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Thursday, January 22, 2015

M6886

Peace!


I'm reviewing M6886... but I don't need too. It's a crazy easy pattern!!! 3 effing pieces. This is not really sewing to me because this can be easily made with a needle and thread. I actually teach a class to young women and broke people (its the truth!) on how to mange a household. Sewing is a part of the class. But folks think you MUST have a machine to sew. I try to how them that they can still make clothes without a machine... it just takes longer. This pattern is perfect for that particular demonstration.

This silhouette is everywhere. When I see dresses that are ridiculously expensive with this silhouette, I get annoyed. But don't hate the hustler... hate the game. This fills in another gap in my transitional wardrobe.

The fabric is 100% polyester. That makes me break out, but..... the print I pretty and cost $1.99/yard. I only needed 2 yards to make the biggest size. On that note, the dress is kinda saggy. I'm not sure if that's because of the fabric or if I cut a size too big. I'll figure it out the next time I make it.

This is one of those patterns, in my opinion, that looks best in a printed fabric. The pure simplicity of the pattern will make a solid color look too plain. Not saying that is a bad thing, but its the difference from a work appropriate dress to something only worn on the weekend.

Look at this Valentino dress Taraji P. Henson (my girl!) is wearing.... This is the same silhouette. Just in an expensive fabric.
Just click the images to see what I'm talking about.

Here's mine....

Don't say ANYTHING about how big my boobs look. That's just what they do!!!! I wore it with a belt and a jacket. I think it looks better like that. I took them off for the pic.

Pattern: Misses' Dresses I made a longer version of A

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the envelope?:
It does doesn't it. I didn't realize that the fabric looks EXACTLY like the one on the envelope.

Were the instructions easy to follow?:
There were instructions????

How long did it take from start to finish?:
1 Hour

What did you like/dislike about the pattern?
Simple to make. But the silhouette is very on trend and super useful. It can easily be shortened to a shirt. I did not like how the directions called for the neck to be finished. That was too chintzy. The V-neck version offered a band. I wish all the necks offered that. But it isn't hard to figure out how to band

Fabric used?:
A nasty smelly 100% polyester knit. I had to wear a shirt under, a long slip so that it wouldn't touch my body. Oh and lots of perfume. I was striving not too smell like a fat girl

Pattern alterations or design changes made?: None

Would you sew it again?: Already have plans

Would you recommend it to others?: Everyone should own it. It's that versitile

Conclusion: will be an all-purpose TNT for me


Peace

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

M6713

Peace!


Did y'all enjoy your long weekends??? Yesterday was supposed to be a Day of service.... Really? The only day commemorating the martyred birth of a Black man is a day where Blacks folks are supposed to work for free??? Do the Irish work for free on St. Patrick's Day? The Mexicans on Cinco de mayo? Do the Colombians have a day of service on Columbus Day? IJS..... My goal for the King weekend was to make 4 dresses for myself... And I did!!!!! shall we?

M6713 is a faux wrap dress. Wrap dresses are perennially in style and part of my transitional wardrobe. The sleeves are short which is indicative of warm weather but the color is darker which is indicative of cool weather. I can always wear it with a sweater and boots ans well as alone with sandals. I guess I've made the transition from sewing what I want when I want to actually thinking about what is most useful for me. I respect the maturity as well as mourn the impetuous spontaneity.

After making a muslin I new I needed to do a fba. I was hoping I wouldn't need one because it's a plus sized pattern. No such luck. So I opened up the front 3” and the back 2”. the fba was so successful I don't need a pin to keep the dress closed! I didn't open up the skirt at all. I assumed that the top would blouse some against the skirt and I would be okay with that. It kind of happened... Kind of didn't. I guess it wasn't a significant enough of a change to see. I'm still okay with it.

The thing I did wrong was to cut one of the top pieces incorrectly. And do you know.... I felt like I was making a mistake when I was cutting it but just couldn't put my finger on what I was doing wrong. The fabric is different... significantly different... on the back vs. the front. So I had to re-cut. I didn't quite have enough fabric to cover said mistake (I bought the fabric last year) so the flouncy detail of the skirt was supposed to be double- sided... is not. I don't think it's super noticeable.

Also the flouncey thing... just doesn't seem attached right to me. I attached it how the directions said to do. Is just seems weird to me. Otherwise... I'm very satisfied with this dress. I adore the color! It's not red. I've quit red. It's.... raspberry....


Pattern: Misses' /Women's Dresses Version C

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the envelope?:
Yes

Were the instructions easy to follow?:
Yes. I did read the directions. The flip thing was confusing for me. And I don't really like how it attaches. It just seems super weird to me. If I make this dress again, I'm changing that

How long did it take from start to finish?:
About 4 hours

What did you like/dislike about the pattern?
I don't do shoulder pads.

