Saturday, April 30, 2016

2016 SWAP Wardrobe DONE!

...with about 7 hours to

All eleven garments have been completely constructed since 1/1/16;  all but 1 of them have been completed since 4/14/16.  That was the day I almost threw in the towel, since I didn't have much accomplished from my original centered-around-a-denim-jacket plan.

But I had a flash of insight about the original SWAP a quick wardrobe of useful coordinates from Tried-N-True patterns.  So I reworked the plan for Quick, Proven and Useful.

Actually, it's all stuff that I've been meaning to make, in one way or another, for quite some time.   The Style Arc dress was a venture into the unknown, but the purple challis had been earmarked for a dress; I just couldn't decide on the pattern. Since I was in the safe zone...I'd finished 10 garments...I decided to have some fun with the last one.

But here are some preliminary photos:

Pack A - Black:  McCall's 6844 Cardigan, from very nice RPL double knit; Jalie 2682 V-neck top from a rayon/lycra blend fairly beefy knit; Loes Hinse Oxford Pants (modified w/ fly zip from her Europeans) from a gray/taupe pinstripe tropical wool.

Pack B - Gray - New Look 6272 drape front jacket, modified for single-layer front, from gray wool crepe I won in a blog giveaway from Rhonda Buss about 3 year ago;  Loes Hinse Oxford pants, modified for a boot cut line, from stretch RPL woven suiting; cream stripe on gray, and a dark gray modal/lycra Jalie 2566 T.  I wanted a lighter shade of gray, but all the silvery gray knits I had looked purpley against the gray of the pants and the jacket, so I went with charcoal.

 Wild Card Pack - Pamela's Patterns Cool Cardigans Drape Front jacket in 4-way stretch rayon jersey, heathery gray, Vogue 8669 cowl neck shell (modified for a faced cowl) from rayon/lycra cream rib knit;  Sewing Workshop Helix Pant from a beefy black denim-look ponte knit.

Combo pack:  Louise Cuttings Easy, Ageless Cool campshirt in rayon challis and, as the sole pop of color in the wardrobe, just for fun, Style Arc's Toni Designer dress, also in rayon challis.

The pop of color could've been about anything; and, in all honesty, it WILL be ...I will wear the gray and black duds for choir until they fall apart (the drape front Pamela's Pattern is actually replacing TWO gray knit cardis that have holes in them...).  The camp shirt can also go over tank tops and t's for a top layer.

(note: all 11 garments are in the picture above and again in the picture below)

I'll have to do some better styling for the actual contest submission photos...although I'm not terribly good at styling...but at least you can see how it will work! ironic...May's choir colors are coral, navy and tan. No black or gray this month!

Saturday, April 23, 2016

Done enough!

Three SWAP garments are in the closet, and have already been photographed in a Choir Wardrobe photo at some point.

Today, I cut out and sewed the white cowl top (still have a thread or two to trim, I see...) and I did the hand work on the pants and camp shirt.

Which brings me to a total of NINE SWAP wardrobe garments completed this year!  All but one of those were finished since I decided to go for it last Thursday.

So I've got enough done to qualify as a completed SWAP...if I don't get the final two garments finished by this time next week, I can pull two 'previously made' garments from the closet.

But I'm going to try to finish those last two.  Just because.

I'm excited.

(PS...if you don't have a clue what I'm talking about, here's a bit of an explanation)

Friday, April 22, 2016

Home Stretch

I may actually finish this.
Did the jacket today...from cutting to finish.  It was a bit of a risk, as I hadn't made it up before, but it's a loose enough style that I figured it didn't have to fit to a T.  And it's actually pretty good.  It needs a good press/steam, and the pants behind it still need hemming, but I'm getting close.

I have 3 garments that just need hand work...hems, buttons...and I have 3 more that need to be made.  But, since the rules allow for two previously made garments that work with the new wardrobe, I really only need one more...and I have a nice cream fabric for a quick cowl neck shell top.  After that, if I can't get two more knit tops made, I can pull something...anything, really, as the SWAP is basic gray and black and cream...from the 'I made this for choir'  wardrobe and put it with the new pieces.

I am going to wear these clothes to shreds....

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

And...the winners of the giveaway....

