Simply Pink New Look 6340

There is nothing like triple digit temperatures to make you grab some fabric and a pattern and run to your sewing machine! ¬†If you are looking for a quick, simple sundress to make for your summer wardrobe, look no further than New Look 6340. ¬† Let me back up and say that I haven’t posted in a while because I have been packing (sewing) for an upcoming trip. Before that, I was cleaning up my sewing room (a HUGE task and you don’t want to see that). ¬†I even donated some fabric! ¬†However, due to the scorching heat outside, I have torn myself away from those tasks to make up this quick dress (and necklace).

I don’t care for the hot summers in Tucson, Arizona but I love¬†the winters. So here I am in June and in need of the coolest possible dress to wear…EVER. Meet New Look 6340.¬† This pattern is perfect made out of a light weight cotton. ¬†I made a size 14. ¬†I purchased my fabric from Joann’s a while ago, so it qualifies as a stash buster. ¬†This pattern offers 4 dress styles with notched, slightly scooped and V neck options. ¬†Pockets and sleeves are optional. Two hemline variations offered and side seam ties can be added to tie in back and offer some additional shaping. I chose to leave off the ties.

Quick glance at New Look 6340

Quick glance at New Look 6340

Center front seems are not my favorite because they break up a print. ¬†To get around this, I try to find an all over print that ‘reads’ as a solid and then the center seam doesn’t bother me as much.

Pocket shaped detail

Pocket with shaped detail

This pocket shape is not offered in the pattern, however a pleated version is offered. I decide to add a little bit of interest to the top of the pocket by shaping it with an inverted point at the center and facing it with a 1″ strip. I copied the shape on the strip and sewed the two pieces together, right sides together. ¬†Next step wass to stitch and trim, clip the curves, turn and press. Because cotton ravels during washing, I serge-finished the pocket edges. ¬†Press under the remaining three sides and top stitch. ¬† I used the pattern marking for the pocket and used fusible tape to secure the pockets before stitching.

A-Line dress with center back seam

A-Line dress with center back seam

The hem is a simple 5/8″ seam turned under and top stitched.

Now you know I have to make a necklace to wear with my outfits, right? ¬†I was fortunate to find some pink and orange ceramic beads and a¬†metal leaf focal pendant at Joann’s. ¬†I added some amber colored faceted crystal beads and some size 6 glass pink seed beads. ¬†It’s a pretty simple design and easy execution with a gold toggle clasp.

Self made necklace with beads and pendant from Joanns

Self made necklace with beads and pendant from Joanns

Ceramic, glass and metal necklace

Ceramic, glass and metal necklace

So there you have it. ¬†I came out of hiding to photograph two simple makes and now I’m on my way to be better prepared for the heat! ¬†Now I have to get back to finishing another¬†¬†TNT shirt for my husband for Father’s Day. What have you been working on for the summer?
[bloglovin_button]

Easy Self Drafted Maxi Gore Skirt And More

Self-Drafted Maxi Skirt in Jewel Tones

Self-Drafted Maxi Skirt in Jewel Tones

I’ve been under the weather, so I’m bringing you this post of a self-drafted skirt as well as a jacket and tank made to go with it. ¬†I hope the content still is helpful to you and that you can be inspired to draft your own simple pattern for a maxi skirt.

The inspiration for this post came from watching a clothing designer on QVC, a shopping network show on television.   The designer had created one simple knit skirt design and offered it in six different fabrics.  I was swept in because of the maxi skirt, the simple gore construction, and the multitude of looks created by changing up the fabric.

It occurred to me that it wouldn’t be that hard to copy. ¬† If I did a few calculations, I could draft a simple gore pattern, multiply it by six, add some elastic, hem and voila! DONE!

I got to work by gathering my supplies.

1.)  Tracing paper (I use medical paper)
2.)  Measuring tape
3.)  Pencil or pen, marker
4.)  Paper cutting scissors
5.)  Yard stick or long ruler
6.) ¬†Fabric (approximately 3 yards of 60″ knit for a maxi length)
7.) ¬†Elastic to fit waist measurement ( I use 1″, but you can use whatever width you want)

*Since my hips are my widest part, I measured them first.  If your waist is your largest measurement, measure that first and use the same calculation since the skirt will drape from there and clear your hips, giving you plenty of ease.

Steps:
1.) Measure Hips. ¬†With your measuring tape, take the first measurement of your hips plus 2″ for ease. ¬†This number will need to be divided by 6. Example: Hip measurement = 46″ + 2″= 48 divided by 6 = 8.

Hip Measurement divided by six

Hip Measurement + 2 divided by six

2.) ¬† Start drawing the gore. ¬†With your long ruler or yardstick, draw two parallel lines the distance of your answer (side seams) ¬†Mine is 8″ including the 1/2″ seam allowance. ¬†The 8″ will be the width of each gore.

3.)   Measure the length of skirt.   If you have a favorite maxi skirt in your wardrobe, use it as a guide to determine length.   Take a measurement from your waist to the floor to get a rough idea of the length you want your skirt to be.   I like mine to hit at the ankle so that it is long enough for heels and can still be worn with flats.

4.) ¬† Add 2″ for hem and elastic fold over to your length measurement from last step. ¬† I use 1″ elastic, but you can use whatever width you want. ¬†Just allow for that amount for the fold over measurement at the top of your skirt. ¬†Continue to draw the lines from the waist down and flare out to make the gore. ¬†I improvised on the width and size of the gore at the hem line. ¬† Since I wanted to be able to keep the width narrow enough to fit on 60″ fabric, the gore sweep needs to stay less than 15″ wide. ¬†Once you draw the first side of the gore flare, fold it in half and draw the other side to match.

Measure the length of skirt. Take a measurement from your waist to the floor to get a rough idea of the length you want your skirt to be.

TIP*  I used this picture below to see the different shapes of gores.  In this case, since I am doing the math for six simple gores, I think mine is closest to View B.

Gore shapes for inspriation

Gore shapes for inspiration. ¬† I’m using View B

5.)  Draw your grain line.  This is easy.  Draw the opposite side of the gore and draw the grain line right down your center fold line.

You are done with the pattern.  Now it is time to lay it out on the fabric, cut it out and sew it up!

TIP*  Fabric requirements: I think knits work best here.  I have used poly spandex knits because they have great drape, pack well, and maintain their shape.

