A blog devoted primarily to garment sewing - with little splashes of quilting, crafts, and misc. sewing thrown in for variety.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Kimono Jacket







Simplicity 8172






I really like the back flounce on this jacket.




I used 2 different rayon challis prints I had in my stash.  They both came from Joann Fabrics.  I love the soft, flowing movement of the fabric.  And it's so cool on hot summer days.




I made a size large, with no alterations.  It's a little big on me.  If I make it again, I'll probably go down to a medium.



I added a small snap at the front seam line to hold it closed.



But I wear it open most of the time.



Wednesday, June 29, 2016

July sewing plans and June recap

July sewing plans
cream color topper
black maxi dress - Butterick 6330
wrap pants - Simplicity 4192 - rollover from a few months ago
wrap skirt - McCall's 5430 - rollover from a few months ago

draft a skirt muslin

pad out my dressform


June recap 
I finished everything on my list except for drafting the skirt muslin.
Nightgown
Put Riley's quilt together & let her start tacking it
Finish organizing fabric
Knit maxi dress - B6330
Black top - made 2

Draft skirt muslin - DID NOT


I also made 2 harnesses for Paisley - this has been on my list for several months.
And made McCall's 7242 dress from my May list; but unfortunately I don't like it.


Saturday, June 25, 2016

Harness for Paisley

Doesn't she look pretty in her new blue harness?
 

I prefer a harness instead of a collar for my dog, as the collar chokes her and she sometimes pulls it over her head.  But finding a harness that fits well and is easy to put on seems impossible.    So I went looking on-line and found some information for making one.

Here's my pattern.  You cut 2 for the inside and 2 for the outside.  Then sew together along the short side.



Here's what it looks like.   I used 2 rows of velcro for the fastening and added a d-ring to snap on the leash.



The fit is great on this one except for a little tightness where it goes around the inside of her legs.  For the next one, I'll make that area narrower. 




I used a sturdy quilting cotton and polyester quilt batting, and did some random machine quilting.   This worked great and makes the harness comfortable; it's not too thick and it's machine washable.   I made self-fabric bias strips to cover the edges.



I'm pretty happy with how it turned out.  And Paisley definitely likes it better than the one I bought.  Well, mostly because it's quicker to put on!  And now that I've got the fitting worked out, the next one should go together much faster.

Friday, June 24, 2016

Back Yoke Knit Top











After recently making McCall's 7284  in a woven fabric,  I decided I'd like a knit top with a back yoke.    So for this top, I used the back of the McCall's pattern and the  front of Vogue 9057.






















 

 
The fabrics I used:  The print is an ITY I bought on-line several years ago - I think from FabricMart; the black is a thin rayon blend from Joann Fabrics; and the purple lace came from Walmart.  I also used the black underneath the lace.






Saturday, June 11, 2016

Sewing Room Makeover

My sewing room had gotten so cluttered and out of control.  I've finally done a much needed clean up and reorganization.   It's not one of those pretty sewing rooms - it's a working room.

View from the door:



 
The main change I made was to take out a large desk that was in the corner and add two wire shelf units.   I had been storing fabric stacked on a countertop and in plastic totes underneath it.  And my machines were on the desk.  I moved the machines to the countertop and the fabric to the shelf units.   This is a much better arrangement.   Before, I didn't have access to my coverstitch or my mechanical machine without shuffling things around.    Now I have my machines set up and always ready to use.  Hopefully, I'll start using the coverstitch machine.
 
Moving out the desk meant giving up the drawers.  But, even though it was a nice desk, it just took up too much floor space.    Since the counter top just sits on a frame, I added some plastic drawer units underneath.   Since I don't have much natural light, I added an undercounter light and also a desk lamp.


For fabric storage, I bought 2 wire shelf units.  To protect the fabric from sunlight and dust,  I hung cloth shower curtains.  I could have made a curtain (I certainly have enough fabric), but it was just so much quicker and easier to use these.  They were very inexpensive and pretty.



I uncluttered and recovered my pressing/cutting table.





I made a small quilt design board.





