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23 Aug Goodbye Valentino’s No.1 Pencil Skirt

Ready-to-Wear garments often inspire my sewing projects. Can you imagine my surprise when I opened the latest J Crew catalogue to find a skirt I made last September in the 2012 Fall Collection of pencil skirts? (pages 56 - 57)        The timing of this unexpected discovery was perfect as it pushed me past the sub-lime green jacket of yesterday as well as reminding me to trust myself and not to be shaken by a disappointment. Goodbye Valentino's No. 1 Pencil Skirt $25.00. J Crew’s No. 2 Pencil Skirt $148.00 ;)...

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22 Aug “It Ain’t Me, Babe” B5567

“This jacket just isn’t you,” commented my honest husband. “Shut up and eat your damn cake,” said I. _____________________________________________________ Years ago while dining at a very nice restaurant, my husband and I observed a drunk man tell his nagging wife to shut up and eat her damn cake in front of a table full of guests.  It’s been one of our little jokes ever since………  It’s quite discouraging to spend three days sewing only to be disappointed with a mediocre result, but my husband is right – this jacket isn’t me. I believe the giant ric-rac just made it worse too.   Would you believe I...

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07 Aug Honor Thy Mother-in-Law

For some reason my 89-year-old mother-in-law and I both own the same shirt.She loves her shirt and wears it throughout the summer. I certainly don’t want my mother-in-law to think I am copying her, so I decided to refashion my shirt.   Though the cotton is extremely lightweight, I enjoy sleeveless tops during the hot sticky summer days and immediately cut off the sleeves. In retrospect short sleeves would have worked just as well, and the project would have been much easier. My last project, the orange peplum blouse, is one of my best fitting garments and inspired me to simulate a peplum.  By...

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02 Aug Proud of My Peppy – Butterick 5615

Decide that you want it more than you are afraid of it.  ~Bill Cosby I’ve made two buttonholes and zero tailored collars during the last eleven months.  Thank goodness I was finally inspired to tackle my fears and add to my skill set. This Butterick pattern offered all of the qualities I like in a blouse. Close fitting but not tight, and structured but not stiff. A straight and flattering peplum is attached at the waist, and the tie extensions remind me of one of my favorite tops I paid a fortune for at Sea Island, Georgia. I have always wanted to know how...

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22 Jul Let’s Hang On To What We’ve Got!

“ Mom, it’s time for you to quit wearing this strapless top.” Is this a preview of what’s to come? “Mom, this house is more than you can handle. Let’s look at a retirement community.” “Mom, it’s time to turn over the car keys.” “Mom, we’re afraid you are going to hurt yourself with that sewing machine.” ………………… I’ll quit wearing the strapless top, but I’m not giving it away.  It’s an expensive Sarah Campbell top made of a beautiful cotton almost as nice as Grandmother’s Sheet, and I love it. I recognize there comes a time when one has to take a long hard look...

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15 Jul 68 Garments and 8 Pairs of Shoes

I recently read an interview on The Pattern Review website with Elizabeth Cline, the author of Overdressed: The Shockingly High Cost of Cheap Fashion. I have not read the book, though I plan to.  Eventually ending up on Elizabeth’s blog  I learned  Americans buy 20.5 billion garments a year or  68 garments and 8 pairs of shoes per person. S e r i o u s l y ? I have been sewing rather maniacally this year making all of my clothes and let’s see……. just how many items have I made during the last 10 and a half months? 15 skirts, 15 dresses, 20 tops, and 7 pants which...

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12 Jul McCalls 3830

I recently bought the August – September issue of Vogue Patterns magazine. When sewing blogger Robin Denning announced her new position as Editor of the magazine I immediately renewed my lapsed subscription, however, after catching a glimpse of pages 76 - 83, I wasn’t willing to wait for it to arrive and bought a copy.  This issue provided me with instant inspiration along with a solution to a four-month dilemma! In March I ordered this fabric based on the jpeg below.   H e l l o………..   “Too bold.” I said. “Too bright……too big……..too much…..” The 7 magazine pages filled with big bold stripes changed my...

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07 Jul One $ Wonder(ful)

My mother gave me this dress some time ago. She bought it for $1.00 at a thrift store and thought the dress might look cute if I hemmed it. O k a y y y y y  … I thought it had potential, but a little hem seemed like just the beginning, or perhaps the grand finale. The fit was acceptable in bust but was too big elsewhere. After releasing a few stitches of the bust lining, I was able to adjust the bodice. Following the stitching lines I removed two inches from the upper bodice through the hips. I then tapered the lower...

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30 Jun Memorable or Forgettable? Vogue 8570

"Fashion is made to become unfashionable."  Coco Chanel I tried to keep this quote in mind while admiring Kate Spade’s new black and white paisley garments. This snappy print is featured all over the website in the form of a skirt, a top, a dress, handbags and other accessories all seen here. Fun, yes! Classic, no! Would I have if I indulged in one of these memorable pieces of clothing if I were shopping this year? I’d like to think not at $238.00 for the skirt, $238.00 for top, $398.00 for the dress and now $498.00 for a silk dress of the same print at Saks, but who...

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16 Jun Tidbits

 I’m sewing Vogue 8648 again . It’s not quite the  S H I B U I  that it was the first time around, partly because I have omitted the silk organza underlining, thus saving me hours or perhaps days of work. In the meantime several tidbits of information and inspiration have surfaced that I wanted to share…….. Today I had the pleasure of reading a comment from Lexley. That would be Lexley who inspired the cute Style Arc Lexley blouse !  I’ve often wondered about the names of clothing articles , particularly with Kate Spade and Lilly Pulitzer who name all of the...

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