Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Playground Party Skirt

I had planned to finish the "Think Pink" party dress and post photos tonight for New Years Eve but, I ran into construction issues. and after an already long week at work I decided to change my plans. So instead I am posting  about a tulle skirt made for playground fun...kind of a party right? I am still working on the pink dropped waist dress and will post it in January.

My sweet little niece is visiting for the holidays and I new I wanted to sew something for her. I wasn't sure of her size so I thought an elastic waist skirt would be easy. I new I wanted it to be comfy for everyday wear but also flirty and fun. I shopped for inspiration and found these skirts cost from $35-50. This is something that would be much less expensive to sew.
J Crew tippy-toe tulle skirt
When I started to sew this I decided I wanted it to be comfortable so I went with a bright knit, then added the tulle in the same color. I purchased all of my fabric (1/3 yard of knit ) and notions from Nancy's Sewing Basket located close to home. The entire skirt cost around $8.00.

I measured and cut the fabric in half, realizing I had enough for two skirts. Then added 5/8 inch casing for the 1/2 inch non roll elastic that I had leftover from another project.
                       The fabric has two different sides. I chose the brighter one.

Then I measured two layers of tulle 9 inches and left it the width of the fabric and gathered it evenly and attaching it right below the waistband. 

The skirt was difficult to catch a photo or two on my moving target. We went to the park and tested it out to see if it would play well.

Here it is paired with a striped tee, coat, leggings, and boots that she already owns.  

Friday, December 27, 2013

New Year: No Ready-to-Wear.

 Some of you saw this on Mood Fabric's Instagram page. It was posted at a time when I wanted to set some personal goals for my style and sewing for 2014. I was interested in doing the Ready-to-Wear Fast that Sarah from Goodbye Valentino is organizing, but worried I would not have enough time to devote to sewing so many things. I thought about my purchases of ready to wear over the last year and realized the only items I had purchased were shoes, and a few vintage items. 
I find when I have shopped, I always end up realizing I could make this and maybe for less. If you shop at many store that have disposable clothing you find that sewing your clothing is more expensive, but if you like quality garments you can sew them for the around the same price and sometimes less. My sewn garments almost always fit better and I know I feel proud when complimented on them.
The only thing that I was not sure I could make were jeans, socks and tights. I purchased some jeans in December and the socks are on the "allowed" list, now I am ready to go. She started her first Fast in August of 2011, during her first year  of sewing she made 64 garments.  She is also one of Mood Fabrics sewing network bloggers. I am going to do my best to make garments in 2014 instead of purchasing. Anyone else want to join Sarah, myself and many more sewists on our fast? The deadline is December 31st to email Sarah with your information. 

Sunday, December 22, 2013

A Pretty Portrait Blouse

I sewed another Portrait blouse from Gertie's New Book for Better Sewing
I actually sewed this last week and have already worn it twice, I am only now getting to the pictures.
The fabric is 1 yard of ivory 4 ply silk crepe with slight stretch from Gorgeous Fabrics sitting in my stash . This fabric is a dream to sew with, and feels yummy against my skin. If only all of my things be made from this lovely fabric.
Since the pattern had already been adjusted for me it was a quick sew. I spent about 30 mins  laying out the fabric and cutting it out one evening. I debated on using the facings around the neck or finish with bias tape because my fabric is ivory and the facings may show. I went with the facings. The next day I squeezed in 30 mins of sewing and was ready to check the fit.
One and a half  hours on the third day to interface and sew in the facings. I am hoping the fabric is thick enough and the facings will work and not show through the blouse. Gertie's book has really great instructions and illustrations. Following her instructions for hemming thin fabric, I hemmed the sleeves and the bottom by stitching  3/8 inch, then another stitch just to the left.
                               Then pressed it under and completed with the final stitch.

 Gertie's book recommend that you finish your seams several ways, I choose to do a zigzag stitch on my machine.

 Then off to my local fabric and notions store (Nancy's Sewing Basket) to purchase a zipper and a few items for a another project. Finally the hand picked zipper.

If you are not sure about lapped zippers check out this free Craftsy Zipper tutorial.
Next I hand picking the edge of the facing and a good press.

  After 3 hours total time I was done. I needed a quick easy project after the last ambitious quilted bathrobe.

                                                  Casual with blazer and jeans or dressed up.

I changed this one by opening up the neckline a little and adding 2 inches to the length to allow me to wear it with more things. The facings show through slightly so I may end up unpicking and redoing the neckline.

My first version is here. I love it but can only wear it with high waisted items because of the length. I may not have my finger on the fashion pulse but I do know that when you are over forty you should not show your midriff. I plan to add more high waisted things to my wardrobe as I think they are much more flattering in general.
I am still working on the "Think Pink" dress. The bodice muslin has been completed and adjusted and now ready for a second fitting. I really, really glad I made a muslin. I will post the details soon.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

The Monthly Stitch December Challenge

I have been spending the past few weeks trying to decide about the December Monthly Stitch Challenge.

My dilemma is I do not really need another party dress. I have my new Sultry Sheath, it has become my new favorite and I have worn it already three times. There is something about a red dress.
My daughter quickly volunteered herself for a Party dress. She is an aspiring designer who dreams up ideas and now it is time to make the latest one a  reality. Here are some of her inspiration photos.
Polka Dot Polly

TimelessVixenVintage on Etsy

I will use my Craftsy Susan Kalhje Couture Sewing Class knowledge and start with a muslin then underline the fashion fabric with silk organza.We have selected Gertie's dropped waist cocktail dress from her New Book for Better Sewing. The pattern is a variation on the Wiggle Dress in the book. There are not any new skills I am learning in the process of this project but I will get practice with couture techniques.

and the bubblegum pink wool crepe and silk organza for underlining has arrived from Mood fabrics.

I am calling this The "Think Pink" Dress drawing inspiration from Funny Face. If you have not seen the movie here is a you tube video of the Think Pink music number. Now off to cut the muslin and trace the all of my markings.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

1940s Vintage quilted robe.

I started this ambitious project a few weeks ago. There have been as many ups as downs. My daughter had asked for this for Christmas last year and I thought I would finally get it completed and still be considered on time, kind of?  I used Vintage pattern  Butterick 4653. .

 I quilted the ivory satin fabric lined with ivory rayon lining to keep the drape similar to the inspiration photo.
This project would have gone much faster if I had not needed to quilt the fabric or if I was a more experienced quilter. 

 Fabric Tag

I think she is pleased.

Friday, December 6, 2013

Holiday Magic at Nancy's Sewing Basket

Nancy's is offering a Draw your Discount from a Holiday Stocking during the Holiday Magic evening . The discounts are between 10-30% off of your purchase.

They are also selling tickets for there Share-the-Joy Dress Raffle. Enter for the chance to win a new wardrobe for your American Girl Doll™, handmade by the staff at Nancy’s. The wardrobe consists of twelve beautiful handmade outfits and three pets for the American Girl™ or other 18" dolls.
 Tickets are $1.00 each and on sale December 6th–22, all proceeds go to benefit Mary's Place. So remember to purchase your $1 ticket when you are in Queen Anne. You will be supporting a good cause and maybe lucky enough to win the wardrobe.

 Mary’s Place is a day center. They offer programs and services for homeless women and their children can  enrich their days and find resources to restore their lives. They provide two hot meals per day, employment resources,support groups and more.
*To find out how Mary’s Place is helping children and their parents, visithttp://www.marysplaceseattle.org/