Saturday, November 22, 2014


Today's ripoff is a bit old, I'm getting slow!

Vogue 8805
Vogue 8805 is a super popular, super cute dress. Its also pretty basic, so maybe, just maybe its a coincidence that its look a lot like....

This Preen dress! I mean for heavens sake, they choose a similar color story, its not a coincidence.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

New Patterns: Butterick Winter 2014

I wasn't going to post these until I say B6151 so let's start with that one.

Butterick 6151

The neck brace, the straps, what the hell is that zipper thing? This pattern seems to think that boobs are dangerous velociraptors plotting to break out of their cage and devour their handlers. Why else would someone think that four straps or two layers of zips are necessary?

Butterick 6128
Butterick's trying to get some of that wrap dress fairy dust that is floating around the blogosphere. The magic of the wrap are the curves it gives (or enhances on) the body but this one isn't giving her anything. The maxi-wrap is a bit first-lady (not Michelle, she's too cool) -esque.

Butterick 6127
Comeon, just call it the Princess Kate line.
AKA, the knock-off of LK Bennett line. 

Butterick 6131
Heavens me that's cheap. Please don't put your bridesmaid in this.

Butterick 6143
Hips gathers? Maybe if you're a twiggy twig-person.

Butterick 6130
Just stop making jumpsuit patterns. Its been done and done better.

Monday, November 17, 2014


Sashiko has shown up a few times in blogs, but its so crazy beautiful its not getting the love that it deserves. I picked up preprinted sashiko fabric, some thread, and needles while on vacation in Hawaii thinking I'd have something to do on the plane back. Instead I drank way too many mai tais in celebration and spent most of the flight focusing on not projectile vomiting on the poor people three rows in front of me. Take my mom's advice because I didn't: being on a plane while hungover is something you will strongly regret. Sashiko waited until I was comfortably back in the mainland.

Now I want to make beautiful garments with sashiko accents. This has been done in sewing blogland a couple of times, notably by Kyra Clark's beautiful Archer and Reves Mecanique jacket. Sashiko also showed up at Balenciaga in 2010. While not traditional sashiko stitching, it appears as if the designer was inspired by it.

Balenciaga Fall 2010

Friday, November 14, 2014

Quilt #4

Quilt #4 is done. Jesus, it went faster than that last behemoth of 1000 pieces. This would have been a better a third project, but I'm a cocky little garment sewer and have no time to worry about silly little things like difficulty ratings. I've sewn silk, bitch!

The pattern is Hanami from quilty, Winter 2012. I wanted something that would feature the large patters and the pattern also worked perfectly with the amount of fabric I bought. The patterned fabric is Lizzy House Constellations and the solids are Kona cotton. Comparing these fabrics to the fabrics from the last quilt (which were all random Joann tone-on-tone prints), the quality is totally noticeable. Feels better, doesn't burn, you know, quality-ness.

I bought the fabric on a whim from Grey's back when I permanently lived in Bostontown, but have since realized that it isn't my style. I decided once I pieced the front that this is going to a children's charity so I quilted the living crap out of this puppy for longevity. This was the first time quilting with my walking foot (and after starching it, starch smells gooood) and it was amazing. It went so so so smoothly. Go buy a walking foot if you don't have one, they are worth their wait in gold and on top of that, just plain fun to watch! Next time I want to try out basting spray as well, but I'm not terribly comfortable adding chemicals to the world so it would have to be amazing.

The binding is also machine sewn on but from the control the walking foot gives, you can't see the stitches. Also, my corners are damn sharp! I am already feeling my preferences for various quilting methods and I like 2.25" binding whereas this is 2.5". I used bias binding because its stronger and I want it to last, but I also really wanted to try out the method for making continuous bias binding. It was a blast! And pretty easy, although I drew the cutting lines on wrong at first, whoopsie. Easily fixed!

