Friday, June 28, 2013

My Bombshell is complete!

Yay!!! I completed my Bombshell swimsuit. I made view B the halter top version.

I LOVE this pattern! The directions were easy to follow the suit fits amazingly well. This was my first swimsuit and I always imagined that they were going to be difficult to sew. NOT TRUE!! This was quite an easy project.

I made the size 16 and made no adjustments. The only change that I will make next time is to use my cover stitch instead of a zig-zag for the outside stitching. I'd love to make view A next.

The fabric is swimwear from Fabric Mart and is an aqua print on a dark brown background, lining and swimwear elastic from Jo-Ann fabrics, needles and thread from stash.

Thanks to ClosetCase Files for such an excellent pattern and for the fun sewalong!

Ok, time for a picture. I'm a real women and have lots of lovely curves!

- Posted by Steph from Siouxzeegirl Designs

Location:Lisle, IL

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Baltimore... The sad and bad followed by THE GOOD!

I'm sitting in the airport waiting patiently for my delayed aircraft to arrive so I can get home! It seems like it has been a long week of travel. I started out in West Virginia on Monday and spent Tuesday evening- Thursday in Baltimore, down in the inner harbor area.

I was initially excited to be in Baltimore for a couple days. I like the inner harbor, over the years they have really built up a nice area to walk around, good restaurants, and things to see. Ad while I did enjoy the very, very small amount of free time I had I was also a bit saddened.

Why? Well in the past 5 days there have been over 32 shootings in the downtown Baltimore area. If you have ever been to the inner harbor area you know that if you wander even a couple blocks in the wrong direction you can end up in some very bad neighborhoods. It makes me sad, there is so much to see and do in this area and it is a shame that people are afraid. It's a vicious circle, without tourists bringing in dollars the area could once again decline and that is sad to me.

As I was walking back from lunch today I passed a large group of young African American boys. Probably about 15 mid teens and they were rough housing with each other and putting their hands into a gun shape and going 'BAM' at each other and saying things like 'I just shot your ass'. Plus many other things that I refuse to repeat on my blog. It made me wonder what kind of lives were these boys going to end up leading and it also made me feel safe that I looked up and saw a police officer just 20 yards away. (I did not feel threatened by these young men, I was just surprised by their behavior)

I felt sad for the Baltimore community, well not just for Baltimore for any community that experiences this senseless type of violence. It makes me appreciate my safe little home even more!

Anyway.... I did enjoy my work trip as much as anyone can enjoy a work trip! We try to make the most of it :) here are some photos of what I did like!

Co-workers that you can call friends, at a baseball game.

My favorite REI hat that the rain rolls right off of!

Bases loaded with a good batter on deck!

Crazy Orioles Fans dressed head to toe in black and orange.... Do you see them???

Getting complimented on my sewn garments :)

Crab Cakes! Must I say more??

A stranger offered to take my picture at the inner harbor! Very nice old man!

A great people watching view while eating the above crab cakes for lunch

Beautiful purple flowers with the masts of a tall ship in the background

- Posted by Steph from Siouxzeegirl Designs.

Location:BWI Airport

Monday, June 24, 2013

The close!!! And a little horse time!

I had a great weekend! I got to spend time with all my favorite people's, some sewing time, some horse time, and more! Too many things to hit all the highlights.... I think I need a weekend after my weekend!

Sunday evening I had a some recoils time in my sewing room and ALMOST got my Bombshell suit finished. Why didn't I? Well..... I ran out of damn swimsuit elastic!!! Ugh. I have every other type and size of elastic in my stash just no more swimsuit elastic. Buggers!

all that needs to be done is added waistline elastic and sew the halter cups on.... So close!

Now, as I sit here at the airport I'm wondering if there is anywhere in my travels this week from Charleston, WV to Baltimore,MD that will take me close to a fabric store.... Oh well, I'll probably just have to wait until Friday to pick up my elastic.

