Thursday, 30 April 2015

Good at following instructions

Everyone has a natural talent, right?  Almost everyone you know has one thing they can do super well with seemingly zero effort.  Or many, similar things with consistently good results.  My husband can cook like no one else I know, he can taste every ingredient in his cooking and know just when something is missing.  My dad can make up stories all day long.  Most are so convincing that even my family has trouble telling fact from fiction.

I've spent a lot of time wondering what my best talent is.  I feel that I have a lot of things I’m good at, like teaching in a way the student understands, but that doesn’t come effortlessly.  I have to work with someone one-on-one to get a feel for their learning style before I can figure out what will help them learn.  I am not so good with a larger group because I don’t know what I can do to help everyone at the same time.  This is probably less of a talent and more of an empathy strength applied to everyday life.

I have an active imagination, which most people see emerge as creativity, but that doesn’t seem like a talent to me, that's just how I think.

I’m good at fine motor skill tasks that most crafts involve, have a natural athletic ability, can remember silly little details like postal codes of houses I lived in as a child, and excel at logic puzzles.  But none of those are really TALENTS.
My favourite Archie gag
After really looking at all the things I do well, and the things I don't do well, I think I've figured out where my true talent lies; I’m exceedingly good at following instructions.  I can read things and get the theory down pat usually.  Often, I can then replicate a task within 3 tries, with going back to the instructions and figuring out what went wrong, then applying my changes.  Some things I need someone to show me how it’s done first, then I can try the task and usually get it on the first try, and am able to add in my own modifications on the second try.  I guess this could fall under a quick learner label, but I think it’s just that I’m good at following instructions.
I can bake, sew, knit, cross stitch, change oil in my car, tile the bathroom, or navigate my way anywhere so long as I have instructions.  It’s when I’m left to wing it that I have trouble.

It sounds like I'm downplaying my abilities, I know.  On the surface, it seems as though I'm saying "I'm not actually good at making things, I just follow instructions well", which is true.  But, on a deeper level, my talent is understanding what I'm being told.  I can decipher directions that often leave others confused, and can translate them to the item I'm working on.

The more I think about it, the more  I can apply that to other aspects of my life.  Why do I do so well at Geometry but absolutely suck at Calculus?  Because I understand the rules of geometry.  If you have a triangle, all angles must add up to 180, the opposite side of any angle is 90-x, etc.  I can follow directions to figure those out.  But Calculus?  I can find the first derivative and then... stuck.  Or in English class, I was good at essays.  They followed a three paragraph formula.  Nomenclature in Chemistry, binomial naming in biology, nearly everything in geography, all have patterns and rules to follow making it easy for me.  

So, I'm not talented at sewing, but I'm talented at learning how to sew better and applying that knowledge, which looks the same.  Asking me to draft a pattern based on a RTW garment you saw in a store will not work.  I haven't learned to pattern draft yet, and without the garment in front of me to measure I have no idea what I'm doing.  Supply me with a pattern for a similar garment and I'll make it up with no problems.

Tuesday, 28 April 2015

Monthly soap update - April 2015

Soap making has been going full swing here in our house.  I like how quick it is to whip up a batch and the kids can help me with a lot of it.  Obviously, they can't help with the lye, but they can help measure out oils and additives, and Aki can help with the stick blending, while Itsa enjoys playing with the measuring spoons and such.  So far, for April we've made:

Castile soap - Olive oil and lye, nothing else.


Chocolate hazelnut

Honey oat

Coconut Lime 

Castile Soap - second batch with the loaf mold.

I also started a journal with the recipes I used, and any changes I'd make to them.  I have left all the soaps to dry out and cure, except one bar of castile from the first batch that I took to use in the shower.  I love this soap!  It's creamy, doesn't really suds, but feels wonderful on my skin.  I can even use it to wash my face with!  I've never been able to take a bar of soap to my face, it always dry it out or causes a break out.

When making soap, I've followed the same principles as I do when making food.  The fewer ingredients, the better.  Especially the fewer synthetic ingredients.  However, I may start to work with more fragrance oils in the future.  I know they're synthetically derived esters, but they do smell so good.

