Apples to apples: M6887

This dress took me a year to finish.

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Last year, I was shopping with two friends for fabric and splurged on a lovely apple fabric. It was a super soft stretch sateen. I’m not sure of the fiber content, but I would guess cotton. What I adored about the fabric was that the apples were all super bright colours on a white background and included a turquoise apple along with the red and yellow varieties you might see in nature. My plan was to use M6887, which was part of last year’s Outfit Along organized by Andi Satterlund and Lauren from Lladybird. I was also going to knit a mint green wrap cardigan, which was also never made due to fitting issues. I think I will make a different cardigan with that yarn, though. Originally that light blue acetate in the picture above was going to be used to line the dress, but I hate lined dresses and cut the lining off after trying it on.

I started off simply enough with a size 22 and then did a FBA of 1.5 inches giving 3 inches extra in the bust area. I decided not to make the version with the back cutout, but instead used the deeper curve for the back on the full back version. I also changed it from a back zipper to a side zipper, because my mobility issues make it very difficult to close a back zipper. Nothing like dislocating your shoulder to make you never want to have a centre back zipper again

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I also made front pockets and put piping in the princess seams on the back, the waist, and on the diagonal front of the pockets. Then I tried it on…and hated it. I unfortunately have no pictures of that. The main issue was no waist definition and that the skirt was hanging weirdly. I think it was due to the stretch in the material and may have been fine in any other material. Or it may not have been. I tossed the dress aside until I could figure out what needed to be done. And there it sat for a year…

When I returned from our honeymoon in May, I cleaned up my stash and resolved to do a few things:

  1. Join the Stashbusting sewalong and pledge to not add to my stash except when buying thrifted fabric (which really is a grab it when you can or you’ll never have another opportunity) or fabric for a specific project that I will immediately use (like the swimsuit fabric I need or other things).
  2. Not buy new patterns unless I know I need it and will actually sew it up. I recently got the prefontaine shorts to fill a need for weekend summer wear. I also got the Siren swim top and sailor bottoms for swim suits.
  3. Finish all my UFOs. My floral linen M6696 was part of that. I still have three Cake Pavlova skirts and a shirt for my husband in my UFO basket.

The whole idea behind doing this is to sew with what I have first and use up the patterns I have had for years first. I’m excited to get some of that done. 😀 So that I can buy new patterns and buy new fabrics! 😀 😀

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We do things to justify the weirdest things in life like eating a salad for lunch to have a cupcake for dinner or walking 6km to a burger joint or for ice cream. I joined the stashbusting sewalong to justify buying more stash eventually. Ha!

I procrastinated on this dress for a while because of the fit issues. Since my smallest part is under my bust, dresses without waistbands tend to hang oddly and they either ride up or just look odd. I need to define that area and give me shape. Waistbands aren’t going to work for everyone. Some find them to be problematic and make the wearer look shortwaisted. Perhaps I do, but I have a short waist anyway so idgaf. I think they work well on me by emphasizing my smallest area and keep the waistline in place as well as make the skirt flow properly.

I had recently done two muslins for the Upton dress (final version still pending…as in not cut out yet…lol) and knew that the waistband for that in size 26 fit me perfectly. So I used that. It was an almost perfect fit for the M6887! I just had to reduce the size of the gores on the skirt back a bit to make it fit. The front was perfect. I attached the waistband on the front and then the back and then sewed up the side seams and then attached the waistband lining. Originally, I forgot to put on interfacing. SMH! But I snuck it in there before finishing up the waistband lining by hand.

Then I had to do the zipper. It took me three hours to put that thing in! My machine would just stop feeding in the middle of it. Not because of bulk or threads jamming, but it would just stop feeding for no reason. I still need to clean it out and wish for the best. I plan on saving up money for a new one in the new year. I then tried handpicking the zipper and had the worst time getting things right. It was like I couldn’t make my hands work so I went back to the machine and then had to unpick a bunch of stuff after to hide all my mistakes. The zipper is far from perfect, but it got in after three hours.

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Ugh. I’m not a fan of zippers anyway. I very much prefer buttons or a dress that you can put over your head. In terms of sewing, zippers are a huge weakness in my skill set. I need more practice for sure, but, of course, I keep choosing patterns without zippers to avoid it entirely. I can sew up a bra, but a zipper gets me sweating. It’s probably not helping that I need side zippers and prefer lapped zippers…. I’m just making it harder on myself. I know it will get better, but man zippers!

Anyway, I had zipper success and then let my dress hang up for about a week to let the skirt settle. Of course, I could have just left it for a few days or even 48 hours and gone back to it, but I was procrastinating again…

I needed to fix some excess fabric in the princess seam and trim off the armholes and shoulders. I’d already made the length from the bust to the shoulder shorter, but it needed some better shape to it. I fixed the shoulder/armhole shaping first:

What a fix. Then I let it sit for a few more days before I unpicked the princess seams. To be fair, I was really busy last week with the Fringe Festival and my improv show’s fundraiser to get to Winnipeg for C4 and performing for William Shatner! (What!) I also just did not want to sew. I have not wanted to sew all summer. Maybe it’s my recent diagnosis. Maybe it’s my pain levels. It was for sure the horrible allergies I have right now. Nothing like stopping sewing to sneeze ten times in a row. It may have been the heat in Toronto. I think, though, it was that the dress had sucked my soul out and I didn’t want to touch it again for fear of losing my soul completely. HA!

