I Just Kept On..another DragonFly shawl

The crochet enthusiasm hasn’t worn off just yet. I finished my second (first dragonfly) dragonfly shawl about 2 weeks ago. I thought I would actually follow directions and make the pretty border according to the pattern but found that I did not have enough yarn.

Loving this yarn. With only 4 oz I had to improvise for the border

Loving this yarn. With only 4 oz I had to improvise for the border

I improvised with double crochet clusters for the edging on this version.

double crochet chain border used for the dragonfly shawl

Double crochet chain border used for the dragonfly shawl

The handspun soysilk that was used drapes nicely and has a luxurious sheen. I spun the yarn from a 4 oz. roving and even without the border the shawl is a fairly large.

the shawl is pretty large. The color patterns is a surprise when using hand painted rovings

The shawl is pretty large. The color patterns are the surprise you get when using hand painted rovings

Enough dragonflies for now.

Wrapped up in the dragonfly shawl

Wrapped up in the dragonfly shawl

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Wardrobe Essentials: Simple Modern Sewing 3C again and F Tunic

I think I’ve got a winner! I have been wearing the heck out of the blue linen dress I made from Simple Modern Sewing Book 3C pattern. It transitions nicely into fall weather with it’s cropped sleeves. Most importantly this shift style dress is super comfortable. I decided to use a printed woven fabric and added a notch to the neckline to mix it up a little for the second dress.

Simple Modern Sewing Dress 3C

Simple Modern Sewing Dress 3C

Simple Modern Sewing Dress 3C

Simple Modern Sewing Dress 3C

I made another top from Stylish Dress Book: Wear With Freedom. As with the other tops I’ve made, the “F” top pattern was super easy to sew. I like the the slotted, petal sleeves with ties. It is roomy enough to wear a knit top underneath for warmth as the weather gets cooler. I have another cut out already. This pattern is a keeper.

Stylish Dress Book: Wear With Freedom "F" top

Stylish Dress Book: Wear With Freedom “F” top

Stylish Dress Book: Wear With Freedom "F" top sleeve

Stylish Dress Book: Wear With Freedom “F” top sleeve

Wardrobe Essentials: Japanese Styles for Everyday

It’s pretty safe to say that I am on a roll with sewing everyday casual clothes for my wardrobe. I found a blouse on Pintrest from a Japanese sewing book one day and ended up falling in love with the simplicity of the styles. I have found 3 books that I really like so far.

Stylish Dress Book: Wear With Freedom by Yoshiko Tsukiori Tuttle Publishing

Happy Homemade: Sew Chic by Yoshiko Tsukiori Tuttle Publishing

Simple Modern Sewing by Shufu To Seikatsu Sha

The books are translated into English  with easy to follow instructions (for advanced beginner) and have western sizing. Styles are fast to sew and comfortable to wear. Most can be made from start to finish in a couple of hours.  Here are some of the styles I’ve made to date. I have been wearing the heck out of them.

tylish Dress Book Wear With Freedom Book

Stylish Dress Book: Wear With Freedom Book

 

Stylish Dress Book View E instructions. I like the pleat but think I will use different sleeves next time.

Stylish Dress Book View E instructions. I like the pleated design but think I will use different sleeves next time.

Stylish dress book View E with pants.

Stylish dress book View E with pants.

Stylish dress book style E back

Stylish dress book style E back

Simple Modern Sewing drawstring casing

Simple Modern Sewing

Simple Modern Sewing 3c model from Book

Simple Modern Sewing 3c model from Book

Simple Modern Sewing 3C instructions

Simple Modern Sewing 3C instructions

Simple Modern Sewing 3C has a cool crossover sleeve detail (like a baby tee) I ended up tacking the flaps together though.  The neckline is wide enough without the flaps.

Simple Modern Sewing 3C has a cool crossover sleeve detail (like a baby tee) I ended up tacking the flaps together though. The neckline is wide enough without the flaps.

Simple Modern Sewing 3C

Simple Modern Sewing 3C with drawstring waist

Simple Wardrobe: Simplicty 1620 and Sew Chic

Simple Wardrobe: Simplicty 1620 and Sew Chic

Sew Chic View E, Simple Tunic with Ruffle Sleeve

Sew Chic View E, Simple Tunic with Ruffle Sleeve

Sew Chic view E

Sew Chic view E

This is style J modeled in the book Sew Chic

This is style J modeled in the book Sew Chic

Easy instructions with diagrams for Sew Chic Style J

Easy instructions with diagrams for Sew Chic Style J

Sew Chic Style J tied in the back

Sew Chic Style J tied in the back

Sew Chic style J Jacket tied

Sew Chic style A worn with pants

Sew Chic style A worn with pants

Sew Chic Style C

Sew Chic Style C

Sew Chic Dress C book

Sew Chic Dress C book

Sew Chic style C worn as a dress.

