July 30, 2011

Slippery Slope

I blame Carolyn. I have never shopped at Fabric Mart.  No matter how many times she has linked to them or shown her beautiful treasures.

I try to buy most of my fabric locally just to support and keep my local brick and mortars in business.  And - regular readers know that just about all natural fibers, with the exception of cotton - sc
are me.  I'm not sure how to handle them or what to do.

So yesterday when Carolyn started talking about the Rayon Challis on sale for $2.50 a yard, well I clicked over and I looked at the lovely prints and I added some to a cart and then I clicked away.  I mean really - what would I do with them?  I asked as much in Carolyn's comments and being the lovely lady that she is, she replied that I would make a dress.

So today with the frustration of having spent the entire month of July working on a single, simple button front skirt - that's still not finished! - I clicked through again and bought 2 of the challis.  Both in a large enough quantity to make a dress.  I mean at that price - if I ruin it, well who cares, right?

I also added a lovely midnight blue windowpane checked cotton - this is right in my comfort zone and I see it being a dress.  I can't decide if it wants to be a slim dress or a dress with a full skirt but I hope it decides before it gets here.

Finally I added another cotton print.  It too wants to be a dress.  This one really wants to be a button front shirt dress. 

I'm happy that in Western Washington I can get 3 seasons of wear from lightweight cottons.  They will easily go from Spring right into the Fall.  And since it's never excessively hot here, they are fine in the summer too.  The midnight blue might go better from Fall through Spring being dark it might like tights and a cardi and be a winter dress.

But the title of this post?  Well I got enough fabric today, plus shipping, for  6 dresses for under $60.  That doesn't include any notions that I might need like buttons, zippers, thread, interfacing, but those are things I have on hand and they don't really count.  If I actually start making sewing progress - I can see this being a bad, bad place to be buying from.  I know first hand that Carolyn knows of what she speaks when she talks about fabric quality.  And I really don't need a fabulous source of quality fabric to add to my stash.  My friend Miss D. threatened to stage an intervention when she saw my fabric on the cutting table when we were doing the floors. 

July 28, 2011

Doodle Bug

This is Abigail Jane
One of her nicknames is Doodle Bug
Don't ask me - I don't know either

Doodle has a chair
She loves it
JB put her chair in the dog house
Yesterday before leaving for work I looked out and saw this
I was late for work because I had to take the picture
to share with you

Happy Dogs on Thursday

July 25, 2011

Why I Don't Do Singles

 Early in July I was contacted to test knit another sock pattern.  It's a lovely pattern and I said yes.  The designer needed one sock in 2 days time. 

So - I grabbed some yarn, caked it up,  and divided it into two.  Then I grabbed some double pointed needles - I have quite the collection that rarely gets used - and started knitting away. 

I finished the first sock in record time and then finally started the second this past week.  As I was knitting along, I noticed that the yarn wasn't patterning in the same way on the second sock - but I just kept knitting along - sometimes I'd
rather be knitting something I know I'll rip - just to have busy hands.

Maybe you can see it better in the second photo?  The bottom sock is the first one and it's easily a quarter of an inch bigger than the second.  Quarter of an inch!  You say - but really that's half an inch because it's doubled and it will make a difference. 

So now it's caked back up and I might start them again this week at knitting but I'm currently working on a shawl and a cardigan and I'm in no hurry to get back to them - regardless of how pretty they are.

July 22, 2011

Fabric Stack

This is the stack of fabrics currently on my cutting table.  All cottons, all destined to be fun summer dresses.

So am I not sewing?  I need to muslin a new pattern - I finally got the Claire Cami pattern after seeing the Snug Bug's cute versions

The green from the Oliver & S collection is for a button front shirt dress but the rest are combos for Sew Seredipity patterns. 

Maybe with my new companion I'll get more sewing done?

July 20, 2011


A friend decided to knit a copy of the ever famous shawl that Kate wore for some reason.  I don't follow royal fashion, but this was cute and doable and was a way to support a friend as she slogged on through the ruffles that never end.  My friend is doing the ruffle all the way around, but I only did it on the triangle point sides. 

I started this on July 4th and it was small and manageable to have at the BBQ and kept my hands busy so they weren't shoving food into my face.  I finished it on the 16th and it's currently blocking - just a soft blocking this time, no stretching, no pins.  I will try and get modeled shots this coming weekend. 

July 18, 2011

My New Sewing Companion

Nope - not a new animal!

A new tv.  A giant one.  The one that was in the studio was small - it came out of our bedroom
because we never watched tv there. 
So - do you watch tv while you sew?  Or Spin?  Or Knit?
What do you do for background noise?  I can stand the silence when I'm cutting or tracing.
I do find some things are easier to have on in the back ground that anothers.

What is your favorite background while you're crafting?

July 11, 2011

Dress #2

Last weekend, I managed to finish not 1, but 2 dresses.  It honestly takes me for-freakin-ever to get anything finished.  The last dress took me almost the entire month of June.  This one took 2 weekends.  I don't sew during the week - I work, cook dinner, walk dogs and knit.

This is the second version of the Monique Dress.  This version is fully lined and made from a much, much softer cotton than the first version.

I lengthened the front bodice this time so the waist band is level all around.  The lining has an a-line skirt rather than the full, gathered skirt.

Again - I used just one fabric but I do have several 2 fabric versions all ready to go on the cutting table.  However, to "spice" it up a bit I added rick rack to the waist band seams. 
I can see from the photos that this still isn't perfect. There are some strange wrinkles above the bust, but you know what? It's good enough.  Does that make me a horrible garment maker?  I don't think so.  It's much, much better than anything I could buy in ready to wear.  The waistband fits snugly and the skirt floats and skims my belly and hips.  It doesn't catch on my rear. 

Even lined - it was light and comfortable to wear on one of the first hot days we've had in Seattle.  Next up:  I have the white denim button front skirt cut - but that's as far as I managed to get this weekend.  I was completely unmotivated to do anything.  Actually, I think I was fighting off a Summer cold.  Now it's back to the work week. 

July 5, 2011

Dress #1

I have been sewing - honest!

Last September I made a muslin of this dress, but labeled it as the wrong pattern and then set it aside waiting to get help from my ASG group. 

In June, I drug the un-ironed muslin to the meeting and slipped it on.  For the life of me, I couldn't remember what I thought the issues were - the muslin fit great!  So I came home and cut it out of a bright crazy cotton print. 

The pattern is Simplicity 3744 - it's a slimmer silhouette than I usually wear, but it was comfortable.  It's not perfect, but it's very, very good and wearable. 

Again, I moved the zipper from the center back to the side seam - that was pretty tricky to put in with the curves along my side.

Looking at the side view here - I can see I really need to get back to super hoola hoop on the Wii! I wore the dress out to dinner on Friday night and it was comfortable.  I was very aware of standing and sitting straight and keeping my tummy in.  The dress isn't perfect, the neckline is a bit too wide - and I'll think about how to fix that in the next version. 
Happy July everyone!
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