Friday, July 29, 2016

Simplicity 2281 pattern hack and another alteration project finally completed!

This is a Cynthia Rowley Simplicity pattern that I lengthened into a blouse.  I have made the dress pattern before here, but wanted to just make a blouse this time.  I really like the neckline and the sleeves on this pattern.

This fabric was from my stash and I really have no idea what the fabric content is.  The top layer is a very sheer fabric - possibly polyester of some sort and the lining is either a rayon or a polyblend - although I'm leaning more towards the polyblend than the rayon.

The armhole on this version turned out quite a bit lower than the armhole on my dress.  Not sure why - maybe I stretched the fabric a little when sewing it.   It still covers the bra though so I'm ok.

The back is secured with just a tie at the top.  No need for a zipper.

To make the top, I extended the front and back bodice pieces about 12 inches and gave them a little bit of a flare on the sides.

I think it turned out quite cute!  I actually had someone at work say they thought it was the nicest thing I have ever made.  That's quite the compliment!!

Part of my Sew '16 Challenge was to rid myself of UFO's and this dress was one of them.  I only wore the dress maybe one or two times and really didn't care for it so I ripped off the top and had plans to just convert it to a skirt.  It's been hanging on the project wall for quite awhile and I can finally say, it's now finished!  

Doesn't it look much better as a skirt?  And, this blue blouse matches it perfectly.

Yeah!  Another UFO completed!!

Total yardage for the blouse = 2.5 yards
YTD stashbustin total = 62.875 yards

Happy sewing everyone!


Sunday, July 24, 2016

Kwik Sew 4154 and my Vogue Fabrics disappointment.....

This dress is Kwik Sew 4154 - View B.  I haven't sewn many Kwik Sew patterns but I really liked the tie in the front of the dress so I decided to give it a go.  

 I sewed a size Small straight out of the envelope with hardly any changes.  

The dress has a long slit in the front that ends at a very modest point.  The top of the V hits right on my collar bones and I debated about lowing it 3/4 inches.  I might do that if I make another version.  

As you can see here, the tie is only on the front of the dress

The dress is not meant to be lined, but I added a lightweight cotton for my lining.

I cut the armhole about 1/2 inch deeper all around the finished it with self-made bias tape.  I made a lot of this bias tape so I'm sure it will show up in future garments. 

The invisible zipper in the back fits very nicely.  

And - a round of applause here please - this is the first time I have finished a zipper entirely on the sewing machine - no hand sewing of the lining at all.  It looks quite nice, don't cha think!

And last, but not least the lining is edged with a bit of Rick Rack, because, I just couldn't resist really.

After wearing this dress to work one day and assessing the fit, there are a few changes I would make if I make this dress again:
1.  Definitely lower the top of the V-neck  by 3/4 inch. Every time I sat down, especially when driving the car, the top of the V's would ride up just enough to hit my neck and it was a little annoying.
2.  Change the direction of the bias skirt.  There is too much fabric in the center front, which ends up gathering between your legs a little bit when you walk.  I always wear a slip underneath dresses and skirts and the fabric still kept bunching with the slip.  A skirt being cut on the bias is usually a good thing because it results in such a nice drape, however, the bias falls right across the center front and back which means the side seams are on the straight of the grain and too much fabric ends up in the center front and back.  The straight of grain on the side seams means it doesn't stretch when sewn, but, the zipper ends up on the bias which is a little annoying.  So next time, I'll make the side seams lay on the bias instead of the center front and back.

The fabric for this dress came from Vogue Fabrics in Chicago.  The DH and I made a trip to Chicago in May of this year and I was very excited about going to their store.  We were staying in downtown Chicago so it was an hour train ride to get there.  Here I am outside the store with my travel purse and backpack in tow expecting to find all kinds of wonderful fabric to stuff in my sack and be on my merry little way. 

