Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Soon to be Useful

A year or two ago (maybe longer; I can't remember) when the Hancock Fabrics in Tulsa had their going out of business sale I bought 3 pieces of cotton interlock knit. I originally planned to make t-shirts and only bought one and a half yards of each but later I decided it was too heavy for summer wear. Mornings have been cool lately so I was inspired to get out that fabric and make this:

I used this Butterick pattern, view D.

I wasn't sure I had enough fabric but I decided to lay out the pieces and see and it was just enough. It was very fast and easy to make, only two pattern pieces since it has kimono sleeves. I didn't bother with the button and loop because I doubt I would use it. I faced the neckline and front edges with wide bias tape.

Here it is with jeans:

The other two pieces of knit fabric are pink and orange. I don't know if I will make exactly the same thing with them but I'm very tempted.

Friday, September 8, 2017

A Pretty Simple Dress

Remember this?

This piece had been in my stash for a few years and I had planned to make something a little bit fancy and dressy but I decided that what I really needed was another casual, lounge-y type of dress so...

It's actually not very different from my original plan; I just made it loose fitting with no zipper instead of making it with a fitted bodice. As a "house dress" I'm happy with it. The arm holes are way too big so if I ever wear it in public it will have to be with a t-shirt or cardigan and I hope no one gets down on their knees to inspect my scallops but mostly it's okay. The little pink buttons are non-functional, for decoration only.

This fabric feels lovely - lightweight and smooth. I loved it when I bought it but as it sat in my stash love changed to merely like but now that I've made it and worn it my feelings about it are tipping back toward love.

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

It's HERE!

Look what came in the mail yesterday.

The top fabric in the picture is the purple fabric I wrote about in my last post. I am absolutely thrilled with it. The colors in the picture are reasonably accurate but there's a subtle quality that just doesn't come through in a photo. Anyway, love it and will sew it soon even though it's going to be a summer dress and fall is rapidly approaching. But that's what they make cardigans and tights for, right?

The other piece was an impulse buy. I can never resist a colorful paisley. It's from a different Etsy shop and even though it came from Florida both pieces arrived on the same day. This one will probably sit in the stash until next spring or summer.

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

A Confluence of Fabric Love and Tragic Events

I normally don't need any encouragement to go fabric shopping but I am currently in a "OMG! I have SO much fabric; I can't buy any more right now" phase. Add to that a little political uncertainty about what is acceptable for an old southern white woman. But I would have gotten around to the African fabrics eventually, maybe in a year or two. But I had to go and shoot off my mouth (or fingers) over at Oonaballoona and Marcy (as well as another commenter) encouraged me so I suddenly had to obtain a piece of African or Dutch Wax Print fabric as soon as possible!

I had been looking at a couple of fabrics at but when I went back there they were gone so I looked at Etsy and found hundreds. I have been looking at and favoriting fabrics for days. I added about 20 favorites. I want to narrow it down to only one or two. So hard! Finally, I woke up yesterday morning and just knew which one it had to be and, as always when such a decision comes to me, in my heart it was already mine. A lovely print in shades of purple with some big fan-like shapes. But then I realized - the seller is in Houston. No one in south Texas is going to be shipping anything anytime soon and I feel a bit guilty even thinking about something as trivial as fabric shopping when millions of people are now homeless.

But, for me at least, life goes on and in a few days I will decide on a different fabric. Or two. I'm thinking about making a shirt for my brother-in-law as a thank you for being so helpful to us. Besides the purple, I have been especially attracted to fabrics with a lot of red and yellow. But those are not all so I don't know. Hopefully another fabric will speak to me in the next few days.

* * *

UPDATE: I kept checking that Houston-based Etsy shop (HouseOfMamiWata) and this morning there was a note saying that she is open! She is traveling to Austin to ship orders. So of course I went ahead and ordered that gorgeous fabric. Also ordered another piece from a different shop and I might even order one more. (I'm incorrigible.)

Friday, August 25, 2017

A Sparkly Little Dress

Here's another dress for my granddaughter:

Of course I would love her and accept her for who she is no matter what; making cute little tops would be just as much fun, but I am thrilled that she loves dresses.

This one is made of glitter cotton using the same pattern as the ladybug dress (I have updated that post with another picture) and added shiny rainbow rick rack around the neckline. I think it is not as long as the other one. That was the intention anyway. She likes purple and she likes sparkly things and she loves pockets (as do I) so this one is sure to be a big hit.

