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Sunday, November 27, 2011

Festive Fun-wear

All we need is some cooler weather for Gracie to rock this festive fleece coat. It's got a lot of twirl factor, and even dolly matches.

I couldn't leave Benjamin out of the fun, so I finished up his new Christmas shirt.

I also sewed up the Kate skirt from Style Arc patterns. I love it! This went together like a dream and fits very well. Plus, it made up really cute in this grape corduroy.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Thankful for my sewing machine

I ran my own Thanksgiving Day sweatshop... First up is this adorable Daisy Kingdom coat in red anti-pill fleece. It needs buttons and I want to buy a spool of black velvet ribbon for trim. Otherwise, it is done.

I had just a teensy bit of fleece left, so I made this:

Gracie's doll will look so cute in a coordinating coat! It also needs buttons, but I'll sew them on when I do the ones for the bigger coat.

I also made a new outfit for Gracie from Fabrenmix's "Nadya" pattern - it is too cute! I was inspired to sew this for her after making up a baby/big sister pair of outfits for some friends of mine due with their second daughter in a few weeks.

These are both Ottobre patterns, but the appliques on all three are Designs by Juju. I just love the combination of the print and stripe. I started with two yards of each and made all of these outfits PLUS Gracie had a onesie out of the stripe when she was one and I still had enough of both fabrics to make a receiving blanket with stripes on one side and the print on the other.

Along with all of those adorable Patsy Aiken/Chez Ami fabrics, I also am working on this (from more of these great knits) for Benjamin: I will be placing an applique/embroidery design on the front - haven't decided which one yet, but something fun for a 6 year old boy.

Gracie is all ready to wear her new outfit out shopping at Joann's tomorrow - 25%off your whole purchase before noon. I need some things - like thread and a seam ripper (just broke mine yesterday). I refuse to go out NOW to hang out at Walmart or Target or the mall. That is just nuts. My shopping is done (;-P) and I figure I made my own Black Friday deals. Plus, when I ordered 13 yards of fabric from Fabric Mart today ($40 with shipping!!!), no one had to leave their house to ring me up.

Saturday, November 19, 2011


I've never been a big fan of the color grey - it lacks too much color for my tastes.However, I have just completed two dresses using a lovely pewter grey ponte knit and I like them both very much.

McCall's 6432 has great lines and was very easy to alter for a large bust since it was a cup size pattern. I got a lot of compliments when I wore it to work, too!

McCall's 6395 turned out even better than I imagined it would. It felt a little risky mixing two different weight knits, but by lining the bodice, it made a big difference. I know the zipper and the lightweight jersey didn't play well (hence the puckering, but I don't care). I'm happy with it.
The zipper details on the sleeves as well as the exposed one on back drive up the project cost a little, but they are great details.

Up next, a couple of holiday fashions for the young'uns and then back to my wardrobe.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Addicted? patterns!

So, yesterday I was out shopping and found myself stuck at the dreaded mall play area watching kiddos #3 & 4 run amok with the other little kids and I pulled out my smart phone. I was b-o-r-e-d...checked email...what was this? New Buttericks??? Of course, I discovered this just as I was calling the little darlings over to retrieve their shoes so we could keep moving. I ended up walking through the mall while trying to peek at patterns on that tiny screen.

Here are my faves (now that I could actually see them in some detail without pushing the image around my tiny screen):

B5708 is really cute and would make a lovely summer dress.

I like the tops of B5709 - except for the one with the asymetrical hem. I haven't been a fan of that trend.

I enjoy a good sleepwear pattern that I can use with my extensive stash of Patsy Aiken knits. It's fun to sew something for myself in a print that would be too cute for anything else.

Can you have enough bag patterns? I think, I really like the smaller items in B5728.

Overall, I maintain one complaint from the last few catalogs: where are the kids' patterns??? No, the robe and the baby bunting do NOT count.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Winter Wardrobe - the little black and grey dresses

I just completed piece #2 - McCall's 5924:

I love this printed ponte knit fabric (G Street - last piece!). I especially like how it looks hemmed with this black ponte as a contrast. While I was planning my wardrobe pieces, I went through my stash of ponte knit (thanks for the sale last month, Fabric Mart) and got inspired.

While I have the knit out, I plan to cut McCall's 6432 with basically the same color combo as the sketch (but my grey is slightly darker - more of a pewter grey).

Then I will take the remaining pewter grey and use it for the skirt of McCall's 6395. I plan to combine the contrast view with the long sleeve view. My version will also have a lighter grey top portion, but mine will be out of a print. I do plan to do the decorative zippers on the sleeves. I like how that looks.

Once I get these three dresses finished, I will likely tackle a top or two.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Fall & Winter Wardrobe Plan

I was cleaning up some patterns and fabric yesterday when I got the notion to sew with a plan for myself for fall and winter...and thus began the obsession. I have trouble doing things on a small scale, so before I knew it, I had a selection of patterns matched with a selection of fabrics from my stash database (yes, I have a's that ridiculous).

 I made the plan in Microsoft OneNote and added yardage info for the garments I wanted to make. I then printed it out and sat down with my fabric database (and a little old-fashioned fabric fondling too) and decided on matching fabrics with patterns. I started to do this on the computer with the Modkid Madeline skirt and some Amy Butler fabrics (see top right of first image), but quickly realized that would be a headache.

At the moment, my plan includes:

14 knit tops
4 jackets
6 pants
8 dresses
11 skirts

I might make a wool coat, too, but that is the only thing I don't have fabric for in my stash right now.

Some of the highlights from the fabric stash include a lot of lovely knits - mainly ITY jersey and ponte knits. I have a fabulous velveteen for the Vogue Today's fit jacket. I also have some nice corduroys and twills for pants as well as a pair denim jeans and a denim skirt with an interesting yellow pinstripe to the fabric.

The first of my planned wardrobe items, the Modkid skirt, is now complete and already reviewed!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Me! Me! Me! I've finally finished some projects for ME!

A top, a dress, and a nightgown...all for me! I don't remember when I last did three projects in a row for myself, but it felt good. I think I might just have to continue this streak.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

New sewing books & fabrics

Today was a great sewing day (in the acquisitions department). My favorite local sewing store is having their anniversary sale (Elegant Stitches - link on the side of my blog) and everything is 25% off. I picked up some lovely fabrics including:

I got the last 3 yards (40% off!). ;-)

I love this pretty line pique - will make a cute summer outfit for Gracie.
I plan to use these two prints (one is Michael Miller and the other Moda) together on this dress: Modkid - Addison

I also got another Modkid pattern on clearance:

There were a couple of other fun finds on the end-of-bolt table as well.

I think this new Lila Tueller pattern is just adorable and will be making it for Gracie next summer.

I also hit the Patsy Aiken outlet where I score some great deals on their wonderful fabrics including quite a few knits. They just started putting out excess fabrics from their Fall '11 line so I did very well on the clearance shelves. 

I hit Joann's for a few zippers and needles - it was nice to hit my phone for a 25% off coupon (sign up for their text alerts!).

Finally, my sewing shopping was rounded out at Barnes and Noble. I picked up the latest issue of Threads which includes an interesting tutorial on how to make better pants pockets.

The best find, though, were these two books:
I have been eager for both of these to come out!

Now, I just need to finish up my Vogue Tracy Reese knit dress and then I can dig into some new fun - with an extra hour this weekend to sew!