Monday, December 17, 2012


Peace Y’all,

Like so many people, I have unblogged projects in my closet. When I realize that I have not blogged a project I labor to get it out there. There is, however, a reason why this particular project was unblogged. Technically it’s unfinished. But I’m wearing it without the least bit of shame so I might as well blog it. Shall we?

This little jacket was beyond easy. Seriously. I got the pattern on sale (and I’m not gonna keep saying that because I ONLY buy patterns on sale), it intrigued me. And for $0.99 you just can’t pass on it. Start to finish, my version took 30 minutes. There are 3 pieces. The most difficult part was finishing it off, which I admit; I could have done better… But I Didn’t!


Pattern Description: Misses'/Women's Shawl and Kimono Jacket

Pattern Sizing: XS-XL (I cut XL)

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?

Were the instructions easy to follow?
I didn’t really need them. There were 3 (really 4) pieces. I could figure it out

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
This pattern intrigued me. It’s not like I was looking for a kimono jacket. But I thought it was interesting and it was on sale so I bought it. A jacket with ¾ sleeves? Who is that good for? And how does that work?

Fabric Used:
Acetate as per the store. I scored this fabric at a local mom&pop store and I had to take the cutters word for it. It was all of $2/yd. I could play…..

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:
There was a piece I omitted from sheer laziness. It would have given the edge a nice finish. I decided to just fold and sew. And it works. I didn’t even do the sleeves, and I have gotten massive compliments on the jacket

Would you sew it again? I think so. I’ll do it right the next time. This might be good for a summer sweater? Or maybe in denim?

Would you recommend it to others? Definitely

Conclusion: Definitely give it try.

I rock this with a belt normally. I have worn it few times. I’ve worn it with a denim skirt and a turtle neck. Not for warmth but for style. Normally I secure it (because it isn’t meant to have buttons) with a belt. But I’m gassy today (I know TMI) and I didn’t feel like a belt across my gut. It’s good for vending too, because you can get this turned around quick.


Tuesday, November 27, 2012

NL 6634 and 50/50


I have a coworker who is a straight hustler. I don’t have that particular hustler gene. I am not good at selling anything. Not candy bars as a child, not Avon as young adult, not really anything. I am a person who can take no for an answer and not bother you again. This may be why my side gig of sewing for other people is just that. A side gig.

I was at a regional conference with a table full of crowns, bags, headwraps and other Nation paraphernalia that folks tell me all the time that they want. The operative phrase is FOLKS TELL ME THEY WANT. Last year I made so much stuff, and really only sold a little more than my expenses. I ain’t mad. At the end of the event is when I made most of my gold. People thought I would discount the prices rather than take product home. I told these people that this is a side gig and pays not one bill in my house. And it’s not like the product expires. I can sell it whenever; and do. Once people understood this they bought stuff. But why does it have to be like this?

Anywho…. My coworker had experience with selling surgical caps at a previous job. We work in a hospital. She doesn’t sew, but she knows I do. She convinced me to partner with her. I don’t really like working with other people, but I would never have thought to do any thing like this on my own. I have been working here for 9 years and never conceived such an idea.

Here is my problem with the set up….. She thinks we should split this 50/50. I’m uncomfortable with that. I buy the fabric and make the caps, All she is doing is selling them. That doesn't seem like it warrants 50/50. She says it’s her idea and she deserves to be compensated for that. We are still working out the details… Here is the cap…


This pattern looks quite a bit like the Little House on the Prairie bonnet hats. I tried one on and if fit my big head with my mid-back length dreadlocks. So I don't think the size is gonna be a problem.

She thinks we should do only holiday ones. I kinda feel differently about that. Some folks like holiday kitsch…. Some don’t. I say, make the caps in holiday colors, yes… but make them in such a way they could be worn year round. Like for Xmas, red ones, green ones and gold ones. The red could work for Valentines Day and the green could work for St. Patrick’s. See where I’m going with that? In hospital environments there are a lot of people whom aren't American and don't share American traditions. They often don't understand our holidays. So I chose some light blue plaid and a moderately ethnic print. It's not really ethnic, but white folks would say it is. She bought a ½ yard of Snowmen fabric. (I convinced her to buy the fabric buy claiming I was broke and would be waiting until I got paid to purchase it. She didn't want to wait.) I got 6 caps out of that. I had some big scraps lying around and made another 7 out of them. We sold 1 yesterday to a male. He didn't like the snowman pattern. Said it was too girly.

Also… I feel like I’m not getting enough from the energy expended. When I make crowns, I can get 3 or 4 from 1 $3 skein of yarn. I sell them for $10 a piece. It is so worth it. If I sell 1 of 4, I have made my money back and then some. These surgical caps are a lot of energy for little return. I run them like an assembly line and it takes me about 10 minutes a piece. There is a lot of ironing and pinning involved. She spent $6 on a half yard of the snowman fabric (she bought no thread) and I got 6 caps. We are selling them for $10 a piece. So that’s $60. But… at a 50/50 break, I get $30. I’m just not feeling it.


Peace Y’all,

Y’all had a good holiday? Mine went as expected… DRAMA!!!! Oh well….

I don’t know if you remember this pattern. Over the summer I had decided to make a floral blazer from this pattern. I was ridiculously difficult, used a LOT of fabric and had boning in it. I was looking at the skirt pattern while I cut the jacket. It grew on me. I had this fabric in my stash for a while destined for a skirt so it was a good match.

The fabric is either black or navy blue with a white pinstripe. I initially thought it was navy blue. I need a navy blue skirt. That’s why I bought the fabric in the 1st place. But the navy blue thread I used didn’t match the fabric. However the black did. When I got done with the skirt I was pissed because I don’t need another black skirt. I have plenty of black skirts. BUT… In certain lighting, it looks blue. IDK. What are you gonna do?




Pattern Sizing: 24

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?

Where the instructions easy to follow?
Very simple. And not just Vogue simple, but simple simple

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
In the back, it’s not really easily seen on the pattern or on my picture, is like a fish tale? I like that detail.

Fabric Used:
Blue or black pinstripe suiting

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:
All I did was lengthen in 2”. No big girl adjustments. I am okay sewing the biggest size out of the package. I am happy as a pig in poop that I don’t have to widen it.

Would you sew it again?
Yup, and plan too. I bought burgundy brocade. I think this will look really good in

Would you recommend it to others?
I really like this skirt. And it makes my stomach look flat!

This skirt, NL6106 and B5760 are my current TNT skirt patterns. They look good on my shape and I can sew them out the package.... quickly


Monday, November 12, 2012

Bornday outfit #2

Peace y’all,

I had what I thought was great degree day. I went to a vegetarian symposium, I got GREAT pizza, (If you have ever lived in the northeast then moved to the south, you the know pizza here is lacking. Felinni’s is the TRUTH!) and we went to see Cloud Atlas. There is still a dinner promised to me, but I was knocked out after the movie. It was nearly 3 hours and very deep. I got some money, funny cards, pistachios, and a HUGE brownie and an ice cream cake. I was really happy until I talked to my cousin. My cousin who I assume is older than I, (the women in my family get to an age, then appear to stop aging) since she has a son older than me, has a degree day the day after mine. I tried to call her at 8pm, but she was at the club….. I need to do some serious life re-evaluation.

These garments aren't going to get the same review as other garments because I have made and reviewed other versions before. The skirt is B5760 (at some point I need to make the jacket) and M5661. I got both fabrics on sale. The skirt fabric was $3.50/yard the blouse $2/yard. I love anything leopard, but the fabric is so flimsy that it already came apart in the left seam of the picture. I’m not surprised. I used a simple stitch. The more binding stitches made the fabric got chewed in the feed plate. Even though I love it… I bought it…. I’m not really attached to it like that. I didn't even use the same thread. It has just made me want MORE leopard. And I know the leopard I want.

The skirt I’m a little more excited about. I was in Ashley Stewart and saw a pleather skirt to die for! But it was $40. Thank goodness $40 isn’t a lot of money for me. But it was more than I was willing to spend. I mean this is why we sew right? I looked at the construction and set off to find some pleather. Pleather is not cheap y’all. But… I found some that was inexpensive to start with an on sale for 50% off. I paid $7 for 2 yards. I still have enough for a hat. Had I had time, I would have gone back this weekend. They are having another sale. But I was all busy with my 9day and stuff. I love how this skirt came out. I lengthened it by 2”. And I couldn't put a hook and eye in it because my needle wouldn't have it. I love this skirt because it’s so on trend and I needed a brown skirt. This just really worked out for me. I made sure to line it up like Sheila did hers. I am so geeked. I really get the whole TNT thing Carolyn, thanks!


