Monday, September 1, 2014

Sewaholic Minoru Jacket

Today marks the beginning of September in California and what a perfect time to make a winter coat - 100 degrees outside and not a cloud in the sky.  I won't be modeling this one due to the weather, but luckily, my trusty Mannequin decided to volunteer to do the modeling instead.

This fabric is a quilted poly (I think) that I purchased during a vacation in Vancouver, Canada a number of years ago.  I remember wrestling with the fabric, trying to make it conform to my carry on bag and hoping the bag wouldn't burst at the seams in transport.  It's stitched with a variegated thread in a swirly, floral/paisley motif.
I questioned using this fabric for this coat because it was so bulky, but I thought I'd give it a go and I'm glad I did - I absolutely love the way it turned out.

I opted not to sew in the optional hood because of the fabric's bulk - there was no way it would fit into the collar without looking like I had a pillow around the back of my neck.

I special ordered a zipper to get the perfect purple color.  Originally, I ordered a plastic molded zipper because I was afraid that a brass one would snag the stitching, but coincidentally, was sent a brass zipper instead.  After e-mailing the company and having them send me the correct plastic molded zipper, I ended up using the brass one they had originally sent.  The brass pulls out the orange color on the thread so nicely I think. 

The coat pattern doesn't come with pockets so I decided to draft my own.  Rather than do a square pocket, I rounded the corners on the bottom to better match the swirly pattern of the stitching and added a lining to them as well.

Here's a look at the back.  The jacket has raglan sleeves with elastic filled cuffs on the sleeve ends and elastic 3/4 of the way around the waistline.

I stitched thru the middle of the elastic to help keep it in place.

But here's the best part of the jacket - the lining!  I just love it!  This fabric too was in my stash and the colors match perfectly.   

I even fussy cut the inside pockets to match.

And added some bias tape to the bottom of the hem to help tie in the light blue color.

Here's another view of the inside front all zipped up.

And the back view.

The loop on the back is some grosgrain ribbon.  I tried to make a loop from the quilted fabric, but it was just too thick and I figured it would feel like I had a knot on the back of my neck when wearing it so I changed it to a ribbon loop instead.

This puts me at sewing 24.625 yards of fabric during the 2014 Stashbust.  I have another 5.375 yards to go to hit my own personal goal of 30 yards.  With that said, I better get busy!

Until next time - Happy Sewing!

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Target Dress Redo!

It all started with this dress.  I first saw it at Target a few years ago and absolutely loved it.  I knew I wanted to remake it into something else, but I didn't want to pay full price for it so I waited for it to go on sale.  Well, I ended up waiting too long, because the only one I could find was an XL - which is not quite my size as you can see below.

I could definitely pinch more than an inch!

Here's my process of transforming the dress.  Let the alterations begin!

First, cut off a few inches below the waist.

Here it is after it's cut.

Next, cut straight up the center back.

Install an invisible zipper - stopping at the waist.

 I was very happy with the invisible zipper.  This is before pressing - you can hardly tell where it is!

Next, pin the sides to fit and add a few tucks to the front too.

Thread trace the pin lines on the inside. This will serve as your stitching guide for the seam.

Sew the seam and serge the edges.

Try on.  I needed to sew the tucks a little higher so I pinned the in place and stitched.

Next, determine how long you would like the ruffle and cut from the bottom up on the leftover piece.  Cutting from the bottom up allows you to use the already stitched hemline from the original dress - one less thing to sew!  Cut a straight line down the center back too - just like you did for the top portion earlier.

Next, gather the ruffle piece.  I zig zag over embroidery floss to make my gathers.  With a wide zig zag stitch, simply place the embroidery floss between the zigs and the zags and sew, making sure not to catch the thread as you sew.

Here's another pic of the gathering process.  Be sure to knot the starting end of your floss before sewing.

Then, simply pull the floss and adjust the gathers.  This method works especially well when you have alot of fabric to gather and you don't want to worry about the threads breaking with two rows of straight stitching.

Next, pin the ruffle in place and try on.  Once you have it where you are happy, repin and sew right sides together.

This placement looked pretty good to me.  Sew the ruffle in place, finish the zipper and you are almost done!

Next, sew on some cute ribbon above the ruffle.

Very important next step - find some cute shoes!

And Ta Dah!  All done!

Here's the before and after.  Quite a change!
Until next time - Happy Sewing everyone!