The rest of the weekend was non-sewing! I managed to pack in 2 movies. Work War Z and Man of Steel. Both were very good with WWZ winning out in my book. It was quite scary for me but done so well! man of Steel was very good except for the cinematography. It was not really to my liking, too jumpy and have me a little headache from it.

I also spent Saturday day going on a 2 hour trailride with my daughter and some friends. We had a great time! I haven't been on a horse in almost 2 years and it was like coming home :) I did not wear my knee brace (I don't think they would have let me on with it!) I also didn't use that leg on the ride. As long as I kept it out of the stirrup and hanging loose I was good to go.

Sunday we headed to a friends house for a morning/early afternoon of game playing and then we went and look at the new apartment that my daughter and her fiancé will be moving into after the wedding! Very excited for them!

So as not to waste my work travel time, I have brought my latest issue of Threads magazine to devour, a new Peggy Sagers DVD, and I brought the veil with me to continue hand sewing all the embellishments on. Hopefully, I can get some good headway done on that project while traveling this week.

- Posted by Steph from my iPad

Location:Lisle, IL and Galena, IL

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Ohhhhh, I love getting goodies in the mail!

Yesterday afternoon I found the most lovely little package in the mail. Did it have special wrapping? No was it post marked Special Delivery? No. Well then, you might be thinking what makes it so special???

Well, to most people it's not so special but to me it was SUPER because it was filled with 3 lovely Colette Patterns!!!

I have had my eye on this lovely little pattern line for a while now and when the lovely Hawthorn Dress was introduced last week I just had to have it! Something about it just grabbed me and pulled me in. (Unlike the Laurel dress which I thought was just not my style)

I have had my eye on The Macaron Dress forever, I love all the different ways that it has been made up. I was going to put a couple pictures up but not sure of the copyright laws so here is link to the flicker group. I also decided to go for a pinafore, I love the idea of being able to make a dress for all seasons and having on nice warm tights and turtleneck underneath for the winter and a lovely soft cotton for summer. So in my basket also jumped the Parfait.

Well, well, what do you know this is another first for me! This will be my first foray into Colette Patterns.

They arrived very, very quickly! I ordered them on Tuesday night and by Friday they were in my mail box. Now that's what I call super fast customer service. The patterns themselves come in these beautiful little booklets with tons of super clear step by step directions. I'm not sure how much I exactly need those directions however i think when I make the first one I will try to follow them step by step and see if I can learn something new.

Which one will I make first. The Hawthorn! There will be a sew-a-long starting sometime soon. Not sure if I will be able to participate due to the upcoming wedding. I'll have to check on the details when they are posted.

In other news I worked a little more on my Bombshell swimsuit. The bottom is completed and I tried it on and my oh my it fits beautifully :) hehe! All I have left is to do the halter top.

- Posted by Steph from Siouxzeegirl Designs

Location:Lisle, IL

Friday, June 21, 2013

Bombshell Sew Along, Antique Spools and a sneak peak!

Happy Summer Solstice!! Enjoy the first day of summer.

This must be my season of firsts! It was my first sewing swap and now I am joining in on my first sew-a-long to make my first bathing suit!

This sew-a-long is for the Bombshell Bathing Suit from Closet Case Files Etsy Shop. You can click on the button at the top of my sidebar to go directly to the sew-a-long info being held at Closet Case Files Blog.

Heather Lou from the blog Closet Case Files has done an excellent job on this pattern and I am very happy to support her endeavors. This pattern came out just in time for me :) I purchased 2 yards of swimsuit fabric from FabricMart earlier this spring and I have been looking for a good swimsuit pattern, one that was not to basic/boring but also one that was appropriate to me. I'm not a bikini chick and I certainly don't like those super high thigh cuts. So Bombshell caught my eye immediately!!! Great coverage yet super sexy ;)

I had the pattern printed at Office Depot copy center. They didn't quite have paper large enough to print in one giant sheet but they broke it in 4 pieces. That sure did make it nice and easy!

These are my back pieces, rushed and basted to the lining material

I checked my measurements against the pattern and cut a straight size 16. I don't have a long or short body so I left it. I figured with a bathing suit there is a lot of forgiveness with fit due to the stretchiness of the fabric.

