Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Catching up, part two

I have more tops to show you, and these one's are not Belcarra's.

The most recent two tops I have made are True Bias Sutton blouse. I must admit when this pattern came out I was underwhelmed, I didn't see anything interesting about it at all. That all changed when Clio of Clio and Phineas made a couple. I fell in love instantly and had to make one or two or fourteen, I have several more planned. Keep in mind these aren't ironed because my shoulder won't let me. One thing to keep in mind, reviews I read mentioned over and over again how the pattern fits large, so even though my measurements put me firmly in a size 18, I made a 16, and it is absolutely perfect.

I made the green one first from thrifted fabric, fully expecting it to be an unwearable muslin. Surprise! Turns out I really like it, the only issue being the high low hem, when wearing jeans it works, when wearing any stretchy fabric bottoms, the hem hits me at exactly the most unflattering spot.

This is my second one, it's a scrub, and it works very well as one. I made the hem even all around and added pockets (as usual). Love both of these.

Second pattern New Look 6179 OOP. I made a number of changes or omissions to this pattern. I made version C, omitted the elastic in the sleeves, lengthened the sleeves a little, omitted the slit in the neckline and of course added pockets. Both of these tops are made from 100% cotton voile, which makes them very cool and comfortable to wear to work. BUT I don't love this pattern, I just don't feel like I look good in them. So I won't be making this pattern again. 


exactly the same fabric as one of the Belcarra's
from yesterdays post, just in a different colour

Next up is New Look 6194 version A .I changed so many things on this pattern that it really doesn't look like the picture at all. I excluded the darts, the sleeve bands and had no need for a zipper, straightened the hemline and lengthened it by several inches. I was looking for a top with some waist shaping, like a Belcarra but without raglan sleeves (see previous post re my inability to match patterns on raglan sleeves). I had the striped floral border print, but not a lot of it, so I barely managed to make it work. This one was a particular challenge, as I really prefer my pockets to match the print perfectly. That couldn't happen with the striped one, so the only thing to do was to make welt pockets, which I had never done before. They worked out quite well.

Next up is Butterick 4465 OOP. So far I have made two of these. I like them surprisingly well, considering they are kind of boxy. I think the raglan sleeves might be the reason. The pattern is really big, I recommend making a size or two smaller than your measurements. I used one inch seam allowances for the side seams, and it is still fairly loose. I think I will go 1½ sizes smaller next time.

textured 100% cotton 

cotton sateen with a little lycra-lovely fabric and a dream to sew

The next 4 tops I have no idea which pattern I used, or if there ever was one. The pattern I used for these ones was cut from thin cardboard that I have had hanging around the sewing dungeon forever. These are all standard boxy unflattering tops, I don't wear these as much as my others but it's convenient sometimes to have something larger to wear on those days you are retaining water/fat/whatever.
bargain center-fabric printed off grain which is why I changed
the direction of the stripes, I really like the way this one
turned out. I even added a zipper to a pocket, this was after
my phone fell in a toilet. Zippered pockets don't work all
that well in scrubs tho. Lesson learned.

100% cotton voile

cotton with a little lycra-lovely to sew

red chambray-very stiff cotton

That's it. I am caught up with reporting items I have made. Except for scrub pants. I am not going to bore anyone by making them look at scrub pants. You are welcome.  

Thank you for coming by.

Monday, May 30, 2016

Catching up-photo heavy post

Hello all!

Right now I am laid up with a very sore shoulder and I am unable to sew. Actually, I can sew, I cannot press or use an iron. Which really sucks because inspiration has struck and fabric is calling me to the sewing dungeon. Sooo annoying. This means of course, I can (and most definitely should) update my sad pathetic little blog.

I didn't finish the SWAP this year. I have been fighting an incredibly stubborn sinus infection since forever December, it has improved since then, not gone tho. My GP thinks surgery maybe required. At this point I don't care, I just want it gone. I see a specialist in July. Thank goodness for corticosteroid nasal sprays. They make breathing possible. The sinus infection also affected my ability to stay on my diet, when you are sick you want what you want to eat. I wanted fresh pressed apple juice with freshly squeezed ginger, and many other things that aren't part of the diet I was following.

