I’m Alive!!

The tale I have to tell you.

2017 has been horrible so far, but things are finally feeling a bit better. Back in December, I got sick. I had a cold over Christmas. I didn’t think anything of it, but then January and February I got worse and worse until I couldn’t walk in February and was having such a difficult time with breathing and I was coughing so much. I wrote about it a bit in my last post back in February. Turns out I had pneumonia, but getting to that point of diagnosis was ridiculous. I didn’t have a fever at all, but I generally have a lower body temperature than the norm. I found out my dad has that as well. In February, I saw my GP several times and saw my respiralogist. Neither of them thought I needed a chest xray because the cough has been present for 9 months and I didn’t have a fever. I told them I was sweating and having chills, but I was checking out okay at a temp of 37.5 degrees celcius, which is high for me. I’m usually around 36 and rarely up at 37.

Eventually, I got diagnosed after going to the ER because my coughing was causing pain in my abdomen, a mild hernia. I got a CT scan and a chest xray and both showed pneumonia in my left lung.

I missed a month of work in total… Not good.

I got back to work and then ended up in the ER again after 2 days back because I sneezed and pulled a muscle in my back/dislocated a rib. It was terrible. I also got costochondritis, inflammation in the rib cartilage from coughing so much, and I still have that and a sore lower back. When you have a chronic illness, getting sick is so much worse and takes so much longer to recover…

I’ve been back to work for two full weeks. I had a migraine this morning, though, but I still feel like things are getting better.

I have little to no desire to sew. It was all I thought of while I was confined to my bed, but now that I am better….meh to sewing apparently!

Here is a recap of what I have sewn this year, though, since I won’t be writing individual posts on things (sorry, I need the spoons):

A blue Cashmerette Upton dress made with the same polyester fabric I used for the Star Trek uniform I made in the fall. I had 12 yards of this fabric so you’re going to see it pop up other places. 😉 I just love this pattern. I have many more plans for it. This version uses the gored skirt. I left the zipper off, because the fabric has some mechanical stretch to it. I’m also still perfecting the length of those waist darts and the width of the neckline, but overall I am pleased with how it looks on me and how I feel in it.

I made two bullet journal pen holders. The black and white bunny one is for my friend, Selina, who loves bunnies. Her holder has velcro on the back. I didn’t have white velcro handy for mine though so it ties around the journal. I’m going to switch that out eventually since it does not sit flat. These holders are great scrapbusters and took me a half hour to make both of them.

I made several of these Burda sweatshirts, which were part of my #2017makenine. I left the zipper off, because it’s not necessary and I didn’t want to struggle with it and the knit fabric. It’s a nice boxy sweater and comfortable. I made a size 52 and graded to a 48 at the shoulders. My first version was pretty large in the shoulders.

But the versions after worked out well.

I didn’t take final pictures of two of these, but you can see the colour combos below. All are made either with sweatshirt, terry, fleece, or cotton lycra with ribbing in various colours. The blue sweatshirt material with black brush strokes is the same material as my Golden Rippy Omega Angel jacket. The material is from 1986! I’m bringing the 80s back. 😉

I designed a couple of future dream projects using my curvy sketchbook:

Spent the day home feeling terrible but had fun sketching this design. #sewing #sewcialists #curvysketchbook

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Mostly, I’ve been making cards and enjoying that part of my creativity and the amazing team of people I am a part of with Stampin’ Up. Yep, I signed up as a demonstrator since I kept giving them my money. Hahah. It’s also been such a positive experience being part of a great team. It’s really helped getting cards from my team members while I was sick. ❤ It’s also a really great time to craft and be social.

I’ll be doing some small cardmaking classes in Toronto. I have one coming up on April 30th. If you live close by and just want a fun easy project to work on and want to be social, you are more than welcome. Feel free to contact me for more information.

I’m hoping my sewjo returns soon, but I’m glad that I’m feeling better every day. I do tend to sew more in the summer, because I want all the summer dresses.  I am still lacking in a lot of energy, but it’s getting better especially with the weather getting better and Spring in the city. I used some precious spoons this weekend to clean up my deck and prep for the flowers and herbs I will be putting back there. I’ve been enjoying my indoor plants and finding joy in the small things.

The happiest little corner ever. 😍😍😍 #plants #indoorplants

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I also really appreciate the notes I got and the well wishes. Friends sent me flowers, brought soup over, and I got a stuffed fox from one, too. It made being sick for that long easier knowing how much people cared. ❤ Thanks all for your emails, comments, and well-wishes.

