Thursday, July 16, 2015

Kirsten Kimono T-Shirt

Seems like the only thing I know how to sew anymore is t-shirts.  I used to think I would have more time to sew when I got older and when the kids were older.  But here I am, 52 years old and sewing less than I ever did.

This week I sewed another top using a free pattern from Maria of Denmark.  The pattern is free when you sign up for the newsletter; it's called the Kirsten Kimono Tee.

Of course I had to make some changes to the pattern.  Using a RTW top as my inspiration, I lengthened the front and back, curved the hem, and flared out the side seams.  After finishing the top as pictured, I decided that the neckline was too high for my liking.  So I went back, took off the neckline binding, and cut the front neckline a bit lower.  Much better--no longer did I feel like the neckline was choking me.  Well, I don't yet have a picture of the new neckline, so you just have to imagine it.

The fabric is a knit with very little stretch.  I made a size small and tapered out bigger from the waist down to the hem.

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Ottobre Woman "Faded Stripes" Top 2/2015

Did I mention that I feel like sewing again?!!  I've spent the last several years knitting and knitting, but would you believe, I have not knitted a stitch in over 2 months?! I've crocheted edgings on a few baby blankets, but no knitting.  (Really, I should finish up a few projects before putting them aside).

This time I made a t-shirt for me instead of sewing for Emily. The pattern is from the 02/2015 issue of Ottobre Design Woman, and really, it is a very simple top but with big appeal to me.  I like how the t-shirt is fitted at top but is loose through the middle and hip areas.  I also like how the pattern has shoulder yokes to add a bit of interest.  I have plans to make another one soon in which I add a bit of lace fabric to the shoulder yokes.

The shirt fits great.  If I can get somebody around here to take a photo, I'll post one of me wearing it.

The Pattern:  Design #17 from the 02/2015 issue of Ottobre Woman
Fabric:  Rayon Jersey Knit
Size: 36
Changes:  I took out an inch from the shoulder area, a "petite"adjustment I often have to make to eliminate excess fabric in the upper bust/shoulder area.

  (These two photos are from the Ottobre magazine.)

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Daisy Dress - Ottobre 3/2015 No. 31

 The simplicity of this dress pattern and its classic style first caught my attention while browsing through the recent Ottobre magazine.  I have been wanting to sew again (it's been forever!) and so decided to have a go at this dress.  Emily chose the fabric from my fabric closet, and off I went....

What you don't notice about this pattern is that it is fully lined.  And see that simple little pleat on the front?  For the life of me, I couldn't figure out how to fold it, and the instructions weren't much help.  I almost decided to just go with a box pleat, but then suddenly it just all fell into place correctly.

Thankfully, the lining and invisible zipper went together well--and for this, I really liked the Ottobre instructions.  The dress was finished in an evening, and Emily has already worn it to her piano recital.  My little girl is growing up, and I fear she won't want this style of dress much longer.  I really must sew more often for her while she still wants me to. 

The only change I made to the pattern was to add ric-rac to the bodice yoke seam.  I also made a matching ric-rac flower that attaches with a pin.

The design:  Daisy Dress, #31, Ottobre 3/2015
Fabric:  woven cotton
Lining fabric: batiste
Size 134 (US 9 or 10, I think)

  from the Ottobre magazine

Saturday, August 09, 2014

Uptown Downtown Dress

When I saw the call for pattern testers for a simple child's dress, I thought maybe this would be just the thing to motivate me to sew again.  (How I have missed sewing!)  So I answered the call and made my 9-year-old princess the Uptown/Downtown Dress designed by Terri of Sew Straight and Gather.


There have only been a handful of times that I've used a PDF pattern, so this was a somewhat new experience for me. I found that printing and taping the pattern together really wasn't as difficult or time consuming as I expected--certainly no worse than tracing the Ottobre patterns I'm used to sewing.  One extra-nice thing about this PDF pattern is that I was able to choose the size I wanted and print just that one size---no maze of overlapping pattern sizes to follow. 

The pattern includes a wide range of sizes from 2T all the way to size 10.  I made a size 8 for Emily.  The fabric is jersey knit that has been taking up space in my sewing room for years.  It was perfect for this pattern.  And Emily loves the dress.  She has worn it every week since I made it in June, and she keeps asking me to make her another dress in the same pattern, even going so far as to pick out fabric at the store.  (I didn't buy the fabric....just told her to shop my stash!) The pattern is quick to sew, and both the fit and instructions are great.  I do hope to sew it again, and soon.


Thursday, March 27, 2014

Crocheted Flower Garland

One cold and blustery day last month, I walked into Walmart and spied the bright and cheery cotton yarn on the bottom shelf in the yarn department.  I bought multiple colors, not really sure what I would make, but I knew I had to make something, anything, to help chase away the winter blues.  Thanks to Ravelry, I found the perfect patterns for a daisy garland and daisy coasters.  Well, we are starting to get a few warm days now and again, but the winter cold still seems to be languishing around.  My colorful garland is hanging over the fireplace mantle ready to welcome the spring while the heat from the fire keeps me warm.  I am so ready for summer.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Sweetheart Granny Squares

Not exactly square, but in the tradition of crocheted granny squares, these granny hearts are made with brightly colored yarn left over from other projects.  I found the pattern at a new-to-me blog, Yarn Pumpkin.   (Thank you, Yarn Pumpkin, for sharing your pattern!)  

I crocheted the hearts using a size J hook (6 mm) and assorted cotton yarns.  My finished hearts are approx. 7.25 inches wide and 7.5 inches high. The hearts are super easy to crochet, and I made all five in an evening while watching the Olympics.

My daughters told me the hearts are too pretty to use as dishcloths and that they would use theirs as a coaster or doily. 

Friday, January 17, 2014

Ottobre Cap Sleeve Pinafore Dress

Ottobre Cap Sleeve Pinafore Dress
Design #21 from the 6/2013 issue

The fabric is not the best for this pattern, but my sweet daughter really wanted a dress from this corduroy print, and I really wanted to sew something quick and easy for her to wear to her piano recital in December.  The busy print pretty much obscures the design elements of the top stitched seams, the drop waist seams, the skirt panels, and the mock pocket flaps in the front.  Other than that, I love the dress on Em.  She has worn the dress often, so I know she loves it too.

It was a cold, snowy day when I took the photos.  I have no idea what to do with my camera, especially on a bright snowy day.  (One of these days, I will learn!)  Poor child of mine was so cold, but she was a good sport. 

The dress is fully lined as you can see from the following picture.  This makes a quick and easy finish for the armhole and neck edges.  No facings or binding to mess with! 
I made a size 128 (US size 7,8) for Emily, and lengthened it several inches.  The pattern does go up to a size 146, and I can see myself making this pattern again with a solid colored fabric in the future.  Other than lengthening, the only other change I made was to interface the fabric along the edge where the invisible zipper was inserted.