Saturday, July 27, 2013

The Joy of Anticipation

Every once in a while, I get caught up in a really big, time-consuming project - like when I re-sewed all the sequins on a skirt because they were falling off, or when I sewed beads onto netting in a swirly design and attached it to the bottom of a formal dress for some added bling (more about that dress coming soon). I even knitted myself a dress last summer...all summer long.

My mom has always jokingly called me obsessive compulsive, and if that means jumping into a project without really counting the cost, I guess I am. But then, I always feel so much fulfillment when I put a lot of work into something and end up with a beautiful product.

One of the things that keeps me from doing too many of these looong projects - and keeps me going when I am in the middle of them - is my impatience. I don't want to have to work for a few months to finish my dress. I want it now! But I have learned to be patient, at least somewhat, and to find joy in anticipation. As Anne says in Anne of Green Gables, "looking forward to things is half the pleasure of them".

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Another Apron

After my last post, I got a few requests for pictures of the back of an apron. I don't know why I didn't think of that! Here are some pictures of an apron that I just made that is now for sale on Etsy.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Creating Variety

Lately I have been sewing aprons - lots of aprons. I got this cover-all pattern from some friends years ago, and I love the endless design possibilities it offers. I have been having so much fun mixing and matching fabrics and letting my imagination run wild.

The kitchen is just a much better  place when you can look cute while working in it, don't you think?

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Step by Step: Combining a shirt and skirt to make a dress

All you need is a shirt and a matching skirt. Here is what I had:

    Step 1: I measured and cut the shirt right below my                             Step 2: I took the waistband and zipper off the
      bust, as I wanted the dress to have a high waist.                                skirt, leaving a raw edge to attach to the shirt.

               Step 3: When I matched the skirt up to the shirt,                   Step 4: T-shirt material stretches easily, so I
                the shirt was quite a bit wider, so I took in four                   sewed a line of stay stitching on the bottom
                   darts, two in the back and two in the front.                       of the shirt before attaching it to the skirt.

Step 5: Next, I sewed the shirt and skirt together, and zig-zag stitched the raw edges to prevent unraveling.

Step 6: I needed to put the zipper back in, but I wanted to move it up so that it would be positioned through the waistline and not just up to it. I took up a little of the side shirt seam to make an opening, then sewed in the zipper. I then sewed up the seam under the zipper to close up the hole left by the old zipper position in the skirt.

Step 7: I wanted to coordinate the top and skirt a little more, so I took the waistband 
and sewed it over the neckline. 

Step 8: Since the neck had been able to stretch when it was just T-shirt material, but now could not, it was too small to fit over my head. To solve this, I cut a small slit in the back and edged it with the rest of the waistband.

Step 8: To finish, I sewed in a snap to close the slit.

The finished product! 

And the best part? This dress is now for sale right here on my Etsy shop!

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Waste Not, Want Not

One of the most important lessons I have learned in sewing is to save the scraps! I can't count the times I have gone digging through the 'scrap dresser' in the basement and found just what I needed to finish a project.

From an edging on a dress to decorative flowers to pieces for a quilt, the possibilities for fabric scraps are endless.

And it's not only fabric that comes in handy. My sisters and I used to collect buttons, and I often find myself digging through our stash and coming out with just the buttons I need.

Lace and trim come in pretty handy, too.

If you have any odds and ends of this sort lying around, but you don't sew yourself, find a friend does. I'm sure they will appreciate it!

Friday, July 5, 2013

Happy 4th!

Happy Independence Day a little late! I hope you had fun celebrating. I sure did! 
Here's a fun idea for recycling old shirts. I just cut up a bunch of shirts that I didn't wear any more into strips and sewed them together to make this dress! It is very comfortable not too hot for summer. Have any old shirts that you are thinking of getting rid of? Let me make them into something you will enjoy wearing! Contact me using the form on the right!