Friday, July 30, 2010

Clothing Construction

I'm feeling the crunch of time with school starting soon.  Next Tuesday for me and August 9 for my new kiddos.  There are many positives for the upcoming year and the negatives are things that can be dealt there's a choice.  As excited as I am for the upcoming year, a big part of me will miss my days of doing what I want, when I want.   

Last month I decided to try clothing construction again.  Making clothing was my earliest introduction to sewing from 4-H when I was about the age of my 3rd graders.  To this day, you will never find me making any kind of drawsting bag or triangular head scarf, since those were the very first things that I made, learning to sew.  Don't get me wrong, there's nothing the matter with either of those, but they take me back to more years ago than I will admit.  And I need to move on.

So, in the wonderful era of internet that we live in today, I did some research on how to make commercial patterns fit me.  My problem is "the girls."  I need an FBA (Full Bust Adjustment).  Just to set the record straight, if you do not need this, be thankful!

I had a simple top pattern, Simplicity 5921.  I followed the graphics from So-So Sewist using the McCall's method for my modifications.    It seemed (seamed?!...sewing joke...haha!) to address my concerns and ended up working very well for me.

I was a good girl and made a muslin from my initial changes to check the fit...that was a first for me!  This fits nicely, although it could be better if I had had someone to help me with the fittings.  And the picture could be better if I had had someone to help me with the photography!  

I added my own touch with the bias trim on the neckline, armholes, and hemline.  Love the results, even though it took a lot of time to do.  Now, I have fabric for another top from this pattern and have an idea of how to change the neckline, armholes, & hemline.

Time to go experiment.

Check out the fabulous finds from these links:

Fabric Fun Thursday @ Cheap Chic Home
Make It Wear It @ The Train to Crazy (Absolutely LOVE the name of this blog!!!)
Finished for Friday @ Lit and Laundry
Sew & Tell @ amylouwho
Sunday Showcase Party @ Under the Table and Dreaming



Friday, July 23, 2010

Easing into Work

Does making items for my desk at school count as working?  Earlier this summer I made myself a sewing basket to see how well I could handle sewing with vinyl.  I did OK, so I made a covered basket for school.  This really is a needed item, since I traded in my big bulky teacher's desk for a computer table and now have no desk drawers.  I love it when functional meets pretty!  

Embellishment:  My first zipper project!

Then, I played around with covering a clipboard to match.  Using light colored fabric for the front, I should have used two coats of paint before applying the fabric.  Lesson learned. 

Embellishment:  Free-form flower.


The flower was an after thought.  The big metal clip just looked too bare, and heaven forbid that a clipboard is naked.  I looked and looked, then looked some more online for flowers to make, then ended up coming up with this on my own, because I wanted to use a variety of fabrics.  Haha...and my first choice of a flower called for WOF and I was primarily working with scraps.  The petals are simply cut circles, with a part flattened.  If anyone wants a tutorial, just holler!  (Like I have people reading this little blog!)  

As pretty as this turned out, it simply will not work for my everyday clipboard that is my lifeline in the classroom.  I broke out into a cold sweat one morning at work last year when I realized that I had left my clipboard at home.  How did I function that day?!  My clipboard gets thrown into my bag (or cart, depending on the amount of work I take home) and I'm sure that would wilt my pretty little flower.  So...

Sparky!  Go ASU!  (and OSU)

Next, I made some little back-to-school trinkets for my co-worker, Joy.  She really is a joy to work with.  Honestly!  That was not sarcasm!   I used remaining fabric from the Professional Tote that I made for her a couple of years ago.  Here are the items: clipboard (her lifeline, too), magnets, coaster (I put a Diet Coke on it...that's where we really differ...should be Diet Pepsi!),  fabric fortune cookie, and a cover for our second lifeline, a district calendar.


See how I got my name on there!

The above picture is the inside of the calendar cover.  I'm really liking the ribbon sewn on to hold sticky notes and pencil.  Must make one of these for myself.  


Linking to:
Sew & Tell Fridays @ amylouwho
Fab Friday @ Frugal and Fabulous Design
Fabric Fun Thursday @ Cheap Chic Home
Strut Your Stuff Thursday @ Somewhat Simple   
Sunday Showcase Party @ Under the Table and Dreaming
Saturday Night Special @ Funky Junk Interiors
DIY Linky Party 8 @ Fine Craft Guild  
Boost My Blog Friday @ Design It Chic

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Flickr Favorites: Quote

On the first Tuesday of each month, Art Mind has a theme for her weekly Flickr Favorites.  This month is a favorite quote. 

I really do not have what I would call a favorite quote.  Last summer at about this time I also needed to come up with a favorite quote for a project in a class I took.  I chose one by Mark Twain: Humor is mankind's greatest blessing.  I'm using the same quote for this month's "assignment."  So without further ado, here is my mosaic for the week!

1. Camera Laughter, 2. My Book: Earth's Laughter, 3. Young Laughter, 4. Stifled Laughter, 5. Laughter rises out of tragedy, when you need it the most, and rewards you for your courage., 6. Laughter and Happiness..., 7. laughter, 8. Laughter is the best medicine..., 9. Silly Pup!

Friday, July 2, 2010

Instant Gratification

Well, almost instant as far as the sewing goes. 

This week I have been working on a quilt top and a couple of bags, so I had the need to do something and finish.  I have been trying to train Jacie to become my sewing buddy.  She's made great strides this week in that department, sometimes laying & napping and being simply adorable.  Even though I'm supplying her with her favorite toys, she sometimes gets bored and then it's like having a toddler around, so she needs to be removed from my room.  Fortunately, she's easily redirected.  If it weren't for constant interruptions from dear doggie today, this would have taken no time to complete.         

I've had the little cardboard coffee thingies in my studio for ages to make a cozy.  I've attempted a couple of knitted ones, but have just never been thrilled with the results.  So while taking care of the little (ha!) puppy, I whipped this little puppy up.  There are a lot of these online but I have no clue as to the sites where I've seen similar ones.  I love the idea of the elastic for the closure.

It is a good feeling to complete something, no matter how simple.

P.S.  Susie...if you ever read my blog, and become a follower, I might consider telling you how I did this!


Thursday, July 1, 2010

My Go-To Skirt Pattern

There are free instructions for drafting this pattern on Patterns That Fit You. I've made a few of these skirts now, and love how easy they are to make. Plus, I can easily adjust for any changes in my measurements. (Fortunately that's been a bit smaller in the past couple of years rather than larger!!!) By using my own measurements, I can easily place the waistband where I want it to be, and not at my actual waistline. Also, I like the narrow waist band that I made, rather than the wider one in the instructions.

This is as good as it gets for a photo, unless I can teach Jacie to use a camera. I foresee difficulties with that, seeing how she thinks that a camera strap is a leash!

Oh...and the hemline really is straight, but looks funny in this picture. I could have fiddled some more to get the picture to better show the skirt, but I have some sewing that I want to do! Plus (sigh) some cleaning really needs to get done. I just don't understand why the maid never shows up. I should fire her.

make it wear it

Calendar Quilt: July

July's block started out with red/white/blue. After that, I just played with the fabrics.