Wednesday, November 26, 2014

New Look 6301 Faux Wrap Dress


As the warm weather gets washed away by crazy bouts of cold, I decided I needed another dress that would keep me looking cute while I dodged the certain uncertain weather changes.  To get my Summer/Winter look on I decided to go with  New Look 6301.  This pattern was the apple of my attention from the moment that I saw it.

Even as I saw the leaves falling and turning colors, my mind ran rampant with ideas about this pattern.  I had gone on an outing with the girls and all I could see were these gorgeous winter wrap dresses.  To my delight the color palettes were dreamy.  I had to have one, but my in my color and my style.
When I completed my project I felt as if I had a winner on my hands.  Some of the dresses that I had seen were pretty, but the colors were so Wintery and dark.  I'm in love with this fabric.  I got it from Fabric Mart a while back and I'm sorry to say that they are all sold out of this one, but they are running a sale on ITY fabric right now that is really making me a happy ITY camper.

The Review

Pattern Description: 
Misses knit dress with skirt and sleeve options and tie that can be worn in the front or the back.
Pattern Sizing:
A ( 8- 20)
Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? yes.

Were the instructions easy to follow? Yes

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? The pieces were easy to manipulate and it came together rather quickly.

Fabric Used: ITY knit

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made: I didn't make any adjustments to this pattern.  

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? yes and yes

Conclusion:  This is an awesome pattern to add to your pattern stash.  It was very easy to assemble and the instructions were great.  The ITY that I used was very sturdy (stable and not flimsy).  I liked how this particular piece of fabric made this dress look and feel.  I think the next time I will go with either a wool jersey (winter style) or a matte jersey.  

I am very pleased with how this pattern worked out and to me, New Look patterns make a lot of sense without a lot of fuss.

I hope you enjoyed today's post. Until next time.

Lots of Love

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

McCall's 6657 In Red


I've realized that it is getting cold outside and I've decided that a coat is in order.  This Summer, the idea of a coat was all I could really think about.  I kept putting it off and for good reason, I had never made one.  Of course you have blazers and light jackets, but when it came down to it, if you haven't gone to the attack of an actual "Coat", you haven't really delved into "fabric".

A few weeks ago, I made the jump, but before I even dared to tackle the fabric, I took a look at different online courses that would help guide me in the right direction.  Because I subscribe to Patternreview and Burdastlye I felt those two should be the starting point for more information.  Here's the kicker,,,just as I was finishing my coat Burdastyle came up with a cute quiz that helps you decide which courses to take according to the direction that you want your sewing skills to go.  That little nudge of direction would have been very helpful to me last month.  However, I began my project with a look at a blog I found last year, Ten Thousand Hours of Sewing.

Last year this young lady (Known to me as) Victoria, went through a personal experience with James McFarland and his dynamic tailoring techniques.  Her blog made me feel as if I were taking the courses with her, only I wasn't actually present to get the real deal.  Boy was I green, but now I have the opportunity to have a similar experience with Gentleman Jim because he is now teaching Master Fit: Advanced Tailoring on Burdastyle.

Needless to say that with this project I didn't have his help, but I will definately be having him next to me on some of my future projects.  So, here is my very first COAT!!!!

For this coat my daughter chose McCall's 6657.  I've had this pattern in my stash for a while because it is now OOP.  Believe me when I say that when I purchased this pattern my intentions were to make it right away, but the idea of a coat was more powerful than the will.  I had a piece of wool that I really didn't want to part with on this particular coat, but hey, it can only cut once, right?
I love the color of this coat and once finished my daughter was in love.  As I was putting the pieces together, she kept saying that I was making her a robe.  The fur collar kind of changed her mind.

The Review

Pattern Description:  Misses unlined/lined coast with different variations.

Pattern Sizing:  Y (XSM - MED)

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?  Yes.

Were the instructions easy to follow?  The instructions were easy, but applying the lining was a bit tricky. (honestly, I started the lining before I read the lining instructions and ended up redoing another set of lining pieces, which makes that my fault. oh oh).

Fabric Used:  Wool

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:  I had to make a pattern specifically for my daughter and I used muslin as a guide for the fit.  With my daughter being a lot of different sizes in 1 the sizes ranged between the medium, small, and extra small. (as reference not numbers).

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?  Yes, Yes.

