Wednesday, June 29, 2011

sewing mini break

Okay I didn't work on the shirt today, instead I watched video on sew-what's new, and went to a few more sewing sites.  At least I am keeping my word.   Now, I got detoured and ended up watching........a horse being trapped in ice (suppose to be sewing) an elephant trapped in a mote and then getting electrocuted.  Don't you just hate it when things take you away from what you are suppose to be doing?  Another thing I went to look at Buffalo, New York to see how many sewing and fabric shops they have there.  I'm back to Buffalo again in my mind.  To stay or not to stay here in Minnesota is the question.  I do know what I want to be doing though, for the time being there is a lot on my plate mentally at the moment and I guess these distractions are helping some.  Tomorrow i will put the sleeves in the shirt.  Mind you I've not looked at one direction.  My mind sees how the pieces are suppose to go.  I was determined though to cut the pattern out.  This time I stapled all of the directions together so I can read them like a book. 

Tuesday, June 28, 2011


I have had a time with this shirt.  First off I cut the pattern and I shouldn't have done that, I should have known from experience that it would probably be too small.  Well it was, so now that I've cut it out I wanted to add ............then I used the muslin but I gooffed on that as well because it was too large.   So then I thought I would just baste this material.   Every time I thought I had the fit right, I noticed that I had to take out half and inch on both sides.   Next time I am going to try something a little more different to make it easier the error was on my part though.  I was determined not to mess up this shirt, because I got the fabric from Toronto last year. At least I am still keeping my promise in working on something daily.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

books today

These are the latest of my sewing arsenal. Make your own patterns by Rene Bergh seems to be the best so far, because it has good pictures, so therefore I will be able to reference it easily. I've just scanned through the book but I like what I see and I am going to play around with it as soon as I finish the shirt that I am going to make. I really have to get over the fear of these patterns. But the lines on the patterns drive me crazy and that's why I've been looking for other options. The lines are so close together until I am not able to tell if it means 18,20 because they seem to run together.

The couture sewing is by Claire Shaffer and practically anything she puts together is informative even if there aren't a lot of pictures I can follow the way she writes. I've also skimmed over this book and think it is primarily talking about the origin of Couture and then there are a few examples of various other designers that she refers to as well. Also there are the basics from pockets, to sleeves, skirts ect. This book is updated and I caught the review on Amazon and thought that I would give it a try. I am quite sure that while my sewing gets better this book will be of greater value. I am really forcing myself to do this pattern. There is the lazy way...........I had a 90.00 blouse that I brought from Nordstrom some time back and I wore that white blouse until I wore the white out, but I didn't want to throw it away. I like the style because it was the first time that I brought a blouse that fit my body and I didn't look boxy. So I took the blouse apart and use it as a pattern. I also want to learn how to put on a fancy collar.

Most of the time I get ideas from these books even though I might not be able to follow the written word from them. It makes sense when I am reading it, but if there is no pictures it's hard for me to put things in place sometimes. There is another book with DVD with Claire Shaffer and I will get that next because it goes along with the book. I read the reviews on it and they have been pretty positive. So I will keep looking over these books and reading until something clicks. Once I see the picture in my head I'm good to go. When I was going to beauty school many moons ago, I would tell the teacher to show me..........don't tell me about degrees and angles. The pictures or watching it puts things right into place. That's how I became a really good hair cutter, now if I can just apply this to sewing I am going to be fine. Already though I have people fooled. They really think I know what I'm doing and I just laugh inside. I think You just have to have the eye for it.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

finished skirt

I decided to leave the bottom of the skirt frayed. For some reason I like that look. I have been working on this since 2:00 this afternoon and finished around 4:00 this afternoon, but that was due to bobbin problems. My error of course. Stuck with it, but I finished at last. I had trouble with my bobbin and it kept jamming. Then I noticed that the machine doesn't like to mix two different types of threads sometimes. I had blue jean thread on the spool, and because I couldn't seem to get the button hole right and the bobbin kept jamming I decided that I would change the bobbin thread. Instead of having blue jean in the bobbin I switched to Egyptian cotton thread, and then every thing ran smoothly. In the mean time I will have to take some more of the waist in but for the time being I will do that later on. I also decided to put a zigzag stitch to support the frayed bottom. Now I am going to work on making a cop blouse. Don't know if I will do the pattern or not, just want to make a couple of things to wear for the summer.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

