While I have been a member of Artisan's Square for several years, I rarely visit. Recently, during a bout of boredom, I thought that I would check out the forums over there and see what there was to see. I came across a thread about a summer wardrobe and decided that this plan would help me. I had fabrics picked out but didn't have a direction.
Anyway, the Summer Plan consists of:
3 blouses/tops ( 1 to match skirt, 2 to complement)
1 lightweight layering top/cardigan
This is perfect! Just what I need.
So, I thought about this rayon batik that I bought one or two years ago from Sawyer Brook Fabrics. I had close to 5 yds. of this fabric - gorgeous blues, pinks, purples and some light aqua. A lightweight, summery looking fabric.
Now, I realize that since I took this picture at an angle, that you can't tell that this particular batik has a definite pattern. It needs to be cut with a nap layout as all of those palm trees go in the same direction. Here's where things began to get wonky.
To cut the fabric so that the pattern was straight resulted in this:
The long end is 10" and the short end? 3.75" I think this might be printed a little off. Resulting in two pieces that measure the same but have center folds that look like this when the side seams are put together:
Now, Sawyer Brook is not responsible for this, but I paid $13/yd. for this fabric and I'm not sure what I can do to salvage it. If I ignore the print, it will be weirdly wonky. If I don't ignore the print, it won't hang right.
The girls and I are leaving the house today and traveling back down to South Louisiana. Before I go, I wanted to show y'all something that I received in the mail from a blogging friend.
Juli, The Happy Homemaker, has come up with some pattern storage sheets and sent me some. I have to tell you that these are FABULOUS! The plastic is thicker than ziploc freezer style baggies. They're reclosable, and they have holes so that you can pretend to be organized and put them in a 3-ring binder. I love these simply because I have quite a few e-patterns that I've printed out the pattern pieces to and then just tossed them wherever (mostly into a big pile of paper).
This weekend I'll be working on a small shawlette. I'm using a fingering weight yarn by Claudia Handpainted in Antique Jeans that I bought early last year from Eat.Sleep.Knit. It's very soft merino wool yarn and the color is awesome. More blue and less gray than this picture.
I made these knee-hi socks for Debra back in December.
Miss. Rachael found them in a drawer and since they are now too small for Debra asked if she could have them. After telling her yes, she then requested that I make them into armwarmers. Now, why she wants to wear wool when the temp is getting up to 105 dumbfounds me, but who am I to get in the way of a 7 yo's fashion sense?
I frogged the feet part back to the ribbing section of the sock. Placed the stitches onto DPNs and then bound off. If only all my projects were this easy.
I've come to the realization that I'm a t-shirt and skirt kinda gal. As much as I like jackets and fancy suits - that's not my life. I'm the SAHM to three girls, one of whom is a mere 13 months old. I need clothes that are easy care and that I don't have to pull on to keep them where they belong. I'm casual.
I pulled out several fabrics that looked summery, were light-weight, and that could possibly form a cohesive wardrobe if ever actually sewn up.
Since I'm in desperate need of some shirts, I pulled this knit out of the pile to work on first. It's a 60" wide cotton/lycra knit that I bought from Sawyer Brook Fabrics about two years ago. For some reason I only bought 1 yd. of this fun, stripe-y knit. Obviously it's destined to become a t-shirt and a sleeveless one at that.
After looking through my pattern stash I decided on Butterick 5493. Views A, B, & C are actually designed for wovens; while view D is for knits. I waffled back and forth between making view B, C, or D before finally deciding to make view D.
So, my alterations to the pattern: For the front, I traced off a 16; raised the neckline 1"; did a FBA and FSA. For the back, I traced off a size 20 to give me the width needed to go across my back with pulling and the corresponding
FSA needed for the back shoulder.
I have to say that this fits really well - maybe a bit looser than I normally like my tanks to fit. But! There is one problem. The bust dart is way too high and too long. UGH - how did I manage to screw that up?
Okay, so I need to hide the bust darts or something. I looked at the envelope and then the pattern pieces and decided that I had just enough fabric left over to make the ruffle from view C.
Another UGH - it looks awful!!
At this point I took off the shirt, put it down on my dresser and walked away.
I puttered around the house doing a few things (waiting for inspiration) and then, realizing what time it was went to my bedroom to get ready for church. About 10 minutes before I walked out the door I came up with a solution. I didn't have enough fabric to cut an entire front but maybe I had enough to cut the top half and piece it to the existing bottom half.
This morning when I awoke, I was excited about getting to my sewing desk and getting started. Guess what? There wasn't enough. I would have had to piece the top half with about 5 different pieces. It's a wadder - already in the trash. Oh well. Honestly? Once I sewed the shirt together, I didn't really like the stripes. No harm, no foul, but I will make muslins in the future.
With the advent of summer and traveling back and forth between our house and Cody's job, not much sewing will be done for a while. I'm just not willing to pack up my machine twice a week. Yes, twice a week. On Tuesday mornings, the girls and I pack up and come home for three days - piano lessons, mid-week church and any chores that need to be taken care of. On Fridays, we'll head back down (over, or up to) wherever Cody happens to be working.
Last week, when the girls and I came home no sewing happened. Of course, I was desperately wanting to sew, but all of my machines were in the shop getting a thorough check-up. So, I cut out the pieces for a laptop cover. Although I could have figured out all of the measurements myself, I was lazy and bought a pattern (The Padded Laptop Sleeve) from You Can Make This.
