Monthly Archives: March 2010

No sewing – just house

I wasn’t able to do any sewing at all this weekend. :-( But, I did find a fabulous piece of embroidered white linen in my stash for another jacket. It’s been prewashed and is just waiting to be pressed.

I was busy all weekend replacing door casings in my bathroom so that I could get them painted before Jim started grouting. Not the most fun I ever had but I did get to use my nail gun and who doesn’t feel like *all that* when wielding a nail gun?

I picked up the crown moulding today as well as paint for the ceiling. I want to paint the ceiling before he starts laying the floor tiles because I’ll have to get my BIG ladder out to paint inside the skylight and don’t want to worry about scraping tiles. I decided to do the painting myself because I am super picky about that. Which is why I spent my entire Sunday sanding and painting door casings…

I didn’t spend the entire weekend working. Bryan and I went to a Panthers game with our friends Jodi and Jimmy. Jimmy and I graduated from high school together and now their daughter plays softball for Bryan. I hadn’t been to a game in ages – we had a great time! I had to laugh because I look so pale next to them – they spent all day Friday and Saturday at a softball tournament.

game

The tile is going pretty quickly now. Jim is nearly up the ceiling in the shower, yay!

shower

I got a big surprise today. Jim actually *made* these big, fat bullnose pieces – they are really incredible. Since the tile was going to come out as far as the door casing he thought we needed a nice trim piece. Love it!

bullnose

Here’s my shower drain. I had so much fun helping with this today – I made all of those little filler pieces! I cut up some 4×4 tiles and then hand filed the edges. I know it doesn’t seem like a big deal but I get so excited when I learn a new technique.

drain1

drain2

I probably won’t be able to get into my sewing room today since I have a ceiling to sand but I should be able to get back to my jacket by Wednesday evening.

Happy sewing to the rest of you!

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Simplicity 2443 – Part V

Okay, I lied. I did work on the jacket a little today, after all. The peplum and facing is on and topstitched which did not take very long. So, now all that’s left are the sleeves which I’ll take care of this weekend.

front

I like that the back is a little shorter and has a nice shape. I did make a teeny sway back adjustment which I probably didn’t even need. You can barely see that I added a horizontal dart because I needed a little more bust room. I transferred some of the horizontal dart to the vertical dart.

back

Several of you commented on the tie closure. I like the closure because it’s really different. I think it’s not meant to be closed but to instead hang open – which will be nice over a tank top or camisole. However, now you all have me thinking about other closures so I might make another one with completely different pockets, interesting antler-crown buttons and bias loops. Heck, you’ve practically dared me! ;-) I’ll probably change the sleeves too since these sleeves are pretty distinctive.

Things are going very well in the bathroom. I figure you are all getting bored with my photos so I’ll post them again once we get closer to completion.

PS: By now you are probably wondering what color this fabric really is! It’s a tough one to capture on camera. If you have the Pantone Shopping Guide it’s close to 18-3015 with blue threads woven in.

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Simplicity 2443 – Part IV

I couldn’t sleep this morning so I decided to get up and work on the jacket a little more.

I ended up taking the welts off altogether and don’t miss them! I think that between the pockets, oversized tabs and ties this jacket has enough going on without adding superfluous details. The facing has been attached and topstitched but I probably won’t be able to start on the peplum until the weekend as my dance card is pretty full for the rest of this week.

front

I finished the edges of the facing with a Hong Kong finish. I just happened to have 1/4 yard of a matching cotton fabric in my stash. I have no idea why I originally bought it but it came in handy.

binding

I was surfing the internet this afternoon and look what I found: the Cynthia Rowley jacket in leather! I don’t know if it only came in leather originally or if this is just another version. I like the leather a lot but I’m not sure it would be practical where I live. In case you are wondering, the price is/was $550 – pretty reasonable, IMO (although I do think it could look neater).

crleather

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Simplicity 2443 – Part III

This pattern calls for ribbon to be used for the front tie closures. As an exercise in futility I went to JoAnn’s this morning to see, if by chance, they had twill tape that would match. Hahahaha (snort). So, I decided to cut 2″ wide strips of self-fabric on the bias. That worked well but then I had to decide how to finish the ends. Normally, I would either tie a knot or use a cord end or bead. A cord end was out of the question because, with eight ties, that’s a lot of extra weight on one side of a lightweight jacket.