Thursday, November 8, 2012

OOP S9224: Bornday #1


Y’all it’s my birthday!!!! (Well actually my true birthday is Saturday 11/10 at 8:31am) In my Nation we call it “Degree Day or “Bornday.” Either way…. I’m getting my party on! Borndays are special. Everyone shares all the other holidays with other people. But on borndays are just for you. You get to be the center of attention. That is unless you are a twin, or are born on a holiday. One tradition I have… and I have many traditions…. Is to get me something new on my day, on my own terms. i.e... I buy/make something for Serenity; and that is more than likely a new outfit. When I grew up… yeah I’m getting old saying stuff like that!…. Children didn't have all the say in their lives they have now. You may have expressed your preferences, but you got what you got. When I got old enough to have my own money… because in my house, if someone gave you money, you HAD to hand it over to Mommie or she would not let you have any peace until she saw it spent…. I made sure to have at least 1 present that I truly wanted. Also I went to Catholic school, so I didn't have a lot of personal clothes. I guess I’m a bit on the hoarding side when it comes to clothes, shoes and purses. I never had what I wanted. And it wasn't because we were broke. We weren't. Mommie is just tight with a quarter. Seriously! She didn't buy anything we didn't need.

I have been telling y’all a bit about me personal life. And that ain't like me. I must truly be getting old and have begun to ramble. Anywho…..

Since my bornday is on Saturday, no one will see me in my new duds. And isn't that the point? So…. I made 2 bornday outfits. A cream one and a leopard/pleather one. I decided to wear the cream dress before and the pleather combo after. I’m expecting company over the weekend and I don’t want to be in a white dress when she gets here. I’ll wear the darker separates on Monday and make a bornday-new-outfit-sandwich. Apparently I’m not that old….

I bought Simplicity 9224 at a thrift shop when I was getting into patterns. It was 10 cents. And where is the cents sign on this keyboard? I really cannot bring myself to pay these exorbitant prices for old patterns that folks ask. I just won’t. Especially when they were bought for all of 15 cents and not by the person selling them. I mean $35 for a pattern that cost 15 cents originally?? And even the thrift stores have caught on a bit and have begun charging $1 for patterns. I won’t pay that either. I can buy a brand new uncut pattern that has all the pieces and instructions for $1 (on sale). I’m not taking the chance on a used one for the same price. And the big 4 have vintage patterns now a days.

One of the things that blows my mind is that 1979 is considered vintage. It is 33 years ago. I’m older than that at times. Anything 30 years or more is considered vintage. When I think of 1979, I think of the television show Dallas. I remember thinking, as a small child, how glamorous all the people in the show were. Since my mother had a job, I assumed I would have to work (and I do) and most of the working women were the receptionists at Ewing Oil. This looks like something they would wear. And didn’t Ginger from Gilligan’s Island work at Ewing Oil?

The pattern had all the pieces and instructions included. I’m very thankful for that. The pattern came in sizes 18 and 20 and was already cut for a 20. Again I’m grateful. I had some cream knit from a store that was half fabric half dollar store that was going out of business. I miss that store…. So I made out like a bandit with this combo.

I tried to smile, I'm worried about wrinkles... And damn my boobs look big in this picture.

S9224: Women’s dress, OOP, from 1979

Pattern Sizing: 18 & 20

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?
Actually yes. Even more so because I used the same color fabric that was on the package

Where the instructions easy to follow?
Yes they were.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
I made it right out of the package. I always love not having to make adjustments! I do not really care for front slits. My knees are meaty and I don’t feel modest with this type of feature. I also finally figured out what the directions mean when speak on inserting the waistband. I did it like that. I don’t think it was easier. I will see how it wears.

This was my 1st time with these types of button holes. Oh there was a lot of internetting to figure out what they meant. I think I got it. Next time it will be better

Fabric Used:
Cream knit. I don’t know what kind of knit. It was that type of store. As of yet, I’m not itching, but that could change. The knit doesn't have a lot of body to it. I wore a girdle although the popular current word is “shapewear” to camouflage the lumps, but you can see the shapewear. I don’t really see the point?

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:
None I was testing out the waters...

Would you sew it again?
I plan too. I want to make one of the short sleeved longer versions for the summer in a cotton, possibly with a print. Maybe for the 4th of July? Does anyone other than me plan that far in advance?

Would you recommend it to others?
Yes if you can find it.

Conclusion: I’m very satisfied!

Stay tuned for bornday outfit #2!


Monday, November 5, 2012

NL 6106

Peace y’all,

I have been sewing, but I have not been blogging. And it’s not the blog… It’s my job situation. I have been working at this job for 8.5 years. I have relative privacy in my office so I can do what I want. For some reason I have yet to fathom, my boss decided to hire someone to “help” me. She is older, Caucasian, and doesn't want to be told anything by me because she has done this type of work for 27 years. But she cannot type, file, refuses to learn the software and she consistently lies and bullies the patients. So now I have to watch my back when I do stuff at work. She does all kinds of personal isht at work, but I’m not petty enough to snitch. If folks do their jobs, who cares what else they do? That’s my see… I don’t like to blog at home because I’m busy sewing or thinking about sewing, or shopping for sewing…. That’s where the magic happens!

Basically… I’ll be playing catch up for awhile.

I made NL6106 over the summer. Atlanta does not have a large selection of fabric stores. You would think they would since this is a big metro area, they have designers based out of Atl and they have a fashion school here. We have Hancocks, Joanns and Hobby Lobby. Some Walmarts have fabric and notions. Then there are the few… and I mean few… Mom and Pop stores. One of these stores is called Gayle K fabrics. This place has every effing thing you can imagine. I think that is where the students and designers shop. Seriously. B.U.T. They are seriously effing high; and I mean for everything like thread, buttons, zipper, just everything. And they never have sales. They WILL have what you are looking for, but it will cost more to make than to buy. But I was in there one day looking for tangerine linen (because where else will you find tangerine linen?) to make my spring jacket and I saw this fabric. I could not stop thinking about it. I have a firm policy that when you think about something for days and lay in the bed thinking about it…. You must. So I did.

I really love everything about this skirt. I love that I can wear it year round. I also love that it’s printed. But I wasn't thinking about the print when I cut the 1st panel. I would have lined it up differently. Valuable lesson learned. I would have preferred the antelopes be the stars rather than the birds. Because of that I had to line the back up to match. I’m okay with it, though. I’m not really mad. I have enough scraps to make a purse.

Pattern Sizing: 10-22

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?

Where the instructions easy to follow? Very

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? That I didn't have to make 1 adjustment to the pattern. I was able to sew it right out of the package. And it was actually loose. Yay running!

Fabric Used: Printed Denim

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made: Not 1

Would you sew it again? Yes and I have. When I made it the second time, I used the shorter version for my Halloween costume. The shorter version is REALLY short and not modest at all.

Would you recommend it to others? Yes

Conclusion: A TNT A-line pattern that is modest and not frumpy looking.


Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween

Two little Black siblings (boy and girl) were dressed up and trick or treating on
Halloween. They walked up to a racist white lady’s home and rang the bell.
When she opened the door she asked the children who they were supposed to be.
The children said, “Jack and Jill.” The racist lady said, “No. You need to find
another idea before I give you some candy. The siblings went home thought of a
new idea, changed their clothes and went back to the racist lady’s door. When
she opened it she asked them again who they were supposed to be. The siblings said, “Hansel and Gretel.” The racist white lady said, “Your not getting it. You
are little Black children. You need to be something Black. Jack, Jill, Hansel and Gretel…. Those are white. Figure it out and I’ll give you some candy.” Well!
The children went home and thought about it. Then they went back to the white lady’s house, got in the bushed and took off ALL their clothes. They stood there
Buck naked and rand the doorbell for the last time. When the racist white lady answered the door she was shocked. She then asked, “Who are you?” The children answered, “Hershey bars. One with nuts and one without!”

Peace Y’all!

It’s that time of the year…. Halloween. I dress. If you consistently follow me, you already know that. When I was a child, I went to a school that had a tradition of having the students choose a character from history make a report, give a speech and wear a costume. My mother… being as militant as she could conceive, always dressed me for someone out of Black History, and made sure that the testimony I had was powerful and my costume was on point. No poor wretched looking broke down slave wenches for me. And she made sure I had a POWERFUL speech. There was an evening assembly to go along with the promenade and she made sure all the devils in attendance learned something. She also found folks with vans and bussed in a bunch of my friends and church people to the festivities. That school that had a total of maybe 20 Black people (and that included pre-school to 12th grade) would be inundated that night. I continue the tradition.

Meet Lt. Nyota Uhura from the USS Enterprise --- Original series. Uhura means ‘Freedom.’ Today’s Supreme Mathematics is Understanding Knowledge abbt Culture/Freedom. I chose to be that embodiment of Today’s Supreme Mathematics….

This is the most overworked Halloween dress in existence. And it didn’t have to be that way! Instead of making a simple shift dress, I decided to join separates of garments that I had successfully completed. It didn’t work!

The top is NL6130 and the bottom is NL6106. Both of which I had success. Now I didn’t. Well I did, because clearly I’m wearing it out. I’m not as happy as I could have been. Oh well.

