Friday, April 30, 2010

Winner!

I used a random number generator and even had Andrew click the button! Totally fair and unbiased, lol.

The winner is.... Rachel!

You can visit her blog here - it looks like the dress will be heading to Australia!

Rachel, you can email me at mollysewsblog (at) gmail (dot) com and give me your address!

Thursday, April 29, 2010

New Fabrics

My mom sent me the fabric on the left. It is a tiny blue and white stripe Oxford cloth. She sent me a lot, at least 4 yards. I think she found it at a thrift store? I will use it to make up a test pattern for something that requires a lot of yardage, but I haven't decided what yet.

The pink is my lining for my cape that I bought from Vogue Fabrics online. It's bemberg lining in "blossom." It's very pretty pale pink and is exactly what I pictured in my mind.
Here it is next to the cape. I wanted it to be light and somewhat neutral, but still pretty.
Well, now I have something to work on since the welt pockets and collar have given me a mental block/ scared to *&^ it up. Yay!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Cape update and 100 follower giveaway!!!

Currently, I have put together the main part of the cape. It is beige wool from Mood- it's really nice. As of now, I am being stumped by my fear of screwing up the collar, and of the welt pockets on the front, which I have never done before.
I did successfully "ease in fullness" the sleeve/over should part. It is perfectly lump-free!


When I cut it out, I really did not realize there are hand-holes, so you can use your pockets. Duh, Molly. Makes sense after the fact!

My giveaway:
You can read my review of the dress and why it doesn't work for me HERE, but many other people thought it was very cute! Itr has 3/4 sleeves, a scalloped dropped waist, and a pleated skirt (big pleats). It is pretty loose on me; it would best fit someone around a 34-28-(loose). Whoever that may be- you, daughter, friend, etc!

So, if you want to be in the drawing for it, be (or become) a follower and leave a comment by Friday at noon and I will draw a winner out of a hat Fri evening! So if you do enter, check back on Friday to see if you won!

PS- I will mail it wherever, but it will be slow, cheap mail. All I want in return is a picture of someone happily wearing it and enjoying it!



Sunday, April 25, 2010

Black and white sundress- Finished!


Yesterday I said all the things I have to say about remaking this pattern, so here's the pix:
The wiener dog pulling a "I just want to SIT in the sun."
From the back, for both of us.
The print is big stylized roses, although it also reminds me of a giraffe.
Overall, I am pleased. What do you think?

"Time Warp Wives"

This is a fairly old article, from 2008, but I just discovered it.

You can read it here.

It is about three women who eschew the modern world and live and dress and act completely within their preferred decade, the 30s, the 40s and the 50s.

The author of the article did a good job of not putting their own slant on it, but I really found the whole idea very distasteful. Now, I also think that it's weird that I have such a strong dislike for the concept these women live by. I like vintage things and clothes, I sew and wear them and I buy them at estate sales.

I guess it is the attitude of the women that I don't like. For one, it is very ingenuous and head-in-the-sand. Each of the women says something along the lines of: "the world is a dangerous and scary place that I want nothing to do with." and "I don't read the news." So they would rather live in a time warp?

Of course there was poverty then, and sadness, and crime, or a man abusing his wife, or a child going hungry; there has been and always will be sadness in the world. I don't think the wisest way to deal with it is to pretend it doesn't exist.

My analogy: New Orleans can be a very dangerous city- we often have the highest murder rate in the entire nation. I could say "that is a terrifying fact, so I will pretend not to know it" and live my life unwisely, riding my bike wherever I want, not paying attention to my surrounding, going in unsafe areas and generally being oblivious because I would rather not think about it. Or, I could be smart and realistic and say "this can be a very dangerous city, but only if you are unwise." So I avoid certain areas, and keep my eyes open and act smart- and never personally experience crime, while still enjoying my life.

The only other thing that annoyed me was how much time and money they spend keeping this lifestyle going. One of the women says she spends 50-150 pounds on each outfit. That is one of the principal reasons I started sewing vintage clothes- I simply don't have the money to buy them, especially as the vintage concept grows and prices go up.

