Saturday, April 26, 2014

Simplicity 6209 Dress - View D

Front view of the dress

Is that another Simplicity 6209 dress?? Yep, it sure is! And I LOVE it! (with a deep voice, like when Oprah's excited). I made all my seams french; I love french seams because they give the garment a nice, clean finish. We have nice weather here in Texas so I decided to take some pics outside. I love Spring! 

Another front view

Honestly, I had a hard time finishing off the armholes. I thought "sleeveless" would be easier than sleeves, but I was wrong. So this is an area I need to work on. I love sleeves though, so I don't anticipate making many sleeveless garments. But when I do, I need to be able to get it done right.

Back view

I used left-over fabric from my Simplicity 6053 skirt. I bought 2.5 yards of fabric from Jo-Ann's and it was enough to make a dress and a skirt! 

Side view

Don't you just love this rock? Me encanta!

As much as I love this pattern, it's time for me to put it away, and move on to others. 

Pattern cover

Keep sewing! Y'all are encouraging me so much with all your beautiful garments...

Friday, April 18, 2014

Sunshine and Shine On Award - I've been nominated.

I'd like to thank Dorothy of Sewing Fun Things for nominating me for the Sunshine and Shine On award. What an honor! This award is meant to help you get to know your fellow bloggers better and network with other bloggers, as well as reveal fun facts about you to help your readers know you better.

The Rules - a) Use the award logo in your post
                     b) Link to whoever nominated you
                     c) Write ten pieces of information about yourself
                     d) Nominate ten fellow bloggers ( or less if you have less followers) who positively and                                  creatively inspire others in the blogosphere
                     e)Inform the nominees on their blogs.

Okay, check on a) and b); now some info about moi:

1. I think its true that, looking back, we regret more the opportunities we left on the table, than the mistakes we made. 
2. Sometimes I wish I lived back in the 18th century. 
3. I don't watch much TV at all - only a few shows, one of them being Peppa Pig - thanks to my son!
4. I don't like to cook. Sigh!
5. Math was my favorite subject in school. 
6. I'm not scared of heights.
7. I'd love to become a polyglot (someone who fluently speaks many languages), like Michel Thomas.
8. I'm such a home body!
9. I'm mad at myself for not getting back at sewing sooner. 
10. I'm absolutely enjoying getting to know all the wonderful sewists in the blogosphere. I think the sewing community is the best ever! So cheers to more sewing and more creativity...

My nominees:
1. Mrs. Toad Sews
2. Sew Filled to the Brim
3. Sew Florida
4. Mrs. Crafty Chick
5. SarahLizSewStyle

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Simplicity Sew Simple A1523 Top

I am absolutely pleased with this project! This top was such an easy, quick sew, even for a newbie like me. I chose to use a silk blend fabric, but the pattern is made for stretchy knits. I cut the pattern to a size 10, which turned out to be just the right size, even though I didn't use a stretchy fabric. 

Front view of the top. Sorry I didn't realize there was a little fold there at the bottom.

Using a silky fabric was a bit of challenge because it's slippery and frays easily. So I made all the seams french seams, to prevent them from fraying. The main change I made to this pattern was not attaching elastic to the lower side seams. 

Here is a zoomed-in view of the top.

I actually wore this top to work today, with RTW pants. It felt really good being complimented for something that I made. I really love this top; I can't wait to make another version of it.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Simplicity (New Look) 6053 Skirt - View A

Front view of skirt

I completed view A of Simplicity 6053. This was a very simple pattern and the instructions were easy to follow. The only change I made was skipping the side vent. 

Side view of the skirt.

I'll definitely be making more of these; in fact, I think I may just make all the views on this pattern. I really like view C too. 

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Sewing History │ The Invention of the Sewing Machine

Sewing had been around for many centuries before the sewing machine was invented, and I have absolute respect for all the sewists who took the time to make clothing without all the great machines we have today. I think about, for example, all the gorgeous outfits that were worn by the elite in ancient civilizations such as the great Mesopotamia and Egypt, and that somebody had to have made them all by hand! The first sewing needles were actually made of animal bones. Look at these wonderful outfits that were worn by the Egyptian elite back then:

It wasn't until the 18th century that any attempts were made to invent a sewing machine. Several people tried but were unsuccessful:

Charles Weisenthal - in 1755 he was issued the first patent for a needle designed for a sewing machine.
Thomas Saint - in 1790 he was issued the first patent for a sewing machine that didn't work.
Thomas Stone & James Henderson - they were issued a patent in 1804 for a machine, but their invention failed.
Josef Madersperger - he was also issued a patent in 1814, but his invention was unsuccessful.
John A. Doge & John Knowles - they invented a sewing machine in 1818, but their invention failed.

After all these failed inventions, the first practical and widely used machine was invented in 1829 by French tailor, Barthelemy Thimonnier. In America, the first patent for a functional sewing machine was issued to Elias Howe in 1846. Look at Howe's invention below - not bad for 1846, no?

Elias Howe's machine had a speed of 250 stitches per minute!

Isaac Singer and Allen Wilson adopted Howe's invention's mechanism to improve their own inventions, which resulted in Singer building the first commercially successful machine. Howe sued Singer for patent infringement in 1854 and won. Look at Singer's invention below - genius, huh?

We've come a long way indeed! Today's high-end sewing machines come with incredible features - everything from being computerized, to having hundreds of different stitches, to making buttonholes and all sorts of amazing things. I'm truly grateful to all the inventors, even the ones whose inventions failed. Now little me can make herself some clothing too ( coz I sure wouldn't do it by hand! ahem).

Credits: - The London Science Museum;

Friday, April 4, 2014

Book Review│ Simplicity Fabric Guide

I recently got a copy of Simplicity's Fabric Guide: The Ultimate Fiber Resource, which was released in 2011. For a sewist who's getting back in the game, like me, it is the perfect companion. The book comes packed with all sorts of info - from a brief history of fabric to caring for and working with fabric. 

There's a whole chapter with basic information on different types of fabric, including each fabric's characteristics, uses, and sewing tips. This is definitely a helpful tool when selecting fabric for your projects.

Lots of tips on fabric preparation

There's also a whole chapter on threads.

The brief history of fabric was definitely a teaser - I'd have enjoyed more info on that topic. Even though the book is excellent for newbies, I don't think seasoned sewists will find it as useful. If you've been sewing for a while, you probably know most of the stuff by heart, so it may be a boring read. 

The book is meant to be a guide to turn to again and again for most basic sewing questions. Overall, I think it is a must-have when you're starting out.