2013 ESSENTIAL TOPS SEW-A-LONG FINISHED PROJECTS

September 21, 2014

GETTING MY FALL SEW ON...

...since happiness returned I'm able to really get my Fall sew on.  I finished my third project for the new season today.  It came from my fantastic TNT McCall's 6654 knit skirt pattern.  Love this pattern.  For me it needs only the small alteration of tapering or pegging a little bit in the side seams- that gives me the perfect fit.

This striped aztec print knit jumped out at me during a quick run through Hancock's on Friday.  Cost $19.99 but a deal with a 50% coupon - I bought a yard - discovered I only needed 3/4 yard when I got home and looked at the pattern.  Could have sworn that the pattern called for a full yard.  Oh well, maybe I'll remember that next time.  The fabric comes already bonded with an underlining, but I still thought it would get better wear if I lined it, so I did.
Our temps are still in the upper 80's so this skirt won't be worn for a little while, but at least it will be ready when the time does come.  I saw a skirt in this same print somewhere during an online snoop shopping trip priced at $189.00.  I can't say enough about being SO GLAD THAT I SEW!  I think my skirt is just as wonderful as that one and cost $170.00 less...

September 20, 2014

MY PROJECT RUNWAY REVIEW...

...
I proclaimed that my Mother and I are Project Runway's Biggest Fans.  As a matter of fact we should have been the first to be invited last season when they aired a segment that featured PR fans - after all, we are the Biggest Fans.  We couldn't wait until the new season started, and we have a regular ritual of calling each other before the show starts every week.  The conversation usually goes something like this:

THURSDAY CONVERSATION:
MOTHER:  Well it's Thursday are you ready?  I've already had a little nap.
ME:  Yes, I'm ready; I'm watching the reruns right now.
MOTHER:  I'll tell you right now, I'm not going to make it.
ME:  Well I for one am not making any promises.  I've nodded out before while watching sitting straight up in a chair.
MOTHER:  I've come to the realization that I am NOT going to torture myself with this any more.  I've tried everything!  I'm going to bed!  I can watch it tomorrow, I have it set to record.
ME:  It is torture!  I tried propping myself up in bed, but that didn't work.  Woke up with a neck cramp and ended up having to go in for an adjustment.
MOTHER:  Well it comes on over and over again back to back.  I'll just watch it tomorrow.
ME:    Well I can always watch it online or catch On Demand.
MOTHER:  Well let's talk tomorrow, hope you make it.

FRIDAY CONVERSATION:
ME:   I didn't make it. Who won?
MOTHER:  I didn't make it either, and had to watch it twice today.  I fell asleep on it the first go round.
OR
ME or MOTHER: I saw the whole thing, but I can't remember who won - who went home?

CONFESSION:  As much as the Biggest Fans LOVE Project Runway - we can rarely stay awake long enough to watch an entire episode!  Pitiful, I say Pitiful!

My mouth fell open at the most notable judging critique of the evening.  The award goes to Heidi Klum's comment about Sean Kelly's American Doll crippled peace sign jumpsuit outfit:  "I don't think the look is o.k. at all to be honest with you.  To me it looks like a McCall's pattern book sew it yourself kinda thing."

All in all we do really enjoy watching... 

September 17, 2014

TODAYS INSPIRATION BROUGHT TO YOU BY ETCETERA...

... I hadn't looked at Etcetera in quite a while, but true to form they still have cute clothes that spark my interest - styles that fit my taste but not my budget.  I'll take one of each please - they are all sewing possibilities.
What's your favorite online clothing site????

September 16, 2014

TODAY'S INSPIRATION BROUGHT TO YOU BY CHICO'S...

...as mentioned last post - "Inspiration can come from anywhere, at any time; and anything, anywhere—can spark the creative process".   I can't exactly put my finger on what it is about Chico's that always catches my eye - the catalog always brings a smile to my face even more than the September issued fashion magazines.
  •  Pumpkin bracelet length swing jacket
  • Camel cowl neck knit dress
  • Blurred purple boyfriend cardigan
  • Renaissance red turtleneck
  • Do I dare faux fur vest
  • Red leopard scarf
I could easily make these pieces appear from my sewing room.

