Monday, August 31, 2009

Shoe Whore!

I ONLY like the fall for the cute shoes you can wear. Here are a few I'm looking at:

I'm an official shoe whore- forgive me.

Checklist to Start

Ok, I've honestly become my mother. Yes, this evening was spent ironing, steaming and preparing fabric for marathon sewing. How is this like her you ask? My mother is the person slaving over the hot iron for hours- that was me tonight. I've waited until the last minute to prepare the fabrics but they are (almost) ready for tomorrow. I still have more ironing to do on the lining fabrics but they can wait until I need a break.

To track my progress or lack thereof, I have decided to make a checklist (it may be incomplete):
Prepare the fabric
Pick out the patterns (so far all but one) check off 9
Assemble the supplies
Trace the patterns(1 left to trace), check off 9
Cut each top 1/2/3/4/5
Cut each bottom 1/2/3/4
Cut the topper
Sew each piece found above- Top 1/2/3/4/5
Sew each piece found above- Bottom 1/2/3/4
Sew topper
Post a review of each
Resize everything because I lost so much weight due to lack of time to eat...

Since the weather is chilly it's been nice to feel the steam off the iron- call me crazy but I pretend I'm at the spa.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

PR Wardrobe Preliminary Storybook

PR Wardrobe
Originally uploaded by a2thstudent

Here is the preliminary mock-up for the PR wardrobe. I'm not too sure on the blouse for the silk charmeuse. I'd like something a little less structured but with ruffles. Honestly, I didn't think I was the ruffle type.

Next, I'm thinking about substituting one of the Jalie wrap tops for a simple t-shirt. This is a transitional wardrobe that could be used for both spring, summer and fall. Some of the items may also be used for the winter.

The jacket fabric is closer to the actual color- less yellow and more white. I'm thinking about dropping one of the wools and making a skirt so I'd officially have a suit. We'll see.

First things first, start tracing. I've only traced 4 of the blouses and not the topper. That leaves the jacket, 1 blouse (yet to be determined) and 1 skirt. I can't wait to make the BWOF skirt. It looks pretty simple yet distinctive.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

What Kind of Skirt?

Still trying to figure out what kind of skirt to make with this beautiful heather double knit from Emma One Sock. It's got some give and definitely NOT your grandmothers dk.
I was thinking about BWOF from 1/09 or even a simple Jalie pencil skirt with limited detail.  This is still for the PR wardrobe contest.  I'm really trying to think of things I'll wear and make a great wardrobe.  
Comments are requested and welcome.  Thanks for answering my endless questions- I think I might be dependent (screw the co-dependent;).

Thursday, August 27, 2009

The Devil Made Silk Charmeuse

I am convinced I want to live and die in silk charmeuse. Now on the other hand, I don't want to deal with cutting out it's slipperiness! That's why God didn't make it but the Devil did- smooth like glass, slick like oil but oh, so mean.

I've fallen in love with this royal blue silk charmeuse from Gorgeous Fabrics (sorry, I bought the last of it).

There is enough for a blouse and something sexy- maybe a cute little dress or a nighty. Although that's not very practical since I have a dog and she wants to go out as soon as she gets up. Maybe it needs to be made into a robe...

Monday, August 24, 2009

Juki without a name

Ok, I finally got the Juki FS600 and after a little snafoo (is that the way it's spelled?) with threader, I'm back in business. Still no name that I can pronounce;) Geeksewing (aka- something else I can't remember) gave many suggestions but being the white-chic-from-Oklahoma that I am, I can't pronounce most of the them correctly. If you can help, please do! She needs a proper name.

Also, the PR contest starts next week and I've been busy changing my mind on fabrics and patterns. The tops will go quickly but the pants are another story. Unfortunately, I think it might be a hurdle I have a whim to not cross. Please help cheer me on to at least finish. I plan to keep a blog of the progress- good or bad. Sorry if it's full of pictures and wordy- you've been forewarned.

