Monday, October 31, 2011

Is it too early to plan handmade Christmas tree decorations?

I know it is the last day of October, but my mind can't help clicking over, thinking about all the fun crafting/cooking/decorating activities that lay ahead over the next two months.

Purchasing the ingredients needed for my fruit cakes.

Dusting off the Christmas decorations and tree.

Visiting the QVB Christmas tree.

Purchasing a Christmas decoration for 2011.

A mad rush to finish handmade presents.

Hanging our Christmas stockings.

Deciding which handmade decoration to make for Christmas 2011...

~ found here ~

I am definitely going to make a set of these dollies!

~ found here ~

~ found here ~

~ found here ~

Ribbon and bead ornament
~ found here ~

Appliqued Heart Christmas Ornament
~ found here ~

Holiday Star Ornaments
~ found here ~


~ both found here ~

~ found here ~

I hope some of these inspire you to make your own Christmas tree decoration this year. Mill and I are going to have a hard time deciding which decoration we will both make this year :-)

Sam xox

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

My latest patterns.

I hope these inspire you!
Misses Playsuit Romper and Jacket 1957 McCalls Pattern (bust 34 waist 26) Complete with Factory Folds
~ McCalls 4097 ~

1950s Butterick 6743 UNCUT Vintage Sewing Pattern Misses' Hostess Aprons One Size

1940's Hollywood Pattern Lot of 4
~ Hollywood Pattern 1014, 1698, 1799, 1609 ~

Vintage 1950s Pajama Sewing Pattern McCalls 4201 Pajamas Top and Pants B34

1940s two piece Swing dress 34 bust

40s Simplicity 1672 Dress Bust 34 Size 16 Wrap Cap Sleeves Button or Tie Closing Gathers Scallops Summer

Sam xox

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Simplicity 5034 wrap dress in progress.

~ I am sewing view 4 ~

Do you ever embark on sewing projects that end up causing you more trouble than you anticipated??? 

I purchased this fabric with the intention of 'whipping up' this wrap dress. Boy was I wrong. This dress has now taken more that two weeks of intermittent sewing to get to this point...

Problems I have had thus far:
* I could not get the pleats and darts on the skirt right. I swear I followed the pattern correctly but the skirt ended up being much wider than the bodice. Also, when worn, all the pleats added a lot of weight to the hips, so I removed most of them.
* I lowered the neckline, because it was seriously choking me.
* It turns out my shoulder to waist measurement is quite short, or I have a high waist, and this is a problem when sewing a dress that wraps at the back. When first made up the back gaped terribly! I threw the dress in a ball in the corner of my sewing room for a week, then my mother-in-law suggested I raise the waist - duh of course! I raised the waist a couple of inches and good bye gaping back!

Simultaneous to this project I am making some summer pyjama shorts (or pajama if your in the US)... a quick project that is guaranteed to work.

All I have left to do on my dress is sew on the bias binding, attach the ties, and then hem. Hopefully I will get this done by the end of the weekend.

Sam xox

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

The teacher becomes the student.

Last weekend we had my sister-in-law Sarah and her partner to visit. Sarah and I spent Sunday afternoon sitting in the sun, drinking bubbles, and reading magazines as my chickens 'free-ranged' around our feet. About twenty minutes in Sarah asked me the magic question - "Could you teach me to sew?". A conversation rapidly followed that uncovered her plan to replicate a beautiful quilt she had found in an antique shop (the photos of said quilt were stunning!).

My brain clicked over as I thought of what sewing project she could embark on right there and then. I showed her the bikini I had made myself at the beginning of this year, and she was keen! We set ourselves up in the sewing room, and an evening and a morning later Sarah had her very own bikini. She did a seriously amazing job. There would not be many people who can sit at a sewing machine for the first time and manage to sew an elasticised garment using four way stretch fabric. She was thrilled to bits and I hope she has now been bitten by the sewing bug.

 ~ And sew it begins ~

 ~ Sewing elastic onto four way stretch fabric perfectly - and this was her first time sewing?!? ~

Monday evening I quickly changed from teacher to student as I began my 12 week sewing course at a local community centre. The course promised help with any sewing project I brought along. I decided on taking my scalloped jacket/skirt project as this little beauty has been taunting me for some time. I just have not had the confidence to tackle it yet. 

~ Light pink fabric is for the skirt lining, Liberty fabric is for the jacket lining, dark pink is the main fabric ~

~ The cutting tables were so roomy ~

During the class I was able to sew up a muslin of the skirt and have it checked by the teacher. The fit was perfect so I cut out my fabric. I was taught how to sew tailors tacks to mark the dart placement instead of using chalk. I have the skirt now all cut out and my homework this week is to sew it up to the point where the zipper is inserted, as I will do this in class next week.

Sam xox