McCalls: 7472

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Not quite fabric scraps, the grape printed challis was barely a yard, acquired from the ASG Garage Sale back in May.  I walked past the bundles of fabric, trailing my hand along then stopped when I touched this one.  Ohhh!  Score!

It’s an old-style challis.  One of the softer more fluid ones.  The accent fabric on the sleeves and collar are also from the garage sale.  It’s a sueded challis in a bluish grey color.  The photo above doesn’t do the colors justice.  They are much more saturated in real life.

The pattern is a new one for me.  I liked the raglan sleeves so I wouldn’t have to worry about lining up a shoulder seam to my non-aligned shoulders.  I added a pleat to the back for a bit more fullness.

Otherwise there were no pattern alterations.  The sewing was very direct.  Sew seam.  Overlock seam.  Next!  I used Louise Cutting’s method for attaching the collar band.  She has a great tutorial on doing this which cuts down on bulk and insures the curves match.

Once the weather cools down, I plan on wearing this with grey leggings.

Give a Hoot

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I saw these little ceramic owls in the discard pile at the local bead shoppe (aren’t all bead stores a shoppe?) and knew they deserved better.  They were just laying there, asking for some passer-by to please give a hoot about them.  That was me.  Hoot!  Hoot!

They were so full of color and personality they didn’t need much to make them soar.

I pulled the primary colors of the spiral focal from the owls – bright red, mauve and baby blue.  The rest of the necklace is a lovely dove grey which compliments the brightness of the owls.  I’m not enough of a bird watcher to know if owls and doves coexist in the wild, but in beading they certainly do.

Rami Kim Perseverance

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It was waaay back in the Fall of 2016 that our local sewing guild had Rami Kim, Queen of Fabric Manipulation present a workshop.

She showed us many, many different ways of folding, stitching and otherwise twisting fabric to achieve texture and depth.

The workshop project was a tote.  We were instructed to prep our fabric before-hand, cutting various pieces to size.  Rami was quite the task master.  She would demonstrate a particular technique, then we would have 45 minutes.  Or 30 minutes.  Or 15 to replicate things.

This may sound a bit stern, but it was necessary if we were to learn everything she wanted to teach us.  Goodness there was a wealth of knowledge to acquire!

Each section of the tote featured a different type of fabric manipulation.  And once the fabric was cajoled in to the appropriate shape, it could be further embellished with beads or embroidery.  I chose beads.

We learned different types of smocking, fabric pinwheels, a new take on flying geese triangles, and many, many other methods.

By the time Saturday evening rolled around, we were exhausted, educated and very happy sewists.  We all swore we would finish our totes, and have  a show-and-tote at a meeting in the future.

Perseverance was key in completing the tote.  There was considerably more hand sewing (see smocking mentioned above) than I had done in years.  All that smocking?  Yup, sewn by hand.  All those beads?  By hand again, though adding beads was my choice.  By the time it was finished my hands cried uncle and my fingers felt blistered.  Perseverance may be overrated.

The future is here!  I’ve finished my bag!

Bag-A-Licious

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I seem to be on a bit of a scrap binge lately.  These are follow-on creations inspired by the fabric pods.  They’re great to make when you just want to sew, not bothering with fitting or fussiness of any kind.

While the pods take a square, these little bags can be made from more forgiving scraps.  Any little oblong piece can be incorporated.  Like the pod bags, the zippers are attached so that when they are unzipped the bags stay open.  A nice touch.

Once the bags were sewn, I decorated the toucans and tigers a bit more.  They have rhinestones on them for a little bling sais quoi.

I like them.  They’re colorful and fun and make me smile.  I hope they make you smile too.

Style Arc: Lotsa Lotti

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The recent issue of the American Sewing Guild newsletter had an article about garment sewing from scraps.  Basically showing runway designs and recommending patterns that lend themselves to reduced yardage.

The light bulb went off, and I realized that’s what I’ve been doing all along with the Style Arc Lotti tank top.

It’s perfect for using those knit fabrics you love, but don’t have enough of to make a full tank.  While the pattern shows three different sections both front and back, it’s easy to merge the third section into the first and make it with only two different fabrics.  That’s what I did with this top.

I know, a black tank top?  What can I say, white as the accent wouldn’t have worked with two dark-furred cats, and I don’t look good in tans.  Black is basic.  Black is classy.  Black it is!

Ziggurat

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This bracelet was an experiment in free-form weaving.  Not free form as in absent warp and weft, but free form as in design.  I had no plan when I started, other than it should be dark and goth-like.

It was intended as a gift for someone, but alas, I have not yet perfected sizing my loom pieces, and it fell short of her wrist.  Pooh!

That said, I remain pleased with it.  The clasp is pleasantly hefty and solid, the woven band is nicely tactile.  With the sizing exception, it turned out well.

The black background highlights the Mardi Gras colored design, with it’s peaks and ogees.