Thursday, October 31, 2013

Costumes of years past

I find it hard to believe that after all these years of making Halloween costumes for my kids, after sweating the details and driving everyone crazy, that I cannot find a million photos of them in the costumes.

Not even the truck costume? Nooooooo!

Blondini made these himself

Robin Hood and Brown Ninja 2006

Homemade Owl (oh good lord, that was version 2, after the year before was less of an owl than a pile)

More Robin Hood

The family bee! Inherited, remodeled, would have taken less time to just make from scratch.

And me, as the Pope. Yes, I bought the miter. This costume is going to another party at the Episcopalian church this evening.

In more recent years, Blondini desperately needed to be a character from Naruto. Hours of sewing hour of wear?

Though I have made some sewing pals in the hunt for the details. Hey, C-Gal! Recognize the fabric?

And last year, the infamous white hoodie of Assassins Creed. As mentioned in other places, these are supposed to be dirtier, but not really dirty.  This link to a hoodie pattern is pretty dang wonderful

This evening, Blondini has a rehearsal for a show until 9pm, so the shame of his purchase of a military vest will not be seen in the neighborhood this year. Thing One is handing out candy with his galpal at our house again, and I am wearing the Left Hand of Doom (Hellboy) as the official Greeter.

Now all I need to do is find it.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Choir dress hemming and depuffing 2013

It's October, so it must be girl choir dress mend and hem time!

This year I have 33 or so (might be a few more), about a third done.
And now - taking the stand up puff out of the sleeves of the extra dresses. Top photo shows left puffy sleeve head and right depuffed sleeve head.

And this is the new sleeve pattern (traced onto flimsy off of model sleeve still on dress). Yes, about two inches off the top and sides. Whoa! Eighties Puff!

I had an intense learning curve on these last year, and thank heavens I left big stitching and evened out hems for myself this year. MUCH smarter the second time around.

And who says we do not learn from experience?

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Sewing Machine Orchestra

While I debate taking new photos of the new dress pattern, and hem forty choir dresses, I give you a fine example of putting Singer Featherlights to work in a new setting.

(blogger doesn't like vimeo today, thus link to vid, not photo link to vid)

I am an old hand at yer post modern misuse of gadgets, but this is not to everyone's taste.  You can always turn off the sound and just enjoy the threadless action. 

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Armadillo Sewalong

I have really enjoyed reading the sew-alongs for folks' projects and patterns. It seems to me that I should give proper due to the Armadillo bag. It's one thing for someone to tell you how a bag goes together, and expect you to buy the pattern. It's another to actually SHOW you.

Subtle plug for MightyO Donuts and Dr Who. Not my bottle of wine, tho.
It does hold a ton, and takes about a yard of 44" wide fabric (a yard and a half if you want the pattern to run up and down, but you can make two). Made of thin, rip-stop or the like, it can do it's duty and roll up like a pro. Or just make up out of whatever you have on hand, and have another tote to go. I've balanced the handles and the bottom seams so it carries the weight in the bag evenly, and the straps are long enough to go over your shoulder (but not so long it drags when shorty me carries it by hand).

Nasty animal print silky will find its purpose

I trimmed away the seam allowance for cutting on the fold

Cutting out pattern, leave piece between straps as one piece
Clip to star in corner

Crosswise layout is cut all in one piece

Sew up side seams

Sew to the end of the side seam

Flip over

Coverstitch down seam you just sewed

Sew straps together (NOT front to back)

Fold over raw edges and stitch em down

Some times a clip helps to keep it folded over

Stay stitch at corners

Clip side seam to reduce bulk when you turn and sew it

More corner coverstitch action shots!

Use care at top of handle; fold over the seam and sew on over!

Reinforce at corners with stay tape or scraps (you could make em in contrast and cute)

Open bag out with side seam at center

Pin em out and sew em down!

Stitch and coverstitch side bottom seams

Or you could do a fancy french seam. 

Seam with wrong sides together

Trim seam down, turn inside out

Stitch close to first seam

More Dr Who Magazine in background.....

Trim off the thready excess

Hold up by handle

Fold it over, matching seams
Pin in place

You want to sew two inches from the seam in both directions: 4 inches total folded and sewn shut

To check how big the storage pocket needs to be, do a trial fold up. I'm using the portion from between the straps to make the pocket

Wrap fabric around to see how big it needs to be. When you're stuffing this back in the pocket, you will need more room than you think you will.

That's about right

Pocket in progress; folded and stitched edges before sides

Flap to front, pin to edge between straps

FOLDING! Lay it out  flat with side seams center and bottom folded in to itself

Fold straps down

Fold sides in (see the storage pocket is flipped out)

Roll it up towards pocket

Smoosh and roll to center


Pull over. Should have made this pocket bigger!

See! It goes in!