March 31, 2016

Knitting Pile O' Shame


I have this pile of knitting on a chair in my house.  It's where I put finished knits before blocking.  And some of these have been waiting for a long time!
And honestly - they didn't all make it in the photo!


From the top:  Hitofude cardigan.  Knit with Cashwool held double.
This took a long time for me to knit - but only because it kept being set aside for other projects.
I finished it while Carolyn was in town in February.


 Next is a basic cowl.  This is another version of the bias loop cowl.
I have at least 2 dresses that will match this cowl and probably a few more items of clothing.


Next is Follow Your Arrow 2.  At this point - I don't even know what clues I followed.


This is a shawl - it was a mystery knit pattern by Wendy Knits and I think I knit it back in 2013.
Yes!  2013.  If I remember correctly, Krystle dyed the yarn for me.


Next - this is Through the Loops Mystery Shawl.  Maybe from 2014.
I love the way this looks.  But if you know me - you know I love prints - so what do I wear this with?


Last in the pile - this lovely half round shawl with a rows of a daisy lace.  
The yarn is Madeline Tosh and it's lovely.  The color is a fabulous neutral.

So - now that I've shared my shame - let's see if I can show you some 'finished' knit photos.
I'm going to aim for by the end of April - but as you can see from my 'avoidance' track record - I make no promises!

What's the longest it's taken you to "finish" something?

March 21, 2016

Upcoming Projects - Inspired by Carolyn - Topper

Photo borrowed from Carolyn's Blog
Way back at the end of February, when Carolyn was in Seattle being pestered by my dog, we did a tour of the fabric shops in Seattle.  

Weather-wise the day was mostly nice - that is until we were getting close to Nancy's Sewing Basket.  Nancy's is a lovely store and the staff are so friendly and nice.  

I didn't take any photos during the day - because I wasn't planning a blog post - I don't often think that far ahead. ::hem::  So, I've borrowed the picture of the Wardrobe from Everyday Style by Lotta Jansdotter in the window at Nancy's.  

Both Carolyn and I noticed the window on our way in - but we really didn't linger and look because it had decided to act like Seattle weather at that point and it was raining sideways!  We wanted to get inside - because of course - I left the umbrella in the car  :\

Tamara (Somerfield Studio) was working at Nancy's that day - and she was wearing the topper from the book.  We all started talking about toppers and looking through Everyday Style which was right on the front counter.  The gals at Nancy's all pulled out Kwik Sew 4104 which Carolyn also recommended to knock off her topper which was a take-off from the Vogue 1247 skirt.  

Anyway - I bought the book.  And I plan to make the topper.  

When I bought the book - I immediately thought of this lovely blue textural fabric that's been in my stash for some time.  I have plenty and it's always been destined for a coat - but should it be an 'outerwear' coat, or something fun like this topper?  The paisley in the corner was originally purchased to make a dress - but I think will make fabulous bias tape for binding the seams as this binder is unlined.  

As I said, Tamara was wearing the topper when we walked into Nancy's.  As sewists do - when we started talking about them, she ripped it off and threw it at me to try on.  She told me which size she sewed and I was sold.  Having tried it on - I know that I only need to add a bit of width through the hips - about 2" on the back only.  I can easily add that when I trace the pattern - soon.  I plan to do it soon.    

I also have this fabric combo which I think will make a lovely topper - maybe with the front turned back like in the window display.  



But - I have a question for you - how would you style a topper?  Talk to me - because basically - I can't dress myself.  

March 11, 2016

Carolyn's Visit

Nancy's and District Fabric Purchases
 As you may (or may not) know - Carolyn was in Seattle a few weekends ago.  We toured the majority of the Seattle fabric stores - I've learnt from the comments that we missed a few.  We went to Expo on Saturday and Sunday we went to lunch, hung out and watched the Red Carpet.  You can read all about the weekend from Carolyn's point of view.