 

Handmade Christmas 2016

I got back to sewing in December and made a bunch of presents for people for Christmas. I did manage to make one thing for myself before the year ended, but I will post about that another day.

My mom got a dark purple bamboo knit Cashmerette Concord T:

Concord T shirt for my mom

I made her one for her birthday last year and she really liked it.

I made a bunch of pj pants and shorts using the free pj pants pattern from 5 out of 4 patterns.

5 out of 4 PJ Pants

5 out of 4 PJ pants

5 out of 4 PJ pants

5 out of 4 PJ pants

The top two were made for two of my friends that I work with. The bottom two are for my stepkids. The pants all have pockets in them and every time I pointed that out the recipient was pretty excited about it!

I have plans to use up all the flannel I’ve been hoarding for myself for this and try out the pattern. If I used up my flannel, I’d clear off a shelf and get the surplus into my cabinet. Most of the surplus is fleece leftover from the next project so if I make some fleece tops then that is cleared, too! Plans to get my stash down by 10% are underway.

The next project was all self-drafted. And by drafted, I don’t mean to claim any professional skills, but that I eyeballed most things and made guesses and luckily it all worked out!

First up, I made three mermaid tail blankets!

Mermaid Tail Blanket

They are super cute. Two are adult size for my niece and sister and the one is a bit shorter for my youngest niece.

I made shark tail blankets for my nephew and brother in law:

Shark Tail Blanket

These are probably my favourite out of the lot. Those teeth make me giggle!

Finally, I made a Cashmerette Turner dress for my friend and couldn’t resist trying it on:

Turner Dress

It’s made with some lovely medium-weight knit that a friend gifted me. The colour and print looks great on my friend. It’s all coffee colours and was originally going to be a Gilmore Girls related gift with a Luke’s Diner brooch made by me, but I never got around to it. So she has to wait for that part of the gift. She sent me a pic of her wearing it for her birthday and Christmas Day and I was over the moon with happiness. She looked amazing.

That’s it for what I made for Christmas presents this year. My husband missed out on the handmade gifts this year sadly, but I tried to remind him that he got two wicked Star Trek uniforms earlier this year!

Did you make any handmade gifts this year?

A Bedding Set for Charlie

I didn’t sew all November and now I have a huge amount to sew for the holidays. Luckily all knits so they should go pretty fast. I can’t post about the projects until after Christmas, but I will be posting my Top 5 of 2016 again this year along with stats and such. Should be fun. I am also hoping for a sewcation for the holidays so I hope I will have a new project to share after. 🙂

This project was the last one I worked on.

Back in May, my friend, Nicole, posted on facebook that she was annoyed with the selection of baby bedding and how expensive it was. Nicole had recently announced that she was pregnant with her second child. I immediately commented that I could make her something. We worked out an arrangement where she paid for the fabric and I covered the labour as a present to her.

Plan was to make a quilt, a bed skirt, and bumper pads. We picked out the fabric from fabric.com in June and got it in July along with a few things locally and the quilt batting locally. I started the quilt in August with two decorative squares. One using applique:

Nicole sent me the design for the fox when she sent me a bunch of inspiration for the whole set.

Quilt for Baby Charlie

As a surprise, I embroidered the name on a quilt square with an arrow:

I haven’t done a lot of embroidery, but this makes me want to get into it more for adding fun details to clothes.

The rest of the squares and rectangles on the quilt were created without a plan. I cut the quilt back to size first and then arranged the pieces on top to get an idea of the layout.

I squared up the pieces and sewed.

And then sandwiched the layers together and used safety pins to make them lay right for quilting. I’ve never done a quilt of this size before and have literally only done one quilted wall hanging before so this was all a new experience for me.

For the quilting, I just followed the lines of the squares to make sure the feature was the gorgeous fabric and those two feature squares.

For the binding, I could not wrap my head around how to do it and just sort of winged it. I have since looked up more tutorials and am kicking myself for not getting it, but I didn’t want to rip it all back and really it looks just fine. The binding is a navy blue polkadot print. Difficult to tell in these pictures:

Baby quilt all done!!! 😍😍😍 #sewing #sewcialists #quilting

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The skirt was pretty simple to make. I followed this tutorial, but didn’t make a box pleat and chose to use two different fabrics.

