Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Vogue 8649

This is Vogue 8649.  Coming on the heels of the scarf-collar top, I forgot how much ease Vogue has in their patterns for knits compared with Jalie.  Ugh.  I planned this as a top for DD, and the style is similar to tops she has purchased at Nordstrom.  Going by her measurements, I cut a size 14 with the B-cup bodice.  The whole thing looked gigantic on my sewing table, so I made the seams 1" instead of 5/8".  I meant to stabilize the shoulders, but I forgot.  I serged all seams and used the coverstitch on the neck binding and hems.  Plus,  I used self-fabric binding instead of the recommended bias tape, stretching the binding as I sewed it in the hopes of diminishing the anticipated gaposis (and it worked; the neckline stays in place).  With these changes, it's wearable, but now that she's tried it on, it is still looser than I would like.  I could take it in some more, but she likes it as is so it is on its way to her closet.

The fabric is a jersey I bought on sale last summer at Joann's.  It has a nice drape, but does tend to curl a bit.   I still have quite a bit of fabric left over; perhaps I'll use it in a swingy summer skirt.

Happy sewing! ~ Peggy

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Thank you, "Goodbye Valentino" - and a peek of a new outfit

Imagine my surprise when I got home late last night to see that Sarah of Goodbye Valentino had nominated me for a Versatile Blogger award!  Thank you, Sarah!  I started following Goodbye Valentino just a few months ago after I found her blog while doing an internet search for Vogue 8669.  Well, once I got there, I had to read every post!  Sarah has beautiful taste in clothing, and each piece looks like it was made professionally.  I also love the premise of her blog:  that she is eschewing clothing purchases for a year and is making all her own clothes instead.  (It kind of reminds me of Julia and Julia.)  I hope she continues to make (and blog about) her own clothes when the year is complete.

To accept the Versatile Blogger award, one must:

1. Add the award to your blog
2. Thank the blogger who gave it to you
3. Mention 7 random things about yourself
4. List the rules
5. Give the award to 15 bloggers
6. Inform each of those 15 bloggers by leaving a comment on their blog

7 Random Things About Me
1.    My favorite drink is iced water; however, my love for Diet Coke is bordering on addiction.

      2.  Not only did I learn to sew in 4-H, I also raised sheep.
With Elf at the San Diego County Fair in Del Mar
3.     I love museums, reading, going for walks, and daydreaming—usually not at the same time.

4.     I have written a book—a murder mystery—which is currently unpublished.  It's called In the Pink and features a Brazilian Salmon Pink Birdeater Tarantula.  Oh dear.
I do not like spiders
5.     I don’t believe I had any store-bought dresses until I was in junior high.  My mother, in her mid-80s, is still an amazing seamstress.  

6.     I used to show horses – hunt seat and saddle seat.  (That’s me, in front, waiting for my next (show) class, riding Charlie My Boy.) 
I think this was in Rancho Santa Fe (San Diego County)

7.     And, most importantly, I am blessed to be the mother of one wonderful young woman.  We have always had a harmonious relationship.  She has also always had a vast mom-made wardrobe.  Here are three examples:
a.     In a 4th of July outfit I made for her (age 5)
b.     In a mommy-made Christmas dress with her late daddy (age 9 – her, not him!)

c.      In a mom/daughter-made recreation of Bjork’s swan dress for a Halloween party (she’s wearing a wig)

Well!  I'm sure that's more about me than you ever wanted to know!

 I'd like to share this award with the following bloggers (in random order):

Diary of a Sewing Fanatic - I doubt there's an internet-savvy sewist alive who hasn't seen Carolyn's great blog.  She sees inspiration everywhere and turns those inspirations into amazing, one-of-a-kind outfits.  She generously shares her thought processes and techniques with her readers.

Dressing Mrs. Exeter - Fabulous and funny blog from England (and sometimes from her "chateau" in France)!  "Mrs. Exeter" sews, knits, cooks, goes to the races, and--you name it.

