Monday, January 25, 2010

A Natural State of Me

I have been gradually cutting my hair since last spring. I had never really had short hair and I wanted a change. Somewhere along the road I started considering going natural. I have a few friends and sorors who have gone natural and they said it was one of the best decisions they made. I last relaxed around Thanksgiving of 2009 and knew in the back of my mind that was going to be the last time. I went in for a trim earlier this month and was tempted to chop it all off but I wasn't quite ready yet. Well last Friday on my lunch break I went to a local salon and chopped all my relaxed hair off. Oh it was so liberating and I haven't stopped smiling since! The stylist kept commenting on how calm I was. I told her I knew I was ready so why wait. As thick as my hair is I was not looking forward to transitioning and dealing with two different textures of crazy thick hair. Well without further ado here is the new do:

Have a fantastic week!

LBD:Vogue 8409

I started out planning on making this dress for myself, but when someone offers to pay you to make a dress for them...well you know what that means. In theory the dress is finished but we have one more fitting to see if I need to make any adjustments in the arms.

Pattern Description: Mid-knee length dress has pleated bodice, middle inset, straight skirt, back zipper and back slit. A: cuffed, below elbow length sleeve. B: long sleeve.

Pattern Sizing: 6-22; I cut a 16 in the bodice and graded to somewhere an 18 and 20 in the hips for a little wiggle room.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? Of course!

Were the instructions easy to follow? Very. I looked at them before beginning construction but I don't know that I looked at them after that.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? I really liked how well drafted this pattern is. I did have a little trouble getting the middle inset pieces lined up. I really dislike slip stitching in general and it seemed like the midriff was never ending. Oh and the sleeves were such a pain. I ended up with a tiny bit of puckering at the top of each sleeve cap but since it happened on both sides it really looks like it was meant to be there.

Fabric Used: Cotton Blend Twill in Black

Pattern Alterations or any design changes you made: I shortened the skirt and graded the hips up about one size.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? I really love how this dress turned out and I still would like to sew one for myself. It was odd making something for someone else that I hadn't already done before but it wasn't as nerve wracking as I thought it would be.

Conclusion: I really like this dress and think it makes an awesome little black dress. I was stoked to watch Private Practice few nights ago and see Naomi wearing a black dress with similar bodice pleating! I am sure that my client will love it as well.

Bottom Line:
Fabric: 2 yds @ $1.95/yd= $3.90
Notions: facing and thread from stash
1 invisible zipper $1.75
Total Cost to Make: $5.65
Cost Sold for: Not telling you ; )

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Vogue On!

Ok so I have too much time on my hands at work and went to the Vogue website to see if they had anything new and image my surprise to see a new website! I really like it.

Anyway these two patterns caught my eye. I doubt I get to them any time this year but they are still ONEderful!

Vogue 1162 with the sleeve flower and pleated neckline are TDF! I would be all dressed up with nowhere to go but I would be looking some kind of good. I am having a hard time imagining this dress in any color but red because I just don't know what other color could do the details justice. Sigh.....

I didn't think there was anything special about V8633 until I saw all the different views. I love the structure of the neck and bodice paired with the flare skirt in view D. Maybe it's the peach color of the dress but it makes me want to throw on a wide brim hat and go to the Kentucky Derby.

A meme

1. What did you do in 2009 that you’d never done before?

Trekked on a glacier.

2. Did you keep your New Year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?

I TRY not to make resolutions, I make life changes.

3. How did you spend New Year’s Eve?

At my BIL's house in the boonies. It was good times though.

4. Did anyone close to you die?


5. What countries did you visit?

Canada (Toronto, Victoria, Vancouver), Italy (Rome), Egypt (Cairo and Alexandria), Turkey(Izmir and Ephesus), Malta (Valletta) , Spain (Barcelona and Madrid), and Greece (Athens)

6. What would you like to have in 2010 that you lacked in 2009?

More quality time with my Husband.

7. What date from 2009 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?

October 10. Date night discussion that changed a few things but for the better

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?

Learning how to let go.

9. What was your biggest failure?

Trying to do it all

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?

Nothing serious.

