni style knit from Fashionista Fabrics, sorry I bought all she had. My intentions were a wrap dress but not quite enough fabric. The black knit is matte jersey from a Loes Hinse swing skirt in my closet, I wasn’t wearing it anymore and decided to repurpose the fabric.

Conclusion: Fun top, love the print and the style. I wasn’t sure about the pattern when I started but thought why not. Cute top with many ways to change the basic design.

Front view by my Christmas tree

Pleat and piping

Back view with tie

To a good home

Anyone want some fabric? I have been organizing my fabric and planning future projects.

This pile of knits - some are scraps but some are yardage (approx 1 yard). Send me an email (under my profile) or leave a comment. The knits are gone

Okay, small stack of wovens - probably 1/2 yard or less of each. Same thing send me an email

Off to watch Fashionably Late.


Any suggestions?

What should I make with this rayon knit? I love it but not sure what to do with it. If it looks familiar, it is a jumper on a Threads pattern. I have 2 yards.


Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Ottobre Jeans FInally hemmed and Photographed

Remember these? Well, I finally had time to take some pictures. They have been finished and waiting for me!

Pattern Review

Pattern: Ottobre 5/2007 #10 5-Pocket Jeans

Description: The straight cut 5-pocket jeans are sewn from denim with contrast-color topstitching. The waistline of the jeans lieas only a few centimeters below the narrowest part of the waist. The pattern is designed for a slightly stretchy or non-stretch fabric. Design A has flapped back pockets and bootleg cut. Design B has a patch pocket and straight legs. I made design A.

Sizing: 34 to 44, I made a 38.

Instructions: The instructions are very good. I did reference Sandra Betzina’s fly instructions. I thought the instructions were in a nice order and had good details. The flap pockets were easy to figure out and the instructions were helpful. Note on page 24 of this issue is detailed instructions for the zipper placket and on page 25 a picture sequence to aid with the front hip pockets.

Likes/Dislikes: I love the style and the fit, once I helped the fit along! The only dislike is as noted the waistline lies only a few centimeters below the narrowest part of the waist. Think ½” under your navel. This is pretty high compared to RTW jeans and what I am use to wearing. The RTW jeans are coming up toward the waist more and this will be fine. I really love the look of my jeans and the fit.

Changes: I added 2-3/4” to the length. At 5’9”, I wanted to be safe. I did cut off the ¾” and hemmed up about ¾” and still can wear these with my high heel boots. The hips seem wider in proportion to the rest of the sizing. I felt like I was in a pair of jodhpurs (riding pants). I took them it approximately ½” from the waistline to the end of the front pocket. I also took in the CB at the waist another ½”. Next time, I will trace the hip area at a 36.

Fabric: Stretch denim at Joann’s in the clearance section, cost $2 a yard.

Conclusion: These are FANTASTIC pants, I love them, love them. I couldn’t be happier with the fit and construction. I am probably going to make more – let’s see a brown denim needs to be ordered. I might try making the rise not so tall, I will have to read up on how to do this.

Okay, here is the back:

Front - My top is Simplicity 4076 and it is from a remant at Joann's, 3/4 of a yard and I just barely got the top cut out. The remnant was 75% off, so this is my 67 cent top!


I wanted a slightly different wrap top and saw a review of Vogue 8379 on Pattern Review. Well, instead of buying another pattern I used

Butterick 4976 My fabric is from Fashionista Fabric and I really like my top. I didn't attach the black tie belt, my reasoning, I could put on a different belt or use my tie belt on another garment.

Anyone interested in a book? Leave a comment and tell me which one you might like and I will draw over the weekend. One book per person.

One more question - Bonnie, are we sewing some of the same items!!??!

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Sewing Gifts for my College Daughter

My college daughter is home for Thanksgiving break - yea!! The two of us went shopping and dinner on Friday night. "P" was mentioning all the gifts she needed for sorority sisters and other friends. Well, I have this wonderful Hooty Owl fabric leftover from other purses. The sorority's mascot is owls.
Warning: You will be tired of the Hooty Owl fabric and the same colorway after you look at all the pictures!

First for her roommate a new purse:

We added a yo-yo for decoration

A friend is having a baby, so a Hooty Owl diaper bag. I used just a bit of the owl fabric, had to be frugal, too many projects!

Back of bag- I like this fabric soooo much and it is all gone from my stash.

I had a few squares left from the purse so I embellished a burp cloth to be included with the diaper bag.

Notebook covers

Notecards (15) for one friend, this friend loves to write notes. Yes, there is owl fabric on about 5 cards! P already had it the stack tied in a cute ribbon and bow, I didn't want to undo it.

You can find tutorials for the notecards and notebooks at The Craft Apple. The diaper bag is Butterick 4111, it is OOP.

Hooty owl fabric can be purchased at Sew Mama Sew

P also made 5 pillows from polar fleece - can you guess what was appliqued on this fleece?

