28 October 2010

Progress Update: Knit Tank & Sequins

Hand-sewing sequins is not difficult at all. Getting these little buggers to line up nicely is another thing. At first, I was kind of digging the wiggly look. Then by some force of nature, I managed to attach the sequins without wiggles. Near the neckline, the sequins seem to behave and follow a more uniform line. Hmm...

What do you think? Should I keep going or start over?


25 October 2010

I am Loving Sequins Right Now

Lately, I have developed an attraction for sequins (silver, gold, copper, etc.) and all things shiny. I don't really follow trends, so I am not sure where this new-found liking is coming from. It sort of crept up on me during the summer and was put into overdrive when I saw Deepika's fabric. She snagged a seriously smoking all-over sequined top from Haberman's Fabrics at this year's American Sewing Expo. I. Love. This. Fabric.

(picture is of her fitting the neckline with tucks)

After seeing this, I started searching the internet for ideas of how to incorporate these details into my garments. Last weekend, I made a knit tank top using Jalie 965 and a black rayon slubbed knit from Fabric.com. Having already made J965 in black slinky, I wanted to add some sort of embellishment to this newest version. I bought a spool of silver single-strand sequins and started designing some layouts. Here are my options:

(click on image for a better view)

Of the five designs (starting at the upper left corner), I like numbers two, four, and five the best. The third design would hide the sequins in the hem and the first doesn't do anything for me. I am leaning toward design four because it's simple and busy (is that even possible?). However, crossing the lines of sequins might create unsightly humps and bumps. Designs two and five are also very cool. I wonder, though, how difficult it will be to keep the curved lines uniform.

I was so eager to finish the tank top, that I didn't think to embellish the front before sewing the side seams. Oh well. I am not picking out those stitches. I'll just have to channel my inner Tim Gunn and make it work!

Do you like sequins? Have you ever sewn with them? Am I in over my head? =)

Off topic...
Thanks for the comment, Rachelle. You're probably right; I need to stop trippin! =) I'll take a photo while wearing the top. Let me know what you think!


24 October 2010

The Verdict on HP 1099: Meh.

Last weekend, I took some time to work on TDHP (That Damn Hot Patterns) 1099. Where do I begin?

Oy vey. The sleeve! Previously, I noticed that the sleeve cap had an insane amount of ease. Set-in sleeve caps have extra length that is eased into the armhole, right?. HP1099's sleeve is designed to be set in flat! The shape of the sleeve cap is actually quite nice. The length of the sleeve cap from back to shoulder is longer and angled differently than that of front to shoulder length I like the design of this sleeve cap because most of us are not the same length or shape in these areas and the differences appear to make for a better fit.

The picture above isn't that of the HP 1099 sleeve pattern. I found this online just to illustrate the idea. I would take a picture of my pattern, but it's currently in hibernation - never to see the light of day for a long, long time.

To take out some of the ease, I slashed the sleeve cap from the shoulder point to within 5/8" of the bottom of the sleeve. I attempted to slash to the hem, but the folds were just too deep to reconcile. I overlapped the cap 1 inch, removing 2" of ease. Would you believe that this still wasn't enough? I cut out a test sleeve to sew in a previously constructed muslin. There was still about a half an inch of extra length on both the front and back of the sleeve cap. So, again I slashed the front and back and overlapped the cap by about 1/2" - thus removing over an inch of length. Finally, this worked and I was able to sew the sleeve in flat without any puckers.

Having attempted the collar several times, I was able to sew this one without incident. It's still not perfect. Unless I point out the errors, I don't think anyone will ever know.

Overall the bust fit is quite good, but I am not totally satisfied with the pattern. The top is boxy and wears more like a jacket than a blouse. If I decide to sew it again, I will likely use a much heavier fabric.

I haven't done the hems or buttons yet because...well...I got tired of working on it and I am disappointed with the final result. When I do finish, I will wear it. In the meantime, here are some parting photos:

front with gaping hem

boxy back

top with buttons

Currently in queue are two projects: the new Simplicity jacket (2284) and a black knit tank top that needs embellishment. I'll be blogging on both soon.

Until next time,


14 October 2010

Planning & 7 Deadly Sins

My sewing hit a brick wall with the New Look skirt. I have no pictures to share because I cut that joker up and threw it in the trash. The fit was terrible and I had Z.E.R.O. motivation to finish it - even for charity. I felt an enormous weight lift when I tossed it. Now I can work on something else. Since being sick, I am slow to return to the sewing room.

In the meantime, I am planning my next projects. The Endless Combinations contest is coming up on Pattern Review and I've already got some ideas in mind. I'm keeping that on the low for now, though. =)

Switching gears, I saw this on Adrienne's Blog a few days ago:

The 7 Deadly Sins...
Day 1 - Pride. Seven great things about yourself.

Day 2 - Envy. Seven things you lack and covet.

Day 3 - Wrath. Seven things that piss you off.

Day 4 - Sloth. Seven things you neglect to do.

Day 5 - Greed. Seven worldly material desires.

Day 6 - Gluttony. Seven guilty pleasures.

Day 7 - Lust. Seven love secrets.

Let's see how long I play with this one. =)

Until next time!


04 October 2010

Woo! What a Month!

For the better part of September, I was ill. My illness manifested itself the form of extreme fatigue, increased appetite, and nausea. Wait. Hold up! It was NOT a baby, I assure you! Without going into detail, I am happy to say that I am feeling much better and am on the road to resuming my normal daily activities.

I went roller skating for the first time in three weeks (gasp) on Friday. This is a big deal for me since I normally roll twice per week. One of my skate buddies wondered if I had died. Ummmm... Oookay. Like I said, it's a big deal. I still sleep a lot (11 hours this past Saturday), but at least it is nearly not as bad as it was a couple of weeks ago.

I attended the American Sewing Expo last weekend and had a wonderful time. I got to meet up with my dear friend Deepika and share many lasting memories with Melody, Sharon, Rachelle, Tina, EveS, Leslie (in Austin), Tenia, KBurkhardt, KristineKay, and many more (sorry names are escaping me right now). Even though I didn't take any classes, I enjoyed every single moment of the Expo. Pictures? Well...see...what had happened was... I'll have to grab photos from someone and post them here.

On the sewing front, my machines saw power for the first time yesterday. I finally had the energy to sit down and sew. I sewed for about two hours straight and completed another version of the Simplicity Cardi Wrap 2603. I am working to complete some projects and commitments that I started in August - one of which is a small 6-piece wardrobe, referred to as a 6PAC. The idea is to create a small set of coordinating clothes for the current season in three months. The current 6PAC is as follows:

Skirt or trousers (neutral)
3 blouses/tops (1 to match bottom, 2 to complement)
Cardigan (to match skirt/trousers)
Coat or jacket (coordinating neutral)

Since the start of the sew along, I've completed four garments - not totally following the plan, though.

The items in green text are already completed. Up next is the New Look skirt and another attempt at TDHP1099 (That Damn Hot Patterns) blouse.

I hope everyone is doing well.

Until next time,



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