Archive | April, 2013

Susie Homemaker Does Housekeeping

28 Apr

Well, ladies and gents, I may be the last one jumping on board the Me Made May train but I am officially a passenger now.

‘I, Katrina of the blog Susie Homemaker, MD, sign up as a participant of Me-Made-May ’13. I endeavor to wear one item that I have made, mended, or altered each day for the duration of May 2013.’

This will be my first year to participate and I am excited but also nervous that I won’t meet the challenge.  I included the “mended or altered” condition so that I can include items I have had a hand in making wearable in some way.  The way I look at it, before I learned to sew, I would take my clothes to the alteration shop just to have buttons sewn back on (sad, I know), so anything that I have learned to do since I started sewing is going to count for this self-challenge.  I will do my best to post a weekly roundup of outfits (that is another challenge in itself!).

In other housekeeping news, I have been working with a professional organizer to get my house ready to sell/lease.  This means that we got to spend an entire day and a half cleaning out and organizing my sewing room.  Now, I have definitely cleaned and organized my sewing room before without professional help, but it has never been so functional!  I have been so motivated to sew since we did the overhaul so I will have several new pieces to show you during the month of May.




One of the things we added in the sewing room is an open bookcase for storing fabric.  Before, fabric was in boxes on shelves and the floor.  It was impossible to easily see what was in my stash and that made it hard to be motivated.  Now that I can pop into the sewing room whenever the mood strikes and pet my fabric, I find myself cutting out and stitching much more often, rather than just daydreaming about sewing.  Unfortunately all of my fabric doesn’t fit on the bookcase — I have two large plastic bins of knits and one large plastic bin of quilting/decor fabric still on the shelves.




Here’s a shot showing the cute shelves my husband put up for me a little while back.  They run along two walls of my sewing room.  I have the best husband ever!  I will show you more pics of the updated sewing space once I get it tidied up from the sewing marathon that has been taking place.

In final housekeeping news, I am probably also the last person to claim my blog on Bloglovin’.  I have never been a big Google Reader user (I prefer to subscribe to blogs by email), but I know I have Reader followers out there, so I am now claiming my little blog for Bloglovin’.  There you go.

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I hope everyone has a great week.  I will do my best to pop back in later this week with a delicious, fresh chicken pasta salad recipe for you 🙂

Thirsty Thursdays — Strawberry Margarita

11 Apr


Does all this sewing have you thirsty?  If so, I have just the thing — a delicious Strawberry Margarita, compliments of The Foodie Bride blog.  If you are a margarita lover, you should visit her site for more mouth-watering recipes to satisfy your craving and find your perfect libation for Cinco de Mayo.  I am especially loving the traditional lime margarita.

More sewing to come.  I am currently working on a muslin for a casual button down shirt for my husband.  Photos soon when I have something substantial to show.  I also plan to *finally* finish my Gertie shirtwaist dress this weekend.  Plus I have ideas for several quick and breezy summer dresses.  We will see how all that turns out.  What’s on your sewing table or in your kitchen right now?

Strawberry Margaritas

Serves 2

  • Salt or sugar for rimming glasses (optional)
  • 2 oz tequila
  • 1 oz orange liqueur (like Cointreau)
  • 3 oz fresh orange juice (from about 2 navel oranges)
  • 4 oz strawberry puree*
  • 4 oz homemade margarita mix
  • Ice

If desired, rim glass with water or lime juice then salt or sugar (or mixture).  Combine liquid ingredients in the glass and stir well.  Add ice and serve.

*The strawberry puree is made by tossing 1 teaspoon of sugar with 1.5 pints chopped strawberries and then pureed after letting it sit at room temp for a while. You can adjust accordingly if you don’t have a use for that much puree.

Adapted from The Foodie Bride.


Perfect Shell — Simplicity 2599

2 Apr




Here’s my most recently finished sewing project — and I actually just finished it this week!  This is Simplicity 2599, a great basic blouse pattern that includes sleeveless and short-sleeved versions as well as several different trim options.  It also features different pattern pieces for B, C, and D bust cups so you don’t have to do any adjustments for that department.  The blouse is quick and easy to put together once you work out any fitting issues.  And really, there can’t be too many fitting issues when there is just one main piece for the front and one main piece for the back 🙂







As you can see, the neck in this version (E) features a cute ruffle which is created by gathering a single layer of bias cut fabric and attaching it to the neckline through the blouse and facing.  This technique is great because it keeps the facing from flipping out and because the facing adds an extra layer of sturdiness to anchor the ruffle.




In this photo you can see what the shirt looks like untucked.  Please excuse the wrinkles since I had it tucked into my skirt all day.  I had to tweak the pattern to achieve the waist definition you see here.  When I first sewed up the shirt, it was a complete box.  I ended up grading the waist down two sizes from the size that I sewed in the bust and hips.  This makes it a little hard to get on over my head since I also omitted the button opening at the neck but it is possible.




From the back view you can see that I did an awesome swayback adjustment — well, pretend like you can :).  It is wrinkly from being tucked in but before I made my swayback adjustment, the back of this shirt pooled like crazy.  Now it glides over my junk-trunk much more gracefully.  For finishing, the seams are all French seams and the armholes are finished with self-bias binding.




And just to show you one of my favorite flowers and why this is my favorite time of the year.  Azaleas make me so happy.  These are some of the small azalea bushes outside my office.  When I left work yesterday afternoon, they were so full of blooms and the sunshine was so pretty, I just had to snap a picture for you.  Unfortunately azaleas grow really slowly so it will be many years before these bushes reach the massive size of the plants that I so admire in our surrounding neighborhoods, but at least my little babies make up for it in quality!




And one last shot to show you the outtakes from my first attempt at self-photography.  Apparently 10 seconds isn’t as long as I thought it was.  Or we can pretend I was doing exercises in my skirt and heels.  In front of the camera.  I’m still amazed that I even figured out how to turn on the timer on my camera without having to consult the manual…



Blouse–Made by Me!
Skirt–Halogen from Nordstrom
Shoes–Cole Haan
Necklace–Tessyla on Etsy