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Rhythmic Gymnastic Leotard

Rhythmic Gymnastic Leotard

Where do I begin? This was something I have never done before in my life! I don't even sew knits for myself! I was asked by my longtime friend to sew up a leotard for her daughter. I agreed thinking that it would be easy. One colour, no fuss, no muss. Then I got the email with links to design ideas. Surprise, surprise, surprise! What had I gotten myself into and could I get myself out of it!?
We went fabric shopping and she picked the colours she liked and we went from there. We managed to get a pattern but it was a ladies pattern so I had to draft it down in size to fit her. I made a mock up and it fit well. With a few alterations I drafted for the suit you see here. I started drafting this about January 5th, had the mock up done for the 9th, re-drafted for the alterations and the new design on the 10th and completed the sewing (finally) January 12th.


A-Line Camo Skirt

A-Line Camo Skirt

I found some new camo print cotton twill and decided it should be an a-line skirt. I drafted a basic skirt pattern and then altered the basic pattern to be an a-line skirt pattern. I ran the camo print vertically instead of horizontally to make it more interesting. I drafted and sewed this up in about 4 hours on January 14th, 2008.


The Reluctant Muse.

The Reluctant Muse.

The recap. Butterick B1577. Started March 23rd, 2008. Fabric was actually bought as with the purpose of becoming an East Indian suit but I decided it should be a dress. I believe the fabric is 100% polyester. After trials and tribulations it was finished March 29th, 2008. I am very happy with the outcome!


Flower Power

Flower Power

Yes, the B1577 again! This time I used a crisp mid weight printed cotton with those fantastic retro styled flowers! The cotton print is actually navy blue rather than black as I originally thought. So the contrast fabric is a navy poplin. I cut and sewed this in one day. I had to make a couple modifications as I didn't have enough navy fabric or enough lining. I changed the neck tie to half the width it should have been. Which turned out great as there isn't all that bulk at the neck. The lining I had to piece together in 2 pieces for the front. I didn't have enough fabric to cut it on the fold. I love it! I am going to get a lot of use out of this pattern for summer dresses. Started and finished April 5th, 2008


Spring Trench

Spring Trench

Yeah! Yeah! Yeah! This turned out pretty great! And the fit is fab! I managed to ease in the sleeves with no problems! The buttons lined up perfect! I did manage to sew the back side of the snap on upside down rendering it useless until I decide to remove it and sew it on again the right way. This is made with Commander fabric, a poly/cotton blend. Lightweight and should shed the rain well. Hopefully it won't make me too sweaty! This is New Look 6736 Size 14. I cut and finished most of this on April 6th, 2008. I decided that I needed to catch stitch the facings down all the way around so they wouldn't roll. Who knew I could grow to love hand finishing?! Final finishings of buttons and snaps April 7th, 2008. Love it!


Hot Cha-Cha-Cha-Cha!

Hot Cha-Cha-Cha-Cha!

Whoa! This was a super easy super quick sew! Hot Patterns Easy Sew No Sweat Cha-Cha-Cha Halter Dress! I seriously cut and sewed this up in about 4 hours! I did have issues with the pattern markings and directions. For example it instructs you to 'cut a pair on the fold'. Uh, how about 'cut 2' and the international pattern signal on the side you place on the fold! Also the directions were a bit dodgy. I appreciated the simplicity of it. Just thought they could be better worded for newer sewers. I did alter this to fit my small bust (35") and then widened it through the waist to the hips(42"). I am the ultimate 'pear shape'! I also lined the front with plain white cotton. The fabric is a bit sheer. Modesty prevails! Notes for next time. Lengthen about 4 inches. A bit short for me. Also change the bias tape at the neck to be 1" making it easier to thread the tie. This is a halter dress and a little inappropriate for work, so next time I will also add the back bodice piece and make a bias casing at the top so the tie can thread all the way around the neck. Overall it's a keeper and definitely a 'do-over'!


Sunkissed Cha Cha Cha

Sunkissed Cha Cha Cha

This is Hot Patterns Hot Cha Cha Cha No Sweat Easy Sew Halter Dress with some modifications. There is another style of dress included in the pattern so I did a little mix and match. I added the back bodice of the other dress and then altered the lower back pattern piece of the halter dress so it would fit together with the new back bodice. I did end up gathering the bottom of the back bodice to make it fit to my lower back piece. That worked out really well as there is gathering on the front bodice also. I put a zipper in the side seam so I could get in and out of it. I added 2 inches in length and now it hits my knee perfectly! I am happy with the way this turned out but I do need to make a few small changes on the next version. There will be many versions of this dress! So fast and easy! I cut and sewed this in about 3 hours or so on May 19th, 2008.


