Friday, July 20, 2018

Vogue 8793 - Third Time Around the Block

I have been thinking about why I was not totally over the moon about my yellow version of Vogue 8793.  Here's the pattern again:

And here's my yellow completed dress again - I don't really like this dress:

I wore it yesterday and loved the fit.  I also loved the swishiness of the skirt.  So I had to conclude that I am crazy about the style and the pattern!  That left the fabric.  I kept looking at the dress and realized that the fabric is too busy and colorful for my style sensibilities.  Not to mention that I am not crazy about the color brown.  Everywhere the little hula girl appears is the color brown, because that's the color of her hair.  There are a lot of hula girls on this, which means there's a lot of brown!  There are also a lot of other colors on this.  And a lot of little figures.  It's just TOO much for me.  If it were up to me, this dress would not be a regular in my wardrobe - I really can't stand looking at the fabric.  But because I loved the fit of this dress, and because my other half is a big fan of this dress, I am keeping it.  But I am also going to make it one more time with a more toned down print.  Since I am on a yellow kick right now, I'm sewing this dress with this fabric - yellow runs through it.  I'm sewing it exactly like the yellow one, even down to the ribbon trim:

Hopefully, I'll have this done very soon because I want to get started on another top, in yellow, that I have been obsessing about.  


Thursday, July 19, 2018

Vogue 8723 - A Fail? My Back to the Fifties Vintage Style Dress

I started on this dress on Monday, and put the finishing touches on it on Thursday morning.

I turned the flat fold above into this dress:

To give it a 50s feel, I added 2 rows of ribbon at the top and 2 towards the bottom of the skirt.  I joined the bottom ribbon at the side seam because I thought it was less noticeable there than it would have been if it was joined at the center back seam.  


This dress was, for the most part, quite easy to sew.  When I sewed this before, the straps gave me trouble, and this time, it gave me trouble again.  The straps just wouldn't lay flat.  I tried to follow the sparse directions and looked at the pics, too, but either I had a block about them, or they didn't work.  I wasted a lot of precious sewing time on this and finally decided to just do a pin fit (with the strap seam on the inside).  After several adjustments, it finally fit. 


I also made a self belt for this.  For crisp corners after turning, I sewed it with 2 diagonal stitches at the corner and trimmed it.  To avoid bulk, I didn't serge the edges:

I don't really like this dress.  Not sure why.  Maybe it's the fabric that I chose.  Maybe it's the super high neckline.  I'm really not sure why, but I don't really like it.  I'm going to wear it once and if I still don't like it after I've actually worn it, I'm tossing it.

Be back shortly with my next project!


Monday, July 16, 2018

Lesson Learned, Next Project, and a Sewing Planner


I wore my new Butterick 5526 yellow blouse yesterday and loved it even more than I thought I would!  I'd completely forgotten what it felt like to be fashionable.  I'm always dressed neatly, but haven't been fashionable in eons.  When I first decided to wear my new top, I thought I'd wear it untucked.  Uh - it didn't look good.  For a moment, I thought I might have made a mistake in sewing this top.  But then, I remembered that I made this to be tied at the waist or tucked in.  When I tied it, it made all the difference in the world!  I wore my new top tied at the waist with jeans.  I also wore a statement necklace with it.  My outfit was casual, but I felt all dressed up!

And now, YIKES! I want more me-made fashionable clothes like this in my wardrobe.  I used to be relatively fashionable, but being around people who didn't care about fashion made me feel shallow and embarrassed when I paid attention to my appearance.  Yesterday, I learned that caring about how I look doesn't feel shallow and it's nothing to be ashamed of.  Caring actually feels good!

I don't plan to obsess about how I look, but I am going to start paying attention to my appearance.

NEXT PROJECT - already cut and pinned!  This is going to be a FUN sew:


I like being organized, and since I am planning to sew more, I decided to keep a sewing planner.  The one I chose has a monthly view followed by a weekly view.  I am guessing that it will be perfect for my sewing.  I also like for my planner to have encouraging words scattered throughout, and this planner has some of that.  This is the planner that I went with.  I'm also using colorful pens for writing:

I want my planner to be a happy place, so I filled the monthly view with colorful stickers.  If I have something really important on my calendar, I'll make a short note on the monthly view.  Otherwise, the monthly view will not have any writing on it:

The weekly view is where I'll enter all of the pertinent info.  Since this is a sewing planner, I decided to also cut a small square of my fabric to glue on the day that I start my project.  Along with that info, I'll also write down the pattern number and the progress that I made on that day:

It'll be fun to actually track my progress.

