Another Agnes Dress

I have a few sewing projects on my list of things to sew. Three of them are gifts for my son’s birthday this month. His girlfriend wants me to sew her a bralette. And let’s not forget I want to get back to bra drafting.

In the midst of all that, I’m planning to sew some new clothes for summer.

Thankfully, with all these projects, one project I’m planning for me is really quick and I know turns out well. It’s the  hallå patterns’ agnes swing top & dress. It’s quick to cut out and quick to sew.

My last one turned out pretty much perfectly with no adjustments. The armhole was a touch big, so I trimmed a 1/4″ off the shoulder to bring that up and am leaving the rest of this as is. I was thinking I’d make another dress, and a couple of tops.

As it turns out, I cut out three dresses and one top. Here are the fabrics I’m using.

The blue and red floral is a dress, and so is the blue splotchy one. The red splotchy one is an agnes swing top. All of these fabrics were Fabricland finds from my trip to Ontario last year, and they’re all gorgeous cotton Lycras.

I also cut this fabric out as a dress.

For this dress, I have some black cotton Lycra in my stash left over from panty-making. I think I’ll use that for the neck and arm bindings. It will give it a nice color block feel, and a pop of contrasting color. This fabric was another one of my Fabricland finds, but this time at 70% off here at home. I love a great deal like this.

Birthday sewing had to come first though, so although I’ve cut these dresses out, only the top got sewn up so far.

Here’s my first agnes swing top. I’ve been wearing it and it’s so very flattering. I love it.

I did have some fun while finishing this off. I’m using my CoverPro machine. I really do love how neatly it finishes the hems.

Oh, that’s a pretty hem.

I’ll have to do a fashion show with all my dresses and tops in an upcoming post. My husband/photographer is out of town today, so a photo of me in my new top will have to wait. I can say, I’m loving this top!

Happy creating!

A Total Failure

A Total Failure

Just before the dress challenges I posted about before the tour, I had another sewing challenge. It was a total failure of a sewing project. I thought I’d share it with you since I asked you all to share your sewing mistakes with me for a chance to win a PDF pattern. My failure was a new pattern for me, and I just blew it – the first time.

Here’s the awesome material I found. This is a big panel of material.

I love this. This was created to celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday this year – there’s one for each province. I found mine at a local quilting store. I thought it would be perfect for my Canada 150 – In the Bag bag.

Do you see that crest on the right side with Canada beside it? I was going to use that to create a beautiful bag. I’d measured everything out and I thought it would all fit perfectly. I was super excited about it. It was going to be beautiful!

I was happily sewing it together. Below in the photo, it’s just pinned. It was looking great.

The Canada quiz material on the right? I was using that for the back of the bag as well as this little side feature. My beautiful leather maple leaf was mirroring the leaves on the back material and was all sewn on.

Great Sadness

Then a very VERY sad thing happened. I hadn’t considered having to turn the material for the bottom of the handbag. I knew there was a bottom, I guess I just thought it was an extra piece.

I now had a bag front showing the word ‘ANADA’ going up the side. I also lost some of my crest. It was the ANADA that did it though.

This was not going to work at all. Sadly, I’d already made internal pockets and bag straps. Sigh.

There’s Always a Silver Lining

The good news about messing up my first bag was I knew exactly what I needed to do for my second bag.

I played a little more with my leaf’s placement. I really wanted it on the side like this.

Then I remembered the strap anchors and this wasn’t going to work. Do you notice it’s stitched down here? Yup. I had to take all that stitching out. It had already been sewn on the quiz fabric, so this was the second time sewing it and then taking the stitches out.

So, before I sewed it one more time, I figured out where my seams were, where the bag would fold, where the anchors would go, where the snaps were. I tried to think of everything. I was not doing this again. After all that, then I put my leaf on. Whew. You’ll notice it’s not sewn down here in the photo below. This was just laying everything out.

Everything turned out great the second time I sewed the bag, or the third time I sewed the leaf.

Overall, I’m really happy with my second bag. I still haven’t thrown out my first one though. I’m hoping I’ll be able to salvage some of that material… Not quite sure how yet.

I had a number of people who shared their own sewing mistakes with me on my blog when I posted about my second bag during the Canada 150 – It’s in the Bag tour. Marsha picked a number for me before the tour even began. Congratulations! An Emmaline Bags PDF pattern is going to Rhonda! Rhonda, I’ll send you an email and give you the details on how to collect your prize.

