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BurdaStyle Top Picks :: Week of 3/29-4/4

April 5, 2010

Well, my weekend was pretty productive!

On Saturday, I got all the laundry done, the dishes washed, cleaned off my kitchen table (I can actually see the top of it now!), and dove into the mess that is my sewing room. I thoroughly cleaned and reorganized the entire space, including moving a couple pieces of minor furniture. In one corner, I had a pile of random stuff that was driving me crazy and I got that whittled down and eventually eliminated (woohoo!). I took down the makeshift curtains I had up so all I have covering the window is the shade and I am amazed at how much more light comes in now! I also took down the tired artwork I had up and cleared off my bulletin board so my walls are uncluttered and bare, which helps the room feel bigger and cleaner. Also, I not only cleared off working surfaces, I also resurfaced my sewing table… but more on that later ;)

Friday night, I went out to dinner with my mom and afterwards I was in my car getting ready to head home and remembered that Hancock Fabrics was right there in the same parking lot. I looked over and saw the sign: SALE!! I had to go in. The laws of a sewist enforces it. I had no choice.

I did not go in to buy, so of course I came out with several things, but I was very good and only spent $20 of my budgeted grocery money! I felt so naughty… Showing and telling is forthcoming!


This week’s top picks are very reflective of I have been attracted to (eventually) making lately. Shiny fabrics, feminine flourishes, big skirts. I must get my act together and make something fun for myself.

These are garments that I particularly like and would love to wear myself. I usually just “favorite” them on BurdaStyle, but I’ve decided to make it a regular thing to feature them on my blog so I could share the inspiration and applaud the talent of the people who made them!

Spring Floral Blouse
by JacquieLovesFashion


Mocca Spring/Summer Dress
by Suzete Williams


Amour fou blouse
by Sibeli


My Linda
by Melaniec


Bird Blouse
by zozowahine


BurdaStyle Top Picks :: Week of 3/22-3/28

March 29, 2010

I just realized I didn’t blog at all last week. Whoops!  Trust me, though, there wasn’t much to report.  I have had little motivation to sew lately and I think it’s because my sewing room is overwhelming me.  Either my room is too small or I have too much stuff in there.  I think it’s the latter.  The stuff is fairly organized, but the room is dark and claustrophobic.  And there’s a pile of J’s dress shirts on the ironing board waiting to be pressed that taunts me every time I walk in there.  I think I need to permanently set up the ironing board in the living room in front of the tv so it’s not such a dreaded task.  Never have I wanted to live in a real house more than when I’m trying to find room to iron.  It’s surprising how much space is needed for it and you have to factor in being in close proximity to an electrical outlet.  Not as easy as it sounds.


These are garments that I particularly like and would love to wear myself. I usually just “favorite” them on BurdaStyle, but I’ve decided to make it a regular thing to feature them on my blog so I could share the inspiration and applaud the talent of the people who made them!


Simplicity 2614
by SewBissy

Great fit!  I almost always prefer gathers to darts when it comes to bodices.  Much prettier (and easier to do)!


Green Linen Spring Dress
by miss_jane_e

I have a pet peeve when it comes to homemade skirts and dresses:  how wide the hem should be.  So often I see them really tiny and they stick out like a sore thumb which screams homemade!  The first thing I noticed about this dress is the nice, wide hem at the bottom.  Makes the skirt hang much better and more evenly.  I really like the pockets, too :)


Natty’s Practice Pleated Tank
by NattyJane

I like pleats.  Especially on white.


Rossy Dress
by pitocia

My favorite detail about this dress is the design on the fabric.


“Izzybelle” Quilt
by bagfashionista

Doesn’t this quilt look so cozy?  The ruffled back is made with fleece.  I really like the wide binding, too.


Flowery Maxi Dress
by Suzete Williams

On my list of clothes to make myself is a maxi dress.  I really like the style of this one.  It’s more fitted than others I’ve seen which makes for a much nicer sillhouette.


Nadine Cropped Jacket and McCall’s 4444, summer dress
by corduroycoat

The cropped jacket is so cute!  I need to make/buy something like this, especially for spring.  All I have right now are ratty old cardigans.

That blue dress is darling!  And the red accent on the bust keeps it from being too plain. 

Anna Maria Horner: All Voile

March 17, 2010

I’ve never sewn with voile, but I love wearing it!  Never thought to quilt with it.  I must try this! What a luxurious summer blanket it would make. All the sun we’ve been getting lately has me thinking about vibrant colors, too! I guess I am ready for summer.

(found via whip up)

Linen Lampshade

March 16, 2010

 This happened a few weeks ago: 


We’ll just say it involved a man and his cat and an over-eager play session.  So on Saturday, when the man was at work, I set to making a new lampshade.

