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Sunday, September 14, 2014

Vintage Ballerina


It's been awhile since I blogged, moving and work have been keeping me busy. 
A few months back I made up this vintage ballerina pattern as a secret work project. Shh don't tell 
anyone! I thought I would blog it because it is the first piece of children's clothing that I have
ever made, and it was so fun!


My only regret is that I did not add more layers of tulle and gather it more tightly.
I think it would have been more of a tutu effect. In any case, working with tulle was
new to me also. I am going to give this to my darling niece Katie. Cheers!

Friday, July 11, 2014

Oonapalooza!!

Was it ever an actual question? How could I not want to join in celebrating the one and only,
incomparable, Oonaballoona's oonapalooza!
 I think it's about time to make something fun in honor of the gal who inspired me
to start sewing again, believe in myself and actually put pictures of myself in clothes
that I made on the interwebs!

So heres the skinny. I made a silk, sheer By Hand London Anna dress. I know how Oona loves
BHL, and I know her love of print. This is probably the closest I will get to orange! I don't
usually go for bright colors. The fabric was purchased at an amazing Indian shop called 
India Fabric Imports in Berkeley, the prices there are great and the prints are fabulous.
 I think that it is meant for a parsis, but this fabric had another destiny in it's future.


Let's all drink to this inspiring ladays day!!


Ok, so if you haven't noticed- the dress is a bit tight in the waist. I didn't want
to wash this silk but I should have steamed it before I cut it. Unfortunately all
of the steam from my finishing shrunk it down a bit. But it wouldn't be Oonapalooza
if it wasn't a bit sexy!!


Have a great month Miss Oona! Cheers!!

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Sheer Bow Mid Length

Hello to friends, family and fellow sewists from beautiful, foggy SF! Today I bring to you my favorite TNT pattern, one that I have made at least 5 times by now, the Simplicity Built by Wendy Pattern 3964. I usually make the short sleeve, summery version, but I thought that this
 poly chiffon would lend itself to longer sleeves, and indeed a longer hemline. I lengthened the pattern by 10" to make it more of a mid length. I bought this fun print ages ago at a random jobber downtown, and had no idea what I was going to do with it, but dresses seem to be my thing lately, so I thought a longer, sheer dress would work nicely in my wardrobe.




I just love the triangle detail and how it sews up. Such elegance!


The hat matches! I have been on bit of a hat mission lately, they do seem to add a lot to a look! 


This is another super easy pattern, no buttons or zips, and I think really looks best with a drapier
fabric. Unfortunately, as you can see on my side seam, the poly did not iron well, I will
have to keep working on that. Over all I would for sure make up this version again, if I didn't already
have this pattern in such heavy rotation. I do think that I need more long sleeved versions of it!
Next thing on my to do list: Oonapalooza- my pattern is cut, can't wait to get a cocktail in my
hand and start sewing. Cheers! 

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Summer Boho Maxi

Hello all of you fantastic sewist out there! Just a tiny post about my super quick and easy summer
maxi that I stitched up last weekend. The pattern is is Vogue -V1352, which I bought during a sale. Gotta love those sales!


The construction is very basic, no zips or buttons. I cut a straight size 10, 
with the elastic waist I figured there would be no adjustments needed, although
now that I see it on, I wouldn't mind the waist being a bit lower.
 The fabric is super inexpensive poly that I picked up downtown during an LA meet-up in April. 
As much as I hate to admit it, if the print is right, sometimes I don't mind certain poly fabrications.
I love the durability and washability! 


I had to throw on the hat..


So there you have it, the easiest dress to throw together in a weekend, so comfy and summery!

Monday, May 26, 2014

Peter pan baby doll tester

Hello fine sewist! I have been on a bit of a sewing hiatus, moving to a new city and settling into a new job. Let me tell you what a relief it was, even though all of the boxes are not unpacked yet, to do a bit of sewing! I was very excited as well, to be trying out a new pattern that I designed and commissioned to be made into a PDF! I will share it all with you, very soon, for free, -yay! but I wanted to iron out the kinks first. This first attempt that I am showing here is not my finest sewing hour- to be sure, (I only attempted to match plaid at the side seams, and this rayon slipped like crazy when I was cutting) I just wanted it done and sewn up so that I could see how the pattern was looking! Indeed, it needed some tweaks, the collar is not quite the shape that I had wanted and it has some other issues.


I really like the look of the teensy bias binding instead of a facing. Do you have a preference?


The back keyhole tie is one of my favorite features.





You have to stand funny to make these types of dresses flattering, unfortunately. I think that is
why people shy away from this style. You don't want to look pregnant if you are not? I can't imagine why.




Wonky collar, (my fault) but it should extend all the way to the back at least..
Also it could lie a bit flatter.



I would love your feedback though, is this a style that you would be at all interested in making?
Also, Chuleen over at CSews, nominated me for a Liebster award, I will give that some
attention very soon!

