Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Never Fails

So, I'm working on a denim version of Burda May 2009 Vest, without the sleeves, and I'm at the topstitching stage.

Because the jeans topstitching thread I'm using is so bulky, I do it with the jeans thread in the bobbin and topstitch from the wrong side (it is an adventure in faith, let me tell you!).

So, anyway, my bobbin ran out last night. And I couldn't find the spool of jeans thread to refill it. That is, it wasn't with the other decorative thread and I didn't have a clue where else to look...it'd been quite a while since I'd last used it.

But, not to worry, I bought 2 mini-cones of jeans thread (they were on sale), so I knew I could use the second one. However, I didn't want to pull the shrink wrap off of it and have another loose thread tail in the sewing room if I could help it. But I was *really* tired last night and called it quits before I hunted for the opened cone.

Today I went in and sort of half-heartedly looked around for the missing thread cone. But I didn't see it and I decided my sewing time is too precious to use it hunting for something when I could just open the other cone, load up my bobbin and go to it.

So I pulled the shrink-wrap off the other cone, pulled the little sticky label off the bottom to free up the loose end and then looked around for the empty bobbin.

And immediately found the first cone of jeans thread sitting on my sewing table nestled right up behind the sewing machine.

Does this happen to anyone else, or am I the only one with such a scattered brain? ;)

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Choir Sundays 09 # 24

Can you believe we are at the halfway point for 2009??? Unbelievable...

Anyway, this month's colors are fuschia, yellow and/or grey with jeans.
The Jacket is *still* the Vogue 8045 denim jacket, and the jeans are Gloria Vanderbilt RTW, which you've seen before, but the top is the scoop-neck view of Simplicity 4076. Love that pattern...!

I *am* working on an alternative for the denim jacket; hopefully I'll have something to show for it in the next couple of days!

Friday, June 26, 2009

Going a little Knit Nutty

And I succumbed to a fabric sale again; the fabric arrived earlier in the week, jumping my 'Fabric In' total to over 50 yards for the year...not good if I want to keep my purchases under 100 yards by the end of December.
But I know knits sew up quickly, and I really do need some more work-appropriate tops.

Not all were exactly what I expected (I'll 'splain that in a minute), but they are all lovely and I'm itching to find time to work on 'em:

The purple one hasn't been through the washer/dryer yet; the others have. The print runs vertically on a cotton/lycra blend; the rest are rayon/lycra jerseys. The heathery brown is pretty beefy, but the purple and the black are a bit on the sheer side (sorry for the blur, but you get the idea):

I have a few ideas of what to do with something that is potentially see-through, all of which involve drapiness and/or multiple layers...or possibly lingerie. We'll see.

I'm wishing I'd bought more of the heathery brown now that I see it...it would make a fabulous twin set. Unfortunately, I was thinking 'one top' when I ordered it, so I don't think I can squeeze a twin set out of it.

That makes 11 pieces of knit fabric I have purchased for myself (I'm not counting the knits I bought to make The Flute Player garments) so far this year. I'm finding myself liking them so much that I've hit Fear of Cutting...I don't want to use them on something that's not wonderful. So I'm bouncing around from idea to idea as to what I want to make.

I need to quit bouncing and start cutting... ;)

Monday, June 22, 2009

More Baptismal Robe Musings

I'm rethinking the fabric a bit...perhaps a good choice would be ponte de roma? That's the stuff that cheerleader uniforms are made from; it's a stable doubleknit.

FFC has some blue poly ponte de roma, so I think we'll be able to get as much as we need.

So, I'll ask a variation on the same question...has anyone sewn w/the FFC stuff? Will it be too stiff/heavy for baptismal robes? We probably need something a bit beefy if we want to reduce the cling-when-wet factor we now have.

I sent the link to the folks who asked me to make the robes and I'm keeping my eyes open for a 'free shipping' sale...40 yards comes with a pretty hefty shipping charge, if I remember rightly.

So, we'll see what happens next. ;)

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Choir Sundays '09 #23

I was busy with some other duties today, but I did manage to get to sing with the choir during second service (we have three Sunday morning services...), so I can post the 'choir outfit' for the day...

This Month's Choir Colors: Fuchsia, silver grey, or yellow w/ blue jeans.

I've got on the same ol' same ol' Vogue 8045 denim jacket, but this was the first time I've worn the modified City Dress shell, made from heavy grey lace underlined w/silvery grey rayon faille. It's been waiting for a good opportunity...and it just so happens to be the right shade of grey!

The Gloria Vanderbuilt jeans are pretty standard here, too.

Hopefully I can squeeze in some sewing this week...I survived the one-two punch of Teen Girls retreat and the jr high girl's lock-in by sleeping all day yesterday.


Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Baptism Robes on Order....opinions needed...

