February 22, 2013

Ohhh Beau

I missed Dogs on Thankful Thursday.
I really need to get that funny picture of me off the top of the blog.
This dog has my heart.
Today (a day late), I am thankful for:
*a very supportive husband
*the ability to create with my hands
*fabulous blog friends that I have met in real life (and those I haven't)
*dogs who don't care about the rules and flaunt them in your face
*rainy days off - they are cozy
What are you thankful for this Last Friday in February?

February 12, 2013

McCalls 6713 x2

 This was the last thing I made before taking my sewing machine to the doctor.  The problem with things electronic is that you can't fix them yourself.  Hopefully it's just a dirty sensor as the doctor thinks, but since I haven't heard from him yet - well fingers crossed.  The good news is that I have a back up machine and sewing *will* happen over my 4-day weekend. 

This is the second version of McCalls 6713 - this time with the flounce.  The brown spotty version was the 'muslin' for this fabric.  And honestly - that brown dress has become a favorite and while I hate wearing the same clothes often - I've already worn it twice! 

This fabric was a very lightweight, but heavy (if that makes sense - and if you sew you know what I mean) knit.  I would guess that even if you don't sew you have some items of clothing that are very thin, but the fabric itself is heavy.  Anyway - because of that it stretched and hung different that the more stable brown spotty fabric. 

Again - no changes to the pattern, I just cut it out and sewed it up - mostly on the serger - remember, my machine wasn't playing nice. 

I cut the flounce in a single layer, rather than the self-lined and instructed in the pattern.  I felt this would be okay because the back of the fabric is a nice grey (is it grEy or grAy?)  and if it was visible it would be okay.  I chose to leave the edges of the flounce raw and unfinished as it's a knit and won't ravel and I didn't want the added bulk of another layer at my waist were everything is joined. 

I wore the dress with red pumps, red cardigan and red jewelry.  JB was less than impressed with this make.  He couldn't really verbalize what was different, but he said it looked more casual than my other dresses.    Looking at the photos - it's not nearly as cute as I thought it was when I left the house in the morning. 

The one major 'fix' was to serge a dart out of the center back.  Umm - yea - seriously.  When I first put this dress on, there was about 3" of extra fabric at the center of my back.  Remember - light but heavy fabric.  The back is cut on the fold, the neckline was already finished and it looked horrible.  Possibly a belt could have saved it - but it honestly needed some sort of adjustment to the back to make it fit.  So I folded the dress in half at the skirt center back seam, laid my french curve down on the dress marking about 1 1/4" at the waist seam - down about 5" and all the way up to the neckline but not through it.  I then took it to the serger, said a little prayer and serged with the left needle on the chalk line.  Let out breath, try dress on and the back fits!  Win!! 

February 9, 2013


So, I know just about everyone who blogs *loves* comments, right?  They encourage us, inspire us and give the encouragement to go on and finish a project.  Our readers can help us through a difficult stage of a project with their comments. 

One of the things I enjoy most about blogging is the relationships I have built with the commenters.  That being said - often people who comment don't have a visible email address so you can reply.  I've set up the reply in my comments section.  But it seems weird to reply to some people via return email and other by a reply in the comments.  It also feels like the people who don't have a visible reply are being ignored - while that may or may not be the case. 

So - help a girl out here.  If you don't mind, please answer the following questions in the comments.  I'm trying to figure out the best way to handle comments and keep everyone happy. 

1.  Do you like getting a response from the blogger about the comment you left?
2.  Do you like checking back on a blog to see if you've heard anything?
3.  Are you feelings hurt if the blogger replies to some (most) of the comments, but not yours?
4.  Do you care if your comment is acknowledge?
5.  Do you comment to build relationships? 

February 8, 2013

Dress Suit?

 Totally and completely inspired by Carolyn as most of my sewing is.  Unfortunately - I don't have the stash of lovely fabrics like she does as mostly my sewing has been limited to quilting cottons.  I am trying to get over that - honest. 

In November, a sewing friend and I made plans to get together and work on fitting.  I have always wanted a 'straight' dress that fit me.  Ideally, I'd like a darted sheath dress, but thankfully we had been working on this Simplicity Amazing Fit Dress - Pattern 2648.  We had the fit all worked out and I have to say, in a single fabric - I didn't love it.  It looked boring and very blah on me.  It needed some interest - like the belt.  My friend and I both agreed.

When I saw Carolyn's dress for her Pleasant Purple Dress and Jacket - I knew that would work.  I felt comfortable and confident in the dress all day.  Although I will say - there are things I could have done differently - like lining the dress or at least the bodice.  I used bias to finish the neckline and armholes and fought with them while wearing.  Not good. 

After finishing the dress on Sunday, I was ready to start the jacket.  I have never made a jacket and this one is not perfect by any means.  Look closely the buttons and buttonholes are reversed! 

I was amazed how much I was able to get done in just a couple of hours each evening after work.  That time is usually reserved for knitting and mindless tv watching with JB.  Last week however, I went down to the studio and sewed until 10 Monday and Tuesday.  Wednesday I put the buttonholes in and didn't have the chance to start sewing until after 10 - but I was on a deadline and couldn't leave it - see what happens when you sew tired?

The jacket is a total and complete rip off of Carolyn's.  Imitation being the highest form of flattery and all that - I do hope she knows how much she inspires me to stretch myself and do better.  Next time I'll use 'good fabric.'

Also thanks to Carolyn - JB is taking more than one photo.  He's trying harder to make me comfortable and look good.  We are experimenting with new places in the house to take pictures.  The first 2 photos were taken in the arched doorway between our living spaces and kitchen.  The last photo was taken on the landing - mid floors.  JB was standing at the top trying to get all of me in the photo - he kept saying he could get my head or my shoes - but not both. 

This outfit really needed taupe shoes - but I didn't have any.  Nor do I own a pair of black pumps - can you believe that?  The grey were better than the brown - so that's what I went with.  I felt pretty and comfortable and confident in this outfit. 

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