Sunday, May 26, 2013

Me-Made May Miracle: One Evening, Three Items

My hapi-coat inspired
summer housecoat &
Believe me, all of you amazing sewists, who are showing off your creations for all 31 days this month, I am so impressed & following along avidly.  A whole wardrobe of things I've made?!  I'll call that Me-Made-Maybe, A.D. 2045 edition!

A first attempt at copying
a store-bought nightgown.
In the meantime, after spending the day running errands, going to yoga, going to the gym, fighting w/ a sewing pattern (which is what I feel like I do about 90% of the time), and needing a shower, I finally took one after we got dinner ready and just before we ate.  

BTW, We've joined the community garden nearby and our sweat equity has really paid off...the greens & herbs have been abundant, fresh & delicious the last 5-6 weeks.  Rainbow chard, beet greens, spinach, every possible variation on lettuce, cilantro, etc.  Yum!

Anyway, we made an amazing salad, and I got dressed and it just so happened that all 3 items I put on were me-made!  I'd call that a me-made miracle.  It all definitely came together because it got quite cold yesterday, so I needed the fuzzy slipper-socks, in addition to the nightgown (never blogged) and the hapi-coat (not really a yukata because of the length).  

Here are a few photos (sorry they're not the greatest quality), with my own tiny tribute to Me-Made May.  

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Enough Already! 4 Pair of Roommate Knickers!

Okay, I finally got the fly figured out!  And I've made the Roommate four pair of knickers now, all using the pattern I got from One-Yard Wonders...

I must admit I didn't figure it out by myself.  I ended up going to one of the open studio classes at Bits of Thread and getting some assistance from Rosalie, who, despite her tender age, has amazing sewing skills.  

The top pair (turquoise/burgundy/yellow) is using up some of the printed Kente we got in Ghana, lo these many years ago, and the bottom pair is flannel; the other 2 pair are actual one-yard pieces I got at a quilt show.  BTW, it's a rainy cool weekend and the Roommate reports the flannel pair were very nice to put on this morning!  

I have many projects in the pipeline, using some fun fabric I just purchased, plus getting some inspiration from a concert we were at on Thursday...but first I must finish up quite a few things.  More on that later!

Monday, May 13, 2013

More One-Yard Wonders: Roommate Knickers v.2

I mentioned I'd found 2 great books in my public library, and ended up buying them both.  You'll see here the 2nd version of boxers from Fabric by Fabric: One-Yard Wonders, which I actually made with less than one yard!  Boy is my life exciting.  If you're interested, the original book is One-Yard Wonders.  Both are written by Hoskins & Yaker.  

I am about to start a 3rd version, with a look to really perfecting the fly, something I've always known was difficult, but I got interested in really trying to get it right after watching my friend Tilly on the Great British Sewing Bee from BBC2.  I have become addicted to Project Runway, so #GBSB was fun because it was soooo different.  (For one thing, much more emphasis on sewing skills, not as much on design...which makes sense, but nice to see a different focus.)  

One of the projects was to make a pair of men's pants...something I will probably never try. But they mentioned how difficult a zipper fly is and I remember that I had done a just-barely-acceptable job on the first pair of knickers for Mr. Roommate, so was enthused to try again.  The verdict?  Well, not quite right, but better.  

I had a lot of fun playing with the stripey fabric on this & if you look closely at the left edge of the photo, above, you'll see that I went all the way to the selvage.  We saw this a lot in West Africa & I think it's a great way to use as much fabric as possible! 

Sunday, May 5, 2013

More Copy Your Clothes

Green dress at Great Sand Dunes National Park
You may or may not know that the main reason I started making clothes again...and stopped because I no longer live in Abu Dhabi & no longer have my tailor, Mohammed, to make clothes for me.  We left Abu Dhabi in 2008, so the wonderful cotton dresses and skirts and jackets I have are beginning to wear out.  

This green dress, in particular, wasn't all cotton to begin with.  (One of the hazards of buying fabric for 27¢/yard is not knowing exactly what that fabric is made of.)  Anyway, it's faded horribly, and it's time to try my hand at copying it & making another...

If you're wondering what it will be made of, check out this amazing fabric from Windham Fabrics.  I love it & broke down last week and bought 4 yards (there's a discount if you buy more than 3, so I HAD to).  
After taking the pieces apart, I marked
them so I wouldn't get confused. 

The green dress is mostly taken apart at this point--it's quite a good thing to do if you're watching a movie, as we were last night (those old Columbos are great fun!).  There were 10 homemade buttons (fabric + plastic) on it and Bella is loving those--they bounce & skitter extremely well on our hardwood floors!  

The next part will be turning these dress pieces into pattern pieces.  I don't think Mohammed used a 5/8" seam allowance!  But I have plenty of old maps from work to make pattern pieces out here I go.

I've traced the piece, but need to add
the 5/8" seam. 

I pieced the pattern piece for the sleeve, I didn't
want to start cutting into a new map! 

BTW, the copied skirt is coming along nicely--lined and everything, I just haven't felt like tacking the hem.  Will probably wait until my friend gets back in town so she can help.  Explaining to the Roommate what I want is rather a chore, but Heidi will know exactly what I want...
Bella is devoted to Project Runway, too!

Overseeing the efficient use of fabric.