Sunday, December 29, 2013


I was perusing and was looking at 2013 trends when I ran across this photo and my jaw hit the floor. There are dresses from Dolce and Gabbana's Fall line, reflecting artwork during the Byzantine empire, and they are spectacular!!! I particularly LOVE the dress in the middle!!! The styling is pure perfections----don't you just love those earrings, dark lips, intense eyes and pulled back hair. If I had this dress I'd wear it out!!! Truth be told I LOVE art from so many periods---Renaissance, etc. If you take any famous paintings such as the Mona Lisa or Michaelangelo's "The Creation of Man" and slap it on a dress I'd wear it. All such beautiful art!!!!Don't let me come across any fabric with large artwork panels such as these. I'll be making my own dresses. LOL!!!

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Christmas Inspiration and a Gift for Myself!

Merry Christmas EVERYONE!!!! I woke up this morning just so thankful for life and for this day! I feel so blessed. I've got a healthy and happy family, home, food, friends and family I love dearly, YOU and all sorts of blessings (most of which money can't buy)! I love this time of year in that it gets me to focus on the important things in life that really matter.

As I watched my daughter open her gifts I had a bit of an epiphany. I'm not one for gifts for myself this time of year but I realized that I needed to give MYSELF a GIFT today! I realized that I needed to give myself the gift of "a chance". Truth be told since venturing off into self-employment I've been working my little tooshie off on several projects (sewing and non-sewing) but when it came to my pursuit of fashion design--- my heart had retreated into a state of uncertainty and doubt. I've got BIG sewing dreams (most I've only shared with a handful of folks) and I feel like I'm on the path to make them happen. But every once in a while I look at where I am and think of how far I've got to go that my doubts & fears paralyze me.  I'm always happy for moments like today that bring me back to my usual positive self. What have I got to fear? God's got my back (which means EVERYTHING to me) and I have so many supportive family and friends cheering me on. I can do this! I KNOW I can! So today I snapped out of my mental paralysis and got back to studying draping and patternmaking. I REALLY LOVE the idea of being able to come up with a design and know exactly how to execute it. I don't want to always depend on commercial patterns. I feel a bit creatively stagnated by them.

Anyhow I've been enjoying family and reading/studying draping & patternmaking for most of the day. As I mentioned before I'm working to re-create a gown I made for a client last month on my mini half-scale form. I'm making progress. I draped the front and just need to finish the back. I'm really having fun with this. I hope to post a pic of the draped "mini version" gown really soon!
 (Draping on the form. There's the pattern I'm recreating. Pinned out my dart and have drawn my stylines in the front)

 Helen Joseph Armstrong's Draping book lesson on draping on the bias. I'm technically not since the dress I'm remaking is a knit but I could go this route in practicing with a woven fabric so I get the body hugging fit.

I LOVE my books. I've learned something different from each of them!

Anyhow....I've had a great day and needless to day feel renewed in spirit. It's nice to get back to my design and draping and patternmaking work. Hope you're enjoying a wonderful Christmas.

Again.....Wishing you and your family a MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

It's Gonna Be a Good & Stylish Winter Season.......

I realized this when I walked out of both Jo-Ann's with a ton of patterns recently. I found Winter/Holiday patterns that I loved from Burda, Butterick and Vogue! I was in SHOCK! I buy patterns very seldomly. In the last couple of years I haven't consistently liked alot of the styles and I hate the idea of redundancy. That's why I'm so scrutinous in my pattern buying. And I seem to get worst every year. So finding so many patterns I like at one time really is great! Odd but great! Plus I needed alot of winter styles anyway. Living in a subtropical region means there's not alot of need for Winter clothes but for the short winter we do have this girl wants to be stylish! My pattern haul really made me happy. Now I only  need decide what to sew next.  So is it me or has anyone else noticed that the Winter season patterns for most of the big 4 pattern companies actually looked really good??? Were you impressed or not impressed????

