Moulage Progress

I’ve been slowly working through a Craftsy class called Patternmaking Basics: the Bodice Sloper. Currently, I’ve got the fit of the muslin right, for the most part, but now I have to transfer the changes to the moulage pattern.

The fitting required some finagling. My first moulage fit beautifully on the back, but the front was so tight, I couldn’t close it up (no pics of that one!). So I remeasured, tried again with some bigger measurements in the bust and the waist and drafted and sewed a second one. This one fit better in the front, but not entirely (so yeah, still no pics…), but didn’t really fit in the back. Rather than try to figure it out (because the back is really really hard to do when it’s on yourself) I decided to take the back of the first one and the front of the second one and try to marry them up.

Matching up moulage shoulder

Matching up moulage shoulder

It worked very well on the sides, and even the shoulders went pretty well. Still wasn’t big enough to close, so there was some slashing and spreading and armhole dart taking in in order get it to close down the front. It all worked in the end and it fits, but man, is it tight. I posted pics (finally, there’s pics!) on the Craftsy platform to ask Suzy about the fit and she said good to go, other than some vertical waist changes.

Moulage slash and spread fitting

Moulage slash and spread fitting

I can’t believe how much fun I’m having with this process, even when I frustrated and ready to wad everything up and chuck it. (That sounds like an oxymoron of some kind, but it’s true.) I’ve measured my sister and started drafting her moulage as well. When I asked if I could measure her, she gave me a look that distinctly said, “I tolerate you and your hobbies.” :). However, I need to finish up some other project before I sew up her moulage musin.

I think this class is fantastic for learning this process. I’m curious if Suzy Furrer’s methods are unique to her or if this is more standard flat pattern drafting material Either way, her style of teaching and the online format really work for me and I love it!

 

Things Worth Sharing (August 16, 2014)

Here’s some interesting links and projects that I’ve come across this week.

  • Dixie DIY interviewed a costume pattern designer who works for/with Simpliticy patterns, Andrea Schewe. The interview was interesting from both the costume design standpoint as well as from getting a look into what it’s like to work with a Big 4 pattern company.
  • Emmaline bags is now selling a metal Handmade label. She’s got a couple other styles in her shop as well. I think I might need 1 or 10 of these…

New blogs I started following:

Cloth Habit
Ten Thousand Hours of Sewing
Dixie DIY
Jolie Marie Louise
Andrea Shewe Designs

 

Did you find anything this week that particularly inspired you? Or buy any new books or classes?

Things Worth Sharing

Here’s some interesting links and projects that I’ve come across this week.

Beautiful white dress, sewed by Sarai from Collette Patterns
Being creative on only a little bit of time, from an interview with Mark Frauenfelder, editor of the Make Magazine
Sewing pattern sizes for indie patterns (this is awesome!)
TED talk by Phil Hansen called Embrace the Shake about embracing our limitations and finding the large amount of creativity that comes from that

New blogs I started following:

A Stitching Odessy
Did You Make That?
Love Sewing
Thread Carefully

I’ve also bought a new Craftsy class! It’s Patternmaking + Design: Creative Sleeves with Suzy Furrer. I’m just now finishing up the Suzy’s Bodice sloper class and can’t wait to learn about sleeves. :)

Did you find anything this week that particularly inspired you? Or buy any new books or classes?

Dramatic Butterfly Sling Purse

Before I got pregnant last year (or maybe even longer, eek!), I promised a friend of mine that I’d made her a bag. She wanted black and red alligator (faux) skin for the outside and leopard print for the inside. This isn’t something I’d pick to make for myself, but that’s why it’s fun to sew for other people, sometimes. This purse was a bit challenging, but I think it turned out fantastic.

Butterfly Sling Purse - Black and Red Drama

Butterfly Sling Purse – Black and Red Drama

I love this pattern and am going to definitely (eventually) make one for myself. The design is clever and at the same time, not over done. It was pretty straight forward to sew. The pattern comes from Emmaline Bags as a part of Sew Sweetness’ Bag of the Month that just wrapped up (and is now available on her site, here). I showed my friend a couple of patterns from that and she chose the Butterfly Sling Purse. I thought the directions were great, easy to understand without being overdone. I love the result and hope my friend does too! Making one for myself is now on my list :)

One thing I learned during this process is that none of the stores around me sell turn locks or metal sliders anymore. :( I guess my purse hardware will have to come from online now. I try to support local stores, especially smaller specialty shops, but I guess this is one chase where online is the only real option. Anybody have favorite places to buy?

 

 

Book Review: A Stillness of Chimes

Amazon - A Stillness of Chimes

A Stillness of Chimes by Meg Moseley opens with the main character returning to her hometown due to her mother’s death. Rumors have been circulating around town that Laura’s father, presumed to have drowned years before, has been seen. Laura joins forces with an old flame to find out if there is any truth in the rumors. Along that way, Laura learns more about her past and defines her future.

I had the opportunity to review this book before, but passed it up due to what I thought was an implausible story line. However, second time around, I thought I’d give it a shot and I’m so glad that I did. This was a very well written and interesting book that I recommend as a fun read. Some aspects of the story are predicable, like getting back together with her old flame, but it was pleasantly so. In addition, the twists of the story kept the overall book from feeling predicable.

Because there were so many twists and new developments in the story, I greatly appreciated the use of foreshadowing. Not once did I feel that any of the new developments were trumped up. Instead, the story was a clear unraveling of the past events and the impact on the character’s current lives.

I received a copy of this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own.