I used a round belt hanger to hold my embroidery and quilt hoops and hung it on the end of the shelf unit.





I put hooks on the end of my cutting table to hang cutting mats


It's a small room, so I have to make every inch count.

I went through everything and got rid of things I don't use - some were passed to others and some went in the trash.  First, I went through supplies and notions: buttons, zippers, snaps, interfacing, craft supplies, etc.  Naturally, the biggest job was the fabric.  I gave away a lot of fabric.  And I threw away scraps and UFO's that were never going to get finished.  It feels good to let go of unnecessary things.

I still have things I want to do, such as: cover some boxes, drill holes in the counter for the cords to fit through, organize the contents of the drawers, etc.  And now that I can get to my dress form, I want to repad it.  Overall, I'm happy with the makeover and enjoy spending time in there.

One of my favorite things in my sewing room is this clock; it was a birthday gift from my Mom several years ago.




Monday, May 30, 2016

June plans & May recap

June
Nightgown - B6838
Put Riley's quilt together & let her tack it
Draft skirt muslin
Finish organizing fabric
Knit maxi dress - B6330
Black top


May recap
another harness for Paisley - NO
wrap pants - Simplicity 4192 - NO
2 summer nightgowns - 1 finished & plans for the next
dress - McCall's 7242 - NO
wrap skirt - McCall's 5430 - NO
cushions for porch - YES (made 4)
work on Riley's quilt - YES, sewn together & ready to tack

McCall's 7284 Top



This is a great pattern.



















I love the neckline - it's a nice faced V.   It's not too low and it lays nice and flat.


I also love that the gathered bodice has just the right amount of fullness - it doesn't look like a maternity top.  I love the band across the bottom. 




It wasn't quite as long as I thought it would be.  So instead of hemming it, I added a narrow strip to the bottom.





The armholes are small and high and when I inserted the sleeves, they were too tight.  So,   I made it sleeveless.  I put self-fabric bias binding on the armholes.



I changed the way the front yoke attaches to the lower bodice as I don't like trying to do inset corners.




I love sewing cotton woven tops.  And they are perfect to wear in hot, humid summer heat.

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Porch

I decided my porch needed a facelift, so I've cleaned and freshened it up.

I re-stained the porch swing, rocking chair, Adirondack chair and footstool, the sewing table, and the floor.


My rocking chair had a sad, flat, faded cushion that definitely needed to be replaced.  Here's the new and improved version:   I love my comfy new cushions!

 

 My sewing table was drab, so I re-stained the legs and covered the top with contact paper.






New throw cushion







 
And I got a new rug.   It really brightens up the porch!


Dining area:



Flowers:









Now, to enjoy sitting on it.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

May Plans

First a review of how I did in April
Start on summer handbag - started but didn't get very far
Harness for Paisley - made 1 but it's not quite right, so need to try again
Make wearable pants - made 1 pair
Work on Riley's & MIL's quilts - worked on Riley's


So overall, not too bad




For May, I want to sew:

another harness for Paisley
wrap pants - Simplicity 4192
2 summer nightgowns
dress - McCall's 7242
wrap skirt - McCall's 5430
cushions for porch
work on Riley's quilt

That's a lot and probably more than I can finish, but I can roll unfinished items over into June.

Sunday, April 24, 2016

McCall's 7286 Polka Dot Top



I bought this pattern on Thursday and made it the next day.   I bought it because of the raglan sleeves and the 2 hemline options.   I made the first view - with short sleeves and rounded hem.   I plan to make the other view too.


























I started with my usual size medium.  Since it's described as close-fitting and I like my tops loose through the middle, I started just below the bust and added a little to both the center and side seams.   I also made a swayback adjustment too.  The fit turned out perfect.  And the neckline fits so nice - just high enough and narrow enough. 





I love polka dots and love this fabric.  It's a very soft cotton knit that I got at Joann's a year ago and paid $2.50 yard.   I bought 4 yards and only used 1 yard for this top.  The white is a small piece I had left over from something else.




 
I wanted some basic summer tees that are pretty and fit better than RTW.   And I'm happy with how this first one turned out.  Now onto the next one.