First of all, it’s polyester. Polyester that was $3/yard and on sale for 50% off… So you know I’m itchy. Then nothing lined up the way I planed it. Still I persevered…. Then once I managed to finish, it was too small. I had to let it out 8 inches. I made the sleeves tight and have to make a gusset to let them out…. But everyone loves it. Go figure. Clearly they don’t sew.


Monday, September 24, 2012

B5760 ; Skirt


For my current wardrobe I have decided what my need is, is skirts and blouses. I’m NOT a suit girl. And I want to up my game and grown woman wardrobe. My body type looks best with pencil or a-line skirts. So I made a pencil skirt this weekend with B5760. When you google B5760 all you come up with is the cardigan reviews. I admit that I bought the pattern for said cardigan. But there are other things on the pattern. I freely admit that since I don’t wear pants, it’s unlikely that I would use them, but you never know…. I’m a runner now a days and you just don’t know what I might do.

But I’m thinking the other pieces of this pattern are under appreciated. And…. I just needed a pencil skirt and this one was laying around to I cut it. Seriously. I didn’t realize how many patterns have other pieces on them and I have tunnel vision about what I’m willing to make out of it. Like NL6130. Did anyone notice it too has a pencil skirt? It’s wasteful really. But how many pencil skirt patterns does one actually need? Anywho…. I like the skirt part of B5760! And here is my review.

Pattern: Butterick 5760 Misses' Jacket, Cardigan, Dress, Belt, Skirt and Pants I made the skirt

Fabric used: Purple with blue pinstripe suiting

Alterations? None. YAY!!!!! I have been dieting and exercising and I am heartened that I don’t’ always have to add width to a garment like I used to. It feels good to make a garment right off the paper! But I should have added 2 inches for just a smear more modesty. It comes to the knee, but when I sit, it rises. I don’t like that, but it won’t keep me from wearing it to death.

Did it look like the envelope? Yes

Instructions easy to follow? Ummm…. No. I find this shocking….. but I have never made a vented skirt before. The directions must have assumed that I knew how to do this because it wasn’t discussed on the paper. I had to google how to do it and I am thrilled that I learned a new skill.

Likes/Dislikes? All like no dislikes except the no vent on the skirt directions

Would you sew it again? I would!

Recommend to others? Do it!


Thursday, September 6, 2012

Lil' Scrappy


I really have to take the recommendations on the back of the pattern package more. I have a habit of matching a fabric I love with a fabric I love. Damn the recommendation. 25% of the time, it works. More often than not it doesn’t. Like the denim dress I made from V1250 that you have never heard of. My current creation is no different. I fell in love with the fabric and wanted to make a dress out of it. Even though the fabric is better suited to be a blouse than a dress. I still made a dress out of it. A wadder. The fabric is pretty and every one told me that specific tidbit of information though no one made mention of the dress itself. I didn’t even finish it correctly. So it came apart.


So what is a girl to do? Recalculate! I recut the top and left the bottom alone. I added a solid band to the middle and backed the hem with the same heavy cotton. The last dress was so light that it would rise up on it’s own accord. So I made a scrapped dress out of reclaimed fabric of a dress that I shouldn’t have made in the 1st place.

But do you know what? I like it! And people have given me compliments on the dress itself. It’s tighter than I expected it would be and I made sure to finish it correctly so I don’t pop out… like I did in the last dress made from this fabric.


Tuesday, September 4, 2012

New Look 6107


About 13 years ago I wanted a bike. So I bought one from Toys R Us. The people who put the bike together were on vacation and I would have to wait 2 weeks before it could be put it together. That wouldn’t do. My late husband claimed that he could put the bike together. When I came home from my ptj the bike was done; but there was a bag of leftover parts. He said they always include extra parts. The next Saturday we went to the park to bike ride. He was on his nephew’s bike and I was on my new one. I pushed off and the brakes and the whole break line came off. I couldn’t stop the bike. But luckily the wheel fell off. That stopped me. We took the bike to a bike shop, but without the extra pieces because he had discarded them. It cost $50 in the 90’s to repair the bike. That is how I feel about New Look 6107. It had a bunch of mystery pieces

Let me just say I love this pattern. It is very easy and very pretty. And I wanted something polka dot since Shawnta made a polka dot blouse. And I love a good pussy bow! I bought it in the summer with plans to make the short sleeved version. Unfortunately I didn’t get it in like that so I added the longer sleeves. I really like it. But I did have some problems.

Pattern Description:
Misses' Sportswear Misses' button front blouse with sleeve and neckline variations and pencil skirt in two lengths.

Pattern Sizing:
8-18 I cut the 18 I did the A-version

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?

Were the instructions easy to follow?

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
I didn’t get the instructions down to the pieces to be cut. I mean there were pieces that I just never used. I was pissed that I cut them because I wanted to make a hat out of the remnants but couldn’t because I had cut all the pieces that they asked for.

Fabric Used:
A BEAUTIFUL cotton from Wal-Mart. Yes Wal-Mart. It was a joy to work with and it doesn’t look like a scrub top. I might get some more and make a skirt….

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:
I have been on a diet fro the last 2 months and everything I own is loose. So I thought I didn’t need to do an FBA… That is until I was about to add the buttons (my last step_ Then I realized that although I didn’t need to add 10” to the garment, I did need to add about 6”. So I rigged the front to give me the extra room. In the future when I make this… And I will be making this again…. I will add the FBA. I accept I will never be able to make a top out of the package and I am okay with that.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?

I love this pattern <3<3<3 I’m wearing the hell out of this top.


Wednesday, August 15, 2012

New Look 6130.... Blah!


I sewed last weekend. I completed 2 UFOs. One skirt one top. I started to refashion a wadder that I refuse to give up on the fabric. I love it too much! I need to get these things done before I start sewing for the fall and I have plans!!!! I hit a Butterick sale like that last weekend.

I initially wanted V8815 but none of the stores I frequent ever had it in stock. I was NOT ordering it. I’d have to pay full price + shipping and handling (and what’s handling anyway and why do I have to pay for it????). Nope. Folks…Shawnta and Alethia… had remarked about NL 6130 And NLs are never too expensive so….. I got it. I had to go all the way over to NC to get it too.

I liked the pattern of NL6130 a little more that I liked V8815 because NL6130 is princessed seamned and V8815 is not. I think PS is a better look for me vs. just flat.

So here is my take on it…..

Pattern Description:
Misses' peplum top with neckline and sleeve variations, slim pants, pencil skirt and tie belt…. I made the top, view c

Pattern Sizing: 8-18, I cut an 18

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?
Yes it did

Were the instructions easy to follow?
I suppose

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
I don’t really like the pleated and pointy front peplum, but I don’t absolutely hate it. It’s too cutesy if you know what I mean.

Fabric Used: The store keeper said Cotton knit. I HATED working with the fabric. That might have something to do with why I don’t love it. It broke a needle and kept getting jammed in the machine. I blame the fabric because when I finally finished I was able to work on another garment with no problems and I finished a skirt before hand. I have another UFO in the same fabric in red. It might stay a UFO

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made: None because folks said it ran big and I was using knit.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?
Yes and yes

Conclusion: I like and dislike it. I’m not sure why. I will absolutely wear it. Probably wear it to death. It’s that type of reliable black top. I plan to make one for the fall with short sleeves and in pleather. But I will change the front peplum to the one in the back. I might change the sleeves too. Right now they are too poofy. If you like this style. It’s a straight forward pattern. There are just small things I personally didn’t like. I can over come it though and put my ‘stank’ on it though.

These aren't good pictures because the fabric is Black. Project Runway says black doesn't photograph well... Oh well....


Monday, July 16, 2012

What wear on a hot @$$ed Day? M6556!

Peace Y’all,

It has been is hot as Satan’s scrotum lately. The funny thing is you would think the south would get all the hot weather and everyplace would be cooler. But surprisingly no. Seems like everybody is getting slapped upside the face with heat. There have been days my inlaws in upstate NY had higher temps than we did. It makes it difficult to dress 3/4th when it's hot like that. I mean I could stay home and be naked, but this Earth has people to see and things to do!

M6556 was almost the dress that wasn’t. I cut this joker out at the beginning of the summer to teach another Earth how to sew. Since it really only has 2 pieces (once you tape them together) I thought it would be a good teaching experience. Unfortunately she got lost cutting it out. And folks who claim they want to learn to sew don’t necessarily mean it. And her mother sews!!!!!

I went through 3 different planned fabrics on this too. The green gauze was my original intention. I hate when I go through hell just to start back at the beginning. I swear this dress didn’t want to be made. I t was impossible to cut on the table so I had to cut it on the floor. Just crazy reasons NOT to make this “dress.” But I persevered and here it is. Shall we?

I don't know what I was looking at.

Pattern Description:
M6556 Misses Dresses. But this is not a dress unless you are under 5’ tall. I had to wear it with a skirt

Pattern Sizing: 12-20

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?
Actually it did

Were the instructions easy to follow?

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
It is a very unique top. But for some reason the front neckline is a bit wonky. I had to readjust it while I wore it. I think the weight of the right arm fabric kept pivoting it.

