Thursday, July 26, 2012

Summer Preppy with McCall's 3348

Aloha!  First off I just want to say thank you all so much for all your encouragement with Freckles.  I really loved reading all the comments left where you also shared your own experiences with your dogs, kitties, and pets.  I also appreciate all the kind comments regarding the last outfit and my style in general.  I love to come up with outfits, that's for sure.  I am really happy Project Runway is back on now.  I like how it gets me to think outside the box, no matter what the contestants come up with.  Can you imagine getting to go into a candy store and having a $500.00 budget?  I would much rather work with candy than old car parts, which is what they used in one of the seasons past.  However, I would have been sick to my stomach if I was a contestant.  I really don't think I could have resisted eating most of my construction material.  Seriously, I have such a sweet tooth!

This past week and a half, I have had fun making another summer outfit out of fabric from my stash.  I used a heavy weight white cotton twill for the shorts (from, a navy and white striped cotton/spandex knit (from The Fabric Fairy), and an athletic mesh knit (from Gorgeous Fabrics) to create this look.  Up first are the shorts made from McCall's 3348.  This is an out of print pattern, I believe, for misses low rise pants.  I first made these after the birth of my first son, which was 13 years ago now.  I remember I liked how the crotch curve fit, but I also remembered they were really low waisted.  I don't like super low waists because I am constantly pulling them up and I hate to wear a belt.  So this time around I added 5/8" to the top of the pants to raise the waist.  However, when I tried them on, the back was still way too low for my liking.  I had to get creative.  I added a wedge of fabric to the back, much like denim jeans.  I borrowed this wedge, the back pocket, and the curved waistband from Vogue 1204.  Here are two pictures of how the pants look with the wedge, pocket, and curved waistband added:
In reality, you will never see this "design feature" when I wear the shorts, because I don't ever intend to wear them with a shirt tucked in.  These shorts also have a fly and front pockets.  My sewing machine had a hard time handling the weight of the fabric when I made the buttonhole, so it came out a little messy.  Again, it's not something that will be noticed when I wear the shorts.

I am really happy with the fit and comfort of these shorts.  If I hadn't taken the time to fix the rise and add back pockets I don't think they would have made it into my closet.

For the top, I used Jalie 2805 as a base again, but I scooped out the neckline to my liking and added the athletic mesh to finish the neckline, arms, and hem.  I really like the dark coral with the navy and white stripe.
And here is the completed ensemble:
I am in the middle of another soccer tournament with my youngest son.  This outfit will be just right for the game tomorrow.  Aloha Everyone!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

New Fabrics = New Clothes

Aloha!  How's your weekend been?  Mine has been fairly productive.  I recently had a couple of new fabrics arrive in the mail, and I just had to get at them after working with several fabrics from my stash. The first is an off-white knit lace from Hart's Fabrics.  On the website it was described as a "high quality nylon lace white", and I would agree it is high quality with a medium weight and beautiful drape.  Alas, I don't think it is still available, since I cannot find it on the website anymore.  I used Jalie 2805 to make a simple long sleeve t-shirt to show off the print.
Here is a close-up of the t-shirt.  I've used this pattern before, so I already had the size "s" cut out, traced off, and ready to go with my adjustments.  I used my serger for all of my construction except hemming the sleeves and body.  There I used my coverstitch machine to hem with a double row of stitching.  Since this fabric has a very open weave, I applied a 5/8" wide strip of Pro-Sheer Elegance fusible interfacing to the wrong side of the fabric before turning it up and hemming.  This gave me a finish I am really happy with.
The second piece of fabric came from Emma One Sock, and it is a beautiful, robin's egg blue, striped, medium weight linen.  You probably know I love capris, and The Sewing Workshop has a pattern that I really like and have made three times now.  To prepare my linen, I washed on warm and tumble dried, before making my garment.  From now on I will simply wash the linen capris and hang to dry.  Since discovering this advice on Marcy Tilton's website, I do this for every piece of linen I make into a garment, and have not been disappointed.  I do not have very many clothes that are dry clean only, and I definitely don't want any of my linen to have to be cleaned that way.  Therefore, you will notice that my garments always have that recognizable wrinkled texture that washed linen is famous for.
Here are a couple of details shots of the capris before I show you the whole ensemble.  They have an elastic waistband that is flat in the front.  For this pair I added a pocket to one side.  That is the only drawback to this pattern, no pockets.  I just winged a design and slapped it on.  LOL
Here is the completed outfit.  The knit top will also be a versatile basic to mix with other pants and skirts.  Although there is fairly good stretch in the knit top, I didn't want to make it too tight since the weave is so open, and I don't want any holes developing at the seams.
Oh, by the way, here is a little update on our dog Freckles.  I've been spending even more time with her since hiring a dog trainer to help us stabilize her behavior.  Once she became comfortable in our home, she became very aggressive to strangers, which the trainer felt was due to fear.  Since she was adopted from the Humane Society, we really don't know what kind of past she has had to cause her to act this way.  On the one hand I am glad she is protective of me and the boys, but on-the-other hand, she needs to know when to back down.  The good news is, she is responding beautifully to training.  I really love her, so I am extremely happy about this.  I also feel very blessed to have been able to hire a trainer to help.  It is an investment.  It would have broken my heart to take her back.  Here she is demonstrating the command "Place" before one of our runs together.  Did I mention how much I love having a girl in the house?  Too bad I can't sew dresses for her :)
Have an awesome week everyone!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

