Monday, June 29, 2009

Playing with big print fabric

Today I traced Burda WOF 3-2009-101 which I love but was afraid it didn't have enough shaping. However after seeing the reviews I decided to go for it. Now the fabric I plan to use is this one from Gorgeous Fabrics which has a very large repeat about 24 in. If you look at the fabric with the selvages up and down the color gray is heavy on one side and not the other. It didn't bother me because the dress is cinched at the waist and I figure the colors would come together anyways. Then I looked at Phillys entry on how she played with the same fabric in a different color way. As you can see she went with the selvage going left to right. While I see that her dress looks very nice, her pattern is very different from mine, the print in hers is clearly displayed (my gray/dark blue color is the same as her light blue) which will not be the case for mine. But of course now I'm thinking... I couldn't use this Burda pattern if I turned my grainline 90 deg, the fabric is only 45 inches wide, and I really have my heart set on this pattern with this fabric.

I'm going to sleep on it and see. What do you all think?

Monday, June 22, 2009

Father's Day

For Father's Day we went to the Catoctin Wildlife Preserve and Zoo near Frederick, Maryland. We were all impressed by the number of animals they had, this is a relatively small zoo and not only did they have a great number of babies (among them the cutest wolf puppies you have ever seen) but all animals look healthy, active and happy.

We took a "safari" ride through their preserve which consists of about 3-4 fenced sections where they keep a variety of animals.

On the safari we fed bagels to a yak...

Bread to a bison with a huge slimy tongue...

Popcorn to deer, rheas...

and a camel.

We had wonderful weather, breezy and in the 70's, it was a perfect Father's Day.


The picture above was taken while we got gas on our way out to the zoo. Apparently the utility workers hit a water line. Pretty geyser no?

Friday, June 19, 2009

A stash confessional

Like I said in my previous post I got more than I planned at Kashi's and the pile arrived yesterday as he promised.

These are the knits, from left the first 4 are rayon knits, the solid heathers are beautiful which Kashi showed me after I got the print. The last two are poly knits. I do have a general idea of what I'm making with these but I don't want to commit yet. Looking at these I can say the mood was blue apparently ;)

Here are the wovens. On the left what Kashi called a Japanese cotton which will be made into this Burda top. The last on this row is another Japanese cotton that Carolyn made famous in her blog, this one for a sheath dress. The yellow print, which looks greenish in the picture, is a cotton with some stretch, I'm thinking another sheath dress. Next a Swiss dot for a top and above a silk for this tunic

When he was cutting my fabric, this denim was being put away by one of his assistants and I couldn't resist. It is double sided one a medium blue the other a very cool print.

Considering that last time I saw Kashi was a year ago, I'm thinking this wasn't so bad...The angst us fabric lovers put ourselves through...


I leave you with an image of my son receiving his 5th grade promotion certificate from his principal. And if you would just let me boast, he also received the President's award for academic achievement.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Back home

So, unexpectedly (someone decided to come early!) I got to go to New Jersey and spend 5 days with my brother, his wife and their beautiful baby boy, my nephew! As all new parents they are getting used to their new routine or lack of, and I was glad to help.

On Tuesday morning after breakfast I took the bus into the city to enjoy a few hours in the garment district. I knew Cidell and Trena had been there and I almost followed in their footsteps by visiting a few of the same stores. I was very excited about going to Greenberg and Hammer where I finally bought large sheets of marking paper to avoid constantly moving around the tiny pieces of it available at Joann's. These will be great when marking jackets. I also bought the wax slabs that disappear when ironing after I read about them in Trena's blog. From there I went to see Kashi where I purchased more than I planned and therefore had him ship it for me. I found these beautiful belt buckles in another shop (can't remember the name) and the trim in Pacific Trims (Trena does it look like the trim you got?)

I'm all excited about finishing the dress I'm working on and making more summer dresses but first I have to catch up with my household duties...

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Something new worn with something old

The something new is the top, it's the finished Green Gable by Zephyr Style in a white cotton yarn. I'm not completely satisfied with this project. The neckline in the back curls to the right side and so does the front to a lesser degree. I blocked it but didn't do much. My plan now is to wash the garment and then reblock and see if it helps. I also hope it helps the ribbing in the arms and especially at the hem, it is too loose and flips again to the right side; this might be my fault, I did not go down a needle size like the pattern asked because I didn't want tight ribbing at the hips and I also did Elizabeth Zimmermann's sewn bind off because my regular bind off had no give and too tight. I lengthened the pattern,I didn't want my belly showing but maybe now it is too long? I hope it shrinks some after the wash. The lighting was strange, it really made the white shine and you can't see the lace detail in the front, so here it is.

The old is the skirt, Burda 8654 (out of print) which I made about 4 years ago (yikes!) and I never reviewed it. The fabric is a polyester chiffon from Joann's, I fell in love with the print but I knew it would give me trouble;the lining is also poly from Joann's. Once I sewed the side seams and put it on it was almost unwearable, I think the fabric must have shifted during cutting, I did have it pinned to tissue paper however, but there was almost no ease in the thigh area which I never have problem with since my hips are the widest part of my body. I do like the style, the chiffon overlay has a mock wrap and there is a slit in center back. I also like the top included in this pattern.

Both of these garments are wearable but I'm not completely satisfied, oh well they all can't be winners!

Monday, June 08, 2009

I am an aunt!

Born June 7, my brother's son. Welcome to the family!

Sunday, June 07, 2009

The week's summary

A week ago on our anniversary we celebrated with our boys by going to the National Zoo. Everyone gets to pick what they want to see, I wanted to see the birds which is where I took the photographs of the peacock. He seemed to be posing for me and I couldn't resist the beautiful colors. The best part of our visit however was seeing the baby gorilla. We were lucky to find the mom and baby active and out and about. The way the mother looked after the youngster, never letting him out of arm's length, was precious. Her eyes conveyed such expression and intelligence.

Yesterday we got a day of no rain, after a week of downpours, so I went out to the garden and weeded. I also planted my herb pot because I love cooking with fresh herbs. I planted some sunflower seeds and placed some iron edgings down on the soil hoping to deter the squirrels from digging them up, we'll see.

I'm working on Vogue 7793 which is now out of print. I had cut the pattern from a beautiful batiste I bought at Metro Textiles that year. I used binding at the neckline instead of facings and I really like how it looks. More on the dress later...

Monday, June 01, 2009

Burda WOF 4-2009 101A

I finished this skirt just in time to wear for my meeting with Cidell. Please excuse the wrinkles I had been wearing it for a while when I took this picture. This skirt took longer to construct than I thought it would, in part because life got in the way and partly because of the facing construction which was a bit confusing. Other reviewers found it confusing too and I believe we all just did our own thing; Karen documented her steps better than I could explain it here.

I found Guttermann topstitching thread in the same color red and I like the way it shows. The opening with the buttons is fully functional except that the skirt has a side zipper, so you could just sew it up and use the buttons as decorative and still get in and out of the skirt just fine.

The length on this pattern for a 5'6" me ended above my knees, I wanted it a little lower so I made a 1/2 inch hem finished with bias binding. The fabric is a stretch denim from EmmaOneSock which has been in my stash for a while.

One more photo to show the topstitching