Monday, March 31, 2014

Goodbye LA, Hello SF

Hello there friends! Hoping everyone is well and happily sewing up a storm out there in the land of sewasroursrex . I have had a lot of sewing related fun since my last post including  Christine Haynes book release party at SewLA, and an awesome meet up, headed by the lovely Amity of Lolita Patterns, in the downtown LA garment district. I was introduced to some very talented and wonderful sewist, Laurie of Sewexhausted,  Kathy of The Nerdy Seamstress, Laura of A Make It Yourself Mom's Diary , Jeanette and Latrice of SewTell. Here is some photographic evidence of our meet up.



Look at all of those bags in our hands! Rayon for 2$ a yard? Why yes please, thank you very much!
I went way overboard and had no self control what so ever. The only one who was the voice of
reason was Latrice. It was such a pleasure to meet everyone, and I am looking forward to keeping up with them via the internets and instagram. It made me realize that I should  meet up
with fellow sewist more often! 


Ye old fabric mountain. We didn't dive in but just hiked up the side a bit.

So on to my big and exciting news, after a few months of thinking, working and preparation,
Will and I are taking the plunge and relocating to San Francisco!
We are so excited to explore a new city and discover new adventures! 



As a going away gift to my friend Julie, I am finally giving her a project that I actually
started many, many years ago. A free hand sewing machine embroidered apron. 
Just so you know Julie LOVES frogs. If I had more time on my hands I would fill in all
of the empty space with stitching,  but I think that it looks OK with some areas
having a bit of lighter stitching.



And lastly I have been trying to make jeans. I am using the Built By Wendy Sew U book pants
pattern and narrowing the leg down the calf a bit. Unfortunately with our sudden
move, my plans to sew up the real deal have to be postponed. What I did learn
though by making 2  muslins is: 1- sew very slowly when topstitching a curve,
and 2- zip fly fronts are not that hard if you follow Sallieoh's wonderful tutorial.
Well guys- got to go, packing is calling my name.
Hope to see you in SF! xo

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Dyeing to the rescue.


Hello there! This weekend, besides being in great need of a bit of r&r, I was wanting 
to sew up something fairly quickly, something that I have been thinking 
about for awhile now, the Suzy pants by Tessuti. They are right on trend, 
I have seen these type of loose, pleated,  flowy pants
 on friends and colleagues, and in shops, but stopped myself from purchasing 
because I new that I had the Suzy pattern printed out
at home just waiting to be made. So I searched for some rayon on Fabric.com,
and found what I thought was the right print for some funky pants.


When I saw the scale and color of the print in RL I was very disappointed, to say the least.
I am so picky about prints, and I don't like anything that looks too junior market, or cheap.
I thought, yes funky-- or maybe just fugly. Lesson learned! Order swatches first. ALWAYS.


 I almost returned the fabric for my money back when I realized shipping would
cost about as much as the fabric did. So I opted to save the fabric by toning 
down the whole thing and over-dyeing it.
By coincidence I had another disappointing fiasco sitting in my closet waiting
to be dealt with, my favorite heather grey Madewell sweatshirt that I had gotten
a bleach stain on. I had plans to cover the stain with a block print or some trim, but  
the sinister mark was on the side middle, kind of weird  placement for anything like that.
So dye that puppy black too! I said (to myself, or whomever- ie the dog... would listen) ..







I wanted the sweatshirt to be really black so I used the whole bottle of liquid 
Rit black dye on it and figured that  I would use the left over dye
 bath to over-dye the rayon print. Did you know that basic colors like blue and
black Rit Dye are available at Ralphs? I recommend the liquid over the powder, 
because with the powder Rit Dye the particles of dye get in the air and that stuff is toxic! 
After following the dye directions from Ritdye.com and putting the 
sweatshirt in a pot on the stove, I was pretty pleased when I saw how quickly 
it became a beautiful black, and bonus- the thread top stitching overlock
stayed white - must be polyester thread, and I think it's an nice contrast detail.
 - oh yeah, I meant to do that!



I was really happy with the over-dyed rayon fabric as well! I really liked the wrong side of the
print and thought it had a cool- almost tie dyed effect.


So I hastily made up the pants using the wrong side of the fabric as the face. 
I figured this could be a wearable muslin, not wanting to waste any
time, I made a straight up size S as my measurements dictated.
Not that I planned it this way, but the sweatshirt and pants actually
make a pretty cute outfit. The length of the sweatshirt covers up
the high waisted part that I don't like about the pants.


 

  I may take apart the pants and lower the waistline. 
I would also like to make a flat front waistband and leave the elastic part for the back. 
(like Kelli at True Bias did) I would also take out the pockets, who needs that 
added bulk on your hips? (I really should have read some pattern reviews and 
mods before jumping in), Like Kelli's - Um Duh!! but that's just me! 
I might try something a bit more fitted next time, like the 



What do you think? In the end they could be a bit slimmer, but
I actually really love the print!