Sew Chic style C worn as a dress.

Sew Chic Style C with style A sleeves. The patterns are interchangeable so you can make lots of variations of the styles.  Sometimes I wear pant with the dresses

Sew Chic Style C with style A sleeves. The patterns are interchangeable so you can make lots of variations of the styles. Sometimes I wear pant with the dresses

Wardrobe Essentials: Make it Easy Simplicity 1620 and Sew Chic

Not too long ago re-making my wardrobe seemed pretty far-fetched. At my rate it would take forever. I got to thinking about what I wear on a daily basis. I realized that most of the patterns in my stash were more tailored than what I would typically choose for an easy, fuss free day.

Now this might be a Midwest thing but truth be told, when I’m not working, on an outing, or going to church you will most likely find me in some knit pants with t-shirt or jeans with t-shirt. I know, I know, I need to mix it up right?

I started looking for easy chill clothes and found Simplicity 1620. It is a simple wardrobe that has pull-on pants, a dress, tunic, short 2 piece jacket, long 2 piece jacket and a sash. No zippers, no buttons, no fuss. Fast and Easy sewing.

Simple Wardrobe: Simplicty 1620 and Sew Chic

Simple Wardrobe: Simplicty 1620 and Sew Chic

I bought linen blend fabric in different colors and got to sewing. I made no major alterations since the patterns have a lot of ease. In about 3 days I had made:

  • 2 pairs of pull on pants
  • 3 shirts
  • a short jacket
  • a long kacket
  • a dress
  • 2 sashes
  • Bolero jacket (from Sew Chic Japanese sewing book)
    Wow that's a lot of lint. Beware when you are drying Linen/Rayon blend fabric. You may want to clear the lint trap a few times while drying.

    Wow that’s a lot of lint. Beware when you are drying Linen/Rayon blend fabric. You may want to clear the lint trap a few times while drying.

    Linen/Rayon blend fabric. Very soft and drapey. I didn't even need to iron it.

    Linen/Rayon blend fabric. Very soft and drapey. I didn’t even need to iron it.

    Simplicity 1620 long jacket with 2 sided sash and brown pull-on pants

    Simplicity 1620 long jacket with 2 sided sash and brown pull-on pants

    Yellow top. I used the box pleated side. (Pattern calls for tucks)

    Yellow top. I used the box pleated side. (Pattern calls for tucks)

    Close-up of pleat detail. I also top stitched with a simple running stitch.

    Close-up of pleat detail. I also top stitched with a simple running stitch.

    Simplicity 1620 dress with sash

    Simplicity 1620 dress with sash

    Simplicity 1620 dress with short jacket

    Simplicity 1620 dress with short jacket

    I finally figured out what to do with 1/2 yard of this cool linen fabric I bought a few months ago

    I finally figured out what to do with 1/2 yard of this cool linen fabric I bought a few months ago

    Simplicity 1620 Tunic. I made one large pleat instead of 3 so that I wouldn't obscure the print as much

    Simplicity 1620 Tunic. I made one large pleat instead of 3 so that I wouldn’t obscure the print as much

    Simpicity 1620 tunic

    Simpicity 1620 tunic

Happy with the result I kept looking for more. Unfortunately I didn’t find too many more simple wardrobes like this one in the Big 4 pattern catalogs. Thank goodness for Pintrest though. I discovered Japanese clothing patterns.

My goodness. There are so many simple, easy to wear designs and they have started to publish them in English! My favorite Japanese designer at the moment is Yoshiko Tsukiori. I have her book Happy Homemade Sew Chic: 20 Simple Everyday Designs. Love it!

Simple instructions with diagrams. Jacket has only 3 patterns pieces

Simple instructions with diagrams. Jacket has only 3 patterns pieces

Simplcity 1630 dress with Sew Chic Jersey Style Bolero

Simplcity 1630 dress with Sew Chic Jersey Style Bolero

 

There are a few base patterns (graded up to American sizes) that have a bunch of style variations to mix and sew. The instructions are easy to follow with lots of diagrams. So far I have made the Jersey Style Bolero jacket. It only takes 3 pattern pieces to make. Easy, Peasy. I have more patterns cut out ready to sew. I will continue exploring  Japanese clothing style for sure.