And I have a well-stocked sewing room, we didn't have to buy any supplies for these projects!! Can I rationalize this to hubby? The gifts were free, sounds good to me!
My daughter was very appreciative and called me awesome!

Now, if I could get through my Christmas sewing list as quickly. I don't think it will happen, basketball season starts tomorrow and we have 3 girls playing this year.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Jean Pocket

Picture of my Ottobre jeans - I just have to hem them. I will post more pictures and a review in the next few days.

Answering one question from my blouse - I used regular thread.

I'm getting DSL

I'm getting DSL
I'm getting DSL

Yes, I am excited. It was something Centurytel told me wouldn't happen for quite sometime. They called last night, and I said "get out of here", salesman chuckled. Then I said, "sign me up!"

November 26th is DSL day.

Now back to my regular scheduled podcasting and sewing

Monday, November 12, 2007

Another picture

Okay, shutter speed practice.
I worked a bit last night on my Ottobre jeans, messed up the fly front zipper, did some unsewing and then did it correctly. I will maybe get back to it on Wednesday.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Practicing my Pictures

Okay, I went out to practice what I learned at my photography class yesterday. First aperature:

Then a bit of photoshop.

I was at a covered bridge in our area - so inside the bridge

I little photoshop.

Okay, too much changing in photoshop? Stacy, if you are reading, what do you think?

Now back to the yahtzee game. Meredith just rolled 4 yahtzees in one game, too bad she is too young for the gambling boat, I do believe she is lucky tonight!

Saturday, November 10, 2007

New Jeans and Photography Class

I traced and cut out these jeans last night and then tonight started sewing them. I hope I chosen the correct size - I am loving the way they look so far. I have just finished the back pockets, lots of topstitching but boy they look good (if I do say so myself).

For 3+ years, I have owned a digital SLR camera. It takes wonderful pictures but if the user (me) knew more it could take fantastic pictures. The store hubby purchased my camera (Christmas present) offers classes and today I finally took one. SLR basics. I loved it - aperture and shutter speeds aren't so mysterious anymore. Next week is expanding on this for 45 minutes and then 45 minutes on Photoshop. I am there for that one and then the following week is tips for lowlight photography. Count me in. I am so excited.

Friday, November 09, 2007

Home Alone

Twins are at a Student Council event
17 year old daughter is at a friend's house
College girl is, well at college
Hubby is still at work.

Me home alone, thought it sounded great at 5 pm, but now it stinks (and I have 2 more hours of quiet). Too quiet, I have watched one movie, fast-forwarded through the beginning and end of another. Put up a review at Pattern Review, traced an Ottobre jeans pattern for me, and decided when I am an empty nester , I might have to work at Wal-Mart or something like that in the evenings. Especially when hubby is working late. Too quiet, too quiet.

Be careful what you wish for, it might come true? I did wish for that when my 4 were little and it was never, ever quiet.

McCall's 5479

Pattern: McCall’s 5479
Description: Misses’ Lined Jackets: A-line, cropped or high hip, lined jacket with back pleat has front and collar variations
Sizing: 4 to 20, I made a 10 and I really like the fit of this one.
Instructions: The instructions were very good and added some pretty good lining tips. I did pull out my Sandra Betzina’s Power Sewing Step-by-Step to help with the lining. I also bagged the lining as described in the book.
Likes/Dislikes: I like the retro feel of the jacket. I like the longer version and the weight is good for a car coat. I don’t like my plaid fabric – I really spent some time cutting this out. One layer at a time but as you can tell my back is a bit off. Oh, well, I move quickly, and have no friends who sew, just my internet pals will know.
Changes: Well, I started with the one inch extra length to the body and the sleeves. I had the coat partially finished, and put it on. My first observation – my neck isn’t long enough for this coat. I need to be Inspector Gadget (cartoon character) and crank my neck up to work the collar for this coat. As this is not going to happen, I folded the front of the collar down and sewed a button to keep it in place. Wow, her buttons don’t match – you are right, I didn’t have any matching navy buttons so these are for the pictures only. I will get matching buttons!

Next change, my sleeves felt like the wings. Others might feel differently but for me, this had to be fixed. I took inspiration from Sew Stylish Fall 2007 and added bands to the sleeves. I decided to cut the bands on the bias, I like this look. Yes, the buttons don’t match here either!
Fabric: A nice flannel coating from Joanns. Nice in the weight, not so nice in the plaid area.

Conclusion: I really love this jacket, now to find a gray turtleneck. I feel a bit better about my lining skills, now to work on the plaid skills! Fellow sewers, this is a quick garment to make and one you can make several changes to make it your own.

Front - I have something to fix on the bottom right (as you look at it) pulls a bit.



My dog enjoying the sun:

And the bittersweet I planted this spring - isn't it pretty?

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

McCall's 5471 and Butterick 5100 - these are winners.