I'm also going to start selling them in my Etsy shop.  The label will be Aki and Itsa and all profits will go to them. 70% to their education funds, and 15% each to their everyday savings.  The initial supply costs and Etsy fees are my gifts to them, and the cost of new batches will be taken off the top.  This helps alleviate the anxiety I have over not starting education funds for them yet.  Neither Spart nor I were able to get a post-secondary education due to lack of money, so we both feel very strongly about saving for our children's future.  Ideally, we'll have enough money for an undergrad degree costs and rent, and they'll only need part time or summer jobs for spending money.  Wish me luck!

Saturday, 25 April 2015

Life these days

I knew that my husband could out humour me any day, but now my children are doing it too.  I always thought I was a funny person, but apparently I'm the least funny in my house.  Itsa's really set the bar high for herself here.

Thursday, 23 April 2015

Custom labels

Lookie what I have!

Well... this is the digital file anyway.  I may have forgot to take a photo...
Custom made labels for my brand!  Hoorah!  These are going to be sewn into all the garments I make now.  They're a nice, soft organic twill cotton with a screen printed graphic.  I ordered these on Etsy from Mountain Street Arts and found the service to be perfect.  I had a proof the same day I sent in my graphic, and they were printed and shipped the next.  The seller kept me informed of my status.

I haven't washed any yet, so I can't comment on the durability or colour-fastness, but I don't forsee any problems.

I feel a bit strange having custom labels made to be honest.  It feels so... adult. So... responsible.  Like an investment, even more so than my business cards do. I'm trying to create a brand for myself, and find it a little difficult to make sure everything ties in together.  I love colour, and rainbows, and lots and lots of colours.  The shop that did up my business cards only had a few designs to choose from and not really anything custom.  So I chose my favourite from their selection and kind of built up on that.  Teal isn't my favourite colour, I'd have preferred red, but it's a nice colour, so I'll work with it.  I have to fight the urge to add different colours and other cats to my logo and graphics.  It's really hard.

Tuesday, 21 April 2015

Custom Bra sewing service: FAQ

So far, I've had a couple of clients for my custom bra making service.  I have had quite a few questions though, so I thought it would be good to round them all up in one place.  I've noticed that many women feel like bras are similar to shoes.  They're always uncomfortable and you just have to deal with it.  I call shenanigans on that!  Although, I do find it mostly true with shoes.  One day I'll learn to make my own.

What are my pattern choices?
Currently, I have 6 bra patterns to choose from.  I can order any available pattern for you though, and don't charge for the pattern but will require a down payment to make sure I have the funds on hand. The six I have right now are:
Pin-up Girls: Linda, Shelly, and Amanda

Make Bra: 3221

Merckwaerdigh: CUPL16 and EFG40

These are all patterns drafted for larger cup sizes.  I have not yet bought any for smaller cups as they won't fit me.

I also have Cloth Habit Watson, which is unstructured.

How long will it take?
At least 4 weeks.  I don't keep too many components in my stock as there are so many sizes and variations available.  This means I order the materials as needed and then have to wait for shipping.  This also means I can help you make a truly custom bra as you have control over every aspect of it.

My size is this.  Why are you measuring me?
That size is a good starting off point for me, but I need hard numbers to fit you properly.  I can't tell if you're wearing the best size for you, or what size chart your favourite brand of store-bought bras uses.

That's not my size.
Let's wait for the test fit before we say that, shall we?  Like boobs, bra sizes aren't standard.  Some companies updated their sizing when spandex was incorporated into bras, and some are stuck in pre-spandex days.  I don't know how you measured to get your size, but the one I'm choosing is based on the pattern's recommendation.  Let's try it.

How can you be sure it will fit?
Well, chances are that the first fitting won't be a perfect fit.  I hope that is really, really close though.  I make a test bra out of my cheap, ugly fabrics first so you can try it on.  I expect to have to either add a little here or take in a little there, or go through 3 or 4 different size wires until we find your perfect fit.  It may take longer, but it will be the best fitting bra you've ever worn.

I really hate tight bras, can I have it looser?
Err... maybe?  I'll make it to your size first, and then we can see how you like it.  If you still want the band looser I can add in a little bit of extra without changing anything else.  Keep in mind that a too loose band will ride up your back and be uncomfortable.  A properly fitted band will stay in place level around your whole body.  Personally, I find the level band to be most comfortable.

