Here's my Halloween costume, which I started sewing on October 1st, 2012! I used Simplicity 2172, and ended up with this an estimated 24-30 hours later:
I used a poly taffeta for the main fabric, cotton broadcloth to line the jacket, a twill for the bustier, and organza for the neckline and cuffs. It was kind of an epic journey to complete, all smashed into one month, but I'm happy with how it turned out!
And some close ups:
Additional photos and info on my blog. (see signature)
So, I decided to sew a dress to go to dinner in for my 1 year anniversary (April Fool's Day!) with my DB, but I didn't get going soon enough at it to be able to make a woven dress (aka make a muslin and then make a dress), so I decided to work with a knit so I knew it would fit. I also decided that it was time to become less afraid of prints (I have so many solids in my stash) and to finally use this black/gray/cream fabric that I have been saving for a while.
But you know how the Big 4 are when it comes to patterns that use knit fabric - they still add in ease (Why? WHY?!) when there should be 0 or many times negative ease for many knit designs to fit the body properly. And...I had bought this pattern my "woven" (14-16) size (I usually make an 8 to 10 in knits), so even the smallest size looked like a sack.
So, I ended up with this, which is supposed to be in the spirit of Butterick 5383, but is based off of a self drafted knit pattern for another dress. Though, I actually did end up using the sleeve from the pattern:
I am pleased with it as a dress in general, but it is just not sexy like I was hoping for. (I'm also not sure about the print in this silhouette, but that's a different story) I've determined that I pretty much need to widen (slightly) and deepen the V neck and that should help, and maybe a smaller band at the neckline would make it less casual looking, but I wanted to see if any of you had any good ideas for me!
I have to get the dress finished tonight, so I would appreciate hearing anything you can muster!
OK, guys...I'm back and here to tell the tale of the wine soap that wasn't to be... (a bit late, but better late than never, right?)
So, I made beer soap last Saturday (beer and honey!) and decided it would be cool to make wine soap as well...ya know, wine and beer kind complement each other, right?
I went to work on the wine soap Sunday morning. I used a Cabernet Sauvignon from Trader Joe's (Two Buck Chuck! Who wants to use good wine to make soap? Not me!), measured out my lye and set to mixing it up.
**Let me also preface this to say that I have a mask I wear while soaping, but it is just a plain paper mask and not good for much - I just trying to stay out of the way of the fumes while mixing the lye. It also not helpful that I live in an apartment and have just a hood fan and nearby dining room fan for air movement.**
The fumes the lye/wine put off were the most terrible I had ever been witness to, and, as was mentioned to me earlier in this thread, had to be mixed very slowly because it pretty much causes an eruption when lye and wine are put together. This stuff BOILED like nobody's business when I put a bit too much lye in at once. Luckily, it didn't boil over - what an awful mess that would have been! But, back to the fumes...they seeped through my crappy mask and I can say with certainty that this was the soapmaking endeavor that would take time off of my life, if any. I don't think words can express the nastiness of it.
So...I let the lye mixture cool and warmed up my oils, and it finally came time to mix them together. I wasn't happy with how this was going so far, and was about to get even more unhappy. Actually, I was about to get royally pissed off.
So, I'm mixing them together and everything is looking pretty good except for the fact that the lye has turned the wine to a fugly brown. I figure, I can add some colorant to make it look more wine-like. I add the FO (which is also supposed to smell like cabernet sauvignon) and stir for a bit. And then it hits me. I FORGOT TO LINE MY FREAKIN' MOLD! While cursing like a sailor, I slapped a liner into my soap mold and returned to my soaping pot to find brown sludge.
You'd think this would be the icing on the cake, but we're not there yet. I consider myself fairly lucky because I've made dozens of batches of soap and this is the first time that this has happened to me. Sure, I've gotten batches that start to seize and I quick get them into the mold, but never had it all just harden in the pot.
At this point I'm more than a little irked, but also determined. I decide that I'm going to save this batch by doing some WP magic. Have I ever done WP soap? No...but you have to start somewhere. So, I throw it on the stove and start to heat it up. I'm not sure if the grossness of the lye/wine mixture got reactivated or it was the FO, but it started stinkin' again...and I'm still put off by the brown color. So, I decide to throw in some colorant.
Not a great idea. When I finally got it done and pushed into the mold, it looked like someone had eaten a hamburger...meat, bun, all the extras...and then got handsomely sloshed on red wine and threw it all up. Doesn't smell much better, either:
After this debacle I got the heck out of my apartment to let it air out - it may have been in my head, but I started getting light headed. I threw out the gloves and washing implements I used with this batch (the smell was just rank...) and purchased a heavy duty mask that filters out fumes from the local home improvement store. I try to be careful when I soap, and I am certainly not taking any more risks with my lungs and I am never making soap with wine as the liquid base again!
