TNT 8962

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One of my favorite TNT (tried and true) patterns is Vogue 8962. I have made it several times before here and here. It’s easy, flattering, fast and just what I needed to end the winter season heading toward spring.  Snow was falling, but I knew that the sun will shine in a few days and it is here today! I grabbed some fabric from my stash and whipped up a new top by afternoon. I’ve worn it several times already.

TNT-Brown-stripeThe interesting thing about this pattern is how the stripes meet in the back forming a “v” shape. I love it! The pattern picture shows a stripe fabric, but never from the back so it was quite a surprise, and in a very good way.TNT-Brown-stripe_3

What’s going on?

I have a few things in progress, however I’m making lots of plans for the next couple of months. This week will be an overview of things to come including WIPs (works-in-progress), new fabrics for spring and a couple of light fixtures I’m making for the house. I’m not sure which project is the most exciting!

Works-in-progress

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First I have two projects I’m working on. I want a little more color in my living room. At the same time my yarn stash of leftover skeins is getting out of control. Yep, an afghan of many Wendy colors! I picked a basket of colors that coordinate with my living room and the lime green patio furniture outside the windows. I rib knit a couple of inches and from there on I’m knitting in garter stitch with a very occasional few rows in stockinette. When I get tired of a color I just switch to something different. I’m not even giving much thought to the weight of the yarns other than doubling some of them at times. One end will have fringe from all of the loose ends and I will need to do some finish on the other end. I might bind that edge with suede, wool, or crochet an edge. Sometimes it’s just relaxing to just knit without having to worry about shaping or fit!

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The second work in progress is some embroidery with no plans on where I will use it. I love a little handwork now and then, but when I’m almost finished with a project I can’t get myself to wait for a small labor-intensive detail. I’m making some elements to have on hand to enhance a project when I desire. I may even design something just to use these decorative pieces. Shown here is the beginning of three button-hole tabs for a future jacket or blouse.

Fabrics for Spring

My spring wardrobe sewing plans are coming together. I just drafted a classic straight pant that I hope will work well with some of my knits. Then I can modify the pattern to work with the linen pants that I love to wear in summer. Here are a few fabric combinations that I have grouped together to make outfits.

Projects-022115_4Green knit pants with coordinating floral and solid top options.

Projects-022115_7Thin stripe linen pants with a soft rayon challis for a blouse.

Projects-022115_6Lime green linen pants with a cotton lawn shirt.

Projects-022115_5Black linen pants with a red and black cotton and linen blouse and a stripe and plaid seersucker blouse.

I have more rayon challis coming in with some wild prints for a change. I’m normally a fall color person who struggles with spring/summer colors, but I think the upcoming season is looking up on the wardrobe front!

Light Fixtures

Projects-022115_3Then I’m making light fixtures. For several years I have admired the work of lighting designer Lindsey Adelman, but couldn’t afford the fixtures.Adelman-ceiling-light

Adelman-desk-light

Her fixtures run from around $7,500 to 15,000, but she is now offering directions and supply lists for a cool branch series. The kit for the chandelier is $145!!!! I have parts for the You Make it Chandelier, and two of the You Make it Desk Lamps. So Cool!!!!

Heartfelt Vest

Heartfelt-Vest_16I bought this amazing fabric at Allyn’s Fabrics in Denver. This store has been there forever. To give you some idea, the current owners bought it almost 45 years ago. I’m pretty sure some of the fabric is old and priceless. You have to dig while praying that the bolts at the top touching the ceiling don’t come down on you. In some areas my BSF and I needed to use our cell phones as flashlights. The staff is very friendly and it is a must stop in Denver.

I bought two pattern repeats, and proceeded on the search for the perfect jacket/vest design to show off the green border. Finally, it dawned on me that this fabric speaks for itself. I need a versatile pattern with simple lines, allowing me to make decisions on the fly. Diane Ericson’s Heartfelt Coat to the rescue! This is the same pattern I used on my first ever blog post. That hand-pieced fabric had the same requirements of simplicity with options.