But I returned to it on Friday and finished it on Saturday before another Fringe show and wore it out that night. I got a lot of lovely compliments. Although I was so doped up from allergy medication that I barely responded.

Now that I am done this UFO, I adore the dress, as I knew I would. I mean, come on, that fabric is adorable! Behind all the cuteness of it, is the harrowing story of a seamstressing out.

The pattern itself is actually quite good. It was easy to alter for an FBA and, once I transfer all my changes while sewing it up to paper, should become a favourite of mine. I think it looks incredible on me and I love the changes I made with the front pockets and then lower back, as well as the side zipper. The instructions for the pattern are typical of McCall’s. You need some sewing experience to tackle a pattern like this, but you can also search for tutorials. I tend not to look over sewing instructions anymore unless I am testing the pattern or there is a technique I am unfamiliar with and then I tend to also google tutorials. Thank goodness for google.

I didn’t line the dress as the pattern calls for. Even self-lining drives me nuts when I wear it. I prefer unlined dresses and then I finish the seams. Of course, I didn’t finish the seams in this dress… I would normally serge the edges or using pink sheers. I pinked the front princess seams and the pocket seams, but nowhere else. The neckline and armholes are finished with mint bias tape using the same colour fabric as the pockets. The pocket fabric in the front is a bit sheer for my liking and would have benefited from a double layer or from being underlined in white cotton. It doesn’t really bother me though. There is a bit of an issue with bust pulling due to the differences in the stretch cotton versus the non-stretch cotton and bulk from the piping. Those issues as well as some pulling the armhole would disappear with a more stable fabric. The pains of using a fabric because it’s pretty!

My only annoyance with the dress now is that the hem flips up in the wash and I actually have to *gasp* iron it! I hate ironing. I will press like crazy when I making something but after….ugh. Ironing is so annoying when it isn’t related to sewing. Related, I did not iron this before taking pictures. I wore it at work and was sweaty from hot summer weather!

M6887 Apple dress

M6887 Apple dress

M6887 Apple dress

M6887 Apple dress

M6887 Apple dress

M6887 Apple dress

TL:DR Review

  • Pattern: M6887
  • Pros: Lovely fit and flare design. Easy to fit princess seams.
  • Cons: Like with most plus sized patterns in 90% of the patterns out there, the shoulders are ridiculously huge and wide. I know there are people out there with wide shoulders, but I am not one of them and I don’t really know anyone with that wide of shoulders. Somewhere in between would be nice…
  • Make again?: Yes. I would make it again exactly as it without any further alterations. It’s really a gorgeous dress and flatters me quite a bit. I don’t think I will ever try the version with the back cutout as much as I like it.
  • Rating: pink-star-black-mdpink-star-black-mdpink-star-black-mdpink-star-black-mdwhite-star-black-md4/5 stars

 

That feeling when…

…you are just ready to hibernate and it’s not even winter yet…

So far June has not been good to me!

I began gardening the back patio planter and then came out the day after I got the soil perfect on one side of the planter to this destruction on that very same side:

Planter destroyed!

That hole is through to my neighbor’s patio and all the soil and rocks for drainage is now under HER patio. Great fun. She is having her patio redone and the people doing it ripped it out and destroyed that portion of our fence/ planter. So bye bye newly rejuvenated soil and a bunch of rocks for drainage!

As I was doing that side, there were a ton of roots that I dug out. Turns out a tree is growing off the patio into the property behind us, which is a store. You can’t see a lot through the fence so it just looked like a tree on the other side, but it’s coming out of our planter and is making a nice big hole in it. Fun times.

Bad things come in three… The faucet for the hose in the back needs a part replaced as well before I can use it. For now, I am carting water back and forth from the kitchen. When my landlady replaces that and the hose is on, I can also wash the deck.

I scrapped my idea of having a nice garden in the planter this summer and will focus on it next year. The fence will be fixed and the soil replaced by the builders next door. They promised me and my landlady and best follow through… Then my landlady will have to negotiate the tree removal with the store behind us to get it removed. By-laws in Toronto are pretty strict about a tree crossing property lines. I figure it will take a while to get it out and get the roots removed. Then the faucet will be fixed.

Gardening

I put all the plants into pots and used the soil from the planter since I will need to remove it anyway to get the root system out. I posted a photo and Megan had some great tips on adding interest with levels since all her plants are in pots around her house. For now the recycling bin and other plant pots are temporary. I’m going to keep an eye out for pallets and cinder blocks and curb side tables for better looking things to put the pots on. I already found two steal plant pots. I also thought up some other great ideas and hope to eventually have lots of flowering plants, herbs, and ivy, etc. I will put everything in pots this summer and then maybe next summer I can refocus on the planter. That deck area may also need to be replaced next summer, too. Such a bummer.

