Monthly Archives: July 2012

Empire Crossover

In my mission to make a few summer tops before the season is over, I present my latest: Jalie 2804. I originally sewed this pattern up in 2008 and haven’t touched it since so I thought it was high time to put it back into circulation. This time around I used what was left of this paisley jersey and the sleeveless, non-rouched version of the pattern (I think I would have gone for the rouched, but there just wasn’t enough fabric left over to do it).

Overall, this was a great pattern to work with again. It was easy to put together and looks great on (in fact, I like this top so much better than my previous version). My only complaint is that the top gapes open way too much for my taste. Since I didn’t make the modesty panel, I did the second best thing…. I stitch the two panels together where they meet along the seam line. If you look carefully, you might see a bit of pulling in this are when I wear it, but I think in the end it’s 10x better than a ‘wardrobe malfunction’!

In The Mail

Nothing brings more joy to my sewing room like a little brown packages being delivered to my doorstep…. and here’s my latest acquisitions! The first is an awesome Coats & Clark 200th Anniversary tin. Not only is the box adorable (because I’m a sucker for cute tins), but it comes with tons Coats & Clark thread, retro mini-calendars, and an awesome zipper lanyard (confiscated by my teen).

Next up is my Tula Pink Nightshade prize from FreeSpirit’s blog: 6 one yard cuts for this “Halloween themed” collection. I was extremely excited to receive this since this was one fabric grouping that I really fell in love with when I saw it…. plus I even got it in the colorway that I was hoping for! One thing I will say, the ‘witches’ print is much larger than what I expected them to be, so now I’m re-thinking what I might make with it (something large enough that will showcase the print without cutting into the faces)….. I’m thinking a new High Street Messenger or something from The Bag Making Bible might be in order (although I’m up for suggestions if anyone has any ideas!).

Slubbed T

We’ve been on summer vacation for 2 months now. Over the weekend I realized that I’ve sewn very little summer clothes and I had better romp on it before the season is over! I have a number of fabrics that I’ve been holding on to for just this reason so I ‘shopped the stash’ and pulled out a slubbed rayon jersey from Gorgeous Fabrics and Jalie 2805. Since I’ve made this pattern numerous times, I’ll skip the review, but will say that it’s another perfect fitting top and the fabric feels wonderfully comfortable (although note to self, this fabric is sheer enough that I need to wear a tank underneath)…. In fact I love this shirt so much I’m thinking I need to find the right material to make a second. But first, I think I’ll start another top in a different design!

Chiffon Chic

Do you have a fabric that intimidates you? For many of us that material is called “chiffon”: It’s slippery, doesn’t take to pins kindly, ravels easily…. just to name a few issues. However you can take the fear out of sewing with chiffon if you read my latest article (AugustSeptember) in Sew News – on newsstands now! You’ll not only learn tips and tricks when working with chiffon, but finishing techniques, and how to adapt a pattern to make the keyhole top you see on the left. Can’t wait for your issue to make the top? You can get the instructions to make yours here (and if you’re looking for the fabric, it’s currently on sale at Gorgeous Fabrics!

Linky Thursday

A cute way to step out of the shower.

I’m not sure I’d be brave enough to make a home made fabric swing for my little one, but I sure do love the idea!

In Germany, the first day of school is celebrated with “schultute”, beautiful cones filled with gifts. Now you can make your own cone, perfect for any occasion!

Now you don’t have to make a trip to the auto parts store, make a steering wheel cover that fits your mood an personality.

As much as I love my Kitchen Aid Mixer, I don’t use it often enough. Here’s a tutorial to make a cover to keep the dust of until you’re ready to use yours.

There’s something about puffy purses that make me want to sew them up. Here’s a cute one that uses a flex frame.

Make your outdoors just as beautiful as the inside of your home with these Piped Pillows.

Not only can you sew your own baby cake, but these fabric baskets are stackable after the gift is disassembled, too.

You get two dresses for the price of one when you sew up this reversible cutie.

I have a strong desire to buy a plain t-shirt just so I can try out this halter top refashion (and it’s no-sew too). This one (also by the same designer), is pretty awesome too.

No one would ever guess that the Let’s Go to the Park Bag isn’t just a cute handbag, but one that stows away diapers, bottles and other necessities for baby.

Looking to take your iPod with you on your runwalk, but don’t want to wear pockets? Then you’ll definitely want to whip up this easy armband.

A Wedding Set

Do you ever get an idea in your head and you just have to ‘get it out’ (i.e. sew it up) before you can move on to the next project? Such is the case of my latest item… the Blythe Wedding dress. For some reason I was up late one night and decided that the sparkly white cotton I had on hand would make a perfect dress – the next day I headed to Hobby Lobby (which, I have discovered, has the best assortment of trims and ribbons in my area) and loaded up on fun notions. The photo on the right is the end result which I am really pleased with (I even made a tiny little Blythe garter for her to wear under the dress). Whew! Now that it’s off my mind, I can move onto something new… question is, which ‘something new’ should I get to?

