Monday, January 31, 2011

Back from the Break...

Wow, that went by fast...except, when shall I find time to read the 766 posts that have accumulated in Google Reader????

I didn't get as much sewing done as I wanted, but I did have one 'wait up while the kids do homework' night in which I made knit tops. I finally made the boat neck top from the Sept. (oops) Feb. '09 issue of Burda Style...and I made a total of three of em in about a day and a half. I haven't gotten my review written yet, and these photos were taken all at once, but I have worn each of the tops already.

The first one is short sleeved because that's all the fabric I had. I fell victim to a sale, but I determined to sew the goods quickly. However, the vendor from which I ordered my first batch of '11 fabric has gone to the little sticky notes as order sheets, and the information was truncated by the edge of the note. So the '.5' on the order got lost and instead of getting a yard and a half, I got a very scant one yard of the royal paisely print. It's an ITY jersey, which I ordered mostly because I wanted to see what all the buzz is about ITY fabrics. But I didn't have enough for long sleeves. So, I made a short sleeved version.

For all it's slick and drapey, it's still very much polyester. The fabric feels cold when I wear it. It was ok as a bottom layer, but I think this is going to go to the back of the closet until the weather warms up.

I did have a yard and a half (again, rather scant, but not a half yard scant) of the rayon/lycra blend turquoise brush stroke knit. It's super yummy, and I love-love-love the colors. But, to my surprise, those brush strokes are horizontal. Since there was ample stretch in the length as well as the width, I just put my pattern on crosswise, so the stripes are vertical. This may be my new favorite top.

However, I still hadn't made the top as intended, so I pulled a 'why did I get this?' pink floral cotton/lycra knit from the stash and made one more top, since they went together so incredibly fast. This one gets zero style points, but it's nice to wear so it's a good 'change into after Sunday services' shirt; it may get worn more than the others after all. Or, if I can come up with a suitable bottom half, it may turn into a PJ top...

I'll get my review written up in the next couple of days and talk about the fit. I did have to do some tweaking to the neckline and the underarm, but by and large this is going to be a workhorse pattern for me. It is definitely instant gratification, and I was in sore need of some of that.

It's good to be back; I've missed the blogsphere... ;)

Sunday, January 09, 2011

Let It Snow!!

The NWS and all the local weather people have been prophesying sigNIFicant snowfall for the Tennessee Valley for the last few days; tonight is the night when all their predictions will be tested. Will we really get a shut-the-city-down snowfall? Or just a near brush with winter? According to the radar, it's been snowing in the Rocket City for an hour or two already, but I've not seen a flake. Apparently the air is still too dry for it to reach the ground. We'll see if the predicted Gulf moisture actually makes it this far.

But...the photo directory pictures are all finished, as of yesterday, and we hustled around and made sure all the bank deposits were recounted and hauled off to the night depository before we left church today; I can access the data base online and finish up my routine weekly data input from home at any time.

So...I'm hoping for a real snow event. One in which I can actually let myself thread up the machine and make something. I'm overdue for a sewing fix.

But, wouldn't you know, tomorrow begins our annual time of fasting and prayer at church...and I'm going to be hitting my geek fast of staying off the computer for everything but email (and weather reports!). I'm not fasting sewing...can't fast something I haven't been doing much of anyway.

So, I'm hoping for snow...and I'll be back in three weeks! ;)

Friday, January 07, 2011

Foiled by a Lack of Preparation

I got an email today from Michael and Sherri...the entire website is 50% off.

I don't have extra money to spend on wonderful fabrics right now, but I looked anyway.

Oh, my friends, I was undone by a piece of rich red double-faced Armani wool that's listed at $60/yd.

I *know* that discounted price is an amazing price for such fabric. I was sorely tempted.

But I closed the window because...I don't have a jacket pattern ready to cut out. Oh, I have one in the muslin stage, but nothing proven.

And I already have about three pieces of wonderful wool that I want to make jackets from before the moths find them (which has happened once a piece of Armani wool...aaaiiieee, that still hurts!). I don't want to buy another piece to just put in the bin to wait on the pattern to be ready for it.

