Monday, June 29, 2015

June Wrap Up and MidYear Check-In

Can you even believe that we are halfway through 2015? I mean, for serious! Half the year is gone!!!!!

June has been interesting, I got in a bunch of sewing and then started work and then bam. Complete sewing stall. I needed a mojo-boost so I cut the recent S1063 and started that. And then DD let me know that she needs a new swimsuit, so that's in progress as well. Those are reflected in the totals but reviews will be coming soon.

This month I sewed 15.75 yards:

  • McCall's 6802 cardigan in grey sweater knit - 2 yards (for my daughter)
  • Butterick 6204 dress in black cotton twill - 2.5 yards
  • Burda June 2015 culottes in plum RPL - 1.5 yards wadder
  • Vogue 8805 dress in ponte - 1.75 yards
  • Vogue 9032 pants in rayon blend suiting - 2.5 yards
  • Butterick 6183 top in polkadot cotton poplin - 1.5 yards
  • Butterick 5760 skirt in a tweed-y suiting - 1 yard (WIP)
  • RTW knockoff in black jersey - 1.5 yards
  • McCall's 6519 in sweater knit - 1 yard (WIP)
  • McCall's 6759
Favorite: My V8805 dress! The in progress skirt could have been but that Vogue dress just turned out so well! I wore it this past week and felt amazing in it!

FAILS: Obviously the horror that was the culottes. 

Accomplishments: Color blocking!!! This may seem like a 'huh?' to some but I do not have the mind for it and felt so proud of myself for pulling it off!

Back in January I posted 10 "goals" for 2015...let's check in.

1) Buy a new sewing machine

I got a new machine! yay! It's been 3 months since I've had it...I will write a review soon. There are some features I still need to test out.

2) New techniques

I was mainly thinking welt pockets; which I still haven't done. But I did make bound buttonholes which is just as scary! 

3) Using my Burda mags

I made garments for Jan and Feb and June. There is a jacket from May on the to-do list and a couple dresses from June. I'm trying. I'm unsure if I'm going to renew my subscription for 2016.

4) Patterns

At the time I posted, I had 453. I now have 442. I got up to 503 and then culled 62 patterns from the stash. I will aim not to go over 500 again.

5) Fabric


I think that my stashing philosophy will change just a little bit. My new job will be much more demanding once the retiree leaves and I think my sewing will lessen a bit. I think I will probably stash basics (like ponte. I love, love, love rayon blend ponte) and neutral suiting when I see a deal. But I will switch a little bit to buying specifically for special projects. I really wanted a flowy summer skirt but of all the fabric I have (and it's a lot), I couldn't find anything in stash that would work).

6) Budget


Because I stress-buy, I've busted the budget a few times. 

7) Personal Goal

I lose a little (a little!), I stall, I get annoyed. Wah.

8) Documentation

I like the 110 Creations book a lot and the idea of recording but I just don't enjoy sketching. Not my jam.

9) Jeans

yep! I've made two pair and want to find a grey denim to make a 3rd pair.

10) Progression

I sew fast. I am accepting that. For example, when I made the suit, I made a muslin and sewed bias tape everywhere and still...I made a jacket, skirt and pants in like 4 days and I was NOT sewing every minute :) 

Now that I think a little more, I guess I wasn't adding much dress/skirt appropriate fabric because I couldn't wear them! I have a few dresses and skirts in mind that may take a little more time to work up. 

I am so excited for fall sewing with this new job!!!!

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Early Fall Patterns: Simplicity and McCall's

So the other day I really did a hard purge and removed 62 patterns from the collection but now, more will be added. Oh yes, they will.


Must haves:

7186 is a fantastic work dress!

7199 stopped me in my tracks! YES. YES. YES!!!

7193: I wished this had cup sizing...but I think it's worth doing an FBA!

Patterns that I really like but probably won't add (unless I see them made up and fall in love!)

7185; a fun dress pattern

7189: Another great dress

7187: Really like this one but I don't think I can do that dropped waist

7204: I really like this but tend to shy away from long full cardigans like this (too short and thick!)

7192: Another cute top

7194: A strong contender, but I'd probably have to see it made up.
Those angled hems are kind of meh.

I NEVER look at costumes but is she a total babe or what!?!?


I've already added a few Simplicity's to the pattern collection:

I already have fabric out to make view C. I don't care for the back drape on the other view

I just cannot give up on the raglan! And with these great panels! Swoon!

A sack dress but with a wide sash. I think I may love this.
We will see!

Does this awesome fall jacket need any words? I think not.

