Happy Friday my sewing friends. I am quickly falling back into my days of button down shirts and t-shirts. With shirts being my true love. I keep trying to force myself to sew up a few blouses. You know the ones you must pull over your head. Well it’s not working for me.

This is probably one of the best shirt patterns put out by Butterick, but they in their infinite wisdom decided to discontinue this version. WHY!! @mccallspatterncompany would you do that???!?! Doesn’t really make since to me. Especially, since it’s a cup sized pattern and is a great design for many figure types.

With princess seaming and the best sleeve inset and sleeve cap ease I have found, this is a dream to sew. It comes with patch pockets, plackets, sleeve applets and other details that would make a great cargo shirt as well as a terrific military style shirt. So why did it go away.

Fitting wise this was easy. I cut a straight size 14 and used the D cup front piece and added a tad bit for a broad back at the blades and the. Did a sway back adjustment of only 3/8″. Of course for this fitted shirt pockets dos not work on those mounds we call bust. I I took them off and will opt for pockets on a more moderately fitted shirt.

I am so glad is traced and secured this pattern for use in the future. They should bring it back real fast and in a hurry before there is an uprising in the sewing community.

Let’s wave our flags with this picture to get them to hear our cry.

Until net time. Keep sewing.

Stella got her groove back by going to the Bahamas, I thought I would work on getting or keeping mine back by checking out my pattern stash.

With the help of some really nice matte jersey I got in New York and Donna Karan for Vogue patterns #2067, I was able to strike this pose for this picture.  No photoshop here y’all.  Just straight up all me, stretch marks and all.  
It’s not easy trying to keep your sexy and be a grandmother all at the same time, and still be just a slight bit modest.   But I manage to try ever so often as not to wither away into that old lady, “mmm” what is she wearing kinda, it’s a shame, she should “dress her age”.  What the hell does that mean!??! Dress the way you want! Just make sure it is SASSY not TRASHy.  You feel me?
The pattern is basically a wrap dress with the upper portion of the bodice detached at the front midriff forming a type of crop top which reveals just enough skin to keep it modest yet sassy. 
It almost looks like the Vogue 1250 that everyone has fallen in love with.  
Construction Notes:
1.  All the edges are finished with elastic to make it really snug at the openings:  Neckline, armhole, under the bust, and at the top of the skirt wraps/overlays.  
2.  The side seams are placed forward toward the front with the side hip dart at an angle toward the rear hip line.  A very nice touch indeed.  
3.  The center back seam makes it extremely easy to grade up and down as needed and to deal with the dreaded sway back issues. 
4.  With the front bodice piece being just that, a front piece, you can literally increase the bust and lengthen the front crop section to your hearts desire.
Moving forward:
I plan to make every single one of the views on this pattern in several colors.  They are great dresses to have on hand for any activity you might want to wear a “body con” dress.  Oh yeah!!! There is plenty coverage for Spanx and such and such if you so need or desire.
Here a kick in the butt to aging and frumpy dresses!!! 

Did I say season?  Oh, yes, this is Houston, Texas.  We have the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo, better known as RodeoHouston, the world’s largest live entertainment and livestock exhibition. (wikipedia.com) RodeoHouston is only second to the International Quilt Festival.  So, it is only right that I celebrate both in my Gringos and Cowboy Cowgirl hat, like baseball and apple pie, they go together during this time of year.