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Butterick 5454- The ZigZag Wrap Dress

 Well I first laid eyes on this fabric and LOVED it! I'm a sucker for a bold print. I knew it would be wrap dress worthy. I thought I'd give Butterick 5454 a try. I'm not a fan of waist line pleats (they tend to make me look boxy) but figured they'd be pretty disguised in this print. Anyhow I like the results. I was rushing for church this morning so I didn't "dress it up" as much as I wanted. A chunky necklace and some tights and boots would've made this outfit much cuter. But I loved it just the same. The Hubby couldn't see what I made all the fuss about. I guess he wasn't spellbound by the print! LOL! But I got a thumbs up from the "Wee-One", my 6 year old and biggest critic, so I know I made a wise choice LOL! Anyhow, here's the review....

Time to Sew:
About 5 or 6 hours

Sewing Ease (scale 1 easy to 10 difficult):
About a 3, nothing hard about it.

Pattern Description:
Knit Wrap dress, View B

Pattern Sizing:
I used a very stretchy knit so I cut a size 10 for the bust and graded up to a size 12 for the waist and hips.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?

Were the instructions easy to follow?

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
It's a wrap dress! I could own hundreds and be happy. I'm not a fan of pleats but I could live with the one's in this dress.

Fabric Used:
Very stretchy rayon knit. I fell immediately in love with it at the fabric store!

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:
I added about 3" I believe to the length. I did my usual short back length alteration by taking out 1" in center back bodice and grading to nothing at side seams. I sewed the pleats at the seam allowance edge but didn't sew any of them down. I also used my coverstitch machine to hem my skirt and dress neck/front edge. To stabilize the neck/front edge I used seams great in the seam allowance to inhibit stretching.

What would you do differently next time?:

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?

Wardrobe Versatility:
This can be worn with a cardigan or jacket, bare legged with pumps or with tights and boots:)

Cute wrap dress!

Friday, December 13, 2013

2 Masquerade Ball Gowns Revealed.....

Ha, the November 16 "Birthday" Masquerade Ball has come and gone and I'm finally getting around to doing a post! Someone tell me where has the time gone???? I don't want to even think of how near the end of the year we are!!!

Anyhow here are the 2 gowns I made for me and my friend, Ms. S's Masquerade themed birthday party. I ESPECIALLY loved the way Ms.S's gown turned out especially since she was the Birthday Girl. The fit, style and fabrication of the dress were spot on and I'm delighted to report that she loved it! And I absolutely LOVED making it!

Ms. S's gown is Vogue 8358 and consists of 2 layers of fabric which I'll reveal in my review post. I also think for "kick's and giggles" that I'll try remaking the dress on my half-scale dressfrom (mini form version) so you can get a better view of the dress and especially since I don't have any other good quality photos to show you at the moment. The fabric used for this dress was absolutely stunning, especially if you saw it in person!!! Also, for some reason I can't remember which pattern I used for mine. Hopefully I'll remember the next time I post. Ok, more on these a little later.......:)

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Video Book Review/ Giveaway Winners!!!

Howdy!!! Well it's time for me to reveal the 2 winners of my 4th Blogoversary Giveaway. But 2 things first. THANKS to all of you who follow along with me on my sewing adventures and 10,000 Hour Sewing Challenge. I'm beginning to really settle into full time self-employment so my adventures are going to kick into higher gear. But more on that later. Secondly, I promised to do a book review---so here it is in video form.....BTW I made a small error in the video. My favorite fashion era is the 1500-1600's around the time of Queen Elizabeth I (I said Queen Victoria by mistake).


Last but not's the winner of the Smithsonian Definitive Guide to History and Style!!!
Drum Roll please...........................

"Rosa from Silicon Valley!!!!!!!!!!!

And the winner of Mr. Jim's (my tailoring teacher-Blog HERE) Basic Alteration 2 DVD Disc set is..................another drum roll................

"Mary Deeter"

Ladies, please email me your contact info. You can reach me at Congrats again to the Ladies and thanks to all who participated!!!!

Sunday, December 8, 2013

My Current Favorite Fashion Website......

