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Tuesday, March 30, 2010


Well, I've been sucked in by $2.99 Butterick and McCalls patterns and $3.99 Vouges, even though I made my last purchase less than a month ago. I also just made a purchase. It's crazy how much beautiful fabric I got for less than $50. I try to be a quality over quantity girl (especially given how much fabric I have patiently waiting to be made up), but this appeared to be both. At any rate, I've added a few more projects to the queue:

(Click on all photos to get to the appropriate web page.)

I've decided it's time to make hubs a shirt.

Yep, I got the jumpsuit pattern. I want one! (but not the strapless one... that would never last the day with little boys around)

I hardly ever wear jackets, but I couldn't pass up this pattern. I want the bottom right one. So so cute!

I'm sure I have some stashed fabric that will work for this interesting sheath for church in summer. It only takes just about a yard.

Because I really, really need a strapless silk brocade dress, People!! It's the hole in my closet!

To make a sleeveless ruffled shirt for summer.

Slub cotton jersey for view A of McCalls 6034.

Big cotton print for a fun gathered-waist skirt.

Pretty print cotton fabric and trim for a simple sundress.

Monday, March 29, 2010

McCalls 6034

Sadly, there is only one semi-decent picture of this top. I forgot to take a photo until evening, but I am too excited to show it to wait until I wear it again. Expect a few more photos later this week. I LOVE this top! It has the volume and drapey-ness that's still in style, but the band on the bottom makes it flattering, too.

I cut out and sewed this top all in one evening - about 2 1/2 hours all together. It's so easy and I got several compliments when I wore it the next day. The fabric* is poly jersey from Gorgeous Fabrics but is now sold out. The pattern is McCalls 6034, view B.

The pattern review is here. I'm kind of surprised I did the first review of this one. I think it's a really cute top, on trend, and it was so easy.

*Ok, so I actually cut this out of purple jersey first, but I somehow lost the front piece and don't have enough left over to cut it again. I am just waiting to find that piece, and if it doesn't turn up in a few weeks, I'll have to recut a tank top or something. I've scoured my sewing area, under chairs, the trash can...

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Shark shirt!

This is more a craft project than real sewing, but I think it came out really cute. My little man turned 3 last weekend. Yikes! I don't usually sew things for my kids. I just haven't really gotten into it. I did, however, have this idea for a shirt for his birthday, and I think I'll continue this theme for my boys on their birthdays as long as they think it's cool.

I purchased the plain white polo last summer. Sharks are pretty much Paul's favorite thing in the whole world. Go figure. It all started with my mom showing him a fake shark carcass on the boardwalk... My husband freehanded the fabulous artwork - both the great whites and the "hammew head." I drew the "3"- yes, freehand, People!

The applique fabrics are from cheap clearance tops for about $2 each. (I needed boy colors fast!) To attach the appliques, I used steam a seam to iron them on.

On the sharks, I did a simple straight machine stitch around and hand stitched blue eyes.

For the 3, I did a hand running stitch around with 2 strands of gray embroidery floss. I think it looks cute, but it killed my fingers. That fused glue is hard to stitch through! I would have been happy to use this technique on the sharks, too, but my fingers were having none of that!

I am so happy with how this came out, and I know Paul loves his "shark shirt."

Friday, March 26, 2010

Cinnamon Rolls!

This is a definite departure for me, but what the heck! On my husband's birthday a few weeks ago, I decided to make real cinnamon rolls from scratch. I do enjoy baking, but this was a first. I used my brand new The Pioneer Woman Cooks cookbook. If you're one of the 2 people in the universe who haven't found her website/blog yet, do check it out. It's great on so many levels.

In her honor, I took lots of photos. They're pretty crappy but still fun. Oh, and you don't even have to buy her cookbook for this recipe. It's right here on her website.

So I skipped a lot of steps, and just jumped right in with the fun part - assembling the cinnamon rolls. I made the dough the night before, let it rise, and then stuck it in the fridge until morning.

It already looks yummy! (Please ignore the softening cream cheese. Hubs loves him some cheesecake!)

Lots of melted butter and cinnamon (please ignore the beer...)

Lots of sugar and some curious hands.

Please ignore those finger streaks. I have no idea how they got there!

Now where is my rolling pin going?

After rising, ready for the oven!

Paul had to try his hand with the rolling pin.

Just missing one thing...

Look at all the gooey frosting!

Extreme yumminess.

Relaxing with full bellies.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Easter dress!

I've finished my Easter dress. Yippee! The pattern is McCalls 5752. I'm mostly happy with this. The fabric is lovely rayon jersey from my local, nice German fabric store. The fit is pretty good, but I took in the sides a bit and probably could have just gone down another size to an 8, which is kind of crazy since my measuremenbts would have me make a 12. I guess I like my knits clingy!

