Creating the prized t-shirt. This is my favorite make of all comfort makes.  But today I just didn’t have enough fabrics for the full collar affect so I just folded out whatever amount necessary for it to fit on the fabric I did have available. 

That was a sum total of three inches I will not be enjoying. Thus, I needed to make a complimentary contrasting piece for the main collar piece. No problem. Black it is for this make. That should be a great addition to the wardrobe. 

Of course the black is a rayon knit in a comparable quality and weight. So this should wear quite nicely.  The dotted fabric is a mid weight rayon jersey with beautiful drape from FabricDepot in Portland and the black is a Donna Karen rayon jersey from NYC I got on the Peggy Sagers fabric shopping trip last year.

Oh did I mention the measurements of the pattern?  I’m cutting the size 14. They measure at the bust 39.5, waist 35.5, and hips 41.5. I cut the hip at 16 and I’m good with the negative ease of the bust and the looseness of the waist. Very comfortable indeed.  I also liked the idea of installing the sleeves flat.

That really worked great.  And for the neckline. Well I missed the boat on that one and did it backwards.   I ended up with the stitched seam to the public side this I had to encase it into a seam that made it look like a bound seam.

It actually looks pretty nice. So much for following directions. They were extremely easy for beginners but not so much for advanced folks since we tend to have a hard time sticking to the script. Here is a random video I did of all my bloopers when I was trying to film a tutorial for my Youtube channel.  Don’t forget to subscribe if you haven’t already.  Enjoy. 

Needless to say I’m really happy with my new five thread chain stitch plus overlock serger. I have always been a little intimidated by those machines. But you can actually teach an old dog new tricks. It’s just takes patience. 

The this turned out out makes me believe that running out of fabric is actually a good thing. 

I remembered this project from last month when I was in the mall the other day, something I DO NOT normally do, as I really seriously hate shopping.  But, what I do like to do is research and analyze.  I was actually trying to get ideas for some outfits I have in the pipeline for Rodeo season here, which is upon us.  Some things I found were a big use of grommets and still hanging strong are zippers and fringe.  Now, I don’t know about you, but I personally have not gotten into the fringe just yet.  But I do recognize when its needed on a garment.  As with this dress… I did some updating for my daughter in prep for her company’s “The Great Gatsby” holiday party which she attended.

This is an awesome shot of her with that piece… ooh…….boy. I don’t want a debate about gun control showing up on my blog…because I DO feel its okay.  Knowledge is power.  So, keep it moving if you have a comment about that.  Otherwise, if you want to talk about fabric, sewing, and fringe, keep reading.  All the ladies were really dolled up really nicely in the group photo.  
That fine momma with the long cigarette has my vote for sure.  What a lot of sassafras and attitude right?  I just love it all.  They all look wonderful wouldn’t you agree?

I did the beaded fringe because it was important to have the dress weighted down so it wouldn’t ride up her hips since it was mesh and very light for the design.  I forgot to take a picture of her before the dress was changed.  But it was not right for the occasion if left plain.   I have so many ideas racing through my head all the time.  I just need to put pen to paper or needle to fabric.  
How do you keep up with all the ideas that come across your table?

I’m learning how to use my new posting system for my blog….in order to bring to you class times and updates of where I am teaching…

For some reason this didn’t go through the way it was supposed to work.  So you actually got my calendar post instead.

Sorry folks for this mishap.  At least you know what I’m up to right?  LOL.

Yellow is such a wonderful boost to my overall state of mind.  The light was dim, but the top was the sun.  I needed something quick to sew to get me over this hump with all the other fitting work and projects I have been working on.  This was a really quick top to make….actually it was all of 1 hour, and that was because I had problems with the stitching because I was too lazy to actually change the needle to a “stretch” needle.  Of course I know better, since I did write a tutorial on sewing on knits…here…go figure.  “Do as I say, not as I do, right?”  OOOps.

The wind of course was giving me a task of this small little photo shoot.  I just pulled over to the side of the rode, set my tripod and let her rip while I talked on the phone to my fellow sew-sister, and friend, WendyByDesign from Detroit, via FaceTime of course.  That made the whole deal more fun, since I do become somewhat shy about taking pictures in public…you gotta believe me, I am really coming out of my shell for y’all.
The folks looking out the office window really were have a time with my escapades.  I have so much appreciation for those bloggers that get out for their pictures time and time again.  Well that for them and this is for me…I hate this type of thing.  But, like I said it was a lot of fun.  

 This is the second time making this pattern, the first time was here without the sleeve.  The fabric was a nice gift from another sew-sister, Cennetta at The Mahogany Stylist.  It’s really nice meeting such wonderful people all over the country and world.  I don’t particularly have any folks in different countries yet to call on, but it in the works.

The pattern is literally shaped the exact way it looks.  I did a small fba on the front left “bust” so it wouldn’t pull to the side like in the last one.  Amazing how much of a difference it makes.
I will definitely be making this again.  I am head over heals with this “t-shirt” top.  
Thanks for reading. 

