April 24, 2014


A new way to snoop shop.  Now just how cute can you get...


...I wanted to post Gwen’s entire email where she gave me advice on eliminating the diagonal front wrinkling that plagued my pants fitting.  To my dismay – I cannot find the email.  I must have deleted it!  I can’t believe it got deleted because I save everything.  No problem though, I can share the information from memory because I use it regularly.  I’ll also point you to some other wrinkle eliminating information that might also be helpful.
My diagonal wrinkling problems radiate from the front crouch area below the fly zipper up to side seams. 
  •  In this picture you can see where I folded out and pinned the excess that causes the wrinkling (wish I had taken a picture before I folded and pinned).
  • I pinned from the crouch area, starting just below the zipper, and tapered up to nothing at the side seam/slant pocket area. I started pinning below the zipper because I did not want to alter the zipper length; and tapered to nothing at the slant pocket/side seams for the same reason – I did not want to alter the length of the pocket opening.  

  • In this picture the right side is still pinned, but on the left I’ve stitched the excess up into a long diagonal dart  
  • I measured the amount pinned out in the muslin and transferred the same alteration to the front pattern piece.  This has made a tremendous difference in the fit of this pattern for me.
I think my wrinkles indicate that my pattern’s front crouch length is too long – just guessing here because as you know – I am no expert.

Gwen’s advice also convinced me to purchase Palmer & Pletsch’s book “Pants for Real People” that I had been reluctant to buy before that time.  If you have the book, I’d like to direct your attention to page 31 (bagginess in the back).  Although this section speaks about problems with the back pattern piece, it can also be applied to problems with bagginess in the front.   Page 54 (chalk-mark stitching lines) refers to chalk marking an adjustment made at the waistline; and (the waistband) is also helpful.
P.S.  Although tissue fitting is shown in the book – I NEVER pin fit – I’m a muslin girl (just my personal preference).  I’m afraid that I will tear and destroy the pattern; I always work with muslins instead.  Hope you find this helpful…

April 21, 2014


...why?, because I hate taking pictures.  But I realize that posting pictures wearing my hand crafted garments from time to time is necessary for good blog documentation.   After not making pants for an entire year, I decided it was time to add a few new pair to my wardrobe rotation.  When the pants idea first came up I was all ready to start working on a brand new (to me) pants pattern.  I pulled out several patterns, cut the paper pieces out, and then remembered why I took an entire month last spring tweaking my same old TNT pattern.  The number one reasons:
  • limited number of pattern pieces (a two piece slant pocket is enough for me and gives me the look and feel I like).  Call me narrow, but the same goes for the waist band; a one piece waistband fits my body and needs quite well.
  • Come on Faye, why re-invent the wheel?  What you wanted was a good fitting pant pattern, that you could whip up in a couple hours sewing time.  You've worked hard to get it, so just go with it.

Since my re-emergence a couple of weeks ago I've made three new pair and decided to test drive one of them today.

Not too tight, not too loose, comfortable all day long.  Minimal diagonal wrinkling across the front thanks to information received from one of my sewing mentors, Gwen.  I will never forget the wrinkle elimination tips she taught me by email.

The other 2 pair that I call radiant orchid and turquoise (I think)
I also love the ease of wearing skirts so I revisited McCall's 6654 to add two colorful knit #2 pencils  this weekend.   I think my sewing sessions produced some much needed splashes of color to my otherwise neutral way of dressing. 

Turquoise and Coral both of pontederoma
I'm not on one of my usual all out sewing marathons (yet), but I think I'm off to a great sewing season.  I really did enjoy being able to sew the past two weekends - it was like taking a breath of really fresh air...

April 19, 2014


...let's take time to rejoice because

And he said to them, "Do not be amazed; you are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who has been crucified. He has risen; He is not here; behold, here is the place where they laid Him."
Mark 16:6
Have a beautiful Easter weekend sharing with family and loved ones where ever you are!

April 9, 2014


...needed to take some time to organize, gather my thoughts, and clean up a bit.  If it's alright with you, I'll just pretend that I've been here all along and I just pick up where I left off, o.k.  It's amazes me how junkie my sewing area can get even when you are not doing any sewing.  Case in point...
this mess.  How useful can an inspiration board like this be?
or this mess.  How in the world does this continually happen?  I declare this table is a clutter magnet!

Part of my organizing efforts produced this
a useful inspiration board ready for me to junk up again.  No, I take that back, I must speak positive words in my sewing room.

and a clean, ready to use cutting space.
Even with our sporadic weather (supposed to be 40 degrees in the morning), I've had plenty of time to think about spring sewing possibilities.  I do have a little plan (subject to change), and I have pulled 6 stashed fabrics (4 wovens and 2 knits) that are being pretreated tonight.  Maybe, just maybe, if the dryer hurries up, I can get at least one item cut tonight.  Here's 4 of the pieces
Jersey knit for a top, pontederoma knit for a pencil skirt, and two gaberdine pieces that will become slim cut pants.
There's brown and radiant orchid gaberdine pieces in the dryer now, both for pants.  I think I've blog watched from a distance long enough - it's time for me re-emerge...

March 15, 2014


... almost always =s dramatically busy work life going on.  Yep, there are times that I have to back away from the sewing machine (a difficult thing to do) to focus on other pressing tasks at hand.  I'm not sure if I mentioned that in February five of my students competed in District Level
Competitions that yielded 3 metals (2 first place and 1 third).  This time it was the big Statewide Competitions; more difficult, harder judging criteria, and much more stressful - at least it was for me.  For the last two and 1/2 days, five students and one model competed in five events.

I gave them the pep talk that my Granny used to give me:
  •  try your very best, 
  •  come away from the task confident that you have given your very best,
  •  win or lose know that after after you've done your very best, that is all that you could have done.
We won Third Place in one category, and I am confident that each student gave it her very best try.

The student who won stood on her feet cutting and styling for almost six whole hours to win her third place metal. That took real dedication and endurance.

I am so very proud of each and every one of them.  This was the first year for our Chapter.  We learned a lot, and will go into our second year with more confidence and more knowledge.

I can hear the sewing machine calling my name, shhhhhh, can you hear it??????? 

March 2, 2014



If so, how often do you use it???

As for me in response, I quite often forget I have it, although I always know where to find it if I do want to use it - which is rare.  It's a wonderful idea, but it just gets too hot, burns your hands, making it quite uncomfortable to use.


  • Pants Sewing Guide
  • Denim Revolution
  • Pants for Real People
  • Jackets for Real Peopls
  • Easy, Easier, Easiest Tailoring - Palmer & Pletsch - Gifted
  • The Sewing Machine Attachment Handbook
  • Ribbon Crafts
  • Professional Sewing Techniques for Designers
  • Successful Serging
  • Making Trousers for Men and Women
  • Couture Sewing Techniques
  • Singer - Perfect Plus
  • Cool Couture
  • Couture, The Fine Art of Sewing
  • Singer Sewing Reference Library - Tailoring - GIFTED
  • The Perfect Fit: The Classic Guide to Altering Patterns - Creative Publishing International
  • Fit for Real People
  • DK-The Complete Book of Sewing