Wearable Wednesday Au Jour Le Jour


Now I do not speak french, but I believe this translates to ‘today I did ill-advised things with fabric and glue’.

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When a budding teen designer makes these, we applaud and encourage. When a designer expects $800 for it, we plan an intervention.

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I saw a toddler in Target wearing this- wasn’t cute there either.

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Isn’t this Ringo Starrs exact wedding ensemble?

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Did Chloe Sevigny sponsor this collection?

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Ginger should have asked for the ‘right of refusal’ clause in her modeling contract.

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Yes, the ancient art of slip wearing has officially died.

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Don’t scowl Erica, you got off relatively easy with this outfit. Or are you trying to figure out what a kitchen mixer, hand grenade and suitcases have in common?

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photo credits: Style.com. All images remain the property of the original owner.

Simplicity 1104- stop looking at it!


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Mistakes. I make them. To err is human, right? I usually make them when I am zipping along on my pink spangled wings flying too close to the sun. Now I have a blouse that resents me. I feel it. So for a week it has dangled from its fancy hanger while we avoid each other.

Let’s go back to our happy days- before I ruined our love foolishly.

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Cynthia Rowley patterns always go in my buggy, but I don’t always sew them. Sometimes I love the look, but know they aren’t the best shape for my reverse petite frame. By the time I find the perfect fabric, I’ve seen so many great versions that I am just put off by it. Yup. Reverse inspiration- it happens if I don’t feel like I can make it my own or bring  anything new to it.

Sigh…I made a Lisette from this fabric and had enough left over for a blouse and this pattern didn’t cut up my print too much- like more forward placed princess seams would have, so I call that a win. This is still a pretty warm fabric to use on a lined top in the SC summer, so I skipped the lining and used self binding at the neck and arm holes.

I tried adding a sleeve awning, but it didn’t take. Let’s not talk about it. Just know that it looked like I was wearing little shells over each arm.

Now this neckline is interesting- it sort of squares off and would lay beautifully if I’d lined it. Are you seeing what happened? Am I setting up the story for you? Are you nodding yet?

Caution children- this next paragraph contains foreshadowing:

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This edging took me longer than I’d like to admit, but I kept thinking, don’t half ass it. No! I will not settle for almost and then throw some decoration over it to cover the dodgy ripples. I kept redoing and redoing and easing it and oh, mercy Maude! It was perfect! Aw! Now the feeling of accomplishment! I paused in the halo of my ott light to smugly acknowledge a job well done.  Yes, I high-five’d the cat.Those moments- they are magic, right?

I delicately laid out my trophy on the ironing board and proceeded to delicately trim my facing, ever so slowly and carefully, trimming, trimming, Screaming! Howling! Raising fists to the heavens!?

Yup. I caught the fabric and it could only be saved by those vinyl chair repair goo kits they used to sell on TV.


Aargh!! I’m out of fabric- it’s already too low cut to ‘drop it low’ as the cool kids say- fine! Fine! I’ll use fray check and just throw some decoration on it to cover up the dodgy ripples. Oh, how the chubby worm has turned…..

I’d like to think this happens to everyone, I’d like to think you are all nodding and thinking, ‘been there, screwed up like that’ but gees,the mean little voice in my ear that might be the cat-


Is saying, ‘you are soo stupid-nobody else who isn’t suffering from the shakes could have done this!?’

I know in my heart that the cool sewists weave their own fabric from magic sparkly alpacas they bottle feed and dip dyed by hand in organic natural dyes they created from their heirloom beet plants they grow in a special stained glass hydroponic greenhouse that is regularly visited by their fabulous neighbors Helena Bonham Carter and Helen Mirren and they all eat gluten-free scones and then they all drink mojitos and mock me!!!!

Anyhow. Here’s my damned top.

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No. I’m not emotionally ready yet. Deep breathe. You can do this Anne- SHOW THEM YOUR FLAWS AND BE FREE.

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Now wasn’t that cathartic and liberating? Raspberries!!!!

Alright, I’ll give you the rest of the review now. I skipped the zip- fit and flare saves the effort. I will make this again and I’m wishing it had a sleeve aspect- I could love this in the winter.