The one thing I don't have a problem with is the relationship lifestyle choice. If they want to play subservient housewife, that's totally their business. Everyone's relationship has a balance of power; theirs is just very obvious to the world.

Anyways, it's an interesting article- go read it and tell me what you think!!

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Black and White Sundress


Orange juice made using my awesome Silex Juice-it, in my cute mug from the estate sale. Oh, plus a little vodka; let's be real here, it's the weekend.

Tomorrow it will be sunnier, so I will take a picture of me wearing the dress. I am mostly happy with it. I made all the notes (changes on a post-it) I made from the first time I made it- too bad I stopped doing that. It's not like I can remember anything for more than 15 minutes! Lol! Next time however, I will make a facing for the bodice. I dislike the bias binding. I cut off the 5 inches Molly-from-last-summer suggested and it's still below my knee. That's probably because I lazied out and hemmed it on the machine. Pish posh!
I don't know about anyone else, but I am sick of sewing from patterns. I need a challenge! So, I have decided to draft myself a pattern for the perfect sweetheart neckline strapless dress.

Like the yellow part of Drew Barrymore's awesome dress.
or, this Michael Kors dress. I like the cheetah print lace.
That will be my goal for the weekend- we'll see how it goes!

Wish me luck!

P.S. I have done this before- see here (copy of a designer dress) and here (marie antoinette halloween costume)

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Randomness

This is all I have accomplished on my next dress. It requires a lot of gathering, and I wasn't in a gathering mood. I think it will look pretty striking when I'm finished.
Andrew also brought me some sauces from the UK. One is brown sauce, and the picture is of onions and apples. The other is HP sauce, which Andrew says tastes like "crappy BBQ sauce." Soon I will taste them for myself.

Wish me luck!

Gardening update!

This weekend Andrew and I fixed up the garden in the back. I did weeding and Andrew did the dirt-turning, back-breaking stuff. The person who lived here before us build three big raised beds and had a concrete planter, so that's where I planted all the viney stuff that needs a lot of space.
This involved a lot of leaf raking. They're just in piles because there was no room in the garbage.
These beds have pumpkins, zucchini, watermelon, cantaloupe and honeydew. I love melon!
This one has horseradish, carrots and bell peppers.
I also swept the stairs and cut back the bamboo, so you don't get slapped in the face every time you use them.

Balcony update:
My lemons are the size of golf balls!
Everything has sprouted except for the strawberries. It might be too late in the season for them here. I'm giving them until Friday before I rip them up and plant something else.

Haircut!

This was my before:
Blurry, but almost to elbow length.

After:
It has lots of layers and looked better when the salon girl did it, but I like it. I need a round brush to make it fluffier, but she cut off about 5 inches.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Garage Sale Loot!!!

Today, I dragged Andrew along. However, after some minor arguing about directions (hardly unusual) we went to a bunch and found a little bit of cool stuff. Then we had sushi for lunch and walked around the French Quarter gawking at tourists. Haha.
This is a pretty, heavy pewter frame that was only $2!
These cute little matching teacups/mugs were marked 7 for $3. Although there were 8. At that sale it looked like the HBO show Treme, which they film in New Orleans, had come earlier and bought a bunch of stuff. Random.

I got the yellow Pyrex bowl at another estate sale. It was $5, which isn't super cheap, but the white inside and colored outside is my favorite kind!

This was Andrew's choice, which was $4. Minus the dents, it's a nice thermos that has the lid-cup and a cork stopper and is leather on the outside.

This was cut out of the Wall Street Journal. If I end up going to NYC over the summer, I definitely want to see this exhibit. Look how stunning that outfit is. I love everything about it- the cape-coat, the polka dots, the dress, the bubble hem that looks scalloped....beautiful!! You can see a better online picture here.

If anyone ever sees a fabric like that pattern, please, let me know!!

Now I can chill for awhile, then off to help with the spring dance. The kids will so awkward and adorable, it's worth the Saturday evening.

Friday, April 16, 2010

The possum

We were putting our bikes back in the shed in the backyard and we saw a neighbor through the fence. She says, " I just wanted to let you know I have seen the most gigantic possum running through your yard and into your shed all the time! Just wanted to let you know!"

