Friday, September 20, 2013

DIY, New Look 6181,,,The Fabric From Outer Space

You will not believe what I am about to post today.  Have you ever had that piece of fabric that just took you by suprise, but not completely shock you off your feet?  Well, I just finished New Look 6181 and I would like to say that I had a good time making this dress, but I didn't.  I had been eyeing this fabric that's been in my stash for quite some time. I never paid any attention to the fact that I would politely move it around or just walk past it like it didn't exist, but now I know why I kept it in the corner, in the dark, way in the back of my stash.

When I began this project, I was enthused about having another perfect dress for my empty closet.  I thought this would be an easy task, right?.  The pattern read very easy and I should have been able to put it together fairly quickly, but here's the laugh.  The pattern was a good pattern, but the fabric was from outer space.  It has skates and a mind of it's own.  The more I touched it the angrier it got and the more heartbroken I had become.  I looked around and I thought about throwing it in the TRASH, but I couldn't let a piece of fabric ruin me or run me.  I was the boss of my machine or so I thought.  I kept trying everything I could to make that fabric be still, I even took down the tissue paper, wax paper, and typing paper.  Nothing was going to do this fabric any good.

BUT WAIT!!!  If this garment was going to survive my wrath it had one hope and one shot.  I quickly picked up my phone and made my last call to my life line, MOM.  The phone rang 6 or 7 times, no answer.  I called cellphones, both hers and my dad's, still no answer.  I went into panic state and then I broke down into tears.  My progress was progress, but it was so slow and so time consuming to fight with this alien that was looking at me.  My dreams were fading and phone rang.  I didn't check to see who it was ( too many tears), but that voice sparked a fire that burned my heart back to life.

"Hi Mommy".  Somewhere in her mommy bones she could tell that something was  "What's the matter baby?"  I started spilling the beans of this extra terrestrial fabric as she let out a smiling laugh she spoke so calmly and lightly, "Baby, have you tried some glycerin rose water?"  I looked up at the ceiling, as if I needed to question the answer, then all of a sudden my heart attack ceased.  My tears were gone and so was I.  I grabbed my car keys and off to Walmart I went.  My mom was on the phone with me while I got this beautiful liquid.  She instructed me to rub a little on my hands and then use what was on my hands to rub the fabric.  I did as instructed and voila'.  My serger was actually sewing and my straight stitch was working on this alien raw hide
Hahaha, Who had the last laugh?  Let's see.

Side leg slit.

Back ties.  This is the cute part to the dress
Arm opening
Steve Madden sandals
I believe that I conquered an alien.  This lovely fabric is a polyester Charmeuse.  I did not think that it would give me such a fit, but with the help of my mom, tissue paper and some glycerin I have a moment to think about a few things,,like never choosing a poly charmeuse again.  LOL, just kidding.  I would tackle it again in a heartbeat, just let me catch my breath first.

Thanks you for viewing my post today.  Have a great weekend.  Until next time,,don't let the aliens get you.


Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Sew Simple A1636, Tutorial Part 2

Yesterday was a great day and a very full day.  We started Sew Simple pattern A1636.  Yesterday we cut the pattern out in fabric and began the preparation work for the construction of the dress today.  So let's continue where we left off.

For a dress like this, I will admit that I would be able to make it in about 2 or 3 hours, but I wanted to share this very easy pattern with the beginning sewists.  This dress is a good way to quickly maximize your wardrobe potential without the expense of driving to the mall (price, gas, time) and without buying the most expensive fabric in the fabric store.  This pattern let's you be the boss of your price and personal style.

