Sunday, June 28, 2009
Monday, June 22, 2009
Thursday, June 18, 2009
It features bees, of course, and includes two tiny brass bee charms and a little pewter moon. I love this little piece and I really need to get it framed and hang it up somewhere.
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
I also made progress on B5022:
These are the front pockets. I love the elasticized top edge. It's just a little bit different and looks so cute and feminine. I can't wait to get these sewn onto the front pieces so I can start to get an idea of how this is going to look.
And here is the blingy iron-on applied to the cargo pocket. Application went very well. I followed the directions on the package and all the rhinestones adhered perfectly. We'll see how this goes. I'm still not convinced this is going to stand up to everyday wearing and washing. I'll have to try to remember to at least wash the pants inside out, but I'll have to let you know how this holds up.
I'm taking the next two days off from work so I am anticipating a nice, long, four day weekend. I hope to get some more progress made on the pink cargo pants and on the birth sampler. I also have another little UFO in progress that I plan to take with me if I end up out and about this weekend. I'll share that one next time.
Saturday, June 13, 2009
I've mentioned before, a long, long time ago, that I used to do quite a bit of needlework. There was a time when I had at least one, sometimes several pieces in progress at all times. In fact, my hands used to be dry and cracked to the point of pain because I was so scrupulous about washing my hands in order to work on my precious samplers.
A few years ago, my needlework mojo dried up quite suddenly and unexpectedly. I put all of my fancy fibers, beautiful pieces of linen, and tons of charts and patterns away. This happened to coincide with me learning to smock and finding a new "love" and with some devastating family disruptions. There suddenly just wasn't enough time, energy, or money, and something had to give.
This one is also mostly cross stitch except for the verse and the border. It is stitched on 28ct ivory linen that I bought prepackaged at Walmart- back when they had a decent selection of needlework supplies.
Here's a little sampler with a strawberry theme. This one is stitched all in DMC floss in red, green, blue, gold, and ecru on 28ct ivory linen. (Once again- sorry for the green tint.) This one was a lot of fun and quick to stitch with lots of specialty stitches.
And here is one of those UFOs I mentioned. This one is from Full Circle Designs and features pumpkins. I have lots of patterns with pumpkins. My son Bryan has a thing for them- we have a collection, and so I pick up pumpkin patterns here and there. This one should be quick to finish. It's stitched in Sampler Threads on 32ct linen. I'm not sure of the color but it's a rustic beige/tan.
And finally, this is a small piece of my main UFO, which I need to hurry up and finish. The picture from the beginning of the post is also a portion of this piece- Heirloom Anniversary Sampler from Victoria Sampler. I am modifying the design, however, to be a birth sampler for a special little family friend. The colors are soft rose, taupe, ecru, and sparkly platinum on 28ct Platinum Cashel linen (a warm pale grey). The sampler features all kinds of stitches, hardanger, silk ribbon embroidery, and is sprinkled with beads and metallic thread accents. I have already made it once for my parents as an anniversary sampler, and I thought it would adapt nicely to a birth sampler. I just need to get myself in gear and finish it!
Saturday, June 6, 2009
I'm going to give this one an A. Not an A+, because I decided I don't love the fabric so much, but still, an A, because it was so comfortable and fun to wear. It reminded me again that I love a cotton dress on a warm day! This is a pattern that I just might make again- the full skirt and the sleeveless version intrigue me.
Anyway, on to the details. I used the slim skirt, the flat sleeves, amd the wide yoke. I cut a 16 from the neckline down to the hip, where I morphed out to an 18. As I said in a previous post, the waist was way too tight. I should have used the size 18 cutting lines at the waist. For the finished dress, I cut it out the same as the muslin, but I used 1/4" seam allowances at the waist instead of 5/8". This gave me plenty of room and I can breathe in the finished dress.
I added 1" of length to the bodice pieces at the waist- a pretty standard adjustment for me. I did a 3/8" princess FBA, and I added 3/8" of width to the back skirt piece which was darted out at the waist. Now that the dress is finished, I think I could have gotten away with a little less extra circumference in the skirt and waist, but it turned out okay and I'm not going to sweat it.
To personalize the dress, I used mini piping in both the upper and lower yoke seams.
I also piped the waist tabs. The tabs are unique in that they are sewn into the back darts rather than the side seams.
I'm not crazy about these mother of pearl buttons, but they were the only ones in my stash that were remotely suitable. I figured I could change them later, but I probably won't bother since I fell out of love with the dress.
I used an invisible zipper and for once I managed to line up the piped yoke seam and the waist seam pretty well.
All in all I like the dress and I will wear it from time to time throughout the summer. It is not lined, but all the inside seams are serged. I will wear it with a slip. This is a cute dress pattern and I recommend it if you need an easy summer dress
Next up for me will be BWOF 05-2008-115, a princess seamed dress with an intriguing twist front:
I'll be skipping the turban. I plan to use a cool black rayon challis with a pink and green swirl print. Muslin is made, pattern is tweaked, and cutting will commence this weekend!
I also need to make a few things for my daughter who is growing like a weed. Summer Fields is still in progress (okay, languishing in the sewing room), but we are going to take time out this weekend to work on some casual play clothes. We'll start with Butterick 5022:
I have some pink twill picked out for the capri pants and a cute blingy applique to try out on one of the pockets. We'll pick out a print from stash to make the cute little sun top. Stay tuned for results.
Wednesday, June 3, 2009
All I need to do is hem it, and I'll do that in a little while when I get off of the computer. Hmmm.... I almost like the muslin better. I let the waist out 3/4" on both sides by taking a 1/4" seam allowance instead of 5/8". The fit is perfect now- I can breathe. But clearly this dress doesn't look as sleek as the muslin. Oh well, I guess it's better to breathe than to look a little slimmer. It could have something to do with the dark print of the muslin versus the crazy print of the dress, too. Now that it's done, I'm not loving this Kaffe Fassett print so much anymore. I'm still going to wear it, it just won't be a favorite.
Chris asked in the comments of the last post if I lined the dress, and if so, with what? Well, I didn't line the muslin, and I didn't line this either. The quilting cotton is opaque, so I don't need to worry about modesty, and I prefer to wear a separate slip under these cotton dresses. It gets really hot here in Oklahoma, but a slip doesn't bother me, and the cotton breathes beautifully. Especially with bare legs and sandals. You could line a dress like this (made out of quilting cotton) but I'd be careful to choose something "slippery"- at least for the skirt. Batiste wouldn't work, I don't think, because it would want to cling to the dress fabric and would get bunched up inside of the dress. It would be okay for the bodice, though, since it's fitted and the layers won't shift against each other. I have used broadcloth before in a similar dress, but only for the bodice. I've also used polysatin. It's slippery and not as easy to work with as cotton, but it feels really nice against the skin.
Christina in Canada asked about interfacing the bodice of a smocked dress, specifically if I have had problems with "rippling" after washing. Unfortunately, yes- I have. Not on every interfaced bodice, though. It seems to have more to do with the quality of the interfacing rather than technique. My suggestion is to get the best stuff you can find. I can't recommend a specific brand (because I'm lazy and disorganized and I don't always keep the plastic wrap that comes with the interfacing) but anything you get from an heirloom sewing shop should work. I've found good interfacing at Hancock's, too. It wouldn't hurt to make a test swatch and run it through the washer and dryer just to see. Of course, you could always just underline the bodice with a piece of batiste. That should add enough body to the bodice to hide the yoke seam allowance and you wouldn't get any rippling.
Alright, well I guess I'm off to hem. Hopefully I'll have some progress to report on Summer Fields soon. It's still lying in the sewing room, all smocked and lonely.