McCalls

McCall’s 7406 Misses’ Dress

Are you ready for summer? Well even if you aren’t it’s here. As I write this post it is a mere 101 degrees outside. It’s hot and it is only the second day of summer. We are in for a long HOT Summer. This dress is a cool and easy to make pattern.

I made View D last summer, the weather turned cold when I was almost finished and it was put into the Unfinished Object basket. I used the Guided Sew Along tutorial with Leslie C. Bentley over in the Facebook group The Sewcial Place. She gives simple and clear instructions in all of her videos. Check it out if you have time.

I went back through the basket a month or so ago and pulled out a few projects to finish. This one was on the top of my list, as orange seems to be my go to color. I finished the trim and the hem on it and it is ready to wear this summer.

I left it on the longer side, I usually trim off the length as I am on the shorter side, but I plan to wear wedges with this one. It can be dressed up or down. With the flow of this material I want to keep it dressy. Happy Sewing Everyone.

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McCalls · Simplicity

Goodbye Valentino Ready to Wear Challenge 6 month update

It has been 6 months since I joined the Goodbye Valentino Ready to Wear Challenge. I thought it would befitting that I provide you with a half way mark update. Well, I La Riesha Simmons have NOT, I repeat have NOT, bought one single item of ready to wear clothing during this time. I am so proud of myself. Before joining this challenge I would purchase something clothing related at least 4-5 in a month. That’s just ridiculous. My shopping was more of a want and not a need.

With this challenge I have paid off some credit card bills I created, I am able to save more, and the best benefit of all is that I am sewing more and learning new things about my sewing machine, the Babylock Aria, that turned one year’s old this month. I just love her. Happy Birthday Aria.

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As you can tell I am enjoying every single minute that I get to sew or share my creations on my blog, instagram, and facebook. I am proud of myself, if I can’t be proud of myself, I can’t expect anyone else to be proud of. I am my own cheering squad. 🙂

So, what have I made during these last 6 months? Well here are my makes so far for 2018. There are lots more to come, some easy, some intermediate, and I have my eye on an advanced piece that for sure will help me to increase my skills.  Happy Sewing Everyone.

McCalls

Summer 2018 Pattern Haul Part 2

Here is Part 2 of my Summer 2018 Pattern Haul. My goal is make at least 2 per month. Lately I have been sewing a lot and I am really enjoying my time in my space.

McCall’s 7778 Misses’ Dresses, Romper and Jumpsuit

View D, once again it’s another Jumpsuit. I am so in love with them right now. I am going for the longer version. This version can be dressed up or down. I don’t have a color of fabric in mind for this one, but if I could find this golden canary yellow, that would be fabulous. The suggested fabrics for this pattern are  Linen, Cotton Blends, Challis, and Stable Knits.

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McCall’s 7773 Misses” Dresses

The multiple variations of backs on this pattern is what caught my eye.  If I had to pick a favorite View B would get my vote. I just ordered and received a black and white polka dot fabric from Fabric.com. It is a Stretch ITY Jersey Knit Dot Black and white, on sale for $5.68 per yard. It has an amazing feel to it. The suggested fabrics for this pattern are Moderate Stretch Knits (35% Cross Grain):  Ribbed Knit, Cotton Knits, Jerseys, and Interlock.

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McCall’s 7775 Misses’ Dresses

View B would be my choice for this one. It has a fun summer vibe to it, that can be dressed up for any special occasion event. Although this is not a super fancy dress, it will be my Segway into maybe formal wear. Let’s hope I can master this, as I want to improve on my skills to start making more pieces that are strictly out of my comfort zone. The suggested fabric choices for this pattern are Crepes, Crepe De Chine, Stable Knits, Cotton Blends.

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These patterns and the Patterns from my Summer 2018 Pattern Haul Part 1 post will definitely keep me busy this summer. We have already reach the 100 degree mark for weather here in California and there are more to come, so I will be in my sewing studio with the Air Conditioner running, working away at my creations. Happy Sewing Everyone.

 

 

Simplicity

Simplicity 8655 Misses’ Top

I love this top. It is super easy to make. It is a Mimi G for Simplicity pattern which means it has a YouTube video with the instructions. I completed it without the YouTube video, but ended up watching the video later.

I cut a size M. It looked like the photo on the pattern envelope and I am in love with the outcome. I see another in my future.

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I originally made this top to go over a maxi dress that has the back cut too low and I wanted to cover it with this top. Well the weather changed and the wind picked up, so I decided to style with the jeans for a casual Friday look.

 

 

Here my mannequin Breanna is wearing the top, this way you can see the fabric better. I get that taking the photos under the tree with the green top did not give the best photos. I still love the top and the photos.

