Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Snapshots from a journey

Today on the way to work and on the way home from work, all I could think about was my next sewing projects. See what four days of sewing will do to you....make you think about sewing constantly! *smile* Well, more than normal anyway!

I finally snapped some pictures of me dressed in the outfits.

1. The Sewing Workshop Mission Tank and TNT Pants in the brown twill linen from FFC.

2. The Burda OOP Cardigan and TNT straight skirt in a chocolate brown rayon/lycra knit from EOS.

The best thing about these four pieces are the little extra details. The black dyed lace on the tank and the piping added to the front of the cardigan:

I don't think you can see it in the pics but the skirt has side slits instead of the normal back slit opening. The slits open about a 1/2" above my knee and are open to the hem. It was taking the time to add the special touches to this set of garments that made this sewing weekend so rewarding.

And here is a sneak peek at the beginnings of Butterick 6619, my next sewing project:

I am using a black/creme linen purchased from Fabric Mart's Sample Cut Club. I have added a black satin rattail piping to the neckline and front of the bodice. I will add the same piping to the hem of the short sleeves. The dress skirt is made of pleats. Will keep you updated on the progress of this second edition from The Season of the Dress!

So do you think I had a productive sewing vacation?

Monday, May 29, 2006

A Pit Stop

I was rolling down Cutting Junction minding my own business when I saw a sign for Dye City. The sign was quite colorful and filled with possibilities and I was a little intrigued so I pulled over.

What does this mean in real world terms? As I was cutting out a pair of TNT pants in the brown twill linen (pictured in the last post), I thought that a matching shell would work great with the pants. But I had only purchased enough fabric for the pants. Since when had that stopped me from creating a matching top. So I got out my TNT tank pattern (Sewing Workshop Mission Tank) and I placed the two main pieces on my leftover scraps.

Hmmmm, it would work if I could add some lace. Well being the notions stasher that I am, I have 25 yards of a 2" cotton cluny lace that was given to me by a friend. However, the lace is a beigey color. No problem. I know that I have some black Rit dye leftover from a dyeing experiment last year.

A big pot of boiling water, some dye, 1/2 cup of salt and four hours later I have 7 yards of freshly dyed black lace. Now this wasn't a detour I was planning on taking but since I had the time and since I wasn't in a rush, I decided to explore this creative juncture. Now at the end of the evening, I have a great new outfit. A sleeveless tank top accented with beautiful strips of black lace, that I dyed myself, and a matching pair of pants. I am very thrilled with this new outfit!

Here are two more snapshots taken during my journey:

A picture of the original beige lace before it was dyed and then the lace after it was dyed black on top of the fabric used for the pants and top.

And a picture of the lace detailing on the front of the tank!

More photos and more on my journey tomorrow when I will be wrapping up my sewing adventure and heading home!

Sunday, May 28, 2006

Pretreating Fabric - A Necessary Evil

The first stop in my Memorial Day Sewing Journal is "Pretreating Alley."

I don't know about anyone else but this ranks right up there with cutting out as things that I don't like about sewing but are necessary evils. You can skip this step but you are really rolling the dice about whether or not you will wear the finished garment more than once. So after you have put all of this work into a garment ~ pretreating should not be an option you avoid! But, boy is it tempting!

Yesterday, I washed, dried and ironed linen for hours. It seemed like I ironed and ironed and ironed. Most linens are so pretty and crisp when you either bring them home or they come out of the box, but one good wash and dry removes the sizing that makes the fabric shiny, pretty and crisp. What you are left with is your "real piece of fabric" and then does it still appeal to you after the sizing is removed? This can be the first casualty of pretreatment and it can cause you to review your sewing plan.

See, it's not like I don't pretreat fabric during the fall/winter season. But since most of my garments are drycleaned during this season, pretreatment doesn't necessary take hours and hours of my precious sewing time! And yes, I could have done this days before the personal sewing vacation, but I was a little preoccupied and coming off another hot sewing assignment. So this fell to one of my actual sewing days!