Fabric Used:
Cotton gauze

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:
I added 2” to the top trying to get it to be a dress. And that didn’t work. The package said the finished garment should be 41”. And had that been the truth then the additional 2” would have allowed it to cover the exposed knee. Any longer than 2” then the hanging part would have dragged the floor when my arm was down

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?
I doubt I’d sew it again, and I do recommend this to others if you like this style. But be forewarned it’s a top and not a dress.

Cute and different top.


Monday, July 2, 2012


Peace Family.

I sort of had a vacation last week. Sort of… The office I work for was closed for an entire week, but….. I came in on Monday and Thursday, had a funeral on Tuesday that took all day and Wednesday I just couldn’t do it. I couldn’t come in on Friday because my coworker and I are not allowed to be alone together (it’s that serious y’all) and Friday is her day to come in the office since we are usually closed on Fridays. Mix in the FACT that our AC went out at home on Wednesday and the temps have been over 100* of late means I didn’t get much sewing done. But I did get something completed.


This is a baby quilt for my newest nephew. Dillon Benjamin, though I’m not completely sure of the name. I want to get his name embroidered on the blanket but my people have not confirmed the spelling of his name. You know how we can be…. My niece and I are 1 year apart in age. When her sister started having babies, I made blankets for her girls. All 4 of them. This started me the tradition of me making blankets for the next generation. My niece even asked me if I was making a blanket for her son. You know I had to say YES! Besides, this niece has been sickly all her life and never expected to have a child. He was a blessed surprise. We are all very geeked.

I kind of cheated on this quilt. I made the 1st square 3 years ago. A fellow Earth was baring and I volunteered to make her a quilt. I had made another Earth a quilt when she was baring, but it was a group project. This Earth and I were cool at the time so I agreed to make her a baby quilt and allowed her to choose the colors. You need to understand. I don’t like to quilt. But I will make a baby quilt if the squares are large enough that I don’t have to make that many. And I have to really like you to make you a quilt. And I never allow the recipients to dictate the colors unless I’m not quilting but teaching someone how to quilt.

So I allowed this woman to choose her own colors… blue and lavender. Since it’s hot here in GA, I don’t always use quilt batting. I back the quilt with fleece. I find that’s usually enough to make a solid baby quilt. Anywhoo… As I was building with the Earth…. Who KNEW I was making her a quilt…. Waits until the week before her shower to tell me she doesn’t want a quilt from me but something else. Apparently, she went through her guest list and decided what certain people should contribute. The shower was clearly intended to be a gift receiving venture. She didn’t even stay in the room with her guests or participate in any of the games. I didn’t buy her what she asked for and was planning not to attend the shower. B.U.T. she made the shower coed and invited my God to said shower who did purchase what she asked for and put both our names on the gift. To this day I am still waiting for a thank you card….. So…

I used the same fabric for my new nephew’s quilt. Luckily my niece isn’t picky doesn’t know the story nor does she follow my blog. Even though I’m pissed how the story unfolded, I’m thrilled with the out come. It is a 16” block. I made 4 with a 2.5” strip of white in the middle with another red piece. I think it’s really cute. And once I got rolling, it wasn’t hard at all. In the future, I will spring for a quilting foot. I broke 2 needles! I will only quilt baby quilts on my machine. Anything bigger gets sent out.

The quilt square is called “A Mother’s Life.” If you look you will see a red square of love in the center and arrows going out and coming in to represent a mother’s love in how she loves others and they love her right back. Here is the link to the website.

I hope Dillon Likes it. It is very different from his cousin’s blankets. You can see how my skill level increased through the years. The oldest niece is 15 now. Her blanket was one of the ones that you make maybe a few stitches here and there. Grand-niece 2 & 3 got quilts and #4 got a crocheted blanket. I was in my crochet phase then. Each of the girls still keeps her own respective ‘blanky”.

Yay Dillon!!!!!


Monday, June 18, 2012

A little help please......

I have a fresh dilemma and I wanted to take it to the 20 of you. I want to make a floral blazer! But I’m scared.

Here is the fabric. I am obsessed with light blue this summer. I don’t know why. But I scored 4 yards from Wal-Mart of this fabric. I love it. You can tell I love it because I paid full price for it.

The pattern that I want is V1296. The pattern itself says that it’s hard. And it even requires some boning! It was even hard to cut out. I have B5619 It calls for 41/8 yd of fabric to my 4 yards, but I can cut the facings in a different color if I need too.

Here is my dilemma…. Should I go ahead and try to make V1296 or should I just go with the safety of B5619?

I suppose a muslin would help…. I hate doubling back, but I hate wadders too….


Wednesday, June 6, 2012

The God Laughed!

Peace Y’all,

My God sometimes reads this blog. He agreed that I needed to have a sewing space separate from my reflection on my life as Earth. He made a suggestion that I blog on my nail habits. Since it is part of my refinement. Wow. Even after years together, this man surprises me!

When I was a small child, I had 3 wishes: long hair, straight teeth and long nails. Well weaves supplemented me until I went natural. Now I have locs and you know locs will grow. So I checked off Long hair. I checked off straight teeth when my braces came off in the 11th grade. But the nail thing was tricky.

I have soft nails. Really soft. They will fold as soon as they grow past the fingertip. That folding causes cracking and loss of the nail. These nails are just like my mother’s nails. Skinny and sharp. As thin as they are, they are like razor blades and used to tear my skin up when I scratch. That is actually a big problem for me because I suffer from eczema. I have tried every hardener, every vitamin, every damn thing that reported that I could grow those long beautiful thick and strong nails. Even my toenails are thin and are prone to grow inward.

When I was 22, I went to a ball hosted at my dental school (I managed to graduate with long nails. I have the graduation pictures to prove it!). I decided to get some acrylic nails. I have never looked back. I have had some sort of acrylic on my nails since that day 19 years ago. Acrylic nails make life easier. When I get my nails ‘done,’ I’m done. Meaning I feel put together and since polish doesn’t chip off acrylic nails like it does natural nails, I don’t have to worry about my hands until my next nail appointment. That is a huge relief. Before acrylics, I would have to paint and repaint my nails every 4 days. That’s a HUGE inconvenience because of all the down time it takes to dry. It was like and additional hair washing day. And y’all know how long it takes a Black woman to completely wash her own hair from start to finish!

Folks act like this is an expensive venture. As soon as I hear that nonsense I KNOW it is coming from a place of frank ignorance. A full set is $20 here in GA. Fillins run between $12-15. I get fillins ever 2-3 weeks. For some reasoning the winter my nails grow more slowly. So there have been the occasional months where I only fill once. That’s maybe $12-25/month. You waste more than $25/month.

The thing that made the God laugh was all the rules and regulations I have set up for myself with regard to shapes and color. Nail techs think I’m crazy and I’m not far behind them in that appraisal. When I get a fresh set, I go with round nails and light colors. More than likely some sort of American. I won’t cut them down until my own nail grows back in. As my nails get longer, I will have them shortened to the actual nail but cut square. The reasoning is this… I prefer round nails, but they have a tendency to separate from the natural nail. That leaves sharp snags that cut me, pulls my hair, ruins stockings, etc. So as soon as the natural nail grows in good, I swap round for square. Square makes my fingers look longer. I have really stubby digits.

I will NOT wear frosted polish in the spring or summer. I just won’t. Makes me look ashy and looks like something that should be worn around the holidays. The ONLY exception would be for a special occasion or if it is a sparkle and not a frost. Meaning like a top coat with those big sparkly pieces in it. Pastels and bright colors for spring and summer only.

In the winter frosts and dark colors abound. After the autumnal equinox, that’s when I’ll entertain, browns, deep oranges and reds. I don’t think red looks good on me. But I will rock red and gold at the winter solstice. Just seems like the right time to do it then. I will only wear Black or dark blues in the fall/winter too.

On the toes, anything goes. I don’t generally tip my toes. I will admit that there has been the rare occasion that I have put tips on my toes. I don’t generally do this because it is uncomfortable to wear closed toe shoes. Don’t judge me. But I will wear ANY color on my toes I fancy at any time. I just feel that way about feet. I DO NOT like for my finger nails and toe nails to match. Nope. Don’t like that at all. It bothers me and I don’t know why.

I rarely do nail art. I feel like that’s for kids. I’m grown. I don’t need flowers and swirls on my fingertips or toes. I might add a sparkle color to the top of my color but that’s about as intense as I go. I pay attention to colors of the seasons. I bet you didn’t realize that nail polish companies come out with spring and fall lines of color. I know. I was blown away when I found out. But that’s why it’s hard to find a color that you always wear if it’s not in style. Those colors come and go.

So that’s my build on nails. You can call me vain… excessive…. High maintenance…. Whatever. But just know when you do it, my nails and hair will be perfectly on point while you’re talking.

Proper Education Always Corrects Errors!

My toes in Tiffany blue and my nails done "Stiletto" style.