New Look 6106, Again!

Hello again!  It was so fun to see what everyone wore for the Fourth of July as I cruised the blogosphere this week.  As you know, I made a skirt from New Look 6106 last week and decided I needed one more before putting the pattern pieces away.  I used another quilting cotton from my stash that I purchased here at one of the quilt shops a year or two ago.  It's so funny, when I checked the selvage on this quilting cotton, I found it was another Alexander Henry fabric called "Canyon Path".  I must be drawn to their designs, because I had no idea that this fabric and the one used in the previous post came from the same designer when I purchased them.  Now I will keep my eye on the new designs that come out from this company.

I don't have anything new to share about construction on this version.  I made view C again, but this time took 5 inches off the hemline, due to fabric constraints.  Since the fabric is so busy it is hard to see any details like the front pockets, invisible zipper, or darts in the back.  This is just another comfortable easy-to-wear skirt.  I have styled it with a rtw tank top that I've had in my wardrobe for awhile now.  I haven't come across any buttons in my stash that would work for embellishing the pockets.  I may browse around this weekend and see if I come up with some I like, or I may leave it as is.

A few close-ups of the back, side, and front.  This skirt will be fun to wear with my magenta or white cardigan too.


I am pretty excited about a couple of new fabrics that just arrived in the mail today.  You'll be seeing them soon.  Have a great weekend everyone and thanks for stopping by.  Aloha!

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Independence Day with New Look 6106

To all my fellow American's I wish you a Happy and Safe Independence Day!  It's truly a day to celebrate!  I often thank God for living in this great country where I am blessed with so many freedoms.  The older I get the more I realize how important it is not to take those freedoms for granted.  Even though I wasn't specifically thinking about a red, white, and blue color scheme for this latest outfit, my subconscious must have kicked in, and I was drawn to this Alexander Henry quilting cotton (Meiji Mumm) I've had in my stash for a couple of years.  It is a nice heavier weight cotton. A wrap skirt is what I had in mind when I purchased it, but I was shy 1/2 a yard to make the skirt I wanted.   No problem, New Look 6106 to the rescue!
I decided to make View C, although I cut 3" off the length, so my version is a bit shorter than the one pictured above.  I cut out a size 10 and only had to make minor tweaks to the pattern.  I extended the two back darts by about an inch and a half. At the side seams in the waistband, I only took up a 3/8" seam to give myself a little bit more room.  This is a routine adjustment for me.  To match the waistband width I also took up a 3/8" seam in the side seams of the skirt.  However, two inches down from the top of the skirt I removed about 5/8" from the back side seam to snug up the hip area.  Here is the result.
I love the decorative button detail on the front pockets.  I found these vintage buttons at an Etsy shop called Lillian Olive.  When I bought them I didn't know what I would use them for, but I think they are the perfect finishing touch for this skirt.
When making this skirt I also remembered that Eugenia has a post about how she installs invisible zippers so that the top looks nicer.  I decided to try it out and am so happy with the result.
I really like the t-shirt design of Butterick 3028, reviewed here, and think it complements a-line skirts beautifully.  So, of course, I had to have one in navy blue to wear with this skirt!
Oops, I need to wear a shorter slip!  There is a slight peek of the white slip at the back hemline.

This skirt gets a big "High Five".  While I really enjoy seeing and even making some of the current fashion trends, I also love the breezy, modest, comfortable, design of skirts like New Look 6106.  Especially on days where I want to look pulled together, but want to feel completely relaxed.  I already have my next quilting cotton picked out for version two!  Stay tuned...