Here are some other versions I have made:

Once you have crafted your own gore skirt panel, you can complete this skirt in less than two hours, maybe less. I like these for the no-wrinkle factor, quick make and they are surprisingly cool in the summer even though the fabric is poly/spandex.  I bought the fabric at my local mill end store (SAS Fabrics) where they have rolls and bolts of ends sold at a discount.  I think I paid $2.99/yd for each of these pieces.

Fabric Requirements:¬†¬† I prefer 60″ knits with some recovery for this skirt. ¬†I bought 3 yards to have enough to lay out two lengths of the skirt plus extra for a tank top.

Fabric Layout: ¬†If your fabric is a true 60″ wide, you can fold the fabric with one selvage folded to the center of the fabric, and the remaining fabric left to be a single layer. ¬†On the folded area, place your gore and pin the grain line perpendicular to the fold. ¬†Cut out gore. ¬†You will end up with two cut gore pieces. ¬†Move pattern piece to the single layer area, parallel to the folded area you just cut and cut one more gore. ¬†Now you have three. ¬†Repeat for one more set of three gore pieces. ¬†Once you have 6 gore pieces, you will be ready to sew them up.

Sewing:  With right sides together, pin and stitch two gore pieces together from the hem to the waist.  Repeat six times.  Measure elastic to to your waist, cut, and sew to form a circle.  Quarter the elastic and skirt with pins.  Pin elastic to skirt with all quartered pins lining up.  Zig zag or serge around top edge of fabric to top edge of elastic, stretching while sewing.  Slowly work around entire waist. Turn down elastic towards skirt.  Stitch elastic down to skirt.  Turn up hem as desired.  Done!

Loes Hinse Tank and self drafted skirt

Loes Hinse Tank and self drafted skirt

MaxiSkirtJewelTonesBackIMG_4518
The tank top is from Loes Hinse’s #5305 Tank Dress Pattern. ¬†This is a simple tank with turned under edges.

Tank Dress Pattern, Loes Hinse Patterns

Tank Dress Pattern, Loes Hinse Patterns

On to the Jacket:
The jean jacket is a out of print (OOP) Kwik Sew 2895. ¬†I love this patterns and have made both short and long versions. ¬†It is not boxy. ¬†There is a slight curve at the waist which is visible in the drawing of the longer version, but is also present in the shorter version even though the line drawing doesn’t show it. ¬†I made it out of a light to medium weight denim.


The only thing I don’t like about the pattern is the way the facing and collar meet. ¬†I haven’t figured out a way to make it look better other than to re-draft the facing and have it meet the shoulder seam. ¬†It doesn’t show when worn because it is turned under so I just go with it.

I have kept making the jacket because what I like about the jacket outweighs what I don’t like. ¬†Below are some other versions from this pattern.

MaxiSkirtJewelTones2IMG_4512

So since my favorite pattern is OOP, here are some other options.  A stylish jean jacket design by Gertie, Butterick 6390.

Gertie Jacket, Butterick 6390

Gertie Jacket, Butterick 6390

Another alternative is Butterick 5616.

Butterick 5616 Jean Jacket

Butterick 5616 Jean Jacket

Now it is time for the shoes….I keep thinking that this gladiator, heavily strapped-ankle wrapped look is going to go away, but every summer it returns with a new twist. ¬†These are navy IMPO blue suede cage sandals from Stein Mart. ¬†I found them in our local store on sale. ¬† I don’t think they are still available, but here is a similar pair. ¬†They are actually pretty comfortable! ¬†They zip in the back and the laces are adjustable to fit the width of my feet.
Navy CageShoes1IMG_4531

Navy cage sandals

Navy cage sandals

If I find some navy shoes, I’m feeling lucky because they seem so rare. ¬† Do you feel lucky when you find a particular color shoe on sale?

Do you have a favorite jean jacket pattern?  Do you have successfully sewn garments that you (after-the-fact) wish had some drafting changes?  Do you tackle your own drafting?

I would love to hear your successful discoveries in the comments below.

I hope you found this post helpful, inspirational and/or interesting.  Off to the next project.

Until next time, happy sewing!

-Dana

 

 

 

Men’s Ties Christmas Tree Skirt Tutorial

Family Ties turned into a Christmas Tree Skirt

Family Ties turned into a Christmas Tree Skirt

Men’s ties make the perfect circle skirt to dress up your tree. ¬† If the male family members in your house despise wearing ties (like my husband), and they are sitting in a drawer, gather them together for this quick project. ¬† I was lucky enough to receive my dad’s and uncle’s discarded ties after their professional lives no longer called for them. ¬† I also added a few from thrift stores to complete the project. ¬† It has become a family tradition to use this skirt under our tree every year as a way to include some of the past and bring it into the present.

*A little disclaimer: I made this tree skirt before I started my blog, so this tutorial is explaining how to make this after the fact. Hopefully, I can explain the process clearly enough so you can easily make one for yourself…or give to someone else.

I gathered 46 ties to assemble this tress skirt, including the tie used in the center hole.
Here is a list of what you will need:
1). Approximately 42-52 men’s ties, both skinny and wide, or enough to make a circle around the base of your tree
2). Approximately 40″ of Single Fold Bias Tape (or you could use a strip of Christmas fabric)
3). Muslin or cotton fabric for base
4). Thread to match ties

Underside of tree skirt using muslin fabric

Underside of tree skirt using muslin fabric

1.) Draw a large circle out of the muslin fabric (above photo) making it a few inches shorter than ties to allow the points of ties to hang off (below).  Mine measures 20.5 inches from center circle to outer edge.

Tie ends overlap the base fabric

Tie ends overlap the base fabric

2.) Serge or finish the outer edge of the skirt (above).

Cut opening from center circle to outer edge

Cut opening from center circle to outer edge

3.) Draw a center circle. (The center circle needs to be large enough to fit around the stem/trunk of your tree). Cut out center circle hole and continue cutting stright out to the edge creating an opening to slip around tree base (above photo).  One tie will be used to trim around center circle in Step 9.
4.) Finish straight edge with bias tape or scrap strip of Christmas fabric. In photo above, you can see I used green bias tape from my bias tape scraps.

Audition tie layout

Audition tie layout

5.) Using muslin as my base fabric, audition all of the ties next to each other and pin in place overlapping each tie. Continue in a circle until the look and arrangement of ties is pleasing.
6.) Overlap the ties near the center circle (below).   They will be roughly cut and uneven and its okay.  Ignore the tie used to finish the circle.  Yours will not look like this at this stage but will after Step 9.

Narrow sections of ties overlapped at center circle

Narrow sections of ties overlapped at center circle

7.) Top stitch ties in place overlapping each tie over another.  Continue working around the entire circle until the first and last two ties cover the bias tape on the right side of the skirt.  When placed under the tree, the ties will overlap, disguising the opening.