The bumpers were a bit more difficult. I didn’t get the length right the first time and I piped the tops of them with the same navy polkadot fabric. I had to rip it out and redo that and I messed up the position of the ties so that also needed to be fixed as well. After you add the batting, you then quilt lines through all layers at each tie except the end ones so the batting sits flat. My heart was a bit in my throat since I was sure I would mess that up, but it worked out great.

And then I tossed it in the mail. It didn’t make it to their place in time for Nicole’s mother to see it in person. That’s Canada Post for you! They guarantee 7 days and it gets there in 10… :/

Nicole took some pictures of the nursery with everything set up and I am in love with it. I sent her fabric samples once she chose the main fabrics and she picked paint colours and accessories based on the samples. The room looks like something off pinterest!

Quilt for Baby Charlie

Bedding Set for Baby Charlie

Bedding set for Baby Charlie

Bedding set for baby Charlie

Bedding Set for Baby Charlie

Charlie is a super lucky little girl to have such an awesome mom. ❤ ❤

 

Star Trek Insurrection Captain’s dress uniform

Last night I finished the most involved project I’ve ever made in a short space of time.

About a year ago, my husband and I were watching Star Trek: Insurrection. Occasionally, my husband points out costumes or items of clothing that he wants me to make him. This time, he happened to point out one that I was in love with:

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The dress uniform has quilted panels across the shoulders and in the zippered front panel, extended front tails, a cropped back, gold lame bias tape accents, red and gold piping details, red bias tape in the collar stand, and red bias tape on the deep cuffs. To my husband’s disappointment, I did not make the funky braided ceremonial hat for his head.

I definitely procrastinated on this for a while. I was a bit fearful of fitting another person in such a tailored looking jacket. I assembled the materials for it after we watched the movie, but they sat around until last week.

I was able to find gold lame bias tape from fabric.com. It has a fusible back. While it was thin (1/4 inch), I used two lines of it in most places. I got red bias tape from fabric.com as well, but it is the low quality poly/cotton stuff. I should have bought the good stuff locally, but it is just a costume piece. I also got white poly cotton twill from fabric.com, but the grey stuff to eventually make a lower rank dress uniform for myself with the grey zippered panel. I did not find a good choice for the red and gold piping. Most stuff I found was thicker, upholstery grade and would have been difficult to sew in because of the many many layers of fabric. I decided to leave it off.

I started with M7216 for my pattern. PSA to all, it’s so easy to fit someone else, especially a guy! I started with a tissue fit to see if the pattern out of the envelope would fit him. There were some adjustments to make: full belly adjustment and a narrow shoulder adjustment, but overall it fit him really well. After those adjustments, I modified the pattern to have a front panel, as well as a bit of a curved side panel to make the fit over the stomach a lot cleaner looking. I raised the neckline and then used the collar stand piece from my M6696, because it was the closest pattern with a stand. Collar stands are pretty universal. I also added shoulder pads to give more structure to the shoulders.

Instead of adding panels for the quilting to the shoulders, I just sewed detail lines there and in the front zipper panel, too.

That lovely shoulder V in gold lame! 😍😍😍 #sewing #sewcialists #costuming #cosplay

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The sewing process was quite involved with all the lines and bias tape that needed to be matched as well as the cuff and collar.

The construction on the collar was a bit rushed as it was a half hour before we left for Fan Expo to perform, but I am not going to beat myself up on it.

DONE!! Just in time to leave for #fanexpo2016 #sewing #sewcialists #costuming #cosplay

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I love the cuffs.

My husband looks absolutely fantastic in it and it showed in his improv last night, because he kicked ass.

We performed last night at Fan Expo with PJ Phil from YTV’s the Zone. He was PJ in the 90s and I came rushing home from high school to watch Sailor Moon during the Zone every day. PJ Phil is a Canadian celebrity, especially for us 90s kids.

It was a lot of fun and Phil was a great Admiral Sulu!

I made the other uniforms excluding the other female performers’ uniforms which they purchased on their own. You can read about the guys uniforms here.

The jacket is my crowning achievement, though, and has given me so much confidence with sewing going forward.

Star Trek Insurrection Captain's dress uniform

Star Trek Insurrection Captain's dress uniform

The back fits incredibly well, but you will have to take my word for it since I didn’t take a picture of it.