 

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McCalls · Simplicity

Summer 2018 Pattern Haul Part 1

Each time a new pattern is released, I have to have it. LOL!!! Not really it’s a want, not a need. McCall’s and Simplicity have been my go to patterns for a long time. I purchase from Burda, Butterick, New Look, and Vogue as well, but I find that when I make a list of sewing items, McCall’s and Simplicity are ALWAYS and I mean ALWAYS on my list.  With the last pattern sale, I purchased a few more patterns for my stash. Here I have shared a few of what I have purchased and the views I intend to make. Don’t hold me to the view, as I am constantly changing my mind. the change usually comes with what fabric I have picked out, if the weather has changed, the occasion I am wearing it for, lately the items I have been making are for work.

Well here is my pattern haul for Summer 2018:

McCall’s MP688 also McCall’s 7752 Misses’ Top

My view the top left choice with the upper and lower peplum bottom. This pattern is in pieces and you can select the pieces to create the look you want. My choice would include the following pieces 1. bra, 4. strap, 7. midriff with upper and lower peplum.  The fabric suggestions for these tops are Poplin, Cotton Blends, Gingham, and Shantung. I am thinking a Gingham print will be cute for this one.

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McCall’s 7790 Misses’ Jacket and Belt

I have fallen in love with view B. The only thing is the extra fabric in the sleeve, does not always look good on short body types. I am of short body type, all of 4’11 tall of me. LOL! I have always been a rebel, so yep you guessed it I am going to make anyway. If there are modifications that need to be made I am sure I can work it out. Fabric choices for this beauty are Crepes, Drapery Wovens, Stable Knits, and Challis. I am just starting to get of sewing everything in a knit fabric, so this will help me on my journey.

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Simplicity 8635 Misses’ Dress, Jumpsuit and Romper

I am in love with Jumpsuits right now. Is it because they are so cute and versatile? Maybe it is because I had success in the first one that I made a few weeks ago, blog coming soon for that one too. So now that you know I love jumpsuits, my view choice is view C. The back of this jumpsuit in the right print fabric will be fire, now let me find the right fabric. LOL!!! Fabric options for this pattern are Batiks, Chambray, Cotton Lawn, Cotton Types, Crepe de Chine, Lightweight Denim (not this time of year in the California heat), Linen Types, and Silky Types. I can’t wait to cut into this one.

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Simplicity 8137 Misses’ And Plus Size Wrap Dresses, Top, and Pants

This pattern is going to be everything, it has all the pieces in one pattern. That makes me happy. More than likely I will be starting off with the View A, the Maxi Wrap Dress, of course I will need to modify the length, but that is an easy fix. Next will be the top, View C. I don’t have enough tops and find my sleeve putting a cardigan over all that I wear. Then last will be pants, View D, I am in the learning process of making pants and hope to have those skills mastered in no time. Fabric options for this pattern are Batiks, Challis, Chambray, Cotton Types, Crepe Back Satin, Gingham, Linen Types, Poplin, Sateen and for Views ABC, Double Georgette, and Crepe De Chine. Not sure which fabric type I will pick for the dress, but I need something in a bold powerful print.

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There are lots more patterns that I have selected and I will continue next week with another blog post for those. Happy Sewing everyone.

 

McCalls · Sewing rooms, spare bedroom sewing space, the sewcial sewist,

My New Sewing Studio – Spare Bedroom

I finally have a space all of my own for my sewing equipment. My daughter moved out, yes I was full of emotions. I was happy, sad, confused, and the most of all PROUD!!! She is a smart young lady pursuing a Bachelor’s Degree, in Communications, she graduates next month. So with her room becoming empty I took over it and made it my Sewing Studio, my husband and both kids laugh at me when I saw “I’m going to the studio”, it is definitely my happy place and it has a door. I was sewing in the living room, which was the first thing you saw when you walked into my home. Now I can close the door if I have started something I don’t want to move or if I have made a mess I didn’t have time to clean up. This year we can actually have a Christmas Tree, last year I was selfish and didn’t put up one, because I would have had to move all my sewing machines around or put them away. I know shame on me.

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This was the original floor plan, I am no artist, but it was my vision and of course it didn’t work out this way. I am still pleased with the end result. I have space for everything except for my massive fabric stash. The stash is living in the upstairs hallway for now, until I can come up a plan for it, who knows maybe it will stay there forever. I also did not have a place to leave my ironing board up all the time either. That I can live without as the ironing station for  family use is right outside the door to this room. So that I am okay with.