Fabric used?:
ITY knit

Pattern alterations or design changes made?:
FBA of course, and lengthened it about 3” on the skirt and 1.5” on the top. 3/4th requires my dresses to go past my knees.

Would you sew it again?:
Maybe. A Solid maybe. I can see that this is a wardrobe builder.

Would you recommend it to others?:
Yes. Especially if you have normal sized breasts.

Conclusion:
A woman I don't know, who works in the hospital looked at me this morning and said I always look so nice. We are besties now. So I think this dress is a winner!!!!


Peace!!!!

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

No Sewing... Just thoughts

Peace.

I live in Georgia. I am originally from New Jersey (ie the Promised Land). In Georgia the cold/wintery season is short. Not non existent, but short. It does get cold here in spurts and occasionally snows, but it doesn't last. Folks here always have hope that the weather will “break.” Even though I've lived in GA, at this point half as long as I lived in Jersey, I still take on the NJ perspective. I'm not planning to move back to NJ unless I hit the lottery (and I so would... I don't like it here, but it's cheap and warm) so I need to fill the gaps. And as it stands.. The gaps are transitional clothing.

In NJ, it gets cold in October and doesn't let up until the beginning of June. It's how it is. And you just deal with it. I never needed true transitional wardrobe because you wear the winter clothes until May and pull the summer clothes out of the trunk if they made it in. With such a short summer, you can buy cheap crap and wear it to death until it got cold again. You put your money into warm clothes.

Here in “Hotlanta” the reverse is true. It's pleasant for 9 months and cold for 3. Those 3 cold months are punctuated with unseasonably warm days where my people will grill. Drive through the hood on a warm day in February and you will smell charcoal and meat! You may not see it but you will smell it. So it stands to reason that you would make your summer clothes the keepers and the winter clothes few and far between. I've noticed, over the years, I've stopped with true sweaters. I got rid of all my turtlenecks a few years ago because I didn't like how my boobs look in them and it's too warm to wear them under clothes. I'm hard on shoes, and sandals used to last me 2-3 seasons now last 1. But boots that used to be dogged out by June now can me 3 years. The boots I'm currently wearing are on their 3rd and final year.

I've said this before but it bares repeating... My goal with my personal sewing is to make my wardrobe more “seasonless” by creating garments that aren't specifically for summer. Now every summer I acquire a few white dresses. I have no idea why I love to wear white so much but I do. That's toatally summery. But other than that, the clothes I make need to be able to be worn with tights and boots as well as sandals.

I need dresses, skirts and tops. I believe... because I'm not sure... if I make these garments now they will be transitional enough to work through the summer when I'm working in an industrially cooled hospital. I just have to be mindful of the colors. Not too bright, not too dark.

I needed to get that out on paper.... so to speak.


Peace

Monday, January 5, 2015

My Only sewing resolution

Peace

Ever since making a scrub jacket for my last client, I have been getting inquiries on some other custom scrub garments. Unfortunately I can't make them more cheaply than they can be bought. The fabric alone is more expensive than store bought. So I suppose I'm not quitting my day job to become a scrub seamstress. Though some ushers have inquired about my services. Apparently usher whites, which used to be scrub dresses, are harder to find these days. One of my new Years resolutions is to make 8 scrubs/uniforms for myself.

I work in health care, but I am front office right now and don't have to wear scrubs. I don't even like wearing scrubs because they make me look sloppy. I'm short, have wide hips and huge breasts. For a top and bottom to fit me in those areas I will look a mess. I already know this because in previous jobs where I had to wear them, I looked a mess. I looked like I was playing dress up in my mothers clothes. Also, last time I wore scrubs, I gained 30lbs without realizing. Everything is so adjustable. And you go to work and come home and put on “in the house” clothes. You never notice. Regular non-scrub clothes keep you honest! Lastly, I don't wear pants. I know skirted scrubs are doable but hard to find. But there are 2 reasons that making 8 sets has made it to the resolution list....

(1)I am still studying to be a midwife. I want to have some laying around. I can't see how I'd get passed that. And (2) My evil coworker here at the front desk has been whispering to the boss... REPEATEDLY... to allow her to wear scrubs. She claims she doesn't have the clothes I do. But instead of plumping her wardrobe she would rather mine go stale and wear scrubs. For some reason she has his ear. The boss told her that SHE could wear whatever she wanted. And she said, “No, not if –my name-- isn't going to wear them.” At this point she is just being a bitch. He knows that I'm in school and has even asked me what I wear there. That is an odd question is it not? I told him since I'm an apprentice I just watch so I don't have to wear anything special.

I'm a seamstress!!!!! I will be making my own scrubs that fit my body and make me look amazing! Oh yeah.... there aren't really any patterns for what I am looking for. Everything is pretty unisexual. Unisexual isn't my thing. Unisexual is the 1st step to sloppy. I have NL6634 that covers a wrap dress, a top, a cap and some pants. The dress has a tie for the back..... e_e.... Have I told you how much I hate ties??? It screams “fat girl”. And that too screams sloppy. I have compiled a list of what characteristics scrubs should have...

