Monday, August 4, 2014

Colette Myrtle as a Skirt

I love my new Myrtle from last week so much I wore it on Monday to work, and Saturday to my Alpha Gamma Delta little sister’s wedding since her color was purple!Myrtle as a Skirt
So following the Myrtle fest I made a skirt version.
Fabric: Cotton Seersucker with metallic stripe.
Pattern Pieces: Cut short version of the skirt front & back on the fold, and 4 pocket pieces.
Since the waist band of the dress Myrtle folds down (rather than up) making Myrtle into a skirt couldn’t be easier.
I cut the back skirt on the fold, be sure to scoot it over 3/8” since you don’t need that seam allowance.
Other than that I followed the woven Myrtle directions for the skirt. I used my 1/4” rolled hem foot for the bottom hem.
I sewed everything with the designed 3/8” seam allowance, then I serged the edges so they don’t fray.
For the waistband I serged the top edge and then just folded and stitched it over the elastic, which reduced bulk and makes it easier.
Love the Myrtle as a simple full skirt, complete with pockets!
Here are some pictures of skirt, learn how I make my tags in this post.
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Friday, August 1, 2014

Colette Myrtle Pattern Review


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Pattern Sewn: Colette Myrtle Knit Dress with available woven version.

Colette Digital Pattern Tip:

If you purchased the digital pattern and only want to print sizes  S-XL these are the pages you have to print: copy and paste this into Adobe Reader and you won't print the 2XL or 3XL split off pages:
4-8,11-14,18-21,24-29,31-34,37-47,50-60,62-63

I also printed the instruction packet so it was 2-pages-in-one using my printer settings, everything was still readable and it saved me some flipping.

Pattern Review: (View on PatternReview.com here)

Pattern Description: Simple knit dress with cowlneck and elastic waist perfect for summer.
Pattern Sizing: Up to 2x. I cut an XL, the pattern measurements matched my current street sizing.
Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?
Very much so. I cut the longer length without the shoulder tabs.
Were the instructions easy to follow?
This was my first Collette pattern and I totally see why they are so loved. Great diagrams and clever construction. The elastic casing for the waist is a little tricky to visualize, but Colette posted a video which really helped me.  Rather than trying to stretch the waistband while sewing it to get the fabric flat though I just gathered the excess to the already sewn area, much easier than trying to stretch and sew it.
What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
I like the self lining bodice and the elastic casing. The A-Line of the skirt is great too, just enough flair but without bulk. Oh and the pockets... Love some pockets! I'll probably make this pattern into separates once I have a dress in every color.
Fabric Used:  ITY Knit from Fabric Mart (No longer available)
Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:
I cut the neckline against the 'stretchier' grain of my ITY. This made this fall off my shoulders a bit. I think it was a combo of stretchy grain, and that my shoulders are probably a little more narrow than a true XL. Since I have a busy knit, I stuck a 3" x 5" dart in the middle of the neck line and it works perfectly, the pattern hides it fine. In my next Myrtle I'll cut the neck on the less stretchy grain and will also alter the pattern to reduce the width.
Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?
I can't wait to sew a few more of these, they will be great for work. Now that I've made my first the rest will come together very quickly.
Conclusion: 
Love this fun quick dress in a flattering cut.

Completed Dress Photos of the Construction



(Note these photos are from before I added the neck dart.)

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The completed shoulder seam, this was easier than it seemed to be on paper, lined up nicely for me.

Some Photos from while Sewing


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Finally made some pattern weights, they were helpful.


Since I don't have a coverstitch I serged the edge (above), then I double needle hemmed the openings (below). It worked out pretty well on my new machine.

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The completed bodice.

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I double needle hemmed the bottom edge to, I have so much space on this machine I stored my pin collector in the arm!

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Here's the dart on the right side.
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Full width of this dart is 3" x 5" inches. I basted to first before committing and recommend you do the same if you end up needing one.

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Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Initial Impressions of the Brother Dreamweaver XE

I've had my Brother Dreamweaver XE for a week and have tried out a lot of the unique features already.

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Day 1:
Turned it on, OMG this thing is mega mega bright with it's many LED lights, love it!

I figured out how to thread it via the on screen guide, and tried the automatic threader function. Swoon! It's so easy!
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I sewed a little, then switched over to trying the embroidery function.

Pretty sure my most appreciated feature is the simplest though, having a knee lift is amazing. So much faster and totally natural!

First I needed an embroidery thread bobbin, no fear, I can now wind bobbins without unthreading the machine, and they auto wind, it "pops" like a toaster when it hits the requested fill.
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Just using the onscreen editor I made a simple monogram complete with thread changes.
I easily aligned it in the hoop using the drop-light and sonic pen. Plus with the drop light you can see the embroidery path more clearly.

Then I tried one of the built-in Disney designs. I was disappointed to learn that you can't re size the Disney designs, at least not the Pooh bear I picked.Brother-Dreamweaver-XE-Sewing-Machine-015

I did not like that the ugly "© Disney" was at the end of the design and I was able to stop the machine before it stitched it.

I also created massive box-aster in the guestroom. oops.


Day 2: I got some digitizing software and used my "Hello Kirsti" logo font to create a stitchable logo design, and it worked! It was very easy to transfer my designs via USB from my computer to my machine.



Then I used a downloaded Redwork Cherry and a built in font to decorate some Danskin knock off Norts, very cute and easy! I LOVE the look of simple outline embroidery.
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Day 3: Monday, I brought show n tell to work... yup I'm 10. My work friends loved it though =D

That night I designed some more monograms using fonts in my digitizing software, then hunted for objects I could hoop, and that if it didn't turn out well I'd be ok with it.

So I added a Vine monogram to my Hello Kitty Target basket.Brother-Dreamweaver-XE-Sewing-Machine-028
Then I added a mod monogram to a "Not A Kelly Bag" style tote. I hooped it a little crooked, but using the sonic pen, rotate, and "path preview" I got it perfectly placed and straight!

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Then I had a right of passage... I broke my first needle on the canvas/stabilizer combination =(

No fear though I replaced the needle, then used the Needle +/- to find spot where the needle broke and easily resumed the project, you can't even tell!

Day 4: Applique!

I was brave when I tackled my first applique, I used a old T shirt, added a star fish shape, then I perfectly centered a T on the star fish. I dunno if I've absorbed enough Tennessee though, it wasn't until I stitched out that font in orange that I realized what I had done, that T is definitely for Tucker, not the UT Volunteers...Brother-Dreamweaver-XE-Sewing-Machine-044

Once I had my applique done I cut it out in the pattern shape, centering the star. Then I installed my move-it foot to tackle the tricky jersey + knit combination. It rolled right through and I kept a perfect seam allowance with the laser guide.
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In fact I was so impressed with it I decided to top stitch the whole bib, and it turned out super cute =)

See my post about this bib pattern here.
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Here's  Lil Tucker rockin his new bib, isn't he the cutest?

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More adventures coming soon!