Thursday, December 31, 2009

A Butterick Knit top (B5354)

I've been wanting to make this top for a long time and it was the first thing I made after Christmas.I wanted an easy project and this one fit the bill.I had it cut out a while back so I got right down to sewing and it only took about three hours.
Here is the outcome. It's nothing special really.

The fabric is a poly sweater knit that is very soft.The name of the collection was "Cashmere".It was left over from my daughter's Christmas dress which I forgot to photograph before sending it to Ottawa.

The reason I'm not thrilled with it I think is that the tucks at the neckline don't show up because of the printed fabric.But I definitely want to make it again in a plain knit.

There was one problem with this pattern.I found that the neckline falls toward the back so I'll take the seam allowance away from the front shoulder and add it to the back.I find this step usually fixes this problem.

What I like about this top is the fit (I used size 12 but cut the side seams at size 14). I like the amount of fullness through the bodice. It's not too wide.The only change I made to the pattern was to lengthen the sleeves because I'm always cold.I've already worn it several times so it wasn't a waist of time.You know.We all have things we sew that are just ordinary.This is one of mine.

I didn't get any pics taken of me wearing it but I've already finished a couple of other pieces,V8323 and V8561. I'll post on them in the next couple of days after DH has taken the photos.

I hope you all find time to sew this week.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Catching Up

I don't know about you but I'm glad Christmas is over. Even though I love the Holidays, let's face it. They are hectic and a lot of work. I love all the preparations ,the decorating, the sewing of gifts and the shopping (notice I didn't say the cooking because I'm one of those lucky women whose husband loves to cook) . But enough is enough! I'm ready to get back to normal.

I just wanted to announce a few things that are new in my life.

First of all, I have a new grand-daughter, born on Nov.21st.Here she is ,Riley Grace, with her handsome father,my youngest child Jeff!


I haven't seen her yet because she lives in Ottawa and I don't travel at this time of year.I'll be going in March. But many photos have found their way to my computer!

Next is that I decided to stop working at Fabricville. Ann, I'm so glad you came in the last day I was there. We had a great chat (and your son is very handsome too!)
My body has been protesting rather loudly about all the abuse I was putting it through at my beloved Fabricville.I enjoyed my six years there immensely and made many wonderful friends .I'll visit often for sure.

Also,I have a new sewing machine! I had to give up on my Kenmore 19606. It was a real lemon. In five years, it was away for repairs for a total of 42 weeks!! Finally, Sears offered me a "buy-out" so I decided to buy this beauty,

I haven't learned to use the embroidery component yet, but I'll be having lessons soon and am looking forward to at least creating my own sewing labels for a start.

Last but not least, just before Christmas, my husband was in an accident. He hit a piece of black ice on a sharp turn and lost control, He hit a culvert. The truck rolled over once and then landed on the passenger side. Because he was wearing a seat belt ,my sweet man came out without a scratch , just a slightly stiff neck. I was on my way home from work and came upon the scene. It was a real shock to see the truck being pulled out of the ditch by a tow-truck. Here is one photo of the wreck.

Needless to say, our whole family feels very grateful that our Bobby was spared. I can't help smiling every time I look at him. Life is SWEET!

Now on to sewing stuff. I'm just going to show you the jacket I made in November as part of my What Goes With Brown collection

The pattern is Vogue1100

I added about 4" to the length and an inch to the side seams to make it roomy enough for a winter jacket.

The fabric is a wool/rayon/polyester blend. I lined it with a printed "designer" polyester lining. I didn't add an under-lining as I had planned because I wanted to wear it in late fall and early spring. It's quite warm enough to wear now with a sweater under it.

I love the retro look of the 3/4 sleeves that is so popular at the moment. I added an inch to the sleeve length as well as the the cuff length. I can wear the sleeves with the cuff turned up or down with my long leather gloves I bought in Montreal.

I made bound buttonholes with a faux suede and used big buttons because I love big buttons.I also trimmed the welt pocket flap with the faux suede.

To complete the look ,I made a cool scarf with the animal print knit I showed in another post.

I'm loving this jacket and have worn it many times already.
Voila! What do you think?

For more pics, look here.

Have a great and Happy New Year each of you who so kindly visit my blog. It feels good to be back and I'm looking forward to another year of sewing and blogging now that I'm retired for the second time.

Hope you find time to sew!

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas from my House to yours

It feels so peacsful tonight now that the rush is over.It seems like such a long time since I've spent any time at all visiting blogs or blogging myself.

I wanted to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a happy Holiday Season.I hope everyone got to spend the day with those you love.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

A Copy-Cat Idea

I've been browsing through my favorite blogs and after visiting Marji's, I decided to be a copy-cat. Quite a few Bloggers that I follow sew according to a colour plan to which they give creative names and although I too sometimes sew two or three items that match each other, I don't give my matching outfits names. Well I think I'll give it a shot.