I like this pattern. It is a good mojo starter. I know I have been sewing a lot lately, but this top is what I needed. It is a “grown woman” top; meaning it’s not from Old Navy. It’s not knit. It’s is in my favorite color purple. Most folks don’t realize that purple is my favorite color because I don’t wear it. I don’t think lot looks good on me. But this top does and I love it. And lastly, it is printed! I have been doing the knowledge to indigenous Original cultures; and have come to realize that Original people love print and color. It’s in the blood. And you can recognize a person’s culture based on the prints they wear. I’m doing prints until further notice.

I have been desperately searching for a peplum pattern. V8815 isn’t in the stores yet and NL6130 can’t be found. I was getting a bit desperate. Shall we?

I have to stop making that face. I honestly was smiling and the moment I stopped to answer a question, she took the picture!

Pattern Description: Misses' Top and Belt

Pattern Sizing: 16-24. I cut the C-version of a 24… you know, for Cocoa and Puff. But I could have easily cut a 20. It’s very loose. But I like loose, despite what my mother says….

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? Yes it did!

Were the instructions easy to follow? Very easy. The whole thing start to finish only took 3 hours and I paused to cook breakfast

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? The style of the top is very adult

Fabric Used: Rayon. Now this is wear I get mad with folk/ Why didn’t someone tell me how difficult it is to work with rayon? All the ironing… all the fraying… I would have pinked this. I have a bunch of navy blue rayon to use for a shirt dress….. I am very nervous

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made: Not sure if this counts, but I tacked the front closed. Otherwise, I’d have to wear a shirt underneath it. In the future, I will add an additional 1-2" to the bodice. The Girls take up a lot of room.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? Yes and yes. I am planning to make the A-version and I have fall/winter versions with the sleeves planned

Conclusion: A TNT top!

I made the skirt too…. Maybe in April? I don’t remember the pattern number. I’m annoyed because here I am thinking I’m stepping out of my comfort zone with this skirt and I had 4 others in the summer trunk in brighter colors. I wear the skirt a lot, but I am very ashamed.


Thursday, May 31, 2012


This is the dress that I build about in my last post. I like it but don’t like it. The one that's not completely finished because I can't find my 2 missing boxes of hook and eye closures.

Pattern Description: B5643: Very easy jacket and dress. I made the dress.
Pattern Sizing: 14-20, of course I cut a 20. I also didn’t make a FBA. I have been doing the Knowledge to “ease” and according to that philosophy, there should be enough ease in a very loose fitting garment to accommodate Cocoa and Puff. They fit. But it’s kind of tight around the high bust. Not so tight that it interferes with my breathing or ability to move, but enough that I can feel it. Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? No…. I will explain that in a minute Were the instructions easy to follow? I didn’t follow them because I lost them! So I had to make the dress up based on what the pattern pieces dictated, i.e facings went where facings go, pleats got put in where the pattern indicated, etc. I got confused when it was time to connect the shoulder straps, but I got it together. I mean… they are straps! What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? I don’t think it is the dress for my body. In actuality I think this pattern is more of a nightgown than dress! It’s essentially a swing dress. It hits the boobs and it’s out. It makes me look pregnant. A belt didn’t help cinch the waist either. And I tried multiple belts! Fabric Used: Floral cotton from Wal-Mart. It was a really pretty fabric and floral is supposed to be “in” this season and according to the fashion experts, my body is supposed to do small print. Whatever… This fabric really should have been a blouse. I had hoped that because it was such a long dress that the fabric would weigh the dress down… It doesn’t. It’s that light. Pattern alterations or any design changes you made: After I was done, I didn’t like the length. I did a longer version than the short version on the pattern, but a shorter version than the long pattern version. I was afraid that the longer version would be too long on my 5’3” frame. It probably wouldn’t have been, but I don’t think I would have liked how it would have looked straight to the ground. Does that make sense? When I finished the 1st version… the way the pattern dictated… it was too short and the fabric is so light that it floated up easily. I had extra fabric so I started experimenting. I have 2 feet that I don’t use much (I have other feet I don’t even know what they are!); a gathering foot and a rolled hem foot. I cut the remaining fabric into 11.5” strips, joined them, and rolled the hem and then gathered them so that it looks like a ruffle addition at the bottom of the skirt. I am not unhappy with the addition and I don’t think you can tell with a just cursory look at the dress that the bottom.
Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? No I won’t make this dress for myself again unless I want a nightgown. It is just not my style. But I did put in a lot of effort in making this dress. I will add this to my recreational wardrobe because I really don’t want to take it apart and make something else. I have a 15 hour road trip to NYC for Show and Prove coming up. Since the dress is so light, it should breathe and be very comfortable to wear in the car. Conclusion: Not a TNT, but I’m glad I stepped out of my comfort zone. I’ll take the best part. Peace!

Tuesday, May 29, 2012


Peace. Blogger’s changes are pissing me off. I swear I am writing in paragraph form but blogger is not formatting it like that. Any suggestions? Did y’all have great paid holiday? I did. I danced, told more lies, ate more veggie burgers and drank more liquor than I have in a minute. The troops that gave their lives for this country would have wanted it that way… I meant to sew more than I did this weekend. I wanted to have 4 completed garments to present. 1 for each day of my weekend. But… I just have 2. Oh well. It’s better than nothing. We just bought a new foam bed. It’s really hard to get out of it. I completed M6069 and B5643. Technically, I completed B5643 last week and even more technically, it’s not fully completed. Like 99.5% I need to add in the hook and eye. Here is the thing… I can’t find where I put them. And I have already bought a replacement case (because I misplaced the previous case while moving. They must be with my eyeglasses). I’m not buying a third. So the dress will remain 99% finished until I either (a) find the missing box/es or (b) decided to discard something with a hook and eye so I can cannibalize one. Busters…. M6069 is complete and I have worn it already. Well… complete enough that I wore it out. I have made M6069 before. It’s a dress pattern that I made a blouse/top out of. Where as I still wear the top, even after 2 years, there are things about the top I never liked. This pattern has a cowl n the front and in the back. I believe the back cowl is deeper than the front one. Not a good look if you MUST wear a bra. When I wear the top from this pattern, I’m bra checking all day unless I wear a jacket over it. Under a cardigan or hoodie (yes I will wear a hoodie out, to work, etc. Don’t judge me!) I kind of look like a hunchback because the fabric noticeably bunches up so it requires a blazer to slap it into submission. So when I decided to make this pattern up again, I knew that I needed to make some adjustments. You want to read about it? Here it goes…..
I will admit this is not the best picture. The God doesn't get what I am trying to express when I ask him to take a reflection. anyway, this is me at the parliament building. Pattern Description: M6069: Misses' Dresses and Sash Pattern Sizing: 14-20. Of course I cut a 20, no FBA Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? Yes and no. But it was on purpose. Were the instructions easy to follow? Yes, up to #32. I don’t get how they meant to add the elastic. I did add it, but not the way the instructions said. The way I know how. Which I’m certain is NOT the same, but it worked so…… What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? I am clear that I don’t like a cowl in the back and it was too short as is Fabric Used: Cotton knit print from Wal-Mart. Yes Wal-Mart. I’m open on them right now. I will ride that wave as long as it lasts. I can buy things that are less expensive and clearly labeled from Wal-Mart or either spend my utility money at Hancocks/Joanns or be lied too at another mom and pop fabric store about what the fabric actually is. I bought this fabric for 2 dollars a yard. I bought 4 yards and still have at least 1.5 yards! What is not to love? The only down side is the print is so playful that I don’t think it’s appropriate for work. My office is closed on Fridays, and casual Thursdays is kind of something that only I do and hasn’t been approved by the boss. But he hasn’t said anything yet. I won’t push it. Even though I think I can get away with it if I add a white cardigan and some white stilettos. Pattern alterations or any design changes you made: OK. This is where it gets interesting…. I have stated, repeatedly, that I didn’t like cowl on the back. Version C of the dress has a plain front with a cowl in the back. I suppose the design feature is the back cowl. Some feature LOL! I used the plain front as a back and used the front of A&B as a front. So I used 2 fronts and no back! Teehee. That’s funny to me! I added an extra pleat on each side of the front piece so that it would match the depth of the shoulder. I also kept the facing. I think it looks neater with one and tacked it down with tailors tacks in a matching inconspicuous location so it doesn’t flop around as facings tend to do. I also lengthened it 15 inches. I’m not sure it’s enough. Who knew? I might be taller than I think. Maxidresses tend to drag the floor. This dress is just long; a mididress. I suppose my ‘parts’ made it rise higher than I expected. I have enough fabric left to nicely lengthen it, but I haven’t decided that I want to do that yet. I do wish I had lengthened the bodice some. Maybe an inch. It’s not a big deal. Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? Yes I would. I really like this dress. I have already worn it twice in 3 days and I am planning to take it on vacation. It is a very versatile and easy pattern. I would recommend it if it was still in print. And I can see myself making the long sleeved version when the weather shifts. It took longer than 1 hour though. I’m not sure who’s fault that was. Conclusion: My 1st TNT pattern!!!! Peace PS: here is another pic of me. Guess which one I am?

