Sunday Deal! 10 Classes for $10

Craftsy’s deal today is 10 classes for $10.

One of these classes is a favorite of mine – Suzy Furrer’s Patternmaking Basics: The Bodice Sloper. I use this class all the time, to see how a pattern will fit, what to adjust and how much. It’s long enough, that I’ve used this class to draft my skirts too. It’s a great class!

The Daily Buzz on Craftsy is pretty good today too. It’s an Applique and Sewing BOGO.

Buy any featured class and choose a second of equal or lesser value FREE. Just enter code DAILYBUZZ554536 at checkout.

Happy creating!

A Review of Craftsy’s Vietnamese Classics: Pho, Noodles & Beyond

It’s time for my monthly Craftsy class review. If you missed our first review of Design & Sew an A-Line Skirt, you can read it here.

craftsy-script-with-magnifying-glass

Marsha and I agreed, with Christmas, holidays, and the New Year being such a busy season, we’d be a little easier on ourselves and review a cooking class this month.

A friend of mine had this class before I did and I heard so many great things about it from her, I had to buy it too. I was not disappointed. (Thanks, Naomi!)

 What is this great class? It’s Vietnamese Classics: Pho, Noodles & Beyond with Andrea Nguyen.

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Great reviews.

This class has 35 reviews, which isn’t a lot, but… of those 35 reviews, only one review wasn’t a Five-Star review. That one was a Four-star.

reviews

There are so many reviews that say ‘Love this class’. I love it too. If you read my last review, I had a little trouble with my feelings towards the class. I have no trouble at all with this class! I not only bought this class, but also Andrea’s Favorite Asian Dumplings from ScratchI didn’t even think about it.

A personal comment.

Just a personal comment here. Andrea really has to be great because I can’t have gluten and I bought her dumpling class! I will share more on that when I review the class.

Class content.

class-lessons

There are a number of lessons in this class I was thrilled to try, starting with lesson One. I love Rice Paper Rolls, and Andrea shows how to make them, and make them so they present well too.

rolls

Aren’t these lovely? This is a screen shot from the class. Mine didn’t look that nice, but no one here was complaining about them. They were delicious!

Andrea shows us how to make these, with tips on displaying the shrimp and making the rolls look pretty and delicious. It’s little touches like this, that make this class great. As well, Andrea is so engaging.

Pho, Pho, and more Pho.

From the Rice Paper Rolls, Andrea takes us right into making Pho. In fact, she shows us Pho four ways. We start with a shortcut Chicken Pho, which I haven’t tried yet, but have heard it’s really good. Then right on to full traditional Chicken Pho, Beef Pho, and Grilled Pork Rice Noodle bowl.

Last month in our teaser posts, Marsha and I each made one of the Pho recipes. You can read Marsha’s recipe review here. You can read mine here.

For my recipe review, I made rice paper rolls and traditional Beef Pho. All I can say is my house smelled so good! And there were no leftovers. My family was delighted with the recipes I tried.

Recommendations

So, would I recommend this class? Yes! I have no hesitation in recommending this class. It’s really great. From the lessons, to the recipes, to how engaging Andrea is, in my opinion this class is one of the best classes Craftsy has to offer and I’d love to see more classes with Andrea!

For a frame of reference, I previewed almost every cooking class Craftsy offered in October 2015 when they had a monthly pass. There are a lot of good cooking classes, and really good recipes, but I can’t say all the instructors are as engaging as Andrea.

I’m going to head over to Marsha’s post now to read her review. Let me know if you have this class and have a favorite recipe too. Of if you don’t have this class, what is your favorite cooking class on Craftsy?

If you’re wanting to get this class, Andrea’s other class, or any class, the Craftsy discount code I posted earlier this week is good until January 26th. Use 17JUST4U at checkout.

If you’ve used that discount already, Craftsy is offering 50% off the full retail price of this class until January 31st. Code: c3c57576-6579-46df-b07b-f

Happy creating!

Too Good to Pass Up

Look what I found on Facebook this morning!

My first thought was, ‘Thanks for sharing!’ Then I thought, ‘I should share too.’

