Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Dark Purple Drapey Thing

I don't generally go for this kind of drapey neckline but there's a gorgeous piece of fabric that I've had for a while (not this fabric but another one) and it seems like it needs to be something like this so I bought this pattern for it but I've still been hesitating to start it. Then I saw this extremely cheap dark purple polyester and thought it would be good for trying the pattern for the first time.

And here's the result.

I don't know... I sort of like it and sort of don't like it. I definitely don't like the way the hem came out. I'm going to blame the fabric for that. This was is a very easy pattern but this fabric was a bit hard to work with. By the way it's quite a bit darker than it looks in this second photo. That's it under the pattern in the first photo. It's closer to the actual color, at least on my screen.

Aside from the bad hem, I still have mixed feelings about it and I'm not sure if it's because it's that bad or if I'm just not used to wearing this style of top. It's indecently comfortable though. It's so lightweight I feel like I'm not even wearing anything.

I'm going to sew at least one more test top before I cut into the precious fabric but I still think this is the right pattern for it. I'm just not sure if I'm the right sewist for it.

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Sorry, No Pics

It seems like it's been ages since I've had any new sewing to show off. My latest thing was a pair of black denim trousers. I'm calling them trousers* because they have none of the usual jeans details. They're just plain. I did take a few pictures of them and was going to post but when I saw the pics I chickened out. They're nothing special anyway, very basic. (*Also I'm trying to be more international and saying "trousers" instead of "pants" even though it feels weird.)

I just started a purple top which I should be able to show off in a few days, maybe next week. I'm already worrying about the end result though so I don't know. I've been having trouble getting started on anything. There are a bunch of things I want to make but I don't know which I want to do next so instead of just grabbing something at random and starting it like I should I've been procrastinating.

I think maybe the weather is a big part of my problem. (It's always easy to blame the weather isn't it?) It's been lovely almost all winter, just like spring, but now, the last official week of winter it has turned cold. I think Mother Nature is schizophrenic. Or maybe she just has a drinking problem.

What I really need to do is some of the alterations and re-fashions that I've been putting off forever. It's always more fun to sew new things though.

Thursday, March 2, 2017

Friday, February 24, 2017

Second Thoughts... and Third Thoughts

I always had it in mind to use Simplicity 1538 for this fabric but the day I cut it I was wearing an old McCall's 4922 and impulsively decided that I wanted to use that pattern instead. Then the day after I cut it I wore the Simplicity 1538 and wished I had stuck with my original plan. But it's okay. It's another one of those things that I like much better when I'm just wearing it and not looking at pictures of myself wearing it.

It was 80°F and extremely windy yesterday when these were taken.

It has a relaxed fit, which seems a little bit wrong for something with princess seams (or maybe it's just too large?) and somehow it overemphasizes my pear shape. I wish I had stuck with my original plan but, as I said, I like it just fine when I'm wearing it. I love the colors, which are a bit brighter in person.

Here's one more pic just because cat.

Friday, February 10, 2017


This really has nothing to do with sewing but maybe this will inspire you to think about spring sewing. (Any excuse right?) It's going to be 70F here today and over 80(!) tomorrow so I'm already thinking about spring. No flowers yet though.

Thursday, February 2, 2017

Very Red

My camera has a problem with red. Whenever I try to photograph something red it ends up looking like just a solid red blob. I only managed to get one kind of okay but not really good picture.

I don't often sew solid colors (except for trousers) but solid colors can be useful and this intense red is such a fun color. The fabric is cotton. And I'm sure you notice the cute heart shaped buttons. I have 7 of those left over that I can use on something else!

The pattern is McCall's 6076.

Not very exciting, just looking at the envelope but I've used it several times and it always looks better on me than it does on the models (if you'll pardon the bragging) The one change I made here is the sleeves. The originals are straight and huge at the wrist and about 3 inches too long so I shortened and tapered them. I also shortened the body about an inch. I love the result. Perfect for Valentines Day or any other day. Red and hearts are appropriate almost anytime.

Monday, January 30, 2017

Somebody Noticed Me!

So here I am thinking it would probably be overly optimistic to think I have three readers - in other words, feeling kind of lonely here. But then I see this Blogger Recognition Award at Swarm of Chickadees and I think, "Yay, another list where I might find some sewing blogs I didn't know about." So I look at the list and - shock, awe, immense gratitude - my humble little blog is on the list! Thank you so much.

Now there are five things I'm supposed to do.

1. Thank the blogger who nominated you and provide a link to their blog. Done, but thank you again, Swarm of Chickadees.

2. Write a post to show your award. Working on it right now.

3. Give a brief story of how your blog started. I have actually had a blog since 2002. Not a sewing blog, just a place to post whatever comes to mind, including sewing but a year or two ago (I can't remember when exactly) I decided I should have a blog exclusively for sewing so I started by copying some of my favorite sewing posts from my other blog. That's why my archives go back to 2008.

