Butterick B5734 Final

I have finally completed my first dress all by myself! YAY!! I will definitely tell you it was fun and hard at the same time trying to learn my way through new sewing techniques and redoing my zipper a few times. :)

Some problems that I ran in to was I didn't measure the dress on my body before sewing the back seam for the zipper because once I finally finished the zipper (after removing the first zipper that I sewed on backwards, lol) I put the dress on and realized i needed to take it in a half inch on each side.

The hardest part of the entire project was hemming the bottom of the dress!! Since the skirt was made of 5 pieces (which gave it a flared look vs. just having one rectangular piece of fabric) it was hard to take the hem up an equal amount all around because when I folded the fabric up it created extra fabric and didn't lay flat at all. It was also hard to fold up the hem an equal amount all around because once I sewed the skirt pieces together some pieces were longer than others at the bottom, which i should have double checked before sewing them all together.

Overall if I ever decided to redo this dress I've learned some very valuable lessons. The dress fits great and I like the wide straps. I also think the pockets are super fun and very trendy on dresses right now. When I get better at sewing and finishing dresses I would love to try this dress again. As you can see from the back I would still need to put a hook and eye above the zipper.

Onto the next project!

Dress Form Diva

Yippee! Isn't she hot! On my doorstep a few days ago was a SINGER dress form!!! It was on my wish list as I continue to progress and enjoy my projects. I have amazing parents and my DAD (yep I said that right) thought I needed a good tool to grow in my sewing. My dad is all about tools. :)

Thanks Dad!
I know I just said that I have a new workspace, but now I have an even NEWER workspace. My husband game me the approval to revamp our back bedroom into my project area!!

Gotta love the husband touches :) 
(Cowboys trash can and Iowa State Flag)

I've been working on the Butterick dress B5734 and so far I've completed the top and the skirt and my next step is to sew the skirt to the top. I've learned some new terms like baste, staystich, and understitching. Understitching is the coolest thing I've learned so far because it make the finishing look great and once you press the seam it doesn't roll. I did however have to youtube how to do the understitch and I found a great simple video that was wonderful in explaining how it works.

The hardest part was sewing around the center in the v-neck

I'm so excited to finish this dress project and continue learning. Its pretty hard since I have a full-time job so I try find time when I can. :) Lastly it's been SO warm in Iowa that I saved some money to purchase a patio lounger! One of the awesome old-school plastic ones to soak up the sun when I have time.

It was only $22 at Target

A Place To Call My Own

While browsing the new target ad, like I usually do on Sundays, I found an awesome deal for a 6 foot folding table! What a perfect table for me to use for my sewing. Plus I can fold it up when I'm not doing a project. Since right now all I use is our cute little kitchen table which is super tiny :) Now I can finally lay out the whole length of fabric so I can pin and cut.

Check out the deal on Page 14 of this weeks ad
I officially have a place of my own and now I can move from the kitchen.....to the living room :) It might not be ideal (since we live in a trailer) but it sure feels super awesome to have the space. Thanks Hubby!!

I was told by many people that since I chose a linen (100% cotton) material that I should wash the fabric before I start sewing with it so that it shrinks first. Instead of shrinking after I have the nice dress all put together. That was my goal today and I also cut out all the pattern pieces for the dress. There were 10 total pieces which may seem like a lot for a "simple" dress but I think since it has pockets that could be why. I need to do a little more research on what the important symbols are to trace onto my fabric. I did some chatting with my mom today and there are a lot of circles and points where I should trace. That will be my next step once I pin my patterns on.

Also I've been frustrated with the fact that most patterns only start a size 6, until I realized that it may actually be the "true" sizing that women should have had or at least did at one point in time until those crazy/smart marketers (yep that's what I got my degree in) decided to tell people they are fitting into a size 4 when that might actually be a size 6. The measurements above are the bust measurements on my dress which seem fairly normal or strange depending on how you look at it. :)

Lastly I went to the mall today and was sucked in by the amazing smells coming from Bath & Body Works! Somehow I came out of there with 5 new hand soaps that smell delicious. :) I recommend the ones I bought below.