Coloring May Lucky Stars

I’m working through these blocks. Before you know it, I’ll be caught up! Just in time to go back to work (after maternity leave) and fall behind again…. Well, hopefully not, we’ll have to see how life goes. On, a happier note, here’s the May blocks.

Abstract Orbit

Abstract Orbit

Blades

Blades

Bubble Gum

Bubble Gum

Burst

Burst

Fractured Blades

Fractured Blades

Illusion

Illusion

Thin Pin

Thin Pin

Don’t Call Me Betsy - the 2014 Lucky Stars BOM Club

Me Made May Week 4: Summing it all up

Well, I did it! My first Me Made May! I hit my main goal and came close to my bonus goal. I do admit that I fudged on when my week started and ended. In the end, I wore four different me-made pieces approximately a week apart. Good enough for me! :)

Week 1: Batik Maxi Skirt
Week 2: Shirt Fail
Week 3: Funky Skirt
Week 4: Yellow and Black Skirt (no pics since I already blogged this one)

For my bonus goal for carrying accessories, I used the ring sling I made and I carried the purse I made, once I went back to work. So, I had a couple accessories for the month, but not as many as I’d hoped.

Because I was starting back to work after maternity leave, I figured my sewing time would be cut down too far to make much new. I thought I’d have to wear one of the two things I’d already made more than once. But no, I surprised myself and made three new items (and my husband is awesome and lets me disappear into the sewing room… ). One of the three things I made probably won’t get worn again, sadly, but I’ll chalk that up to a learning experience and move right along!

I’m so glad that I decided to go for this and that I completed my challenge. Most of all though, I’m glad I decided on a reasonable (for me) goal. Now I’m even more motivated to get sewing on a wardrobe. By next year, maybe I’ll be ready to sew with the big girls! :)

April Lucky Star Block Finished

I’ve completed the April block. I’m so close to being caught up! I don’t think I’ll get May’s done this month, but I think I can get both May and June done next month. That means it only took me half the year to catch up. (When I say it like that, it doesn’t feel so warm and fuzzy…. Oh, well, better late than never! )

To state the obvious, but something that I’m still excited about: I’m getting better and better with each block I sew. Since this was a block with 8 seams in the middle, I was able to practice keeping the bulk down and getting all the seams lined up (since January’s really didn’t go well). I was halfway there; I got the seams lined up nicely, but the bulk was ridiculous! I’ll just have to make sure my quilting doesn’t go straight through there.

Lucky Stars BOM April

Lucky Stars BOM April

Ok, May, here I come!

Don’t Call Me Betsy - the 2014 Lucky Stars BOM Club

Book Review: When We Were on Fire

Mostly this blog is about sewing, but I’ve gotten the opportunity to blog for some free books. Since reading has been a love of mine from a young age, I could hardly pass up the opportunity. If this isn’t your thing, please feel free to skip this. I’ll return to sewing related topics in my next post. :)

The book When We Were on Fire is the memoirs of Addie Zierman during her journey through religious disillusionment. She was an on-fire youth, but had her heart broken as she grew up. The consequences of her broken heart led to destructive behaviors and questioning of what she’d believed so firmly before. She ends her book with her steps toward healing and return to her faith, however tentative.

Going into this, I was aware it was memoirs, but I anticipated it to be slightly more theological than it ended up being. This was a very personal story of pain and learning and growing. The author switched between first and second person narrative as a way to draw the reader in and further the story. In general, first person was used to demonstrate an event that the author wanted to highlight, while second person showed the passing of time and the changing of her character between events. At first this threw me a little, but once I got into the pattern, I found it very helpful. While I have much more in common with the author than not, the book was so personal that at times I struggled to relate. The switching helped the story keep moving and helped me feel connected even when she was doing or saying things that I didn’t really understand her reasons.

Overall, I enjoyed this book, but I wouldn’t say that I recommend it flat out. If you’re someone that has worked through your own journey of faith questioning, then this is probably something that you could relate to. Perhaps someone who had never questioned their own convictions deeply could relate, but it could possibly be difficult to empathize with some of her choices if you’ve never felt completely lost and disconnected from everything you held as true and real.

The conclusion of the book felt loose for me, that she didn’t really concluded anything. I hoped for more joy and freedom through Christ to come through the pages as a part of her healing. But that’s mostly because that’s how my journey of disillusionment ended, not necessarily hers, and that’s ok. I hope for her and for others that read this or are going through their own journey that you find the freedom, healing, and hope that can only come through Christ and no one, not even Church People, can take it away.

I received this book for free from the publisher’s Blogging for Books program in exchange for my honest review.

Me Made May Week 3 – Funky Skirt

Me Made May Week 3 - Gored Skirt Feature

A while back Hot Patterns and Fabric.com were giving a way a free skirt pattern. It’s a funky gored skirt with 8 ruffled panels. I got some cheap knit to make it out of, cut out 2/3 of the pieces, realized that I hadn’t bought enough fabric, so promptly let it languish in the UFO pile.  I finally bought the rest of the fabric I needed, let it sit for a while longer, just for good measure (yes, Sheldon, that’s sarcasm) and this last weekend finally got around to sewing it up.

It was a fairly quick sew once I got going on it. I still have troubles trying to stretch knit pieces to fit as they roll terribly and I get cranky about it. I think the next few projects will be in woven fabric just to help me to not rip any hair out. Any tips on keeping the rolling under control would be appreciated. Am I just doing something wrong?

This skirt isn’t my usual style, but it’s sometimes fun to have something a little different when you need to get out of a “business casual” rut, amiright?

 

Me Made May Week 3 - Gored Skirt

Me Made May Week 3 – Gored Skirt