Simplicity 1417:A dress fit for a wedding…in Vegas

My sister and brother-in-law recently decided to renew their wedding vows in Las Vegas to celebrate their 10 year anniversary.

I thought, well how cool! We would always joke about how they got married at a courthouse in plain clothes. They didn’t want to break tradition getting all fancied up. Afterall it worked for my parents and grandparents. No divorces to date.

This time my sister surprised me by wearing the pink and navy stretch denim dress I made for her a few months ago to her wedding. The pattern is Simplicity 1417. As far as she is concerned it is a dress fit for a wedding. I have to agree. She looked great!

Simplicity 1417

Here comes the bride in Simplicity 1417

Here comes the bride in Simplicity 1417

Vegas wedding. My sister and brother-in-law renewied their vows at the Las Vegas sign. 10 yrs and counting

Vegas wedding. My sister and brother-in-law renewed their vows at the Las Vegas sign. 10 yrs and counting

Just married in Vegas

Just married in Vegas

My sister all dolled up in her Simplicity 1417 dress for her wedding

My sister all dolled up in her Simplicity 1417 dress for the wedding

I Do Love This Dress!

My Little JadiBop is Growing Up: McCall’s 6736

My niece Jadin turns 10 years old this month. My goodness. I can’t believe my little JadiBop is growing up so fast. We were looking at patterns together a few weeks ago and she talked me into making her a maxi dress with ruffles from McCalls 6736. Seriously, I didn’t require and begging. This pattern is too cute!

McCalls 6736

McCalls 6736

I chose a hot pink leopard quilting cotton for the fabric and used some leftover cupcake fabric scraps for the bodice. She is soooo tiny. I bought a size 7 girl’s pattern but ended up needing to take out 4 inches from the bodice.

Cupcake fabric to line the bodice. What else do you line a hot pink leopard dress with?

Cupcake fabric to line the bodice. What else do you line a hot pink leopard dress with?

I stitched her nickname on the tie end for a little fun. (I wonder how long before she's too cool to let me call her JadiBop:-)

I stitched her nickname on the tie end for a little fun. (I wonder how long before she’s too cool to let me call her JadiBop:-)

Mccalls 6736

You don’t realize how grownup your little neice is getting until you ask her to pose for a picture and she insists that her dress would be best photogaphed on the patio couch.

Jadin shows off her her new maxi dress. McCalls 6736

Jadin shows off her her new maxi dress. McCalls 6736

Jadin dress standing (2) Jadin dress standing

 

She’s a saucy little thing.Daaawling!

Make Me a Birthday Suit: McCall’s 6083 and Simplicity 1506

When I agreed to sew a jumpsuit for a friend’s birthday I was excited and a little reluctant at the same time. Afterall, I’d never made anything for anyone outside of family.

We chose to make McCall’s 6083 View E in a black and turquoise pinstripe suiting.

McCall's 6083

McCall’s 6083

I made a few pattern alterations, made up a muslin, and made some more alterations.

I learned a lot, having made different alterations than my usual. Thank goodness for Sanda Betzina’s “Fast Fit” book. I also realized how personal making clothing for others can be. I was so worried  she wouldn’t like it at one point I almost didn’t finish. It was as if the jumpsuit being rejected would mean I was being rejected. Crazy huh?

 With some encourgement from my weaving buddy and sister  (Thanks Donna and Melanie!), I kept on working. It also helps that Ms. Neisha was the perfect first client. She was very enthusiastic but patient and knows what she likes. Once the elastic and sash were added the jumpsuit came to life. I was loving it. I made a sash in turquoise satin to add some color.

MCCalls 6083 with turquise sash

MCCalls 6083 with turquise sash

I ended up sewing the black sash and turquoise sash together in the middle and leaving the ends to hang free for a ribbon effect. A great idea from the client. I definately want to try this again. CUTE.

2 combined sashes with the ends left loose

2 combined sashes with the ends left loose

 

Ms. Neisha modeling her new birthday suit, McCall's 6083 View E

Ms. Neisha modeling her new birthday suit, McCall’s 6083 View E

 

I made a matching tie  with Simplicity 1506 View D for Ms, Neisha’s fiance. The tie was cut on the bias and backed with turquoise satin. I added his initials to give it a special touch.

Simplicity 1506 View D

Simplicity 1506 View D

Ms Neisha loved the end result. She looks really classy in her new birthday suit.