I like my clothing in the spring/summer season to be wash and wear. I don't know why but I like the simplicity of throwing it in the washer and dryer, ironing and wearing it. So I am especially vigilant about the methods I use to pretreat summer garments. I just don't want my beautifully finished garment to shrink during the second or third washing. What a waste of my time! So pretreating is a necessary step before beginning any summer garment. But I hate it! Even during the process I am already imaging the next steps. The fun part ~ where the magic happens!

Prewashing does not equal fun!
Prewashing does not equal magic!
Prewashing is just a necessary evil!

So I am finally through "Prewashing Alley" and headed down to "Cutting Junction" with maybe a pitstop at "Fitting Way." I am using only one new pattern on this sewing journey and even though all of the pattern work has been completed, you just never know. So I may need to make more than a pitstop at Fitting Way. I will just have to see as I travel along!

Well this is just the first installment on my MD sewing journey. Of course, there will be more to follow! Oh and here are some photos I snapped while I was riding along Prewashing Alley!

Pile of prewashed fabrics from top to bottom:

  • black/creme circle print from Fabric Mart
  • black/creme floral knit from Ebads Fabrics
  • tan rayon/linen blend from FFC
  • beige/blue/brown floral rayon/linen blend from FFC
  • medium chocolate brown linen from FFC
  • chocolate brown twill weave linen from FFC.

One more view of the fabrics that I will be cutting first!

I will check in again soon!

Saturday, May 27, 2006

It's a Cafe Au Lait Weekend!

Saturday has dawned with a bright morn, a light wind and promises of a beautiful spring day. I can hear the birds chirping as I sit before my computer and my home is flooded with sunshine! So this is my last computer stop before heading for my sewing area.

Yes, my personal sewing mini-vacation has begun....four fun-filled days of sewing. And I think I have even managed to come up with a list of things to sew, hence the cafe au lait title. Thanks Kathryn (fxzdoc at sewing sites) for the moniker, I have used it because it is so appropriate.

My "outline" which I am calling my sewing plan because it will give me guidelines in which to sew but will also give me the freedom to follow any creative meanderings is:

1. blue/brown/tan floral linen from FFC in the infamous Tamatsou dress

2. blk/creme floral knit from Ebads Fabrics in the McCalls wrap dress (4470)

3. Two pairs of linen pants ~ one in the chocolate brown linen and the other in the brown twill linen both from FFC

4. Two Sewing Workshop Mission Tanks - one in left over brown twill fabric with some black lace added to it and the second in the blue/brown/tan floral linen

5. The burda OOP cardigan, a v-neck t-shirt from an OOP Sandra Betzina pattern and a straight skirt with side slits and elastic waist from the chocolate brown rayon lycra blend from EOS.

I have some ideas for trim detailing, piping and lace insertion that hasn't quite been fleshed out in my mind but I am adding them into the sewing mix. So now that I have a pretty definite roadmap, I am off to enjoy the sewing journey. Will check back in during rest stops and refueling pitstops and will share snapshots from the journey!

Thursday, May 25, 2006


From the date you can tell that it's the Thursday before a long holiday weekend and I have A-N-T-I-C-I-P-A-T-I-O-N!!!! Yes, tomorrow at 3:00 pm EST, my personal mini sewing vacation (psv) begins!

I try to plan at least two mini sewing vacations a year. Hey, you do what you need to do to keep your sanity and I do what I need to do to keep mine! Mini sewing vacations definitely work for me! Not only do I get to spend time just being creative but I also manage to do a little stash reduction and wardrobe increasement. Okay, I don't think that was a word but you get the gist!

Usually, I have been planning what to make for weeks. Making a list, refining the list, deleting things from the list, carting the list around and imagining garments on the list, but this year "The Prom Dress" precluded that from happening. So I am doing something totally unusual for me, I am winging it. Yup, just going to go into my sewing area and see what moves me and sewing it!