Sewing Expo Purchases
I thought it's about time I shared my fabric and intentions.


This fabric came from District Fabric.  It was in the clearance end and was marked at $2.50 a yard!  This is one of 3 pieces that Carolyn and I both bought.  It was said several times over the weekend - If Carolyn is buying it and I'm drawn to it - I better buy some because she doesn't want to hear it when I grumble that I should have bought some when I see her finished garment.  I believe we both plan to make skirts from this piece.  It is a fabulous tiny pin cord and it's amazing. 


This is another District purchase.  I'm pretty sure I have multiple pink floral jerseys - but this one was amazing.  So slinky and rich looking.  It screamed at me that it needed to be an Appleton in my closet - and so it shall be - hopefully soon!!

Our first stop at Expo was the Tilton booth.  I found this lovely floral sateen (sensing a theme?) and started looking for a jersey to pair it with.  It wants to be a Washington dress - ever since seeing We Bought a Manor's Washingtons - I have needed to make one.  I know I have some black ponte - but I'm hoping I have some black pleather as well.
  

One of the things I was looking for at Expo was a piece of fabric that would work with the lace I bought at Nancy's.  This piece of lace is stunning!  I thought the fabric would become a Carolyn Skirt to be worn with a bow blouse.  We'll see if that's the pattern I end up using.  


This fabric I must have picked up when someone else was having it cut.  I purchased it at the Vogue booth and it says shirtdress to me.  The fabric is very light so I'll have to make a slip to wear under it.  But those roses - lovely!  (3rd floral!)


Another fabric that both Carolyn and I both have yardage.  Again - I think this one should be a shirtdress.  I think Carolyn has different plans for her piece.  And at least one other local friend has a piece of this fabric.  


The final shared piece of yardage between Carolyn and I.  She thinks this should be the middle McCalls dress with the full skirt for me - but I think the fabric might be a bit too thin and slinky for that dress.  Pretty sure I would need to underline the bodice in organza to make this work - but would the skirt need to be underlined as well - or could I just wear a slim petticoat under it?  If that plan doesn't work - then one of the tops on either side should work for this fabric.  


I bought one more piece of fabric.  This one was in Billie's and it 's a beautiful black and white sateen with a lovely border print.  It has Maggie London printed on the selvedge.  Honestly - I've decided that Maggie is my kryptonite - I can rarely walk away from it.  Sitting on top of it are my new Kai scissors.  I'm hoping to actually use them soon.  This fabric also wants to be a shirtdress.    


And here are the shirtdress options in my pattern stash.  I should be able to find one that works - right?  

March 10, 2016

Rodan and Fields



In January, I became a Rodan + Fields Consultant.
I am very excited about the products and loving the skin care regimens.
I mean - 60-day, empty-bottle, money-back guarantee!
The before and after photos are amazing!  

I personally am using Soothe because I have sensitive skin.
I also feel like my nose is very red. 
In the month since I started using the products, I notice my nose is less red & I'm using less makeup.

I do not intent to turn this blog into a place to shill for my side-business.
That being said - I did want to let you know, I'm doing this and I'm here if you have questions.
I do hope if you want to try the product you'll reach out to me!  

If you are interested - please reach out!  My contact info is in the sidebar.
I look forward to hearing from you.

March 7, 2016

My Sewing Space - a Little Bit Closer

The CSC is doing a series on Sewing Spaces and I'm lucky enough to be the first space showcased!  

I really, really meant to get downstairs and take more photos to add to that post, but it didn't happen.  So - I'm doing a part 2 of my blog tour.  

Really - I'm just showing you the back wall - the notions storage.  The back wall also holds the chatchkies and memorabilia.  

On that top shelf - on the ridge edge, you'll see a red tin.  It holds my grandma's crochet hooks.  I don't really crochet - but I can't bring myself to get rid of them - they bring me joy and happiness!