I don't care for underwires, can we make it without?
We sure can!  Unless you want a partial band bra, then you're out of luck.  Partial band bras rely on underwires to keep everything in shape.  But the others can be made without.  You might also want to try on a few different sizes of underwires before you make your decision.  Ready to wear (RTW) bras have the best underwire for the size of the bra, but I can help you find the best underwire for the size of you.  You may find a wider or narrower wire is super comfy even though you've never liked wires before.  Some breasts are winder at the base, and some narrower.  In a size that fits me RTW, the wires are usually much too wide and poke me in the middle of my armpits.  I experimented by removing those wires on an old bra and inserting my favourite ones for sewing.  It was so much better.

I like foam cups, can you do those?
Yes!  There are lots of patterns for foam cup bras, I can help you choose the one you like best.

Yes, but only in 1 style (See Amanda bra)

Yes!  This is more about finding a comfortable bra that can change with you for the next few months.  I can adapt any pattern to do that with a few tucks and some extra thought.

Yes! After examining many nursing bras in the stores, I can adapt almost any pattern to be a nursing bra.  Stiff foam cups would be tricky, but if that's what you want, I am sure I can figure it out.

Is it really worth it to have a custom bra made?
Yes!  It is totally worth it!  Every boob is a different shape than any other.  Even the two on each woman can be very different.  RTW bras are made to blend quite a few sizes into an "average" size based on measurements.  They can't possibly sell bras that fit perfectly in stores because they don't know your body.  Custom sewing means I'll make it to fit only you, not every other women of roughly the same size and shape as you.

No one notices a bra that fits well.  It becomes nearly invisible under your clothes.  But a bra that is poorly-fitted will make you look odd.  A bra too small in the cups will cause spilling over the top, one too large in the cups causes wrinkles and gaps, a too loose band makes it creep up your back and has you feeling like the straps can never be the right length, whereas a too small band digs into your ribs and causes you to notice it's there  Why deal with all that discomfort when you don't have to?

Saturday, 18 April 2015

Pattern Filing

I file my patterns.  My job as an Admin Assistant includes filing, so this seemed natural, also, when we moved in 2011 Spart bought a lot of Banker's Boxes thinking we'd be able to use them as storage boxes in the new house.  I had a lot of those to work with, and saw Beauty for Ashes organize her pattern collection on Pinterest, and the whole thing came together just like that.  I have 2.5 boxes of patterns at the moment (150-ish) with the Jalie patterns hanging out somewhere else until they stop being A4 size.  The nerve!  Actually, they can probably fit in the box now that I've given up on putting the tops back on.

Some of my digital downloads needed a larger folder to hold everything together.  All the instruction pages plus the thicker paper and tape made them really really bulky.  No worries!  Dollarama had these pretty little expanded folders that work perfectly for this.

On the patterns I've used, I cut up the envelope and glue it to the front of the folder.  The sides of the folders are stapled together to make a nice little pouch, and the pattern company and number is written on the tab.  I can usually remember the company if nothing else.  I then organised the patterns by garment type with "kids" and "men's" just kind of lumped together.  

I never really had a problem with folding my patterns back to their original size after use, but I find it a relief to not even have to try anymore.  I can just fold until they're the size of a sheet of letter paper and then put them away.  The instruction sheets only need to be folded in half now, so that saves on some bulk.  And I can even cut the larger Vogue pattern envelopes down to the right size to glue to the front.  The booklet style patterns like Colette are easy to just photocopy the cover and glue on.

I'll probably be buying more patterns as digital downloads now.  It can be annoying to tape the pieces together, but I love the convenience of being able to slash up the pattern and not worry if I ruin it.  I can simply print a new one and start over again!  This is also perfect for commission sewing as I can make a garment in a specific size for a client and not worry if she is smaller than me.  No more tracing so as to preserve the other sizes or tracing so I can then slash and spread or change up necklines or whatever.  I can just print a new one, file the one I altered away in case I want to do it again, and start all over.  I tried to convince myself to just slash up my printed patterns as I needed because I probably wouldn't sew the pattern again, but I just can't.