Heartfelt-Vest_4After making the basic shape I spent a day making sleeves and then taking them off and adding a simple band to finish the arm opening. Then I played around with a button/ large snap closure that was too heavy for the (mystery) textile. I removed the button and heavy snaps, and added lighter snaps.

Heartfelt-Vest_1Heartfelt-Vest_5Finally I explored collar options. This multi layered bias collar is also a Diane technique. I love having a good stash and the hand-dyed green organza was sitting on a shelf just waiting for the perfect project.

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The fabric isn’t stable enough for the pockets I hoped for, so I still have a few scraps of fabric and the unused button. I plan on making a little matching purse in the next few weeks. I also have a lovely green knit slated for a pair of pants to coordinate with the vest.

Happy Valentines Day to all!

You did it again Marcy!

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I didn’t get much sewing done this week, but I did have one sewing afternoon with my BSF. This is my first pair of sewn pants in years! With all the nice heavy stretch knits available, making a well-fitting elastic waist pant is easy. Or perhaps (definitely) they fit because the designer did a great job with the pattern. I used Marcy Tilton’s close-fitting pants pattern Vogue 8859. Many of my fellow bloggers have made these pants with success and I can see why. While easy to put together they have a few extra details like the knee pleats and a back waist yoke that make these look stylish.Tilton-Slim-Pants_4

The poncho I put on Roxanne is a couple of years old, but an absolute favorite. It’s just a 25” x 50” rectangle sewn together on the long side except for a neck opening. If you don’t have one, get to your needles now! I wear it almost every morning before I warm up for the day, and just decided to put it on Roxy at the last-minute. Looks good with the pants!

Seriously? Another Black Vest

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I know I just posted a black vest refashion. While it came out well, it isn’t an everyday throw-on piece. This vest started out with an embroidered stretch denim fabric that should, in theory, work for everyday. Of course my copper silk scraps looked so good I had to make the cool button band detail. In addition the only lining fabric in my stash that looked perfect is a        dupioni silk. I did wash the silk first so I can still throw this vest in the washer.Black-Denim-Vest_2

I used Butterick pattern 5468 with the buttons being the only alteration. I think I will make this again. It could have been a size smaller and I would like a slightly softer fabric next time, for example wool would be nice. It’s a versatile pattern that has a sophisticated silhouette.Black-Denim-Vest_1

Believe it or not I have another vest soon to show in the near future. This is the year of the vest for me!

Vest Refashion and my BSF

Ever buy something that doesn’t fit, but you keep it anyway? Well that is this vest. I like that it was long, but it’s too long. I love the belted waist, but it unfortunately doesn’t fit my waist! The neck is so small that it doesn’t comfortably fit anyone. At least I liked the fabric and the pockets. So there it hung, alone in my closet, waiting for some 6 foot tall, thin woman with an impossibly skinny neck.Black-Vest-Before

This is what I did:

First I cut off about 10” of length. Then I ripped out the side seams and finished them leaving an open seam under the arm. Shaping the neck into a V solved the neck fitting problem. Then I took the extra hem fabric and made a side panel to highlight the waistband that buckles in the front. At that point it looked pretty good, but I decided that the completely open side made it difficult to find something to wear underneath. My BSF Debra agreed with me.Black-Vest-refashion_3

Time to go shopping in my stash store! Debra and I found this cool laser cut neoprene fabric and that solved the side panel issue and provided a nice contemporary lace edge for the neck. It’s so nice to have a second sewing friend to bounce ideas around. Thanks Debra.

