Tuesday, March 27, 2012

about a Pinterest board of mine

I have a Pinterest board called sewing details for jeans. It has occurred to me that it might be useful for people other than me to be able to access this board freely and be able to pin on it. If I add you as a contributor the board shows up as if it was your own. Cool, huh?

If you are interested just add a comment on this post with your Pinterest user name (or email me privately at ellecsews at gmail dot com) and I will add your name as a contributor. Could be useful, yes?

So hurry up people email me and then start pinning!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Woohoo! 16 followers

As of today I have 16 followers! To celebrate I am doing my first giveaway.This has the benefit of making all of you adore me for my kindness and generosity, and the secondary benefit of getting rid of crap, oops I mean decluttering my sewing dungeon. Believe me when I say this won't even make a dent.

First one. Three vintage patterns.  Yes, all three patterns are one giveaway.

Butterick 9309, size 12 bust 32, no date

McCalls 7349, size 14-16, Bust 34-36, dated 1964  

Simplicity 3965 Size 12, Bust 32  

Second one. An assortment of orange stuff. Some of it vintage. In appreciation of Tangerine Tango. 8-) Yes, all this can be inflicted upon you. What orangey goodness!

2 pkgs stretchable hem facing 2 1/2 yards each
2 pkgs stretchable seam binding 3 yards each, just so you know, these are fashionable, the label says so
1 pkg "Tidy Trim" bias tape 5 yards of size 5 ???
1 pkg single fold bias tape 2.75 meters
1 18" Talon nylon coil zipper in apricot
1 7" Lightning zipper in coral
2 5" orange zippers
1 7" orange zipper
1 17" orange zipper

Third one. My Favourite. All vintage or older.

The buttons are from J. C. Penney

1 card (not quite intact) of "Newey's World Famed Hooks & Loops, by appointment to Her Majesty Queen Mary-this is old!  Queen Mary was Queen Elizabeth's grandmother
1 card of British Snap Size 0- War Time Pack
1 card of British Snap Size 00-War Time Pack
3 cards of Penimaid Buttons-I think they are mother of pearl,  4 of the buttons are 3/4", 2 are 5/8"
1 intact card of 12 mother of pearl buttons-La Mode-these are beautiful 1/4" wide 1/2" long, these would be lovely framed for a sewing room.

If you want any or all of these, just leave me a comment what you would like to win. Yes, I will ship anywhere. I will draw names next Sunday, April 1st. April's Fool Day. Seems appropriate somehow.

Good luck!

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Clown Pants

Vogue 1096-a wearable muslin, sort of

First of all I have to say I have never sewn a Today's Fit pattern before and I don't think you could find a pattern with better instructions and diagrams. They could not have been clearer. Excellent instructions and suggestions for fit. I have sewn a lot of Vogue and often refer to them as Vague patterns cause the instructions can be so iffy. Not so with Today's Fit.  Sandra Betzina knows her stuff. 

Until I started reading sewing blogs, it never occurred to me to make a muslin for simple clothes, complicated ones, yes. I now realize how helpful it can be for easy or hard garments. For instance:

please trust me when I say I am NOT this large
“pattern+fabric+my measurements=clown pants”

The pattern Vogue Today's Fit OOP 1096 View A, fabric zebra print cotton flannelette, size G, almost exactly my measurements. The result, very very baggy pyjama bottoms. Fortunately I like my at home clothes to be loose, but these are huge, I could easily fit three of my dogs in them with me. They probably wouldn't stay there but you get the point. There is 8 inches of ease in the thigh, WTF?? At first I thought it was my fabric choice that was the culprit, but then I actually read (what a concept!!) the suggested fabrics, “Pants A: Double Knits, Linen, Cotton Twill, Pinwale Corduroy and Hammered Satin.” There really isn't much of a difference in weight and hand between corduroy and flannelette is there? 

It is kind of a shame about the fit of this pattern because there are details I really like about it. I like the waistband, it has an interesting construction, it is something I may use on another pattern that has an elastic waist. It is a two piece waistband, one piece for the front and the larger piece for the sides and back. The elastic is sewn unstretched to the front piece, and then the elastic gathers up the remainder of the waistband. It looks good. The pockets are different and interesting, they are sort of a welt type of pocket, without the lips and they are big pockets, unlike many women's clothes. The drawstrings on the side are a cute detail too, obviously in a heavier fabric they aren't that functional, but made in a fabric that is drapier, it would be a cute detail.

side pocket-don't look too closely-it isn't perfect

casings at bottom of legs

Will I make them again? A definite maybe. Don't you love it when people committ? If I did,  it would be in a size or two or three smaller and in a much drapier fabric. I will check the stash and see if I have anything that might work.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

New Simplicity Patterns

Simplicity has their new patterns out today and I fell in love with one and I like several. First the one I love.  I love this dress, never mind that with my current shape it would look dreadful. Love can be unrequited. I`m okay with that. Don`t you love the seaming on this dress, so cute.

