Friday, November 24, 2017

All the Ogden Camis

It was a damn hot summer in Los Angeles (and now it's leaking into fall--no wonder people think we don't have "seasons" here). Like triple-digits hot. Even though this is technically an urban desert, it's not very common to go over 100 out here by the ocean. But it happened this year.

To cope I made the True Bias Ogden camisole tank top. I made four, to be exact, but only three are wearable. (The first one was a tester out of a leopard printed bed sheet but I sewed it very quickly without a lining or matching thread, so it's not really for public consumption.)

This pattern is beloved by the online sewing community. Everyone raves about how the low back doesn't show a bra! I did not have this experience, even after shortening the straps, so I brought up the back about 1.5 inches.

Thursday, November 23, 2017

Cataloging My Pattern Stash - McCall's Patterns

I might have a problem.

I like patterns. A lot. Especially when I was first starting out and saw all the shiny things, I wanted them all!

The problem is that our tiny condo has zero storage, so organizing my stash is a bit of a nightmare.

That still doesn't stop me from buying more...

I could move into a warehouse dedicated solely to my pattern collection and would probably outgrow that pretty quickly too. BUT WHEN WILL I GET TO MAKING ALL OF THEM?

You see my conundrum?

It's silly, really. But here we are. And I need a better tracking system.

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Menswear TNT Pattern - McCall's 6044 or 9234

First, can we talk about the confusing pattern numbering systems sometimes employed by these companies? There's one pattern number on the package, depending on where it is sold, and then another on the actual pattern itself, which is the one that corresponds to the company's website.

This isn't limited to just one company either. I've found this in both McCall's and New Look patterns. It's frustrating and annoying. WHY IS THIS DONE?!!!


Second, can a pattern be considered "tried and true" if it's only been used once? Twice? I think at twice, the answer is yes. And so I present these two similar shirts I made for my husband from M6044 (or is it M9234????):

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

My First TNT Pattern - McCall's 6754

The month of  #SewcialistsTNT patterns is in full swing! I actually had to think about what patterns are "tried and true" to me. Usually I make something once and move on to my next project. I always mean to come back to a successful make and reimagine it anew, but struggle with all the new patterns I have at my disposal.

And then I remembered my wedding reception dress! AND HOW MUCH I LOVE A FULL, TWIRLY SKIRT!

Back in September of last year, I still hadn't gotten the hang of different fabric types and decided that McCall's 6754 was the perfect party dress—in satin. M6754 is made for knits, which means that the fit is a bit tighter because of something called "negative ease." Because knits stretch, the final product can be a bit smaller than your measurements as the fabric will stretch to accommodate. Think of leggings, and how they seem small but will stretch to fit. Same premise.

Friday, November 10, 2017

All the Saunios

Throughout the year, the ongoing #sewmystyle Instagram project has brought the online sewing community a monthly challenge to all make the same project. Planned by Alex Bartholomew of Bluebird Fabrics, the challenge curated 12 patterns from indie designers available at a discount for anyone participating (sign-ups were required).

A post shared by Paulette Font-Erato (@pfont) on

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Committed to ALL THE HASHTAGS!

November is a crazy month for sewing enthusiasts! There's #OWOP, #SewcialistsTNT, and #BPsewvember.

I finally committed to One Week One Pattern and even stuck to the pattern I originally blogged about. There are likely over 100 participants thus far, and I spent a good hour or so following everyone on Instagram. I can't wait to see everyone's makes! I need the sewjo inspiration.

Before committing, though, I made another batwing kimono-style top from Simplicity Patterns. I'd expected that maybe I would use that pattern instead, but it turns out it needs more fixes than I have the patience for at the moment. I'm treating it as a wearable muslin and even wore it out on date night, where someone who wasn't El Husbando complimented me on it. So despite all the fitting problems, I still consider that a win! But it won't work for THIS month.

Monday, November 6, 2017

Self-Drafted Off-Shoulder Men's Button Down Upcycle

Look at me, still enjoying this NEVER ENDING SUMMER pretending it's still summer.

My husband bought that hat in Mexico, while were there celebrating our first wedding anniversary back in June. He wears it nearly all the time now. This photo shoot was done while he was out of the house. Stolen. Ha ha.

Back to this shirt. I got the idea for it from Mimi G. She has a sew along on her YouTube channel. Video tutorials are really the best!

I snagged this beautiful twill weave cotton men's shirt at the local thrift shop for about $6, brought it home, and followed her tutorial almost to the letter. The only part I struggled with was her instructions for the shoulder pleat. I kept running into the pleat when trying to thread the elastic through. So I finally gave up on the pleat and just folded over. It works fine.

Friday, November 3, 2017

Nov17 Sewing Plans

It's FINALLY getting chilly in LA. Temps will remain in the mid- to low-60s down here in the South Bay for at least the next week. This is about as cold as it gets, but the summer dragged on and on and on, so it's nice to get down to "sweater weather."

I know, mid-60s is veritable summer temps for some of you. I recognize how spoiled I am. I accept this burden.

That being said though, there are some nights when a good chunky sweater is needed. I've been working on a thick black Saunio Cardigan since last March...shelved in May because the weather finally turned hot, after a few false starts. But the material is prone to stretching, so I'm not even sure it's worth finishing it. All I have left to do is sew the facing and hem. But I just tried it on and the sleeves are strangely tight. But the weight is just right for the slight chill in my house, so we'll see how long this remains a work-in-progress (WIP).

I already have three of these, but none of them are particularly warm and cozy.

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Oct17 Recap

I never actually believed I’d be able to power through all of my want-to-makes for October, but the act of making my plans public did actually help me accomplish three of them. Plus, it’s good to have smart goals.

  1. I finally finished my mom’s floral Loretta. Pictures will be fortcoming. 

  2. My husband is now the proud owner of a pair of Jalie men’s underwear (Jalie 3242). This is the only picture I’m likely to get out of it, though. 

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Volume, Volume, Volume! Simplicity 8091

Ready to fly!

That's what this dress screams to me. I'm a colorful, rainbow bat.

At least it's seasonally appropriate!

Speaking of which: what did you dress up as for Halloween? My husband and I were murderjacks, which is an inside joke from our beer-centric Youtube channel. Check it out!

Back to this funky dress. It's Simplicity 8091 view A. Simplicity describes this as a "cocoon shaped kimono that pulls over head." That means the hem is a bit narrower and constricting, like a cocoon might be.

What that description fails to fully explain is that this dress has so much volume, you could safely use it as a parachute.