Attrition has taken its toll... enough baptism robes have gone missing that we've been asked to make 10 more. But, the last batch we made used all the fabric we had on hand, so I need to order more. Given that each robe takes 4 yards of fabric, we'll need a bunch. Plus, the request has been to get some slightly heavier fabric than we used before; it tends to cling when wet a little more than is desirable.

Anyway, we're looking for navy blue polyester crepe. I've done a little looking around on the web, but I'm not sure where I can find 40 yards. Does anyone have any experience w/JoAnn's 'Casa' crepe? I'm guessing it's pretty lightweight, since it's marketed for 'special occasion' use, but I thought I'd ask.

So...sometime in the next couple of months we'll be doing robes again...

Monday, June 15, 2009

A Jubilee Dress?

Nothin' like a week that is so crazy-busy I'm just hoping to make it through it to get me wishing I could just sit and sew...

But Carolyn's comment a couple of days ago about the Simplicity sheath dress pattern started me thinking.

And, y'know, this is the Jubilee year (I've been posting about it on Mondays over at my other blog)...which, being translated, means that I'm a few measly weeks away from my 50th birthday.

And, all of a sudden, I got an urge to make a fabulous dress to wear on my birthday.

And I have *NO* sewing time this week. None. Zip. Nada.

But...I can think about it...and, maybe next week, I'll have a plan... ;)

Sunday, June 14, 2009

No Choir Sunday today...

I had other duties today and didn't get to sing in the choir; looks like next week will be a repeat. I *did* dress for choir today, so I suppose I could post a photo, but, well, it 'just don't seem right' to do that.

But I am thinking about NEXT month's colors...white and gold w/blue jeans. Actually, I think the plan is to wear white shirts w/gold accessories, or something like that.

But my summer white shirt wardrobe is pretty skimpy. I did get 3 or 4 pieces of white shirting last year that I haven't cut into yet; maybe I should just declare next week (as in the one that starts a week from today) as 'White Shirt Week' and see if I can at least get one made?

This week is the annual MPact girls camp; I'm workin' Mon-Wed, going to camp Thur-Fri and then doing the Jr High Girls lock-in on Friday night into Saturday morning.

So I don't think I'm gonna get much sewing done. Shoot, I may not get much ANYTHING done....

Friday, June 12, 2009

Patterns In...

Since I subscribed to Burda (formerly World of Fashion) Magazine, I've found that my pattern-buying has dropped off significantly. I'm not sure if that's due to the monthly arrival of more patterns than I could sew before the next batch arrives, or due to the fact that I *am* getting much more discretionary in my pattern-buying.

I can't say how many times I've looked at new pattern offerings and realized I already had something in my sizable stash that is pretty close, or could see how to alter up a similar pattern to have the details in the new releases.

Aside from kids' patterns, which I don't catalog because they're outgrown, I've only purchased 8 patterns so far this year.

And I just realized I haven't talked about them on the blog yet. Oh, I AM slipping!

Anyway, the first batch was back in April, at one of Hancock's dollar sales. I actually found a few Simplicity patterns that met my criteria of being sufficiently different from something already in the stash to come home. (Simplicity's site seems to be down at the moment, I'll have to link to the info at Pattern Review...)

Anyway, two of them were popular wardrobe patterns, but I'm not expecting to use them for multiple wardrobe items. 2977 is worth a dollar and a place in the cabinet for the gathered surplice tank top/dress. I'll probably make the top first, then, if I like it, I'll make the dress. Same thing with 2938; I like that pleated neckline. I think that will look good under a jacket for choir at some point.

The other Simplicity pattern is 2648. I'm accumulating sheath dress patterns...probably in order to build up my nerve to actually try one. That's one of those garments that I'd rather not fit to a pudgy body, but, well, I think as soon as I can find the time I'm going to give it a go anyway. Cut and fitted well, in the right fabric, it could be a Good Thing. Maybe. And this one has lots of fitting details in it, so I think it'll be a good candidate.

Since I'm also steeling my nerve to make jeans, I decided to try Jalie's stretch jeans pattern, 2908. I like the fact that it also has The Flute Player's size in it...I can, hopefully, make her some custom-fitted jeans for the next school year and not have to do the mall crawl to find something that reasonably fits her two-sizes-different waist and hips. But first, some that will fit my two-sizes-in-the-other-direction different waist and hips....

Since I was ordering that pattern from Pattern Review, I also ordered Jalie's twinset, 2566. I like the narrow banding on the cardigan...narrower than my favorite Kwik Sew twin set pattern. I think the narrow line is a little more, um, youthful? Otherwise, it looks like it will be constructed in just the same way. (and yes, I could've possibly just narrowed the band on the KS cardi...but I hadn't done it YET and ordering more patterns got me free shipping...). I did order one of Jalie's swimsuit patterns, but it turned out to be out of print and no longer available. :( .

