Merry Christmas!

I meant to post this jammie picture yesterday, but, as you can imagine, the day was busy with opening presents, putting said presents together, and cooking. 

Jammipalooza 2010 was a great success.  The kids loved their pj’s and they looked so cute in them.  See for yourselves…

L: Jack in KS3510, M: Katie in NL6638, R: Thor in S3584

I will have reviews up for these pjs later today and tomorrow.  I hope you all had a great holiday.  I’ll be back later with the dets.

We broke up

My boyfriend and I broke up. You remember him, don’t you?  My ruffler/gathering foot.  I don’t know what I did wrong, but suddenly he gave me the cold shoulder.  He didn’t want to gather or ruffle for me anymore. 

When I was making my niece Katie’s Xmas nightgown (a monument to gathers and ruffles), I couldn’t get him to gather for the life of me.  I looked up his directions in the manual (wouldn’t it be great if men did come with manuals???), I did an internet search on how to get better gathers, I changed thread tension, I changed stitch length.  In short, I tried everything.

My boyfriend wouldn’t gather.

My last ditch effort to save the relationship?  I thought to crowd the fabric from behind the needle and the fabric started to gather in a more acceptable fashion.  I don’t know why this idea occurred to me.  I don’t know if I had read about it in someone’s blog post or in one of my sewing books, but the idea just popped into my head.  I just smushed the fabric against the needle plate as I stitched and it helped the foot to gather the fabric as it fed through.  It wasn’t as consistent as it had been in the past, but what man is consistent?

I’m not sure if we’re going to get back together or not.  The pain is still too fresh.  But you can be sure, I will let you know if there are any further developments.

😉

Still here, but…

I cannot believe how long it took me to finish those flannel pj’s!  But they are finished and I am quite proud of them.  Reviews and pics after Christmas though.  They’re presents after all.  I can’t wait to show you.  I am so proud of my work.

I loved the flannel quality; it was yardage from Fabric.com (unfortunately all the holiday flannels are all sold out, but there are other flannel prints there still).  It is so thick, warm and fuzzy.  Perfect for keeping cute little kids cozy on a winter’s night.  🙂  

I have two knit jammies to make and a sleep sack.  I have the most adorable airplane camo knit from The Fabric Fairy.com for Jack and for my niece Haley a Christmas-y red and white stripe knit that reminds me of candy canes.  Then I have to make some bibs for a certain new little baby boy in Napa.  Oh and I also want to make my sister a quick scarf to add to her birthday booty.  And then…

Then I can sew for me!  I can’t wait to get back to my grey double-knit dress that has been cut up for two weeks now and staring at me accusingly from my dining room, I mean, sewing table. 

Some thoughts on my sewing: Although I will do a 2010 recap sometime next week and a 2011 goals post in the beginning of January, I was thinking this week about how far I’ve come in my sewing.  I no longer have problems reading pattern directions.  I haven’t called my sewing teacher, Thea, in months.  I don’t pester Karen and Carolyn with questions that much anymore.  I still sew very slowly, but my skill is growing by leaps and bounds.  And my finished products are looking more and more professional with each new project.  Besides singing, sewing, has been my longest obsession ever.  I don’t see it waning any time soon either. 

I’m going to imitate Myrna now as imitation is a form of flattery…

Grateful:  For having such a smart, handsome, playful and affectionate son in my life.  He brings a smile to my face and heart every time I think of him.  And for sewing.  I love having the sewing skills to make clothes for my family.   Everything I make for them is made with love and I think it shows.

On the mend…

Well folks, I’m finally on the mend.  It only took two days off of work and sleeping off some of my sleep deficit for my immune system to kick in finally. 

I kept a steady stream of movies in the dvd player and Nick Jr on the tv for Jack today while I sewed (ah the luxuries of single parenting).  But I am still super behind in my Xmas sewing.  It took me 10 straight hours of  sewing to complete the flannel pj’s for my nephew Thor.  I used Simplicity 3584, the bottom left, View C. 

