Monday, January 21, 2013

Emma's Apron

 My 9 r. old granddaughter, Emma, made an apron.

Emma & I love to sew, and when we get to spend the day together, that's what we do.  She also likes to cook and didn't have her own apron, so she decided to make one. She looked through my stash and picked a "tie-dye" fabric and a solid yellow for accent.  These are both quilting type cottons.    Since I already have Butterick pattern 5426, that's what we used.  We made a combination of views B & C.  And because it's sized for adults, I removed a little here and there to make it fit Emma.

I had to help her with some of the sewing, but she did most of it.  I think it turned out pretty cute!  Most importantly, she likes it.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

TNT Patterns

I've decided to add another item to my list of sewing goals for this year.  I want to develop a TNT (tried and true) pattern for the basics in my wardrobe. After thinking about what I wear most of the time, I came up with this list of 10.
1. Basic knit top (with neckline & sleeve variations)
2. Cardigan
3. Woven pull over top
4. Princess seam button down blouse
5. Loose fit button down shirt
6. Vest
7. Boot-leg trousers
8. Knit pants (slim fit & flare leg)
9. Woven pants (pull on style for linen, etc.)
10. Knit dress

This will be a big job, but once it's done, it will make sewing more enjoyable.   And quicker too since fitting a new pattern can take a lot of time. Wish me luck!

Friday, January 11, 2013

Tablecloth Skirt

My last post was for a tablecloth and this one is for a "tablecloth" skirt. Ha! That's totally coincidental.

I've wanted to make this skirt since I saw on Shams' blog
Thank you for sharing your pattern!

I followed her instructions as to size and sewing directions except I hemmed mine last thing.  I was almost finished with it and realized it was too long.  So I took 2" off just the long points. 

And now that I've made it, I love it! 

It fits great, hangs so nicely and it swishes when I walk :)

Since it takes over 3 yards of fabric, I made sure to pick something that's not too heavy.  This fabric is perfect for this skirt.  It's a very drapey, soft fabric, but ravels horribly, and I believe is a rayon.  I found in my stash, and I have no idea when or where I got it. There were a couple of rips in the fabric, but I was able to cut around them.

Here's a picture of the back.

Monday, January 7, 2013


I made a new tablecloth for my round kitchen/dining table. 

I recently noticed that my tablecloth had a couple stains that wouldn't come off and decided I needed to replace it - whenever.  Yesterday as I was looking thru a box of fabric, for something else, I came across this 2 yd piece of red/black plaid.  It's a nice crisp fabric, right color & just big enough for a tablecloth! A fabric stash is a good thing.  So in a couple hours - ta-da, new tablecloth!

It wasn't quite big enough across, so I trimmed a little off the end and added it to the side.  And thanks to the plaid, you can't even tell where the seam is.  I trimmed a little off the corner points so they wouldn't be so long.  And instead of hemming it, I used black bias tape for the edges.  Don't you just love black bias tape! 
 It's cold and wintery here, so that plaid looks appropriate :)

Fabric Purchase

I went to Joann's last week & they had their "red tag" fabrics on clearance for 50% off. I always look when it's on clearance and usually find some good deals.  Here's what I got:

First, a piece of tweed suiting.  It's medium weight, very soft & pretty.  Would make real nice pants, but there was only 1 yard of it.   I could use it for a bag or maybe a vest. It was $3.00 yd.

This is 2 pieces of printed corduroy,  I got 3 yds of 1 and 3.25 of the other.  One was $3.00 and the other $3.50 yd.

I really like the printed pants I've been seeing, so the idea is to use these for pants.

This is 2 yds of lt weight denim (to use for a skirt) and 3.25 yds of med. wt. denim.  They were $3.00 yd.  The check piece is red & pink flannel.  I got 6 yds of it for $1.50 yd.  Will use it for pj pants or a quilt.

I also got a 1 yd piece of black crepe for $1.50 that is very nice.

These are all basics and at really good prices.

I also got several spools of thread at 50% off and Vogue pattern 1323.  This is the line drawing.  I plan to make the shirt for warm weather (with shorter sleeves).

Sunday, January 6, 2013


It seems fitting (pun intended) that my first post of the year is about pants.  Last year on PR, we had a year long sew-along for fitting and making pants.   I wanted to be able to easily make my own pants that fit better than RTW.   I had challenged myself to make an average of 1 pair of pants per month.  I didn't meet that challenge, but I have learned a lot and made progress.   After making a lot of muslins, looking at my backside more than I ever wanted to, and with the help of the other ladies on the sew-along, I have figured out why most RTW pants and patterns don't work for me.  Apparently I have a high round backside with a tilted waist, and this is not the typical, average shape. And I have a very long back crotch and very short front crotch.  So now I'm working on making adjustments to come up with a TNT pants pattern.

I started out with this Vogue pattern by Sandra Betzina (it's OOP now). 

This pattern came with a Craftsy class on pants fitting taught by Sandra Betzina.   The shape and fit of the waist, hips and crotch of this pattern are pretty good for me.  Much better than any other pattern I've tried, and I've tried a lot.  What I don't like: the legs are very loose, there's a seam in the center of the legs and no front zipper.   I also had wrinkles in the backside.  And when I tried to fix one wrinkle, I would get 2 more somewhere else.  After many test pairs and much slicing & dicing, I have finally come up with a pair of pants I will actually wear.  I decided to go with a wide-leg style and loose fit.  It's hard to tell in the pictures, but I used a dark purple (eggplant?) corduroy.

Here's a picture showing the pocket and the lining for the fly & waistband.  Just for fun, I used a pink zipper :)