The only alteration I did was a sort of small bust adjustment. I didn't take any photos, but the back neck is a slightly high, extended collar type thing. It's cut with the front pieces (if you've looked at or made this pattern, you'll know what I'm talking about). Anyway, I just cut the back neck edges on a diagonal so the side attaching to the back piece is as drafted, but the other end is about 2 inches shorter.

The only thing I'm not super crazy about is I don't think it's the most flattering dress on me. I like it a lot, but I don't love it quite as much as I love the one on the pattern envelope. I just think it makes me look so straight and un-curvy. Maybe it's just my post-babies body rudely looking back at me.
If I had a cool pin, I'd definitley wear it like on the black dress in the envelope photo.

Whoa! What is with the back fat?? I wouldn't even begin to know how to fix that! I think it's just the combination of very drapey fabric and the cut-on short-ish sleeves. What do you think?

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Of SPAM and other tidbits

I've been getting a LOT of spam comments lately - like a couple on each post, and I don't get tons of comments to start with, so it's kind of annoying. I don't get the point of this type of spamming - does anyone actually click on those links if the blog owner leaves them up?? Anyone else having spam annoyances?

I hoped to get a lot done this week - move right along on my jacket and cut out a knit dress for Easter. Unfortunately, I've been sick as a dog the past 4 days. Well, really only sick as a dog the first day, but not feeling so hot the past 3 either. I'm also having a little trouble getting used to my husband's work schedule this month. He has to work evenings and weekends, and while it's only for a month or two, it's just throwing me off in a big way. I think we get more quality time with him, actually, but as I said, it's just really different. I can tell you it's been wonderful having him home while I've been sick.

So, now that I'm feeling decent again, after the boys are in bed tonight, I WILL cut out that Easter dress. It took me a while to decide what to make for Easter in Scotland (yes, I am so lucky!). It'll be pretty cold, but I finally settled on McCalls 5752 figuring I can wear it with a cardigan and boots and still feel spring-y. I just made my second version of this shortened to a top, so I figured it's time to actually make the dress! I have some gorgeous deep purple rayon jersey that just feels like silk. The color doesn't exactly scream "spring" I'll admit, but again, I'll be in Scotland.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010


I'm working on a jacket. Here's one front, with welt pocket and bound buttonholes. I'm reasonably happy with those details. Not perfect, but then, I haven't made that many.

Now, I'm working on the collar. Padstitching...padstitching...padstitching...

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Corduroy Skirt

I've been trying (and succeeding) to wear more skirts/dresses. I feel good when I wear them, and for the most part, they don't interfere with my daily routine. I do pass on the skirts/dresses on playgroup days, though...

I wanted a casual black skirt for winter, and I tried to move beyond my pencil or A-line skirt fallbacks. I settled on gathered and hemmed it pretty short to keep from looking dowdy or little-girly (funny how both were concerns). I'll only wear it with tights, most likely, so I think it's ok.

Side view: (It does make my butt look a tad super ginormous.)

Back view. I used a contoured waistband from TNT pants, and then gathered 2 rectangles for the front and back. I'm calling it self-drafted to sound impressive.

Here is the spiffy big button. The fabric is lightweight black corduroy from my local fabric store. It was one of those rare finds that wasn't crazy expensive here. It's really soft for corduroy, which is why I went for the gathered skirt.

I made a slit for the zipper, and it's hidden nicely in the gathers. The button loop is made from a narrow tube of black doubleknit. That was one of my ideas that actually worked out pretty well. It has the perfect balance of stretch and stability.

I'm not crazy about it paired with this top. I think the top is just too light and spring-like for the corduroy. I don't want to wear a big sweater with it, though, since it's pretty billowy itself. I'll try it with a fine-gauge sweater, I think.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

faux wrap top

This is a second version of McCalls 5752, which I shortened to a top.

I sewed the fronts together under the tie so I can pull it on and not worry about it. I also sewed the tie onto the side seams so I don't lose it in the laundry!

The fabric is poly jersey from Gorgeous Fabrics which I bought last summer, I think.

I still want to make the dress at some point, actually a dress. I think I'll do a SBA, though. I tacked this top together at a couple places on the front to fix gaping. The purple one doesn't have that problem, but I think that may be because the thicker knit is more forgiving.

Next up, I have a finished corduroy skirt to show. I'm working on a jacket right now. I just finished the welt pockets and am pretty happy with them. Next, I still have to cut out the lining so I have the other half of the pocket bags. Ugh. I dislike cutting. I just want to hear the hum of that machine!