Simplicity 3584

Overall it’s a decent pattern.  There was only one small drafting error that I encountered.  It was the facing, which extended far too long.  In retrospect, I could have cut it off to match the shoulder seam, but I had tunnel vision at the time and now it’s too late.  Oh well.  I think the pattern is pretty simple; there’s no collar stand after all.  But I think it’s a little too intense or long of a project for Xmas jammies.  The top has so many details that are fussy, like the collar (despite no collar stand) and the pocket.  I’m on the fence as to whether the cut on facing is time saver or not. 

The jammies are definitely cute, but a lot of work.  And with my time constraints now, I am switching gears now and using last year’s knit jammies pattern, Kwik Sew 3510.  The only change I’ll make is to lengthen the torso on the tops. 

Kwik Sew 3510

Apologies, but I can’t show you the flannel pj’s until after Xmas.  My sister might check out my blog and I want it to be a surprise. 

I hope everyone’s Xmas sewing is going well. 

PS: I am so behind on reading blogs right now.  I have over 300 waiting for me on google reader right now, at least 90 of which are saved ones on which I need to comment.  There’s just too little time in the day.

Still sick

Man, these pre-school germs are powerful bugs!  I’m still down for the count.  Getting far behind in my Xmas sewing. 

Just wanted to check in with you guys and let you know I’m still here.  I’m not dead yet.

Hope you’re all healthy!

Sick

No work was done on the dress this weekend, other than cutting out my beloved double-knit, unfortunately.  I was laid low with one of Jack’s vicious colds.  I am hacking my way through the day at work today.   Yesterday, all I could muster was making chicken soup and Xmas cookies with Jack.

And alas, since Christmas is so close now, I will have to set my dress aside and address (haha, I can still pun while sick) my Xmas sewing (totebags galore and the jammie-palooza).

Wish me luck in getting all this done in time.  I’ll need it.

Oh and wish me getting healthy soon too. 

And while you’re at it, wish me a million dollars too.  Thanks!

Deer in headlights

I bet you’re wondering how my dress is coming along. 

Umm…. 

Well….

I did make the 2nd muslin on Tuesday night.  I cut it out and sewed it.  In one night.  That’s a record for me.  I usually sew slower than a snail.  If you’ll remember, I had the great idea to make it a size smaller in real muslin, because the sz 14 in a stretchy knit was gargantuan.  Folks, that sz 12 would have made a hoochie mama blush.  I could barely get it over my hips and you could forget about ever zipping it up the back.

It’s not all bad though, for two good realizations came out of this process:

  1. I could reasonably be assured that I can go ahead and make this in a sz 14 in my double-knit fabric and just baste the side seams, fitting as I go.
  2. This dress is gorgeous. 

I absolutely adore this dress.  The cut is very flattering.  I love the pleats going up the bodice, so cute and flattering at the same time.

Now, about those princess seams…  I tried the “clipping the curve” method to get the princess seams not to pucker and gather as I sewed them, but it did not work.  I think the curved part is just too deep a curve.  I might have to flatten that curve a bit.

And my only worry about going straight to the fashion fabric is that I have not muslined the sleeves at all yet.  I’m just going to treat it like I treat making a left hand turn against on-coming, close my eyes, hit the pedal and just go for it.  😉  

image from xraynova.com

Ok, here’s the confession part of the post:  I was going to cut my double-knit last night, but I suffered from the deer in headlights syndrome.  I pre-treated it and it came out all lovely and soft and beautiful and I just got scared to cut into it.  So I did my Xmas cards and laundry instead.  But tonight is another sewing night my friends and this hoochie mama needs a new dress!  I think this might be a two or three night process.  I might get this dress done over the weekend.  We’ll see.  I’m not making any promises. 

One quick question:  I can get kind of obsessive over things at times (shocking to you, I know), and I can’t stop thinking about color blocking.  Do you think I could use a different color knit for the center of the dress (i.e. betweeen the princess seams) or just leave well enough alone and make it in just one color?  Here’s a picture of the envelope to refresh your memory.

Simplicity 2337

Happy sewing everyone!