Monday, August 31, 2009

The Wedding is Over...Good Riddance

The wedding is over and good riddance. How does anybody survive a big wedding? My was very small and I barely survived it. I'll try to get this post short while at the same time giving you all the info. First the groom stayed out all night partying his last night of bachelorhood and was last getting to my house. I didn't get dressed because I would have been too upset. When he did finally arrive to get dressed I wasn't in the best of moods. My sister-in-law arrived to help me get ready with my mother in tow. Although I love my mom to death I wasn't in the mood for her shenanigans. Luckily the groom and other family members left for church service. I was late getting to the church and everyone wss worried that I wouldn't show! Photographer was really freaking out. After I got dressed, at break neck speed, I bent down to pick some of my crap off of the floor and my !@##$$ zipper split. Someone had safety pins but no needle and thread or scissors. Someone did have acrylic nail clippers. I was able to get the zipper back together but was afraid to breathe for the rest of the ceremony or at dinner! In all, other than the dress fiasco, it was a wonderful and intimate ceremony. BTW I forgot to take my camera so don't have a single picture of me and my husband together! I'll post some better pictures when the photographer gets them to me.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Projecting Wedding Dress Part VI--It's a done deal!

I am finally finished with Project Wedding Dress. I am so glad to be done because my sewing room is a wreck. It looks as if someone broke in and trashed the place! I missed my midnight deadline because as I was giving the dress a final pressing the zipper weirded out on me and I wound up having to take it partically out and restitch it. That also meant taking the back lining and facing apart as well. I was amazed at how calm I was. I checked by stash and only had a black and a pink invisible zipper available so didn't have the option of replacing. I've never repaired an invisible zipper before but it wasn't a problem and I managed to get it lined back up as perfect as it was originally. Guess I'd better get some sleep. Wouldn't want to over sleep and miss my own wedding. Thanks to everyone for the well wishes and the congratulations. Look for lots of pictures soon!

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Project Wedding Dress part V--down to the wire!

Okay it's getting down to the wire and no, the dress is not finished but it's close. I just have to sew the skirt lining in. I will not be working on the the dress tomorrow so that means I have until midnight tonight. That leaves hair, nails, eyebrows, and a few other things. I'm not nervous but my wedding song has been ringing in my ears since yesterday...At Last by Etta James. I just love that song and am going to walk down the aisle to it. I will post pictures of the wedding as soon as I can but for now I gotta get off of here and get to work. Wish me luck. BTW a girlfriend of mine dropped off this card box yesterday. I just love it. She says she's not crafty at all but you sure can't tell can you?

Friday, August 28, 2009

Project Wedding Dress part 4

I didn't get up last night nor at the crack of dawn this morning but thank God I did get up! I also had a wonderful thought. I'm going to have a floating hem in my dress. That means that I am going to shorten the lining just enough that when I stitch the dress to the lining it will pull the hem into place. There will be no stitches showing at all! It's genius if I must say so myself.
I sewed the dress skirt front onto the bodice and pin fit the sides as much as I could. Putting boning in the midriff was the smartest thing I could have done. The midriff has the corseted look I was going for. I was able to do a preliminary fitting and came to a couple of conclusions. First my dressform is bigger than I am. I can't get the dress zipped all they way on "Dolly" but I can on myself. Second, my boobs are not a big as I thought they were. I was fretting over not having made a big enough FBA when I actually probably added too much. I could stick a small pair of socks in my bodice! So while I was thinking of removing the straps for a more sexy strapless look, strapless is no longer an option. I need the straps to pull the bodice as close as possible. I am almost there. Believe it or not, I'm not anxious about the dress or the wedding. I'm anxious about getting this dress finished so that I can move on to other projects!
Several of my co-workers questioned my making my own wedding dress. Huh? I am the best seamstress I know. Why wouldn't I make my own dress? I never once considered anything else and even as a little girl I always knew I would make my own. What do you think?

