30.12.13

Year in review

As the year 2013 comes to a close it's a good time to reflect on what I did for the year and to contemplate what I would like to do in 2014. The past year has been most challenging for me in almost every aspect of my life. At this year end I have given up one of my dance teaching jobs and I have taken a break from sewing for others. It may not seem like much but it has stemmed from a difficult year with a couple frustrations from my PhD program, my spiritual life and generally being a grown up. I'm the type of person that will say yes to everything and I look at all challenges with an attitude that I can overcome them all. I've learnt my lesson this year that pushing myself to the limit will only wear me out and turn me into a dull girl. Mind you it does remind me of what I am capable of, and that's to be excellent at whatever I put my hands to!

This year I made bridesmaids dresses for 3 weddings; 13 dresses in total. What a task. I never anticipated that making similar styles for different sizes could be so daunting. Sometimes when a pattern has to be altered  it's like making an entirely new pattern/ dress.

I painted 51 overalls for a gospel choir (with help from my talented sister and cousin).For my large non sewing tasks I like to get a bit of help from my family members. All the designs for these were drawn by me with love as the inspiration.


I made abut 6 items for different family members and a few other dresses, tops, skirts for lovely client friends......actually double digits, by no means a few. I was able to practice, lean and fine tune many skills. I also started to use patterns a lot more this year to make garments.


I even had time to make some dresses and other things for myself. In my opinion my wardrobe is still lacking! I really need to work on a few key items next year.

Additionally I made about 20 gore/ fish tailed skirts and 9 short sleeved jackets for a choir very close to my heart, dance uniforms galore- different groups, different styles, a couple swimsuits and a few handmade delights. Peew, I survived it all!

Favorites:-

  • Green bow back dress
  • White with black polka dot vintage style dress
  • A linen dress for a friend (I have no pictures)
  • Maid of honour pink bridesmaids dress (poor picture quality)


Look out 2014:-


  • Clothes items for me- Black jacket, a pair of denim jeans, twill shorts, dresses dresses dresses
  • A pair or two trousers for my husband
  • I want to try my hand at facinators and sashes a bit more
  • Ariation labels- If anyone knows a good online label company please let me know
  • Better photography and capturing everything I make (camera needed)
  • Clear my stash so I can start buying fabric again
  • New blog design, maybe
I'm so honoured to have you readers and I do hope that 2013 fades out well and 2014 brings new joys, hopes and successes. Thanks for being here, 
God bless!











24.12.13

Merry Christmas

May Christ live in you heart this season and always! 


God bless!

19.12.13

Damask wedding- Flower girl dresses

Hello everyone, I hope all is well. How are things coming along this Christmas season? Today I'm just going to show you some pictures of the dresses I made for the little loves for the December wedding. 



I made the dresses using crepe back satin, sheet lining, organza and damask print cotton sateen. The skirt has 4 layers of circle skirts with the organza layers hemmed with the nylon fishing line to give it a wavy edge. The design was a copy cat of a little girl's dress the bride came across on the internet. 











I made so many hand made flowers for the dresses and hair that my fingers got punctured a few times :( I need to make use of a thimble for sure next time. The flowers are not difficult to make and I definitely recommend giving it a try (tutorial anyone?). 

The two girls looked absolutely delightful just as their personalities are. 

I hope you enjoyed the post, God bless!


8.12.13

Preview- Flower girl dresses Dec 2013

I've finished the 2 flower girl dresses and 3 bridesmaids dresses in less than the 10 days! I can now see about what I'll sew up for Christmas day. Looking forward to next week when one of my best friends gets married to her beloved.  God bless!

30.11.13

On my sewing table- November 30th 2013

At the moment I'm making bridesmaids dresses and flower girl dresses; 3 and 2 respectively. Yes bridesmaids dresses again.  This will be the third set for the year.  Most of my closest friends will be/ married off now so I hope things slow down next year in this area because it's such hard work. It's a damask and pink wedding and it's in 2 weeks.  I have maybe 10 days to finish and just as I post this I'll only just begin to sew. Pray for me!

18.11.13

A simple coat for Ari

Hey guys, so I recently showed you the coat I stitched up for hubby and now I'm going to show you mine. I'm glad I made it and I hope it can last me for some more trips to come. It kept me warm enough I guess and I pretty much killed it on a daily basis. 


My coat took so much less time to do because I did not use interlining for extra warmth and body. I made it using a wool blend I bought on  Fabric.com on sale at a really good price. I absolutely love the colour and pattern of it. It was quite heavy weight and easy to work with. 


I made a self drafted patten for a number of reasons:-

  1. I am ridiculously long which I love. I always have to add about 4 inches extra to a sleeve length of a bought pattern.
  2. I had a look around for styles I wanted and none could be found in available patterns.
  3. I like the thrill of it!
It wasn't too bad at all. I also made a two piece sleeve which I am quite proud of. The sleeve looks great in the photos and it fits quite comfortably. There is a side piece which meets up with a front panel and a back panel; there is therefore no side seam. The pockets I love because they hang low for my long arms and go all the way to the hem. It's fully lined in a heavy black satin and only the collar is underlined (shame on me!........ for going for the floppy look) 

My biggest disappointment was the buttons. I couldn't find really large buttons so I had to settle for these 7/8 inch ones. It looks like the install wasn't too good because they are a bit lopsided. Anyway that's something that can be fixed, I'll definitely do so for the next wearing. 






