Completed: A Quilt For Buddy

When the Crazy Dog Lady Sewing Challenge was announced, I knew I was in.  I wanted to make something for Buddy, but I wasn’t sure what.  He already has a couple of jackets I made for him, and he doesn’t need another one.   Then one Saturday afternoon, while I was cleaning out my scrap bin, it occurred to me to make him a quilt.
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See, Buddy is the kind of dog that can’t have a thick fluffy bed.  He shreds them.  Every. Time.  So a blanket or towel usually serves as his bed.  (He also has a cot that he likes and can’t destroy.)  So I thought a small quilt would be nice for him, practical, and would get rid of my scraps.

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Although calling this a quilt is a pretty generous description.  Both the front and back are just strips of scraps sewn together.  Even the batting is scrap, which I pieced together with a zig zag stitch.  I tried some free motion quilting, but it didn’t go well, so I sewed simple vertical lines.  And instead of binding it, I serged the edges.  I know, totally not good.  And totally lazy. But it’s a dog quilt — that may or may not get chewed up.  So, I decided serged edges would do.

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The good news, Buddy likes it, and hasn’t tried to tear it apart yet!  (So maybe one day I will go back and bind those edges for him after all. :) )
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Completed: Polka Dot January Dress

Thanks to daylight savings time, I now get home from work before dark, which makes taking pics so much easier.  So, here it is mid-March, and I’m finally showing you a dress I made in January for the “Polka Dot January” theme I hosted over on the Sewcialists blog.

Polka dot dress

I love polka dots.  Always have.  I can’t image ever tiring of them, to be honest.  Although I do try to restrain myself and resist the temptation to make everything spotted.  I was looking through some old family pictures, and noticed that I come from a line of polka dot wearing ladies.

Here’s me and my great-grandma in the late ’70s.  I think a polka dot shirt dress is pretty timeless, and it could be fun to recreate this dress with shorter sleeves, a shorter hem, and a smaller collar (or in other words McCall 6696, ha).

Polka Dot Ladies

And here’s my grandparents.  Grandma was rocking the polka dot jumpsuit.  Polka dots feel one part classic and one part happy to me, and that’s the feeling I get from this picture.  Classy and fun – which was totally my grandma.  I recently picked up a similar blue polka dot fabric, not sure what it will become though.

Polka Dot Ladies

Anyway, back to my dress . . . . this project started with the fabric, which is a rayon challis. Since I know the the Emery pattern works well with challis, I went ahead and made another Emery.  (No apologies, I love this pattern.)

Polka dot dress

Polka dot dress

To mix things up a little, I hacked the bodice to add an inset waist (using this method).  I added a light interfacing to the waistband piece, and it works nicely.  Unfortunately, I didn’t pay attention to pattern matching, so the top of the waistband certainly could look better. However, I like that this gives the dress a little more waist definition, without needing a belt.

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The rest of the dress is sewn pretty much exactly the same as my prior Emery dresses, so I’ll save you the boring details.  ;)

The time change has also motivated me to get back to sewing in the evenings, which I haven’t done in a while.  So hopefully that will result in more finished projects to share soon!

Completed: Marianne Dress

As you well know by now, I love the Emery dress by Christine Haynes.  So when Christine released her newest pattern, the Marianne dress, late last year, I scooped it up. Here’s my version.

Marianne

Marianne is designed for knit fabrics, and has a loose fit, and casual vibe.  I paired it with leggings, because it kind of feels more like a long tunic than a dress to me.  This isn’t a dress that I can wear to the office (except on the rare casual day), but I think it will be good for weekend wear, or traveling.

Marianne

I didn’t make a test version.  I just picked my size based on my upper bust measurement, and then graded out a size at the hip.  I think it fits reasonably well, although I do have some pooling going on at my low back.  A sway back adjustment is in order if I make this again.

Marianne

I did make a slight change to the neckline.  As drafted, I found it was a little too high for my liking. I realized this mid-construction.  So, I very unscientifically put my dress on, and drew a new neckline with chalk.  (I think I lowered it maybe 1.5 inches.)  Because this made the neckline longer, I had to recut a new (longer) neckband piece.  I determined how long it should be using the method shown in this video.

Marianne

I also stitched around the neck with my twin needle.

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The main striped fabric is a cotton/lycra knit that I purchased at The Fabric Store, in L.A.  I bought this with the intent to make a tee shirt, so I only had one yard.  Thankfully the fabric was really wide, and I was able to get all my pattern pieces to fit.  The contrast is a bit of left over ponte.  I knew it was a risk to mix the two fabrics, but I think it turned out fine.  The only thing I don’t like is that the cuffs are a bit thick, compared to the sleeve.

Marianne

Speaking of cuffs, I didn’t have any buttons that matched, so I just left them off.  I kind of like it this way.  But I may go back and add them later.

Here’s a couple flat shots.
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Bottom line?  I like this dress.  It’s nice.  But I’m not like, ‘in love’ with it on me, if that makes sense.  However, it’s really comfy, and comfy is always a winner in my book, so I still see it getting plenty of wear (in fact, I’ve worn it twice already).  :)  If you’re just getting into sewing knits, I think this would be a great first project.  The pattern is easy to assemble, and the instructions are clear and easy to follow.  So Marianne gets a thumbs up, even though it hasn’t knocked Emery out of her top spot.  ;)

Marianne

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Finally, a couple of unrelated notes.  First, I recently re-organized my project pages, so that they are hopefully easier to navigate.  Sewing projects are now organized by pattern company.  Check out the sewing archive here, and knitting archive here. (Permanent links to the pages are at the top of my blog header.)

Second, on the topic of affiliate links, reviews, etc.: If you’ve ever wondered, or cared, I don’t use affiliate links. If I’ve added a link to something, it’s just because I thought it would be helpful for my readers (or me) as a reference.  Also, in the event I do a review or have some sponor-y type thing, I’ll let you know, k. ;)

Completed: Another McCall 2401

I’ve been fighting what feels like a never-ending cold for the past few weeks, so I haven’t sewn a stitch in a while.  (On the upside, my knitting time has increased. :) )  It works out though since I’ve got a backlog of finished garments.  Here’s another dress that I sewed last month.  Right after I finished my last McCall 2401, I decided to cut another one.  I was curious if it would work in a knit, so I pulled out some black ponte from my stash.

McCall 2401

On this version, I dropped the neckline a little bit, and omitted the back zipper.

McCall 2401

As you can see below, my sleeves are still not sitting right. I tried doing a forward shoulder adjustment, but I haven’t got it quite right yet.  I need to go do some more research.  Does anyone have any tips for this type of alteration?

McCall 2401

The insides of this one are really boring.  I used my serger to make things neat, although with this fabric I really didn’t have to, since ponte doesn’t unravel or fray.

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mccall 2401

I sewed a back kick pleat.  Now that I think about it though, I could have skipped that too, given the stretch factor.

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mccall 2401

Overall, I like this version, but the dress is a little too big.  I didn’t size down when I cut it out, and I suppose I should have.  Next time.  Nevertheless, the dress is really comfortable as is, and a cardigan or jacket can always cover up the wrinkles around the shoulders.

McCall 2401