Next up is to adapt this pattern into a Captain Kirk uniform from the early Star Trek movies for our performance at C4 in Winnipeg in October opening the Con and for William Shatner:

Kirk-Uniform-022614

My husband is eventually going to have an entire Star Trek cosplay closet along with his TNG uniform. It’s going to be great. I need to get business cards with my blog so when people ask him who made his spiffy costumes, he can pimp my blog. 😉

If you are in Toronto, come see the Dandies perform Star Trek improv at Fan Expo again at 5:30pm tonight in 701B. If you can’t make it to that, we also have our regular show Holodeck Follies on Wednesday night at Social Capital Theatre.

In terms of the pattern and giving it proper review, I feel I can’t really rate it fairly since I changed it so much. I do think, though, that the mark of a good pattern is being able to adapt and change it without the fit falling apart.

Live long and prosper or, as we say in the comedy business, Laugh Long and Prosper!

 

Baby clothes

Nope. Stop thinking that. I’m not having a baby!

All of my friends, however, are having babies. I have about ten pregnant friends and three that just had a baby in the last year (one of those is pregnant again!).

When I was on our honeymoon, I bought some fabrics with baby clothes in mind, but also myself, because I love them, too, and am not afraid of wearing twee fabrics.

My friend had a Harry Potter themed baby shower on Saturday. I didn’t make a bunch of Gryffindor cardigans for the baby, but I did make a bunch of fox and squirrel print clothing which has nothing to do with Harry Potter… The baby shower was awesome, though.

Golden snitches!!!! #harrypotter #quidditch #nerdlove

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You know you have fabulous friends when you go to a Harry Potter themed baby shower! @liz_t_one

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I also am so appreciative when people accommodate my million food allergies. I felt very cared for. Warm fuzzies.

Baby Clothes

I used all free patterns for the present.

First up is Made by Rae leggings:

Baby Clothes

Baby clothes

My friend got a bonus pair in jellyfish print, because she was over the moon when I posted my jellyfish dress.

These were easy to put together. They only come in one size: 3-6 months. Although, the stretch in the jellyfish would probably make it just 0-3 months depending on the size of the baby. That’s okay for a free pattern. I can’t wait to see how they look on the baby.

Next up is the Charlie Sweatshirt from Shwin & Shwin:

Baby Clothes

It looks a bit different from the one on the website. I majorly screwed up the neckline and cut it off and then attached a 4 inch wide band to the neckline instead, which is folded over. I think it looks cute. This is 6-12 months size, which makes it perfect timing for winter. The baby is due in the next month so in 6 months it will need a sweater.

Next up is the baby shoes pattern from Crazy Little Projects:

Baby Clothes

It’s 6-12 months size as well. I adapted the pattern quite a bit. It’s meant for woven fabric and I used knit. I also added a leg band for colder months. Not my best work with the serger for the teeny curves at the front, sadly, but it will look fine with chubby little baby feet in it.

I found so many adorable patterns for booties that I can’t wait to make more.

Next up are these baby mittens by From a Box:

Baby Clothes

These are fully lined and would probably work for up to 12 months.

Probably my favourite of the bunch is this knot-style baby hat from Zaaberry:

Baby Clothes

This is 0-3 months size and super cute. I would totally make a billion of these for friends!

Zaaberry also has two other versions of the hat: one with bear ears and a plain beanie. So cute.

Everyone is getting a baby hat! You get a baby hat! And you get a baby hat!

Finally, the last item I made was a tiny tank top from the Allison show:

Baby Clothes

I added bands to the armholes and the neckline instead of hemming them. I have no idea what the size is on that one. Maybe the same as the leggings, 3-6 months.

The whole bunch is adorable and took so little time to make. I probably spent about 4 hours with everything including cutting.

I also put together this card with Stampin Up products:

Baby Shower card

Most of it is using the Foxy Friends bundle and paper. Seriously love that bundle. The link above is to my friend’s shop so she would get happy if you decided to order anything through that link. 😉

So this project plus a pattern testing project may have helped get my sewing mojo back after a rough June. Cross your fingers!

 

Handmade Gifts

Over the past couple of months, I’ve made a lot of gifts for people. My nieces birthdays are in November and then Christmas I made gifts for people and some of those overlapped into January for me to finish them. Then my sister’s birthday is at the end of January. I still have one more thing to get done, but it has to wait… again… I’ve had a shirt cut out for my husband since uh… early 2015….oops.

My nieces are 14 and 7. I had a big dilemma regarding the 14 year old and what to send her for both her birthday and Christmas. I chose to make them both pajama sets for their birthday. Last year for Christmas, I sent all my nieces and nephew pj pants and they went over really well.

