Sewing

Vlisco Wax Print

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Vlisco Wax Print

It has arrived! While surfing the web a week ago I came across the Vlisco website and instantly fell in love with their prints. I think it was almost an obsession. The hubby was at the point where he actually “almost”, pleaded with me to purchase a piece so that I could take the both of us out of the constant agony (my verbal thoughts and his having to hear it all).

I settled on this piece with one project in mind, but I may have another more appropriate use for it. I’m going to keep it out in sight for a few days until I make a decision on its final outcome.

One thing I do know is that I am going to have fun with this one.

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Reworking It!

Well I just completed my first recycled project. Although I thought my mini me was going to be able to help me, she couldn’t suck it in enough to get the  waist fastened.

This project started with a pair of cream capris that had been used to the full and a printed skirt that although I like the print I really didn’t like the fit. I’d been telling myself for years . . . and I do mean years . . . to get rid of them both, it’s a good thing they ended up in the Goodwill bags that made their way into the garage.

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I decided to dye the cream a nice grey using Pantone’s 2015 color titanium and Ritdye color matching chart.

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I haven’t really been able to get into the maxi trend, but I do like the high low look . . . I loved that look back in high school, and this is one trend that I’m glad to see come back around.

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For the hem on both the skirt and lining I decided to work with a few features on my serger and machine. For the skirt I used the roll hem feature on my serger.  I hadn’t used this in years so I had to pull out the instruction booklet.

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Rolled hem

And for the lining I used a hemmer foot that has to this point gotten very little use.

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This skirt will probably get a workout this spring and summer.

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Off to the next project!

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Bitter – Sweet “Mini-Me”

Well my mini-me is complete!

I have been drooling over a dressform for years. There are several very nice ones on the market pricing from $100 to over $1,000. And it seemed as if the more I looked the more I realized there was a pretty good chance that those on the open market wouldn’t quite measure up to my fine physique 🙂 Their measurements were all off and although I know you can make adjustments to the manufactured forms I really can’t afford to shell out that kind of money for something that I wouldn’t be happy with.

I have read several articles  on the “duct tape dressform” and always thought there is no way this could work. . .  duct tape really . . . how could this work. And then there is the thought of getting taped up . . . really! But than again what did I have to loose. If it doesn’t work I can always chalk it up to a learning experience and go out and make the investment on a ready made form.

So first there was the research. There are some very good blog post out there with step by step instructions and pictures. After getting the concept in my head it was then time to go out and purchase the supplies. I spent hours in our local Lowe’s and Home Depot. I think the workers in the store thought I was probably a little insane. I’d pick something up . . . walk around and bring it back (I’m really glad hubby wasn’t with me on this excursion, as his patience would have worn off within 15 minutes). After everything was in place we set out a couple of hours to start the tapping process. All I can say is . . . go to the toilet first 🙂 it is a little difficult once you are taped up.

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First layer of tape.

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First layer

Second layer of tape

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Final layer

Final layer of tape

After the final layer came the really scary part. Phil had to cut me out of the tape! We made it through with only a few minor cuts. I used a piece of black rib knit I had on hand for another project to cover Lene. Here is the final project.

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It was a bitter sweet experience. My mini-me turned out to be a pretty accurate replica which was the sweet part. My mini-me also turned out to be a pretty accurate replica which is the bitter part. I’ve always wondered what I look like and now I know (I really have to hit the gym). I am hoping I will be ready to do this again in a couple of months after I get some of these curves readjusted, but I am really not going to hold my breath.

I can already tell that I am going to enjoy working with my mini-me. Lene as I will call her is going to be a big help with all the sewing projects I have lined up.

Here’s to sewing with a bodyform!

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End of 2014!

I can’t believe 2014 is winding down. It seems like it was only yesterday that I was having difficulties writing 2014 instead of 2013.

When I look back over my post for this year they have been rather scarce. And that is most likely do to the fact that my sewing this year has also been scarce and what I would consider subpar.

So, what do I do for 2015? I’m not going to say that I will “fast” when it comes to ready-to-wear (although it is very difficult for me to purchase clothing out of the department stores) I will spend the year trying to hone in on my sewing skills. And a major factor to constructing garments that are actually wearable will be the quality of my fabric purchases and planning ahead.

So it is time for me to buckle up and get ready for an interesting 2015! Happy sewing.

