Sunday, August 13, 2017

Hello Charlie!

Jalie Charlie Bomber Jacket
Size Q

It all started last week while shopping for back-to-school clothes.  The stores are full of bomber jackets right now.  My daughter wanted one, but specifically in cheetah print!  

Oh my, would we even find one and one that she would like?  

I immediately told her about Jalie's bomber jacket pattern and this way she could choose her own fabric!  Plus, I get to buy a new pattern.  I love any excuse to buy a new pattern of course.  I knew this would be a win/win situation for both of us.

Before I bought the pattern, I noticed that Jalie had a video tutorial.  It is so well done that you can follow along with it instead of referring to the instructions, which is pretty much what I did. 

Look at that pocket!!  It is genius how this goes together and so simple to do, really.  

I bought this cheetah quilted knit from, as well as the solid black ponte knit.  Joann's Fabric store had the black rib knit for the waistband, cuffs, and collar.

I lined it too...with cheetah print!  My daughter spotted this lining at Joann's before we even bought the other fabrics we would need.

This jacket is quick to make and the only difficulty I had with it was the top of the zipper where it meets the collar.  I bought some zipper stops, but they were too small to use with my zipper, so that was one snag I hit.  Then I decided to just sew a tight zig zag stitch at the top for my own stop which worked fine.  But I still seemed to have trouble lining up the collar at the right point on the zipper.  I think it's just a learning curve.  This was the first one for me, so hopefully the next time it will go much smoother.

We're both excited how this jacket turned out.  I can't wait to make myself one now.

Thanks for stopping by ~ Shirley

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Angel Bootcut Jean with the Delila Top

I have been sewing a lot lately....on my jeans!  I've put hours into them.  This is the first time I have distressed jeans where I achieved great results and I'm so happy with them.  I've made them twice before, here and here.  My pattern was already traced, so I just went with previous alterations, but this time I raised my knee on the pattern by a couple of inches.  I noticed with my two previous pairs that I had some buckling of fabric at the back knee area.  

I do have Angela Wolf's Craftsy class on how to make these and I highly recommend it.  She shows you step by step how to assemble, as well as how to distress your denim.  Distressing is a lot of fun.  I would sew and then just work on the distressing outside on a board.  I got a little carried away on my waistband and ended up with a tiny hole from the sandpaper.  Boo.  I whipped out my fabric glue and covered it really good and just went with it and top stitched over the area.  You can't really tell.

I made another Delila, but this time in a long sleeve.  I love this top.  I especially love the long sleeve cuffs!  I started with a very dark navy blue and used dye remover on it.  I ended up with a little yellow, green, and a kind of purple tint.  Removing dye is exciting!  You just don't know how it is all going to look until you pop off those rubber bands at the end of the wash.  Hmm, how many dyed tops would be too many?  I seriously want to try one in every color.

Thanks for stopping by ~ Shirley

Sunday, July 9, 2017

The Delila Top

Angela Wolf Pattern
Delila Top
Size S
Fabric:  Rayon Spandex Jersey Knit from Joann's Fabrics

I made a new top....finally!  I have been so busy this summer that I have hardly had any time to sew.  I had to take a little break too in order to get my tendinitis in my right wrist to heal.  It's slow going with the healing, but I'm noticing definite improvement now.  Anyway, I've made a new top!

First off, I decided to use dye remover.  I cut out my shirt and then basted my seams together, leaving off the neckband so it would remain a solid red color.  Next I used 6 rubber bands to bind small and large areas of my shirt.  I got the idea from one of Angela Wolf's video's on FaceBook.  She is doing a sew-a-long right now for her jeans too if you are interested!


So now about the pattern.  I really like it.  My bust and hip measurements fell into the size small.  My waist fell into the XS size, but I didn't want to adjust the pattern any and I'm glad I didn't; it's so nice and drapey.  I considered adjusting the length of the pattern since I'm short waisted, but decided to leave it long so it could blouse a lot.  The bottom of the hem fits snugly, which I love too.  The neckband is sewn where it wraps around like binding and has a very nice and even finish.

You don't have to put in the shoulder slits if you don't want to.  It takes a little more time, but it's nice having some skin peak through.  The seam allowance edges of my slits are sewn down with my cover stitch machine.

I think this top looks fabulous with jeans and I will definitely be making more.  I will probably live in several during the winter time too.  I'm already feeling anxious to make one with long sleeves.

Thanks for stopping by ~ Shirley

Monday, June 19, 2017

Sewing a few things...

Hello!  With summer in full swing, my sewing has slowed down a little.  My children are on summer break from school and we have been busy with other things.

I made another SUAT Brazi!  I have made a few, so they are a quick and easy sew for me.  I found this lovely Boho jersey knit from Girl Charlee a while back and paired it with some navy blue knit.

What draws me to this dress time and time again is the sewn in bra cups.  

I made this dress a few weeks ago but never got around to blogging it.  My girls and I ran out to the store, so I threw this on and had pictures taken...probably at the worst time of the day with the bright sun!  It was either that or no picture.