Three Easy Pieces

Three Easy Pieces

And my interpretation of the pose on the pattern envelope! It's Butterick B4790 Retro 1952!
For so few pattern pieces this pattern gave me a little grief. Mostly brought about by my lifelong friend, Stupido.
I picked up this lovely sage green linen and then a corresponding green printed linen for this. I cut this and sewed most of it on Wednesday. I made the bias tape from leftover fabric pieces and then it started to go sideways. I decided that I didn't want to bias tape to be visible and contrasting to the fabric. So instead of encasing the seam with binding as the pattern requires I decided to apply the bias tape as the facings. I trimmed the seam and under stitched the bias tape then I sewed the tape along the inside of the dress edges. I was quite happy with it until after handling the dress a few times I noticed a small fray at the neck edge. I smacked my hand to my forehead and cursed the loose weave of linen! What was I to do? I emailed my internet sewing buddy Bonnie and asked for some advice. She is such a support and sage sewer! Her suggestion was to remove the bias tape and then apply a thin strip of interfacing at the edges of the garment that would be bias taped. Did I mention I understitched the seam? In the end I cut off the bias tape. Losing about 1/2 inch of fabric around the edges. I then did as advised and applied a thin strip of interfacing along the neck edge. I then finished the seam with the bias tape as I had originally intended. It worked! No seams fraying apart!
Then there was a small problem of the fit. I don't know why I think I am smaller than I actually am but there you go. I cut a 12 and did not allow or make any alterations to accommodate my 16 waist and my 18 hips. Hips didn't really matter in this but the waist did! Shockingly it was too small! I used a ribbon tie to close the under dress at the back. Then I made a fabric rectangle the same width as the back bodice where it wraps around the front. 4 snaps and I was good to go!
Almost. I was very good and let the dress hang for 24 hours to let the bias work itself out. I cut the hem and when I set it on the dress form again it was a sad, sad, sad state of a hem! Wavy and wonky as all get out. So I got down on the floor and marked the hem again from the shortest length on the skirt. Making the dress a few inches shorter than I had originally intended. Still below the knee though! Perfect! I love it!
I started this on May 21st, 2008 and completed it May 24th, 2008.


Party PJ's

Party PJ's

Lil Sis came over with a PJ pants pattern and we had at it. Probably only an hour to cut and sew! I have no idea what brand or pattern number it is as she took the pattern with her when she left! Cut and sewn June 6th, 2008.


Just Dotty

Just Dotty

Look how cute this looks on the dress form! So pretty! This is Vogue V8470 and is a lovely pattern. However, after checking my measurements to the pattern and making the necessary alterations I forgot one very important measurement. My bust rides way low on my chest. I forgot to measure from the shoulder to the bust point. Doh! The under bust seam on this cuts directly across my bust line. Yep, that seam sits right on my nips. Not flattering at all! So it sits looking pretty on my dress form until I decide what to do. Whether or not to rip it all apart of try to futz together something at the shoulders to lengthen it. I cut this sometime last month and almost completed it July 5, 2008.


Skulls and Roses Apron

Skulls and Roses Apron

Looks can be deceiving! This is a pattern that my sister and I dreamed up and drafted out for her b-day present. This is a custom fitted pattern and we loved the skulls and roses fabric and decided to give it a vintage kick. Started, drafted and muslined last month and completed July 5th, 2008!


Garden Party

Garden Party

Yahoo! I made something that fits! I remembered to measure my shoulder to bust point length on this one and guess what? I had to lengthen the front shoulders about an inch and a half and the back shoulder about 3/4's! I found this fabric called 'Faye" at the fabric store and fell in love with it. So I looked around for a pattern that would show it off. Simplicity 2886 is a total keeper! Easy directions. Awesome way to sew the lining and the front together without any pain at all! You will see this pattern again! And again! And again! I cut and sewed this on July 6th, 2008.


Retro Modern Deconstruction

Retro Modern Deconstruction

This is a skirt pattern from the 70's where you cut strips of fabric and sew them together. Then you cut it out on the bias making a unique diagonal flared skirt. I've been trying to sew a plain khaki skirt but was bored with the thought of it. Then I saw this. I made it interesting by sewing the seams inside out so they would fray. I also did not finish the hem and let that fray too. I think I may have to make another one of these out of old jeans. That would be cute! Started on July 5th, 2008 and completed July 6th, 2008.


