Tag Archives: butterick

Lots of sewing and lots of sneezing

Well it’s just been nuts here. The last month has been full of frenzied sewing and not much photo taking. Oh, and the spring crud that seems to be going around. Everybody in my family has been sick. I still sound like death warmed over. Ugh.

In between snotty tissues and coughing, there’s been lots of deadline sewing. First off is the wedding quilt for my sister-in-law. Who got married last June. Really, as long I they get the gift before their first anniversary then it’s not late. I love that tradition. It’s saved my bacon a few times for wedding gifts.

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The quilt is actually the 8th one I’ve finished this year. So I’m way ahead on my goal, but way behind on documenting any of it. If I can just make it through the next couple of weeks of scheduling madness, then I’ll have time to start photographing things.

The rest of the sewing is all related to the upcoming wedding of some good friends. First off was sewing one of the bridesmaid dresses. The wedding is going to be fairly casual, and the bridesmaids were simply asked to wear dresses in certain colors, no real specifications on style. My friend who I sewed the dress for is currently seven months pregnant and wasn’t too happy with the limited selection of maternity dresses she could find. Brilliant woman that she is, she tried tracing a pattern off an existing simple jersey dress she owns. We tweaked the pattern a bit, and with relatively few adjustments came out with a lovely dress for her. Gotta love good jersey! I made a copy of the pattern, and plan on making a few shirt versions soon.

Next up is a silk robe as a bridal shower gift. The pattern is from Amy Butler’s In Stitches. I haven’t actually made many things from this book other than the bathrobe. But I’ve made at least five robes at this point. It’s my go-to bridal shower gift.

My husband is one of the groomsmen in the wedding. The guys are wearing dark jeans, light dress shirts, light colored ties and brown vests. He already had everything except for the vest, so that’s where I come in. I actually made formal vests for my husband and the groomsmen for our wedding, so I’ve already got a good pattern. It’s just a matter of finishing the darn thing at this point.

Vest for husband

Vest for husband

Last, of course, is a dress for me. I’m not in the wedding or anything, but assuming I can find the time, I’m going to make a dress to wear. Nothing fancy, as the invite made it clear that the wedding is casual. But something that will look nice and at least be comfortable. I’ve got the fabric picked out already (from my stash of course) and the pattern. Whether I get time to sew it up before the wedding is a whole different issue.

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Aside from all that, there have been a few pairs of boxers for the husband, a quick t-shirt or two for me, and a pair of Thurlow shorts almost entirely finished! Look at me, sewing before the season, instead of halfway through it! That never happens.

So yea, really busy. Anybody feel like that happens every spring?

Me-Made-May …the rest of the month

Hey look, it’s June. Perhaps I should post the rest of my Me-Made-May updates. I’ve read other bloggers mention that they get burned out taking a photo everyday during May. I can certainly understand that having now (tried) to do that myself. I also got tired of writing the updates, but that might be because I had so many repeats, or just that I wear jeans and a t-shirt most of the time and it’s not very exciting to write about. Regardless, here’s the rest of the month.

May 15-threeDay 15 Me-Mades: Another raglan t-shirt

This is another old shirt from the depths of my closet. It’s a little short for my current tastes and feels  a bit blah, so it doesn’t get worn much. The fabric is some sort of squishy stretchy polyester, and it was a bear to sew. Those three buttons there aren’t functional at all, I just needed something to cover up the ripples in that seam. And of course, one button was lost in the laundry the last time I washed this. So now it’s really not going to get much wear, at least not until I find some new buttons.

IMG_1862Day 16 Me-Mades: Stripey Renfrew

Yup, still loving this shirt.

IMG_1873Day 17 Me-Mades: Knockoff GAP t-shirt

Another repeat, but hey, it’s a really comfortable t-shirt.

Day 18 Me-Mades: Knockoff GAP t-shirt

I totally didn’t get a picture today. But the shirt I wore is exactly the same pattern as yesterday, just in plain gray fabric.

