December 30, 2013

Top 5 of 2013

If you sew, you are most likely aware of Gillian from Crafting a Rainbow and her Top 5 of 2013 lists.
I'm really, really enjoying seeing everyone's garments, reading their reflections, about inspirations and what the goals for the new year are.  I'm not sure if I'm going to do misses, reflections, inspiration or goals.  But I do want to share my Top 5.

For me - 2013 was all about the dress.  As Carolyn has preached for years, wearing a dress is just so dang easy.  One garment and you look put together and polished and ready to tackle anything.  A dress is cool in the heat and honestly - I don't have any issues with being cold in a dress during the winter.  I would guess that 9 out of 10 work days I'm wearing a dress.  On that 10th day, I generally sport a skirt. 

So what were my favorite garments from 2013?  I almost think I want to go with pattern, rather than specific garment. 

Let's go backwards, shall we?

5.  McCalls 6713.  I've made this dress 3 times and 2 of the three dresses - both without the flounce still get worn often. 

4.  New Look 6184.  This dress has been made twice and I wear both of them.  I still want to try the lower neckline as well as the slimmer skirt.  But the dress made quickly to wear to a wedding is still a favorite.

3.  Anna Dress.  I've made a top from this pattern, and while the fit isn't perfect - I really like it.  I blame the fabric.  The dress I love, it's comfortable, flirty and fun.  I'm comfortable wearing it.  I also made a jersey maxi version which I wore to my office holiday party.  I'm hoping to 'dress it down' for work this week and then I'll get blog photos.  It's been shown on Instagram if you follow me there.  But I can't figure out how to get photos from there to here and visa-versa.

2.  Simplicity 2648.  This is another pattern that has been made multiple times.  The first version was the red wool.  While it's not my best sewing ever, it's my very first wool garment and I get a ton of compliments when I wear it.  Then I used the same pattern and made a 'suit' for interviews.  The final version (although it won't be the last) is the double sided denim - which gets worn for jean Fridays quite often.

1.  Ottobre Knit Sheath (No link to the pattern.)  This is another pattern that's suddenly in heavy rotation.  I love it and have made 4 dresses from this pattern.  Again - you've only seen 3.  I honestly can't decide which is my favorite - the holiday fail or the birthday dress.  They've both been worn multiple times since they were made. 

So - did I include your favorite?  If not - what was it and why?  Thanks for sharing my sewing successes with me in 2013.  Let's do it again next year, eh?

December 27, 2013

Vogue 8634/8764 - Very Creative Title, no?

So this summer after seeing kbenco's mash up of patterns, I decided I wanted to so the same.  She had made a couple of very amazing dresses.  When it had finally percolated up my to-sew list, I didn't remember it exactly correctly.  But I think it was close enough.

It has been well documented here at gMarie of my desire to get a dress with a straight or slim skirt that fits and looks good. 

In July, I pulled this knit from Girl Charlie which had a very fall vibe.   I set it aside with Vogue 8764 (dress) and Vogue 8634 (top).  Sometime last year I attempted to make dress from a woven.  It was a huge sack and looked horrible.  For some reason I have a vague memory of making the top up with similar results. 

This time, when I traced the top, I made sure I did sway back adjustments and took the side seams in just a bit.  I overlapped the two different patterns to figure out the best place to put a waist seam and start the skirt. 

I finished the dress fairly quickly and then set it aside.  For some reason, I just didn't like it on me.  I mean it didn't even make it to the bedroom for a chance in the 'magic closet.'  It just stayed in the sewing room.

I didn't like it plain.  I don't have a cardigan that worked with the colors in the fabric and I thought it needed something.  I bought a couple of belts - but they didn't do it for me.  Finally - I tried it with the brown belt in these pictures and while I still don't think it's exactly right - it wasn't horrible and I felt cute and stylish all day.

JB likes it better without the belt and honestly, you can't tell from the photos which is better.  But you can get a glimpse of the print.

So - for the record, made in July 2013.  First wearing November 2013.  And I haven't worn it again yet.  Will it get worn again?  Quite possibly, I do like this dress and it still feels very 'new'.  I haven't done much sewing in the last couple of weeks.  Well, that's not completely true  - I've sewn, just not for me.  4 pairs of new PJ pants for Christmas gifts, 2 long fleece skirts to up the lounge wear of the girl children and one knee length flannel penguin skirt - just because I could. 

Up next:  Hopefully, sewing for me. 

December 16, 2013

Holiday Fail

Another version of the Ottobre knit sheath dress.
Fabric is a wool jersey from Mood Fabrics, bought last Fall.
I thought it could be a wrap dress, but the fabric was thick.
The leaves are silver and painted on.

I really like this dress.  It's fully lined and easy to wear.
So, you may ask - why is it a fail?
Well, I originally made it thinking I could wear it to my office holiday party.
When I finished it and put it on, JB said (and I quote)
"It's short!"
I ended up making another dress (full length) to wear to the party.
There was enough fabric left over that I made magic pencil skirts for both of my girls.
I really wish they both lived close, because I would totally do matchy/matchy photos.

December 11, 2013

Another Skater Hack

This time I took the lady skater dress pattern and an article from Threads.
I created the cowl neck lady skater. 

The fabric is an ITY that I bought from Fabric Mart
on sale just before my birthday.
It got sewn up quite quickly.
 The boots look a bit dark with this print, which is orange, olive, ivory and dark brown.  I bought 3 yards at just over $3 a yard so it's the $10 dress. 

I think the next hack might be to add darts to the bodice or maybe gathers a la the ottobre tee.

I have 3 more pieces of ITY from this order - maybe there are more lady skaters in my future.  It's an easy, simple dress and is easily adaptable for hacks. 

December 3, 2013

MAGAM - Anna

This is the first Anna Dress.   I made some changes from the Anna Top.
I took the center front panel in 1/2" all the way down the length of it.  That's the 1/4" I added to all seams plus an additional 1/4".  It could be a bit snugger from the armholes through the waist.
And I'm wondering if I need to take a smidge out above the bust - thoughts?

I added 6" to the midi-length dress mark because I always have to add 6" to get it long enough. I cut 2" off and made a 2" hem.
Those BHL girls must be tall!

I wore this with a white cardigan all day.
I don't really know how to accessorize my work clothes.
If it isn't easy - well it doesn't get done.
Ideas - suggestions?

I am leaning backwards in this photo and sticking my belly forward.
But - I till think it's a good photo from the mid-chest up.
This was my garment for the Make A Garment a Month Challenge.
I made one muslin, then the top and finally the dress was made on the 29th.
But I didn't get a chance to wear it or take photos until today.
For December, I want to work with another BHL pattern - this one will be Elisalex. It will definitely have to be muslined - as the bodice is fitted and I'm not sure about that skirt on my hips - there might be more photos of me in muslin to get honest feedback.
Hopefully - I will have time to get it done.  I don't generally sew during the work week.
This coming weekend is my office Holiday Party.
The next weekend is Poker and I have to have the annual flannel pants ready to mail.
Truthfully - this past weekend - I was selfish.  I wanted to sew for me, so I did.
I made Anna and then I cut a lovely sweater knit I bought from Mood and made another Ottobre Sheath.  I then (unselfishly) made both of my girls Magic Pencil Skirts from the leftovers.
Good thing one of them lives on the East Coast - I think we are a bit too old to do the matchy matchy.
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