Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Walking on Sunshine

I'm back!

It's been a busy few weeks for me between work, birthday parties and the usual day to day things that keep me hopping.  But I have had some time for craftiness!  Today I'm going to wax poetic about the Patterns for Pirates Sunshine Dress* that I sewed up for this year's Maxi dress sew along.  The Sunshine Dress hadn't even been on my radar at all despite being released a year ago and suddenly I was completely smitten and had to make it.

It has pockets, just as any good dress should have! :)

The reason it suddenly popped onto my radar was that I have a slight obsession with the custom fabric shops that are all over Facebook these days.  I joined one group, Blended Threads, which somehow led me to another group, True North Fabrics, that led me to Kiss My Stash, which led me to Elevated Fashion Fabrics which led me to Sew Sew English.  (I clearly need help.  Send some sort of intervention now!!!!)

The common things I kept noticing throughout all the groups was mention of DBP.  Now what the heck is DBP???  Double Brushed Poly, or as I've seen it referred to as "Unicorn fur" or something along those mythical lines.  I was skeptical.  Polyester?  Brushed?  Twice?  It made me think of the old nighties and pjs from the seventies and early eighties that were definitely polyester - sort of scratchy on the inside, but kind of soft and fuzzy on the outside.  Everyone was raving about it though.  And the prints that I was seeing coming up in the various groups were stunning.  So finally I bit the bullet.  I am so absolutely and easily led.  I bought a couple of yards on a pre-order from Blended Threads.  I'd bought a few different fabrics this spring from her already and been really impressed with the quality and the customer service.  Plus she's practically local being in Saskatchewan, so I felt like she wouldn't lead me astray at all.

(PS: I'm walking here, not practicing standing like a flamingo...)

The fabric came and it is glorious.  Soft and luxurious.  Nothing like those old pjs and nighties at all. But then I wasn't sure what to make with it.  It seemed too special to make just anything.  I was flummoxed as to what would be suitable. Then a sew along showed up for the P4P Sunshine dress in the Sew Sew English Facebook group and I kept looking at all the gorgeous finished dresses.  The cut seemed to flatter so many different figures and everyone seemed to be on the DBP bandwagon, so I hopped on too.   The more the merrier!

And boy am I glad I did.  First off, the pattern is fabulous.  No adjustments nor muslin for that matter were made, I went on blind faith alone.  Oh!  I did cut a smaller skirt size just because of fabric constraints and well, quite frankly I didn't feel my hips needed quite as much width of fabric as the pattern called for.  But that's more a size blending thing than an actual pattern adjustment in my books.  So fit is spot on out of the package (Ok, off the printer, if we're going to quibble), and now lets talk about ease of sewing.  Nothing challenging about it at all.  Instructions were top notch. Everything lined up beautifully.  The end result looks like it is a lot harder to acheive than it actually is.  Easy peasy lemon squeezy as my little boys would say.

And Double Brushed Poly?  Well, it's safe to say I've drunk the Koolaid.  Not only does it feel luxurious, but it sews like a dream.  It doesn't shift or slip and slide while sewing like other drapey knits would!  So I'm in.  I've got a couple more yards headed my way from Sew Sew English and just received a couple from Elevated Fashion Fabrics.

After sewing up my dress I can definitely say I'm thoroughly impressed with Patterns for Pirates and am really looking forward to sewing up the other patterns I have  since bought from them!  But first? I think I might have to make another DBP Sunshine Dress or two...

Tuesday, July 04, 2017

The Solution to I HAVE NOTHING TO WEAR!!!

Recently I quickly realized as the temperatures warmed up that I had pretty much nothing to wear that was suitable for work.  In the past in my life as a stay at home come spring it was pretty much the "season of no pants" until the temps dropped again in fall.  So I have a closet that is positively jam packed full of dresses and not much else save for a few blouses that are, ahem, a bit too snug and/or short on me.  Only now that I'm working in an environment that requires pants I noticed a pretty huge deficit in my warm weather wardrobe so over the last several weeks I've been slowly plugging away at filling that hole.  The sewist's solution to "I HAVE NOTHING TO WEAR!!!!"? Obviously grab some fabric, a pattern and head to the sewing machine!

You'll have seen pictures of these "solutions" on my Instagram already possibly, but I thought I'd share them here too with a bit more detail.

EYMM Kymy's Dolman

First I made Kymy's Dolman Top from Everything Your Mama Made.  I LIVE in this top.  The jersey was an inexpensive fabric from Fabricland and it's light weight and perfect.  I made the banded version so that it's more tunic length than tee shirt length because there is nothing more annoying than feeling like my shirt is too short when I'm reaching up to put a motor back on a shelf.  Kind of hard to pull a shirt down when your hands are full and you're on a ladder.  LOL!  I think the only change I made to this one from the pattern was the neckline.  I made it a touch narrower and scooped it a touch lower than the pattern (good thing too or it would've been way to high even for a boat neck!).  Then instead of turning and topstitching I cut a strip of fabric and bound the neckline.  I feel it gives it a cleaner, neater finish.

EYMM Kymy's Dolman

Next up was Sew Over It's Lulu top.  This pattern came out earlier in the spring.  I chose a gauzy cotton for it and then decided I really didn't like the fabric a whole lot and wished I stuck with my initial choice which was a bit more structured lightweight denim-y polka dot print.  I was feeling like I was overheating at the time in the fabric store and after standing at the cutting table for what felt like forever waiting my turn I suddenly changed my mind and grabbed the gauzy fabric that was right beside the table and set my first choice aside.  Buyers remorse set in pretty quickly, but I decided to sew it up anyways.  I need to do a bit of an alteration with the pattern for next time but I'm not sure what.  I think it may need a tiny broad back adjustment.  Also I'm still not sure how I feel about the fabric itself, but it is definitely comfy and cool so that is a big bonus!

Sew Over It Lulu

Then since two short sleeve shirts don't quite cut it - they have to go in the laundry once in a while - I just made another tee last week.  This one was made using a print jersey I picked up last fall on sale from Craftsy.  It's a really nice quality and so soft.  It's a bit thicker than maybe optimal for summer, but not too bad, plus birdies!!  I love them!  I still have almost three metres of it left to make a shirt of some sort for fall/winter too!  The pattern I used was the Cowl Neck from Patterns by Moo oops! Apparently now called Sewing Geek.  I think I've had this pattern on my computer since the very early days of PDF patterns.  I've had it for several years anyways and just never bothered to do anything with it.  Not sure why because I sewed this one exactly as designed just blending between sizes at the hip and I'm pretty darn pleased with it.

Sewing Geek Cowl Neck

Not sure what's next for me.  As per usual I've got eleventy billion different projects in the wings and just slightly less on the go.  I've got a Corriedale batt I'm in the midst of spinning, I have a stack of patterns and fabric waiting for something to happen to them, I'm partway through my Untangling Knots Anaheim Cardi and need to make my dress for the annual Outfit Along.  So, you know, its pretty much same old, same old here.  LOL