Thursday, October 27, 2011

The Vintage Pattern Obsession and a New Blog

Don't you love this blouse? So sleek and chic! And I've really gotten into getting the patterns in my Etsy shop, and am excited that they are actually selling! So I want to step it up a bit, and I've started a new blog just focusing on the vintage patterns, the shop, and things I make (and hopefully others make) from these patterns.

BUT. I'm not leaving this blog, because it's really my personal, here's what's happening in my life! It's the thread, dammit! LOL! There's the Tracy Reese "wedding dress" waiting to be revealed, and Wilma on Wednesday, after all.

If you love vintage patterns, though, and want to check them out in my etsy shop (where the majority are under $20, mostly under $10) come take a look at Sew Vintage Today. It's a wordpress blog, and there is a definite learning curve, so changes will be coming slowly but steadily... like adding the blogroll, and all the widgits and all the good stuff. Follow along for announcements, giveaways, and maybe even a contest or two. I just need that critical mass of followers, hint, hint.

Hope to see some old friends over there!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Wilma on Wednesday is Back!

Grandma Wilma and Grandpops Gerry with my little sister, Susan on a trip to Austin, Texas

After a bit of a hiatus with the Wilma recipes (due to an attempt at vegetarianism... that's for another post), I decided it was time to get on with Wilma's recipes. One of my family's favorites is a super easy one, that I have made over and over. You probably have a version you make for your own family.

Easy & Quick Chicken Divan

2 - 10 oz. frozen broccoli (I use the florets)
2 cups sliced cook chicken (I used 2 bone-in chicken breasts and roasted them for about 45 minutes, uncovered)

Place the above ingredients in a casserole pan (12" x 8").

Mix together:
2 cups cream of chicken soup (I used one can), 1/2 cup mayonnaise (I didn't measure), and 1 tsp lemon juice (I squeezed one wedge into the mayo/soup)

Spread the mixture over the chicken and broccoli. It's thick, so it kind of spreads like frosting. It will "melt" into the casserole.

Sprinkle with buttered bread crumbs (I leave these off).

Bake at 350 deg F for 25 minutes.

Sprinkle grated sharp cheese over the top and bake for another 5 minutes or until the cheese is melted.

I served this with white rice.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Wedding Dress Sneak Peak

Not that kind of wedding dress, sillies! But the kind of dress you wear when you are invited to a wedding. One that suggests you "dress to impress". And one that is TWO WEEKS from Friday.

Not too much pressure, but this Vogue 1252 has 63 steps. I've finished 31 and have 32 left, so yep, about halfway and it brings me to the skirt. Here's the top so far:
 Wanna see more? Me too. I'm off to a shopping trip to my favorite for some more skirt lining. I bought the mesh as recommended for the lining, but for the skirt I just want some slick black tricot, for spinning drama if there is dancing.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Muslin Progress on Vogue 1252

The days are speeding by, and while I haven't done a countdown until our trip to the midwest, I'm feeling a bit of pressure. The Tracy Reese dress really has to fit well, so the other day I cut out a muslin using a horrible doubleknit polyester shiny thing. My actual fabric has a bit more stretch, so I'm keeping that in mind.

Anyway, I cut out a straight 14, and, well, let me show you another picture to get it in your mind.
I really had to plan the muslin, because I didn't want to make the entire dress, but the underneath fitted part. Does that make sense? So, full skirt... not making. Did cut out the sleeves, the left and right yoke fronts, and the upper back. Eliminated the drape from the left shoulder, and the bodice part that is all ruched. So, that just left the bodice lining.

I took a bunch of pictures, but most are just for my eyes only. Yeah... you just don't want to see these. That might make you think it isn't working, but actually it's really pretty good, and I'm only making a few changes.
#1... the sleeves are about an inch (maybe a little less) too long. Easy. The shoulders fit well, as does the bust area. I think the jersey will gather much more attractively than this hideous stuff. It might look ok in the picture, but it's actually scratchy.
#2... the bodice needs to be longer. Probably a couple of inches longer. The waistline is unbelievably high. Too much white flesh to show you below the cropping, but trust me, that's just about where the bodice ends in the picture.

And that's it! The jersey should stretch nicely, so even though my waist measurement is *ahem* bigger than the pattern, it's not an issue. And, I did the official technique of holding up the tissue to my body, and the skirt looks like a good length.

The goal now... get it cut out, and make some good progress by the end of the weekend. 

Monday, October 17, 2011

Piles of Sewing

When the summer sewing season ended, I made a long list of things to make in the fall. While it does seem like I haven't been sewing, I have been able to cross a few things off the list. Things you've seen: the half a crepe denim skirt, the red Lisette pattern skirt, the lime houndstooth violet, and a plaid shift from a vintage Simplicity. Oh, and let's not forget the plaid jasmine that I showed you yesterday. It wasn't even on the list. Of course, there was more on the list that has turned out to be wishful thinking.

But now, I have an occasion. One of those things with a definite deadline, AND a dress code. My husband's cousin's daughter is getting married on November 11 (I have a cousin whose daughter is also getting married on 11/11... do you sense a theme?). Anyway, for the sake of brevity, let's just call her Melia.