My goodies are allocated...I started with the most expensive piece of fabric and worked my way down to the one that was the clearance price... If you said you looked good in a color, you were in the drawing for that particular fabric.

3 yards of Navy Zegna silk suiting from Michael, a David Warren suit pattern from Butterick and a copy of Second Stitches goes to ....Marilyn!

4 yards of olive/tan/black tattersal tropical wool from Hancock's...back in the day, sigh....a 1940's retro reprint Simplicity pattern and Jane Conlon's Fine Embellishment Techniques goes to....Debbie!

3 yards of pink linen/rayon eyelet, which is one of the nicest pieces of fabric I've ever bought at a JoAnn's (I believe it came from Cool Springs, TN),  a 3 piece Butterick Wardrobe pattern and a copy of Sewing Secrets from the Fashion Industry  goes to ....Mary Deeter!

2 yards of cross-woven pinpoint cotton shirting from Gorgeous Fabrics, a Kwik Sew classic women's shirt pattern and a copy of Bottom/Chaney's Make it Your Own goes to ....Kathleen Conery!

And 2 1/4 yards of a sylized floral rayon challis in varying shades of olive-y green, gray, black and white,  that I *think* came from Fabric Mart but may have come from along with a Vogue Basic Designs Shirt pattern and the Baker/Young classic Simply Serge Any Fabric  goes to....Amy Mayer!

And, the truth is, I only had 9 ladies enter the drawing.  So...for the rest of you (Amy Bailes, Susan V., Ann Marie and Amy in SC)...if you will send me your typical Big 4 pattern size, I'll pick a pattern from the stash and send it your way!

So, basically, everyone who entered needs to send her mailing address to tig77lw at yahoo dotcom, and I'll get the goodies out in the mail.

I hope you all enjoy your glad you all participated!  And, once again, thanks to everyone who stops by Sew Random!

Now...back to the SWAP sewing...

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Choir Wardrobe 4 17 and almost half a SWAP...

Well, mostly new stuff.  And the new stuff is not reviewed yet....I did another view on that McCall's cardigan 6844, made in a pretty substantial black RPL (or maybe PRL) ponte.  I made some Oxford pants from this fabric SEVERAL years ago; this is the last of that piece.  It's really, really nice and has held up well on the pants so I expect the same from the cardigan.

The pants are probably (at the moment, anyway), the most expensive garment in the plan.  It's another exceptional doubleknit; it's kinda tweedy and actually looks a lot like denim.  I got it from Nancy Erikson at the one-and-only time the sewing Expo stopped in Indianapolis, back in 2014.  It was a dream to sew; I actually used the pattern I meant to use when I bought it...Sewing Workshop's Helix pant, although I've modified it somewhat.  One of these days' I'll write a review and tell what I did; but I'm very happy with them.  The only fly in the ointment is that I should have used stouter elastic; with anything at all in the pockets (that I added) the pants kinda drift downward.  But that's definitely a TNT for knit pants now. The trick is finding a suitable knit...

The top has a STORY.

It was the first top I made from Simplicity 2603 (I've made something like 7 or 8 so far...) and it was originally a rather bright coral...  (original 2011 photo)------>

However, there was a laundry mishap shortly after I made it and the attempt to reverse the purple splotching, most of the color was stripped and it was left a weird yellow...with odd orange thread.

I stuffed it in a drawer, where it sat for about a week shy of FIVE YEARS.  Friday I decided it was time to DO SOMETHING about that top.

I pulled out some Rit dye... fuchsia powder and tangerine liquid...and mixed up a batch of dye, guessing (it looked purple in the mixing bucket...) and ran it through.  As you can see, it's considerably more muted than the original, but still within the coral bandwidth, worked.

Am I ever glad to have that out of the junk drawer and back in the closet, although it needs a pinch of mending; it's worn fuzzy at the point where I clipped the CF notch on the band/top.  Guess the 30 minutes of agitation in the dye bath was a bit much.  I'll put a little beading or some lace or something on it cover it up.    But it's good enough for stage wear and, as we're going to be wearing coral both this month (with black and gray for neutrals) AND next month (with navy and tan for neutrals), I can use a little extra coral in the closet.