At any rate this meant my sewing output really dropped early this year. I did get a bunch of  the intended SWAP sewn, but obviously not blogged or instagrammed or anything social media-ish. So here goes one massive update (ok maybe two not so massive updates).

I have decided that I don't like using scrub patterns for scrub tops, they are shapeless baggy and boring. My favorite pattern for scrubs is Sewaholic's Belcarra blouse. This top actually makes me look like I have a waist, WIN! To date I have made 14 Belcarra's. I have made so many that I am going to temporarily retire the pattern. I have made a few modifications to the pattern, narrowed the neckline (followed instructions on Sewaholic blog) lower patch pockets (essential for scrubs), no cuffs on the sleeves and sometimes I cut the hem level, depends on the fabric. I have one problem with the pattern and it is all my problem, I am incapable of making stripes match on raglan sleeves. I'm pretty sure it's genetic. Pockets I can match, sleeves not so much.

Here is the parade of Belcarra's. If the photos suck, my apologies, they were taken with my iPhone, the DLSR is too heavy for me to use right now.

100%  cotton voile-lovely and cool

cotton with lycra-you can barely tell, but the sleeves and hem are finished with black bias binding

obviously a Christmas top, made from bargain center off grain quilting cotton

another Christmas-check out the pockets on this one, all three of them

yet another Christmas top
2 ice dyed tops-I didn't intend for them to be almost identical, but that's the way they turned out

my favorite fabric, cotton sateen with a little lycra, I ♥ this print-was going to be part of SWAP

cotton with lycra-lovely and cool to wear

made for Jungle January, but never blogged, too sick sorry Anne!

linen, this fabric is more peach than pink

100% cotton border print

made from quilting cotton
I have never sewn a pattern as many times as this one. What patterns do you make over and over and over again?

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

refining my SWAP

blobby voile print
I have been home sick with a nasty cold/flu thingy, and I am feeling better but not enough to actually do anything productive, so of course that meant playing with my SWAP fabrics. As you may or may not have noticed, I have more than enough fabrics pulled to make 11 garments. Some need to be eliminated. This of course requires making tables and or spreadsheets. Cause I love doing that.

Two of my fabrics, although I love them and will sew them up, only go with white. They both have pink/fuchsia but not the pink/fuchsia solids that I have in the SWAP. So they are out of the SWAP plan.

I haven't made McCalls 7093, so a muslin must be made, and I will use the blobby print for that pattern. The border print needs a pattern with a straight bottom hem, so it will be a Belcarra as that is the only pattern I am using with a remotely straight hem, and I need to fine tune the fit on the Belcarra.

polka dots or dotted? border print 

I admit I am/was a little lot concerned about the fit of my garments. As I am in approximately the middle of my weight loss journey (need to lose around 20 more very stubborn pounds), and I hope to be done somewhere around the deadline of the SWAP, it will be impossible to have everything fit perfectly. However as I am sewing scrubs and well fitting scrubs are somewhat of an oxymoron, I have decided to not concern myself with this, and if necessary I can alter everything later. Although I hate, loathe, detest, and abhor altering clothing, whether I made it or not.

As I was writing this, I realized I really wanted to call the border print "polka dots", and then it occurred to me that I wasn't sure if this is a term that people outside North America use. It seems that I see the termed dotted used on British blogs? Am I right? Is polka dots a North American term? Tell me.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

SWAP 2016, the patterns

I have been going through my pattern collection and the BMV website and perusing various indie pattern designers looking for inspiration.  I made another Pinterest board to keep track of my ideas.