If you haven’t done so already, there are give-aways on every blog, and lots of prizes! The give-away for the prizes ends at midnight EDT today.

Happy creating and congratulations!

Below are all the tour details again – just so you can still enter.

Tour Discounts

  • 10% off!
    Tangled Blossoms Design
    is offering 10% off anything in stock for the duration of the tour. Offer expires June 10, 2017. Use discount code HAPPYBIRTHDAYCANADA
  • 15% off!
    Bringberry Handbag Hardware and Design
    is offering 15% off anything in stock for the duration of the tour. Offer expires June 10, 2017. Use discount code LOVECANADA150

Tour Stops

June 4

Emmaline Bags

June 5

Tangled Blossoms DesignWith Love in Every StitchHappy Okapi

June 6

Michelle’s CreationsBaraboobooSoca Sewing

June 7

Glitter in my CoffeeMichelle’s CreationsSeam of my Pants

June 8

Seam of my PantsCreative Roots SewingHappy Okapi

June 9

Seam of my Pants

June 10

Giveaway ends at midnight EDT (North America)

July 1

CANADA DAY 150


Giveaway Prizes


Please join us in thanking our tour sponsors by visiting their websites.

Canada 150 – In the Bag Tour Western Sponsors

Welcome again to my stop on the Canada 150 – In the Bag tour! This is just a short (well, I tried to keep it short) sweet post to let you know a bit about some of our fabulous sponsors! Remember, all our sponsors are Canadian. And our tour just wouldn’t be as much fun without their awesome support – prizes for you!

Being a transplanted Westerner, I’m covering the Western Canadian sponsors for our tour.

I’m starting off with Stay Home Fabrics, an online fabric shop located in Saskatchewan.

Stay Home Fabrics is located solely online with 99% of their customer base being Canadians. They also have quite a few customers who make handbags. They offer a large variety of fabrics: fleece, minky, linen, cotton, flannel, knit, and interfacing.

Above is a photo of their wall of fabric. That’s a nice selection.

Next stop:

Traveling west to Alberta, we come across another online fabric shop – Crookshanks Custom Textiles.

Crookshanks is unique in that it specializes in cotton Lycra. (Oh, I love CL!)  Crookshanks owner says:

I had noticed that there was a need for geeky/nerdy based fabric from Canadian sellers. I’m one of the few Canadian groups that’s doing original, nerdy artwork. I think it’s a niche for sure, but there is definitely a market for it that just needs to be tapped.

There are a couple of women who make handbags, but cotton Lycra needs to be stabilized first and many don’t know you can do that for handbags.”

Just take a quick look at some of what Crookshanks carries and how it can be used:

LOVE!

Continuing on our westward journey, there’s nowhere to go after Alberta but British Columbia, at least not if we’re going strictly west. In B.C. we find two more of our sponsors.

First we come to Blackbird Fabrics. Any of my bra-making readers will recognize Blackbird Fabrics as one of the Canadian suppliers of bra-making materials.

“I have sales from all over the world, but Canada and the US is where I ship to the most. More than half of my business is from Canada, so I would say it’s a viable market!  I pride myself on great customer service, staying personally connected with my customers and the community on social media, and I make sure to only bring in fabrics and supplies that are great quality – things I would want to work with and sew with.

Garment fabrics is the bread and butter of my online shop. Alongside the fabrics, you’ll find sewing patterns, workroom supplies, and some lingerie supplies. I’ll be expanding the lingerie section this year, and I’m working on sourcing a nice range of trims and notions.

I know Blackbird’s bra-making kits have flown off the shelves in the past, so I’m going to be watching for that expanding lingerie section.

Our last stop is Sitka Fabrics.

 Sitka Fabrics tells us on their website, ‘If you do not see a fabric you would like, please let me know! I am more than happy to see if I can order it in.’

Sitka Fabrics is also wanting to expand further, possibly building a warehouse shop or leasing a retail space in town. I want to be able to offer more textile varieties, trims, and notions.  We hope to offer sewing classes locally, especially for kids.
At this time they carry mainly European knits. As well as a variety of quilting cottons, notions such as stiff stuff, piping, binding, needles et al.  They are bringing in a really neat product that is not widely found in Canada that will be revealed later in June!
I can’t wait for the reveal!

