Vogue 8881


Ahhhh…something simple!!  This is a quick-to-make top using Vogue 8881.  I was using up some leftover knit, a cute stripe from Gorgeous fabrics.  I made no effort to match the stripes, since I didn’t have much fabric.  This is an easy pattern.  I just serged up the seams, and finished the arms and neck.  I didn’t finish the hem.  I made a size Medium; I’m normally size 12 in Vogue patterns.




Summer Linen

I finished up another knit top, using a pattern from this book:


There are lots of cute patterns in this book, I made the Layered Ruffle Sweater, shown here:


I think it was the glass of wine that got my attention

Looking at the picture, you can tell that the top is pretty low cut.  Also, I wasn’t sure how those ruffles would look on me.  Well, here’s how it turned out:



Not feeling those ruffles?  Yeah, me either.  Fortunately, they were easy to add and remove.  Plus, the top is too low for my comfort.  I removed the ruffles, and added a second row of single crochet around the neck.


I used Claudia Handpaint Linen, and 100% linen sport weight yarn.



Much better!  I kind of like it with my vintage CAbi maxi skirt.

For more details, my Ravelry page, I’m Sewellen over there too!  Have a great weekend!

Vogue 1381


….big sigh….

It took me a long time to write a review about this one.  I didn’t want to come off as a hater, but for more than 3 months, this dress and I were at WAR!! …ahem…

OK!  SO!   I’m going to use a positive, and constructive tone, and I’ll not be negative (snort!).  Rather, I’ll give you my advice on making this one up.  And, I hope you do, make this dress, that is.  Why not?  This is like the cutest dress ever!  The A-line skirt is very pretty, I love the inset pockets, and the top doesn’t appear to have a lot of fit issues. 

Here’s the bugaboo:  the quilted inserts. 



Bulky much??

The pattern calls for “fleece interfacing”.  In quilter’s speak, that’s just plain batting.  Here, I used a product called “Warm & Natural”. 

I thought it would be thin enough, but it turned out to be way too bulky, especially at points where all the seams meet.


Even if there wasn’t a problem with intersecting seams, like the top  here, all this quilting and batting changed the hand of the fabric, so that the top no longer draped well on the body.


For me, the coup de grace came after inserting the invisible zipper.


Imagine, if you can, after perfectly matching up seams, sewing the zipper in, the darn thing breaks!  Well, why wouldn’t it?  You’re trying to fold all that bulk back over onto itself, and yank the zipper pull across all of it?  Not gonna happen.

You can also see in the above picture another view of how the bodice sits away from the body with the added stiffness of the quilting.

I’ve set this dress aside, maybe I’ll pull it out next Spring and attempt to re-work it.

SO!  Here’s my advice to you, should you choose to attempt this dress (and I really hope you try it…it’s so cute, you should try and overlook the fussy-ness):

don’t use fleece batting, or any other type of “interfacing” for the quilted sections.  Simply lay the fashion fabric and lining together and quilt with nothing in-between. 

If you just have to have that lofty-quilted look, then make sure to cut the seam allowances off your batting before you begin quilting your piece.

I suppose you could also make this up without quilting the pattern pieces altogether, but I think the quilting/topstitching lines are a key design feature of this dress.

Here are some other nice elements:


Lined skirt



Bias-finished pockets

I’m going to remain positive, it’s not a wadder.  I will fold this up til next year, though.  The quilted pieces just need to be re-cut and sewn, and it will need a new zipper.

Right now, though, I need something easy!



Another unfinished knit done!!  I’m loving the stripes on this.  Also, it’s knit in cotton, yay!

The pattern is Shellseeker by Heidi Kerrmaier.  It’s a great pattern, easy to knit with some nice design details, such as the little “pouch” pocket and the split hem.


And, here it is on me…



I like the boatneck too…very “nautical” Smile

If you’re interested, I have more construction details on my project page on Ravelry…I’m Sewellen there too!

Sewing begins anew next week!!

A box of dye….

Hey everyone!  How are you all doing on your RTW fast???  We’re almost at the halfway point!  I confess that I haven’t been good.  Twice a year, I host a CAbi party, and I succumb to temptation!  I bought several pieces back at the Spring show (half-price, of course), and I’ll probably host another party in the Fall.  BUT! other than that, nada.  Recently, I was going through my closet and came across this great CAbi dress that I bought years ago, $10 on Ebay:


Ya’ll know I’m a sucker for shirt dresses, and this one is really unique.  I really like the heavy cotton, great construction, and fit.  The only thing was that it wasn’t one of my go-to dresses from the closet.  I figured it was the color.  It was a an odd chartreuse, definitely not khaki.  I’ve never dyed anything before, so I thought I’d experiment for the first time with this dress.  I bought a box of navy blue Rit dye, read the instructions, and tried it:




I’d worn this all day, so it’s a bit wrinkled.  I was interested to see that the topstitching thread didn’t take the dye.  I think it added a neat effect.  I’m really happy with the results, the color especially. 

If you’ve never dealt with dyeing before, just realize it’s not a quick activity.  You have to be oh-so careful to not get the dye ANYWHERE.  I ended up doing the whole process outdoors, in a cardboard box lined with a trash bag.  Plus, I wore thick plastic gloves to handle it all.  Some of the internet articles I read said you could just do the whole thing in your washing machine.  I wasn’t willing to risk that.

How’s your RTW fast going?

End of MadMay’14

I know I’ve mentioned before that one of my all-time favorite yarns to knit is any color of Madelinetosh.  I participated in the KAL called MadMay over on Ravelry this past month.  I just wanted to finish up a few unfinished MadTosh projects; of course I only finished one.  It took a marathon of knitting over this past week, but I was able to finish a Raglan Sweater:


Big and cozy!  Great to wear with boots!  Definitely for a cold day!



The Yarn is MadTosh 80/10/10 Worsted in “Cove”

the pattern is the Raglan Sweater by  Jo Sharp

This was a great mindless knitting project, just simple stockinette stitches, but I’m very glad it’s done.

Back to sewing!  Happy Summer!

Textile Studio 1201

Hi everyone!  I’ve had a tough time finding my sewing mojo, but I’m creeping along.  I’m trying hard to finish my linen Rucci dress.  It’s a slow process, but I am reaching the zipper stage, finally.  I took a quick break from it in hopes of jumpstarting my motivation.  I’ve been really wanting something in lace (as evidence from my Pinterest board) :


This taupe top is my favorite.



I’d love a lace dress, but I know I’ll get more wear out of a top.  I dug into my pattern stash and found Textile Studio Basic Top #1201


In a few hours time, I made this top from some stretch lace from Gail K’s:


I finished the neck edge with a piece of selvage, and cut the sleeves, front, and back so that the hem would be at the selvage.  It’s all sewn with French seams.



Just what I wanted:  comfy casual, in lace!


Nice dress! Thanks, I made it!!

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