Choose your class and apply coupon code: 17JUST4U at checkout.

Enjoy!

Craftsy’s Daily Buzz

I learned something new about Craftsy this week. Their site has a section called Quilter’s Daily Buzz.

Each day, Craftsy is offering a deal on this site. There is also a Tip of the Day. The Tip of the Day today is the classic quilt, the Log Cabin; a step-by-step break down in the form of a video.

Just click on the link above, or the Tip photo and it will take you right to the Daily Buzz.

I’m still on the lookout to see if there are other Daily Buzz sites, and if I find one on sewing or cooking or anything else, I’ll let you know.

Happy creating!

2017: The Year of Finishing Things

I don’t make many resolutions, but as I began my sewing year this year with messes all around me, I made one. I’ve decided that this year I’m going to finish a lot of the unfinished projects that are all around me.

Let me give you a few examples of what I’m going to work on.

Footstool

Our footstool is often used and looked like it. The top had split along all four seams, and my wonderful hubby suggests I make a new cover for it.

I got as far as cutting the old top off.

Then after another month or more, I tried some material on it to see how it would look.

I even cut out material to make a band all around it. All I have to do is sew it. Yet it sits there, with half my pins in it.

It’s been sitting there for two or more months just waiting for me. Part of the problem for that is I’m not 100% sure just how I want to finish it. The other part of the problem is I want fresh and new projects all the time.

Purses

Do you remember when I’d met a sewing friend a year or so ago? She had made her own handbag, and I complimented her on it. She also gave me three handbags that she’d cut out and interfaced! All I have to do is sew them! But I haven’t yet.

They’re all cut out! And interfaced!

That is one of my UFO projects I’m going to do this year. In fact, I’m not packing them all back up and putting them all away again. I’m keeping one of them out to sew up.

Pants

More specifically, hemming pants. I have a favorite pair of pants that I love, but hate to wear because they’re too long. Every time I put them on, I thinking I’m ruining them because they need hemming. Pretty much weekly, they make it to my mending pile, only to be taken back out again.

We won’t even bother going into mending…

Enough!

Craftsy Classes

I love Craftsy, and unfortunately I have a lot of classes I haven’t watched yet. I’m changing that. Once a month, I’m going to review a Craftsy class. Since I’ll have to watch them to review them… You get my logic here. I win, and hopefully, you win too with the reviews. I’ll say here, although I am an affiliate with Craftsy, any class I review will be my honest opinion.

Let me go back to those favorite pants for a minute. And while I’m there address something else – my CoverPro machine. One of the reasons I hadn’t hemmed my pants was because I have this wonderful CoverPro machine and I wanted to use it to hem the pants. But… I didn’t know how to use it!

So I bought a Craftsy class on that. Coverstitch: Basics & Beyond. I’ve watched it, and hopefully, with my new resolve to finish some UFOs, I’ll use the class info and my machine to hem my favorite pants. I think there’s another pair of pants and a skirt in that hemming pile too. Yup, it’s time to get around to this.

So, I’m trying to plan out my sewing and blogging for the year. My goals so far are to do a class review once a month. I was thinking if I also do one UFO each month, that leaves me two weeks to play with new things, which are much more motivating for me.

So, we’re into our second week of January. Did I start? I did! I repaired a blouse I’d bought. It’s a stretch knit, with chiffon below the hem. As pretty as it looked, the chiffon had no stretch but the rest of the top did. Here’s the photo from the website. There’s a link in it too.

Well, because it didn’t stretch at all at the hips, it wasn’t fitting very well. I opened those seams and did an overlock stitch along them. There! The first of my mending pile/UFOs done. The chiffon is now vented giving me that little bit of extra room where I needed it.

Do you have a UFO pile? How about your Craftsy classes? Are you getting through them? Did you make any sewing resolutions this year? I’d love to hear!

If you’re interested in that Coverstitch class, or any other classes on Craftsy, they’re having a BOGO sale that started today and ends Sunday night. Just use coupon code BOGOJAN17 at checkout.

Happy creating!

Winter Survival

We have had a lovely Autumn. Even though I live in the Great White North, we didn’t see very much of the white stuff or experience freezing temperatures until December.