Well, that wasn't exactly the truth. I do have a little inspiration ~ new spring/summer dresses, the new purse in the last post and the new fabric that just arrived from Fashions Fabric Club (FFC). I ordered this fabric about two weeks ago - warning, do not order from FFC if you are looking for instant gratification...ain't gonna happen. An order from them usually takes 2 to 2.5 weeks to arrive at my front door! So I was pleasantly surprised when it arrived a day earlier than the tracking notification said that it would. I had also managed to "forget" exactly what I had ordered. I mean I had a vague recollection that I got some nice linens inexpensively~ like how I said cheaply! hehehehe! But I did not remember exactly what was in the bag. Turns out that I did good! 5 yards of a medium chocolate brown linen, 5 yards of a brown/tan/blue floral linen print that coordinates soooooo well with the brown linen, 4 yards of a tan mediumweight linen and a black/white cotton stretch.

I am definitely going to use the brown linen print during the psv! What else I don't know. I just know that I am going to sew for four glorious days. That I am going to shut the world out and create magic in my sewing studio. That I am going to enjoy, recharge, renew and get my inner sewing aura in order. Yeap, I got anticipation. Anticipation....Anticipation....Anticipation!

Sunday, May 21, 2006

What's Next?

I know we get inspiration for sewing in many different ways. So I have spent the last two days wondering what I am going to sew during my personal mini-sewing vacation next weekend ~ four full sewing days!!! While I was working on my daughter's prom dress, I was really considering making this outfit:

Black linen pants from my TNT pants pattern with a wrap top from the black/pink/white graphic print using the Burda pattern in the picture. But since I have finished the dress, those pieces haven't been calling very loudly. I think they just wanted to be made then because I was preoccupied with the prom dress!

So I was still casting around for my next project. Well, while we were out looking for the stick-on bra cups for my daughter to wear under her prom dress, I happened upon this purse in Burlington Coat Factory:

I don't know how many people have a Burlington's near them but they are a store that carries inexpensive name brand items that don't make it to the more upscale stores. You can get Tahari suits, Jones NY Separates, and some other designer gear here. They also carry shoes, children's clothing, linens, menswear, etc. I don't think you can see it in the picture but the handles have these funky conch shells on it for a really summery beachwear look. As I was putting the purse away ~ it was still in the plastic bag laying near the couch in the living room where it had lain since Friday evening ~ I thought it would be kewl to wear the purse. But with what?!

Now, I am sure that I have something in my vast wardrobe that would go with this purse but my mind immediately went to the brown midweight linen that is winging itself to me right now from Fashions Fabric Club. As an aside, we are not going to have a discussion about the fact that I said I wasn't buying any more fabric. This was a staples purchase. You know a basic fabric that you need in your collection to make basic pieces you wear all the time. I just don't know how those other four or five pieces were included in the order, but I digress! *smile*

Well the purse and the new fabric have inspired me and moved me into a new direction. So I am off to find patterns and other fabrics that I already own, which is a good thing, to come up with a sewing plan for the weekend! I will report back as soon as I have a plan!!!

Saturday, May 20, 2006

The Prom Dress is Done

Well its done and I don't know if I am happy or sad!

I just know that it is done and she has worn it to the dance. I am emotionally spent from making this dress! But she was very happy and she looked like a princess so I am glad that I made the dress. So I will revel in the fact that the dress is finished, and I will move onto sewing easier things for me!

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Prom Progress

This is an update on the prom dress. First, I am not usually nervous when I sew. Sewing is calming for me. It smooths everything out and creates a peaceful environment. Sewing soothes my soul. Making this prom dress has been so fraught with anxiety for me that until I did my daughter's first fitting, I was completely unnerved.

This dress is a big deal to my daughter. She is a senior in high school and this is the most important dance she will ever attend, well until her wedding! Since she was a little girl, I have been dreaming about making this dress for her. My desires for her to have a great dress almost got the best of me. It took me forever to cut the dress out. Then when it was cut out, I took out several seams several times, because I want this dress to be perfect. I don't want it to look homemade when her classmates will be wearing store bought dresses that will cost of hundreds of dollars. I want my daughter to look beautiful. So, this has not been a calm or peaceful process.

Below is a picture of the beginning elements of the dress. I am using a Vogue pattern that I made for my niece's prom dress last year. A forest green polyester crepe, crystal piping, and a crystal art deco style trim for the straps.

