Thursday, July 9, 2015

2015 First Day of School Project

I wasn't sure if I'd have time to participate this year, but decided to go for it during the long Independence Day weekend. I used a different pattern this time, a circa 1998 McCall's pattern that I got from the ASG Trading Post several months ago. I made the little dress featured in the photograph:

As with previous clothes I've made for First Day of School, I mostly used remnants from clothes I've made for myself. This one is made from some cotton sateen I used for a skirt. It's a little shorter than the other two due to fabric limitations, but I'm sure it will work well for some little girl.

The facing on this one is from the Vogue 8645 dress I recently posted, and the green is a faux linen that I used last year to make little girl's pants for First Day of School. The green is more olive than in the picture.

This one is made from a heavyweight rayon that I previously used for this dress:

The construction was pretty straightforward, all machine stitching and serging. I definitely will hang onto this pattern because the dresses were so easy and fast to make! I hope the girls that get these dresses will enjoy them.

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Vogue 8645 Dress

I've been on a bit of a linen binge lately, and this dress is another example. I got this fabric last year at JoAnn's, not my favorite fabric store (is it for anyone?). But I have to admit that even they have nice fabrics now and then. It's a linen and rayon blend, based on how it feels and drapes. One of the reasons I chose this fabric was because the design went all the way across the width, so I didn't need to worry about the placement of the pattern  pieces (no bullseyes or twinning).

I've been meaning to make up this pattern for a few summers but something has always gotten in the way until now. The pattern is out of print but is currently still on the Vogue website.

One of the major changes I made in sewing this dress was to eliminate the lining. I just serge finished the edges, turned them under, and topstitched. The linen is heavy enough that there's no show through.

This was an easy sew and I think the pattern's a keeper.

Patent leather slingback platform sandals by Vigotti and my standard silver hoop earrings.

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Linen Apron

I finished this project last month but I've been holding it back because it was a gift. It's been mailed and the recipient has confirmed she received its, so it's time for the reveal.

I got this fabric last year while visiting Nob Hill Fabrics with Shams.

I had to get it because the print featured some orange haired fashionistas, which reminded me of my red-headed sister. I only bought a yard because my original thought was a bag, then I changed my mind and I've been looking for another project ever since. Because, perfect fabric! Here's a closer view of it on the right:

I saw the apron on Facebook, courtesy of the blog of Full disclosure, I have not bought any actual fabric from them yet but plan to once I've worked the stash down a bit.

Anyway, an apron was a great choice because my sister loves to cook, and the pattern called for the right amount of fabric. It's really easy to wear too, no ties or fasteners to deal with. Just throw it on and you're all set. Here's a link to the tutorial. The hardest part for me was drawing out the pattern. I adapted it slightly, making the straps into a separate piece pattern piece to save on fabric. Also, I hemmed the edges instead of just serging them as the pattern suggests. Even so, it took minimal time to make and would be a great gift for any cooks in your life.

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Butterick 5218 On the Hoof

Ok, so it's been a while since I posted and I edited the post on this tunic without realizing I actually posted already (2 months ago). So here's a picture of it on me--the sun is out and I'm spending a quiet afternoon at home. No more excuses. For all the details, please refer to this post.

Monday, May 25, 2015

A Few Small Projects

It's been a cool and rainy month here in Albuquerque, so I haven't had much of an opportunity to take pictures of my most recent projects. Still, "happy for the rain," as you will hear almost every New Mexican say. Warmer and sunnier weather is inevitable, so hopefully I will be modeling some garments soon.

In the meantime, I thought I'd share a few smaller projects that I've been making. This weekend was the biannual Fiber Arts Fiesta, at which I volunteered, bought a few things from the vendors, and also made some items to sell to benefit the Fiesta's charitable cause. Enlace Communitario was this year's beneficiary. Its mission is to work to eliminate domestic violence in the Latino immigrant communities of Central New Mexico and promote healthy families through comprehensive domestic violence intervention services, preventative community education, policy advocacy and leadership development. I made some bibs that the booth could sell for this fundraiser.