Ok, after years of fighting it I've decided to immerse myself into the world of fashion designers. I mean I love clothes and I know what I like but I never took the time to look at the specific work of fashion designers. Now I'm intrigued. Each designer has/his own point of view and I now look forward to seeing how that's expressed season by season. I've only been familiar with a handful of designers but I plan to broaden my scope a bit. I ran across and LOVE the website!!!! I was just checking out Marc Jacob's Fall 2013 collection (I know I'm behind and need to catch up LOL!) I LOVED this look!!!!
I rock skirts and sweaters during the winter months (it's practically my uniform) and I'm thinking I need to add a few metallic skirts to my wardrobe to give my "uniform" some added spunk! I've really had a great time just looking at bunch of designer's work. It's neat to see the level of creativity that exists out there. I know there's a ton of fashion sites out there but this one is pretty cool! So far I've been caught up looking at runway shows but I plan to peruse the site. Since I'm sewing full-time I know I need to invest the time to study the fashions out there. Fashion design is now pretty intriguing to me. Who knows, I may just come out with my own line one day.......(wink, wink).
How about you do you frequent fashion websites??? Do you have any favorite Online Fashion sites that you think I should check out?????

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Sewing Jots and Tittles 12.3.13

Oh, it's been FOREVER since I did my routine "Sewing Jots and Tittle" Post! Between my transition to Full-Time-Sewing-Business-Woman and my client work load I've been pretty swamped. But I can't neglect these posts.  You know I've got a brain that never sleeps. Here' all of the thoughts that have been plaguing my mind....

Sewing, Fashions and Such....

(Stopped in my tracks when I saw this gown in a store window. Breathtaking! I'd love to make gowns like this in the future!)

 (I NEED to make a camel coat! Like NEED! LOL!)

 (Adding this to my book purchase list.......)

 (..... this one....)

(and this one too! )

(BurdaStyle pattern magazines are at Jo-Ann's now. How convenient! I'm feeling a little tempted to try my hand back at tracing patterns. I'm really tempted!)

(Clowing around at Mr. Jim's (my tailoring teacher) studio! Trying out my new instagram account. Yes, I finally broke down and started one. You can follow me at "thetailor2005".

(I walked into Hancock and there was NO customers there! That's rare! Can you say Ghost Town?!?)

 (Bought my daughter her first pair of Nine West shoes! They're so cute, small and lady like. At $9 that was the only way she was going to get them. Mama never pays alot for shoes. NEVER! That's my rule!!!!)

(I made a Masquerade Ball gown for myself---actually 2---(I made one for the Bday girl too) that I still have to review. Just waiting on more pictures)

(New Vogue patterns! Need I see more. I just need to find time to make my list so I can pick them up at the next sale!)

(My sewing room was converted into a bedroom for my Aunt visiting for the Thanksgiving holiday. That means I didn't sew for 2 days but she ended up being really comfortable! Who knew?)

(Don't forget about my 4th Blogoversary GIVEAWAY. I'm giving away this FANTASTIC book. To enter HERE!!!) 


 (You can't take some people to a wedding.....they hoard all the favors! LOL!)

 (A great detergent recipe. These 3 boxes and 3 bars of Kirks Castle soap. Cut up soap or put in the food processor and mix with these 3 powders.  Voila! Lots of detergent that will last forever! I like to use it with my liquid detergent to stretch it!)

 ( Lionfish at a local aquarium!!! Beautiful creatures! They're so fancy looking!!! Love the colors! Would provide great inspiration for a dress.)

 (The Octopus is my favorite ocean creature! I love this painting I spotted in St. Augustine, FL)

(Saw "The Great Gasby" only for the fashions---that's the worst story ever! I didn't like it when I read it in High School. But I did fall in love with this song! I only know and like one other Sia song. Didn't know her voice was so strong! The lyrics are pretty strong too. I'm assuming she's metaphorically speaking! LOL!)

 (The Tic-Tac-Toe matches between the Hubby and "Wee-One" can get intense. They're so hilarious to watch. The "Wee-One's" pretty good!

 (Love this quote by W.W. Law written on his building in downtown Savannah. A profound truth indeed!!!)

(Took the "Wee-One" to see Disney on Ice along with her Godsis and GodMom. It took me back to my childhood! It was great!!!!) 

 ( Transformed into a "Fairy Princess" for Trick or Trunk and her school Book Parade)

 (Don't you judge me! Yes it was cold enough to wear socks with my sparkle toe flats. It was a one time thing. Don't worry I promise I won't be the woman going to WalMart in rollers! LOL!)