One of my girls asked for another pair of Jalie Jeans.  I bought this beautiful red denim from the Angela Wolf website.  It's a medium weight knit that is really soft next to the skin.

My daughter is a fan of "That 70s Show," and likes her pants with bell bottoms.  I just flared out the pattern from the knee down.

Out of all the pairs of jeans I have made, these are by far the nicest sewing job I've done, particularly the waistband..  Maybe from here on out they will all be perfect?  LOL  Of course no picture of the waistband, but it is really good!

I used kind of a maroon colored top stitching thread.  Red just blended in too much and I thought that would be boring for her.  Any other color was too much of a contrast.

When I cut out the pockets, I gave her some white chalk to make her own design.  I think you can still see a little bit of the chalk on the fabric.  I used a triple stitch for the X and a zig zag stitch for the heart.  Definitely put some tear away stabilizer underneath your pocket pieces; it keeps the fabric from stretching out.

And I actually tried out a new pattern!  This is the Patterns for Pirates Essential Tank.  I made it with a jersey knit from Joann's.  It's a little thin, so I am wearing a slip underneath.  It's almost too thin for my liking for dress purposes, but for a tank it is perfect.  I have another tie dye fabric in red and blue that I'll be using to make another one.  I love wearing this around the house on these hot summer days.  It's more comfortable than shorts.


Somehow I have managed to injure my wrist and I'm not sure exactly what I did.  It's pretty sore.  Sometimes extremely painful.  It seems to mend a little and then the slightest thing makes it hurt again.  Turning a door knob is even painful!  sigh  

It has really put a damper on my sewing.  My brazi and my essential tank dresses were both made before injuring my wrist.  I had started my daughter's jeans, but then I had to work ever-so-slowly on them when I could.  I thought I would never get them finished!  She has been so excited about them.

Thanks for stopping by ~ Shirley

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Jalie Bella Dress

Jalie 3460
Bella Fit and Flare Dress
Size T

Yes, I'm sewing up knits still!  Ever since I saw the Jalie Bella dress, I knew that I would eventually have to buy the pattern for myself.  One of my girls has already asked for this dress as well.  I wish all pattern companies had such a wide range of sizes, fitting the ever so tiny tot to full size women.  My girls will be 14 this year, so they are about to fit into the XXS and XS sizes of some of these Indie patterns out there too. 

As you have probably noticed, I lowered the neckline.  I don't like too high of a neckline, nor too low of one.  I used the back pattern piece for maintaining the curve, just eyeing it and bringing it down a couple of inches.  I still wanted the backside to be lower than the front.

Isn't that flare great?!  For the life of me I couldn't visualize how that would work by looking at the flared pattern pieces.  I was totally scratching my head trying to figure out where to shorten this dress for me.  Do I need to shorten an inch in the torso?  Maybe shorten the torso and skirt both?  Finally after a day of tormenting myself with my back and forth thoughts, I decided to just play it safe and shorten the skirt area.  Otherwise, I might mess up by not having enough width to cover my lower waist fullness.  LOL  I measured up 5 inches from the bottom edge of the skirt and used this point to draw a line to shorten by 3 inches.

 I made it from DBP from knitpop which feels delightfully soft on.

Thanks for stopping by ~ Shirley

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Sewing for Summer

P4P Favorite Tee Pattern

I'm really enjoying sewing up knit dresses for summer!  Sewing with knits is fast and fun, something that I have needed in order to overcome my recent sewing slump.  I gave it some serious thought about what I wanted to be wearing--cool and comfy--without having to devote hours into solving fit of a new pattern.  On occasion I do like the challenge of more complicated sewing, but for now, I want my sewing to be a little more lighthearted.

This is a PDF pattern from Patterns for Pirates with neckline, sleeve, and hem style/length options.  I made a small bodice graded out to a medium at the waist.

I did make a muslin, twice, of the bodice and sleeve and I'm so glad I did.  I determined that I needed to raise the neckline 5/8", lower the armscye 1", and adjust the width of the sleeve pattern by 1/2".  My arms are rather full and it felt like the sleeve was too close to my armpit to be comfortable.  

I also made a swayback adjustment.  I don't even think twice about that anymore.  When I trace a new pattern, that is something that I do right away.

I like the lower curved hem in the back.  I didn't shorten this dress any since the length of the front was spot on for me.  So many of my dresses have to be shortened since I am 5'1.

I purchased this fabric from Knitpop.


Kitschy Coo
Lady Skater Dress

I made this once before here.  I'm surprised that I haven't made this again until now.  After looking at the fit of my first one, I realized that the length of the bodice really needed to be shortened by an inch!  And of course I had to retrace the pattern to enlarge at the waist/hip area--sigh.

This is such a simple dress; actually, both of these dresses I'm blogging about today are.  Just two mornings of my week and I had two new dresses to wear.

I purchased this fabric from Girl Charlee.

Thanks for stopping by ~ Shirley

Friday, April 14, 2017

Another Aldaia Dress

Pauline Alice Aldaia Dress

I made this dress before here and here.  This time I used the bodice from view B with sleeves and skirt from View C.  This dress pattern is awesome.  With the many combinations between the 3 views (I still have yet to make view A), and different fabric choices, you can fill your closet with this one dress pattern.  I know I will...especially since I have my size and fit figured out and the pattern is just sitting and ready to go!

