My Last Makes of 2015

I’m going to share my last two makes of last year, so that I can start sewing and sharing this years. First up is New Look 6350. I made the pants even though I bought the pattern for the skirts. The hip measurements for the skirts are just not big enough for my hips unless I made them out of a knit. So pants it was! I made two pairs of these. I learned a lot from my first pair. The waist is way higher than I like in the pattern and there is no separate waistband pieces. I fixed both of those issues with this pair. My first pair is currently waiting for the waist are to be fixed. Several stitches holding the elastic have popped.

I used rayon fabric treated with Mary Ellen’s Best Press to make cutting out easier. Mary Ellen’s is a starch alternative so it stiffens up the fabric and makes it much less slippery. I usually spray and then iron to apply, but this time I mixed it with water about half and half and added the fabric. From there I removed the excess liquid from the fabric and put the fabric in the dryer. Easy! It went straight from the dryer to the cutting table. You can easily use more or less Mary Ellen’s to get crisper or softer fabric and it all comes out the next time you wash it.

Misses' Skirt and Wide Leg Cropped Pants or Shorts

I made view C and while I was unsure of the angled hem I went with it. I actually love it more than I expected. It would be an easy fix if you don’t like the look of it. I need to make view D next and I really want to make view C in a knit. These pants are in continuous rotation in my wardrobe. They are comfortable and easy to pair with any solid shirt.

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On to the next! McCalls 6968 which is sadly out of print. I made view D out of a swiss dot cotton. I started this pattern in my last month of pregnancy which was a bit ago! I finished it several months after when I ventured back into the sewing room.

M6968, Misses' Tops, Skirts, Shorts and Pants

This is a super simple pattern. One pattern piece and a lot of ease. I cut a size 12 and my recommended size was a 18 or 20. Look at the finished measurements on this pattern to determine your size. You need the ease for it to drape nicely but you don’t need 20+ inches of it! My skirt has around 10 inches of ease and it fits great. The only change I recommend is to lengthen the ties so they tie and drape nicely.

The swiss dot cotton was breeze to cut and sew, but not as drapey as I would like for this skirt. My mom sewed me this skirt in a rayon fabric and it drapes so much better.

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What’s your next project? I have a finished knit object to share with you soon!

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A Match Made in Fabric

I finally had some time to get pictures of several of my finished projects. I expect that I’ll have several posts for you over the next week. This skirt was finished quite a while ago. It was my first project postpartum. Which means I made it sometime at the end of February!

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The skirt is Simplicity 1163 view E. I traced every skirt in this pattern and I imagine I will sew them eventually.  It’s been a while so I have no idea what size I sewed. By the finished measurements it should be a size 20 which is a bit smaller than my 46″ hips.

It’s a super easy pattern and  I didn’t use the instructions until I dealt with the pleating. This is a great pattern if you want to do some pattern matching, since each piece is cut individually. Stripes would have been much easier to match than the fabric I chose, but I think I did a fairly good job.

What do you think?  I honestly didn’t expect the matching to turn out nearly as well as it did. I wear this skirt way more than I expected. It’s easy to put on and easy to match. I can easily do anything with my son while wearing it. That includes sitting on the floor to play with him.

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I’m not getting into the sewing room as much as I would like, but I am still working on projects and the knitting bags. I do not know that I will be offering them through Etsy just yet, but I may have other opportunities coming up. A lot of my time right now is spent with my amazing son and knitting. I’ve been working on Stephen West’s Doodler mystery knit along(MKAL) and I have been in love with the pattern. Go look at all the wonderful projects people have made!

I’ll be back with another finished project in the next few days. In the meantime, do you knit? Tell me what you are working on!

A Long Time Coming

It’s been a while, in some ways too long, and in others not nearly long enough. The last time I posted I was still pregnant, and now I’m the mother of a handsome six month old baby boy! This is likely to be a long post; if you want to catch up read on, if not skip to the pictures to find out what I’m up to in the sewing realm. I won’t mind in the least.

