Sunday, September 30, 2012

Choir Wardrobe 9-30-2012

It's a humid day...GREAT for frizzy hair...

Last day for the mauve/dusty rose/brown combo.  Got the knit Cold Water Creek jeans being coated in fur by the Sewing Assistant, and something that doesn't look like a twinset but is...Jalie 2566.  I never reviewed the crew neck top (shame on me)...I should do that soon, 'specially since I've made it twice now.  This is the purported-to-be-rayon-but-isn't knit print I got early in the month made up into the cap sleeve crew neck, and my wonderful really-is-yummy-rayon-and-lycra heathery brown jersey knit cardigan that I've been wearing forever.

I have a mauve blouse about half done; it's not going to get worn for choir but at least it will be a check of the pattern tweaks.  I've got some cream and brown sewing up next, I hope, since that's gonna be on the list for the next two months.

Is anyone other than me totally amazed to realize tomorrow is October???

Sunday, September 23, 2012

No Choir Post Today...

I actually got up and dressed in my new cream/mauvey floral knit top (yes, the one that was Most Likely to be Sewn actually was...) and brown Jalie cardi and went to church and taught my two classes, but I happened to wake up with symptoms of a little recurring problem I've been having for the last 3ish weeks, so after the second class I cashed it in, came home by myself (leaving My Sweet Baboo to catch a ride with the Actor, who'd driven separately) and began downing cranberry juice.  Looks like visit to the dr is in my immediate future.  I don't think the antibiotics I've taken have quite kicked the bacterial tail yet...

So, no singing and no photo.  But I will share one thought that occurred to me whilst at the Sewing Expo Friday....

Cynthia Guffey made the statement that ladies give up sewing for themselves when they can no longer fit into patterns without alterations; we try, more or less trial-and-error, to fit ourselves but give up when it doesn't work and start quilting.  She didn't say, but either someone else did or I thought it (I actually can't remember, isn't THAT scary...), that the final process in aging as a home sewing enthusiast is to become a quilter.

So I decided that, to avoid aging, all I need to do is to keep sewing garments and resist quilting....d'you think that'll work??? ;-)

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Back from the Friendly Neighborhood Sewing Expo

It's been 4 years since I last was able to go to the annual sewing expo's stop in Atlanta, GA.  There was just too much on the more ways than one...for me to make it work.  But I missed it; missed the camaraderie, missed the learning experiences, missed the break in the routine, missed the sewing geek shopping opportunities.  Every year I watch the info pop into my in box and look at it wistfully, hoping I can go 'next year'.

Then I got an out of season notice...and was surprised to see that the Expo was coming to Birmingham, a mere two hours away!  My traveling buddy and I filled a day with classes and went yesterday.

Now, this was the first time the show had been to Birmingham.  It was a fraction of the size of the huge Atlanta show, both in terms of venue space itself and vendors exhibiting/ teachers teaching.  But I did get to see Carolyn.

I had basically a full day of fitting classes from Cynthia Guffey, with an additional class from Louise Cutting.  Most of it I had seen before, but it's been 4 years and the reminder didn't hurt.  Besides, some things came with a lightbulb moment that I don't think I'd had before.    Louise came to the Birmingham ASG last fall, so I had heard her much more recently, but the chance to look at her garments made up is inspiring in itself.

I bought a piece of ivory silk/linen from Louise, and a top pattern from Cynthia.  Not much by way of shopping, but, given the current financial season, even that felt like an over indulgence.  But I need ivory for choir; it will get worn.

The question now is...will I get the chance to jump into sewing before I lose the fresh inspiration?  Or will that lovely silk linen blend just get regulated to the stash for another season? 

I commented to a lady who was purchasing some raw silk from Cynthia while I was waiting on the credit card to clear that I had a goal of wearing one year's Expo purchases to the next Expo.  Cynthia responded, 'That's a very good goal.'  I replied, laughing, that I don't think I've ever actually done that, but she shook her head. 'It's still a good goal.'

She's right.  It is.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Face Palm Moment

I've been subscribing to Burda's style/patten magazine for a little over four years now.  I haven't actually sewn from very many of them,  but I do enjoy looking through them and dreaming about what I might sew...if I could just get to it.