As of last night, I've made 5 garments for the SWAP plan since I left work on Thursday night, being's how the office is closed on Fridays.  I have a little finish work to do on two...hems and closures...but the other three are completed.

If I can keep going at this rate, I might just make it...

Oh yeah.  There's still a couple of days left in the 10 Year blogiversary giveaway, if you missed the post with the details...

Saturday, April 16, 2016

Half a day...

Thought I'd spend the whole day yesterday whaling away at the SWAP list BUT...

It's going to be in the 80's next week.  Time to switch the fall/winter duds for the spring/summer wardrobe.

We're wearing coral in choir this month and next month.  I have a top that was coral when I made, several years ago.  A laundry mishap resulted in all the color being bleached out of it.  Well, most all the color.  It was left a kind of buff yellow w/ orange topstitiching.  Been meaning to give it a go through a Rit dye bath to see if I could, um, re-coral it; it's just been in a wad in a drawer in the sewing cave.  So, yesterday the bug bit and I re-dyed it using a guesstimation combination of powder fuschia and liquid tangerine.  It actually came out a nice dusky coral color...but the extended agitation caused a wear point in the center front (where the notches were for matching).  It's not going to show from the choir platform, but I know it's there. I may add a bit of lace or beading or something to cover it...but not this week. ;-)

And I had already skipped two weeks on posting my weekly dig-into-original-language Bible study over on the other blog.

So, with one thing and another, it was about 2 PM before I even really got upstairs to start cutting.

I cut pants and one knit top; then found that the pattern that I intended to use for the camp shirt was not traced.  Yeah, I  know, TNT and all, but it's a loose fitting shirt from an indy designer I've used before, so I'm going to brave it.  It was the pattern I wanted.  So I traced it off, then I sewed up the knit top (Jalie 2682, in a rather beefy, super soft modal/lycra knit).  Which completes the A 3-Pack, except for the handwork on the pants.

So...gonna cut some more today.  And sew.  And we'll see what happens.

As I posted on Stitcher's Guild, even if I don't meet the SWAP requirements by two weeks from today, I will at least have pushed myself to sew some basics that I've been needed really badly for a while now.  And that's a good thing.

Besides, it's kinda fun to see if I can do it.

I dunno when I'll get pictures...but I'll post some when I get a chance.

Friday, April 15, 2016

Two down...almost

I sat down last night whilst eating reheated pizza for supper and went over the SWAP plan that I made in January.  I crossed out all the potentially time consuming items (my much needed black denim jacket is going back into the 'make this soon!' list...still don't have a TNT pattern that I want to use for it) and added things I knew I could make quickly, all in the (mostly) black-and-gray family.

Then I hit the two In Progress items and finished the black doubleknit McCall's 6844 (non-pepblum view) cardigan and took the tropical wool pinstripe Oxford pants to the hand work; they just need a trouser hook-and-eye and hemming.

I have about 3 garments I'm going to cut out today, and I'm going to try to get at least one finished before bed tonight...

Think I'll start by putting a fresh blade in the rotary cutter... :-D

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Puchyer Head Down and SEW!

Haven't done that in AGES..

But, we're coming up on the end of April.

Which is the sewing deadline for the 2016 Stitcher's Guild SWAP 'contest' (I'm not aware of any prizes for it this's just for the fun of it).

Now, I've sewn about...two...maybe...garments that are compatible with my SWAP plan.  I was about to write it off.

But...then I recollected the original idea of SWAP:

Pick TNT patterns, and QUICKLY sew up an 11-piece collection that coordinates.  Bingo.  Instant wardrobe.

I've got two weekends ahead of me.  Next weekend has some busy to it...Sunday will be an 'I'll be at church all day long' kinda deal...but this weekend is blissfully uncommitted.

I'm gonna give it a run.  Just to see.  How fast can I sew?

Taking a deep breath...GO!

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Workwear 25

I said I'd try to post a photo of the lacy vest I got from the Z flower retailer;  had to do the ol' set-the-timer-and-jump-in-front-of-the-camera routine again, but at least you can get an idea of what it looked like.

I had to secure a few long thread tails this morning before I could wear it.  I have to say, I have not been impressed with the quality of stuff from the Z folks.

