May 18, 2011


Hey guys!  I am working on a couple dresses and other sewing projects, but I won't be able to post for 2 weeks!  Get ready for a bunch of posts in June!

May 15, 2011

Purple Anniversary Dress

Pattern: McCalls 5752, view C

Fabric: Very stretchy purple floral knit
It has been downstairs for years and I've been trying to get my Mom to make herself a dress out of it for  a while, but being a busy Mom of five and homeschooling and teaching pilates.
The Front.
Well, my Mom and Dad are going on a Mediterranean cruise for their 20th anniversary, so I bugged my Mom until she decided to let me do it. :-)

The pattern was really easy and our serger made it go pretty fast.  I modified the sleeve to match what  my Mom wanted.  I basically cropped the sleeves and added tiny circle skirts to them. :-)

 Because of the crossoverness of the dress, my mom wanted a coordinating top to wear under it.
 The different areas of gathering are so interesting.
 She gave me a cami and I figured out a way to cover it without making it look awkward.

I covered the entire front, but there wasn't enough for the back.  Oh well. :-)

The Back.

Definitely cruise wear, but my Mom likes it, and that is cool.  The more I sew, the more creative I feel and the more willing I am to try new things.  Perhaps we'll see a pair of pants on here in the future?  I don't know.  What are you guys working on?

May 13, 2011

Teal Cowl Top - the "teal knit saga" part 1

My darling Grandma Judy and I went shopping at Joann Fabrics a couple weeks ago during one of their big sales.  I picked up some button the the CPJ and 11 McCalls patterns.  If you're familiar with Joann's I'm sure you know what the red tag section is?  Well it is a sale section and it was 50% extra off at that time.  My friend and I are both really into teal/aqua at the moment, so I immediately thought of her when I saw this fabric.  Turns out that since it was only $1 a yard (!) my Grandma just bought the whole bolt for me!  Like 9 yards I think. :-)  Loveliness. :-)

So I gave some of it to Shannen and she is going to come over sometime and sew up a shirt.  I made one up yesterday afternoon to test the pattern and was  a little worried about the finished product, but I think it is growing on me.  Anyway, I wore this outfit to my awards ceremony last night and one of my new friends loved it and I told her she should make one. :-) So Kristiana will also be making one.

(Finally got to wear that pendant!  Been looking for something to match it. :-)
Here it is.

Pattern: McCalls 6034, view b

 The side...
Hemming knits is not the loveliest task in the work, so thankfully this pattern only requires the back of the neck to be hemmed.
 The back.

I realize I am wearing it a little short here, but with this skirt it did not sit well very low.  I tried it on with jeans today and it works though. :-)

Pictures thanks to the tripod and self-timer. get a remote. ;-)

Nat's Patch Bag

 Pattern: Slouchy Bags by Cindy Taylor Oates, views d w/o the pocket.
 Natalie hadn't ever sewn anything before, so we decided that we would make her a bag and finish it before we went on a field trip to Chicago the next day.  We were up till 11:30, but it was worth it.  The bag really doesn't take that long, but we made our own fabric, so that took a good deal of time.
All the edges are raw, and it looks SO neat.  We pulled parts of a towel, parts from a cut up flowered chiffon skirt, some corduroy, some cotton, some minky fabric, some quilting fabric, and a knit t-shirt from the scrap bag and went to work.  It is lined with a sturdy tablecloth so there isn't stress on the more delicate fabrics.  I think it turned out so nice!  Our approx. 5 inch squares were not very even, but she did a nice job.  When it came down to crunch time I did the darts and straps, but she did everything else.

Great job Nat!

May 10, 2011

Double Breasted Eggplant Dress Vest

What a mouthfull!  And what a lot of fun.  Other than the boys doublets, and tunic/blouse thing I haven't made any men's clothes.  Well, the Masquerade ball was coming up and I knew I would be making my dress, so I asked Hud if he wanted me to make him a costume too.  To my surprise, he said that would be nice. :-)  Originally I was thinking along the lines of the Phantom and Raul from "The Phantom of the Opera" with the frilly shirt cool waistcoats and capes etc.  As time went on however, I realized that just a vest, and one that could be worn again in "real life" was more in order.  So I double checked the color with Hud and ordered extra fabric when I bought it for my dress.
Simplicity 4762
We chose the look with the lapels.
Eggplant elegance taffeta from
Generic black lining fabric scrap that was lying around
faux black suede with interesting embroidery scrap
metal buckle from joanns
4 random buttons from the downstairs collection. :-)

No, they don't match. :-)  At least they are the same color and size. 
Hud sort of like the spontaneous and use what you got style, so it works.