Thursday, May 24, 2012

I wanna be like Carolyn when I grow up.....

Peace. I know everyone reading this is a follower/worshipper/reader of Diary of a Sewing Fanatic. If not, you should be. One of the things I have always wondered, but never asked is why does the author have this obsession with TNT patterns? I now know. It keeps you from making garments that you would not wear. I am in serious possession of many patterns that probably won’t look good on me. And because I primarily increase my wardrobe, these days, 80% of the time with my own made garments, chances are, I won’t know a particular look is not for me until I make up the pattern. Why not have TNTs? I work in the health care industry. So that means I NEVER have to wear suits unless I want to. Up until 8 years ago, (and my life is COMPLETELY different than it was 8 years ago) my jobs came with uniforms. My wardrobe consisted of: uniforms, church clothes, a going out outfit (I hardly ever go out like that) and recreational clothes. I chose when I started this job to NOT wear uniforms. I didn’t have to and I don’t. There are only 2 of us that don’t wear scrubs and the other person is a man. He wears a uniform of khakis and a dress shirt daily. I have had to really figure out what looks good on me and what I have the temperament to wear. Y’all have seen my shape from previous pictures. I’m a big girl with large breasts. But I have good legs (bad/fat knees), B.U.T. I’m righteous and don’t often show them off. What y’all may not realize is I’m short…. Regular clothes don’t automatically look good on me. I tend to look sloppy in my clothes if not done right. I want to do them right. My mother blessed me with her shape, for the most part; but not her ass. My behind is wide like hers but not protrusive. So I never have to make a sway back adjustment. In turn, my boobs are way bigger than hers and she is shorter than me. Luckily I can wear heels, she can’t. Artificial knees. Now I’m not telling you all my mother’s business for no reason. Mommie’s philosophy is to wear clothes as tight as you can stand them and to wear even tighter foundation garments to make you look smaller and smooth. I tried that. But I like to breathe; seems it’s not as important to her. I had Mommie watching Mad Men and she went on and on and on and on….. about how good “Joan” looked. She said that since we couldn’t hide our shapes we should display them. I don’t know how I feel about that. I still have bad memories of getting in trouble because my high school gym shorts were labeled ‘obscene’ by the administration. Mommie bought those shorts…. I’m just saying. All older people aren’t conservative like that. I am trying to figure out my figure. I used to be hour glassed, but now, not so much. I swear either my hips are receding and/or my waist is thickening. I think my waist is thickening. I don’t get that… or why. So I am drifting into a big, straight up and down with boobs. I don’t know how to dress that. More fabric on the bottom makes me look even bigger. Where are the What Not To Wear people when you need them? I have a bunch of belts to cinch my waist but it’s not doing what the claims say it should be doing. I have been following big girl fashion blogs and they are all over the place. These women are wearing short, tight, loose, all kinds of garments. Adele and Octavia Spencer come to mind. They don’t look uncomfortable like my mother would have me look (she buys me a tight suit for Christmas every year. Her suits are the only suits I own. One of the caveats of not celebrating Christmas anymore is I don’t have to accept these suits!) I have ventured out of my comfort zone and tried to make some very loose fitting caftan type garments. I don’t particularly care for the results. I favor pencil skirts, sometime a-line skirts. I like soft cardigans and Old Navy t-shirts. ***sigh*** but I’m not in my 20’s or even 30’s). I can’t keep wearing that to work. Or can I? I need some TNT’s. That is my new mission. Find some TNT patterns that work for my ever changing body and hold onto them for dear life. More to come…… Peace PS: Hey Carolyn! When are you gonna teach us how to shirr? Is that spelled right?

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

S2615: Don't sew while sick

Peace. Again…. I am going to complain about Simplicity patterns. It’s getting to the point that I want to purge all Simplicity patterns from my stash. But… I paid for them so that’s probably not going to happen. I’ll give them away 1st. Also I have a head cold. I will admit that that is what it is. My voice and nose are all choked up. I can hear myself laboring to breathe. My chest is fine although I have a generalized achyness that I just cannot put my finger on why it’s there and where it’s coming from. I’m warm, all my teeth hurt and my eczema seems to be popping out afresh. Maybe just sheer crappiness has caused me to dislike Simplicity. Don’t sew while sick. I have switched my diet to a more sattvic one and will just let nature take it’s course. Does anyone other than me have cutter’s remorse? It’s holding me back. Buying fabric is not the problem. It’s decided what to do with the fabric once it’s bought. I always have an idea when I buy a fabric about what I want to do with it, but then it changes. So now when I buy fabric, I always buy a little extra. I will sit with a pattern on my nightstand reading and re-reading the directions until I can quote them by number in my sleep only to change my mind when I get to the cutting table. Anyone out there do this foolishness? Anyone? Is it just me? S2615 is a wardrobe. It has 2 tops, a dress pants and shorts. The only different pattern pieces are the pants/shorts combo. I made the top. I need more tops in my wardrobe. Grown woman tops. I bought some thin cotton knit at a sale in Decatur. $2/yard indeed! I love the color… coral… but have to take their word on the type of fabric it is because it is never listed on the bolt. Coral looks good on everybody. I wish more people realized that. I knew when I only bought 2 yards of it that it was meant to be a top. I was just not sure which one. Several patterns sat on the nightstand. In the end I decided on S2615 because it was sort of a tunic. Sort of….

Posing in the kitchen after making breakfast for grown people who work from home! Slightly salty.... Pattern Description: S2615 Misses' & Plus Size Sportswear Misses or Plus Size Pullover Dress, Top and Pants & Shorts Pattern Sizing: 20W-28W I cut a 20 Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? Yes Were the instructions easy to follow? I guess What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? Simplicity’s vague directions and I don’t like garments that tie in the back. That’s country. I figured I could finagle around it but it didn’t work with the fabric. So I have a top that ties in the back. Fabric Used: Alleged cotton knit. In the knit’s defense, I was able to iron it but it stayed really hot for a minute. Pattern alterations or any design changes you made: I am 5’3”. Yes I admit that. I shortened it 3” for many reasons. (a) It would have come down like a small dress if I didn’t. And (b) I didn’t have enough fabric to make the top as is. I know I’m technically petite, but I don’t normally to shorten clothes. I blame the boobs and other body parts Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? I am teaching an Earth to sew who just found out that she is expecting. I will give the pattern to her. I think it is suitable for maternity. I didn’t cut the pants since I don’t wear pants. She can fit those however she needs to. Conclusion: I like it enough to not throw it out. It has a deep slit in the front that I find kind of sexy. I like the color more than anything else. Peace

Monday, April 23, 2012

I'm here.... Sort Of

Good Morning Y’all, I have been sewing. I have. I have loads of projects sitting on the sewing table. The God has been cleaning his side of the room. Eventually I think we will have space for other people other than ourselves in there. Who knows? Anywho. Where as I have plenty of mojo, it’s becoming depleted. I’m making garments I’m not super happy with. The last time I was satisfied with a garment it was my orange linen jacket. I like it now, but the construction was a beast. I made V1250 out of denim. It was a stretch denim, but still denim. I added 2 extra inches to it because it (a) wasn’t a knit and (b) because I knew I would be putting a zipper in it. And it came out enough for me to wear it publicly, but I wasn’t comfortable in it. Partially because it was shorter than my muslin, it came to the knee. (If I cut the muslin long, I don’t remember) And it rode up when I sat down. I wore it with boots to keep the overall proportion 3/4ths. The folks I was with said I looked hot in it. But I think it is because it is not my normal look. I wore a leather hat instead of my usual headwrap that let a lot of my hair out and I had up-to-the-knee boots. I’m thinking that attributed to the “hotness” more so than the dress. I Frankensteined another dress this weekend. I had some African inspired cotton print that I wanted to make a simple spring dress. African print is overpowering and making a dress with pleats or anything uber-fancy will look crazy because of the print. Another thing is I was going to a party this weekend (you know you’re getting old when your friends start turning 50!) and I made the dress the morning of the party. Come to think of it, I finished V1250 before I was about to go out. Maybe I’m putting undo pressure on myself. I used NL6648 for the top and the bottom of V8663. I chose both those patterns because I had success with them in the past. And yes I made a perfectly nice dress, but not anything I crave to wear. Had I loved the dress, I would have worn it to work this morning. I didn’t. The dress came out completely ok. Just not the BOOM I was looking for. I will wear it again. Here is the thing with both dresses…. My gut! Let me tell you something about Serenity…. Serenity is a thick sista, with big boobies and wide hips. What she never has is a pooch or a thick gut. NEVER!!!! And if she is… let me stop 3rd person talking… And if I have a PMS moment (which I didn’t have for the last 2 occasions) I can squish it together with shape wear. And I have a LOT of shape wear. Probably more than the average woman. My mother has a shape wear fetish that I inherited. On both occasions I suffered through a tight waist cincher and both times no cinching happened. WTF? This is truly disturbing because I don’t know what is happening to me. I just came off a 21 day juice fast. I should be fine as the Board of Health. But my stomach is fighting me. I’m just at a loss…. So this is my plan…. I have 2 events coming up; a born day party and my niece’s baby shower. I BOUGHT a dress to wear to both these events. I will watch my diet for the next 2 weeks and workout a bit more. I’m going to work my mojo by finishing little Dillon’s baby quilt, and finish my curtains. I also have 1 more crochet job to get out. That should preserve my mojo until I figure this tummy thing out. I will be crushed to find out it’s because of age. Peace

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Random Build on a Wednesday

Peace Y’all,

I thought I’d type out something just to remind self to get my behind in front of the sewing machine. I’m hoping to get really random….

