Monday, March 30, 2015

Lady Skater ~ Revisited

I loved this pattern the first time I saw it and was so excited to make one up for myself last January.  Then I became frustrated when the pattern did not work for me so I left it lay for some time and decided now was a great time to revisit it.

Last January I overlooked that the pattern is drafted for someone 5'5".  No wonder I felt it was high waisted on me.  Actually I'll list all the issues I had: too high waisted, dislike for cap sleeves, unpleasant fit in the neck, shoulder, bust area.

So here is what I changed this time around: 



  • I'm 5'7" so I added 1" to the bodice at the lengthen/shorten line and 1" to the skirt at the l/s line.
  • took my Renfrew TNT and laid it over the lady skater bodice.  Traced off the shoulders to the armscythe (boy the difference).  
  • 1/2" square shoulder adjustment
  • replaced cap sleeve with renfrew short sleeve
  • Used fold over elastic in waist instead of clear elastic because I hate that itchy feeling I get from it (allergic to latex)
My measurements had me between a 4 and a 5 so I went with a straight 4.  I like negative ease.  

The only hard part was remembering that the Renfrew shoulders, arms, and sleeves were 5/8" SA where as the skater is 3/8" SA.  

I used my serger for all of the construction except the bottom hem which I coverstiched. 


My first go around was my "test" but it turned out so great that I'll be wearing it everywhere for sure.

Fabric: 2 yards black cotton jersey knit from fashion fabrics club.  I picked it up in January this year for $3.95 a yard so $7.50 total.  I didn't pay attention to the cutting layout and had to cut the back skirt as two pieces (not on fold) just to get it to fit on the 2 yards.  So I have a seam down the back of the skirt on this one.  My advice: pay attention to the cutting layout! It saves you a bunch of fabric.


It fit wonderfully and I loved it so I went ahead and sewed up my desired fabric.


I love this fabric!  It was called "violet blue floral ponte double knit" from fashion fabrics club, also purchased 2 yards in Jan 2015 for $3.95/yard so $7.90 for this one too!  Sadly this fabric is now out of stock.  It is 97%poly and 3% lycra.  I feel like every purchase from them is a gamble as to whether I'll love the fabric or not, but this is one I wish I would have bought more of!


Red cotton lycra used for the bands.  I originally had the ponte fabric for the neckband but it wouldn't lay right so I had to unpick not only my serging but also the coverstitching all the way around. Ugh!  I do love how it turned out now though so it was worth the extra time.


I'm so glad I didn't give up on this pattern :)  I feel like I could make a dozen more of these!

~ Happy Sewing! ~ Kristin ~

Friday, March 20, 2015

Spring Outfit for K (Ottobre's and Jalie)

Usually I sew what comes to mind at any given time.  I get an image in my head and off I go.  Sometimes this results in clothing pieces that do not match anything....  This time I decided I would make a whole outfit for K for Spring.

K is getting a little fuller so I wanted to try a few plus size patterns.

I started with a Tee.
Ottobre 06/2008 #36 "Tania" T-shirt. 


Size: I sewed a 134 for the neck/shoulders and 140 elsewhere.
Alterations: I changed the pattern from long to short sleeves.
Fit: It is a bit big overall but she will grow into it. I could have made this a size smaller like 128/134.
Fabric: I used a beautiful pastel butterfly cotton knit I picked up from FabricStalkers on Facebook. 1 yard $4. Yes, only $4 (it was on sale for 1/2 price).  It is a great medium weight cotton jersey.  I purchased it Feb. this year.  For the neckband I used some "Light Pink" Cotton Lycra from Purpleseamstress.

Sewing/Instructions:  T-shirts only have a few quick ways to sew them together.  I didn't read the instructions.  I sewed one shoulder, then used my binder attachment on my coverstitch to attach the neck binding. Then I sewed the other shoulder, added the sleeves, and sewed up the sides.  The last thing to do was hem; which I did with my coverstitch.


Next I moved on to sewing some pants.
Ottobre 06/2008 #35 "Mimmi" Corduroy Pants.
This is the second time I've made these.  I had an unpleasant go at it back in August 2013 where they looked cute but the fit was crazy weird. I told myself I'd never sew them again but here I am. LOL.


Size: I sewed a straight size 140 plus.
Alterations: I eliminated the pockets with flaps on the front - it created too much bulk in that area.  I drafted normal pants pockets with pocket bags.  I added buttonhole elastic into the waistband to make these have an adjustable waist.  I didn't add the belt loops because K doesn't wear a belt but she was pulling these up a lot so I might go back and add them.




Fit: Gosh they actually fit pretty darn good!  There is a bit of front crotch sagging but K likes to pull her pants waistline waaaaaaay down. She hates things near her belly button.  I will try this pattern again perhaps but reduce the crotch curve length.


Fabric: Dusty Pink Corduroy. It is lightweight and has great stretch.  I had 2.25 yards in my stash from August 2013. I bought it at Mill End for $2.99/yard.  I used 1.25 yards.  Total of $3.74. Ha! I used scraps from this failed dress  in May 2012 for the front pocket bags, it is called Jungle Gym.  The back pocket flaps were made with scraps from this cute dress in April 2013. It is called Dress up days bikes yellow.  Not thinking I put it in upside down.  Oh well. I love using scraps from previous makes because it get's K all happy.