Underside of tree skirt using muslin fabric

Underside of tree skirt using muslin fabric

8). After all of the ties are sewn to the base muslin fabric, it is time to trim the center circle and clean up the edge. Cut the ties evenly around center circle edge.
9).  Fold one tie in half and center around circle leaving ends to be used to tie in a bow. Stitch, enclosing all rough edges of ties.

Completed center circle with remaining tie for bow

Completed center circle with remaining tie for bow

You are done!….except for the presents.

Completed tree skirt

Completed tree skirt

Time to add presents

Time to add presents

Place under your tree and Merry Christmas!
If you are interested in other quick Christmas presents, check out my Snap Bag Tutorial or Curling Iron Cover Tutorial.

– Dana

Simplicity 2153 Silly Putty Jacket

Tried and True Simplicity 2153

Tried and True Simplicity 2153

Am I dating myself if I ask you about the color of Silly Putty? ¬†You know, the dirty, well-loved Silly Putty after it has been used on newsprint a few times. ¬†Looks a little gross, but it provided lots of fun for me when I was a kid….and there is interesting history of the gooey stuff to read¬†here. ¬† And if you can’t get enough, put in Silly Putty in Google images to see the many playful uses of this stuff.

The dirty, well-used Silly Putty

The dirty, well-used Silly Putty

Anyway, when I see this pinkish-brown color I think of Silly Putty and I happen to love it.   Here is another version from the same pattern green jacket I made here with a few changes.
I absolutely love this OOP Simplicity 2153 pattern.   It is still available for sale on various sites on the web.  I have plans to make this up in a khaki twill fabric to have a safari-like vest or jacket.  My favorite part of the jacket is the length which means my hands fit comfortably into the pockets and that it covers my rear.  A definite plus in my book.

Bum Coverage

Bum Coverage

The fabric is a linen and rayon blend, which means that it gets a rumpled look but it breathes well. It is also lightweight, which is important for layering and living in the desert.   If I need more warmth, adding a scarf usually does the trick.

Silly Putty Back View

Silly Putty Back View

In the above picture, the jacket looks like it has white splotches all over it, but it is just shadows.  It is roomy without looking too big.  I made a size 14.

Below is an up close shot of the pockets with the selvedges sewn around the tops of the pockets. ¬† This was a different approach than with the olive version. ¬†I tried to achieve a worn in look that didn’t look too formal or fussy, not that this would ever look like a formal jacket, but I wanted to be able to pull out of the closet, put it on and go.
Pockets IMG_4383

Collar Ties

Collar Ties

Above, you can see that I used the selvedge and incorporated it into the pocket and collar. ¬†I always look at the selvedges of the fabrics I purchase and see how they hold up during the laundering phase. ¬†If they survive and have an appealing look, I experiment with ways to include them into the garment. ¬†The collar contains elastic in the outer edge and is sewn to the ties. ¬†I won’t be cinching it up so leaving it this way just makes the collar stand up, stay in place and ready for wear.

Inside elastic casing with bias tape

Inside elastic casing with bias tape

I purchased my zipper for the olive jacket and this jacket from ZipperShipper. ¬†They have a great selection, good prices and fast shipping. ¬†I guessed on the ‘medium brown’ color knowing it wouldn’t be a perfect match for this weird shade of brown, ¬†but it works and the quality of the zipper is great.

Elastic casing made with bias tape

Elastic casing made with bias tape

Something I repeated from the olive green jacket was the elastic waist casing.   I pulled the elastic to a comfortable measurement, attached the ties and then knotted them.  This means that I can grab the coat and GO.  No fussing about with a fidgety waist drawstring.  I can always count on the elastic gathering evenly.

Possible accessories

Possible accessories

If I want to add a little more interest, I have a me-made necklace I made out of acrylic beads or a scarf to pair with it.

Optional additions

Optional additions

Finished product

Finished product

There is a reason why a M-65 Army utility jacket like this has been so popular over the years for military, fishing, hunting and fashion.  I get it!  It provides pockets galore, no-fuss practical style and if you happen to sew, it can be made up in many types of fabric.  If you happen to be interested in the history of such a jacket, here is an article worth reading.

Thanks for stopping by and happy sewing.

-Dana

 

 

Surface Design With Diane Ericson

Okay, you thought I gave up posting, right? Not exactly. I just took a sabbatical from blog posting. ¬†I have some things to share, so I hope you’ll stay tuned. ¬†I have been busy with a tiring job for the last few months and all my energy went to it. ¬†This blog post is about a trip I took last November and I am just getting to tell you about it now. ¬† Fortunately, with the support of my husband and family, I have reached a new chapter in my life now where I am working for myself doing sewing jobs for others, teaching and making jewelry. ¬†I hope this post has some value to you as I offer some destinations in Oregon to visit, some eye candy, and reflections from the trip.

Diane Ericson and Dana in the studio

Diane Ericson and Dana in the studio

Let’s go back in time for a minute….last Fall, I was fortunate to visit my mom in Oregon. While I was there, we visited Diane Ericson’s studio located in Ashland and took a class from her. What fun! ¬†She was an inspiration to free up the typical thought process when creating and take it in another direction. ¬†After a brief tour and some rifling through her beautiful art-to-wear garments, it was clear to me that I would be seeing clothing construction in a new way. ¬†Diane’s foundation in clothing construction and design allows her the freedom to manipulate fabric in new ways to construct unusual collars, cuff treatments, sleeve alterations, etc. ¬†To top it off, she specializes in surface design with paints to add more unique artistry and color to her creations.

Table set up for painting with stencils

Table set up for painting with stencils

The table was set up for us with sample fabrics provided different textures and colors to use with stencils. ¬† With Diane’s easy going approach, she gave clear suggestions and instructions of how to hold the sponge just right, how much paint to use and how to finesse the touch on the stencil to get the best look.

Diane demonstrating painting with a stencil

Diane demonstrating painting with a stencil

Dana's attempt at surface design

Dana’s attempt at surface design

Stenciling around buttonholes

Stenciling around buttonholes

Just when you think you’ve seen it all, she shows another way to use the stencils…around buttonholes. ¬†If the stencil design is large enough, the button will not hide it. ¬†This technique is a placket made by joining two fabrics, sewing the seams and leaving enough room for a buttonhole and then continue sewing until the next buttonhole, etc.

More surface design

More surface design

It was great to see Diane’s use of various stencils with one garment. ¬†A simple turn of a stencil or using just part of a stencil design created great looks.