Sunday, August 24, 2014

McCalls 6966

Here's my latest Stashbushin' Project and I just love it!  A new skirt pattern from McCalls 6966, pictured below.  

McCall's Misses' Skirts 6966

Here's the line drawing:
Line Drawing

I made view E - the one with the different fabrics for each section.  This skirt is meant for knit fabrics and I was able to use 4 different knits I already had without having to buy anything!

At first, I wasn't starting out to good.  I wasn't happy with the way everything looked because it just looked to plain.  Even though it was different fabrics, it was still missing something.

So I got out my boxes of ribbons and trims and starting playing and here's what I came up with.

Here's a description of everything.  All of this was already in my stash too so I was quite excited - especially to use the printed elastic.  I bought a bunch of this stuff in different prints and colors a year ago and it's been sitting around awaiting a use.  Finally, a project that would work with it!  I needed something stretchy for the top layer since this is nearest the waistband and needs to stretch in order to get the garment on and this worked out perfectly.

And here's the finished product!  Yippee!

Just by chance, I managed to get the Ric Rac to line up as well.

 And the other side too.

And here's the back.

And this has to be my new favorite elastic waistband technique.  Can you see the elastic in here?  I don't think so.  To make this waistband, you will need 4 pieces of fabric - two for the front and two for the back. Sew these pieces together front to back at the side seams (on one set - leave a small 1/2" opening on one of the side seams about 1/4 down from the top).  Then with right sides together, sew both pieces together 7/8 inch down from the top of the waist - all the way around.  Next, sew them again 1/4" away from the top of the waistband. This will form a casing.  Next, insert your elastic, sew up the small opening and then turn right side out and the elastic is enclosed between the two layers.  It's like magic!

I'm up to 19.375 yards of stash fabric sewn.  10.625 yards to go to hit my 30 yard goal!  I'm almost there!

Until next time - Happy Sewing!

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Modkid Madeline


This is the Madeline skirt by modkid sewing patterns.  The pattern includes four different skirt styles, each with knit yoga waistbands.  I selected View B - which is the version featured on the front of the pattern that you see here.

The front and back pieces are cut on the bias so they drape fairly nicely and stretch along with the waistband to pull the skirt on.  The two front "mock wraps" are finished on three sides and then sewn into the side seams and are held in place by the two buttons in the front.

This was my first time sewing a modkid pattern and the instructions are very clear - lots of pictures and explanations along the way.  I made a size Medium with no alterations which was surprising because I usually like a little longer skirt, but this one was the perfect length for me.

The instructions for measuring and cutting the waistband might seem a bit daunting for the beginning sewer, but if you read everything carefully and do the calculations using your own measurements, it turns out ok.

And here's my version.  It was a bit windy this day and the flaps on the skirt wouldn't lay flat.  I'll take some pictures inside to show you the detail.

Here's the skirt on my dress form.  Although this skirt is very comfy to wear, I feel that the waistband is just too big and too thick - it's a double fold of fabric that is folded down again to create the yoga waistband - this gives you a total of 4 layers of fabric at the waistline.  If I make this skirt again, I'll change the waistband so the folded down portion is not so big and bulky - I'd probably change it to just two layers with nothing folded over.

The skirt front and back pieces are finished with double fold bias tape.  To me, the side view looks a bit odd because the bias tape doesn't carry onto the hem of the mock wrap pieces - it just ends at the side seam.

 Here's a close-up of the buttons I used - I did manage to find the perfect combination!

Just a quick post for today.  This skirt was made a few years ago and thought I would share with everyone.

Until next time - Happy Sewing!

Friday, August 15, 2014

New pillows!

Another Stashbushin' Project completed!  New pillows for our travel trailer.

This panel was purchased at a Quilt Show's garage sale a few years ago.  I just happened to have some cording trim in my stash that coordinated with the fabric and enough stuffing leftover from another project to complete them.  Here's the before pic:

And after - Ta Dah!  Another yard bites the dust!  My cording isn't perfect but whatever - it's for our travel trailer!

So far, I'm up to 15.375 yards sewn out of my stash (not including the cording yardage).  I'm hoping I can make it to 30 yards total by the end of the Summer Stashbush 2014 - which is September 21st.  I'm halfway there with a little over a month left.  I'd better get sewin!

Until next time - Happy Sewing!