I’m a Sucker for Seersucker

After I finished my project bags I was ready to tackle a bigger sewing project. I bought some seersucker for another Fen Dress soon after I made the first one, and I decided it was time to put it to use.

I like the dress, but I don’t like that I have to wear a slip with it. I don’t own a slip. Well, that’s not true. I didn’t own a slip until I MacGyvered one this afternoon. I had an old layering tank top and a quarter yard of knit fabric. I did some serger magic and created a slip. The slip is fine (even though it looks a bit like a dress a Kardashian would wear), but I think it will be too warm for seersucker. I am now going to look for a slip pattern (if you have a suggestion, please send it my way)

I have the fabric for a t shirt and a pair of pants in my stash. I’m hoping to finish another sewing project next week, but that will involve taping a pattern together so it might not happen.

What are you working on this weekend?

Tension Headache

I decided to take a break from knitting because of the shawl that shall not be named. I worked up two medium size Christmas themed project bags. I’m going to keep one and give one to a friend who knits a lot of presents for Christmas.

This project gave me fits. I could not get my tension right. My friend even came over to help. I tried 10 different tensions on my machine and kept ending up with thread barf on the bottom of my work.

After days of fighting tension she suggested I try a different thread. It was instantly better. I think it is the sewing equivalent of the help desk telling you to turn it off and turn it back on again. I won’t be trying to work with cotton thread again any time soon.

In the end I have two project bags that are OK to look at from a distance.

Now that I have my tension issues figured out I’m ready to get back to sewing. I cut out a new dress and hope to have it done in time to wear to the BINGO party I’m going to on Saturday afternoon (there will be boozy punch, a cheese ball, and prizes….I can’t wait).

I hope you are having better luck with your crafts than I am this week.

It’s Sewing, And I Helped

Do you remember the Shake and Bake commercials? The ones where kids said “It’s Shake and Bake, and I helped?” I felt like the kids in those commercials this morning when I brought out my sewing projects and directions to make sure I understood them.

It started innocently enough. I figured I should read through the project to make sure I understood everything while my mom was around to ask questions. That very quickly led to her cutting out the projects, so they would be ready for me when I got around to making them.

While she did this I stood around knitting and drinking coffee. I’m helpful like that.20190321_0849281513163270167118370.jpg

After she cut out the fabric she decided she should get started on making one to make sure it wasn’t tricky. Then it got out of control. She decided to keep going. She had me pin the bags, cut the notches for the curves, and iron them (you know, the worst part). She showed me what a zipper foot is, so now I know what to look for when I go through my sewing stuff to see if I have one.

I’m now the owner of two cute small project bags. I used the pattern Li’l Knot Bag from Indigo Bird Design. The pattern has three sizes. I made small this time, I think I’ll make a medium bag next time. This size is perfect for socks or other small projects (my Green Bay socks are already in the Hawkeyes bag).20190321_1140301633940026528833313.jpg

You might recognize the fabric as the fat quarters I bought last weekend in Winterset. I am glad I’ve used them already. I don’t want to develop a fabric stash issue, as I already have that with yarn.

Yesterday I thought it was silly that I brought two sewing projects and three knitting projects with me on a 48 hour trip. It turns out that was close to the right number of projects. I haven’t touched one of the knitting projects, but it is always better to be safe than sorry.

Well, crap.

I wore my new dress enough that I needed to wash it. I threw it in on delicate with other delicate items, and it came out of the dryer like this:20190303_1004342838696916982617717.jpg

I think the issue is I snipped the underarm to press down the seams (as directed in the pattern) a little too close to the seam. The flannel unraveled enough in the wash to undo the seam. Once the seam was open the fabric tore. That’s my theory, at any rate (Kathy, do you have any advice or input here?).

This morning, after my 24 hour period of dress mourning was complete, I got out my sewing machine. I closed the underarm seam (and reinforced the heck out of it and the other underarm seam). I stitched up the tear. I was not hoping for magic, but I did hope the dress would be wearable.


In the end, I don’t think it looks that bad. I will continue to wear the dress, and I don’t think anyone will notice the repair.

What other sewing mistakes should I be watching out for? Have you ever had a sewing mishap? Please share your sewing problems so I feel better.


WIP Wednesday

I had the whole day to myself, thanks to a dentist appointment and in-laws that love to babysit. I had planned on getting a lot of knitting done, but I got sucked into other projects and didn’t even pick up my needles. I’m making some progress on my projects, but not much.

I started a new pair of socks. I had to reschedule Jess and the start of our Green Bay Packers KAL, so I cast on a pair of Rose City Rollers. I wanted a fast pair of socks so I have free needles next weekend when we start the KAL. The yarn I’m using was a scarf until two weeks ago. I knit the scarf for John years ago and he never once used it, so I decided it could find a new life as socks and I could clear out something from the closet. 20190227_2017507248305064538664895.jpgThe yarn is Strand Yarnworks in the Cigars and Cabernet colorway. The heel is random sock yarn from my bag of fingering weight yarn for my scrap blanket. I don’t love the combination, but I don’t hate it enough to rip it out. I think it will look better when it is complete.

My sweater is moving along. I have about 10 rows left on the back. I’m sure the front pieces will fly. Or maybe I’m just telling myself that.

Instead of knitting today I spent my timeĀ tearing out messed up seams sewing. I made a Fen Shirt, as the I loved the Fen Dress so much. I like the shirt, but if I make it again I’ll make it longer. I’m tall, and the shirt is a little too short for my taste.20190227_1942364849034781141051578.jpg

After finishing my shirt I made some cold reliever bath bombs. I used lavender, eucalyptus, tea tree, and peppermint essential oils in the bombs (thank goodness for Pinterest, I know nothing about essential oil blends). They smell wonderful. I left out the food coloring, because I don’t like sitting in food coloring. We are on our third cold of the year in our house, so I think we will be using these soon.20190227_2009497326086627035105918.jpg

I also spent some time feeling extra awesome about my dress after my cousin Claire pointed out what great taste I have. It is rare that something I wear is actually fashionable, so it is nice when it happens.

I hope you are having a good week and making progress on your works in progress.

I Made A Dress

One of my resolutions this year was to make, thrift, or mend a clothing item if I need a new one. I hadn’t sewn a garment since I was in college (20 years ago), and that was pajama pants (not a difficult thing to make).

I’ve started attending a new church (OK, fine, “sporadically attending” would be a better way to phrase that). People at my new church dress up on Sundays, and I don’t have many dresses. I decided to go crazy and make a dress.


I made the Fen Dress by Fancy Tiger Crafts. Is it perfect? Hell no. Is it done? YES! I’m looking forward to wearing it for the rest of the winter. I used flannel, so the dress is nice and cozy. It’s basically pajamas I can wear in public.

I made lots of mistakes while making this dress, several you can probably see in this photo if you are an avid sewer. I have a hard time loving crafts that I’m not immediately good at. I did enjoy the process enough to want to sew more. I would like to get to the point where I’m OK at sewing. I don’t know if I’ll ever advance to zippers.

The Fen Dress pattern comes with a shirt version of the dress. I think I’m going to make that next. I want to see if the process goes better the second time I make the pattern.

Do you sew? Do you have any easy sewing patterns you would recommend? What is your favorite thing to sew?