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Project Wedding Dress Part III--No progress

I haven't sewn a stitch on my dress in two days! Yesterday after work I was just too tired. Today I had to take my mom in for a colonoscopy, 120 miles round trip. Then I had to hurry back to go for premarital counseling. I am beat. I'm going to take a nap and then get up and work on my dress. If I don't make it up, I'm going to get up at the crack of dawn and have at it! We've had counseling, we have the license, and I almost have a's a done deal!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Project Wedding Dress Part II

Today did not start out well. I woke up with a migrane--a side effect of the radiation treatment. After taking my meds I went back to bed and didn't get up until after 2 p.m. I only got up then because I had to do some work on my dress. Before calling it quits last night I went to JoAnn's and picked up some boning. I've decided to put it in the front and back midriff and the side seams.

Today I put the invisible zipper in. For some reason I can't find my second invisible zipper foot so had to resort to using the regular zipper foot because I hate the Coats & Clarks one that I was able to find! If I must say so myself the zipper looks fantastic. I got skills and I know it...LOL
I was also able to fix the front overlay. I forgot that when I altered the overlay piece that I needed to make a wedge alteration to allow more room on the center front.
That simple alteration brought the overlay more in line with where it should be.
View from the front with bodice attached
Sneak peek of front. The skirt is only pinned in place. I hope to sew the side seams tomorrow after work. Stay tuned!

Monday, August 24, 2009

Project Wedding Dress is Underway

Project wedding dress is underway. I spent about an hour on Sunday just fusing the interfacing to the pieces and spent another hour today finishing them up. That's right. It took me about two hours to cut the interfacing and fuse it to all the pieces. Not a task for somebody in a hurry. Here's a closeup of my fabric.

During the interfacing phase I also cut the beads out of the seam allowance of all of the pieces. Don't want to risk any skip stitches or needle breaks.

So far I've got the straps and the upper bodice pieces finished. It's coming along nicely but I do have some concerns about the overlay pieces. My mind is also racing on quick fixes if I need to go in another direction.

I didn't make a muslin and now I'm wondering if I did enough of an FBA. I cut the size 20 so that I can pinfit to size.

This is what the bodice looks like so far

If I keep at it I may be done tomorrow!

Saturday, August 22, 2009

More progress on wedding

No photos yet but I did cut my dress out today and there has been a slight change of plans. The fabric I chose was so beautiful that I just couldn't bring myself to cut it as originally planned. So instead of having a knee length dress it will be floor length. Hey it's my wedding and I can change my mind if I want to! I also stopped by JoAnn's today and found what I think is the most beautiful headpiece. It has flower roses and pearls. I also picked up a bunch of clearance roses for a bouquet. Was going to skip a bouquet but thought they will look good in the photos. Tomorrow I'll snap a picture of the fabric. I promise you will absolutely love it!

Friday, August 21, 2009

Progress on wedding dress

I am finally making progress on the wedding dress. No, I haven't started sewing it yet but I have made the alterations to the pattern and have actually purchased the fabric for the dress. I might cut it out later tonight. Just want all you nar sayers to know that I am not going to wait in the the last minute...LOL

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Estate Sewing Finds - Picture heavy

I went to another estate sale today that offered a smorgasbord of sewing goods.

I started out with stuff I've already got but at 50 cents or a dollar a piece I just couldn't pass on them.

Next I moved on to some vintage patterns and fabric

Can you ever have enough tracing paper?? Not at $1 for the whole batch!

This is some kind of weird curling iron for clothes! Hope I don't burn down the house when I plug it in. Seriously! It too was $1.

And the piece de resistance...

When was the last time you saw one of these? Depending on how old you are, you may not even know what it is. It's what fabric stores use to used to measure your fabric. I don't know what I'm going to use it for...maybe just for decoration but I love it! It makes me all nostalgic!

In other news, I finally bought the fabric for my dress today. I hope to work on pattern alterations tomorrow and the dress itself no later than Monday. I work better under pressure or at least that's what I keep telling myself. I stopped into David's Bridal today for snoop shopping. One thing I found out is that the heavily beaded bodiced gowns have a lapped zipper in the back, not invisible. The beading is totally removed from the underside of the lap. Interesting!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Happy Birthday to me!

