NEWLOOK 6246 top | a finish

What was thought to be a TNT (tried-n-true) pattern because I'd made it before, became anything but!  Are there any mindless garment sewing projects out there?!
This is NEWLOOK 6246, a slouchy knit top.  When I made it previously I think that particular knit fabric was more soft and stretchy than this knit fabric; so, that may be why that version needed to be taken in under the arms.  When I began this project, I thought that was a standard modification that needed to be made so everything was cut with those alterations in mind.  With this fabric, the fit is a little tight under the arms.  See all the crease marks under and around my arm below.  Because the top's side seams were taken in under the arms, meant also slimming down the armscythes... again, making it a little too snug there too.
The top doesn't really look too bad here....
....but check out this view.  Awful.... just awful.  The underarm fit was manageable, but oh my goodness, the folds of fabric puddling above my hands looks terrible!
Another view here below.  I'm in a relaxed pose and those folds and folds of fabric under my elbows.... well, completely unacceptable.
So, back to the sewing room and using my all-time favorite NEWLOOK 6735, traced the side seam curves onto this shirt..... basted... checked fit.... serged.... and this is it.  Acceptable.  No love.  Just acceptable.  *sigh*  In hindsight, if I'd sewn this pattern straight out of the envelope it probably would've been fine with this particular knit fabric.
From the moment I started sewing this knit, I had a nagging feeling that this was not going to make the shirt I had envisioned.  After I sewed the shoulder seams, it made me think of a nightgown.  Oh great, was I going to feel like I was wearing pajamas ran through my mind.  Then it seemed like an 'old-lady'-ish fabric....  gee, don't want that.  Now this wonky fit.  So.... acceptable. 

The difference is clear with side-by-side photos:  Before, left.  After, right.  Methinks a good exercise program would help these fitting issues too.  :) 
I'll wear this top, but I'm not making it again.... for a while at least.  This completes my March plans for 'Make a Garment a Month Challenge'.
The pattern....
May I also say how beneficial it is to photograph yourself wearing the garment you made.  I tried this on multiple times in my sewing room, checking myself in the full-length mirror, but it wasn't until taking the pictures for this blog post that the fit issue became so clear!  *Shudder* to think I would've worn this out in public if I hadn't been photographing for the blog.

Happy Sewing Everyone!


March 2015 Garment Sewing Plans | and a little project planning tip

St. Patrick's Day today and no green to wear, threads are a' flyin' in the sewing room as I whip up this little 3/4 length sleeve knit top using NEWLOOK 6246, a favorite pattern of mine for both the top and pants.
The knit fabric is a soft mint green with cream swirls, purchased at Hobby Lobby for @$7.00 total.
I've made this top before here, and love it!
Thought I'd show you the notecards I make for every project.  These are 4"x6" index cards and you can see it includes the garment start date, completion date, pattern number, a (rough!) little sketch of what I'm making and all project notes pertaining to the construction, along with a little snippet of fabric.  These are kept in their own separate file box and it's a joy to flip through them occasionally to see what I've made.  Not to mention they're pulled out and referred to when making that particular pattern again.
Now if only our weather will cooperate and give us truly Spring temps.  Today's forecast high is 82 degrees.  That's Summertime to me!

Happy Sewing Everyone!
UPDATE 3.19.2015:  You can read more about the completed top and its process here.  This project was a good example of how using different knit fabrics, sew up into different fitting garments even when using the same pattern.