I am not a fan of the back patio, but am really determined to make it into something lovely where I want to hang out back there. It may be a place that we rent, but it’s our home and I love every other part of it. Our landlady treats us like family, as well, and I really can’t imagine living anywhere else in Toronto. I got the patio furniture all cleaned up and ready for sangria back there. It’s slowly coming together. The plus side of planting so late is that you can get a ton of discounted plants right now! They will be a little worse for the wear in some cases, but can come back without too much trouble.

Patio furniture

Other than the patio nightmares, I’ve had horrible health! The weather went from 30 degrees to 15 degrees and then back up to 20/22 degrees celcius. I got a week of migraines last week as a result and my allergies are nuts right now. My shoulder is still bothering me and my lower back is now too.

I sound like doom and gloom right now. I’m planning on taking some mental and physical health time and treating myself to quiet nights at home. I also decided not to participate in Indie Pattern Month over at the Monthly Stitch. I love it. Last year, I wasn’t able to participate because it was the month before my wedding and I had planned out several things for it this year. But it wasn’t to be. My serger broke and that cost a mint meaning I couldn’t buy the fabric I needed for the swimsuit I had planned in conjunction with CSC’s swimsuit sewing month. All plans out the window!

I was in the middle of working on a Cashmerette Concord Tank top when my serger broke. I did manage to get it done on my sewing machine, though. I made two Concord Tank tops:

Concord Tank top!

Concord Tank top!

Nothing much to say about what I did here. I didn’t add sleeves. Made bands for the armhole instead. The pineapple top was cut a bit more narrow in front to get it to fit on the fabric and I think it worked out a bit better for the cotton lycra. The cherry top was a bit wider and didn’t need to be narrowed, but I think the fabric actually needs a size down due to stretch. I still love both tops. Used the same size as before and serged the raw hem.

While my serger was being repaired by Sewing World (took all of 48 hours btw. And incredible customer service so I recommend them as a repair shop. They are also a Janome dealer so they might be the place I go when I am ready to buy a new sewing machine), I reorganized my fabric stash and managed to fit it all into my cupboard again!

The sewing craze before our honeymoon really helped my stash go down. I worked a bit on a muslin for an Upton dress. My size is all over the map right now so two muslins later and still no good fit. It’s all my error with choosing a size, though.

I went through my UFOs since the reorganization meant they weren’t covered in fabric and found a vintage floral linen M6696 from last year that got tossed aside during the wedding and post-wedding blahs.

 

I finished the vintage floral linen M6696, though! I’ve made the pattern several times before.

Vintage Floral Linen M6696

Look at those lovely vintage buttons! And look at it on me!

Vintage Floral Linen M6696

I remember doing an extra inch FBA on this bodice last year and I need another one this year. The waistband was also increased by an inch. I just put in the collar stand and not the collar. I like the look. I made shoulder tabs, too, but neglected to take a picture of them. They are orange and have green flower buttons on them. Pretty cute. The sewing on the tabs isn’t the best, though.

I also found my failed apple print M6887 dress and plan on tackling that again, too. It’s so pretty, but just didn’t look good on me. I’ve taken apart and plan on adding a mint waistband. The apple material is slightly stretchy so using a stable non-stretch cotton will help it look better at the waist. I’m also trying to figure out how to add more volume to the skirt, but I will first bast it on the waistband and see if that improved the look on me. I have only a metre left of the fabric. Luckily, the bodice fits quite well. No alterations there.

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After the apple print M6887 dress is done, I think I might revisit M7084, which was the pattern I used for my wedding dress. I plan on going with the same length from my wedding dress and sleeveless, but I think I will add a waistband since it really cinches me in at my underbust and I find the look flatters me. I will also be tackling my Upton dress again and making a muslin for the Decades of Style ESP dress since I have some lovely Wonder Woman fabric from Tanya that I need to sew now! I also have some awesome nerdy Hello Kitty fabric from Alicia that might also become an ESP dress.

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It’s a summer of dresses! I have many other plans, but for now all I can focus on is making all the dresses.

Who else feels like making all the dresses?

 

And now back to our regular programming… Striped Simplicity 1459

Now that the wedding is over, I can write about sewing again and get back to reviewing patterns, sewing favourites, and musing on sewing in general without the focus of the wedding for every project.

Of course without any time constraints, I haven’t been sewing! I’ve been hanging out with my husband. 😀

I have some deadlines coming up for some challenges. The Outfit Along ends at the end of the month. I haven’t even muslined the dress and I am only five inches into my Embrace knit wrap. Along with this, I could be taking part in the Bra-a-Week challenge (I have some bra fabrics on the way!) or the Sundress sew-a-long (I haven’t even settled on a pattern for this one)…or sewing up the three projects I have already cut out… (two Jenna cardis and another M6696). Nope. Hanging out with my husband and cuddling him like crazy.

Lucky for you, I have a project kicking around from the end of May to blog about! Phew!

I got the fabric for my dress back in May during a thrift store visit and basically made the dress in the same week. The fabric is actually an Ikea duvet cover and had the stripes on both sides, which means double the fabric. There were two colourways and I kick myself for not picking up the blue/green colourway as well. I call that thrift store regret. I often leave things behind and then dream about them later for weeks. I usually go back the next day in these circumstances, but the thrift stores get cleaned out of the good stuff pretty often. I never got the blue/green colourway, sadly. 😦

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I’ve always wanted a horizontal striped dress, but I wanted multicoloured crazy stripes like the duvet. I love all stripes, but really love the multicoloured stripes. I also want more orange and yellow in my life. They are colours that just make me happy, but I know they don’t look right next to my face so the other colours worked well to keep the yellow/orange away from my face.