cowboy boots, RodeoHouston, cowboy hats and fashion
The weather during Rodeo season is just as unpredictable as bronco busting, you never know which way the cowboy will be thrown, so we have to be ready for anything here.  I decided to wear a simple dress I made to go with my boots or my house shoes, slippers to some of you. The day started with a bank of fog all over and a slight chill, and ended up by mid-morning at nearly 70 degrees.  This is why we call it Rodeo season.
cowboy boots, RodeoHouston, cowboy hats and fashion
It’s quite fun dressing in Houston, because you can actually have the best of both worlds…excluding the summers.  I get to sew summer clothes during the “Winter”.  I made this dress from McCalls 6346, which is now out-of-print, but my lovely boots are new to my wardrobe.  These Old Gringo boots, as they are branded, are the most comfortable I have ever worn.  The website says: “Our distinctive style makes us a life style brand with a vast following unlike the average “cowboy boot” company.  They have a “following,” now that is interesting.  
cowboy boots, RodeoHouston, cowboy hats and fashion
We all migrate at some point in our lives to a particular brand or style whether it be in fashion, cars, or sewing machines.  We all have a preference.  Why that is the case only we personally know ourselves, and explaining it is useless.  I like sewing with Bernina sewing machines, and wearing Old Gringos, simple as that, no explanation needed. 
cowboy boots, RodeoHouston, cowboy hats and fashion
Out of curiosity, have any of you ever been to RodeoHouston or just plain enjoy wearing cowboy boots and hats during any season?  
I love the theatre.  Synchronized dance is my favorite, along with any comedy and mystery drama. Though, it seems to be more dependent on my mood at the time I see the season lineup.  This time it was the Radio City Rockettes Christmas Musical.  We ended up going after Christmas, even still it felt like Christmas. 

Although prepping for these events and choosing my outfit can be fun, it can also be problematic at the same time.  Deciding what to wear is alway difficult for me, especially, because some of the actual outfits I might want to wear, actually haven’t been sewn yet! They are all in my head…LOL

Unless I plan the event “and sew” the outfit well in advance, it is disappointing when the time comes to get dressed.  These are the times that commentators can consider sewing to be a Track & Field event. A race to the finish line, over hurdles and around corners, against the best the field has to offer.  We “Sewist” finish strong!!!
The heat I ran in this day was “The “48 Minute Dress,” Vogue 1314, a dress that has already passed the semi-finals for me and is on to the Hall of Fame in my book.  My coaches were my daughter and of course Mini-Me.  They encouraged and cheered me on to get it completed in time and out the door with time to enjoy the festivities, a leisurely stroll and a beverage before the show.  
Of course I couldn’t leave my Mom out.  She was watching the race from afar and eventually joined us at the finish line to receive our honors.  We look so much alike it’s beginning to get confusing when I edit my pictures on a small screen.  I need to start using an oversized monitor, especially when I haven’t worn my glasses during the photos.

Making something so quick, though, comes with a few caveats in order for it to work in your favor. Including the following:   
  1. The pattern has to be pre-sized or fitted.
  2. The fabric has to be pre-treated
  3. The thread color in the machines need to match chosen materials
  4. All notions and supplies need to be part of your base stock.

Race Day Stats:

Underwritten by “McCalls Patterns, Vogue 1314” in size 14.
Starring fabric: Ponte Roma, purchased from “Marcorp Sales Inc” out of NYC. 
Hardware and race day equipment contributed by Bernina of America.
and last but not least….
Well known Athlete and fashion model the sewing diva herself……
Remember to tune in weekly for more races to the finish line.   As long as I sew, there will always  be some kind of timed event. 

I did an inventory of my wardrobe and found that nice t-shirts and button downs comprise the majority of my separates.  Well, nice to me…I don’t actuall have lace ones just test..but that’s on the burner.

Renfrew top by sewtofit.com

So, I went to my studio to rectify the problem and this is what I came up with. another Renfrew. Go figure.

sewaholic renfrew top by sewtofit.com

In my own defense, I settled with the fact that this version, view “C” has a cool collar.
… a different sleeve length. Lol. Does it help that it can be used as a hoodie if I were trying to protect the hair?

Renfrew top by sewtofit.com

After I get my fill of t-shirts and button downs, we shall see where I go from here.  I am truly a creature of habit.

In the meantime another button down is in the works… This next one will be in a really luxurious, buttery  stretch 4-ply silk.

I have made it already for a Christmas gift and really LOVE it.  I used a poly georgette from Hancock.

Until next time, keep sewing.

Andrea