Thursday, 16 April 2015

Finished project: Ginger Shorts

Woohoo!  I'm all done now!  Well, you know, the shorts anyway.  The pants are still only a thought.  But knowing that I only have to make a minor change to the pattern before cutting it out again is amazing.  I love it when a pattern fits as drafted.

Pattern: Ginger by Closet Case Files
Size: 14
Fabric: stretch denim from Fabricana.  Managed to get all but the waistband out of a 1m remnant I had left from my last jeans.  Contrast is left over from a dress made 10 years ago.
Modifications: Chopped the pattern off at the “lengthen or shorten here” line to make them shorts.
Mods for next time: Take out a ¼” wedge from the back, add length to the pants (possibly 1.5”)  (Edit after wearing the shorts for a few hours: Go down a size.  Denim is super super stretchy)

I love this pattern!  I mean, I’m a bit iffy on skinny jeans as I hate having fabric tight on my calves and ankles, but I can totally do “Stovepipe”.  I have to be able to get my socks on underneath the jeans.

I also tapered in my Jalie jeans a bit.  They were really quite flared and it was not only making my legs look thicker than they are, but also picking up a lot of water in puddles.  Flared jeans are not practical in Vancouver rain.  I would call them more of a bootcut now.  Not skinny by any means, but no longer standing out from my legs.

Hell-o flat bum!  I feel a rounder bum would balance out my large bust better.

I hammered on the rivets and jeans button with some help from the kids.  I really couldn’t keep them away from it, actually.  They saw me take tools out for sewing and were by my side in an instant.  Aki did pretty well with it, but Itsa totally missed the point of the hammering.  She was all over hitting the board with the hammer instead of the fabric.

Photos were taken before belt loops, hammering, and hemming.  Now to cut the next pair out!

Tuesday, 14 April 2015

Sewing Vintage Patterns

I was reading Scruffy Badger Time’s post recently on her latest vintage reproduction finished object, and saw that there is a Vintage Sewing Pattern Pledge for 2015.  So I wandered over to A Stitching Odyssey and checked that out.  Long story short, I now have a pretty button on my blog and have pledged myself to sewing up at least two of my vintage patterns this year.

All that and it wasn't yet 9 in the morning!  Some days I inspire myself with the efficiency I have with getting in over my head.

I sewed a couple vintage reproduction patterns last year, both Butterick.  One turned out super, the other not as much so.  I’m not yet sure if I want to go all out and use only sewing techniques that would have been common practice at the time the garment was designed, or if I want to just get ‘er done.  Likely the latter as I’m generally an impatient sort and want to focus on making my garments look as good as possible, not necessarily as historically accurate as possible.

The first pattern I have in mind is Butterick 5209, a delightful little sundress with a not so full skirt. I love the triangle waistband and the gathers for the halter front should make a Full Bust Adjustment easy.  But what really drew me to this pattern is view B.  It looks like a little bordello over the halter dress, but it’s actually a clever back piece with cap sleeves sewn into the pattern.  Can you make out the halter strap at the top of the back piece? It’s all sewn together!  I have plan to use that piece to adapt all my halter top patterns into regular tops.  I don't care for halter tops anymore, but I-am-seamster-hear-me-roar!  I can overcome a design feature I don't like and change it into something I do.

Now, this pattern features a gathered skirt.  Typically, those don’t look so hot on me.  Very barrel-esque.  So I’m thinking of taking a cue from TheSewing Lab and her Vogue 8789 and swapping it out for a ¾ circle skirt.  Or a Full if I can swing it from my fabric.  Might as well use up as much of the cut as possible.  Also, full circle skirts are so much fun to twirl in!  However, I'm open to a pleated skirt as well if that's what I can get out of the fabric.

The second pattern I plan to use is a vintage swim suit for toddlers for Itsa.  The Kandel Knits no. 75 I picked up at a thrift store in February.  That should be straight forward and a quick two day sort of project.  I'm undecided yet if I'll add ruffles to it.  Itsa loves girly looking clothes with flouces and ruffles and such, so I probably will.  Maybe I'll just troll Pinterest for ideas. Warning: do not Google image search for "Toddler girl swimsuits" unless you think it's cute to see little girls in adult cut swim suits.  *sigh*  I don't find it cute.  I like little kids to look like little kids and dressed to play and move.  I'm going to line up all my suitable fabrics and ask Itsa to choose which one she wants me to use.  She knows what she likes.