This photo shows my entire back piece sewn together

According to the sew-a-long schedule I am a little over half way finished! (Although I did all the work yesterday) the directions are excellent and I think this is perfect for my first bathing suit.

This funny picture is the front crotch, front bodice piece and back piece all sandwiched together and sewn. However, no boob pieces are on yet!

My weekend is looking a little busy and my work schedule next week has me out of town from Monday thru Thursday. So, hopefully I'll get it done by Monday! If not it will have to wait.

On other fronts, I have a new addition to my sewing studio decor.

Antique Spools. These are those big giant wooden spools that I believe had been use in spinning..... Not 100% sure so if anyone knows for sure I'd love to hear! I'm using them for some lovely renaissance ribbon from Kaffe Fassett.

I have also been working on a major hand sewing project for the wedding. Here is a sneak peak :) only 1 month left until the wedding!!!

- Posted by Steph from Siouxzeegirl Designs

Location:Lisle, IL

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Baby Gift #2 bibs, burp pads, onesies and a chenille blanket

If you remember back a while ago I mentioned that I have 3 baby's on the way! Not me personally... But from friends and family members.

I knew that with all the craziness of the wedding that if I was going to give handmade gifts, which I prefer to do , then I would need to be organized and get going on it. Doesn't that always seem to be easier said than done????

Well, this time I have managed so far to be fairly organized and productive.

As usual I work backwards. I purchase fabric first and then decide what to do with it later. My local quilt shop has closed it's doors forever and in the past several weeks they have had some great sales. I took advantage of these sales to buy enough fabric to make whatever came to my fancy. :) it was nice to have enough coordinating fabric to make several items without having to super plan it all out first.

I did have a rough idea as to what I was going to do. I knew I wanted to make another set of bibs and burp pads and I purchased enough onesies in the beginning to embroider some for all the little babies in the way.

For this gift my base set of fabric was flannel. Instead of making a quilt I decided to try my hand at someone new and made a chenille blanket. Ohhhhhhh..... I want one just for me snuggle under!

I used 4 layers of flannel. The 'top' which was layered face down (polka dot yellow) , a base (multicolored stripe, also used for the binding) and 2 top layers a yellow then a green watercolor dot looking flannel.

I then spent several solid hours stitching straight lines across the bias every 1/2 inch. Thank goodness for a good walking foot! I can only imagine all of the shifting and mess it would have been going across the bias on 4 layers of flannel.

Next up was the FUN part, the slashing! At the same quilting store that went out of business as I got the fabric I also purchased their last chenille rotary cutter. This made the entire process of slashing the top 2 layers of flannel (the green and yellow) very easy. After slashing I rounded the corners, bound the entire thing by machine and then put it in the washer and dryer so that the slashed edges could 'bloom'.

As soon as I took it out of the dryer I fell in love. I instantly wanted to make an enormous blanket for myself to snuggle under. Hehehe. I ran upstairs to share my love with my hubby and got the good 'ole 'that's nice'. LOL!!! I guess you have to be a sewer to get excited over these things :)

I used the extra flannel and some pink corduroy to back the bibs and burp pads.

AND..... I figured out how to embroider on onesies without a great deal of pain and with great results! I guess trial and error a the best way to learn. In all fairness I did also do an extensive search on the blogosphere to see how others had done these. Of course, just like anything else, everyone has there own way of coming to success and their own great failures. So I gleaned various bits of info from here and there and tried again. I'm very happy with my results this time.

- Posted by Steph from Siouxzeegirl Designs

Location:Lisle, IL

Monday, June 17, 2013

Spring Sewing SWAP 2013 goodies!!

I had so much fun with this Spring Sewing SWAP 2013. How could I not??? Who doesn't love stalking another blog, getting to make a new sewing friend and sending off a fun package of goodies and then getting one in return!