It was in December I realized we had a real motley crew of dog booties left over from last year. I have no idea why either.

Missing Boots

We have one animal print boot.

I wonder what happened to the other three.

We have two of the full pad bottoms.

And one left that I made from an actual pattern and put straps on. I often referred to these as the mittens of shame because he’d lose a boot and usually my husband would have to turn around and try to find it. With these ties, they weren’t getting lost because they were pinned to his sweater.

I was sure these ones would last, however, there was only one left.

It was time for new dog boots. At least I had enough experience making them last year that I knew how to put them together quickly and well.

New Boots

Here are my pup’s 2017 winter boots.

He doesn’t love putting his boots on, but there are days when it’s -20 Celsius or worse and he simply stops walking. It’s just too cold for him. These booties also have the long tie to attach them to his coat. I have no desire to make dog boots over and over.

This pattern comes in one size, that’s probably a medium-large, but I reduce it on the computer and it’s been great. Seeing as he’s a small dog, at times we have trouble finding him the right size.

You can find the pattern on this blog post here. And there’s a great video for making dog boots here.

I’m Missing Things Too

One other winter survival item that went missing was my cold weather face mask. I usually put it in my coat pocket when I’m not wearing it. I went to go out on a -16 Celsius day, and it was nowhere to be found. It was back to holding my scarf over my mouth.

I was upset for two reasons. I didn’t have my mask, and my son had given it to me. It was such a thoughtful and practical gift. I loved it!

It very quickly became time to make something else.

What I Had

What I Tried

Here’s the free pattern I found.

Well, they’re not the same shape, but I was hopeful. You can find it here.

First I made one out of fleece and cotton just to see how it would all come together. It fits and I thought, maybe. It doesn’t do a thing outside.

Once I knew the size would work, it was time to break out some serious materials and stash bust at the same time. Boiled wool, left over lace from my Pin-Up Girls Boy Shorts, and coordinating cotton.

I’d hoped this one would really be warm with the boiled wool. It was better than the red one, but shape of the mask isn’t right.

The one my son bought me stood out from the face to allow a warm air pocket to develop. These don’t. I kept looking.

I found this photo online. Here’s a side view of the mask and shape I need.

I used that photo to make a template for a pattern. I enlarged it, and figured out the sewing process and…

I have a new cold weather mask.

It’s boiled wool with a cotton lining. I do need to adjust the elastic a bit more to make it snug on my face, but this is good. The boiled wool will be nice and warm, and the cotton will make it comfortable to wear.

I have a few more fun sewing things planned, so I may just leave this mask unadorned for now. It works and that’s what I was wanting.

Happy creating!

How I Fit my Dress Form

I was recently asked where I found a dress form that fits my bras. The woman asking has a small back, but larger bust and has been working with a Fabulous Fit dress form for years now and still can’t get the fit right.

This is a challenge for me too.

You can see one of my bras here on my dress form. I’m always saying my dress form, Catherine, and I are not the same size. I’m going to show you just how different we are.

Dress form STUFFED.

I never thought I’d be stuffing a bra, but I do. On a regular basis too.

Dress form naked.

Here is Catherine without one of my bras on her. I put a necklace on her because, well, I just like to do that.

Here’s a side view of her.

Catherine isn’t a sewing dress form. She’s a display form for stores. She’s very basic. You can see she’s is smaller proportioned all around. We’re the same in our shoulders and rib cage. Other than that she needs to be padded out to show how anything fits on me.

Here Catherine is wearing a bra, but no stuffing or padding at all.

Now we know what Catherine has; you can see how much I’m filling in to make the bras fit her.

Tools of the trade.

Here are the tools I use to pad Catherine and make my bras look better on her.

First, and maybe all you’ll need depending on your size, is a pair of foam cups in the same size as your bra cups.

I’ve used both foam cups I’ve purchased and ones I’ve made from Cut & Sew foam. For this use, I’d recommend purchased ones. They’re a little sturdier, and I’m wanting to fill out the cups on my bra while it’s on my dress form. They’re also rounder, so give a nice shape behind the cups.