I have removed fabric from the running and ordered some really nice knits from Emma One Sock for a skirt. Furthermore, the top selection will now include #110 BWOF 1/09 top.

I'd love to make some pants from this issue but again, am chicken on such a time constraint. Three months doesn't seem like a short time but 10 items with a fitted jacket that will be lined and interlined will be a challenge for me since I am teaching again on my day off. (Stupid me for taking that assignment;)

Has anyone tried the BWOF pants who can give me the heads up? Also, I read about cutting out silk charmeuse using spray starch to stiffen it- have you ever tried this? Seems smart to me but I don't want to mess up the silk.

Fear is controlling my sewing- must take those pills for boldness... now where did I put them????

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Preliminary Decisions for Wardrobe Contest on PR

As I mentioned in my previous post, I am considering entering the Wardrobe Contest on PR for Sept-Nov. After scraping my original plan I came up with some other combinations. Thankfully, they are mostly from my stash:)

I've been dying to make this jacket from BWOF 8/09

This fabric is from Gorgeous Fabrics. It's a winter white wool twill. I like that it is lightweight and can easily be used for the fall and spring seasons. I'm lining it with pink Ambiance lining. Although the picture makes it look cream, it is actually a winter white.

Next, I'm making 5 knit tops ranging from short sleeved to long sleeve from various patterns (I'll attach those as I decide). The fabrics are t-shirt weight to a heavier RPL knit with a border. I love the Jalie tops and the bell shaped sleeves.

Finally, the bottoms will be 2 pair of pants and the other 2 items are yet to be decided. The first pair of pants will be a subtle plaid. I'm really hoping they will go with the mod prints. I guess we'll have to wait and see. Both of these are machine washable in cold and warm dry. Did I mention my wardrobe is going to be machine washable? Can you believe it?!

This is a nice stretch polyester, wool combo...

I've never made either one of these patterns but I'm thinking of making a wide-leg pant and a narrow leg. Once I get one to work well for me, this will become my TNT pant pattern. Again, will I have time?

I'd like to make some skirts but pants fit my lifestyle much better. I do have some alternating wale brown corduroy that might make a cute skirt to wear with boots this fall. I wish the contest included something hand knit- my plans include a caplet with super bulky yarn. It's going to knit quickly. Now if I can only figure out the last piece.

The fabrics are in the wash and I'm picking out patterns as we speak. I'd love to use some of the knit coordinating as binding on the other tops but am afraid to make things match too much. Cheer me on! This is going to be a handful:)

Thursday, August 13, 2009

PR Contest Sept 1- Nov

Pattern Review is having another contest- basically it's to build the wardrobe. The contest consists of 4 bottoms, 5 tops and a topper. Whew! The tops need to go with all the bottoms and vice-versa with the topper also going with all the combinations. Can I do it? I don't know if my stash is big enough to accomplish that.

I've already traced a few patterns and would love to use them. Also, there are a couple of jackets I want to make so I don't know if this contest is for me. It would be great to get some new pieces for the fall that can be used with my current wardrobe but I don't know if I have enough TNT patterns. This may take some work. I'll post some possible combinations as I search my stash!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Knoon Knitting Projects

I found some new patterns for children's toys. As you've probably figured out, I make a lot of things for our friends children. I figure it's my way of satiating my need to have a child. It's the fun stuff that I'll miss so this way, I have it all:) Lots of babies are in our lives so these will be fun to make. The aliens are my favorite! (Photos from

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Maxi Dress is finally finished

(Taken from my review at

New photos will be added shortly...

Fabric: Matte Jersey [See other projects in this fabric]
Pattern Description: The perfect dress for your dream vacation. It‘s long, flowing, sun-backed and colourful. Contrasting straps trim the plunging V-neckline, creating a pretty décolléte.

Pattern Sizing:Burda petite/half sizes 17 - 21

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?

Were the instructions easy to follow? Not bad for BWOF- after you read it about 10 times.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? Because it was a jersey knit, I had to size down for the dress.

