Hawthorn muslin

This is the muslin for Hawthorn, and it fits really well without any modifications! I’m surprised since I had to do just about every modification ever to the laurel pattern! So I’m gonna go ahead and cut into my mood fabric and just pray my button holes goes smoother than on my muslin! Check out that wonkyness  as they get further away from the seam near the bottom! 

Day One: ♪ Beverly Hills, That’s Where I Want To Be… ♪

I just took a well needed vacation on the opposite coast. My parents are looking to downsize and are considering building a modern pre-fab home. When they heard about the Dwell On Design conference they figured it be a good way to size up some of the many builders and options before they embark on such a project. I got to tag along and pretend I had the funds to consider such a thing! It was really fun and interesting, even if I’m not a fan of L.A. traffic. I didn’t think any gridlock could be worse than D.C.’s, but oh how I was wrong.  I’ve decided to split the days up into individual posts, it seems so much less tedious than having to do a MEGA post on a five day vacation. So keep your eye out if you’re interested in my trip! 

We got to the airport late Thursday morning and decided Grater’s Ice Cream would be a great breakfast!  

After a few flights, with a barely caught connection in houston, we landed at LAX and made our way Sofitel in Beverly Hills. The hotel was beautiful, and had some of the best service I’ve ever had. I’m pretty sure the concierge would have gone out at one am for a Doritos run for me had I asked. I tried to keep it classy, and refrained from doing that.

The location was right across from the Beverly Center, which had some really great shopping. I didn’t end up buying anything there, but it was still kind of nice to walk around. Oh and did I mention our hotel balcony had an awesome view? If you squinted really hard to the right you can see the Hollywood sign.  Well that and if the smog wasn’t too bad. 

The hotel was great to be able to walk to places to shop and eat. Even though we had rented a car we did that a few times just because it was so convenient. We were pretty beat after our cross country flights, but we managed to make it out to a really tasty Japanese grill called Guyu-Kaku. I got some really delicious marinated skirt steak and had a good time gabbing with my parents! 

By the time we were done eating, the time change had definitely caught up with us. I did all I could not to fall asleep on the walk home and slept like a log until 5 am (yikes). I’m already an early riser, so being three hours behind didn’t help any! 


I buy expensive suits, they just look cheap on me.

Do you ever go through your pattern stash and say “What was I thinking?”. I know I do. I tend to buy vintage patterns in lots because I really want one or two, and the rest just kind of sweeten the deal. Case in point, never once in my life have I thought “Man I really need a two piece suit!”. My pattern stash will tell you other wise though.  

So I guess I should add a suit to my sewing list (as if it needed to be bigger?). What one would you guys like to see sewn up? I could actually get some use out of a suit, I work in an office. But I feel like for it to be wearable enough for me, it’d have to be black or gray. This might be a good kick off for my fall sewing, that is as soon as I get started on my summer sewing.

What’s your favorite suit? 

The Hawthorne Sew-along!

Hawthorn Dress Sewalong

So much like the rest of the sewing community I’ve purchased Colette Pattern’s newest release, Hawthorn. It’s a beautiful shirt dress, with an option to sew it as a peplum top. It’s got enough buttons to drive even the sanest of sewers crazy using their fincky buttonholer attachments. I plan on making the sleeved version.

I did pick up some blue poppy fabric when I went to MOOD in LA over the weekend. There’s nothing on the salvage, but I’m pretty sure it’s a cotton/lycra twill with a nice drape. It was ten dollars a yard.

I need to go buy some muslin on my way home so I can test the fit. I still don’t know what kind of buttons I’m going to use though, does anyone have any suggestions?

Radio Silence

Sorry for the radio silence over here, but I’ve just returned from an amazing trip to LA, and the Dwell on Design 2013 convention. Give me a day to get back into my routine and I should have a wonderful trip post for you. Our flight got back very late last night. I’m being a trooper though and putting in a full day at work.

Thanks in advance for your patience! Check back tomorrow for a shiny brand new post. 

The Striped House Dress

Sometimes you power through and sew a dress in a few short hours. That happened today. I’ve had this pattern, simplicity 142 (1955), for a while now. The illustration is super cute, and it’s got some really neat details like the contrasting lapel pieces that are detachable. Fair warning though, I haven’t yet made any of the fun pieces! 

Excuse the frizzy mass that is my hair right now, it’s humid as all get out in the Midwest right now.  

I always think it’s kind of comical to see the pattern illustration with the perfect waspy waist, and then see it on my much more generous body. I prefer modern patterns with photos on real bodies (although ideal ones), to a perfectly fitted illustration.

I used a striped linen I had in my stash which was super easy to work with. It went together fairly quick. My pattern matching isn’t perfect, but it’s not horrible. I made a simple fabric tie in lieu of a belt. My local store was out of belting, and this is just one of those dresses that looks weird without one. I made no pattern alternations, and think I will next time If I sew it again. The bodice is like an inch too long, not long enough to try and fix now, but long enough to where it will bug me. I also ironed back the neckline notches into baby labels. The notches just seemed kind of weird. The buttons aren’t perfect, but not bad for maybe one of the five times I’ve actually done buttons. I do really like the way the gored skirt falls; I had to cut off like a foot from the hem though, it was so long! That further cements the idea that petite patterns are my friend. I’m almost five foot eight, so you think it would be the opposite. My short legs and long torso combo is a strange one!

I feel like I’m finally seeing some improvement in my sewing skills though! Things are coming out much neater than before, which is exciting if you’re a sewing nerd. 

Anyway off to pick a new pattern to sew up! See you later this week!  

Finished! The Holloway Dress

Here’s some proper pictures of The Holloway Dress (Simplicity 3575). Although I’m no where near the babe of this dresses namesake is; I’ll try my best to live up to the va-va-voom attitude of many people’s favorite Mad Men character. If only I had her assets right? The dress is a bit wrinkly. I wore it to work so my desk sitting caused some creases, I don’t think it held up too bad in that regard though. 

I thought I was going to have to do an adjustment to take some of the ease out of the bust. Although, since I’ve washed the dress and taken these pictures, I don’t think it’s actually all too bad. Especially for a wearable muslin, as I plan on doing the full skirted version of this pattern later. I’m also fairly certain that dresses from 1960’s usually were cut more generously than we are used to in modern clothing. 

The pattern was missing the waist stay piece, so I just decided to leave it out. All the seams are serged, and there’s an invisible zipper in the side (one of my best!). The fabric is either a high quality quilting cotton or shirting. I’m not for sure it was an unmarked clearance bin bargain.  

I can’t wait to make another version of this dress soon! Also, I’ve grown very fond of this grass green color! More than one person told me it should be my color.