mom shorts

shortsmuslin

High waist shorts practice pair. Or perhaps, freshly cut mom jeans.

Now true I modified this pattern some. I added an inch to the waist to make it higher, which apparently I had no business doing. And I obviously shortened the trouser leg to make shorts. Nevermind the “cuffed” bottom you see in the photo. I was just getting an idea of where I wanted the length to stop on these shorts.

However, had I known that the Simplicity 5259 pattern were none other than a “mom” trousers pattern, I would’ve probably looked at other patterns first. It looks like I have these on backwards since I’ve got this odd air pocket hanging over my stomach where it looks like one’s booty would go. As much as I hate the idea of starting over completely, especially when I’ve been averaging one day at home per week lately, this wasn’t a total fail at all. I’ve been dying to learn how to make alterations, and truly this probably an excellent project to start with since there aren’t many pieces nor doesn’t require much fabric.

Armed with more muslin fabric and some patience, I’ll definitely be back at it after this next trip.

P.S. — Although it’s a pretty crummy photo above, that tank top is the one I made some weeks ago.

high-waist shorts all day everyday

chic highwaist shorts

What I hope my end result will be making my own pair of high-waist shorts, minus the cool zipper detailing.
(Image source)

triangles pattern3

First attempt at drafting the shorts! Using Simplicity pants pattern #5259 as my guide.  Also, the test fabric swatch of my pattern design from Spoonflower.

triangles pattern2

1 yard of my very own fabric.

I’m probably the only one that wants to hold onto summer just a little while longer. 100+ degree days be damned, I sure hate layering up.

There. I said it.

So I’m rebelling with these shorts. Hopefully the rebellion is a successful one because I’ve wanted high-waist shorts for the longest time, and what a treat it would be to have them in a fabric of my own design, right? After making a scale change to my design based on the swatch I got back from Spoonflower last month, I received my fabric order in the mail a week ago. I settled on making shorts because it would’ve definitely been pricey to get more than a single yard to make anything bigger than that. However, if somehow this shorts pattern doesn’t work out, I may totally turn this yard of fabric into a crop top.

Let’s just hope the days are still warm enough by the time I complete these shorts. If not, layering it up with tights it is I guess.

wish me luck

burda7351b

Front (so far). Burda pattern #7351, version A.

burda7351c

Back.

burda7351a

100% cotton plaid shirting fabric + light denim.

burda7351d

A side-shot in the reflection.

This is yet another unfinished sewing project that I brought back from my 7 month stint Fresno, California nearly two years ago now (WOW).  In case you were sincerely wondering – NO. This was NOT my final fabric choice for this top. I purchased this fabric at Ikea in Palo Alto at super cheap so I could make a mock-up to see how the pattern fit. I hardly ever do this even though it’s always a good idea to make test garment before the final. Feel free to call me lazy.

It’s a retro-style blouse with a just slightly rounded collar and concealed button closure. What you see is exactly where I left off. I recall never completing this project because I got stuck on the directions for attaching the collar to the neckline. I just didn’t understand the way the instructions were written. I pulled this same project out a few months ago thinking a 1-year hiatus would make it simpler to understand, but no such luck. In the above pics the collar is just resting on the shirt, but I really want this shirt DONE already. I bought some fairly inexpensive fabric (that I shouldn’t have) with it in mind, so I’m going to bust out my sewing reference books and figure this out once and for all.

I just KNOW it ain’t that hard.

I can’t let this dumb pattern get the best of me any longer (!@_$%!!!*).

Alas, it will have to wait a few days of course since I won’t be home for another few days. Duty calls :/

wear it out

necktie1

Front.

necktie3

necktie2

Back.

necktie5

Perhaps a captured moment of bliss.
Or maybe the sun was in my eyes.

The headband I’m wearing is actually one that I stole from my mother. The print is absolutely beautiful. She says she made it out of some scrap fabric years and years ago, so somehow it just feels extra special. Especially since I don’t remember her touching a sewing machine past my second grade year of elementary school. Next add a self-made blouse, a darling necklace with a Singer sewing machine charm (YES, you read correctly) given to me by my best friend for my 30th, and a yellow clutch gifted to me by a dear friend from Francesca’s Collections.

It’s definitely feeling personal.

I hope you all had a great 4th of July! I finished my trip that afternoon and fell asleep early to the sound of enthusiastic kiddos and far away fireworks. I totally missed out on all celebrations, food and firework displays. Believe me, I was just happy to be at home!

i just can’t quit you

tienecktop1

tienecktop2

tienecktop3

I go into the occasional serious sewing slump, but I’ve been on really great terms with my sewing machine as of late. A really really late night together and a couple all-day dates last week. A spat here and there of course, but for the most part we’ve been getting along just fine. I think more and more this job may be coming between us.

