Palazzo flow

I had been on the hunt for some interesting fabric to make some palazzo pants and of course, Habermans was reading my mind again! How do they know to have exactly what I need on my weekly visits?? I found this beautiful, multicolored jersey knit that was screaming to be made into palazzo pants! I used McCalls 6571, which is a one piece pattern! It doesn’t get much easier than that! The only design change I made was that I used a 1 1/2 inch elastic in the waistband instead of the 1/4 inch suggested. This was mainly to raise the crotch which was practically at knee level! And since I have a few color options, I made an orange top and a white top to maximize my wearing enjoyment although, the white top is not shown here.

Although I love my summer dresses, I will definitely be making more palazzo pants with this easy pattern!

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Burda Lovin

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Well, I am in love with my latest completed project (insert Cheshire Cat grin). To think, it all started with a downloadable (DL) Burda sleeveless waistcoat pattern! http://www.burdastyle.com/pattern_store/patterns/long-fur-waistcoat-102012 And since Burda DL’s don’t include seam allowance, I thought it wise to make a wearable muslin first! After a little tweaking of the muslin, I was ready to dive into the gorgeous faux shirling I bought at Joann Fabrics with my 60% off coupon! The total coupon price for 2 1/2 yards was $22.00! There’s just something magical about fabric, sewing and coupons! Said like the true addict I am!
So let’s start with the muslin. The fashion fabric used from my stash was from Walmart for a mere $1.00 per yard! Didn’t need a coupon for that! The fabric is a sturdy denim that probably is more upholstery than fashion but it worked wonderfully for this project and if it failed (not I, but it), I would have only lost $2.50 of the $4.00 paid for 4 yards! Piece of cake! The fabric used for the sleeves was also purchased from Walmart for a $1.00/yd. it’s the most awful mystery knit I’ve ever used but perfect for sleeves! Awful because it kept breaking my thread even after many tension adjustments. image
The real star is the faux shirling coat! Since I can’t do much with a sleeveless waistcoat, especially with the winter we’ve had in Michigan, I paired it with upcycled leather sleeves that were originally skirts I purchased from the Salvation Army for less than $10 bucks total!
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I originally wanted to go with an animal print lining, but found this instead in the clearance section of my favorite fabric store Habermans for $4.98/yd.
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Since the neckline is wider than an average coat, I made a fleece infinity scarf/hood which allowed me to get some animal print in!
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And since I had the entire top half of the tan leather skirt leftover, I made a purse with animal print lining!image

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I left the skirt zipper and fashioned it into a pocket to keep my cell phone or keys.

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For those still reading this rather lengthy post, I say thank you! Now off to continue admiring my handy work!

Scraptastic

During the Memorial Day weekend, I went scrap diving thru my growing pile-o-sraps that my hubby wonders why I cant seem to get rid of! My response is always the same, although laced with some irritation… you see trash, I see fashion opportunities! also known as small projects like these two simple summer tops. I knew there was a reason I couldn’t throw away those lovely, psychodelic bits of fabric over the years!

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McCalls 6320 view B is perfect for a scrap dig! Just shy of 1 yard to make so you can’t beat that! This is my 2nd time making this top. I especially love this one because of this fabric.

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I really love the rhinestone buckle I found at the craft store. Adds a nice touch.

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I also made McCalls 6751.

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The photo on the jacket is sort of misleading. The model’s top is close-fitting at the waist which I like. My version was not close-fitting at all at the waist. I may tweak it a little to achieve that fit. Also, I used bias binding along the edges instead of doing the fold over method but I think the bias distorts the shape especially the back opening. Next time I’ll try it without the bias.

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My scrap heap got lighter by a mere 2 pounds but its a start!

Floral Frock

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According to the fashion mags, floral is the trend this spring and summer. While I would love to say I made this dress to be on trend, truth of the matter is that I cut this out almost two years ago but I was extremely intimidated to start this pattern a second time! The first time I attempted this project about 4 years ago, it turned into an epic fail! I was an over ambitious newbie to the sewing world. Being ambitious is usually a good thing but knowing your limitations is also a good thing!

The pattern itself was not so bad, my problem was choosing a silky fabric! It was a beautiful fabric, the operative word being WAS! See for yourself… Cuz this is all that’s left of it!

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Obviously I’m still mourning the loss! But alas, I can covet a new and improved treasure that’s actually wearable!

This fabric is a stretch cotton floral that I manipulated to get this layout. The dark blue waistband was actually the bottom border. I thought it would be visually appealing and would break up the white bodice and top of the skirt.

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I was able to place the floral scraps just enough to get the print on the front of the sleeve cap only. It took every inch of fabric to get this layout.

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I am beyond pleased with the way it turned out! I omitted the pockets on this version remembering I got all kinds of corn-fused the first time around! I also reduced the width of the skirt cuz all that fabric just wasn’t flattering on me! Suzy Chin is back on my good list, I’m sure she’s pleased!

Ralph Chado Rucci

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It’s done finally! My extremely long Vogue Ralph Chado Rucci project! I was so hesitant about starting this project for fear of botching it up! Then Erica B. published her detailed, instructional review! http://sewing.patternreview.com/cgi-bin/readreview.pl?readreview=1&reviewnum=82705. Because of her thoughtful review, I knew the alterations I needed to make. For instance, I didn’t want the neck slit as revealing as what was shown on the pattern so I reduced the slit but obviously not enough! Darn it! Oh well, I’ll just have to buy a matching camisole. Also, I needed to lengthen the skirt to a respectable length for my 5’7″ frame. I added 1 1/2 inches to the waist, then adjusted all my markings. And I had no intentions of making the pockets but I got a little confused on how to bypass that part of the directions, so as an afterthought, I added them. I read scientific protocols for a living but couldn’t figure out how to bypass the pattern instructions- go figure! Anywho, I probably should have raised the pockets up a tad bit more. The fabric used is a pale pink ponte knit which sewed nicely. And since I was using knit, I used stabilizer on the ties to prevent stretching. I have to admit that I didn’t even know what a gusset was before this project but I really like this detail. Gives it high style factor! Also, I had never made bias binding prior to this project. When I’m walking, that little detail adds sex appeal. Overall, I love the way it turned out! This was the most thoughtful project I’ve ever worked on aside from the Burda Odysee http://wp.me/a2dcK6-9L. Careful consideration had to be taken, after all, there were 75 instructions to complete which was a confidence booster in itself! Even my husband, the ultimate critic was impressed by my skills which was enough to make me do the happy dance!

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The Power of Ponte

Is there any garment more versatile, stylish and comfortable than leggings? Jeans are great too but jeans don’t offer the same comfort as leggings IMHO. A few months ago, I bought some overpriced (way overpriced!) leggings to compliment an outfit. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love them but I knew I was paying too much for them and even entertained the thought of making them as I was handing over my credit card! They’re faux leather and ponte knit and feel fabulous on. 20130226-225002.jpg

I rationalized that since I’m saving money by making some of my clothes, I can afford to splurge every now and then.
But thanks to the plentiful pattern sales at Joanns, I picked up a McCalls pattern for .99 cent that offered a nice variety of legging styles so I thought Id give it a try!
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The version I chose was a two tone style and fortunately, I had fabric in my stash I planned to use. It’s a graphic ponte knit I bought at Habermans a few years ago. Although, I’m supposed to be sewing from my stash, I did purchase a yard of black ponte knit to achieve the look.
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Overall, I’m pleased with the way they turned out. But next time, I’ll make the waistband wider. I definitely plan on making other versions. Hopefully, I can find more interesting graphic knit.
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