They're made from scraps left over from some other projects, not particularly childlike prints, but I figured that they might appeal for that reason. Sure enough, none were left by the time I went to the Fiesta on Saturday. I'll be making some more of these for baby gifts in the future.

You may have seen these on Facebook or Instagram already, but I also made some more rolled-edge napkins for the house. These were made of leftovers from some of the pillow case projects I made in the past. What's different about this set is that they are double layers of fabric. DH likes them better than the original ones because they have more heft. We've had time to run them through the washer and dryer and they're holding their shape pretty well!

This weekend I made another nightgown from Simplicity 9505. You've seen these before (here and here). I needed another one and it's a fast sew that I was able to make in a couple of hours. The fabric is from Santa Fe Fabrics.

Yes, it's a dress form print!

I'll have another project to show you once the intended recipient has gotten it. But that's a post for another day.

And it's raining. Again.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

A Visit to Portland OR

Last weekend, I headed up to Portland for a meet up with several delightful ladies for a weekend of fashion, food, and fun! I really needed a break and this getaway really hit the spot for me

First up, some shopping. Georgene and I headed off to the Pendleton Woolen Mill Store, the one with actual fabrics, located at 8500 SE McLoughlin Blvd. We both did a lot of damage to our wallets there! Following are some of the goodies I picked up.

Silk prints,

cotton shirting,

a remnant of Pendleton's signature wool,

and notions. Clockwise are felt binding, faux suede binding, and denim piping.

The fabrics were precut and discounted from the prices on the labels. In addition, I picked up a scarf that you'll see later. Definitely worth the taxi fare.

After Pendleton, we met with the rest of the group as they were finishing lunch at Habibi, a Lebanese place. I shared a few bites and it was fabulous, yum!

After, some of us headed to saysay, a nearby boutique. I picked up a pair of tights (which I forgot to photograph--trust me, they're cute!). I also got a wonderful handbag that can be worn two ways. Here's the bag all together.

The inner bag can also be worn by itself with a shoulder strap.

The scarf in the above pictures is the cotton scarf I got at Pendleton. I love the Pacific Northwest Native American design of hummingbirds.

But we weren't done yet! Off to Nordstrom Rack, where we had to look at (and buy) shoes. These are the ones I got. This pair was marked "Brookline" on the tag, a brand I'm not familiar with, but I did like the Fluvog/Tsubo look. They are also surprisingly comfortable.

The other pair is Bernie Mev, which I've liked since seeing Shams' pair last year in Santa Fe. Very light and comfortable. All those strips are elastic. 

After a brief respite at our home away from home, Hotel DeLuxe, we headed out for an Italian dinner at Piattino in the Pearl District. I think we overwhelmed the place, but we had a great time as you can see. Mardel, Liana, Jan, me, Rosie, Ann, Margy, Patti, Shams, and Georgene.

Saturday and breakfast at Cheryl's on 12th.  A hearty, delicicious breakfast and lots of coffee prepared us for our journey into fashion at ...

the Portland Art Museum! We arrived before it opened and had some time to explore the sculpture garden. Margy and Shams with a sculpture that matched their ensembles.

And then the doors opened for the show,

The exhibit was a very comprehensive review of Italian fashion, with several galleries over 2 floors. Alas, no photos allowed inside, but the catalog arrived Saturday (yay!).

Of course, more shopping around after the museum. We all wound up at the Button Emporium, since pretty much all of us sew. It's a very well stocked place, but it made me realize that I already have a lot of buttons. I really couldn't choose and left without buying, although I did like browsing.

Jan and I broke off from the group when we noticed a "boutique" Goodwill nearby (838 10th Avenue). I bought an Eileen Fisher cardigan and a dupioni top from Chico's. I liked the concept and hope Albuquerque will open one of these soon. Yes, the items are a bit more expensive, but worth not having to hunt through racks and racks of clothes to find one nice thing.