I started by salvaging the top and bottom rings and ripping all the paper off.  The old shade had a lot of thin wire in it so I kept that as well for some future project that would require thin wire…

I measured around the ring and found that it was 25″ in circumference.  Then I measured the lamp stand from the top down to the hook at the bottom and that was exactly 45″.  I decided to make the shade out of my linen Ikea curtain panel that used to cover the kitchen table.  It had several stains on it and I felt its life as a tablecloth had ended, so I found a good sized patch without stains and cut into it.

It has such a great natural color and I love the texture which I knew would really show when illuminated from the inside!

I cut a rectangle measuring 26″ x 46″ which gave me a 1/2″ seam allowance all around.  Fortunately, the fabric is somewhat stretchy so I didn’t need to be exact when sewing it together.  I did pin it around the metal ring first to make sure the fit was right and to find out exactly how much seam allowance I really had.  I had an inch overlap once I’d gone all the way around so it was perfect!

I took all the pins out and sewed it together lengthwise, then ironed the seam open.

I thought a little while about how I wanted to attach the fabric to the ring.  I considered velcro, but I searched around my room for some and didn’t find any so that was out–and plus I wasn’t too fond of the bulkiness that would have created.  I thought about buttons–too much work!  Then I considered hand sewing it all around, but that was also too much work than I wanted to do.  So I tried fitting the ring under the presser foot on my machine and it slipped right under!  So I stitched it by machine.  Quick and easy!  

To make it even easier on myself, before I sewed it to the ring, I ironed the fold in so the ring slipped right inside and instinctively folder over exactly, matching the ring against the crease.  I did this for both the top and the bottom:


Finished!  It’s so pretty!


 While the bulbs we use are the low-energy, halogen type that don’t create as much heat as the regular bulbs, I still made sure that the fabric didn’t touch them.  Having the metal ring at the bottom also helps keep the shade straight as it hangs.

Sigh… Ohh linen, you have such exquisite texture!  I love this fabric so much…

BurdaStyle Top Picks :: Week of 3/8-3/14

March 15, 2010

Happy Monday everyone!

I hope you all had an enjoyable weekend.  Mine was fairly productive.  I sewed up a new pillowcase for my body pillow.  The previous one I’d had for several years and was looking pretty sad, so I took one of my thrift store sheets and sewed one up.  Pretty simple, so I won’t be sharing it here, but I do have a post prepared about making a new lampshade for one of our living room lights!  I used linen… of course!

BurdaStyle top picks are numerous today!  Lots of goodies last week :)


These are garments that I particularly like and would love to wear myself. I usually just “favorite” them on BurdaStyle, but I’ve decided to make it a regular thing to feature them on my blog so I could share the inspiration and applaud the talent of the people who made them!

Swallowed By The Sea
by Ranjani

Beautiful color!


Moss shirt
by imvisible

I really like how this top fits with the cowl neckline and the tight band around the hips.  Great drape!


Do the Yellow Petal Shuffe!!!
by littlewren

This is actually a dress, but I wanted to use the picture that had a detail shot of that fantastic bodice.  She copied a dress she liked but was too expensive and drafted her own version. (Btw, that beautiful flower field she’s standing in is in China!)


Heidi in Roses
by motozulli

Great print on that fabric!  Great fit. Plus–pockets!!


First drafted Power Skirt!
by juebejue

Love those pockets!!


Satin dress with a lace collar
by AsiaMc

So pretty.  Be sure to click this link and see the close-up photos of the lace collar beautifully hand-made by her mother.


Refashioned shorts
by Lily_Bart

So cute!  Made from a pair of men’s dress pants. 


Poplin Dress
by SewBissy

Drafted the pattern herself.  Love the gathers at the top and bottom of the bodice!


Cascades McPlaiderson
by littlewren

A sophisticated ruffle!


Clear as Mud-Cloth Dress
by BeNew

Beautiful blue and I love the tribal print on the skirt of the dress.  Is it just me or was there a blue theme going on with these picks today? :)

Rough Linen

March 11, 2010

Rough Linen makes bedding all with French seams and pre-wash to shrink and soften.

People of the earth — I have found my textile heaven!!!

(found via Design*Sponge)


March 10, 2010

Our kitchen table is constantly being used.  I used to have a gray, linen Ikea curtain panel over it acting as a tablecloth, but it got dirty so fast and always has heavy stuff put on it that laundering it was becoming more of a chore than I like.  And it was always lopsided.  I hate uneven things!

When we have a real house with a real kitchen table that doesn’t have a rotating selection of electronics piled on it because we have nowhere else to put the damn things, I want to make this:

A simple, pretty tablecloth!  This one was made from Ikea cloth napkins.  A tablekin, if you will.

(via Design*Sponge)