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51  CLOTHING / Clothing: Discussion and Questions / Help! V-Neck Sewing Techniques? on: August 20, 2004 03:35:47 PM
hey all..

i am working on a dress, and i'm trying to make a v-neck back (non-banded) out of one piece of fabric. ahh, if only there was a center seam in the back.. then it would be so easy!!

alas.. do you know of any techniques that will create a nice finish, and prevent fraying at the "v" tip?

52  COOKING / Dessert / Mini Cooper Cake with Candle Tutorial on: June 13, 2004 04:00:10 PM
Hey guys! This is a cake I made for my boyfriend's birthday, using a Wilton 3D cake pan.

It was also the first time I used food color spray instead of dyeing the icing. I used wax paper to cover the areas I wanted white (the hood and bonnet stripes). But there has got to be a better way! Dyeing tastes so funky, and the spray was purple-tinged and watery. I've heard that rolled fondant tastes funky, too. Blah.

The road was made out of colored sugar crystals. The mirrors and decals were made with royal icing and painted with a mixture of luster dust & lemon extract. Be careful how much extract you use, however, as too much will break down the royal icing and prevent it from staying hard.

I had seen some lovely construction cone candles on the web, but was unable to find them in a local store. So i reconstructed some myself! And here for your edification is a mini candle tutorial :

1. Melt an orange votive in a double boiler
   (a Pyrex dish in a pot of water). 
2. Wrap some wax paper around an icing
    tip to get the proper shape. Tape closed.

3. Tape a regular birthday candle in the middle
    of your wax paper mold.
4. Dip the tip of your mold into the melted wax
    to seal it. Then spoon wax into the mold.

5. Let your candles cool on a cooling rack
    hung over the sink.
6. Voila! Peel off the wax paper and add a
    royal icing base, painted black.

53  CLOTHING / Sewing Pattern Reviews / Simplicity 7090 & Vogue 2429 - Why Vogue is Better! on: June 13, 2004 01:03:11 AM
Hoorah! I finished my first real sewing projects! Luckily my mom is a sewing goddess.. I only called her every other minute, really..

First up is a skirt made from Simplicity pattern #7090. It turned out all right, I suppose, although I should have paid more attention to the garment ease. I had to fudge the back a bit and take out some elastic, so now it's all bunchy. But the biggest problem I had with this pattern was the hem and seam allowances! They seemed to be different in different places, and some of them weren't marked at all.

Next is my much more successful attempt at Vogue pattern #2429. I can't even tell you how happy I was with this pattern! For one thing, the finished garment measurements were printed on the pattern pieces. The paper tore less easily, and the instructions were clear and well-illustrated (even for a complicated dress)!

Oooone complaint I had would be the difficulty of the pleats.. they're kind of mussed, although you can't tell from the pictures. (Note the pooching near the back zipper.) Y'all have any advice on great pleats not posted elsewhere?

Digital camera timers rule!

Finally, here is a close-up of the bodice lining & back zipper :

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