Thursday, December 27, 2012

Fitting....Still a Struggle

Sometime in 2011 in this blog, I vowed to create a set of patterns or slopers that would fit me perfectly.  I am pleased to report that I have made some progress.  I purchased more books, videos, went to workshops with experts and practiced.  Well, sorry to say that I have not mastered the process.  You see, I'm lazy and always in a hurry to see the finished product that I tend not to want to make a muslin for everything.  Of course when I don't make the muslin, the fit is less perfect.  So as of today, my new pledge to myself and readers is that I will now add a 1" seam allowance to all seams that require some fit even after fitting adjustments.  I'm finding that I need to do this for the granddaughters as well.

I now understand what Cynthia Guffey ment when in her workshop on fit she told us that many women stopped sewing garments when they got older and their figures changed; they started making quilts and purses.  Yes I do understand, however I'm still determined to find a way to have less sewing drama and stress around the fit of garments.

Went a little crazy tonight and ordered $125. of fabric from the Fabric Mart's year end sale.  Some for as little as $1. p/yd.  Will let you know if I am pleased with my purchase.  Guess I'm a little tired of Hancock Fabric, since it is the only game in town.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Cute Skirt

I made this for my younger granddaughter.  Very easy, but check waist measurement against actual pattern pieces.  I used a flocked taffeta with velvet as the contrast.  I've made a few other things for the holidays and I'll post as soon as I can retrieve them.

Hope everyone's Christmas was blessed and memorable.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Debutant Dress ^%*&##

I was relatively disappointed in this pattern as the collar is really misleading and the fullness of the dress is really much less that the picture depicts.  I eliminated the collar and redrafted the top.

It was a really nice affair and we were pleased.  And ya'll didn't have to come bail me out of jail for teen abuse!  lol

Friday, October 26, 2012

New Vogue Patterns *&#%@!

I know I haven't posted much this summer and early fall basically because of my obsession with Pinterest.  But now I have a serious vent!  Vogue Patterns...."What the______".  Each new issue of Vogue will usually have several patterns that I am dying to get, just waiting for Hancock to have them for $3.99 so I can buy all of the ones I like.  However, this season they have really disappointed me.  The patterns are either way too big with too much fabric (3-5 yds in a jacket) or way too costumey (thats probably not a word), you know looking like it should be in a period play or something.  Maybe its just me or my age showing, but I have only found one thing that I like and its the red dress under that gray jacket that has way too much fabric in it V8866.  Oh well, maybe the holiday issue or early spring will bring something I really like.

Is it just me ya'll?

Monday, September 24, 2012

ROAD TRIP.....The Original Sewing and Quilt Expo @ Birmingham

Hi Everyone:

I returned Saturday night around 10:30 p.m. from three days at The Original Sewing and Quilt Festival held at Birmingham, AL.  Let me tell you it was really a fabulously put together event.  I took five classes for a total of $119.  The average cost is about $20 per class, some more depending on the time over an hour.  I learned so much about fitting from some real experts like, Louise Cutting, Cynthia Guffey  and others.  I must admit that I knew nothing about some methods of pattern adjustment i.e., the seams and hinges method.  The class I had was hands on and we used 1/2 sized patterns for practice.  I was amazed at how easy it was and can't wait to try it on real patterns.  This method is now being taught at colleges and universities.  The textbook is "Fitting & Pattern Alteration" which can be purchased from Amazon for $89.  I purchased it from the vender at the show and it reads like a novel (not really,  I just like it).  Information on the seams and hinges method is also online, so you can just google it and see what you think.

Louise Cutting and Cynthia Guffey both were excellent.  Of course they had fabric for sale and I was very good and only purchased 3 pieces.  However, I did purchase five of Louise Cutting's patterns which are pricy as they are by an independent pattern maker.  I had tried her one seam pants several years ago and they just had too much fabric in them for my taste, but I noticed at one of the new designer fashion shows that they seemed less full.  I asked her about this and was told that yes they had been tweaked and instructions were online for the changes if you had already purchased the pattern.  So I'm planning to try it again.  I also purchased some of her elastic that  makes a wonderfully comfortable waste band.

This was the fourth Original Sewing and Quilt Expo I've attended and the first in Birmingham, the others were in Atlanta.  Because this was the first time in Birmingham, there were not as many vendors.  I especially missed Vogue Fabrics and the Wool House vendors, however, I saved me money because Vogue Fabrics has such a large selection and the Wool House has great quality linen as well as wool (you know down here in the really deep south, we wear linen year round:  We just darken the color selection and weight for winter).  I know the temptation to purchase would have been too great to pass up especially when you live in a town that only has a Hancock and a few upholstery fabric shops.