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My plan for a cutting table was to use the 2 wall unit cubbies that I had already. They were to be the bookends and I was going to place a piece of wood or a table top on top of those. That didn’t go as planned either. The wood was too expensive and I had no way to get it home without renting a truck for about $80.00 for a few days. I am making do with what I have already and in the future if that doesn’t work I can always revisit the idea of getting something else for a cutting table. For now, I will be using the 2 trusty and very sturdy card tables that I purchased from Costco. I put a cutting mat on one side and will use the other side for workspace. I purchased a new cutting mat today at Joann’s using their 40% off coupon and a gift card from my girlfriend that she gave to me for my birthday. The items you see in the workspace are for decorations for the purpose of taking photos. 🙂 Now lets talk about the TV in the background, that TV was gifted to me for free, by a co-worker who didn’t need it. It was like brand new, so I gave her a small donation for her mom to buy some fabric as she loves to make pillowcases.

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The 2 wall unit cubbies here is where I store all of my patterns, extra interfacing, notions, Unfinished Objects (UFO’s), anything I may need, but mostly patterns, the top 8 are full of patterns. By stacking the 2 on top of each other took away my bookshelf for my library. I need to have my books at arm’s reach, placing them on top wasn’t an option as I am really short and I would need to use a step ladder or stool to reach them. So I divided the shelf with the books and placed the cubbies on top.  There are 4 more cubbies at the bottom, which you can’t see in this photo.

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My 2 sergers and main sewing machine ( 2 other machines are in there cases until needed)  placed on a 6 foot card table purchased from Costco as well. Yes I love Costco. LOL!  I have my thread on this table at the back until I know exactly how I want to store it. I may leave it or I may look around and find another home for it. I purchased a floor lamp, but haven’t put it together yet. It will go in the corner on the right. This room has lots of natural light, but I do sew a lot in the nighttime hours. The 2 stools at the sewing table are from, yep you guessed it, Costco. LOL!!! They are labeled as workshop stools, well this is my workshop. LOL!!! They lower and raise, so perfect for sewing at the machine and when raised, perfect for working at the cutting table. The crate full of rulers and drafting paper will be gone once I hang some hooks for the rulers.

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Here you have Brianna Modeling for you a McCall’s 7405 made last summer, using a Guided Sew Along from Leslie C. Bentley’s, The Sewcial Place Facebook group. If you haven’t joined her group, I highly recommend that you do. She’s awesome! Now let’s talk shoes!!! I know shoes don’t go with sewing, but answer me this question, when you sew a garment, what’s the first thing you need, to see how it’s going to fit? SHOES!!!! I placed all my pumps and wedges here so when I am done sewing up something fabulous, I can grab a pair of shoes, try it on, and snap a quick picture. I won’t let Brianna be my model for pictures anymore. I have no excuses, all I need is in one room and it has a door!!!

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Below are the photos of my sewing space from the living room. I loved what I had and was thankful for the space. I am so happy with my new space and no more cutting on Grandma’s dining room table. Thanks for visiting.

McCalls

McCall’s 7531 Round 2

I love this pattern, quick and easy. The choice of fabric makes the dress and in this case, I made this dress with this lovely printed knit from Angel’s Textiles in Los Angeles, CA for the second time. Yes, the same dress and the same fabric for Round 2, why?

 

 

Well the first time I made it I didn’t lay the fabric correctly. Fabric should be laid selvage to selvage when working with knits, this allows the fabric to stretch where it needs to be stretched. SO when I tried on the first dress, after I had completely finished it, it was so tight I couldn’t get it off and I had to cut it straight down the front to get it off.  CRAZY!!!  I saved that fabric and will use it to make a clutch or a head wrap, That’s how much I love this fabric.

 

 

I purchased 4 yards of this fabric so there was enough to make the dress again for Round 2. I checked and double checked to be sure I laid the fabric correctly this time. I tried it on, once I had it all assembled and it fit perfectly. From there I serged the inside to make  it as pretty as the outside.

 

 

I wore this dress today for a very special reason – my mom was being honored at the California State Capitol as Woman of the Year for her District. It was an amazing experience and very much deserved as she is one of the hardest working women I know. I am so proud of her.

 

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McCall’s 7531 – Learn to Sew for Fun

Misses Very Close Fitted Dress

Size Cut – Medium

Level – Easy to follow, great for beginners

Fabric –  Stretch Knit

Vogue

Vogue 8825 – Misses’ Tunic Dress

Very Easy Vogue Pattern – that’s what the pattern envelope says. For the most part it was an Easy Sew until you arrived at the collar which is along Step 7. I had to send out an SOS to Sew Sister Nola of Aloha for Now and of course she had the answer, well after she laughed at me and said “did you read the instructions?”, well Yes, but it was confusing. Well she explained in terms that I understood and what do you know it worked. She loves me enough to laugh at me then she answered. Gotta love your Sew Sisters.

The bodice also looks good by itself. I plan to make it again just as a top to wear with jeans and boots for a casual Friday look.

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I cut view A, being all of 4″11′ tall, longer dresses are not the best looking on me. I didn’t need to make any modifications to the length as it hit just in the right place below my knees. The sleeves were perfect and needed no modifications as well. All and all this was a great sew for me. I love the way this turned out.

