Thursday, June 28, 2007

Butterick 4238 Wrap Top

Funny how these projects evolve. I picked this pattern for a white crinkled fabric I have. I really like this fabric. So I decided to test this pattern first on another fabric. Ironically the fabric I chose for the muslin cost me more than the white fabric. How silly. But that's how these projects go sometimes. I barely had enough of this test fabric but I squeezed it out. Before I got too far I decided I didn't want this pattern for my white fabric because I feared it would look like a lab coat. At this point one must continue even though one is no longer testing for the favored fabric nor interested in the pattern. So my attitude was not good about this garment....

This is a loose-fitting top with shaped hems. View D, which is the one I made, has a wrap front, 3/4 sleeves and self fabric ties. The other views have side slits, short sleeves or are sleeveless. There is also a pull-on pants pattern. This is an easy pattern with adequate instructions.

The fabric is a cotton print I bought a few years ago from a booth at Puyallup. I don't remember what I had in mind for it. Maybe nothing.

I cut size 10 at the shoulders and did a FBA adding to about size 13 at the sides. The fit is very good at the shoulders. I notice that the right side point hits more in the middle than the pattern picture shows. Not crazy about how that looks.

When I cut it out I wasn't paying attention and didn't cut the left side straight across so it was shaped just like the right side. When I put it together I thought, how odd, it doesn't look like the pattern. Well, duh. I thought maybe I liked it with the two points so I hemmed it that way. Tried it on with possible pants and thought it was a wadder. I decided the problem was the length. I took off 3 inches all around plus cut the left side straight as per the pattern. Much better.

Once I tried it with the pants that were forgotten and lurking in my closet I find I like it.

Owen's Book of Colors

I purchased this set of designs as part of my new found enthusiasm for machine embroidery. Actually I bought three sets of designs for baby books but this one took so long it may be awhile before I get to the other books. But it was really fun to make and very adorable. The hardest part was punching the holes for the binding and getting my cord through. Next time I should pick a thinner cording. Although using applique saves on thread it takes more time because of all the trimming of the fabric pieces.

Simplicity 4020 Kimono Top

I finally made the kimono wrap top that has been so popular on PatternReview. I cut this out before I went to visit Owen (and parents) in May along with another project. I've been so busy with relearning how to use my embroidery software and helping DH with his computer that I haven't had time to sew. I feel like a computer geek lately. But finally I got back to this and I'm so glad I did. I love this top. I finished it and then wore it all day.

I cut out size 8 at the top and extended to @14 at the sides and sleeve length. I dropped the underbust seam 1 inch. I had trouble when sewing on the neck band. Either I forgot to lengthen it as per the underbust extra inch or I stretched the bodice piece. Whichever it was the band was a half inch short. I tried to get it into the empire seam but it looks like I pulled it a little bit as it wrinkles at the seam. Not too obvious I hope.

The underarm seam that joins with the underbust seam is awkward and a little tricky to get it together correctly. The instructions did not address this issue.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Onesies for OZ

Working on the bumper pad has me enthused to use my embroidery machine more. I decided to personalize some little onesies for Owen. Because they are so small it was a bit tricky to hoop them but it worked out okay if I just embroidered OZ. When I tried the longer "Owen" I ran into trouble and had to pick out some stitches that went astray. Soon he will be bigger so I will have more space to work with.

Pan Covers for Derek

My son Derek, the musician, has been wanting me to make covers for his steel drums for a long time now. I made a sample one a year or so ago but until now he hasn't found any fabric he liked. On their recent trip to Hawaii they stopped in a fabric store on Kawai and picked out this beautiful green and black barkcloth. I was surprised by a phone call from Derek. He called from the store to figure out how much to buy. I think this was the very same store that I stopped in when we were there many years ago. I made 3 covers, one for the bigger drum. I also created a label for him. I hope he will send me a photo of the covers on the pans to include here.

The Nursery

Here are some shots of the nursery with items I made. The crib with the epic bumper is only used by Tubs, the cat, so far. Suzanne and I are making a sling to carry Oz using white fleece. We also made a teal gray one for Justin to use.

Sunday, June 3, 2007

Home again

Back from meeting Owen Zander Smith, born April 27, 2007 in Jackson, Wyoming. I modified the nursery decor to better suit a baby boy! Suzanne and I made fleece slings for herself and Justin to carry Oz. These require @ 52-56 inches of fabric depending on the height of the wearer. Since the fleece we used is 60" wide we were able to make 3 slings from each color (white and teal). I brought one of each home to experiment with embroidery and edging. We also made a cloth book. I insisted that Suzanne do part of the sewing on these projects and she seemed to enjoy it but felt she could have never done this by herself. As these were her first attempts at sewing she was rather afraid of the sewing machine. I hope she finds a way to sew some more. Justin hung the embroidery I made "A Star is Born" near the crib.