Thursday, July 31, 2014

Tracy Reese Dress Vogue 1343, a TNT dress and another crazy month!

This July was just crazy, crazy, crazy busy for me! 

- started off with a fun filled 4 th of July long weekend
- a brand spanking new grand daughter that seems to not want to get out of my arms!! ;) as if I would even think of putting her down!!!
- my sister visiting for a long weekend from mississippi. That include trips to Arlington horse track and to the Chicago Art institute 
- another weekend filled with a great wedding and wine tasting & lunch with friends. 
- I was also AWAY from home for work for 14 of the 31 days! Ugh

Now with all of that said let's get to the important parts.... The Sewing! After all this is a sewing blog.

I did get a little bit of time in the sewing room. I have to it is my sanctuary, my place to go and just be. 

I finished a dress, the Tracy Reese Vogue 1343 dress. This dress is actually a wearable muslin. The construction was suitably difficult to not be able to make a partial fitting muslin. I read all of the reviews that I could find and compared flat measurements to my own measurements and made some adjustments before I even cut my fabric. 

The biggest complaint from other reviewers was that the cowl neckline was way, way to deep. Like indecent type of deep! And that the neckline was just a bit too low to start off with. 
I made 2 changes to correct for these. 1- I shortened the length of the neckline at the front shoulder yoke by cutting horizontally from the neckline to but not through the armhole and overlapped the tissue at the neck line by 1/2 inch. This effectively raised the neckline at center by an inch. 2- to reduce the depth and drape of the cowl I did a similar adjustment by cutting perpendicular down center front from the top of the cowl to but not throughout the waist and overlapped these pieces by 1 1/2 inches reducing the overall fullness and depth of the cowl by 3". This does not mean that the cowl lays three inches higher than where it did originally... I didn't actually measure that change but it does pull it up some and still leaves a nice drape in front. 

The sizing in this dress is a bit crazy so pay attention to the flat measurements! My pattern was multi sized from 16-22. I cut a 16 for the top and graded to a 22 for the bottom. That's how HUGE the top is drafted!!

I will make 3 more changes when I make this again, and I will make this again even though the silhouette is one that I don't normally wear. 
1. Cut a larger armhole
2. Lengthen the bodice by an inch
3. Lengthen the skirt at the waist by an inch

The armhole was just a tad snug so I recut it on the fly before adding the bias finishing. The length above the waist felt a little short. Since there is a light elastic in there I would like it to fall at my natural waist. The overall length felt a bit short for me. Mostly because I haven't really worn any dresses that hit above the knee in years! Now that I have no more leg brace I dint have to worry about covering down to my mid-calves but I could have used just a tad more length for my comfort :)

The fabric I used was a cheap 'silky' from JoAnns that I got on half price at the red tag section. So I maybe paid 8$. The fabric was horrible to work with mostly because the quality was poor and it frayed like no ones business and was difficult to handle well. I mean really, just check out the AWFULL back button placket. It does not even come close to matching and I did it twice! The fabric could just not handle me pulling out the stitches of the bias finishing one more time, just was being destroyed. I even used a ton of spray starch to try and tame it!! However, it did work perfectly for a wearable muslin and I have worn it twice so far. Once for a work event with a brown belt and brown shoes and once to a wedding with a gold belt and gold shoes. I have some very nice rayon cuts in my stash that I will make this out of again.

The second dress I made TNT knit dress pattern Simplicity 1653. This time I used the big fluttery sleevs and also added width to the bottom of the skirt to make it a bit fuller. This is primarily a work dress and I love it! It is a striped ponte knit. I cut the front and back pieces on the bias and matched the stripes at center front and back in a chevron. I cut the front so that the chevron pointed up and the back so that it pointed down RS way at the side seams the stripes flowed across at a downward angle on the skirt. This way I didn't have to try and match a chevron at the side. The upper sides did not matter since the top fronts were cut on the cross grain,  same as the sleeves. I a very happy with the outcome of this dress! And because it is a knit it travels well in my suitcase for work.

I have 2 more July makes that will be in the monthly wrap-up post :)

Happy sewing!!

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

June 2014 wrap-up!

June was a great month that just flew by!!!

I did get in a little  bit of sewing but NO blogging was done. Just too much going on :)
What I did make was some nice additions to my summer wardrobe.

So just what did I make in June:
1 maxi skirt, McCall's 6966 view D
2 shirts McCall's 6703 view A and B
1 pair of short pants or maybe long shorts.... Adapted from my favorite Silhoutte Jeans patterns.
10 burp pads
10 baby washcloths, give or take a few 
1 Moby-esque baby wrap

Now for the pics :)

Maxi skirt and one top

Short pants and another top

Pants detail... No back pockets and the front pockets were made from a starfish cotton print that my mom gave me. Love it!!! So summery :)

The baby wrap and me wearing my Grandaughter. 

And of course some pictures of Victoria :) 2 weeks old today!

I also have a Vogue dress on my work table that I have been working on. It's probably 50% done. I have a big work meeting later in July and hope to have it finished for then. 

Happy sewing!

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

The BEST June ever!!!!

I think I have a pretty good life! It may not be big and glamorous but it certainly is all mine and I love it. I have family and friends that I love and whom love me back ( so important in life!). I share my life with a several special canines. My home is modest but it is all ours and It is my sanctuary. I have steady employment that keeps all the bills paid and doesn't overly stress me out. I get to go on a nice vacation every year, sometimes even two! 


I am a GRANDMA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
So blessed! My hubby and I are over the moon and haven fallen so deeply in love with Victoria, our Grandaughter. I find words difficult to express this feeling.

My daughter asked me to be with her during her labor and delivery. It was very exciting and exhausting at the same time. During her labor we were chatting, to keep her mind off.... You know, things.  I told her that it still amazes me to this day how I felt my entire life shift when I gave birth to her. It was like things that it thought were important the day before just all melted away and I had this brand new awareness of life and love. 

The point of that little story is that it happened all over again for me. It is like I could just feel my heart expand and take in this new little one and now I am made new again. I am a grandmother. LOL!! I just like saying it! I like being in the grandparent 'Club'! 

Makes me want to shout it from the rooftops and give great big hugs to all the grandparents out there! 

And now I have a little girl to sew for again!! Yipeee!!!

Meet Victoria Ann

Just hours old and checking out her world!

Momma and baby napping in the hospital.

Napping on grandma's chest!

I made a Moby wrap to carry her around while my daughter does laundry and errands.

Grandpa, singing to her darling girl!

The proud papa just minutes after she was born!  A big smile to hide the tears of joy in his eyes!

I actually did get a couple items sewn in June, never blogged about them. June was a bit crazy. My daughter was put on bed rest and due to her bad back was in quite a bit of pain at the end of her pregnancy. The doctors gave her muscle relaxers to use but she needed to be under constant supervision as a fall risk. So they moved into our house for several weeks and I was able to work from home during that time. I spent most of my spare time with Melissa and keeping her company. This meant blogging fell to the side for a bit. 
After the 4th of July weekend, I resume my regular work travel schedule. It has been so nice to have the time at home to take case of my daughter and enjoy the first several weeks of my Grandaughter!

So blessed!!