Really this dress was all about the stripe location and I spent about two hours deciding on where to place things before cutting it out. I held it up to my body. I looked in the mirror. I wrapped it about like a toga. I twirled in it. I cocooned myself in the fabric and thought long and hard. Okay, I spent more time playing than anything else. 😛 Do you ever just play with fabric? I can’t be the only one?!

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I made the dress using Simplicity 1459 for the bodice. I left the collar off the dress and simply sewed the facing to the wrong side of the bodice and turned and pressed. In order to not have the facing issue that I had with my gingham version, I used fusible webbing to prevent the facing from turning up at the back. I also used it in a couple of locations at the front to ensure the facing laid flat. It also really helps maintain the shape of the neckline since the fabric is super soft. For the skirt, I cut out a rectangle and just gathered the skirt for a basic skirt. I made fabric-covered buttons using the orange and pink stripes so they were consistent in all the buttons. I didn’t want to worry about the buttons turning about and the stripes not matching up correctly. I stripe-matched on the side seams and the front bodice. I think I did an okay job. It’s off by a millimeter here or there, but overall pretty good. Like the gingham version, I finished the armholes with self-made bias tape. I also put in a short side zipper, which I installed by handpicking, and side-seam pockets.

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I also made a matching band for a new hat I got:

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Hahha, such a nerd.

I chose to have the white stripes go across my chest and the orange stripes across my waist. This worked perfectly and gives the dress a wicked shape for my body. I’ve been wearing this dress constantly since I made it. It’s extremely comfortable due to the lack of a waist band.The fabric is so soft, too. It’s 100% cotton, but the cotton feels brushed and lovely. It’s like wearing around a comfy duvet cover all day…wait… it’s literally that. 😉

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I wore the dress for Me-Made-May, our Stag and Doe, and for our minimoon in Niagara Falls. A T-rex invaded my personal space to tell me she liked my dress.

The only issue with the dress is that the neckline doesn’t quite sit flat at my cleavage line when I am sitting forward. It’s a little baggy there and the v-neck sometimes gaps. It doesn’t bother me, though, since it still provides enough coverage that I don’t need to worry about flashing people. Just means I need to stop slouching!

Here is my much-delayed photoshoot:

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Spring Sewing Round up + Summer Sewing Plans

It’s a week before the weddddding!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Yeay!

I also recently got this lovely bundle in the mail from Jenny at Cashmerette!

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She had a giveaway on her blog and I won it. 😀

I think the panel of fabric is screaming to become a cute mini-quilt for a wall hanging.

Okay, excitement is high here, but I do have some Summer sewing plans for after the wedding and wanted to post a roundup of my Spring sewing.

Spring Sewing Roundup

1. Outerwear:

I made two M7100 bomber jackets as planned (click the pictures for links to the entries):

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And spent most of the Spring wearing them every day. We have had a strange Spring here. Usually by this time in Toronto, we have weather that is over 20 degrees and less rain. This Spring is weather anywhere between 10 degrees and 30 degrees and tons of rain. It’s crazy. I never know how to dress so having these jackets is perfect.

2. Men’s clothes:

I want to formally apologize to my husband-to-be for neglecting him yet again in this area.

3. Dresses:

I made a few dresses:

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I haven’t blogged about the striped dress yet. I keep spilling coffee on myself before I get pictures taken! At this point, too, it’s definitely going to be a post-wedding entry…

I never made anything for Indie Pattern Month, sadly. Oh well, I’ll be able to participate next year. Not the million dress I planned, but enough.

I also made my wedding dress, but you have to wait until July to see that.

I made a flower girl dress. So cute! Not my size, though. 😉 Darn.

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4. Tops:

I didn’t make the top I planned (M7094) but I did make two JVL Bronte tops:

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5. Lingerie

I made two bras from my cloned Elomi bra pattern!! Neither of these are blogged about, but I will be doing that before the wedding.

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Summer Sewing Plans

1. Outerwear:

I did not get to the raincoat with the Spring sewing, but I will get that raincoat made this summer. I didn’t get to it, because of a minor alteration on the sleeves and basically just wanted to sew up projects I knew would be easy. As a reminder, these are the fabrics and the pattern I plan to use:

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M6517:

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I decided to sketch it out for fun!

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I’m using my Curvy Sketchbook from Cashmerette.

2. Men’s clothes:

I swear I will get this done. I already have the first version cut out in a black cotton. It will be Simplicity 1544:

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View A with just the collar stay and not the full collar in black cotton from a local store.

Other than that, I am making him some boxer shorts, but I will not be posting them here. I can post my underwear without issue, but not other people’s.

3. Lingerie:

On the heels of two more successful bras, I want to make all the bras! I have enough of the fuchsia duoplex to make another bra and this time I will be using pink and purple elastics/findings. I will also be making two in turquoise fabric. One is planning with white lace and blue elastics/findings. I have yet to find a lace for the second version, but I am leaning toward hot pink or something else crazy and loud with black elastics/findings. Black powernet for both. Although, I might “harvest” my first bra for white powernet for the turquoise bra, but I haven’t decided yet. I may also just get some white powernet since I need more underwires anyway.