I had high expectations for the store since I have been to the Sew Expo in Puyallup, Washington several times and have enjoyed the Vogue Fabrics booth at the show (and spent lots of money at their booth too).  I was severely disappointed in the store.  Upon entering, it looked old, tired and dirty.  Fabrics were on rolls and stacked on top of each other on big tables and it was hard to see what was buried underneath the pile.  Not to be discouraged by bad first impressions, I plowed on.  After almost tripping on the loose floor tiles and the uneven floor, it wasn't getting any better.  The staff were extremely unhelpful - I actually had a shopper stop me and ask for help because they couldn't find someone in the store to help them!

They obviously save their best fabrics for the Sew Expo show.  After about 30 minutes, the DH came back in to check on me and he could tell I was disheartened.  I had nothing in my hands yet and was struggling to find something to buy.  I didn't want to make that long of a journey and leave empty handed!  I gave another quick look and ended up finding 3 pieces - this nice dot cotton that you see above, a bamboo tie dye knit and a light blue rayon with some sort of print that reminds me of hard boiled eggs.  That was it!  My total bill was only $50.00 which is not bad, but I was really hoping to fill up my backpack with prized fabrics.  Oh well - at least I can check that store off of my list and know not to go again.

So - since this dot fabric is relatively new, I'm not including it in the stashbustin' total.  The lining however I will count.  Here are my YTD stats:

Total yardage for this dress = 2.75 yards
YTD Total = 60.375 yards

That's it for me today!  Happy sewing everyone!

Friday, July 15, 2016

Catching Up!

As you can see - I made this skirt and top back in May as part of the Me Made May Challenge, but am just now getting around to posting it! As the label says - the blouse is Simplicity 1716 - View E and the skirt is Anna Maria Horner's Study Hall skirt.

I love the drape of the neckline on this blouse.  It's a nice cowl neck, but it doesn't fall down to your bellybutton when you bend over.  It has two pleats on each side of the front near the shoulder that help enhance the draping effect.  

The top is a little on the long side, but it gathers nicely around the waistline.

There is a center back seam too, although it's hard to see in this picture.

It has small sleeves that overlap at the bottom.  The armhole is a little on the low side, but it does still manage to cover up my bra when wearing.

The skirt is made from 3 different quilting cottons - all from my stash believe it or not!

I added a trim that is edged with rick rack on both sides to the bottom piece.

The box pleats open nicely when walking too.

This skirt and top used up another 4 yards from the stash bringing the YTD total to = 57.625 yards!  Whoop!  Whoop!

Just a quick post today.  I'm working on a really cute Kwik Sew dress and hope to finish it this weekend.  And, my July MAGAM Challenge vest is coming along nicely - but I'm on a brief hold with this project as I'm waiting for my color matched brass zipper to be delivered!

That's it for me.  Happy sewing everyone!


Sunday, July 10, 2016

Opposites Attract!

The theme for July's Make A Garment a Month Challenge is "Opposites".  A suggestion from yours truly!

Opposites can take on many different interpretations - opposite season; opposites on the color wheel; plaids and stripes, etc - you get the idea.  My opposite is going to be opposing seasons.

In my part of the world we are currently in mid-summer - the perfect time to make a quilted winter vest!  I will be using Vogue 8757 as my pattern.  This is a jacket pattern, but I'm going to turn it into a vest instead.

I think the line drawing gives you a better idea of the actual jacket/vest.

You might recognize the main fabric I'll be using for the vest.  The fabric on the far right is a leftover piece of purple quilted fabric from a Minoru Jacket I made a few years ago.  The middle fabric is a satin cut-off from a prom dress alteration and the fabric on the left is a nice piece of cotton from the Robert Talbott outlet in Carmel Valley.

You might also recognize the piece I'll be using for the lining.  This was a top I made from the remnants of the Minoru Jacket lining - New Look 6245.  I was never really thrilled with this top and it's been hanging on the alteration rack for quite awhile.  I really like the print on this satiny fabric.

So for this project - I'll have quite a few iterations of the theme "opposites" going on:

- Opposite Season - making something for Winter when my current season is Summer.
- Old versus New - turning something old into something new again by reusing the old top for the lining.
- Zipper versus Snap - I'll be changing to a zipper closure instead of a snap closure as suggested in the pattern.

If I think of any other opposite in the sewing process - I'll be sure to mention that in my final project post.

Happy Opposites Sewing everyone!