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Me Made Week Take 3

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This is one of the outfits I made prior to starting at the beginning of my challenge. This is the one that brought to my attention that I really needed to work on my sewing skills. Come to think of it . . . Today is actually the first day I’ve worn this outfit.

It was made from an Easy New Look pattern in a jersey knit. What I call a variation for my usual sweats.

From the looks of things it should be no surprise that my colors for the fall are black, gray and red.

We’ll see what’s hidden in the closet over the next couple of days.

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Me Made Week Take 2

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Day two of me-made week. Today is errands day, so we are out and about. I’m happy I’ve chosen this week to highlight some of my accomplishments in the sewing arena because I would normally throw on my Levi’s and call it a day, but today I managed to get myself in my blue princess seam pants. You may remember these from my http://www.Craftsy.com class Pant Fitting Techniques post some time ago.

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Here is the photo of when they were newly sewn. I am really happy with the overall fit. I think it may be time for me to try my hand at another pair of pants.
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I had Phil snap another photo as we ended our long day of errands. I couldn’t resist the sunset over Lake Camanche this evening.

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Bringing in the Fall Blocked Style

It took me a couple of seasons but I finally tried the color block. I had bought a Very Easy Vogue pattern awhile ago and thought it would work great for the fall.

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Very Easy Vogue 8805

My color palette for this fall is grey, black and white with a a kick of red.

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Prep work

This was a very easy pattern to make. The directions were very clear and easy to follow.

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The finished product

I think this will transition into the winter easily. I can see it with a black turtleneck and some black tights and boots (Phil says . . .  “But you don’t have any black boots” . . . My answer “I know honey . . . They’re coming” he’s so cute. You would think he would know how this works after 30+ years).

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Sewing supplies peg board

While I was at it I took a few minutes to complete the peg board for the sewing room.

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My How Time Flies

I can’t believe this year is almost over! I started this challenge on October 1, 2012 and I am heading into my final month. It is surprising how much one can learn in a single year.

Hubby wanted to take a quick drive to the Premium Outlets in Livermore on Saturday. It was a nice little get away, but while in the stores I couldn’t help but think about how nice it has been this past year to focus on how I can improve my own sewing skills. Focusing on how to get the proper fit, fabric content and technique.

Now don’t get me wrong there were some gorgeous things that I wouldn’t mind hanging in my closet . . . with stores like Michael Kors, Elie Tahari, Kenneth Cole, Prada, Dooney & Bourke, Coach, Talbots, Theory, 7 For All Mankind etc. and that is just a few, how could there not be. But this trip I found myself looking at the fabric content, cut, checking out the linings and seams etc . . . I think I am forever ruined.

I guess I will probably be shopping more for accessories to go along with my “homemade” outfits. Afterall they did have my favorite shoe store for shoes (Cole Haan) and accessories (Fossil).

coleHaanPump                           FossilExplorerTote

Side note: While there I did decide on my fall colors . . . black, white and gray . . . I’ll probably add a pop of red! Pretty basic, but I want to see what I can do with it. Come to think of it maybe I’ll make that my challenge for 2014.

2013 Fall Colors

2013 Fall Colors

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Where Did You Get Those Jeans?

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That was a pretty big compliment coming from my hubby. You see he helped me stay on time this morning by pressing my jeans. When I put them in he said “where did you get those jeans?”. He knows I made myself a challenge this year by making my clothing instead of buying RTW. When I told him these are the ones I made he just said wow! I think they really turned out nice.

The http://www.Craftsy.com class Jean-ius was great and Mr. Kings instructions were right on point. While going through the course at times I didn’t think my jeans would turn out this nice, but now I do see another pair in my future. The fabric is a black solid denim (FC25200C) purchased from Mood Fabrics and the pattern is my own 🙂

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It has been a very busy summer!

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Although I have been “silent” the past few months I have been very busy. Safiyah spent a little time with us this summer and needless to say we are not as young as we used to be.

The vest is one of many things we worked on together, but I think this is her favorite. I almost couldn’t get her out of it.

The pattern is McMall’s 6640. Sherpa is the suggested fabric but we found a remnant piece of denim that I had purchased for my Craftsy.com class “Jean-ius” (more in that later) from Moods Fabric and the denim won. Several modifications had to be made with the construction but they added a special touch. We also made the T-shirt from the same pattern. It wasn’t quite to either of our liking so I don’t think she’ll get much wear out of it.

This time around Safiyah did a lot of the sewing herself. She is becoming quite the sewer. I can see her patience is lasting a few seconds longer this time around.

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