OAL2014: Blue Myrna and Marvel Dress

I finally got around to taking those pics of my second finished outfit from the OAL2014.

In reality, I made this dress before the Owl dress. So, this dress will always have a special place in my heart because it is my first dress. To top that, it’s a dress I love! The process of this dress went by wonderfully because of LLADYBIRD’s wonderful tutorials and detailed instructions. Near the end, I did get anxious and did the skirt portion on my own. In retrospect, I wish I would taken LLADYBIRD’s advice and put the pockets on the side. I definitely have kangaroo pockets.

So, let’s get into the details. I went with the offical OAL2014 dress, which is Simplicity 1803.This dress was made as written. The only slight adjustment made was tacking down the yoke portion to prevent gaping. I made Version A without sleeves. I also added the tie end to this version of the dress. I like how the tie end wraps around the back and then ties in the front. The details are kinda obscured with this print. I did a narrow hem which turned out pretty nice for the most part. The line did get a bit crooked when I top-stitched the hem. I finished my seams by using pinking shears. However, for the interfacing, I finished the seams using the zig-zag stitch.

The fabric for the dress is a Marvel print in cotton. I underlined the dress with a black satin fabric.

So, let’s talk about my Myrna cardigan. This is my second Myrna. After my first Myrna worked up so quickly, I decided to make another. The yarn used is Knit Picks Wool of the Andes in Whirlpool. Again, I got gauge with Size 8 needles. Initially, this blue cardigan was meant to go with the owl dress but, when it arrived I liked the color with the Marvel dress. With the Marvel dress in mind, I decided to go with contrasting buttons in the color red. I was hesitant to do this at first because I thought it would limit the cardigan but, it doesn’t limit it at all. Also, this time I went with 1-inch buttons and they stay on perfectly. I made the XS size, which has a 30 bust. My bust is 32” but, I wanted the 2-inches of negative ease. I really like the fit of this cardigan. And of course, I really appreciate that Andi’s designs always fit into my wardrobe so seamlessly. I have already worn this cardigan so much. It is the perfect balance of lightweight yet warm. It gets really hot in Alabama so, I like lightweight cardigans that work perfectly in air conditioned buildings.

I can’t think of anything else to say about this outfit besides I adore it. As I’ve said before, I am all up for participating next year should LLADYBIRD and Andi decide to do another OAL because this really made me step out of my box and challenge myself.

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Finished: Simplicity 2444

Remember my frustration with this dress. Well, it is all over and done.  And now I have a staple dress that I simply love!

This is Simplicity 2444 and it can be a really quick project if you don’t have the hiccups that I experienced with it. Pretty much, this pattern runs small. I am a 32” bust and the Size 4 has a finished 32.5” bust. Well, initially it was too small and I could not close it in the back.

I made the following changes to it:

  1. I took out the side seams and stitched with a 1/4” seam allowance instead of the 5/8”
  2. I did not bring in the back pleats as much.

And that fixed the dress! I now can move about comfortably in the dress.

The fabric was purchased at the thrift store about a year ago for $2. I had about 3 yards so I did the version of the dress that required the least amount of fabric. I really am not sure what type of fiber it is. Initially, I thought a type of polyester blend. Now, I think it may be cotton. I’m not sure but, I love the moveability of the fabric the comfort of it.

While I was working on this dress, no one liked the fabric. My family is not big into plaid. I may be one of the few. However, this morning when my Dad saw me he was like,  It looks so good. I didn’t think the plaid would look right. It’s nice now that I see it. 

So, check out the pics.

IMG_0604[1] IMG_0599[1] IMG_0601[1]Extra Thoughts: I have packed my sewing machine away and maybe I’ll get to sewing something while in school. As a going away present, one of my co-workers from Ghana, Africa has given me some authentic African fabric. It is so gorgeous and I can’t wait to make a dress from it. It is about 3 yards and I am thinking of using this pattern with my personal adjustments for it.

OAL2014: Yellow Myrna and Owl Dress

I was off work last week and I got so much accomplished for the OAL2014. I finished both my dresses and I simply adore them both. I have learned many lessons. And I can’t wait to make another dress already! So, let’s talk about the first dress.

