Wednesday, December 29, 2010

FSL: Christmas Decorations

FSL: Christmas Decorations
As part of my yearly cookie gifts I decided to make some free standing lace ornaments to attach to each baggie of cookies. What I thought would be a easy present turned into a nightmare. The FSL kept caving in because my wash away mesh wasn’t strong enough. I had to fold three layers to get them to stitch out, and even then it was touch and go. Eventually I got through it, and they were a hit. Here are some steps to take if you decide to make these.
1.    I would use Vilene or another wash away that is not thin. The wash away should feel sort of like fabric. I used sulky, and it just didn’t do it for this project. I would not use that brand in the future for this type of project.
2.    Wash away is expensive. So to save money you can keep the stabilizer on its roll and just keep hooping as close to the old design as possible without affecting the designs. If you have a big project you may not want to hoop into the old design. I did hoop into it at times to save space and my designs were not affected. If the design you are stitching out is a long stitch count you wouldn't want to do that. The process could give the design hoop burn from the stitch motion.
3. To save time, get everything you need next to your workspace. That way you can easily switch designs and colors fast. If you have software , you can combine designs in the same hoop, so more than one ornament will stitch out.
How to wash away the stabilizer: Get a bucket of warm water and simply soak the designs in it for 30 or so minutes or until all wash away has dissolved.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

New Toys!

I have new toys to report. DH bought me a dress form for Christmas. The form’s a dream come true. The little time I’ve had it I’ve found it's not only useful in the sewing room, but also useful to preoccupy my children. My youngest constantly pokes at it and asks me if I feel it. I believe he’s getting this idea from “voodoo”, where he heard this I do not know. And then, my DH tells me that when I stepped out to drop my daughter off somewhere DS came running out of his room to show me something. Tapping on the form (she’s dressed in clothing at the moment, but apparently her not having a head doesn’t matter much) mom, mom, mom guess what. DH said our son was a little embarrassed over it. Anyway it’s a Dritz surefit. Stay tuned for a review later.
New Feet! I purchased 3 new feet for my Pfaff last week. I was surprised to see them in the mail this morning.  I honestly didn’t think they’d be here until after Christmas. Sew-Classic is a saint for her fast shipping! The feet appear to be good quality also; adjustable binder, felling foot, and knit edge piping foot.
The knit edge will be used this week. I’m making my daughter a wool knit blend sweater dress.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Simplicity 0493/2603

2603 Cover/Back

                                                        0493 Cover and Fabric Choice.
                                                    A nice sweater knit in Floral plum for the cardi, and a dark purple
                                                                         knit for the top
 First up though, I have the first cardi I did in a low quality mystery knit. This one was made in View A, the long version. It's dark blue and has an eyelet design all over it. It is very very stretchy, a 4 way. My machine, even with the IDT did not want to sew this fabric. It kept eating it. I had to resort to wedging tissue paper in all the seams just so I could get it sewed. I'm not talking just the start of a seam, no, I mean I had to literally cut strips of tissue and nudge it inside all the seams before sewing. This cardi was my test run before sewing my lovely sweater knit. I did make some mistakes. I sewed the arm seam up instead of under the arm. I need to fix that. I'm not looking forward to picking the stitches on this fabric.
 The following photos are ways you can wear the cardi.I did find that view A is too long for my taste. My body shape will not take well to tying the extra fabric around me. I just look huge!

So once I figured out all my tweaks I decided to get cardi # 2 done. This is the floral plum fabric in a soft sweater knit. I love this fabric, and wish I would have written down  exact name so I could go back and buy different colors. Anyways. I made some changes. I did view c which is a short drape, and shorter sleeves. I did not add the elastic to the back neck. For this fabric it didn't need it. I also made sure to sew the sleeves right. HOWEVER, I did mess them up twice and had to pick stitches and resew TWICE! you'd think I would have learned the first time. Yikes.

 Knit sleeveless top view E. As you can see the neckline is different than the patterns. I some how stretched the fabric out when sewing the neckline, and it wouldn't lay flat; even after washing/drying and ironing the heck out of it. So I added a second piece of the neckline, and that did help flatten it out, but i still wasn't satisfied. So I got my trust pfaff 7570 out and did a old school maxi design right onto the stitching, and then took it around back. I love the way it turned out.

 You can see the neck design a little better here, but the next photo is a better closeup.

I'm pleased with the neck design. When it's worn the neckline is really pretty.

Did it look like the photo: Yes it did
Likes: I love the different variations to the drape. I loved the sleeveless top, and it took well to my changes
Dislikes: Didn't like view A's drape length. It's long and bulky. It's not something I'd wear all year round, but it is something I'd wear once in a while.
Sew it again: Definitely!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

SWAP update
I got my fabric from today. OH my goodness, the fabric is to die for. I am very pleased. There isn’t a single piece that I’m not happy with; which is saying a lot since ordering online can be tricky. I’ve done the eBay thing and haven’t always been pleased. In fact I’ve often come out either scammed or extremely pissed off at the miss judgment in the fabrics quality.
Ok, so here are the photos of my lovely fabrics minus one. The best fabric, lovely light weight sweater quality mohair can’t be shown. Little elves read my blog every morning before school. No child, you won’t be finding this one, but I did just give you a tease. That IS if you can figure out what the word “mohair” means…
Anyways, these fabrics will be used for SWAP 2011. I’m still deciding on my plan of action. I hope to finalize it soon. I have some ideas though, and have finalized a couple items. I have one more lot of fabrics planned from, and possibly a lot from another online company that I heard gives out 10 yard bonus packs with a certain dollar amount spent:) I still need notions: zippers, thread, possibly wide waist elastic, and a few others. Also need linning material for jacket.

Eyelash Sweater Knit in Black 50% Polyester, 50% Acrylic 
Garment: Sweater
                       Designer Boucle Suiting in Jessica Plaid Tan/Red 62% Rayon, 29% Acrylic, 95 Nylon
                                                               Garment: Suit Jacket
                                      Wool Blend Suiting in Brown/Black 80% Wool, 20 % Nylon
                                                         Garment: Hopefully Pants and Skirt
                                      Wool Blend Knit in Olive/Silver 80% Wool 20% Polyester
                                                  Garment: Possibilities include Turtleneck or T-Shirt