Week 16 – Mother’s Day – Inspired by an old family photo

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Mother’s Day- Inspired by an old family photo TAG: Family

*Please note: This post was written awhile back and I am just now sharing it with you all. Please enjoy!

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The Facts

Fabric: Mystery content fabric from stash. Unsure of original origins.

Pattern: Simplicity 2147

Year: 2011

Notions: Bias tape from stash. Unsure of original origins.

Time to complete: 20+ hours

First worn: Not yet

Wear again? Hopefully I will get a lot of wear out of this during the summer months.

Total Cost: Unsure as I am not sure when or where I got the fabrics and bias tape.

Mother’s Day was last Sunday. I celebrated by not bothering my mother. While she appreciates it when her family shows their love for her, she does not like it when we try to do it at the same time as everyone else in the area does it. So, sometime in the future, I will take her out for a nice meal that she can enjoy without having to plan a menu, shop for groceries, or clean up a kitchen afterwards.

My mom is the one who first set me on my path of learning how to sew and how to create my own clothes. It was her goal to make sure that I would be able to at least hem a pair of pants and fix a button. She has sewn for many years and while I was growing up, many of my clothes were ones that she made for me.

I am sorry to say that I do not have any of the pictures from when I was growing up. My parents are in the process of moving into a new house and the photos of me as a child are in a box somewhere, waiting to be put into a photo album. However, I can assure you that this top is one similar to one that i would have had as a child. It would probably have looked something like this:

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This is a random pattern that I found by doing an image search. This one shows the yoke front, basic tunic shape and a puffy sleeve. While I can’t confirm that this is a pattern that my mother would have used, it is similar to something that she would have made for me. I would have worn it while climbing trees or digging in the dirt. I was never really that much of a girly girl and to this day I sometimes struggle with my tomboy tendencies. I also blame my numerous Converse collection of my tomboy need for the most comfortable thing warring with my girly side for needing all the cute shoes. All the cute shoes!!

Ahem. Anyway. I am trying to use up the fabric that I have in my stash. I did not have enough of the fabric to make a tunic length shirt and have a front and back yoke. So I poked around for a bit and found this navy blue fabric that is a much darker shade of navy than I remember it being.

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In the spirit of Mother’s day, I decided to combine the two fabrics. My mom has said on many different occasions something along the lines of, “just because the pattern says to do it one way, it doesn’t mean that you have to do things the way that they tell you to.” It is a good policy to remember in the creative world, even if it makes the possibilities endless.

So that solved my fabric dilemma. It was after I decided to make this shirt that I realized that I also needed a seam binding. I excavated my crafting cave for a bit and I came up with this.

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I thought the package had been opened until I tried to get the bias tape out. It had apparently never been opened and worked wonderfully for this top. Bonus: I didn’t use it all so I have it for future projects!

I had some trouble when I was sewing the top together. The sheer fabric is prone to fraying, and the other fabric seems to want to fray as well, just not as much as the sheer. I had picked up this pattern because it seemed like a simple top that would be a good wardrobe basic. I forgot that pattern instructions are written for the level that the manufacturer assumes that the person sewing is at or near. This is a basic pattern that is meant to teach, well, basics to someone who is newer to sewing. I felt like certain things were glossed over while other things were repeated needlessly. It was definitely a good practice pattern for me as the fabric forced me to slow down and make sure I paid attention to details that I may not have otherwise paid attention to at all.

Here is the finished top from the front –

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And here it is from the back –

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I know it kind of seems boring and shapeless, but wait till you see it with a belt –

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I’m going to wear it with a some dark wash jeans and a pair of purple converse.

Happy sewing!!

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Week 12 – Mad Men Inspired

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The Facts

Fabric: socks

Pattern: self-drafted

Year: current

Notions: buttons and thread from stash

Time to complete: I think I finished this one while watching Skyfall

First worn: N/A

Wear again? N/A

Total Cost: $5 for all materials

Interesting fact: Not directly related to the week’s theme. I mean, there are several characters that could have inspired this, but not quite like how it turned out. Also, I apologize for these challenges being out of order. I am trying my best.

I  have watched and enjoyed the show Mad Men. However, I tend to binge watch shows on Netflix and Mad Men can get to be a little intense if I watch too many episodes at once. With this in mind, I tend to choose shows with a lighter hearted storyline over the darker tones of Mad Men. In fact, I initially had heard about this show because of the sewing blogs that I follow and I ended up watching it a lot because of the fashion that the characters wear. I love seeing the styles evolve as the years go by and I love the matching ability of Betty Draper as well as the plaid ensembles that Peggy wears.

So while I have seen the show and drooled over its fashions, I have neither watched any episodes recently, nor have I done any research to see what I could find as inspiration to make an outfit. On top of that, I have been making items for the show that I will be vending at on May 24. I also managed to pick up additional hours at work, so my time that I would be using to work on the sewing challenge has been sucked up by everything else that I am working on and finishing up.

On the other hand, since I have been making items, and most of them seem to involve some sort of hand sewing, I felt that I had to share some sort of blog post this week. I don’t want to look back and think that I missed a sewing challenge because I did something silly like choosing sleep over sewing. So here it is, my sewing post for this week.

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This is a view from the center front. The thing sticking up in the middle is its dorsal fin. Not visible in the picture is the tail. I do realize that it looks nothing like any shark ever.

I started working on this plush awhile back. I’m not sure what I was thinking I was making when I started, but when I saw the components together I heard a voice in my head say, “I’m a shark!” I guess this means that I am officially addicted to that webcomic that I have been reading and the next step is to make a tinfoil hat. I will spare you the emotional rollercoaster by not telling you the title of the webcomic. I know it seems cruel, but I am trying to help you. However, if you feel like you can handle the flowy capes, the science, and the city on fire, then comment on my facebook page (either Sew Late at Night or Mrs. Uncommon Geek) and I will tell you which webcomic I am talking about.

If you like my plush and want to see more of it, or some of my other creations, then come on out to Ye Olde Yellow Cabaret tomorrow, May 24 in Dayton, OH and see what monster or minion you want to take home. I will also have books, old photos and other things available for purchase. If I have some time before the show, I may even refashion a new top for the event. I hope to see you there!

Happy Sewing!