Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Last sewing projects for July and Machines are in for a cleaning

I wanted to make a couple more tops this morning. My Babylock serger had a different idea, I could not get the lower looper to thread, I think the air threading was clogged. So with the day off work, the twins at basketball camp and the morning free, I found some sewing to do. Recently, I had purchased the Versatile bag ebook from Sew Spoiled. I thought I would make a couple of purses.

I made 3 from this very cute pattern, which by the way is great.

Here is the first one:

The second one, I had made the piecing earlier with plans for a different purse. I decided it would be perfect for this purse:

Side view:

I thought this purse needed something on the flap but the fabric didn't look like it needed a flower pin, so I dug out this vintage button, just right.

Here is the last one, I omitted the flap, added a couple of inches to the bag and added some ruffles.
A fun morning in the sewing room.
The afternoon, I took my serger to the Babylock dealer, it might be 2 weeks, they are very busy. Please no, I want to pick it up sooner.
My sewing machine went to the Viking dealer, for a bit of maintenance and cleaning.
So no sewing for me for a bit.

Winner from drawing on my 400th post

I used and #3 was the chosen winner.

so Kelli send me your mailing address and I will send the prize your way.

Thanks all for the comments on my latest shirt sewing craze, I appreciate it.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Pattern Review - Burda 5/2009 #110

Description: This blouse is 110A and 110B. 110A is on page 10 of the May 2009 issue and its description is: Delicate batiste, waist darts and an empire seam beautifully transform a shirt into your favorite summer blouse.

110B is on page 23 and this description: Be it walking through the desert or cycling to work, this shirt blouse can take quite a beating and yet still look great. Front and back waist tucks give it a most interesting shape.

The only difference I see between the two is the cutting layout. 110B has you cut the front band and cuffs on the bias.

Sizing: 36 to 46, I made a 38

Instructions: The instructions were very good, especially for Burda Magazine. I did use my notes from my shirtmaking class on Pattern Review to help with the sleeve vents.

Likes/Dislikes: Well, I am on the empire shirt kick, so this was an interesting blouse with wonderful details. I really like how it looks on me, much better than on the dressform.

I also liked how well the entire blouse went together, sleeves eased perfectly, everything matched up , it was a joy to sew.

Changes: I planned on cutting the front band on the bias, but due to fabric limitations, I cut it on the crossgrain which is fine for this blouse.

The only change was adding 1” to the sleeve length, well, next blouse I will be adding another inch. It just is a bit short, notice all the models have the sleeves rolled up, this might be the reason.

Fabric: A lightweight linen from Joann’s, pretty color but very see-through, I will have to wear it with a cami or use the 110B look.

Conclusion: A very pretty blouse with unusual styling. I am going to see how much I wear this one and if I like it half as much as I think I will, then I will make 2 more. One in white and one in cream.

Bodice gathers and tuck details.

back tucks

Front view

Side view of the front, the color is most true in this picture.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Kwik Sew 3419

Description: Misses’ close-fitting pullover tops have empire waist on front with gathers’ under bust, and neckline finished with facing. View A and B have a deep v-neckline. View C has a scoop neckline with a bias-cut ruffle from contrast sheer fabric; ruffle edge is not finished.

Sizing: XS to XL. I made a small

Instructions: The were great, many drawings and good explanations.

Likes/Dislikes: I liked the empire waist, especially after reading Inside Outstyle blog
a link provided by Brigitte. I thought I would follow the advice of the blog and try some empire waists for my H body type. I really liked the scoop neckline, but not that deep.

Changes: This KS pattern reminds me of a BWOF pattern, very plunging neckline. I added 1-1/2” to the neckline. Also, I didn’t do the facings, yuk, facings on a knit? I used a simple binding for the neckline. I also added a bit of length to the bodice. Another change, the gathers on me were a bit to the sides of the bust, I moved them to the center a bit more.

On my first one, I added a fabric bow. Mainly to cover up where I started my coverstitching, I just wasn’t thinking and started that in the front. The bow does the trick.

One more change, I made a small on the last two but I had to take a bit more in from the back to make the top fit a bit better. You might measure the pattern pieces, to check and see if a smaller back piece might work better for your top.

One more note on change. I do Anne's trick for measuring the binding: Measure the pattern pieces with the tape measure on the side. Measure the front, subtract seam allowances, write that on the front pattern piece. Measure the back, write that amount less seam allowances and write that on the back pattern piece. On the front, I add these two numbers together subtract what I think is needed for the binding. Now this is number that can change. Some knits just don't have the recovery, I take a bit more off to pull the neckline in. Another way I judge this amount, I quarter the neckline and the binding. Pin these to each other, if the binding doesn't stretch much, then I unpin and take more off the binding. Hope that makes sense.