My fabric is Telio Venice stretch ITY knit from  When I looked up to see what it was I bought, I noticed there is also this same print in Denim color.  I think I will have to buy that one too.  To me, this fabric gives the dress a retro look, which I love.  The print is textured.

I haven't made view A of this pattern yet because I am totally in love with this wrap style bodice.  If I make another one this summer, I have to admit it will probably be this combination of pattern pieces.

No swayback needed for me since there are two darts at the bottom bodice back.

I've been making some great progress on my son's American Ships Quilt!  I still have a ways to go, but I am nearly finished with embroidering the ships.  I have about 5 to go, as well as some embroidered accent squares.  It has been a work in progress for years

Thanks for stopping by ~ Shirley

Sunday, March 26, 2017

DIY Spring Wreath

Spring is finally here!  So this weekend, my kids and I went to our local craft store and bought supplies to make a pretty wreath for our door.  

I already knew I wanted a purple and white color theme, but my son thought to add a splash of some turquoise flowers to the mix.

If you haven't ever made a wreath before, here is how it all came together for us.  Hopefully you can get your flowers on sale. It doesn't look like a lot flowers purchased, but once you begin cutting the stems free of the bunches, it starts to accumulate into a nice pile quickly.  I did have another picture of a additional 2 bunches, but there was an error with that picture and I couldn't post it for some reason.  It was a bunch of small white flowers and a little more of the turquoise flowers, as well as a tiny sprig of pink.  I just want to let you know to give you an idea of how many flowers we used.

Some of the stems are thick and hard to cut through, so it helps to have a pair of wire cutters on hand.

My daughter and I each took a side of the wreath and randomly started sticking the flowers into the wood.  It helps to take a few steps back and look at it from a distance as you go.  If it doesn't look right, just pull it out and start over.

Next, secure most everything with a hot glue gun.  

 I searched for a You Tube video on how to tie a bow for a wreath.  You definitely want to use wired ribbon for this.

My daughter used one of the stems to fasten an area to glue our bird to.

Happy Spring!

Thanks for stopping by ~ Shirley

Monday, March 13, 2017

Making Chokers & Missing the Mark on My Sewing

One of my girls is really into wearing chokers.  I can remember wearing them myself, many, many years ago. Allowance money can only take you so far when you want to start buying jewelry, and when you are crafty, why buy when you can make it!  Thank you Sew4home blog for the awesome post on making your own chokers.

The most challenging part is finding the ribbon you want.  We still need to find a good source, so more shopping to come.

However, we found enough to get started and they turned out awesome!  This was much easier and quicker than we thought it would be.


I have been sewing for myself, but I'm having a bad run of things not fitting!  It's so frustrating.  Times like these, if I wasn't already an experienced seamstress, I might throw in the towel...yes, that frustrating.

I once had my fit perfected, but I'm a little older now (49) and after a couple extra pounds, things just aren't coming together as easily.  Plus, I have been on a mission to make myself a woven skirt, so that is another hurdle as well.

Simplicity 8300

This is such a cute skirt!  Cute details with darts, back zipper, overlay, etc.  By the way, Chambray frays so nicely too.  I had high hopes of making a cute red striped knit shirt to wear with this.  I made it in a 14, and although my hips fall within this size range, I clearly need a little extra room on the backside.  The back doesn't fall level to the front, and after some blog reading, I now understand why you can be within the size range and still not fit.  I have more on the backside than I do on the front, so I need to compensate for that.

It's a basic skirt pattern with the cute overlay making it look like a wrap.  This pattern is definitely a winner, but I have to learn how to make the needed adjustment for fitting myself.


Simplicity 8343

Such a cute pattern!  Elastic waist shorts with an over skirt that ties in the front.  I made this in a size 14; however, there is so much ease that I had to really tighten up on the elastic, throwing off the tie/wrap pieces and since I can't tie them as tight as I need to, they hang lower than where the shorts hit my waist.  I still think this pattern is a winner, but I have to make them in a 12 next time.

I really thought this fabric was navy blue on the computer, so a surprise when I saw that it was purple.  Not being sold on the color didn't help when I was sewing it up.  I found that I really have to love my fabric or I just want to fly through my project to get it done.

New Look 6407

I was so excited that this was turning out!  I originally planned on View D with the tie sleeves, but quickly realized that they were going to be way too tight around my fuller arms.  I pulled out the sleeve for View E and compared the two pattern sleeves and discovered that there is much more room in E.  Oh my, much more ease to contend with and the way the sleeves looked on me just made me disappointed.  It could be the result of using cotton lawn.  Maybe.  

There are actually a couple of other makes that are long gone in the trash, so as you can see, I have been in a long sewing slump.

To recover from my sewing blues, I sewed up a couple of Jalie knit shirts...

Jalie 2805

Jalie 3352

Thanks for stopping by ~ Shirley