Tuesday, 9 February 2016

Good Grief!

I swear, I haven't been drinking. However, this might be a warning that when one is feeling under the weather that maybe the sewing table is not the place to recover.  


Yes, I really did sew the pocket upside down and the wrong pocket piece. And after I ripped out the seam and thought things were going along smoothy...


I wasn't willing to give up and sew the side seams and remove the pockets.  Well, because they're pockets!




What can I say, I'm not perfect.  

Happy Sewing!  


Monday, 8 February 2016

Monday's Mending Pile...

It has been a rough weekend. I've been recovering from some stomach ailment. Feeling sick of being sick, I thought I would do some hand-stitching to a collar that I'm working on.  


Using The Dressmaker's Handbook of Couture Sewing Techniques, I made a ribbon-trimmed collar band. 


The band was already sewn to the neckline when I sat down to hand-stitch the band facing in place. Everything was going smoothly when I decided to remove the hand basting that was showing when I clipped my fabric just below the neckline. If I didn't already feel sick to my stomach, this have likely  would have pushed me in that direction.  


And this is where my current sewing project became my mending project. I either needed to start this project over or patch the clipped fabric.


I decided to patch it with some of the ribbon that I used on the ribbon-trimmed collar band. The cut was treated with Fray Check® and then top-stitched the ribbon over the damaged fabric.


Thankfully, it is unseen under the collar.


Some days are not meant for sewing and work out better as mending days. But I think I should be mending myself with some chicken broth instead of hanging out at the sewing table. ~Sigh~

Happy Sewing!



Wednesday, 3 February 2016

In Sewing News Today...

My sewing mojo is still waning but I found something else to fill my time. There is a new book in my life.  


Unlike Elizabeth L. Cline's Overdressed:  The Shockingly High Cost of Cheap Fashion, Michael Lavergne is an apparel industry insider who explores the history of global fashion and offers an unique prospective as "an ethical supply chain professional." This is a book that I'll be able to take my mind off my wrist, let it rest and feel like I'm being somewhat productive with my limited free time.  

Talking about limited free time... Do you remember my previous rant musing about people asking me to sew for them?  
I don't like mending my own clothes, never mind someone else's. I don't get people sometimes (I'm going to chalk it up to holiday craziness taking hold), I would never ask someone to do my household chores. But people seem to think it is okay to ask me to do theirs, why? I think that is why I'm so beat, I just can't figure some people out and I'm exhausted with people asking me to sew for them. People need to stop. Like right now! I need to start collecting business cards from seamstresses who actually are looking for this type of work just when these scenarios happen because people have no clue the amount of work that goes into mending and the insane pile of my own mending. Come to think of it. Maybe I should take some of my mending in to get mended. 
Well, it happened again. I fear this rudeness trend is never going to end. But something wonderful did change. I said "no." No, seriously. I really did it! And it felt great! Amazingly great. Beyond words great! I feel like a new woman, hear me roar.  I have more than enough sewing work to do, I don't need to take in other people's sewing projects. And besides, there are plenty of businesses that are willing and able to do that. People need to support their local businesses and stop buying cheap fashion that are meant to fall apart and be thrown away.  

Well, that is all in sewing news today....

Happy Sewing!  


Monday, 1 February 2016

Monday's Mending Pile

This week I had to tend to a pair of my own pants. These pants have been sitting in the mending pile for a couple of months now. Yeah, I really don't like mending. 

American painter, Kenton Nelson: Mending
{Source}

The issue:  a fallen hem. These 100% wool pants are perfect winter workwear so it was high time that they made it out of the mending pile. 

The pants were previously hemmed on the sewing machine using the blind hem foot. The hem started to come apart in some spots and was starting to become noticeable when I was walking up and down stairs. This time I hand-stitched the hem since I didn't want to search for beige thread and fill a bobbin for such a small task.  


Time to complete this task:  20 minutes + hundreds of hours of procrastination.  

Happy Sewing!  


Sunday, 31 January 2016

January in Review

Sewing:

Top L to R:  Jungle January Jammies, McCall's 2476; Vintage Jumper Muslin, OOP McCall's 7946;
Vintage Jumper, OOP McCall's 7946; Donna Karan skirt, OOP Vogue 1378; 'The Cat's Pajamas', McCall's 7299;
Striped skirt, no pattern used.

I actually did not get around to doing a lot of sewing this month. The Donna Karan skirt and the vintage jumper muslin were sewn during my Christmas lay-off. I just didn't get around to snapping pictures and blogging about them until this month. I had grand plans that are still in the works.  Maybe February will be more productive?  

I did manage to get some mending and alterations done this month. This is a huge achievement for me because I'm not all that fond of mending and alterations. The plan is to get the mending pile under control this year.   


RTW Fast:

And I managed to get through the first month sewing, mending and altering all my clothing needs. This is my third year on a ready-to-wear fast. Woohoo! After the first year, I recall Carolyn mentioning that it gets easier as time progresses and she's right. As my skills improve so does my confidence that I could make something just as well or better.


