Sep 30, 2010

I always have to make it harder on myself...

So, as promised, I completed Pixelink's 1 Piece Kimono Tee pattern from Naturally, I had to make it more difficult than cutting a single piece and adding some side seams and hems. I had a striped jersey I really wanted to use, but (yes, I know I'm supposed to prefer vertical slimming ones) I really wanted horizontal stripes. So, after piecing the printable puzzle-pattern, I just it in half at the shoulders and added a seam allowance.  It really is a very easy pattern and it didn't take long to sew up. I was looking for a few more casual things to add to my wardrobe.... things that I can wear with jeans. So far, I've pretty much stuck to the going-back-to-work wardrobe. So, at least until the weather gets cold, I have one more casual look to sport while I'm cleaning up scattered barbies and spilled juice boxes.

My cat, Toby, guest stars in my photo:

And I don't want to brag or anything, but check out this stripe-matching prowess! :)

Sep 28, 2010

Super Nerdy School Pride

I'm not 100% sure what I'm making with this, yet... but I just got my blue and gold seersucker from Denver Fabrics in the mail today!

I'm thinking a Mountaineer shirtdress, maybe? I'll be so stylin' at work for WVU football! (Really, I can't help being such a geek... it's in my DNA)  :)

If anyone has a great shirtdress pattern, I'd love to know about it!

I try to complete one thing before I move on to another, but I always have several ideas in my head at once. So, here's what's on my list for the moment:

BurdaStyle Kimono Tee in striped jersey

Jacket (without belt) in brown floral moleskin

Sep 21, 2010

Slow Progress...

So, I decided this afternoon that I needed to do some sewing. I haven't been behind my machine in nearly a week and I was getting a little jittery. :) I've been sitting on this pattern for quite a while: McCall's 6070.
It's an easy enough pattern - a simple design, but a nice silhouette. After waiting for the perfect knit fabric to jump out at me, I finally decided on a very pretty forest green soft rayon knit. It's gorgeous and it feels amazing.

When it comes to knits, I usually just jump right in. It's stretchy and forgives a lot of sins in fitting (and I'm a little too impatient sometimes). I used the entire afternoon session (the length of time my 14-month-old will nap) just trying to lay out the pattern. There is usually some amount of give in the amount of fabric required by the pattern. Well, not this one folks! In fact, it was so tight, I had to rearrange the layout from the one given... a first for me. In case you're wondering how to do it with 58" wide knit - this is about the only way it will work. 


Fold your fabric into the center so there are folds on both top and bottom. There is *barely* enough room to cut out your front/back piece - I had a little leeway because I was cutting a 12 rather than the largest size (14). The pattern instructions would have you use a regular single fold for the remaining pieces, but with the yardage suggestion, there isn't quite enough to get all the cuts made. I suggest keeping the double fold so that you can cut pieces 5 and 6 on both folds. Trying to squeeze 4 pieces onto one fold didn't work at all. And there was absolutely no left over room for the tie back pieces that way either. (Note that they were supposed to fit between the front/back pieces somewhere... yeah, right!) Long story short - rearrange and it will work. Otherwise, just buy and extra 1/8 yard. Okay, moving on.

After the chillins went to bed this evening, I got to sit down again for a little while. I got as far as the bodice, but she's lookin' good so far! And Beatrice wears it so well, too, don't you think?


Shoulder detail (encased elastic)

Back - with tiebacks 

It probably wouldn't have taken me nearly this long to get just this far, but the tiebacks absolutely take FOREVER! Turning those silly things right-side-out was migraine-inducing. Luckily I had a pair of long tweezers that helped keep me from trying to hang myself with them. If they weren't so damn cute, I'd have just chucked them. :)

It's finished! After several evenings of way-too-tired-after-the-babies-went-to-bed-ness, I finished up McCall's 6070 last night. Here's a shot of the finished product:
 Super cute and REALLY comfortable (have I mentioned how much I love rayon knit?)  I'm not going to win any awards for being avant garde with this one - definitely not runway material. But I love her just the same. I have made a promise to myself, though. Pattern. I will stray away from my solid-colored world of fashion and incorporate some pattern in my life! 