Anyway, early in the game I decided what I needed to do was copy out the two-page line drawing spread from each magazine  and put them in page protectors in a 3 ring binder, so I could sit down and dream conveniently.  I also emptied my kitchen of gallon zipper-seal bags to put the pattern sheets in, and filed the magazines in one set of bins and the pattern packages in another bin and cross-referenced with the binder.  It worked.  Sort of.

Fast forward to about last week, when I was copying the line drawings from a small backlog of magazines from the last few months. I decided it was annoying to have to look  up both the filed zipper bag w/the patterns AND the filed magazine, so I could have both the patterns and the directions.  I decided that I'd pull the instruction set out of the magazine, too, and put them in the bags with the patterns...I had to work with my short stapler a bit to staple the instruction pages together, but it was worth it.

I did that with the last two or three magazines that hadn't been filed yet, and then I thought it was a good idea so I started pulling the magazines/pattern sets out of the files; thinking that if I do a few a night, it'll eventually all get done.

After the second or third set, I kinda dropped the directions insert and cringed, expecting the pages to all fly apart.

They didn't.

It's all glued up.

Apparently, this is what one is SUPPOSED to do with those pages...pull them out of the magazine.


Sunday, September 16, 2012

Choir Wardrobe 09 16

Wow.  I wasn't standing bowlegged; I promise.  Not sure how that camera angle happened but, well, c'est la vie.

Anyway, the choir wardrobe colors are cream, tan, brown, mauve and/or dusty pink.

I pulled out my well-aged McCalls 5191, done up in brown eyelet on stretch denim, breaking the 'no double denim' fashion rule, but oh, well. It has the brown element.  ;-).  The top is my new and as-yet-unreviewed Simplicity 2599 shell, made from a poly-lycra charmeuse I picked up on sale from Hancock's.  I really and truly intended to make it with the matte side out, but, well, old habits are hard to break and I had it sewn with the shiny side out before I realized what I'd done..

 Lee bootcuts and a self-strung brown wooden bead necklace and I was good to go, frizzy hair notwithstanding. (Trying to make it to the holidays before I see about a New Hairstyle...3 more months of growing ought to give me enough back length to do something different.  Maybe)

At least I managed not to dribble anything on my top  today...

Monday, September 10, 2012

Open weekend ahead

Good thing, since I indulged in a few pieces of fabric from a recent clearance sale.  I'm determined that at LEAST one of these will be a garment to wear by Sunday...
The one voted Most Likely to be Worn for Choir This Week is the floral rayon knit (ETA- pretty sure this is not a rayon at all, since there was not a trace of 'woodiness' when I washed it...but it is soft); not sure which knit shirt pattern I'll use but that can be transformed into something wearable within a couple of hours.  The mauve cotton/rayon broadcloth just barely visible behind it *could* be sewn up; that's going to be a matter of whether I can pick a pattern quick enough or not.  There is a diagonal print at 12:00 that is not getting fair treatment by the camera here, either; it's silk crepe de chine and will be going into the stash for a bit; I'm not sure whether it's going to be a blouse or a stunning jacket lining.

The panel print that is pretty much dominating the photo is also silk crepe de chine; this is going to be my 'learn to hand roll edges' project.  I'll trim the borders down to size and use the scraps to practice, then I plan to hand roll all of it and have a pretty snazzy print scarf.  However, that is not likely to happen this week, either.

I think I'm done buying fabric for a while, anyway.  It's going to take a pretty phenomenal deal to get me to invest in something.

Oh.  Except I'm going to the Sewing Expo in Birmingham next week...where I just might find a pretty phenomenal deal... ;-)

Sunday, September 09, 2012

Choir Wardrobe 0909

Our colors for September are usually chosen from the palette used for the decor for our annual women's conference; this year we had tan/brown/mauve/dusty pink/cream.  The mauvish top I made last week came out of the dryer needing an iron, and, as this was the weekend of said women's conference I didn't have time to to that.  So I  grabbed the tube I'd sewn, kinda on a lark because it wasn't enough for anything else, from the remnant of the top fabric and put it on over a Coldwater Creek silk/nylon v-neck sweater shell. I intended to wear a cream RTW jacket with it, but I've got some smudgy something on it (I suspect dry erase marker, actually), so I punted with my khaki stretch cotton sateen McCalls 5860 over Lee bootcuts.

