Saturday, November 24, 2007

TShirts and Thanksgiving

...And not necessarily in that order. Wow, I sure love these four day weekends. Need to have more of them. I've been getting a TON of sewing done.

On PatternReview there are a lot of women who have made the Ottobre 2-2006 t shirts. They've been raving about them, so I bought the magazine and started in. Now, mind you, I already have a TNT tshirt (Vogue 8151). In fact, I have two TNT tshirts (and New Look 6730), but I have minor problems with them both.

The Vogue has a bust dart (not always fun to put in a knit, but it's doable) and the New Look has a center back seam (which can be eliminated) for shaping. I love them both. But I would like to combine them and have no back seam and no bust dart. Sounds easy, but it isn't always. Besides, again, others have raved about this Ottobre top, so here is my first one below:

That fabric was $2/yd at StuffMart. The end of the bolt said "polyester" but it's positively a cotton interlock. Not the greatest of recovery, but very nice and I love the color. It's a pretty deep burgundy with black dots. Not bad for a $4 shirt. But as you can see on Annie, the front is a bit too baggy. I don't have a tummy (thank you, Lord) and so I don't need that fullness there.

The next top is a nice crinkle knit I got from At the same time, I bought a ribbing knit to make a top out of, but discovered the colors are a perfect match, so I used it to bind the neckline. I've never done this technique, so it was strange. I double folded the binding as if I were applying it in the flat and stitched it to the right side. Then I folded it all the way under and stitched in the ditch on the front. It gives it a bit of a rolled binding look. I'm happy with it. But again, as you can see the front is baggy. And I cut the pattern down on the side seams.

So, here's my question for you out there who are reading this and can offer advice: Can't I just lay my front piece on the fold and pivot it out at the bottom so that the bottom hem of the center front lies an inch or so beyond the fold? (Did that make sense?)

This pattern is almost identical to the Vogue and New Look fronts. I can't understand where that extra fabric is coming from. I can't simply take it in more on the side seams, can I? Can't I remove the extra from the center front? The width at the neckline and chest is perfect.

Also...I hate the sleeves on both the Vogue and NL. The shoulder cap is so severe I have to sew basting stitches to ease it on the garment. I hate that. The Ottobre did NOT require that and for that reason I loved that pattern. I just need to figure out the bulk in the front.

Also, on that awesome website are online classes to take. Now, I've been a member for almost 3 years and have NEVER signed up for a class and have been wanting to. So...last night I signed up for the "Build a Better TShirt" class. I got a discount because I'm a member and it starts January 7 (right before my bday). I'm excited about learning how to...obviously...make a better tshirt.

So, for the last picture, I used TNT Vogue 8151 with the dart. I bought this fabric from Gorgeous Things and have wanted to sew it up since I bought it but was afraid. I didn't know what pattern to use, etc. I'm not very stylish, so I wasn't going to make a tunic top. I finally decided to just make a nice shell for work.

As you can see, I haven't sewn the side seams yet. I want to make this a 3/4 sleeve, too, like the blue one above. (The white turtleneck in the picture on Annie is her body cover) Because I used the Vogue pattern, this one won't have any bulk at the front. It does have bust darts, but it's a nice knit and will be ok.

I have also been sewing for Cindy of the quilt shop. I'll show it to you tomorrow.

Oh yes, before I forget. Thanksgiving. I found a few hours out of my day Thursday to head to the kitchen and whip up a small turkey dinner. Small, because there's just two of us here and it was a Butterball rolled turkey chest (we don't use the "b" word) roast. Of course, with all the trimmings. Delicious.

Have a Blessed weekend all!

Friday, November 16, 2007

Cappuccino Quilt

During our "quilter's retreat" last weekend, I had the opportunity to buy some new fabric. I started out with 14 fat quarters of Moda's "Chez Moi" line. They are gorgeous chocolate browns and raspberry colors. At this point, I had all this great fabric, but what to do with it? Charisma reminded me of the Cappuccino quilt I made my son for his high school graduation. So, I supplemented this line of fabric with about 6 other quarter yard cuts. And then I began.

Below are 12 of the 15 large squares all done on my design wall.

