Friday, January 15, 2021

Happy 2021!!! and a recap of Holiday sewing

 Happy 2021!

I have arrived into 2021 feeling renewed and full of personal hope. I am so very glad to have sewing and creativity in my life, having this stability to fall back on has been a wonderful thing for me. A place where I can go to be happy and calm and express my creativity which helps to make me a better person overall.

My life has calmed down a bit since the end of 2020... Like many people "stuff" has been going on and the 2 big P's- Pandemic and Politics have not made anything easier. We sure are living through quite a bit of history. I truly hope that when we, as a collective, emerge from the other side, we are stronger and better!

I wanted to share a couple pictures of some Christmas Sewing that I did for 2020.

Since Christmas was being spent quite differently this year I decided to make special lounge outfits for my daughter, granddaughter, myslef and for Arya! We had a fun time taking silly pictures! All day was spent lounging in our coordinating outfits while we watched movies and played games and ate food on the couch!

The fabric is all from Natures Fabrics and are dyed with eco friendly dyes The pants and cardigans are made from the Cotton Velour which is so lovely to work with!! 80% cotton and 20% poly. Washes and sews lovely!! The T-shirt watercolor rainbow hearts fabric is also an eco friendly cotton jersey that is also so lovely!

All the pants were made from True Bias Hudson Pants pattern, with the cuffs and pocket detail in the knit tee fabric. The adult tank tops are from Cashmerette Saybrook Tank and the Cardigan is the Helen's Closet Blackwood Cardigan. The kids T-shirt is Misusu Pattern's Rowan Tee and the Cardigan is Ellie & Mac The Chapman Cardigan.

The doggy tee shirt and sweater are part rubb offed from an existing sweater and part self drafted.

And no worries anyone... we were at a complete halt on Lake Shore Drive for about 15 minutes when we took this!!

I also sewed fun pillowcases for my brother and his family in the Netherlands and then some dinosaur ones for my granddaughter.

Plus I did some hand crafting (great for those times when I really need to just rest) and made 2 birds. One for my Nephew and his wife who are expecting a baby girl at the end of April and one for my sister to enjoy. :)

I did do one large sewing related project to start off the year. I purged my fabric collection! This has been something I have been meaning to do and now just felt like the right time! We all have those fabrics in our collection or stash that just dont suit us. Either our tastes have changed or maybe it is a beautiful fabric that you would never wear or perhaps it was given to you or picked up in a swap or trade. I decided that I needed to get rid of those fabrics that my hands always pass over in favoor of something more appealing. SO I got rid of quite a bit! It was also easier to do since I was giving the fabric to a wonderful young woman who is starting her journey in fashion design. She is a person that really deserves all the good that the world can give her!

Happy Sewing!!

WIshing everyone peace, health and happiness as we navigate our way through another historic year!

Friday, December 18, 2020

Pulling out of the funk of 2020 and wishing for the best Holidays we can have!

 Wow, what a year!

I felt like I was doing so well with ALL the crap that 2020 brought to all of us and then apparently I crossed a line that broke the proverbial camels back! Adding personal issues on top of the global issues was just enough for me.

I made the decision to be a bit quiet on my blog about it as I don't like to use it as a bitch fest but to use it more as a record and celebration of my sewing and creativity.


I love how that sounds and I am slowly getting back to feeling that way. Sewing and creating is such an important part of my life and I have not stopped, I just felt a bit down and unmotivated and overwhelmed with 'stuff'. So, instead,  I have been doing some holiday sewing which has been fun and enjoyable and has helped me to hold my shit together. 

Whatever it takes right now to keep moving forward in the healthiest way possible. I think having grace with myself is so very important. Self care and self love is so important on a regular basis and even more important during these trying times.

I want to wish everyone, every single person across the world, a Happy Holidays and to remind us all that we are not alone, even though it may feel like it!

May your creativity fill you with joy and positive energy during the Holidays :)


Happy Sewing!

Stay Safe and Stay Healthy!


Friday, November 13, 2020

Notes on Mentorship- Developing an idea into a garment- Raised neckline with radiating darts … Part 2

In may last Notes on Mentorship post I talked about how I developed the pattern and I showed you the pictures of the ‘mini’ muslins that were just to bust and then one to the waist.

In this post I will show you the final muslin that I made to double check the overall fit and show you the final garment!

I LOVE these radiating darts!!

Get ready for lots of photos!


The last muslin that I made was one that was basically full length but left off the sleeves and the hem facing and just did the bodice front back and the front and back neck facing. Normally in mock ups or muslins I omit the facing and just mark the finished neckline. However, because this garment has so much focus on the neckline and the pattern pieces are so strange, I decided that It was worth adding the facing to just make sure everything went together perfectly.

Shoulder collapse without the sleeves inserted.

You will see in the muslin pictures that there seems to be some funkiness with the upper bodice fitting. Consulting with my mentor helped me to understand that because of the final pattern shapes that much of the upper bodice was on the bias and that without the sleeves in the muslin it was sort of collapsing a little bit in that area.

So glad this issue resolved when the sleeves were put in!

The final shaping for the neckline is controlled and determined by several factors. On the back- shaped center back neckline. At the very top of the seam it bows in, mimicking a fish eye dart. There is also a shaped neckline dart from about mid back shoulder area. You can clearly see the bottom third of the dart coming to the point it a normal dart shape. The rest of the dart has been carefully ‘shaped’ to give me the shape that I want.

Front neckline facing- cut on fold at CF

Front bodice with neckline darts and inverted or reverse pin tucks

The rest of the raised neckline shaping is done at the shoulder. You can see the ‘swoop’ of the shoulder line, this also acts as an area for shaping.

Back neckline facing

Back Bodice pattern   

The fabric I am using for the final garment is from Fabrics and Fabrics in NYC. It is a solid texture cotton pique in lime green with a nice amount of body to it and perfect for holding this neckline. I used the wrong side of the fabric. I decided on this by playing with the fabric and folding in where the neck darks would be and the ‘lines’ or ‘striped’ side of the fabric was better. I’m the designer so I can use whatever side I want J I love this lime green color and this fabric washed up and dried beautifully! Another great high quality fabric from Fabrics and Fabrics!

For the facings and the turn back cuff and the pockets I used some Liberty of London lawn that I had left over from a shirt I made a couple of years ago. I used a fairly lightweight fusible interfacing for the facings. Just enough to give it a little bit of extra oomph but careful to not over interface. This was done with testing a fabric sandwich to check that it was enough.

Inside out - front

Inside out- side

The other factor that I had to take into account was that there are a bunch of darts and seams in the neckline which also help to o give it more body and hold the shape.

I am super excited with this garment. Being able to take the design from inspiration to sketch to pattern development and fit to final garment has been such a great and rewarding process. Especially with a design that is tricky.

No good pictures of me in it yet, just this one peek. I am waiting for some dark green ponte to arrive so that I can make a pair of leggings. Plus, I am not feeling so hot with my pancreas so not feeling like a photo shoot would be fun this week!