Let the sewing begin!!!


Sunday, July 15, 2018

Butterick 5526 - Yellow Fitted Shirt (Part 3) - DONE!

Before sewing the major parts of whatever I am working on, I will usually do a pin fit to make sure everything feels right.

When I did this for the sleeve ruffles of this top, I noticed that it felt a little off.  I raised my arms to see the full drama of the sleeves and saw that the shortest part of the ruffle was off to the side, over my elbows. That's not what I expected.  It definitely wasn't draping how I thought it should, so I unpinned the entire ruffle, rotated it around 1 1/2 inches to the front and re-pinned it.  When I tried it on again and raised my arms, the shortest part was now in the crux of my arm.   PERFECT!

I'm sure I placed the ruffle correctly, matching the pattern marks appropriately, when I pin fit it the first time and am not sure why McCalls drafted the ruffle the way they did, but getting it to fit my style sensibilities was a very easy fix.

Here's my top:

I've never sewn this pattern before and thought of this project as a muslin when I started.  But I really like it and am slipping it into my wardrobe as a regular!

My new top actually looks better in quality than most things I'd find in RTW, and heaven knows it fits much BETTER than any RTW top that has ever crossed my path.  Seeing how well my new top turned out is motivating me to sew more than just fast and easy projects.  I love fast and easy projects, but for this top, I actually used my creativity and a sewing skill set that is higher than is required for just fast and easy sewing.  It reminded me of how I used to sew, and I was surprised by how much I enjoyed it!

My sewing machine currently has yellow thread, and since I am loving the color yellow right now, I decided to do a little yellow capsule.  No, not a capsule in the traditional sense of the word, where everything goes with everything, but rather, a wardrobe subset of yellow pieces.

In addition to another yellow Butterick 5526 fitted shirt, I am also making a trio of fun summer skirts that will match them.  I'm using my Burda TNT for this:

I'm also making 2 fun summer dresses:

When done, I'll have 3 fitted shirts, 3 pencil skirts (2 prints and a denim), and 2 bouffant dresses!  All woven and all either yellow or coordinates of yellow!

I am actually working towards building the wardrobe that I want and am really glad that I started!

The pic below is of a glass block that I look at every morning.  It reminds me that everything will get done one step at a time, if I just start.


Friday, July 13, 2018

Butterick 5526 - Yellow Fitted Shirt (Part 2) - I Chose My Statement Sleeves!!!

The statement sleeve trend completely passed me by!  To be honest, I liked it well enough, but thought most of what I saw as statement sleeves might be a little too fussy to wear.  That's why I let the entire trend pass me by.  But now that it's on its way out, I thought it was finally time for me to try on the trend.  Hahaha!  For my first foray into the land of statement sleeves, I chose the most dramatic sleeves of McCalls 7542, which is View B.  When I'm in, I'm REALLY in!

The top from this pattern is boxy and is a style that I know would not look good on me.  I definitely won't be making this top, but I got the pattern because the sleeve options looked interesting.  I didn't  think I'd ever make anything with the sleeves, but I got it anyway, just in case I later changed my mind.  If you are into morphing patterns, like I am, then you probably understand my thinking here.

Well, needless to say, I am really glad that I got this pattern!

My top isn't finished, yet, but here is my drama-ful top - I still need to sew the buttons, buttonholes, and hem:

For the sleeves, I morphed the bottom edge of the McCalls 7542 sleeves with the top portion of the Butterick 5526 sleeves.  In the pic below, the fabric is the original Butterick 5526 sleeve, and the pattern piece is from the McCalls 7542 pattern.  I did it this way so the McCalls 7542 ruffle would fit the bottom edge of the sleeve without changing the armscye:

Finishing the edge of the ruffle was very easy.  I sewed a straight line very close to the ruffle's edge:

That stitching line made it super easy to turn and pin the hem - look at how flat it lays:

For this step, you can save some time if you don't follow the McCalls 7542 pattern's instructions, which would have you sew the straight line 1/2" from the edge, then trim away the excess.  I always just simply stitch close to the edge.  When you're stitching that close to the edge, it's easy to go over the edge.  YIKES!!!  I know this from experience.  To keep from doing that, stitch slowly and focus.  Before you know it, you'll have completed this step:

I'm planning to finish this top tomorrow.