Each blog has an exclusive giveaway, so be sure to visit them all.


Tour Discounts

  • 10% off!
    Tangled Blossoms Design
    is offering 10% off anything in stock for the duration of the tour. Offer expires June 10, 2017. Use discount code HAPPYBIRTHDAYCANADA
  • 15% off!
    Bringberry Handbag Hardware and Design
    is offering 15% off anything in stock for the duration of the tour. Offer expires June 10, 2017. Use discount code LOVECANADA150

Tour Stops

(These links will be active on and after the day they are scheduled.)

June 4

Emmaline Bags

June 5

Tangled Blossoms Design With Love in Every Stitch Happy Okapi

June 6

Michelle’s Creations Barabooboo Soca Sewing

June 7

Glitter in my Coffee Michelle’s Creations Seam of my Pants

June 8

Seam of my Pants Creative Roots Sewing Happy Okapi

June 9

Seam of my Pants

June 10

Giveaway ends at midnight EDT (North America)

July 1

CANADA DAY 150


Giveaway Prizes

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Please join us in thanking our tour sponsors by visiting their websites.


* Jewellery is the Canadian spelling.

 

Canada 150 — In the Emmaline Bags Bag

Welcome to my stop on the Canada 150 — In the Bag tour.

This tour is a bag-making, bag designer, bag supplier tour, so by my title, you may have guessed I’m featuring a bag from Emmaline Bags.

Most of the bag patterns shown on our tour were donated to the bloggers by the designers. You will be able to buy them, and maybe even win one. (I’ll be giving away a pattern on June 10th, so keep checking in.)

Here are all our sponsors, but some of these are our Designers too. (At the end of this post there are links to all of our sponsors & designers)

All of our Designers offer great patterns you can purchase, however, I really wanted to show there are free options out there. We are celebrating after all!

The bag I’ve chosen is a pattern from Emmaline Bags – and it is free. In fact, the additions I’ve made to it are all from Emmaline Bags’ blog, so they’re free too. Well, you do have to buy your materials and hardware…

Here’s the pattern I made:

Isn’t that lovely? I’ve been admiring the Miss Maggie’s Handbag since it came out, and dreaming of a leather Miss Maggie. However, I found some perfect fabrics I wanted to use for my Canada 150 bag.

Here’s my Miss Maggie’s Handbag:

Oh, I love it! The material I used for this was created to celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday this July 1st. This is Stonehenge Oh Canada by Northcott. I’m including a link for the fabrics just in case you love it too. Being Canadian, I was able to find this at my local quilting shop.

Here’s the back view of my bag:

Nice hardware, eh? Yup. I really do love this bag.

Pockets

The bag is lovely all on it’s own, but I wanted to add a few things. The first thing I added was a zipper pocket inside the bag.

This zipper pocket is the perfect size.

Here’s the tutorial for adding a zipper pocket to a bag.

SEW AN EASY ZIPPER POCKET METHOD 1- A TUTORIAL.

Janelle (owner of Emmaline Bags) says, ‘Everyone needs an internal zipper pocket in their purse or handbag…’ I felt the same way. I love to have a zippered pocket to keep things tucked away and safe. This tutorial was easy too. I had no problems with it whatsoever.

The fabrics I used for the inside of the bag are both special edition fabrics that were created just for Canada’s 150th. The maple leafs (part of the Canadian Sesquicentennial Collection by Northcott) inspired my maple leaf on the front of my bag, and the Canadiana quiz material (same collection as the maple leafs) was just too fun not to use.

More Pockets

The bag comes with one slip pocket included in the pattern.

That pocket is perfect for a cell phone, or anything else you want to keep separate in your bag. I’m thinking my cell and sunglasses!

You can also see in of all of these pocket photos that I’ve added a magnetic clasp for a closure. This closure is what the pattern suggests, and Janelle has a tutorial for that too.

How to Install a Magnetic Snap Closure

Janelle has some really great tips in this tutorial to keep that snap tightly secured, and I followed them.

Bling Bling

I had to add some bling to my bag.

Who could resist a Sewn label? Not me. Anyone who sees my bag will know it’s an original and handcrafted.

The Long John Strap Anchors, the handmade hanging metal tag, and the leather tassel are more bling. Well, the strap anchors are rather practical in that they attach the straps to the bag, but they definitely bring the bling factor.

So much more love!