I only have one sewing pattern in my stash from pre-1960.  A mail-order type pattern by Marian Martin, 9138.

A nice little shift dress with an interesting collar.  The french darts are a nice touch. This may get made up next year as a LBD.

I love, love, love the fashions of by-gone days.  The 20th century was full of beautiful colours, fabrics, silhouettes, and designs, however, I have never said that I was born in the wrong time.  I am a strong woman living in this modern age and loving the freedoms and rights I have that the women before me fought for.  I simply admire the clothes, designs, and handcrafts of the past.  I believe in efficiency in many aspects of life, but feel that sometimes we all need to slow down, calm down, and meditate over a hand-stitched invisible hem on a ball gown.

Saturday, 11 April 2015

Expressions to make mainstream

Maybe I'll make this a regular feature if I can keep coming up with them.

We'll start with two from my parents.

"Down to Mojos" - Being down to your last penny.  origin: My father.  As a child, candies were a penny each, but Mojos were 2 for a penny.  When his friends were down to their last penny, they'd all buy Mojos to make it last a bit longer.  Seeing a friend eating a mojo would inspire empathetic "You're down to mojos, eh?"

"Tropical Moment" - Hot Flash.  Origin: My mother.  At a family reunion several years ago my mum and her sisters / sisters-in-law were embarrassed to admit to hot flashes but worked around it by declaring a tropical moment instead.

Hot Flash?

Nah son, just a tropical moment.
I totally used this during pregnancy hot flashes.  Too good not to.

Thoughts and opinions?  Want to hear more of these?  My family is full of humour, I can get a good list going.

Thursday, 9 April 2015

WIP: Ginger shorts

While casually ignoring the half-finished pyjamas I have to work on, I started sewing up some Ginger jeans.  The only pair of RTW jeans I own have just started to split on the inside crotch, which leaves me with only the Jalie jeans I made in the winter.  I want to taper the legs in on those jeans, but I haven’t gotten around to it yet.  It means rehemming them at the narrower width.  I think I will wait until I’m hemming the jeans I’m working on, because, you know; motivation.

Down to only one pair of jeans, I decided that making a new pair was my top sewing priority as small children and their sticky hands mean I can’t guarantee a pair of jeans will be clean enough to wear again after a Saturday at home, which leaves me pantsless for Sunday.  Ideally, I’ll have two pairs of new jeans soon for a total of three pairs, but we’ll see how my sewing mojo is after these shorts and jeans.

I decided on the Closet Case Files Ginger jeans this go around.  I like the Jalie jeans, but they were missing that extra oomph I was hoping for from my jeans.  I’m a fan of Buffalo brand jeans as they make my bum look good and come in a longer length.  They’re pricier, but not extravagantly so, at around $100 a pair.  Of course though, I am not buying clothes anymore, meaning I needed to make some.
Front sewn, now to choose a zipper and rivets colour.

After my Jalie jeans, I went back to Fabricana and bought 5 additional metres of the denim I had
used.  It’s a super stretchy denim that is so comfy but looks nice, and I knew I could get 2 or 3 more pairs of jeans out of 5 metres.  At minimum, 2 pairs of jeans and a straight jean skirt.  I also had 1 metre left over from the other pair, which was the perfect amount to do up a pair of shorts to test the fit of the Gingers.  Shorts don’t get a lot of wear from me as I prefer skirts, but sometimes I need the coverage and movement shorts provide, I like to have 2 or 3 pairs on hand.  Camping, playing, amusement parks, and bike riding all are more comfortable in shorts, but usually ends in getting dirty.  Three pairs of shorts is a summer minimum with at least one being nylon board shorts that dry quickly for water activities, one being a heavier fabric to look nice for social events, and one being hardwearing and totally washable for rolling around in mud puddles.  Again, taking a cue from my children and their lack of concern for their clothes.

Brass tone is the winner with this denim.

Girl, look at that fly!

So good!