11. What was the best thing you bought?

A Wii

12. Where did most of your money go?

Fabric, shoes and travel but not necessarily in that order

13. What song will always remind you of 2009?

Empire State of Mind

14. What do you wish you’d done more of?

Spent more time with my Sister. She is growing up so fast!

15. What do you wish you’d done less of?

Daydreaming instead of doing

16. What was your favourite TV program?

I somehow just discovered Bones.

17. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?

No I don't hate anyone. Takes too much effort and is not worth it.

18. What was the best book you read?

Hold that thought....

19. What was your greatest musical discovery?

The Element of Freedom by Alicia Keys

20. What was your favorite film of this year?

Gran Torino

22. What kept you sane?

My Family and Sorors

23. Who did you miss?

Uncle LH

24. Who was the best new person you met?

New persons: My LS, My Big Big, and Mama Dean

25. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2009:

It's not too late to make some things right you just have to know your limits. Everything happens for a reason. Have no regrets but learn from missteps and no matter what keep your head held high.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Finished: Baby Blanket

I feel like I worked on this blanket forever. In reality it only took about 5 or 6 hours to crochet, I just sat it down for a good two months before actually finishing it. It was quite easy and very repetitive (perhaps why it sat for so long?) but it is done. The shower is next month so I may whip up some booties or a little hat to go with it.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010


Was I asleep when the new McCall patterns came out? I was browsing the website a few minutes ago and noticed some new patterns to select from.

The ONE that really caught my eye is 6024. I am totally in love with it already!

It's no secret that I am a sucker for a wrap dress but when you combine it with flutter sleeves AND a neck flounce, you could buy me for a nickel. I am now on the hunt for THE perfect fabric for this dress as I am planning to make it to wear the a rehearsal dinner.

There were a couple of others that I am still on the fence about but I am trying to stay focus on getting this stash down so that's it for now.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

M5974 take 2

This is a second and less detailed review for McCall's 5974. You can see my original review here.

Pattern Description: Misses dress with bodice variations, front pleats, neckline variations, self-faced midriff, pleated skirt front, back zipper and sleeves in three lengths. I made view D which has a wrapped bodice, v-neck, self-ties and long sleeves.

Pattern Sizing: 8-16; 18W-24W. This time I cut a 14.

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?
I didn't actually use this instruction this time since I had just made another version a few weeks ago. But the instructions are very well written and make sewing this dress a breeze.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? You can see my original review for the whole list but basically I love the whole dress.

Fabric Used: A brown 'optic matte jersey' print from Joann's. I love the earthy tones of the fabric.

Pattern Alterations or any design changes you made: I shorted the skirt and added about an inch to the bodice so I could cross it over a bit more for modesty.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? I still want this in a solid color but I have some other projects I want to knock out first. I do highly recommend this to others.

Bottom Line:

Fabric: 3 yds @ 6.49/yd = $19.47
Notions: thread from my stash
Total: $19.47

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Happy New Year!

I can hardly believe that 2009 has come and gone! While some beautiful things and some not so beautiful things happened in '09, I am looking forward to what 2010 has in store. This year promises to be exciting and full of new beginnings, not just for me but for many of those around me. My goal of sewing for others will certainly be met as I have been asked to make a prom dress, a flower girl dress, and a rehearsal dinner dress all which will be needed within weeks of one another! That just means I have to stay focused. While I have tried this before with mixed results, I will again start to set sewing deadlines for myself. Hopefully this will keep me from jumping around to various projects so much but we will see.

For the month of January 2010 I will finish the following:

Butterick 5242. I have made this before and while I said I wouldn't make again, I obviously changed my mind. I am on this knit dress/print fabric binge and immediately thought of this pattern. I've worn my original version so many times and it really is very comfortable. Since I have grown as a sewer since first making it, I have figured out to make the necessary adjustments to the bodice, etc. to get a better fit. I will make view B, but am already planning to take some of the volume out of the sleeves.

Next is Butterick 5328. I have been planning on making this for time but was intimidated by the fit issues that some reviewers have had. I have decided to take the plunge and figure it out as I go. How else will I learn?

Lastly for this month I want to make Vogue 8409. I found some fabulous snake print shoes that would really jazz up a LBD. I'm super excited about making this one.

Alright, that's what I am up to this month. What are your sewing plans?