Fabric: I have made this 3 times. The first one is my ultimate favorite. I started out with a Medium, had it traced from a few years ago. I shouldn’t have been in such a hurry and traced my correct size. I had to unsew this one several times to get the size right. The fabric is an incredible 90% cotton 10% lycra, you can get it here at Needle Nook. I called Anne to get more fabric of this content but this was the only one at the time. Darn, but it saved me money, I probably would have purchased tons!

The second top is from a knit (thin, not much recovery) from Denver Fabrics, I made a small, taking in a bit at the back, this knit stretched all out of shape. I was disappointed but thought it would be fine for work. I washed it in hot water and a dried it. That did the trick , I wore the top last night and it fit perfectly, hurray!

The third top is from a knit I purchased locally, another great fit. The fabric is nice but not as nice as the first.

Conclusion: A great top and yes the blog was right, the empire waist does look great. Plus this Kwik Sew is a winner. I see several more in my future. In fact, I have 2 solid knits on the sewing table for this pattern.

Here is top #1, it is hard to see the empire lines on this fabric, you will be able to see them on the last 2 tops.

Here is a picture on me, look my eyes are open:

Then the girls were making fun of me all posing the same, so I did a silly model pose, and they snapped the picture and then burst laughing. I thought it was pretty good so I posted it.

Here is top #2. Yesterday it was cool here and cloudy and windy, 70's in July, unbelievable. Hubby and I went out shopping for a new couch. I added a turquoise cardigan and a belt, it looked very cute. You can see the empire waist in this fabric.

Top #3, another winner

Today I gave the girls these choices, paint #3 dd's bedroom, take the bikes and ride the Katy Trail. That was their choice, then hubby came in from the farm chores and added mow the yard, that met with groans, ha ha. It does need to be done, we leave on Thursday for vacation. Hurray, beach here we come.
Don't forget to read July 18's post, there is a chance to win something. My 400th post.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Kwik Sew 3523 and 400th post

Description: Misses’ tops and tunic have scoop neckline with gathers at center front and center back. Armholes and neckline are finished with narrow bindings. View A is tunic style with contrast empire inset and bindings. View B is gathered to wide band at bottom edge. View C is hemmed at bottom edge.

Why I bought this pattern: Oldest daughter had purchased a tunic from Express just like the one on the model, I thought I would make her a couple more tops. I never seemed to get around to that. While looking through all my patterns, I rediscovered this pattern and thought the tank top would be great for the summer.

Sizing: XS to XL

Instructions: Like I always say, Kwik Sew instructions are terrific. I do wish they would update their pattern envelopes, probably would help with pattern sales.

Likes/Dislikes: I like the look of the tank top but with this pattern you get a few extras to make the tank top a bit more stylish. I also like using up my less than 1 yard pieces of knits.

Changes: The first time I made this in a medium and it was too big. The second time I made a small, much better and then the third time, I made the small again and decreased the bottom band by 1”.

Fabric: Three knits leftover from other projects.

Conclusion: I cute tank top that is perfect for hot summer days. Since it is loose through the middle it seems to be cooler and more comfortable in Missouri’s heat and humidity.

I might make the tunic for the twins, I have the blue and white pointelle (from yesterday's Jalie pattern post) and then some white ribbing. This would be a very cute tunic and I think it would look great on them. I better ask first, before I sew it up.

Okay here is the pink one on me. Three pictures were taken by dd#3 and in each one I had my eyes closed! So no head shots this time.

Side view:

Front, I didn't have enough fabric to bind the top with the pink/white knit, so I used white ribbing. This is the one I took 1" off the band.

This is the first one, wrong size, knit doesn't have much recovery. As a result, this top will always be worn under a cardigan or jacket. I do like the colors of this knit. I am going to try to wash it in hot water and then a hot dryer, that should help some.

Last one, I had enough fabric to cut the binding on the bias.