Practice of stenciling on half size

Practice of stenciling on half size

Above, using manila paper, Diane practiced the design on a smaller version of the garment to test placement and color.

Studio Merch

Studio items for sale

Once the painting is over, there plenty of patterns, fabrics, stencils and inks/paints to purchase for experimentation at home.  Samples are up all over the studio for inspiration.

Studio Merch for sale

Studio merchandise for sale

Eye Candy Ashland Vest

Eye Candy Clothing

Artistic vest

Artistic vest

Decorative stitching and creative closure

Decorative stitching and creative closure

I had to take a picture of this showing some different techniques of stitching, painting, layering of fabrics and stenciling. ¬†The button closure is interesting and creative–Diane style!

Getting the vision on paper

Getting the vision on paper

Long vest with center stenciling

Long vest with center stenciling

You can read more about this long Ventana Jacket pattern #327 here from a Pattern Review article in Threads magazine.

Double-sided wool coat with details

Double-sided wool coat with details

This double-sided coat was my favorite item because of the shape and pattern, the fabric and the techniques Diane chose to make it so special.  I pulled the front open a bit when I took the picture so you could see the stenciling in the inside of the collar and down the front.  It is a peek-a-boo feature visible when the collar rolls back or the jacket is worn unfastened.

Stenciling on the inside of the coat

Stenciling on the inside of the coat

WoolCoatButtonIMG_4440

Creative closure

Creative closure

Diane shirt from Threads issue

Diane’s shirt from Threads issue

This was a shirt featuring a paper airplanes stencil and fabric manipulation.  Who can resist flying a little paper airplane?  A little whimsy in your sewing brings about a smile.

Peeking at her website, Diane will be featured in the June/July 16′ issue of ¬†Vogue Pattern Magazine featuring Curves and Angles: Designing with Art Fabrics. ¬†You can read more about the article on her sight before getting to read the article in full. ¬†Hopefully, you can get your hands on a copy at a local fabric store, bookstore or online.

Diane’s style would be called ‘funky, or ‘edgy’ or ‘out there’. ¬† Her love for the tactile qualities of many fabrics is apparent in her work. ¬†It may not suit all, but I like the creative departure from what is often found in the fashion blog world. ¬†This is another reason why I love to sew; ¬†self expression is possible by wearing handmade garments. ¬†How cool is that? Aaaannnd, how about some surface design, fabric combinations, creative closures, and top stitching to name a few..? ¬†It truly was a treat to meet Diane and be in her presence to hear and see how her creative mind works. ¬†To learn more about more about the many sides of Diane, click here.

Thanks for scrolling through my pics.  To read more about my other Oregon adventures, click here.

Happy Sewing,

Dana

Gray and Beige Equals Greige

Greige Outfit and Necklace

Greige Outfit and Necklace

Is there a neutral color that gets your attention every time? ¬†It may be certain shades of gray, tan or camel or a interesting combination of shades you can’t even describe. ¬†Well this is mine. ¬†I love this boring and funky color of brown/gray/beige. ¬†I bet many of you would call it something entirely different. ¬†It is another alternative to black, and a bit more complimentary to my coloring.
I scored the necklace at a local art fair and loved the combination of colored stones set in sterling silver.  Earrings are self made by adding a bead to a post finding from my stash.
Back to the outfit. ¬†I found the fabric at Jo Ann’s in the Famous Maker are which means it retails for $9.99 but eligible for coupons. ¬†I bought what was left on the bolt.

The skirt is a column skirt Рnothing special.  Just measure the length, add seam allowances for elastic waist and hem.  Measure around hips when sitting down and add 1-2 inches for ease.  I added a tricot stretchy lining since the fabric is see-through.  I copied the measurements of the skirt and made the lining just a bit smaller.

Tricot Lining

Tricot Lining

The pattern is from Sewing Workshop / Ann’s Cardigan and Tank. ¬†I noticed this pattern on Linda Lee on the Craftsy Sewing Fashion Knits online course in my personal Craftsy library. ¬†I think I have gushed over Linda before about her eye for color (and fabric) and the course if a great advertisement for some of her fabric and pattern choices as she describes some great techniques for working for knits.

Pattern Front 618WIMG_2729

Pattern Front and Line Drawing

Pattern Back618WIMG_2730

Quick back view to help you prepare

A quick look at the pattern shown here gives you and idea of what fabric type and yardage you’ll need.

Doorway618WidthIMG_2706

Pumps from Kohl’s (old)

Godet Featured618WIMG_2707

Back comes forward forming a godet (a triangle shape)

The magic of the drape of the cardigan happens at the hip line.

Hipline 618WIMG_2718

Side slit of tank top

Above photo shows the side slit of the tank.  Notice I left the hem edges raw.
Changes in the future I would make:The tank has a modern silhouette with the points but the length is a little short on me. I like the length with this ensemble because there is so much of this color and the proportions work out, but in the future, I will lengthen the tank by cutting the tank pattern at the waist and adding length there instead of the hem. That way, it won’t add more bulk at the hips. ¬†DON’T NEED THAT.

Here is an up close view of the tank neckline and necklace. ¬†The neckline is turned under and sewn with two rows of top stitching. ¬†I love using two fusible tapes for the neckline: ¬†Design Plus Bias Fusible from LJ Designs This is used to stabilize and serge. Then I apply Dritz Wash Away Wonder Tape¬†in the 1/4 inch width to help fuse the edge to the underside. ¬†Then, carefully top stitch. Don’t do this late at night or too hopped up on caffeine!

PS NecklaceIMG_2720[1]

Doorway2 618WIMG_2705

Happy with the results

The pattern is a bit pricey, but if you are a cardigan girl like me, the plan is to make many of these pieces to get my money’s worth. The fit is flattering no matter your size or shape. Just remember to purchase a drapey knit that highlights the cascading front. Do you have a favorite cardigan (or tank) pattern?

Green Apples and Green Peas

IMG_4050 Before I get started, I feel I have some explaining to do regarding my “break” from posting. It is due to many reasons, none of which may interest you, but I have been doing home remodeling to one room in the house, which leads to much upheaval in the rest of the house. I am pretty disorganized as much of my fabric and patterns are still not at my fingertips. I have also been trying to figure out how to keep up on the posts, offer interesting sewing projects when sometimes I just want to sew and not think in terms of blogging about it. Believe me, there is a difference between sewing and sewing to blog about it. Since I do it all, I have been thinking about ways to stream line and ease the process. I also have such a extensive collection …(hoarder) of patterns, that sometimes I want to make those oldies but goodies that are out of print. Is that just frustrating to read about a fantastic pattern that is no longer available?? When other sewing bloggers do it, I figure I MUST have that patterns somewhere….