To make my tassel, it was back to Emmaline Bags’ blog for another tutorial.

HOW TO MAKE A TASSEL: AN EASY BAG MAKING TUTORIAL.

I had so much fun making my tassel. It was extremely satisfying. Leather is so lovely to use. The leather I used for my tassel was from a second-hand score. A box of leather samples and a few other things for $5.

As well as making the tassel from my upcycled leather, I also made a gorgeous Maple leaf – the symbol on Canada’s flag.

Over the top love!

 All the beautiful bling I bought (commonly called hardware) came from Emmaline Bags’ online store. Unfortunately, it’s not free. But you do have a chance to win some.

Hardware Tip & More

In the Miss Maggie pattern, it’s suggested to keep the plastic protective covering on your hardware while you sew your bag. That makes a lot of sense, but some of my hardware didn’t come with plastic on it.

I used some Press & Seal to cover my hardware during the sewing process and it worked perfectly!

There were no scratches to any of my hardware this way. Not only does Beverly Johnson (The Fairy Bra Mother) tell us how to clone a bra with Press & Seal, but now I can see another great reason why we all need this in our sewing rooms! You can see I started by covering my hardware with a bit of felt. The Press & Seal was faster and no pins.

I have one more little tip for you. To attach the magnetic clasp, I needed double-sided fusible interfacing. I know I had some, but I could not find it anywhere. I happen to have lots of single sided interfacing though and more than one sewing machine.

I sewed a strip of interfacing together with the glue sides out. It worked perfectly under the magnetic closure.

How to Win

For my give-away in the Canada 150 – It’s in the Bag tour, I’m giving away a PDF pattern from Emmaline Bags.

Comment on my post about your biggest sewing failure for a chance to win. Marsha (Seam of my Pants) has already picked the winning post number for me. All you have to do is post. The winner will be announced on the 10th.

As well, on the 10th I’ll be sharing my project that didn’t work out for this tour.

Enjoy the rest of our tour.

Happy 150th Canada!

&

Happy creating!

Each blog has an exclusive giveaway, so be sure to visit them all.


Tour Discounts

  • 10% off!
    Tangled Blossoms Design
    is offering 10% off anything in stock for the duration of the tour. Offer expires June 10, 2017. Use discount code HAPPYBIRTHDAYCANADA
  • 15% off!
    Bringberry Handbag Hardware and Design
    is offering 15% off anything in stock for the duration of the tour. Offer expires June 10, 2017. Use discount code LOVECANADA150

Tour Stops

(These links will be active on and after the day they are scheduled.)

June 4

Emmaline Bags

June 5

Tangled Blossoms Design With Love in Every Stitch Happy Okapi

June 6

Michelle’s Creations Barabooboo Soca Sewing

June 7

Glitter in my Coffee Michelle’s Creations Seam of my Pants

June 8

Seam of my Pants Creative Roots Sewing Happy Okapi

June 9

Seam of my Pants

June 10

Giveaway ends at midnight EDT (North America)

July 1

CANADA DAY 150


Giveaway Prizes

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Please join us in thanking our tour sponsors by visiting their websites.


* Jewellery is the Canadian spelling.

Canada 150 – it’s in the Bag Tour Kick Off

Our blog tour starts today.

Tour Stops

(These links will be active on and after the day they are scheduled.)

June 4

Emmaline Bags

June 5

Tangled Blossoms Design With Love in Every Stitch Happy Okapi

June 6

Michelle’s Creations Barabooboo Soca Sewing

June 7

Glitter in my Coffee Michelle’s Creations Seam of my Pants

June 8

Seam of my Pants Creative Roots Sewing Happy Okapi

June 9

Seam of my Pants

June 10

Giveaway ends at midnight EDT (North America)

July 1

CANADA DAY 150

When Things Aren’t Coming Together

Have you ever had a sewing project that just wasn’t coming together? I’ve had two of those recently.

A Butt-Kicking

Let’s talk about the first one. It’s a lovely dress. The Carefree dress by hallå.

Isn’t that pretty? It’s been kicking my butt!

It’s not the pattern. It’s dumb little things that keep happening. I cut out the skirt and somehow laid the top out and didn’t have enough material. I had been sure I had enough. I gave up at that point because it was late, and I really like my material. The next day when I went back, I did have enough material. I couldn’t figure out how I couldn’t see that the night before.

