Friday, May 26, 2017

Pratesi Linen from Marcy Tilton Fabrics

I modeled this shirt briefly before mailing it off to my Brandybuck Clothiers customer. I love this new Italian linen from Marcy Tilton. This is the flax color. I failed miserably trying to make perfect pleats in the front, so I sent the fabric to Alice to recut and sew. She made it perfect and I bowed down to her when I picked it up. One of the things I love about this fabric is the 106" width. Keep that in mind when you see the price. It really is a reasonable price.

I found this dried maple tree flower on my patio table this morning and photographed it on the white linen. I think you will love these fabrics like I do. We may play with dying the white for some Summer fun.

If you want a perfectly pleated shirt (we also do them in dress length) I sell them at Brandybuck Clothiers. The womens have bust darts, but otherwise, they have mens shirt styling with big arm holes and a bit of a drop shoulder. The collars are big too.

Friday, March 24, 2017

My Jacket Express and Pattern Review

I know you want this class now if you missed it last week. The Craftsy class includes the physical pattern mailed to you which makes it a great value. Here is an affiliate link that gets you a 25% discount.
 Being able to sew along with the video classes was wonderful. I could put my brain on cruise control and just follow Janet. I love her teaching style. She is a very sweet and helpful person. I think the pattern is very clever. As you can see, I LOVE that it has 19 pattern pieces - all the better to mix fabrics, my dear.

I used the finished garment measurements to choose a size, and I made the size small. It was supposed to be 43.125" at the bust (and hip) but mine came out about 42" when closed. My snaps are set in .75" from the front edges. The button hole markings are probably a little closer than that which would account for the difference.
I loved learning how to use the pressing tools properly.  I recently purchased the point presser from Janet's website and I used the bottom of it as a clapper. I already had a point turner and a sleeve roll. Janet uses a seam stick instead of a sleeve roll. I am going to have to get that too, it works better than a sleeve roll for pressing seams.  Here is a link to Janet's pressing tools for sale.
Changes I made to the pattern:
1. I needed the breast pockets on the outside for my design - the original pattern has them on the inside and a very clever opening and top stitching. To accomplish my contrasting pockets, I used the pocket pieces as facing pieces but instead of stitching them to the outside and turning in, I stitched to the inside and turned out.  I kept the shape of the pocket opening by making the top edge of the pocket match what the facing would have been, and added muslin pockets behind the facing (fake) pockets.
2. I lengthened the sleeves by an inch and a half. It is a 3 part sleeve so that was a little tricky to get the shape just right after lengthening and I don't think I did a great job of it. I want to revisit the sleeve next time and redraft a sleeve using Suzie Furrer's class.
3. When installing the cuffs, I completely sandwiched the sleeve edges and mostly burrito'ed the sides and ends of cuff, leaving about 3" open to turn. I liked the way this came out better than the way she shows in the class. (I did one her way and one my way)
4. I made the collar pointed instead of curved.
5. I took 2" out of the length of the center back, tapering it out to meet the side seam. The jacket was hitting me right on the bum and it was keeping the jacket from hanging properly. (All that hiking and stair climbing is paying off!)  The hem still looks straight when I am wearing it. This change means you have to change the shape of the back facing piece to match.
6. I used snaps instead of buttons and button holes.  My spacing is different too. I used 5 snaps on the front instead of 4.
Additional changes I will make next time:
1. I will cut the front facing slightly longer than the pattern at the top end where the facing meets the shoulder seam. Having only 1/4" seam allowance is not enough for me, I ended up short on one side. I can always cut it off later if I don't need it.
2. I really do not like the notches at the shoulder and the final closure of the collar. I would like to try leaving the upper collar and under collar unconstructed until the end. Maybe the upper collar could attach to the facing and the under collar attach to the jacket, then they all come together along the outside edges. That might work better for me without the 1/4" deep notches. The other option would be to simply stop and start sewing again at the notches rather than making them long enough to flip out of the way.
3. Sleeve vent I will make and/or finish differently. Maybe take a look at doing a different sleeve. I need to make a whole sleeve at the correct length and then break it into 3 pieces. Adjusting the length of 3 sleeve pieces just did not work. Wearing it's great, but I know it could have been drafted better. The original is great but just not long enough for me.
I hope you'll take advantage of this class and pattern. I think you will love it like I do. Connect with me and show me your jackets. I would love to see them.  I posted some of my process photos on Instagram. I am @StudioCherie_sewing on Instagram. If you follow me there, you will see the TripsterShirts as I make them. I'll be making more of these jackets with the TripsterShirts label. One of my friends commented that it had a '70's vibe. Next photo shoot, I will stick my front leg way out for the "keep on truckin" pose.