Kansas City + back yesterday. Toronto + back today. Early in the a.m. (technically, today) I begin a 4 day trip with layovers in Sacramento, Bakersfield, and Tampico (Mexico).

Sometimes, I just want to be at home sewing the day away.

This is fabric is actually from my personal stash, and the Simplicity 0273 pattern is one that I picked up on sale for 99 cents a couple months back. So this is pretty much feeling like a free blouse in the making. No buttons, no zippers, no extra trip to the fabric store, and only 4 pattern pieces (version B) to deal with so I couldn’t pass at the chance to make it.

The print is rather busy with this tie-neck style….but I think I’m totally okay with it. I still have facing for the sleeve openings, an issue with the neckline I gots to solve, and hemming on the bottom left to do. Hoping to get this project finished at the end of the week since I don’t come back home again until July 4th.

Ughhhhhhhhh. I have to wake up in 4 hours. Have a good week you guys.

$1.50 salvation army dress refashion

dollarfifty3

These $9.95 Forever 21 sandals cost 6x more than the drawstring tube dress I’m wearing. The number of compliments I’ve gotten on this dress after two wearings is absolutely priceless. Happy. Camper.

dollarfifty1

Humble beginnings. Size 14 button down collared cotton shirt dress, front + back.

dollarfifty2

Hand-sewing gold glass bead embellishments on the existing fabric design.
Ignore the chipped nail polish.

dollarfifty6

Closer detail shot of the finished simple beading I added.

dollarfifty5

Finished front + back shots.

I stumbled upon this hidden gem when I was living in California about a year and a half ago. I’ve been holding on this old thing with pure laziness + good intentions. This dress was originally priced at $3.00 at the Salvation Army, but apparently on Wednesdays all clothing is marked 50% off. I don’t ever go into the Salvation Army clothing shops really, and I haven’t been in one since. The exact play by play of this purchase is quite hazy now, but all I remember is that dress looked like a tent on the hanger and that the fabric felt like it had been washed a million times. But I loved the fabric detail, particularly on the bottom hem of the muumuu-like button-down dress.

I like showing my shoulders + forgetting the sleeves during Texas summers, so I opted to make this a tube dress and adding a drawstring casing to the new mid-section. Most of this new dress is actually the bottom skirt of the old. I used the top part of the old dress mostly for the drawstring casing.

The navy, off-white + burgundy palette and existing fabric design put me in mind of a kind of nautical look so I added a gold rope trim that I found at JoAnn fabrics to help cinch the waist. I put an elastic band around the top of the tube dress + added gold beads just to give the dress some extra personality. It goes smashingly well with the afro puff.

dollarfifty4

not winning any awards on apartment therapy

workspace2

workspace1New workspace setup in my living room.

It’s almost amazing what a little rearranging will do. I originally had these two tables set up in my bedroom side by side linearly with both sewing machines. It looked slick, yet highly inefficient for me. I HATED going in my bedroom to sew. I didn’t have as much natural light + having the tables longways didn’t make for a helpful fabric-laying surface. I was still cutting and laying my fabrics + patterns on the floor. It’s such an annoyance to crawl around on the floor, hunch over to cut pieces, and it absolutely KILLS my knees!

I was trying really hard to keep my living room space a pure living room space. Just couch, coffee table, tv, a few books on the shelves so when people come over they know I be readin’. People over? I hardly ever have people over. And secondly, it’s MY living room space and I was doing a horrible job living up to the room’s name.

I’ll admit, it’s a bit of an eyesore in the room. But me actually feeling motivated and happy to work on a sewing project is absolutely priceless. Not like I’m ever really excited about going to work ever, but I am so extremely sad that I will be leaving my awesome home workspace for the next few days….I just enjoy working away now so much more!

peplum pre1Peplum top drafting. Using Vogue Easy Options pattern #8184 for the top + creating my own pattern for the peplum lower half.

peplum pre2

peplum pre3Good thing I made a practice first. The top will fit perfect, but that flared “peplum” bottom obviously needs work!

I’m really super obsessed with this neon yellow trend going around. I wanted to make a fabulous tube style dress with a flared bottom in the color for the summer, but when I went to the fabric store the only had one bolt of a loud (not neon) yellow. AND it was only 1 3/8 yards left on the bolt. Down, but not out, I gladly took it home and decided that although I couldn’t make an entire dress, I could probably pull off a peplum tube top. (The yellow fabric is shown on the table in the first two photos)

I gotta stop here. I have to wake up super early for work + unfortunately I’ll have to wait 4 whole days until I can tackle this project again *shaking fist*

Till next time kids.

best laid plans

McCalls 6173 leggings, Vogue 8688 top

This was originally supposed to be my NYE outfit. I went to the Neon Indian concert in Austin, TX that night. Glitzy black leggings, black (Target) wedges, and a simply relaxed extra-off-the-shoulder plain heather gray batwing top with a black cami underneath. You will be happy to know that I actually finished this outfit on time! But it was really rainy, and we knew it was going to be impossible to park close to the venue that night, so I ended up keeping the top, exchanging the leggings for black skinny jeans and sporting my grey + hot pink Puma sneaks. So. Much. Fun.