Totally sucked in by the pattern pic. We will see if I actually sew it

Was going to pass on this one until I saw cup sizing. 
Cup sizing will get me nearly every time.

I considered this one but decided I probably wouldn't actually make it.

So any new patterns for you??

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Butterick 6183, Vogue 9032 and RTW

Thank you everyone for the well wishes on the new job!

The first "week" (2 days!) went very well. It's a small, quiet office that's really close to home. It only took me 5 minutes to get there in Friday traffic! I am impressed by how well they treat their employees. The digs are decidedly un-fancy, but not only do people hang around and retire from this place (shortest tenure prior to myself and a new IT person that started recently is 13 years) but they close the week between Christmas and New Year! I have not heard of non-manufacturing environments doing this for a long, long time.

I hope to stay here for AWHILE!

When B6183 came out I thought that top was absolutely everything. I made it before in ponte because I didn't want to muslin it :)

This time, I used a cotton poplin with a tiny polka-dot print.

I cut a size 16C (I said recently that the D cup has too much projection for me)
1/2" swayback (need 3/4")
1/2" narrow shoulder
added CB seam
eliminated the zipper and used a hook and eye closure
used my paisley bias tape :)

There's a little excess fabric like I need a tuck at the armscye

Normally I don't really care about my serger thread...but the next few projects I had in mind were light colored so I had a combo of taupe and cream loaded and used it.

But every time I see the inside of this top I'm all O_o LOL!! 

I wore this outfit on my first day and felt great!

I have sewn several pair of Vogue 9032 pants and wanted to try the pleated view. Halfway through making them I went to try them on and absolutely hated them. But since I loved the color and feel of the fabric I decided to finish them anyway, even if they became a wadder. 

I tried to convert them to darts based on great suggestions on IG, but that seemed to highlight my tummy pooch even more than the pleats. 

So, I do not hate them but I hate the pleats. I will wear them only with tops long enough to cover them. 

The top is my copy of the RTW top I made for the Fabric Mart contest last year. Not long ago, FM had knits on sale and they had a black rayon jersey. For SOME reason I only ordered 2 yards. I kept looking at it and thinking, I need a black top but I need to make the "right" pattern. And then it hit me...use the RTW top!!! :) So glad I did. I foresee this one getting lots of wear.

The left is the RTW top and the right was my first version. 

I followed it up with a taupey colored one from a liquidy rayon jersey which I love.

And funnily enough, while going through OLD pics today on my laptop trying to find one of my dad and me, Lookey at what I found:

I had THREE of them before! Hahaha!!!! Smart lady! ;-)

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

New Beginnings!

I had my last interview on Tuesday and then sat on my thumbs waiting for the next interview THIS Tuesday. I had so much nervous energy and pulled out like TEN sewing projects! Hahaha!

I got three sewn and 2 in progress. All patterns I've sewn before with some tweaks. Because I GOT THE JOB!!! the over abundant sewing will slow for a bit. I have just over 5 weeks of intensive training with the current person before she retires.

I'll get these 5 items blogged over the coming days, as I get pictures. The horrific photo quality you see? That's as good as it got today as it is so overcast.

1. Butterick 5760 skirt - mod includes lining. Still needs finishing

2. McCall's 6519 woven pullover top -mod is that I made it in a drapey sweater knit. Still needs finishing

Vogue 9032 pants  - made the view with the pleats. Finished. 

RTW Knockoff top - Love. I may wear this for my first day! Done in a black rayon jersey. Finished.

Butterick 6183 top - made in a woven this time (as intended per the pattern). Done in a pindot cotton poplin. Finished. 

I was certain I would reward myself with new fabric if I got the job...but I'm totally leaning towards jewelry and shoes! I am more excited than I should be about wearing normal (e.g., non safe/comfortable) shoes!

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Vogue 8805; the "It's About Time!" Dress

You know V8805...The cute little easy, breezy dress that like, nearly everyone else has sewn??

I'm sure you've seen some gorgeous combinations of fantastic pontes and linens and so on...My mind does not colorblock. I see it. I love it. I tried it and had a massive fail.

I needed a quick and easy project after the more involved dress and the dreaded culottes. I decided that in the right color scheme, this would be a great work-appropriate dress to add to my wardrobe. I don't have many of those and anticipate wearing LOTS of dresses this summer in my new role (which hopefully will come soon; ONE MORE interview on Tuesday with the company president!). It IS above the knee, BUT I think the fit allows it to still be good for work.

