Sunday, October 23, 2016

Choir Wardrobe 10/23/16

Wow!  An actual Choir post on

I decided to wear the two Vogue 9057 tops the only way that really works for this set.  The tank top has to be on the bottom, because for whatever reason the neckline is higher on it.

Which is kind ok, as that shade of yellow (colors for November are burnt orange, spicy mustard, and/or warm taupe with brown) is not particularly flattering on me, so covering up most of it probably is a good idea anyway.

I love wearing that brown top; the knit (which had been in the stash for something like 5 years, waiting on a great pattern) is sooo yummy.  I have recently purchased some Telio knits from that are similar in weight and drape, although they strike me as being a bit more shiny (that elasticity shine...know what I mean?)  I used this one for a tank/cardi twinset and loved it so much I bought more and it's just been sitting around.  I finally decided it's time to sew it up...and I needed brown...and I had that great Tilton Vogue yellow fabric was horrid, but the brown is nice and I'll wear this until that asymmetric top screams 'old lady'.  Which I will be by then, so it will still be good.
The scarf is a remnant of a burnout poly that I picked up at Hancock's, may they RIP.  I really don't like wearing poly scarves, because they feel hot and smell funky, but the colors on this are so perfect that I deal with it in October.

I put the two tops together, like, Friday and looked at them hard.  Wished I had brown jeggings to wear with them.

Wouldn't ya know, I had to make a Wal-mart run yesterday, which I do about once every six weeks, and walking through the store on my way to the dairy section from health and beauty, I walked right by a rack with $13 jeggings.  And the brown was right in front in my size.

Now I've officially moved into the 21st century, fashion-wise.  They have back hip pockets, so I've got someplace to stash phone/keys/leadership badge/kleenex, and belt loops so I could run a belt through to clip my pedometer onto.  It's hysterical...I get about 12,000 steps over three services, just because we move back and forth a bit (the 'choir sway') during the worship sessions.  So despite the hokey useless front faux pockets, the jeggings are rather long as I'm wearing a long enough top.  And that's all I'm going to say there.

The brown suede boots once belonged to The Princess.  She apparently decided they didn't suit her wardrobe at some point about a year and a half ago and gave them to The Flute Player.  But Flute Player has size 8ish feet, and these boots are a size 7 W.  She put them in a bag for donating...and I noticed them, saw the size, which happens to be mine, and discovered they fit me fairly well.

Into my closet they went.

Is that a hand me up?

I can't review those tops just yet; I suspect the neckline issue is my fault.  I need to check the patterns against each other to verify my hypothesis...and maybe make another tank to test my theory.

Because layers are good in winter anyway...right? LOL.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

How'd it get to be Thursday already?

November colors: burnt orange, spicy mustard, warm taupe and brown.

I managed to finish the two Marci Tilton/Vogue 9057 tops I'd cut out but it didn't work out like I had planned...

I had a goldish (it will sort of work for spicy mustard) rayon/poly blend knit in the stash for the next time we had to wear that shade of yellow, and I had a lovely heathery brown knit that I'd been saving to make a funky tunic top for ever so long, so I thought I'd do that set w/ the 3/4 length sleeve hem-slanted-right top from the brown and the tank-top-hem-slanted-left from the gold and wear them layered.


The gold fabric really doesn't have a lot of stretch in it.  The brown has a wonderful liquidy drapey stretch and looks great but the gold...clings to the brown and looks too small over it.  And somehow, despite the fact that I faced the neckline instead of using a band, the tank neckline is higher than the brown top, which looks weird.

So I'm either wearing them with the yellow on the bottom...or separately.

Sunday I went with separately.  The Jalie 2566 Cardigan I'm wearing over the, spicy mustard... top is actually the same knit from which the yet-unworn brown top is made.   The photographer did not alert me to the fact that the cardi was kinda shifted around...I need to train my camera operators just a little better, I think.

Dark wash skinny jeans under it all; some orangey jewelry to throw in a bit of one of the other colors and it worked for Sunday.  Even though I actually should never wear that shade of

Saturday, October 15, 2016

That 'no-stashing' pledge...

I've been trying to write this post since the first of August and couldn't seem to get it done.  So Imma gonna just do it now.

Last July, I made a pledge not to add anything to the fabric stash until my birthday this year (July 11...a year later).  I'd had to clean out the spare bedroom I use for cutting, which had somehow accumulated all the fabric purchases for the previous three years, in addition to fabrics I'd pulled from the bins with the intention of sewing them up and then never getting to it.  It was a mess.

