Tuesday, May 29, 2012

The Corner and The New Jacket

Soo, it was a wonderful long wk-end. Got a lot done, not as much as I would like, but enough. I finished carving out my sewing corner, it’s comfy and will do for now. Wanted to get so much done, but what is it they say about the best laid plans…

The little bouquet is from my garden, a left over from my Dad's visit.

       My pattern stash is growing, what was only two drawers full is quickly becoming three. ClubBMV is working well for me. I've more than recoup the $15 membership in savings, and for the umpteenth time JoAnns didn't have any of the patterns that interested me in the drawer. Pay no attention to the fabric, they came out of the dryer and just need to be folded.

Started a new project, a lil premature maybe- I started it before finishing the last one, but I am anxious. I cut out a jacket pattern that the envelope said would be done in thirty minutes, over an hour later....... After hand basting the panels together to see the fit, happy with that, the lapel/collar/back facing area is giving me a run for my money. It’s something I don’t think I’ve ever done before. 

Ok, partly hand based (or is it basted) and partly pinned. 

               A thing of beauty, if I say so myself. I used to stay away from patterns like this when I was younger, and only sewed tops with a center back seam or darts. But putting these pieces to together is not as hard as I thought it would be, and it does make for a better fit.

I figured I’d give it a rest for tonight and pick it up again tomorrow. DH made me a mango, pineapple, strawberry daiquiri and that’s more appealing than figuring out this collar right now, it be calling me man.…lol.

Thanks for tuning in, come again

Sunday, May 27, 2012


Happy Memorial Day to all those men and women that walk the wall every day and night.  My heart breaks and my prayers are with the families that have lost a loved one, or loved ones, to this war, and for those that are caring for the wounded.

All my respect to the Veterans of this and previous wars and battles. 

God Bless You All 


Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Another Lesson

Still learning. This week’s lesson, make sure all the pattern pieces are on the right side when cutting your fabric, or the fabric on the wrong side for all of it. Unfortunately I didn’t have enough scrap fabric left over to correct the mistake, so I forged ahead anyway, figuring maybe I’ll start my own trend. An Ary’sMom original (or not):

       So I'm liking the way it looks, juxtaposed like that, but looking at it "from a distance" I'm questioning the "right side" piping I guess that's called. I thought it might highlight the faded pattern and create a sort of "panel" effect, but it's just looking messy to me.

This is my first attempt after the whole boob pocket jacket fiasco. On a side note, the Janome sews like a dream. I’ve never owned or sewed on something that fancy, the fact the sewing speed can be controlled by a switch and not the cramp inducing foot pedal is wonderful. I’m so grateful to have won it. I’m just waiting for it to impart some of Mimi G’s expertise and skill on me…. it could happen.

Thanks for tuning in, come again

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Lesson Learned

So I have learned some big lessons this week. Measure, measure, measure. Then measure some more. And for patterns that are a lil more complicated than just back, front and darts, a muslin is probably a great idea, until I become the expert I want to be.

I am sad at the loss of a beautiful piece of fabric. I don’t know what the content is, but it’s rayon-y, summer suit weight and the colour was great. I got it a kind of fabric outlet (Affordable Fabrics) some time ago (at least two yrs), so I can’t go back and try to get some more.

Hand based together to work out the curves (pinned at the shoulder)

             Those wonderfully, perfectly lined pockets (my first foray into lining) are supposed to be down around the hip area, not up under the boob where they currently sit.

Unlike some sewers, I don’t always buy a piece of fabric with a particular garment in mind. I buy fabric because it’s pretty or the texture is nice. This creates two problems, the more immediate being the stockpile of fabrics I now have. The bigger problem, which I am dealing with now (read overwhelming me), is some of the fabrics are sooo beautiful, I can’t decide what would the best use of it and I am VERY hesitant to cut – cause I don’t wanna mess them up (waste)  since I can’t easily replace most of it. It’s like that beautiful wrapping paper you buy from the kids’ school fundraiser that is too pretty to use (Am I the only one??...lol).

Anyway, I muster on. Passing through the stages of loss for that beautiful dark brown rayon-y fabric.

Thanks for tuning in, come again

Sunday, May 13, 2012


Happy Mother's Day to all the mothers. Hope your day is peaceful and enjoyable.


