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I’m the type of adorable person that yes, wears matching top and bottom pajamas almost every night because I like to look adorable even though I live alone. So yes, even while I’m sitting here on a Saturday at noon still in morning mode I’m wearing matching pajamas. Second thing to know about me is that I’m picky about what I wear. Which lead me to finally making my own pajama set! Bonus: I took it with me to wear for my sister’s wedding weekend and was able to show it off during the girls night at the hotel pre-wedding.

The pattern actually wasn’t that hard to put together. Either that or I’m starting to get real good at making clothes. The one thing I didn’t do was add in the interfacing. I added the interfacing to my Anchor Dress (blog post link here) and for some reason when I washed it the interfacing made the fabric go all funny. I sort of liked the top without the interfacing so when I make another pair I’ll do the same thing.

Now I’m off to change out of my matching pajama set and set off into the city for a day of adventure!

First to start off I have to apologize for the lack of blogging in the later part of last year. It wasn’t that I didn’t still spend weekends and evening at my sewing machine but life just got a little busy…and then flipped upside down.  The flip was an actual flip when I fell off a horse and spent the last couple of months working on recovery.

But that doesn’t mean that I didn’t get a couple of little projects completed in time for the holidays! Below I wanted to share a couple quick photos of what I was working on over the blog “break”. Up and coming – pjs, skirts and another quilt! Some are already done and some are still just ideas but this year I have a few projects in mind that I want to sew together. Sewing goal for 2017 is this: become better friends with my serger. I was lucky enough that my Mom passed me along this great book with serger tricks and tweaks that I’m looking forward to learning more about.

I haven’t forgotten though about my knitting and right now have a new knitting project sitting on my coffee table all ready to cast on! Knitting and I had a bit of a disagreement towards the later part of last year which is why I’ve been more sewing than knitting but I’m ready now to make friends with it again and give it another go!

 

 

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First off I would like to start this blog with an apology for taking a whole month to put up an new post. I will admit that this is for a couple of reasons. The first is that it was summer. Summer means that I’ve been outside riding horses, buying a car and drinking beer instead of sewing and knitting. The second reason is that the two recent projects I completed were baby shower gifts for a dear friend of mine who I know is on my Instagram so I didn’t want to spoil the surprise. I promise moving forward and into the cooler weather that the outdoor beer drinking and late nights out will soon be fewer and far between which means I will have more time hunched over at my machines and knitting needles. I will admit that I have a new knitting project on the needles at the moment which I’m going to dig into once this is posted.

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When I first saw this Noodle Head pattern I knew I had to make it for someone. So when my friend told me she was having a baby I knew right away what I was going to make! This pattern was so easy to follow and I was done the quilt top before I knew it.

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Now because I wanted to make it to match her nursery I did tell her I what I was making without giving away too much but I had to ask the colors so I was sure it would go. It’s always so nice to give gifts to others that you know they will cherish and use.

Now…I’m off to watch some Friday Night Lights and knit. Or do dishes. Or knit… yeah knitting sounds good.

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I think I probably own about 10 or more summer dresses. The ones that you can just throw on when it’s hot out to go to work or out for a casual dinner. The same dresses that you can later put with black tights and a sweater to wear all year long. I could live in these dresses which is probably why I seem to keep making them.

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For those of you that don’t know I recently turned 30. Yes, it was a little scary and honestly it still is even almost a month later. But one of the gifts I received for my birthday was my new serger (!). It was on my wish list but something I didn’t expect to actually get. So of course I fell in love with it and was so happy to be able to use it on this project. The dress looks so professional now!

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Even now I’m continuing to keep an eye out for cute dresses to make and navy fabric to pair with them in preparation for the cooler months. Can’t wait to use my serger again shortly!

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Pattern: Washi Dress from Made by Rae

Fabric: Fabricland

The first quilt I made was small and simple. I had made it at a friends request for a quilt of their own and for something a little more manly for my couch. The quilt was easy to put together and I was able to take a couple quick photos of it before it headed off to another life. But it was my second quilt that was a stunner.