Ha ha ha! Gross. Fortunately the door squeaks really loudly, so hopefully we need never see him/her.

On that note, maybe I shouldn't be feeding stray "cats." lol.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Les Cadeaux

I wasn't really expecting presents, but my boyfriend brought me back some from Europe! These were from Paris:
I really like the one with the stripe up the leg- very retro.

The oats he got on his side trip to Scotland with his mom and sister. I think he described them as: "the only thing at a Scotch breakfast that won't make you gag."

The tea is from the very best tea shop (in my opinion) in Paris, Mariage Freres. They have a cool website here.
Too bad you can't smell the delicious tea. It smells very delicate and flowery, but not like roses.



These are my gift to myself. I ordered XS from Nordstrom's junior's department, but they were too tight! I looked like a saucisson (sausage, possibly one of my favorite French words)!

I love Nordstroms!! Not only was the exchange free, even though I bought them online, the girl on the phone was great and they include return labels in the package to make returning it even easier. Everyone should shop there!! (when you have the cash...)
They are all delightful! Andrew's comment: "Wow, I didn't know I was dating Mr. Rogers!" LOL. I do love 3/4 length cardigans! Now I have 13!

Now, I will try to sew.

P.S. Did you notice how I made the sweaters hug each other? Good, because I did that on purpose.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Labels

To answer two recent questions:

1. Where did you get the labels?

The labels were from namemaker.com and the style I bought was about 28 bucks for 40. Fanciness and more writing makes the price go up. They have lots of other designs and sayings!

2. How have you been sewing so much?

I have been sewing a lot lately, but don't give me too much credit. Not only did I have a full week off of work for Spring Break, but my boyfriend was in Europe for 2 weeks, and part of those overlapped. So I was lonely and had LOTS of free time. I expect my sewing will slow down for the next 6 weeks, but then it's summer break!!

Bonus made up question: How lazy are you?

I am so lazy, the only thing from preventing me from beginning my next project is that I need to wind the bobbin with black thread (and, yes, I only have one bobbin.)

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

So far, so good!

Good things:

1. It is standardized testing week, and while that makes the students insane, I have nothing to do or prepare each night. Wonderful! Now I can focus my energies on margaritas!

2. I found out that I officially have a permanent position for next year, although I don't know what subject yet. Hopefully 6th grade, cross your fingers for me!!!!

3. I got my awesome clothing labels in the mail today!
4. My aunt cleaned out her stash of vintage button and now I have 6 billion. I need to think of something red, with lots of buttons!
5. I have cut out all of the pieces of my next dress...
6. My boyfriend is back from his 2 week trip...and he nearly owes me my 100 follower dinner. Yay! (This should be #1, but I don't feel like renumbering...)

7. I just saw the cutest stray cat- I think I will start feeding it. It is tortoiseshell with green eyes and a nub tail.

I hope you all are having a good week too!

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Garage Sale Loot!!!


My school's mascot is the pirates, so I am fully authorized to use the word loot, FYI.

I spent a good chunk of the morning driving around Metairie (a suburb of New Orleans), alternately getting lost and getting pissed off.

I think the legislature should pass a law that says "An estate sale can only be promoted as such when the entire contents of the house and adjacent building(s) shall be open to the public and for sale. Heretofore, the punishment will be tarring and feathering." I'm going to write to my Congresspeople! lol.

In all seriousness, if your "estate sale" is a measly pile of junk that makes a regular yard sale look immensely appealing, you don't have an "estate sale."

However, I have found one estate liquidating company that is awesome. I told the woman she had really great, reasonable prices, and she shrugged and said "yeah, it's just a lot of old junk mostly."

I am giggling wildly.

Look at my loot! Please note, it was going to cost me $3.50, but she gave it to me for $3 so she could save her quarters. ;)

A flat sheet. There are two in this pattern.

A nice little future booze pitcher and another flat sheet.

One dinner plate.

All my loot. This includes a Jewel cassette tape (the cd player is also broken on my wondermobile), an old juicer and 2, I REPEAT 2, Le Creuset cast iron enameled frying pans!!!