Saturday, May 12, 2012

It's Saturday yawl

Now, when I use to sew when I was younger I just cut out a pattern, cut the fabric and put the pieces together how they made sense to me, and came out with a fairly well fitting garment in the end. Maybe patterns have changed since then, but nothing is that simple anymore, especially since my body has changed over the years. I realize I now have to worry about alterations, because I have a fuller figure and fabric tends to pile on my ample derriere, and that's not attractive yawl.

So with this in mind, and knowing that my idols study their craft (and have even taken a class or 2), I ordered some books that was suggested by Threads Magazine (which I am now an avid reader of). They were delivered a couple days ago and I've been busy going through them, especially where proper fitting is concerned. These are the books I got, and as you can imagine, I attacked them like a person trying to master her craft...

The most interesting and useful thing I've learned so far is how the sizing on pattern envelopes work (and that European patterns are sized differently than American ones, wow!). I don't recall ever worrying about that when I was younger. But now trying to decide the correct size to cut out was a challenge. I always looked at the bust measurement and chose a size from there, but then the size it suggested was usually a size or 2 too big. I just learned that the bust measurement refers to the high bust measurement, taken up under the arm, above the fullest part of the breast, this helps with better fit through the shoulders. Let's just say I'm happy I got these books.

And this is a source of humor and amazement for the hubby. You see I never, NEVER read, browse, look or even glance at directions. I usually scan at the pictures, check out how the final product is supposed to look, and go from there. He ALWAYS comments on that, and wonders how things never fall apart or blow up, lol. 

So, I continue on my quest for sewing knowledge (and continue to pull my sewing corner together). 

Thanks for tuning in, and come again.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Oh Happy Day

Janome arrived at her new home yesterday, met the family and has settled into her new abode. It's so exciting. I've never sewn on anything so fancy, much less owned one. What I had before was a 15 + year old something like an 18 stitch Brother sewing machine that when I pulled it out of the attic and tried to use it was very rebellious and kept doing this frustrating thread knotting thing on me (crazy run on sentence). But Janome, she looks very sleek and a little formidable, I must admit. But I'm hoping some of Mimi's experience will rub off on me, through Janome.

Janome arrives (assisted by the infamous Aryelle)

She meets the family

A little tiff about who's her favorite

Everyone's getting along again 

On her way to her new room

Checking it out, a little hesitant

Getting settled in.

I am so excited to have this machine and to start sewing. So excited I'm hesitant - if that makes sense. I'm still buying the little necessities I think I'll need so once I start and can just go (like the wind).

Thanks for tuning in, and thank you again Mimi G.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Passing time...

And so another week has passed. I've spent the past week cutting out my new patterns. I see that some people lay the pattern on the fabric and cut them both at the same time, but that doesn't seem natural to me. I like to have the patterns already cut out so I can arrange and pin them on the fabric so I can make optimum use of it.

I haven't received that cool sewing machine I won yet, Mimi is such a dear, she's having the machine cleaned and oiled before sending it out to me. Basically Janome is getting a physical and full work up before moving on to her new home. So in the meantime I've been keeping busy deciding what my first project will be, and I've learned a few things along the way.

The right tools are important:
Scissors, pins, weights and tape (for modifying the patterns for those of us who are short waisted).

The wood blocks were left over from a project the Mister was working on. They are great paper weights, better than upsetting the fam by grabbing all the remotes.

I learned a few things about choosing the right scissors too. The pink Fiskars below left are awesome. The hand fits perfectly in the grips without squishing and the blades cut like a hot knife through buttah. Really, buttah.  Problem - the handles are big and it really distorts the fabric, that's already distorted by the pins, when you're cutting.

The scissors above right I bought because of the funky shaped handles and colour. It turns out that these are the better ones for cutting fabric. The profile is slim and low to the mat, problem - it doesn't cut as well as the pink Fiskars. But we will make due...

And chalk. I love how this makes me feel like I know what I'm doing. I have the pencils, but I really like the feel of the chalk in my hand.

And on a non-sewing note. I bought a plant from the Home Depot a couple years ago because I liked the look of it, and now it has bloomed. The flower is pretty, in a sort of invasion of the body snatchers alien bursting out of the dog's stomach kinda way.

See what I mean?!?

Thank you for tuning in....