Overall a good time was had by all especially since my travel buddy agreed to drive as I now have  serious anxiety about driving outside of my area.  I guess its a senior thing.  I don't care as long as I can get someone else to do the driving.

This show travels to many cities, so if there is one near you; I highly recommend you go.  Check then out online at (I think thats the correct link).  If not google it.  It is well worth it.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Independent Pattern Compant

If you are not familiar with independent pattern designer, Loes Hinse check her out. I really like her simple and classic designs. This will take you dto her site. Http://

Sunday, May 13, 2012


My garage has always been a place where I either hide stuff or find fabulous stuff for lack of a better word.  When I was married, I remember my husband asking why did I just throw things into the garage and end up with a mess that he had to clean up because he was meticulous with everything and of course he had to have enough space to 'fool-around-with' the corvette.  Yes, it was red.  I was relatively offended as I usually was and said he was mistaken as I hardly ever went into his precious  garage.  Later, of course, we were divorced and I tell you within three months, I could not get my car into the garage.  I would just stand there and say if only this house had more storage space, I would be able to put my car into the garage.  As usual, I had deceived myself.  There was no one else to add to the stuff in the garage but me.  Oh well, that's water under the bridge.

In 1999, I moved into a new house with a shiny, clean and roomy double garage.  I had shelves and cabinets installed and just stood back and admired all of the wonderful SPACE.  Well as time passed, and I continued to purchase things, furniture, lamps, rugs, Christmas decorations, power tools, tool boxes, storage boxes, comforter sets, drapes, shoes, clothes and of course patterns and fabrics.  Now I must interject here that the fabric and patterns were for many things; comforters, drapes, purses and handbags, clothing for the granddaughters school, summer and special occasions, drapes and bedspreads, pillows and place mats for my daughter's new home.  So now my garage is filled with some Christmas stuff, a few power tools and regular tools, storage boxes and bins but mostly, I'm embarrassed to say fabric.

Now mind you, over the years I had planned to whittle it down.  First there was charities and yes I did give some of it to the senior citizen center, friends who sewed, and church groups.  However, the following incident most clearly describes how I REALLY felt (and still do feel) about my fabric.  I had not sewn for a while and a dear friend suggested that I have a garage sale and include fabric.  I thought this was a nifty idea and surely there were large groups of people who loved fabric as I did who would be willing to take if off my hands a the bargain prices I was asking.  Needless to say, I had few customers who were interested in fabric.  Then it happened; my heart started to beat fast as I caught site of a little woman coming towards me with a stack of fabric almost as tall as she.  Apparently she did not speak a lot of English as she pointed to the stack and said "Two dolla?"  I asked incredulously,, "Each?"  She shook her head and again pointed towards the stack and said "Two dolla all!"  I wanted to snatch my wonderful fabric from her, but instead I reached for it and said very firmly "No".  My friend walked away and I could hear him laughing hysterically inside my house.  Immediately, I started to inform the customers as they were going through my things and bargaining that the sale was over and lowered the garage door.  How could someone offer two dollars for my beautiful, cottons, silks, wools, and various and sundry other fabrics such a psaltery price?  R U FREAKING KIDDING ME!  (Sorry, let me compose myself)

Consequently, in my garage are trunks, large plastic storage bins from Walmart, decorative sewing boxes, baskets,other boxes and yes even plastic bags all filled with fabric of all types, sewing books, videos, sewing machine manuals, notions of every type and various and sundry other sewing stuff.  Inside my guest bedroom are more sewing books, hope chests and dressers and chest of drawers all filled with fabric.

Now for the sewing room, it is organized, fabric neatly and exactly folded and color coordinated, thread on racks and drawers according to color and use and the patterns are all separated by type, for whom they were purchased and by pattern company.  The secret is that it has taken me 40 years to come up with a system that doesn't drive me crazy.  Now that I am happily retired, I get real pleasure in going into my sewing room and seeing every thing in order and in its place.  Yet with all of this organization, if I put something down, like glasses, scissors, marking pens I catch you know what finding it immediately.  I have now taken to saying out loud "That's why I have twenty of everything".  Oh well..........

All of that being said and confessions made, I ask you am I a hoarder?  I think NOT.  I'm just one of thousands of women who love to sew, purchase fabric, patterns and other sundries related to the creative art of sewing.  I know that I am happiest when I am creating and learning and doing etc........... all around the wonderful art of sewing.

Now for all of the "haters" suffering from "sewing room envy", here are a few photos of refuge.  lol.....Really, I'm kidding about the haters and envy, but here is my answer to those wonderful spaces we see in the magazines, catalogs and sewing videos.

You'll notice there are no pictures of the garage.  heh,heh,heh