I must muslin this year. I must, I must. I don't want to pass up a lovely piece of fabric for lack of preparation again...

Thursday, January 06, 2011

So much for resolutions

Well maybe I'm only partly non-compliant.

See, I told myself I wouldn't spend any money unless it was on wedding-related items.

So, when I purchased a swatch of fabric, and some on-sale Vogue bridal patterns, if a couple other items found their way into my shopping cart...well, no fabric can travel alone...

The Princess is still fairly adamant that I will not make her dress, but I'm thinking I'm plan B if she can't find what she wants for a price she can afford. So, I'm swatching and picking up patterns on sale...just in case. Anyway, I hit up for a swatch of Duchess Satin fabric. Since a $.75 charge on the credit card was ludicrous, I also ordered a couple of pieces of printed knit (I'm going to try an ITY knit and see how it fares) and a bamboo/cotton solid for some much needed PJ's. That got me free shipping. ;)

Later in the day, I stopped by Hancock's to take advantage of the Butterick/Vogue sale this weekend. $4 isn't too much to invest in a slight possibility; Vogue 2842 has some things in common with a dress that she tried on and loved; notably the front draping. However, the dress in the boutique also had draping in the back and a train, so there would have to be some significant modifications in order to replicate the ~$1K dress....

I also picked up Vogue 8569, which might actually get used, as she agrees with me that $250 is a ludicrous amount of money to spend for a comb and some polyester tulle. Along those lines, I also picked up Vogue 7009. Rosette patterns should be handy for about anything...including future costuming...

But, there's more than one dress at a wedding, and I'm starting to mull over the MOB dress. It's going to be an early afternoon wedding, so not too formal; no long dresses. I have a few patterns in my stash that I'll be pulling out and mulling over, but today I picked up the Kay Unger design, Vogue 1182. That's a striking dress, although I'm not sure how easy my standard 'lower the bust an inch and a half' adjustment will be on that. Might get tricky.

I looked through the Butterick catalog, too, since they were $1.99 each, but didn't see anything really wedding-y. However, Butterick 5559 and Butterick 5523 both came home anyway. Just because.

The wheels, they are a' turnin'...I'm sure there's going to be much more discussion ahead...

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

2010 in the Rear View Mirror

2010 was not a stellar year for me, sewing-wise. But one brightish thought is that, while I was 21 yards short of sewing parity, I did manage to curtail my shopping to only 78.5 yards...just 28 pieces of fabric...which is the lowest my annual intake has been since I started keeping rack of it 6 years ago. Maybe I'm learning self control?

In a less hectic time, I would've easily sewn 80 yards up in a year; this has just been a crazy year.

I suppose the high point of my sewing was the project I did in the early part of the year in which I tried to make 12 garments in 12 weeks. I didn't *quite* make the time line but I did get twelve new garments for the Flute Player and myself that were needed in the wardrobe.

So, here are the final stats:
Fabric In: 78.5 yds
Fabric Out: 57.5 yds
Last fabric purchase: 10/4/10
Garments made for me: 24
Garments made for other people in my family: 7
Home Dec items: 1
Muslins: 3

Miscellaneous Church-Related Sewing:
Six Black/white liturgical stoles

Team Effort:
3 baptismal robes

I still have a few baptismal robes in the bin under my desk at work that need to be finished out; I *think* all they need are side seams and hems.

Maybe that'll be the first 'As soon as I'm done with the church directory photo scheduling' project, just to get it off my conscience ;). We have one more weekend of photography this week, to make up for a day we lost last month due to freezing rain, and then that portion of our directory project is DONE. The next step...editing the directory info itself... should not be so time consuming. I hope, anyway.

'Cause I have total chaos in evidence just about everywhere and somehow I need to get dug out of it. So my sewing plans for 2011 are rather on hold; all I know for sure is that I'll be doing some wedding sewing. Still don't know exactly what...but I should have an idea soon.

I hope. ;)