The pattern used was the official pattern for the OAL, which is Simplicity 1803. I made Bodice B for the owl dress and kept everything exactly the same for the pattern. I didn’t add a tie belt or tie end to this dress because I wanted to wear belts with this dress for a contrast.

This dress was started after the Marvel dress and it was not my first choice for fabric. However, when Joann’s did not have the Marvel print fabric then, I went with this owl print, which I loved. I thought I would put off making a dress from this fabric for about a month or two but, I couldn’t resist the fabric and decided to make them both simultaneously.

The dress was underlined with pink tulle that gives it great volume. The first lesson learned is to watch my iron setting because I definitely burned a piece of the pink tulle while make the bodice but, it was covered when I pressed the skirt seam upward. The underlining was an extra step but, it was so worth it. I would not love this dress as much if it didn’t have the underlining.

The bodice was the most intense part of the dressmaking. I thought the princess seams would be a problem but LLADYBIRD explained it so wonderfully that they turned out absolutely beautiful. Also, I loved her way of making darts and my back darts are just gorgeous. I don’t think I would have been able to have such great success with the bodice if it weren’t for LLADYBIRD. I kept the bodice sleeveless because I like to wear cardigans with my dresses the majority of the time and I don’t like the added bulk of sleeves. Adding the bias tape was no biggy. It could have been a bit neater but, I still like how it turned out. I don’t really like working armholes because it is such a small area to work with and you have to be extra careful. I was praying the entire time. Since the bodice was the main part I needed help with I decided to finish the dresses by simply following the pattern.

The skirt portion went by relatively smoothly. My threads did snap while doing the gathers for my skirt but, once I tried it again everything was cool. I must agree with LLADYBIRD about the pockets. They are in a kinda weird spot but, I’m not really dwelling on it. I did a narrow hem and made sure to take my time and it came out so neat.

Now, let’s talk about this zipper. I really wanted to finish my dress but, I was wary of inserting a lapped zipper. Well, I found that I built it up in my mind because it was no biggy. I referred to my book Teach Yourself Visually Sewing, looked at YouTube videos, and read the pattern instructions. I prayed and started the process and I love it!! I tried to make sure the zipper matched but, I see that with a lapped zipper it doesn’t really matter because it is covered. I did add the hook and eye above the zipper but, I can’t reach it by myself so, I usually leave it undone.

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I don’t own a serger so, I used pinking shears for most of my seams except the facing. I used the zig zag stitch on the edge of the interfacing. I was battling with my machine because my zig zag stitch would not do proper zig zags. I took it apart, cleaned it out, and changed the needle but, it still wasn’t working. I finally changed the tension and it worked like a charm.

Let’s talk about the cardigan. This is Myrna by Andi Satterlund of Untangling Knots. It was a very simple knit and the fit is perfect. I do feel the buttons are too small and I may change them out for larger buttons at a later date. The cardigan pops free from the buttons and doesn’t really stay closed securely. I am not rushing to change out the buttons because I very rarely wear my cardigans completely closed. They are usually open most of the time. The yarn is my favorite part of the cardigan. The color is perfect!! The yellow has orange undertones. And the yellow is so vivid. The yarn feels absolutely amazing and it is very lightweight despite it being wool. This was a very quick knit and I finished it in about a week.  The yarn is Miss Bab’s Yowza in Squash Blossom. I used the suggested Size 8 needles because I did get gauge with it. The gauge was actually an errata but, I still like the fit and my measurements weren’t off according to the schematics so, the errata was not a big problem when it came to my cardigan.

Hopefully, I covered everything about this dress. So, here are the pictures of the complete outfit…


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Finished: Shirt (Butterick b5653)

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And it is done! Well, you all know about my previous issues with trying to make this shirt. I learned many, many lessons. Also, I have to say a HUGE thank you to everyone who chimed in and offered advice and support during my first disastrous attempt.

On Friday night, I immediately went home and got back to work on this shirt. I fixed the gathers on the front of the sleeves and pretty much started from scratch for the sewing portion. And it worked out beautifully. I adore this top and actually wore it the next day to lunch and shopping. I received a compliment from the hostess on the shirt. I wanted to say Thank you. I made it. But, I just settled for Thank you 😉

I think I did alright with my underlining. It could have been neater but, I am pleased with it nonetheless. I have to re-do my slip stitches  because I think I rushed the process during the finishing and they weren’t that neat. So, I am going to mend that at a later date.