~ Since the sewing/computer room is so dark, I bought a floor lamp to lighten up things. It’s assembled but not used yet. I got it from Ikea on sale. But it has a funny light bulb. I sure hope that bulb lasts forever. Because I’ll probably have to buy another lamp if it goes out. Come on Ikea lamp!

~ I have decided for every 3 garments I create for myself, I’ll create one for the God.

~ The God said that he does not have a problem with the 2 of us matching… **insert sinister laugh here**

~ Do you know how hard it is to find interesting clothes for men? I peeped a bunch of runway shows and there is really nothing interesting out there. I have a shirt/jacket pattern and a pants pattern. Apparently that’s all I need. Men’s clothes are BORING!

~ I have all the fabric I need for all the projects I have planned for myself….. That’s never happened before.

~I’m sick of people asking me personal questions and for money!!!!

~ I have been procrastinating like a mug. I need to finish my black linen mourning suit and start on my Easter dress. No UFO’s in the new place.

~ Why am I making an Easter dress when I’m not a Christian and don’t celebrate Easter? I guess old habits die hard.

~ This random blogging is harder than it looked.

~ My job is really boring. And I have have to work this Friday. I shouldn't complain, since I only work 1 Friday a month....

~ Life seems like it’s taking a good turn, despite what people say. Right now I’m satisfied with what’s going on around me.

~ I need to make a trip out to some country thrift stores. They always have old patterns and crazy notions on the low/

~ I just joined Sew Weekly. I’m a joiner.

~ I hate taking out the trash……


Thursday, March 29, 2012

S2766 + Tangerine Now and Laters


I am exhausted from the New Year festivities. Within my culture we celebrate the Asiatic New Year at the spring equinox. Also, the Gods who helped the God and I move refused to take money for their aid. So we threw them a shindig this weekend as well. I am exhausted!

I did manage to finish curtains for the public rooms with the exception of the dining room. The DR is really a sun porch, but for us it’s a DR. The master bedroom and bathroom have not gotten their embellishment either. But do you know what? They will be just fine! And I got a shine on the wood floors that even the men noticed. It has gotten warm, real warm, in the “A” and I need to swap out to my warm weather clothes. So that brings me to the reason for this build…. Simplicity 2766....

I hate Simplicity patterns. I do. I have gotten to the point where I can say, I doubt I will buy any more unless the instructions are obvious. It’s not the styles that bother me but the instructions. I ALWAYS read instructions. I read them in the store when I buy new patterns. I read them while considering sewing them. I read them before I go to sleep at night. I want you to know and understand that I read the directions. Okay. So why when I follow the directions to a “T” the garment comes out muffed up? Answer me that? And…. It doesn’t happen with Vogue’s intricate hard assed patterns, or Mcalls or Butterick, or even Kwik Sew. Hell, not even with vintage patterns! Only Simplicty. I am so over them. Why did I buy it in the 1st place? IDK. It was probably recommended and/or on sale.

This garment is the foundation of my summer wardrobe. I’m calling it “The Now & Later Collection" after my favorite childhood (and adult) candy. I wanted a tangerine car coat with bracelet sleeves. I love the color, but I don’t own much tangerine/orange. I mean my Jeep is orange, but that is more of an accessory and not a garment. So I wanted a pop, and I got it with this jacket. The fabric is this luscious linen from Gail K’s. I love that store for browsing. I find her too freaking expensive. But, I hit the lottery. Not for a lot (not even enough to pay off the Jeep), but enough to afford $16/yd tangerine linen. I bought 5 yards of it. It is sooooo pretty and feels so wonderful to my skin. My pessimistic coworker saw the bag (nosy heifer). I have blogged about her before. She thinks she can sew and is an authority because she made a skirt and an apron in high school. But she does't own a machine and never has. I wasn't trying to show her the fabric. She said, "That’s pretty but I don’t see where or how you can wear that color." Whatever.

Pattern: Simplicity 2766

Description: Wardrobe: I made the F view long jacket with the short sleeves

Size: 18

Did it look like the pattern envelope when you were done sewing it? Mostly

Fabric: Tangerine Linen

Were the instructions easy to follow? Heck NO

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
I hated the instructions more than you can imagine. I started the jacket last week and got so frustrated that I had to walk away from it but I came back and rigged it to something I could wear

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made?
I extended the collar and omitted the buttons. The buttons that I fell in love with were $8/button. I wanted to hold on to my money a little longer I can always add them later if I want.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?
On both answers no. Will I wear the garment I made? Yes. It is the core of my summer wardrobe and I bought shoes to match.

I tried to smile this time. I have enough lined to either make some gloves or a skirt. Does anyone know if you can make gloves out of linen? I don't think I've ever seen any before.

Y'all like my shoes? I ADORE them!!!! I went to Macy's to purchase these shoes after seeing them online. In the store I saw beige and black versions but not the orange. The mean associate told me that they ONLY came in colors I saw. I told him I saw them online in orange and he called me a liar to my face! Seriously. I was about to snap six degrees of ghetto in the store. Instead I pulled up the shoes on my phone. the associate asked me if it was a Macy's website. Really? Style and Company is a Macy's brand and I reminded him of that. As he got nastier, I reached in my purse for my stun gun. i was taking him down. The manager heard the incident and saved him from electrical complications. She found the shoes in their computer, ordered them for me and gave me a SEVERE discount. Then she took the man aside. I'm not going back tot hat Macy's (and it wasn't even a Hood Macy's), but I got my shoes.


Monday, March 12, 2012



Y’all know I have million and 6 things to do with the new place. I need to wax the floors, make curtains, and really just clean and get things together. We are having a party in 2 weeks! On Friday, I did manage to claim my space in the combination sewing/computer room. The God has been nagging at me to get it done. He has been nagging at me like his side is already clean. But I digress.

A big problem that I have always had is I don’t have going “out” clothes. I have work clothes, I have weekend clothes, I have a few workout clothes (that is all I need), I have mourning dresses and a couple of all purpose suits. And that’s it. I don’t have going out clothes. Probably because I hardly ever go out. But I needed some. Some Earths asked me to go to a spoken word slam. I likes spoken word. And it was on a Saturday evening. I may be getting old, but that sounds like going “out” to me. So V8663 to the rescue!

I have been meaning to make an LBD for a long time. I wanted to find something that reflected me. Not too old, but not too young. Middle age is a trip. I don’t want to wear the same clothes my mother wears and I don’t want anything written on my ass. I tried at Thanksgiving, but that was a failure and a massive use of fabric.

I was in Decatur to renew my license, I decided to go by my fabric place and see what they have. Since I moved going to that fabric store is a 40 minute hike. I would prefer to find something in my new neighborhood. Y’all know how that is. Folks don’t sew anymore. It’s hard to find a grocery store in my new neighborhood. You know searching for a fabric store will yield miniscule results. So I picked up 3 yards of black knit with a light dusting of glitter on 1 side. The clerk said that it was cotton knit. My iron said otherwise.

Folks call V8663 a 3 hour dress. Well I spent 4 hours on it. You know why? I made mistakes. But not crucial ones, but mistakes none the less. (1) I could not find all my sewing stuff. My white pencil, my seam ripper (And I have 4 rippers, but couldn’t find 1. One was so new I hadn’t opened the package yet) are gone. Where? IDK. But their loss will require me to go to Hancocks or Joann’s to replace them. Because every store doesn’t just carry a white pencil. (2) I cut the back of the skirt incorrectly. That didn’t cause a huge problem because I just had to keep in mind to superimpose the pieces since I cut them backwards and it worked fine. (3) Without my white pencil it was difficult to line up the pleats on the bodice. But even after all that drama, I am still really happy and relieved that I finally have a black dress that I can wear “out” and satisfies my 3/4th requirement. I predict this dress will get lots of wear.

Pattern: V8663

Description: Ladies Dress

Size: I cut a 22

Did it look like the pattern envelope when you were done sewing it? Yup

Fabric: cotton jersey, though I suspect it is polyester

Were the instructions easy to follow? I didn’t use them. Vogue didn’t lie when they said very easy. BUT…. There should have been more direction with regard to finishing off the collar and the armscye.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? It is an age appropriate dress for a 40-something year old

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made? I lengthened the bodice 2” and I made a mistake with the back of the skirt that you can’t sea

Would you sew it again? Yes I would. If I needed to. I’m keeping the pattern because I keep all my patterns that work. But I won’t make another one of these unless something happens to this dress. I can’t see having a whole wardrobe of these.