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Yes this is my fabric stash and I am hoping the Ready to Wear Challenge helps me to get it sewn down.

You must excuse my tired face in the photo, but it was a long day, I had homework to finish, I was hungry, and I wanted to get a picture of me in this dress for the fit before I went to bed.  Note to self Next time wait. LOL! I am sure we all have those days when we are tired and still need to get things done and this was definitely one of those days. I’ll be sure to do another photo shoot with a much happier face soon.

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DRESS: VOGUE 8825

HANDBAG: STEVE MADDEN

 

 

 

Burda · McCalls · Simplicity · Uncategorized · Vogue

My Space -Sewing in the Living Room

My Sewing Space is nothing fancy, but it is where I create my garments. I love the space I have and I am very thankful that it is mine. There is plenty of space for all of my patterns, sewing notions, sewing machines and sergers, fabric, and anything else sewing related.

I realize that my space is taking up all of the Formal and Dining Room Space, but we don’t have visitors much and those that do visit are family and understand that I work on my garments at home. They all respect my craft.

Hopefully at some point I will be able to have my own space with a door where I can close it and know one will know if it is clean or not. Right now it is in the open space and I, myself feel guilty about not having it clean and all put together when I walk through the front door.

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My Pattern Storage. This cabinet holds all of my patterns. At last count this (according to my Pinterest Board), there are approximately 600 – 750 Patterns housed here. I have the major patterns, McCalls, New Look, Butterick, Simplicity, Burda, Kwik Sew, and Vogue.  I also have a few other brands that include,  Cotton and Chalk, and Simply Sewing.img_2265-1

My machines, this the heart of where all my work gets completed. There are 2 Sergers and 3 Sewing Machines that live in this space in front of these 2 large windows that have so much natural light when the sun is shining, which is a lot. My main go to Sewing Machine right now is my Babylock Aria. I LOVE LOVE LOVE this machine. This machine does everything, there are still somethings that I haven’t discovered. I have 2 brother machines that I purchased from Costco. The first brother was purchased when I was into scrapbooking and I wanted to create borders around my scrapbook pages. I couldn’t figure out how to thread it and it sat in the box for about 2 years before I was able to figure it out with the help of YouTube. The second  brother machine was an impulse buy because it was such a good price at Costco and I couldn’t pass it up.

I use both of the Sergers equally. One is a Babylock Ovation and the other is a Brother, yep purchased at Costco, don’t sleep on Costco, they have great machines. I keep black thread in one and white thread in the other. When I am sewing they are both on and ready to roll. They make all your garments look as good on the inside as it does on the outside and I love that I have the ability to have that professional look,  made by me.img_2261-1My Library – I keep my books on top of this shelf, so I can easily access them when I need to reference a technique or look up a fabric option. I am a bookworm at heart and I love to read. There is a lot of knowledge here on this shelf. In the bins  are all of my notions that are not out for display. I keep my extra thread, serger thread, an extra iron, interfacing, some fabric scraps ( I don’t keep all), bias tape, elastic, zippers, buttons, and all other notions.  I know I missed some. img_2220

Workspace in use. As you can see all my things out on display, when a project is being completed. I typically work one project at a time, unless I am having a cutting party. A cutting party, is when I will cut out multiple patterns, but not the fabric until I am ready to sew them up. This saves me lots of time on the weekends when I actually sew my projects.

 

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My Fabric Stash. Yes this is my stash and not actual store. I have been asked if it was a store. LOL! I thought that was funny. I do shop for fabric faster than I sew, but that’s okay, because I have options.  I love my stash.

Vogue

2018 Sewing Challenge #2018RTWF

As I enter 2018, I have committed to no shopping for Ready to Wear clothes for the whole year of 2018. Yes NO SHOPPING for ready to wear clothing for an entire year. I know this sounds crazy considering how much I LOVE to shop, but on the other hand here are a few reasons why I won’t be shopping.

  1. Save Money- I want for nothing, my closet is busting at the seams with store bought clothing.
  2. Improve my sewing skills – I have been sewing for 3.5 years and there are some techniques that I have not mastered yet, that I am so ready to learn.
  3. Make clothes that fit me – I am 4″11 and most maxi dresses or skirts don’t fit me. When I do purchase them I have to alter them, so why not make my own.

How am I going to do this? Well, I have already joined the 2018 Ready To Wear Fasters Challenge being hosted by Sarah Gunn of Goodbye Valentino.

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In addition to the Ready to Wear Challenge I belong to several Facebook sewing groups where I am learning from other teachers, sewists, and sewing bloggers. There are a lot of Sew Sisters out there that provide love and support to each other, not just for sewing but in life. This makes a huge difference, when you can communicate with those that have the same passions that you do. So with that said, Happy Sew Year 2018. Let’s get this party started. img_4082img_4083