Monday, May 27, 2013

Pattern Enhancement x2 - both Knitting and Sewing

Sewing Pattern Enhancement
No surprise about these sewing patterns.  I ordered them the same day as the Vogue patterns, they just took slightly longer to arrive.

They're both Sewaholic patterns.
1. Cambie Dress - light to medium weight wovens.
2. Alma Shirt - light wovens.

I'd say both of these have a slightly 50s, retro vibe, especially if sewing the peter pan collar version of the Alma.  It's funny because G. came home recently from Fremont (Seattle neighborhood) saying he'd seen a store he wanted to take me to with 50s vibe clothing.  He said he thought it was style that would suit me.  Little did he know I'd already beat him to the punch.  We spend Saturday morning in Seattle with the kids at Folklife Festival (super fun and great people watching!), then headed to Fremont for lunch and to check on our family condo.  We visited the 50s, retro clothing, however no way I was going to spend upwards of $200 for a red twill circle skirt.  Can totally make that myself, especially once the sewing room is done.

Which other Sewaholic patterns am I drooling over... almost all of them I think!  Thurlow Trousers, Lonsdale Dress, and especially the Robson Coat!

Knitting Pattern Enhancement
1.  I had pre-ordered Botanical Knits, by Alana Dakos, a few months ago.  While I received the digital copy immediately, the print book just showed up along with an extra pattern for having pre-ordered.  Beautiful patterns!  We're tentatively thinking of a fall trip to New York to visit Big G's parents and possibly to coincide with Rhinebeck - this could be the source of a fall sweater.  My first pick would probably be Twigs and Willows for a fall cardi.

2.  The second book is Amy Herzog's, Knit to Flatter.  I had a B&N gift card to use and had wanted a copy.  I haven't had all that much of a chance to peruse it yet, but I am excited to look into it.  I've been coming around more and more to not just picking up clothes to buy/make because they are o.k., but to really think about what works for me - body shape, style, ability to parent 2 kiddies in, and ability to teach in.  I need to stop buying/wearing/making stuff that is shape and style-less!

Thrift Refashion

We happen to live about 2 blocks from a women's/children's thrift store.  It's a pretty hit and miss experience to find stuff for myself or the kids, but sometimes I do see something worth grabbing.  I don't usually buy clothes for the kids that require refashioning (so not worth the energy for the amount of time they'll wear it!), but sometimes I'm drawn to something for myself that needs a little fixing.

First item I grabbed was a deep purple pair of cropped pants from Eddie Bauer.  Ripstop, 100% cotton. They fit just a tad large in the hips, but were quite large in the waist causing a lot of sagging.  Simple fix.  I added a piece of sewn in elastic across the back waist facing, much like toddler pants.  These are perfect for hanging around in this summer, casual BBQing, gardening, etc.

 No before photos, but they fit fine now.  No sagging, not tight, even some nice breathing room thanks to the elastic!  I took about 3 inches out of the waist using the elastic.  I don't know if this method would work if I needed to take out much more.

Comfy pants for less than $7!  Next up is this't been taken apart, but not put back together again.  I couldn't resist the fun butterfly print.  It was several sizes too big, plus being petite it needed some serious hemming.  I'm going to hem it from the waist so that I don't lose any of the motif along the bottom.
Hopefully I'll have a finished skirt next week.  I need to recut the front and back skirt pieces, trim the facing, find a new zipper, and sew it all back together.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Pattern Enhancement Day#2

My order of sale Vogue patterns arrived in record time.  Wish I had done a more thorough search of the blogosphere and ordered a few additional ones.  Of course, I didn't find the yearly round-up of best patterns on PatternView Central until just this morning.  Oh well.

The 3 patterns from Vogue are:
V8884 - A trench coat with a variety of options
V8903 - A classic shirt dress, buttons all the way down
V1192 - Anne Klein lined dress with side ruching

I'm still waiting on a set of patterns from Sewaholic...not sure which ones I want to start on first!

G. made progress with dry-walling the sewing room this weekend.  He sanded until his arms wanted to fall off, creating a crazy amount of dust!  C. thought Daddy was a ghost, but a funny one, not a scary one.  C. went off to Grandma's this afternoon to play with a little cousin.  We went and bought baby chicks with Grandma today, so the kids were going to help Grandma tuck the new chickies in to their new home.    This is the last week of preschool for C.  It was only one day/week this year, but I guess we have to get ready for going 2 days/week next year in the 3's class.  I'll be teaching 3 days/week next  year, so I'm not sure what we're doing for childcare and getting C. to school on her days.

