Chiffon Wearin’ Olympic Watchin’ Martyr!


This weekend I was totally after some instant gratification sewing because I am an olympic widow. The husband insists on watching every moment of medal earning sweat.  Now I am not anti-sport, nor am I against the 40 pound Wellington he served for the opening ceremony. I just can’t watch every Costas laden minute. Sorry, Bob- you get boring.

I saw this Simplicity  and I thought, oh, perhaps I could use some fabric I already have. OH, what a thought! So I donned my pith helmet, grabbed my machete and an orange cat guide and opened the door to the textile Hoarding closet of doom and sallied forth. Tada! I was generously gifted with a ton of fancy sheers and fluffies from my friend Deanna when she moved and they are all cut into lengths and soo prettypretty! When I find a pattern that has long narrow pieces I immediately save it for these fabrics. This pattern is perfect for it.I did a hybrid of 2 views- I always want a little sleeve on things, so I added the short sleeves to the faux wrap view and skipped the back gathering section. I like it belted, anyhoo. Especially some zebra!

So how does a 1 hour top turn into a 3 hour top? Chiffon  and french seams!  I am proud to announce that every mother-lovin’ blessed seam is french seamed. I tried to explain to the husband how cool this was, but he didn’t really understand the idea of an indestructible chiffon top. Well, fine!

I only had one issue, I got a little dizzy with all the turning and flipping to get the crossover part french seamed- but I did. By the by- does ‘french seam’ have tenses? I keep wanting to write ‘I frenched it’ but it just seems so wrong…. One more Disney top done!

On an unrelated note- this week the animals got a pet door. It is baffling them.  If they walk up to it, they don’t think that they can go thru it. If they run up to it, they barrel thru. It’s sort of the dachshund equivalent of Hogwarts train depot.

photo credits: headhawg, pattern review, google images

I’m a strawberry scented tortured soul…


No, I’m not Prince!

I just realized I have unintentionally created a Lots o’ Hugs the Bear costume! I was picturing sort of frisky retro space advisor when I saw the pattern- but somehow that didn’t discourage me. Because I saw what Montanachic did with it as a blouse- I felt the familiar covetous sensations!

I had a lovely piece of a non-stretch mauvey/pinky veloury Deanna fabric that seemed like a worthy sacrifice.  My machine was even happy with my idea. It sewed thru the fabric like it was really pleased with it.

I got tghe shoulder seams and the side seams basted and headed to the bathroom for a try- on with the big mirror.

Here I am:

 Got to wax my eyebrows this weekend- I’m looking like Ned Beatty…..stay tuned- the next post will either have lovely completed pics of me wearing it, or the Dachshunds new velour bedding!

photo credits: little me, google images, pattern review

Mccalls 6470 A Semi-Sheer Diversion


So you know I’m not totally locked into worrying about making a garment look like the picture on the envelope- that harshes my art, man. Ahem, cough, cough. Ok, sometimes they do, sometimes the fabric tells you what it feels like doing.

 I can’t stand here all day defending my craft like a kid showing off his sketch of what is SO obviously a dragon and some people (insert my Mother here) just don’t get it?! Thats so limiting! So onward, right?  I had this fabric as part of the amazing and never ending Deanna fabric stash and I think it is quite blousey- tho sheer and it says peasanty, drapey fun thing to me. Of course the fabric talks, right? You know it does!

Sorry the picture is so dark- a meteor was about to strike the earth- or my husband had the settings wrong. Whatevs. A  perfect opportunity to practice my seam finishes while I find a therapist willing to spend an hour with me and my serger.  I’m pleased to announce that the insides of this top are as pretty as the outside- look Mom, I made french seams- well, I didn’t sew them down flat, I didn’t want the top stitching  look on this- so formal- so unpeasanty!

See:

Theres your gratuitous pup shot of Bruderlein and Katze.

So here is my little list of changes:

Well, most obvious would be the jellyfish decorative bow. I just felt it needed something and the fabric was to lightweight for one of the brooches I got at the Elizabeth Taylor auction last week- I’ll save that for another outfit!

I also thought the crinkly sheer fabric didn’t lend itself to all that top stitching, so I let the collar and cuffs be a little  more unstructured. Because that’s what the fabric said to do! I hand stitched the cuffs and collar under on the inside and I like it’s rolling look.

Also, I gathered the material over the shoulders instead of using the patterns pleats. It stood up in little peaks like I’d let it dry on a hanger- you know the look, right? So I sent for the more smooth laying alternative.

Last- I cut off about 4 inches on the hem- there is belted tunic, then there is Grannies nightshirt, you know?

Friday Lisette Recap


I am not a big Black Friday shopper- too many years in retail have made me feel it’s cruelty. I’d rather avoid the whole consumer rat trap and hide at home. So I planned a few projects in the Sewer’s Bordello- between laundry cycles. How do two people make so much laundry. I need to come home at odd times and see if I can catch those dachshunds wearing my things. That’s the only reasonable explanation I can come up with.
Anyhoo….I still love the girlish simplicity of the Simplicity Lisette line. Today I touched up a jacket and made a top using 2209 and 2059 respectively:

I used a narrow wale bown corduroy for the jacket- I love some corduroy! I lined it with a quilters cotton for that element of daring that only quilters cotton can achieve!

