Monday, September 17, 2012

to belt or not to belt? and other awesomeness

look at all the lovelies compliments of Nothy!
oh happy saturday! after such a stressful week, it was a joy to find a package on my doorstep! From the Patterns and Postcards Swap, the wonderful Nothy sent me this awesome package of sewing goodies! Included was a bonus - my first ever burda magazine! (it may be the same issue of burda that dottiedoodle is swapping to me. if it is i'll have a giveaway for one of them. or i will hoard them both [insert evil cackling]) i sat down and read through it immediately (even though i was in the middle of some intense house-cleaning). there is a dress in there that looks cute and has some really neat curved darts. The way they fit all of those patterns in there is impressive and a little intimidating, but i think i could work it out. A bonus seventh pattern (butterick) also snuck in there. I'll have to work on some down-grading on it, but it would be adorable. I have high hopes for the Style 2325 pattern. I'll have to start searching for some fabric, because i'd like to sew that one up first. What fabric should i pick???

when it rains, it pours - good news that is! i also got a note that i won the pattern pyramid giveaway over at gMarieSews! i have been stalking the pattern pyramid since Karen of DidYouMakeThat? started it. it's been a great way to discover new blogs, and my blog reader is overflowing! i'm excited to host a giveaway for it, so keep an eye out for it. have you been following the pattern pyramid too? 

drum roll… more good news! my alma is finished! …maybe? it's your call! Is it done or not??

are we done yet?
to belt or not to belt that is the question. i have enough fabric. should i make the belt? would it look good with the belt? i plan on wearing this top to work one day this week with pants that are either tan to match the leaves or black. (i'll post a photo.) it is a little wide in the waist, specifically in the back. i omitted the zipper because i could easily pull it on over head. but now i'm thinking i should've left the zipper in and then taken the darts in more in the back. there's a little more excess fabric back there than i'd like. swayback anyone? but if i take the back darts in more now, i run the risk of not being able to get it on and off over my head. so the belt would help pull in the fabric. but would it look good or would it look too handmade? any thoughts?

I'm very happy with how the hems turned out, because i've read a few tricks from the latest library book haul. yay! if anyone's curious i can post details later. but maybe it's just something that you guys already know and i'm just slow to the gate. i was especially nervous about hemming my sleeves because the opening is so narrow it wouldn't fit around the arm of my machine! totally my fault. the sleeves were so wide that i wondered if i had traced the pattern correctly. I looked back and i did trace it correctly for the size i cut. but i must have unusually tiny arms. so i did a makeshift tiny arm adjustment.


borrowed from here
tiny arms! i pinched out an extra 5/8" at the bottom of the sleeve and sewed it up tapering to nothing at the top of the sleeve. still too wide, so i did it again. and again. and next time i will just make them smaller to start with. so then i read up on sleeve adjustment in the vogue fitting book i checked out. good stuff. they call it a "thin arm adjustment" and go about it a little differently, but i'm pretty sure i'll just keep calling it tiny arm adjustment. 

[for awhile i was going to the gym all the time and lifting weights and i had the makings of some guns. and then they closed the gym. and i have some dinky free weights at home, but zero motivation. so tiny arms it is…] pardon my rambling

i also decided to shorten the sleeves back up closer to how they were drafted on the pattern. i had left them extra long because i wasn't sure how long i'd need to make them, but this fabric is a little stiff, so i didn't want the sleeves to go past my elbows or i might not be able to bend them easily!! ha ha. so they hit right above the elbow. in my next version (yes i'm doing another version!) i'm going to go for the long sleeves. ready for fall anyone? also i have not sewn buttonholes on my machine yet. so we're going to learn. oh did i mention that the bust darts on this fit perfectly. they end exactly where i think they should. the back darts not so much. but i also had to lengthen the whole thing by 2 inches. 

so last night i started tracing out and adjusting the pattern for my long sleeved version. i already bought the fabric! i had a huge fabric crush on this the moment i spotted it at the store…


…it's just, some little thing, crush, not like everything i dooo depends on youuu
i know, it's sheer! scandalous! don't worry, i'll wear a cami underneath. i love that it's so lightweight and has a nice drape. the flowers are kind of a purpley-burgundy color on an ivory base. i'm slightly nervous sewing this type of fabric because it's new to me. any tips on sewing with sheers?  maybe some french seams… smaller needle…a couple advil… a glass of wine… 

*soisewedthis does not promote mixing alcohol and painkillers to cure sewing related frustrations. eat a tub of ben and jerry's first!

14 comments:

  1. Your top turned out great!! Instead of making a belt maybe you could just pair it with a black or brown skinny belt. I bet that would look super cute!

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    1. added to shopping list: black skinny belt

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  2. Way to go with the Alma! I agree with Shanni- go a brown or black belt so it pops. Loving the new fabric! I'm having my first attempt at flimsy fabric sewing on my next project so I'll be stalking this post for advice people give you. Best of luck!

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    1. flimsy fabric sew-along, haha! i'll be keeping my eye on yours too! i'm still tracing the pattern, but i hope to get it all cut out by wednesday and start sewing thursday!

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  3. Nice gift! And the Alma came out great - I was thinking the same thing as Shanni - a skinny belt would look nice - you can even try a contrasting color. Good job on finishing it! I haven't even started mine yet.

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    1. Thanks!! you'd look great in an alma too!

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  4. Your top is really pretty! I love the print :)

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    1. Thanks! i was having doubts about the print toward the end. maybe from staring at it too long??

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  5. The Alma is fabulous. I still have my pattern and fabric out waiting, waiting, waiting. I have to finish the slipcover for my loveseat before I do anything. And oh, I can't believe you already have a copy of that issue of Burda coming to you! I'll check back and if it is the same one, I'll send you a different issue. I wanted it to be a fun surprise!

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    1. It was still a fun surprise, even if i do have 2 copies now! I may add one into the pattern pyramid so that i can share the love. What fabric did you pick for your alma?

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  6. Ben & Jerrys - that will cure all that ails everyone won't it? Love that darling little blouse and I might have a crush on your new fabric as well. :) g

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    1. Thanks! Let's hope i'm still in love with the fabric after i start sewing it!

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  7. I rarely make a same fabric belt. But I love my leather belts in various colours. I would definitely belt this (not saying you have to).
    I love a glass of wine with sewing. I worry less about perfection then...

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    1. Yes, i discovered it really needs a belt or i need to go in and fix the fit around the waist. I haven't done wine with sewing at home (yet!), but we did indulge at our last sewing class. =)

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Thanks for reading! I welcome any advice, insights, witty remarks, snarky comebacks, commiserations or just a quick hello. I'd love to check out your blog as well, so let me know where you're posting. Happy sewing!