See that lady? I like her dress, a lot. But thought the chartreuse might be a bit much. So I went with a remnant from my cobalt V1411 pants - yay me! I have loads and loads of Maggy London black ponte and had a remnant in that taupe-y color from my NL lace/nude dress.

I LOVE IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Based on the intended fit (meaning, it's not body hugging; it's meant to skim), and the finished measurements, I cut a size 16, C cup.

Wait...I actually traced the pattern. YAY ME!

Once I saw the colors together I was so excited to get this one sewn up! I shortened the middle section 1" based on some reviews that I'd read awhile back.  I hemmed it 3/4" (serged and turned up) instead of the narrow hem suggested.

After basting the side seams, I took in the waist about 3/8" (so 1.5" total). I nipped it from right below the bust dart to just above the high hip. I didn't want it to be snug anywhere. There *is* a bit of a puff of fabric at the middle back but it's not terrible.

I had black thread in both my machine and serger. I sewed all of the connecting seams with black thread, pressing the seams open (they are left unfinished). Then I did the black topstitching. I switched to blue and did that topstitching. Then, I switched to tan, did the back slit, sewed the shoulder seams and did the tan topstitching. It all went really quickly this way.

I used a hook and eye as a closure. Because of the thickness of the ponte and because I didn't feel like making bias tape, I used a 1.5" wide strip of ponte, very, VERY slightly stretching it in place (flat). I then trimmed, pressed and topstitched at 3/8". I may go in and trim all of the seam allowances that were left unfinished, but honestly, it doesn't bother me. The seams that were finished (the side seams) and the hems, were serged in black.

If you're anal about that sort of thing, look away! LOL!

I had low expectations when I first decided to sew this dress. Well, it worked! :)

The outtake:

That remote is always out to get me.

Saturday, June 6, 2015

The Good: Butterick 6204; The Bad: Burda 6/2015 #126

I have been doing a terrible job at replying to comments lately; my apologies!!

Let's start with the bad, shall we?

There are several garments in the June issue of Burda that I want. I was immediately drawn to the culottes in the plus size section. I'm pretty much a 40/42 in Burda tops and dresses depending on the style and assumed I needed to go up a size for my bottoms as I do with the Big 4. So I figured the 44 should work for me!

Initially, I was going to use some awesome linen that I got from the Fabric Mart contest last year but it had far too much body after washing and drying that I decided on a lightweight cotton blend suiting. I really love the color of this fabric and have been hoarding it.

While tracing the pattern off, I started really questioning if I should make them or not. Because I am getting wiser in my old age :) I pulled out the purplish RPL that I'd gotten a generous cut of earlier this year. This one was much less vibrant than it appeared on the site---and I've yet to believe I can successfully wear this color or not---so I figured it was perfect for a muslin.

I cut the size 44, knew that crotch curve would be all kinds of wrong and the tissue fit confirmed I'd have some "butt hungriness" so I scooped out A LOT; like 1/2" and that was the right move. I did not add any hem allowance because I never need to with Burda (unless it's a petite pattern).  I added 5/8" seam allowances except for 1" at the side seams. This was good as I needed a little more room at the high hip.

I cut off 7 inches of fabric from them. SEVEN INCHES! I hate everything about them. I hate them. I hate them. I hate them.

And I still don't think this is a good color for me.

Do I look cool and chic like her? Nope. 

Also she must be like 6'4" cause...SEVEN INCHES.

They "fit"; the side seam is straight, the back looks good...

But I hate the style on me. Too much fabric. And, OMG the dropped crotch. I do not like is not comfortable. 

Other 'what in the world?!' for me is that the front crotch is sewn to the notch and then you topstitch the left side and then it wraps over. The part that would have a zipper? It's just open O_o I understand it because of the crossover; and it will have two outside buttons and an inside button, but again, not a feature I particularly cared for.

There will be NO additional work on these! I am moving on!!!!


But there is LIGHT! :-)

When B6204 dropped I was all aghast. I had to have this dress!!! 

I mean, doesn't she look great?! :) I did not care for the hi-low hem but view A has an even hem...

I was going to muslin this but I've made similar and figured flat measuring and tissue fitting should suffice.

I have previously been using 14 D-cup but I think that I need to use the C cup and do a small FBA. It seems as though the D cup has too much projection. Like my bust are more full than sticky-outy.  Anyhow, I went with a 16 C cup. Traced, did some tissue fitting...made some changes to the front.

The Front.

Did I fit the back at all? Nope. Sometimes my older self is not wiser.