The shorts are going along quite well.  I did the most excellent fly front on them that had me almost in tears with its beauty.  I’ve only sewn a fly twice before, and both were sub-par, but this one is gorgeous.  Too bad, as I can’t go showing it off while I’m wearing the garment.  I’d have a lot of people shouting at me to put my pants back on.  I did have to study my RTW jeans to understand what the instructions were saying to me, but sometimes I’m a visual learner like that.  I am nearly at a place where I can try on the shorts to see if they are the right size, which is exciting.  I hate the uncertainty I have with choosing sizes in sewing patterns.  I understand how it can seem daunting to a newbie sewist to choose a size based on the measurements given.  You have to place a lot of trust in the designer to not add in too much ease for your own tastes.  You know, to be a mind reader.  Tissue fitting this pattern didn’t work as well as other ones I’ve done recently because of the desired negative ease and the stiffness of the copy paper not curving around my backside easily.  So, I’m kind of winging it here, trusting Heather Lou’s judgement.  She has more of a booty than I do, (because I have approximately zero bum) so I am already prepared to remove some of the crotch curve.  I’m also relying heavily on pocket placement to shape and flatter.  From the research I did online (finding sewing/fashion blogs talking about jeans and back pocket placement and comparing the images) I’ve decided that the most flattering pocket placement is as if the pockets were hands cupping one’s bum.  Like in perfume ads when the man is lifting the woman  in a suggestive manner and she has her jean-clad legs wrapped around his waist.  Where his hands are placed on her bum is where jean pockets should be placed.  No wonder tight jeans are considered sexy!

I had to google search for "bum grab jeans" to find the sort of image I was going for.

Tuesday, 7 April 2015

Sewing cat

Cats are my favourite animal.  You know, just in case you haven't guessed that yet.

The four kittens we fostered grooming each other after supper
I have two cats at home, Ebony and Babe.  They are from the same litter and were adopted from VOKRA in 2006.  My roommate at the time and I fostered them and their two brothers and then my (then) boyfriend (now husband) adopted our cats because he fell in love with them.  I grew up with cats, but Spart didn't.  It was a novelty for him to have pets in the house, (Also, it was a novelty for him to have a basement when we moved into our current house.  He lived in apartments his whole life).

I've never had house cats and never ones so devoted and loving as these cats are.  Babe is in love with Spart.  She follows him around and begs for pets and to be carried around by him.  With me, she is mostly a kitchen cat who is always either underfoot or overfoot when I'm in the kitchen.  She also tolerates the kids, but only cuddles up to them when they're already asleep.  Babe knew I was pregnant both times before I did and stuck by my side for the whole pregnancies.

Ebony is the cat who adores me.  She follows me around the house, tries to convince me that anytime is nap time, and often trips me on the stairs.  She's also a cat-of-all-trades who likes to inspect our plumbing, tilework, painting, sewing, knitting, and other general repairs/crafts.  She is the nurse who helps look down our throats when they're sore, who tries to see what object is irritating our eyes (hint: it's cat fur) and who makes sure we're warm enough when lying in bed with a fever.  She has started sleeping with me at night and now demands I tuck her in my blanket with me, head on my pillow and everything.

I'm helping.  These camping blankets won't go together without me.
Ebby's main talent is sewing.  She's spent many hours honing her skills.

Seam ripping

Sewing jeans

adjusting the lighting
That's my cat.  What a silly thing.

Saturday, 4 April 2015

Sewing goals for 2015

Since going back to work at the beginning of March I've had less sewing time than normal.  I've been a little glum about not accomplishing anything in the sewing room, so I thought it would be best to do up a list of my sewing goals for the year.  We're also trying really hard to update some things in our house so we can install a dishwasher (be still, my heart.) and that means mo-nay.  My fabric shopping will be halted for the year, and I'm prepared to live off my stash.

Good thing I've been stockpiling for just such an occasion!  Honestly, I'm a little embarrassed that I have this many projects worth of fabric stashed.  I want to keep it under 5 full projects worth of material.

My personal sewing plan includes completing one garment per month, and only buying things necessary to finish said garments.  Notions mostly.  Here's the list:

Closet Case Files - Carolyn Pyjamas
Striped silk cotton fabric
Short sleeved and short pants version

I actually had started these and hoped to enter in the contest Heather Lou had for the pattern.  But it didn't happen, and these were set aside to finish after my client obligations were completed. I hope to finish them over Easter.  They'll be an April finish, but I am counting them towards the March goal.