Would you recommend it to others? Absolutely
Don't I look Happy to be going out?

Alright… Back to my curtains


Thursday, March 1, 2012

Cocoa and Puff


After finding an Easter dress in 1984, my mother became sincerely frustrated. The dress had to be altered so much that the alterations cost more than the dress (and the shoes) did new. She looked at me with a seriousness that made me doubt any duplicity in her words and said, “Until your body evens out, I’m not buying any more clothes for you.” And she meant it.

That is what started me on my sewing journey. I requested a sewing machine as an 8th grade graduation gift. I knew that I had to take up the slack in alterations or I would have nothing to wear. And high school was coming….

I call the girls Cocoa and Puff. Properly measured, I am a 40J. Think I can find that size in Macy’s? Think again. My bras are NEVER pretty and ALWAYS expensive. Half the time I cannot find the right size and have to play with sizes. And half bras are a joke. A bad joke. Think of all the styles of clothing I cannot wear. And anything that requires strap less or off the shoulder is a no no. I even have dents in my shoulders from where the straps sit. And before I get a bunch of advice, it’s too late. They are in there permanently. My boobs are heavy too. I weighed one. 1 of them is 11lbs without me leaning in on the scale. I was once excommunicated from a friend’s wedding party because my girls would not go tastefully in the bridesmaid dress the bride chose. She said she had her heart set on a certain type of dress and I since I could not accommodate her dress, I was out!

For my own bridal shower, I requested to NOT receive lingerie. But my in-laws thought they were doing something good by giving it to me anyway. In the back of my mind I know it was for their brother/son/grandson/cousin. None of the, ahem… outfits… ever got worn in the 13 years that have followed.

They have been the bane of my existence as well as a treasured resource. Yes I have to get salty with men who feel completely okay at ogling me and speaking into them but conversely, they got me out of tickets and got work signed off for me as well. I won’t have them removed. They have always been there in some way. I have never been flat chested. I have had nodules ever since I was a toddler. I blame the Similac.

Dressing the girls has always been a challenge. I keep hoping for something to happen in the retail world. I can’t be the only woman with an ample bosom. Returning to my sewing machine has also made a bit of knowledge born to me that patterns also run tight for me in booby area. Can the buxom get a break? But FBA’s and newer patterns have helped me out a great deal. I used to purchase tops in larger sizes and alter them down to fit me. Since I’m short, I have always been able to alter down a dress and insert a gusset to release the chest. The funny thing is I didn’t know what a ‘gusset’ was at the time. I have had professionals to give me advice but I am really sad to report their advice was really heartless. More…. “You should have those things removed” and not true advice. And I had to pay for a lot of that bullshit.

So if your big breasted, and clueless I will share with you what has helped me thus far. Without sending a shout out to my switchblade. And be mindful, as big as you think they are… or what you see in the mirror… They are bigger.

Things that tell you where to put your boobs are off limits. Lingerie is good for doing this. If there is a clear are designated for boobs to go, don’t buy it. Since I’m speaking on lingerie, don’t buy traditional outfits. Big boobs dangle and aren’t perky. Buy whole slips that don’t tell you where to put your boobs or separates that are like t-shirt and panties. Anything else will be highly UN-sexy.

Empire waists and tent/swing outfits make you look pregnant. Yeah they do. I used to love me some baby dolls in the 90’s with Dr Martins. Good thing slovenliness was also the rage. A lot of those African outfits are swingy or straight but definitely not form fitting. I don’t know why. I got engaged on my Bornday in November. I sang in a concert shortly thereafter where I had to where on of those African outfits. Everybody thought I was pregnant and that’s why I had gotten engaged. It is a nice commentary of today’s society that the only reason 2 folks in their 20’s who have been dating for a minute have to get married is if they get pregnant…..

Belting under your boobs because it’s the smallest part of you is salacious and should be avoided. When I do that I look like a porn queen. I wear belts at my natural waist.

Separates are really the only answer. I have gotten bigger as I have aged. But when I was thinner, I could not buy a suit. I had to buy a jacket and a skirt. Or tops and bottoms. But all separate. The only dresses I wore, I made. I could make them to fit my body. Jackets are still tricky. I cannot afford to wear a poorly made jacket. I will either look sloppy or like a sausage. Jackets should close. I think this is the reason I have moved to cardigans. And I was doing this BEFORE the 1st lady. And why does she wear them anyway? The one thing she is lacking is boobies.

As hard as this is to believe, showing neck and upper chest BUT NOT CLEAVAGE takes the attention off the girls. Big earrings go a long way to camouflage the girls.

Dark tops and lighter bottoms. Yes just the opposite of what most folks. I don’t own a white blouse since I stopped being a church usher. Seriously. I own all dark dress tops and maybe a few white t-shirts. That’s it.

If I have unavoidable cleavage, I use a scarf to throw it off.

And most importantly; I hold my head and back up proudly. I am a beautiful woman that happens to have large breasts. If you have a problem with that, get some therapy.


Tuesday, February 28, 2012

The New House!

Peace Y’all,

There has not been any sewing. But there have been plans to sew! I moved at the beginning of this month. I moved from a 5 bedroom 2.5 bath 3500 sq ft home to a 3 bedroom 3 bath 1500 sq ft home. I took stock of my life… I lived at the other address for 10 years. When I initially moved there I was married, a Christian, 30, planning a large family and had dreams of pursuing a career that I got myself into severe student loan debt to cover. 10 years later, I am 40ish, righteous, childless, widowed, and I realize that the career I prepared for, I no longer want. There was no reason to keep that house. And I’m okay with it. Life does go that way.

My new home is an older home with a lot of older (1940 compared to 1999) touches. I have hard wood floors. I have never lived in a home with hard wood floors that I knew of. My childhood home had really pretty and ornate hardwood floors. But my mother covered it with wall to wall shag carpet. I didn’t know they were underneath until she sold the house and the new owners wanted the floors uncovered and refinished. My currant floors are thirsty looking and I have no idea how to care for them. The internet is suspect in my investigations. One article says do this another says don’t do it. One product get raves in one search the next search slams it. I am at a complete loss. And my mother is no help. She feels I gave up on the other place. Why is this her business? Does she pay any of my bills? Now Cipher! – That’s “No” for the non-righteous….

Another thing about the new house is… It has a ishtload of windows in places you wouldn’t suspect. The sub-basement, the laundry room, a closet, a basement bathroom and a sun room. The rooms with windows like you would the windows open sideways and some don’t open at all and have bars on them! It’s going to be interesting getting to learn this house.

My ‘sweat shop’ will now be shared with the God’s computer workroom. He does computer stuff and carpentry. I have convinced him to leave the carpentry stuff outdoors. I don’t want that dust on my things. He could also use the sub-basement, but it’s scary and smells moldy down there. The Sub basement is big enough for you to stand, is well light, has windows and a concrete floor. But it reminds me of a place where you would keep hostages or cut up bodies in peace. The computer/sewing room is a big space. I was flirting with making it our master bedroom because it has so much space and a bathroom, but it’s cold. I can’t handle that. Even in GA.

I have been getting excited about what I will sew for spring/summer. Very excited but that is another build. What I need to sew right now, is curtains for all these doggone windows. And they need to be pretty curtains. I was thinking…shabby chic. I bought a sheet set at Dollar General that has the look I am going for…. And they were 50% off. Those will go upstairs in the boudoir, closet and bathroom. I will use the drapes from the other house for the living room and combo space. The sun room will be used as a dining room (Do you know how hard it was to find a small house with a dining room? Are dining rooms luxury rooms?) BUT…. The sun room has 3 large windows, a small window and a sliding door. The irony is, for it’s name and location, it gets very little sun! I have 3 tension rods that are less than an inch too short when fully extended (yet they are too long to use anywhere else!). ARGHH!!!!

The living room has 1 large window that has decorative, though useful bars on the inside of the house which prevent me from hanging blinds. But I do walk around half naked and I don’t want the world to see me or the flatscreen. So my 1st sewing project will be to find some opaque fabric and hang them off said bars. I will have to add tabs and Velcro to attach and close the tabs.

The second project will be curtains for the laundry room and downstairs bathroom. Not so much for privacy, but the view really sucks from those windows. It looks into the neighbor’s yard and that is one nasty looking yard! I don’t want to go crazy on fabric (my new utilities are low, but the move itself was expensive) so I will shop what’s already in my stash. While I was packing I found that I infact have a stash that I was unaware of. So they will become curtains for these “off’ rooms. I don’t want to just make panels. I want them to be pretty. But I am having a hard time finding inspiration. Don’t people use curtains anymore?

All right y’all. Wish me luck! I am very excited about this new stage in my life! Watch I’ll end up pregnant and need to move again for the room!