This is definitely a summer top for me, and I'm planning to wear it either tucked in or tied at the waist.

After the top  is done, I'm making  a pencil skirt with the summery fabric below to wear with it:

The skirt will probably be a modified version of the New Look 6544 pencil skirt:

I also want to make a pair of  "car wash" style pants to wear with this top, either in white or navy.  I think it'll be a fun look:

That's it for now - be back when the shirt is completely finished.


Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Butterick 5526 - Yellow Fitted Shirt (Part 1) - Can't Decide on Sleeves

I am working on the Butterick 5526 princess seamed fitted shirt.

I used a yellow and white polka dotted fabric and cut it out a few days ago.  So far, I've finished everything except the buttons, buttonholes, and sleeves.  It would have been finished already, but I can't decide what style sleeves to go with.  I want something current, not necessarily classic and am leaning towards some sort of statement sleeves.  I'll decide on something tonight.  Hopefully, I'll finish it by tomorrow.

I sewed the collar with the interfacing trimmed at the collar points, then turned it for sharp corners:

After turning the collar right side out, I sewed it to one side of the collar stand and sewed that to the neck edge:

Then I sewed on the other side of the collar stand, trimmed the upper edge then turned it.  After that, I trimmed the neck edge, turned it, pressed, then stitched it down on my machine.  I find that sewing it this way is easier than the standard way of sewing a collar stand.  It also gives the stand a much better shape and looks neater.

I'll be back with the finished shirt tomorrow.


Tuesday, July 3, 2018

Pink Lemonade - More Fun Summer 2018 Sewing

Who can resist ice cold pink lemonade on a warm summer day???

Definitely not me!!!

It's been hot as Mars here.  Ok, maybe not that hot.  But it has been HOT! 

And as I was sitting out on the lanai sipping on some pink lemonade earlier today, I thought about how much I love the color pink!  And about how I should finally turn some of my pink flat folds into clothes.

My first pink project is going to be the sleeveless wrap dress from Simplicity 8673:

I have the perfect fabric for this and can't wait to get started!

Happy Fourth!


Thursday, June 28, 2018

A Morph of New Look 6528 + McCalls 7542 - Eyelet Top In The Making

I bought McCalls 7542 because of the View D sleeves and have been meaning to sew this top for the longest time, but what held me back is that the straight up and down silhouette would not work on my hourglass shape.  I would look dumpy in it:

But just recently, I had an idea!  I could get the fitted top that I wanted without any drafting if I morphed the McCalls' sleeves with the New Look 6528 top with vertical darts!!!

Uh-oh!  I think I'm starting to imagine sewing possibilities and options again.  It's been a while since I've done that.  It's good knowing that I still can, even if it's just baby steps for now, so . . . YAY Me!  

I'm working on this top now and hope to finish it by the weekend.


Friday, June 22, 2018

Simplicity 8603 - Double Gauze Yellow Top

When I saw 8603 in the Simplicity pattern book, I immediately liked that it looked fitted at the bust and flowed to a loose fit from there.  I liked the hemline, too!  But I was on the fence about actually getting it because I worried that it might make me look too matronly, and because loose fitting tops are out of my comfort zone.  But after some consideration, I decided that the breezy style was too perfect to pass up for hot summer weather, and for my yellow double gauze fabric.

I made View B with some yellow double gauze:

Gauze can easily stretch out of shape, so I stabilized it at the shoulders with cotton twill tape:

To avoid stretching, I used a woven fabric for the neck and armhole facings.  I also hand hemmed this to avoid stretching.

I rarely trace anything, but I wanted to be sure that the pocket was in the right place, so I transferred the pattern's pocket mark to my fabric using this:

I sewed it with slightly cut in shoulders, and I used elastic for the pocket instead of a drawstring, but those were the only adjustments that I made.

I like this top well enough, but I don't LOVE it.  It might be simply because the loose fit is out of my comfort zone, and that I just need time to get used to it.  We'll see.

I will be wearing this with my white or pale blue jeggings.  For footwear, I might be embellishing my 99 cent yellow flip flops (aka slippers in Hawaii) with some 98 cent yellow flowers.  Or I'll just get a white or yellow pair of sneakers.

Be back when my next project is done.