Saturday, October 29, 2011

Got a job!

I got a job!  Yahoo!

I've been a teacher the last 3 years, and in a big political/personal showdown, I ended up losing my job at the end of June.  I applied to teaching jobs over the summer, but obviously didn't get anything.  So I was just collecting unemployment and looking into switching careers and had even taken steps to going back to school in January.  Then on Monday afternoon I got a phone call and I've been swept up in the whirlwind all week.  I'm teaching 5th grade for San Diego Unified.  The classes were overfilled so they're splitting them up and giving me the overflow and I start with kids on Monday.

At my last job, I had a really difficult time maintaining a work/personal balance and I felt like work sucked my life away.  Coming home and sewing or knitting was my therapy.  This week I admit that I've been very unbalanced on the side of work, but I'm also trying to learn a whole new system, get officially hired, and be all set up for kids on Monday so I'm giving myself a pass for the first month or so.

So that's my story on why I haven't done much sewing!  I started a pair of pants last weekend, but haven't touched them all week.  I started McCalls 6403 in View E, the wide legged loose fitting pants.

I started out with the intention to make the shorts in View D, but I had the fabric and got excited and there you have it!  I've never made a fly before, and I swear it took me like 2 hours of watching you tube videos repeatedly and ripping out and trying again, but now that I've done it before I think it'd be easier the second time around.  This video was extremely useful by the way for anyone trying to sew a front fly zipper.  Despite doing a tissue fitting, this is a bit big so I need to shave off the sides, attach the waist band, and hem up the bottom.  Hopefully I'll get to it this weekend!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Little Bow Peep

This is my final product:
And incidentally the only normal picture

This is what I was going for:

This is the story behind it all:
I always liked this Anthropologie top.  But I also believe it was priced around the $100 mark.  I thought about copying it, but I had never done that before, so I let it sit in my inspiration folder.

I was looking at Pattern Review for reviews of Simplicity 2599 and came across this tutorial.  The ladies at Presserfoot had already written a tutorial for how to make a Shelby-like top.

So I pullled out some cute cotton from my stash...

And got to work!

Now, you would think that having this tutorial readily available, mine would come out darn close.  And I'd have to agree with you.  But this is what I did:

Skim tutorial... skim... okay, cut a piece about that shape... gather here... skim, skim skim.  Got it!

Do you understand now why mine didn't come out like the tutorial?

My collar piece was much larger than the one on the Anthropologie top, but I decided I liked it.  Because the collar was so large, I left off the gathers on the sleeves.  I wish I had made the ties slightly longer, but it's not worth taking it apart in my opinion.

The thing I am most proud of is the fit on this top.  I had made this before, and it's really big in the back.  As I was cutting this one, I realized it's because I omitted the back seam without accounting for the seam allowances.  Oops.  This means I have an extra 1.25 inches in the back of the first one I made, which is why it's so big.

So this time I cut a size 12, graded out to a 16 in the hips.  I did a tissue fitting and brought the seams in slightly.  I omitted the back seam and took out the 5/8 seam allowance on each side.  I also tried it on pinned together before sewing it and made some slight adjustments, but overall I was really happy.

The front and the back pieces were the only pattern pieces I used from the Simplicity pattern.  The collar piece, the ties, and the bias binding I measured and made myself.

Even though it's not exactly what I had in mind when I started this project, I'm very happy with the end result.

As an end of post treat, here's a mini-montage of pictures from Gary trying to coach me in modeling:

Steph, look away like you're thinking.  Why are your arms just dangling there?!?

Try whipping your hair....

Sorry, I took the picture too fast.  Try again!

 Not enough hair.  Try again!  Be a model!

There you go, that's modeling!
Uh... Gary... you know that I'm trying to show off my shirt right?  This isn't  a Pantene commercial.

PS! I forgot to mention that my post on Butterick 4989 is going to be featured on Butterick's facebook page. I feel famous!