Thanks to Kestrel Makes for setting up this sewing swap. She did a great job organizing :)

I was paired up with a lovely blogger from Oakville, Ontario Canada. It was great fun getting to know Debbie from Sew Debbie and picking out some lovely sewing goodies to share with her.

This was the package I received from Debbie.
It included 2 meters of knit fabric. I love the print!
2 patterns a skirt and a top
A sewing kit pattern
Buttons, trim, tags and an always needed measuring tape.
I'm looking forward to using my new goodies.

This is what I sent to Debbie:
A Silhouettes pattern
2 yards of purple heather knit fabric
And various other goodies, my favorite marking pen, buttons, trim and some beads. I spied some nice beaded necklaces on her blog!

This was the first time I have participated in a sewing swap and it was a lot of fun!

- Posted by Steph from my iPad

Location:Lisle, IL

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Jungle Path baby quilt

I finally finished hand sewing the binding on this quilt last week! Talk about procrastination on my part.... It sat in a bag next to my lazy-z-boy chair in the front room patiently waiting to be worked on for several weeks.

This was a fun quilt to make! And was all done with stash fabrics. I had a charm pack and coordinating jelly roll that have been waiting for the perfect use and this was it a beautiful baby girl quilt.

I used a pattern from Moda Bakeshop called Jungle Path I changed up the backing and used Moda BLISS fabric.

This quilt goes along with the baby bibs, burp pads and onesies I posted about here. They all use coordinating fabrics from the Moda Bliss line.

For the quilting I quilted the center and white part of each square with a quilting design on my embroidery machine. It was the first time I have used the embroidery machine for quilting. I also quilted done the sashing in the center and in the ditch on each side. It made for a lovely grid pattern.

I embroidered a label which I appliquéd to the back lower right corner. This is a gift for the baby shower and the name has not yet been picked.... I'm contemplating making a new label after the baby is born. I'll see what the mama wants to about it after I give it to her.

This was a fun project. Moda Bakeshop has so many great ideas posted by some fabulous quilters.

- Posted by Steph from siouxzeegirl designs.

Location:Lisle, IL

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Catch up post! Last weekend's FUN

Geez! I can't believe that it's been 2 weeks since my last post.... Oops! Time sure is flying by. It also doesn't help that my allergies have been wicked, allergy meds trough me off my game a bit.
I've been busy, not the crazy stressful busy but the good kind of busy. The week before last (the first week of June) I did actually get some sewing projects done. I had a large pile of clothes that I needed to either alter to fit my slimmer shape or to donate to GoodWill. I ended up redoing 5 shirts and a pair of yoga pants, all of these items were me made items and I was quite happy to be able to alter them to get longer use from them. There was only one top that I decided to donate... It was just too big and not easy to alter. I also spent one evening taking a comprehensive set of measurements of my darling daughter. She has asked me to make a dress for her to wear to the Chicago wedding reception that she is having and since it is several weeks after the actual wedding she did not want to wear the wedding dress. I only have a 2 more wedding sewing projects that MUST be completed. The above said dress and the bridal veil. So I feel to be in a very good spot, now to get the million or so other things done and ready before the wedding!
Last weekend my hubby planned a date day for us. We had a ballroom dancing lesson, a bike ride and walk around the Arboretum and then a Blackhawks hockey party at a friends house. It was a delightful day!! We loved the dancing lesson so much that we signed up for ten more lessons! Who knew that doing the rumba and foxtrot could be so much fun ;)
At the Arboretum we bike about six miles and then took a nice walk. They have this amazing outdoor art installation of giant wooden bugs. I LOVED the dragonflies, the giant ants were just creepy and the big spiders were downright scary!

Having fun with the self timer mode on my little camera :)

Here I am stuck in the spiders web! Hehehe.... I know, I'm a goof ball!

Giant ants marching down the lawns, I would probably die if I saw these for real.

Me getting eaten by a giant daddy long legs! True fact: these are actually the most poisonous spiders but since the pinchers/stingers are so tiny that they can not bother humans. Good thing!!

I love my husband!
- Posted by Steph from Siouxzeegirl Designs