Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Tutorial, New Look 6206 Part 2


When we left yesterday, we had completely assembled the bodice of New Look 6206.  If you haven't done the adjustments to the back elastic, please do so now because the next couple of rounds will go by kind of fast.

Let's start this segment with the embellishments and finish out with the completed garment.  I didn't use any with this dress because the fabric itself is adornment enough, but if you are using a solid color or you want your dress to be little bit on the jazzy side then this is the point where you would want to add those in.  In Step 7, the instructions show you how to apply either ribbon, beads, sequins, or just whatever style choice you pick, to the dress.  There are a lot of ways to style this dress with embellishments, but the simplest and prettiest would be to add it to the midriff as instructed.

If you are not going to do anything special to the bodice then let's begin with the skirt construction.  I began with the back pieces.  Match the notches and then the rest of your raw edges, then stitch.
Once the center back is stitched, press the seam open.
At this point, the whole back is completed.  Now you want to join the front panel to the back.  Match the notches together and pin.  Do this for both sides.
When all the side seams are completed open the seams and press.  You should have 3 sets of pressed seams.
Your skirt is now assembled.  The next step is very important for the balance of the dress.  When I opened, I mentioned an area for embellishments.  There is a little dot at the very center of the pattern about 5/8" from the seam line.  This dot has a dual purpose.  It helps with any trims that you have and it is a guide for the V in the center front.

Your next to final step is going to be tricky...(LOL) BUT not really.  You have to connect the top to the skirt.  This will be step 9 on the instruction sheet.  With all thicknesses together pin the top to the skirt.  I like to pin the seams and dots first, then fill in from there.  Match the bodice small dot (that you made when you first began) with the small dot that is in the center of the skirt front.
Stitch through the 3 layers and it should turn out either like this or better.
Stitched .  See the center dot?  This is what you want to keep an eye on to guide you to the V look.
Well, that seems to be just about it.  OOPs.. we have to put a hem in this one and then we can be out the door.  Real time construction is about 2 or 3 hours.  It depends on you and the fabric you are using, but either way this is a really neat dress.  I love it.  Here's a look at the finished dress.

This complete our tutorial for NL6206.  I hope you enjoyed it.  I look forward to our time together. Be sure to leave a comment.  Until next time,

Lots Of Love

Monday, April 14, 2014

Tutorial, New Look 6206 Part 1


Recently I was asked to do a tutorial on New Look 6206.  I had made this dress as a Semi-Formal for my daughter last year.  Here is a picture of the dress that I made her.
This was view A.  Today for the tutorial I will be doing view B.  I'm not going to say that this is the only pattern out there with this style of bodice, so I did a brief search and found a few patterns that will give the same style of look.  Pattern 1, Pattern 2, Pattern 3, Pattern 4, Pattern 5, Pattern 6, etc.  Now that you get the picture of finding what style of pattern that you want, I'll start with this pattern since it is one that I have on hand and I've already ventured into before.  On my daughter's dress I made changes to the skirt (fitted) and I shortened the skirt to fit her.  With this tutorial I will be making the dress as it is in the pattern.
Here are the items I will be using for this tutorial.  I will try not to serge,  but that will be hard.  The fabric that I used for the first dress is a glitter double knit (fancy/ formal).  The fabric that I am using for this project is a Rayon knit.  It feels like cotton jersey, but it's soft and flowing which is something that I wanted for this particular dress.

