Wednesday, October 29, 2008

What goes around comes around...

Recently a won a Patrones magazine in a giveaway organised by Christina of Assorted Notions
In the spirit of this generosity I am having a giveaway of the July issue of Burda wof.
This is a great issue and has lots of lovely summer items such as this wrap skirt ( I have a lovely brown/cream linen lined up to make this one)...

For those who need dress-ups there is this...

And this great little summer skirt with top stitching detail...

In the Plus size section I love this swirly skirt...

Now I know there are some of you who read this blog who are already Burda aficionados, but for those who haven't tried it yet this is a great opportunity to try this magazine.
I will post the magazine anywhere in the world and all you need to do to get you name in the draw is leave a comment on your favorite item in your wardrobe at the moment and did you make it or is it RTW by Wednesday 5th November.
I don't get heaps of comments so please join in so that I can pass this magazine on and the joy of winning something!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

McCalls 5576

I have finished McCalls 5576 in View A. I was a bit ambivalent while I was making this dress. I love the fabric which is a Michael Miller Cotton called 'Dumb Dot'. It is a beautiful quality cotton and I never realised but if you use a good quality cotton with a high thread count it doesn't crush so much or need so much ironing. I will certainly be keeping an eye out for more fabrics like this as they wear so well in our Australian summer.
I had to take the sides in by 1.5 cm (5/8") on each side. It just looked like a 'house dress' otherwise. There is heaps of ease in the dress (well it is described as 'loose' but it was too loose for my taste).
If I make this again I will make an adjustment for sway back. You can see the creases reaching from my waist. You can also see by the back shot that I can't really go down a size as I need the width across the shoulders.

The sleeves are lined and I found that a great way to make them. The finish is very neat as there is no edge finish showing on the sleeve. It also makes them very 'pouffy'. If you had a softer fabric this would also be good, but not so necessary in this cotton.
I wore it out for the first time on Sunday afternoon when I was spending some time with the girls. I am showing this photo as I want to show the cute shoes I wore with it. I am looking for a yellow bracelet to complete the look, but have had no luck so far. I wish I had thought of that when we did our road trip down the hill the other day. There was heaps of bracelets at the Craft & Quilt Fair. (The shoes are yellow btw, it is not so clear in theis photo.)
After wearing the dress (and getting some lovely feedback form my mates) I do like it more. When you have problems with the fit I think it can put you off an outfit but I believe if I wear it as soon as I can, I usually overcome the doubts.
Yesterday I had a free afternoon (after rounding up the dust buffalo in the house). I started on New Look 6807 in View B. I thought it would be an instant gratification type of thing but did not get it finished. I ended up having to hand sew the neck edge after a disastrous attempt at doing it by machine. It looks much better now but took a while so I still have the hem to go. It is a bit bland in the off-white jersey I choose but I can picture it with some chocolate brown linen pants I am making soon. Hopefully I will have it finished by the next post.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Renovation success

I have spent this week-end making over some clothes. Caity suggested fixing this skirt and shortening it and was right on the mark!
I was getting ready to move it out of the wardrobe as it was driving me insane as it had a wide turn-over band of jersey to hold the skirt up and it was always slip, sliding away. It's not a good look to always being hitching your skirt up! It was also too long to be truly flattering. As it was a slippery black jersey it was a real pain to work with, so the top band isn't as tidy as I would have liked, but I would always wear a top over it anyway. However the double needle stitching on the hem came out beautifully. I had a new twin needle which was narrower than previous ones so that could be the trick!
However I had two different brands of black thread going through the needles and you can see a difference when you look closely. I will have to remember to buy two rolls the same or put some on a bobbin next time.

I also dug out a black long dress that I have worked out is 12 years old. I have worn it once as a long dress. I have been hanging on to it for all these years as I really love it. However I had two problems with it -
(1) it was long and there was never any occasions to wear it and
(2) it hasn't fit me for ages!
Well I have been working hard at the gym and following a plan of using Musashi products and when Caity was over I tried it on. Viola the zip was done up and I didn't look like a sausage trying to escape from its casing (as I did a few months ago when I last tried it on!) Caity marked the hem for me and I fixed it yesterday and wore it to dinner to celebrate our 20th wedding anniversary!

Here is the care label in the dress. This really does date it as you never see clothes with a 'Made in Australia' label anymore...