But it was kinda fun to wear.  One of my co-workers said I was going retro today...and I replied that, since I never owned a lacy/macrame' vest back in the day, I could wear it today.  :-).

It's over modified Loes Hinse Oxford pants (I added the flare to the legs) and a long sleeved Jalie 2566 T shirt.

And I made a stop at Hobby Lobby on the way home from work and a lady asked me if I made my necklace, since I was buying jewelry goodies.  When I said I did, she asked if I sold them.

Maybe I should have asked her to make me an offer?  LOL.

Monday, April 11, 2016

Post number 1800 and the Postponed 10 year Blogiversary Celebration

Eighteen hundred blog posts.  Hard to believe.

That's, like, a book or something...

But it's been a fuzz over ten years.

I wanted to do a big 'reader appreciation' giveaway back in November, when the actual ten year blogiversary happened, but we were up to our endurance limit with a home remodel that had half the house barricaded and under construction, and the other half crammed jammed to the nearly non-navigable point with the contents of the rooms being rebuilt. I couldn't even begin to think about pulling stuff out of the stashes at that state...and  the celebration got postponed.  Somehow I thought it would be good to put it at the 1800 post mark.

I will admit, it took me longer to reach the 1800 posts than I thought it would, but that gave me time to pull some goodies to send  along.

I'm not going to detail them...but I'll say that each box has fabric w/ one of five different fibers (silk, linen, rayon, cotton and wool -- all wovens) a suitable pattern for the fabric and a book from the bookshelf.

Because I have more fabric and more patterns than I can expect to ever sew my way through,  and more books than I have time to appreciate, and something like 200 followers that I know of who have read the blog, commented on the blog, encouraged me, corrected me, and bailed me out over the past ten years.  Some of you I've met in real life; some are facebook friends, and some have enabled my fabric and stash accumulation.

So it's time for a little payback love for folks who have hung with me in the past few years.

Here's the deal: you have to be a follower of the blog.  Somewhere, somehow.

But I'm going to take your word for it...because I probably can't go check everywhere and make sure. enter the giveaway:

1) Leave a comment ON THIS POST.  In the past, I've pulled comments from all posts in the allotted time frame, but for this one, I'm just pulling off of this post.  Easier to keep track of. ;-)

2) In the comment,  leave your namehow you follow the blog, how long you've been following the blog,  and whether you look best in blue, pink or olive green. :-)

3) If you feel motivated to comment on today's post but your fabric and pattern stashes are at the explosion point and you don't want to be included in the giveaway, just say so.  You don't have to enter to comment...but you have to comment to enter. :-)

4)  I'll do a random drawing in a week to pick the folks who will get the goodies.

And thanks to EVERYONE for your support of Sew Random through the years!

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Choir Wardobe 4/10/16

April's Choir colors are black, gray and coral.

90% of my coral wardrobe pieces are still packed up in the spring/summer wardrobe...which I probably won't get  switched until next weekend.

But my coral Jalie Pleated cardigan was still in the closet, as was my grayscale striped silk jersey Vogue 8669 shell top.  Black jeans that I hoped would stay dark black longer.

The flatironed hair is still garnering compliments.  Probably back to curls tomorrow...

Next post will be a biggie...not sure when I'll get it up, other than before the next Choir post! ;-)

Thursday, April 07, 2016 what????

I had noticed a problem with and there, kinda randomly, photos were disappearing from the blog posts.  They ...just weren't there.

Then I clicked on a photo from one of my that was linked to my  collection of review photos in Picasa.

And got a 'this page is missing' notice.


Then I noticed that my entire album of review photos was missing.

Now that'll give you a sinking feeling.

Then I noticed a yellow box at the top.  'An important message from Picasa.  Click to learn more.' it read.

Well.  Here we go again.

After much thought and consideration, we’ve decided to retire Picasa over the coming months in order to focus entirely on a single photo service in Google Photos.

Yahoo photos went away.  Photoworks went away.  Now Picasa is going away.

But Picasa is the host site for all the Blogger photos.  What is going to happen to all of the photos linked to the blogs????  

Oy.  This makes my head hurt. 

And I still don't know what happened to the missing photos...