Monday, March 23, 2015

Wiksten Tova Top

One of my favorite things about the online sewing community is being introduced to great independent sewing patterns that I would have never seen otherwise.  I just found the Wiksten Tova Top last week.......why did it take me so long?

It is the perfect dress for me!  Loose fitting yet flattering with a bohemian twist.....all my favorite things.  I also LOVE that it is made for woven fabrics.  I made this one from a linen/cotton blend that I found a Joann's.  This fabric is LOVELY!  I wore this dress all day (even took a quick nap on the couch) and then took pictures.  Barely any wrinkles to be seen!!!

My adjustments were minor.  I added to the upper back because I always have too.   I also added a collar because I just like that type of neckline better.  Other than that, this dress was made straight out of the box.  It is a very fast pattern too which was just what I needed after the wool jacket!  

Check out my birthday gift....the cutest cowboy boots ever!!!

Saturday, March 21, 2015

From Sexy To Practical In Two Weeks Flat!

Well folks, I completely step out of my comfort zone with this one and I think I enjoyed it. 

It all started on a sunny day last September when the newest Burda Magazine arrived in my mailbox.   I spotted Burda 9/2014 127 and fell in love.  

Sadly it was short-lived.  I made three muslins with zero success.  Even after adding 5 inches to the upper back, I still couldn't move my arms.  The fit on the front of the sleeve was a disaster too.  So I accepted defeat and trashed the pattern.  I still had the most lovely wool (Colorado Fabric) and a ton of faux patent leather ( in need of a purpose.  I searched the internet for the perfect pattern (I only had 2 1/4 yards of wool) but couldn't find what I wanted.

So, I turned to New Look 6226 because I knew the shoulders and upper back fit perfectly.  I used my favorite ready-wear jacket to figure out a new bottom for the front and back and length.  I also added a collar.  I have never bought a coat or jacket that fits my upper back comfortably so I may have gone overboard with excess room in that area but I don't apologize.......crossing my arms without restriction is the BEST EVER THING!

I started out hoping for a sexy Michelle Pfeiffer (Grease II) jacket and ended up with an simple yet practical one.  Overall, I am very happy.  The sexy one would have spent most of its time in my closet whereas the practical one will see daily wear next winter.  

The faux patent leather (fancy word for vinyl) was surprisingly easy to sew with.  I used silk thread with the wool for the first time because Sandra Betzine told me too! (Crafty's Fabric Know-How class).  She is amazing and I LOVE the results.  I also LOVE sewing with wool..........wishing for a full wool

It seemed wrong to have a lovely wool jacket and put a polyester lining in it so I tried out some ambiance bemberg lining fabric and loved it so much I bought a ton more for the future.  Overall it was a PROCESS but the results make me smile! The best part is I have just enough wool left to make a little pencil skirt.  Yippee!!!

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

In LOVE With Audrey! - Maria Denmark

Hello all!  A couple of week ago quite a few of you recommended the Audrey knit dress from Maria Denmark for me and I just can't thank you all enough!!!  I LOVE this dress pattern!  It is THE dress pattern I have been searching for forever!  

The pattern is really lovely to sew.  All the dots lined up and it went together in record time.  I did change the neckline to an even strip because I was not so sure about my abilities to sew the fancy one but other than that I sew it as directed.  The back darts are WONDERFUL!  They give the dress such great shape!  It is very comfortable to wear and the design is simple enough that I can have quite a few in the closet with no problem.

I used a really nice sweater knit I picked up a Colorado Fabric.  I have been wearing the heck out of this dress.   It has been worn on a fabric shopping trip to Denver with my friend Caryn (Caryn's Blog), an opening night at an art gallery and a few grocery shopping trips too.  It is super versatile! 

I am currently working on a wool jacket that has been really intense.  Once I finish, another one of these dresses is on the cutting table.  It is the perfect feel-good quick project that I will be needing.  

I gotta love a pattern that bring my super busy college girl home to sew.  I think she did a fantastic job and I love her fabric.  

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

My Burda Challenge February Fail

I love a sewing challenge.....they keep me on-task and motivated even on the worst of my dreary/lazy days. So when I read about the Burda Challenge on Nancy's blog last month, I was very excited.  The challenge is to sew something from a Burda magazine each month.  Thankfully, back issues are allowed because my sewing room has a stack of them.  I love so many of the patterns but tracing them out.......ugh!  This is the PERFECT challenge to get me to spend a bit more quality time with my tracing paper!  I missed January and surprisingly didn't have a February issue in the stack so I picked up the U.S. February issue at JoAnn's.  I fell in love with this shirt.  

It is the Burda 01/2014  #122 reprinted in the February 2015 U.S. Burda.  Sometimes I forget that I am in my mid-40's and my body has changed A LOT since high school.  Sadly, this pattern was a harsh reminder!  I have a super straight body and was hoping the various directions of the stripes would give me the illusion of curves but no that didn't happen.  It just made me look straighter.   Thankfully my daughter took it off my hands.

I think part of the problem was that my stripes were too narrow and I must have forgot that I really hate myself in a stripe of any kind. Anyway, it found a good home in the end.  The pattern itself was really easy to put together and in the U.S. issue there is a sew-a-long included with the pattern making the directions crystal clear.  I used a reversible jersey knit I purchased at JoAnn's

  This dress was REALLY hard to photography.  She looks lovely in it in this picture but it really is even cuter in real-life.  She is also my super favorite person for agreeing to a photo in the freezing weather!