Saturday, April 30, 2011

Royal wedding

I will admit it, I got very caught up in the Royal Wedding.  I recorded every special on TV this week.  I didn't get up at 3am to watch it, but I was pretty nutso over the whole thing.  I can't really even explain why.  But I wanted to share my thoughts out on blog world since none of my girl friends cared enough to watch it with me.

The good:
Kate of course looked beautiful.  I think her dress was such a perfect choice.  It was a simple and elegant silhouette which fits her personal style.  Her lace sleeves added modesty as the occasion demanded, but it didn't look matronly.  She looked young and fresh and classic.

And it's nice to see a much more reasonable train than Diana's dress.

The Bad
I'm not a Camilla hater, really.  I think it's actually sweet that Charles has always loved her, she's obviously the love of his life, and it's sad that he couldn't marry her in the first place just because she had had "other lovers" (that's the G version they told me on E!  Code I'm pretty sure for her not being a virgin).

Her hat is pretty cute, but overall I dislike her outfit.  It doesn't look like it fits very well, and the appliqué around the hips draws the eye where it doesn't need to be drawn.

Did anybody else think this looked a little too similar to the dress she wore to her own wedding?

The Ugly
I read a lot of sewing and fashion blogs.  I've read a lot about Kate's dress, including the fact that the lace makers washed their hands every 30 minutes.  But I wonder why nobody seemed as bothered as me by Princess Eugenie and Princess Beatrice:

You can read more about this here, but what he heck were those girls thinking?  Beatrice's dress/coat is really pretty actually, the detailing by the collar is beautiful, but all anybody notices is the ridiculous hat on her head.  Even during the ceremony I could spot her from the crowd. (Side note: This is a Philip Treacy hat.  Anybody remember when he was on Project Runway?  I agreed with Laura about that episode, his hats are a bit too much for me.)

The announcer on TLC where I watched the coverage said the girls struggle with their weight and get criticized a lot for it, and as such they went on a special diet just for the wedding.  I get that, I really do.  But what I don't get is Eugenie's choice in dress.  The ribbons on the bodice kind of sausage her in.  It's not very flattering, especially knowing she's concerned about her weight.

Now I feel mean.  I think I'm just jealous that we didn't get a national holiday in the states. :)  It would've made catching up on all the TV coverage easier if I had Friday off work.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Found my mojo, lost my camera

That's right, my camera is missing again.  Sigh.  I'm sure it will turn up.

Joann had a big sale this past week, and I went on Saturday.  Being there, surrounded by fabric and other sewists, got me back into the sewing mood.  One lady even asked me about how to sew knits and I had to hold back from being too nerdy as I described why you need a ball point needle.  Anyways, my point is I got reinspired and in the mood!

So what am I working on?  Simplicity 2599, in the version the model is wearing with that cute bow.

I couldn't find a picture of the fabric online, but I'm using a really cute fabric I got on clearance at Joann a month or so ago, but I did see it again yesterday.  It's a "simply silky print" made for Joann, basically a polyester shiny material.  It's a medium purple with big pink polka dots.  I think it's going to look super cute!  But I'm having some fit issues.  I think I have a small back.  Whenever I sew shirts, they're too big in the back.  I went down a size from what Simplicity suggested, and I still took another inch off each side and the back, and I think I'm going to take another inch off the back.  But now I know that I need to go 2 sizes down in Simplicity patterns.  So far, I've got the basic shell down save one arm lining, and then I need to do the neck ruffle, the bow, and the bottom hem. And of course take another inch off the back.

So what did I buy at Joann?
A ton of patterns, which I'm really excited about!  But I'm not going to post them all, so you'll have to wait and see once I make them.

What else?
A teal, lightweight denim, with which I plan to make this pencil skirt:

And this beautiful, bottomweight cotton fabric by lisette:

(By the way, this fabric is so not me.  I am not a blue person at all.  But I fell in love with this, so why fight it?)