Pendrell Blouse by Sewaholic Patterns - Envelope CoverBelcarra Blouse by Sewaholic Patterns - Envelope Cover

The problem is, and it's not really a problem, is that I have lost around 30 pounds this year, and I am not interested in making or wearing the standard boxy scrubs. I have made a couple of scrubs using Sewaholic's Belcarra Blouse, and I really like them, and even though I am most definitely not a pear shape, the pattern is flattering and achieves the impossible by making me look like I have a waist! Definitely a winner.
M7093, Misses' Tops and Tunic K3979, Misses' Top and Pants

However, I don't want to make the same top over and over and over again. You can make a pattern look different with the use of piping, bias trims, zippers as trims etc, but the sewing gets so boring. In the running are the Belcarra, McCalls 7093, the Pendrell (with different sleeves than the pattern because I hate the sleeves as drafted), and/or Kwik Sew 3979. I might even do a muslin. First time for everything.
Line Drawing
The pants/capris are going to be made from Loes Hinse Cruise pants. I love the way they fit me and I will add plenty of pockets, a minimum of four pockets per pair. At least one decision is easy.

Last, but most difficult. Seeing as I am sewing this as a whole wardrobe, I need a jacket. It is going to be Sewaholic's Minoru. With the standard addition of external patch pockets and without the hood. I have already made one of these and have worn it constantly. It will be made from black corduroy which is in the stash.
Minoru Jacket by Sewaholic Patterns - Envelope Cover

In conclusion. This will be overall a very easy sew. I can make a Belcarra in a day, same for the Cruise pants. The Minoru is another story, especially in corduroy, but I want to be challenged somehow.

Any opinions? What do you think?

Saturday, November 14, 2015

update from the sewing dungeon and SWAP 2016

Hello reader(S)? Anyone?

Contrary to popular belief, I haven't died or become Amish or stopped sewing. Nope, just lost that lovin' feeling ♫ for the blog. Much sewing has been happening since I last posted. Thank goodness I didn't lose sewing mojo, just blogging  mojo. But I am back. I am not even going to attempt to catch up on blogging about things I have made since last blogged. Partially because I am old and can't remember what I have made, and partially because I don't want to.

On to the sewing. I have decided to participate in the SWAP 2016 at Artisan Square. As I work in a nursing home, I wear scrubs So a scrub SWAP it is. After rifling through the fabric closet of requirement, I discovered I have more than enough fabric for a scrub SWAP. The name I gave the SWAP on Artisan Square is "natural fiber scrub wardrobe", but I really wanted to call it "Nursing homes are hotter than f***ing hell and I can't wear those awful cotton polyester scrubs they sell everywhere cause they make me sweat and stink and they are f***king uncomfortable".

Perhaps a bit wordy. Anyway, my colours are black, white, and bright pink/fuchsia. The fabrics are cotton, linen and rayon. Breathable. Ahh.

And here are the fabrics.

Row 1: white embroidered cotton, tie dye print cotton voile
Row 2; black & white rayon plaid, black and white gingham stretch cotton
Row 3: black and cream polka dot cotton sateen, flowered/striped border print
Row 4: a gorgeous stretch cotton sateen ♥, green and pink polka dot border print cotton voile
Row 5: water colour printed cotton voile, embroidered pink cotton
Row 6: pink linen, and another pink linen
Row 7: pink fleece, and a photo of the three pink woven fabrics to show the differences in colour

Also, but not pictured plain white cotton and plaid black cotton, cause really, do you need a picture of plain black or white fabric? No, of course not. Some of these may not make it into the final SWAP, we shall see.

Next post. Which patterns?

Friday, November 7, 2014

happy weekend everyone

The McCall's blog recently posted about their new magazine which is produced in conjunction with Joanne's Fabrics. As I live in Canada and we don't have a Joannes (not sure whether this is good thing or not), I can't have a look at it before I buy it, I was wondering if any of you Americans have had a look at it. Is it worth it?

I was checking out the Burda patterns on the Simplicity website the other day and I noticed something unusual, There seems to be a pattern (Burda 6974) which appears identical to a top that was in Burdastyle magazine, Draped Shirt 02/2013 #113. Is this normal? Or am I a total idiot for never having noticed before? Tell me.

Don't worry about offending me, I am used to feeling stupid foolish.

And I noticed this pattern description. Almost a little frumpy and innocent??? I got to get me some of that, there is nothing more desirable than frumpy when making your own clothes. You could have added that it would look homemade to make it even more attractive.