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I tend to jump into things with both feet and want to really try my skills at something new and challenging. This quilt for my Mother was just that and I know as a quilter there will be many more triangles in my future but I need a triangle making break after putting together this quilt top.

I learned a few things along the way and one included to measure out the size of something before starting! This quilt top came together in pieces and all of a sudden the pieces were together enough to lay it out on the floor to see the real size I was dealing with. There were a few choice words when I came to realize that it was HUGE. Like I mean I had to move my bed to the side of the room just to get this to lay out on the floor. Following this there was a few more choice words when I realized that I would have to bast, quilt and bind this before Christmas and at this point it was already November. So first lesson – check the size on the pattern prior to buying fabric. Because it will also mean that the backing fabric will cost you more than I care to share in this post.

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The quilt was a gift for my Mom for Christmas and as the progress went it was so hard to share my hours of triangle making on social media in order to keep it a secret.

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I got lucky and a few days before heading north for the holidays I finished the binding and five minutes later put it in a huge box and wrapped it up. It felt good to be able to say that my first large quilt was done and ready for delivery! It was very well received and oh so cozy that it looks lovely at my parents home in the country.

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I recently was lucky enough to go to a posh store with a personal shopper and it is now the only way I will shop! I’m not one to go through racks and racks of clothes and run from store to store to find the perfect dress for an event. I would much rather a sales girl pull a few items for me and have me try them on. I’m also know to be a picky person in all areas of life. Apartments, boys, clothing… all of it!

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So when I wanted an off the shoulder dress I was on the look out for something I really liked. But because I’m a picky person it was hard to find anything that I wanted or would feel like shelling out the cash for. So I decided to make it myself pattern and all.

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Now, one of the down sides of living alone is that when you make clothing and need to alter it you have to take it off and put it on a zillion times while poking yourself multiple times with the pins in the hem. This might be the only thing that I dislike about living alone. And yes, I am not scared of spiders and can fix almost anything on my own.

So here it is! The much anticipated dress in all of it’s (a little short) glory!

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A Practical Summer Piece

One thing you should know about me is that when I own something and really like it I will wear it forever until it falls apart. I would like to thank Kate Middleton for bringing the re-wearing thing into proper fashion. This is the reason why I noticed today that my black cardigan is now grey and I will need to part with it soon. It is also why it is soon time to part with my cozy, fluffy red housecoat that makes me look like Elmo. When I replace the things I’ve loved so much I get picky with what I replace it with. But when a friend of mine sent me an image of the Purl Soho Housecoat Pattern I knew that it would be a great replacement! Best part was that I could be picky and pick my own fabrics.

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To put this one together I made my own pattern pieces using sewable-traceable paper/fabric from The Workroom (here in Toronto) as the pattern only lists the size of the pattern pieces as it was an automatic download. Was worth the time though because when I make another one I’ll be able to re-use the pieces I have now. And yes, I will be making another one.

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The lightness of the cotton makes this great for the summer time and the fit was perfect! I did change the length of it though to suit me so if you make it maybe measure yourself for the length you want.

 

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Linden Sweatshirt

One of the down sides of running a blog and living alone is that you have no one around to take photos of you in your new hand made clothing on a week night. So with that said I know you all believe me when I tell you this sweater fits like a glove. It is the perfect sweater to throw on with shorts for a summer evening stroll with friends. I’ve already decided that I need one in light ballerina pink and one in a Liberty of London fabric fleece. I may have to raise funds for the second one but it would be amazing.

I picked up the grey bamboo jersey a while ago and it’s been sitting in my stash for about 6 months now waiting to be made into something. Originally the plan was to make a t-shirt and one day I was all set to get started until I started reading online all the info to know about working with stretch fabric. It was enough to scare into switching projects and stashing the fabric for something else.