The buttonholes weren't perfect, the under-stitching hand done and the back V rather sloppy, but I love how it turned out.  I also like the added detail of the hidden button helping to hold things together.
After I had finished basic construction and pulled the sides through the shoulders we had to leave for prayer meeting.  When we got back we had people over and were snacking and playing cards, so I decided to do my under-stitching.
  Hudson fitted the vest and said "So what about your insignia"
"You know, the tag thing or emblem that says it was made by you.  The thing that shows you made it."
"I don't have one yet!  That is called branding and it takes lots of thought."
"Well, you at least have to have a pocket!"
(This all said with a little sarcasm on both sides)
I sketched for a bit, then told him to draw what he would like in the vest.  So he drew this cursive type j and k thing.  
that is what I used. :-)

The back.  
And yes, I know the buckle and buttons are not the same color.

This project was surprisingly easy.  It only took probably 4 hours start to finish.  The longest part was lining up the buttons and buttonholes.

These pictures were taken the day after the masquerade, but her wore it to his solo recital (see previous post) so I was able to get nice photos. :-)

May 9, 2011

Masquerade Gown Part 3 *Finished*

The only pictures I have right now are the ones from the banquet, but I will probably get others after school is over. (Two more days!!!)

I used Simplicity 4092 and Simplicity 3637

Just about everything is from 4092, but since the sleeve pattern was wacky I used the sleeve pattern from 3637.  I read the directions a couple times before I started cutting my fabric because I knew I would be doing this project over the course of about 2 months.  In this way I was able do plan out what sort of embellishment I wanted to do and when to do it.

Eggplant Elegance Taffeta from
Fuchsia Taffeta from
All-over nylon scalloped white lace from (though when I washed it with the taffeta it took on the slightest hint of pink. :-)
Beads from my collection
Pink Broadcloth from
Pink bottom weight tablecloth from Thrift store for lining
LOTS of thread :-)

 The back
 The side (Yes, it is that long!)
 Even though you aren't supposed to see the pink broadcloth, I think this shot is really cool.  It looks more like a dress from the 18th century because of the way it poofs out. :-)
 Hudson and I
I added 1 1/2 inches to the neckline, but it is still on the verge of being a little too low. :-/  Maybe I'll wear a fichu next time.  To fill the gap a little I threw together a charm and wore it with some black cord.

The underskirt
The ribbon waistband does clash, but it fits perfectly and is so easy to get on and off with the two hook-and-eyes.
The pink invisible zipper I got from our stash downstairs.  Perhaps it was not the best idea.  It had been recycled from something else and was pretty old.  It was metal, which was nice, but I had to work it a dozen or so times before it decided to cooperate most of the time.  My brothers had to zip it up on me a couple times. :-)
Pleats in the front and gathers in the back.  It is a little odd, I admit, but that is what the pattern said, so that is what I did.

The Sleeves
Here you can see that hint of pink when it is stacked. :-)  By the way,  3/4 sleeves with lace have always been cool and a dream of mine.  They are amazing.  Seriously.  Go make yourself a dress with sleeves like this!  To die for. :-)
The necklace
The Mask
I made a black mask with the leftovers from the leftovers from Hudson's lapels, overlaid it with the lace and glued fuchsia glitter on it.  Not the coolest (no feathers :-) but it worked, and it matched.

Hudson's Solo Recital

In which Hudson plays beautifully...and wears his vest.  Post to follow. :-)

May 4, 2011

Light Polka Dot Coverup

Because of the open back and shoulders of the Lime Summer Dress, I found it necessary to make a summer coverup that I could wear this dress to church with.

Ever since I got Simplicity 2560 I have liked view E.  So I used it for this bolero. 

Red Tag tricot from Joann's
 After I made it I found that if was too short, so I had to add a band around the bottom to make it work.

 The Back...

 The sides...

And my brother, who helped me with the pictures.  Thanks Than!