For the older niece’s top, I used Lydia #3197 from Burdastyle. I then graded the top down a couple of sizes for a 14 year old. I’ve used the Lydia pattern quite a bit for my Star Trek uniform shirts for the women in my troupe; I made a bunch of them in the fall. The Lydia is a nice basic long sleeve t-shirt and works well; it has nice hip shaping for the curvy among us and is very flattering.

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The top is made from white jersey with spandex in it (same fabric from my Simplicity 1812 top). It’s an awesome shirt fabric and has great recovery. It also washes well and doesn’t stain easily. I used my serger for the construction and my machine twin needle for all the topstitching. Although, I was disappointed with the lack of stretch in the twin needle. I think I should have increased my stitch length or used a different width of twin needle.

For the pj pants, I made an XS with the Simplicity free pattern (which isn’t available on their new site since they updated it). It’s the same one I used last year for Christmas. Then I freaked because they looked super small and added a four inch panel to each side. I figured bigger with a drawstring was probably fine. She says they fit okay. Phew.

This picture was taken before I added the panel:

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The pj pants are made with super soft blue and green plaid flannel. It was originally a double-sized flat sheet that I got at the thrift store. I used french seams in the whole thing. I hope I have enough of this fabric for a button-up top or a pair of pj pants for me or a top of some sort. I adore it. So soft. Excuse me, I need to go pet this fabric….

For my younger niece’s pj top, I used another Burda pattern: Raglan Tee 03/2014 #138. The pattern is really good. It includes two versions in it (here is the other version). I really love Burda kids patterns. They sew up very easily and fit my niece well.

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For the pj pants, I used Livi Stitches’ Avery Lounge Pants. I used the same pattern last year for her pjs, but forgot to talk about it. It’s an easy pattern with lots of sizes included in it. It is unisex and goes from 6-12M for an infant all the way to 12 years for a kid. I will be using this pattern for years to come. The plus about the pattern is that you only need to print the size you are making. Now that does mean there are no nested sizes, unfortunately, but fitting kids is super easy. The sizes are pretty spot on with RTW kids sizes, which is pretty important to me when I make stuff for my niece or anyone else’s kids. They need to be close to RTW or else it is too much guess work and measuring. The pattern also has great options for length and adding cuffs and ruffles. It’s well worth the $5 I paid for it.

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Both top and bottom are made with purple cotton ribbing and blue cotton interlock with some machine embroidery detail on the hems of the sleeves, shirt, and pant legs. I tried to top stitch the neckline with it, but it failed and I had to cut off the original neckline and sew on a new one. Worked out fine and made for an even nicer neckline, but I was bummed that I couldn’t use the embroidery stitch there. It was the same flower chain stitch from my green circle skirt. I used my serger for the construction and my machine for top stitching.

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Their gifts were fueled by Reese Peanut Butter cups. Yum!

For Christmas, I made two more pj sets for my younger niece. I used the Avery Lounge pants again, but for the top I made a change. My sister informed me that my niece loved her pj set so much, but that she didn’t really wear long sleeve tops to bed. I found a free pattern for a kid’s tank top for sizes 3-8.

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One pj set includes a pink tank top made with poly rayon spandex jersey and fleece cupcake print fabric. Both are from Fabricland. Since Fabricland moved into Honest Ed’s at the corner of Bathurst and Bloor here in Toronto, I’ve been visiting there about once every month or two. It’s easier to navigate than the other fabric stores in the Fashion District and often has good sales. I am still frequenting King Textiles, Neveruns, and Affordable Textiles every once in a while, but Fabricland is also part of my rotation. Findings, notions, and trims are still kind of expensive at Fabricland. I find more of a price difference in the knit fabrics. Knit fabrics in the Fashion District are a little on the pricey side. The other advantage to a chain store is the sales. The independent places rarely have sales and their marked down stuff is pretty low quality sometimes dusty as anything from streetcar dust on Queen St or sun bleached. It’s pretty disappointing. It’s nice to get bigger discounts at Fabricland. I’ve been avoiding shopping online since the Canadian dollar is not doing well at all. Sadly, even the Black Friday and post-Christmas sales were too expensive for me after the exchange rate and shipping. I’m hoping the dollar is on par again soon. I have done some online shopping, but only for bramaking stuff.