Pattern Review

Pattern: Butterick 5100 Tunic
Description: Misses’ Tunic, Dress and Belt

Sizing: XS to XL, I made a small

Instructions: So simple, you just need to glance at them.
Likes/Dislikes: I love the look for the dress, tunic. I was hesitant to make the dress for my first garment, the tunic takes less fabric.
Changes: No changes.
Fabric: Beefier knit from Hancock’s, not much stretch.
Conclusion: Love this pattern, I like the look and will be on the lookout for some gray knit for the dress. I did just buy black boots so I NEED a dress to go with them!

Pattern Review

Pattern: McCall’s 5471
Description: Semi-fitted shirt has princess seams, mock front band, collar, collar band and shaped hem. Sleeve variations. I made view A.
Sizing: size 6 to 20, I made a 12 according to the finished measurements with the B cup. I will taper it to a 10 at the waist and hips next time.
Instructions: The instructions were very good and the shirt went together beautifully.
Likes/Dislikes: I love the style of the shirt, princess seams are so flattering. The cup sizes are especially nice in the pattern pieces, helps your fitting needs. The sleeve variations have some great choices. For a very fitted garment with many seams, the construction goes relatively quickly, my view with no cuffs helps.
Changes: I added my 1” to the sleeves and body. I might add another 1” to the body next time. I also added interfacing to the mock front band, the pattern didn’t call for it but I felt it was needed.
Fabric: Shirting from Joann’s, this is very see-through so the tunic or other garment will always be over my blouse.
Conclusion: Fantastic blouse, can’t wait to make another one(one that can be worn on its own!). I am so pleased with my finished garment. Check out my picture with the drawing and typed instructions. I made a template for the collar band and this is the best one I have sewn yet. I always have trouble with each side of the band looking the same, I think this might be the solution for that.

Bad expression - so a headless shot.


The great collar deserves a picture!

How I did the collar band.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Yea or Nay? Butterick 5101

Pattern Review

Pattern: Butterick 5101

Description: Wrap front top and dress have all-in-one sleeve, pleated collar extending into front neckline, side tie, sleeve length and hem variations. Mock wrap front skirt and straight leg pants have casing and elastic yokes.

Sizing: XS to XL, I made a Medium (12-14) according to the finished measurements on the pattern piece. Might should have made the small, jury is still out.

Instructions: The instructions were good, this is the first Butterick I can recall making in a very long time. There is a mistake at the beginning, the instructions state stitch the belt loop to the right front. It is suppose to be the left front, this is the line drawing and the marking on the pattern piece.

Likes/Dislikes: The all-in-one sleeve is a dislike. I realize it is called for on this pattern but
- I need to be more aware of fabric, not too good for a geometric print with a seam down the top of the sleeve
-This all one piece makes the layout tough, I barely sqeaked it out. I did match the side seams and the CB seam.
-Opposite of BWOF and being too low, this top might be too much coverage for the wrap style. Does that make sense? Hope so.

Changes: My usual 1” to the body and sleeves.

Fabric: Knit from Hancock’s

Conclusion: I like the wrap style but is it for me? Kaitlyn commented, “Mom, it makes you look fat!” I don’t know fat is the word but unflattering maybe more correct. I took a look at the two reviews on Pattern review, the cap sleeves is maybe cuter. Another one for opinions, cap sleeves or long sleeves?

Okay, what do you think? And no dressform, I am actually the model!

Notice the CB matches

Meredith wanted a silly pose, I had to be a good mom!

Meredith and I braved the cold for these pictures. I have 2 more garments to post on the blog but it is getting late, so maybe tomorrow.

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Cards and Scrapbooking

Pictures of Meredith's cards - one is a collage of different designs, and the grouping on the table is from our class. You can click on the pictures to see a larger size. My collage pictures have the flash glare, sorry. I think she did a terrific job, with the colors and decorative elements.
Bonnie, was impressed with 85 pages, well, don't be really impressed. I started scrapbooking with Creative Memories and I don't do lots of embellishment on each page, some paper, pictures (lots on a double layout), title and journaling. I just like my pictures on a book with the story about the pictures. I want the story to be saved for my kids and their kids. Also, for me, I love to look back on my pictures and the journaling, it starts a flood of memories and I just smile.
So, I am a speed scrapbooker, paper, adhesive, pictures and markers, then go to town! I do have to say for these 85 pages, I bought 3 small packages of 12 x 12 solid paper (less than $7) and then used what I had at home. I was really being creative the last few pages to find paper combinations but I did it. This would have to be the most economical set of pages I have ever done!

Saturday, November 03, 2007


Remember the 248 pictures I uploaded last Saturday? Well, Meredith and I pulled out all the scrapbooking stuff and spread it out over the dining room table. She made 30 cards and I did 85 scrapbook pages.

I tend to obsess over getting my scrapbooking done, especially when it is spread all over the place!!

Meredith loved her card class and is making cards for Christmas presents. She makes a variety of 10 and then ties a ribbon around the 10. I told her a perfect present, everyone needs cards.

I have been sewing 3 garments complete, well, I need buttons for one blouse. I love 2 of the garments and the other is okay but will do for work. I will take pictures as soon as I get the buttons.