Monday, December 29, 2014

Simplicity1499 made using anti pill fleece from Joann's. 

I didn't read the pattern instructions before purchasing fabric and the separating zipper. The pattern has a mandarin type collar which is finished with bias tape or binding as is the center front. There isn't a front facing. The pattern has you apply the bias or binding to the front  and collar and then topstitch the fronts to the zipper. Since I had not read the instructions I didn't take into consideratin that to do it the way I did that I would need to cut a facing and I did't have enough fabric to cut one. I used the same gray lining fabric to cut front facings that I used to line the pockets. I cut bindings from the fleece for the armhole facing. I also recut the collar to be more the type of collar that is normally seen on this type vest. The seperating zipper was not long enough to go all the way to the top of the collar. I doubt most people will notice that when I wear it. I made this for casual wear or for an added comfortable  layer at home. 

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Faux Fur Vest

Seeing so many of the faux fur vests on line this year I knew I needed one-- or a second one-- I made the first last year using fabric from a project that didn't go as planned.
I used Simplicity 1499 and made some changes. I omitted the collar, separating zipper and lining. I went to one of the local stores to look at faux vests before starting mine and was disappointed by what I saw. There was only one there and it was lined. Eventhough the lining had been understitched it stillpulled to  the front. As I told my DH I wouldn't have let that come out of my sewing room. The price on that vest was $70. Instead of the lining on this one I used strips of a gray interlock knit to make bindings. I turned the binding to the inside and stitched by machine. It looks fine from the outside but I may pick out that stitching and hand stitch. The inside would look much better.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Charcoal Gray Butterick 5356

This is made using polyester knit from Joann's. I used yhe 3/4 length sleeve shortening it by about an inch and adding the ruffle.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Butterick 5356

Made from polyester interlock.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Butterick 5682

These are Butterick 5682 View D- flared legs.
These jeans gave me a fit to make but now that they are finished they feel good on so I think worth the trouble. They are made from a denim with no stretch. I think it is  a 9 oz denim.

I wanted flare legs to wear with boots. Most of the trouble I had with these jeans was of my own making.I stitched the double rows of topstitching about 4-5 times until I got it as near perfect as I could. It of course isn't any more perfect than I am but it looks pretty good. After taking it out and re-sttiching so many times I realized I had sewn it to the fly lining. After I got that fixed. I tried the zipper and the zipper worked fine but the fly didn't open. I realized I had sewn the  zipper to the wrong part of the fly. GRRR I finallyhad that fixed and moved on.

You have to sew the inseams and topstitch those before sewing the side seams. When I got the side seams sewn and tried the jeans on I realized that the legs were too wide. As much as I hated to I unpicked the gold topstitching thread on the inseams. This was no small feat.
When I got that done I laid the jeans on the table and laid a pair that I like the legs on on top. I cut the sides of the new jeans legs off and restitched and re-topstitched.
I used a template made from cardstock with seams allowances removed to press the pockets aroind to get nice even edges before stitching onto the jeans. I also use cardstock to make a template ti trace off the stitching guide for the decorative stitching for the back pockets

The waistband gaped in the back. I decided to fix it with 2 little darts. They still need the rivets and I have those ordered. I will get my husband to add those when they come.
I love the way the jeans feel on and in the end they were worth the trouble.

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Saturday Sewing

These pants are made using McCalls 6571. The fabric is a jersey. The pattern calls for stitching the elastic to the top edge of the pant's waist and the turning to the inside like a casing. Instead of doing it the way the pattern states I shortened the pants from the top at the waist and topstitched 1 1-2 inch wide elastic at the waist edge. When I get the pants made except for the elastic at the waist and hems I try them on and check to see if the waist is going to sit where I want it which is just below my belly button. If it isn't at the right place I take them off and trim some more off the waist and then sew the elastic on.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

I made this for 3 year old Bella.
The pants are Simplicity 2134 with some changes. I shortened the legs to allow for the ruffle. The ruffle is 1 1/2 times the width of the pants leg.
The top is the Temily pattern. The smocking is from the christmas Handbags is piped between the front panel and side panels with whip stitch piping.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

If you like the Chicken Tortilla Soup at McAlisters this a good knock off.