Wednesday, August 23, 2017


This is why I'm not sewing right now.

My current sewing project is inside that chest, in the top part under the lid that lifts up. Obviously I can't work on it right now.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

August Sewing Thoughts and Plans

It's the middle of August! Can you believe it's the middle of August already? Every year around this time I start thinking back to early spring and all the things I was excited about sewing then and all my ambitious plans. This year I have not done well at sticking with plans. I'm not terribly concerned about it. I got distracted by some other pretty fabrics and made a few things. I also altered and remade a few old things to make them more wearable and I made a few dresses for my little granddaughter, some of them using small leftover pieces of fabric. Oh, and a couple of shirts for my husband. (Zero chance I can ever get him to model them.) So really, not a bad summer so far.

Still, I'm a little disappointed that I haven't gotten around to this yet:

Or this:

I also have this set of companion prints that I've been thinking about.

I'm not going to go to the effort of photographing all of the fabrics I'm thinking about right now, just one more because I'm seriously thinking this might be next. Or I might make another shirt for my husband; I don't know. (Right now I'm working on another lovely little dress for the granddaughter.

I have had that piece for several years but just recently got freshly inspired.

The good thing about living in Oklahoma is that summer weather can last a month or more beyond the "official" end of summer so I still have time to sew these and more. I think what I am most disappointed about is that I haven't worked on a quilt this year. I started a quilt top that I had hoped to have nearly finished quilting by now but I've barely started sewing the top so I might spend some time working on that. I have so many quilt ideas. The hard part of that, for me, is getting the top done because I don't enjoy that as much as I do the quilting.

So how have your summer projects been going?

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

My New Favorite Dress

It's another Butterick 5748. (I know... I keep making the same two dresses over and over again, but LOVE!)

With pockets of course.

And here's the back. I really kind of hate showing this pic because I hate my arms and also, on this one, because I didn't bother trying to match the pattern and it came out a little goofy looking but... oh well.

I love this pattern, obviously since I keep making it, and I absolutely over-the-top love this fabric. The colors are amazing. But can you believe I finished it over a week ago and haven't even worn it yet? It's been cooler than normal for August and when I get dressed in the morning and it's only 64F I just reach for something else even though I know it would be fine later. But I will wear it soon.

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Oops and Nice Recovery

I don't have a before picture. I photograph almost everything I make so I thought surely I had to have a picture of the dress somewhere but I didn't find one. Here's what happened. It was a simple A-line dress. I loved it, mainly for the fabric. I have a bit of a thing for ladybugs, you see. But it had a couple of problems so I didn't wear it very often. One problem was that the arm holes were a bit too small. Easy to fix, right? Well, perhaps I am a bit overconfident at times. When I got done "fixing" the arm holes they were way too big.

So for a while I pouted and tried to think of a way to fix them again. But the armholes weren't the only problem. The pockets were too small to be useful (I made it before I got a smartphone.) and I don't wear A-line dresses much anymore. So I decided to give it up and make something out of it for my granddaughter.

It's McCall's 9227. I lengthened the skirt because she's tall for her age but I might have lengthened it more than I needed to. I think it will be okay though. She often wears longish dresses and not just the ones I make. I will get to see her and give it to her this weekend.

Now I have just one problem: I no longer have a ladybug dress. I can't not have a ladybug dress. Must go fabric shopping.

* This was actually a while ago that I made this and I already have something else to show off but who knows when I will get around to it.

* * * * *


It turned out to be a maxi. She loves it. Here she is watching the eclipse, wearing the dress and her dad's welding mask.

Friday, July 7, 2017

Happy Flower Faces

I don't have just one favorite color (at least not one long term favorite) but I must say, the color orange makes me ridiculously happy.

I liked the way this dress turned out so well that I did the same thing with the bodice on this one. The skirt though, is just a plain gathered skirt. It looks much longer in the picture than it actually is. It's just a bit below mid-calf.

And the faces? Here are the faces. I like that only a few random flowers have faces.

Here's the back of the dress. I am addicted to these scoop back dresses.

Before I made the dress I made this bolero or "shrug" as the kids are calling them these days. It's cotton voile with embroidered flowers and I sewed lace trim around the edges, just about an inch in from the edge.

I'm not 100% thrilled with it but it's okay and it might occasionally be useful. Hmmmm... I wonder if it meets the Congressional dress code.

One more thing - the shoes are Clark's Cloudsteppers and they're amazing.