I’m back!

Last weekend started out as a busy weekend and turned into a challenging week, but let me show you what I did!

I am still working on my sister’s dress – part of my “Sister’s Sewing Project”.  She would like this dress, in this 100% cotton border print and I am using this pattern, Butterick B6089 (sorry for the flash glare).

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The battle is over!

It started off bad.  I wanted a dress like my mom and aunt.  I wanted it out of this fabric (100% Rayon, which I love) and I thought I could alter this pattern to what I wanted.  That’s when my problems started.  If you missed it, you can read about it here.

 

 

So forget about the dress!  I managed to salvage as much of the fabric as I could and I made a top instead.   Continue reading

A long drawn out battle with beautiful fabric …

and I’m not quite finished yet!

Let me tell you what’s up …

I have been searching for a pattern and fabric to make a “replica” of my mother’s and aunt’s dresses in this photo.  My Aunt was a seamstress back in Europe and she not only sewed for clients but also for herself and my mother.  She used no patterns and could make anything!  I thought I had the magical combination for this dress with this 100% Rayon Denim Challis I had in my stash – a favourite fabric of mine!

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I still think this pattern, Vogue 1395, might work but it doesn’t have the rounded neckline that I want.  Being lazy, I thought I might just make two bodice backs and use those to make the bodice instead.

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What can I say? I still had some denim strips left!

And I’m certainly not one to waste recycled denim!  So let’s make another bag.  This one is not quite big enough to hold my iPad, not like the last one I made.  This one seemed to go together quicker too!  Perhaps it wasn’t as “fancy” or perhaps I’m actually getting used to throwing them together?!?

Again, I started by sewing my strips together, pressing them, ironing on the fusible interfacing, and trimming the two outer bag walls to the right size.

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How to sew a recycled denim handbag. Part 2

Back again!  To recap last week’s post … I wanted to make myself a 100% recycled denim bag, using denim strips like those bags I saw on Pinterest.  Last week I cut up my denim jeans, pieced and sewed the strips together and fused on the interfacing for my outer bag walls.  I sewed the pockets and the zipper pocket on my bag lining.  I sewed the bag strap.  I did my topstitching – I love topstitching and Amber, my Singer 421G was a work horse!  

This week, I continued on.  I prepped the opening zipper, cutting it to the right length and topstitching the zipper tabs on the ends.  I switched from the brown zipper to this blue one as it fit around my iPad just right.

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How to sew a recycled denim handbag.

I was trying to think of an eye-catching, mysterious title for my blog post.  I couldn’t.  I have too been immersed in bag making lately – sewing creatively, instead of blogging creatively!  

The only other handbags I’ve made I posted about here and here.  I made one of them for my sister – she’s seems to be happy with it.  I made her’s by copying something she already had.

This time I wanted to make a handbag for myself out of 100% recycled materials, specifically denim.  I have been collecting a few images on my Pinterest and I’m quite inspired by this recycled denim Chobe Bag with the denim strips sewn together.

Nice dress! Thanks, I made it!!

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… future’s so bright I gotta wear shades!

Seriously, it’s been a HOT summer.  No rainfall the whole month of July, not a shower or drizzle.  The temperatures are supposed to get up to 33 C (91.4 F) this week!  It’s a good thing I took the opportunity to run outside today and take my blog photos – I think I will be hiding inside with the fan or an air conditioner the rest of the week!

Let me tell you about my “Tower Dress”.  I love that name.  I’ve named my dress after one of my favourite prints – called a “Tower” print, 92% polyester, 8% spandex.  I love how the odd white leaf POPS out at you.

For my Tower Dress I used this McCall’s pattern, M6503, view B.  It has fold back facings for a collar and a wrap bodice.  I can’t wait to try some of the other bodice versions.  The only pattern changes I made were to omit the side zipper (mine’s made from a knit fabric), lower the waistband about an inch (I’m not fond of high waisted garments), sew shut the wrap bodice (I find them to be a bother), and add piping (my new fetish!). I think this type of dress is available from lots of pattern makers, including the Indie pattern producers.

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… with the kindness of strangers.

I was determined to clean up and oil Barbie, my Singer Slant-o-Matic 500, my “Rocketeer”, while I was on holidays from work.  Before I even got around to cleaning her up … well … I broke off her Plate Cover by accident.  I just closed it and it popped off in my hand.  The manual showed it was an easy fix – just snap it back on.

I could see though on my Plate Cover that my hinge pins show some paint chipping on  the right and a slight crack possibly on the left.  

These VSM are famous for broken Plate Cover hinges so I was afraid to force it.  I cautiously pushed it back on – with a bad result …

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I learned something new…

Just by chance actually!  As a matter of fact, I learned a couple of things.

I’ve decided I need more dresses in my life (again).  I also noticed that IG is having a #sewtogetherforsummer Challenge that I can participate in – if I get my entry done by June 21st.  I do not like deadline sewing, so this is going to be interesting.

I have my shirt dress pattern picked out – Butterick B5920.  It is an unexpected shirt dress pattern, as it might not even be a shirt dress.  It’s a Butterick Retro ’51 pattern.  Of course, there is NO WAY I am sewing heart shaped pockets on my chest – sorry.  I am going to leave the pockets off completely.  But I do LOVE this turned up collar.  It kind of follows my neck curve like no other collar I have seen before … and I love it!

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One step closer to the beach …

My sewing days are running out.  Soon my sister and I leave for Mexico.  As usual, I have a dozen ideas but only so much time – so at the top of the list, besides swimsuits, is cover ups.  I bought the fabric for two cover ups – one for my sister and one for me – last weekend.  My sister chose this print – full of black, brown and gold colours.  It’s called Tangiers Linen-look print, 97% polyester and 3% spandex.  It definitely has the quality of linen.  When I pre-washed both fabrics, this one lost at least a 1/4″ off the width with the unravelling and fraying.  I decided that I would have to be very careful finishing off the seams.

Did I make changes to this pattern, McCall’s M7200?  I added a few inches to the length and I made the back only one piece instead of the several they designed into the pattern.  This pattern has a pretty back with all those seams and a bit of a peplum, but I want my cover ups to be a plain style.  I ended up with only four pieces – front, back, collar and sleeve.  (My cover up will be the same, made of the beige fabric.)

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