All corners met pretty well and I had to press seams open because of all that white fabric. Pressing open made my garment sewing heart happy. You might notice the fabric framing the light blue, constellation fabric is uneven. I didn't have enough fabric to make those blocks as large as they were supposed to be and I didn't want to make them smaller because the fabric is so doggone-it-stinking cute, so I just adjusted the border to compensate.

I hope someone will enjoy this!

Thursday, October 30, 2014

New Vogue Patterns: Winter/Holiday 2014

Let's start with the good.

Vogue 1424
I absolutely adore this dress! I love the strappies, those pleats (swoon!), and even the color. With all the seams it seems fairly straightforward how to adjust for a larger bust too! I know the strappies have gotten mixed reviews, but I'm firmly team strappies.

Vogue 1421
Oh man alive I love that seaming! Other than the weird, fun seaming, that's a pretty simple dress. I want to make it in scuba something fierce!

Okay, the others:

Vogue 1423
Ok, I'm off team strappies. If you left off that underlayer, this would be a very chic dress for your next BDSM soiree.

Vogue 1426
I want to pull her bodice up for her. That's some super dated stuff guys.

Vogue 1428
Helen Mirren would look hot in this. No joke, Helen Mirren is hot.

Vogue 1425
Anyone else want to cut this off and make a top? Cause I do, bad. Otherwise its a fairly boring shape.

Vogue 1427
She's going out on the town with ruffle-lady. They're on the prowl!

Vogue 1422
Again a pretty, if dull dress. Gorgeous fabric. If Michelle Obama hasn't worn this yet, she ought to.

Vogu 1420
I do love a good wrap bodice, even a mock-wrap is ok. The finishing on this dress looks like it was finger-pressed and stapled. This style needs to be sharp.

Vogue 9046
I don't even know about this one. I love and hate the slight 40's-50's style. Removing the sleeves might bring this towards a more modern aesthetic. The pleats are beautiful, but there are so many it looks like a corset. The v-neck is very elegant.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Quilt #3

I made my first quilt when I was about 10 and quiltmaking spread like wildfire through our sewing classes. After that I had no desire to quilt ever again. It was kinda like the time I got it into my head I wanted to make a teddy bear. I ended up gluing his arms and legs on. Over it.

Then while persuing the magazine rack I saw quilty, specifically quilty winter 2012, specifically the quilt 'Burgoyne, with Red', and I was mesmerized. Seriously, quilts are beautiful pieces of art, decorating your life AND keep you warm. I'm now completely hooked! I have every quilty since that issue and a few other magazines, follow quilting blogs, am starting quite a collection of quilting notions, and even bought a quilting class on craftsy. Bring it on, baby!

Quilt #1 was that little thing I made when I was 10. Quilt #2 was a wall hanging I made for my amazing in-laws last Christmas which was more of an appliqued horse and quilted landscape picture. Quilt #3 is the first proper quilt, piecing, backing, and binding.

The pattern is 'Hello, Handsome' by Nancy Downey from quilty, March 2014 and might have been a bit ambitious for my first proper quilt, but hell, it turned out ok. The second, nay, the MILLISECOND after I quilted it I ordered a walking foot because quilting it was hell.


That's the only picture of the back you get because the quilting blows. I added some extra blocks to the back, I'm not sure if I like the effect.

 I've already learned a lot about quilting so despite my incredible lack of quilting acumen, most of my points lined up! There were only about 3 majors misalignments. I decided to do stitch-in-the-ditch quilting because piecing is so pretty that I worry that putting thread all over it will mess it up. I need to get over that fear fast!

I ended up giving this to a person who did me a huge favor for me, but I'm going to make it again because I love it so much. And here I swear: every point will line up and I will be more adventurous in quilting.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Sunday Confessional

I never sweep or vacuum my threads. I find them at work, in my car. I've even found them still on me in another country after flying for 10 hours.

From a post from a thread from the edge about the troubles of bamboo batting. Good to know as I'm working on my 4th quilt right now!

Forgive me.