Ok, here we go.  Yesterday we ended with prep work, so for today we will continue with construction and the finish for the big reveal.  In  the pattern step1 says to stay-stitch the front and back at the neck.  I used my serger, but for those who do not have a serger, it's ok, don't sweat it.  Just use a zig-zag stitch to secure your edges.  This keeps your neck area from stretching while you sew.
The second part of step1 is to stitch between the 2 dots on the front bodice.  Hint: Stitch 2 rows. This makes for a cleaner pull and better gathers when gathers are called for.
Step2: Stitch bodice front to bodice back at the shoulders.  If you are looking at the instructions illustration3 shows you that you will be using the facing that you prepped yesterday, so to save time go ahead and stitch those after you are done connecting the bodice front to the back.  When you are done press your seams open on your facing and your bodice pieces.
After you have pressed both pieces, take the facing and stitch a zig-zag stitch/ serge along the outer edge.  Then turn under the stitched edge 1/4", press, then stitch.  This step is done before you connect the facing to the bodice (less fabric to work with).
Once you have completed the edging of your facing, it's time to connect it to the bodice.  Start with the seam lines first, then make sure your notches and markings are matching.  If they aren't matching, now it the time to straighten them out.

When you get all of your markings, notches, and seams fixed, it's time to make your gathers.  Gently pull the bobbin strings to make your gathers.  The strings should be between the 2 dots at the top of the bodice.  Once you have your gathers, adjust them so that they look correct to you.

This is the part where the garment starts taking on life "for me".  Setting the facing means that the party has really begun.  So Step3 says to stitch the facing to the bodice.  Once the facing is connected clip the curves and here is where I can't help but to PRESS.  I like for my fabric to start the behave effect as soon as possible, so press the facing away from the bodice with the seam going in the same direction as the facing.  After you are done pressing you are ready to stitch the facing close to the seam allowance step4.
Like I said, " The facing starts the process for me."  Now, I will look at my progress to make sure I'm on the right track.
Now that I have checked my gathers and shoulder stitches, I will move on. 
With the facing already hemmed the next step is fairly easy.  Take a needle and thread and tack the facing to the shoulder seams and then stitch the side seams.  The bodice part of the construction is almost over.  The excitement continues with the bias tape.  The bias tape is going to secure the armholes.  I used white bias tape because my dress had a white background.  I might could have used another color, but I don't think so with all the colors in this particular fabric and the fact that I wanted a very casual dress.
Bias tape in arm holes, 
The bias tape install if step7 thru 9.  When you've finished installing the bias tape, PRESS.  This concludes the bodice construction.  The only thing I suggest is to stay stitch the bottom while you work on the skirt part of the dress.

The bottom part of the dress is going to be just as easy as the top part.  First, we will place the pockets over the front skirt piece with notches and dots matching.  I also suggest that you do the same thing for the skirt back.  This way you can move from sewing one set of pockets to the next, step10 and 11.   When completed, PRESS the seam toward the skirt front and back.
Stitch the skirt front to the skirt back being sure to match dots, pockets, and hemline.  On step12 the illustrations shows that the pocket is away from the side seam and the seam for the skirt is being stitched parallel to the pocket seam, but it stops at the dot (the red pin just above my pinky).  Make this stitch first, then stitch your pockets together and follow that seam around until you get to the second dot ( just under my wrist).  When you get to the second set of dots, connect the dots and then continue your seam down to the bottom of your skirt.
Guess what?  We are almost done with this project.  I can't wait to see what this looks like on me.  I might just have to forge ahead, so that I can get the anticipation over with.  Alrighty then, I think we were on step13.  Here is where it can get tricky if you aren't paying attention.  If you are confused about which piece is the skirt front and which is the back, the skirt front has wider spaced notches that the back. Hint: Use tailor's chalk on the inside to mark an F/B to let you know the difference between the two. But we are still at step13.  Clip just under the back pocket seam, stay stitch the top of the pocket to the skirt front.  This clip will cause the pocket to lay forward and make step14 easier.  When down clipping, press the pocket toward the skirt front.
 In step14 you will begin some of the final work on this project by connecting the bodice to the skirt.

The results:

Wow, that was a journey. I will be posting a review for this pattern a little later, but I enjoyed the time that you spent with me and I look forward to doing it again soon.  Thank you for stopping by my site.


Monday, September 16, 2013

Sew Simple A1636, Tutorial Part 1

Today I wanted to share a pattern that I thought would make a good "Go To" dress for just about any size, shape, or age.  I found this pattern at my local Walmart a few weeks back and after reviewing it a few times, I decided I would share this sewing experience with you.