Sewing/Instructions: Ok, I totally didn't re-read all my issues the first time and here they happened again.  The waistband is NOT drafted long enough to fit these darn pants.  I added 2" and I barely fit them on with much swearing.  The waistband is too skinny, It needs to be at least 1/2" wider.  I had forgotten how much time a zipper and pockets add to sewing; I had to split it up into a few days.  I also forgot to sew the back darts BEFORE doing the back pockets because those pockets go right up to that dart point (and slightly over).
(windy day)

(pants in action)

Other than that things were smooth.  I have sewn a good share of flies now but it has been awhile so I used the instructions for Jalie 2908.

Wisconsin Spring is unpredictable so I made K another Sweatshirt.
Jalie 3355

Size: Height of M and width of P.
Alterations: Added 1" to the hemband as it was super hard to stretch to meet the bodice fabric last time.


Fit: fabulous! I love this pattern.  I need to make myself one next


Fabric: I purchased 1 yard of this PacMan French Terry off a facebook group in July 2014 for $8.  I didn't realize until I started cutting that there were streaks from roller marks in the fabric :(  I could only squeeze the bodice front and back and hood lining out of that.  I was freaking out but then saw that the Lilac Cotton Lycra from Purple Seamstress matched almost dead on.  So I used that for the arms, cuffs, and hood.  I'd say that was another yard at $6.50. Total: $14.50


Sewing/Instructions:  I remembered to put the Kangaroo pocket on first this time.  All sewing went smoothly and I followed the instructions.  The extra inch on the hemband made all the difference.  However, the cuffs were so super small and I wasn't sure they would stretch enough to make it all around the arm.  I need to add an inch here as well next time.


And to finish off the whole outfit I made a pair of maching undies!  K will not wear store bought ones anymore so I thought this would be perfect.
Ottobre 06/2013 #33 Undies
Size: 152
Alterations: None.
Fit: the best!
Fabric: Leftovers from the t-shirt. a beautiful pastel butterfly cotton knit.  For the band and crotch lining I used some "Light Pink" Cotton Lycra from Purpleseamstress.
Sewing/Instructions: Super fast to put together. I used my coverstitch binder attachment to put on the leg bands.

Here is our new naughty puppy Link.  His personality is very opposite of our other dog Nala.  He bites, chews, sheds, and is very vocal. He will literally talk back to you when you are scolding him. He is wild.  Nala is none of those so it's been an extreme adjustment. An exhausting one too.  We are putting in this fence so he can run without being tied up; he is super fast and loves to run but we live on a decently busy highway.  The gate hasn't been attached yet for these pictures so he is tied.  He really wants to get at Nala all the time. . .

But she is smart enough to stay on the other side of the fence!

He is a rescue pup. They say he is a cross between a wiener dog and a Jack Russell Terrier. Anywhichway, he is a bundle of naughty cuteness.  He likes to give kisses and snuggle a lot too so it's not all bad!


Two weeks ago we had a really bad scare with Nala. She always has reactions to her rabies vaccines and this year was the worst.  I thought we were going to lose her.  She is only 5 and our princess.  Puppy hospital is expensive.  I never knew.  Anyway she got lots of shots and medicine and had the worst miserable week of her life.  She pulled through like a good girl and is back to her old antics.

Exciting things going on around here all the time it seems.

~ Happy Sewing! ~ Kristin ~

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Renfrew love

I'm here! I promise. I have quite a bit of sewing to share.  I am just finishing up my last class so I've been busy.  I'm also just getting over a respiratory infection so, ugh. We also had a funeral, 2 spring concerts, and both kids are sick.  It has been crazy around here!

To do some stress-free sewing I whipped up another renfrew, because who doesn't love this pattern! Since spring is on its way I went with short sleeve.



I had just 1 yard of 44" Charley Harper Organic knit (Bank Swallow Blue).  It worked out perfectly - just enough.  I was saving this fabric for a special tee for me. At $16.50 per yard, there was no room for error.  Man I love those little birds :)  I picked up the fabric last year February.  The solid fabric is from Purpleseamstress (teal).  It matched pretty much perfectly.


I used the same size as my others.  I've added a few pounds back on since my uber sickness in August last year.  And I'm ok with this. I feel a bit healthier.  The top fits great. Shoulders/bust 6, waist 8, hip 12. 1/2" square shoulder adjustment.  I keep forgetting to add 1/2" to the back piece at the sides to accommodate my large rear.  The shirt sort of pulls a bit there.



That's it for today, I'll share some more when I bribe have a chance to get Miss K to put things on to take pictures. 

~ Happy Sewing! ~ Kristin ~

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Feb 2015 Recap

February was all about the active wear.
I did sew some other things up but have not yet blogged them.
My annual Feb cold has hit. So I am a bit under the weather, nothing serious.
My last class started two weeks ago too.
And the puppy.... oh that puppy. Sigh.


8 items, 8.25 yards of fabric.

How did I do for Jan with my resolutions?
1 new pattern: yes, 2!
1 new Burda/Otto: didn't happen this month
1 fabric stash: yes! 5.25 yards!
1 me make each month in 2015: yes! 4

Let's hope March brings some warmer weather!

~ Happy Sewing! ~ Kristin ~