The second tool I use is a circle of cotton Lycra filled with plastic beads. It can shape itself around the smaller breast shape on the dress form and give a little more backing behind the foam cup.

You can see these little circles can change shape, be fuller in one area, flatter in another. They really help.

The process.

Now let me show you how the process looks and changes with each step.

Here’s the bra with a foam cup only filling in the cup on our left.

That’s better than nothing, but still not as good as I’m wanting.

Next I put the circle in.

You can see both the foam cup and the circle inside that bra cup.

And here’s what it looks like with both tools inside the cup on the dress form.

That’s much better. Not perfect, but much better. Both of these tools can be moved around in the cup as well, so depending on where the wrinkles are, I can move these to fill that area of the cup out a little more.

Here are both cups filled out now.

With both the foam cup and the circle form, I help my dress form be closer in size to me and make my bras look nicer for photos.

I hope this helps!

Happy New Year & happy creating!

Gifts Sewn with Love

It’s Boxing Day in Canada. It’s our equivalent to Black Friday in the U.S. The biggest sales day of the year. I’m going shopping! But just before I do, I wanted to share a couple of things I’ve been working on for Christmas.

Also, at the end of this post is the link for the Bag-a-Day Giveaway from Craftsy.

I love gifts. I love getting them, and I love giving them. For me, it’s a delightful challenge to try to think of something original that someone will love and want.

Gifts for her.

This year I had one extra person on my gift list: my son’s girlfriend. I had to think what I could give her.

Earlier this year she had given me some material she’d bought and hadn’t used. It’s flannel, so super soft and warm. We both love music and play piano, so she knew I’d love the material.

As soon as she gave it to me, I knew I’d give it back to her. I knew I was going to make her a lap quilt.

Here it is, folded in half, on my office/sewing room chair to give you an idea of the size.

She loves it!

It’s simply a large rectangle and I use wool yarn to tie it throughout. The yarn will felt and also with some washing and use become little bobbles on the quilt. Here’s an older lap quilt I did with the wool ties.

Gifts for him.

My son was another person I was sewing for this year. All he wanted was SAXX underwear. Really? That stuff is on the expensive side. But, if that’s what he wants, then that’s what he’ll get. However…

Earlier this year I’d bought the Pin-Up Girls Men’s Underwear pattern thinking I could make some underwear for my husband and sons. I put that idea on hold as no one was jumping up and down saying, ‘Yeah, that sounds great!’

With the holidays here, and the request for underwear, my hubby and I decided we’d buy him two pair of underwear, and I’d make him one. I made him the Michael style, which has the same sling-styling as the SAXX underwear he loves.

You can see my pattern matching wasn’t quite perfect. However, this was also a trial pair to see how they went together and would fit.

Here’s the inside of the underwear, and you can see the sling feature.

I didn’t get his measurements before I started this project. He was busy and couldn’t call me back right away. I got impatient and started without knowing his waist measurements. I cut out a size 34, and found out after I was all done cutting out that his waist is 35″. I’m happy to report they fit perfectly! He wants some more.

Gifts for my hubby.

When I was finished sewing the underwear, I showed the Michael shorts to my hubby. I asked him if he wanted me to make him some too. He said he wasn’t that fond of SAXX, so not to bother.

Okay. So I asked him if he wanted me to make him regular boxers. His reply? ‘No! If you’re going to make me underwear, I want the Micheal ones.’ Ha, ha. He wants the best. I’ll have to make him a pair… in the new year.

Have you made the Pin-Up Girls Men’s Underwear? Which style did you make? I’d love to hear your thoughts on them.

Happy creating!

Today is day 5 of the Craftsy Bag-a-Day Giveaway. Just click the photo to enter.

Happy holidays!

Craftsy Bag Give-Away Day 3

Craftsy’s Day 3 bag kit give-away is a roomy bag with inner and outer pockets, the Maxwell Bag kit just might become your daily companion! Just click on the photo to enter.

I won’t be posting the give-away tomorrow, but be sure to enter again. You can use the same link and it will take you to the blog where the give-away is posted.

Have a wonderful holiday season.