The first thing we will need to do is gather all the items that will be needed to begin/complete our project.
1. The pattern Sew Simple A1636 (A Simplicity line pattern).
2.  Size 10/12 will need 2 3/8 yds of fabric and Size 14 thru 18 will need 2 1/2 yds.

3.  1 package of 1/2" wide single fold bias tape.
4.  1 package of 1/4" wide elastic.
5.  Matching colored thread.
6.  Pins/weights to secure your pattern to your fabric.
7.  A trusty pair of scissors.
8. Lightweight  fusible interfacing.

I am showing hem tape for this dress, but I possibly will not be using it, so feel free to leave it off if you would like or do not know how to apply it.

The pattern gives a kind of vague fabric options list, but I believe that there are many different options for this type of dress, so I chose 3 yds. of 100% cotton that I already had in my stash.  When I look at this pattern, I see it as casual wear, but if it is made out of a more luxurious fabric, it would become something different.  Satin, charmeuse, silk, linen, gauze, crepe de chine, all of these fabrics have different properties and I believe they would serve this pattern well, even a nice chambrey would make this dress something special.

Before you begin this project, please read over the directions several times.  It is better to read the directions and look at the illustrations, so that you will have a clear understanding of what you are going to be doing, than to run blind and mess up.  This project is going to be simple with no frustration and the end result will be a beautiful dress that you can be proud of.  Now, let's get started with our new adventure in sewing something nice for ourselves.

To begin, I did not check my sizing because I knew I would be using 3 yds, which is more than what is called for even on the largest size.  On the back of your pattern there is a size chart for sizes 10 - 18.  The bust, waist, and hip measurements are given in approximation to this particular pattern.  If you have not taken your measurements lately for yourself, let's take a few minutes and jot those down so that we can get figured out which size we will be making.  

On the average, I measure myself almost every time  I make something for myself, but the measurements never seem to change,,,hmmm, maybe I should be exercising if I want the numbers to change.  Any who, my bust measures at 41 1/2", my waist is 36", and my hips are 41".  If I go by the chart on the back of the envelope, my size would be 18, if not 20.  You would think that this is all you need for your correct sizing, but you are not done calculating your size just yet.  The chart that is at the bottom gives you the Finished Garment Measurements.  If I go by the finished garment sizing, my size would be a 12.  So, I have to think rationally and combine the 2 measurements so that they make sense according to the measurements that I just took. 

The finished garment measurements measure the final garment at 48", but my tape measure says I am 41 1/2", so that means that if I want more room in the bust, I will use the size 18.  If  I want the top part of the dress to be a little more fitted, I should cut the 16, which has a finished bust of 46".  I want my dress to be blousy, but not excessively, so I chose the size 16.

Now that we have chosen our size for this project we can begin by laying out our fabric (pattern pieces should already be cut) and placing the pattern pieces according to the cutting layout on the instruction sheet.  

You will notice that I had weights in the first picture, but I decided to forgo the weights and use pins instead because there are pockets that were doubled, the sash belt is long and I wanted to cut everything out at one time.  You may also notice that I have not completely trimmed my pattern down to a size 16.  The reason being is that if I choose to grade the pattern from an 18 to a 16, I can mark my pattern for changes, but I actually cut everything to a size 16 as not to confuse myself or you.

So, once you have all your pieces laid out onto your fabric and pinned down, check it.  Make sure your lines are all even with the center fold line and even on the ends and outside edges.  Remember to old adage of measure twice and cut once.  If all of your pieces are coming up to par, you can begin your first cut.  

Once you have all the pieces cut out, go over each piece and make sure that all of you tabs are cut and markings are marked.
The notches and markings are important to the process of making any garment.  They help you keep an eye on the positioning and placement of your fabric pieces
When all of your pieces are clearly marked you can proceed with what I call a dry assembly (pinning).  I began with the skirt and the pockets.  Here is something that is a little tricky if you are not paying attention.  If you are planning on setting in matching pattern pockets, instead of a solid coordinate pockets, be sure to turn the patterned side to the the patterned side of the skirt (put right sides together).