Conclusion:  This pattern would make a really good pattern to use with a less bulky fabric (poplin, flannel, or brushed wool).  I liked that this was an easier pattern that I had first thought.  It was similar to making a robe, but with more detail on the collar.  The front facing and the front panel had to be lined in order to get the collar to line up for tacking.
I used a heavy weight interfacing and a lot of steam and dry ironing to press this particular fabric to make it workable and to get the seams as small as they would go,  The pins are in place because the idea was to run a seam along the lines and omit the fur collar (here is where the robe look happens).  With my daughter the shoulders were way to long, so I had to cut 1 1/2" off both shoulders and the sleeves.  The S sleeves were too tight and the MED sleeves were too big.  So, I used her arm measurements to make a sleeve that fit between the 2 and added 1/2" for seam allowance.  The bodice of the MED was way too big from the waist down.  Here I had to take her measurements and adjust the muslin to suit her.  I had to take a complete 1" off the back at the top and graded down by 3" from the waist and 4" at the widest hip area.  For the front (without the attached facing and lining) I continued with 1' taken from the top, 3" at the waist and 4" at the hips.  With the lining and front facing I took 1" off the facing that attached to the lining side and used the same 1"- 3"- 4" for the lining piece that connected to the lining back.  I also used those measurements for the lining back.  The sleeve lining was made using the adjusted sleeve muslin minus 1/2".  

Once I had completed all of this it was time to try the coat on again and here is were my young lady says,,,,,,"It's too long".  I can't agree with her on this, but she kind of wanted an above the waist jacket.  I wished she had told me this earlier.  I knew that if I had left the coat as long as it was, she wouldn't want to wear it, so I went back into  the coat lining on the inside left side and cut away 5" from the bottom.  Then cut 1" off the lining and stitched it close all the way across the bottom, closed the side opening and now it is ready for the cleaners.  

Overall, I liked this pattern, but making this coat again is not at the top of my "to do" list.  My daughter has expressed to me that she wants more collars since the fur one is removeable and I do see those in the future, so as I complete those, I'll keep you up to date with that.

Well, that concludes today's post.  I hope you enjoy it.  Thank you for joining me.

Lots of Love 

Thursday, November 6, 2014

McCall's 7021 and Review


I think I probably said in an earlier post that Halloween kind of stopped me in my tracks with a couple of projects that I really wanted and needed to get done.  I started looking for new and interesting patterns for the 2014 Fall/Winter season, but making my mind up on which one to start with was kind of hard when there were some awesome patterns coming out.  Some were repeats, but I was still mesmerized when I saw McCall's 7021.  I actually figured I would make a few of these for my daughter, but I knew that in order to get her to like it I would have to make one for myself first.  Guess what,,,,It worked?  When she saw my blouse she was all excited to get one for herself.  She actually picked a leopard print jersey that I had and a solid red.   Halloween cut into the red one, but here are a few pics of the 2 that I did manage to finish.

This is my blouse.

I just turned under the sleeves for a small hem.

I decided not to do the waste according to the instructions because I wanted my elastic almost invisible.
I used a Rayon Jersey for my blouse which can be found Here, Here, and Here.  The rayon has a silky soft feel.  This is the last piece of fabric that I had from a previous project.  I was impressed with this fabric then and almost too happy that I had just enough left to make this top.

I used the same pattern that I had for myself for my daughter.  I was not about to buy 2 of the same pattern.  I had to grade it to a small so that it would fit her.  Then I made the sides in the front a little longer that what the pattern called for.   This gives a significant dip for the front part of the peplum.

After I alter the front, I used the front to match the length of the seams and then cut the back.  I applied her elastic the same way that I did mine.

I turned under the neck and the sleeves per instructions.

My daughter wore her blouse the very next day and she just loves it.  I don't know when I will get a chance to wear mine, but I'm sure I'll find an excuse to put on...LOL.

The Review

Pattern Description: Misses top with variations

Pattern Sizing: B5 (8-16)

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? Yes. Completely

Were the instructions easy to follow?  These were the best and easiest instructions that I've had in a while.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?  I liked how easy everything was. From cutting to sewing, the whole process was a breeze.

Fabric Used:  The pink top I used a Rayon and the leopard print was a cotton jersey.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:  I didn't make any changes to my pattern other than the elastic change.  With the second one, I had to adjust the pattern to fit my daughter. (didn't buy 2 patterns).

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?  Yes, I am definitely going to make this one again and again.  I recommend this pattern completely!!!!