Showing my imperfections here :s how embarrassing!





Look how fab my sleeve looks! 








I hope you enjoyed the post. Thanks for viewing. God bless!


11.11.13

A coat for hubby

Hey everyone, I trust all is well even in the midst of life's ups and downs. It has been a while since my last post as I've been quite busy with school. I mentioned earlier that I would be making some coats for a trip for my husband and myself to the UK and I'm finally able to blog about it.


For my husband's coat I made a double breasted coat using Vogue pattern V8940 View B (short). It is one of the new patterns of 2013. It's described as semi-fitted, lined jacket with collar, collar band, shoulder pads, back yoke, forward shoulder seams, side panels, back vent, two-piece sleeves.

It took me quite some time to get it done because I did it with all the special features; only the best for my hubby! I didn't give my coat as much time and effort so mine is not as high quality as his.

Concerning the fabric, it's a mini houndstooth that I got it online at Fabricmart at quite a good price. It's a wool blend of medium weight. 

I completely interlined the coat. I found the fabric to be not as firm as I would have liked and after thorough research I learnt that an interlined coat looks much better as it has more body. I attached the fleece interlining by catch stitching the pieces unto the fashion fabric. This process took such a long time to do but I am quite happy with the result. I used interfacing on some of the pieces like the collar, back yoke and the front facing. For this I used horse hair canvas. Below are a few photos of the construction. 




Below are some photos of the coat while out and about in the UK. Unfortunately Kevin did not wear the coat often because it kept him too warm. I do hope that we will have some other opportunity so he can wear it again in true winter weather. 

I must admit that I quite like the pattern and it was not too difficult to follow through with the instructions. I had about 40 pattern pieces to work with so I'm glad I completed it sucesfully.  

The good news is hubby likes his coat very much and finds it quite comfortable to move around in. It is a slim fit sort of pattern so those interested in making such a coat should make adjustments for this if necessary. 










I hope you enjoy the readFeel free to ask me anything about the construction. Thanks for reading. God bless!

9.10.13

Painting for forever

Hey guys. I hope all is well! Sewing has taken a backseat as my paint brushes came out for a somewhat large project.  51 overalls in total;  only a few more left to do. So tired but it was lovely to paint again.

God bless!

31.8.13

Painting project

Hey all. I have the wonderful opportunity to take a little bit of time from sewing to do one of my long lost favorites; painting.  I'll be doing 50 of these bright pieces for a choir production in October. This is the first one so things can only get better.  My lines are a bit wobbly and I'd like to do some more colour mixing. The overall is made of brown cotton and I'm using acrylic paints to get the job done.

26.8.13

Coats in Caribbean?

Yes coats in the Caribbean!  Hey guys I hope all is well. As some of you may know from reading my blog I am from Trinidad and Tobago. 365 warm days every year without fail; some with rain, some with more heat than can be desired but all days warm. All I ever want to wear are breezy dresses, shorts and vest tops. 

I had the opportunity to spent a considerable amount of time in London, UK in my early and mid  twenties and  ohhh how I enjoyed it! One complaint though; it gets way to cold for my Caribbean bones. I will be travelling to the UK once again in October for training and hubby is coming with me. It will be his first trip to the UK and we are both quite excited. So excited that I perhaps made a stupid decision without thinking it through. I volunteered to make us both some coats for the trip. It seemed a good idea at the time but now that I am actually doing some research into coat making I realise that it is a monumental task. If I could just turn back the hands of time a bit! I already bought fabric on Fabric.com and a coat pattern for my hubby. I must therefore take the plunge!

The fabrics

Mini houndstooth in tan for hubby
Close up on the tan fabric 
Option 1 for me, small dotted black grey and pink wool blend. From far it looks quite uniformed without design. 
Close up on option 1
Option 2 Boucle fabric in brown with multi-colour threads
Close up on option 2

Fabric.com had a generous sale on wool blend fabrics so I was able to snatch these up at a great price. I also bought quite a bit just in case I had errors in production. I must say I was surprised a bit when I received my package. I don't think they do a very good job at photographing the fabrics for the site. Also I noticed some of the descriptions attached to some fabrics are incorrect. The colours are a lot more vivid than I expected which is not particularly what I wanted. I am most likely going to make my coat with fabric Option 1 as I find it most appealing.

The patterns
I would like to make myself a collar-less coat or one with a collar tie. There are a few pattern options available on Burdastyle for the collarless but I feel quite adventurous. Making my own pattern should be fun, right? If anyone knows of links to great resources for construction please let me know. 

As for hubby he's going to get his coat made from Vogue pattern V8940 Men's Jacket  most likely at a shorter length. It seems like a great pattern and I hope my version comes out well. 


V8940

Thanks for reading. We will all be looking forward to my future post on the coats with great anticipation and apprehension.

Has anyone done a coat before? Do you have a link to it?