Sew Here We Go Again - Karin makes beautiful clothes for herself and her daughters.  Occasionally, she throws in a great recipe, too!

Communing with Fabric - Talk about inventive!  I think Shams can make anything.  She is the reason I've bought felting supplies and a bunch of Marcy Tilton patterns!

Sharon Sews - I first found her blog when I did a search for John Kloss patterns (1970s - Butterick).  Sharon makes a lot of amazing things - and - she is a Zumba instructor!

Irene's Studio - Irene makes oodles of gorgeously tailored clothes, plus some pretty great purses!

Lucky Sew and Sew - Jane makes great stuff and often shares book suggestions and more.  Check out her fantastic array of Pamela's Patterns magic pencil skirts! 

Kadiddlehopper - Katie sews for her whole family.  Check out the fabulous faux fur jacket she just posted.  I don't know how she does it all with three little ones!

Une femme d'un certain age -  Style choices, travel (Paris!), books, and more -- "Une Femme" writes about living a stylish, adventurous, balanced, delicious life after 50.  Elle est magnifique!

Sew Passionista by Diana - I always love to see what Diana has created. She is a master of marrying the right fabric with the right pattern.  Her blog is also chock-full of helpful tutorials.

A Fool for Fabric - Margy makes beautiful clothes with an edge--some from fabrics she's picked up on her exotic travels, but all of them eye-catching.  Check out her recent Kwik Sew jacket in a fantabulous black/white geometric from EOS.

Lindsey's Volleyblog  - Lindsey is a blogging friend--well, actually, she's my daughter!  She blogs about some of her obsessions:  creative writing, bulldogs, and volleyball. 

The Cheese Press - Charlie is chronicling his European adventures as a future cheese-maker with his twin brother.  For something a little different, check out his blog! 


Hmmm.  This post is much longer than I realized.  So, here's just a quick peek at what I'm working on.  I'll write more about it later:

  Happy sewing! ~ Peggy

Friday, February 24, 2012

Jalie Scarf Top

I love Jalie patterns.  They're well drafted, stylish, and the fit is fabulous.  I'm pretty late to the party for this one--Jalie 2921, the "Scarf-Collar Top."  I believe it came out in 2009 and has a zillion reviews on Pattern Review.  I've had the pattern for awhile, and as is my wont, I've let it age in my pattern drawer for far too long.

This is made from a mystery knit from my stash--a crepe jersey from who-knows-where in petal pink.  (The color in the photos is not accurate, but it's the best I could get.)  I cut a size "U" and added 1-1/2" to the length.  I also stabilized the shoulders with scraps of interfacing.  The seams were serged and the hems were done on my coverstitch.  I had intended to tie the scarf in a bow, but my fabric is a little too heavy.  My next iteration will be in something light and slinky.

As many others have noted, the burrito collar technique is quite something.  I couldn't fathom how it could work, but it did!  So, if you're making this for the first time and have some, uh, issues with spatial thinking like moi, just follow the directions and have faith!

Happy sewing! ~ Peggy

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Infinity Scarves and the Quest for Red Houndstooth Fabric

I'm taking a few days of vacation this week and I've been having lots of fun!  Finally saw The Artist, toured the Designer Showcase house, lots of walks, meals out, reading, resting, etc., etc.,  Oh, yes--and some sewing!  I made a gray/ivory checked pencil skirt--just need to hem it and then I'll post some pix, have cut out a Jalie scarf top, and a Vogue knit top which I hope to get to tomorrow, and I have made two super-quick and easy infinity scarves. 

There are lots of scarf tutorials all over the web, and I know both Carolyn and Eugenia have posted their versions.  Mine are made from chiffon from my stash(!), and they are 58" by 14" before sewing; the finished width is about 6 1/4".  Infinity scarves are great for a couple of reasons:  there's no fuss trying to tie the scarf in an aesthetically pleasing manner--just loop it once or twice and you're good to go; and, because the fabric is doubled, there's no hem!