All of this is to say that the cost of my niece’s outfit here was really low. Less than ten bucks and I get a shirt or two for myself out of the pink fabric. I’ve picked up different colours for myself.

The other fabrics for the second set are the same purple cotton ribbing from her birthday set and a flower power flannel both from the thrift store. It’s nice to stay on budget for the holidays for once! Thank goodness for my local thrift store.

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My older niece got a choice for her Christmas present, because my sister informed me she didn’t need anymore pj pants. I gave her the choice of either True Bias’s Hudson pants (which I hadn’t made before but I thought would be a good choice for a sporty teen) or a Bluegingerdoll Violet dress (my version was made for Jungle January last year). She was okay with either and gave the choice to me so I decided on the Violet dress, because I had made it previously and enjoyed the process. I used black poly rayon spandex fabric from Fabricland. Are you sensing that I love this fabric? This one was a little different: more lightweight fabric with a texture to it. I hope my camera picked that up okay for you in the picture below. It’s a lovely fabric and obviously I got enough to make myself a top.

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I did the neckline construction a little different than the instructions. I let the elastic gathering create the v-neck after I put the band on in the round. I had a bit of a messy neckline before so I wanted a nice professional one for this dress. The hem is finished with my serger.

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I can report that it fits her really well. I’m not going to share her picture, but it does look great!

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I also added some coffee beans to the package for my sister and brother-in-law and dressed them up like Rudolph. 🙂

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When I was chatting with my sister over the holidays, she asked in the most adorable way if I could make her a pair of pj pants. I think she might have gotten a little jealous of all the things I made the kids.

Instead of using the free Simplicity pattern for the pj pants, I wanted her to feel super special and give her a fancier pair. I went with Sewaholic’s Tofino pants for her, because I love the piping detail. I also knew the sizing would be a better choice since my sister is a pear shape.

I got the pdf version of the pattern. It was very easy to tape together. I had no issues with that at all. The instructions were really simple to follow. Definitely a great pattern. I’m a bit of a Sewaholic fan and would love to make more of their patterns in the future. I’m a little busty for them, though… But they are really nicely drafted patterns. Their current sizing is close to my measurements, except in the bust obviously. Tofino pants only go up to size 16, but I am confident on grading them up to a 20 or 22 for myself will work. I definitely want to make myself some in the future.

For my sister’s pants, I made size 12, but cut a size 10 elastic for the waistband. I made piping using red and white striped cotton fabric and a piece of yarn for the cording. I am a DIY queen when it comes to piping. Yarn as the centre works just fine for me!

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Unfortunately, I didn’t have enough to always match the stripes accurately, but I didn’t really fuss over that. With piping, it’s such a small band that shows and these are pj pants after all. My sister isn’t going to hang me for that small infraction.

The fabric I used is another thrift store find and was during a 40% off sale at the thrift store. I got it for $2.50. I received the elastic as a gift and the striped cotton was leftover scraps from my Nautical M6696 dress. Sending it to her in the mail cost more than the whole thing.

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She didn’t care that the fabric was Christmas themed at all. It’s super soft. Maybe not quite as soft as the plaid flannel at the top of this post, but so very close. Excuse me while I go pet this fabric…

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Construction took about 2.5 hours in total even with making all that piping. I like that the waistband is a separate piece. I like the panels and the deep hem.

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I topstitched the piping down to make sure the seam didn’t bother her while she slept.

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I shortened the pants about 3 inches, because we are a family of shorties. The deep hem also means that if they are too short for her taste, she can bring that hem down. 3 inches is my standard shortening process.

Another item I made that was so late was for my friend, Lyndsey, who freaked when I posted my Gryffindor cardigan in such a cute way that I offered to make her one.

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Here it is before the buttons were on. I made the same size 48 I made myself for the Sophie Cardigan using the same fabric and buttons. The only difference is that the patch was slightly different. I, of course, totally neglected to take a picture of it.

The second last gift I made is one I refuse to take a picture of, because it was boxers for my husband. I’m not showing you his underwear. I made 6 pairs.

I will report, however, that the boxer shorts pattern in Simplicity 2741 is great. I made a size L and the fit is spot on. Although, I did need to increase the crotch curve. And that is all I am saying about that.

The final thing I made was a Slytherin cardigan for my husband using M6803 in size XXL.

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I used a polyester knit in grey and a dark forest green. I also got metal buttons and a patch from ebay.

