Saturday, April 14, 2018

Birthday Briefcase

Birthday Briefcase

I've been married for 36 years.  In that time I've made my hubby ties, vest and even dress shirts for work.  Two days before his 59th birthday, I had the inspiration that his old briefcase was shabby looking and he needed a new one.  I would MAKE him one!  I searched for a couple of hours for a pattern but no luck.  I looked at the old briefcase and thought about my decades of sewing and thought...I can do this!  And so I did.  I made the briefcase without a pattern.  It was not as easy as I thought it would be...I had 1.5 days to do it...and trust me, there was fabric flying everywhere!

Here's the finished product:
His briefcase was always stuffed to the brim so I increased the gusset from 2 inches to 5 inches.  I planned on doing a drop in lining but I really didn't like the sloppy look so I stitched in the ditch on the seams to anchor the lining. 

I posted the bag on a sew website asking a couple of questions and a number of people were interested in my pattern...I've never made a pattern before but the idea is exciting....I think that will be my next adventure. 

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Whew! Just in time...Bunny & Carrot.

Whew!  Just in time...Bunny & Carrot.

I offered to serve as a pattern tester for Liel.  This is an inde pattern maker who makes children's toys.  I wasn't chosen but did get this pattern half off for applying! 

The bunny was tricky but only because it's so small.  I think the next one I do will be 50% bigger.  He turned out very cute though.. I used minky fabric so he's incredibly soft.  I also used plastic eyes and nose and skipped the mouth.  These were inherited from my MIL and I always enjoy when I find a way to use her supplies. 

The pattern also came with a carrot suit.  This was a bear to make!  It looks easy enough and it really wasn't difficult but there was a lot of felt, inside and out.  I think it I EVER make it again, I'll use cotton fabric for the inside.  It would make the whole process much easier and since you really can't see the inside, I think it would be just fine.  

This is for my 10 year old granddaughter.  Here's hoping she loves it!  

Sunday, March 18, 2018

Lane Raglan, times 3

Lane Raglan, times 3

I'm still working on perfecting that Lane Raglan by Hey, June patterns and I think I've finally done it. 

I added an inch to the neckline following this tutorial.  Then I downsized the hips to an XL and took in the waist one inch.  I shortened the neckband 1.5 inches.  The end result is an almost perfect fit and a super cute and comfy shirt.  I think I'm going to be living in these shirts. 

The fabric is brushed poly from Cali fabrics.  It has great stretch and recovery and it is unbelievably soft!  The price was very reasonable as was the shipping. 

Here's the final product:

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Lane raglan, part 2

Lane raglan, part 2

I joined the Hey June! facebook group and asked for some help.  Fabulous people, sewers!  Another sewer had the same issue and had contacted the pattern designer who gave her some tips for making that neckline smaller and she, of course, shared them with me. 

I added an inch to the neck line and the tops of the sleeves.  I also thought I'd try the size small.  The neckline is MUCH better but the smaller size is a bit tight in the shoulders. 

I'm going to try this again with the added inch to the size medium and I think I will have found the PERFECT fit! 

Stay tuned....

Saturday, March 3, 2018

Lane Raglan by Hey June patterns

Lane Raglan by Hey June patterns

I've been working on so many things lately that I never had time to finish this shirt and blog about it.  I had seen a ton of good reviews online about it and it looked easy enough so I thought I'd give it a go. 

I made it in a size medium with XL adjustment at the hip to accommodate the pear shape.  It sewed up easy but the fit was not great.  The top was just to big, and was showing my bra strap.   (hate that...)  I cut 3 inches off the neckband and reapplied and that helped.  It's still a bit big so next time I will ignore the sizing chart and just cut a size small.  The hips were also to big and I ended up adjusting 1 1/2 inches on both sides to make it smaller.  Definitely need to go down a size there too.

I love the look of it on the dress form but not sure how much I'll wear it because of the neckline issue.  I also wonder if the stretch of the body might have a lot to do with size.  The next fabric I bought to go with it is has a lot less stretch....Hmm...might cut larger and size down just in case.

Here's the final garment....


Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Sharing your passion...

Sharing your passion...

It's midwinter break time here in Michigan so the kids are off of school for a couple of days.  My 10 year old granddaughter and I had been talking about sewing at Christmas and she seemed interested.  So I snagged her after school friday night and we had ourselves a sewing retreat!


She started with a pillowcase for her bed.  Super easy straight sewing.  I showed her how to line up the raw edges with a mark on the machine but even I sometimes find that annoying because I'll find I've drifted over to a different mark if I don't pay close attention.  I put a piece of red masking tape on the 1/2 inch line and she lined up her fabric against that.  It made it much easier for her.  Then I just talked her through it.  


She learned how to use the iron (carefully!) and that the machine IS a machine and needs to be respected.  



She did fabulous.   Here's her third project....a funny pillow for her bed!


She was so proud of herself!  I was so proud of her, too!  I actually had to force her to stop because Grandma was getting tired.  

She told me that someday she'd like to have her own sewing room and make her living sewing..........
Sharing your passion....what could be better than that?

Still playing with Minikins...

Still playing with Minikins...

I'm still trying out the minikins by Sarah Lawson from Sew Sweetness.  Here's my latest try using Tula Pink fabric.  LOVE Tula Pink with this bag because it highlights the animals in her fabrics.

They are also great scrap busters.  On the blue octopus I also used scraps of Linen I had left over from a picture frame project.  The elephant I used raspberry that came from who knows!  I've had it so long.  I had to do some hunting to find the raspberry thread, I can tell you!

When top stitching, I've been changing the top thread to make sure it matches the fabric so I sewed white on the octopus and then blue on the linen.  It's a much nicer look I think.

I just finished making 6 emmaline retreat bags for a client too but neglected to take a final picture.  :-(

Sewing on...