Today, after unloading my vehicle and then racing to our piano lessons, I came home to do a little sewing. I am now the proud owner of a one-of-a-kind laptop cover and I bet y'all will never be able to figure out what brand of laptop I have. :)
The cover closes with a strip of velcro. My supply of velcro has mysteriously disappeared so I'll pick some up at Hancock's when I go to Monroe on Thursday.
So, are you wondering what I do while at the travel trailer with no sewing machine? What? You've got other things on your mind? I can understand, but I'm going to tell you anyway!
Last week, I cast on for a shrug for Miss. D. The pattern (Whirligig Shrug by Stefanie Japel) is one that I've had kept in mind for a while. I first saw it in the 2009 Interweave Knits Weekend magazine. I wanted to make a cute little shrug that would be good for covering up her arms during the summer. You can read my projects notes here. I will admit that I don't have many notes on this shrug. The only thing of note is that only about half of the yardage that is called for is really needed. I used Jo Sharp's Soho Summer DK Cotton in Kiwi Green on size 6 needles. 12-18 months size.
To me, green is almost a neutral color. Green just goes with so many other colors. Don't believe me? Go outside and look at the flowers. What is the one color that they all have in common?
The sleeve ruffle ends right at her elbow and I love the double roll around the neck and front of the shrug. I will definitely make this again.
The top two pictures reflect the true color of the yarn. Isn't it gorgeous? I certainly think so!
In parting I leave you with a little summertime fun.
Cody is currently working on a job in Houma, LA, and we are going back and forth from here to the house. On the weekends we join Cody at the travel trailer & go see the sights.
When we arrived back to the TT this afternoon Miss. D fell asleep on the bathroom floor today. Unfortunately, she fell asleep in front of the door that goes into the room where the toilet is. I told Hannah she would just have to pee in a cup (jk - maybe).
Have you ever been in the fabric store and found a really awesome fabric but you didn't know what to do with it. Or what size needle to use or how the fabric should be washed?
Well, recently I stumbled upon a new iPhone app called Fabric U. It just recently released by Sutro Media and written by The Lazy Milliner. It doesn't have any reviews yet but what I've seen so far looks pretty cool.
I realized that y'alls time is valuable. That y'all have many demands upon your time. That many people expect you do amazing things. I mean, after all, people are suddenly demanding that separate pieces be included in the pattern envelope for different cup sizes and they want up-to-date styles and patterns to come in bigger and smaller size ranges. So, I understand that you've probably over-looked a fact of life.
Just because I've gained a little weight (okay, a lot) doesn't mean that I've also grown 5" in height! If anything, I'll probably shrink a bit as I get older. Please, keep this in mind when y'all grade a pattern up in size. My arms did not suddenly extend another 3". My measurements assure me that the length between my hips and my waist is still 7". My legs are still stumpy, little tree trunks. Do you get the picture?
I would appreciate your consideration in this matter very much!
We came home Saturday with a present from camp. This lovely parting gift involved frequent rushing to the bathroom, laying on the couch moaning and lots of sleeping. Want to take a guess? If you said, " A stomach virus!!" you would be correct! Poor Rachael woke up Sunday at 6:30a and let the whole house know that she wasn't feeling to good. I'm praying the rest of us don't get it.
How many of y'all have ever promised something to your child? And had said child remind you? Do I see hands being raised all over? I know that I do - 'cause children never forget a promise.
Several weeks ago, while fabric shopping at my LQS Rachael found a pattern for a vehicle clutter catcher/organizer. Since I was talking with one of the ladies at the front counter, she brought the pattern to me. Mommy, please! Urgh, I don't really like to sew non-clothing. I promised that I would make it for her after we came back from camp since:
she really did need something like this in our vehicle
I'm tired of the clutter on the floor of my vehicle
I thought it was kind of cute
I'm always up for another fabric purchase
So, we looked around at what was available. Rachael originally wanted a horse print with a black background - I nixed that idea and we kept looking. She finally reached for a bandana print by Michael Miller and I tried to talk her out of them but changed my mind. We then starting looking for a few coordinating fabrics. Our final selection ended up being a blue plaid, a red with white horse-shoes, a vintage print with cowgirls and the red bandana print.
The pattern, Clutter Catchers by Sewbaby, features several pockets of varying size and is fairly easy to make. But (you knew there was a but, didn't you?), I will make this a little differently the next time I make one. I'll widen the top and sides by about an 1", and shorten the top strap by 8".
Here it is laying flat on the table:
And in the vehicle:
This is where my irritation came in to play. I took this outside to put on the back seat and guess what? My vehicle doesn't have anywhere to tie the bottom to! I finally fixed that problem by taking a 5' length of ribbon, wrapping it around the front of the seat, looping it through the bias loops and tying it off. I just stuffed the ribbon down into the seat so that it was hidden. It wasn't the pattern's fault, 'cause it does have little loops at the bottom of the thingy-ma-jig to tie off to something. My vehicle just has everything covered in plastic and there was no place to tie it off to.
As you can see it didn't take long for Rachael to fill it up with her stuff.
Yesterday evening (when I supposed to be packing) I decided to make one more thing for Debra.
This is Ellie Inspired's Ruffled Halter Dress in a size 1. The pattern is a free sew-a-long that Laura hosted on her website. The dress is absolutely adorable but way too small for my little munchkin. I tried it on Miss. D this morning and it didn't even cover her rear. That's okay though, I'll use it as a top instead and make her another in a bigger size for an actual dress - 'cause I love this dress!