IMG_1899Day 19 Me-Mades: Twisty Dress

New dress! New dress! Finished at the last minute the night before, no less.

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Day 20 Me-Mades: Drapey cowl shirt

Somewhere in the depths of my studio is the pattern for this shirt. But I don’t care if I ever find it, because I’m not making another one of these. I realized, when I put this shirt on, why it’s languished in the back of my dresser drawer for so long. I hate the way it looks on me. It’s not terribly comfortable, and I feel like it makes my shoulders look really broad. Plus, it’s too short, so I spent the whole day tugging at the hem. The only thing that made it at all wearable was the jacket I wore over it. Yup, this one’s gotta go.

Day 21 Me-Mades: Er, no picture again. I got busy. Same t-shirt as day 6.

IMG_1985Day 22 Me-Mades: New shirt! Not blogged about yet.

Day 23 Me-Mades: Um, day 23 appears to have fallen into a black hole. Can’t find the picture I took, and can’t remember what I wore. Oops.

IMG_1998Day 24 Me-Mades: Raglan t-shirt

Nothing very exciting, just another raglan t-shirt. Really, I had no idea how many shirts I’d made off this pattern until doing this challenge. In the interest of variety I think I need to try some new patterns.

Day 25 Me-Mades: This is the last day with no picture, I promise. I just wore a gray t-shirt again, off my Knockoff GAP T-shirt pattern. I think I wore that shirt 3 or 4 times this months and never managed to photograph it. That’s okay though, it’s pretty uninspiring. Just your basic gray t-shirt.

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Day 26 Me-Mades: Cotton gauze button-up shirt.

This is one of those nearly finished projects that I find buried in my studio and can’t for the life of me figure out why I never finished it. This shirt was completely done except for buttons and buttonholes. Needless to say, that was a quick fix. I plan on making another one shortly and will blog about both then.

IMG_2006Day 27 Me-Mades: Throwback sleeveless blouse

My husband told me I looked like a throwback to the 80’s in this, and it would be a good gardening shirt. That’s his way of saying he doesn’t want to have to be seen in public with me when I’m wearing this. Really, it doesn’t fit well enough for me to wear it out anyway. The armholes are way too loose. But still, I didn’t think the fabric was that bad. Oh well. It’s comfortable and breezy, so it actually does make a good gardening shirt.

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Day 28 Me-Mades: Geometric Twisty top

This is the first top I made off one of my favorite Butterick patterns. I’ve since tweaked it and made it up as a dress. I still like the original top, though it is a bit short these days.

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Day 29 Me-Mades: Another new, unblogged about shirt!

Well I guess this means I have something else to write about now that May is over.

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Day 30 Me-Mades: Ariadne tunic, and white cardighan, modified nursing cami

The cardighan is pretty old (at least 10 years), and made from a Lose Hinse pattern. It’s pretty basic, but I like it. I opted to just put two buttons near the neck for closure, instead of all down the button band. And while I didn’t make kiddo’s outfit, it is from the thrift store. Seriously, that’s the best place for buying baby clothes without going broke.

IMG_2118Day 31 Me-Mades: Long sleeved raglan t-shirt for me, and mama-made pants for the boy, along with a grandma-modified onesie!

Last day!! My top is completely boring, but I made up for it with kiddo’s clothes. I made the pants, and my mom added the matching long sleeves to his onesie. And she embroidered  the ducky on the front.

Phew! I survived, but I’m glad May is over. The challenge was great for making me think about what I wear, and for getting me to clean out my closet a bit. I dug out some tops that I haven’t worn in years, and for good reason mostly. This also helped me narrow down some areas for future sewing. There was something really satisfying about knowing I had on at least one thing I’d made myself every single day last month. This has really re-charged my desire to sew more of my own clothes. So here’s a big thank you to Zoe for hosting Me-Made-May 2013!