These garments should be simple and sanitary
Loose fitting, composed of 1-2 pieces
Designed to prevent spread of infection
Protects employees from body fluids and/or chemicals
Covers up the lady parts and not be suggestive
Durable: stands up to frequent washing
Professional yet casual and comfortable
Should be highly breathable
Tops tend to be short sleeved unless it is a jacket
Scrub pattern needs to match environment that one works
Cotton poly blend
Lots of pockets

So as long as my garments have these characteristics, I should be okay. Here is the thing.... Scrubs, for the most part, are made of woven fabric and doesn't have zippers and the like on the tops. That's going to be hard for me and my breasts. I could make a tunic of sorts... but I personally think tunics look sloppy on me. I'm just going yo have to find a way to use some sort of fastener in my tops. Or possible use those knit t-shirts that give me uni-boob. I'm not really worried about the skirts. I can put zippers in those. BUT... I'm going to try to stay true to the genre and use elastic. As a midwife I'll be doing a lot of squirming. I don't want to possibly be uncomfortable.

If I have to wear them in the office, I will ONLY wear a doctor's coat over them for warmth. I'm a doctor even though I'm not practicing. And since I now embroider, I will put that on my coat too. That will super piss my evil coworkers off. That's an extra bit of icing.... I think I will embroider my righteous name on the scrubs as well. I'm not one of these people who think that folks must have name tags on at all times. Actually it's stupid. But my boss knows I have this alternative name and uses it sometimes.

So that is my sewing resolution. I kind of want to focus afterward on making transition clothes but I have all year for that.


Peace

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

M6241

Peace.

I made this....


What do you do when a client comes to you with a crazy request? This man wanted a python scrub jacket. I work in a hospital and have kind of been wanting to break into scrub sewing for the experience. My education/career is healthcare based so this is what I come into contact with on a daily basis. I figure I can use this as my base. But I need some practice. I met this man in the basement of the building and asked him where he got his hat from. If you recall, a few years ago a coworker convinced me into going into business with her. That didn't work out. When she recouped her $5 investment, she quit. It left me with a bunch of surgical caps. Anywho... I saw this man with an unique cap on and asked him where he got it. He said he USED to have someone who custom made things for him. I asked what happened. He said they retired. I informed him that he has a new seamstress and gave him my card. I didn't expect to see him again, but he came to my office and we have been rolling.

I didn't find any dedicated scrub jackets patterns. So for the jacket I used M4261. The hoodie pattern was sufficient. The entire time I worked on this, I cracked up. This fabric is soooooooooooooo loud for the conservative hospital environment. Nurses in this hospital can only wear teal colored scrubs. But his unit allows him to be himself. He wanted a cap too. SMH..... He also wanted his ENTIRE name embroidered on the front. I have an embroidery machine but no experience whatsoever embroidering. So you know what I said when he asked... ABSOLUTELY!

So I learned a new technique... I Embroider!!!!

Pattern: McCalls 4261Misses'/Miss Petite Unlined Jacket, Top, Bra, Pants In 2 Lengths, Skirt and Bag


Did it look like the photo/drawing on the envelope?: Nope

Were the instructions easy to follow?: I suppose they would have been.

How long did it take from start to finish?: From start to finish.... about 6 hours. I had to learn to embroider!

What did you like/dislike about the pattern? Its a hoodie... whats not to like?

Fabric used?: Python polyester! That my male straight,married to a woman, father choose all by himself.

Pattern alterations or design changes made?:
I didn't add the hood. I lengthened it by 6 inches. I didn't make the hoodie pockets, I made regular scrub pockets on the outside and 4 big pockets on the inside. I didn't add the yoke which was just decorative. I was trying to make this as lowkey as possible.

Would you sew it again?: I would.

Would you recommend it to others?: Do it!

Conclusion: It's a cute collection of garments in that pattern bag

Peace

Monday, December 15, 2014

Talking Back

Peace.

Before I put finger to keyboard to write this post... I had a moment. The nature of the post could be considered incendiary. But then I thought... Screw it.

Ever since blogging became a thing, I have noticed that blog comments only tend to be something positive. I KNOW for a fact that folks don't see everything I post as positive. Folks who know me personally will complain to my face regarding something I wrote, but never is that disagreement posted in the comments. I am guilty of this as well. I follow the if-I-can't-say-something-nice-say-nothing philosophy as taught by my mother. But that is not completely right and exact.

If someone posts foolishness... and you don't say anything.... then you agree with said foolishness. For silence grants consent. Especially if you will comment on something you agree with with and/or like. How is that being a friend? In my personal life I will cut any and all people who only want to be around me when things are going well, but when I need them because I'm going through something they disappear like the trader That confirms we aren't really friends.

