Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Sew Long Summer - Summer Crush

The Sew Long Summer started this week!  SLS is a 4 week sew along that takes us from summer and into the fall (and even has some prizes, yay!) This week's theme is "Summer Crush" and we are challenged to sew up a pattern we've been crushin' on this summer but for whatever reason (usually time, right?) we haven't made it up.

Early in the summer after my daughter returned home from college, we took a trip to the Downtown LA fabric district for a look and some inspiration.  She's been wanting a romper all summer long and she found a "Roxy-esque" gauze fabric that was perfect.

I've had Simplicity pattern 1355 for at least a year with the intention of making it up for her and Sew Long Summer got me sewing and I finished up the romper the day before I took her back to college. It's  an easy project and I completed it in a couple of hours.  I'm still looking for something different for the tie but for now a piece of bias tape worked.

I quickly snapped these photos in front of Target the day I moved her back to college.  She looked adorable in her romper even though we spent the day moving boxes, cleaning, unpacking and laughing. We topped off the day by eating lunch at a hole-in-the-wall Mexican food place (what could be better?) with the tiniest diet coke cup ever!

Nothing says so long summer like moving your baby back to college but ending it with a day with my favorite girl in a cute romper made it nice.

There's still time to join Sew Long Summer.   Check it out!

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Made by a Fabricista - Fall Icebreaker Shirtdress

I'm happy to be back on the Fabricmart Fabrics blog with my fall sewing icebreaker.  I'm finished with my summer sewing and looking to make some pieces for fall even though it's 104 degrees today.  Sewing a plaid wool skirt doesn't sound fun at the moment so I wanted something that would work on those all too frequent 90 degree October days when I don't want to wear a sunny yellow halter dress but a skirt and sweater will just make me cranky.  A transitional dress is exactly what I need.

Shirtdresses are all the rage right now and this JCrew dress inspired my first project for fall.  I've had this Vogue pattern in my stash since the early nineties (seriously....someone needs to give me some tough love about my pattern stash!) and it's perfect.  No need to buy a pattern and even better I'm justifying my stash.

For my shirtdress knockoff I chose a JCrew stretch cotton stripe shirting from Fabricmart Fabrics even though the inspiration dress is made of wool.  In my climate I can comfortably wear a wool dress exactly 3 times a year so cotton not only makes sense but is easy care, practical and comfortable.

The fabric was very easy to sew but like so many striped fabrics, I found the stripes would play tricks on my eyes when I was sewing.  I added a piece of painter's tape (it doesn't leave residue) on my machine at the 5/8" seam line making it easier to sew an accurate seam.

For the curved seams, I made an arrow across from the needle to mark where my fabric needs to land.  It's only important to line up the raw edge on the 5/8" line across from the needle not the entire way down the tape.  Thinking about it this way makes it much easier to sew a curved seam.

I had planned on keeping this project simple like the JCrew dress but as I was sewing I wanted to add some red.  Red buttons were too much so I decided on red corded buttonholes.  I took red pearl cotton from my stash and here's how I did it:

I flipped the buttonhole foot over and wrapped a length of pearl cotton over the back hook.

From the top of the foot I ran the tails of the thread through the bottom prongs to hold the thread in place then stitched the buttonholes just as I normally would.

After taking the work out from under the machine, I pulled the right tail thread through to eliminate the loop.

Lastly, I loaded the tail threads through a large hand sewing needle, pulled them through to the back and clipped them.  It's that easy!  It's these little details that make sewing fun!

I broke the ice for my fall sewing so what does your fall sewing plan look like?

Happy sewing....Diane at Gatorbunnysews.

Sunday, August 16, 2015

It's That Time Again!

It's that time again!  The Fabricmart Fabricista Fashion Challenge is set to begin soon and they are looking for bloggers to join the challenge.  I had the privilege to complete in it 2 years ago (ahhh the memories here, here and here) and now it's your turn.  Visit the Fabricmart Fabrics blog for more details.  Entries are accepted through August 18.

Hey, if you don't enter someone else is going to be picked so hurry up and enter!  

Monday, August 10, 2015

Pattern Hack Dress - Part 2

My pattern dress hack is done!  Well, actually it's been done for quite a while it just took me a bit to shoot some pics.  I'm  happy with how it turned out and it's really comfortable too which is always a plus.  All the details about how I put it together are here.

I was able to take some interesting photos when we went to LACMA (Los Angeles County Museum of Art) yesterday.  It's a can't miss if you find yourself in LA.

I'm sad to share that we lost our sweet Jack on Saturday.  He was the dearest, most loving and loyal family member we could ever have hoped for.  I'll miss him smiling while riding shotgun, sitting at my feet when I sew and the way he looked at me like I was the only thing in the world that mattered.  We are so grateful we had 12 years with him we just selfishly wanted more.

Our Precious Jack