Podcast is up, yea!! Off to sew a BWOF blouse. Hubby is working on the Habitat for Humanity house in our town, then we are heading for some shopping this afternoon. I am looking for a couple of chairs, we will see.
In honor of my 400th post, I am going to have a giveaway. It will be a surprise, either a book or magazine from my library of sewing books. So leave a comment, let's see, what is your favorite garment I have made. I will draw next Tuesday. Thanks all for reading and commenting.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Knit Shirts

I have been making many new knit shirts for myself the last few days. Especially, today, the twins are at a basketball camp, hubby worked until 6:30 and I had sewing time from 3 p.m. on. Here are some pictures of a few, all these garments are from patterns I have made before and you can find the information on my blog.

First Simplicity 4076, I need to count how many times I have made this pattern. Here it is in basic white knit from Needle Nook. I added 4" to the hem, wanted it longer to wear with my BWOF lace jacket , which I haven't worn yet. Also, I want to make the vest from July's issue, thought a longer shirt was needed in my wardrobe.

Next, Jalie 2806 and you can find the original review here

This is a pointelle knit from Denver Fabrics. I made the pleat by sewing wrong sides together and sewing it a bit longer and omitting the extra foldover fabric part.

Here is a close-up of the pleat:

The flutter sleeves from the pattern. I really like the look of this sleeve.

Then another knit from Denver Fabrics:

A better picture of the flutter sleeve:

I have several more to show you but they need reviews, so I will do those one a day. Plus a pair of shorts to get photographed.
Now off to edit a podcast, yes, I did get one recorded.
Thanks all for the kind comments on dd#4's picture, she is quite fun and her personality was showing through in the tankini pics.
Lindsay, you had asked about the precut knits. Well, the Bernina store does not carry any fabric but she buys 1 to 2 yard cuts from another Bernina dealer and just sells them in these lengths. A way for her to have a selection of knits without purchasing bolts of fabric.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Another Tankini

Here is my review of this tankini at this blog post so if you want more information check it out. For now, here is dd#4 in her new tankini. She was being very silly and I couldn't get her to put the towel down, claimed it was a backdrop so my picture would be better. I am not buying it.

Fabric is from Needle Nook.

I have been sewing several knit tops with plans for several more this weekend, so I will try to get some pictures of those. Also, I am hoping to get time for a podcast this weekend. The twins have discovered facebook and the games and quizzes, so my time on the computer has been very limited.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Vogue Dress picture and Bags

I taught 3 classes this week at my friend's quilt shop. Wednesday night was the first class for the Anna Tunic, 3 people in this class and it was so fun. We will finish it up this Wednesday.

Saturday, we had Bag Day. One class in the morning and another in the afternoon. Busy and long day but many cute purses were made.

I thought I would make the two purses again, since it had been a couple of months since I made the class sample. I used fabric I had at home.

Here is one - It is called the Triple Treat Bag:

Then the Bungalow Bag:

I added a flower:

Here is the Vogue dress on, I really like it, don't know what I am doing with the face!!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Lovely Blog Award

I am behind on posting about my award. Emily awarded me this on June 17th.
Emily is an 8 year old learning to sew, that is so exciting. Thank you Emily for the award, I appreciate it.
Here are the rules:
The rules to pass the award on to others is as follows:
1) Accept the award, post it on your blog together with the name of the person who has granted the award, and his or her blog link.
2) Pass the award on to 5 other blogs that you’ve newly discovered. Remember to contact the bloggers to let them know they have been chosen for this award.
I am passing it to anyone who has not received this award. I read so many lovely blogs, I can't name just 5. So thanks all for posting and sharing.

McCall's 5391

Pattern Description: Shorts in three lengths and belt. Shorts have mock fly, slanted pockets, carrier and hem variations. Shorts D have a beltPattern

Sizing:4 to 20, I made a 10.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?I made view B and they looks very similar to the pattern envelope.Were the instructions easy to follow?The instructions were good, I did follow Sandra Betzina's fly zipper instructions from Power Sewing.What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?I like the look of the shorts with the length choices, also the tab on the cuff was a nice feature.

Fabric Used:Linen

Pattern Alterations or any design changes you made:I had to let out the CB seam and I still am not pleased with the look of the back. It felt tight in the seat, possibly not enough room in the crotch depth.

Suggestions are welcome to fix this.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?I did sew these again in a khaki twill. I changed the crotch to match my favorite pants pattern, Ottobre. I thought that would be the perfect solution, no, didn't work that well. Changed the crotch back to the McCall's pattern, fit okay, can work with that. Checked the fit, added the waistband and guess what - 1" from snapping. I don't know what I did, but I wasn't going to fix it. The first pair fit okay but not great enough to rework the second pair. Part of the fit and style might be my mid-40's body. Others have really liked the fit of the shorts, so I think if you like the look of the pattern envelope, do try this pattern. Shorts take such a small amount of fabric, you aren't out too much money if they don't work out.

