What's been happenin' 'round here...

....painting, painting and more painting!  And I LOVE it!  Well, truth-be-told I don't care much for the painting process itself, but the results are worth it.  Our Master Bathroom's ceiling and walls needed a fresh coat of paint.... 
... and thanks to The Project Girl's paint colors I'd pinned over a year ago, we had the perfect wall paint color.... Sherwin William's Abalone.   My little rural town's Ace Hardware does not carry the Sherwin Williams' brand of paint..... and the closest Sherwin Williams is a good ways away..... so I asked if they could mix their Valspar brand of paint to the Sherwin Williams' abalone color I'd fallen in love with.  It was no problem, and this was the best idea because when we needed more paint, it was a mere 5 minutes away to buy more, versus 45+.  I chose the Satin finish for a little sheen. 
Fantastic website about her colors
Sooooo, after the Master Bathroom was done..... Melissa's bathroom was next along with the little hallway leading to her room and bathroom..... and then..... drumroll, please here...... my Sewing Room!!!!   (insert lots of handclapping and hoorays!)  Though along with the excitement, was the STRESS as every.... single.... thing... had to be taken out of the room because the ceilings, as well as the walls, needed to be done.  My sweet husband took it all in stride.  Now I''m at the point where half my stuff is back in and I'm trying to be conscious of what I want to keep and what might need to be pared back.  I do not work well surrounded by lots of 'stuff'.... so when it's all done I'll post finished photos.
Meanwhile, these had been bugging me.... seeing my tuna can pattern weights......
....so using my paper cutter and pretty adhesive paper, these look a lot better.  Took less than 15 minutes.  Geez.
And I finally decided the Rachel Comey Vogue 1247 skirt in a cream corduroy will be my next project.  For some reason I've gone back and forth on this one and finally decided to simply jump in and cut it out.  The only thing I do not understand, is that I wear a size 10 NEWLOOK pattern tops, pants and skirts..... the size 10 Vogue 1247 top was big on me.... but my measurements show I should be cutting out a size 16 skirt?  Really?!  My pattern only goes to a size 12, so I added 1/2" to all the side seams and plan to sew with a mere 1/4" seam allowance and hope to make this work.  Also added 4" to the length.  And took the time to make a master pattern out of interfacing..... of course after I'd cut out the pattern and cut out the fabric.  During that process I began to wonder.... how do others handle their patterns and fabrics?  Do you trace the original pattern and not cut it out?  Do you trace your pattern to the fabric and then cut?  Or do you pin (or use tuna can pattern weights!) the cut-out pattern to your fabric and then cut your fabric out? 
That was probably clear as mud.
Hope everyone is having a good week!


A new slouchy top | NEWLOOK 6246

With temps at 63 degrees F this morning, blue skies and oh-so-bright sunshine, it feels more like Spring than Winter, and my new top fits right in the Spring theme with its soft lavender shade of purple.
From my earlier post you may recall my youngest daughter gifted me with this beautiful, sheer, lavender knit fabric for Christmas.  Did I say it was sheer?!  It is so sheer that even doubling the fabric was still too sheer, so I lined the bodice with a soft white knit from the stash that, with a significant flaw, coupled with too small yardage to make a top on its own, was perfect to line the bodice of this top.  NEWLOOK 6246 view B a slouchy, boxy-shaped 3/4 length sleeve knit top pattern was used.  Cut a size 10, and the only modification I made was to take in a little under the arms' side seams to make it a little less 'boxy-ish'.  I doubled the sheer lavender on the arms and left them un-hemmed.  I like the casual look of the doubled sheer knit 'rolling' slightly there.
The neckline is maybe a little too wide, but is something I can live with.  Used a piece of unlined sheer lavender fabric for the neckline.  I like the contrast of the sheer lavender at the neckline and sleeves against the white knit-lined bodice.... it is subtle yet a little interesting.
This also completes my January 'Make a Garment a Month Challenge'.
Goes perfect with a rtw pair of jeans!  It's that kinda' day!  


A new top in the making

Having thoroughly enjoyed participating in Make a Garment a Month Challenge last year, I am excited to participate again this year and this will be my first 2015 make.... a new top from NEWLOOK 6246.  As you can see from the photo below, I have made the pants before, (you can read all about them here) but not the shirt.  This is a slouchy, 3/4 length sleeve top for stretch knits.
My daughter, Melissa, gave me 2 yards of this beautiful, lightweight, very thin and very sheer soft lavender knit fabric for Christmas and it just seemed 'right' for this shirt.  May I also say, that this soft lavender color is stepping outside my usual 'color' comfort zone but am excited to see (and wear!) the finished top.
Last evening was spent cutting everything out.  The bodice will be lined with a 1 yard remnant of white cotton knit that was flawed in a couple of places, but will be unnoticeable as a 'lining'.  Not having enough of the white cotton knit to also line the sleeves, the lavender fabric will be doubled there.  Even one layer of the lavender was too 'sheer' to think about on my arms, but two layers will be fine.  The slight color/texture difference of the sleeves against the bodice should be interesting..... I hope.  Seams will be serged and the lavender and lining fabrics will be treated as 'one'.
So looks like 2015 is off to a 'brighter' start for my wardrobe with soft lavender!  Happy Sewing Everyone!