What prompted this was something I saw on one of the sewing blogs I follow. Folks will use the most horrendous fabric to make a garment and think they look cute. It doesn't matter how advanced your skills are... if you sew up a garment with ugly... non-matching... cheap looking... fabric... IT WILL BE UGLY. But I'd never say to someone...”Wow. That is some super ugly fabric!” I have no nice way to put it other than, “Is that a muslin?” IJS

Another sewing related pet peeve I have is plain vs detail. If you have a pattern that has a lot of detail on it, you shouldn't use a highly printed fabric because you's never notice the said details. It will be overpowered by the print of the fabric. If the pattern is plain like McCalls 6886 you can use any fabric you choose. And my problem is I recognize patterns. I can look at what someone makes and say... “Wait, that pattern has ruching” or “That has a feature” and see that the said feature is obliterated by the print. But who am I to say? I'm not a designer. I am just a person who is obsessed with art of fashion and garment construction.

Since I can't speak for everybody, I'm a speak for me.... If I post something that you disagree with, I openly invite you to post your view. Just be respectful and don't be anonymous. And be mindful there is a difference between interacting and trolling. I have had people tell me I'm too fat to wear something I made... anonymously. I would have posted it had it not been anonymous. I had another response of I don't know what I'm doing when I sew. Okay. I'll take that action. I admit there are people who have been sewing longer than the 31 years that I have so I am open to constructive criticism. When I blog, I blog with the intention of having a dialogue with others. I have noticed on my righteous blog that no one says anything about what I post. I will get private messages from people who don't real know anything about NGE and assume that the way I do it is the way ALL of NGE does it. Well what do you expect newbies and looker-ons to think when no one ever disagrees.

I said all this to say.... Talk back to me!



Peace

Monday, November 24, 2014

Abbreviated V2900 - Wearable Muslin

Peace!!!!

Ok. I have been searching for a full skirt that won't make me look as as big as a house. Also.... I have a lot of patterns already. Once you get a certain amount, you kinda feel like everything you need should be found in the collection. I mean a pencil skirt is a pencil skirt. A button down is a button down, and so forth. I have lots of full skirts in my collection. Something has to work.

Well something did... Vogue 2900! I've had this pattern for a minute. Once I purchased it, brought it home, opened the package.... I realized it had too many pieces. I ain't one for a lot of pieces. So back in the box it went. While perusing my stash I realized that this was the skirt I was looking for. I like that it has a drop waist... So I know it won't suffocate me... and pockets. It's full but not too full. I don't twirl. I don't need that option in a skirt. And it's long enough to meet my 3/4th requirement. This is a good skirt.

The fabric... I don't know. It doesn't seem like an external fabric or maybe it's for coats? It's too heavy to be quilting fabric. It's a little heavy to be broadcloth. I don't know where it came from either. I opened the armoire and there it was. For all I know fairies could have placed it there. I don't know what it is either. I burned some and it's still inconclusive. In some light, one side looks like cotton. The other side looks like cotton ironed too much. And on that note, my iron broke! It's not totally dead but the hoops required to get tit to work are frustrating and it doesn't last long. It keeps turning itself off. Phooey!!! this is not the time of year for money-out expenses. I also promised myself that my next iron would be an expensive iron. These damn Sunbeams are not irons for grown folks who sew. Because of the fabric, I consider this skirt a wearable muslin. But wear it I shall!

So here it is... my Abbreviated V2900 wearable muslin


Pattern: Vogue 2900, Misses dress

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the envelope?:Yes

Were the instructions easy to follow?:
No. At one point I was completely lost and just decided to make the skirt in a way that made sense to me. Which caused me to be left with extra pieces.

How long did it take from start to finish?:
I'd say.... 2 hours. It went quick once I actually started sewing and stopped watching H2GAWM and playing solitaire

What did you like/dislike about the pattern?
I didn't like the directions. The pocket directions totally confused em and I ended up using a method that made sense to me and left me with extra pieces. Also there is a seam right down the center that I don't understand. I left it there because I was changing so much about the skirt that I wanted to keep a bit of it's integrity

Fabric used?:
No idea

Pattern alterations or design changes made?:
I abbreviated the dress to a skirt. So I had to add facing and interfacing.

Would you sew it again?:
I cannot wait until the summer so that I can make this dress in chambray

Would you recommend it to others?: Absolutely

Conclusion: Yay!!!! I got a full skirt!!!

For someone who NEEDS tops, I sure am making a LOT of skirts....

I made the top too. It has a matching skirt. That review is sitting in a queue just waiting on me to get a good photo. The stripes must make me dizzy because I keep dropping food on it.

Pro tip: crop tops are NOT for the buxom.



Peace!