Friday, August 31, 2012

Sadly, not much sewing going on.

I haven't had the chance to sew too much lately, which leaves me very antsy and a bit cranky (well, a lot cranky).   I've been running around, going to the gym again, took a kickboxing class, taking care of annoying things and not getting anywhere with them. 

I've got lots of projects in mind:

1) the Alma blouse ~ really want to sew it but haven't found the right fabric in my stash and so I'm waiting for next week to go fabric shopping. 

2) some other tops ~ I really need some tops but again, don't have the right fabrics/ colors in my stash so I'm just cutting out the patterns, thinking about tracing them (will probably not trace any but the Alma) and wondering where to find the fabrics for them.  I've gone to Joann's but I'm not really excited about the (limited) choices there.  There's a fabric shop close to me but for some reason, there just isn't a lot to choose from.  Just a few knits (very few prints) and lots of linens in pastel colors (eh, I don't do pastels very well).

3) a few dresses - same issue as with the first two.

4) I'm so excited about the new Tiramisu pattern coming up soon ~ I want that one too!

5) I have the Colette book and I want some things out of there but....

6) oh and I also want to fix up my sewing room and buy a serger.

So I'm in blah mode.  Lots I want to do, not enough fabric or time.  Does this happen to you?  What do you do to get yourself sewing again?  I'm thinking I may have to prioritize some projects and shop for fabric as I go through each pattern.

This weekend will be a three day weekend (Happy Labor Day!) and there'll be little time for sewing with another family birthday and visits from the adorable niece and nephew.  Of course I'll be spending my time with them at my sister's house (she's got the pool). 

I know I need to spend time fabric shopping and I wish I knew where some fabulous shops are.  I know there are awesome ones online but I really don't like to spend $10 + on shipping.  I wish I could take a quick trip to NYC and go shopping.  It's funny that when I lived there (practically my WHOLE life) I wasn't interesting in sewing.  Go figure.

Well, I hope everyone is sewing happily.  I will be soon :)  

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Happy Birthday to my heart...

My "baby" is turning 20.  Wow - can't believe it's been 20 years.  Of course, I'm reminiscing now and thinking of how far we've come.  He's been my greatest joy in my life.  I picked a few pictures of us throughout the years to share.  Unfortunately most of my photos are stored so these were the few I have on hand. 

This is my son and I a year ago when I first returned to Florida.  He was just turning 19:

This was in 2010 or 2009, we were at the Museum of Natural History in New York City (our favorite museum).  He was about 17 (the photo is undated):

This was either 2009 or 2008 in Howard Beach, New York.  We were in front of a friend's house.  He was about 16.

Here he is as a Jr. ROTC at John Bowne High School in Flushing, NY:

This was taken in 2003 right after my graduation from Rollins College, Florida (I received my Bachelor's Degree :)  ) - he was almost 10 here:

Here we are with my brother celebrating my graduation:

My babe and I at Astoria park in the late 90's in Astoria, NY.  He was probably around 5 or 6:

Same day as the sun was setting.  I was about to give him a kiss.  I just loved hugging and kissing him!

 and here's a really cool one from 1994.  He was almost 2 and I was 20.

My baby at 6 months:

 Wasn't he absolutely adorable! 

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

What a Ham!

I made a ham!  lol it was really too easy.  I've been wanting one for a while now but I didn't want to order it and pay what - $10 bucks plus shipping (Amazon)?? nah - I've got fabric-stash busting to do, so here's the little sucker:

 Cute right?  I just stuffed it with fabric scraps - some of them cotton, some of them knits.  I'm going to make a seam roll next - just after I gather some more fabric scraps.  It was easy and I found a tutorial for it - let me know if you'd like the link - I can post it.

Another link I found is a  great tutorial on the Narrow Hem Foot - there are great photos and everything:

Hope that helps (hope the link works - let me know if it doesn't, I'm still learning how to be a blogger)

So my latest project is the 2nd from the left - that pink dress:

While I was not blogging - I started a muslin on New Look 6097.  I love the way it looks in the photo~  and here's my muslin:

Of course in this picture it's unfinished as I still had to attach the bodice to the skirt and attach the sleeves.  It was tricky working with this jersey knit.  I used a ballpoint needle and a zigzag stitch.  The fabric was a bit slippery and stretchy and it took patience to sew with it.  I read somewhere that it's best to use a walking foot with jersey so that is now in my Amazon cart and I'll be ordering it very soon.  I find that pattern fitting with the jersey was easy.  This was good practice. 