After changing for dinner, we headed to Josephine's. It's a re-boot of the the venerable Portland fabric store that closed in 2013. The new store is in D Street Village and has a well-curated selection of fabrics. Below are Liana and Margy checking out the goods.

I bought a yard of Liberty Tana Lawn cotton that I fell in love with. Now I know why people go nuts for it. This print is called "Anna's Garden."

Next up, dinner at PokPok, a Thai restaurant. It's very popular but somehow Shams managed to get reservations for us! Here's Jan, me, Georgene, Ann, Patti, Mardel, and Liana.

Mardel and Liana again, Rosie, Shams, and Margy's(?) hand.

Interesting food and delicious drinks.

Since Ann, Georgene, Shams, and Rosie were leaving on Sunday, we did a show and tell after dinner with all our goodies. The front part of this pile is mine (yikes).

We had a farewell breakfast Sunday morning at the hotel's restaurant, Gracie's. Mardel, Liana, Jan and I went to Knit Purl. I didn't get anything since I'm "World's Slowest Knitter" and had already bought so much stuff, but it was a lovely store. Afterwards, we had dessert at Petunia's. I admit that I didn't have high hopes for a vegan and gluten free bakery, but the food was remarkably good! I had pie, a sliver of Mardel's cake, and a spoonful of Jan's mac and cheese.

We took in a movie since Dior and I was showing locally. It's a documentary of Raf Simon's first collection for the House of Dior, and quite good. We all appreciated that so much attention was given to the staff who make those beautiful couture garments.

One last meal, back at the hotel since we were all pretty tired at this point. Thanks Driftwood Lounge for having wonderful burgers and other items that we could make a meal of. And here we are: me, Margy, Mardel, Liana, Jan, and Patti!

Thanks to Patti and Shams for "herding cats" and putting this weekend together! And thanks to all who attended--Ann, Georgene, Jan, Liana, Rosie, Mardel, Margy, and Patti! I loved being with each and every one of you.

Other posts about our Portland weekend--Shams (here), Margy (here), and Mardel (here and here).

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Butterick 5218 Tunic View B

Back to the blog! The weather and my schedule have been cooperating at last! I finished this up in time for the Portland trip in early May but couldn't schedule a photo of me wearing it.  Finally I do!

It's par for the course on this project, which felt like I was working on it forever! I originally cut it out last fall in Material Girls but didn't get around to sewing it before the weather changed.Even though it's long sleeved, it's made of a light weight linen (from Jo-Ann's) that wouldn't have been wearable in cooler weather.  So I started working on it again this spring in bits and pieces.

This is another OOP pattern from the stash, although I noticed it's still available on the Butterick patterns web site. They do have a new one on the site that's somewhat similar in front (Butterick 6099), but the back has a yoke and pleat instead of gathers at the back neck.

I pretty much made it from the pattern, although the illustration is slightly wrong. View B actually uses the same collar as View A instead of the notched collar shown in Views C and D, but that's was fine with me. What wasn't so fine was those voluminous gathered sleeves, so I shortened and tapered them. I took about 6" off the width and about 2" off the length, and they're still full length sleeves. I also shortened the tunic by 4", so unless you're tall, you might end up with a dress instead of a tunic. I used the extra length to add a real hem instead of the narrow one directed by the guide sheet.

I do like the result though, in spite of those things and a few other wonky aspects of the guide sheet. I don't know that I'll make another though.

Collar detail:

Placket detail (aren't those buttons great? Like jewelry):

Back neck detail, with gathers:

And at last, a photo of the tunic on me! In addition to the tunic, I'm wearing a RTW pair of ponte leggings, and some Born sandals. And the silver hoops I wear most of the time. My hair's up so you can see garment details.