Chicken Tortilla Soup

1 pound of cooked shredded chicken-- I use boneless skinless chicken breast
1 can enchilada sauce(I use Old ElPaso)
1- 15 oz can whole tomatoes- mashed
Med onion chopped
1 tsp minced garlic
4 oz can of chopped green chiles
1 can chicken broth( I use fat free)
2 cups water( I usually sub fat free chicken broth for more flavor)
1 can cream of chicken soup( I use fat free)
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp chili powder
2-3 chicken bullion cubes
1/2 of a 10 oz bag of frozen whole kernel corn

 Put all in the slow cooker and cook on low for 6-8 hours.

 When the soup is almost done If I want it a little thicker I take out about 1/4 cup of the liquid and mix with about 1 1/2 tablespoons of flour to make a roux and add back to the soup and stir well. If there are little lumps they will dissolve as it cooks. (Add the roux 1/2 at a time until soup is the desired thickness)

 This freezes well. I freeze in 1 cup portions for lunch. When frozen you can pop out of the container and drop all the servings in a gallon freezer bag. When ready to eat take out a serving and place in a bowl. Microwave for 2 minutes on high, It will still be kind of frozen but you can break apart with a spoon. microwave another 2 minutes and it should be ready to eat.

I have calculated this to be about 4 points for a serving on Weight Watchers.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Mommy Necklaces

In an earlier post I posted the Nana necklace I made for myself. After making it I made each of my daughter's a mommy necklace. These would make great Mother's Day ,birthday or Christmas gifts.

I made this outfit for my granddaughter. She loved it. The peasant top is made from broadcloth and the pants are from a cotton blend chevron from Hobby Lobby. This is a size 12. If interested there is a tutorial on my blog for making the ruffle pants using a regular pants pattern.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

More Jewelry Making

A friend's little girl had her tenth birthday this week so I made her a pair if birthstone earrings. I had just ordered Swarosvki crystal beads so that's what I used. 

Of course for a gift I needed packaging. I made a matchbook style card for the earrings. Using white card stock I folded it in half and cut just a small amount larger that the little plastic bag holding the earrings.

 Next using rubber stamps I stamped the cupcake and Happy Birthday. I staples the little plastic bag in with the open end down so
The earrings could be removed without tearing the card. Then I punched two holes using the hole punch and using ribbon tied a bow to close. 

The gift was a hit with my friend's daughter.

I recently made a couple pairs of earrings for myself. 
Pink and Brown drop Earrings


Thursday, August 14, 2014

A couple of months ago when I went on a business trip with my husband i was shopping in some shops across the street from the hotel. When I came across the Swarovski crystal beads I decided that I needed to make myself a Nana Necklace. The lady in the shop helped me pick the beads that I would need. I went back the next day and got beads to make my 3 daughters a Mommy Necklace.

This started my interest in jewelry making. I have made a few other things now and I'm thinking about making the Nana and Mommy Necklaces to sell.

This beads in this necklace and earrings are from an old bracelet.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Smocked Baby Gown

This little gown was made using the Grace Knott Baby Nightie. It was a UFO that
I came across and decided to finish.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Self Drafted Batwing Top

While I do have a pattern for this style top it is not necessary to use a pattern. It is just cut on the fold in the shape of half an oval with the lower edge not too rounded. once you look at a top that has been made or the pattern piece it is easy to understand. I certainly did not develop this style of top. I had the sales person at Joann's measure me from elbow to elbow with my arms outstretched to get the width of the upper edge across the shoulders. I cut this top with the shoulder edges on the fold side using 60 inch fabric. If you have a one way design or are worried about the stretch you can certainly open the fabric up and fold the length of the fabric having the selvages on either side. I am normally a stickler about the grainline but it doesn't seem to matter with this top. The fabric is an ITY from Joann's. I guessed at the neck and tried it over my head and cut a little more making the front a little lower than the back.

I used the rolled edge stitch on my serger and serged around the neck and outer edges. I marked the seams at the sides using my waist measurement plus 4 inches for ease. I divided that by 4 and marked from the center point . Top stitch these seams and you are done.
 This is  a little diagram of what the pattern piece should look like. I honestly don't even cut a paper pattern and just cut the fabric. You can see the shoulders are on the fold. The dotted line down the center is just for measurement purposes. I measure from this line to mark the stitching lines. If you don't have a serger or like me at times and just don't want to bother with changing the thread on the serger you can finish the edges with a narrow zig zag stitch if it is a knit. You can also do a narrow hem at the neck and outer edges.