There may be more outfits on the mannequin just to speed up the post publishing, so here I am back in the saddle. I hope the posts will still be inspirational yet shorter and more concise. So I will start up with one of the beauties from an independent pattern company….

Here is the Midtown Trench Coat pattern from Indygo Junction. I would include a link, but sadly, it is no longer available. Bummer! I call it my apple green trench because it is that exact color. The necklace is self made from beads purchased at the Tucson Gem Show. Green agate the size of green peas. (More about the necklace below). It may not be the best color on me, but I spotted this fabric at Walmart of all places and thought it might be cute made up in this retro-inspired coat. ¬† It was cotton, 45″ wide and inexpensive. WIN! I thought it would be good practice (muslin) fabric to try out the pattern. It has a red slub stripe running though it which I wanted to feature on the bias cut cuffs and collar.

3/4

3/4″ Sleeves, Bias Cuffs, Side Seam Pockets

I think I like the back the best. The pleats add so much interest and resembles the back of a swing coat.

Back View, Midtown Trench

Back View, Midtown Trench

The line drawings show the slight differences. I chose to insert the pockets into the side seams, but the patch pockets look great, too. ¬†I made the shorter thigh length (32″) instead of to the knee. ¬†I wear it with dark denim and a tank.

Back view of the Midtown Trench

Back view of the Midtown Trench

Green Apple Trench, DIY necklace, Hobby Lobby Buttons

Green Apple Trench, DIY necklace, Hobby Lobby Buttons

Amy Barickman, the founder of Indygo Junction, partners with Mary Ann Donze to make these great patterns available. I have about 5-6 patterns of theirs that I want to make up. When I attended the Sewing and Stitching Expo in Puyallup, WA, Amy was at her booth wearing the Mod Top and Tunic, and she looked so cute.   There is nothing like seeing a sample made up to sucker me into buying the pattern!

Click here again to see the different ways this looks made up in cotton quilting fabrics. I suppose any other medium weight woven fabric would work. Check out the other patterns on the site. You may find something that you can’t wait to try.
IMG_4050Buttons are from Hobby Lobby, and the collar, cuffs and facing are interfaced. There is a slight princess line shaping down the front. The pleats in the back are sewn right down the crease (my choice, not on instructions) to help keep the edges sharp.
Necklace: I’ve been wanting a light green necklace for some time now. I spotted these beads and envisioned them in a simple, multi-strand collar style necklace. The cones and toggle were also purchased at the gem show.
IMG_4064

Green Jasper, 8mm

Green Jasper, 8mm

IMG_4067

18″ Five Strand Necklace

Do you ever get compelled by a color that works it’s way into your wardrobe?

Rectangle Zipper Bag

IMG_3829
Look at these zipped up beauties! ¬†Imagine the endless possibilities combining fabrics, zippers, ribbons, tabs, buttons and stitches! ¬†She is not just any ordinary zipper bag. ¬†She has flair and personality due to her embellishment options. ¬†Take a quick look around Pinterest or the Google searches for zippered pouches and you will see a plethora of choices; small big, square, round, triangular, animal shapes, etc. ¬†You are going to brush up on some skills with this one…insert a zipper, practice your buttonholes, quilt three layers together, personalize with lettering (optional–see Ethan’s name on the dark blue bag handle?), impress yourself and friends with decorative stitching, so hang on.

The approximate finished measurements are 10″ long x 3″ wide x 2″ high. ¬†The reason I like this is because it holds more than it looks and can be used for sewing supplies and tools, toiletries, pens and pencils, or whatever you want AND makes for another guy gift idea like here, and here.

Upon closer examination, you will see that these three bags have slight differences: tabs are different shapes, handles are different, quilting patterns are different, and placement of fabrics are different. ¬†Your choice! ¬†So let’s get into the How To of it all , including some ‘Creative Options’ along the way for you to do it your way.

Supplies Needed:
-2 Coordinating Fabrics (can be fat quarters) 18″ x 22″ One is used for outside and one is used for lining and tabs
-One zipper, 16-18″
-Tear away stabilizer, or 2 scrap fusible interfacing pieces measuring 36″ x 3″ long
-Two or Four coordinating flat buttons that nest nicely, your choice. See samples for ideas.
-52″ of ¬†1/2″-5/8″ grosgrain ribbon for trim along zipper and outer tab (optional)
-Thread for decorative stitching on outer ribbon
-Batting-low loft, approximately 13 x 16″
-Basting SprayР(Optional-  It makes things a little easier by holding all layers together before quilting. However, I pinned layers and it worked.)

Supplies in the rough

Supplies in the rough

Specific sewing machine feet are helpful (from left):
-Buttonhole foot-yours may look different
-Quilt Bar-inserts to back of foot ankle or dual feed foot.
-Open toe satin stitch foot, or a foot that has a groove in the bottom to allow clearance for dense and raised stitches
-Button Sew-on Foot (optional-can always hand-sew on buttons–I did!)
-Zipper Foot

CroppedIMG_3940

Quilt bar inserted into foot ankle in back

Quilt bar inserted into foot ankle in back

Dual Feed/Even Feed Foot with Quilt Bar, Satin Stitch Foot

Dual Feed/Even Feed Foot with Quilt Bar, Satin Stitch Foot

Notice the groove space on the bottom of the satin stitch foot and the metal plates on the bottom (left). This allows for the thickness of decorative or satin stitches to pass freely under the foot without getting caught, dragged, or smashed.

1.)  Cut and Prep:
Cut the selvage off fat quarter.

Remove selvage before measuring

Remove selvage before measuring

2.) Cut out pieces

-Cut two 13″ x 11″ bag squares from each fat quarter (one outer and one lining)
-Cut one 13″ x 11″ bag square from batting
-Cut two 3.5″ x 3.5″ squares from both fabrics and batting—or—

CREATIVE OPTION: ¬†¬†This is where you can create the tab shape of your choice. ¬† Here, I made oval shaped tabs. Triangles or squares are fine, too. Measure it to be approximately 3.5″ x 3.5″. ¬†Cut one piece of batting for your two chosen tab shapes. ¬†¬†NOTE: ¬†I like to make a straight grain line arrow and a bias line on my little pattern piece just in case the tab would look great on the diagonal, like a stripe or plaid (see below)

-The handle does not need batting. ¬†Here, I used outer fabric (or contrasting fabric) and cut two pieces 5.5″ x 3″, and sew right sides together. turn and press—or—

CREATIVE OPTION: The handle/loop can be cut from your one yard piece of ribbon. ¬† See examples of the ribbon used as a loop in the completed bag pictures. ¬†If so, cut one piece 5″ long. ¬†Set aside.