And here are the two sets of 24 smaller blocks done on my design wall (total of 48). These are done but for adding a 1 inch border to each of the 48 blocks. I've been doing that the past few days. As of last night, I had five left to border.

And here's a picture of the blocks on my wall as laid out via the pattern guide. As I finish the smaller blocks, I put them on the wall where I want them. When I'm done, I'll stand back and see what needs to be rearranged. But otherwise, right now, I like the arrangment.

When I originally bought the fat quarters (and didn't have this pattern in mind), I knew I'd need some border fabric, so I bought a yard of the purple tone-on-tone and two yards of one of the nice raspberry prints. And this quilt doesn't call for borders. So....I'll see when I'm done. I may use the print for a border and the purple for binding.

Keep sewing everyone. Have a great weekend, too!

Monday, November 12, 2007

Heart Bargello, Part 3

Ok, here is more of my heart bargello still in my sewing room. Remember, I was going to show a few friends how to sew theirs, so I sewed about 3/4 of my quilt.

And here is another close up of my bargello with the sheep border on it. I collect sheep and selected this fabric as my border.

And at the sewing weekend we just had (Friday and Saturday), I was able to finish it. Below is a shot of it, but it's pinned up against another quilt that's hanging on the wall. So, all that blue, etc is not a part of my quilt.

I am so glad it's done. Charisma finished her heart bargello, but still has 7 borders to add to it. I only wanted two borders because mine is going to be a wallhanging and my walls aren't big enough for it if I were to add all the borders on. So, I finished at two borders.

Another gal, Patty, spent alot of our weekend sewing up her panels and then Saturday night she started in on the quilt. I believe she got about 5-6 strips done before we had to head for home.

We started sewing (or I did) at 9am on Friday morning and I didn't close up the shop until 1:30am Saturday. Then I was back down at 9am Saturday and we finished up at 9:30 pm. We all decided we'd leave the shop cleaner than when we found it, so two gals scrubbed the bathrooms and emptied the wastebaskets and I vaccumed the place. Patty washed down the tables, etc. All in all, we had a GREAT TIME. We ordered pizza Friday for dinner and mexican food Saturday night. In between we had a whole table with food on it.

I got 5 projects donem but then again, most of my heart bargello (which is why we were getting together) was done before I got there and I even started another quilt that I'll show you another time. Phew. A special "thank you" to Cindi for letting us have her classroom to party.

Enjoy your Veteran's Day. And remember our servicemen serving our country. Dad, I'm thinking of you today!

Friday, November 9, 2007

Playing Catch Up...and other ramblings

Wow, it's already the 9th of November and I haven't blogged this month at all! Guess I've just been too busy with sewing to actually sit down and talk about sewing.

As mentioned in my previous post, today is the day us gals have our sewing "party". We're meeting at my local quilt shop (thanks to the generous owner, Cindi) and we're going to sew for the next two days until we drop. The shop will be open it's regular hours, but we'll be in the back classroom sewing away. When the shop closes, we'll still be back there sewing. Psstt....I've got a key! Cindi said we can stay as late as we like. In fact, I'm going to get there this morning before they open and begin setting up. Others will arrive throughout the day. We've invited eight, but it looks like we're only going to be six. Which is fine. One gal will join us just for a few hours tonight and I'm looking forward to getting to know her. She's a friend of Charisma's.

So, the next time I post, you'll see pictures of our sewing. I'm going to be helping two of the gals sew up their heart bargellos and I actually am taking along about 5 projects. First is my heart bargello, but I doubt I'll get a chance to work on it. Then I've got some quilt blocks labeled and all ready to sew together. Next, there's a casserole carrier for Cindi. Then a pillow sham for a friend's daughter's quilt that was finished earlier this week. My friend, Sheila, is going to help me do this pillowsham "crumb" style. And Sheila and I have a huge quilt to do for the local Rotary club raffle. It's all two inch squares and two inch half square triangles. I have my half of the squares done and Sheila's going to be sewing up her "thangles" today. Each blocks consists of 64 squares and there's 20 blocks in the entire quilt. It's all scraps, too! Gotta love it. Again, I'll post pictures tomorrow.

Right now, I'm off and running to the quilt shop and it's only 7am! Talk at you later. Take care everyone.