I did not make a fabric all...from July 1, 2015 to Jan 29, 2016.  During that time, I sewed up 16.5 yards.  I started letting myself purchase fabric on the condition that I sewed it up immediately...and, excluding of a couple of pieces, totaling 7 yards that I bought to replace basic fabrics that I sewed (gotta keep those basics stocked, you know), I purchased...and sewed... 29.5 yards of fabric between 1/1/16 and 7/1/16.

That's 46 yards of sewing all by itself, not counting the 'from stash' sewing that I did.

And I almost made it.  Those 4th of July sales caught me, and I added 15.625 yards in the first two weeks of July...most of which has still not been sewn.   I kinda fudged by saying my last purchase was 7/1/15, so I made it the required year.  Sort of.

And there have been sales since then.  You can look at the sidebar and see that my fabric in is now exceeding the fabric out for the calendar year by about ten yards....which isn't TOO bad, considering I bought fabric in anticipation of costuming needs that did not least, not yet.

When I was a teen, I happened to see a friend's mom's fabric stash and was astonished that anyone would purchase fabric and then not sew it.  Now, with the demise of Hancock's, not to mention most independent fabric stores, it's hard not to buy fabric that sings when I spy it...because who knows if it will be there when I want to sew it?

Which is a kinda crazy way to think.

It was a great discipline for me to make myself sew what I bought.  I think...I hope...I broke the tendency to purchase without sewing.

I don't know that I'll get all the new purchases sewn by Christmas; I've upped my work hours a bit and embarked on an online Master's degree, so my sewing time has dropped again.

But, before I tackle the new purchases,  I think I'm going to see if I can clean up some UFO's. Time to get those off the sidebar.

And I'm going to try not to order any more fabric until I have sewn up what I can (not tackling costuming until I need it...) from the recent purchases.  Or at least get back to

Sunday, October 09, 2016

Catching Up Again...

October is already off to a slammin' all-day-not-at-home last Sunday, and a trip to the ol' stompin' grounds and back in between means I didn't get much blogging...or sewing...done.

But fall is in the air; sort of, anyway.  We have at least turned off the AC.  So fall colors are the designation for October:  burnt orange, spicy mustard and/or warm taupe, with brown for the neutral.

Am I ever glad we have brown for a neutral!  I was not sure what I was going to wear before that word came  But last week, I pulled out the RTW brown jeans (which should have been cuffed), and a RTW guipere lace tank, worn over a rayon/lycra Jalie 965 tank and under a wool jersey Pamela's Patterns Draped front Cool Cardigan.  Today, I wore the same cardi over a stretch lace Jalie 2566 T with brown linen Stretch and Sew 704 Quick and Easy Pants.

I have cut out a couple of items to hopefully wear this asymmetric top/tank top from one of the Vogue Tilton patterns...too lazy to look up the number now.  Brown top w / sleeves and a 'spicy mustard' tank top.

I don't know what's up with my sewing fortunes...after finishing the miserable silk/rayon burnout topper, I drew a knit that is just, well, kinda gummy to sew.  It was hard to cut, and the serger just sort of chews on it.  It's pretty ugly on the inside.  Not sure it's going to turn out wearable, owing to the gommed up bands on the neckline and the armholes.  Trying to salvage them by making them facings instead of bands...we'll see if I can pull it off.  It may end up all puckery.  Grumble grumble.... I need a nice cooperative fabric to sew! lol...

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Workwear 34

I'm mentally writing my next blog post...about fabric accumulation (sigh)...and I didn't expect to write one before that.

But I wore something yesterday that actually snagged several compliments, so I thought it might be worth documenting for future

It was late when I made that decision and the quickest way to get a photo was to prop the camera on the kitchen counter.  So the angle is, well, not the best.

It's a couple pf pieces from this year's SWAP collection...the modified Loes Hinse Bootcuts and the Pamela's Patterns Cool Cardigan, with my favorite cowl neck shell, Vogue 8669.  I made the same pattern in a cream knit for the SWAP and originally planned to wear that...but decided I wanted some color and, in a rather uncharacteristic move, pulled a top that I generally only wear when required by the choir wardrobe.  Orange generally is not my friend.  But this one is bright and intense and leans towards red and it worked.

But I have decided I need to hem the pants a little shorter.  I'd forgotten that the pants I'd made years ago from this modification had shrunk in length over time.  I held off, just in case these also shrunk, but they appear to be stable of these days I'm going to take about an inch off the bottom.  If I could wear heels, they'd be fine, but my particular mix of orthopedic issues means that I have to be very, very careful about my footwear.  Sassy heels are not for me, and the pants need to be shorter. 