Congratulations lived4th1..!!!! Please send me an email via the mailbox link under my profile picture so that Jennelle and I can forward you the link for your new book.   It’s so exciting to be able to give away to a lucky winner a free copy of the book,  “The Upcycled T-shirt Book, by Jenelle Montilone.  Thank you all for participating in this giveaway, and taking time to consider the impact you could make from your sewing room.

As you can see, it was really a very scientific process. Writing each name was fun because now I’m really beginning to recognize who all you wonderful folks are. I think you all are winners in this case because you already sew for yourselves.  But as time goes on, having a better idea and knowing the small things we can do to save on fabric makes our craft that much more appealing. Your creativity for the reuse or up-cycle of old clothes is limitless.

trash2tees blog hop 2016 #TheUpcycledTshirt  #bigballoftshirtyarn

Many, many times I talk about how much I hate to waste fabric in my sewing projects.  Which is why I enjoy using the tissue fitting method of fitting my patterns when I make my own clothes.  When you find others who see things the way you do and share the same ideals about living and being more accountable for our resources, you want to support their efforts to make a difference.
So, after meeting Jenelle Montilone, the author of “The Upcycled T-shirt Book,” I was inspired to create something with the leftover t-shirts in my own home.  I took an old work t-shirt from my husband and dyed it to color and created this cute number.

trash2tees blog hop 2016 #TheUpcycledTshirt  #bigballoftshirtyarn
My plans are to take full advantage of this free fabric resource and look into other options she has given in her book, as well as this awesome initiative for the “Yarn Ball Project” found here.  

T-shirt refashion is a big deal these days, but for me, I am moved by “reason” not fashion, although fashion is a big part of it for me.  This lady has such ideals for improving on the amount of waste created by “fast fashion”, with meaning and passion.

trash2tees blog hop 2016 #TheUpcycledTshirt  #bigballoftshirtyarn
Starting where I am, in my sewing room, I know I am making a difference.  Every little bit counts and will absolutely make a world of difference for everyone now and in the future.  Here is the funny thing….I had already been eying this book for sometime now.  Because of the sewing classes I teach, I wanted something that was cheap or better yet free, for the group of ladies who don’t have the means to buy fabric the traditional way.

What can you do to save on the fabric waste created in your sewing room.  Maybe bring in more fabric.  Wait, that’s not a ticket to go purchase more fabric.  Quite the contrary.  I say bring in other garments that can be repurposed into another fashionable garments for yourself or someone else.  For those of you who knit, maybe consider the fact that one large t-shirt will yield 15 yards of t-shirt yarn. Now, I don’t know personally how far that will get you, but, to me 15 yards is fifteen over zero, right!! Consider dying the t-shirts first the way I did, and you are off to create something wonderful.

Here is a great video in which Jenelle details how to create your t-shirt yarn for knitting.  Others on this Blog Tour have created some awesome projects with ideas presented by Jenelle.

trash2tees blog hop 2016 #TheUpcycledTshirt  #bigballoftshirtyarn

She has even given me the freedom to let one of my readers have a copy of this book, her treat.  That means all you need to do is comment below and I will pull a name next Wednesday, January 13th to name the winner.

It is said by more than a few stylist in the world of fashion that I should have at least one “fancy” skirt, in this case a sequin skirt for the fun times and events….whether dressed up or down.  A piece such as this is a great go to item for any holiday or celebratory occasion.  Well, I do as I am told by my wardrobe consultant.  See, I made a sequin skirt.  Guess what???  I love it!!!


I originally wanted to use a basic Mccalls pattern for the skirt.  But decided to stick with my high waisted look based off Pamelas Patterns and my own measurements.  I just used my hip, waist and length measurement to create the skirt.  I included a 2 inch allowance for the top in order to make for a wide sew-on 1.5″ elastic.

The sequin fabric is from SMFabrics.com.  This fabric is extremely nice.  I mean, before working with this sequin, I had a serious phobia against working with sequins.  Roz over at SMFabrics took a chance on me and gifted me outright with a cut of such a beautiful luxe fabric.  I love it…it does not act anything like the fabric sequins I have had experience using.  The pyramid shaping to the sequins gives it such a distinctive look and feel.  You can get a discount for watching my Periscopes from SmFabrics, whenever I am displaying one of her fabrics I will give you the code.  For this one, I give you a sneak peek:  its “sewtofit10”.. LoL.  Don’t tell.  But it is only good unit Monday January 4th.

It looks like leather at first glance.  The sequins are no more than 1/8″ big and are “stacked”, I mean stacked densely on the knit backing.  I was worried about adding the darts to get the shaping and how I would work them in without adding excess bulk.

There are four darts in this skirt.  I will show you the techniques in a later post, since it is so very detailed.  So stay tuned.  The lining was a really nice designer grade tricot that is really lightweight, yet strong enough to stand up to the weight of the fabric.

I wore the outfit to a friends new years gathering with the over the knee boots.  They were much more comfortable than the heels, although the heels were really cute and a great touch for the overall look.    Such fun was had making this wonderful sequin skirt and silk top “live” on periscope.  Everyone seems to enjoy immensely the live sewing time I have in my studio.  I always have so much to share and show.