Sunday, September 18, 2011

My future's so bright

This is what happens when you stay up much too late and can't sleep. The brain starts to wander you see. And while I should be thinking about upcoming plans, I'm sitting here with the startling realization that I'll have to make any Easter dress I do up next year into a nursing dress.

Now that this little thought has entered my mind, I won't be able to sleep until I've given myself a couple ideas. Thankfully, I've come up with three. However, now I can't go to bed until I write them up and stash them somewhere lest I forget between now and March of next year.

What better place than here, cached and safe from my slippery little brain?

Would you like to see?

Option number one would be this adorable, 1940's reproduction from Decades of Style. It wouldn't take much to make those buttons functional and do some kind of nursing openings into a lining underneath. Or would it?

Maybe in a linen and with a jaunty little hat to match, of course.

From Past Patterns we have option number two. This one is a pretty, 1930's number I think could be adjusted by using that little tie detail across the front to hide nursing access. Some experimentation would be in order but with the right fabric, it might work.

Again with the linen. I think layers of chiffon would be prettier but it wouldn't cover up the nursing access much, would it?

Option number three would be the easiest solution. Separates! For the top, I'd hit up Folkwear and use the Armistice Blouse pattern circa 1918 and gussy it up with all the embroidery and lace insertion befitting such a pretty thing. I'd always wanted to make one so that's a bonus in this option's corner. However, lace insertion is a time consuming process, one I might not be up to three months postpartum, or rather the baby might not allow me to be up to. If I were so inclined, I'd match it with this skirt from Past Patterns.

Of course I have plenty of time to decide or come up with a whole slew of different ideas. And there's still Christmas to consider. But I'll save Yuletide musings for a little later, perhaps once I've gotten a few maternity projects under my belt.

Everybody's working for the weekend!

So I finished the skirt but I put the waistband in wrong. I also cut the bodice piece on one of the Spring Ruffle Tops just a wee bit too short. However, I have plenty of that fabric left so it's not biggie. I just need to cut another one. My progress on the rest have been stymied by the realization that I've pretty much cut shapeless tents in my bid to come up with something that fits my pregnant belly. So I have a few adjustments to make before I proceed.

Lest you be afraid for me and/or take me up on my previous invitation to yell at me, I have started on the Fall Palette Challenge . . . sort of. No, really, I did start. However, I started on a piece that I added last minute. It's a hodgepodge of two patterns made up from some kind of lightweight walmart weirdo piece that's likely a poly blend of some sort. It's almost lining like. I have no idea. All I know is it's a beautiful burgundy color and I got four yards of the stuff from wally world's remnant basket. What four yards of anything is doing in a remnant basket is anyone's guess but it's not up to me to doubt the awesomeness of such a find. Since it is a questionable and cheap fabric, I think it's perfect for a maternity dress.

How very 40's, don't you think? I'm not in love with those sleeves so we'll be adjusting that into something more of a flutter sleeve. I also had to do a full bust adjustment on that bodice. Quite frankly, I should be doing a FBA on everything I sew given how *ahem* gifted I am in that area but alas, my laziness and fear of FBAs has kept me from doing so. I was planning to just press ahead as usual but hey, what's a challenge without a wee bit of challenge?

And so I present to you my first FBA.

I've already made up a muslin of the bodice and the fit is just about spot on. That's good enough for me.

I bet you're wondering how I'm going to get a baby belly into that thing. Well, I have a pattern in my stash that I think will help with that.

The pattern is meant for knits but since I just want to use the front skirt piece, it should suffice. Surely there's enough room with all those pleats. I'll have to cut it just a wee bit longer in the middle front to make up for how much length I'll lose covering a a belly. But I think it will work.

What say you?

Oops, I almost forgot the mention! I used Lazy Stitching's FBA tutorial for a gathered bodice found here. Thank you!

Monday, September 12, 2011

I Swear by the moon and the stars in the sky

I succeeded in cutting out the pieces for all four of my planned Spring Ruffle Tops. I'd love to show you a picture but someone has informed me that they are not the one today. I'm not sure if it's my phone or tinypic but one of them has had enough of my shennanigans of late and is not speaking to me.

This is what appeared when I googled "not the one."
Yeah, I don't know either.

But trust me. They're all waiting underneath my coffee table for their chance to meet up with my iron first thing in the morning. My goal for tomorrow is two tops and a skirt. Think I can do it?

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Always something there to remind me

I have crafting ADD.

As you know, I'm supposed to be working on my Fall Palette Challenge. True to my nature, something else has taken up my attention, namely clothes that fit my fat belly. It seems everything I own is either increasingly tighter or increasingly shorter if not both. So I think I'm going to take a very short break from the challenge to sew up a couple quickies lest I be forced to wear H's band tees and my Flyers pajama shorts everywhere.

Not a good look, unless you love the Broad Street Bullies of course. Not that they've bullied anyone in ages mind you.

Thanks to the vast world of my fellow sewing bloggers, this project should only side track me for three days at most. What's not to love about an easy to use tutorial? I'm thinking this skirt from Sew, Mama, Sew in a linen looking navy blue and a few versions of Rae's Spring Ruffle Top using some of the fabrics I bought from's Everything's $1.75 section last spring.

While I'm doing that, I can finalize the details of my maternity alterations and find the swedish tracing paper I've misplaced.

Feel free to yell at me if I'm not back to the challenge by Thursday.

I'm sorry, Mama

I never meant to hurt you. I never meant to make you cry but tonight, I'm not using Bisquick.

This is the face Eminem will make if he finds out what I've done to his song.

I grew up in a strictly Bisquick home. No other baking mixes, be them store brand or otherwise wer permitted in our household. And rightly so. Bisquick pancakes are only the fluffiest, most awesome things in the world, even better than Denny's. However, mr man in law buys whatever's on sale. And since I never turn down food I didn't have to cook, I've gotten used to them.