On the 16 C bodice I "took back" 1" of the dart uptake, lowered the darts 1", and did a 3/8" tuck on the front neckline to hopefully prevent gaping. I also did a 3/8" armscye tuck. I did not narrow the shoulder. I added 2 inches to the front waistband to match the addition to the front pattern piece and to the front skirt to match the waistband.

I decided to leave off the belt carriers and pockets and completely forgot to interface my waistband...

The instructions for lining the bodice was great! Sew the armscye seams first, easier to understitch that way! And if you try on your bodice a whole bunch of times (like, a whole bunch), it may 'grow' and then be slightly bigger than your lining. I don't know anyone who may have done that though...


Once I got it assembled, I basted in the zipper and got this:

my daughter keeps Christmas lights up in her room :) should have fit the back too crazy lady!!!

But my in progress shot was encouraging so I was excited to finish:

And then trying to get the zipper in with the crazy amount of excess fabric in the back resulted in a serious case of Whiskey Tango Foxtrot with some of the inside finishes.

I was so annoyed...and I'd go so far as saying I was completely pissed off at this dress last night!!!! I wanted to throw it in the fire place!!!! Nothing was going right. I probably should've just quit and came back to it but I didn't and as a result just suffered!

I pushed and pushed and when I tried on the finished dress, I was giddy! GIDDY!!!!! I was both glad that I powered through and mad that I "angry sewed" the rest of it.

(Dear daughter, you could have warned me about the trash cans...)

I mean...the twirly shots are far more important than anything else, right? RIGHT?!?!

It feels great on and I think those few bodice wrinkles are totally due to me making the fashion fabric stretch out of shape.

I just left all the excess fabric and used wonder tape to get the zipper in place as needed

Clean lined bodice!!

In the area where you have the cross over there's lots of sure to grade that seam...

The side split

Now, do I love it? I do...I love it very much. But what's up with the crazy amount of fabric in back? Is it due to me choosing the wrong bodice size? Is the pattern just crazy big in back?? I can't say for sure. 

All fabric in this post from Fabric Mart!

Monday, June 1, 2015

May Wrap Up

A much quieter May than April, that's for sure! :)

This month I sewed up 11 2/3 yards:

  • McCall's 7094 top in animal print rayon challis - 1.5
  • McCall's 7167 romper in ponte/shirting - 1.5 (for my daughter)
  • Burda 03/2014 #101 jacket in blue/gray suiting - 1.75
  • Butterick 5760 skirt in blue/gray suiting - 1
  • Vogue 9032 pants in blue/gray suiting - 2.25
  • McCall's 6559 robe in floral linen/rayon woven - 3 2/3

1 top
1 skirt
1 pants
1 jacket
1 robe
1 gift

Favorite: I did a great job this month of adding super lovable garments to my closet - yay me!  However, as we type, I am staring (with the side-eye) at my M7094 top. I swear I pretreated the fabric -- I've gotten to where everything is washed when it comes out of it's FabricMart box and/or SR Harris/Hancock Fabrics bag! :) And it's a crinkled hot mess.

Accomplishments: I won 2nd place in the wardrobe contest! Yay!!!! Also, I did something that I've wanted to do since I first started sewing; a 3 piece suiting collection. I totally have enough fabric left to make a sheath dress or another skirt; we will see.

For June I really want to catch up on my Burda challenge garments. I cannot find anything in March to love and am thinking if I just give myself "permission" to skip it, I can move forward.

I also have a couple "unselfish sewing" projects in the works for the kids.


Last of MMM'15!

Day 22: M7094 top and V1411 pants
Day 23: M6839 top and S2061 pants
Day 24: M6841 top

Day 25: Happy Memorial Day! S2255 shirt
Day 26: Interview day! Burda 3/2014 jacket and V9032 pants
Day 27: M6927 top and S1696 pants

Day 27: M6559 (My S1696 pants grew and grew (why I despise lycra in my pants!!!)
Day 28: NL6108 top and M6654 skirt
Day 29: Tee refashioned from a mens XL and Style Arc jeans
Day 30: B6169 jacket and SA jeans
Day 31: S2351 jacket, NL6110 top and V1411 pants

I didn't repat any whole outfits, which honestly I knew wouldn't be that hard. Well...I totally want to wear my McCall's 5890 dress all.the.time!

I wore both V1411 and M6996 3 times each. I had to force myself not to wear M6996 more throughout the month. I wore M6839 and NL6108 twice each (AND my distressed RTW jeans 3 times - I totally put them on after the interview suit came off. I love those jeans!!).

I wore my Style Arc jeans 4 times! Definitely find myself reaching for them :)

Hope you enjoyed MMM too!