Monthly Archives: January 2013

And The Winner of the Pattern Pyramid is…..



Please send me your mailing deets and I’ll fire that off to you ASAP! ^_^

On the subject – I moved my Pattern Pyramid make up in the queue and have made great progress so far, so I expect to have a post for that shortly!! ๐Ÿ™‚

Take care & happy sewing! ๐Ÿ™‚

The Evolution of Skill: Skill vs. Dreams

I’ve had some time to reflect lately, and some of this post was inspired by the amazing conversations I had with Andrea of Stitch Parade, as I had the great pleasure of meeting her this past Thursday (she wrote a lovely blog post about it here).

We had a great discussion about knowing what styles work on us; not just because of our figures, but our personalities. I thought about this a lot on my travels home that day, and have been since then. That was the main inspiration for this post.

Also, at one point in our discussion, Andrea had asked me how I got into sewing, and it made me think. That was the other part of my inspiration.

My journey to sewing has been a bit backwards. I grew up with a familiarity towards sewing (my mum is an amazing seamstress, and used to make all our clothes, as well as tailor my dad’s suits, growing up). But despite the fact I always had an INTEREST in sewing and design, I didn’t develop the PATIENCE for sewing until I was in my late 20’s, and only began teaching myself just over a year ago.

That’s partly the reason I say I’m backwards, but also because I like to dive in the deep end with things – it’s the challenging, scary stuff that really excites me! As an artist, exploring new genres of creativity is my lifeblood – so this process is not new to me, and I typically learn the skill part of things very fast and then savour the process of perfecting them thereafter.

When I first started sewing just over a year ago, I had in my mind visions of perfectly fitting, stylish, unique and high quality clothes that would reflect on the outside who I truly am on the inside. I’d studied in depth the theory and science of draping and corsetry and had fallen head over heels in love!!

I began with such excitement; so much to learn, conquer and accomplish! And even better; I’d discovered the awesomeness that is this sewing community – a boundless support system of beautiful people, endless inspiration and so much information ๐Ÿ™‚

But with so many decisions to make I quickly became distracted… I made garments that didn’t suit me in colours and fabrics that weren’t me. What’s worse, my dreams moved faster than my skills and I found it difficult to achieve the perfect fit and finish I’d dreamed of right away (gee, what a shock! lol)

I soon came to a phase where I was creating really slowly… I just wasn’t excited about my makes. I’d learned a lot in a short time, but my garments went unworn and I started to lose my passion. They were made well, and I was proud of my execution, but I had been more concerned with making garments that would ‘fit in’ and be ‘blog interesting’ rather than garments that reflected my own style.

The first step in the right direction was making my Bombshell Dress. I made it in colours I adored, a fabric I loved, and a style that screamed ME!! The combination of advanced techniques, including having to drape the bodice cups, was absolute aphrodisiac to me… I was in heaven!

I vowed after that not to make anything else that wasn’t me… I wanted to feel excited about sewing all the time! Of course, nothing since has been quite as intoxicating as making that dress, and one can’t exactly go around wearing boned vintage dresses everywhere, but it was a turning point.

So back at Square One, I still had no wardrobe and what little I did have was getting too big, as I was losing weight. I read a post by Steph C of Cake Patterns about creating a capsule wardrobe: carefully choosing a limited colour palette and a selection of garments that could work together. It’s a smart idea, and just what I need to keep me on track, ensuring my makes fit my style and what I’ll actually wear.

Since then a wonderful thing has happened: I’m making clothes I actually wear and I’ve found myself loving the process a lot more. I love planning, I love creating and I love the fact I’m finally building a wardrobe that feels like me. I’m developing MY style, and I’m letting myself sew colours I love without apology. Yes there’s a lot of black and red. I’m ok with that. I can see my skills catching up with my dreams and its pretty rad.

So I don’t participate in community sewalongs or challenges as much – but even though I don’t sport the Seamless badge, I haven’t bought any RTW in months; and though I don’t join in sewalongs or pledges as much, I can still live vicariously through all you wonderful, colourful, spontaneous sewists out there – I’ll keep sewing alongside you though…. in my ‘boring’ blacks and solid colours and simple styles ^__^

Lots of love & happy sewing – whatever your colours and styles! ^_^

And thank you, Andrea, for your wonderful company and for the amazing conversation we shared – I look forward to next time! ^_^

Pattern Pyramid Update

OK all is well in blog land now. I did end up having to change themes because I couldn’t get the old one to work, but change is good, no? I’m not entirely convinced I’m in love with this one, but it’ll do for now, and more importantly, it works.

