Monthly Archives: March 2013

Top O’ the Mornin’ To Ya


Well, it’s allegedly the first day of spring, so therefore I’m writing my St. Patrick’s Day post. I probably won’t be writing a first day of spring post because spring doesn’t seem to want to happen here. The sun is technically out, but we’re still only reaching highs in the sweltering 40s.

Okay, so although I am not Irish and have no discernible heritage other than being a hillbilly from Ohio, I thought I’d honor the day in my own special way. Because I can! I found some cute fabrics, but not enough of my favorites to make one whole dress, so I broke it up. I looked through my pattern stash and chose New Look 6934 because it encourages contrast and was cute enough for a possible summer TNT–empire waist, cute length, sleeveless. The bodice is lined, which is nice. I think I graded up to an 18-20 like I did with the 6000, and it seemed to be fine. If anything a little gapey at the neckline, but no biggie.

I got a passable un-hemmed draft ready in time for a local St. Pat’s parade on March 10, and had a lovely time in my new creation. In this country you can rest assured that no matter how silly you feel, someone (probably someone also not Irish) will look even sillier, so really I didn’t stand out yet looked plenty festive. Luckily I had played with a go-to cardi pattern (Simplicity 2154) back in the fall, and made one in this chartreusey kinda color, which totally complements these greens.


Actual St. Patrick’s Day was incredibly fun. We had a few events to attend that ended up being only 20 minutes apart, so we hopped back and forth. One was sort of a tribute/memorial concert with lots of bands, and the other was my former Italian teacher’s annual fundraiser wherein he and a talented cast sing, dance, and tell jokes and have a merry old time. And I love that my Italian teacher is Irish. 🙂

It’s not a Guinness, but it was damn good.

With someone behind Lenny cracking me up…

And with my Sicilian leprechaun …


Goorin Bros hat, by the way. Love it.

The adorable Mr. Caffrey


Ed politely admiring my handiwork…

I’m just going to stand here while you flap your arms…

As always, there’s so much more going on. I had the pleasure of joining in on Lauren/Lladybird’s Mood meetup on the 9th, and had a blast. Meg from Mood welcomed us like royalty and even posted a pic of us on Mood’s Twitter feed. You’ve probably seen this, but here it is again:


Lots of Mood haul pics and other randomness as always on my Instagram.

Great synopses of the day by Gaby, Lisette, Allie, Charlotte, Nettie, and of course the guest of honor herself, Lauren. I believe that Gaby’s, Allie’s, and Lauren’s have a fairly comprehensive list of attendees’ blog links as well. These are the recaps I’ve spotted so far, and I don’t have much to add to their assessment other than to exclaim, “What an incredible bunch of blogoddesses!!” I’m not usually one to hang out with a gaggle of women, but maybe I’ve been wrong. Everyone was so bright and interesting–and, according to Charlotte, no visible pores. Bonus. And thanks ever so much to Lee and Sonja for finding me when I was a little lost sheep, all carried away by the wonders of Mood, oblivious to eighteen people leaving en masse.

Hope you’re all actually experiencing springlike conditions, and sewing your little hearts out.


Mad Men Challenge



Well, the season six cast photos are out and clearly I’m going to have to rethink my Joan dress. I’ll just whip up this little number.

Anyone working on the challenge? Seen the new photos?

Season Six begins April 7.

Happy Sewing!!

(Photo credit: Frank Ockenfels/AMC)



Hey all

Did I win the award for last documented polka dot frock? It wasn’t my goal–I’m just slow–but I am so glad I finished before the end of February. It’s 10:30pm-ish Eastern Standard Time.   Pay no attention to that March 1st up there…

Thanks again to Winnie at Scruffy Badger Time for hosting this absolutely fun sewalong. Her feedback via blog, email, and Flickr has been so encouraging. Such the consummate hostess.

Here’s my take on New Look 6000. While I love the look of the collar option, I chose an open neck because I fell in love with my lining so much, and wanted it to peek out. I originally tried the long sleeve option, which has a really neat cuff, but for whatever reason I just didn’t like the long sleeves. It was just too much… something. I’m so glad I ultimately decided on the short sleeves, because they’re precious as hell. They have a pleat and puff just so, but not ridiculously.

Constructionwise, everything was reasonably straightforward. I’m really glad I made a muslin, because although it was a simple pattern, all of those darts had to go in the right places. Also, I had to grade up from the maximum included size of 16 to about a 20, and that was an interesting exercise for me. I made the muslin out of lining fabric, with the goal of having both a good fit and an already-finished lining for the dress. It worked like a charm.

Photo Feb 24, 4 53 52 PM
Obligatory silly phone muslin-fitting pic.

The sleeves went together easily, and I didn’t have to do a neck facing since I did that fancy blue lining.

Here’s the dress. Beware of photo overload. I may as well post a bunch since I tortured my sweet angel for the entire evening–half the evening listening to me curse at the finishing touches, and the other half trying to get the perfect shot.  By the way, these pics are the perfect representation of my house.  There is literally thread on the floor everywhere.


The fabric is a Jennifer Paganelli cotton that I found on eBay.  It was love at first sight.




I love my lining!

Decent invisible zipper action, and not horrible back darts. Any wrinkles or lumps you see are my body, not the dress. 🙂


When I leave my honey alone, he gets really good shots like this, with my beloved hat and the fabric in the background(!!!). Kudos to Lenny for catching this moment.


I really love this pattern. It will most certainly be a TNT. The collar and cuff variations will be fun to play with in different fabrics, prints, and colors; and I’m ecstatic to now have a go-to custom-fitted sheath dress template.

Definitely check out the GOR-GEOUS variations on the Flickr group, and always feel free to see what’s doin’ on my Instagram feed. It fills in the sometimes-long gaps between blog posts. Lots of WIPs and other messes in my life.

You are all gorgeous and adorable and creative, and I can’t wait to see the other stragglers like me who are sewing away, finishing up their polka dotty works of art.  Thanks again, Winnie!!