Monday, March 12, 2012

An Ironing Board Makeover

I love when your fabric just speaks to you, telling you exactly what it would like to be!  I was pressing this fabric, and thinking of making one of the bags I posted about here.  When I laid it down on the board though, I knew that it was really meant to be an ironing board cover - and that this would be my next (and super quick) project!

There are quite a few blog tutes out there for covers, but I used this one here (from Craftiness is Not Optional).

It was super easy, and it was actually the first time I used my serger (to which I am now helplessly hooked on) to finish the raw edges before creating the elastic channel.

I really want to name my board now - either Betty or Gertude.  My computer is Scarlet, and my sewing machine is Eleanor, so it just seems fitting to continue the pattern.

Thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Two More Bags

I made a pattern for these loosely based on a bag that my friend had.  It's a light bag with a pocket on the inside, gathers at the top of the strap, and pleats as well along the bottom.

I very heavily heart both of these fabric designs.  They are from Kaffe Fassett (the brighter one is Lotus Leaf, and the darker one is Forest of Arden).  I have probably made 5 or 6 gifts with Lotus Leaf (including the Slouch Bag I made for my sister), but I only bought 1 meter of Arden at a needle work show for cheap.  This as an afterthought, was not well planned.  I love this design and can't find it anywhere.  I'm sure I possibly could find it on line, but I'm still more of a brick and mortar fabric shopper right now.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

I see a new dress in my near future

I am currently working on this cute dress for an intermediate class I am taking in Toronto:


I love the sleeves and pleating on the front of this dress!  The man and I are on a tight budget saving everything we can for a down payment on a house, but a date night will definitely be in order once I finish this!!  And seriously how can I not be madly in love with this fabric - I have always been more of a jeans and t-shirt girl, so I don't have anything like this in my closet (other than my Lonsdale dress, which I still haven't had a chance to wear out)!  This year I intend to do some serious garment sewing, and begin to move away from my t-shirt drawer and into more classy and stylish clothing.

Kwik Sew 3913
I am also working on this tunic.  I am not too big on the pattern, but I thought it was perfect for this fabric and hopefully it will look great with some leggings and boots, or maybe dressed down a little over some jeans.  The fabric has this lacey look to it which is gorgeous, and again, completely out of my traditionally "casual" element!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

That was so last year...

Circa Christmas Time anyways.  I made a few of my Christmas gifts this year - three bags and a fleece shirt.

This is why that was all I has a chance to make:

This pattern is from the Fall 2011 Stitch magazine (Slouch Bag).  There were a ton of steps in the pattern, and tons of layers (Holy crap, i felt like a spent 8 hours cutting out the shell and lining fabric, and muslin, headliner and stiff interfacing pieces) to work with.  There was also a lot of top stitching required in the pattern. 

The pattern also asked for silk douppioni for the thick trim on the bag lining.  Fabricland sells it for $34 a metre so I found the perfect substitute in their home dec section which was $7 a metre.  The lining once done though was about 2 inches longer than the shell, so I had to cut off some of the trim.  It might have hurt a little doing that if it was silk douppioni.  I find there are always minor glitches with Stitch patterns, whether the pattern pieces are off, or there are missing or weird instructions.  I have actually made a few projects from Stitch magazine, so I don't mind them too much, I just need to keep an open mind when I am completing them.  (I also made the fleece shirt from the same Stitch mag which didn't go as well, but I'll leave that for another post.)

It took a few days to put together but the end result is a pretty sweet looking bag with a surprising inside.

I love the strap details at the sides of the bag.

The clear vinyl was ironed onto the bottom piece for added protection.

My sewing machine was very testy while I was sewing this bag, although I can''t blame it now - I started out using the wrong size top stitch sewing needle for my thread.  On top of that, the Teflon foot I bought to sew the vinyl bag strap was weirdly thick and when I was sewing over more than one layer the foot would slant up and the sewing needle would jam into the back of the foot opening.  This happened a few times while I was trying to figure out if there was something wrong with my machine before I realized it was the foot causing the problem.  It was a $30 Janome foot for a Janome machine - hopefully I can send them an email and get a refund for it...