To start, this is a pattern that has to be assembled in 3 parts, the bodice, then the skirt, and then join those 2 together.  You can start with either the bodice or the skirt first, but I like to go with the hardest first,,,the bodice.   Once all the pattern pieces are all cut out, notches, and markings are done you are ready to begin.
Of all the markings and sewing that you will do with this garment, these are the most important markings.  These are the markings that make the V in the center of the dress.  There will be 4 layers to have to make the markings through.  Be sure that you clip and mark through all 4 layers.
For View B, this is the first step.  With both pieces you will need to stitch from the large dot to the small dot.  One set of bodice will be facing outward and the other will be the lining/ back to the front.  Your stitches should be set to zig-zag and you might want to have a ball point needle which is better for sewing knits.
 This is what both pieces will look like with the center stitched together.  Press the seam on both pieces open.  Then take the bodice back and match the notches to the bodice front notches (side) for both pieces.
All of the previous photos are step 3 from the instruction sheet.  Be sure to press your seams open.  Next is step 4,  stitching all of this together.  Here is where I do what I do best,,,,PIN,PIN,PIN.
I pinned all the way around even to where the dots are where I began my first stitch.  I started my stitch close to the dot then stitched all the way around to the other side of the bodice and the other set of dots.  This is Step 4 from the instructions sheet.
After I finish joining the bodice pieces, I trim.  Trimming will take away some of the bulkiness especially on the ties and the underarm, but DO NOT cut beyond the seam line that joins to the back(show you why later).
When you are done trimming the excess, turn the bodice right side out and press.  At the bottom of Step 4 there is an important message and here is what it says "Stitch straps and upper edge of back, breaking and reinforcing stitching at large dots.  Layer seams".  This would seem to be difficult, but it's not.  What this means is the little V that you made first has to be adjusted.  The instructions are telling to to cut, break, or do what you need to do in order to get the look. (Please, no stretching)
When the center seam is lined up and centered the way you want,,,Press it, keeping the front seams flat.  This will keep the bodice pretty and neat.  On to step 5.  Step 5 is why you didn't trim all the way around the bodice.  Here you have to add your elastic to the bodice back.  Use the elastic guide to show you how much elastic is needed for the back.  Some of you will need less elastic, but go by the guide as a general rule and then try your top on and cut down from there.
In Step 5, you can see that the elastic goes just beyond the seams.  Pin both ends of the elastic down according to the instructions.  If you look close to the picture below you will see that I placed the elastic edge just at the seam that joins the two back bodice pieces.  This is how you will pin the elastic all the way across, tugging gently to make sure that the back bodice and the elastic are evened out.  Once pinned down, stitch.
As you stitch the elastic to the back bodice, tug the elastic as you sew from pin to pin, but try not to pull the fabric.

This is the finished bodice back.  At this point try the bodice on and see if the back is tight enough or loose enough.  How ever you decide to fit your bodice, here is where you will make the change in the fit.

Thus far we have completed the bodice.  In my next post I will be visiting Step 7, the possibility of embellishments and completing the skirt.

Thank you for joining me today.  Until next time,

Lots of Love,

Friday, April 11, 2014

New Look 6048 Completed And Review


Last week I started pattern NL 6048.  It is a sundress with options for a halter strap or regular straps.  I chose the halter strap look simply because I hadn't had a halter in a long time.  This project was suppose to take me a couple of day, but it ended up taking longer.  Here's why,  I decided that I could not tell which end was up or down, so I have been organizing my sewing area.  That was something that has been on my mind for a while and I just never seemed to have the time to get is going.  Even though I was busy organizing, I was seriously trying to finish this project.  It was like having a ball and chain wrapped around my fingers weighing me down. So, here's the finished work.
The Review

Pattern Description: Misses sundress with strap options (halter/2 straps).  
Pattern Sizing:  4-16
Fabric:  Cotton
Did it look like the photo on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?  Not really sure.
Were the instructions easy to follow?  Yes.
What did you like about the pattern?  The look of the dress.  I love the skirt.  The pockets are all but invisible.
Pattern alterations you made:  I added 1" to the bodice bottom and back bottom.  
Will you sew it again?  No.  I don't really like it as much as I thought, but it is a good dress.
Would you recommend this pattern to others?  Yes.
Conclusion: This pattern kind of took me in a whole different direction.  I liked the way it looked on the cover.  Construction and instruction sheet went kind of easy.  The one thing I didn't like was the top part of the sweetheart neckline.
 As you can see the front flap piece is all over the place and there are some gaps (might have tied it a little too tight), but I do plan on stitching this flap down.  I debated this for a while, but decided to show that this could be a problem for others who might would like to try this pattern.  The pattern cover that I had did not give any clues as to what type of zipper that I would need to use, but the instruction sheet had the invisible zipper as the zipper of choice.  I am beginning to like the invisible zipper.  My overall thoughts on this pattern is that it is a good pattern.  It's good for a beginner who would like to test their skills.

