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1  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: General / Office-style button-up shirt and skirt combo on: May 19, 2008 06:48:15 PM

Well, it was a lot of blood, sweat, and tears, but I finally finished my first complete outfit (except for buttons - the buttonholer broke tonight, but I was too excited and had to post it as-is).  I was really just trying to get my feet wet with more tailored clothing, so the fabric isn't terribly exciting - it was whatever they had at the store by my work  Tongue

A couple of lessons learned:

1.  When sewing darts, thread a hand needle and run it through the end of the dart.  Hold onto both the thread ends and the needle (so you have a loop through the fabric pulling it tight).  This gives you a lot more control over the garment when you're sewing the dart.  When you're done, pull the hand needle and thread out and clip the machine thread as normal, but leave a little extra.  Tie it in a knot against the fabric to get a nice point on the dart.

2.  When sewing an invisible zipper in, shorten and cut it after you sew it in.  Unzip and press the coil open as usual, but stitch it in as far as you want before cutting, because when you cut it, the pull gets in the way.  You can move the pull up to the top, but when the zipper is closed it's much more difficult to get the stitch underneath the coil to make it nice and invisible on the other side of the fabric. 

3.  Cheap thread is horrible, spend the extra $2 for the good stuff and save yourself a thousand headaches. 

2  PURSES, BAGS, WALLETS / Purses, Bags, Wallets: Completed Projects: General / Machine-quilted polka dot tote on: January 31, 2008 04:59:46 PM
Made this in a class (that I took with my mom, aww), so I can't post the pattern - but ogle away.

The fabric was a rayon fused to a cotton backing, the lining and handles are just quilting fabric (thin cotton print).  Since the outer fabric was so heavy, I didn't put any batting in it, but I put it in the handles and the inner pockets.  I liked the zipper end covers too, they're a nice touch.

It's a little girly, so I probably won't carry it (plus I prefer messenger bags to totes), but I definitely learned a lot making it  Grin

3  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: General / Cadet style cap on: January 31, 2008 04:54:33 PM
Well, this was my first project without a pattern - and I think it came out pretty well, although it took 8+ hours.  And broke two needles.

Once I get the bugs worked out of it, I'll post a pattern.  I'd never seen one of these in person before, so I just kinda took a crack at it.  It's more or less a strip that flares on one side, a circle, another band, and two U-shaped pieces. 

I hemmed the bottom of the 'main' piece before I stitched the band piece on - that was a mistake.  The commercial one I stole from my friend after I produced this actually has two band pieces, one on the inside and one on the outside - the bottoms are turned under and stitched together underneath the main piece.

That didn't make any sense.  It will once I get the pattern together.

The brim's a little crooked, and it's too flimsy - the only thing I had that my machine could sew through was a Quaker Oatmeal Squares box and it doesn't cut it.  I'm going to try with some plastic folders from Staples, but I was really sick of the project at the end and I just wanted it to be done.  The band is the selvege from the side of the fabric I had - this was scrap fabric to see if it worked, but I ended up liking it.  I wear it all the time now.

It's meant to look a little frayed, but it wouldn't if I had hemmed the edges of the main piece before attaching the top piece. 

Pictures: (yes, I am aware that I match my shirt, no it was not planned)

4  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: General / Cloud Fleece hat! on: November 19, 2007 12:59:24 PM
First completed, wearable project!  The seams and binding don't quiiite match up in the back (second picture) and I think some of the cutting got a little wobbly because the fleece is so thin and stretchy.  Had some cabbage-edge too, I think the binding is too stiff for this thin fleece - finding stretch binding was tough, even here.  

Still, I'm quite happy with it - now I need to go finish another one so I can give it away as a prize at the race tonight.  Smiley

Big thanks to nico-tiro for posting the pattern and a few ideas to get me started.  

nico-tiro's thread: https://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=61577.0

5  POTTERY, CERAMICS, POLYMER CLAY / Polymer Clay: Completed Projects / Magnets! on: February 17, 2007 08:27:46 AM
I wanted to do something hand-made for my girlfriend for valentines day, and she loves magnets.  I got some PC and went to work:


I don't have any pictures post-baking, I didn't expect the fingerprints to show up as much as they did - and I think they baked a little too long, the flounder turned a little brown in some parts.  

She loved them, the octopus is now named 'Herbert'.  
6  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Discussion and Questions / Translucent Plastic for a lampshade? on: February 07, 2007 02:18:37 PM
I'm looking to make a lamp for my dad.

I'd like to take a few sheets of translucent white plastic, mount them to a frame, and put a lamp in the middle.

All the plastics I've found so far say they'll melt with even a 100W bulb in the middle - ideas?  sources?
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