Cynthia, can we talk about the neckline or abdomen line as it were?  You see, alot of us over a standard model size have these things that the bodice is supposed to cover. Perhaps even conceal. I’ll slip you a drawing if you aren’t on the same page with me yet. The model can reach down for her diet coke or turn quickly to hug Kaiser Lagerfeld in any neckline, but the unfortunate souls with more shall we say….torso? Have some trouble with these serious plunging necklines. Can we raise the bar a bit, perhaps? Just think on it, m’kay? I raised this 1 inch. 1 people. The bustal glare is still major.

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On the whole, I like this. I do hope that version 2 will be nice to this one as they hang together in the closet of gaud’ and not remind it of the awful moment on the ironing board……..

photo credits: pattern review, google images, little me.

Wearable Wednesday Dimitri


Well, all those times Father screamed, ‘For Gods sake Leslie, put a shirt on!’ finally sunk in.

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Oh,this- yes. So nice its distracting me from the other model needing more fabric back there!

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Worlds tightest pants + 1 ton of fringe = bathroom hilarity!

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Ladies, the bus driver doesn’t have all day, please have your tokens handy!

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Yes to this- altho I think they should check her for scoliosis. No shade, its a health thing.

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This collection is all over the place for me! But I kind of like this one- cuz I always loved Judith Light as a sassy 80’s tv  sitcom mom.

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Did you know silver polish can help with chafing?

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Sigh. Yes Wanda, we get it- you went to Marrakesh with Lenny Kravitz, enough already?!

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The models face seems to be saying, ‘Dude- enough with the coins already?! ‘

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Fine. Because of your attitude, Betheny gets no jewelry!

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photo credits: style.com.All images remain the property of their original owners.

Mccalls 6846 & Butterick 5815 one Blouse!


My closet. A place much like the rain forest- it’s full of strange brightly colored plumage and occasionally, a wild cat napping by the wreckage of a small Cesna……

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Ok, it’s not that bad, the Cesna is actually a lot of quickly discarded Betsey Johnson luggage, thrown under a rack until the next Disney trip. But it is steamy and I swear, things get lost in there, never to be seen again. How else can you explain my constant need for more blouses?

Anne, you’re shallow, tribal raiders are not stealing your tops, you just get bored if you’ve worn it once before.

Nonsense!!! It is a sartorial conspiracy and stealthy monkey ninjas sneak out of the racks, try on my shit and take it away to their monkey condos in the trees. That is the only explanation that makes any sense.

So anyhoo, I made another top, because if you have a uterus, you are nodding right now as I say truthfully,

I HAVE NOTHING TO WEAR!?

The only thing I have less of than clothes is blouse patterns. So Bruder and I got out the patterns and I flung fabric hither and thither and he gave me sage advice based on how comfortable each piece of fabric was to his butt. It’s a fool-proof system designed by 2 fools- how can it go wrong? Now, you may have noticed if you see me on twittr, I have a baby gate at the sewing room door because I suffer mightily from a lack of space. Ok, it was cutting table or cheetah print fainting couch and I made the logical choice. Fainting couch- maybe I shouldn’t have let Bruder vote.

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So if I am cutting out I have to shoo the wee teutonic beasties out or I have a very hard time cutting anything out accurately. There is no more magnetic pull in the universe than pet tuckus to a freshly laid out, pre-washed textile. Look it up, it’s true. Ask Bill Nye. He knows.

So shoo them I did and cut out I did and sew up, I……did not. By then it was nap time. Mine. I follow closely to the wisdom of the great Helena Bonham Carter:

I just want to give you this one piece of advice: if you’re standing and you could be sitting, sit. If you’re sitting and you could be lying down, lie down.
Now, after snacks and a nap, I sewed up this little number, Mccalls 6846.

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I made a few changes. Some intentional, some by default. Look at this envelope shot?! Did this ever fit this model? No wonder this puppy is OOP. I did not make this view. Self tie belt, collar that looks like a deflated life preserver, um, no. Thats not why I chose it- I looked at another view- of course, not the one featured on miss table cloth. Isn’t that always the way?