I hope you enjoyed today's post and I am so happy that you decided to follow this experience with me.

Lots Of Love

Friday, April 4, 2014

Sewing Through The Fog, Update


In my last post I described a moment when I didn't think I would be able to weather the let down of not succeeding at a task that I had set for myself.  In order to get over this small "Bumper" I moved forward with a pattern ( New look 6048) that I had been wanting to get my hands on, but didn't quite have the right fabric to make it all come together for me.

Here are a few photos of how things are going.
Here I added 1" to the bottom of the torso.  I added it all the way around because it looked like the bodice was going to be a little short.  I don't have an extremely log torso, but I hate when  dress is suppose to fit at the waist yet it is hiked up like it's an empire bodice.  Plus, that look would be better on a younger person.  If you have a longer torso then this is an option that you might would want to consider.
The front bodice completed.  I used white thread to stitch the seams forward (facing each other), to add more of a white contrast.
This is the dress coming together.  I don't know why I didn't take photos of the skirt,, I think it slipped my mind.  Any who,, There are pleats in the skirt that have to be matched up all the way around, even the one in the back.
I've noticed with this pattern that the zipper assembly is going to be last.  The contrasting sweetheart border finish and neck ties go together.  I will say at this point that the skirt comes in 2 lengths.  One was a little long than this one and I wanted that look, but I didn't want the ruffles.  My option was to cut at the line where the ruffle line started.  Once I saw that the skirt was going to be long enough without the contrasting white band and ruffle I decided to omit the bottom contrast in white, but I am still debating on adding white bias tape instead of a 1' hem.
I saw Vogue 1174 last year and fell in love with how it looked.  So, you can guess where the idea for this dress is coming from.  There will be some differences in the two dresses.  The Vogue has a seamed in bust bodice and back.  The New Look pattern has princess seams.  The back of the Vogue skirt doesn't have pleats, but darts and the front has a set of pleats.  The New Look pattern has pleats all the way around.  Both patterns have pockets which makes this the perfect dress for me.  I love pockets whether I use them or not.  

Here is a video that I found from one of my favorite blog sites, Fashion TV Blog that is very useful with sewing princess seams.
If you haven't checked Colleen's site out (beginning and returning sewers) it's time you did.  There is a host of information that can help you sharpen you sewing skills and enlighten your sewing knowledge.

Until next time,,,,

Lots Of Love,

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

New Look 6048, Sewing Through The Fog


Today I will attempt to get through a recent epic fail that ended up breaking my heart.  Normally, not accomplishing a task doesn't have that huge of an impact on my mood or my zest for sewing, but last week I had in my mind what I could see as the ultimate dress for my Mom's birthday.  I had had this pattern on my mind since it first came out and all I could see was her in this dress and to top that off I would make it in her favorite color GREEN.
 So, I set out to find the perfect combination of fabrics to make my ideal dress come to life  for my Mom.  I gathered all the things that I would need as I was reeling with excitement because my Mom even made a trip to my house so that I could get her measurements correct.  Her visit made me so giddy and happy.  I had ants in my pants the whole time.

