Thursday, October 31, 2013

Red October, procrasrination

After 30 days of procrastination and 25 hours to spare I finally completed the challenge I set out to complete for the month of October. The Red October challenge hosted by the Sewcialists. I opted to make a blouse and a pair of red leggings using McCalls M6173 leggings pattern and McCalls M5662 blouse pattern.

 I started on the blouse first and quicly completed my muslin, adding many inches to all sides of the bodice to cover my breast area. After I completed the muslin and cut on the pieces of my top I got to a stand still and didnt work on it for weeks. I didn't run into an issue, I just lost interest in the project.  After two weeks of no progress I decided to work on the leggings to hopefully recreate the motivation behind the project. It only took me two evenings behind my sewing machine to complete them and I loved them immediately. Actually, it's a miracle I haven't already worn them out because I have really been itching to show them off. This helped me get motivated again and after about a solid week of sewing and lots of seam ripping and re-sewing I have finally completed the matching blouse.  I made some changes to match my style, I added a red band to the center piece of the blouse and also sewed the top up straight instead of crossing them over as the pattern called for. After all done I am very happy with the finished project and ready to show the outfit off tonight. Now to decide what to sew next... hmmm. :)

Monday, September 30, 2013

Franklin's Swanky Bow Ties

I'm a cat person through and through, until I met Mr. Franklin D. Roosevelt whose doggie daddy happens to be one of my good friends Matthew. Franklin is an all black miniature schnauzer who is THE most laid back animal I have ever had the pleasure of meeting.  The best part about Frank? When I met him he was wearing this super cool bow tie! 

His bow tie has gotten a little dirty in the time that I have known him so one weekend, several weeks ago, when I was doggie-sitting for Matt I decided it was time to put my sewing skills to work and make Frank a new one. I used two types of grosgrain ribbons just as the original. And then hot glued elastic to the back to fit over the collar. Here was my first attempt (and welcome home surprise to Matthew) at a doggie bow tie. 
I made it just a bit bigger than his original and I was very happy with the result as were Franklin and Matthew. But now that we knew I could make these lovely little bow ties for Franklin, in come the requests and discussions of the "next one." At the suggestion of my lovely mother, and fellow blogger ( ) I decided to use fabric and interfacing this go around. My first attempt was a little too small for Frank's hefty size, but my second go around was perfect. 

To the left is my first attempt and the start of my second one. I had to make it slightly bigger do to Frank's size. Also my Halloween fabric choice! :) To the right shows the lastic hot glued to the back to make the loop to attach to the collar.
 Finished project and the mess up. 
I haven't given them to Franklin to model yet, I have been waiting to make him a new black collar to match his new bow tie better. Which takes me to the funny conversation my mother and I got to experience with my dear friend Matthew yesterday. I called him in request of Frank's neck measurements and he says to us, "Sure, I can do that. One question... How do I measure it without breaking his neck or breaking the ruler?" My mother and I laughed and laughed over this and explained to take his current collar off and measure that. His next remark? "Oh yeah, I can do that. One more thing, can I borrow a ruler?" Oh he quite made me laugh yesterday and needless to say I will be purchasing my home-owning friend a measuring tape since everyone should have one. 

He has since gotten me the measurements I need and I will be working on that this week. Also I am thinking of starting to sell these, I have had several friends request them for their dogs and they aren't difficult to make. Nice way to use my sewing skills as a side job I'd say. I leave you with a picture of Franklin and my baby girl, furbaby, and love of my life. My 13 year old cat, Salt. 
She wasn't thrilled but doesn't hate him either. 

Monday, September 23, 2013

Fall for Cotton, completed!

Okay y'all!

I have completely finished my Fall for Cotton project! The Fall for Cotton challenge hosted by, is a challenge featuring a vintage item using cotton fabric!

 I spent Saturday completing the head piece to give my photo shoot look a real vintage feel. I used my left over striped fabric and the left over polka dot fabric as well! I got to break out one of my moms newest tools, a bias tape maker!