This is what the dry assembly should look like.  Pin both sets of pockets the skirt front and skirt back.  After you pin the pockets take note of the dots that you marked earlier.  The dots are a line for the pocket opening.  I drew a line to remind myself how far down I should sew once I begin to join my skirt pieces together.  
Ok, this much takes care of the bottom half of the dress, so now it's on to the top part.  The top has facing pieces and those 2 pieces need to be infused with interfacing.  I used a lightweight interfacing and I believe the lighter the weight on this dress the better it will be for the garment as a whole.  I took the pattern piece from the fabric piece so that I could cut an accurate interfacing.  Once I was done with the interfacing it was time to attach it to the fabric.  

TIP:  When using interfacing, you may wonder which side is the correct side use against the wrong side of your fabric.  The rough, bumpy side is the side that has the fusing on it and this is the side that should face the wrong side of your fabric.  The opposite side should be fairly smooth to the touch.  This side is the side that faces outward.
When applying your interfacing to your fabric you want to use the correct heat settings for both your fabric and the interfacing.  I set my iron to cotton, but I used very little steam.
Most of the time I use a cotton towel as my drop cloth.  It helps to absorb extra moisture.  If you use a towel be sure that the bumps from the nap doesn't leave an imprint on your fabric.  You want this process to be smooth and go smooth.

Begin adhering your interfacing (after you have completely aligned the hole fabric area) at one side (end) and very slowly press downward until you have pressed the whole facing piece.  Don't move your iron back and forth the way you would as if you were ironing clothes.  You want to give the sticky side and opportunity to actually stick to the fabric. 
Once you have finished applying the interfacing, you may notice that your markings have disappeared.  My advice is to simply remark(invisible ink pen) them so that you will be able to see them once you begin the construction process,  

Well, with all the work that we have done today, we are finished with a lot of the preparation work.  Tomorrow we will continue with anything that I have left off and we will begin construction.  Until tomorrow, LOLPOH,  Dellia

Sunday, September 15, 2013

DIY, Vintage E.S.P. (Extra Sure Pattern) 5825

I am so excited about the pattern that I am posting today.  So excited until I can't wait for it to be modeled.  I kind of thought that I would post those pics a little later.

Now, on to this crazy Kool pattern.  I acquired this pattern a while back and I thought it would be nice to share a vintage pattern or at least a remake of a vintage pattern.  Every now and then I will be posting a vintage piece just to show that vintage garments are not just old clothes.  I like to think of some vintage pieces as a connection to my past and things that are and were important at some point in time, to me.

After I had finished my New Look 6224/0910 dress.  I was looking through my pattern stash and ran across a pattern that kind of stood out and said something to me.  I don't know why, but I could see this pattern on either my oldest daughter or my sister.  I knew I wasn't going to make it for me, but I wanted to see it on someone else..LOL. So, this is what I came up with for my baby sister.

I liked the idea of a jumpsuit, but I really didn't want the connection of the pants with the top.  So I just used the top.
The top is a desert sand colored peachskin fabric with a 100% polyester floral animal print, onion skin fabric overlay.

The skirt is a double layered handkerchief style with a rolled hem.  It is made of the same peachskin polyester that the top is lined with.   

This was an interesting project for me.  I almost put a regular gathered skirt on it, but I wanted something with a little more pizazz (like my sister), so I opted to cut the skirt at an angle instead of rectangles.  I hope she likes it because I do and she has very discriminate taste.

Thank you for stopping by, until next time

Monday, September 9, 2013

Homecoming Preparations with Modcloth


Today I got a little something in my email that I wanted to share with you.  

School’s back in session and football season is here! You know what that means – Homecoming’s next!

To celebrate this time-honored scholastic holiday, ModCloth is hosting a Party Dress Pinning Party on Pinterest! Enter by 9/12 to win one of two $250 ModCloth gift certificates. How do you enter? Find out more on the ModCloth blog:

Most importantly, spend some quality time perusing the ModCloth homecoming dress section to find the dress of your dreams! Check them all out here:ModCloth Homecoming Dresses 

So have fun this year, pin like crazy, and don't forget the Homecoming dress!!! 
LOLPOH, Dellia