Here are some of my fabrics:

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I also have plans for some funky strapping across the front of the fuchsia one, like this bra:

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The straps would replace the stretch lace in the upper cup… We’ll see if that ends up being something I make… Or even something that will work…

4. Dresses:

Now that it is summer. I want to make all the dresses ever. I have started sketching a couple with my Curvy Sketchbook.

a) B6210 in the same stripe fabric as I’ve used before:

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b) For the Outfit Along, I am planning to make the Embrace wrap cardigan in a mint green wool/acrylic blend from Ice Yarn and M6887 in a lovely apple fabric with a light blue lining and mint green bias tape accents:

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The knit wrap cardigan is the Embrace pattern. It’s available for free on Ravelry.

c) Decades of Style ESP Dress in Wonder Woman fabric:

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d) Muse Patterns’ Melissa dress in a mint green floral print with forest green accents on the front v pockets and the sleeves, and an ivory lace insert on the back V:

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e) I currently have another M6696 all cut out and ready to be sewn using these fabrics and buttons:

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The plan for this is to have sleeves that turn up with a cuff and button tabs with the green flower buttons. We’ll see if that works out! 🙂

5. Shorts:

I don’t really know whether this will happen or not. To be honest, I almost didn’t put it on the list, but if I try this and fail, I still want to write about what happened. I’m not a fan of shorts or pants. You see me wear leggings with dresses and I get by okay all year round. The thickness of the leggings just change based on the weather.

I’m not sure of the pattern. I know I want them to be bermuda length (knee-length), though, anything shorter and I won’t feel comfortable wearing them. I have Green Style Taylor Shorts and Ginger Jeans in my pdf patterns. I also have M5894, a jeans pattern, in my paper pattern stash and that one is the closet in terms of sizing for me. I just discovered a new pattern that is yet to be released from Itch to Stitch called the Angelia Shorts. I saw a version over on the Monthly Stitch and really loved them. They aren’t really in my size range, though. I like the idea of adapting M5894 into a bermuda length with a draw string and making them in a lightweight pant material. We’ll see what happens here. If anyone knows of a pattern like the Itch to Stitch that is in a 24W or higher (there are tons with an elastic waist, but that isn’t what I am looking for at all), please let me know!

I have no sketches of this yet as I am just mulling it over…

6. Swimming:

This venture really depends on whether I can find a good swimsuit fabric that I like. I haven’t found any yet; although, I can make the first version in cheap fabric to check fit and figure the bra issue. I will be making B5795 in view B for the top and view F for the bottoms:

B5795B5795 bottoms

The bottoms will be made in a solid colour, because I want to make a few and have them interchangeable for the tops. I would also like a few bottoms in boy shorts, too. The tops are going to be prints with the princess seams on the front in solid colours. There will also be a foam bra insert using my bra pattern so I will be changing the back a little bit so it dips lower and has an elastic band and a swim clasp.

I’ve sketched out the concept here:

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The bottoms have drawstring ties in the picture. Not sure if I want to do that yet.

Along with swimsuits, I also have plans for a swim cover up, using the free Medina mini-kaftan pattern from Hot Patterns on fabric.com I’d like it in the white island breeze gauze on fabric.com for the main fabric and a fluorescent cotton for the contrast. A store near me sells a few fluorescent cottons that I want to snag for this. I’m thinking hot pink for the neckline and orange or yellow for the sleeves/bottom. I love colour blocking like that, because I know the orange/yellow won’t work near my face in terms of my complexion, but it will be fine on the sleeves or bottom of the cover up.

hot patterns

I plan on going to the aquatic centre near my home for a drop-in class of aquafit or for the non-lane swim times. My post-wedding plans are to increase my fitness in low-impact ways. So that means yoga, swimming, light stretching at home, and some strength training at home, too. With my fibromyalgia, I can’t really do anything that leads to a flare up so that means I do smaller things and get fit in different ways.

I find it funny that most people try to lose weight for a wedding. How can anyone handle that with all the other stress? I plan on focusing on getting fit after the wedding. 🙂 I’m not purely focused on losing weight, but more on making sure I am getting my body to a better place in fitness. Not being in pain all the time will hopefully be a result of this.

I could write out more that I want to sew, but I’m trying to limit my planning a bit more. I tend to be pretty ambitious. I also want to focus on slower projects and make interesting details for them.

What are your summer sewing plans?

Winter Round-up and Spring Sewing plans

Winter Round Up

Well, the rest of winter went by super fast and I wasn’t in the sewing mood for most of it. Let’s see how I achieved my objectives for the sewing categories I set out in my Winter Sewing Plans:

1. Underwear:

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I managed to clone my Elomi bra. I also this weekend tried Seamwork’s Florence lounge bra pattern. I will talk about it in a separate post. I also made another pair of underwear from my self-drafted pattern. I compared it to Seamwork’s Geneva knickers pattern, but found that the pattern ran very large for me and decided to go with my own pattern instead.