This one looks like a nice easy summer dress, I like the wrap front, without a wrap on the bottom, which I always find irritating to wear.


This one is kind of cute, but nothing that we haven`t seen before, but not bad. I can see it being worn by a variety of shapes and sizes.


Anyway that`s it for me. What do you think about the new Simplicity patterns?

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Sunshine Award!

Carolyn, who has to be one of the best sewists and bloggers ever, just gave me an award!

I am completely blown away, I have been blogging for what feels like 5 minutes, and I get an award! Thank you very much Carolyn, I feel very honoured by this. I know it isn't like it is an Academy Award or anything, but still. When I started my blog, I really didn't think anyone would ever read it, it still surprises me that I have followers! I just started it to motivate me to sew more, and it has worked.

Anyway, on to the questions.

Favourite Colour: Fuchsia

Favourite Animal: Dogs. Always dogs. We live with four of them and often take care of friends dogs when they go away.
Ricky, father of Jasper

Favourite Number: 3. That is my name in numerology.

Favourite Non-Alcoholic Drink: Can't have just one. Earl Grey Tea, French Roast Coffee and Pepsi.

Facebook or Twitter: Neither, Pinterest. I find Facebook sometimes a little too much like being in High School. No offense intended to anyone.

My Passion: Dogs, reading and sewing.

Getting or Giving Presents: Giving. There is no better feeling than when you find the perfect gift for someone and they love it.

Favourite Pattern: The last one I looked at. Usually a Marcy Tilton pattern.

Favourite Day of the Week: .A day that my husband and I have off together, there aren't many of these.

Favourite Flower: Old Fashioned Pink Roses, but they have to be fragrant. Lavender is my second favorite.

Favourite celebrity role model:  Katherine Hepburn. She was stylish, smart and lived her life exactly the way she chose. Love her.

My nominees for a Sunshine Award. 

These are the bloggers who I most look forward to hearing from (except of course Carolyn). I would nominate Shams from Communing with Fabric, but she doesn't accept awards. I think she is incredibly talented and everything she sews and writes is inspiring.

Tanit-Isis Sews. I love her even though she makes me feel inadequate. She sews like a dream, has two kids and is working on (I believe) her doctorate. She is also gorgeous and thin. For that alone I should hate her.

Seraphinalina-I love reading about her life. She is inspiring.

Lazysubculturalgirl-She is one of the few people I know who watches the same strange TV shows I do, like Lost Girl, Grimm, and Being Human. She also sews and has purple hair.

Jillybejoyful- Her blog always makes me feel happy and at peace. Her Koos coat is beautiful and amazing.

Beangirl the blog-her random posts just slay me. She is funny funny funny. The only problem with her blog is she doesn't post enough.

Pretty Grievances-I think Anne is the funniest woman I know. She also sews and has dogs. So really that means she is perfect. We may have been separated at birth. Except I am older, and in a different country, and not as funny.

A Fool for Fabric, Margy has the most incredible style ever. I put her travel wardrobe on my Pinterest page as inspiration. One of her jackets was in Marcy Tilton's fashion show at Puyallup! Deservedly so, it is stunning.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Tablecloth skirt completed

I finished my version of Sham's tablecloth skirt. Sham's instructions are excellent and it went together very easily. Unfortunately as I suspected it isn't as flattering on me as I would like, oh hell it isn't flattering at all.

I look as big as a dining table in it. That seats twelve. 8-)

My choice of fabric could be better as well. The fabric feels very light, but this skirt uses a lot of fabric and even light fabrics can feel kind of heavy when there is this much of it. The fabric looks far more interesting close up, from a distance it has the look of homeless bag lady. Not surprisingly this is not the look I was going for. I made a drawstring waist (with 18 inches or so of elastic sewn to the ties), as I intended this to be a casual skirt for hot summer days. This has the added benefit of getting smaller with me as I lose weight ( okay I am dreaming here).

I have also learned that as much as I like funky clothes on other people, on me I prefer a slightly more conservative look. I don't consider this a failure, I will wear it this summer, probably mostly at home. Where no one will see me.

close up of fabric, it is 55% linen and 45% cotton

drawstring waist

Friday, March 9, 2012

Hello All!

