Thursday, December 4, 2014

Pattern Review Sewing Bee!!

Hey guys!  I know, it's a long time no see, right?  Well, to be 100% honest, I haven't been sewing much.  I have had a really rough year.  I always have a problem with over sharing details of my life, so I am not sure what I can and cannot say about it.  Of course, I am making sounds a thousand times worse than it really is.  Suffice it to say that 2014 and 2013 have been incredibly draining years for me emotionally.  I felt like I had lost myself.  So, in October, while I was sewing my daughter's Halloween costume, I found out about Pattern Review's Sewing Bee.  I thought it might get me out of my funk so I joined the challenge, hoping I would make it to Round 2.  Well, I did!  Then I made it to Round 3!  Unfortunately I didn't make it past Round 3 and was eliminated.  I was disappointed, but the contest was so much fun and helped me move past my emotional funk that I was stuck in.  I also discovered my passion in life, which was totally unexpected!  I realized that I was passionate about CREATING THINGS.  I told my husband about my epiphany and he rolled his eyes and said, "obviously". LOL!  Sometimes it's hard to see what's in front of you sometimes.

Anyways, I am sure you guys are waiting for the pictures of everything I did.  So, full disclosure, I am not going to go into 100% of what I did, because it is all in my reviews on Pattern Review, it seems superfluous to go into that kind of detail again.  So, I will link to my reviews.

Challenge 1: A-Line Skirt
A seemingly simple task.  But, wait, I don't have a lot of bottom weight fabrics and I don't really wear A-Line skirts, opting for fuller skirts.  So, I went to my new favorite fabric store in the Bay Area.  If you are ever in the area, stop by-it's amazing!  While I was at the fabric store, I found.....wait for it.....Hedgehog linen fabric (insert explosion sounds as my mind blows).  It was an amazing linen blend that doesn't wrinkle and presses like a dream.  So, if hedgehog linen doesn't get you excited then something is wrong with you then maybe you will be interested in the TOADSTOOL BUTTONS I found!  What?  I know, they're amazing.  Anyways, I used Gertie's Pencil Skirt pattern in the Gertie's New Book for Better Sewing and I made it into an A-Line Skirt.  I used Sunni's tutorial on adding pockets to your skirt.  The lining sucked...seriously.  It was put in great, but the fabric really sucked.  The pattern was wonderful (could you expect anything different from Gertie?) and the linen was amazing.  Now I just need a shirt to go with it. 

Aren't I overly enthusiastic? lol

Pattern Review

Challenge 2: Refashioning a Men's Button-up Shirt

So, this one was rough for me.  I don't refashion that much.  So, this one really had me thinking about everything.  I would do a lot of this differently if I were to do it again, but I still like it...I think.  I don't know, I go back and forth on this dress to be honest.  It's a little...much for me (says the person who made a hedgehog skirt with toadstool buttons...), but I think I can get used to it.  I've worn it out and have gotten compliments soooooo.....

Okay, the cool thing about this dress is all of the detail I added! 
So, I kept the original pockets on the skirt (as you can tell by my boobage picture).  I took the pocket flaps off of one of the shirts and put them in the seams of my skirt, which I thought I was the bee's knees when I thought of that.  I kept the sleeve plackets intact (and functional), but I put it at the hem of my skirt, again I thought I was the coolest kid in the room when I thought of that!  Then what REALLY made me excited was when I decided to make a mock lapped zipper using the snap placket from the front of the shirt.  I call it mock lapped zipper because underneath that placket is an invisible's all I had!  There is a whole step by step process on my pattern review of it.

Also, those are new shoes...and I'm obsessed with them and convinced that they go with EVERYTHING!
Pattern Review

Challenge 3: Winter Street Dress

So, for the third challenge they gave us all a pattern and told us to sew it.  I interpreted the rules as keeping the integrity of the pattern intact, fit the dress perfectly to you, and add in your own minor tweaks.  Oh, and you had to use two different knit fabrics!  I think my minor tweaks is what got me eliminated.  Seriously...check the contest gallery, insane!  I think everyone did great, but they had to eliminate people, and I fell in the category...perhaps it was because I threatened them?  I don't know lol.

Anyways, I bought this fabric while in LA last time.  I was in love with it, but I was unsure what to do with it.  So, I broke it out for this challenge.  I added an 18" flare to the skirt(!) and eliminated the pleats.  I lowered the neckline about an inch to make it more flattering (and apparently so I can add another boobage shot...seriously, I didn't do it on purpose lol!!)  Instead of adding 2 inches to the length of the bodice, I wanted to show a different way to add length and I made a pink polka dot waistband (with waist ties!).  I also added in gathering at the center, because I thought it needed a little something something.   My favorite part of the dress?  The sleeve ruching.  I did this by muslining twice (groan) and testing out different starting points and positions of the ruching.  It's crazy easy.  You grab some clear elastic, put it at your starting point on your sleeve (or whatever) which you carefully marked beforehand (right?), stitch a little, backstitch, then you pull the elastic tight (in a straight line!), and stitch a straight line-backstitching at your end point.  Not going to lie, the first time will feel awkward and you will feel like you need three hands, but once you practice a bit, it will be easy and provide really pretty results (that look like it took a lot of time lol).  Anyways, at the end, I used a tutorial for freezer paper stenciling and I put two little deer at the hem of my skirt...why?  Because I could lol!  Then, I hemmed with some lace and called it a day. 
I love how this picture makes me look like an old lady lol
Sleeve Ruching!!
Funny story about this dress.  After making it, I realized that I NEEDED more knit fabric to make this dress again and I wore it to go fabric shopping.  Now, I also needed white satin for my daughter's flower girl dress so I went into the City (which is the Bay Area's fancy way of saying, San Francisco) and I went to the Fabric Outlet (another great fabric store).  Anyways, while I was looking at the knits, a woman walks up to me and says that she loved my dress and asked if I made it.  I smiled and said yes and we exchanged pleasantries.  Then, as I moved to another section, she followed me...then she followed me to the next section and so on.  Then when I was getting my fabric cut, she followed me up there.  All this time NOT TALKING!  Lol, she was pretty awesome, but I think she wanted to talk to me, but was too socially awkward to know what to say, and I was too socially awkward to know what to say to her!  Anyways.  I have also gotten compliments from small children in my daughter's class.  So, my dress is cool according to 6 year old standards...I'll take it!

Oh what?  Some of you noticed that I said I threatened the judges?  what??  I would never...


Maybe I did.  Well, after years of watching The Sopranos and The Godfather movies, I knew that when you were in a sewing contest and you wanted to win, you IMPLY something bad will happen.  So, I told them that if I didn't move on, I would call in my muscle and she would tickle them until they peed their pants (her words not mine)

Pattern Review Contest Committee: She's coming for you, and she will tickle you...mercilessly. :P

Pattern Review

**Also, sorry about all the links!  I didn't want to bombard you guys with copious amount of pictures! 

1 comment:

  1. Hey! I love it all, it's so full of awesomeness! I love the hedgehog pattern and the toadstool buttons! I also love your sewing machine necklace! Great job!