So in the future, if some snob is like "Well, I have Le Creuset as well, and mine is much nicer and in new, modern colors," I will slap her in the face and say "Well, mine cost 33 cents each, b*%#$!"

They are both harvest orange, one is 9 inches and enameled outside only and the other is 6 inches, with white enamel on the inside. The both could use a scrubbing, but are otherwise great. I just looked them up on Amazon.com and the big one would cost $99.95 and the small one would be $69.95. Ahahahahahahahaha! Awesome!

Also, the juicer is kind of beat up, but it works! and it has all it's parts! So when my lemons ripen (the first word I thought of was "hatch" lol) I can make delicious lemonade with my 33 cent juicer machine. Bet you can't buy a juicer for 33 cents!

Hopefully you are all jealous and will go to some garage sales tomorrow to try to top my finds. Good luck!!

Friday, April 9, 2010

Take Two- Simplicity 4782

This is the same pattern as the Lemon Dress.

The side view shows off its nice A-line shape. I once again did a twice folded under hem to give it more stiffness and body, and hemmed it on the machine.
Front view. I had a half-yard less of this fabric, so I was forced to make this one a bit shorter. It comes to my knees instead of just below.
I love these shoes. I got them at an estate sale towards the end of high school, when I was starting to get over my desperately-caring-about-what-everyone-thinks phase. My mom and I went and the house was just stuffed. I bought a fur and these shoes. The people running the sale said it was the third or fourth straight weekend, and they had only emptied the downstairs and one room upstairs. "Hoarder" was not a common tern (at least in my vocabulary) in 2000, but that had to have been the case. Too bad we didn't go back...
They are made out of some kind of plastic-like substance, and have rounded toes and very high heels, which is why they don't get much play. I think they are super cute, and are navy blue, it's kind of hard to tell in the photos.

I just googled the brand "Salon Debs" but got nothing. It also says "designed exclusively for Block's." I searched for Block's department store, and there was one in Indianapolis from 1896 to 1987. It would be kind of amazing if they had traveled from there to Oregon, but it's possible!
Here's the baby T-Rex being adorable!
Have a good weekend everyone! I know I will- we don't have to turn in lesson plans next week because of state testing, so it's like I was given three more hours of weekend! Yay!!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Shopping Online!

I love shopping for pretty dresses, and then not buying them. I also enjoy looking at the prices and thinking about how much less it would cost to sew it.

I think that for most of these you would need less than 3 yards of fabric and maybe a burda style pattern, or even just adjust pattern pieces you already own!

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Banana Republic: $130

This would be a snap to make!
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Nordstrom's: $158

I think this dress is adorable, and would be easy to make with some small ajdustments on 60's patterns I already own.

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Nordstrom's: $248

Obviously, I like this style. It is boob-maximizing and waist-minimizing- certainly something I could appreciate!
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Nordstrom: $445

This dress is adorable! Even if the fabric is $20/yard, how could this dress cost you more than 60-70 bucks? $445? Sure, if you're giving me a trust fund! Ha ha!
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Banana Republic: $110

Now I don't really like this style- it is very shapeless. However, I would just like to point out, since I saw it in person, that it is ok fabric. However, the stitching on the neckline was white, over the dark blue part. It was terribly obvious and made it look really cheap, which it is not at $110!
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Does anyone else just shop to poach ideas and/or criticize clothes? I find I do!

Monday, April 5, 2010

Procrastinating....

I am procrastinating doing work for school tomorrow... so here are the fruits of my labors:
Look at my lemons! I am glad re-potting it didn't make it angry. You can also see my car down below. Can you see the yellow spot where the paint fell off? That was my latest car surprise when I went through the car wash. lol. I love you, Oldsmobile!
My tiny dills are sprouting.
My asparagus shot up about 3 inches overnight. The lighting is bad, it IS green, I swear!
I finished my blue dress! It's the same pattern as the lemon dress, but tweaked a little to fit better. I shortened the skirt pieces because I had less fabric and because I ended up cutting off several inches last time. I also took about 1/2" on the fold from the front and back (bodice and skirt) to make up for the inches I had to take in on the other finished version.

Overall, I am satisfied!