Thursday, November 23, 2017

A trip to Fine Fabrics

Hello everyone!  

So what do you do when the weather is overcast and you want to get out of the house?  Well, you call up your best friend and head over to Fine Fabrics (with babies in tow, of course)!!!

I have heard SO much about Fine Fabrics!  Not only have I seen quite a few blog posts about it, but I pass it every week on my way to and from church.  And yes, each time I pass it, I think "It would be really neat to go there someday."

I finally went!


We started off by getting pics at the front of the store.  It was early Monday morning, but there were still quite a few cars in the parking lot.  The store is tucked away off the highway, but you can't miss the sign when you are driving there.  

Now, when you walk in...

It is HEAVENLY!  The aisles are narrow (very narrow if you are bringing kids), but there are rows and rows of shelves with bolts.  You can find the fabric content listed at the beginning of each aisle, and there are attendants to help you pull any bolts you fall in love with.

I SO wish I had gotten a photo of the GORGEOUS African prints when you walk through the door!  I can't wait to go back and grab one up!  

This is how I made my way through the aisles:

I strapped my son to me in his carrier, and happily fondled fabric while he gazed at ALL the colors.  It worked, but NEXT time I will go with my bestie sans kiddos!  

We spent about an hour there, but you could easily be there longer.  

Oh the remnants! SO many different cuts at such affordable prices!! Must go back!

I think this was various notions...again, lots of choices!

Trims and more trims!

I am not even sure, lol! 

These end aisles have lace yokes for tops and tunics!  I always wondered about those.

It was such a great experience!!!!  Though I wanted to buy a ton of fabric, I restrained myself to two yards of navy ponte.  I just wasn't prepared for so much fabric greatness, and must get my budget together.

But I HIGHLY recommend shopping here if you are in the area, or interested in making a trip.  

In the meantime, my November plans are in effect, and here is a pic of an in-progress Sadie.  I chose a houndstooth knit print, and did the sleeve cuffs in black.  I sewed the funnel neck in the same rayon knit, but didn't care for the drapiness.  I now plan on using a nice black ponte instead.

*Wondering about my Kelly Anorak progress? See how it is coming along here.

Stay sew-filled!

Thursday, November 9, 2017

Piedra tent dress

Hello everyone!

There is just something about slipping on a dress that instantly brightens your day!  You know, the dress you go to when you wake up feeling blah, but want to turn your mood around?  Well, that is exactly what I achieved with the Piedra dress from Seamworks!

Let me remind you of the line drawing, because you will see that my version looks a tad different than what I showed you:

Do you notice the differences?  I am proud to admit that I've been pattern hacking!  I do love the original design of the Piedra, and see the appeal to the shape of the garment, but when I saw the pattern hacks included with the Seamwork magazine, I decided to give them a try.  The choices were a V-neck, cowl neck, or ruffle.  

Of course I couldn't just choose ONE, lol!  I needed a V-neck AND a ruffle please!  So, that is what I did!  It was very easy to follow the directions for the hack, and I am pleased with the results.

I used a REALLY old knit from my stash.  I know I got it from Hancock Fabrics as a part of the value section.  When my niece came to visit (I think she was around 9 or 10 at the time), she "kindly" remarked that the fabric design reminded her of poo.  Since then, I couldn't shake that impression when I looked at it, lol!  So, I figured this would be the perfect fabric to use for my adjusted Piedra.  If I didn't like it, it wouldn't be a loss since I wasn't married to the fabric in the first place!

Well, I don't like it, I LOVE it!! I think I need to convert every neckline to a V!!

As far as sewing the V-neckline goes, I could definitely use a little more practice, though.  I have found that you need to make sure you appropriately stretch the V corner, or you won't get it to lay right.  I also staystitched beforehand, and pressed a lot afterward.  I am happy with the results, and look forward to my next V-neckline.

I was able to sew a size S for the whole garment because it has LOADS of ease.  It fit perfectly!  For the hem, I serged the bottom for a clean-looking edge, and left it as is.  Actually, this whole dress is basted on my sewing machine, then serged for the final look.  I really want to work up the nerve to serge my neckbands, though.  I still have some nervousness there, and need to make some practice scraps.

Overall, this dress is awesome, and I may get around to making another one in the future.  For styling, I want to add a longer necklace, like colored beads or something.  But other than that, I am glad to turn this poo to "woo-hoo!"

**Have you checked my Kelly Anorak tab above?  I have updated it for the week, and plan to add more photos soon!!  You can also follow along on my Instagram!**

Stay sew-filled!

Monday, November 6, 2017

October Recap/November Plans

Hello eveyone!

Is it really November?!?!?!

We are still having weather that DOES NOT FEEL LIKE IT!!  I mean, this past week was in the 70s, and I ended up taking my kids to the park to play--no jackets required.  I am certainly not complaining, and even quite thankful, because I still have a chance to wear my finished Anorak, which is already underway.

