Sunday, October 17, 2010

Magazine Sighting- Simplicity 2512

InStyle Magazine has been one of my faves for years.  I have bunches of old ones that never made it to the recycling pile that I occasionally take out to thumb through.  Look what I found in this 2007 InStyle magazine. InStyleCynthiaRowley 003

Surely this will look familiar to some of you.  It is the Simplicity 2512 Cynthia Rowley skirt.  Back in 2007 I never would have known a pattern existed for this skirt but trust me I say I shrieked a little bit when I saw this.  Do you think that was sign that this should be my next project?

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

I Was A Good Girl...Kind Of

Do you remember that post about patterns and me not buying anymore patterns? There was one that I was allowing myself to get because I knew it would be on sale for 99 cents.  I have a small confession to make.  I did get the pattern I wanted (Simplicity 2572), but as you can see I was bad and picked up yet another pattern (Simplicity 2892).  Those 99 cent sales are just to hard for me to pass up.


Looking at the bright side, I didn't go crazy.  It was only 1 little 99 cent pattern.  Just one.  

Do bans work?  Have you ever succssufully put yourself on a ban or did you cave under the pressure?

I caved :-(

Monday, October 11, 2010

I Can Knit...

I know this is a sewing blog but I feel like sharing that I learned how to knit.  Over the summer the lady at the local knitting shop said she would teach us.  Last week I gave myself a little free time and took her up on it.

Knitting- Project 1

She did the cast on part so I still haven't learned how to do that yet but then she showed me how to put those needles to work.  Talk about confusing at first.  I watched her as she chanted a little knitting song and it looked pretty easy.  That is until the needles got into my hands.  I did a few stitches(?) and she guided me through it.  I was so proud of myself for learning something new.  Not so proud when I totally messed up and was purling and not knitting and then had to undo some.  Is that called unknitting or unpurling?

A scarf is in the works and you can tell it is the scarf of someone who just learned how to knit. There are some uneven areas but honestly my goal wasn't to make a perfect scarf it was to make my first scarf.  I'll figure out how to get more consistent with practice no doubt.  I held it up to the sun so you can see my moments of "learning".

Knitting- Project 1Knitting- Project 1

Knitting- Project 1

What was really great about this experience was that when I got there another lady and her were learning how to do another stitch.  I sat there for 2 hours and we knitted and unknitted.  Me doing the most basic stitch and them doing something far more advanced.  It just goes to show you that you are never to old to learn something new.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Getting Organized

This is my dining room sewing room.  I don't think that we have eaten in here in all the years we have lived here so why not turn it into something useful.  No one seems to mind at all and I am glad that space is now put to use.

Organization is not my strong suit.  On any given day you can walk into my sewing room and it will pretty much look like a tornado went ripping through.  There were a couple of things that were nagging at me and had to be done.  First off I needed a spot right next to my sewing machine to keep my at hand items.  Seam rippers, snippers, pin magnets are the items I use when I am sitting right at my machine.  I took a little shelving unit that had in another corner and put it by the machine.  Don't laugh at me but I have had this little white plastic shelf since I was in college almost 15 years ago.  A shelf is a shelf.  

Sewing Space

The green bin is something I'll explain later but on the 1st shelf there is a caddy with my seam ripper, snippers, a little ruler and anything else I may grab.  The second shelf is my thread and an empty drawer that I haven't decided what to put in yet.  The bottom has my sewing machine needles.

I dug this organizational unit below out of my basement.  It was full of my kids puzzles, craft supplies, coloring books from when they were small.  Before I buy anything I try to take a good look at what I already have and repurpose it if I can.  The colors leave something to be desired but hopefully I can make some pretty covers to take care of that.  Tutorials or suggestions are gladly accepted here.  

Sewing Space

I was happy to to add this unit because it houses buttons, twill tape, zippers, elastic, pattern tracing supplies, muslin and projects actively in progress.  As you can see it isn't full and some things may still be reorganized but it is a nice addition.  I really like the larger bins at the bottom which will be for my current projects.  I can just grab one and have everything I need is waiting  for me.  When I am done for the day I can throw it all back in there and if Lani J needs to work she won't have to worry about moving any of my things out of the way.  Hopefully this will prevent having pieces of different fabrics and patterns scattered everywhere.

My scraps are in that box on the lower right.  I just dig through to find the size or material that I need and practice or test whatever.  The little basket to the left that is cut off is my basket of patterns.  All 52 of them!

Fabric, where is my fabric you ask.  Ta da.  What better use for china cabinet?  As you can see the top shelf still has some things that need to be cleaned out but for now this is where I store fabric, interfacing, some items that need alterations, books.  Hanging to the left are some projects that my daughters were working and have decided to come back to somewhere down the road.  The knobs are nifty for hanging measuring tapes too. 

Sewing Space

There you have it.  That is my sewing room.  It will probably be organized and reorganized again and again but for just starting out I am pretty happy. I have a few things to keep me organized so I can do more sewing and less looking for things and cleaning up.

Eventually I want to get another table for just my sewing machine and put some risers under the table to get it to a nice height for cutting.  I was wondeing if the furniture could be painted to give it a fresher look.  That is for somewhere down the road though.

So now I ask you, what is your favorite thing about your sewing space and what is the one thing you would change.  I am just curious to hear.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

A Project A Week

Following all of the bloggers who participated in Self Stitched September has got me extremely envious of their lovely self-stitched wardrobes.  My goal for the month of October is to present you with at least one self-stitched item a week and actually wear it.  This forces me to get moving on my sewing.  Wish me luck!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Practice Makes Perfect

Are there any techniques that you practice just to get better?  Each time you make something that is no doubt practice but what I mean is sitting down at the machine and trying to perfect a certain technique typically using a piece of scrap fabric.  When I first started sewing I drew lines and curves on fabric and sat there and practiced sewing straight and curved lines.  Beyond that though there was nothing outside of my projects that I have done.  Shame on me probably.

I was recently reading a sewing book and it showed another way to gather your fabric so I sat down and practiced it a couple times to see if it was a technique I would prefer to use.  I am still undecided but I can tell you that doing it was 100 times better than just reading it and moving on.

None of my patterns have called for a blind hem but I know I will come across having to do it soon enough.  I took out my machine owners manual and worked through doing a blind hem.  After doing it a few times I realized I was doing it backwards so I need to go back and practice the right way now.  At least I can say I have attempted it and not just read about it.

Sewing Practice- Gathering Sewing Practice - Blind Hem

In the future I would like to get practice some of the different seam finishing techniques, using bias tape (whichI really need practice at), and also making my own bias tape.

Do you "practice" your sewing outside of the projects you make?

Friday, October 1, 2010

52 Patterns

What...when did that happen!! I sat down and did a spreadsheet of all my patterns and the magic number is 52. That is crazy. I am officially on a pattern buying ban. Kind of. I do want to get a pattern for my baby cousin. I know what I want and I am just waiting for it to go on sale, and that is IT. Seriously. I don't care what 99 cent sale is going on unless it is Vogue but I am sure that won't happen. Until I crank some fall/winter clothes that are wearable there will be absolutely NO pattern purchases.

Here they are, looking all innocent in their little basket. I will not need anything new to hold these patterns because as I said. No more!!