I experimented with knots with raw edges exposed or tucked in and decided it would just be too much. The last option was to tuck in the ends and hand sew them shut. It took awhile but I think it was worth the effort.

knots

I’m going to leave the bodice on the dressform while I begin working on the sleeves. I still have to decide what to do with those welts.

fronts

House update: Tile, tile, tile. We are breaking up the 18×18 tiles with 4×4 tumbled marble. Jim says otherwise it ends up looking like a mausoleum (which wouldn’t be nice). I LOVE it and can’t wait to take a shower in here.

tile

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Simplicity 2443 – Part II

I just returned from spending the weekend in Dunellon. We were supposed to go up on Valentine’s Day weekend but had to cancel because of the accident. We enjoyed a lovely belated Valentine’s Day dinner with Bryan’s parents on Saturday night and then headed home late yesterday morning.

My asthma is in high gear today so I’ve stayed home but that isn’t preventing me from doing a little sewing. The steam from my iron is good for me, don’t you think?

This is a very easy jacket, really. However, extra care must be taken with all of the details on the front. Namely, making sure that everything matches and lines up properly. A trick I learned from Marta Alto years ago is to lay the fronts on top of each other. This is a foolproof way to make sure everything lines up.

alignment

Since this jacket is unlined and linen is so ravelly, I decided to use flat-felled seams whenever possible. The bonus is that flat-felled seams provide nice structure and support to the garment.
back

I’m pleased with the way the fronts look with the exception of that funky little welt doohickey between the pockets. Honestly, I’m not sure if I want to remove it altogether or replace it with something else.

fronts

House update: The first – and most important – row of tiles has gone in. Tomorrow the real work begins.

tile

I have to express my frustration with my mortgage company. When you have a lot of damage to your home, the mortgage company is listed as one of the payees on all checks so they have to sign off before anyone can get paid. And they seem to love taking their sweet time about it! And, to make matters worse, they somehow expect me to make 90% of the repairs with 20% of the money. If I could figure out a way to do that I’d be in high demand on the public speaking circuit, wouldn’t I?

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Moving right along…

My friend G came over last week and helped me (okay, he did all the work while I fetched stuff) install new junction boxes for the strip lights. I’m so happy those eyeball lights are gone! We also removed the old ’70s-era heat lamp. I dabble a bit in minor electrical work so I was very happy to watch and learn something a little more complicated. G was right, it’s not hard. I’m building my confidence bit by bit – I even installed seven motion-sensor floodlights around the perimeter of my house this past Sunday!

lights

My tile is supposed to be delivered tomorrow and then my friend Jim is coming over on Thursday to work on the layout. He brought me over some samples of different Travertine tiles that he wants to work into the design. I love the big, fat slab of marble that he’s going to use as the base of my niches. Lucky me, they are remnants left over from other jobs!

marble

I had a few mosaic borders in my garage. I like them and may see if we can somehow incorporate them into the design without it getting too busy.

mosaic

I also received a package from Ann last week. The photo really doesn’t do this fantastic Chanel fabric justice! I’m not sure yet which jacket pattern I’ll use but I have lots of time to decide. This is about the only sewing-related thing happening around here right now, I’m sad to say. I’ve not made much progress on the Cynthia Rowley jacket but I’m holing myself up in my sewing room tomorrow night to work on it. I expect the house to be mostly finished in the next couple of weeks and am looking forward to getting back into my old routine.

chanel

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