Mod Podge Rocks

While sewing projects are constantly on my mind, other crafty pursuits are sometimes more difficult to come up with. Even though I browse local craft stores for new products, I’m not always sure what to do with them. Consequently, when I saw that a new book was out called Mod Podge Rocks!: Decoupage Your World, I knew that I had to check it out. I was lucky enough to not just win a copy of the book from Crafty Modern, but lots of extras too – I honestly didn’t know they made so many types of Mod Podge these days! Overall, I found the book to be helpful in knowing what products to use, when. I also liked that there were numerous tips given throughout the projects that help you achieve more professional looking results. However, I think that a lot of the projects fall flat of ‘impressive’. Maybe it’s because I’ve seen similar items on Pinterest, blogs, etc. for so long that a lot of them didn’t seem novel (my only exception is the jewelry made from Dimensional Magic – a product that seems to produce a resin like finish). That’s not to say I won’t give any of them a whirl – in fact I’m definitely going to try my hand a a few of them and get my feet wet in the world of Mod Podge, but I’m more likely to try out my new found knowledge in recreating some of the inspired projects in the gallery section of the book now that I know what I’m doing!

Keep Calm And Add Sleeves

Last Friday I showed you the stencil…. today I’m showing off the shirt! When I started my swap shirt, I was fairly confident that I could refashion a tee, the stencil was the part I was concerned with. Consequently, I did the hardest part first (that way if I ‘messed up’, I could always go out and get a new shirt and start again) and saved the sewing for last. This was a fairly simple recon – removing the existing sleeves, tracing them off onto a new fabric, and then resewing. Normally, this wouldn’t be a long process, but I spent quit a bit of time trying to make sure the stripes matched and were lined up perfectly. I’m not sure that my partner will notice, but in the end, I will. So I think it was worth it!

Even though I’d love to somehow add some of my partner’s other themes into this shirt, I’m afraid I’ll ruin the cute shirt I already have…. so I’m stopping while I’m ahead. Now to pop this into the mail and send it off!

Keep Calm

Besides the Blythe swap that I entered, I also decided that I Needed A FunkyCool T-shirt, too. Even though partners were given quite awhile ago, I’ve been sitting, mulling over what I might make. I found that if the person I’m swapping with doesn’t have a Pinterest (or similar type site), it’s a lot more difficult narrowing down ideas because I’m not quite sure what their style might be. Initially, I thought I would try to take as many of their interests (we got 6) and mash them all into one design, but it got very complicated very quickly and I never could find all the supplies that I wanted to make the shirt look the way I wanted (I was trying to find those tiny shirt lights, apparently that fad is over). So, instead, I settled on using two… the first portion of the shirt is ‘sewing themed’ – as you can see I made a “Keep Calm and Sew On” stencil (I thought about using a screen print, but the image I wanted to make was actually larger than the size of the YUDU). For the crown, I used a special glue and gold foil then embellished it with rhinestones to give it even more ‘bling’. Overall, I’m pretty happy with the way it turned out – not bad for freezer paper and craft knife!

Linky Thursday

This might be my favorite tutorial of the month: A Wrapping Paper Organizer. Made from a stool, a few casters and a bed sheet. Genius!

There’s been lots of pillow case tutorials floating around the internet lately, but this one, The Magical Pillowcase, really stood out. Their method looks fun and easy and the end result has no seams showing.

Need a new bag for the weekend? This tote promises to be quick to make and cute too boot!

Who say’s heart cut out tutorials have to be just for girls? Just check out this RTW dress for inspiration!

Have to been to a noveltywomen’s accessory store and seen those cute Women’s Emergency kits (I’ve even seen men’s, too)? Here’s how you can make one of your own with a potholder.

Ever wonder how to make a floaty cap sleeve to your top? Learn how here.

I don’t think the infinity dress will ever go out of style. Here’s a quick tutorial on how to make your own, plus lots of photos on how to wear your final design.

Cute little fabric boxes will help keep you organized this summer!

Does your little girl need a new summer skirt? Then be sure to download Figgy’s Flutter Circle Skirt…. I need one in my size.

If you’re starting to think about Christmas gift giving and you have an Avenger’s (or other superhero) fan in your life, be sure to check out this cute and easy Superhero Ornament tutorial.

More than likely you’re tired of coming home with tons of sand at the bottom of your bag after a day at the beach. Make one of these Mesh Screen totes and you’ll come home sand free!

Show someone you love them with this heart-shaped-pouch-mini-tutorial.

I’m not usually one for Keds, but I might wear them if they had some bling.