22 August 2017

My precious fabric has arrived

I picked it up at the post office today, and had to wait until I got home to get it open.  Fabric Mart is thankfully dumped FedEx's SmartPost in favor of the USPS Priority mail, which means I get my order 1-3 days sooner.  It does look as photographed, although it is a lighter weight than I like to use for jeans ... so now for a Plan B.  I have this pattern:

Simplicity 8447
"Rosie the Riveter" pattern
Yup, I intend to dress up as Rosie the Riveter come autumn, when it is rumored first the overnight lows may actually get lower than 70F, and then the daytime highs may actually go below 85F!  A nice linen and cotton blend in this weight ought to work no matter what the weather does when Hallowe'en comes around.  It could be some fun.

18 August 2017

Finally found my Precious

I have been saying for years I want to find and use linen denim, and have a nice collection of linen twill (mostly suiting) fabrics in ye olde fabric stash ... but I have finally found actual linen (blended with cotton) denim!  And in all places, Fabric Mart.  The down side of this is, they may not get any more in for a decade or so.  The good news is, it's at a Fabric Mart price.  They're what's called a jobber, in that they buy leftover fabrics from manufacturers and other retailers and sell them quite low.  This is under the Sales section, in their "Precut Buyout"subsection, so when they sell out they are truly out.  For the record, since they are selling it in 2.5 yard pieces, and I need 2.75 yards to make a pair of jeans, I bought two pieces.  I got the shipping email yesterday.
linen/cotton denim
photo used with permission

linen/cotton denim
photo used with permission
I emailed Fabric Mart yesterday asking permission to use their photos of this fabric because they are SO much better at photography than I'll probably ever be, and this morning Julie emailed me permission to use, with a note that I should stress this is a buyout fabric and when it's gone then it is totally gone.  I promised a link to the page, if anyone wants to get their own 2.5 yard piece of linen/cotton denim (if you don't see that fabric anymore, then they are sold out).

I am really stoked about finally finding this.  Even if it's a lighter weight than I like to use for jeans, it will still make summer go-to-town jeans.  FabricMart lists it as "Light/Medium; Falls Moderately Away From Body" so I am not expecting 12 oz weight denim here (although that would certainly be nice), but they do recommend using this fabric for pants, jackets and waistcoats (vests) so I am expecting bottomweight at the least.

10 August 2017

Notes for Simplicity 4149 tunic

I just finished up the test version of Simplicity 4149 tunic, view A with the neckband but without the sleeve flounce.  A few pattern notes from wearing:

  • size 22 is too big in the shoulders for me
  • do a small FBA, about 1/2 inch, and use a second dart for better shaping
  • the armsceye is too long and low, needs to be brought up at least a half-inch
  • still have a small puddle of fabric in the swayback section of the back
  • need a little more room for my butt in back
  • raise the slit in the neck by an inch
  • shorten the sleeve cap by at least a half-inch, lots of ease to gather in
  • flat-fell the straight seams instead of French seams
  • shorten sleeves another inch
I'm doing this up for the Tunic Contest at Pattern Review, so I'll need good notes to write the review.  No pics yet, as hubby went up to Jax to hang out with a friend for friend's birthday today.

02 July 2017


Just how is the year already half over?!?  Seriously, I think someone hit "fast forward" in early April, for hubby as well as me.  This year is just flying by, and apparently I ain't the only one feeling that.

I have been sewing, but I have also been tossing out old clothing that the fabric is disintegrating at about an equal pace.  So far, it's been a matter of jeans, T-shirts, and underpants, but yesterday my order of 5 back issues of My Image pattern magazine (out of the Netherlands) showed up in the box, and I have been paging through it and scheming since late afternoon yesterday.  LOTS of inspiration contained in that one envelope mailer!

Okay, so the quickie-update is this:

  • I have a better jeans pattern, and it is close to being just right on the fit.
  • I have a basic T-shirt pattern that I added princess seams to the front and a center-back seam ... and on the first version I discovered I forgot to add in the seam allowances.  That one is a bit snug around the belly, but I redrew the body pieces and the second shirt is almost finished.
  • I've tweaked the old Kwik Sew master pantie pattern (high cut version) and have a decent sporty underpants pattern.  The 1980s original was a bit too high waisted even for me.
All very basic items, but I intend to learn a bit about fancy sleeves to keep the T-shirts interesting.  I do have some pics, but my digicam is probably underneath a stack of fabric right now.

30 October 2016

McCalls 5142 denim work jeans

As promised last post, I have my new work jeans done (in fact, they're due for a wash after today) and now have pics as of this morning.  Keep in mind, I've worn these to town a couple days this week, and wore them last night for evening chores/milking.  I am VERY pleased with the fit and freedom of movement.
front view McCall's 5142 work jeans
in medium blue denim

back view M5142 jeans
with "heartbeat" wave on back pockets

side view of McCalls 5142
work jeans
These are just perfect through the hips, as I can squat down and reach for eggs the hens decide to lay in the far back corner of the tractors without the slightest tightness or binding.  I put belt loops on this pair, even though they don't need them right now as they sit comfortably at my waist without sliding down.

While hubby notices the lack of excess fabric at the bottom of the zipper, the thing Cindy at Tractor Supply was so enthusiastic about is the lack of gap in back.  I showed them off to her earlier this week, and she tugged at the center back belt loop while exclaiming, "No gap!  Wow, what brand are these?"  While she looked suitably impressed when I told her they are "my brand," she looked and sounded a bit disappointed she can't go buy a pair for herself.  Kem, the assistant manager, remarked they look store-bought (except they fit better).

Since I have the fit I want, the next step is to knock out about 3 or 4 more pair - I am already working on another pair in light blue denim, with hot pink topstitching and floral appliques for my going-to-town jeans.  I have white cotton twill with animal print on it for another pair of going-to-town pants, and I have a couple wild plans for embellishment.  I figured since I would making several pair of this pattern, why not enter in the Pattern Review "One Pattern, Many Looks" contest, which is running mid-October to November 15th.  If I have time before the deadline, I just got some nice light tan cotton twill in good bottomweight thickness for another pair of work pants, which would make for two pair of work pants and two going-to-town pants, which ought to hold me through winter.

After I finish up the pantspalooza, then it's on to knit tops and T-shirts for me, as I had to throw out three old T-shirts that are officially disintegrating - including one of my old PT shirts that is at least 15 years old and I could read through it.  I have patterns, and I now have jersey knits.  Fabric leftovers will be turned into panties, which are also on the must-sew-soon list.