The rest were from the most recent stop at Hancock's during a McCalls/Vogue sale. I got another surplice knit dress pattern...McCall's 5752, which humbly calls itself 'The Perfect Knit Dress.'. Um, we'll see about that, but I do like the neckline that is high in the back and v'd in the front. Very flattering on Women of A Certain Age. The other McCall's pattern I picked up is the Palmer/Pletsch's 'The Perfect Jean' (am I seeing a trend here?). Thought I needed a pattern for non-stretch denim, doncha know.

Finally, I did get one Vogue pattern: a Badgley Mischka skirt suit, 1065. I really had to get past the yukky color of the suit on the pattern cover, but it has nice lines and might be a good 'fool the eye into thinking I've got some curves left' outfit. We'll see.

Inspiration galore! Now, back to tracing that B(WOF) vest... ;)

Monday, June 08, 2009

How 'Bout a Vest?

Maybe a variation on a jacket would be nice...I've been eyeing This Vest Pattern in May's issue of Burda (formerly World of Fashion) magazine...and, hm, maybe a denim vest would be a good thing to use to just put a light layer over t-shirts for choir. It'd, um, cover some issues that a cotton/lycra or rayon/lycra t might not camouflage quite as well as I'd like.

Now, if I make it w/the little cap sleeves, I could wear sleeveless tops under it (sleeveless tops are one of the few no-nos in choir). But...any of my cap sleeve tops might look a little goofy under a cap sleeved vest. And most of my tops have at least cap sleeves, so I *can* wear them in choir.

I'll probably trace the sleeves and decide when I cut it out... ;)

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Choir Sundays 09 #22

This month's colors: Blue jeans w/ bright yellow, fuschia or silver grey.

Ok, I made this top a really, really long time ago, and I really like it, but I never wore it for choir because we never wore gray. So, today...tada! I get to wear it! ;)

It's Textile Studios Monaco Shell, modified just a tinch to add the nice vertical 'seam', made from grey poly/rayon jersey. I think...it was a long time ago... ;)

The jacket you'll be seeing a lot this summer...my one blue denim jacket (I need to make another! I'm studyin' on it...), Vogue 8045.

The jeans are straight-legged Gloria Vanderbilts, worn mostly because they didn't need heels... ;)

I'm really giving some thought to what my next sewn garments should be...I could just keep pulling fabric off the new acquisitions pile, but, as fun as that would be, I think I need to be a little more intentional. I do need some things for choir this summer, so I'm going to be making a mental list while I'm cleaning away in the sewing nook in the 10 and 15 minute increments that seem to be all I'm getting... ;)

Friday, June 05, 2009

It's just me, isn't it?

Fanning myself with whatever's handy. Nobody else seems to feel the heat.

But I could put up with that; what's distressing me the most is that I'm trying to deny what else is happening.

I'm finding myself reluctant to commit my nice fabrics to clothes that fit because...I don't want to fit the body that, um, has been growing on me in the last six months or so.

Hormones? Um, probably. And I'm frustrated by the low back problems that have so far this year kept me from doing any kind of real exercise program to whittle my middle.

I don't even recognize myself in the mirror or in photos. Clothes that I loved last year look really bad this year. And, while I know the concept of 'fit the body you have,' I am not at all motivated to do that. This is not the body I want.

I'm not really looking for sympathy; I'm just publicly acknowledging something that I have not really been wanting to admit to myself...that part of my low personal sewing production this year may be due to a dissatisfaction with what I'm working with here at least as much (maybe more) than it is due to an abundance of volunteer sewing projects. The volunteer stuff has just been an easy way to avoid facing the truth.

So that's my Friday confession. I feel better now.

Thursday, June 04, 2009

One of those weeks...

We had a 'surprise' last week in our girl's ministry and had to get ready to do our annual awards ceremony w/one week's notice. So I spent the last few days making awards necklaces and trying to coax a balky printer into printing my certificates.

But the service went ok last night and it's done. Today was 'appointments out of the house' day and tomorrow...well, tomorrow I'm doing laundry and cleaning the sewing room.

Or at least working at it. It's going to take a while to get order restored back there, but we've got to do some remodel work on the sunroom (remember the leaks?) so I've got to pull all my sewing stuff out of there and put it...somewhere else. For at least a little while.

Dunno when I'll slip in a sewing project. But, hey, organizing the sewing space counts for something...right? ;)

Monday, June 01, 2009

Mantle Ceremony

I guess putting the names on the mantles confused folks a bit; when they were used, the folks praying for them had them on right-side-out, so when they moved them they ended up on the graduates inside-out. But...whatever. It worked.

This is The Artist, with the Pastor he chose to pray over him. Pastor Pat was the youth pastor of our church when we first started attending; The Artist was in the 8th grade. Now Pastor Pat is the College and Career pastor and it was cool to see the mantle passing.

It's going to be odd not to have a kid in that program next year; we've had one in HMC since it started 5 years ago...

Anyway, it's humbling to see something I worked on used in such a significant event.

ETA: The Princess took some photos from the sound booth at the back of the sanctuary; that's all the mantles on the graduates...