Conclusion:   Well, I will say it again.  This is an awesome pattern for beginners and anyone who wants a quick peplum top without all the fuss. Construction time was about 2hrs without distractions.   I used 2 different types of fabric which shows how versatile this pattern is.  I will be trying a few other fabric choices for some of my other projects, but that will be at a later time.

Converting a pre-cut for my daughter was so easy (knit fabrics are so forgiving).  I will be using the same pattern for the both of us in other projects because this pattern will make you feel like a pro.

Well, That's it for now.  I hope you enjoyed today's post and I look forward to next time.

Lots of Love

Monday, November 3, 2014

Halloween Pirates and Simplicity 3685


The past couple of weeks I have been busy with Halloween costumes.  At first I wasn't too happy about it, but when my sister asked me to make her a costume I naturally picked up my step and got in to spirit of things.  The only reason I like Halloween is for the candy and the knowledge that I might possibly be able to talk my Mom into cooking me my favorite turkey and dressing for Thanksgiving around this time.

My sister on the other hand doesn't need an invite to enjoy anything.  She loves the Holidays and any reason to dress up, makes her a happy girl.  This year her theme for the spooky day was "Pirates".  She had come up with a color scheme for everyone to wear and she wanted a special look for herself.  The task of dressing her fell on me.  I was so happy that she decided to let me do my thing until my mind was running wild, but she quickly put me in check with "I want a jacket".

I had coat patterns, sweater patterns, and a few costume patterns, but nothing that I was willing to think outside the box on with such short notice.  Why?  I was right in the middle of making a couple of tops that I was trying to get the tutorial for, but I didn't want to let her down.

  So, I went out and found her a pattern that had the perfect jacket.  Simplicity 3685 was the costume that I used.   I was told to make whatever I chose in black and gold....Yep,, she told me to make it. lol.  It felt so funny to me to have her breathing down my back on this one, but it was fun.

Here's a look at the process and the finish.

With this pattern the bodice and the back was lined with a lightweight interfacing and I used a heavy weight interfacing on the collar.
Right in the middle of construction I decided that I wanted organza on the sleeves and the collar.
 So, I took the collar apart and started again.  The satin collar was pretty, but the organza collar just looked better since I had put some on the sleeves.  This tied the look together for me.  I already had the gold buttons and the gold ribbon.  I got them on sale at Hancock's, but I never knew I would be using them like this.  The gold chain look are chained beads that were sewn on and secured with jewelry caps.  The gold ribbon has a 1" trim between it on the sleeves and the same trim is used on the bottom of the jacket.
Here's my sister all dolled up.
My Matie topped her look off with a black and gold trimmed pirate hat, fishnet stockings, and knee high flat boots (for walking,,, trick or treat).  The pattern came with a makeshift vest and I used a gold stretchy leather like fabric.
My sister and one of her friends.  He looks weird with those eyes, but he's got the pirate thing down pat. LOL...

She already had a cute chiffon skirt that went great with the jacket.  When I was completed with the jacket, I didn't like the look so I stitched a seam really close to the edge.  That was something that I did to make me secure with the lining.

The Review

Simplicity Costumes for adults 3685

I'm not going to give a basic review because this isn't a basic everyday pattern, so I'll start with the fabric for this pattern.   The pattern gives several good option choices for fabric,,,Brocade, Satin, Broadcloth, Velvet, and my thoughts about the fabric would be how much do you want to spend and how fancy do you want it.  Broadcloth would be on the less expensive side and this is where you would say "you get what you pay for".  On the other hand if you want to be in line with a more traditional look you will put a little more into your fabric, but they all would make this project well.

Next, the instructions were so very on point!!!!!  I believe that a determined beginner could make this jacket,  The grommets were easy to do, so don't be afraid of those.  I got my kit a few months back and had avoided doing anything with them because there wasn't anything that I wanted to do that required them, but this would be a great starting place if you want to try your luck with grommet placing.

Finally, I didn't have to do a lot of calculating or grading to get this Simplicity pattern to work.  This was an easy going process that took a few days to put together (aside from the embellishments).  I can't say how many hours I put into it, but a plain jacket wouldn't take that long.  If you can imagine it, just go with it and see what comes up.

Overall, this was a good pattern and a great fit into any costume stash.  I am definitely glad that I've added it to mine.

Thank you for joining my Halloween antics.  Until next time.

Lots of Love
I forgot to show you what I got in exchange for the costume. :-)
I'm so Happy....