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Vogue 8833

This is Vogue 8833 and the second time I have used this pattern. I think I would like one more in white for summer maybe.
I used a recycled sheet from Goodwill for the fabric. The full size sheet was enough for this blouse plus a pair of ruffled pants for my granddaughter.

The only changes I made to the pattern is for the ties. The pattern has really long ties that are sewn to the fronts. There is an opening in one side seam and the ties wrap around the waist and then tie. I find that by the time I wrap it around it just isn't as comfortable s I would like. I shortened the ties and sewed one to the front and the other in the side seam. I added ties on the inside to the opposing front and side seam to hold it together. I also changed the way the collar is sewn on. The pattern has you sew the facing on the front to the circles and then clip and press the facing to the inside sewing the collar on the circle. Then you hand stitch the collar closed. I sewed the collar on first then the facing turning it to the inside. It gives a nicer finish in my opinion.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Simplicity 1606

I had bought some of this fabric off the $ table at Walmart to make an infinity scarf in the winter. It washed well and had a nice drape so I went back and got 3 more yards. When I bought this pattern I knew this fabric would be perfect for it.

This is one of the Amazing Fit patterns and has the different pattern pieces for the different bra cup size. The bodice is lined but does not call for the skirt to be lined. I decided to line the skirt as well.

I don't know about of you but with the Big Three patterns I find I have to cut 2 sizes larger than I wear in RTW. I currently wear a 6 or 8 just depending on the garment. I cut a size 12 because I knew I could take it up but couldn't add more fabric.I ended up having to take it up under the arms by about 1 1/2 inches tapering to the waist seam.
The pattern also calls for a 14 inch zipper with the zipper inserted stopping about 4-6 inches from the neck. I used an 18 inch incisible zipper and extended it to the neck and did a button and loop at the very edge.

I shortened the dress by about 2 inches.

The pants are McCalls 6571 again. This time made from ponte knit from Joann's. These have a different drape than the previous ones. I like these just as well. The top is one I made last year. The pattern is Simplicity Sew Simple 1639. The fabric is a chiffon.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Denim Capris and Wrap Top

The capri pants are Butterick 5614 and the fabric is a light weight denim from Hobby Lobby. I had wanted a pair of capris from a light weight denim last year and never found any so I decided to make them. This pattern is a Fast and Easy pattern it makes up quickly with this view having 2 front darts and 2 back darts with a side zip. I used an invisible zipper since I wanted it lay flat at the side seam.

The blouse is Vogue 8833 made from a recycled cotton sheet from Goodwill. It is the softest fabric. I had a little problem with the facing and collar but feel like it was my mistake though I still haven't figured out what I did wrong. There are several reviews for this pattern on Pattern Review and no one else mentioned the problem. The pattern has you sew the front facing to the fronts up to the circle. You then clip to the circle and turn the facing to the wrong side and press. Then you sew the shoulder seams. where this has been clipped and turned leaves the seam allowance for the collar. On both ends the collar lacked about 1/2 inch coming to the end of the seam allowance. I removed the collar and unpicked the shoulder seams releasing the facing. I then sewed the collar on and enclosing it in the seam. It looked much better and I think it is a better way to attach the collar and sew the facing.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Palazzo Pants

I decided yesterday morning that I was behind and needed to make myself some palazzo pants  so off to the fabric store I went-- of course after first perusing Pinterest.

I had McCalls 6571 and have used it for the top but not for the pants. It is a one piece pant. I used view c which has a wider leg and a dart where each side seam would be.This gives some fitting at the elastic waist without all the fullness.  

I found this black and white jersey knit and it draped well and I decided to go with it.
Once I had the elastic on I ended up removing about 2 inches from the upper edge of the waist. I like them to come just below the belly button. I used a 2 inch black elastic  that is topstitched. I am short so I ended up shortening these about 2 1/2 -3 inches.

I like the fit and will make another pair of these in black.


Saturday, April 5, 2014

Embroidered Raglan Daygown

This sweet little pattern is from The Old Fashioned Baby line of patterns by Jeannie Baumeister. It is the Embroidered Raglan Daygown for infant size 7-18 pounds. It has 3 views and I made view 2 but omitted the embroidery at the hemline. There is a version with gathers at teh neckline and long sleeves and a version for boys.