I spent today putting the dress together. My hands shook the entire time! My mouth was dry and I kept wondering if I was up to the task of making my daughter look beautiful. It didn't help that my family reminisced on Sunday at dinner about some of the dresses I had previously made for my eldest daugher ~ not very flattering stories I might add ~ and their skepticism also concerned me. I just didn't want to fail my daughter.

So I got the dress constructed and it was time for the first fitting. The pictures of the fitting are below.

This is the back view of the dress - first fitting.

This is the front view of the dress - first fitting.

We made several changes. First, the darts were enlarged. I had deliberately sewn the darts smaller because my daughter is a little bustier than my niece but she needed the darts made deeper for contouring. Also since my daughter is pear shaped, I needed to decrease the 5/8" side seams to 3/8" which gave her more room around her hips. I also changed the ruching on the backside and added bra cups to the top. We have changed the straps on the dress, it will be a halter neck with the art deco crystal strip sewn to a silk organza ribbon to provide some support for the crystal string when tied.

We did one more fitting and like the way the dress fits now through the waist and hips. So tomorrow evening I will hand sew the zipper in, add the piping and line the dress through the top. My daughter loves her dress and her reply to my nervousness, "I was never worried. I knew you would make me the perfect dress!"

And with that my hands finally stopped shaking!

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Prom Season and a little more

Its that time of the year ~ Prom Season! And thankfully I only have one daugher attending the prom this year. So I will spend this Saturday making a wonderfully, spectacular, one of a kind, sexyfunkycool dress for my graduating senior. You know the prom dress of your senior year has to be hands down awesome because, well, its the last prom you will ever attend!

First lets start with the dress ~ Vogue 7365 ~ View C

My daughter has chosen forest green as her color. Here is a picture of all the elements being used to construct the dress.

She has chosen a satin crepe and a cubic zirconia piping and cubic zirconia strips to be used as the straps. Can you say bling, bling!!!! This will be my sewing adventure for the weekend. I will keep you posted!

****Tea Dyed Tamotsu Dress Update******

I promised in my last post that I would give more construction details about the dress. What I love about this dress is its simplicity and ease of construction.

The pattern envelope describes the dress as a semi-fitted, a-line dress, above ankle, has collar, collar band, shoulder pads and above elbow sleeves.

The collar band and collar go together easily and fit the collar of the dress without any alterations. All of the pieces of the dress fit together as they should and the best thing is that the dress fits me well through the shoulder and bustline but flares out enough to cover my larger body parts! I have this pattern in a size 20-22-24 and I cut the top in a 20 and the bottom in the 24 plus a little ease. I have also made an alteration to the sleeve piece so that there is more than enough ease for my extra flappalicious biceps.

If you can get your hands on the pattern, I would definitely try to find one since it makes such a wonderful dress. I really want to try making the top out of some silk or linen with longer sleeves and using it as an overblouse for summer outfits!

The trim is just a rayon soutuche that I purchased years ago in a trim factory that use to be across the street from the JoMars on I Street in Philadelphia. It was jammed into my trim drawer and the color red matched the red print perfectly so it had to be used! Everything used in the dress came from my stashes (trim & button) ~ only the fabric was new! That was a really good feeling to know that I was using things I already owned! Oh yes, have a lot of buttons on hand when making the dress ~ I used 11!

That's my update! So if you have any questions, ask! I will be happy to answer them! Well the best I can! *smile* And if you are currently creating some wonderful new garment, dreaming about making something new, or just buying fabric, notions or trim for something new....enjoy your sewing journey!

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

The Season of the Dress - Edition 1

Its finished! It's done! I feel a little like Frodo on the mountain after throwing the ring into the fire! This task which I have devoted days to is finally complete! Okay, it took Frodo and Sam months but it felt like months instead of days to me...

Seriously, the dress is finished. I used the red & white linen fabric that I tea dyed to make the dress. The dress pattern is from Vogue OOP 2090 - a Tamotsu wardrobe pattern.

Here is the dress before hemming:

Here is a close-up of the collar area:

And finally me in the dress:

More about the construction later! Just wanted to share that the dress is finished! I am wearing it to work tomorrow! Yes!

