Friday, November 21, 2014

Completed: Renfrew the Cozy!

When I first traced off the Renfrew, I used a size 0 with some modifications. I removed 1" from the bodice front and back, 1/2" from the sleeve length (3/4 length sleeves) and did a weird sleeve sizing experiment (which failed spectacularly, by the way) where I traced a 2 but didn't accommodate the sleeve cap change in the armscye in the bodice. As you can imagine, that was fun to figure out.

I made some alterations again last night, this time adding back the 1" and 1/2" chunks I originally removed, and extending the bands a bit. I've found when using slinkier knits, the bands don't tend to hold their shape (they kind of bunch up a little?) so I heightened those by 1-2", depending on how much fabric I have to work with. It's really arbitrary, but doesn't matter much since they're just rectangles.
The other thing I've been doing is just cutting the cowl with one layer. You really don't have to finish the edges because knits don't unravel or fray, and often times with lighterweight knits, it's a little weird to have a double layer in just that one area. Also saves on fabric, so you can get away with much less yardage than is "required". I've made this top on less than a yard. Seriously!

Last night, I made a Renfrew out of....fleece!

I originally picked up this fleece as a remnant at JoAnns. I think it was just over a yard and probably like $3-$6. Super Amaze.

The guts are SO PRETTY. I used my serger for the entire thing (normally I use my machine and then finish with the serger)

Here is it right side out. Boring, but so warm and inviting!

My crowning achievement - those seams are super lined-up! Especially on the serger, this has been something I've had a hard time with. I use a walking foot on my regular machine, which does help some, but I've been trying to improve this particular skill.

When you make a particular style over and over, do you notice techniques or particular things that you want to work on/fix? 

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Fabric shopping in San Francisco

I went to San Francisco a couple weeks ago for a work conference, and stayed through the weekend so I could get my fabric hunt on. 

The selection at Britex Fabrics is insane, and unlike anything I've seen in Seattle. It was absolutely overwhelming in the best way. I ended up going home with one remnant piece of 4 way stretch nylon spandex, to become hiking leggings. Britex had a great selection of more traditional fabrics (wools, cottons, silks) and there was a smaller table of knits.

I also went to Fabric Outlet in the Mission, which was a little more my speed. Get thee to Fabric Outlet, you guys. so. many. colorful. knits.

Here is what I left with. All of these knits are destined to become leggings and/or skirts. So excited!

from Britex

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Halloween 2014 - Little Red Riding Hood

Oops! Well, this post is a little overdue! 
For Halloween, Will & I Dressed up as Little Red Riding Hood & The Big Bad Wolf. 
 For his costume, we hit up GoodWill and picked out an old lady housedress, complete with tassles. We got glasses that we punched the lenses out of, and I made a slapdash sleeping hat out of a remnant of quilting cotton I had laying around.  (Stash bustin' - YESSSSSSS!!)

For my costume, I sewed up a quick full circle skirt using the ever handy Circle Skirt App from the fabulous Ladies at By Hand London. I had this red cotton on hand, and I've been trying to whittle away at my stash. I'm pretty sure it was an "as-is" buy from Ikea, and was born into this world as a sheet set. Does anyone else look for sheet sets for fun projects like this? 
I finished the hem of the skirt with a red horse hair braid that I ordered from this seller on Etsy - fast, excellent shipping. I highly recommend!


For the hood, I used that same cotton and based the hood off of a vintage pattern I have (and can't remember the name of right this second).

Found it!

For the bodice of the cape, I basically drew out the length of the edge of the hood, and cut it on the bias and attached the two. I fully lined the red cape with red and white gingham I found at Goodwill (I think a yard length was $5??) so no seams showed at the neckline.

I finished the edge of the cape with the rest of the horsehair braid I had. Ties were made with red grosgrain ribbon I had on hand - easy peasy!

The silly little apron was made with another stash piece - a 100% modal sheet. I basically made a long waist tie, a middle piece and a longer ruffle for the bottom. Modal is a bitch cut out. It is super, super drapey and shifty, so the ruffle ended up uneven, but Halloween so who cares!

Total cost of my costume: $20.95
$14.95 - horsehair braid
$  5.00 - gingham fabric
$  1.00 - basket

Will's Costume: $22.98
$9.99 Granny Housedress
$4.99 Glasses
$8.00 Mask


Wednesday, October 22, 2014

But I've been sewing!

I have all of the drafts. I keep not updating because I want to play catch up, but obviously that is not going to work. Here is my shame, plus additional undrafted drafts:

 Okay, anyway. Several things to talk about!

1. I was laid off this summer, which was magical for my sewing 'jo.  Instead of individual posts, here are photos of some stuff I made! Sadly, I don't have photos of everything I did. Oh well!