Conclusion: I like my linen pair quite a bit. I was heading out to work and grabbed the camera for hubby to take my picture. He asked, why? I made my shorts and want some pictures for my blog and to put up a review. He was impressed, couldn't believe I had made them. That is a good thing, so I will take the success with the linen pair, forget about the oops with the khaki pair and I traced a BWOF short pattern to try one more pair of shorts. We will see.

The tab at the cuff. Hubby isn't the best with the camera, I had all sorts of interesting shots to weed through!

Sunday, July 05, 2009

Vogue 8571

Description: MISSES' DRESS: Pullover dresses A, B in two lengths have bodice front and back gathers, self-faced neck band and flared skirt. A: length is mid-knee. B: length is mid-calf. The dress is designed for 2-way stretch fabric.

Pattern Sizing: Combinations: BB(8-10-12-14), F5(16-18-20-22-24). I cut a size 10 and I am happy with the fit.

Instructions: The instructions were very easy to follow. The gathers were easy to sew and really set off the bodice.

Fabric: A knit from a local sewing machine dealer. I just found out she is carrying pre-cut knits, not very many but I found this wonderful blue at her shop on Thursday. The only problem with the pre-cut fabric is I ran a bit short for the front band lining. In the end, I had to piece this section.

Changes: I added 1" to the bodice front and back.

Conclusion: We just came back from a short vacation and will be heading to the beach at the end of this month. I noticed several cute dresses on vacation and thought I would like a knit one for our next trip. The bodice and empire waist, I really like. Not sure the flared skirt is for me. I will wear it a couple of times and see. I can always take it in or make the dress into a top.

This dress is super easy to make but I think the design speaks "wow!" So if you need a quick dress for a summer event, try this pattern.

The back has a bit of billow, as you can see here:


Dress front:

Friday, July 03, 2009

Kwik Sew 2790

Pattern Review

Kwik Sew 2790

Description: The suits have racing backs, a low back waists, crotch lining, and all of the outside edges are finished with elastic. View B has front panels and piping made from contrast fabrics.

Sizing: 8 to 14

Instructions: As always, Kwik Sew instructions are fantastic. This suit is a great one-piece and is easy to sew. The instructions are in concise with an easy to understand order.

Likes/Dislikes: A conservative one-piece suit with a bit of flair, especially with the cute back view. Also, a nice pieced option, which is a great way to use up scraps of swimsuit fabric.

Changes: I have had this pattern for years, probably started making the twins this suit in the size 8. Anne at Needle Nook suggested this change. Take a look at the back view, look how high cut the racing back appears to be. Anne told me it would be very hard to get on and off, she was exactly right. I would not have noticed this but I am so appreciative she pointed this out. I redrew the back piece with more of a v-shape and making sure the straps didn’t get too skinny. Remember you will have 3/8” elastic on each side of the strap.

I added 1” to the body of the suit for the girls’ height.

Also, I use Anne’s recommendation for elastic, especially with the legs. Measure the pattern pieces, subtract seam allowances. Front leg measurement, subtract 1”, back leg measurement subtract 3”. This really helps the suit stay in place. Great tip.

Fabric: Swimsuit fabric from, is was on sale so I added it to my cart. The girls aren’t crazy about the print but they said it was fine. They like to wear one-piece suits when they really want to swim, race and dive.

Swimsuits are so easy and quick, plus, they save you sooooo much money.

Here you can tell how I reshaped the racing back.

All together the girls have 4 new swimsuits.

Other sewing for me, I have made 5 new knit tops. I will get pictures after this weekend, family reunion tomorrow at my house.

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Back from Branson

We just got back from Branson, hubby had business meetings. The girls and I did some shopping, went to a show and spent a day at Silver Dollar City. It was wonderful to have a short vacation. The girls found great buys at Charlotte Russe, me, I discovered I need to sew more for me. I made a top the night before we left and I love it. Pictures after I get it washed!

Now that we are back, it is time to catch up:

Me with the flowers, dd#2 did a fantastic job watering all my pots.

Here is one bed:

The phlox in full bloom, oh this smells so good. I like to cut several vases for the house.

All my new daylillies, a neighbor thinned her plants last year and brought me many bulbs last fall.


Hubby with help from my dad, moved cattle.

Hay bales to move, the girls and hubby are working on this now. Me? Laundry and heading to the sewing room. I repeat, I need clothes.