Everything got cut out and then had to wait.

I had to take a break from sewing my dress to finish another project that I’ll be revealing in a few days. Let me give you a peek.

Oh! That is gorgeous fabric! It has words from Canada’s national anthem on it.

Well, now that I’m mentioning something… There’s a blog tour coming up right away. Tune in tomorrow for the launch!

Back to the skirt. I finally had some time again this week to get back to sewing it, only to feel like I was getting beat up again. This time it was the waist gathering. I sewed that long running stitch to make the gathers three times. It broke the first two times when I was gathering it. I did get it though. I am determined. I will finish this dress.

Here’s what I have so far.

I’m really liking this. The material was the last of its kind at my local fabric store, and it was 70% off. I liked that too. It’s a lovely cotton Lycra (CL), so will be wonderful to wear.

Here’s how the top will kind of look once it’s done. Well, I’m sure it will look better than this, but you can get the idea.

I’m using the same red CL for the waistband as for the arm and neck bindings.

I’m also thinking of making a hack to the pattern. Rather than sew the top to the waistband, I’m thinking of adding a band to it, and leaving it separate. As well, I’m thinking of making a red top and band so I can add a little more versatility to this rather than just the one look.

Happy creating!

Agnes Swing Top & Dress

This week I’m trying a new pattern. It’s the hallå patterns’ agnes swing top & dress. I’m making the dress.

This is so pretty! I’ve heard so many great things about this pattern. I was really looking forward to trying it.

Something I Like

Right off, I can tell you something I really like about this pattern. It’s a layered PDF pattern so I can print the size I want, or if not sure, just two sizes. I love that! I’ve also heard the instructions for these patterns are really good. I’ll let you know.

Plans

My plans are to use this adorable pattern to make a nightdress or two. I really don’t like the over-sized, one-size-fits-all sleep tees that are so commonly available. I also love my cotton, which narrows things down too.

Another idea I have for a nightgown is the Butterick 6031. I’ve made the camisole, but if I lengthen the slip it would be a lovely nightgown.

Last year, I purchased some lovely cotton Lycra my fabric store brought in. This year, it’s all on sale 70% off. I’ve bought a few more solid colors and prints just for my summer nightgown project. One of the solid colors is the same as my summer house coat, so I’m thrilled about that. That’s where I’m starting.

Small Bumps in the Road

This bump isn’t a new bump. When I look at my measurements, the pattern would put me in a size 20. I know that will be way too big. Out comes my sloper just to prove to me this is going to be too big..

My sloper has a little bit of ease added to it, and I would want more ease for a nightgown. However, this would still be way too big.

I’ve been down this road so many times though, so I knew to look at my high bust measurement rather than my full bust. And even though I’ve been sewing for 25+ years, I learned about the high bust on this blog! Thank you!

My high bust wasn’t going to work this time though. It was going to put me in a size 2/4, and I knew that would be way too small for me.

Since I could print different layers, I printed off 6/8, 10/12, and 14/16.

You can see below, my shoulder hits between the 6/8 and 10/12.

Solution

If I wanted something a little more fitted, I’d probably adjust the shoulder to a 6/8. I’d make a size 10/12 except for the bust, which I’d make a 14/16. Seeing as I want this loose for sleeping, I’m making the 14/16.

My Agnes Make

This does come together really quickly. It’s quick to cut out, and quick to sew up. A serger is what is used in the instructions, so I’m used my serger.

I finished it with a rolled hem.
My hubby is so cute. He tells me this looks like a summer dress. I told him it is a summer dress!

It’s super comfy and as I’d heard, a pretty easy and clear sew.

I will definitely make another agnes, probably a top because it is a very flattering style. I’ll also make one change.

For my next one I’ll use the instructions from the Perfect T-Shirt to do my bindings for the neckline and arms. I prefer her way. It will take a bit longer, but I think the results are a bit better too. I’m not used to this way either, and feels a bit more in control sewing on the bindings in two steps. This one was just one step with the serger.

Here I am in my new agnes.

Material Disappointment

My one disappointment here is not in the pattern, or the instructions. When I was cutting out the dress, I noticed some imperfections in the material.

I’m calling these ‘slubs’ because this reminds of what you get in slub cotton. However, this isn’t supposed to be slub cotton. I’m glad it’s just a nightgown. I turn the lights out and don’t notice them at all.

Happy creating!