Burda, you have to get a native English speaker to proof read your pattern descriptions.


Do it soon.


I promise there will be sewing to show off  write about soon. My mojo has been intact but I have been suffering from decision paralysis. So many things to sew, just couldn't decide which pattern and which fabric etc.

Later sewing sisters ♥

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Hello? Is anyone still out there?

Is anyone out there? I wouldn't blame anyone for giving up on me.

First of all, I am admitting I was shamed into this post. Yes, shamed. Fitnottofit nominated me for a Liebster award. Thank you darling girl! I thought I should write a post before responding to the nomination.

Wow. It has been a long time since I posted. Since April 25, 2014 to be exact. I thought I would include the year because it seems like it has been even longer. I have tried to post, really, truly I have. I offer as evidence excerpts from posts I have started and not finished. These may or may not get finished and may or may not show up as completed posts one day. One never knows.

I miss blogging. I have been so busy and so tired that I just haven't been able to manage it.

while back while thrift store shopping, I came across a Singer 500 (aka Rocketeer) for $25. I knew from reading other people's blogs that it was a powerful machine and could be a worthwhile addition to my sewing machine family. Then of course there was it's appearance. To me it looks like a old Buick/Chrysler/Edsel.

 I have been sewing, but it has been of an industrial kind of sewing. The kind of sewing that you have to sew. For work, and not pretty, fashionable clothes. Nope, the kind that is almost no fun at all. Why? I got a new job. Not a job doing what I want, as apparently there is a conspiracy between all employers to not hire me to do the kind of work I want to do. 

Anyway there has been lots of sewing happening in the sewing dungeon, just not blogging. I'm sure we would all agree, that if one is going to slack off on one discipline, blogging is the one that should be given up on. 

Why am I stuck on referring to myself in the third person? No idea, but it feels right. 

Anyhoo, Here is a list of what I have sewn since my last post.

The List 

Clockwise from top left, the bra (obviously, close up of dark brown scout, close up of yellow scout, close up of black pants fabric

turquoise scout, tiny pocket tank, yellow scout

turquoise linen Scout
yellow voile Scout
taupe Scout with matching scarf, to wear on head while visiting a Sikh temple
dark brown voile Scout with some very simple beading around the neckline-because it sooo boring without something extra
taupe Tiny Pocket Tank top
black pants-Loes Hinse Cruise pants, I ♥ this pattern
3 pairs sleep shorts for a friend (no photos)
matronly beige Pin Up Girls Classic band bra that doesn't quite fit

the most boring beige voile scrub ever, but it is cool, not trendy cool, but temperature cool
blue and white pattern print scrub
red and pink print scrub
pink camo print scrub
polka dot scrub
red print scrub
turquoise and black scrub
turquoise linen scrub
white scrub
yellow voile scrub -no photo (in the wash)
dark brown voile scrub-no photo (in the wash too)
green print scrub (which I hated and felt like crap in, so I gave it away to someone who looks great in it)

That is 22 garments in 4 months. I think know that is a record for me. Yes, they are all simple garments, and I was all set to feel like I was taking the easy way out by only sewing simple easy patterns. Then I thought about it and realized that even the clothes I have bought recently have been simple garments. I guess my style has evolved/devolved? to basic stuff. I could be called a style minimalist. That sounds cool, I like it. Although one day I will attempt a Koos van den Akker coat, V1377, V1331 or V1277. I WILL.

Of course, all of you will no doubt notice that scrubs feature prominently on the list. If you can read between?around? the lines above, I am now working in a nursing home, and I have to wear scrubs to work. Almost all commercially made scrubs are made from the devil's fabric, polyester. As most nursing homes have interior temperatures of somewhere between a blast furnace and that of the cauldron at Kilauea (for the comfort of the residents), the blend of poly/cotton makes for a hot and sweaty and uh, um, a rather fragrant body. Cotton and/or /linen is required (at least for me).  That explains the scrubs.

Anyway, that's all I have time for now, please forgive the bad photography, I was racing against the rain, and of course, time.  I promise I will write more soon.