Peacefully hand sewing the lining into place

Bright happy dress - lining progress 1 back

More progress on the bright happy dress: hand sewing the bodice lining into the dress.  I’m using the same technique as I did for the Mad Men dress – see these two posts – essentially pinning the lining into place (with a million pins, you know me!) and using a simple mattress stitch to attach it.  I’ve quite enjoyed the process of hand sewing this time around, really embracing the peaceful repetition with some good music playing in the background.  Perfect for a relaxing evening!

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A full day of sewing!

Bright happy dress - sneak peek

I got a ton of sewing done on my bright happy dress yesterday – see how cute it’s looking so far?  : )  The photo above is just a little sneak peak… because you *know* I had to try it on as soon as the zipper went in, haha.  Lots of in-progress photos below – enjoy!

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Bright happy skirt assembled

Bright happy dress - skirt construction

Sewing continues on the bright happy dress!  After stitching the bodice pieces together on Thursday night, last night I tackled skirt construction.  One would think that sewing the skirt pieces together would go quickly… but one would be sadly mistaken!  This was quite the odyssey.  Then again, it’s sewing, so it was a pretty enjoyable odyssey.  : )  The reason it took forever is that I used French seams for everything, including topstitching the side seams to keep the seam allowances permanently in place.  It’s time consuming, but I love the finished look and think it’s totally worth it.  Right??  : )

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Sewing begins on the bright happy dress

Bright Happy Dress - bodices pieces sewn

Darts, shoulder seams, and side seams – woo hoo!  The bright happy dress is starting to come together, and I have to say, I’m really digging this crazy bright fabric.  People will be able to see me coming from a mile away!   I managed to squeeze in a little sewing time after work yesterday, which resulted in two completed bodice shells – the outer fabric and the cream lining.  Progress is slow but steady.  : )

Bright Happy Dress - close up of bodiceHere I am modeling the shell over a stripey shirt – not exactly a great combination, huh?  : )  But just imagine an entire dress full of bright circles, with bare arms in the warm summer sun.  Can’t wait!

Next up: putting the skirt pieces together.  French seams, baby!!

Great British Sewing Bee: cutest show ever!

Great British Sewing BeeHave you been watching The Great British Sewing Bee?  Is it not the most delightful show ever?  : )  I just finished watching all 4 episodes on YouTube, and wow, I am totally smitten.  Not only is the show chock full of fiddly sewing techniques and nail-biting sewing under a time limit, but the show manages to leave out all the crap that American reality shows stock up on.  No fighting, yelling, edited-in drama, and crappy filler — just home sewers being nice to each other and enjoying their sewing!  Who knew a reality show could be so… sweet?

I won’t reveal the winner, but I would highly encourage you to watch the series and see for yourself who reaches the top of this sewing class.  I was certainly pleased with the outcome.  : )  Go home sewers!

Now… how do I make being a contestant on this show my full time job??  : )

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Dress cutting complete, tote bags in the works

Bright happy dress - pile of pieces

Behold: a pile of very bright dress pieces (and not-so-bright lining pieces) for the Bright Happy Dress.  Step 1 complete!  Many, many more steps to go!  Gotta celebrate each little step along the way, right?  : )  It *is* pretty satisfying to look at this neat pile of garment pieces on my sewing table… so I guess that’s a good reason as any to celebrate.

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Mathematically correct bagels

Mathematically correct breakfast 1

If you’ve ever felt that your breakfast is missing that magical something… maybe it’s math.  My boyfriend and I had a mathematically correct breakfast this morning – i.e., a bagel cut into two linked rings.  It was extremely geeky and also extremely fun.  Go check out the tutorial and try it for yourself!  🙂

Mathematically correct breakfast 2How awesome is that??  The one I’m holding above is my boyfriend’s bagel, and mine is in the top photo on the plate.  It takes a little fiddling to get it just right, but once you figure it out, it’s pretty awesome.  Bonus: when you spread cream cheese on the inside of the rings, you can pick up all the toppings that fell off during the cutting process.  I would highly recommend the use of everything bagels for this tasty bonus at the end.  : )


Let the healing (and crafting) begin

Fabric for bright happy dress

After an extremely long and tense day here in Boston yesterday, I’m very eager to let the healing — and the crafting — begin.  : )  In light of the saddening events both in Boston and Texas this week, I decided to make my next sewing project as happy and uplifting as possible.  Enter the “Bright Happy Dress,” as I’ve decided to call it, featuring the extremely colorful and bright print you see here.  In addition to helping me focus on something cheerful, I think the print will be great for spring and summer.  Yay for warm weather!  (Now when will it actually arrive?)

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NEW – Finished Project Gallery

Finshed project gallery - screen shot

I’m excited to report that I’ve just created a Finished Project Gallery for my humble little blog.  Yay!  The gallery contains photos of my various sewing, embroidery, and other crafty projects, along with links to the corresponding blog posts.  There are permanent links to the gallery at the top of the blog (above the header) and in the sidebar under “Finished Projects.”  I hope you will check out and enjoy the new gallery!  : )


In other news, the entire greater Boston area is under “lock down” today while police execute a massive manhunt for the 2nd suspect in the Boston Marathon bombings.  Residents are being told to stay indoors with doors locked, all local businesses are closed, and all driving and public transportation have been suspended.  I have been sitting home with the news on, waiting for more information.  We are all hoping that the situation is resolved quickly and that no more innocent civilians are hurt.  Thanks to everyone for your support and concern in this very unpredictable situation.

One pattern, four spring skirts!

Four skirts - Butterick 5613 - View A - View C

Spring has sprung!  I whipped up these four spring skirts from a single pattern – Butterick 5613.  How cute!  The top two are View A, a gathered skirt with side seam pockets and a matching sash, and the bottom two are View C, a pleated skirt with a deeper waistband.  Each skirt probably took me about 2 weekends to put together – not bad at all.

Butterick 5613 pattern art

Above is the pattern art – the pink skirt all the way on the right is View A (corresponding to my two cream colored skirts), and the yellow one on the left is View C (my pink and black/white skirts).  I made a few modifications as I’ll describe below, but overall I followed the pattern pretty closely.  Lots more photos below!

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