All I can say is YUM!

Fabric Mania!

So after a long weekend of guard I was still able to take part in the $0.99 Butterick pattern sale at JoAnn's and found some good patterns that I'm hoping to try out. I had a list of around 10 patterns I wanted but I realized that 1) they would probably have another sale and 2) that would be super crazy to buy that many patterns. I narrowed it down to a few dresses and that's what I've decided to start with.

(left to right) Butterick B5489, B5640, and B5734
I'm really excited and hope that I can pull this off :) My goal is to start with the B5734 first and I am going to choose option A which is the girl on the left in the flower dress.

The most overwhelming part so far has been choosing which fabric to work with. On the back of the patterns they tell you the suggested fabric you should use and this one said "Faille, Crepe, and Stable Knits". All of which I have never heard of except for maybe the knit fabric but didn't know what stable meant. Thanks to Google and a book I found at Half Price Books I was able to at least find the definition. Searching in JoAnn was at first very overwhelming since I had no idea what I was really looking for and their signs aren't the best. Anyway after asking around I decided to go with a linen fabric because its 100% cotton and wont have any stretch to it which can sometimes be hard to work with (I hear). Plus most of the cute fashion fabics at JoAnns were the linen and cotton materials. So I finally broke down and just picked a fabric knowing that this will be my first project on my own and could be a disaster. :)

Hopefully I can get started on cutting out the pattern this week. The white fabric is just a apparel lining fabric that was 100% polyester (JoAnn actually had an aisle that said "apparel lining" so that was the easy part) I also bought some much needed sewing staples that I realized I didn't have.

A tape measure (using the one from your husbands tool box doesn't work quite the same), more bobbin cases since you cant have too many of these, a sewing gauge for when you need to hem the bottom and you want to make sure you are cutting the correct amount all around, and a tracing wheel to mark the darts and important points from your pattern. Other important things needed for dress making are tracing paper so you can mark the darts onto your fabric, pins, and good fabric scissors (i.e. scissors that you haven't used to cut food or sticky things) lol :)

So I should be set to get started! I'm going to pray for patience that I don't get frustrated and want to quit. I can do anything through Christ who gives me strength....even if it is just sewing a dress.

Past Accomplishments

So far in the past year I've made 2 baby quilts for the cutest babies in the world, a dress with the help of my mom, and a super hero She-Ra costume for a Prom held in town. Here are a few pictures of what I've created and this far :) Enjoy!

Baby Quilts

The girls quilt. My friends I made this for have a "punk" side to them so I loved the skull patch I found with purple hearts!!
Finished girls quilt with the skulls bias binding around the edges (hand sewn by the way) :)
Front of the boys quilt. For this quilt I actually used an iron in batting in between the layers so it made it a little more stiff than the girls quilt. Not sure if I would use the iron in batting again.
Back of the boys quilt (fleece material)
One of the amazingly cute babies (note my quilt below). He is such a doll!!

First Dress
 Made from the pattern McCalls Easy M6201 (option A)
Cutting out the pattern with my moms help

Final Dress! 
Sorry about the horrible resolution photos. 
Not sure why they were so bad.

She-Ra Costume
 I used this McCalls pattern 6349 for the dress and just tried to fandagle a sweetheart neckline myself which was pretty hard, but worked out for the most part.

 Final Outfit
I'm not super thrilled with how it turned out but I used some leftover fabric from the wedding that was satin and it would have probably been way easier if I would have just purchased some stretchy material. Oh well, I saved some money!

As you can tell I am a complete NOVICE so far and dont have very much experience. I cant wait to create some better quality pieces and take some nicer photos. :) JoAnn has a $0.99 pattern sale going on this weekend so I look forward to finding my next project soon.