1- I liked B and D, but the front ruffly business in theory only. I but I spend a lot of time with a dangling name badge on and oh, how it annoys me. It’s the adult equivalent of a cat toy. I’m constantly slapping at it and cursing it and getting it in my food. So a blouse with a dangling ruffle fluff would just add to my personal drama??! I changed it to just do a full crossover and leave me alone! Basically I shoved the dangly bit into the shoulder seam. Also, once I did that, it seemed really odd to have the over lap on the other side, well, technically the underlap. This bugger has 3 layers in the front. Its too much for our summer weather. Skip it. One cropss over and step away.

2- Alright, sleeves. I like them, it’s not always 400 degrees here, so lets sleeve up this baby! Where are my sleeve pieces? I check under the cat, I check under me. I check in the surrounding envelopes. I check the bin. Finally I stick my entire head in the envelope like Pooh bear and harrumph. I’ve made this pattern before, where are the flickettyfilthandfoulfrostedflippin’ sleeves? Fine. I’ll just borrow the sleeves from another pattern! Enter Butterick 5815.

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This brings up the question, why do I keep buying similar blouses? Check out the tech drawing of 6846- looking pretty similiar here, am I right? View D, I’m eyeing you.

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Huh, if I keep buying similar blouse patterns, why have I only sewn the same 3 repeatedly? I’ve got to stop. I vow more viewing of the tech drawings, less getting sucked in by a new cover that promises something I already have at home. This rule will not apply to candy with holiday packaging. That I will continue to buy. Thats different.Sweet gobs of crunchy dyed sugar, come to mama!

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So anyhoo. I changed the sleeves, the ruffle and added 3 inches to tunic it. I also made self-bias for the neckline. If you change 4 things can you officially say you designed it yourself? I suppose not. I still feel like the pattern company should get credit or blame for my folly! Here I am- looking  a little shifty for some reason.

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Stop mocking my reading habits, people, everyone keeps noir by the bed. Now, for those with a keen eye, you will notice my sleeves are identical- not mirroring each other.  Why? Is it my usual lack of attention in the sewing room brought on by watching trashy tv and lack of focus. No, I have another top made up from this pattern and the sleeve that has the front folded in the other direction is a feistly one! Always in my way- it hampers me while I’m working or trying to discretely double dip a chip. So I made them both the same. Anyone else have sleeve smothering issues?

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Next time I make this, I’ll try some color blocking and for the sake of belting it, I shall raise the over flappy business to get out of said belts way. Does anyone else get this much help in the photo area? Silly Helmut!

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My usual busy print makes the crossover hard to see in some shots, I have highlighted it for you here:

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Flannery would like to take a moment to ask if anyone is up for Jungle January 4- any ideas would be appreciated- 4, can you believe it???

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Alright everyone, have a lovely week and remember- gaudy fabric needs love too!

photo credits: pattern review, little me, google images. All images remain the property of their original owners.

Wearable Wednesday Comme des Garcons Comme des Garcons


Mr and Mrs Cramshaw- welcome to St Trilobites!

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We know that little Propecia will be a welcome addition to our program! We So look forward to her playing theremin in our marching band.

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Our wide curriculum encompasses every skill from fingersmith to antebellum street miming!

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Hair salon training? Well, no, that sort of field we haven’t touched on yet- why ever do you ask?

co4But we have an excellent program for Corporate ninjas!

co5Ah- here comes one of Sister Hermaphreda’s girls from her dirigible engineering studies program!

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Goodness, it looks like one of our students from the cryogenics experiment has escaped- err….left class early….with permission, I’m sure. I’ll just help her back to her area.

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In the meantime-Who wants to go see the Forensics  dojo?

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photo credits: style.com.all images remain the property of their original owners.

Butterick 6170


For the last 50 years, Butterick has relied upon services of Phillip Lack and Arnold Luster to design their pattern envelopes. Surely you have seen the work of Lack/Luster?  Their mission statement is basically to allow the sewist as much freedom of inspiration as possible, by providing no inspiration on the envelope.