Carolyn Pyjamas, summer edition

Closet Case Files - Ginger Jeans with bonus shorts
Shorts for my fitting test, low rise view
Stretch denim from Fabricana, Jean notions kit from Thread Theory

Closet Case Files Bombshell swimsuit & Kandel Knits 75 for Itsa's suit
View B modified straps from Halter to regular bra style
Two piece suit for Itsa to make bathroom breaks easier.
Fabric: Err, well, hmm.  I have a lot of swimwear fabrics so I'm sure I can find suitable ones.  If nothing else, I have some plain black spandex I can use.  I hate black clothes, but I can overlook it here.  I also have have many little girl appropriate prints for Itsa, and tons of swimwear lining left over from last year's suit.

Bombshell suit and Ginger jeans

Butterick 5209 Retro Dress
Flowered silk from Save-On Fabrics
View B with the little sleeves

Vogue 1088 Donna Karan dress
Green and white silk twill from Frabicana
Modified to add back piece from Butterick pattern

Vogue 1088 and Butterick 5209

Colette Hawthorn Shirtwaist dress or Doe and Deer Bleuet Shirtwaist dress
Blue floral poplin from Fabricland

Cake Patterns Tiramisu
Red and pink stripey jersey from Fabricland

Hawthorn or Bleuet and Tirimisu

Sewaholic Granville
Bicycle shirting fabric from Blackbird Fabrics

Butterick 5953 Gertie design
Grey and Pink wool from Dressew

Sewaholic Thurlow trousers
Black Wool from Fabricland

Time permitting bonus garments: Oakridge blouse by Sewaholic, skinny shorts by Simplicity 1373 (add length), Tofino shorts by Sewaholic, Cambie dress by Sewaholic, Sencha by Colette.

These are my minimums.  I also have client work and a couple bras I need to do in there.  I also hope to get another pair of shorts sewn before the summer sets in. I mostly wear skirts, but when I'm playing with the kids I need some shorts so I can roll around on the ground with them.

Of course, I do also have a trip to Bellingham, Washington, planned for May.  I want to get my hands on some of Gertie's fabrics at Joanne's, and go to Texture Clothing to look at / purchase some of their cotton pointelle, and then off to Otion to look at their supplies for soap making.  Get something I can't find in my local shop maybe.  That kitty cat chiffon of Gertie's will make wonderful circle skirts for Itsa!

Thursday, 2 April 2015

Old sewing projects

Throwback Thursday time!

The quilt we made in grade 10 sewing (2000).  In a group of 6 we each embroidered one square and made one 4 square patch.  Then we put them all together with sashing in between.  Our sashing and binding is a glow-in-the-dark fabric.  We then donated our quilts to Project Linus which gives kids in need homemade blankets.  At that time, they focused on kids with cancer, but they seem to have grown and branched out since then.

Here is my prom outfit from Grade 13 (2003):

It's actually two pieces as seen here:

Looking back, I'm a bit mortified by that skirt.  I liked bottoms to hang from my hips and pool on the floor.  So the skirt both sits too low and is too long to actually look right.

The bustier is Simplicity 7009 and the skirt is Simplicity 1560.  This still lurks at the back of my closet.  (The boy is my high school boyfriend and we were in the middle of breaking up during this time.  Some of the photos I'm practically snarling at the camera in!)

The bustier was a bit ambitious at the time.  I wish I had thought about the lining a little more at the time.  I used a crape back satin for the outfit, and lined the bustier in the same.  With the satin side out.  No wonder I had to yank it up a few times!  Also, I used a satin cording for the lace back.  Oh my word, what a poor job I did on it!  I know how I'd do it better now.

Projects from working at Fabricland (2004):

This is a skirt I still wear.  A little higher than before, but I still wear it. Burda 8611 made from a wonderful tie-dye stretch denim.  I just bought the pattern again so I can have it on hand (I used it a few times and it was cut too small for me figure now, so I gave it away.).  It has a cute little godet at the back for ease of movement.

This sundress I do not wear anymore and purged from my wardrobe about 8 years ago.  Simplicity 5493.  The dress has a nice shape to it, and I might make it up again in the sleeveless version rather than the halter top version.  It has an interesting top shape in the sleeveless.