Next up: 1 Piece Kimono Tee by Pixelink

Sep 19, 2010

Past works, revisited in photos

Here are a couple of pieces that I've done in the last few months that I thought I'd share. These are just some of my favorites:

Butterick 5484
Asymmetrical hem faux wrap dress
Yellow linen-look

Simplicity 5259 Capris
Brown suiting

BurdaStyle download - Kasia #6012   Stretch cotton plaid 
paired with   
McCall's 5661 in Blue baby silk

McCall's 6120
Cap sleeve
Plum rayon knit

Simplicity 9825
Green embroidered microsuede 

McCall's 6120 long sleeve
White cotton interlock

And even something for the hubs:
McCall's 6044 in blue herringbone stripe

Sep 17, 2010

Kickin' it off

Okay, so let's get this started the right way. A quick, easy project.
My choice: New Look 6950 - Misses separates for knits. 

I used some red cotton stretch knit that was in my stash (a sale purchase from Joann's). In case anyone is interested, this one takes about the same amount of time as a 14-month-old's nap... very handy if you happen to be squeezing your sewing into about 2 hours. That even included layout and cutting time. 

I'm certainly no master sewist (yet!), so I don't have the all the great, fun gadgets and equipment I'd love to have access to. No serger means a ballpoint needle, walking foot, and zig zag stitching. I don't mind... I think it still turned out stellar, even if it is just a simple, solid color top. I have bigger projects in the works, but right now I'm trying to build up a versatile wardrobe to go back to work. That's right, folks. In a few weeks, I'll be rejoining the working world after nearly 4 years! (I don't count those part time gigs or the disastrous vet clinic I put my heart and soul into but was horrendously under-appreciated) I digress... Much needed easy-to-pair separates were first on my queue after I got back under the sewing machine. 
Here's how it turned out:

The neckband was quite a bit wider than I expected based on the line drawing. I still really like it, but every time I raise my arms it rides up in a major way. Cute enough, still, that I don't mind pulling it back down and adjusting the shoulders. We'll see if I get totally annoyed after having to do it all day.

Sep 14, 2010

An Introduction.....

I suppose I should begin my first post with a little introduction. My name's Ginnie and I'm from a small suburban town in Western Maryland. Thanks to my mother, I have always lived a life filled with creativity. She's a graphic designer, and has always been an amazing artist. Jack-of-all-trades, she can draw, paint, sew, decorate... you name it, she can probably do it. Luckily, I inherited a bit her of artistic ability (a small fraction, but nonetheless...). As a full time mom of young children (Evie is 1 and Lilly is 3), I haven't had much time to myself in quite a while. So, as the littlest one has started gaining some independence (which means I can leave her with hubby and he won't want to scream after half an hour), I finally get a little 'me time'.

And what am I doing with this new found freedom? I've started sewing. Now, I've actually been sewing for many years. My grandmother gave me an old sewing machine when I was probably 7 or 8 years old and I spent many an afternoon sewing lopsided pillows and babydoll blankets out of whatever scraps my mom had lying around. I've done quite a few needlepoint projects and spent 8 years completing a cross stitch project for my oldest daughter (funny story, actually... definitely fill you in another time). My husband bought me a new sewing machine for my birthday about 4 years ago that pretty much sat in my closet until a few months ago. Somehow in this lifetime of knowing how to sew, I never really learned how to sew.

I created my first garment from a pattern last winter when I made some pajamas for Lilly (not horrible for a first-timer!) And then I tried again this past June when she wanted to be Alice in Wonderland for her birthday. I guess I caught the bug, because I haven't put my sewing machine away since. It sat beside my dining room table with a laundry basket full of notions until my husband built me a sewing studio in the basement. Now, I don't have to clean up every hour when I need the kitchen table. :)

So, here are my adventures in sewing, scrapbooking, painting, and whatever comes along. I shall no longer be stuck beneath the willow tree!

                       My sweet little family

                        My parents and me at my 2010 graduation
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