4. Give two pieces of advice to new bloggers. 1. Make sure your blog is easily readable. You could have the greatest blog in the world but if it's difficult to read because of, for example, light gray text on a white background which seems to be strangely popular right now, a lot of people won't be coming back. Also make your photos as large as possible. 2. This is a piece of advice that I really need to remember myself: Don't get discouraged if it seems like nobody notices you. I once read somewhere that 90% of people who read blogs never comment. That sounds like a made up number but I believe it's true that the majority of readers never comment whether it's 90% or 70% or whatever. That doesn't necessarily mean nobody cares about what you're doing. You could have inspired someone and never know it.

5. Select 15 other bloggers you want to give this award to. I don't know if I can do 15; I don't think there are even that many that I regularly read but I'll just start posting my favorites and not even count how many there are.

Cari Homemaker - She's back! She sews and shows off beautiful dresses she makes for herself and clothes she makes for her lovely children.

But It Can't Be From Dolly Clacket, She Gave Me an Easter Egg! - What a curious and interesting blog title. And I love her! Roisin's style is very similar to my summer style and I admire the way she uses novelty prints, something I love but tend to be a bit timid about.

Lucky Lucille - Lots of great stuff even though Rochelle's style differs somewhat from mine. By the way, Lucille is her beautiful dog that she occasionally posts pictures of.

Pretty Grievances - The grand comedienne of the sewing blog world. Everyone knows Anne I'm sure. Also, she's an enabler. I have bought at least one pattern because of her and someday I am actually going to use it.

A Dress a Day - This was the first sewing blog I found and for several years the only one I knew about.

Artful Blasphemy - Colorful and inspiring. I wasn't sure if it's okay to include this one or not as it's more a fashion blog than a sewing blog.

By Gum By Golly - Awesome retro style sewing blog.

Flashback Summer - Another retro and vintage blog.

Oona Balloona - So much personality! I love her!

Living in Color

Wanna Be Sewing Something

A Colorful Canvas

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Roses in the Jungle

It's Jungle January 2017! I honestly didn't think I would be participating this year but I saw this gorgeous print at Girl Charlee so... here we are.

The fabric is a rayon blend knit and I have to confess, I do not enjoy sewing rayon. It's almost like a living thing that's trying to get away from my horrible pins, needles, and scissors. But I couldn't pass this up and I think it turned out okay. It's wearable at least. The pattern is Butterick 5215, plus long sleeves.

It warmed up enough yesterday to go outside without a coat so here's an outdoor pic.

* * * * *

About a couple of background items in the first photo: The piece of furniture is a gate-leg table that my husband built for me. Folded up, as you see it here, it's only 18 inches by 48 inches; open, it is a little over two yards long.

The picture on the wall... I don't usually frame puzzles but this one was a special case. My younger son gave it to me for Christmas over 10 years ago. I can't remember exactly what year. I used to like puzzles but this one was the most difficult I have ever done and I haven't done another since. It took years to finish it and when I finally did I just couldn't take it apart again so I got a frame (which as you can see doesn't fit) and hung it in our spare bedroom which serves as an occasional guest room, play room for the grandkids, craft room, and (mainly) junk room.

Here's a look at the whole thing. Sorry about the glare.

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

It's All About the Fabric

Here it is - my last make of 2016.

I actually finished this, except for the buttons and buttonholes, a couple of weeks before Christmas but didn't get around to that last little detail until a few days after Christmas. The pattern is Simplicity 8166, modified with a standard shirt collar and, of course, pockets. The gorgeous fabric is a Klimt inspired quilting cotton from eQuilter.

Mostly, I love it. A while back I decided I wanted to try wearing leggings and tunics because I thought they would be amazingly comfortable. In reality it hasn't been working out so well. Leggings and the loose tunics like this feel sort of weird and wrong but this is my favorite leggings outfit so far (leggings purchased at a local store) and I'm going to keep trying for a while longer to get used to wearing them.

Here's the back of the tunic. I love everything that's going on in this fabric - so many beautiful colors and interesting shapes.

Monday, December 26, 2016

Two Finished Projects

Hello? Hello? Anybody out there?

Now that Christmas is over I can show off the two quilts I've been working on and yes, I did finish both of them in time to give them for Christmas. I don't have a good place to display quilts for photographing so I got just a corner of each. This first one was a gift to my grandson. (age 17) He loved it.

And this one went to my brother-in-law (husband's brother) and his wife. This is the one that took me forever to finish and I wasn't entirely happy with the way it turned out but they loved it and were very impressed. (It's easy to impress people who don't quilt.)

And now it's time to get back to regular sewing and start the next quilt. After being so busy for weeks I hardly know what to do with myself now but at the same time I don't feel really motivated by any particular project or idea. It might take me a few days to get started on something.

Someone once called the week between Christmas and New Year's "the quiet week at the bottom of the year." I like that - a week in which it's okay to just do nothing, (or as little as possible) to reflect, to re-group, to read a book and drink hot tea, or just sit back and watch the Mythbusters mega-marathon. (or whatever series you like to binge on) It sort of seems like a bonus week. So, whatever you're doing with your bonus week, happy new year and happy sewing and crafting.