Little G. is down for his afternoon nap.  I think I'll check HBO Go to see if Game of Thrones Ep. 8 is online and then sit down and knit!  What a treat!

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Pattern Enhancement

As well the as the online pattern purchasing this week, I did manage to make it to Joann's...I had a few specific patterns I was searching for, but of course I got there and Butterick's were on sale.  All in all I added 10 patterns to my stash.  It truly is a stash at this point because I'm not yet equipped of for actual sewing.  G is upstairs at this very moment sanding drywall (and creating a crazy amount of dust) to finish my sewing/crafting space.  LOVE! (him and the space).  I do have my machine downstairs, and have set it up at the dining room table to do a few projects this year, but it's a hassle and a kid magnet leaving it set-up with WIP projects spread across the room.  Can't wait for my own space!
 Adding them  here will help me keep a little catalog for myself.  They are:
Vogue Basic Design V8536 -  tops for moderate stretch knits
New Look 6808 - tops for wovens
New Look 6152 from Project Runway - cape for lightweight wool/blends
Simplicity 2444 - P. Runway inspired dress for wovens
Simplicity 1882 Amazing Fit Collection - dress for wovens
Simplicity 1880 - P. Runway inspired shirt/wrap dress
Butterick B5747 - Retro 1960s dress for wovens
Butterick B5510 - baby fashion essentials - boys outfits (x2 different sizes)
Butterick B5849 - dress, light wovens
Butterick B5782 - dress, light to med. wovens

I'll add the other patterns from this week once they hit the front porch!  While I'm waiting to sew-crazyiness to commence, I've been knitting.  I'm currently 4 inches into Laura Chau's Powder River cowl in Madelinetosh Tosh Merino Light, color Vulga.  Pretty purpley-grey.  This is the second time I'm knitting it.  The first time was the shorter length and a gift knit.  This time I have no idea who it's for (which often means me) and I'm knitting the longer cowl length.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

An incredible twice in one week!  It's only because Grandma has the kids and I am home by myself before I go off to have post-birthday dinner.  Yesterday was my 37th... I'm not enjoying the crawl in age towards 40, I think because my self-concept is more that of a late 20-something.  That's when I thought I'd be having kids, as opposed to having the first at 34 and the 2nd at 36.

Tangent ended.  In my lovely alone-time just now I went on an online sewing-pattern-buying-spree!  I think I just ordered 3 patterns straight from Vogue (great sale going on), then 2 patterns from Sewaholic (Alma shirt & ???), and the Miette skirt pattern from Tilly & the Buttons.  That's not all either...I've been blog reading at the same time and have at least 8 more patterns on a list.  I plan on stopping at JoAnn's on my way home from dinner to get a few more.  I figure with the sewing room upstairs almost finished, and my serger almost purchased that the pattern collecting can begin.
Here's the birthday hats from the previous post.  Some are a little worse for wear, but they did all get worn.  Lots went home with folks, but I have about a dozen left for Little G's birthday.  Thanks to my friend Jen for using her Cricut to cut the actual hat.  The animals were cut out using the dicuts at school.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Wow, this is the first time I've signed in and written a post in's 2013.  Just rereading the few previous posts I wrote makes me want to actually keep going with blogger.  I'd like to have a document of life, whether or not anyone ever reads it.

The last 4 years in a nutshell???  Had a baby girl in 2010, moved to a new (very old actually - 1918) house at the beginning of 2012, then had a baby boy in July 2012.  This year I've been teaching part time, and I'll continue that for next year.  In between kids, husband, and teaching, we've been working on our house and I've been crafting.

On the horizon --
 - I've been reading serger reviews.  Big G and mom are starting a serger fund for my birthday.  Not sure when I'll actually get the go ahead to get it though.  I guess it depends on how expensive a model I decide on.  In the meantime I am collecting a lot of sewing patterns for future usage.
 - Big G is working on my sewing/craft space at the top of the stairs.  It started a few months ago with removing the old cedar paneling, rewiring, insulating, hanging drywall, and is now in the mudding and taping stage.  Cannot WAIT for it to be done!

Near term crafting --
- I am currently knitting a few cowls at once, plus a 2nd Hitchhiker shawl.

Over and done --
- Made the cutest birthday hats for Big C's 3rd birthday.  She wanted party hats with animals and that's what I made.  Will get a picture on here ASAP before I forget about blogging again.  Super fun hats.  I actually think we'll be able to pull them out again for Little G's first birthday in July.