Sewing Cafe

Patterns, Tutorials and Works in Progress from the Sewing Studio of Lynne Williams

Friday, July 31, 2009

July's Sewing Cafe

It was nice to see familiar faces and a few new faces as well at our last Sewing Cafe. As we all appreciate, summer is a busy time in the North woods which can make it difficult for us to keep up with our sewing projects, but a valiant effort was made by all this past weekend.

Our new additions were both male, and both enthusiastic beginners. First to arrive on Friday was Chris who teaches north woods survival skills, camping, canoeing, tanning hides, etc. He wanted to learn the basics so he began by learning how to sew the different types of seams, and how to properly press them. Of course he also learned about the importance of grain lines.
He took copious notes and sewed up some fine samples to create his own" How to Sew" notebook. After mastering these, he moved on to making a pillow case to stuff grass into for camping.

We all enjoyed having Chris in class very much! Having beginners is such a good reminder for all of us in the basics. I did notice during instruction that the group was quieter then .....say usual.

Our other new student - James, a wonderful young man, who may at first been a little concerned with the masculinity of sewing, gleefully jumped right in. How could you be there and not want to make something?
James first task was to become familiar with the machine by learning to thread it, sewing on paper, experimenting with all those dials and observing the changes, and lets not forget the importance of speed control!
Once these details had been mastered he made the project you see here! A bean bag toss game.

He made 3 bean bags by ripping rectangles, sewing around 3 sides, filling and closing.

The target was made using a fun old fabric with stars. James chose a star, we cut a square around it and then he ripped some strips which were then sewn around the sides. Another square of denim was cut to match the top, then sewn around the edges to enclose all the seam allowance.

Here James is playing his newly made game. I apologize for the side ways viewing, still have so
much to learn about all of this technology.

Elizabeth made wonderful progress on a sewing surprise, which we cannot talk about much that it remains a surprise. But I did extract a promise from her that she would post pictures soon.

Paula - As you may recall Paula has a beautiful silk Charmeuse dress to make for an upcoming fall wedding. She finished her mock up. Alterations were then transferred to the pattern, and the cutting and marking of the foundation garment was completed. The foundation garment for this dress is boned and interlined to add support. Once her interlining ( a heavy sateen drapery lining I had about) was basted to her lining, the seaming began in preparation for the boning. I believe this is the first time Paula has done a boned foundation for a garment. It sure makes for a comfortable and beautiful fit. I would just also like to add that some of you may remember how much Paula enjoyed sewing her silk camisole(not) and I will confess to encouraging her to make this dress out of silk assuring her that the 42mm would be a little easier to work with then the 16mm. The 42mm being more then twice as heavy makes it more stable then the 16mm. Still fussy as it is silk, and it is bias cut, me when you see the completed dress you will understand that silk was the only option.

Judy - I am trying to take a page out of Judy's book, as she is patiently finishing previously started projects, or creating new projects by drawing on her stash. She sashed a quilt and then made pillows from some left over quilt blocks. Next she tackled this lovely fabric wallet for a friend. A very fortunate friend! I thought this made a nice gift. It was a quick 1/2 day project and used fabric from her stash.

Betty joined us which is when the fun always
begins. After passing out goodies and checking out every ones projects, she started sewing on a gingham house dress. Previously she had stamped little birds and butterflies on the fabric using an acrylic paint and setting it with a hot iron.

My husband also managed to get some detail pictures of her recently completed striped camp shirt.

Mary rejoined us this Friday as well. She brought her serger along and made some new bathing suits. Mary likes to stay young by swimming regularly, which apparently works quite well by the way, but the chlorine kills her suits quickly. That's not a problem for her though as she just sits down in class and whips out a couple of new ones in no time.

Well I believe that is all the news from Sewing Cafe for now, but stay posted you never know what could get added soon( I am sure I must have forgotten something)


Monday, July 6, 2009

Gift a Dress to Someone Special

Of course one of our favorite things to do with our talents is make beautiful clothes for those we love. Its a special pleasure to make a well fitting garment for someone. They have truly comfortable clothing on that helps make them shine, and we get to "look" at our work at leisure. When you think about it when you make things for yourself its like art work you don't really get to see, but when you make something for someone else your art work is displayed for you to further enjoy!

Elizabeth recently completed this dress for her mother to wear to a wedding, and I am told it was very well received. An added benefit was how comfortable the cotton was in the extreme heat. So while many of the other guests were melting in beaded poly satin (no doubt) Elizabeth's mom maintained her cool comfortable composure. A priceless gift indeed.

To a job well done Elizabeth!

And a beautiful fit from measurements only!

Sule's Silk top

The Pattern # is Vogue8155 and is currently out of print. Its rated easy and the directions were simple enough to follow. For more information go to the Pattern Review link at left.

I would also like to see this pattern done in a silk jersey, or rayon lycra which would create a heavier drape to the lower bodice accomplishing a closer fit to the body. I do love this fabric ( a silk seersucker) which reminded me of whipped cream. That image is furthered by the silk ribbon I placed in the hemline which supported the fullness at the hem so that the overall image is a dollop of whipped cream. I am hoping to make a high waisted pencil skirt to compliment this look which was made for my soon to be 20 daughter.

I am also thinking of making this as a neglige' for myself.

I would like everyones opinions on providing detailed pictures and instructions on my sewing process. I have thought about incorporating this in our class blog, or starting another for that purpose. What are your thoughts?
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