Monday, August 29, 2011


I, Donna of pledge to take part in Self-Stitched-September by wearing at least one me-made item every day and more than one item whenever I can.

I was hesitant to join this time around, not because I don't love the idea and the process, but because I don't really have any different clothes from the first two challenges in which I participated (March and June). I finally realized that I was going to try to do it, regardless if I pledged or not, so why not pledge?

But I may not upload daily photos to the Flickr group, so as not to repeat the same outfits. I want to join the group to see what everyone else is wearing though! So at this point, I plan on taking daily photos to document, but I'll probably only upload the interesting ones or the new outfits.

A big THANK YOU to Zoe for having (again) organized this event; she's awesome!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Free PDF from Nancy Zieman's Sewing A to Z

Sew Mama Sew! is offering this free download of the seam finishes portion of Nancy Zieman's new book.

Just in case you didn't already see this, I thought I'd include the info. here :)

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Another New Look 6677

I couldn't resist using New Look 6677 to make another top. This time I'm making the long sleeve version.

The v-neck is going better so far, but I'm having trouble with the rest of the collar!

I'm trying French seams for the first time, to practice for the skirt project. So far it's going well (I think):

Friday, August 19, 2011

Birthday Calendar

I used to have a birthday book to help me keep track of birthdays, but somewhere along the line I've lost it. I love this one that I originally saw on ModCloth but I decided that I could make one.

So here's what I've been working on today: January, February, and March

A close-up:

The following months:

July, August, and September:

and the final three:

I had a wee mishap with October...I mean, Octoberrrr. And I think I need to add something on the right side on December to balance things out. Aside from that, I just need to string them together with ribbon to finish it off. And, oh yeah, I should fill in all the birthdays!

Monday, August 15, 2011

One More Down

Believe it or not, I'm still working on my Colette Spring Palette Challenge! I finally finished this tank top from New Look 6677: I made view E.

Aside from my 10 days in Croatia, I haven't experienced much summery weather this year so who knows when I'll wear this. Nevertheless, I'm glad to have it in the wardrobe.

I had to sew the v-neck part three's still not very smooth but I think that's the best I'll do. It dips down pretty low so normally I'd wear a cami underneath it.

I cut a size 10 and I can just barely wiggle into it (despite having reduced the seam allowance), but I think the fit's pretty good. A 12 would've been too big. Please excuse the evil look on my face!

There's puddling in the back 'cuz of my sway back but since it's a fairly casual design, I'm not worried about it.

I didn't quite realize how low this would hit me. I think if I were to make another tank top in this pattern, I would shorten the hem line.

Originally I had the fabric tagged to go with this pattern:

The tank tops are similar styles. I think I changed my mind because I wanted to try a new pattern. I'd already used Simplicity 3838 for a 3/4-sleeve length shirt. However, I do want to revisit the pattern because I think I could do a better job with it now. But it's not on the immediate agenda!

I will (eventually!) finish off my Colette Spring Palette Challenge fabrics, but not necessarily with the patterns I originally chose. Here's a reminder of my challenge:

I'll just roll over the projects to fall and winter :) As much as I love joining these challenges, I just don't sew fast enough to finish the projects within the allotted time. I only finished one item for the Summer Essentials Sewalong: my red skirt. And right now it's out of commission until I fix the side seam. So I don't think I'll join the Fall Sewalong, but I'm looking forward to seeing what everybody makes!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Project for a Friend

My friend who lives in Paris (and at whose house we were staying in Anglet) has wanted to make this fabric into a skirt for a long time now. She received this silk fabric as a gift from India:

I volunteered for the project and together we chose this Simplicity Cynthia Rowley pattern, view B:

I think the subtle shimmer of the fabric will look fabulous in this pattern. And my friend wants to use the selvedge as the hem - so I wonder if I should try to find a ribbon to also incorporate that pink into the waist many possibilities!

In any case, I'm excited about the project. I'll have to get better at putting in zippers first. And I'll have to make a lining for the skirt, which I've never done before - luckily for me that Colette Patterns has a tutorial for placing an invisible zipper in a waist band that may help with that part. My friend said that she'd like the skirt by next summer, so I won't work on it right away. I'll attack some projects for myself that use those techniques so I'll improve and feel more confident.

Speaking of gifts, my friend Drew brought me back this vintage ribbon from Berlin:

There's tons of it so I can use it on several projects - thank you Drew!

Look how far along my sweater is:

I'm getting excited for it, but I still have quite a bit of work left. Finish one sleeve and knit the other one, then finish the collar and put everything together. I'm ready to pick my next project though. I'm definitely going to use the yarn in my stash - I need to make some space in my cabinets. :)

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Croatia: Kuchica

Here's the next installment of my trip to Croatia. We stayed for several days in a cottage outside of Zagreb: Kuchica.

The place is absolutely adorable and so are the owners/operators! They picked us up in Zagreb, drove us out to the cottage (normally about a 20 minute ride) and we shared a delicious quiche dinner together.

Look at this place, it is soooo cute!

Huck Finn! On our way to the market. Plus we had some mist on our first evening: magical cottage.

The upstairs, decorated with a dress and vintage furniture. I love how they did the lamps:

Inside and out, plus Drew's wonderful cooking:

The countryside around the cottage was so beautiful and our stay there was so relaxing: eating, reading, some walking, and lots of photo-taking! If you find yourself visiting Zagreb for a few days, I definitely recommend staying here.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Back and Better Than Ever

Well, at least that first part is true: I'm back! I put my mom on the airplane yesterday and she has safely landed, so everyone is back home.

And speaking of Mom, look what goodies she bought me in Paris: fabric and buttons from a cool store we stumbled across!

We bought these at IE Boutique in the 3rd arrondissement: 128 rue Vieille du Temple. Their website is still under construction, but here's a blurb about them: IE Boutique.

The fabric was 1/2 off because it has a few stains. They might come out in the wash; or I'll just cut around them. And the buttons are vintage, from India.

I'm thinking that the yellow fabric wants to be a skirt. It's thin though so I'll have to line it/layer it. But I like it with this Anna Maria Horner cotton voile, which I'm planning on making into a shirt:

Since this has turned into a goodies post, I'll show you the yarn I bought in the Pyrenees (from a local shop which mainly manufactures blankets and rugs):

Hiding underneath the yarn you can see the fabric I asked my mom to bring me from the States. Sew Mama Sew! was having a sale and I couldn't resist buying some cotton lawn!

The yarn is undyed and comes from the sheep that live in the Pyrenees. We stumbled across some on the road:

Lest you think that's it been all shopping, shopping, shopping and no crafting, here is evidence of my advancing knitting:

I have nearly finished the back and I started a sleeve. :)

And speaking of being back and better than ever, you probably noticed that I again changed the blog design. I can't help it! There are so many beautiful (free!) templates out there! I liked my last template overall, but I didn't like how it presented multiple I changed it. Hopefully this design is not too busy. My newspaper-designer sister said it was too hard to read so I changed the font back to a serif font (or whatever the appropriate description for that is). Feel free to comment if you think this layout is not user-friendly though.