Friday, February 27, 2015

February MAGAM Challenge Complete!

I am thrilled with my finished February MAGAM garment!  This month's theme was Frankenpattern - which basically means either marrying two patterns together or changing an existing pattern in someway.  I opted to combine two different patterns together.

Using the top portion of Simplicity 1607 and the bottom portion of New Look 6224 - this is what I came up with.

I didn't care for the original skirt that came with the top portion of this dress and think this circular style looks much better.

I didn't start out very good on the top portion from the beginning.  As you can see below, I completely missed the mark on lining up the celtic motifs at the side seams.  I knew this would drive me crazy so luckily I had enough fabric to cut a new back piece.  

The straps weren't as hard to assemble as they look either.  Below are all of the strap pieces cut out, interfaced and lined up at the shoulder seams.  After reading other reviews on, I opted to interface every single piece instead of just the underside of each one.  Then, on each side seam, I wrote in pencil either "F" for Front or "B" for Back.  This came in very handy during the construction process.

After sewing the shoulder seams together and trimming, you then sew the straps to their corresponding facing piece.  A trick I do is to use a red pin at the starting and stopping points of sewing.  As I'm sewing along, I know when I come to a red pin that some sort of "action" is needed - either turn a corner, start or stop.  In this case, the red pins indicated "stop sewing".  You can see below my red pins.

Here's one of the straps sewn together.

Next - trim, turn and press.

Next, sew the other shoulder seam together.  Once this is sewn, you interlace the other strap thru this one and sew the same shoulder seam on that piece.  Then, sew the straps to the bodice piece and your top portion is almost done!

I was quite impressed with the twirl factor - not too bad!

Back view looks pretty good.  I could have taken it in a smidgen, but I didn't want it too tight so I think this is almost perfect.

Close-up of the front.

Close-up of the back.

The outside of the dress looked so pretty, I decided to make the inside look pretty too.  I thought the sharp contrast of the blue lining on the bodice with the white lining on the bottom looked too similar to Snow White, so I decided to add a little bit of trim between the two to soften it up a little bit.

This trim has been in my stash for a long time and I only had an inch left over after hand sewing it on.

The bottom of the skirt lining didn't want to miss out on the fun, so I sewed some Rick Rack to it too.

And last, but not least, I sewed some plain white bias binding to the edges of the bodice near the zipper.

So - onto the stash bustin' total for this dress:

3 yards for the outside
3 yards of lining
1.5 yards practice muslin
Total of 7.5 yards for this dress alone.

Yearly total to date of stashbustin is:  15.75 yards.  Not too shabby!

That's it for today!
Happy Sewing everyone!

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

February FrankenPattern Muslin completed

I've completed the top half of the practice muslin for the February MAGAM Challenge and I think there might be something wrong with me.  After reading other reviews for this garment on - the majority of the people commented that the straps are a nightmare - I didn't think they were that big of a deal personally.  I really think there might be something wrong with my sewing brain!  Hopefully I won't mess up the straps on the actual finished product!

Here's a pic of the practice muslin of just the top portion (with yoga pants):

I used a size 12 for the bust and shoulder area and tapered to a 14 at the waist.  I did need to pin out a little over 5/8" at the center front, which I will transfer over to the final garment.  Other than that, I think it fits ok.  I did make a small boo boo on the front strap (sewing from the notch instead of the dot), but I was able to still pin it together in the muslin to get a test fit.  My birds are upside down on this front straps I know - I was trying to squeeze out the straps from the little bit of scrap fabric that I had and it doesn't matter here anyways.

Here's the side view.  Doesn't look to attractive with that little bit of skin flapping over the front near the armhole.  I was very surprised that it wasn't too high in the under arm area though.

Back view.  I might deepen the darts a little more on the finished garment, but I'm not sure yet.  I plan to fully line the entire dress and the weight of the skirt with the lining, might just be enough to even out those wrinkles along the back.  Also - I plan to underline the top portion with white and line the top with a blue rayon lining fabric from the stash. The skirt portion will be lined with a white polyester lining from the stash as well.  I did a test of the blue versus the white behind the main fabric and the blue was enough to just darken those Celtic knots a little too much - hence the reason for the white underlining.  No big deal - just 3 more pieces of fabric to just out.

That's it for now - now I need to cut this puppy out and start sewing!

Happy Sewing Everyone!


Monday, February 16, 2015

February MAGAM Decided

The "Frankenpattern" theme for this month's MAGAM Challenge is one I suggested to SarahLiz as a possible theme for the future.  I'm very excited that it came up so quickly!  But alas, it has taken me awhile to decide on what my Frankenpattern would actually be. After sorting thru my patterns, I have determined what my little pattern monster project will be for this month.

Since Mother Nature seems to have forgotten to bring Winter to California this year, we are skipping from Fall to Spring.   As a result, I'm going to combine the top of Simplicity 1607:

With the bottom of New Look 6224:

For the top - I'm going to eliminate the waistband and instead lengthen the top portion about an inch. I like the skirt on the New Look pattern better than the drop yoke, 80's style skirt on the Cynthia Rowley pattern so I'll be using that as the bottom half.