We had a lovely dinner out and I am considering getting out my wedding dress to see what shape it is in and to see if I am brave enough to try it on agian after 20 years!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Qld Quilt Show

The girl's and I - Caity and Vicki all got up at sparrow's f**t yesterday to head down the hill to Brisvegas to attend the Qld Quilters Quilt Show. The Toowoomba Quilters Club raffle quilt (coordinated by moi and made by lots of members) had won a prize so it was with real delight that we attended the presentation. The quilt got third in the Collaborative Section and I received a parcel of Leutneaggers fabrics and other goodies and a voucher for Be Be Bold.
Here is the quilt - it was beautifully displayed at the show.
This is the parcel of goodies I received. This will all go back to the Club, probably to be used as a raffle prize.
The only annoyance was that I didn't realise the voucher was part of the prize until I was at home again. This was a shame as I could have used it at at their stand at the show. Now I will have to mail order as the shop is located at Lismore.

We had a great time shopping after viewing the quilt show. This is my booty-
I also ordered a magnifying glass for my Bernina machine and as they didn't have any at the stand they said they would mail it - well it arrived today at 11am - that must be a record for prompt service!

After lunch, we thought we should take advantage of being in the big smoke and went into the city to go shopping. I scored a MAC lippie and a big bling ring! We had heaps of fun trying on hats (as it is spring carnival racing season here at the moment and we are considering going to a Melbourne Cup function).

Then we still managed to make our way into the Fabric Barn on the way home and I scored a beautiful black jersey with the chain print and a cotton/spandex which is camel coloured with a stripe in it - that one is also in he photo above under the lippie and ring.

We had a great day but I think I really need to stay out of the fabric shops for awhile now and just get to my sewing machine. I did finish a dress today - piccies to come soon.

And for those interested I have done my review on the Silk dress McCall's 5039.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Silk dress preview

Here is the photo of the silk dress, finally done, review for to follow:

Ps - I had a spray of feathers in my hair, the white flowers were not in my hair - they were in the May Bush in the back ground!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Silk dress update

I have been working on a silk dress to (hopefully) wear to the races this week-end. I have a beautiful Silk Georgette and I am making Mccalls 5039. As it is such a light fabric I am making a silk slip from NL 6244. I have finished the slip up to the stage of hemming and permanently attaching the straps. It sewed together quite well. I am stretching myself as I am using seam finishing techniques such as french seams, etc. The dress body is together (including an invisible zip) but I have to put in the sleeves and finish the neckline ruffle. The instructions for the neckline ruffle make no sense at all, which was confirmed by Caity yesterday when she came around to help me interpret them. Hopefully we have worked that issue out now.

Caity also helped me look at some items in my wardrobe and suggested re-vamping a RTW skirt I have worn a bit but isn't working for me anymore - sometimes you need someone else's eyes to see these things! Thanks Caity!

Yesterday was a calm day off but life has been busy lately - more hours of work than I need, preparing for the Toowoomba Quilters Open Day (lucky they are a good bunch and very helpful) and then on top of all that I have been going to gym more than usual as I am feeling very inspired to improve my fitness some more and to hopefully, lose the one major roll still left hanging around my middle!

On a really exciting note, I received a call from Qld Quilters on the week-end, to say that the raffle quilt I entered in to the Collaborative Section of the Qld Quilt Show has won a prize! I will be attending a presentation ceremony next Wednesday to find out what prize exactly!

However it brings up the ever present quandary - what will I wear?

Friday, October 10, 2008

Shopping is an art... I am an artist.

Caity & I went out and had a great day out - We had our make-up done and Caity was clever enough to organise a photo when she got home, but I didn't. However here is one that Caity took while we at the make-up counter, Cheesy grin & all...

After a great day out - which was also a very busy day as I also went to Gym in the morning, then drove around all the quilting/fabric shops and dropped off flyers for the Toowoomba Quilters Open Day before starting the girly fun day.

I was exhausted by the time I got home but was delighted to find that the postie had left me a parcel wtih the Patrones magazine I won on
Christina's blog . Thanks Christina - it is a great issue!

I love the coat on the cover....
As well as the coats there are great dresses...
and pants - not sure if this straight leg style would suit me but I might have to try them...

I am not sure my sewing is up to this yet but I hope to try at least one item from this magazine by the time we are heading toward Autumn. Hopefully my sewing skills will keep improving!

Keep watching the blog as I plan to have a give-away also to keep this lovely act of kindness moving...

Monday, October 6, 2008

Girraween Camping

We went camping at Girraween this week-end as our vague attempt at being good parents during the school holidays. We took our youngest son and one of his school mates. This is the camping set-up - yes we do it fairly comfortably - our best piece of camping equipment is the fridge which keeps the beer and bubbly cold...
Girraween has plenty of great walks. We did Castle Rock the first day.

Wildlife abounds at Girraween. The brochure tells us that this is a Cunningham Skink.

Same lizard & rock, picture taken wider...
Can you still see the lizard?