Archive | March, 2013

Sewaholic Lonsdale

31 Mar

I’m still here!  Don’t worry I haven’t fallen off the planet!!  I have been traveling, sewing, and mostly working since we spoke last.  I have a cute sundress to show you today.  We are definitely getting into sundress-wearing weather here in the Deep South and the Sewaholic Lonsdale is the perfect pairing.  I stalked this pattern for a while before I actually convinced myself to buy it, but once I got it, I sewed it up almost immediately.  I love the cute knot at the front and the way the straps loop through the back and then tie.  I also like the breezy half (?) circle skirt.  Although I don’t think this halter style is the most flattering on my body, that’s not going to stop me from wearing my new cute dress or making this pattern up again 🙂

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For this version, I used a new rayon challis I picked up at Hart’s Fabric when I was in California last month.  I know I still have to show you all my fabrics and I promise I haven’t forgotten.  The fabric was easy to work with and it is wonderful to wear.  It does wrinkle a bit as you can see in the photos but it is not that bad.
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If you are not familiar with this pattern, the bodice is self-lined but the skirt is unlined.  I strayed from the pattern and decided to line the skirt as well.  I used a yellow batiste.  Because I sewed the batiste to the rayon all the way down the center back seam when inserting the zipper, I could not separate the two layers for hemming without doing some unpicking.  Since that is one of my least favorite tasks, I left it as it was and just hemmed the two layers together and the skirt lining became more of an underlining.  The downside is that my flowy rayon is now a bit more structured but the plus side is that I had a hidden layer to anchor my handstitched blind hem to.  This minor blooper is not going to prevent me from wearing this dress at all and I have already enjoyed wearing it on vacation, to church, and all day to our local arts and crafts fair (where the photos were taken).

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I love the consistent sizing of Sewaholic patterns.  I sewed my usual size 8 and did my usual 1″ full bust adjustment.  This FBA was a bit different since I didn’t want a waist or bust dart in the final dress.  I rotated the bust dart up to the knot gathers and the waist dart fullness was rotated to the center front seam.  You can see details of how this is done on the Sewaholic website’s tutorial.

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The only other alteration I made was to hem the skirt just above knee-length as I feel this is more flattering on me.

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If you are looking for an easy-to-sew and very wearable summer dress pattern, you should definitely consider the Lonsdale.  I am thinking about making the maxi version for the next go-around.  What do you think?

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Vogue 8603, Washington DC, and G Street Fabrics

4 Mar

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So I have to apologize to my email and RSS feed readers who may have noticed that my last post went up a few days prematurely. I guess I will just blame it on the lack of time awareness that goes along with being on a cruise. I actually scheduled the post for Thursday but the WordPress app on my iPad had different ideas. Regardless, now you definitely know that I am spending the week bobbing around the Caribbean aboard the beautiful Celebrity Reflection.

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I’m sorry for not posting this skirt sooner — I initially stitched it up about a year ago but a series of events have kept it from making an introduction before now. Initially, the skirt was complete save for the hemming. Then, I lost a little weight and it got a bit big in the waist. I ended up taking it to my local alteration shop for the modifications because I decided if it was up to me, it would never get done. She also helped me mark the hem. By then it was summertime and I just didn’t feel like working on the skirt any more so it has sat in my UFO pile until now. I decided to finally finish the hem and wear the skirt on a recent work trip to Washington DC a few weeks ago.

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While I was in DC, I made a trip out to G Street Fabrics that all of the DC area sewing bloggers talk about. I had to take the Metro out of the city into Maryland and then walk 5-10 minutes to get there. They have a decent selection of fabric but some of it is hard to peruse because of the way all the bolts are piled on top of one another and their prices are ridiculous! Their silk charmeuses were $60-$70 per yard! I also saw an exact cotton that I purchased in NYC for $6 per yard selling in G Street for $25 per yard. They did have a nice selection of trims and buttons and I did manage to find a few things to bring home. I will show them in an upcoming post along with the Hart’s Fabrics buys that I mentioned not long ago.

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I love the ruching on the hips of this skirt. It reminds me of a skirt I have by one of my favorite designers, Nanette Lepore.

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Unfortunately, I have forgotten many of the details of the construction of this skirt because I made it so long ago. I do know that I cut the lining from the pieces that did not include ruching — no sense in having double the bulk in that area.

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My fabric is a lovely stretch suiting from Emma One Sock with a peachy nude background and green, magenta, and coral tweed-like flecks in it. It is hard to see the details of the fabric from these photos. I will try to update when I get home.

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I lined the skirt with a silky and slightly stretchy pale green satin. I used hot pink for all of my serger threads.

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My mother and grandmother joined me on my trip to Washington. While we were there, we had the opportunity to visit my cousin at work at the Pentagon!

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Thirsty Thursdays — Absolute Stress (Reliever)

4 Mar

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Since you now know I am away slacking in the Caribbean, I thought it only appropriate that I share with you a recipe for a drink to help transport you to an equally tropical state of mind. Enter the Absolute Stress (Reliever). I first tried one of these cocktails in New Orleans and I must say, I was hooked and had to find the recipe for myself. As originally made, the drink called for peach schnapps. You can use this, but I have found that as I have gotten older, my taste buds are not such a fan this overly sweet liqueur. I have substituted peach-flavored vodka here.

So don’t delay, gather your ingredients and transport yourself to a wonderful, tropical place this weekend, even if it is only in your living room 🙂

Absolute Stress (Reliever)
Serves 1

1/2 ounce coconut rum
1/2 ounce vodka
1/2 ounce peach vodka (or peach schnapps)
1 ounce orange juice
1 ounce pineapple juice
1 ounce cranberry juice

Pour all ingredients into a shaker filled with ice. Shake well and strain into cocktail glass filled with fresh ice. Garnish as desired and enjoy!