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Deadlines, schmeadlines

I was way too tired to attempt any sewing last night.  Jack and I had a whirlwind of a weekend, starting off with a 5 mile bike ride followed by swimming at the community center on Saturday morning.  In the afternoon we went to the park.  Sunday found us at a birthday party and then we trekked off to the hinterlands of Brooklyn to visit my friend Nikki and her family.  We had a lot of fun, but boy were we tired when we got home late on Sunday night.  Needless to say, I didn’t want to risk tired sewing with my good fabric.  Ergo the dress is still in the same state as you saw it yesterday: cut but not sewn.  Let’s just disregard that little post I wrote about deadlines, shall we?

However, during Jack’s nap on Sunday, I did a little bit of sewing.  Remember the 3 Hour “20 minute” Skirt?

3 Hour "20 minute" Skirt

3 Hour "20 minute" Skirt

Well, I just couldn’t wear it again in that state (lots of gathers at the waist and hips) after I read Cindy’s post about elastic gathered skirts.  So, determined to wear it to Brooklyn that afternoon, I set about rectifying the situation.  I pinned it on me, taking pinches out of each side seam about 2 inches in on both.  Then I pinned it successively wider as I moved down the hips in 1/4 inch increments until it was only 1 inch, reaching about the mid thigh, and pinning at 1 inch the rest of the way down.  Pinned, it looked slightly A line in shape.  Then I took it to my serger and serged the new seams.  The only bummer was that the elastic escaped one of the seams so I had to open up the channel and re-attach it at that side seam. 

The resulting skirt is much more comfortable to wear and slimming.  There’s still enough fabric for walking ease and a nice full look without all that fabric bunched at my waist.  I wore it with my t shirt tucked in, a leather belt and turquoise jewelry.  Apologies, but I don’t have a pic yet of the altered skirt. 

I can’t believe I’ve already altered something I made recently.  I am determined to make things that I will want to wear and that will be great additions to my meager wardrobe, so I am really happy with this alteration.  Can’t wait to show you the picture.

In other sewing news, I have another sewing “class” tonight with Thea, but I don’t know what we’re going to work on.  Ack!  I don’t want to work on Simplicity 3678 again, because she’s already done that with me.  But I haven’t prepared (i.e., traced out) any new patterns yet.  I guess we could work on making my pant sloper into capris.  I need to draft the waistband, figure out the closure and add some pockets.  That should keep us busy for a while.  😉  Hmmm…  I think that’s what we’ll do.

Happy sewing!

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Quick Update

So far this weekend, I was able to trace out the Size 12 of Simplicity 3678 and cut out the fabric.  This fabric was harder to mark though.  A fabric pen wouldn’t work on it.  Tailor’s chalk was useless.  And tracing paper was barely workable, but I used it.  Marking the pleats was a total PITA and they’re still not really marked well.

Here’s my fabric all ready to go!

 Take 2 ready to go

I hope to sew as much as I can tonight.  Can I finish it tonight?  I don’t know.  Probably not, but who knows.

Wish me luck, I am sewing without a co-pilot tonight.  😉

Happy sewing!

Poll Results

At the end of May I talked about how much I dislike doing “all the little niggling details that will finish off a garment so that it can be worn comfortably and that makes it look nicer on the inside.”  I added a poll to see how other people felt about finishing off a garment. 

Here are the results:

I love french seams and hong kong finishes and line everything I sew!

11%

I’m somewhere in the middle, not a perfectionist but not lacksadaisical either.  

78%

I use pinking shears to finish my seams and am lucky if I remember to backstitch. 

11%

 I voted “somewhere in the middle” because I really do want the finished look; I just hate doing it.  So I think most of the time I will actually do it since I do care.  However, I was surprised to see that a majority of the people who responded voted similarly.  I thought the outcome would have been a majority for the “I love French seams” option.  I find it oddly comforting that other sewists feel the same way as I do.  Now I won’t pressure myself or feel guilty if I am not perfect in my journey to learn how to sew. 

FYI:  I wore my 3 hour 20 minute skirt today to work, styled with a shrug and turquoise earrings and necklace.  I loved it.  It was extremely comfortable.  I felt great knowing I was wearing something I made and the entire outfit including shoes (but not including jewelry) cost $40.  How cool is that?!?!  My only note to self was the elastic is a little loose as I thought.  I can’t decide whether it bothers me enough to fix it or not though.  Hmmmm….

Tonight I hope to trace off Simplicity 2698.  It calls for interfacing the yoke, something I’ve never done before.  If I have enough energy, I might cut the navy cotton too, but that may be doubtful.  We’ll see.

Happy sewing!

On Staycation…

My little boy’s second birthday was last Friday and my parents are in town to celebrate.  I am making root beer cake (recipe from Joy the Baker) and we’re ordering bbq for lunch.  I can’t believe it’s been two years already.  He’s growing up so fast. 

Jack 1 week old

Jack 1 week old

Jack almost 2 yrs old (saying "cheese!")