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The pattern is great. Fit is great and he likes it.

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The only thing I did differently with the pattern was install the pockets more like my Sophie cardigan. Instead of making them a patch slightly above the band, I put them along the band and sewing up the bottom when I sewed on the band. Makes for a cleaner look, but the pockets are rather low. I might increase their height if I make this again.

I had so many requests for Harry Potter cardigans that I think I need to get some more patches!

I still have one more non-selfish gift to get to, but I have bras to do first.

This post covers 18 handmade gifts. I think I finally understand why I haven’t been posting much in the past two months……… Let’s celebrate with cake!

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Mmmm cake./sleeps forever

 

 

 

Star Trek Uniforms: Tahoe Tee pattern

This past week was a wild ride. Other than our regular monthly show, Holodeck Follies, on Wednesday, we also performed at FanExpo on Thursday night, the opening night of the convention.

My husband wrote a wonderful entry that recaps the whole affair. So this entry is about sewing, since that is the theme of my blog.

I sewed up four uniform shirts in four days using the Tahoe Tee pattern from Peekaboo.

Because of the time constraints, I didn’t have time to take detail shots. I have quite a few other shirts to make for the rest of the crew. I pushed through to get the shirts done for our FanExpo performers.

Dale and I already had uniforms. Although, I will also be making new ones for us to match the rest of the crew. I have about 7 more shirts to make before the October 7th show! I will be so tired of making Star Trek tops by then.

With some cast members, I was able to take measurements in person. With a couple, I was only able to go by their shirt size or get measurements from their wife. It turned out pretty well, though. The fit is reasonable on all the shirts. They are meant to be a looser fit than the original uniforms to give the cast some breathing room for human pyramids.

Each t-shirt got individual treatment. I traced out every size. I hate tracing patterns. This was seriously a labour of love. Some of the cast members are the same size so I will be able to re-use those patterns.

For Tracy, our blue shirted Bajoran lady on the left of the photo below, I did a small FBA to allow for a bit more room in the bust without making the shoulders ridiculous. I will have to shorten her sleeves before the next show, but overall the length and fit work for her. Tracy was fine with me using a men’s shirt pattern.

The fit was less complicated for the guys. For all shirts, except Chris’s, who is behind me in the below photo, I simply slashed the pattern to get the colourblocking and added in seam allowances in various areas. I sewed them all on my serger, except for the hems and sewing the topstitching on the neckband, and did a simple neckband in black. On Dale’s uniform and my dress, I did a Mandarin collar, but found that process to be difficult with a knit fabric. Because our show is a parody, it’s doesn’t require 100% accuracy. Leaving off that infernal collar saved my sanity…what’s left of my sanity.

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Photo credit for group shot: Quentin Twaites

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Chris (pictured above with my ire directed toward him) plays Weasley Pincher, our resident Wesley Crusher parody. I got to say, “Shut up, Weasley!” at one point during the show! I’ve been waiting for that opportunity for a while.

I made a basic grey t and added in the stripes in the three colours just below the armscye. Just don’t look closely at the stripe matching. It was the last one I made and I was exhausted. Bloody exhausted. Stripe matching that basically blew my mind. I couldn’t even…

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The Tahoe Tee is a pdf pattern and goes together really well. It even conserves paper by having smaller pattern pieces on a corner of the other pattern pieces. I liked that part. The only issue I have with the pattern is that there is a cutting guide rather than a pattern piece for the neckbands. I totally get this is personal preference, but I really hate cutting a square of fabric. I’d much rather use a pattern piece. I’m a princess. What can I say?

There are fit issues here and there. Without getting a ton of time to test the garments out or get accurate measurements for each cast member, I think they turned out really well!

Nothing else to say about the pattern. It’s a great base for a Star Trek uniform shirt!

Here are some choice actions shots. All taken by AltoVenue, like the picture above.

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TL:DR Review

  • Pattern: Tahoe Tee
  • Pros: Super fast, basic t-shirt for men.
  • Cons: Runs large. Check the pattern pieces for finished measurements. I found they were off from what was printed.
  • Make again?: I HAVE TO! Lol. But honestly, if Dale wants a t-shirt, I’d make him one using this pattern in a heartbeat. It’s a nice basic t and comes with long, short, and no sleeves! Totally worth the 9 bucks.
  • Rating: pink-star-black-md pink-star-black-mdpink-star-black-mdpink-star-black-mdpink-star-black-md5/5 stars

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