hit and miss

I had every intention of working on the skirt. I am using my Bernina 160 and forgot how to use the manual button hole foot, not the one that works automatically. Then the bobbin thread started to tangle. I attempted to make a buttonhole three times. I think I going to change the bobbin thread to a lighter thread and see if that works better tomorrow. At least I was on the machine for an hour trying to set things up. I'll pat myself on the back. I have to thank my pal Ernie............this woman can screw up any day I have, because I know that if she calls it will be my reason not to do anything, because she will keep me on the phone for at least two hours. The trouble with that: she's doing something while she is talking on the phone with me, but if I am on the sewing machine I have to stop what I'm doing and because if I don't I will make a mistake. That my excuse and I'm sticking to it!

Monday, June 20, 2011

pushing myself

Today I forced myself to go out of the house. Primarily to keep my promise that I made to myself to complete my UFO. So I did get the blue jean thread. Then I brought gutterman thread 1094 yard. 8.00 ! Joanne's out to be shot. Yes that's right shot! but still I bitch and sew. I brought a black and a white spool. The blue jean was high as well. Then of course I walk over to get some needles. Viking has a section right there in Joanne's but they are separate from the store. They sell inspira and I got three packs of those. I like them because I get more use out of them than the smetz needles. I still am going to find a way to possibly get the organ needles. For the time being I will stick with what I am using. I hurried up and got out of the store. To tell the truth I am never tempted to buy anything in Joann's only when the have a sale. I really wanted to go to Mill end fabrics but then I would have walked out of the store without getting the needles. So I did the right thing. I'll go to mill end in the next couple of weeks............and that's a big maybe.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

train of thought

I think I am going to devote time just following the blogs on a weekly basis. I notice when I do that.....that it makes me want to go and sew something. Even if I am on it for just a few minutes. Sometimes though, I forget to take the pictures. I notice that on some of the blogs women take pictures of projects in progress. So that is something I have to remember to do, in addition to just forcing myself to do something. I believe when I get my 7700 that I will be on the sewing machine everyday.

For the time being, I am starting and stopping. Just like with the blue jean skirt and running out of thread. It's a habit I should get into, involving picking up thread even when I don't need it. I am out of white thread, and black thread because, they are two most common thread used. Even though some time back I picked up blue jean thread and didn't have the denim at the time. It was a 6months or more before I got the denim, but the thread was there. These woman all seem to have their stuff in order, and looking at the blogs I feel so disorganized. So what to do? Start organizing! Just a few simple steps. It's sure nice to follow the ladies. Sometimes my jaw drops or I get an ah ha moment on something. They are all incredible with their blogs, and the dedication. It appears that even though some don't have a big following; just the idea of blogging and showing, taking pictures is cathartic.

For this period in my life I think I am really going to have to concentrate on the sewing fact. Sometimes you don't want to think about your health and what's bothering you. So I am going to make it a weekly habit of checking in with the ladies and looking at what they do. It will help me, and inspire me. It feels great just to look at the creativity out there. The ladies don't know it but these blogs really make a person feel worth while in that there is a common bond, with ladies who don't know each other yet encourage either directly or indirectly. It is still a constructive day even when you can read what someone did, because the underlying thought is: "I'm going to make something" I just want to put that out there, because there may be someone out there like me who may be going through something, or just may be stuck in a rut. Going back and forth on these blogs gives you ideas and incentive.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

skirt in progress

This is the band that I put on the blue jean skirt. I wanted a more flatter fitting look. I put the zipper in, and just when I was going to complete the skirt..........I ran out of thread. So now this is going to be a UFO until I get the thread. Haven't decided whether or not to put a hem in the skirt. This is the heavy denim so I think I am going to leave it alone. So far though it doesn't look that bad. I didn't quite measure the waist right, and it appears I will have to take half an inch in, the weight of the denim alone has made the waist larger, but I would much rather have it too large than to small. I really like how the flat felled seem came out.........I finally got the picture of how this is to go, had to watch the video on youtube three times. I really need to learn how to arrange stuff on this page. Design it yourself clothes is really good with the pictures. Haven't tried anything yet, but I am going on the right track.

Just got the muslin in and I will attempt to make some blouses or shirts. My goal is to use up the stash that I have while adding on, and so far I've not been able to do that....but I am taking one step at a time. Who could ask for anything more?