So last month I spent most of my energy working on the dress I was going to wear to my baby brother's wedding.  That didn't pan out how I wanted, and left a couple of days in the month to actually finish a project.  I feel good that I squeaked in these two:

The first is an unblogged Piedra dress! I plan on having a review up this week for you all, so stay tuned!  I will say that I love it! Also, I made a few changes to my version, and will talk about that as well.   Second, is my Oslo Cardigan!  I love this also!  I was all set to wear it this week, but as I said earlier, with weather in the 70s, I was sweating as soon as I put it on, lol!

So, overall my month was pretty good!  I am still working on making sewing a daily habit.  And each month I am learning tips and tricks to increase my sewing productivity with my busy, busy life.  I have the mindset that life will NOT get easier, so I have to adapt in order to get things done.

Turning to my sewing plans for November, I am giving my Anorak priority!!!!! I have already started on the pockets, and will be posting updates to my Instagram, as well as the Anorak tab on my blog (see above).  If you are interested in the process, you can follow along with either or those two methods.

The rest of my plans are "nice things I would like to cross off my list for the year."

1. I want to sew for my husband!!!  Yes, Mr. Picky himself!  We have been talking about what he would like, and have settled on a crew-neck, Raglan t-shirt from Ottobre:

2. I really want to sew a pair of overalls for my youngest.  I think he is getting ready to size out of this pattern, so I will have to move quickly, lol!  I already have all the fabric and materials so that is a plus.

3. If you haven't been able to tell, I love Seamworks patterns!  So, naturally,when they released two new patterns for November (and they do every month), I got super excited to make the Sadie, a sweater with pockets and a funnel neck.  It will be another great Fall addition to my wardrobe.

I look forward to showing you my adapted Piedra soon!  I am really wanting to cross off some of my goals for the year, but realize I am running out of time.  So, I will focus on what I can do, and adjust for the New Year.

For now, let's make November a good one!

Stay sew-filled!

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Oslo Cardigan

Hello everyone!

It seems as though, no matter how hard I try, I always end up squeaking in a sewing project that was not in my monthly plan.  In fact, I remember browsing through Instagram, and seeing that Hana from Velvet Ribbon was taking part in the Cosy Cardi Challenge.  I remember wishing I could participate, but due to a full month, decided against it.

Well, a little after I got back from my brother's wedding, I knew I wanted to sew a cardigan for the challenge. And after seeing Hana's lovely cardigan, my mind was made up!  I chose the Oslo by Seamwork patterns because it was a simple garment, AND it was sewn by the Stitch Sisters on Youtube, two of the sponsors for the challenge.  I knew I could get it done in time, and have a good chance of it fitting me really well since I have sewn their pattern before.

And VOILA, here it is:

I decided on a size S with no grading this time.  There was ample ease, so sizing up was not necessary.  My fabric is a sweater knit with a faint chevron pattern.  It is beefy and warm, yet full of stretch (which was a slight issue while sewing).  It was a Fabricmart Fabrics buy from over a year ago.

I don't ever really mention facts about PDF patterns, but this one was only 46 pages.  It covers sizes XS-3XL, and goes together easily.  As far as pattern pieces go, there is a front (2), back (1), sleeves (2), collar (2), and cuffs (2).  My approximate sewing time for this was two hours.  I broke that up into two nights, as I usually try to sew daily, even if it is in a small amount of time.  It was a gratifying sew indeed!
Oslo Cardigan

In the line drawing you can see that there are optional buttons for the front.  I chose to leave the buttons off.  There are also two options for constructing the cuffs.  I picked option 2, which allows you to wear the cardigan cuffed or uncuffed without showing the seam.

The construction was very easy to follow. I mostly sewed this on my own, and only glancing at the instructions a time or two to verify that I was on the right track.  This is a wonderful project for all sewing levels,  since you are creating such a nice piece that will adapt to your wardrobe well.


The fit is also really good!!  Since cardigans are usually roomier, a nice fit is easy to achieve.  I have enough room under my cardigan to wear bulkier garments and still be able to wear the Oslo over it.

I will say that I wasn't too careful about matching up the chevron print, but it still came out great! 

I basted my seams, then serged them.  I also used a stabilizer at the shoulders.  This fabric was pretty stretchy and LOVED to grow on me!  That can be one of the downsides of working with a knit, but I just took a little more (1/2") out of each shoulder seam to compensate.  Next time I may staystitch? Would that even help?  I'll have to reference my fabric resource guide and see what they recommend.

I do think lots of knit fabrics would work well with this pattern, but I do love the appeal of a sweater knit.  I would definitely make MORE!! 

Serging is not necessary, but I love the clean finish!
Yes to cuffs!!!!!
Overall, Seamworks patterns has another winner in my book!  

Stay sew-filled!