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Clock Towers Quilted Clock

I was inspired by Kim Lapaceck's Dresden Neighborhood pattern and the theme "Time" for challenge 6 of Project Quilting Season 8.  Things I would do differently next time:
Plan First. This was improvised and things got added on in different orders than I would do again.  The order of sewing for next time:
1. Buy the canvas first so I know what size the finished clock will be including wrapping the quilt to the back of the frame.
2. Sew the 12 pieces together and quilt them to the background fabric (carefully centered on the background fabric) like I did (with some felt behind it as shown.) Do all of the quilting on the towers before adding any embellishments.
3. Add the center circle, but don't quilt inside it yet.
4. Applique clock faces and belfries (Play with placement on the belfries. I wonder if they should be closer to the clock faces and maybe some above them?)  Be more careful with the clock placement especially positions 12, 3, 6 and 9, so that actual clock hands will line up with the centers of the clock faces.
5. Add a layer of felt to the back (Cut off the corners so that there is only fabric and no felt to wrap on the back side in the corners) and quilt the center circle, add the roofs, and quilt the background.
(Before quilting the center circle, mark the hole placement for the clockworks so I don't have to cut any stitches when I make the hole.)
6. Finish the edges of the quilt.
7. Cut hole in the center of the canvas.
8. Cut hole in the center of a 4" x 4" piece of peltex ultra firm stabilizer, center it on the canvas hole on the back side and stitch it in place. This just adds a little firm depth for the clockworks to hold onto.
9. Double check positioning of the quilt and staple it to the frame.
10. Cut hole in quilt and add clockworks.
I love my new clock!  It is 20" by 20" made in Spokane, WA Started on March 12th or 13th, finished on the 16th.
I like this detail photo:

Saturday, March 11, 2017

A New Kind of Sew Along

I had a fabulous idea today and I hope some of you will join me. Some of you have seen the fun TripsterShirts I have been making. I know all of you have seen the duffles. I was thinking about that last batch of fabric I used to make duffles and that it is on sale right now at Hawthorne Threads. Time to pick up that line if you like it. I was thinking about how those fabrics would be perfect for the jackets Janet Pray makes in her Craftsy class, "Sew Better, Sew Faster." The photos above show several of her students' work. I got the class for myself, and I hope some of you will sign up for it too - it's only $19.99 through Monday and includes the pattern. If we all take the class and sew jackets together, it will make for the best kind of sew along. I took Janet's moto jacket class and loved it. I am pretty excited about getting the pattern and getting started on this. I may even mix up fabrics a bit.  Let's do it! Here is my affiliate link for the class.  Order 3.5 yards of fabric, use one of the home dec sateens like the ones in the HawthorneThreads link above.

Thursday, March 2, 2017

Destination Wedding Duffles

This is the beautiful duffle order I shipped off yesterday. I love it when someone orders 5 at a time so I can show them off together. I can just see the excited bride and her bridesmaids heading out together for her destination wedding. Each of these bags is so gorgeous, I know they will all love them and no one will be jealous.  Etsy has updated the listings variations so I have listed these showing different quantities and volume pricing. Hopefully this will make it easier to order more bags because I do love putting these sets together. Here is the new listing on Etsy for ordering up to 10 of these bags at a time.

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Project Quilting Season 8

My friend, Kim Lapacek, has gotten a bit famous for her yearly competition "project quilting." Kim is an amazing quilter who has contagious free spirit. I have been one of her sponsors for the event for a few years. I always love to watch the beautiful projects as they are entered, and sometimes I participate too. There is still time to join in. No one gets eliminated. You can do as many or a few of the challenges as you want.  This first challenge for the 8th season is inspired by the number 8. I googled "8" for inspiration and saw the bagua, which is an 8 sided, 8 colored symbol with a yin/yang at the center. A long time ago, I put out an applique pattern for yin/yang and it's fun to do, so that became my project. I used the harmony pattern enlarged 140% and figured out how to make an octagon out of triangles for the background.  The binding was done by trimming the background fabric after quilting to 3/4" larger than the quilt and then folding over twice.
I posted a few process photos on instagram as I went.  There you can see how at home the finished quilt is on my wall too. The finished piece is about 12" square. Made in Spokane, WA, USA

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

My newest pattern Laundry and Cosmetic Bags

This video shows the bags. The links to purchase the pattern are here on Craftsy and on Etsy.  I put a full month into tweaking this to really make it the best it can be. From the materials themselves to the how-to put them together, this is a pattern that I am proud to say will get you professional results you will not find elsewhere. I teach a couple of brand new techniques in this pattern that you don't want to miss. I believe this pattern is going to up your bag making game.