2. Outerwear:

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I made Golden Rippy’s Omega Angel Jacket and M6614, my Hello Kitty hoodie.

I did not get to making my raincoat M6517.

3. Skirts:

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I made my Tenterhook Patterns’ Snapdragon skirt in pink denim.

I haven’t blogged about them yet, but I made 2 dirndl skirts and have 2 more cut out and ready to go. I’m planning on blogging all four together to talk about the techniques I used for them and to not bore you with several posts of the same skirts. I’m hoping to get them done this week, though.

I did not get around to making a Sewaholic Hollyburn or a Bluegingerdoll Betsy skirt.

4. Men’s Clothes:

My poor understanding fiance. I have neglected this category completely.

5. Dresses:

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I made a Bluegingerdoll Violet Dress in snake print jersey with red accents.

I did not get to the Burdastyle tunic.

6. Tops:

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I made one white Jennifer Lauren Vintage Bronte top.

No Sewaholic Oakridge blouse, no M6649, and no M7094.

All in all, I did something in almost every category, but not everything. It was my goal to hopefully make something in every category, but not my goal to achieve everything. Planning posts are meant to direct me a little and inspire my sewing.

That being said, I am going for less ambitious plans for Spring sewing this time. We’re in full wedding planning mode and my desire to cuddle my fiance in the evening is stronger than my desire to sew right now.

Spring Sewing Plans:

1. Outerwear:

I swear I will get that raincoat made sometime this year. As a reminder, these are the fabrics I plan to use:

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Pattern M6517:

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I also want to make M7100:

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I have a major lack of Spring coats for weather that is in between. I plan on making this jacket twice in two fabrics with black rib knit and metal zippers:

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I bought the black/white fabric at the thrift store and the floral denim was from Joann fabrics. The black/white is actually a very small houndstooth with a loose weave and feels like cotton. I am pretty sure it will fray like crazy so I need to figure out how to line the jacket.

2. Men’s clothes:

I swear I will get this done. I plan on cutting out the first one this weekend. I have narrowed down the pattern to Simplicity 1544:

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View A with just the collar stay and not the full collar in black cotton from a local store.

3. Dresses:

Well, number one here would be my wedding dress, which I plan on posting in a few stages: planning, construction, and then the reveal, which won’t be until July…. Sorry! Want my dress to be somewhat of a surprise for my family. 🙂

Other than that, I am shifting my Winter plans of sew all the skirts into Spring plans of sewing all the dresses. I don’t plan on making any more skirts until after the wedding, but I love Spring for wearing bright colours and gorgeous dresses.

Surprise! I want more M6696 shirtdresses. You’ve seen my other versions:

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Well, now I want to create a Spring version using these complementary purple prints:

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I have a few printed fabrics, including an amazing Wonder Woman fabric that Tanya sent me:

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I want to make them into simple dresses that don’t hide the prints: darted bodice and gathered skirt. I tried to find a simple darted bodice in my stash, but sadly wasn’t able to find one that I liked. The plan is to create a muslin with the bodice of Lekala’s free dress pattern #8000 and then add a gathered skirt to it. Instead of the back zipper, I will be making a side zipper and in-seam pockets. I’ve done this twice with my dirndl skirts. I like the look of the Lekala bodice, but it will be needing some fitting tweaks to work for me. Luckily, it’s just the bodice that I will need to fit. I will probably need to lengthen the bodice as I don’t feel like Lekala really accounts for the extra fabric needed to get around huge boobs.

I still want to make the Burda tunic dress:

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I also want to make Simplicity 1459:

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I really love Tanya’s versions of this and have been wanting to make this for a while. I have two fabrics for two versions; a lovely white and navy gingham cotton and white and blue polka dot cotton:

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Finally, I’d like to make another Muse Pattern’s Melissa dress using the final version of the pattern, but I don’t have any appropriate fabrics for it yet. I’m hoping for a sweet thrift store score sometime for that.

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4. Top:

Only one top planned. The same M7094 from the Winter plans:

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With this fabric:

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I managed to pick up this drapey hunter green polyester crepe at the thrift store and there is more than enough to make view B with the button tabs, but with the tunic length/shaped hem from view D.

5. Lingerie

I plan on making another cloned Elomi bra with the changes I noticed from wearing the previous version. Here are my fabrics:

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I am also planning out more underwear to finally write up the post on that. I have some more tweaks and learning from the version I made this weekend. My fabrics are all scraps for that from previous projects or clothes that I am deconstructing so I am not going to post them. You’ll just have to wait for the finished versions.

Those are my plans from now until June 21st. Less ambitious from my Winter plans or more depending on your view…? What are your plans?

Winter Sewing Plans

Lately, I am sewing a ton, but barely have time to take pictures for the blog. I have to this week as the deadline for Fall of 1000 Shirt Dresses is looming and I have another M6696 to share. It’s seasonally inappropriate, but very cute. Tomorrow I will take a bunch of pictures for a slew of posts.

