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Archive for the ‘Sewing’ Category

We got so much done on our day off! We got up at seven, had some doughnuts at Daylight Donuts, and then got to work. I think we worked on the house for 12-13 solid hours yesterday.  Here are the things we got done:

I had not done laundry in about 1 week.

I had not done laundry in about 1 week.

1) Laundry. About 4 or 5 loads, which still need to be folded. Nathan doesn’t know it yet, but we’re going to fold it tonight while we watch Quantum of Solace. Maybe that will make it a little more palatable.

Doesn't it look nice?

Doesn't it look nice?

2) A new shelf for my cabinet. Nathan made it for me. He even routered the edges so it would look like the other shelf. It’s so nice not to have smashed bread.

Ta Da!

Ta Da!

3) Installed light in downstairs hallway. This beast of a light fixture has been sitting in our house, taking up floor space, for a year plus. Nathan actually gets more credit on this project. Even though I took down the old fixture and installed the new box, he’s the one who patched the rather large hole I made doing that and hung up the new light. I was about ready to throw the !?#@!? light fixture on the floor and shout obscenities at it. The threaded post that was with it wasn’t long enough to catch the box. But it is done now, and doesn’t it look nice.

Before!

Before!

4) Got my next sewing project started. This actually gets lumped into the home improvement realm because it will clear up some clutter in the dining room. Buddy spilled pop into the bag trying to get some leftover supper one night. The bag is not removable, so I cut it off. I’m going to use it as a pattern to make one that is removable.

Samantha's Accessories

Samantha's Accessories

5) Odds and Ends. Obviously, I didn’t make Samantha’s accessories, but I did open the box they came in. That counts for something. It’s also a prettier picture than me mowing, raking up some twigs, watering my plants, and touching up paint. Incidentally, the oil-based Kilz over those pink dots in the bedroom worked well.

Only before picture I could find on short notice.

Only before picture I could find on short notice.

 6) I saved the best for last. I got a coat of paint on the upstairs bathroom and Nathan got the built-ins for the holes on either side of the shower. They look so good! I hope to get the built-ins primed tomorrow morning.

Looks so much better!

Looks so much better!

And mom, if you’re going to start correcting my grammar, I will be forced to start correcting your spelling. 🙂 I have to go back to work now.

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Progress

So Nathan finally made it back from Cincinatti (a day late, thank you very much), here’s what I did while he was gone:

Click to see more views!

Click to see more views!

 I love how I’m reflected in the door, it’s very CSI. I also did a little cleaning, got some painting done, mowed the yard, and cut out several projects to sew on.  The painting in the formerly blue bedroom looks pretty good, except there are a couple of small spots that will not cover. It’s several dots that come out hot pink. I’ve tried going over it a couple of times, and I’ve used latex based Kilz. If the oil-based kilz doesn’t cover it, I don’t know what I”m going to do. Paint the room pink, I guess. I started painting the upstairs bathroom this weekend. We took down the oh-so-lovely mirror and chest over the toilet. They were so disgusting! There was about an inch of dust and grime on the tops of them. 

I did find time to finish up one of the projects I cut out last week. You can read my review at pattern review if you would like. If not, here’s some pictures:

Buddy’s doing pretty good too. He’s been out chasing his tennis ball, eating greenies to help his breath, and devouring milk bones. When he’s not doing those things, he’s been hanging out on the couch. It’s almost pathetic.

Simplicity 2685 009

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So around the time I finished the coffee date dress, and before running the 1/2 marathon at OKC, and while it was still pretty cold, I was feeling pretty blah. I really didn’t feel like doing much of anything, so I really didn’t do much of anything.  But, the 1/2 marathon is done, the sun is shining (sort of) and I feel better. So I have gotten things done, I just haven’t taken the time to sit down and write about them. I have the upstairs bedroom almost completely painted. In the pictures below, you will see tile, yes tile, on our fireplace. It is finally finished! We’ve made dinner and eaten at home most evenings for the past couple of weeks. We finally eradicated our squirrels. I’ve also  bought lots of fabric online. And elsewhere. Check out the latest additions to my stash!