Butterick 6132- Don’t throw your jaw out yawning.

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This was another one that the cover looked so…..’ok, I’ll just use the sail to make a dress until the rescue boats come-‘

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No, missy- don’t you turn around- I can only take so much! I honestly can’t say how this got into the buggy. Usually the hubs grabs the patterns from the bins as I call out numbers from my tuffet er, seat at the pattern books.  He’s quite helpful- he’s gotten patterns for other people if they call out a number and a size. But, usually, he will have a comment about the style- something charming, like- ‘planning to start fencing?’  ‘Please tell me it’s a gift’ or ‘oh yay, we’re going to Comicon!’ So rarely does a clunker slip past him.

Well- nice thoughts:

It’s good for our hot ‘if that fabric presses against me one more time, I’ll take lives’ weather.

It only took a short amount of time to make.  Of course, a mud pie from the yard is also a quick make, but not as yummy as a souffle…

Mr B liked it. Sometimes, I just never know. He’ll probably claim he found the pattern on purpose. He’s like that- he knows everything. It makes telling him he’s wrong a true ordeal. It’s my cross to bear. Sigh.

This was supposed to be a quicky top to use up fabric from a dress I cut out at the same time- but I made it first, so now it looks like I just plan very poorly!!! Details:

I shortened the sleeves about 2 inches. Again- left over fabric, I weaseled this all the way! By the by- I prefer to inset sleeves- I find them easier to alter and just lay better. I must make a note to ignore the instructions more.

Once I got the pleaty business on the left front set, I realized it could be secured a bit more to almost create a defining shape. But I hated the look of it- it looked too much like I was seeing the back side or something. Too structural- so it times of great want-  we slap a bow on it!

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Perhaps not the most mature looking detail, but I liked it with a little black buckle- so there!? Extreme bow closeup:

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Ready for the yard  pictures? Well, too bad. Its mucky out and the camera is being mean. So my plan was to sneak some shots in a corner of the bedroom. I was able to get about 3 before the usual happened.

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Well, first the camera kept tilting. I wedged a bookmark under it to keep it straight, but a full length shot was just not happening, so I decided to pose on the steps the pups use to get on the bed. Yes, we are THOSE people. Not only do dachshunds sleep on me- they use their own carpeted stairs to do it. No judgement, it cuts down on the heating bills and any ridiculous ideas you could have about sleeping in all day like a sloth.

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Alright, I must be quick with my review, the pups are coming.Why oh why do shapeless shifts always seem to want a pointless back seam? It had all the curve of a good 2×4. So I just cut on the fold and figured a fish eye dart or 2 could work, but it didn’t really need any- or should I say, I didn’t have room for any? Whatever. I think this pattern leaves a lot of room for color play, blocking and  a serious statement piece fabric. Don’t be surprised it I make you look at this again sometime- this was sort of an unplanned event with left overs, but its so comfortable and yet I don’t feel tent-wrapped. Me likey. Not a pattern to replace all others, but a good staple for the arsenal.

I like this top more than the pictures show, but the melodramtic feel is probably  because I am fresh from the photo shoot so any ounce of self-worth I felt is gone with the chins, as they say.

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We ended up with 2 photo settings here- me in focus or a cute dog in focus. Never the twain did meet!?

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I also encountered the ‘Victorian ghost dog’ phenomenon- behold- my supernatural out takes!

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photo credits: little me, pattern review, google images. All images remain the property of their original owners.

Wearable Wednesday Christian Dada


Who’s a sad little bear?

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‘I waited all day in  the rain, but the Ace of Base concert was sold out…’

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Is that a 2nd bear hat or….. what?

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‘What? You said wear dress pants, I wore dress pants.’

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‘Ok, Tinman, once we’re in the castle, then what??’

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I’m having flashbacks to my ex motherinlaw’s fancy powder room  back in Dunellen, NJ.

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Alright- no more comments- I see you are pretty angry!! But save some hostility for the designer who made you wear- OK OK! I’ll quit!

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photo credits: style.com. All images remain the property of their original owners.