So here I am wearing the dress - with sleeves and still unhemmed....

I think I really like the end result of jersey knit - it's kind to the curves of the body! And it's super soft and comfy ~ it feels effortless to wear.  I may have to wear something that covers up my girls a bit more.  Can't walk into work like that.

I'm almost done with the actual dress.  I just have to add the sleeves tonight and hem the skirt. I'm going to use my twin needle for the first time for the hem.

It's hard to see the bodice pleats and the pockets with this print but they're there.  This dress will be exactly the same as the one above.  I'll wear it with my favorite Kenneth Cole nude heels and belt. 

There's another version with 3/4 sleeves and a collar.  I'd like to try that one too but in a medium weight knit for the fall (which around here starts in late October, sigh).  I want a navy or royal blue one to wear with my knee high camel boots. 

So, what do you think?  Should I keep going or just stop now? lol

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Well, I'm almost done with the last project.  I just have to make the sash and I'll think about modeling it (eek).

In the meantime, I have quite a lot going on.  Most of my busy-ness stems from my regular day job which can be sooooo boring sometimes.  Thank goodness I have a nice high-walled cubicle and privacy at work.  The other things that keep me busy are family, exercising (sometimes), cooking, housekeeping and just plain life.  When does that leave time for sewing, right?  Sheesh - I'm always trying to steal some time to sew.  So that leads me to my next issue.  Which project should I do next?
Here are some patterns I'd like to work on:

Of course, they are all (almost) dresses - just love dresses and how easy they are to wear and accessorize.  The other reason is that I'm not allowed to wear jeans to work, sigh.  So dresses make it easier but I really need a lot more.  

Then there is the issue of which fabric do I begin with?

Most of those are knits, one is charmeuse and there's cotton in that stash too.  Hmm, where do I begin?

I haven't tried knits yet so this will be first time.  Nervous!  But I hear good things about sewing knits - we shall see :)

Good night :)

Monday, August 6, 2012

Check out this Give Away from Mimi G !!

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Class @ Jo'Ann's

Has anyone ever taken a class at Jo'Ann's Fabrics?  I'm taking one on August 16th - the pattern we're making is Simplicity 1878. It's my first sewing class ever so I hope it's great! :)

Sunday, August 5, 2012

New Look 6120 - Pattern Review

Pattern Description:
MISSES' Six Sizes in One - dress
Pattern Sizing: 6-16. I cut a 14 top and a 16 skirt. The pattern has an elastic band at the waist so I just gathered up the skirt to fit the bodice before sewing them together. Very easy size alteration.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? I think so...

Were the instructions easy to follow? I was a little confused when it came time to insert the pockets - I improvised a little and they came out okay.  It has an elastic waistband which was easy to insert.  I had a little trouble sewing around the sleeve area as well but that's mainly due to the fact that I'm a beginner sewer.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? I love the design of this dress with the fullness on the upper body and ease of the skirt. It was quick to sew.  It would have been faster if I hadn't messed up and sewn the seam on the right side instead of the inside.  Ugh - I had to rip up all the seams and do it over again.  I haven't sewn the belt yet since I do have my own but I will sew it sooner or later.  I think the belt on the envelope is really cute. 

Fabric Used: It is a silkly type poppy fabric purchased at JoAnn's.  It frays so easily so that made it a little difficult to work with.  I was nervous about sewing with this fabric but it wasn't as hard as I thought it would be.  I thought the fabric was pretty but I'm not sure how much I like it as this dress now.  

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made: I followed the pattern as directed.  I think I should have left out the pockets.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? I'm not sure.  If I do, I will choose a different fabric.

Conclusion: On a scale of 1 - 5 with 1 being the easiest - I found this to be a 3.  Please remember I am new at sewing and this was my first time sewing a bodice (successfully) and pockets.  I think for my first time it went really well.   I had trouble following the pattern with the pockets but I think it turned out okay.  

Here's the pattern:

and here is my final dress:

Would love to hear what you think ~ Thanks! 

Thursday, August 2, 2012

A new skirt

Here's a pic of my new skirt:
It's simple, comfy and was super easy to make.  My hems are getting much better!  It has a side zipper and a facing but only in the front.  I didn't bother to make one for the back.  I self-drafted the pattern from the book Sew What! Skirts  - I love that book.  I've made four skirts already. 

Happy Sewing :)