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I have a happy place in the city of Toronto and that happy place is The Workroom which is on Queen West and only about a 20 min TTC/walk combo trip to from my house. Everyone seems to be able to answer all your sewing questions and the vibe is so casual that you feel comfortable taking your time picking out the right fabric for a project.

So, when they posted a class for the Linden Sweatshirt I was in! The class would not only serve as a reminder for some pattern making tricks I may of missed when making my dress  but it would also teach me to work with stretch fabric and using a twin needle. The two nights I spent there I came out with so many new tips and tricks plus my new sweatshirt. The twin needle stitching that is at the top of the sweater really finishes it nicely and I think next time I might do this at the cuffs as well.

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Starting to love seeing my hand made pieces in with my store bought items and loving them even more because I made them.

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Happy Stitching!

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In August I’ve had my machine for officially a year. I have made many fun projects with it as you will see but I had a craving one afternoon to branch out and making my self some clothes. Now, i have some experience in this area from high school when I made my own prom dress in a home sewing class but was a little rusty. I had a moment of panic that I would open the McCaul pattern and it would only be the pattern with no instructions. Thank goodness I quickly learned that patterns do come with instructions and don’t expect you to put it all together without some guidance.

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When I set my mind to do a project I can normally turn it around quickly thanks to free evenings after work and often a free Sunday to sit down and get a lot finished. But I may of started this dress at the wrong time because it sat on the back of my sewing chair for a month or more. i started the dress at the same time as I launched the website and was planning my trip to Ireland and Scotland (more on that here). So when I got back I told myself that I must get this done so I no longer have it sitting looking sad on the back of my chair.

All it took was one Friday night at home to get most of it finished from where I left off and then another couple weekend mornings to add on what was still remaining and ta da! It was done and ready to go. Or – almost ready with the exception of the buttons. This was the same night that some of you may of seen on my social media (buttons to your right) my wonderful new vintage sewing Judy! She came in very handy on this Friday night when it came to pining on the skirt. She needs a little love but perhaps I’ll take a go at straightening her tomorrow.

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I’m a fan of waking up on a Sunday morning with coffee in hand, no make-up, slippers and just sitting down and doing a bit of sewing before my day starts. These mornings can be the calm in the storm of a crazy work week. Last Sunday morning of a long weekend I had expected to sit down and quickly learn how to sew a button hole with my machine. 3 hours later and much Googling I had a love/hate relationship going with my machine and friends to meet for some summer park time. In the end I had to zig zag stitch both side of the holes and then cut out the middle. So glad that this worked and not a moment too soon! Slightly sad to say that there are no photos from this morning probably due to the frustration I was feeling at the time.

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But then the dress was really done and fits like a glove! Off to the park I went for an afternoon of relaxing, drinking and gossiping. The pattern was so easy to put together that I’ll be keeping an eye out for a lighter fabric to make a couple more.

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Pattern: McCauls 6696, view A

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I keep going into fabric stores and picking up just a couple of fat quarter squares that I just can’t live without. Fabric that I fall in love with and is either out of my price rage or I simply don’t have a specific project in mind. The semi down side of this is that i am currently the owner of a good amount of pretty fat quarters just waiting to be used. I was able to use a few of them for my Caravan Cover project but wanted a project where I could use a few more. So when I came across the pin cushion carry all project from the Handmade Style book I knew it would make a great weekend project.

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Now by weekend project I mean a Saturday night project. It turned out with some tunes in the background and a cup of tea I was able to finish up this little project in no time! Now before everyone thinks I’m a hermit on a Saturday night this was a rare occurrence and I couldn’t not finish something up!

There was however one mistake that I did make which I discovered late at night and was the moment I knew it should probably call it a night. I had attached the top loop meant to hold scissors on the wrong side. So because of the late hour and that my larger scissors would never fit on it anyway I decided to for go the loop to leave more space for pins.

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The pockets on the sides were so much fun to are to make sure the pleats were just right and a functional size for what I needed. In the end this was another wonderful little project from Anna’s book.