Right now I'm sewing a light winter jacket that will go with my browns ,rusts and tans.I just bought a sweater knit in the same colour family and have cut out a brown Marci Tilton skirt.I also have a yummy burnt orange sweater knit that fits in. But what to call it? Hmmmm...???...nothing coming to mind...???...this is probably very lame but...I guess it's going to be my
What Goes With Brown Collection

Here are the Fabrics
The first one is a wool polyester blend and I'm making a jacket using Vogue 1100 I lengthened the jacket about 4 inches and the sleeves an inch. With this jacket I want to wear long tan gloves which I just bought in Montreal.

The second is just going to be a scarf because I would stick out like a sore thumb wearing anything else out of this animal print knit.

The brown stripe is for the Marci Tilton skirt and the rusty orange sweater knit is going to be the top in Simplicity2520.I'm going to lengthen the sleeves and probably change them to fitted ones as well.

This brown sweater knit which I bought at C&M Textiles in Ottawa ,will be either this Butterick pattern or this Sandra Betzina sweater which I've made before.

So far,I've spent many hours on the jacket including pattern alterations, cutting out,interfacing, bound buttonholes and welt pockets (I used brown faux suede for these).The lining is in , the buttons are sewn and it's almost finished.

I'm hoping to have it ready for next weekend . My three sisters and I are going shopping in a nearby city (Moncton). We'll spend the night,go out for a nice dinner , etc.One of my sisters drools over my coats and jackets and so I want to rub it in (LOL)

I'm in the middle of one of those times when all I want to do is sew but I should be cleaning and shopping for Christmas.I've made up a time-table(once a teacher,always a teacher) for the week to try and fit in everything I need to do but there's just no help for it. I'll do like I always do. I'll wait till the last minute to do my Holiday sewing and then be all stressed out.

Oh I have made one thing . A fleece "quilt" . I try to make one of these each fall for the homeless shelter in nearby Fredericton. I use left over or donated pieces of fleece for the front and I just simply back it with a piece large enough to do the trick.It's very warm and there's no need to do any quilting because the static in the fleece holds the two sides together.This project always makes me feel good so I love doing it.The blocks on this one are 12"square.

I'll get some pics of the jacket and post them in a couple of days, hopefully.

I hope you all have a great week and find some time to sew.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

A Taggy Blanket or Jordan's Gift to Riley

Last week ,I was in Ottawa visiting my daughter as well as my youngest son.

While there, my daughter was planning a baby shower for my future daughter-in-law. Jeff and Melanie are expecting a baby girl, whose name is to be Riley, in a couple of weeks.The day before the shower , Tamara and I invited my son's step-daughter, Jordan who is eleven,for a visit.We thought she would enjoy helping with the shower preparations .

We decided that Jordan might like to do a little sewing.I had made a taggy blanket

for my other baby grand-daughter and after explaining what a taggy blanket is,Jordan thought it would be a great gift for her baby sister!. We went to Fabricland where she chose fabric,which should be soft and cudly, and a variety of ribbons of different colours and textures.

Back at home,we got right down to work.

Step 1....Here Jordan is measuring the ribbons.We decided to cut each one eight inches and to make the blanky 15 inches square.

Step 2....Next, Jordan looped each ribbon as she pinned them about 4" apart to the right side of one of the layers.

Step 3...After pinning the second layer over the first layer and the ribbons, It was time to go to the machine.Jordan was a little nervous because she had never sewn before, but I think she did very well with a little help.

Here is the blanket sewn on all sides with an opening of about five inches left on one of the sides so she could turn it right side out.

Step 4...After turning it and sewing the opening shut, here is Jordan with her gift for Baby Riley.

I forgot to take a picture but Jordan made herself a cushion with the left-over fabric and this time she did it all by herself!

Sewing was not all Jordan did that day. She helped Tamara decorate these cookie jars containing the ingredients as well as the directions for making the cookies which were to be party favours that each guest took home.

We carved this watermelon baby carriage fruit bowl

And she helped decorate the cupcakes which were one of the desserts at the shower.

The day ended with a feast of Chinese food and a very tired young girl.

The next day was the shower and Jordan's gift was a great success with not only her Mum and big sister, ,but with all the guests!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Sewing for my Lifestyle

Happy Thanksgiving to my fellow Canadians! Are you stuffed, tired and happy? Hope so.My Dh and I got up early and prepared our turkey and all the fixings so we could enjoy our family which includes our little cutie pie Sadie who is almost 14 months old. I can't resist showing a picture.