One of these days...

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Catching up

That seems like what I've been doing more than anything this summer...catching up....

I've missed two choir posts; since I really wanted to show the red for the month, I'll post the photos, even if they're late...

The left was 9/18/16; the right was 9/25/16.  Both were days in which I pretty much ran home after 3rd service, gulped down a quick lunch, and left again.  Colors for September were claret red, gray and black.  The tunic...or the one I picked up from the conference merch booth, just because I  was enamored of it. So was everyone was EVERYWHERE at the conference.  I've got on slim black pants (La Fred Athena...modified...) because I had to have pockets somewhere.  However, it turns out the dress is so long and full that it's REALLY AWKWARD to hike it up to reach into a pocket.  All future pockets must be in the top layer.   I had a whim a week or so before the conference and bought some black leggings w/ a faux leather stripe down the outside.  Boots and the red dress with those will be way hipper than I normally  Still trying to decide if I need to shorten the dress just a little.  I'm not sure it wouldn't look a little better a little shorter...

And as for sewing...when we last left our heroine, she was struggling with a project that had lost its joy.  It was a silk/rayon burnout fabric that was just a little too substantial for the scarf I had in mind when I ordered it...and I decided to use it for a Sewing Workshop Plaza Jacket.

That fabric.  Oh, the wretchedness of it.  I wasted a ton trying to get it square, then gave up.  It's woven w/some kind of twill weave that refused to behave.  I ended up throwing away the sleeves I'd cut; I just wanted it DONE.  Wavy, spirally, won't-take-a-crease-but-you-can't-press-out-the wrinkles craziness, this stuff is on my Never Sew Again List.  It's worse than stretch panne velvet.  I finally bullied it into sort of submission, and after meticulously hand basting all the hems in place (which, to be fair, I probably would've done anyway.  But it wouldn't have been as aggravating). I finally got the thing finished off last night whilst the others in the family dutifully watched the debate.

In the end, it doesn't look too bad if I keep moving.  I just wish I had decided to skip the sleeves BEFORE I'd spent all that time and fabric trying to get them cut square.  I could've made the topper another 6" longer and really channeled the Golden Girls.

And it really can be arranged so that it's even.  My photographer was paying more attention to the cat than she was to the task at hand....
But that is finally out of the queue.  Now I can move on to other projects...

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Transformation challenge...

Well, maybe a minor one.

This past weekend was our annual women's conference (no choir on Sunday...the stage wasn't reset and we didn't have risers...).  You know how it is at these events....there are goodies available w/ the conference logo or the Women's Ministry logo.  Ours is SHE....which stands for Seeking His Embrace.

I worked the registration area.  I mean, it was kinda my responsibility.  And we were wearing She-wear from past conferences.

Only I was short a t shirt.  I only had two SHE shirts for the three day conference.  So, I figured I needed to get another, so I'm good for next year.

Now, church staff had been allowed to shop the merch for an hour at lunchtime on Thursday, so we would have a chance at purchasing merchandise, since it always sells out.  And they had a tunic (or dress, for the younger set) that I fell in love with.  It was the Choir'll see it soon...and I got that; but I was saving it for Choir on Sunday.  Besides, EVERYONE was wearing the red dress over the weekend.  Er, everyone on staff was wearing it.  Turned out the other staff and pastors loved it as much as I did and the staff nearly bought it out.

But it was Friday night before I decided I wanted a shirt as well as the dress.  And baby, by Friday night the pickins was slim.  But Saturday morning, I had a brainwave.  And I went in and bought one of the few shirts they had a size 1X.  The lady that worked the counter almost wouldn't give it to me. 'It will swallow you whole!' She protested 'It's huge!'

But I assured her that was what I wanted...'I'm going to cut it down.''s the t-shirt, before and after:

I had a bit of lace in my lace box that turned out to be JUST ENOUGH to finish off the bottom.  And, as an indication that this was Meant to Be, the lace was not only enough to cover the bottom but it was the right length for both the front and back to be oddly off center motifs!  The jury's still out on the lace on the sleeves....I might trim the jersey out from under it, I might leave it as it is, and I might decided it's a little too much (as The Actor stated when he saw it) and take it off.

But I'm very pleased with the results.  Except for the size printing on the back that still says '1X - size 22-24'.  'Cause that ain't true

ETA:  I realized that I forgot to post the pattern I used as the basis for the's Vogue 9057, my TNT relaxed fit T.  For the basics on how to cut down a T shirt using a pattern, click HERE