Fabric Used:Jersey knit from EOS.

Pattern Alterations or any design changes you made: I took out about 2 in on each side because it was too loose in the bust. The model shows a nice flat band at the rib cage. I think this would have occurred had it not had such a large transition from my underbust measurement to the FB measurement. To tighten it up and make it more flattering, I added encased elastic at the bottom of the bodice.

To reinforce the straps, I used the interfacing as directed but then placed 1in woven elastic in the straps for stability. Originally I thought about adding bra cups but didn't want to mess with adding a more stable inner lining which would be required to support the weight, ahem. To add better coverage, I shortened the straps considerably.

The length was good but after reading the style experts tips on maxi's and petites, I opted to shorten it to just above ankle level. I'm 5'4 and took off about 4 in prior to a small turned hem. I wonder if it might be a little short. When I get time, I'll add another photo showing the full length.

A few recommendations, I sewed the front of the bodice to the straps and then turned the straps to the inside. This allowed me to adjust the bodice easier and finish off the inside nicely.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? I probably won't sew this again because it's so unusual but I definitely think it's a cute look. If you're busty then you might want to lengthen the top so it doesn't make you appear preggers (like mine). Really, I don't worry about that because everyone knows I'm not pregnant! I did add elastic to the upper and lower edges of the bodice to help pull it all in. If your jersey has lots of stretch, I highly recommend doing it this way.

Conclusion: Easy dress to assemble. It might take some time to get the fit like the model but well worth it. The dress is made for petites but would be easy to convert for non-petites.

I'm on the run right now but will dissect this dress and post photos of the down and dirty insides and workings of this pattern. Boy did I change things. Time for me to start drafting my own patterns.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Chloe is FAMOUS

I was notified today that the magazine "The Bark" placed Chloe's picture on their smiles page. It's about time she earned a living. Unfortunately, she isn't earning any money for all these appearances she's making. I swear, this dog has been in print more times than I'll ever be in my lifetime and she's only 3!
The Bark Smiles Page

BTW, the item on her muzzle is a "Gentle Leader". She is a sporting dog and has a tendency to pull when she gets excited. She's strong and can pull my arm out of socket or cause me to trip when she sees a bunny. This is NOT CRUEL and she can open her mouth completely, it just pulls her head down when she tries to lunge. I think it's much safer and kinder than a collar or a halter since it doesn't choke her or constrict her movements in any way. Yes, it could cause damage if I yank on her with extreme force but I wouldn't do that nor do I have the power. Just look at her- she's pretty darn happy and tired after wearing it and going on long walks and runs-- spoiled dog;)

"The Bark" is a great magazine for the tween kids. Sometimes it's hard to find something to interest the kids between 8 and 15. This is great- no smut, no gossip, no nudity; Just pets, smiles and heartwarming stories of dogs and their companions (plus some advertisements). I love this for the office.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Projects from my stash

Fortunately, I'm still receiving the BWOF magazine and August has a few things I'm considering making. I don't know which to make with a lightweight wool twill I have in my stash but it is a toss-up between these two jackets. (Photos are technical drawings from

The first jacket is much more structured and definitely something I would wear-probably for many years to come.

This caplet is totally different for me and at first, I thought it was ugly. Now it has grown on me. I don't know how long I'd wear this style but it's different. I wonder if my wardrobe needs something different?!

I'm planning projects for my MIA Juki. It still hasn't arrived but I will have a few items ready to sew when (if) it ever gets here. For the fall, I'm planning on making a trench coat from stash fabric I got last year. Recently I won muslin from Lindsey T. Sews that she says is good for a muslin fitting for jackets. I'm hoping this makes my trench coat timeless so I can later make a raincoat. Since she's such a wonderful sewist (is that PC?) I figure it will rub off on my sewing!

Snoop shopping at Nordstrom gave me the idea to use a running stitch for accents on the jacket if I make the one with the interesting lapels. There were so many cute things there but I kept telling myself, "I can make that for so much less." Well, most of those projects will never be made.