The fabric is 100 percent cotton broadcloth and the lace is lace and entredeux are cotton and from  I wanted to use ecru lace and embroidery on the white but only had whtie entredeux.  I decided to tea dye the entredeux. I did this simply by puttin the lace in a bowl and pouring some cold unsweetend tea straight from the refrigerator on top. I let it set ovbernight and in the morning I washed the tea out let it dry and ironed it. I think it came out to be a good match.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Butterick 5815

I found this 100 % silk at Goodwill for $2.99. This is the first time I have used this pattern and was surprised whenI realized how the shoulders are cut. Instead of a regular shoulder seam the front overlaps the back. The sleeve is a 2 piece sleeve but I didn't have enough fabric so I redrafted the sleeve to a one piece sleeve.

Mc Calls 6571

These are 2 new knit tops for summer. I like the fit of this knit top since the cut of it gives some fitting it also gives a more slimming look.

New Look 6232-- Charcoal Gray Chambray

Pattern Review is currently having a fitted shirt contest which I joined. 

I decided to use New Look which I have used 3 times. It is a TNT pattern which I have made a couple of usual alterations to it that I usually make -- the narrow shoulder adjustment and remove some of the sleeve cap ease.  This narrow shoulder adjustment on this pattern is a little different since the pattern has a yoke. You can see a tutorial for narrow shoulder adjustment here.

 I also have learned to measure and remove the extra sleeve cap ease from the Big 4 patterns.  It is my understanding that you should only have about 1 1/2 inch ease in the sleevecap. It makes it so much easier to ease in the sleeves. I removed about 3/4 inch from the sleeve cap. I also shortened the sleeves as well as adding a tab and button to the sleeves to roll the sleeves up for summer.

I found this charcoal gray chambray at Walmart on clearance and thought it would make a good basic wardrobe addition. I also knew I had already made a blue chambray shirt with this same pattern for a sew along on a sewing group.

I failed to realize how much the 2 shirts would look the same until I was in the process of sewing. The difference is quite obvious when side by side though. I can see this shirt paired with white capris or white shorts this summer.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Narrow Shoulder Adjustment For A Shirt With A Yoke

After finding a tutorial on Pinterest for a narrow shoulder adjustment I realized it was an adjustment that I needed to make for my shoulders. However when I decided to use New Look 6232 the first time and it had a yoke I had to put my thinking cap on. It took me a little while to figure out who to make the adjustment but  I figured it out I think. I have used this pattern 3 times and the shoulders have fit well all 3 times . I decided to do a tutorial on it so that maybe it would save someone else the time it takes to think about it. You know we all rather spend our time sewing than thinking about the pattern alterations. 

Someone else may have a method that works better for you and if you do I would love to hear about it. I have been sewing many years and still learn new things all the time.

First, find the shoulder line on your yoke pattern piece. On the picture I have drawn a broken line where it should  be on this one. Cut the yoke pattern piece in half on this line.( Of course I haven't traced the whole shirt front and back -- just enough to do the tutorial. The pattern pieces would extend otherwise.)

Next , tape the front yoke piece to the shirt front pattern piece and the back yoke piece to the shirt back piece. Be careful to not overlap the pattern pieces. I use small pieces of tape because you will remove the tape later or cut through it.

Draw a parallel line from the top of the yoke pattern piece where you cut apart the pattern on the broken line you drew for the shoulder line. Be sure to keep the line parallel to the grain line so the shirt stays on grain. Also under the armhole at the shoulder seam draw a horizontal line to intersect with the parallel line you just drew.

Now, cutting on the horizontal and vertical lines stopping just before where the 2 lines intersect-- approx 1/4 inch.

Overlap at the shoulder seam 1/2 the amount you need to remove from the shoulder width. For me the total is 1/2 inch so I overlap 1/4 inch. Tape the overlap . Tape it again just below and just above where the yoke is taped to the shirt pattern pieces. Repeat for the back.

Now since doing this the "slit" below the armhole will pull up and leave an opening. Slide a piece of tissue underneath and tape in place. Repeat this for the back pattern piece.

Carefully remove the tape where the yoke has been taped to the front and back shirt pattern pieces. If you have trouble removing the tape just carefully cut through it. 

Finally, tape the yoke back together, again being careful to not overlap the edges.

If you are using a pattern without a yoke  and just  have a front and back you can use this same method you will just omit cutting the yoke apart and taping it to the front and back.

I would love to hear comments on this method or any other method someone uses. Thanks for stopping by.