The Stats


Supplies
Quantity Used from the stash this Month
Quantity Used this Year
Added to the Stash
Basting Tape
0.40 metres
0.40 metres
0
Bias Tape
0
0
0
Buttons
1
1
0
Chain
0
0
0
Elastic
0.8 metres
0.8 metres
0
Fabric
11.15 metres
11.15 metres
20.5 metres
Hand needles
0
0
0
Hook and Eyes
0
0
0
Interfacing
0
0
0
Lace trim
0
0
0
Pattern (new)
4
4
3
Pattern (previously used)
1
1
0
Serger needles
0
0
0
Serger thread
0
0
0
Sewing machine needles
0
0
0
Snaps
0
0
0
Thread
2
2
0
Trim
0
0
0
Velcro
0
0
0
Zipper
1
1
0


Happy Sewing!

Saturday, 30 January 2016

Nostalgic Sewing

Stash-busting 2016:  Revisiting an Old Fav and Finally Blogging About It


I made a few skirts with this pattern back-in-the-day when I was much younger and thinner. Well, when I found this pattern in my current size over on Etsy, I couldn't resist the pull towards some nostalgic sewing. That was almost three years ago, goodness how time flies.


OOP Vogue 1378 is a Donna Karan design for a body blouse and skirts, circa 1994. I have in the past made both skirts. Version B was by far my favourite of the two and the one that I wanted to revisit with this sewing project.  

I cut out all the pattern pieces needed to make a direct copy of the skirt as shown above but as you can see it turned out quite different from the photograph on the pattern envelope.

I cut the largest size on the pattern remembering that it was quite fitted when I first made it and my hips are thankful that I did. But I had to do something about the excess of fabric at the waistline and above. I could have cut a size 12 at the waist and graded up towards a size 16 at the hips. So, after sewing up the sides I had a few trips back to the sewing machine taking the side seams in and reaching for my seam ripper to remove the old stitching lines.


Then I basted and chopped off the shaping of the raised waistline and did a rolled hem instead of bothering with the suspenders. I really do like the look of the suspenders but with how my wrists has been feeling I wasn't all that keen on turning over long tubes of fabric.  


This fabric has been in my part of my stash for a very long time, at least a decade if I were to guess. I found it at Mitchell Fabrics in the basement vintage section. I have no idea what the fibre content of this fabric is but I do know that it handled machine washing and drying quite well. It also wrinkles and presses well on a high temperature setting. It is a light-weight plaid and don't let the colours fool you, it would work best as a spring / summer garment. As I was sewing the skirt up and hand stitching the slits and hem, I came to realize that this would make a really nice plaid shirt. And I do have enough of this fabric in the stash to make one. Don't worry, I don't plan on wearing plaid on plaid. That's so 1994!  

The verdict on this one, nostalgic sewing is fun but sometimes you just need to change it up a bit. I do like how it turned out and I think it would be a nice addition to my weekend wardrobe. But I don't think that I'll be sewing up another one anytime soon. Although, it was a nice trip down memory lane.


The Stats:

Fabric:     1.2 metres $7.19 ($5.99 / metre + taxes)

Zipper:     20 cm invisible zipper $1.58 ($2.80 - 50% off + taxes)

Basting Tape:     40 cm $0.00, birthday gift.

Thread:    I'm going to average out about $4.00 for thread used for the sewing machine, serger and hand-stitching.  I managed to finish off a spool of thread during this project.

Pattern:     Vogue 1378 $24.65

Additional Tools and Supplies:  Sewing machine, serger, scissors, pins, hand needle, invisible zipper foot, zipper foot, about four hours, two cups of coffee, and one cookie.

Happy Sewing!





Friday, 29 January 2016

In Sewing News Today...

I was so excited this morning because it was the start of sewing club. I thought I learned a few things from last year that I hoped to put into practice but... 

{Source}

Well, lets say it felt like chaos! Absolute chaos.  

Kids showed up without supplies. Tears where shed because I foolishly purchased the sewing club kids donuts to celebrate the beginning of sewing club and one of their classmates cried, well because apparently they didn't have a chance to sign up when the sign up sheet was up. And then I made a second trip to the donut shop. Mental note: Must stop buying treats for the kids from my own pocket to prevent future tears.  

But in the end it was worth it because the kids who weren't there for "donut club" were actually really  excited about the sewing part. And that is what just filled my heart with pure joy. 

Pure Joy!  {Source}
My fingers are crossed that next time we meet, things will go more smoothly. We'll be getting down to some serious work, no more treats. 

In other sewing news, the little gal that I made the nightshirt for, she likes them and they fit! I don't sew a lot of kids clothes so I'm always nervous and relieved when I find out whether or not the garments fit. I learned that her grandmother also sews and I asked her Mom is she might like the pattern. She said yes and I'm happy that the pattern will go to someone who might have a chance to use and share it. McCall's 7299 is a good pattern.  

And the new spring Vogue patterns that I ordered arrived in record time. I don't think I've ever received an order this quickly. I picked up the new Marcy Tilton shirt with the diagonal front pocket and the Koos Couture jacket patterns. I'm not sure when I'll be able to get around to sewing these patterns, there is so much on the table right now. But then again, when is there not?    

Well, that is all in sewing news today... 

Happy Sewing!  








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