I took a sample of this soap (and my story) to my knitting group last night, and here is what I found on FB this morning:
KRS (my sister) is still slightly nauseated by Jess' vomit soap
So, here's the skinny: I've done some fair isle before, but never any intarsia. I decided that I want to knit a tiny (we're talking 4.5 inches across, 3.5 inches long) sweater for the office mascot, Chuckie the bear, with the company's logo knitted into it.
I came up with this basic chart, using a knitting graph paper program, but am having trouble making the intarsia look good, between the joins (have been twisiting the yarns together), the places where the new color starts significantly far away from where it was in the last row, and the places with big gaps between color in each row.
Adjusted chart (too many stitches on original for the small size of the sweater. Bold lines indicate each stitch):
Also, the logo is looking pretty squat and not round like it should when knit...I thought knitting graph paper made it so it would have the correct shape of the stitches, and make things come out correctly?
I got a few projects done! Whee! So, I decided to repost my list to share with you guys.
My list (click on pictures to see the post for each project):
1. 2/13/10finish Berry and Bramble sweater 2. finish Telemark ski sweater 3. fabric checkbook cover 4. knit a hat for my nephew 5. 2/9/10finish bf's Valentine's Day giftMade the boy a weighted companion cube from the video game Portal - he loved it! 6. 2/16/10finish knitted jumperFinally sewed the last strap on and got this puppy done! 7. Set of 10+ cloth pads! 8. Wet bag for above cloth pads 9. 2/5/10:learn to spinI'm nowhere near finished learning, but I have learned a bit of the basics! Do we ever really stop learning about our craft, anyway? 10. fabric kitchenaid cover that also covers bowl 11. make another of #9 for my mom 12. cloth napkins 13. finish entrelac lace shawl 14. finish knitting my capecho reincarnation 15. Set of 5+ dishcloths 16. finish 4 paneled stained glass lampshade 17. A simple, versatile, knit (fabric) dress 18. Queen sized wish tree-ish quilt 19. Beer soap 20. Learn to felt soaps 21. Knit a colorwork sweater reminiscent of She-Ra 22. 2/10/10Try my hand at making nighties/lingerie - attempting to get something done for Valentine's Day!Whee! Got something nice done in time for V Day. 23. Set of 4+ reusable grocery bags 24. Obi belt 25. Wide pleather belt for Leather & Lace 26. Outfit to go with pleather belt for L&L 27. Messenger bag for Ex (promised it to him for V Day last year...when we broke up (after 6 years) I told him I would still make it, and we're still on speaking terms, so that's good) 28. Knit a pair of socks 29. Make some undies from scratch 30. Make a cape or jacket from my ivory double faced wool 31. Make some amigurumi for my nephew 32. Spin at least 100 yards of yarn for a random project (Not allowing myself to buy any roving until I get at least 10 of these crossed off my list! ) 33. Make a tiny Beyond Compare T shirt for the office mascot - Chuckie. Either knitted or sewn. 34. Finish deformed felted/cabled bag...just needs a button. 35. Knit up Corrie Fair Isle Vest kit from Knitpicks. 36. A "little black dress" 37. Skirt covered in lace (not lace fabric, lace trim yardage) 38. Tablecloth for my dining room table 39. Finish high waisted skirt. Will have to determine if it will even fit anymore before resuming progress. (damn metabolism!) 40. Finish lace shawl from Victorian Lace Today 41. SweaterBabe's Cables and Lace Kimono Wrap Cardigan
...and more to come!
active WIP hibernating WIP datecompletedplus notes and/or link to project
I originally found this Garnstudio pattern on Ravelry, and decided "why not?"
I've knitted lace dresses before, and comparatively, this little jumper seemed like a quick and easy knit. I used a hank and a half Cacasde Eco Wool (fabulous yardage on this stuff!), which is a bit chunkier than the Drops yarn that the pattern called for (which was maybe not a great way to go - we all know how chunky yarns definitely do NOT slim anyone). So, decreased the number of stitches in the dress and straps to accommodate.
Because of the different gauge, I started this puppy over twice (aka 3 starts in total). I kept thinking I had made it big enough, according to my gauge, and then realizing it wasn't. I just didn't want to make it any bigger than I needed to, since the pattern is not exactly all that body flattering to begin with. I also decided originally to increase for my bust, and that just turned into a boob-ful nightmare. I went back and did the standard ribbing that the pattern called for.
