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Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Fabric P@rn anyone?

Fun prints, pretty colors...this is one of the major reasons I sew (and also scrapbook). The top dress is Roxy by Farbenmix in coordinating prints I picked up at Elegant Stitches.

The green dress is Simplicity 3512 is a really adorable bright print with contrasting white trim and a little bug applique to keep her garden free of weeds. ;-)

The "peace" tie-dye splash print is a knit from Joann's that I had to have for a nightgown. The pattern I used is not sleepwear, but an easy knit dress - makes a perfect nightie, though! (McCall's 6074).

...and no fabric p@rn posting would be complete without a taste of some of the other lovely fabrics waiting to meet scissors and machines. ;-)

Off to sew up a ModKid "Emma" in some lovely new Amy Butler fabrics!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

New Vogues - lots to like

New Vogues are out, and I'm excited

This is such a pretty dress with the draping and variety of fabrics! (V1244) I'm usually not a fan of the Koos patterns, but this one intrigues me.

This dress is simple, but has some lovely detail to it: (V1242)

as does V1241, another Kay Unger design:

This dress does not say "summer" to me, but the back is particularly lovely: (V1239)

This DKNY dress has some nice controlled draping: V1235

I also like this easy DKNY dress V1236:

Rachel Comey comes through with another cute skirt & top combo V1247:

Vogue Easy Options has a great halter dress pattern (V8727) that has some bra-friendly cuts to it:

This safari style jacket is cute and I love the hot pink they show it in (V8732):

I have absolutely no reason to make this dress, but I think it is super pretty (V8729):

This vintage design, however, is high on my list of dresses to make since it looks very big-bust-friendly (V8727):

This sundress is so cute and has sep. cup size pieces (V8723):

This dress is also from the Custom Fit (sep. cup size) group with a really interesting back (V8726):

Being Vogue, there are a few oddball patterns, but mostly this collection is wonderful. I can't wait to get my hands on some of these beauties!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Embroidering with Whimsy

Kari Mecca's two books, Sewing with Whimsy and More Sewing with Whimsy, are two of the most creative things I have seen for sewing for little girls - simply breath-taking eye candy. I'll admit that I haven't done as much with them as I'd like to, but have sampled a little from each book.

Last night, I dug into More Sewing with Whimsy and decided to make the square-yoked dress with wavy tiers. Directions for drafting the skirt of the dress couldn't have been easier (even if it does look complicated). I decided to alternate these two coordinating fabrics and embellish the dress with embroidery from Designs by Juju's "Tropical Blast" collection.

I cut the skirt pieces, attached them together and then began stitching.

Tonight I continued by adding the surfing monkey.

Currently, this is the skirt of the dress:

Gracie's little eyes bugged out when she saw the little girl and her surfboard! I'm still deciding what I want to do as far as further embellishment (if I want to do any at all). The print is really bold to begin with and I don't want to detract from the cute characters.

I do think I will construct a pair of bloomers/shorts to go underneath since my little monkey can't get enough of her swingset and I do want her to maintain a little modesty.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Spring flowers

Ever find fabric you love so much you don't want to cut it? That was this...I wanted to sew with this fabric, but I was afraid I'd end up not loving the final product because I was that into the fabric.

Anyway, I made Simplicity 2892 with this beautiful floral print, and I am pleased to say that I didn't disappoint myself. This turned out even better than I expected. Best of all, I didn't need to do an FBA, and I almost always need to do one of those.

So, now I have a new (yet familiar) dilemma: what do I make next?

I have Easter dress shirts for all three boys and my husband to make, plus Gracie's dress, plus my dress...I think it may be the shirts.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

A kick in the pants

I'm a step closer to my goal of making nice pants I can wear to work (fitted ones - obviously I took the elastic route for these). I made these Marci Tilton pants that are supposed to be cropped, but only if you have much longer legs than mine. Also, if you make these pants and you don't have a super-long torso, you might be like me and end up taking an inch off the top of the pants once you fit them at the waist. Do, I say, do, not get lazy and skip the fitting step in lieu of just making the casing and adjusting the length of the elastic. I almost did that and this might have been a disaster. Instead, I am quite happy with them.

I'm currently plotting my evening's sewing to coincide with the need to grade some student work (ah, the joys of teaching - homework). I think I'll grade the digital work while I sit beside my Deco and stitch out a few goodies. I think it's time for a couple of spring/Easter themed towels.

Monday, March 14, 2011

It's all in the details

Friends, this is what I made today! I am thrilled to say that it is all for me - not that I don't love home dec, or sewing for my family, but this was for me, and it was a treat.

My first project was this brown skirt from Simplicity 2261. It was a great skirt to fit (no alterations), but the best part is all of the fun details. The pockets, the side tab, and the interesting flap at the waist are all stitched in a decorative pattern. It was a great way to use this nice brown twill and still get a garment with great details. I'm kind of a pattern junkie (in many senses of the word) and the pattern in the stitching satisfied my need for flair as well as my need for a neutral skirt.

My second project today was McCall's 6324 with this neat zipper detail (it gets a bit lost in this photo). I was hoping it would turn out shorter since it was mid-knee on the model, but I forget that I am vertically challenged with or without the cute new shoes I'm wearing here. I found the fabric for this project at Mary Jo's in Gastonia while coming home from Cullowhee last month. The fabric screamed out "buy me!" for this pattern (which at that point I didn't even own, had only seen online). Luckily, my guesstimate of the amounts was dead on and I cut this with almost no room to spare. It was meant to be.

I pulled out a number of fantastic cotton prints that I intend to use for me. They will be going through the laundry tomorrow, so I can start cutting probably on Tuesday. I have some more things in mind for my spring wardrobe. I will confess that I don't always preshrink the fabric for my little girl, but for, yeah. I'm not taking any chances with the amount of FBA's I usually mess with. I think my plan will be to sew up some of these fun prints and then fill in the wardrobe gaps with some knit tops since I have a decent knit stash in the stockroom (aka my garage).

At least I can look forward to a lot of great sewing time this spring and summer while watching my kids play in the backyard on their new swingset (seen in the brown skirt pic - hubby is working on staining/sealing the wood, but we paid someone to custom build it). 

The best part of today's sewing projects is that I can't decide what to wear to work first! That's a fun dilemma to have. 

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Cuteness - it's a house specialty

We've lived in our house almost 12 years, and I finally have a window treatment for the second upstairs bathroom (aside from blinds). I made these like the ones in the living room (just flipping them over the rod and tying the ribbons). I cut the hems in a wavy pattern using the ruler on the couch in this picture and a rotary cutter.
There is the final product hanging in my kids' "Under the Sea" themed bathroom. I think it looks nice with the stenciling I did back in 1999!

While the fishies on the valance are cute, I thing this is even cuter. Gracie is modeling my go-to Ottobre basic tee pattern with an "If you give a cat a cupcake" appliqué on it. I also made a skirt to go with it out of some cute cupcake fabric I found at Joann's.
Winston, who looks like he's been given too many cupcakes, seems to like it.

Of course, she's cute no matter what she wears, but I'm glad she loves her "Mama made mine" stuff even if we do throw in some cuteness from Macy's along the way:'s how we roll.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Negroni - completed

Negroni -

 my offering for the Male Pattern Boldness Men's Shirt Sew-Along ;-)

Collette Patterns' Negroni in black cotton batiste by Spechler-Vogel.