Jack almost 2 yrs old (saying "cheese!")

 

I have been taking vacation around his birthday the last two years; I think it will become a tradition.  With my parents in town this week, I won’t have any time for blogging I expect.

So I will be seeing you in all the usual places next week. 

Happy sewing!

Teaser

I know I owe you all the last class with Kenneth King debrief, but the end of last week was insanely busy and weekends with Jack just don’t allow for blogging really.  But I thought I’d check in and show you some pics of my niece Katie wearing her top.  It was a great success!  It fits her well and her mommy’s friends all complimented her on it; she wore it to a birthday party last week.

Here’s Katie modeling the top I made for her…

IMG_3126

IMG_3127

IMG_3129

 

In my opinion, my niece makes the top!  Check out the invisible zipper insertion.  Not bad, huh?  But let’s ignore the lack of pattern matching.  I’m just not there yet in my skill set.  The actual sewing level, IMHO, is pretty good.  I’m quite pleased.  Now if I could only sew myself something decent now. 

Uh oh, Jack’s waking from his nap.  Gotta go. 

Happy sewing!

Happy Mother’s Day!

Now that I am a mother, I understand my mom a lot more, as I am sure all new mothers do.  For instance, I used to think she was joking when she prayed for patience.  Now I know better; she was praying for patience so that she wouldn’t end up in jail for seriously harming any of us.  The main difference between me and my mom in terms of parenting is age.  She was 21 when she had me and I just made it under the 40 mark when I had Jack.  4o years old is a generation older than 21, especially considering starting a family.  However, I still feel as helpless as she did most likely at times, despite my years and the “wisdom” they supposedly bring.

I have new-found respect for my mom when it comes to domesticity.  She was the queen of a clean house and a dinner on the table by 6pm, despite a full time job.  I don’t know how she did it.  I find that take out is my best friend and let’s not even get into how I fail at “keeping house”.  We almost never had takeout when I was a kid.  My mom cooked every night!  She was one of the few moms in the neighborhood that did.  Everyone wanted to have dinner at my house.  As a matter of fact, there was one point in my early adolescence that I refused to go out to dinner with the family because my mom’s cooking was way better than restaurant food.  I would rather have had cheerios at home than go out to dinner.  And I did.  Stay home and eat cheerios, that is.  My mom is an amazing cook.  She grew up cooking only Mexican cuisine, but, in adulthood, she mastered American favorites and studied French cooking when she lived in France.  When I found out I had been accepted to Northwestern University’s opera program (after three attempts!), I asked that she make Steak Au Poivre for my victory dinner.  It was amazing and I still remember it.

My mom is always there for me.  No matter what.  She is always supportive of whatever I do.  Music, purple hair, dropping out of college, returning to college, sewing, and Jack.  When I announced I was pregnant with Jack and going to raise him as a single parent, she was the first to stand behind me.  When Jack was born, she stayed with me for five weeks while I recovered from a C-section and was hazed introduced to motherhood, all the while fighting her own extreme tiredness. 

She may not think she is brave, but she is.  She may not think she is strong, but she is.  She is the strongest person I know.  I guess that’s why she’s survived so many struggles.  I have heard that God doesn’t give you what you cannot handle.  Well, apparently my mom can handle a lot.

I hope you have a wonderful Mother’s Day Mom.  Know that I am finally starting to understand what it means to be a mother and what you did for us as a family.  I have lots of hope and dreams still, even as a woman “of a certain age”, but my main dream is to be as strong, supportive and as wonderful a mother to Jack as you were to all of us.

I love you Mom.

My family (Mom's on the bottom right)

My family (Mom's on the bottom right)

Oops!

Oops!  I visited Ann’s Gorgeous Fabrics online fabric store and accidentally bought some gorgeous knits.   She’s having an awesome sale right now.  Do you wanna see some pictures of what I bought???  You don’t have to twist my arm.  Here they are…

Clear as...dots! Jersey

Clear as...dots! Jersey

 

Square Dots Jersey

Square Dots Jersey

 

Aren’t they pretty?!  I bought 3 yards of the purple print for a top and 5 yards of the aqua/brown print for a dress.  I also bought some plain black jersey, but you don’t need a picture of a black square, do you?  I’ll use it for binding or as an accent fabric depending on the patterns.  I have tons of patterns that will work with this fabric.  Ooooh I can’t wait to receive them!!! 

I also bought some fabric and stretch lace trim for another project.  I’ve been inspired by Dawn of Two on Two Off and Sigrid of Sigrid – Sewing Projects and their lingerie sewing.  Sigrid even started a sewalong on PatternReview.  I am in dire need of some new undergarments (tmi?), and they make it sound so easy.  So I am going to try my hand at it sometime soon.  I bought a purple knit and black and white lace trims.  When I receive them, I’ll take some pics. 

While it doesn’t look like I’ll get my top done in time for the Spring Top sewalong, I will work on it tonight some more.  I am really getting excited about my new Emerald 183 and can’t wait to use it again.

Anyway, happy sewing everyone!