Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Valentine Chica - Butterick 6582

Prof. R. and I are big time Valentine’s Day celebrators.  I usually receive a bouquet of flowers during the day, and Prof. R. makes a reservation at a fancy restaurant for dinner.  Of course, I have to make something new for our special dinner, and this is the dress for Valentine’s Day 2016 - Butterick 6582, View B (which started as View A, then became bodice of View C with bows from View A, then finally View B):

I really like this pattern with one exception.  The bodice for view A creates a seam rather than the surplice or faux wrap neckline.  However, this can be easily remedied by using the bodice pattern pieces for view C the full-skirted version.  Once I figured this out and re-cut the bodice pieces the rest was a fairly simple sew. 

Since I was doing most of the sewing during the day on February 14th, naturally, I didn’t have time to finish and attach the bows.  I attached them later that week but found I preferred the dress sin bows.  Once attached, the bows just stuck straight up, giving me little "wings" on my shoulders.  Maybe I just used interfacing that was too stiff, although I’m not sure.  I do plan to make the full-skirted version at some point and will experiment with fabric and interfacing to see if I get a result I like.  One thought I had is just to make them smaller.  We’ll see…

The fabric is from Fabric Outlet on Mission St. in San Francisco.  I purchased it when I was in SF just before Christmas.  It’s polyester brocade that washes and handles very well, with a few precautions (no going back to SF for more fabric if I botched it up).  First, I washed it by machine in a mesh bag but didn’t put it in the dryer.  Then, before laying out the fabric for cutting, I filed my nails and kept my nail file on hand (a nail file lives in my sewing supply bin with my marking pencils and pens) throughout construction.  So far, the fabric has remained snag free!

My little bracelet is a refashion from a bow on elastic that was stretched around the vase in the Valentine’s floral arrangement Prof. R. sent to me the first year we were married.  It’s so cute, and I’ve kept it on hand thinking I could use it for something.  It only took me 5 years to figure I could simply shorten the elastic and make a little bracelet out of it!  

Hasta pronto!

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Happy St. Patrick's Day! - Self Drafted Shamrock Halter

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!  If you celebrated, I hope you had a good one.  Here’s my usual SPD outfit.

I made the top about four years ago PB (Pre-Blog) from some fabric I picked up on a trip back to SF from Discount Fabrics on Mission.  It’s a sheer fabric that I underlined with some white lining fabric in my stash.  The white lining really makes this fabric pop and provides the necessary backing so that it can be worn in public.  

The shamrocks are made from green glitter which gets everywhere.  The morning after our St. Pat's festivities,  I noticed glitter clinging to my neck – even after a long shower.  The price we pay for fashion.  For the rest of the year, this top rests in an under-bed storage bin inside of a plastic bag, protecting the other clothing items from being permanently covered in green glitter. 

The top is entirely self-drafted, so no commercial pattern used.  My only complaint is that even though it’s lined, I still feel where the waist seam joins the peplum, and it’s a little itchy.  I think I’m feeling the scratchy glitter in the seam allowance (yes, more glitter issues).  Maybe next year I can sew some type of interior “belt” out of quilting cotton or a heavy-ish fabric to cover this itchy little seam.  Other than that, I’m really happy with this make, and love pulling it out once a year to celebrate being the little bit of Irish that I am.

Hasta pronto!

Monday, March 14, 2016

Happy Pi Day! - Butterick 5982 for my sister

Happy PI Day!  Yes, it's 3/14/16 or 3.14.  In the sewing world, its the day we celebrate the number that helps us make circle skirts.  For my sister, who is a math teacher, it's a day to teach students about this nifty number.

And here she is in her dress for this special day made by me:

I actually made this for her last year for "Epic PI Day."  It was "epic" last year because the planets aligned to our modern calendar and our modern system of the 12 hour clock so that ten digits would be represented at exactly 9:26:53 (pi=3.141592653).  She was so busy last year with epic pi day weekend, she didn't get a chance to grab some shots in her dress.  Not wanting to wait another hundred years for the next "Epic" pi day, I asked her to take some photos on this regular old non-epic one.

I think she looks great!  The pattern I used is Butterick 5982, which includes multiple cup sizes (A/B, C and D), so I was able to get a good fit for my California sister all the way from New York.  I also had my mom measure her figure points prior to sewing, so I knew I would be on the right track for fit.  I made view A, which is sleeveless.  I have made view C with sleeves (unblogged), but I had the usual commercial pattern issue with not being able to raise my arms comfortably.  Because of this issue, I went sleeveless for this make.  I'll work on adjusting the pattern to use in the future as it's a really easy and cute dress.

Don't you love the fabric?  It's called "Pieces of Pi," and I ordered it from Spoonflower in the gray and black color way.  They have versions with other colors, but I thought this would pop, especially with the belt "buckle."  The sewing pattern includes instructions for a cute bow belt, but I used some felt to create a snazzy white felt "Pi" to match the trim and the white pi's in the fabric.  She absolutely loves it!

Here she is with some students in what looks to be their me made "Pi" wear:

We're going to have pizza tonight in honor of pi day (actually, I'm just too lazy to cook tonight).  How did you celebrate pi day?

Hasta pronto!

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