Further Details:

Pattern – Butterick b5653

Version – Version D with Version C’s shorter bottom. No trim added.

Fabric – from Wal-Mart at $1.50 per yard

Size – XS

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OAN: We start marking and cutting for the OAL2014 today! Why did I not know that pattern envelopes come in different sizes? I am such a newbie to this. So, I have the wrong size for my dress (size 14 – 20) and I need the Size 4. After work, I plan on making a trip to pick up the correct size pattern. Welp, that’s all I have to say about that.

 

Finished My Yellow Skirt

Well, I finished my skirt and I am so pleased with the final results. As mentioned in the previous post, the instructions for this skirt came from Brett Bara’s book Sewing in a Straight Line.

I didn’t have any major problems with the making of this. I just wish it would have turned out a bit longer. Well, I plan on making another in red and hopefully that skirt will turn out a better length.

While I simply adore the color, the lining is what makes me love this skirt. It gives the skirt a nice weight and I look forward to wearing it in the colder months with my tights and not have to worry about the skirt sticking to it.

I do plan on making another skirt using these instructions in red very soon, hopefully. Though now I am looking to challenge myself a bit more with my sewing skills. I want to do a skirt without an elastic waist, add pockets to my creations, and make a dress. I’ll keep you posted on how those turn out.

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WIP: Miette

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Well, I have been working on this Miette cardigan over the past month in addition to my Vivian pullover. I have been making better progress with this cardigan because it is a simple knit. However, with my pullover I have been moving kind of slow because it is a color work project (I will do a separate post on that project later.)

This is a fun and quick knit. I have actually been learning to read and knit using this project.

Also, I am a big fan of the color. This is my first time making something orange and I am excited about pairing it with so many of my dresses once it is complete.

The bust darts were a very fun feature and super-simple to make. It just involved decreases.

So far, I have a few more rows remaining on the body. I am doing the bottom band. Then, I will be moving on to the sleeves. This is the first time that I have made an Andi Satterlund design that does not involve set-in sleeves made with short rows. I do believe that this is her first cardigan design and that may be the reason for it. However, I still like the fit of the cardigan and I can’t wait to wear it with my Spring dresses. It is also the perfect little cardigan to carry along for my cold office and to take to those air-conditioned movies.

 

Finished Object: Marion

Well, this past Thursday I finished my Marion cardigan. I am super pleased with the results even though I did not enjoy working with the yarn. It turned out just beautiful and I simply adore the color.

For the most part, this is a very simple knit. The cables on the body of the garment and the ribbing of the sleeves really does keep things interesting. So, it wasn’t a boring knit. This cardigan is a seamless knit with short row sleeves. And this is why I really enjoy making Andi’s designs. It could be a super-quick knit but, I did take a couple of weeks to read Game of Thrones so, that halted my progress on this.

Let’s talk about this yarn. I got this yarn on sale from JoAnn’s last summer so, I decided to use it for some stash busting. This is Vickie Howell’s Sheep(ish) in Magenta(ish). I really do like the color of this yarn. However, it was a major pain to work with. It splits like crazy and even sheds a bit. I am pleased with the outcome of the cardigan but, I plan on never using this yarn again.

I simply blocked the sweater by pinning according to the schematics and then spraying with cold water. I wore it as soon as it was dry.

Here are the finished pictures.

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Finished Object: Geraldine and Ethel

I am so in love with this set. I mean really in love. I simply adore them. I can’t begin to express how much I love it so, let me get to the details…

As soon as Andi released her Wrapped in Wool collection, I fell in love. It really is like a “love letter to knitters”. The chart patterns drew me in because they featured knitting needles and yarn balls. Iknew immediately that this was the pattern for me to start my journey into the lovely world of fair isle. The design is what enamored me and I knew that I would have to cast on for the pullover and hat set first. I had plans to do the Aida mitts, which is also in the set, but it is getting warm in Alabama. So, I will save those for when Fall is approaching.