Prep the outer layers

Prep the outer layers

3.)   Sandwich layers

Sandwich the three bag layers, placing the batting in the middle of the two fabrics.  Prepare the squares for quilting by pinning or using basting spray.

Pin for Quilting

Pin for Quilting

CREATIVE OPTION: Starting in the middle of the fabric, decide where the lines of your quilting will be. They can be diagonal or from top to bottom. Your choice. Draw a line with chalk or disappearing ink to start with the first line.   Set aside.  Attach quilting bar into back of foot.  See the blog post on my site for more tips on the quilting process.

4.) ¬†Prep the tabs and handle: ¬†Shown is the fabric handle. ¬† Another way to sew the handle is to use only one piece of fabric and fold raw edges to center, then fold again in half. ¬†edge stitch both sides of handle. ¬† If using ribbon, disregard the Fabric Handle directions and set aside your 5″ piece of ribbon for later.

tabs and handle

tabs and handle

5.)  Stitch

TABS–Remember, stack the tab fabrics right sides together with the batting on the bottom. ¬†See picture above. ¬†Sew all the way around the edges in a 1/4″ seam allowance. ¬†Clip curves.

CREATIVE OPTION: If your sewing machine has an alphabet, this is a good time to personalize the loop.  See sample below.  I used scrap interfacing under the ribbon, stitched out the name, trimmed the excess, and then sewed more ribbon wrong sides together along the edges to cover up the underside.

Personalized loop

Personalized loop

-Pin outer edges of tab and stitch in a 1/4″ seam allowance. ¬†Use pinking shears or clip corner carefully all the way around the tabs.

Tab pinned, with right sides together, batting on bottom

Tab pinned, with right sides together, batting on bottom, 1/4″ seam allowance

6.) Cut tabs in half, turn right side out, edge stitch

-Fold in half. Draw a line. Cut through all layers. Turn right side out.

Fold in half to find center of tab

Fold in half to find center of tab

Cut tabs in half

Cut tabs in half

Turn right sides out, edge stitch

Turn right sides out, edge stitch

7.) Buttonhole and Buttons
Gather your button or the two buttons. Determine length of button hole and stitch out buttonhole on tab.

Buttonhole on tab

Buttonhole on tab

-Carefully slice open with seam ripper or sharp scissors. Check that button(s)  will pass through.  By the way, these buttoned tabs have no real purpose except to be decorative and pretty (and to get better at making buttonholes).  Set aside.

Buttonhole test

Buttonhole test

8.)   Sew quilt lines of bag
-Sew the first line of stitching on the main body of the bag on the line you drew, either diagonally or from top to bottom. ¬†(Don’t sew over the pins!)
-Insert quilt guide one inch from needle. ¬† Sew a second line of stitching 1″ apart from the first line of stitching, smoothing fabric as you sew. ¬†Continue until the whole piece is quilted.

Quilt layers for body of bag

Quilt layers for body of bag

It should start to look like this:

Quilting starting to take shape

Quilting starting to take shape

And look like this when finished.  You may want to trim off any loose threads.

Finished quilted piece

Finished quilted piece

9.) Prep Ribbon for Decorative Stitching
-Attach satin foot to machine.
-Place ribbon down the center of your 3″ x 36″ stabilizer or interfacing. Note: I adhered two strips of scrap interfacing together and it worked just fine because I didn’t have stabilizer. ¬†You will stitch one continuous length about one yard long. ¬†Save remaining ribbon for covering bottom seam and loop (if you didn’t make a handle).

Ribbon on stabilizer/interfacing

Ribbon on stabilizer/interfacing

-Select favorite stitch.  Start sewing slowly down entire one yard length of ribbon.

Stitch selection

Stitch selection

Stitches done, press gently

Stitches done, press gently

-The ribbon will be a little lumpy once finished.  Gently press with iron to flatten.  Turn the ribbon over to the underside. Carefully trim off excess interfacing so that there is not interfacing showing from the right side.  Be careful not to cut through stitching or ribbon.

Trim off excess

Trim off excess

-As we did with the tabs to find the center, fold body of bag in half and press to make a crease line.

Fold in half to find center

Fold in half to find center

-Cut bag in half, lengthwise.  This is where the zipper will be inserted.

Cut bag body in half, lengthwise

Cut bag body in half, lengthwise

10.)  Prep for zipper and tab insertion
-On wrong side of one of the rectangles, place zipper right side up with zipper tape and raw edges even. Pin with the tab hanging off one end and the zipper stop hanging off the other end. ¬†It’s okay the zipper is too long.

Prep for zipper

Prep for zipper

-Attach zipper foot to machine.
-Stitch down center of zipper tape with regular stitch length.

Stitch one side of zipper to bag

Stitch one side of zipper to bag

-Trim off excess fabric from under zipper so that there is no fabric showing.   We will be placing decorative ribbon over the zipper tape soon!

Trim raw edge under zipper

Trim raw edge under zipper

-Lightly press zipper tape flat towards outer bag fabric.

Right side up of bag. one half

Right side up of bag. one half, lightly press

With right side of zipper facing up on the wrong side of the other bag half, match up raw edges and centering, pin zipper to other half just as you did with the first half.  Stitch right down the center of the zipper tape.

Attach zipper to other half

Attach zipper to other half

-Turn, trim the fabric underneath, and press gently toward right side.

Zipper installed!

Zipper installed!

-Cut your decorative ribbon piece in half.  Place one half over zipper tape, covering the stitching and onto bag. Center and then stitch down the side nearest the zipper.

Ribbon placed over zipper tape

Ribbon placed over zipper tape

-Get tabs.  Mark center of the bag (red pin).  Slide one tab under the outer side of the ribbon.  Pin.

Tab Placement

Tab Placement

-Repeat for other side.
-Off-set the tabs from each other on opposite sides, using the center mark as a guide.  See below.  Pin.  Sew close to edge of ribbon, catching tabs in stitching.

Tabs slipped under ribbon

Tabs slipped under ribbon

-Mark button placement by marking through the buttonhole.

Mark button placement

Mark button placement

Sew on button(s) using special foot or by hand.  Here are two buttons stacked together and contrasting thread just for fun.