Mc Calls 5850 - I added the halter strap for a "countrified cocktail" wedding we went to.

Obligatory matching clutch (it's lined in the ice creams fabric!)

BHL Anna/Circle skirt mashup thing

 renfrew! (plus another renfrew i don't have a photo of? that one I had to hack by adding a seam up the center back to get it all cut out. very little fabric. I am in love with this pattern)

Okay so I didn't make this. But HOLY COW. I have some complaints about the quality of construction, though. The problem is that I could not walk away from it. I mean, LOOK AT IT. This was made by a "local designer" but the quality is lacking. The zipper is too long, was not trimmed to size, the installation of the zipper itself isn't great (looks like a first zipper), this is a fully lined dress but there is no understitching - instead, there is zig zag top stitching throughout in a mismatched green thread. The sleeves aren't the same length.

BUT LOOK AT IT THOUGH. I over paid. I came home from the store and tried to find a pattern to make this myself. No dice. I went back to the store and bought it.

new sewing closet!

2. We moved! The sewing closet is going to be *amazing*. I have lots of plans to transform this closet. To my right in the above photo, is a great alcove where I'm going to put a built-in desk. Plus shelves, all of the shelves. I hope to sew through a larger portion of my stash than I have in years past, because fabric is taking up the bulk of space right now. 

3. Halloween. I love halloween. This year, I intend to be Little Red Riding Hood! I've ordered red horsehair braid for a red circle skirt hem. I am unsure about the top construction - most photo results are "sexy" and I prefer to avoid that. I might do a plain white peasant top and a red/white gingham frilly apron. Picnic basket and a cape and I'll be all set!

I think that's it. I hope to be around more!

Thursday, May 2, 2013

WIP: a floral pendrell

I have a hard time with vision sometimes, so I rely on you, of the lovely sewing community to give some proper advice.

I'm nearly finished with my second version of the Sewaholic Pendrell Blouse and I've made some fun changes I'm excited about. The pattern originally called for the ruffles to be folded and gathered, with the fold creating the edge of the ruffle. Makes for a really nice, neat finish!

On my Valentine's Dress I cheated and did a rolled hem on my serger and I really like the way it turned out. So for the ruffles on the pendrell, I cut them down the center where the fold would have been, and did a rolled hem on each piece. Instead of one double layered ruffle on each side, I've got two single layer ruffles on each side. MOAR RUFFLES.

For view B, there are two sets of ruffles, the first being placed on the princess seam at the shoulder, and the second being placed on the shoulder seam at the top of the armscye. The second set of ruffles are less ruffly and more of a cap. I'm thinking about just doing a second set like the first.

WHAT DO YOU GUYS THINK? I haven't pressed the princess seams, so excuse the bulkiness of the front.

Monday, April 29, 2013

Dancin' Patterns!

I've been very busy sewing, and I haven't been doing much in the way of blogging! I ran across this and thought it was hilarious, so I'll leave it here with a very brief update.

Currently on my sewing table: another Sewaholic Pendrell, a Hot Cocoa Sweater for Devon, a Hot Cocoa Sweater for me (almost finished!) and I plan to make a few tank tops.

Finished and not blogged: the Prince Skirt, a Hot Cocoa Sweater (almost finished!), the Janelle Monae Jacket, a pair of pajama pants, my Lonsdale dress (geeeez I finished that in SEPTEMBER), Poetry Night dress, which I sort of blogged but haven't taken any good final shots.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Gym Pendrell

I'm calling this my "gym pendrell" because of the fabric choice. It's kind of a gross gym-shorts fabric that I had barely 1 yard of. I received it as part of my mystery fabric bundle from Fabric Mart a while back. The pendrell calls for 2 - 2 1/2 yards, so I really squeezed this one out. I broke some rules, you guys.

I ignored some grain lines. Okay, not entirely. and I also used a fun contrast fabric for the arm and neck bindings. I always forget that I can do that to spice up the inside of a garment. I ignored the grain lines for the ruffle sleeve pieces and slightly tilted one of the bodice pieces to get everything to fit. I wouldn't say that it was detrimental.

Just check out that shiny, polyester goodness.

This top went together very quickly, a nice satisfying project. Can I get a high five for NO CLOSURES, BRO. I did hem this, top-stitched with a twin needle.

Of note: the top is pretty long. I like that, since I can tuck it in and I don't have to worry about it coming un-tucked if I sit down or reach up for something. That's a common problem I have with petite button ups from J. Crew or Banana Republic - they fit everywhere except length!

Alright: here is how I wore it to work on Tuesday!
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