Sunday, May 07, 2006

A Sewing Challenge

Yesterday I had this great idea to take a pattern that wasn't in my size and remake it. The pink/blk/white graphic knit and black linen that I purchased from Ebads Fabrics last week is seriously calling my name. And I can "see" the finished garment that I want to make. A long sleeved, v-neck top that ties in the back with the black linen pants cut with a slimmer leg. This outfit would be perfect for work and make me look slim and tall always two aims for successful dressing for me.

This sweater top really appealed to me:

Only problem is that it is a Burda petite pattern, but after a few days of puzzling it through I thought I could solve the situation by drawing the pattern pieces and then placing them over a TNT cardigan pattern that I already fitted to my body. I got the pattern pieces traced and laid on top of my altered pieces. With new pattern pieces made, I cut them out in a trial cotton knit fabric that was close to the weight of the original pink/blk/white graphic knit fabric.

But something is not working right ~ well I know what's not working right, it's too tight. So what am I do to next? I thought about recutting the pattern. I thought about coming up with a new design. I thought about waiting and finding an actual plus size pattern like the sweater pictured above. Instead I stopped and went and watched a movie.

I hate when this happens because the picture gets even stronger and brighter in my mind. I can't sew anything else. My sewing has just stopped dead in its tracks. But mostly I am annoyed. I only have so much time to devote to sewing ~ life, children, job responsibilities, family responsibilities ~ take much of my available time. So sewing time is precious and I need to make each moment of it count! I tried to think if I had learned anything from this that could be used in the future but right now I am just annoyed!!!!!

So does this happen to anyone else? How do you get back on track? Making something TNT? Skipping sewing for a few days? What? Or does anyone know a pattern like this in a plus size that I could purchase? I think if I could just get pass this I would be okay. 'Cause you know what ~ I am not enjoying the sewing journey today, yesterday and possibly not tomorrow either!!!!!

Thursday, May 04, 2006

Sewing This and That

I have a jumble of things to share today ~ no one topic ~ hence the title of today's post "Sewing This and That" because it is a little of this and a little of that!

Another fabric store closing...

Yesterday I found out that one of my favorite fabric stores in NYC has closed. It hasn't disappeared totally because the owner had two fabric stores on 8th Avenue. He just condensed the two into one because he couldn't support enough busines in two stores. Now just five years ago he was running full tilt in both stores.

The name of this store was Habib's Fabrics. Nabil the owner always had great linens and stretch velvets. I even bought a lot of other kewl pieces there over the years but primarily he was my linen and lining supplier. He didn't sell Bemberg but he had a great silky polyester lining that he sold to me cheap and it worked well in the garments I made.

He moved most of his stock into the other store Ebad's Fabrics which is just up the block from the old store. I went looking for lining yesterday and found the change. It really hurt me and I felt a little guilty like maybe if I had purchased more fabric from him and less from the internet both stores would still be open! And even though I really didn't need or want any more fabric, I bought a couple yards of a midweight black linen (can always use black. I do work in NYC!) and a pretty black/white/pink graphic knit. Don't need either but just felt like I needed to support a friend!

So if you have ever been fabric shopping with me in NYC, Habibs Fabrics is no more. I will miss it!

SWAP Contest results

I am a little remiss in posting these results so late! I guess you can tell I didn't win! *hahahaha!* Even though I didn't go into the contest to win, just wanted the wardrobe and the free pattern, I should have posted the results here earlier. So here goes...there were five prizes awarded even though originally three were going to be awarded. But Julie felt that the vote was so close and the last two ladies did such a great job that she threw in two more prizes! That Julie is a very kewl lady!

So, the SWAP winners are, selected by 83 people who voted:

1st place - Hellenne Vermillion
2nd place - Shannon Murphy
3rd place - Jeanette Morrison

There were so many good SWAPS, that I have decided to extend the prizes and there are five finalists.

4th place - Sandy Curry for Caribbean Dreams
5th place - Lisa Laree

I have to admit that I voted for several of these women's SWAP wardrobes. They were pretty awesome and a great big congratulations to all the winners!

SWAP Consolation Prize...