Vogue 1247 cream corduroy skirt - a very wearable muslin

Our weather has gone from winter to spring/summer almost overnight and there wasn't too many more days corduroy can be worn here in South Carolina, so it was a scramble to get this skirt done to wear to church today.  It's paired with a rtw jacket and top here.
This Rachel Comey Vogue 1247 cream corduroy skirt has been a lesson in perseverance.  It's not the pattern's fault.... it's actually a pretty straight forward fairly easy skirt to make.... it was all in my fabric and fitting my body that was the challenge.
The iconic pockets are such fun! 
The back.  This little rtw jacket works perfectly with this skirt on a couple of different levels.  One, the rust color against the cream corduroy is a nice contrast.... but also this little skirt has horizontal seams across the entire backside, and since my um, er, 'backside' is already a little um, er, prominent.... wasn't sure the seams were what my figure needs.... ya' know.... don't want to bring any more attention to an already troublesome spot :), so the jacket covers it nicely.  Also my zipper wasn't the best zipper application..... so it's nice to know that's kinda' covered too.
This skirt was part of my February Make a Garment a Month Challenge plans, and in spite of the fabric's slight flaw(s) in a couple of places and the fact I completely forgot to take the nap of the corduroy into consideration when cutting out..... decided both those were something only I would probably notice and plan on wearing this skirt with no problem.  Love this pattern!  Already made the cute top here.
Construction details:  Took a little bit more time, but I made a master pattern out of interfacing for this skirt and REALLY like using that so much more than the paper patterns.  My pattern only went to a size 12 and my current measurements put me larger than a 12, so I added 1/2" to side seams of the 12 and added 4" to length.  Sewed/serged with a mere 1/4" seams.  5/8" center back seam and took in a little more at the darts..... particularly the back darts.... and 1/4" on both sides.  I will probably cut the size 12 next time as this one is a little too loose around the waist.  Construction photos show the deleted waistband. 
This skirt has a nice curve to its yoke.... what my figure needs.  The waistband does not.  It is perfectly straight.  I worked many hours on that waistband and it never looked right, so off it came and facings were made.  Because of this change, my skirt sits a little lower than at my natural waist.
Below you can see the facings along with the iconic pockets.  Even though I lengthened the pattern 4", the hem still needed to be negligible.  I'm 5'7".  Made my own bias out of 100% white cotton and hemmed with as little of a turn up as possible.  All seams were serged. 
Back shot.  See the seam line there?  Next time I will delete it and make the back a simple panel.  Someday I hope to learn how to put in an invisible zipper without using an invisible zipper foot.... because I do not have an invisible zipper foot and they are crazy expensive for my machine.  Meanwhile, am content with a regular zipper application.  There's also a little hook and eye at the top.  I have this phobia that without a hook and eye, my zipper will unzip.  Never had that problem... just one of those things I worry about.
By the time I finished this little skirt last night, I wasn't sure if I'd ever make it again.  Now I'm ready to make another!  It is such a fun little skirt to wear!
Now to finish that NEWLOOK 6735 top that's been started and a March garment to think about.  I'm thinking of another NEWLOOK 6246 3/4 length sleeve knit top.

Happy Sewing Everyone!


'Dreaming of Spring' Quilt | Finished!

'Dreaming of Spring' worked its magic as Spring seems to have arrived here, in the Mountains of South Carolina.
And what a pleasure to work on these colors of Spring as the winter storms passed through our area.  Before washing/drying the quilt measured 40 1/4" x 40 1/4".  After washing/drying (as you see here) the quilt measures 38" x 38 1/2".
First time using flannel as a backing and it was no problem at all to quilt.  The flannel was pre-washed and dried prior to sandwiching/quilting.
Washing and drying really brings out the quilting.   Love it!  I could hardly WAIT to see all the quilty goodness.  Kinda felt like Christmas waiting for the dryer to finish its tumble dry cycle.  :)    Everything was machine quilted using either a straight stitch or an elongated running (wavy) stitch.  The new walking foot made the entire quilting process such a pleasure.
For this quilt used a new binding technique that I LOVE!  You can see the video here.  Project Notes:  cut binding strips 2 1/2" wide, sew to front first, no pressing, pin sideways, stitch in the ditch in the front catching the back.  Go slow and this is the best machine stitched binding technique I've found.
Thought you might want to see my 'inspiration'.  This quilt was built around this adorably cute fabric.
One of my pieced blocks show the sky, happy critters frolicking in the green grass, soft earth and daffodils.  The strip representing the 'green grass' was a flannel from my stash that I had wondered why in the world did I buy a solid color green flannel fabric?!   It worked perfectly in this quilt and this piece being flannel adds a bit of texture to the front.  All the other fabrics are 100% cotton and the batting is 100% cotton. 
 Buster was completely unenthused with the outdoor photo shoot....
....and daffodils are my absolutely favorite Spring flower!!!  Love 'em!  Even love the way they smell!
The more quilt projects I complete the more I love quilting!  Already planning the next!  Happy Sewing Everyone!


'Dreaming of Spring' - a new quilt

Can you see the sky, green grass with happy critters frolicking about, soft earth and daffodils?
 'Dreaming of Spring'....
....a perfect winter project.