I saw the Halloween fabric at Cottonwood quilts and just couldn’t pass it up. I especially like the cobwebs with the scaredy cat faces inside. I really don’t have any ideas as to what I will do with it though. I am open to suggestions. The really crazy floral print I found at the Etc. Shop. It looked a lot tamer rolled up like the other two, but  I still like it. At first I thought of that anthropologie dress I like, but I think it’s too wild for that. I think I could make a pretty cute skirt out of it though.  The poplin solids were on sale at fabric.com, so I got them, and the other print that is folded up with them looked at lot prettier online. In reality, it looks like ’70s pearl snap material. And not the cool vintage ones. Just the ugly ones. Oh well.

I took pictures of the dresses I picked up today at the Goodwill sale. I could not believe that whoever got rid of the pretty dress got rid of it! It is really a lot cuter in person. It has really yellowed with age though, I don’t know how you would fix that. The others are just run of the mill 80’s prom/bridesmaid dresses. Ick.

click to go to flickr to see all goodwill dress pics

click to go to flickr to see all goodwill dress pics

 I finished the Simplicity dress I was working on, the one I had to take 5 inches of off. You can read about my problems with it at pattern review. I am going to try it again after tinkering with my pattern to see if I can get some better results. Here is the finished product, and the fabric for my next attempt:
simplicity2587 001

005

I had an aha! moment this evening about my coffee date dress. I’m kind of depressed by my stupidity. I downloaded the pattern from burda style, but forgot to change the scale from the 77% that they use for viewing to the 100% they tell you to change it to for printing. So I made my dress about 23% smaller than I should have. Ugh. I realized it tonight when I was printing off a different pattern.

And now I need to go do something productive, so I’m leaving for now.

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YAY!!!!

I do have a way to lower the feed dogs on my machine! It’s amazing what you learn when you read the sewing machine manual. I have a Bernina 801. There is a little knob on the lower right hand side of the machine, below the knob that controls the stitch length. This means that machine quilting will be so much easier. I noticed when I was reading the instructions on how to use my new hemmer foot that it mentioned what position the feed dogs should be in, which to me implied that there were different positions. And there are! Again, super excited by this new discovery. Which is good, because pretty much everything else has been a bust today. I tried to cut strips on the bias today, and learned the hard way why you don’t fold your material while you’re doing that. So I got that figured out, and got my tape and straps cut out correctly, and then realized there is a typo in the instructions on my apron pattern. The chart I looked at said 2″, but in another part of the instructions, it says 2 1/2″. That definitely makes more sense. So by that time, I had pretty much wasted all the material I had bought for that, so I went back to Wal-Mart to get more of that fabric, and of course they were out.  So, I came home and started with my second choice fabric. Finally got everything cut out, and got the shoulder straps turned inside out. Apparently, there is and easy way and a hard way to turn things right side out. And I know them both. Finally got that taken care of, so now I guess I’ll go finish my silly “1-hour” apron!

In a final note of disappointment, Lowe’s did not get our washer in, so they did not deliver our washer and dryer today. 😦 My laundry will have to wait to do itself until another day.

  • *Update 04/01/09 5:44 PM — I think the Bernina people sold me the wrong rolled hem foot for my machine. The needle strikes the foot instead of the hole in the foot. Arrgh!**

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Done!

I finally finished my Lotus Tunic.  It only took 8 days! I think the zipper and the front seams I did one day, ripped out the next, fixed, and then sewed something new up to be ripped out the next day. I think I need to alter the pattern a little bit. It looks a little too baggy in the back, the back of the neck comes  up too high, and the front doesn’t lay as flat as I would like for it to. The front would look okay if it weren’t for the belt, but the back looks awful without the belt. Oh well. For my first completed dress, I suppose it turned out okay. Part of my problem was not stay stitching the sleeve openings and the top of the front, they stretched out quite a bit. I also should not have tried it on after I got the outer layer done, that probably didn’t help. I was so excited though! I did finally learn how to put in an invisible zipper, how to make princess seams, how to face a hem, and how to slip stitch. I also learned that I have a total of four zipper feet: 2 invisible and 2 regular.  Anyhoo, here are pictures of the finished project.