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Speaking of my BSF, here she is finally appearing on my blog! Debra is modeling her fabulous hand painted shirt. It’s the Lynn Mizono Vogue pattern 1274 that we started together on one of our sewing days. Don’t you love the hand painted black trim? Snap tape hidden under the decorated edge secures the top. Those shoes, copper bracelet and cool glasses…you got it going on girl!Debra-Lynn-Mizono-shirt-web

Darts and Dots

Black-Grey-Shirt_4I bought so much cool fabric in Ashland last spring while attending Diane Ericson’s DOL. These two have been calling to me to make a tunic length shirt. I planned to make a shirt even before Ashland, but just couldn’t find the right pattern. I finally settled on McCall’s 6436 since it has the darts my shape needs. This fits fairly well now, but I will make just a few modifications next time to give a little more ease at the bust. With this shirt I ended up not overlapping the placket, but adding a back placket piece so I could use Chinese knot buttons. They are a lots work, but I do like the look.Black-Grey-Shirt_3

Speaking of the bust area, below is a progress shot of the shirt before I added the final details.

Black-Grey-Shirt-no-pocket I hadn’t planned on adding pockets until I saw the two big dots right where I don’t need two big dots. Even worse was one big dot and one wonky dot…I didn’t even realize the fabric had dots! Pockets to the rescue. I will never use the breast pocket, but it sure solved the problem.Black-Grey-Shirt_2

No inappropriate dots on the back…

Black-Grey-Shirt_1As this entry is sending, I’m on my way to another DOL! I know, I know…I’m a little obsessed, but I’m blaming this one on my BSF who wanted to go to Taos again. Who was I to say no? Taos last year was the event that got me so excited about creating, that I started this blog. My one year blogger anniversary is coming up!

 

Debra and Marcy I Apologize…

Black-Grey-Marcy-Dress My BSF made this dress by Marcy Tilton (Vogue 8975) and tried to convince me to sew one with her. “It will look like a big gunny sack on me” I scoffed. Well I tried on Debra’s dress when she finished and loved it! It’s comfy, clever, perfect for the change of seasons, and no, it does not look like a gunny sack. I should have modeled it, since it actually looks better on me than on Roxy.Black-Grey-Marcy-Dress_3

One does need to read the directions for this dress. The garment goes together fairly quickly despite many pieces and a few odd instructions, for example attaching a point on the hem to the bottom of the pocket.

Black-Grey-Marcy-Dress_2 I made three minor modifications to the pattern. The collar is my invention and I am very happy with it. You may see it again in the very near future. I used three fabrics instead of two, and I shortened the dress two inches so it doesn’t overwhelm me. There’s a lot of fabric in this dress, but it is light and soft so it all works. The back is pretty jazzy too!Black-Grey-Marcy-Dress_1

Citrus Summer Tunic

Citrus-Tunic-OMweb I made another tunic top from my favorite pattern Vogue 8952. This top is for summer so I used a sheer mesh knit for the sleeves and the ruffle on the bottom. I fused the mesh to a piece of solid knit to make the pocket. Citrus-Tunic-BMweb
I may add a bit of stenciling later. Both the fabrics came from a store in Dallas that we passed by while visiting my delightful mother-in-law.

I’m not sure I love the combination, but I also made this vest layer piece out of a knit that has sheer stripes on the solid black.Citrus-Tunic-w-vest-DFMweb The black is very intense so it seems a bit too opaque on top of this tunic, but I love the lines so I’m sure there will be a match with a few tops in my wardrobe.

Party Pants!

I reviewed the Jacket for this outfit a few weeks ago. Here is the entire ensemble, which I wore to a charity event last weekend.

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I felt wonderful wearing my head to toe look with lots of metallic! I constructed the palazzo pants with Vogue 8955. They took 4 yards of gold lame fabric that is actually a stable knit, and very light and liquid. 2-pieces-FMwebThe pattern was relatively easy to sew, but the waistband must fit perfectly. Tight enough to hold up so much fabric, but too tight and it would be uncomfortable for a 4-hour event. I couldn’t find a pattern for the top that I envisioned so I drafted my own!2-pieces-DMweb It took two muslins to get it right but in the end I was very happy with the lines. The entire outfit was comfortable and glamorous at the same time.2-pieces2-DMweb