Archive for August 2013

Pantone Challenge

Saturday, August 31, 2013

The Sew Weekly Reunion
In the spirit of the Sew Weekly posts, here we go with my finished product:

The Facts

Fabric: Cotton for shirt; unknown blend for skirt - estate sale finds for $1 each
Pattern: Simplicity 2215 (from the swap!), Sorbetto from Colette Patterns
Year: 2012
Notions: Zipper, hook and eye, and bias tape (from swap!)
Pantone Challenge colors: Acai and Samba
Time to complete: Skirt: 3 hours and Shirt was about 2 hours
First worn: Lunch then shopping at outdoor market
Wear again: Skirt is a maybe, shirt is a definite
Total cost: $2

Sooooo, my Sew Weekly Reunion pattern swap partner graciously sent me the Cynthia Rowley Simplicity Pattern 2215.  I love it!  Specifically, I dig the skirt.  And it only requires 1.5 yards (Say what?? ...What?... I know, a great way to reduce my fabric stash).


What was even better was that tucked away in my stash was about 2 yards of a Samba colored cotton and several yards of a patterned unknown blend of Acai color.  All thrifted. Woot-woot!  Sew Weekly Reunion Challenge is on.



Do you ever have an idea that it is absolutely fabulous in your head and when it comes to fruition it is not at all like you imagined?  This is exactly what happened to me with the Cynthia Rowley skirt.  I should have known.  I am petite and lots of pleats, well, I get lost in them.   In order to compensate for the poof around my bum and hips, I shortened the skirt a little and tacked down some of the pleats at the bottom.  Did it help?  Only a little.  Despite the mounds of pleats, it turned out lovely.




I am a fan of Simplicity patterns:  the directions were straightforward and the pattern is fun (with pockets!!).  I think next on the next go 'round I will make the dress version of this pattern.  It will be a good fall/winter addition since you can wear a turtleneck or button-up underneath. 





On a final note, I happened on the Sew Weekly blog when I became more serious about sewing.  I love(d) reading the Sew Weekly Blog posts because of the inspiration and knowing that other sewers in the blog world take risks.  More importantly, all of the bloggers enjoy sewing, the challenges it brings, and the reward of awesome garments!  I was glad to be part of the Sew Weekly Reunion challenge. 

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The 'Firework' Walkaway Dress

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

I did it.  I made the B4790 -- Butterick's famous walkaway dress.  I had traced and cut the pattern weeks ago but I kept looking at pictures on other blogs of people who had made it.  I was drawn to the simplicity of the pattern and the allure of a project that could be finished in an afternoon (What was I thinking !?! Projects for me rarely turn out as planned).

One thing was certain -- the right fabric was key to making this dress.  The wrong fabric could send the dress to no-man's land.  I am particularly sensitive to fabric choices since I made Simplicity 2147.  It is a simple tunic dress and I choose what I thought was this cute patterned fabric:  light blue with simple, small flowers.  I was mortified when I asked my husband what he thought and his response was it looked like I was in the hospital.  In fact, he pretended to check for fever.  I still bring this up with him, "Please tell me I don't look like I am wearing a hospital gown!"  But I would rather have honesty than platitudes.

Bearing all that in mind, it took while to find a fabric that I liked -- for 5 yards of required fabric, I wanted to find something fab.  I wanted to avoid looking like I was wearing 
(1.) a hospital gown or 
(2.) a drape or  
(3.) a sheet or 
(4.) a nightgown. 

Looking at the photos of all the lovely Walkaway Dresses, I wanted to find a patterned fabric that was subtle but did not fall into the color range that would qualify it as any of the aforementioned no-no's.  After wandering around several fabric stores (which if you saw me, it would appear rather aimless), I choose a cotton blend that had enough drape to make the skirt swooshy (Is that a word?!) with a lovely red firework print.  


This dress is cleverly designed and really easy to put together which is why it got its name.  I love the drawings on the pattern envelope but I found that when I began to line the neckline with bias tape, it looked 'homemade'.  Don't get me worng, homemade is fine.  I really like bias tape (I love making it in quirky prints and colors!) and use it in all sorts of things.  Just not here.  I instead used the bias tape as a facing, folded it under and stitched.





Hemming a circle skirt is a giant pain in the rear.  I did not use buttons (or snaps)  as suggested but instead made it tie in the middle.  In the end, I was disappointed.  The dress had (or has) potential and I do like it but it fits funny around the ribcage.  It seems loose in the shoulders, tight in the ribcage, and loosens back up below your waist.  The tightness in the ribcage prompted me to get rid of the buttons and go with something that would allow a little more ease.


If I do it again, I will probably start with a larger size bodice and take in as needed.  





So much for 'Fireworks'!  Part of the fun of sewing is trying something new.  On the plus side, I can learn from my mistakes and know how to adjust for the next go-round (That is the teacher in me -- cheering on the frustrated). 

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Sew Weekly Reunion

Sunday, August 4, 2013


The Sew Weekly Reunion challenge is posted and I am excited.


The Sew Weekly Reunion


The Pantone challenge: this seasons colors are rich, jewel-toned, and earthy.  The direction one could take is endless.   As soon as I read the challenge, I looked through my fabric stash but nothing is inspiring me.  I have a  couple of patterns I want to sew but these will required the right fabric.  The right fabric for me is both visually and texturally appealing.  I am always wondering through the fabric store touching visually interesting fabrics.  If it feels yucky then nothing, not even the color or pattern, can convenience me it is worth it.  I can spend a lot of time in my little fabric store.

 



I traced and cut two patterns this week but didn't get to sew.  I planned to work on the muslins of these dresses however life gets busier once the semester draws closer.  But I did score at an Estate Sale this week -- vintage fabric and notions! For $10, I purchased a new Simplicity Bias Tape Maker which will come in handy with my sewing project this week.


On my sewing table this week is Butterick's 4790 Walk-Away Dress.  It has gotten some bad flack but I think it has potential.  There are some really cute versions that ladies have done: here, here, and here.




Here's to a good week of sewing!





This is what my wonderful swap partner sent.  It is perfect.

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