And now I feel the overwhelming desire to sew something that will require no pictures of me…

Twisty Dress

Ha ha! I sewed a dress! And I actually wore it (this is only remarkable given how rarely I wear dresses). And I remembered that knit dresses are pretty darn comfy. Perhaps this will inspire me to make (and wear) a few more of them.

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yes, my legs really are that pale

This is the dress version of one of my favorite t-shirts, from Butterick B4745. Having made a dress off this pattern once before I knew I needed to make some adjustments to the pattern.

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I lengthened it about 2 inches, and flared the skirt out. The original skirt is a fairly minimal A-line that doesn’t really have enough room in the hip area. I’ve had this pattern for a long time, and at the time I bought it I generally went ahead and cut the tissue instead of tracing. So, the pattern pieces are cut in the size that fits my bust, but not really my hips. Easy enough to fix though. I re-traced the pieces (there are only two!) with the extra length, and added some width from the waist down.

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Needs shaping in the back

The back of the dress is one piece, so I added a center back seam to be able to add to the skirt from the center as well as the sides. Also, it gave me the opportunity to add some much needed shaping to the center back.

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As drafted, the back hangs straight down from the shoulders. I’m sure it would be fine if I had a belt to wear with this, but since I don’t, the back really needed some help. I didn’t actually add any shaping until after I’d sewn it up. Then I put it on inside out and had my mom pin in the back to fit better.

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Pinned and ready to take in

Here’s a detail shot of the twist in the front bodice. The front is cut too low for my comfort, but looks rather nice with a camisole underneath. I may just stitch it closed a bit higher in the future, but for now the v-neck in a stretchy fabric make this wearable for nursing.

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The fabric is an ITY knit that’s been in my stash for a few years. And this dress used up just about all of it. I have nothing but scraps left. Maybe enough for a little girls t-shirt, but that’s it. And it’s sheer dumb luck that I was able to line up the pattern to get the stripes matching all the way around.

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Of course, if I hadn’t been able to fit the pieces, I wouldn’t have cut the dress out of this. As it is, it’s very satisfying that I could get the dress cut out with everything matching and use up the fabric.

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There really is a seam in there somewhere…

I used my serger for most of the construction. The hems are finished with a twin needle. It looks decent, but is messier on the inside. And I had to fiddle with the tension a fair bit to minimize the tunneling that so frequently happens when using a twin needle. This is the kind of sewing project that makes me wish I had a coverstitch machine.

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Magenta and black thread, just for kicks

I’m pretty please with the finished dress. Now that I’ve got the pattern re-traced with my changes it’ll be easy to knock out a few more of these if I want to. This would certainly help use up some of the knit fabrics in my stash!

Me-Made-May Week 2

I’m a little late getting this posted. But better late than never, here’s week two.

IMG_1648Day 8 Me-Mades: Stripey Renfrew

New top! Which I’ve already worn three times since making it. Sigh. Must make a few more.

Carolyn May 9-fourDay 9 Me-Mades: Twisty Top

One of my dressy t-shirts. Yes, t-shirts can be dressy. I wish I could claim the jacket as a me-made, but it’s actually from Kohl’s. I love it though, and wear it all the time. I think I need to either make a pattern off it, or find a pattern for something similar.

IMG_1793Day 10 Me-Mades: Knockoff GAP t-shirt

This Friday’s theme is “Sewing, Knitting, Creating Space”. So here’s a little corner of my studio. The rest of the room is too much of a disaster zone to photograph right now, but this is my favorite corner anyway. On the wall above my sewing machine is a picture of my son when he was 1 day old, and my awesome giant wood scissors. Best yard sale find ever. Oh, and the shirt, which is really hard to make out in this photo is a another of my Knockoff GAP t-shirts made in a washed out grayish camo print.

IMG_1605Day 11 Me-Mades: Stripey Renfrew

I actually didn’t get around to taking a photo today. But since my outfit is exactly the same as day three, I’m just reusing that picture.