I loved the little red touch by creating the polka dot bias tape, and I have found I want to use this headband for casual looks now. :)

Sunday morning my mother and I spent hours in our local flea markets in search of pearls for the photo shoot. We we're not only successful in that search but we also found some other goodies, including a vintage cookbook that my grandmother Catherine once had. My mothers golden find of the day was actually one I stumbled upon not even knowing what I found. This was an eyelet and snap pliers which worked out great considering my mom needed her for the dress she is making my younger sister for the Fall for Cotton challenge. She's doing a lovely job with the dress, you can check out her progress at her blog.

The best part about this challenge being a vintage one is that I got to use my mother's 1966 Frigidaire Flair stove that she acquired this past May. She loves this stove, her mother had one just like it when she was a child and she has been looking for one like it for years. She has been very happy with it and I have already requested it in the will. :)

So here is some photos of my completed project from my photo shoot. I must say my mother and I had a lot of fun with this, Markie the cat, not so much.

Friday, September 20, 2013

Joining Fall for Cotton challenge...

While trying to discover my purpose in life in this adult world my
mother has introduced me to the world of seam-rippers, needles, and irons known as sewing.

For my new hobby I am entering the "Fall for Cotton" challenge that my mother has found. (And also entering, btw.)

This sewing challenge is to make a vintage item using 100% cotton fabric only, great considering it's the only fabric I am comfortable using right now anyways. ;)

The pattern I picked is a "Simplicity Archives" pattern that combined two patterns from the 50's. This is an apron pattern.  After completing the apron I had wished I had chosen a more difficult task but at least I do know this is completed well. And as you can see Markie approved of the pattern and fabric choice as well.  :)

The fabrics I picked were a navy and white striped and red and white polka dots from Hancocks. My reasons for these fabrics were simple, I wanted my apron to scream America, or as I like to call it, 'Merica. :)

I have completed my pattern review for the Simplicity 2592 at This was my second pattern I reviewed on this website and I have to say I am getting quite addicted to sewing.

This pattern was fairly easy even for a beginner seamstress like myself.  While cutting out the pattern pieces I did add about 3-4 inches to top piece to acco- mmodate my larger than normal breast.  After all pieces cut in the appropriate fabric for my design I got to reading. My first sewing step was sewing 1/4th inch wide double fold bias tape on each of the three skirt pieces as well as the top pieces. Let me just tell you, this is my nightmare.  From the few projects I have done I have learned a hatred for sewing bias tape, and this is the smallest I have worked with yet. I complained during the whole entire process ( I am sure my mother loved that) but I must say after I completed it I am so happy I did it, it gave such a completed look to the pieces that could have only been created with the gosh awful bias tape. For my next step it was an add in, a change to pattern of sorts. I took both my fabrics and made the tie pieces with each, I then sewed them together to give the tie a more completed look. It wasn't an extremely difficult step I added but I think it made the world of difference on my completed project. It took it from good to great, and I wanted that added detail since I picked such a simple accessory. The last thing I had to do was add all the pieces together, and after completing these simple steps I am very happy with my finished project. It turned out better than I expected.

My last steps are finishing a vintage headpiece I wanted to make for my pictures and then of course I have to take the picture of me modeling my vintage apron, which I have a special surprise with that. :)

Until then.

Moment of clarity.

After years of my mother telling me my "friends" in my world of partying wouldn't last it finally clicked. She didn't warn me that it would be like a light bulb going off, no one told me it would happen faster than over night.

But that's what happened... I have always been a self described social butterfly. My list of "best" friends has always been more than fingers I have.  It's been something I have been proud of, one of my accomplishments so to say. As I find myself on the verge of 24 I realize my list of friends mean nothing in the real game of life if they aren't sincere. It took a few unimportant events for me to see the light, and realize I only have a few real friends. I say the events are unimportant because when looking back on my life in 10,15 years I won't remember the details of why, I will only remember this is the time I discovered who. Who is important that is.

These people that still remain important to me are people who will always have my back, no matter what rumors or lies are being told. They are people I don't get to see everyday but they will always pick up the phone if I need something, or maybe just someone to talk to. The best part is most of them have been around for years, I just didn't see through the selfishness I was catering to in my current social circle. And there was a lot of selfishness.

With the people of drama, lies, and being self-centered as a thing of the past I can focus on the important things and people in my life.

The people I lost will always remain special to me, and in the end I have found no hate for anyone. Just a whole lot of clarity. Now that the fog has past I can focus on the sunshine.