Agent Skully

Agent Skully

Another modification of Hot Patterns No Sweat Easy Sew Cha-Cha-Cha Dress. I added the sleeves but cut them to be short. I also had to put in a side zipper to get in and out of it. Fits perfect! I really like the way the neckline is on this. Without the sash this dress reminds me of an old 40's day dress. This pattern is super fast and super comfortable. Oh and the name? Look closely, those are skulls on the fabric. And they glow in the dark!


Just Dotty Redux

Just Dotty Redux

Well, it's finished. Not the prettiest thing I've ever made but it's functional. I do appreciate the camouflage the pattern provides in hiding the fixes. I sewed a tube of fabric with an end width of 6.5cm finished. Then I cut the shoulders at the seams and slid them into my fabric tube that I measured out and pressed into casing 3 inches in length each. Slap, dash, top stitch job and my shoulders were extended 2 inches! However it probably should be 3 to 3.5. This is still short in the bust. Wearable but annoying to me. I did a little hand stitching to pretty up the front point also. The pattern has a sash but I think it works better as a headband!


Poppy Pods Skirt

Poppy Pods Skirt

I found this fabric at Ikea when I went to get the Petri Dish fabric. It's a heavy cotton canvas with these flower bud thingys. I used my A-line skirt pattern I drafted and cut and sewed it up in under an hour July 20th, 2008.


Melon Squash Skirt

Melon Squash Skirt

Another crazy Ikea fabric! Again a heavy cotton canvas that's been screen printed with these amoebic shapes that remind me of watermelons, gourds and zucchini! Made from a pattern of my own design this was cut and sewn July 20th, 2008.


Petri Dish Skirt

Petri Dish Skirt

I was so envious of Brainylady Alison's skirt she had made that I had to go and make one for myself! Heavy cotton canvas from Ikea with this unusual print that looks like twigs and berries (not those twigs and berries, c'mon) or like molecular structures or what you might see under the microscope in a petri dish. This is my own pattern and it was cut and sewn July 20th, 2008.


Snakey Diamonds Skirt

Snakey Diamonds Skirt

Another Ikea fabric in the same heavy cotton canvas. A pattern of my own design that was cut and sewn July 20th, 2008.


Swing into Fall Suit

Swing into Fall Suit

The first of my Fall sewing! Finally! I had plans to have this done and wear for September 1st but there was a Renaissance Fair my sister was attending and I had to do up some sewing for her and her family. Then there was Stupido, my longtime friend, who kept trying to put the facings to the jacket and skirt on upside down and backwards! Multiple times! Then my sewing machine tried to ruin it all at the very end with buttonhole mangle-age! I think I'm lucky to have gotten this done at all! This is Simplicity 3631 and it was a pretty easy pattern once I got past the whole facing issue. Very straightforward but ended up being a little large. I find most Simplicity's run on the large size. I did have to take in the skirt and it could stand to be taken in a smidge more. Overall I am very pleased. This is made with a rayon/wool blend in a chocolate brown with a green slub that sewed up beautifully! I started this back in mid August and completed it Sept. 7th, 2008.


Bangin' Butterfly Blouse

Bangin' Butterfly Blouse

I knew there was a reason I love fashion from the 30's and 40's! The garment cuts are so flattering! This is another pattern from Decades of Style pattern company. The 1930's Butterfly Blouse and it will be made again and again! I can't believe this is only 3 pieces! I did not follow the recommended fabrics and paid the frustration price. In future I will use drapey fabrics that can hold a crease. Like silk or rayon. I used a 100% polyester that has great weight and drape but was difficult to work with and required a lot of pinning to hold it in place while I sewed it. I actually almost melted a hole in it with my iron trying to get some semblance of a crease to happen! I started this a couple weeks ago and finished it September 22, 2008.


Plaid About You

Plaid About You

This languished for so long and I don't know why! Great suit cuts are stylish no matter what age they are! This is Simplicity 4044 a retro reprint of a suit from the 1940's. I made the jacket from a stretch wool glen plaid with a burgundy stripe in it. Taking care to make all the red lines match up. That was a chore! The pants are a black wool blend with a silver pinstripe and the skirt is a wool blend burgundy a-line design. Both the pants and the skirt feature a notched curve waistband with the notch at the front center waist. Making them very flattering and elegant. I started these items way too long ago and finished the lining and the hem of the jacket yesterday November 11th, 2008.