Old school handsewing

Old school hand sewing

Your bag should look something like this now.

Completed top of bag

Completed top of bag

11.) Sew bottom of bag
-With right sides together, sew bottom center seam of bag in a 3/8″ seam.

Center bottom seam

Center bottom seam

-Press open seam. ¬†Trim off any excess batting or stray fabric or threads. ¬†Trim to 1/4″.

Trim excess off seam

Trim excess off seam

-Unzip bag and center ribbon over the seam.  Stitch down both sides of ribbon covering up the seam.  This makes for a nicer finish inside than a zig zag or serged seam.

Ribbon centered over bottom seam

Ribbon centered over bottom seam

-Your bag should look something like this now.

Looking into bag

Looking into bag

12.) Sew up sides, including loop or handle
-Close zipper.  With right sides together, fold bag in half with zipper facing center bottom seam.

LOOPS: ¬†The loop can be placed in this seam on this side or on the other, your choice. ¬†It should be slipped in now, centered, between both layers, facing into the bag. ¬†You can’t see it because it is inside. ¬†Stitch across ends, going slowly over zipper a few times for durability.

Sides, one with loop or handle

Sides, one with loop or handle

-Stitch across ends in a 3/8″ seam. ¬†Zig zag or serge raw edges for a clean finish.

Stitch across ends, then zig zag or serge

Stitch across ends, then zig zag or serge

-Before sewing up other side, OPEN UP THE ZIPPER ENOUGH FOR YOUR FINGERS TO REACH ZIPPER TAB.  If not, you will not be able to get into the bag!  Line the zipper teeth up closely to each other.  Pin.  Remember, your loop or handle should be sandwiched inside now, centered near the zipper and facing inside.  Stitch up seam. Trim and finish with zig zag or serge.

Open zipper, sew other side

Open zipper, sew other side

This is how it should look.   Open up the zipper a bit to do the next step.

How does it look?

How does it look?

Creating box corners

Creating box corners

-RST, fold sides perpendicular to the seam and measure two inches across and mark with a pen. Pin.

HANDLE:  Insert handle into both box seams.  Just like the loops, the handle stays inside the bag while sewing.  It will flip back out when bag is finished.  See samples.

Handle is sewn into box seams

Handle is sewn into box seams

IMG_3788
Stitch on line. Repeat for other side. You will do this a total of 4 times; two box seams on each end.
IMG_3789

Box corners from the inside

Box corners from the inside

Doggy ears trimmed and serged

Doggy ears trimmed and serged

-Trim off the ‘doggy ears’. ¬†Clean finish with a zig zag or serged seam.

Ready to see it??

Ready to see it??

ALMOST DONE!!! ¬†Reach inside and pull the zipper down enough to turn the bag right side out. ¬†Vwah-la!!!! ¬†It’s done! ¬†Load it up with goodies.

Finished bag

Finished bag

Different tabs, different fabric combinations

Different tabs, different fabric combinations

Another example up close

Another example up close-skateboards!

I had a difficult time finding a coordinating fabric, so I used the same fabric for both sides and just added contrast for the tabs, ribbon, zipper and buttons.

Same fabric used for inside and outside

Same fabric used for inside and outside

Useful, roomy, colorful, and fun to make

Useful, roomy, colorful, and fun to make

These are addictive.  Lengthy tutorial, but all the steps add up to make a great project.  I hope you have enjoyed the ride!

Cheers,
Dana

Skateboard Shorts McCalls 6973

PS CroppedIMG_3675My son came down to visit for the weekend and I whipped up these shorts for him. On a recent trip to my local mill end store, SAS Fabrics, I found this skateboard material and couldn’t resist especially since it is 100% cotton and my son lives in Phoenix. Enough of those polyester basketball shorts!! Yuck. Sweaty. Hot. Weekend fashion is not my son’s top priority, so I took it upon my pushy-self and made two pair of these for him.
PS CroppedIMG_3676The pattern offers a great cargo pocket detail. I added some hook and loop tape to keep the pocket closed so that the phone/keys/wallet won’t slip out when he sits down.

When my two sons were in junior high and high school, skateboards were used for their transportation. They have been known to even beat up a curb or two…anyway, I bought three yards. Isn’t it great? It resembles a camouflage print from a distance. I am always on the look out for kitchy-yet-masculine fabrics for kick around projects for my boys.

Below is the pattern. Read more here about the pattern. In order to help me pick the right size, I compared the width and length of some other favorite shorts to get the silhouette just right.
PS CroppedIMG_3677 There are other usable garments on this pattern. However, the shorts needed a little shortening, so here are some of the following adjustments I made.
1.) I measured the desired inseam on the leg to see where the finished length should be.
2.) Compare to length to pattern piece.
3.) Fold up or cut/lengthen.
Inseam PS CroppedIMG_3687
These were shortened by 2″, so the fold looks like it is 1″. Just remember that the fold is twice the amount of the desired length. For example, if you want to shorten by 1″, the fold will look like 1/2″.
Shorten2 PSCroppedIMG_3686
4.) Don’t forget to shorten (or lengthen) the back and front the same so that the inseams and side seams will match up. Take advantage of the notches on the seam allowance and use them to help with this step.
5.) When measuring the side length, allow for the separate attached waistband. I used 1″ elastic, and top stitched the waistband seam allowance down toward the shorts to secure it. I omitted the tie because I didn’t have anything in my stash that would work, and it wasn’t worth a trip to the fabric store to get something. Normally, I find this technique a bit bulky, but in this case, so I top stitched the waistband down onto the shorts and it helped keep the shorts secure at the hips. Overall, they were a success. So much so that he requested a second pair! I will be making a bag out of this fabric for my other son since he is not here in town to measure.

And last but not least is Outlaw, Sean’s dog who allows us to get our dog ‘fix’ without having all the responsibility. He is a Pit Bull/Boxer mix who is happy and tolerant of our constant hugs and harassment.
To read more about ideas for guy gifts, click here on a post I made that you may have missed.
Outlaw1 PSCroppedIMG_3674

Vogue 8951 Top Turned Into A Dress

IMG_3652I must confess that a guilty pleasure of mine is to watch the home shopping networks.   Instead of resorting to trying clothes on at the local stores, I get a glimpse into what fashion is selling to people who choose to shop from home. It intrigues me to see how women buy pants online or TV.   I like to see what styles, colors, and trends are making their way into homes all across the country.   As a apparel sewer, I am inspired by some of the designs and feel fortunate to be able to replicate these items while incorporating my own twists.