I'm also on a quest for some red houndstooth fabric.  I saw this Christian Dior pencil skirt and fell in LOVE with it (but not the price).  If I can only find a similar fabric, I will be one very happy gal.  So today, in my search, I went to Stonemountain and Daughter in Berkeley and Piedmont Fabrics in Oakland.  Nary a red houndstooth in sight.  Sniff.  Well, there's still Britex; maybe I'll need to take another field trip tomorrow!  Please let me know if you happen to see any of this elusive fabric.  Thanks!

Happy sewing! ~ Peggy

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

A Little Summer Inspiration from Lena Hoschek

Here's a little inspiration from Graz--a charming city in southeastern Austria near the Hungarian and Slovenian borders.  (I've spent a good amount of time in Graz, as DD lived there for quite awhile after college.)  These designs are from Lena Hoschek, who is an up-and-coming designer in the area. I always enjoy seeing what she's created--and getting some ideas, too!  These photos are from her Mercedes Benz Fashion Week show in Berlin.  You can see her whole collection here.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Home Deco Skirt on a Faux Spring Day

I had a bonus visit from my darling daughter last night!  She wanted to spend the night, but didn't have a change of clothes for the morning.  No worries!  With the home deco skirt and our lovely mild weather, I figured she'd have no problem putting together an outfit.  It's lucky that the apple green "Hepburn" sweater (Monterey Bay) matches the print perfectly.  (It also helps that we wear the same size shoes!)  Here she is, ready to leave for work this morning.

Happy sewing! ~ Peggy

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Jalie 2910 - An Homage to Mondo

Thank you all so much for your kind comments on my last couple projects!  It was interesting to learn that quite a few of you use home dec fabrics for apparel sewing.  I just purchased another piece to whip up into a skirt.  Also, I had never heard of Sevier Skirts (thank you Goodbye Valentino!); I checked out their website--what a great concept (although it makes me happy that I can replicate one of their looks for less than $5!).  I wish I had thought of this business!

In my snatches of sewing time this week, I made Jalie 2910,  a faux-wrap top, in a mod print jersey purchased from Best Online Fabrics (eBay) and trimmed with hot pink and black houndstooth knit from Joann's.  The flower print reminds me of Mary Quant.

If you watch Project Runway, you'll undoubtedly remember Mondo; he is also on the current Project Runway All Stars.  I'm calling this top my homage to Mondo because of his use of bright colors and tendency to mix prints.

I made the sleeveless version and raised the neckline to make sure the girls had sufficient coverage.  The instructions were easy to follow, and the fit is great.  I also love that this pattern ranges in size from a size 2 (toddler) to 22 (women's).

 Well, I was going to show a full-torso shot, but I can't seem to upload any more photos!  Nuts.

Anywho, it's a gloriously sunny day here in Marin County.  Time for a walk--followed by laundry and, hopefully, a little sewing!  How about you?  Any special plans for today?

Happy sewing! ~ Peggy

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

McCall’s 3830 – A Skirt from Home Dec Fabric

I love the colors and pattern of this cheerful home dec fabric.  I picked it up last summer from Joann’s when I was debating color schemes for my living room.   Although I decided not to use this fabric in my decor, I thought the one-yard piece might be just enough to eke out a skirt.  

McCall’s 3830 – Quick and Easy – Misses Skirts in 5 lengths is, as advertised, quick and easy.  Two darts in front, two darts in back, faced waist, and back zipper.  I barely had enough fabric for view D which is a little too short for my comfort zone—I suspect my darling daughter might like it, though!
The skirt is underlined in poly/cotton broadcloth; it really helps to give the fabric more body, and I hope it will help cut down on wrinkles.  The installation of the invisible zipper hit a few snags—all my fault, I was tired and didn’t pay enough attention—so my seam ripper saw some action.   
All in all, I’m pleased with the skirt.  I think it’ll look great with a crisp white top or an apple green sweater.   This is the first time I’ve used a home deco fabric for apparel, and I’m interested to see how well it will wear. 
How about you--have you made clothing from this kind of fabric?  If so, what do you think?
Happy sewing! ~ Peggy