Today, let’s talk winter sewing plans. I am a little late on this as winter officially started on the 21st of December and it’s now mid-January, but I figure better late than never, right? These are my plans until spring starts on March 20th. I like planning posts, because they tend to keep me on track in terms of focus. While I don’t always keep to the goals, it definitely keeps me somewhat on course. These plans are also meant to keep my eye on the stash  (patterns and fabric) and make sure I sew from that (except for wedding dress purposes and gifts) until after the wedding in July or until I run out of my stash (wouldn’t that be crazy?!). I have to curb my spending and toss my poor credit card in the freezer.

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I’m going to cover categories and talk about what patterns I intend to sewing in each. I’m also looking forward to Spring with some of these and sewing a bit for that. Although, it’s still cold here in Toronto so I am not sure how much sewing I will get done for the next season before it’s suddenly here! You’ll notice that the wedding dress is missing from these plans. I have a separate post planned for that when I talk about the muslin process.

1. Under where? Under there! Oh! Underwear: 

I love lame jokes. Sorry not sorry. I need new lingerie: bras, panties, a leather corset. Er…..I don’t need that last one…until the wedding night! Hahaha! Kidding, kidding.

Bras:

Now that I have made my first bra, I am excited to get the fit right for the second and other versions. The pattern will be the Classic Full Band Bra by Pin up Girl patterns, like my first one. I have some fitting changes from the first bra and I plan on changing the wires out from what the first bra had. I have to make a visit to Bra Maker’s Supply in Hamilton for this and exchanging the underwires, as well as getting more fitting tips from Beverly Johnson. I will also be picking up fabric for the undergarments for the wedding and some additional bra making supplies. I have set a budget for this and intend to only purchase within the budget.

Emerald Erin has an awesome bra a week challenge for this goal. While I don’t plan on participating every week, I will get a few bras done and send pictures to her. I have far too many things I want to sew to make tons of bras, but I will happily be sewing a few of them this season.

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After another boring white bra, I will be using these lovely fabrics:

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Underwear: 

I bought a lot of fold-over elastic and stretch lace for these purposes:

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The knit remnants in my stash will be perfect for this, too, as underwear doesn’t require a lot of fabric and several of the knits I have in my remnants will work very well for underwear. Nothing like using up the scraps for projects.

I have made a pattern for this using my best fitting underwear:

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We’ll see how the first pair goes. I will likely need to make adjustments for it and then I should have a perfect pattern.

2. Outerwear: 

Raincoat M6517:

For about a year now, I’ve had hot pink nylon fabric and clear vinyl with a pink swirl pattern on it:

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I searched for the perfect pattern for a vinyl coat and came across M6517. I ordered a teflon foot for my sewing machine after the horror of sewing the pleather for my coat. Plans are to cut the nylon into bias strips and use it to bind the seams as I sew for a perfect finish. I hope it goes well… I’ve always wanted a raincoat like this. I’m a little upset that the view they show for the clear vinyl doesn’t have a hood. I may have to add one since the pattern includes a hood. I have to look more closely at the pattern and decide whether it is a simple tweak or I will need to create a muslin. The coat is a loose fit so I wasn’t planning on a muslin for it.

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Knit Jackets:

I am currently finishing up a hoodie using M6614. It’s a very basic hoodie pattern.

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I’ll leave the previews to my Instagram account. There were some issues in the construction that will mean some pointing/blaming fingers at McCall’s. If you have this pattern and are thinking of making it up in the larger sizes, you may need to order a longer zipper unless you want to make alterations to the length or the neckline. Also, size way way down. WAY DOWN. The hoodie is maaaaaaasssssive.

My other plan is to make Golden Rippy’s Omega Angel Jacket.

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I’m going to do a slight FBA on the princess seams, because my black contrast sweatshirt fleece has very little stretch. These are the fabrics I am using:

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I picked up the blue sweatshirt fleece from a thrift store and the black sweatshirt fleece and ribbing is from Joann’s.

I love all the seam details in this pattern and am excited to try it out. This and the other hoodie are perfect for transition weather in the early spring. I will probably wear them well into the summer, too.

3. Skirts: 

Dirndl Skirts:

I plan on self-drafting a pattern, but if you want a pattern that goes up to many sizes, check out the Margo skirt from Style Arc:

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You can make a dirndl skirt easily using two rectangles of fabric for the front and back, and one smaller rectangle for the waistband. I am adding pockets as well and I have a self-drafted pocket that I use. You base the size of the waistband rectangle on the width of where you want the skirt to sit (plus seam allowance and any overlap for a button or hook) and then your front/back is much wider than that. The amount of width is based on how gathered and full you want your skirt to look. Gertie has a tutorial that adds 25 more inches to the skirt pieces than the waist pieces for a total of 50 inches of extra material around. This will likely be a good amount of gathers around. Of course, you can add more or less depending on how full your skirt is… or you can get the Margo skirt and not have to think about it at all!

I have a bunch of floral fabric planned for these skirts and one plaid:

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Sewaholic Hollyburn:

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I have been wanting to make this skirt for a really long time, but putting it off due to having to create a muslin, as well as grading up the pattern several sizes. I have two fabrics planned for this skirt:

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The one on the right is dark navy blue, but looks black in this photo.

Bluegingerdoll Betsy:

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I am continuing my quest for a pencil skirt and am excited to try this pattern. I might need to make some adjustments to this pattern and will definitely be creating a muslin.