2014 Year in Review

2014 was my first full year sewing my clothes and it has been a learning curve year that has brought skill building in many areas, a few frustrations, and much enjoyment.  Participating in 'Make a Garment a Month Challenge' was good for me... to teach me to take the time to plan, as well as keep on track to sew for myself.  It's easy for me to get distracted with home dec projects, projects for my girls, as well as quilts for ministries and family members.  But sew for myself I did and made 20 garments, just for me!  Even though I kept the 2014 Gallery up-to-date, it was still a surprise when the numbers were totaled.  So let's see how that all worked out.  You can find all the project links on the 2014 Gallery page and links in my sidebar.

Pants (elastic-waist) -   5
Tops                         - 10
Poncho                      - 1
Skirts (elastic-waist)   - 3
Knit scarf                    - 1
Total Garments         -20

Sewing for Tom           - 2
Sewing for my girls     - 2
Coat re-fashion          - 1
Home Dec                  - 6
Quilts                         - 3

My favorite tops are definitely the 2 Alabama Chanin inspired tops.  Discovered a love for hand-stitching and though I may be oh-so-slow, it is a process I really enjoy.  Used NEWLOOK 6735 as the base shirt.
Next up, the 4 - Kirsten Kimono Tees that were made.  This is a free pattern from Maria Denmark that makes up quickly into a nice little shirt that goes well under jackets, or on its own.
The Vogue 1247 Rachel Comey top and self-drafted, lined skirt were worn lots even though this top is a little big on me.  When the reviews say a pattern runs big, it runs big and the size 10 swallows me..... but who cares!  It is a great top out of soft, fluid moving fabric and the converging seams matched perfectly.  Plan to make it again soon cutting a size 6 flaring to a 10 at the hem and taking out the big curve at the sides.
Another creative process I enjoyed was copying a rtw inspiration skirt using NEWLOOK 6108 as a start.
Let's see, the self-drafted floaty top has been fun to wear too.
And I continue to love my poncho even more!!!  Ponchos are fun to wear and this one was a fun creative process to make altering the McCall's M6209 pattern to delete the scarf attachment, used selvage edges for the finish, and a biggie...... add flannel lined pockets with a big button!  Gotta' have pockets!  The Shetland Lace Scarf, also in photo below, accessorizes the poncho perfectly.
This was the first time to sew for my husband and will definitely do more for him in the future.
3 quilts were made this year with the biggest project to-date being the Road to Oklahoma quilt for my cousin Clifford.
Participated in Lily Pad Quilting's annual 'Pets on Quilts Show' and my Bugs! a Baby Boy's Quilt won a gift certificate to Abbi May's online store.  The fabric I ordered will be used to make a quilt for my family this year.
Again participated in Gene Black's quilt ministry and donated a strip quilt to be given to a child in a children's home in my home state of Alabama.
During the month of May it was all about Me-Made-May-2014.   So new to garment sewing, this was the first year I could even consider participating, and even though I had many repeats, I am so glad I did.  Ladies around the world, were so nice to this newcomer and so supportive and I learned SO much. 
Taking daily photographs forced me to focus on bettering my photography skills and it was a good chance to go different places to focus on the photography, as well as the garment.
These are the highlights of this past year and am looking forward to 2015.  A few of my plans are to continue to participate in 'Make a Garment a Month Challenge' and another Me-Made-May with hopes to have a few more garments made before then to offset so many repeats.  This will be the year to make quilts for my home and immediate family members, so not sure if there will be time for another Alabama children's home quilt.  Will have to see on that.  Will try to time a quilt to be ready for Lily Pad Quilting's Pets on Quilts show as that was nice to meet other quilters and see their adorable pets.  There are a few home dec projects waiting to be begun with the first being Roman Shades for our hearth room.  Got the material and all the supplies just need to jump in.  Never made roman shades before, so that will be another learning curve to tackle.  My husband's 1947 CJ-2A jeep (it's a guy thing) needs new seat covers/cushions complete with fastening pockets on the back and again, all the supplies and materials are purchased just need to figure where to start with that one.... and hope my machine can handle sewing military weight canvas!  And the biggie..... to continue the learning process of sewing my clothes, figuring out my 'style', what looks best on my body type and what works with my lifestyle.

Happy Sewing 2015 everyone!