DSCN1538Day 12 Me -Mades: Kimono sleeve t-shirt, modified nursing cami

Again, duplicate outfit. But I did actually get a new picture. With my mom and my son. Seeing as it’s Mother’s Day and all… The onesie with the necktie that kiddo is wearing is my mom’s work. She added the sleeves and the tie to a plain white onesie.

IMG_1771Day 13 Me-Mades: Ariadne tunic

I realize now that all three of my Ariadne tunic tops are made up in very busy prints that make it nearly impossible to actually see the design of the shirt. One of these days I might get around to making one in a solid fabric.

IMG_1782Day 14 Me-Mades:Knockoff GAP t-shirt

This is how I look when I’ve been pulling weeds for the last hour, in the sun, in 80+ degree weather. That smile is forced. But hey, at least the t-shirt is comfy.

And there we go, week two. Not very exciting. But I am enjoying the challenge. Even if I do just live in jeans and t-shirts 90 percent of the time, there’s still something very satisfying about knowing that I made at least one thing I’m wearing every single day. Also, I’m starting to feel much less attached to a good portion of my purchased clothes. There may be a closet purge coming up in my near future.

Needs More T-Shirt

At some point over the last year, my style has changed such that most of my old t-shirts are now too short for my current taste. So I’m starting to replace them, one shirt at a time. Since I live in jeans and t-shirts the majority of the time, I’m trying to sew some variety into my casual wardrobe, with some different prints and patterns.

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First up is another raglan sleeve shirt. The fabric is soft and stretchy and I don’t have a clue what the content is. It’s leftover fabric out of my mom’s stash (yes, we regularly raid each others fabric stashes). As with my other raglan t-shirt, this one had the same issue with the sleeves sticking out at a weird angle. Instead of adding hem bands to fix the problem, this time I made a small pleat on each sleeve hem and secured it with a button. It’s a nice little detail that isn’t really visible in the photo, but I promise it’s there.

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Next up is a shirt from a long time favorite pattern, Butterick B4745. It’s hard to see in the picture, but the shirt has a cool twist detail at the front bodice.

B4745

I have a few shirts made from this pattern already. Unfortunately they’re all too short for me now. I made them straight off the pattern, but that usually results in a belly shirt for my long torso. The length didn’t bother me at the time of sewing (this was several years ago), but like I said, my style has changed a bit. So this time I lengthened the shirt a few inches and added a bit of ease around the midsection. Much better.

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To note though, the neckline is low enough to be indecent (for me, anyway). I actually used a safety-pin to close it a bit higher when I wore this. On prior versions of this top I just sewed the v-neck closed an inch or so higher. For this version I think I might add a small snap to close it up a bit. That way it should also double as a nursing top. That’s probably too much information. But hey, if you’re a nursing mom looking for patterns to try, this one is a winner. The fabric for this one is a polyester ITY knit. It drapes beautifully and seems to have good stretch recovery (something to consider for a nursing top).

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Lastly, and most casually, is my own pattern. It’s very loosely based off a GAP t-shirt I found on the clearance rack a few years ago. I loved the way it fit and made a pattern off it, and this shirt is the second generation of that pattern. I added the hem band to this version and loosened up the fit around the midsection. The result is an amazingly comfortable t-shirt that is a bit nicer (I think) than your basic tee. It’s dead simple too. Front and back, and hem bands, that’s it. I’m not sure if the sleeves would be considered dolman sleeves or kimono. I should probably look that up. (Update: I did look it up, and according to Gertie I have kimono sleeves on my pattern.) The fabric is a very light weight poly/cotton jersey with a bit of rayon in it. Hopefully it will hold up well, as I think this shirt will be getting lots of wear once the weather warms up. Until then, not so much. I’m not sure why I keep sewing warmer weather clothes when there’s still snow on the ground. But I’m three t-shirts closer to ready for warmer weather!