I'm almost too tired to blog but if I don't post this tonight ,I won't get another chance as we are leaving for Montreal on Thurs. and I'm then taking the train to Ottawa . I want to be in town for the baby shower my daughter and Co. are having for my daughter-in-law. My new grand-daughter is to be born in mid Nov.
I have a lot of baby stuff to make before Thurs. because as is my habit,I've procrastinated and waited for the last minute to make crib sheets, bibs, receiving blankets and even a quilt (sort of).

So here is what I have to show you tonight.

The fabric is a light chocolate brown sports weight stretch cotton that looks just like denim.The pattern for the jacket is this OOP Vogue Designer one that I've wanted to make for years.

This wasn't my first choice ,however. I had my heart set on making this OOP jacket, but horrors! there was a crucial piece missing.It probably found its way into another pattern envelope when I was cutting out more than one but since that was a long time ago, I couldn't come up with a solution so I had to settle for a different pattern.

I think the jacket is as cute as can be (and look at all that top-stitching which as you know I love to do) but I would have preferred it longer. I added a couple of inches at the bottom but I didn't want to mess with the style too much and it had no allowance for adding length in the body of the jacket.

I was having a hard time finding the right buttons (for the other style ) so the zipper closure on this one solved that problem

For the pants, I used the S.Betzina jeans pattern I used for my Swap, but I wish I had chosen to make a simpler style as there's an awful lot going on right at the stomach which we older women just don't need.But the fit is good and they went together really well.

I trimmed the back pockets with a design to mimic the trim of the jacket.

When I close the jacket, the wide band acts as a girdle and feels good,

but I prefer the opened look.

All in all, I like my new sportswear suit.It will be a great outfit to take with me to Montreal and Ottawa.Now if only I had a medium weight jacket to go with it.Mmmmmm!

More pics here.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Just a Few Thoughts

I had planned on posting about my brown denim pantsuit but since I didn't get any pictures taken,I thought I'd just put a few thoughts out there.

Ever since I participated in Swap 2009, I've been very aware of whether or not I wear the things I make.I guess that would be because I actually sewed 17 different items for Swap and of course some of them I've hardly worn at all. This has led me to consider very carefully what I now sew.

After really examining my past projects ,I decided that by far I wear the coats .jackets and pantsuits that I make the most.These include long coats,

3/4 coats,

short jackets

, jeans jackets,

and casual pantsuits .

However during the summer months, I'd have to include sundresses and skirts to the list ( except for this summer when it rained most of the time).

So what do I sew and don't wear or wear very little? I'd have to say dresses, skirt suits (but I do so love skirt suits and do wear them occasionally) and even tops.That would be because I really like sweaters and nice classic T-shirts.As for shirts,they were once favorites but since I've developed this bigger than necessary chest, I'm not that comfortable wearing them.

After Swap, I decided I wanted to make my sewing more meaningful and I sewed more things for my daughter and I felt good about that. But it doesn't mean that I lost my desire to sew for myself. After all I have this humongous stash and as many ideas as I have pieces of fabric.

So I've been wondering what your thoughts are on this subject.Do you only sew things you need or are you like me (in the past) and sew that oh so stylish suit or party dress to have it languish in your closet?

Thursday, October 1, 2009

A Sew Passionista Design or My Self Drafted Jacket

I'm not succeeding in keeping to my Sunday night blogging schedule. Why not? I guess life just gets in the way sometimes. Or am I lost in LOST?

You see, my husband and I started watching Season 1 a couple of weeks ago and became quickly wrapped up in it. We are now on tape 1 of Season 3. Right now we are taking a break so DH can watch a hockey game so I thought I'd post last weeks project.

A couple of years ago I bought this fabric that is a cross between a boucle and a chenille.The purple is just beautiful.

Originally, I tried to copy this cardigan from Coldwater Creek.

I drew out the pattern by copying a loose fitting pullover with dropped sleeves . It didn't turn out right and I just hung it in the closet where it stayed till last week.

I was looking for something to do while spending time with my mother at the Nursing Home ( I always take hand-sewing or something else to do because my mum can't communicate anymore and if I have something to do while I'm there I can stay longer I find. She just likes to know someone is there who loves her,I feel. )

Well, I grabbed the jacket ( I wish I'd taken a before picture ) and ripped out some of the seams and cut a few inches off the bottom to have a little fabric to work with. When I got home I remodeled it by adding the collar,

adding a strip of fabric to the undersleeves because they were too narrow,

and gathering the bottom of sleeves because they stuck out..

I finished off by lining it and I really love the results.
I'm especially proud because I feel like I was the designer in this case. So here it is.

Instead of buttonholes, which would have been a real problem on this fabric, I made large loops. I found the buttons at a second-hand store!

Here I am in my jacket. Sorry but I can never get the colour just right.

This week I'm working on a brown stretch denim pantsuit and it's turning out quite well I think. Hope to have it up on Sunday night.

Now back to "Lost".