This is the sour cherry tree in my backyard. I am posting this because it is a sign of spring.
See the bud? Yes. You do. It is so a bud. Shut up.

I got some good news today! I was tested for Celiac disease and I got the good news today! I don't have it. I am certain that I have a sensitivity to wheat/gluten, however. It won't kill me though. So I can indulge occasionally should the mood strike.

Apparently there was something wrong with my blog, and some people were unable to post. This upset me greatly as the comments here are one of the few joys of my life. Kidding, I am not quite that pathetic, almost but not quite. I do however really appreciate any and all comments I receive, and now thanks to Jilly, it is fixed. Or so it seems. If you want to comment and you are unable to please please please email me at ellecsews (at) gmail (dot) com and let me know.

Have a good weekend. Get sewing. Like me.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Vortex of energy

I had the strangest experience today, and I felt certain all ten of you who read this poor excuse for a sewing blog (thank you all for returning again and again) would be dying to know all about.

I was in my tiny little clown car (Smart car, his name is Reuben) driving to Costco to buy chicken breasts for one of my dogs who has to be on a special diet. Which I cook. This dog is prone to pancreatitis and calcium oxalate bladder stones, both of which are painful for him and us. So far this has cost us $1200 in vet bills. This is also the dog that doesn't even like me. All of this has nothing to do with the story, it is simply to demonstrate how I am an excellent dog guardian and therefore a wonderful person.  Anyway I was driving by the major shopping mall in my small city, when a vortex of energy suddenly appeared out of nowhere and sucked me and my car into the parking lot, I believe I lost consciousness for a moment because next thing I know I am at the checkout holding this book. I know it is hard to believe, but I had no intention of going to the bookstore, let alone buying a book. Really. I mean it. Stop judging me.

One of the strange things about this event is this bookstore rarely has any good sewing books. For instance they still haven't got the Colette Sewing Handbook. There were not one but TWO Japanese sewing books to choose from. The unconscious me chose this one. I love this book, the clothes are clever and well designed. Never mind the fact that the further away one gets in appearance from being a young. slender, attractive, Japanese woman the less likely the clothes are to look good on one. Let's see, middle aged, a little more than plump, used to be told I was attractive (haven't been told that in while years), northern European descent.
Oh well, eventually I will make some of them anyway.
I love this book.
My precious. MY precious.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Finished the scrubs!

Finally. Now I can sew stuff for me. Yippee!

I mentioned in a previous post that I made a mistake cutting the fabric for one of the scrubs, I believe I managed to make my fuc booboo part of an interesting design. It has turned out to be one of my favorites. Strange how that happens. Anyway, I cut the back of the top too short. I have the pattern for scrubs on cardboard so I don't have to dig out a pattern and press it etc every time I sew a scrub top. The cardboard doesn't come long enough, so I just add 3 inches to the bottom of the front and back of each. For this top I forgot, and much cursing and foul language ensued. It finally came to me to get some plain black cotton and add a border along the bottom and the sleeved edges. It doesn't look like I fuc screwed it up, does it?

I just love how this one turned out.

And here is the completed Superman scrub.

This one is so perfect for The Husband. Left to his own devices he would eat exactly like a four year old, so this fabric is ideal, and loud. He likes that too.

This is a close up of the fabric-notice on the right side, the almost perfect pattern match on the pocket.

It is a happy print, isn't it?
Now I get to sew fun stuff for me. I think I will make The Tablecloth Skirt next. I was going to make it from taffeta, but someone fell in like with it and I gave it to her. I have since found an interesting linen and cotton blend in black and white, it was only $5 a meter, so I bought 6 meters of it. It's a lot I know, but I really like it. Anyway, wish me luck. Photos to follow.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Instant gratification. Almost.

I have had a project in my mind for a couple of weeks now, but time has not been cooperating. I was going to make a top and dip dye it, but I was grocery shopping and they had t-shirts for $8, so I bought 2.
What the heck.

I volunteer at a assisted living facility and once a month or so we do a tie dye class. I always tell everyone if they have something in mind and they want their t-shirt to come out exactly the way they see in their minds eye, to leave, cause it ain't ever gonna happen. I am telling you all this because my t-shirts didn't come out quite the way I wanted them to. Don't you hate it when you have to live with your own advice? Sucks.

I like the colour on this one, but the pattern not so much.
I like the pattern, but not the colour. 
I will wear both of them, maybe just around the house, but at least I didn't spend much $$. If anyone is interested in how to do this, let me know and I will try to come up with a tutorial that is understandable.