They're actually pretty tasty.

As a bonus, they don't require milk or eggs which saves me a few pennies and leaves me with two extra eggs when I make breakfast for dinner.

So tonight, we used Krusteaz.

Unfortunate name not withstanding, I love them. But don't worry, Mom. I still have a soft spot for the good stuff. There's a whole box of it in my cabinet.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Are you scared?

Untitled #9

Because I was. Those colors I posted yesterday just weren't sitting well with me. I spent an hour or so combing through my fabric stash and pattern collection and finally settled on something I like better.

What do you think?

It works so much better than that hot mess I posted yesterday. I also narrowed down the list of projects to a much more manageable six pieces. This means I have to finish one a week to end on time. The primary question is should I get the easier ones of the way and save the dress for last or do I tackle the hard stuff and the rest will be the breeze?

Isn't that dress to die for? I know, I know. It resembles a retro dentist's smock. But trust, it's adorable. Or at least it will be. This dress will combine two firsts for me, working with knits and my first attempt at an Ottobre pattern. Oh, three actually since I'll have to figure out a way to make a sheath dress fit a baby belly. Where there's a will, there's a way . . . or a hot mess. Let's hope for the former, shall we?

And now for the actual fabrics.

See that cute black and turquoise checkered business? Yes, yes, that will be my Joan Holloway dress, oh yes indeed. Let's cross our fingers that I won't have to take out too many seams. There's also a black denim in there that will be worked into a little jacket with a Peter Pan collar. A warm black corduroy will be fashioned into a perfectly pleated skirt. That bright flash of bright aquamarine will make a lovely wrap sweater and the pretty floral silk looking fabric in the bottom corner will be turned into a pretty little sleeveless blouse.

Wish me luck!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Fall Palette Challenge Update

I'm still here, lest you worried I would ditch you so soon. I've been combing through patterns and fabrics, looking for the best way to accomodate a baby belly in a way that my sewing skills can handle. After all, if you can't figure out what to sew, how are you going to get anything under a presser foot?

Honestly, I'm a little iffy on these colors. I know I'll use them. I'm just not sure they make for a cohesive color palette. But I'm trying my best to use up some of this massive stash that's threatening to overtake my house like a rolling tide.

Tomorrow I'll take pictures of the fabric and post pattern ideas. But just to give you a bit of a preview, start thinking about what would happen if Joan Holloway sashayed into Sterling Cooper in some turquoise and black houndstooth.

It will be my first time working with knits and truth be told, I'm a little intimitated. But you have to start somewhere, yes?

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Don't you feel like crying?

Look at the details on this dress. The sleeve treatment, the pleated and crossed bodice, the flowing skirt. Oh yes, I'd love to put this on my list. But it's a Marfy. So what, right? Uhm not quite. These patterns have no seam allowance, which fine, I can not be so lazy and add those. The problem is they don't come with directions.

Does that look like a dress you could put together without help? Not for my level of expertise.

Le Sigh

Instead, I punish myself by going to the Marfy site every few months and bawling like a baby over what might have been.

Let's look a bit more, shall we?

I adore the top of this dress. It's a shame the bottom is the only part I could manage.

This one looks simple enough but I can't figure out how the bodice comes together.

Very 1930's, isn't it?

Those side pleats are divine.

Don't you just love those details?

Saturday, September 3, 2011

It's a cruel, cruel summer

Or at least it was. Sort of was anyway. The misery of southern living is that it's September and I'm still roasting as if it were the 4th of July.


So where have I been you wonder?

And thanks to the power of the internet and message board tickers I actually remember this go 'round exactly how pregnant I am. 19 weeks. Fun! Or it would be fun if contemporary maternity patterns weren't scarce and vintage patterns didn't all look like tents. As a bonus, I guess a home sewist circa 1958 didn't have to worry about proper sizing. Fitting is rather easy when everything is designed to envelop you in five yards of tacky. I'd look like a spinning top, a cranky, back acky spinning top.

Don't believe me?

I'm not doing this.

So like any good internet addicted girl, I decided to take a twirl around the internet. Luckily, plenty of sewing bloggers have tackled the issue and have given me numerous ideas for how to adapt regular patterns for maternity wear. Unluckily for me, the majority of vintage patterns I own won't exactly fit the burgeoning "sisters." And so, I find I will be vintaging up some existing patterns and kind of hodge podging something together from the stash. This is actually a good thing considering the weath of patterns and fabric I already own.

As if the prospect of outgrowning most of what I own wasn't enough of an impetus to sew my little heart out, a quick visit to Colette Patterns gave me yet another reason to break out my sewing machine and get to stitching. It's a good thing too because I have to admit I was incredibly depressed to find Sarai is set to release three new patterns in a few weeks and all of them answer the age old question of AMC fans everywhere, What Would Joan Holloway wear?

Aren't those cigarette pants just divine? And the cute little top, good gracious. Well, I know what I'll be sewing once I've evicted the the wiggly little worm I've got swimming around in here. These will be my first pair of pants ever and Sarai's patterns are just the thing to get started I think.

But I digress.

Sarai has issued a sewing challenge! It only went up a few days ago so I'm not behind. I'm not sure how fall my finished products will come out looking seeing as how I live in a land that doesn't really do autumn until very late in the year with a slight bit of winter at the end. But I'm willing to give it a go.

Wish me luck!

Colette Patterns Fall Palette Challenge

And yes, this post means I plan to return to my normal blogging schedule. Thanks to a rather energy sapping bout of morning sickness, I don't have much to update you with. However, this means all my previous projects are still on the table and I have plenty to do.


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