Before, I started the pattern I thought long and hard about the yarn colors. I knew I wanted to go with a vivid color and this Marine blue answered that call. I went with red for the yarn ball design because I really wanted it to pop. I went with camel heather for the needle design because I was thinking of the color of bamboo needles. This is the one aspect of the set that I am not completely crazy about. I feel like the needle design doesn’t pop and you don’t notice it unless you get close.

I definitely feel like this pattern took forever. It is longer than Andi’s usual cropped length and it is made with sport weight yarn. I believe I got spoiled with all those cropped designs made with worsted weight yarn. However, in retrospect a month is not a long time for a hat and sweater. And I did make a baby blanket and baby hat during that time.

The hat itself took no time just like I figured. I first did the chart pattern. Then, I put the hat down and finished the sweater. Once I finished the sweater I finished the remainder of the hat. I really think this hat could be whipped up in a day or two. I really like the swirly design that the decreases give the hat on the back. I also really enjoyed making the pom pom. I used my pom pom maker and made sure I wrapped it around numerous times. I wanted it to be fat and fluffy. It turned out perfect.

My row gauge was off and maybe that played a factor in the length of the sweater being 2 inches longer than it should be. However, my sleeve length was perfectly in line with the schematics so, I don’t know why this is. Because my body’s length was a bit longer I wear the sweater cuffed upward and I really like how it looks this way. I went up a needle size for the hat because I have a large head and thick head of hair. I am pleased with the fit.

Details:

Yarn – Knit Picks Brava Sport

Color – Marina, Celestial, Red, Black, Camel Heather, Tranquil

Weight – Sport

Needle Size – 5 (3.75 mm) for the hat and 4 (3.5 mm) for the pullover

Level – Intermediate

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Sewing a Skirt…

I have always wanted to sew but, sometimes I get a bit intimidated by the process of it all. When it  comes to knitting or crocheting, I feel like I am the one in control. But, when it comes to sewing the machine has a major part in the process.

I dabbled at sewing in the past. I made a wonky potholder, which I keep just because it was the first thing I sewed. I also made a mini quilt, which I adore. It is still displayed in my living room. I also hemmed a skirt and mended a few.

The ladies from the Untangling Knots group on Ravelry really inspired me with their handmade dresses and skirts.  Also, I adore Jennifer Lauren‘s handmade dresses and skirts.

So, now I actually want to make a wearable from scratch. I looked at YouTube videos, read books, and bought the very easy patterns but, it still seemed mind boggling to me. Then, I found this tutorial. And after looking over it, I figured I could give this a try.

So, tonight I plan on giving this a go. I looked through my fabric stash. Even though I don’t sew I had a few choices because I had “plans” to make a skirt for over a year now. I debated but, I settled on this fabric because it matched a lot of items in my wardrobe.

I will let you all know how it turns out…

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Finished Object: Sejia Set

This pattern was so much fun to make. And did I mention it worked up super-quick! I finished it in 3 days!

I gave the finished blanket and hat set to the couple this past Sunday. But, I got in some pics of the blanket set before it went off to its new home.

This pattern was a nice and simple pattern that has some interesting details. The details stopped it from being boring. I really enjoyed making the braids for the borders and ear flaps the most. It was such a basic aspect that made the blanket unique at the same time. As I mentioned before, this is a very quick pattern. I would have been finished sooner had it not been for the cut finger and watching my nieces/nephew over the weekend (We had a craft session with felting and made bows and bowties.).

The hat was made immediately after the blanket on Saturday night. Since this is a hat for a baby it went by really quickly as well. I usually make an adult sized hat in a night so, I knew that I could whip this baby hat up in a couple of hours. The construction of the hat was lovely. I really like the ear flaps to keep baby’s ears warm.

Oh, the colors! This is my favorite part of the set. My sisters and nieces were also very pleased with the colors. Green, blue, and gray really works and now I want a blanket or cushion in these colors.

Since this pattern can be worked up quickly even with a busy schedule it is now my go-to pattern for baby gifts. I also liked that it only requires less than one skein of yarn for each color to make the entire set.

Details:

Level – Easy

Yarn – Red Heart Super Saver

Colors – Hunter Green, Charcoal, and Light Blue

Hook – G (4.00 mm)

Pattern – from the book The Happy Hooker by Debbie Stoller

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Well, that’s all I can think to say about the pattern for now. I have been back to work on my Geraldine and Ethel set…