What catalog or online stores spark inspiration for you???

September 14, 2014

TODAY'S INSPIRATION BROUGHT TO YOU BY...

...I like to give credit to inspiration sources.  In doing so today, I was reminded of a question from one of the chapters I taught recently...
(paraphrased)"Where can inspiration be found?
A)Movies
B)TV
C)Magazines
D)Videos
E) A person on the street
F)All of the above

ANSWER:  (F)  All of the above.  Inspiration can come from anywhere, at any time.   —Anything, anywhere—can spark the creative process." (Milady's Standard Cosmetology)

Of course, this statement refers to hair design; but it also applies to finding inspiration for sewing.  I constantly get inspiration from other bloggers and the eye-popping designs they make.  Today's inspiration - brought to you by Goodbye Valentino and a skirt she made last Fall that I wanted to make mine, or rather make for myself.

Vogue 8750

This bag contained a stable houndstooth knit that has been in stash residence for at least four years.  When purchased I thought it would become a skirt and jacket to be worn as a suit - which, on second thought would have been way too houndstoothy for me.  I started with 4 1/4 yds and this project probably took less than 1 yard.  There's plenty enough left for yet another garment.  The leather for my project was also taken from a thrifted skirt.

This weekend was dedicated to completing the skirt - which I did sans the leather part of the hem.  I had to use metal clips as well as jumbo paper clips to hold this project together while constructing it.
I'll go looking for leather glue or contact cement for the leather part of the hem tomorrow.

I underlined all non-leather pattern pieces.     

Front View

Side View

Back View
 Although not a100% complete it's finished enough that I won't classify it a UFO.  I can safely move on to a third Fall 2014 project.


Leather glue/contact cemen
Leather glue/contact cemen

September 8, 2014

HAPPINESS RETURNED...

...yes my sewing motivation returned this weekend.  Yep, out of the blue it just showed up.  And if she could talk I think the conversation would have gone something like this...

ME:  Oh sweetie there you are!  Where in the world have you been?
HER:  Oh, just out and about.
ME:  Well I really did miss you, and this time I couldn't even force you to come back.  And you stayed away soooo long.   I'm really glad you're here though, things are just not the same without you.  Come here, give me a little hug!
HER:  Enough of the mushy stuff, let's get to work.
ME:  Alrighty then, but next time don't you dare stay away so long. Mama really missed you!
I bought a slightly ribbed knit off Hancock's bargain flat-fold table earlier this summer at a scrumptious price.  And although the weather was hot as all get out at the time, I knew just what I'd use it for.  I love a great garnet colored fabric for fall, and when I saw it I instantly thought of the black knit dress I made from Vogue 8939 last fall (Reference this post).
So since (you know who came back) we were able to whip up another one this past weekend.
I underlined the back and front pieces of the dress with black tricot.  Had I taken the time to look at the black dress I would have just added a free hanging lining and saved myself a whole lot of time.  I also altered the pattern just a little at the neckline and decreased the width of the collar by 2 1/4" and it feels much more comfortable. 
Found just enough 1/4" twill tape to stabilize the shoulder seams - its just the right width for shoulder seams.  It's so hard to find 1/4" twill tape in our stores here.  I really need to track some down via the internet.  Maybe I could buy it in a big roll.
So I had a really nice sewing weekend.  I'm so glad happiness has returned, and hope she stays for a very long time...


BOOKS ACQUIRED

  • Pants Sewing Guide
  • Denim Revolution
  • Pants for Real People
  • Jackets for Real Peopls
  • Easy, Easier, Easiest Tailoring - Palmer & Pletsch - Gifted
  • The Sewing Machine Attachment Handbook
  • Ribbon Crafts
  • Professional Sewing Techniques for Designers
  • Successful Serging
  • Making Trousers for Men and Women
  • Couture Sewing Techniques
  • Singer - Perfect Plus
  • Cool Couture
  • Couture, The Fine Art of Sewing
  • Singer Sewing Reference Library - Tailoring - GIFTED
  • The Perfect Fit: The Classic Guide to Altering Patterns - Creative Publishing International
  • Fit for Real People
  • DK-The Complete Book of Sewing