Like all the hip and happening couples getting married now, she and her fiance have a website. On it, they have a dress code. Bless their little hearts... they want us all to "dress to impress". No judging here, I'll just take it as a challenge.

This challenge has generated 4 piles of sewing:
I'm trying to be reasonable here. So if I get 2 of these done, I'll be happy. Three and I'll be thrilled. Four and, well, yeah... ecstatic!

What's the most important? The dress for the wedding. There are 2 there, but can you guess which one? If you guessed this one...
you'd be right! Do you think she'll be impressed? Anyway, I'm making a sort of muslin, and have it cut out... more on that tomorrow or Wednesday.

Thanks for all the jasmine love! Makes my heart warm!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

A New Jasmine

Boy, have I been a blogging slacker! I can't really blame self stitched September, though that would be tempting. No, I've actually been doing a little traveling, meeting with some of the friends I've made on Etsy for a little get-away in Providence, RI and other points east. Aren't we all adorable?!

I had planned to sew lots of adorable outfits for the trip, and did manage to finish one top. And it's not the one I'm wearing in the above pic. But, on the Friday before I left, I was furiously sewing and finished the Colette Patterns Jasmine top.
I did wear it, but didn't get a picture with my camera. So I wore it again today and it's time to fill you in! I love it, by the way. Before I do any reveal, let me just say that beginner is the right rating. It's super easy, and so far, it's been the easiest to fit (for me) Colette pattern yet. I suspect I know why, and it definitely has to do with user error.

I made a muslin, and for the first time in my history of making Colette Patterns, I just traced a straight size 10. Usually, I try to do a little tweaking before the muslin stage, but not this time. And the muslin told me that I only needed minimal tweaks. Having a center front and center back seam made things easy.

My usual narrow upper chest problem was solved simply by pinching in the excess at the center seam. I did the same at the back center, though not quite as much. I shortened the dart by about 1/2", and shortened the length about an inch. I also shortened the sleeve about 3/4". Finally, I pinched out about 3/4" from the length of the back armhole, because it was a little long, but left the sleeve seam alone because it was gathered at the top anyway.

The fabric is a madras I had in my stash, and I picked up the dark navy linen contrast at Gail K's in Atlanta. I did interface the collar pieces (not in the instructions) because the linen was a bit floppy.

One other big change was in the cutting out... I actually cut it on the bias cross grain. Is that a thing? Instead of placing the grainline arrow on the vertical, I placed it on the horizontal because I wanted the chevrons to look like the V's that you see and not upside down with the widest part pointing to my hips.

Finally, I have this thing about being trapped in my clothes. Do you know what I mean? Anyway, I put a 9" invisible zipper from the hemline up on the left side and solved that problem.
The madras colors varied greatly from stripe to stripe, so the matching is as good as it could get. I'm thrilled with it. Even the sleeves mostly match.

If I make it again, I'll pinch just a bit more out of the center and that's it.

Yesterday, we had a visit from Kyle, and after packing up more cool-weather clothes and a few other things, he went back to school today. It was fall break after all, so we were thrilled he gave us a few hours.
So is Danny the Dog saying "who is this boy?" or is he thrilled, too?

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Wrapping Up Self Stitched September

Yes, September is over, and so is my self stitched blogging. I have a few more days to "reveal", but wanted to do a little navel gazing about the whole thing. Let's start with that since the days that are left, well, you've seen the outfits already. So, the thoughts:

  • the posts are not nearly as interesting to my followers. I apologize.
  • September weather is very, very similar to June weather here in Atlanta which means I'm still wearing the same things.
  • by September, I'm pretty much over those things that I'm wearing, no matter what their origin.
  • that means, I'm even more tired of taking my picture in those same things.
That's about it. Let's see those days we're missing:

Monday, September 26

Top: Talbots
Skirt: Half a Crepe
Shoes: Mephisto

Tuesday, September 27

Dress: Vintage Vogue 2006
Belt: Talbots
Shoes: Via Uno

Thoughts: I wore this dress back on the 8th with a different belt and different shoes. I kind of like the monochromatic look with this belt.

Wednesday, September 28

I had a doctor's appointment, and wanted to wear the lightest thing possible for the dreaded weigh in where I'm not allowed to take off my shoes thing. Yep. Call me crazy, but that criteria didn't fit the things left in my closet that I had made.

Thursday, September 29

Thoughts: ok, getting really, really lazy here, but I made the top, and the skirt is my crescent skirt, so I made that too. Originally, way back on the 1st, I thought it would be fun to track the progress of Roland's big landscape/hardscape project. Unfortunately, today is the first day there was any change and the month is almost over. But you can see he rented that machine thingie, and the path is done.

Friday, September 30

Thoughts: This is actually a rerun picture from the 6th. But I did wear the same top on the last day. Different jeans though, and different shoes. And it wasn't raining. But I had a friend from Texas visiting for the weekend, and I totally forgot to snap the picture from the last day. Do you sense a little apathy? Well, I just want to thank Zoe for an awesome idea for bringing sewists together, for making us think about what we sew for ourselves, and why, and how to make these things work out in the real world!

I've got some new stuff coming up, so please come back for the newness! I miss my followers and their wonderful comments!


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