I guess I at least looked like I was having a good time, since Nathan decided he wanted to sew something too. He bought duck and burlap at Wal-Mart and has been making a gilley suit.  He’s so funny sometimes.

We went to Wichita today to several thrift stores and Gander Mountain. Nathan was whining about the thrift stores, “we’re not poor, we don’t need to shop at thrift stores, etc., etc.” I finally convinced him that in order to go to Gander Mountain, we would have to go to the thrift stores first.  You know how much I love other people’s junk.  I found several things, and whole new set of shops for us to go to next time you visit. It will be so much fun! Check out what I found!

fabric-finds-0011

 

I know you are terribly jealous. I’m sorry. I’m going to use the bright green with raspberry flowers to make an apron. It’s currently a size 20W dress. I bought the towel with the “D” (I think) monogram for the trim. Isn’t it cute? Anyway, we had a good time, but now I have projects to work on, so I’ll be back later!

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I finally finished my Amy Butler Birdie Bag after 3 days of working on it.  The cutting out and interfacing took 2 evenings to do, and the sewing took me the better part of a day.  Overall, I’m pleased with how it turned out.  It looks good from the outside.  However, it wasn’t as easy as I had hoped.  After it was pleated, the main panel was still longer than the main band (I later read on somebody else’s blog that was not a problem that was unique to me), and sewing through all those layers of fabric was pretty hard. The thing that bummed me out the most is the fact that I can NOT get the “stitch in the ditch” part to fall in the ditch in both sides. If you have made this bag and have had this problem, please let me know so I don’t feel like a sewing failure 😦 However irritating those few problems were, I did finish it and it does look pretty good. I also learned a few things about my sewing machine, like where to oil it. I also thought I had totally broken my sewing machine at one point, so I loaded it up the next day and took it down to the Bernina place.  It was not stitching like it should, the bobbin thread wasn’t grabbing right.  So I lugged it down to Bernina, the lady set up my machine, rethreaded it, and it sewed like a charm.  I felt foolish, but relieved. I learned to always try rethreading before you take your machine to Bernina, how to oil my machine, and that Berninas don’t like for you to “help” feed material through them.  I used my walking foot for this project, and I must say, it is wonderful. Definitely worth the $150. So I’m glad that this project is done, time to move on to the next one. Something easy, like pajama pants. 🙂

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I finally got the heart appliqued onto my wallhanging, and I don’t guess it turned out to badly considering it was my first attempt. I’m still waiting to hear back from the quilter.

Wall Hanging Top

Wall Hanging Top

I finished painting the hall and stairway finally. I was very excited that it only needed one coat. I think it turned out well. Nathan got the tile (almost) done in the upstairs bathroom. It needs one more coat of clear coat. You can see where he missed a spot in the floor. It’s going to look pretty good once it’s done, and it saved us from having to tear out tile and retile.  I started painting the upstairs bedroom. This is the first coat and I think it’s too light. I’m going to add a some paint that’s a couple of shades darker to the next batch of paint and see what happens.

I got all of my fabric in the mail yesterday! The first three are going to become the bag that i’m going to make (see picture in last post), the small print is going to be pajama pants, and I just like the other two. Who knows what I’ll do with them. I’m going to make myself get the lights hung and plug/plate covers put on and my sewing machine moved into the green bedroom before I let myself start another project, though. I’ve had cutting mats and fabric scraps strung out all over the living room and study since I made my quilt.  I also got my books in the mail. I read all the way through SEW U and I’ve browsed through the Vogue Sewing book.  They are pretty good.

Well, I have to go clean before we go on our ski trip, so I guess I’ll go get started!

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