I imagine you want to hear about my pregnancy and the birth of my little boy. It was stressful at times and at times it was amazing. My job was one of the main causes of stress and I’m happy to say that I no longer have to worry about it. I’m a stay at home mom right now and loving it. The doctors were another cause of stress. I felt like the doctors weren’t listening to me and taking care of me. I had a lot of swelling in the last 4 to 5 months of my pregnancy. Towards the end of my pregnancy I hurt my right shoulder and my blood pressure kept getting higher and higher in the last month. On the other hand it was amazing feeling him move, and being able to see my husband when he felt our son move. I ended up being induced at 39 weeks because of the high blood pressure. Let me tell you: NEVER AGAIN! I love my son, but I really would rather go into labor naturally than do that again. Squeakers McWiggles, was born on February 6th, 2015 at 1:32AM, and weighed 7lbs 3oz. My husband and I were (and are) ecstatic! I’ve been having problems with postpartum depression, but with the help of my family, friends and the therapist I was already seeing for my PTSD and anxiety, I am doing much better. I really should say more here, but right now, I can’t/don’t want to. I might feel more like it in the coming months.

I did some maternity sewing, and pretty much none of it ended up here. There is always next time! I would have done even more but the last trimester the swelling really kept me from being on my feet much. Next time I’ll use the compression stockings sooner. Swelling hurts! Thankfully I had a really good friend that loaned me enough maternity clothes to fill the gaps. Thank you, Melissa! IMG_3639Lately I’ve been watching my son grow, and in my spare time I’ve been spending time on my hobbies. I started crocheting back in 2012 and about seven to eight months ago I started learning to knit. I’m a continental knitter and I’m loving it. Here is where I’m bringing my love for sewing and knitting together.

Project Bags!

TwirlDesigns Projectbag-3666 I’m making projects bags for knitters and crocheters. I’m going to be setting up an Etsy store and selling them. I received a really positive response to them from my Stitch n’ Bitch group I go to. The bags are made without a zipper, are reversible, and I’ve made them with tabs or with a handle.

TwirlDesigns Projectbag-3674TwirlDesigns Projectbag-1The handle seems to be the more popular option so far. I’m having a lot of fun picking out the fabric combinations and hand sewing the bias binding. I’m finding the hand sewing very relaxing; I had expected it to be tedious and not much fun.

TwirlDesigns Projectbag-3658 TwirlDesigns Projectbag-3661My next step is to design a larger bag into which these may be inserted, or can be used alone for larger projects. This one is perfectly sized for shawls, socks, or any project that doesn’t take up much space. What do you think?

Wrapping up my current projects, I have several skirts I’ll blog about in the coming month. I look forward to seeing you back!

Where Did All The Time Go?

Really, where did it go? I’ve been sewing up a storm, but I’ve been slacking on the taking pictures department. Hopefully in the next few weeks I can catch up and show you everything I have worked on. For now I’ll show you Kwik Sew 3954. This raglan sleeve tunic is an easy sew and hopefully I will be making a few more. My first was too large, a medium, so I downsized and it fit great. I’m hoping that I will get to wear the original during the winter months and not be swamped by it. I expect I might need the extra room by then….

Because I’m Pregnant!

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 I had a bit of nausea and I had a hard time eating meat in the evenings, but other than that I have been doing great. I’m now four months along and thankfully out of the first trimester! Along with the pregnancy came some definite body changes. My boobs grew, my hips and butt got bigger and then came the bump. Sewing has been interesting and I imagine it will manage to stay that way.

But back to the pattern!

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I used a thin burnout knit from Girl Charlee that I bought quite some time ago. I have enough of this stuff to muslin almost every knit pattern I have! However the stretch factor of this knit is not conducive to any pattern that needs to stretch much. So this loose swingy tunic was perfect. One of my favorite parts of this pattern is the high low hem, although the actual hemming of this top not so much! No matter what I did on the hem the coverstitch still created a tunnel. I think next time I’ll use clear elastic to act as a permanent stabilizer and hope it won’t be too heavy.

