Quick Summer…

It ended way too soon, but there you have it, Summer’s over and it’s back to school.

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Beautiful sunset on Lake Martin, Alabama, July 4th

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For those of you following me on Instagram @sewellen1, I participated in #100days100blocks2017.  That’s pretty much been my sewing this summer.  I’m happy to say, though, that I completed the top and it’s already off to the quilter.

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Started in May, finished up in August, I can’t believe I did 100 blocks in 100 days!!

The only other Summer sewing was on my Alabama Chanin style skirt

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From the “Alabama Studio Sewing and Design” book, I printed out a stencil pattern.  I then cut it into a piece of stencil plastic with an exacto knife.  I used spray fabric paint from Michaels to apply paint to some jersey from my stash.  Here, you can see my coverage is a little “smudgy”.  Stencil painting is definitely something that improves with practice!

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This is the skirt front with center seam hand sewn together and the quilt stitching is in progress.  I’m learning as I’m going for sure; it made more sense to me to partially construct the pieces before embroidering, so I sewed the center seams first as you can see in the picture.  I was afraid of too much shifting of layers, so I basted together with silk thread.  As of today, the front is completed (all the shapes have been outlined with a running hand stitch).  I kind of like the look of it simply quilted, so I don’t think I’ll cut out the shapes.

As I look forward to Fall, I’ve picked up my knitting project, Wake.

The back is finished, front is almost complete, then on to the sleeves.

Thanks for looking!!

What’s new with you??

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Hello!  I haven’t cleaned my sewing room in a long while!

This was taken a few weeks ago; you should see it now, it’s even worse!!

I find myself blogging less here and posting more on Instagram. 

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If you follow me on Instagram, @sewellen1, you’ll know that I’m deep into the quilt challenge known as #100days100blocks2017.  I’m having fun with it; currently, I’ve completed block #80, so there’s an end in sight.  The messy picture you see above is actually my staging area for pairing my fabrics.  I know it’s not the best system, but it’s working for me at the moment. 

Back in May, I made a few baby gifts:

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I finished a decade old quilt (yes, you read that right):

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This was a flannel block swap I participated in ages ago.  Glad to have it done finally.

I always have garment sewing in the back of my mind, and up next I’ve got my sights set on finally tackling an Alabama Chanin outfit.  Today, I worked on copying the design from which I’ll make my stencil.

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It’s slow going, Summer’s busy, and there a quite a few distractions that take me away from the messy sewing room.

Happy Summer!!

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It’s been ages since I made myself an Easter outfit, but when I saw the new Kay Unger pattern, I thought “why not”?  I found some pretty brocade at Fine Fabrics in Atlanta and got a great result!

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What possessed me to do an Easter dress with so little time?  I spent so much time on the coat that I had no time left for the dress…like sewn in 24 hours.

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I love the dress…a simple sheath in the front, party in the back.

So, first the coat.  This is a very cute, very simple princess seam 3/4 length sleeve lined coat with cute details.

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Bound button holes

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Pocket and sleeve tab details as well as topstitching.  These details  come straight from the instructions.

For the dress, I cut a 12 arm/upper chest, but a 14 side seam.  I liked the fit better

Construction for the dress was a hack job due to time constraints, but you can get the idea.

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Probably the hardest thing about construction is sewing these curves and sharp corners.  I was in quite a hurry so you can see my piecing is not perfect, but oh well.

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There are some really lovely details underneath…again, piecing wasn’t perfect.  And, yes, it’ll bug me until I fix itSmile

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I really do love the fit, very comfortable.

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Yes, it was a windy day!

I recommend you at least tissue-fit the dress (if you’re like me and don’t enjoy making muslins).  The pattern photo shows the hem of both coat and dress to be very similar in length.  This was not the case on me.  Here, I added 2 inches to the hem of the DRESS.  It’s still really short for me (I’m 5’4”). 

I can see me making this again and again.  A lovely linen, or even a wool would be beautiful!

Scrappy Baby Quilt

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Hi everyone!  I’m taking a break from garment sewing and completing some long overdue unfinished quilts.  These blocks have been sitting idle for umpty years, so I put them together and added a scrappy border.  I re-acquainted myself with machine quilting on this, and it’s far from perfect, and please excuse the shadowy photo.  But, it’s done and ready for gifting to a family member about to have a baby.  A few years ago, I had made this one below for his first baby.  I never got a good shot of it, but I love the doggie fabric.

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I’m done with machine quilting for now (not fun!) and recently completed another top that I sent off to a long-arm quilter that I found on-line.  Like I said, many long, overdue unfinished quilts to get completed!!

HP 1195 Plain and Simple Scooter Jacket and Car Coat

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“Plain and Simple”…when the fabric needs to speak for itself.

The pattern, that is…

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What can I say?  I’m a sucker for beautiful home dec fabrics.  Don’t we all need to have a car coat of couch fabric in our closets???

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There are some nice details with this pattern:

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I’ve never done a pocket this way before, it’s a single welt all-in-one pocket, great for using when you have bulky fabrics.

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This fabric was just as pretty on the inside, so I just serged all seams and kept it unlined.

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I used large snaps for the closures; there are simple facings and no collar.

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I cut a straight size 12, and the fit seems to be very roomy.  I think I would try the smaller size next time.

If you don’t want to try the pocket detail, I think side seam pockets would be just as pretty.

This is a great pattern to use when you want to showcase a great fabric!

HP 1211 Weekender Swingy Sweatshirt & Sweaterdress

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I saw the cover of this pattern, and it was love at first sight!

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I made this as a test muslin to check fit. I used Ponte knit from my stash.  This is a size 12 with no adjustments.

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I really like the style and fit!  One small adjustment for the next time is to lower the bust dart about 1.5 inches.  I like the neckline, which is not only pretty, but bra-strap friendly.

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This Silly picture is meant to show the front pocket and bust dart detail.  When sewn as instructed, the finished pockets are on the small side.

If you want a more functional pocket, i.e., warming hands or holding items, I would suggest drafting a single “kangaroo pouch” pocket.

 

There are some really cute options with this pattern, you can make it into a dress, change up the neckline, and add big sleeve cuffs.  Choose a great sweatshirt fleece or a fun double-knit!

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Well, this is the final garment of 2016.

A loose-fitting vest is really all this is, but boy oh boy, do I love it!!  The shaping is tapered in at the bottom for a cocoon effect and there are no side seams. 

 

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Love this big welt pocket.

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I finished the back seam with a Hong Kong finish.  Great instructions included for clean-finishing your facings.

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Pattern included for hem facing as well. 

This is a simple pattern, choose a lovely fabric (this is a wool suiting from my stash) with nice drape.  The facing fabric here is Bemberg lining, but you can eliminate it altogether if you wish.

A great layering piece, dress is up or down!

Stay warm everyone!

Nice dress! Thanks, I made it!!

Enjoying a RTW FAST since 2015! Addicted to sewing since the 70's! In a few words, I want to try everything, learn everything and talk about it with you!

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