Making edits to the original pattern to achieve that extra off-the-shoulder goodness!

Dolman sleeves + super relaxed jersey fabric are just incredible.

The neckline is actually a bit more exaggerated than I had planned, because the pattern called for a bias-taped neckline. I chose a metallic gold bias tape which laid HORRIBLY. So at the last minute I just took my shears and cut off my hard work. It definitely made for an even wider neck line, but luckily it was okay since this jersey fabric was so forgiving it didn’t need a finished edge on it. Loved it!

Sadly, you don’t get the glitz effect as much in this pic :/

Whoomp. There it is.

Both of these are easy-level patterns, so they were pretty quick projects to complete for the most part. I did have to whittle down the leggings though so they could be a bit more form-fitting. At first they were hanging on me like loose skin. I chose pattern option C so they gathered beautifully at the ankles. I didn’t want to risk them being too short at the bottom.

It’s a late post for sure, but I had a couple Canada overnights the day after New Years so I didn’t get time to post as early as I wanted. But Hey! This is an awesome start for me! Happy Belated New Year friends 🙂

something good can work

Moxie’s grill/bar in Toronto, Canada. I’ve been here a couple times on layovers and this is probably one of my favorite burgers thus far in my 29 years! It’s the ‘Mediterranean’ with basil pesto, feta + goat cheese. The burger patty is well seasoned and the consistency of a nice meat loaf. SO good.

Watching a free showing of Pretty in Pink at the Miller Outdoor Theater in Houston, TX. I was too ashamed to tell my friends that I had never this awesome 80’s classic before!! Blankets on the lawn, sangria in thermoses, and bags of already popped popcorn. Perfect weather, perfect company.

Le. Sigh. This is about as far as I am in the decorating process for the main living area. Plus some Ikea shelving on the opposite wall that you can’t see. I ordered this off-white couch/futon from Walmart of all places, but the reviews were great, it was affordable for me, and thankfully it’s only available online. The bottom line is I’ve got big plans + a small wallet so the update on this room makeover will be coming ever so slowly, haha. All in all, living on my own is fantastic!

I’ve been making more meals at home and hence eating healthier meals. I struck gold on one of my flights and picked up the October issue of Real Simple magazine with a feature for 10 ideas for kale. (If you don’t know about how good kale is for you, I highly recommend you read up!) I made the kale, broccoli, and feta sauté. It’s very quick, nutritious and delicious especially if you are a fan of Greek food like myself.

Toronto, again. Taking pics of the style I’ve been wearing lately. It keeps well + looks professional when I work….I met Spike Lee on the flight I worked from Houston to Austin my first day or two sporting this look. He was the first to walk on the plane; he smiled big, extended his hand to shake mine and then says, “You look like you’re from Brooklyn.”

I have no idea what that means exactly.

But at the end of the flight he asked me what school I went to + said I looked like Maya Angelou when she was young (!!!!)

WUT!? SO taking that as a compliment!

And THEN about a week later in the same month (September) I spot Robert Horry in O’hare airport (!!!!!)
Back in the day when the Houston Rockets were exceptional, he was my fave player on the team! I barely make it to that man’s shoulders.

Last but not least THIS FREAKING PARKA!!!!! (I know, I know, I realize I overdo it with the caps + exclamations – I don’t yell this much in real life….truth.) I pinned this goodness a few days ago. It’s a daunting looking pattern to me, especially seeing as I don’t have much experience with Burda patterns. But this one is worth making a practice one first out of muslin…..UGH I hate doing that because I’m lazy + I want results yesterday. Can’t afford to mess up a good 4.5 yards of good fabric though!

Right now, I’m thinking this parka in a Canary or Mustard yellow. Ya know. Something a bit brighter for the Fall/Winter season. I’d like to think of it as a much louder khaki.

So in closing, I know this probably should’ve been a few posts, but I obviously haven’t updated in a month so. there.

Also, the title of this post doesn’t make much sense I suppose. It’s actually the title of a Two Door Cinema Club song + the remix of that song has just been added to my ever-growing workout mix.

WHY do I feel the need to over-explain myself? Annnnd I’m yelling again. Gah!