Besides the tried and failed bodice mod, I did not modify this pattern, but if I had to do it over again I would add one more repeat of the cable to get it just a wee bit longer. It's still long enough to be decent, but sitting down might be interesting! Also, I would sew the fronts of the straps down lower so the buttons actually looked like they were holding up the straps. (the pattern calls for buttons with buttonholes, but I just sewing through all of the layers instead)
Awesome yarn, elvissatx! The progression is neat to see. I've think it would be so neat to spin on a wheel, but it's hard to tell which wheel I'd like to spin on, since I don't know anyone or of any spinning wheel shop in the area. (Plus, I've never spun on a wheel at all) I've thought if I get serious about it, going with Ashford Traditional, like you did - how are you liking your wheel so far?
I made my own yarn this week (OK, think it was last week, but I'm new to the concept of Fiber Friday!) - my very first attempt at single ply drop spinning! I bought this beautiful drop spindle at one of my local LYSes, (The Sow's Ear in Verona, WI) and it was hand turned by a wood worker nearby. (less than 50 miles away - forget exactly where at who right now)
This was some practice fiber that one of the shop owners (I'm pretty sure she's one of the owners, anyway) graciously gave to me to practice on when I purchased my spindle! I have it in a hank now, but forgot to snap a pic of it. Also, no idea on what weight this is. Plus, uh, it's just a BIT thick and thin... Really just working on figuring out what I'm doing right now, and will work on the finer points later!
I have more roving to practice on, but am really looking forward to buying and possibly dyeing my own fiber soon! (just have to do a little stash busting with my crafting in general)
There are already a few version of the companion cube out there on craftster, but I wanted to share my own interpretation with you!
So, I started hanging out with my current boyfriend in June of 2009, and one of the first times we hung out after deciding to start dating, he showed me the game Portal, which has a "weighted companion cube" as the main tool.
Shortly after, he told me how (I believe) the makers of the game had made a real life version of the cube, but it was no longer available. That was when I decided I was going to make it, but I knew it had to be for a special occasion (as you can see, it's enough work to qualify for that a requirement!).
I drew up a plan for the cube, and put it in my pocket. I forgot it was there, and he happened to find it and said "what's this?" but I yanked it away and hid it before he could get a good look.
I decided I was going to make the cube for his birthday (and decided this about a week before it...his birthday is October 13th), and like most projects, I didn't make the cut. I bought a toaster for him instead, and decided the cube would be good for Christmas.
Between his birthday and Christmas he let me know that he had seen what was on the afore mentioned sheet of paper. I wanted it to be a surprise, so I put off completing the cube so he would either forget about it, or think I had decided not to make it.
Fast forward to February...I decided to finally finish the cube for Valentine's Day. As usual, I procrastinated and it got to be the week before VDay. Luckily, (but not for him) my boyfriend came down with a cold and had to stay home for the Tuesday and Wednesday before VDay (days we'd most likely have spent together otherwise). In that time, I finished the cube and a bit of lingerie... (http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=338697.0)
Needless to say, my boyfriend was SO excited when he saw it. I brought it out in one of those bags you'd put a kid's bike or some other large toy in and he had NO IDEA what it was until he opened it. He looked just like a kid on Christmas morning and before 5 minutes had passed, he had taken a picture of it on his phone and posted the picture on Facebook. Yay for gift success!
I made the cube with felt (not wool felt, just manmade yardage from JoAnn) and decided it wouldn't withstand being stuffed very easily, so I sewed duck cloth to the back of each piece. I then stuffed it with 3 bags of fiberfill (and it could use more!) and handsewed the last edge shut. It's very generously sized - 18" cubed!
Alright, so this wasn't posted in time for Valentine's Day, but it was finished and ready in time for it! I may have actually I finished sewing the thong while the boyfriend slept on VDay morning, but it was done in time for wearin'.
This is my first attempt at lingerie, and I think I gave it a pretty good shot! I got this fabric either at Vogue Fabrics in Evanston, IL, or at one of the fabric sales my clothing design club had in college (meaning, I've had this fabric sitting around for at least 6 years, unsure of what to do with it). It was labeled as silk, so I'm just going to assume it is, though I'm not sure, and I'm too lazy to do a burn test. I used about 1 1/2 to 2 yards for the whole outfit.
The lace I bought on clearance at JoAnn for either 25 or 50 cents a yard. Yay clearance! The ribbon for the neck tie I got in a grab bag of ribbon at Hancock Fabrics.
The cups of the babydoll are self lined, there's elastic in the back to allow for a little bit of leeway (aka weight gain or loss) and it ties in front for a peek-a-boo effect. I went a little lazy and used the roll hem on my serger for the hem of the skirt, but since it's overlaid with lace, it doesn't really matter.
For the thong I basically just made a triangle a bit bigger than a thong I already owned (since this is woven fabric and the thong was knit), sewed bias strips onto the edges, inserted elastic into them, and tried them on as I went. If I had it to do over again, I may have folded the lace around the edges of the thong or encased them in the bias strips.
Without further adieu, here it is! The pictures without flash are closest to the actual color of the garments: