I love sewing--any form of needle and thread makes me happy.

Thursday, November 5, 2020

The Jolly Bar Book Sew Along Quilt

 It's been such an awful long time since I've posted.    I've been busy with my mother-in-law for about 2 weeks in October.  She had surgery and needed help; so I went down.  When I left, she had a full freezer and was doing remarkably well.  Her progress, according to her reports, continues and she feels surgery was a success.  Although I got no sewing done at all during that time, I did get caught up on a cross-stitch project I'm working on. More on that at another time though.  I found my sewing mojo suffering since last I wrote.  Covid has really affected the moods of many sewers out there.  Luckily, I had a deadline for this quilt. 

I've been working on this quilt since June.  It's part of one of  Pat Sloan's Sew Along quilts.  This one was sponsored by Fat Quarter Shop and featured The Jolly Bar Book, Vol. 2 available here.

The quilt features blocks from the book, following instructions from the Quilt Along for number of blocks to be sewn and placement.  I really enjoyed this sew along.  The blocks were all so fun.  

I used a plaid in charcoal gray and white.  I couldn't match the plaid confidently for the back, so I pieced a line of blocks using leftover squares from the jolly bar.  By the way, in case you're not familiar  with a jolly bar, it's a Fat Quarter shop exclusive that measures 5 in. x 10 in. and includes 20 cuts.  Obviously you could just use ½ of a layer cake instead.  I found this a fun size to work with.

I really like how nicely the back came out.  Since the quilt is a gift, for my boss--it's her first baby, I included a pre-printed label and added the date as shown.  I got the labels from an Etsy shop but don't have the info any longer.  I really hope she likes the quilt.

I really enjoy the piecing part of quilting.  I find I rather dread the quilting part, because I'm still learning to free motion quilt.  But that's getting better with practice and the acquisition of the Janome 6300P.  It's made for quilting:  an accurate ¼ inch seam foot and a larger harp space than my Brother machine. 

Sunday, August 23, 2020

Simplicity 8545 in Pink Lace

This little top started with the fabric; a pink corded lace with no stretch and a lovely scalloped border from Fabric Mart.  I knew I wanted to do a simple top with and wear a cami underneath for modesty.  Luckily, I already had Simplicity 8545 in the pattern stash.  The simple shell top was perfect for what I had in mind.  

This should have been a quick and easy sew, but the lace did complicate things.  I didn't have serger thread the right color and I didn't think it would give enough support to the seams.  Some places in the lace had so much netting that I didn't think French seams would do, either.    So I used an overlock stitch on my sewing machine set to a short length and wide width and stitched 1/4  inch from the regular running stitches and trimmed the excess.  This worked nicely and didn't create too much bulk.  

The neckline called for bias binding but I couldn't find anything that matched well enough.  So I made binding from the lace itself.  It came out rather neatly I think.  

Thanks to the border, at least the bottom and sleeves didn't need hems.  At least that part was easy!  

The center back seam forms a keyhole closure.  I used a bit of ribbon and found a pretty little button in the button collection.  I've enjoyed wearing this top but always wear my pink cami underneath.  Far from being an orphan, it goes with my navy slacks, khaki slacks, dark wash jeans and denim skirt.  I have a gray skirt with pleats for a dressier occasion and black wide leg dress pants, as well.  

Hope you're having a great sewing day.

Saturday, August 8, 2020

Birthday Party in Simplicity 8138 and Vogue 8926

It's been a minute or two since I've blogged or sewn.  July was such a busy month with a trip to Texas and couple of camping trips taking most of my sewing time.  A family birthday and the Endless Combinations contest urged me into the Sewing Room.  The result being this outfit:

The pants are Simplicity 8138 and are so comfortable!  I've made this pattern before in an oatmeal colored linen.  They're one of my favorite things to wear in the summer.  They have an elasticized waist band and pockets, so you know they're uber comfy but still practical.  

The fabric is a soft linen from Fabric Mart.  The pattern itself is clear and well-written; no problems there.  I had to make some adjustments to get it to fit though since I'm so short waisted and have a very rounded derriere.  First I folded out 1" at the front crotch; then I lowered the center front 1½ inches tapering to nothing at the sides.  Then for the back, I raised the center back ¾ inch and added ½ inch to the back inseam at the crotch to extend the seat a little.  The weave on this linen is looser than the other slacks, so I might have been able to make it in a size smaller.  Something to consider next pair.    Yes, I love  this pattern so much there will be another pair someday. 

The top is Very Easy Vogue 8926 and it lived up to its claim.  It was very easy to assemble.  There are many markings and dots to keep track of but as long as you do, the top goes together quite easily.  It's made from a poplin shirting also from Fabric Mart.  I seldom sew with cotton and I always wonder why once I do because it's such a pleasure to sew with. 

I noticed when wearing it that day, and in the pictures here, that there's quite a bit of gaping at the underarm area.  I had to take that in by about 2 inches to make it fit nicer.  It's perfect for the hot, humid summer we have here.  

Friday, June 19, 2020

Simplicity 1920 Topped Off By Simplicity 1318

Hi, all!  Back with two easy Simplicity makes:  a tank top and a kimono.

Simplicity 1920 is OOP now, but sure has been good to me.  I've made everything in this pattern except the scarf.  It comes in sizes 10-18 and 20W to 28W. I found copies on Etsy, Amazon and Ebay.  The top is very straight forward to make and comes together quickly and easily.

 I cut a size 18 and graded out to a 20 at the hip,  The fabric is a "silky blend" polyester from JoAnn's.  I just love the color.  I also used French seams on this top.  It's a little lowcut for me, so next time I make it, I'll be raising the neckline. The bias binding was the time hog on this trying to get it just right.  It came out the prettiest binding application I've ever done. 

The kimono jacket is Simplicity 1318--Also OOP but available on Ebay.  The pattern envelope includes all sizes from XXS to XXL.  I made an XL in View C and it's wonderfully roomy without being too big.  

Again, the fabric is a "silky" polyester blend from JoAnn's incorporating the rust color and some black, grey and gold.  The front and sleeve bands are done in a black polyester origin unknown.  

This, too was an easy sew despite the French seams I used, my choice not a pattern dictate.    The only time-consuming part was hand-stitching the front bands, but I didn't want any raw or serged seams showing on this.  I plan on wearing it a long time.

The h-low hem covers a multitude of sins--which I find increasingly necessary.  LOL.  I have a black t-shirt and cami that also wear well with this.  Here I'm wearing it with khaki colored slacks.  It also goes with my black slacks to dress up a bit, or jeans for a more casual look.  

Right now, I'm playing with some lace and quilting the Tonals quilt.  I hope to be done with the quilt by July.  We'll see..... 

Saturday, May 23, 2020

Vogue 9128

It's been so long since I've updated the blog.  There is a little sewing going on.  Just no time to blog about it.  Unlike so many others who are stranded at home, I'm an essential employee who's been working overtime in a pharmacy.  Starting next month, though, the budget requires the annual summer cuts.  I'll only be working 4 days a week so I'll have much more sewing time.  Yay!

Onto the review of the Vogue top-- Vogue 9128.

This is a Very Easy Vogue pattern and it lives up to its title.  A confident beginner could do this using a little care with the curved seams.  I like how the front J seams give the waist a bit of shape while the peplum flares out over the hips.

It's sewn in a size 20 and it fits nicely except in the neckline.  I should have narrowed that slightly as it gapes a little bit.  This doesn't really show when I wear it, but I'm aware of it and for some reason it disproportionately bothers me.  I think if I make it again,  I'll use  a heavier ITY or lightweight ponte.  Something with a little heft/body but still drapes well and tighten up that neckline.  I used a rather lightweight ITY from Cali Fabrics for this one.  

I also used my Teflon foot to sew this and it just glided over the fabric.  No ruffling or waves--even on the narrow hem.  Just love this foot for knits!

In Quilty News,  I finished piecing the Pat Sloan April Quilt Along quilt.  I'm very pleased with how it turned out.   Now to quilt it for hanging in July!

I've got a couple of  Simplicity makes to share next.  I can definitely say it won't take 6 weeks to post them!   Well, it's a lovely day out there for a change, so we're driving down to see Daughter #1 and her family for the first time in 8 weeks.  I do miss them all so much, especially those two grandsons!
Hopefully everyone gets some sewing in on this long weekend!