This is the pattern I asked for as my consolation prize:

Everyone who completed and submitted pictures of their SWAP receives a free pattern from Julie Timmel of Timmel Fabrics. So I chose Jalie 2566, a women's twin set pattern with two different necklines. I have never made a Jalie pattern before and have heard a lot of good things about them so I want to experience the "Jalie Difference" for myself! As soon as I decide what to make with it, I will report back here first! *LOL* Like there is someplace else that will let me ramble on and on about sewing!
Adding to my sewing library....

Hey, I don't just collect fabric, trim, notions and patterns. I collect sewing books too! I have four shelves of a five shelf bookcase full of sewing books from all generations. Lately I have been purchasing more sewing books from the 40's and 50's. When I was at my friend Lynn's in San Francisco, she had a book called "Dress Design Draping and Flat Pattern Making" by Marion Hillhouse and Evelyn Mansfield, that I thought was sooo kewl. I have been wanting an Armstrong pattern making book but new they are kinda pricey! Thought that this would be a good alternative. I mean I have almost every Adele Margolis book and a few Mary Brooks Pickens plus several other sewing instructors and I didn't pay an arm and a leg for them! How expensive could this book be? Well, checked it out on Abe Books and Amazon's Used Book - cheapest price was $95 up to $127. Not exactly my idea of a cheap book so this has been put on the back burner for now.

Well those are my sewing ramblings for today...a varied lot they are but since something sewing is always passing through my brain, I thought I would just share those first few thoughts!

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

The Season of the Dress

I am truly inspired creatively by the seasons, the things that I see and the conversations that I ingest.

Presently there is a conversation/discussion on Sewing World about dresses. Now I have always loved dresses especially for spring, summer and fall. Dresses, stockings and heels make me feel beautiful and feminine. Truly when was the last time you saw a guy in a dress looking good!

I can remember dresses being special to me ever since I was 4 years old. I was in church with my grandmother (the one who taught me to sew!) and it was time to give our offering. In her Southern Baptist church that meant that everyone left their pew and marched around to the front of the church and placed their offering in the basket. I clearly remember my grandmother telling me to swish the hem of my dress as I walked. "Give it a little flow, child!" Is what she actually said! That was a life changing event for me ~ well obviously since I remember it so vividly 42 years later! But it really taught me how dresses can make a woman feel feminine and pretty.

Flash forward several years ~ I have always collected dress patterns especially since I live in them during the summer. On the East Coast, summer days can be very hot, muggy and humid so a dress with the right accessories and a good pair of sandals makes you well dressed as well as heat resistant! I must have purchased hundreds of dress patterns over the years as I searched for "The Perfect Dress."

This spring/summer season the following dresses have caught my eye and will become part of the elusive search for The Perfect Dress:

1. McCalls 9172 ~ This one was suggested by Sewjandid on Sewing World. It looks like a simple easy dress that can be changed with different fabric types or trims to make a week's worth of dresses. I have ordered this pattern!

2. Vogue 7994 ~ I have wanted to make this one since Cambric Tea reviewed it on Patternreview. I have a wonderful soft seagreen linen from the fabric collection that this would look beautiful in!

3. McCalls 3173 OOP ~ Almost every summer I pull this pattern out. I haven't gotten around to making it yet but it is back out again this year! Hopefully I will have a soft rayon print version of it by summer's end!

4. McCalls 4770 ~ I think this will be my version of the wrap dress this summer. It can be made out of a woven instead of a knit which I think will look better on my plus size body. I have several very pretty Pucci prints in the fabric collection that could make this dress sing!

5. Butterick 6198 ~ is OOP and I have made it twice before out of solid linen and a dot print linen. It was one of my favorite dresses at the time so when I saw the pink picture (cut from a Barrie Pace catalog), I knew I had to find my old pattern, bring it out and use it again!

6. McCalls 7714 ~ An OOP Sundress that I have wanted to make for several years but didn't because of my arms. I hate my upper arms but hey we all have body parts that we would willing trade! I think I can handle making it this year, not because I had arm flap surgery but because I have several great knit cardigans and a great shrug pattern that would look soooo cute with this dress.