The top I have been plotting over and I think i found just the thing- the front is very basic- just bust darts and a round neck ,so this print gives it a little something without the back getting too muddled- I insist you sit down- I followed the bself-bias tape neckline instructions! So proud I am. So proud.

I know these two pieces aren’t exactly seting the world on fire skill-wise, but I really need staples in the closet and I feel like today I struck a blow against consumerist and that gioves me the piety/frisky combo I love best!

Good day to you all!

photo credits: little me and the NY Public Library Archives

Simplicity 2147- renews my faith in humanity, probably looks great with a scabbard….


Well, yesterday I tried to shake off the cocoa-pepto doldrums and get back in the Sewers Bordello. I had a pattern in mind- yup- still practicing Dug the Dog costume avoidance, but I have 27 days- surely I can breathe fun fur another day and still be done on time. Anyhoo….

I’m developing a real affinity for anything labelled tunic. I used to think that was not my best style- ok, this came to mind:

But I’m starting to love the tuckus and hip camouflage they provide while still looked put together and of course leaving me somewhere to scabbard my broadsword when not threatening the neighbor children.

So here are my results- I added a little fabric brooch- ala Carrie Bradshaw to break up the houndstooth pervasiveness and I wore it out to dinner with the parentals. My dislike of bias tape (ok, I’m not so great at it) led me to line the yoke and I like the extra stability it gave me. You of course need that when adding a silly fabric flower to your  work!

Yes I’m melting in the sun…..but the earrings are moving! Lookee an action shot!

A flower close up: I think of this as my ‘Why I do declare! ” pose. 

For anyone wondering where the pink dress is…it’s with my stylist….

Oh, new sewing machine, I love you so….


I do love my new sewing machine. How much? I think I’m going to take it behind the bleachers and give it a hickey. I think I would let it have the last of the mint milano cookies. I think it could convince me to watch a Tyler Perry movie. So close are we two.  As with all obsessive love- it leads you to do foolish things. Like playing around with fancy embroidery stitchers on garments that really don’t need them. 

 This is Vogue 1247 and I love it- finally got a picture of my torso in it!  I love the crab underside effect of all the converging seamlines.When I see myself in it, I want to eat hushpuppies- the subliminal crab thing is very powerful. I’m having mild hem regret too- the angles gave me fits- the dachsies learn much latin that day, friends.

I got this impulsive idea to decoratively stitch the neckline and it made it a little 80’s looking to me. Perhaps cheapened the look over all…But those decorative stitches are so tempting! With the press of a button I can add the entire text of the Iliad to any bustier! I can embroider the Last Supper on my next pair of gauchos! Oh, the bliss! Oh, the feeling that this is not what  Coco Chanel had herself cryogentically frozen to return for……

Or perhaps she did…..

Overall, I do love the blouse- I plan to try it again in another fabric once I have taped over the decorative stitch chart and can promise to behave myself.

A little sunday something…


I did get some pics taken today- before I got wrinkly, too!

Aw, I’ve embarassed Bruder-boo with my wonky hem- it just needs a little ironing, I think. This is simplicity 2025- one of the lovely new $1.49 Sew Simple designs. I’m happy. I skipped the back zipper- it is an easy over the head tunic. I changed the neckline- it was very low cut- even by my sleazy standards! I love the sleeves and my free to me Deanna fabric. I want to find a border print to use next time.

yes, just like Edward, I appear to sparkle in full sunlight. Bathe in your jealousy.

What have I done for me lately….


I planned to hunker down in the Sewers Bordello- create masterworks and gently stroke my new loves- who I tentatively refer to as Lillian and Dorothy after the Gish sisters, but no…….

Mr B felt the need to hitch up the wagon and drive into the big city.

So because he’s really very tolerant of my shenanigans I sighed heavilly and went along. We did our usual route- lunch, a triangular trek about town looking for a phantom camera shop and a trip to Whole Foods.  So I didn’t get any pictures of my lovely purple creation I made last week, or finish the Cheetah frock, but I have been busy, I swear!

I’m trying to participate in the Fall Palette Planning – I have chosen browns, pinks and burgundies and with some green thrown in to make myself look like a chubby azalea bush from the right angle- but I think these colors are the most flattering on my delicate complexion- or lack there of.

Now I need a pinky swear that the following pictures of stash closet madness will not make it back to Mr B….

Ok, I have some fabric now and a lot of patterns, but the planning and follow thru are my enemy- I flit a little. I like to make what I feel like making, so when a new bright, shiny object appears before me, I change the plan.

Fashion Week is not helping!

Check out this Monique Lhullier:

and this Cynthia Rowley:

and this by Band of Outsiders:

I am seriously chasing my tail now!

Hope you like it, Mickey.


My final vacation top has been sewn. Sigh. No, not sigh over vacation, but sigh over the top I used some really cute Deanna fabric on. I can’t help thinking that I have made a very expensive pillowcase dress. You know- the ones all the little eventual sorority girls have that come with GIANT matching hairbows and look so nauseating in soft focus beach photography that hangs over the mantels of people who have good taste and too many sweater sets? I know- I’m an awful person. But, gees, to find out you spent 2 hours making something that should have been seriously obvious from the Hubbell telescope as feedsack couture. I am embarrassed.

Well, it is obscenely comfortable and I don’t have to suck in while wearing it, so ok, it’s a tiny win.

Here it is, she said in her best Eyeore voice:

Oh, Liesl blinked! Well, thats about how we feel about Butterick 5216….