Sunday, April 12, 2020

Happy Easter and a Quilty Update

Happy Easter everyone!  I hope you all have a very blessed day.  Here in Kentucky, we're having a very quiet day in the wake of Covid-19 and social distancing.  I listened to a service on the radio while I worked on some sewing.  The family has exchanged good tidings and photos of grandchildren  celebrating Easter in their own quiet way this year.  Usually we have a big, rowdy get-together with everyone after church with a big egg hunt and an even bigger dinner and games.Maybe next year.   I hope you have a lovely Easter in your own way, too.

In sewing news, I took last week off as sewcation.  It was supposed to be camping, but they shut down where we were planning to go, so we stayed home.  Hubs has been home for 6 weeks now (he's a high school teacher) so it pleased him to have company for a while.

Friendship Stars Quilt:

 This is finally finished.  I just quilted in the ditch, nothing fancy on this one.  I just wanted to get it done, it had been lingering around so long.  Sorry for the awful couch picture, but it's raining here so no pretty outdoor shot.  

Pat Sloan's "Stay at Home" Quilt along:                                                                                                            

Pat Sloan is hosting a Quilt Along for the month of April.  It's a simple snowball block with sashing and cornerstones.  She's using novelty prints for hers, and doing the sashing as she goes.   I'm using red and blue blocks, solid red cornerstones, and white sashing for mine.  Very patriotic.  I'm using a variety of  red prints so I'm assembling all the blocks first, then I'll so the sashing.  By sewing 2 blocks a day, I keep up easily and will still have time before the end of the month to do the sashings.  

"Pocket of Tonals" quilt kit:     

I got this kit a few months ago from Connecting Threads.  This is what the finished product is supposed to look like:


I'm making good progress now, doing 2 blocks a day.  Here's what I've got going so far:                      

I've only got 4 more blocks to do then things will go slower with the tiny piecing of the sashings.
I'm quite pleased with the progress so far and just love the colors.  

Now don't think I've forgotten to do any garment sewing.  I have a Vogue top and a duster to share with you.

Enjoy your Easter and I hope you get to sew today, too.

Thursday, April 2, 2020

Arrgg!! Computers! and Simplicity 4074

You know the old saying about men...Can't live with them, can't live without them.  Well, I feel that way about my computer.  The contrary beast decided to crash last month.  After 5 weeks in computer hospital, they're slow but so very good, it has a new hard drive and is back to normal.  At last.  There's a limit to what these fumbly fingers can do on the phone, and writing posts is not one of them.  It's back now and running brilliantly. Hubs and I are very happyto have it back. On to sewing.

I visited Simplicity 4074 again.

I just love this skirt pattern.  It's for knits, is a 6-gore skirt with just the right amount of flair at the knee to be kicky and fun.  It's the third time I've made it and I love each version.  

This time I made it from a brushed poly/spandex from Fabric Mart in a gorgeous paisley print.  As you can see, it goes beautifully with my golden Simplity 8982 top.  Funny thing is, I bought this fabric thinking I would make this top from it.  After I got it, it told me it wanted to be a skirt instead.  

I did change the waistband on this one.  Instead of using a traditional elastic casing, I serged the elastic to the top of the waist, then turned it down and stitched it down at the side seans for a smoother more RTW finish.  I really like how it turned out.  The fabric was too light for my usual Knit'n Fuse tape hem treatment. So I used my machine's walking foot and the hem came out beautifully--no waves at all.  

I'm trying to sew more, but find I'm often too exhausted by work to sew.  I'm deemed an essential worker being a pharmacy tech.  We are a 24 hour pharmacy, so we're all working more hours during this time of pandemic and panic. There are so many sew-a-longs and quilt-a-longs going on now.  I'd love to participate in so many of them but I just don't have the time.  I am participating in Pat Sloan's quilt along for the month of April.  It's just a block a day and is an easy block at that so I feel I can keep up with that one.  I'm going with a red, white, and blue theme. 

What about you?  How are you spending your quarantine time?  Are you participating in a sew along, sewing on your own or has inertia struck at the this great disturbance to your routine?