I have one more favorite that I have made twice before but somehow neglected to get a picture of it. It is an OOP Vogue Tamoutsu pattern 2090. The pattern envelope describes it as a semi-fitted, a-line dress, above ankle has a collar, collar band, shoulder pads, mock front bands and above elbow sleeves. I have made it in a linen and a silk duppioni both are easy to wear and great looking. I want to add one more version to my summer dress wardrobe.

So here are my choices for summer dressing. One pattern to make a week's worth of dresses and the others to make some very kewl alternatives. If you can get your hands on the May 2006 issue of Burda World of Fashion, they devote an entire section to summer dresses. Now for us plus size girls, they haven't included any dress patterns, but I used the patterns they chose as inspiration in picking my six patterns above. Hey a girl's got to do what a girl's got to do to be fashionable! *smile* Hopefully during the summer of 2006, while the living is easy my summer dresses will keep me cool, fashionable and beautiful!

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Fabric Saturation

My original title was "The Hole is Full ~ or the Stop Sign is Up!" Neither one of those seemed really great once I typed them in so I think Fabric Saturation works really well!

Lately, I have been on what at times to me has seemed like a fabric buying binge! I have denied myself very few pieces of fabric that I have seen and/or admired. Each piece has been carefully chosen by either color or fabrication and truthfully a few pieces were chosen by wanton desire! *smile* And each piece that was purchased came with a dream attached to it regarding what it wanted to become!

But recently, I have been feeling saturated and satisfied. As if this need to fill up a hole is done ~ full ~ finished. Mardel from the blog, "Sew Distracted" posted to Sewing World a few months ago about an acquiring gene. I think my genetic acquiring moniker tripped over sometime in early February and it has just recently shut down.

I know this sounds a little strange but there has been fabric everywhere calling my name ~ sometimes quite loudly, sometimes in a soft whisper full of promises, sometimes with a great chorus, y'know like that song from the Oscar ceremony that just rings in your brain forever! Whether loudly or softly, the name calling has been consistent but lately the cries are getting fainter and fainter.

Instead my mind is full to the brim of things to create. Ideas for garments, fabric combinations and trim ideas are all flooding my brain asking/begging to be released through my fingers and made up into interesting pieces to adorn my body.

As my last post acknowledges, I made four simple skirts this weekend but it was like a dam bursting and unlocking a new and different creative flow. My mind is reeling with skirt ideas, trim possibilities and the potential of a new wardrobe of summer skirts! Maybe a new skirt every day for a month! Now that's a reason to go to work every day!!!!

I think my construction genetic moniker has tripped to the on position and its time to create instead of acquire!

Monday, May 01, 2006

Skirts, skirts, skirts ~ Part 2

Well I managed to get four skirts completed. They aren't the skirts I originally contemplated making and I have fabric for three more laying on my cutting table. But it is three pieces of fabric that are no longer in flat form and are now garments!

I was inspired by a skirt that I saw in the spring JJill catalog ~ a simple linen skirt with an elastic waist that is selling for $68 and it doesn't come in a plus size!

And here is a picture of my finished skirts:

From left to right:

1. Pink/blk/gray floral print stretch woven made with a white trim down the front of each gore.

2. Green retros 70's polyester print - close up of the fabric below. I really like this piece. It was given to me by a friend from their aunt's stash.

3. Blue/lime green circles on white background linen print that I have extra left over. So I am working with some lace and the leftover fabric to make a tank top.

4. Skirt from "Cashmere Dreams Collection." Picture of topstitching on skirt pictured below. This topstitching is on each gore of the skirt and the skirt is lined.

These skirts are made from two of my TNT skirt patterns ~ actually one skirt pattern that I have morphed from the original by shortening it, adding gores to the skirt and widening each gore to give the skirt more swing. This skirt worn with a twinset is the perfect outfit for work and a staple in my work wardrobe.

I managed to accomplish my goal for the weekend ~ four new skirts to wear to work this week! And three pieces of fabric removed from the fabric pile...wish this made a big dent in the collection but it isn't even noticeable! *smile*

So did you have a sewing goal for the weekend? Did you accomplish it or are you still working it out? Do you even set sewing goals or do you just go with the flow? I would love to hear about your sewing processes so feel free to share!


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