Because of the delay caused by technical difficulties, I am extending the Pattern Pyramid draw til Tuesday, January 29th. You can either leave a comment on this post or on the original Pattern Pyramid post, here.

Thanks for your patience! ^__^

Technical Difficulties

Hi All!

Recently, MrsMole notified me that my comments on my last few blog posts were not working, and since I generally do all my blogging and commenting from my iphone, I hadn’t actually looked at my blog on a computer for awhile, so I gave it a check.

Not only were my comments ‘stuck’ but my formatting had gone all whacadoodle, so I temporarily installed a new theme to see if that solved the issue, and it did. Which is why we’re looking a bit boring at the moment!

I’m sorry for any difficulty and I am trying to fix the problem, but in the meantime comments should be working, and I’ll be extending the Pattern Pyramid draw til next week to give any more hopefuls a fair chance! ๐Ÿ™‚

Cheers, all!

Tough Lessons Learned

This post took me awhile to write because honestly, I was feeling pretty negative towards it.

I’m usually pretty fastidious, and I border on OCD, so when I do something careless, it’s slightly devastating; and this time it involved something I made with love & care, and the fix took hours.

In a nutshell, I washed my Anise jacket. Now, as I’d prewashed all my fabrics, and they were all washable, my reasoning was actually sound… however, I clearly had a thing or two to learn about fabric, which I’ll share with you now.

The fabric I used for my outer jacket shell was a larger weave, slightly thick cotton or bamboo (narrowed it down via burn test). The fabric, in hindsight, wasn’t the best choice because despite its weight, it’s a little too drapey and causes the jacket to bag a little with wear. I figured it’d tighten up in the wash….

Unfortunately, the other downfall (that I didn’t discover til it was too late) is that in the wash, anywhere there’s hand sewing (of which there’s a lot) as well as corners and anywhere there’s a fold, the fibers in this fabric separate and pull, and this is what ultimately happened:


That’s just one area of devastation. In addition, the following had to be fixed by hand:

– holes in fold of collar
– tears in corners of welts
– front panel folds detached

It took me awhile to bring myself to do the repairs but I finally buckled down and did them the other night. Now all it needs is a press and I think it’ll be good to go.

Lesson learned; next time I’m using wool for my outerwear ๐Ÿ™‚

Pattern Pyramid is Here!!

Hi All!

I was recently chosen as the next recipient of the Pattern Pyramid started by Ann ofย Pretty Grievances, inspired by the one started by Karen ofย Did You Make That? The previous custodian was Anne of Tulle and Tweed, and she sent it all the way from Glasgow, Scotland to the west coast of Canada! ^__^

Here is the one I chose to keep:

photo 2

It’s similar to Cake’s Tiramisu pattern, which I have, but the skirt is cut on the bias, and there is no separate midriff piece; instead there is a tie belt, which is a nice touch. I was a bit concerned there wasn’t enough separation between the two patterns for me to justify keeping this one, but alas, the others are all either the wrong style for me, the wrong size, or I already have it ^__^

I will likely make this a bit shorter as well, since I prefer above the knee to calf length ๐Ÿ˜›

Here is the pattern I am replacing it with:

photo 1

It’s a vintage Kwik Sew bra pattern for 32 A-D. There is even some writing on it from the previous owner who discovered she actually needed the 34A, so I’m guessing the pattern hasn’t been used ^___^ I would think adjusting the width wouldn’t be too hard, but I’m not at all experienced enough to say that with any certainty, and in any event, it doesn’t go high enough in cup size for me, so I’m setting this pattern free in hopes someone adventurous might get a chance to try it ๐Ÿ™‚

Here are the rest of the Pattern Pyramid patterns up for grabs:

photo 3

I can personally recommend the Cynthia Rowley pattern, as that’s the one I made my Starsky Dress from ๐Ÿ™‚

Please leave a comment on this post if you would like to be entered for the draw to become the next link in the Pattern Pyramid chain! I will be doing the draw on Tuesday, January 22nd: one week from today ๐Ÿ™‚

Good luck! ^__^