Under the floating shelves is an old oak entertainment center.  It holds my sock yarn stash, swift, ball winder, embroidery hoops.  On top - there is a jar of ribbon, a Seattle Starbucks mug that holds colored pens, ribbon storage, a glass jar with spools of new silk thread and a metal basket full of zippers.

Here's a close up of the button jars.  I can always tell when the cleaning woman has been - because they are rearranged!  The buttons are mostly sorted by color.   
On the bottom shelf - there are these 2 adorable dog pin cushions.  The little pink one I bought - he still has tags hanging on him, but the green one was a gift made by a friend who no longer blogs or sews much - but she loves her dogs as much as I do.  Next to the dogs is a glass jar of old wooden spools of thread.  I do not use these threads.  And next to them is some decorative spools of ribbon.  


 At the very top of the shelves is a very special Puffy.  Krystle didn't have a blanket - she puffy was her security and she went nowhere without it.  The very favorite one was a blue and white puffy.  One day while she was in pre-school a random dog came and stole it off the playground - the entire school went chasing after that dog to get it back - and they did.  This is a holiday version which stays with me for safekeeping until there is a grand to share it with.  

In the corner of my cutting table there is more clutter.  The little pink organizer thing on the left holds all my cutting tools, nail file, measuring tape, other necessary items - it makes it easy to pack for retreats so I don't forget anything.  The wicker basket hold patterns I've made or the ones I want to make soon.  the pile in front is new and wanting to be made up.  The metal basket holds more buttons.


Finally - we get to the pattern storage - it's under the other window in the room, between 2 chairs.  

Currently on top of the boxes are the remains of my circle skirt project - which I messed up and haven't finished.  Story of my life. . . 

Carolyn reminded me that I need to showcase the cutting table - so look for a 3rd post on my space soon.  All about the cutting table.  

If you came over from the CSC - thanks for stopping by!  Please leave a comment - I love meeting new people.  


March 2, 2016

The Fabric The Wouldn't Run Out



I bought this fabric at District Fabrics over Labor Day weekend 2015.  I really can't decide if it's a really plush ponte or a scuba - but I like it.  I loved the print and all the colors in it.  You've seen the first dress from this fabric - and honestly this fabric was always meant to be that dress.  I can't remember if I bought 3 or 4 yards, but I'm guessing based on how garments I got from it that I bought 4 yards.  

In October - I cut into it.  I started with the dress.  Then I cut a magic pencil skirt for Krystle (I'm hopeful she'll send me some outfit photos so I can blog that one too). 

Then I decided to make another Madeleine Ponte Top from Style Arc Patterns.  I'm happy to say I've made more clothes in the past year than my blog posts would leave you to believe.  The first version was black and I made it following the pattern exactly.   If you look closely at the line drawing at the bottom of the post, you'll see I did some things differently this time. 

For starters - I took my french curve and cut the neckline lower.  
Next - I sewed the back up without a zipper - I mean, the top is made from a knit - a fairly stable knit, but a knit none-the-less.

Then - I used bias to finish the neckline and armholes rather than the bands.  


And - I cut both the upper and lower back pieces on the fold.

Finally - I left the little under triangle off as well as the bands.

There are still issues with this top - the upper chest is a bit wide on me.  I need to take a wedge out, wider at the top, tapering to nothing at the bust and the armholes gape a bit.  But under a cardigan - it's fine.  And based on those back wrinkles - I can't decide if I need to figure out how to do a swayback on this or if it needs more room in the hips.  But since this top is rather distinctive and I've now made it 3 times - I'm not sure it'll get another go soon.  

The style elements of this top are all in the details - the pleating at the front and how the upper front wraps around to the back to create the armholes.  



I'm wearing this with a charcoal grey magic pencil skirt.  This is another piece of fabric that multiples were made from.  If you aren't sure you can wear a pencil skirt - try this one!  

There's still one more garment to share from this lovely fabric.  

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