 (Don't you just love the specialty food section in some stores. You can get som many fancy products from other countries! Jams, chips, candies and nuts! LOVE it!)

 (Someone just got a new pair of jeggings. You can't tell her she ain't hot stuff! No seriously, you can't. She won't believe you! LOL!!!)

 (A pay-phone!!!! At least I was excited until I realized the phone was missing. )

(Oh, these two! They're hilarious together. I love to watch them. They're attached at the hip---or in this case at the back! LOL!)

(In a thrift shop testing out the golf clubs. Thank God there wasn't a ball involved LOL! Moments like these  ALWAYS make me happy. My daughter's got the best Daddy in the world, just like I did:)

(My Hubby did the "Voiceover" for the commercial for our church's Christmas production that will be starting tomorrow (doesn't he have a great voice?).  Anyhow, it's an interactive journey back in time to the night Christ was born.  He's also one of the actors too. This is a huge event at our chuch and thousands visit. It's really awesome!)

 (These things are great! I love dehydrated vegetables!)

 (I use coconut oil on my skin and an added perk is I never have to check the weather outside. If it's cold the coconut oil will be a solid and if not less so. What a great dual use!)

(The Wee-One's Grandma was one of the family members in town for Thanksgiving. When she's around all bets are off and rules go out the window--as it should be! LOL! Here's the Wee-One in Grandma's glasses and holding/drinking Grandma's soda---a soda she wouldn't otherwise get! You gotta love Grandparents!!!! They're the other fun, older parents! LOL!)

(Never read the book but thought the cookbook parody was hilarious! HA!)

Sunday, December 1, 2013

2 Leopard Skirts- S1786 & BurdaStyle 01/2013 #115

Hope you All enjoyed your Thanksgiving holiday!!!! Mine was great! I had family visiting from out of town and we had a blast! I LOVE playing hostess! Well the 3 days I had guest there was no sewing. Actually my sewing room was converted into a bedroom which surprisingly worked out well. Anyhow as soon as the guest were gone I thought I'd churn out a project--specifically Simplicity 1786 for my daughter. I made the Burda Style leopard sweater knit skirt over a couple of weeks ago for my Burda Style "Knit Picky". I like these 2 projects and they were pretty quick to make. Here are the reviews.....Also, don't forget I celebrated my 4th Blogoversary on Thanksgiving and am hosting an awesome GIVEAWAY. You can find the details at the link HERE.

BurdaStyle 01/2013 #115 (from the BurdaStyle website)

Time to Sew:
Less than 2 hours

Sewing Ease (scale 1 easy to 10 difficult):
Pattern Description:
Skirt with drawstring 

Pattern Sizing:
I think I cut the smallest size......

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?
Yes, minus the changes I made to it.

Were the instructions easy to follow?

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
Loved the easy style!

Fabric Used:
Leopard print sweater knit

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:
I made the the casing and drawstring out of the sweater knit instead of washed silk

What would you do differently next time?:
Nothing. I'd make it with the changes I implemented.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?
Yes, it's a great wardrobe builder.

Wardrobe Versatility:
It can be work with tights, leggings, cardigans or jacket.

Super cute skirt!

Time to Sew:
About 2 hours normally but I was watching TV and distracted! LOL!

Sewing Ease (scale 1 easy to 10 difficult):

Pattern Description:
Vest and knit elastic waist skirt

Pattern Sizing:
I cut size 7 for my daughter

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?
Sorta! The vest looks alot wider in the picture and I don't think that's solely due to the use of a fur.

Were the instructions easy to follow?

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
I liked the simple style. Thought it would be a great pattern to showcase a wild fabric. I dislike how much narrower the vest was then in the photo and how wide the skirt was. I had to take it in a good deal.

Fabric Used:
Electric blue leopard print velboa

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:
I took out at least 4" in skirt width. It ran BIG!

What would you do differently next time?:
Make pattern changes to the skirt and vest

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?
Probably, but I'd want to make additional changes to the skirt and vest.

Wardrobe Versatility:
The pieces can be used as separates.

Cute outfit!


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