Tenterhook Patterns’ Snapdragon:

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Another pencil skirt pattern. I really love the two faux wrap styles and am excited to see how it works out in the muslin process.

For Besty and Snapdragon, I have some potential fabrics, but no firm plans and they all depend on which skirt pattern I like the most:

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One of the three skirts will be the skirt I make using this magenta jean fabric for the Monthly Stitches’ jeans challenge with the bonus pink challenge achieved:

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4. Men’s clothes: I am so selfish in my sewing and very prone to promising stuff for my fiance and not delivering on it. I have stash fabric already purchased and need to sew him some button up shirts for work in the next few weeks or else!

Shirts:

I have three potential pattern for a nice button down shirt for him:

Simplicity 1544:

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I’m not super thrilled with this one, but I do like the cuffs on it best out of the three. I do like the Western-styled version of the shirt, but I don’t think my fiance will love it.

Simplicity 2741:

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Bonus of this pattern, is the included boxer shorts and vest pattern. I doubt I will make the vest, but the boxer shorts will definitely get made. I may not share the finished version on here, though. I can show my underwear, but my fiance’s is a whole other thing.

The shirt pattern itself had some nice pleats on the back, but isn’t much different from the other Simplicity pattern.

McCall’s 6932:

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This one is probably better for more casual shirts than work shirts. I do like the pleat on the back, but am not thrilled that there isn’t a separate button band and the collar is different.

I figure I will create a muslin of all three and let my fiance decide, since he is the one wearing them.

Right now, I just have two black fabrics picked out for him. I’ll spare you a boring black fabric picture. I hope to get some nice cotton shirting from local stores.

5. Dresses:

I’m actually not really in the mood to make dresses lately, but have two planned out.

Bluegingerdoll Violet:

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I have two fabrics for this and plan on creating this for Jungle January:

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The red is the remainder from my Wonder Woman outfit and the snake print jersey is a thrift find.

BurdaStyle Printed Tunic (01/2013 #133A):

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Tanya made a gorgeous version of this as a dress and I’ve wanted to make it ever since. This will be lengthened into a dress and made in a light blue fabric that I picked up in a thrifting adventure:

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6. Tops

With skirts, there must be tops and I have a couple planned.

More Jennifer Lauren Vintage Bronte’s:

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Since I loved the top I made for my Wonder Woman outfit so much and have worn it a bunch since, I have three others planned in these fabrics:

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Sewaholic Oakridge Blouse:

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I really liked the Granville shirt, but the Oakridge blouse made me squeal in glee! I had been looking for a top with a bow detail for a while. I’m patiently waiting for it to come in the mail and then I will decide on fabric. I may need to purchase some drapey fabric for this. So I probably won’t be sewing this until around March.

M6649:

The main reason I didn’t get the Granville shirt pattern is because I already have a couple of nice shirt patterns with cup size variations. M6649 is one of them:

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I want to make view B or D. I’m not sure I would have as many ruffles as are in the pattern. I may only do half the amount or decide that ruffles on boobs my size are ridiculous. No fabric planned for this and, if I have to buy some, we’re looking at March for this.

M7094:

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More drapey fabrics. I love all the pleats at the shoulder and the gathers at the back. I might need to buy fabric for this, which will not make me happy, but we’ll see what is in my stash. This is definitely a couple months away from being made. I’m hoping I will have my stash depleted enough to justify the purchase of drapey fabrics.

Those are my non-wedding dress plans from now until the end of March. Do you have an sewing plans?

Indie Pattern Month

Indie Pattern Month starts in June and you know what? I’m going to do it, because it’s a month away, which gives me time to plan and start sewing, and because I have acquired quite a few indie patterns lately (Colette’s Moneta, Cake Pattern’s Espresso Leggings, and Pattern Anthology’s Just Add Jeans Collection, which I think counts even though it’s not on the list of Indie designers?). I just ordered Sewaholic’s Cambie dress that I’ve been eyeing for a really long time. I will have to do an FBA for it, but I am excited. I’ve been wanting that dress for a really long time, because it’s 99.9% the style I love to wear. I would prefer every dress I own to have a sweetheart neckline. It’d be perfect if it had puffed sleeves.

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I only really mentioned puffed sleeves to use this picture again.

I also really like the Anna Dress from By Hand London. It’s been on my wishlist for a while, too, but I think I should wait for that. My tendency is to buy tons of patterns and fabric and look at them. I am not allowed to by the Anna Dress pattern until I pump out at least five dresses. I’m definitely not allowed to buy fabric until my stash is depleted a little more.

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Must. Be. Good.

But I digress.

Indie Pattern Month is great. There weekly challenges:

Week 1: Dresses (I wear those!)

Week 2: New-to-Me (All of these patterns are new to me!)

Week 3: FRANKEN-INDIE (I said that in a loud German accent with muppet arms!)

Week 4: Indie Fan-Girl LEVEL: ULTIMATE (Cue Streetfighter theme!)

AND THERE ARE PRIZES!!!!!!!!! /muppet arms!

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So, yeah, I have a month to get my shhhh…tuff together (censored for da little ones).

I’m not sure that I will do all of those challenges, but I will definitely do one of them. 🙂