With which I plan to make this:
Side note about this pattern: I think maybe people are turned off because it says "learn to sew" because there are no projects on  It caught my eye as part of the display when Simplicity patterns were on sale and I loved the style.  And it doesn't take a lot of fabric, just 2 yards of 60" fabric for the long skirt

Now off to get started on these bad boys!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Lost my mojo

Hey all,

Since the debacle with my stupid sewing machine skipping stupid stitches on my stupid fabric (can you tell my true feelings?) I've lost my sewing mojo.  I haven't sewn all week. To be fair, I think I worked over 50 hours this week, and having just returned from Spring Break my energy level was not up to it's usual norm. I started feeling a little guilty for not sewing, but then I realized I'm not going to force myself. I want it to be a hobby and not a chore.  I'm sure I'll cut into something this week.

In other exciting sewing news, McCalls and Vogue patterns are on sale at Joann this week.  They haven't been on sale for a few months, so I have a big wishlist piled up.  But at 99 cents each, I can afford to get a lot.  :)

So what have I been doing in my crafting-less week?

  • I'm in week 3 of P90x, and working out 6 days a week takes a lot of time!  I also hope to lose a couple inches doing the program, which makes me a little hesitant to sew.  I always gain weight below the belt, so tops should be fine, but I want to make this Cynthia Rowley dress for my school's Spring Gala fundraiser May 21st.  Unfortunately, this dress has a side zipper, making alterations more difficult if I do lose weight.  So although I feel a time crunch, I'm hesitant to start in.
  • I went out for a coworker's birthday Saturday night
  • I spent the day Saturday shopping with my mom.  I got 8 shirts and a dress for $90.  Am I a bargain shopper or what?  I haven't bought that much stuff at once since like high school.  It was very satisfying, I love everything that I bought and now that I can sew, I know that I got things made of nice fabric.  Gary always throws a fit when I buy a lot of stuff, not because of the money but because our closet space is limited.  So in a gesture of peace, I filled a BIG bag of old clothes to take to the thrift store.
  • Gary and I got hooked on TLC's new show, Extreme Couponing.  Some people on that show obviously have control issues, and we do NOT want to be extreme, crazy coupon people, but we realized we should make a bigger effort and bought a Sunday newspaper just for the coupons.
  • Gary made a delicious dinner of lamb shoulder while I panted away to P90x.
  • And my favorite part of this past week.... Gary and I spent like 3 hours on the couch just snuggling and watching Arrested Development on Netflix.  We all need our downtime, right?
Hope you all had a wonderful weekend!

Sunday, April 3, 2011


I'm ready to throw my sewing machine out the window!!

I'm trying to make a simple little racer back knit dress, Simplicity 2443.  The pattern seems easy enough, and everyone's projects came out really cute.

However, I am having a hell of a time sewing this damn thing!

I have some sort of mystery knit fabric.  It was one of those things that I thought was something else when I bought it online, but it's actually a knit.  I think it's a rib knit because it looks the same on both sides, but it's much lighter and stretchier than a double knit.  I also believe it's polyester.  And my sewing machine hates it.

My problem is that my machine is skipping stitches. I have done everything I can think of.  I tried 3 different sizes of ball point needles, I tried a zig zag stitch, and I tried a long straight stitch as recommended here. I give up.  I was seriously ready to throw a hissy fit, so I put it away for the night and went to bed.  I thought maybe if I slept on it, things would improve. They did not.

So where to go from here?

  1.  I'm going to put back in my universal needle and sew some scrap cotton, just to make sure that my machine isn't broken.
  2. If my machine isn't broken, then I'm going to get a scrap of another, higher quality knit fabric (I have some 100% cotton jersey that'd be perfect) and see if I have any success there.  I've sewn knits in the past, I think it's just this fabric that's repulsing my machine.

Has anyone else had this problem where their machine hates a fabric?  What'd you do?