I didn't want to ever make this bag again the day I finished it, but after I gave this to my sister from Christmas, I keep thinking about it, and just might make one for myself but with these changes:
*take out some of the inside thickness - it has about 4 layers of muslin, plus the headliner.
*make the bag strap a few inches longer and about a half inch narrower - my sisters one complaint is that the strap sometimes falls off her shoulder because it is pretty wide.
My sis modeling her bag

If you have made this bag, or anything else from Stitch Mag, I would love to see it so please feel free to link to your blog or pics in the comments section

Looks like this post is getting a little lengthy so I will write about the fleece shirt and other 2 bags later.

Thanks for stopping by, and Happy 2012 (February and beyond...)!!!

Friday, November 25, 2011

Lonsdale, I think I love you

I.  Love.  This.  Dress!!

I am so happy with how the Lonsdale dress turned out, it is simply beautiful!  And really there were so many amazing seamstresses who followed Tasia's sew along, and every dress made looks absolutely fabulous!!  The dress has a unique halter front - mine worked best double knotted, mostly to compensate for my smaller bust proportions, and I love that it ties through the back.  It is also designed with the pear shaped lady in mind, and while I didn't think I had many curves going for me, I fit the measurements for a size 10 to the T (finally a pattern where my measurements don't span over 3 sizes!).

I will definitely make this dress again in the longer length, and although I love the fit, I could still make some small adjustments to the bust area.  I followed Tasia's sew-along, finishing the sides with a french seam and bound edges at the back.  Techniques I hadn't really tried before this, and I love the outcome!  The only thing I didn't do was hand pick the zipper.  No excuses though for the next dress.

The waist is hard to distinguish because of the busy design but I love this belt with the dress.  This is actually a pretty bold fabric for me as well but I am so happy I picked it up when I found it at Fabricland!!  I ended up with quite a bit left, which I am thinking of using for the Sorbetto tank from Colette Patterns.

Thanks for stopping by!  Cheers!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Placemats In Progress

I am making these for a girlfriend's 30th, that has honestly just passed.  With all the quilting required they took longer than I thought they would, but I was still able to give her a flirty little felt pencil holder and an embroidery hoop wall hanging of button flowers (no pics of those unfortunately) that I had also made.  I think I went a little overboard with this project thinking it wouldn't take a lot of time, and now I am in love with the placemats, so they may be hard to part with...

I have the backing and edge trim left to attach, and then they are finished (finally).  Next up for gifts is a slouch bag (from the Fall STITCH magazine) for my sister that I am a little nervous to start because it has quite a few steps involved.

And for me, I will hopefully start working on some curtains next week.  Two sets for the front room and dining area in our house, a ruffle shower curtain using this tutorial from Sweetie Pie Bakery, and a curtain for my sewing room to block out the blinding sun in the morning (no complaints though for sunny days!!).


Cottage Days

I don't know about you, but it is much easier for me to sew handmade gifts for my girlfriends, rather than the men in my life.  Bags, pillows, aprons, eye pillows, scarves...  I have made these and more as gifts, but for the boys...  I made my Dad a snuggie-style blanket last year, and another one for my boyfriend's birthday that just passed. 

But I had a lot of trouble this fathers day coming up with a gift to sew for my dad.  I had tossed around the idea of embroidering different fish hanging from lines on 3 hoops, but I wasn't too sure if he would like that (although I know my Dad would love anything I made for him).  What I finally decided to work on was a painting of the government dock by our cottage on Lake of Bays, in Muskoka, Ontario.  My grandfather built the cottage in the early 50's when my father was a young boy, so both he, and my sister and I have grown up here.  This place has so much meaning for our entire family and we have all collected our own stories at this government dock.  My sister and I would meet up with friends there at night with the cheapest alcohol we could all find/buy, and climb on top of the roof to hang out.  And every local has their name carved on some portion of the dock.

This was the first time I had done a painting for anybody.  It's not that large, but I am pretty happy with the outcome.  It was a smaller canvas that I bought in a set of three and the other two I am thinking of painting a solid color and embroidering birds on them (can that even be done?) for our place.
For Christmas I am knitting a scarf for my Dad, and for my man I am embroidering a cover with different types of electric and acoustic guitars, for a binder that he can put his music sheets and tabs in.  The Fall edition of Stitch magazine has a few more ideas for man gifts - I am considering making the zip-front pullover for both of mine.  2 months until Christmas - hopefully I can get everything done in time!

Thanks for stopping by!