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I did shorten the patterns sleeve at the shorten/lengthen line. On my first one I made I did not like how long the short sleeve was. It ended up being the perfect length for me. Not much else I can say about this pattern. Make sure to go down a size from the recommended or pay attention to the finished measurements on the pattern itself.

And one last pic for you:

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I’m due in February 2015!

 

A Year in Mind

It seems like I had just begun blogging and already this year is up, but not quite so for the blog.That anniversary will be next month! There was so much I accomplished in the last year and so much that I wanted to, but never quite got around to. A fair amount of successes and some failures along the way.  I thought I would share some of my favorites with you and then talk about what I had in mind for this next year.

My Faves:

twirldesign2013From left to right:

1. Murphy’s Sister and a Skirt. This skirt was a challenge to make due to the silk and the extra layers, but it was worth it!

2. Me Made May ’13. So much fun to watch and to take part in. I look forward to taking part even more this coming year.

3. The Bombshell! I love this swimsuit and I really need to make myself a second one.

4. Velvet Tulip Skirt. Stretch velvet is fun and quite comfy! I loved sewing and wearing this skirt. It was a truly simple pattern and the stretch makes it quite comfortable.

5. Grainline’s Tiny Pocket Tank. I think making this shirt a hi-low hem made me fall in love with the effect, not to mention it felt like I made the pattern my own.

I feel like this year has gone by way too fast. There hasn’t been nearly the amount of time to sew that I would like! I am also dividing my time between my other hobbies that generally don’t show up on this blog. I have spent the last year: cooking, reading, photography, and learning to crochet! I expect I’ll continue growing in each area and more beside them!

I’m not generally one for resolutions, but I think there are a few things sewing that I need to try to attain this coming year. The biggest one I think would be to start using the patterns I have before buying new ones! So, no more new patterns until I have used at least three for each one I want to buy and I think digital patterns need to count towards this as well. I want to finish at least two of the Craftsy courses I have purchased. And last but not least, I want to fit in at least fifteen minutes of sewing on 4 days out of the week. If I can make it every day I will.

So that’s it for 2013! Happy New Year!

Knits, knits, knits! Oh how I love thee!

I really do. Love knits that is. I love how the stretchiness of the fabric is so forgiving and comfortable to wear.

I’m always on the look out for good patterns that are designed for knits and not always finding the ones I want. I am however always finding patterns that look like they would work just fine for knits and often better than any other fabric. I’ve been finding more and more patterns like this lately. I wonder if these patterns are being designed for wovens or as I like to say, “non stretchy fabrics” because people are uncomfortable attempting to deal with knits?

ImageTwo patterns that would transfer well to knit fabrics

I do admit that I have had my fair share of trouble sewing knits and I have had many wadders that have ended up going the way of the dodo. If it isn’t the fabric it’s the sewing machine or more likely the serger acting up. Oh, the fun, but with practice it does get easier. Don’t give up!

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New Look 6814

These pants were designed for a woven and to be a loose pull on pant. I turned them into a fitted pant by taking in the hips, waist and inserted exposed zippers on both hips. I loved the contrasting pop of color! Unfortunately in taking these in I didn’t leave enough seam in the rear and they failed on me after my third wear. I didn’t think I would do them again just yet with another satin, so I turned to a lovely grey knit!

ImageNew Look 6814 in a knit

Ta Da!!!!! I have a hard time not wearing these every day! They are the ultimate in comfort and they don’t look like yoga or lounge pants unless I’m dressing them down. These pants dress up easily with a button up shirt and some fancy shoes. I will at some point be making this pattern again and I will be doing it in a knit again and I think I hear a colorful sating calling my name… I’ll just have to remember that seam allowance!

And this is what the cat does while I edit pictures!

And this is what the cat does while I edit pictures!