I'm really not happy with that just is too swingy in the bottom. Way too much ease in the lower front. Pattern flaw or alteration goof?  I've no idea; could be either or both.  The scarf was almost a joke; I mean, the end is just the kinda fringy selvedge. I felt rather frowsy and thrown together today.  But I got compliments on the outfit... which really surprised me.  Funny how often that happens...and when I wear something I'm rather proud of ...nothing.

But a compliment is a compliment, right?  ;-)

Sunday, September 02, 2012, yeah, well, ....

The promised photo did not happen today because I am a silly vain thing.

My Sweet Baboo had the camera in hand, and we were about to go get set, when he pointed out that I had a spot on the center front of the shiny top.

Well, I thought I'd just been splashed by the water I'd used to rinse the broccoli, so I went into the bathroom and hit it with the hairdryer.

Only it didn't go away.

I suspect it is a dribble of coffee that got by me when I was working on the data entry during the last service.

I could not bring myself to pose for a photo with an unalterable spot on the top.

So no photo of the only thing I have sewn in the last six weeks.

I will, however, share a photo of one of the difficulties I had in sewing the top; she jumped up there the moment I put it on the table:
"I is holding ur fabric hostage!"

Saturday, September 01, 2012

Posting woes

Aside from the fact that I sewed absolutely nothing in the entire month of August, we've been having internet connectivity/ filter issues.  I am up and running on the 'net again, but 3/4 of all photos on blogger are currently blocked, so not only can I not see the majority of my own photos, I cannot see most of the photos on anyone else's blogs, either.  I have, however, been down this road before.  I think this is what happens...blogger dumps all uploaded photos into one of four,, etc...and I think they do it rather randomly, probably depending on which bin is available first.  Anyway, the photo links have the corresponding prefix on them, depending upon which bin they're in.  Apparently, blogger does not differentiate between the blogs that are listed as 'adult content' and those that are not as to what gets posted in the bins, so when someone stumbles across an offensive image and complains about it to our filtering folks, they block everything in that bin.  Which means everything with that prefix is blocked. 

I have unblock requests in.  Hopefully we will not come to the place where I have to request an unblock for every.single.picture....although the customer service tech seemed to think that would be what is necessary.  Surely not; this has been fixed before...

Anyway, I can see all 1.bp.blogspot photos but none of the rest of them.

Puts a dent in the inspiration file.

But I did actually get some sewing done today...I made a first go at Simplicity 2599.  I'll likely wear it for choir tomorrow, as it is the ONLY garment in my wardrobe in the dusty rose/mauve family, but it's barely a keeper.  I need to rotate a small dart out of the neckline for it to be really wearable, but, well, I'll deal with it.  Under a jacket, it may not be so noticeable.

That's the first time I've made one of Simplicity's multi-cup size patterns; I used the D cup front and, per my normal alterations, lowered the bust point by about 1 1/4" before I cut it out.  When I tried on the top after sewing together the shoulder seams, I laughed at myself and ripped the darts out and moved them right back to their original location.    I just didn't expect that.

But I think this is going to be a very good 'blank' top; something I can play with ...changing up necklines and such.  And there's all the frou-frou included in the pattern if I want something, well, frou-frou.  I left the frou-frou off this time and just made the plain tank top.

Our church women's conference begins Thursday;  we have some very good speakers coming in.  I'm looking forward to it...but it will consume the ENTIRE weekend.  The following weekend is the only weekend in September that does not have something going on. And I SO hoped to make myself a nice jacket this month....

I need to get myself ready.  I think we have begun the downhill run to the holidays, and it's only going to pick up speed until then.

I should start my Christmas shopping .   ;-)

Pictures tomorrow. I hope.  Even if I can't see 'em.