With my pattern and fabric in toe, I began to work on my Mom's dress.  I kept saying to myself that I wanted it to be perfect.  Not that that was any pressure but, I wanted my strongest critic to have something beautiful.  In my vision I had the dress on a vintage scale.  I wanted the skirt longer and the bodice was perfect for the overlay that I wanted to put on it.  I basted the bodice overlay to the the fabric (medium weight satin).  It was coming together so well until I knew I would have the dress finished by the time my Mom and Dad left,,,,BUT,,, When she tried the bodice on it was so small until I almost screamed when I saw it.  Mom had suggested that I re-cut the front bodice piece, but I kept saying to myself that if I did that it would throw the side seams off and there wasn't any of the overlay left to re-cut or throw to waste even thought I had overshot the fabric amount.  My mind was going so fast trying to do a quick troubleshoot until I gave in.  Needless to say that my smiling face turned into a crooked frown.

After my Mom and Dad left, I called my oldest daughter in to try the bodice on her.  I thought, ok. she's smaller than my mother and maybe I can salvage the whole thing and finish it for her (which would give some thought of accomplishment).  That was an even more tragic tale of pattern/ fabric thievery.  For days, I kept trying to fix the bodice in my mind.  I drew sketches to help with all the brainstorms I was coming up with, but I am going to have to put this project to the side until my AH-HA moment comes AND IT WILL.  Some way,,,some day,,,soon, I will win this war but, until then I will have to work through the fog and continue to pray.

Just like some fashions are fads that fade away so will disappointment.  Which is why I am moving on to New Look 6048.  I kind of think it will help me get my mojo back and help to ease the pain of my recent temporary loss (LOL)  I wanted something that I had never sewn before that looked easy.  I found some cotton fabric in my stash and that is what I am going for this week.  Here's a look at the combo that I put together for this project.

Ok, now that I have chosen my next victim, I'm ready to go.  Stay tuned for updates on this one.  I'm hoping it will give me that certain pep that I need.  Even though my Mom is ok with not having her dress,,,I'm not.  Persevering though the fog might just be the prescription I need.

Until next time,,

Lots Of Love,

Monday, March 17, 2014

Burda 7143 & Simplicity 2364 DIY


For weeks I have been dreaming of a tulle skirt.  I kept seeing them everywhere and was quite annoyed with myself for letting the many layers of tulle stop me from having one.  BUT, I had to have one of those skirts.  They are absolutely geor- G- ous!  I've seen them on almost every page of any woman's magazine.  The celebrities have been wearing them for a while,,, did I miss the memo?  I think I did.
Sarah Jessica Parker
Color was an open option for me, but all the time that I had thought about this skirt, I had my color already sealed in stone.  I wanted green because it was coming up to St. Patrick's Day.  I haven't been out partying on St. Patti's Day in years, but I thought about today being the perfect day to wear my tulle skirt.  However, the weather is not allowing me much opportunity to wear anything other than a coat.  Here's a picture of the first 30 seconds of the picture taking for my skirt. (LOL)
I was going to try to be Tyra Banks and "Smize" my way through, but the weather was not working for me.  I am not a cold weather girl.  So, since outside was a no go for me, I had to improvise.  Let's see what came up.

Ok, I've gotten the torture part over,,, here's a look at the outfit on Sarah.  The patterns that I used were Burda 7143 for the skirt and Simplicity 2364 View F for the top.
This was an enjoyable project for me.  I was excited from the moment I began.  For the top I used a single knit in the back and for the lining.  The from is a textured knit.  I used the textured knit because I only had 1 yard of single knit and did not feel up to running out to get anything else.  Once I saw the combination together, I decided,,,Kool and went with it.

 I ended up adding extra fabric to the lining because it was not long enough to completely cover my bust area, so the whole top is lined.  I doubled the sleeve because I wanted to blend the single and textured knit together in order to make the front and the back make sense (or at least that's how I could see it).  I went by the pattern for the skirt.  I just added tulle, 4 extra inches from the original View B and lined it with lightweight taffeta.  It swishes when I walk.  That's a sound that some people like and others don't, but I felt that it was a necessary evil for this skirt.

Thank you for joining me today,  I hope you have a happy St. Patrick's Day.

Lots of Love