This particular dress came from a QVC designer, Susan Graver. She sold thousands of this style dress..and for good reasons. If this dress is anything like the two I just made, it very comfortable. I was lucky to find this green cotton French Terry at my local mill end store. It has the sweatshirt-like feel we all know and love, as well as the heft needed to wear this without show-through. Susan’s version is out of her own manufactured cotton French Terry and offers shorter sleeves, rounded side slits, and patch pockets. It looks like this. ¬†To find out more about this dress click¬†here:
SG french terry dressMy version comes from Vogue 8951, which offers woven tops, but had a similar neckline and it could be extended into a dress length.

Woven Tops Turned into Knit Dresses

Woven Tops Turned into Knit Dresses

I chose not to include the hood, although that would have been a cute option if I used hoods more often. The sleeves were lengthened to 3/4 length, and I also chose not to add rounded side slits. Basically, my dress is View A with longer sleeves and more than 34″ added to the length from the side seams. I added more to the length so that I could try the dress on and have plenty of material for the hem. ¬† I settled on the hem being just a bit above the knee.

Green French Terry Vogue Dress

Green French Terry Vogue Dress

The kangaroo pocket is very comfortable, hold a cell phone and/or keys, and disguises my tummy pooch. It also adds to the very casual look of the dress.
IMG_3643Second version out of a stable knit and longer in length. I prefer this dress at this time of year because the knit is lighter weight for our hot desert summer weather.

Turquoise/White Knit Knee Length

Turquoise/White Knit Knee Length

One thing to note: This pattern calls for wovens, not knits. I added about 1/4″ around the shoulders, bust area, sleeves and armhole just to be sure it would have some ease. I also added quite a bit to the side seams so that it wouldn’t be too tight around my rear. I tapered it at the waist and flared out at the hips. It took trying on and off multiple times, trips to the mirror, trips to and from the sewing machine, but I got the fit just the way I wanted.

After making the first dress, I knew I would be cranking out a few more. I have one more cut out out of another stable knit.

Why make duplicates of the same pattern, you ask?
1.)   The second item takes less time to complete.
2.)   The kinks, alterations, and design changes are worked out.
3.)   Different fabrics provide variety and change the look of the original pattern.
4.)   Success is addictive! If one is good, more is better.

Once a pattern has been a success, it becomes a Tried and True (TNT) pattern. ¬† ¬†Do you have some TNT’s in your wardrobe?

 

Father’s Day Gift Ideas

Mug Cover and Mug Rug

Mug Cover and Mug Rug

This is a little late getting posted, but I thought it might be worth it to give a few ‘guy’ ideas for future presents. It is easy to come up with girly projects to sew, but I have a harder time coming up with ideas for the males in my family. My husband is no exception. He is truly appreciative of anything I sew for him….as long as it is masculine and useful.
So here are my three picks for this year’s Father’s Day:
1.) Handmade shirt
2.) Mug Rug (or small place mat)
3.) Mug Cover (fancy pen and pencil holder)

Mug holding guy stuff

Mug holding guy stuff

I think this may be my tenth mug cover gift because they can be personalized with cute fabrics and they hold SO much stuff. (Also great for manicuring tools, sewing supplies, etc.) Here is the pattern and the link at Simplicity here:

Mug Cover Simp 2450

Mug Cover Simp 2450

Simplicity calls is ‘Buckets Gone Wild’, but I think of 5 gallon buckets when I hear the world bucket, so mug cover it is.

I buy the standard vacation souvenir mugs at the thrift stores for a buck or less or re-purpose some from my collection. I then rummage through my cotton fabric and bias tape stashes. I just maaay have to go to the fabric store to look at the fat quarter combinations if nothing seems to be coming together.

The next idea is a version of a mug rug. I was lucky enough to receive one of these as a gift from Rachel, my student/friend (Sewredy.wordpress.com) She has perfected the applique mug rug and other projects. I wrote a little something about her new blog here.
Here is my version with rounded edges:

Camping Fabric Mug Rug

Camping Fabric Mug Rug

I rounded the edges simply because I find it faster and easier to apply bias tape or self-made bias strips. No pattern is used. These can be made many different ways, but the basic dimensions are approximately 13″ X 8″-ish.

The fabric is a camping motive cotton remnant and I edge finished useing dark brown single fold bias tape from my stash. I used the same fabric on the other side because the drawings are entertaining like the Air-stream camper. If you want more info on how I apply my bias tape, I wrote about it on the thermal iron cover post I wrote here.

The last project is a hand made shirt. I have lost track of how many I have made for him, but it it is a my ‘go-to’ pattern.

McCalls 2149 Men's Camp Shirt

McCalls 2149 Men’s Camp Shirt

Okay, so no hanger appeal. I see that here, but it DOES look better on a human, I promise. I chose version “B” from this McCalls 2149:

Great Pattern for Mens shirts

Great Pattern for Mens shirts

You can tell by the low pattern number that it has been in the pattern book for a long time. I think many of the new McCall’s patterns are in the 6000’s.

I bribed my husband with homemade blueberry pancakes to model the shirt.

Husband in his Father's Day shirt

Mr. B in his Father’s Day shirt

Now that’s a little better. You can see the shirt filled out better and that it had a casual, loose fit.
IMG_3633
Since we love to dance, looser and more comfortable clothes are mandatory to do all the fancy moves. The fabric is a rayon from my stash in what I call ‘Builder Beige and Brown’.

Buttons and collar

Buttons and collar

Here you can see I used the standard men’s brown/tan button which blends in so well, it cannot be seen except for up close.

The ‘guy’ list continued:
4.) Neck pillow or lumbar pillow
5.) Personalized pillow case (Great for travel so you don’t accidentally leave the beloved pillow in the hotel)
6.) Shoe bags (Keeps shoes protected and off clothes in suitcase)

Can you think of some more great handmade gift ideas?

Until next time, keep creating.
-Dana

A Shout Out for SewRED-y…A New Blog

Sewing With Cats_0002
I am thrilled to share a link to a new sewing blog on the scene. It is SewRed-y from my student, Rachel. I’m so glad she has taken on the sewing obsession and wow, is she a natural! She took a class from me when I taught at Jo Ann’s and with a little guidance from me, some love and support from the hubby, and some fierce determination, off she went! Read up on the details, like how she fits in sewing with many furry creatures at her house here.

Here she is at one of our Sit and Sew sessions cutting out a pattern: (pre-short hair cut)
OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Loving the idea of me taking her picture…
IMG_1512
Now I get to stalk another blog and add it to my blog roll. Way to go, Rachel!