Yep. That's right. Today is my 52nd birthday! I'm am just thrilled to death. Although I've been a little under the weather for about two a nasty sinus infection that required a doctor's visit last week but I'm still here. Started the morning off putting the finishing touches on McCall's 5522 and cut out a skirt to sew tomorrow. No more putting off starting my wedding dress. Just two weeks until the big day. The only bummer is that as I was looking over the pattern last night it calls for stretch satin! Yikes! I didn't know that. While the fabric I'm using is by no means stretch I'm not opposed to just picking another pattern...I'm flexible like that and it's getting down to the wire. Now have to get ready for church.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Butterick 5179...jury is still out!

I know I should be working on my dress for the wedding, but I'm not. I going to start it on Monday. In the meantime I finished a dress and am working on a blouse...McCalls 5522. The jury is still out on the dress. I like it and it's very comfortable but reminds me of a house dress and I think I look pregnant!

Pattern Description:
fast and easy misses/misses petite dress
Pattern Sizing:
Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? Yes, exactly
Were the instructions easy to follow? Very
What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
I liked how the dress looked on the pattern envelope. The picture is deceiving because the dress is quite voluminous
Fabric Used:
I used an interlock knit for the dress and stretch twill for the yoke
Pattern Alterations or any design changes you made:
I made an FBA that made the upper part of the dress in the bust area wider but not longer and it worked. I didn't want that pulling of gathers east and west that you often see on full busted women!
I made the yoke a different color and attached the dress to the yoke one inch wider on each side. Beware...regular bra straps will show!
I reshaped the front yoke as it was gaping during tissue fitting.
Instead of using purchased bias tape for armhole opening, I used cut bias strips from the dress fabric.
I also eliminated the back seam as well as zipper. I don't even know why one would be needed???
I made a faced slit back opening and added hooks and eyes. Now that it's finished I realized that it doesn't even need a back opening at all. It could easily be slipped right over my head.
Back neck opening
I added 2 1/2" to the dress length. I would have preferred it a little longer as it is I only made about a 3/4" coverstitch hem.
Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?
I don't think I'll sew this again because it feels like a house dress and I think it makes me look pregnant!
Of course on really warm and humid days this dress will be a godsend!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Cyberbridesmaid (CBM)

Someone asked what is it that a cyberbridesmaid is supposed to do. Good question. I'm playing this by ear. First I think a CBM should have to make herself a dress and it should have to be done by the 30th of August or soon after. I'd rather it be for yourself, but if not I do understand that some sewers don't sew for themselves. Second I need a picture of you or the recepient wearing the dress so that I can post it on my blog. Sorry you can't wear something you've already worn to my nuptials! It's gotta be fresh off the machine. I guess that also means that I'd better get in craft mode so that I can make all my bridesmaids a gift (or at least those that accept being a CBM). After I receive the photo I'll need you to send me your snail mail address via email so that I can get your CBM gift to you. How does that sound? I think it sound like fun!

Feeling a little better and cyber bridesmaids

I was feeling a little better yesterday and managed to drag myself to work. I wore Butterick 5186 with Simplicity 9515. I got lots of compliments but believe me I looked better than I felt. This photo was taken after a long day on the job.

As far as the wedding goes I'm still having a dress and a photographer and that's it. After what had better be no longer than 20 minutes including pictures, I'm going to Red Lobster and maybe a movie. If anybody doesn't like it than they can go take a flying leap! I like Melodye's idea of cyber bridesmaids so I'm asking

Erica B

Of course somebody has to throw me a cyber fabric bridal shower! LOL.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Wedding Ramblings and such.

Calvin really likes this picture of me. It was taken a few weeks ago. I hate posting without photos. No other reason for the picture!

First, the wedding may be off! Not the marriage...just the wedding. I want something very small and still want to do it at church after Sunday worship service but people are starting to drive me crazy about what I HAVE to do. Calvin is sick of it and so am I. I am about ready to tell everybody to got to Hell and leave me alone. I see now why people elope...I am ALMOST there. If I don't wan't a bouquet, personalized napkins, attendants, engraved cake knife, a video etc., that's my business.