I've read other reviews on that the straps on the Simplicity top can be a bit of a nightmare so I'll keep that in mind with my practice muslin

Here's the fabric I've selected (from the stash of course!):

This is a Celtic print cotton that I picked up at a quilt guild garage sale last year.  There is about 8 yards of it so if I do mess up on the straps, at least there will be enough left over to try again.

That's it for today - wish me luck with those straps!

Happy Sewing everyone!


Saturday, February 7, 2015

Vogue 8817 - A Dress?

My last Tilton garment was a bit of a flop, but this one has turned out great!  Yippee!  I have actually made this pattern previously, but this time, I decided to turn it into a dress.

Using View C of Vogue 8817 - I tried to squeek out as much of the leftover black and white circle fabric that I had to make the bottom portion of the dress.  My grainlines are not at all correct on these two pieces, but that was the only way I could get the most length out of my leftover scraps.  After hanging on the dress form for a few days, you can see that the back is a little higher than the front.

I took in the sides about 1 inch on each side and then added two bands to the bottom of the dress to make it a little longer and voila! I think it turned out pretty cute!

I purchased this necklace on a vacation in Chipping Campden, England two years ago and have never worn it.  Finally I have something to wear it with!

Back view.  It's a very roomy dress, but it is super comfortable and I can't wait to wear it to work next week.

And yes - this is another stashbusting project.  This adds another 2.75 yards to the total for this year bringing me up to 8.25 yards sewn so far.

Happy Sewing everyone!


Wednesday, February 4, 2015

New Ironing Board cover inspired complete room redo!

Thank you to Winter Queen who was the inspiration behind this update.  Her ironing board cover was so adorable, it inspired me to update my old, dirty cover - which lead to a complete room revamp!

Let's start with the old ironing board cover - well worn and in desperate need of a redo.

Actually, the whole room could use an update dontchathink?!?!

I was't wild about the border print anymore (sorry for the pun but I couldn't resist).

And you'd think after 10 years, I could have corrected the height of the canvas on the right.  

 The organizer could use a bit of organizing....

And the rug runner needs to run somewhere else.

Out comes the Tate Gallery London shirt (my one and only painting shirt.  In fact, the husband gets nervous when he see's it surface because he knows a change in coming and his handiwork might be required).

First, I need some fun fabric for the ironing board.  This has been in the stash for a few years just waiting for the perfect project and this is it.

Using the old cover as a pattern, I folded it in half and added 2.5 inches to the sides.  

Next, serge the edges, fold over 1/2" and sew around to make a casing for the cording.  Thread in some old cording and add a cordlock, 

And voila!  A super cute new cover!  

But I couldn't put that cute ironing board back into that old room so I needed to find some new stuff. Here comes some new artwork courtesy of The Salvation Army thrift store.  

I didn't pay the $95.00 as indicated on the original price tag.  It was at Salvation Army for $24.50 and that particular day, it was 50% off, so I paid $12.25.  What a steal!

It had a few scratches on the side that I sanded out and spray painted the frame orange.

The room needed some color so I got to work.   Stripping off the wallpaper border, patching holes and taping tight spots.

The dear husband had a job too.  I wanted some new pendant lighting directly above the ironing board so I can actually see what I was ironing.

Here's one of the lights fitted.  And my new white and green paint on the walls. 

And the finished product!  Much for light and bright in here! 

Turned out the organizer wasn't working anymore so I moved this artwork from elsewhere in my house to here and it works out great!

A new fun rug and we're all done!

Doesn't it look great!  The dear husband installed a new outlet just above the ironing board too that incorporates some USB plugs so I can charge my phone in here too!

So of course this is going to be a stashbusting project too.  This adds another 1.25 yards to the total for a YTD total of 5 yards!  Yippee!!

Happy Sewing everyone!


Monday, February 2, 2015

January MAGAM Done - Thank Goodness!

I am happy to say this garment is finally done and it was a dud!

I had high hopes for Vogue 8834 a Katherine Tilton pattern, but was sadly disappointed.  Of course I opted not to make a muslin first and instead just decided to dive right in.  If I had made a muslin, I would have thrown both it and the pattern away without further thought.

The back of the garment was fairly roomy - not huge, but enough to move around and be comfortable.

However the front just pulls at the bustline - and I'm not overly busty to start with!

The collar on the pattern is supposed to be just a single layer with the wrong side of the fabric showing, but I opted to do a doubled collar instead.  Of course I spent extra time lining up all of those lines and trimming away the excess material on the double turned facing.....

See - look how well the lines intersect!

Only to be disappointed with the front - My lines are off just enough to be annoying.  My mish-mash of buttons adds a little interest to the front.

But that big floppy collar lays funny and your bra strap ends up showing.

And the sleeve has just too much in the back of the arm.  See that extra fabric just sticking out in the back?

As you can tell, this top is not a winner for me and I'll probably never wear it.  It was so annoying with the collar flopping everywhere and constantly readjusting it just for these photos, that it would probably drive me crazy if I had to wear it all day!  Oh well - you win some and you loose some!

Note to self - next time - make a muslin!

One good thing did come out of this experience though - it was yet another stashbuster and this one consumed 2 & 5/8 yards bringing my YTD total to 4.25 yards.  A slow start to the year, but it all counts!

That's it for me today - onto the next project that will hopefully be a better one!

Happy Sewing everyone!