I've been sick since Saturday afternoon. If I never have nausea or vomiting for the rest of my life that is okay with me. My throat feels as though I've burned it with hot coffee. Since Saturday I haven't been able to keep any food down for long and have mostly given up trying. I've been living on crackers and diet Pepsi...the 6 oz cans. I don't know what brings it on but when it does I have go off of my meds but feel as though I'm walking around (okay laying around) in a drug-induced haze. I've got the shakes and am generally miserable. So do I feel like working on my dress or any other wedding details? No. What was I thinking getting married this month? Calvin says I haven't had an entire week of feeling great since September 2008. Yikes! I never really thought about that. I still think someone should have warned me. I was just so sure that after surgery I was going to be back to normal. I think I felt better when I still had cancer! Recovering is killing me! So I'll have to spend about a week off of all meds and then another week slowing going by on. By then it will be the 17th and only 13 days to the wedding. I'm going to sleep on it for one more night but generally I think I'm calling everything off except the "I do(s)."

In your opinion what is the difference between an experienced and an inexperienced sewer? I think the difference is that an experienced sewer really knows what their particular limitations are and readily accepts them or takes steps to correct them. An experienced sewer knows when a project can be salvaged and when to give up the fight and move on. Not every project can be salvaged. I used to have a poster in my sewing room of a man floating in an inner tube in what appeared to be the middle of the ocean. It read "good judgement comes from experience, experience comes from poor judgement." In my opinion that is truly the difference between experienced and inexperienced sewers.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Butterick 5186

I know I should be working on the dress for my wedding but it's not going to take me a month to make it. I cut this pattern out on Tuesday. I started sewing it Thursday and nearly had a nervous breakdown. After sleeping on it I worked on it some yesterday. I finished it today because I can't stand having UFO's hanging around. I honestly want to squeeze in one more project before I start the wedding dress. I did manage to work on my wedding invitations today. I'm taking them to church tomorrow so that the pastor can okay them. So you see I did do some work for the wedding afterall.

Pattern Description:

Misses's Semi fitted tops

Pattern Sizing:


Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?

Yes except I made View B but didn't have quite enough fabric so I opted for the View C sleeve

Were the instructions easy to follow?

Absolutely not. At least not for the collar and dart. Had I read the other reviews for this top prior to cutting my fabric, I probably would have chosen another pattern. The instructions for assembling the front to the back at the neckline should have been a lot more specific especially as it related to clipping to the dot. I think majoring in rocket science in college would have been easier. Sure, I finally got it together but on the inside it sure ain't pretty! Luckily the collar facing covers up most of the ugliness.

I think the key to getting the collar to fit is to pivot at a 90 degree angle when you get to the dot markings and don't be overly concerned about retaining the 5/8" seam allowance.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?

I disliked how the front and back fit together at the back neckline. After reading the other reviews for this pattern I see that I am not the only one. Other than the collar construction I mostly love the pattern however I don't necessarily like how the back looks. It looks fine until I tie the tie snug in the front then it rides up in the back. Since I don't see the doesn't bother me a whole lot.

Fabric Used:

It looks like a heavier weight Polyester chiffon but since it came from Walmart it's "fiber of unknown origin." Some of the detail seems lost because of the pattern in the fabric but it looks fantastic on.

Pattern Alterations or any design changes you made:

One good thing was I didn't have to do a FBA because there is a nice size but dart under the facing. I did lengthen it 1 1/2" and made a wide back adjustment. I used a covered button, although it hidden under a the lapel/collar, because I couldn't even imagine finding a button that would have otherwise matched. To make sure that the metal didn't blatantly show through the thin fabric, I interfaced the fabric circle before I covered it.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?

After sewing the "Collar from Hell", this top went together really fast. I would like to sew this again but probably not this season. The collar alone made me question my "advanced" sewing skills--that is until I read the other reviews of this pattern.


Even with the difficulty of sewing the collar I absolutely love this top. I especially love the fabric. It came out looking just like I envisioned it... funky and hip. I think the pattern should not be rated fast and easy because of the collar but I couldn't be happier with the result.