Two More Agnes Dresses

Last summer I bought some gorgeous floral material to make my favorite Flirt Skirt to wear this summer. I still haven’t done that. I have, however, made two  more dresses from the hallå agnes swing top & dress pattern.

This first material has the design as the red top I made, but in blues and I made it as a dress. Here’s the front: 

This dress comes together really quickly with serged seams, and serging used to attach the neckline and armbands.

I had thought I’d change how I attached these bands, but decided to make another change I’ll tell you about below.

Here’s the side view: 

 Here’s the red top just as a reminder to see the print on it.

I know my hubby loves blue on me, so I think this blue dress will be his favorite.

This forth agnes is a dress too, in black, white, with little bits of yellow. 

The yellow isn’t very visible in the photo, so here’s a close up:

I think four agneses is a good place to stop for now. I really do love this pattern, and am living in this dress this summer.

One Change

Although, I’m loving all my hallå agnes dresses and top, but there’s one little element I wasn’t loving. The seams are all serged on these dresses and the top. That’s great. The seams all looks nice and neat this way.

However,  once these were washed, I found the seams at the neckband and arms were flipping or folding in half. It wasn’t visible from the outside when I was wearing it, but I could see it when I was putting the garment on. I didn’t like it.

Here you can see how the seam has folded up:

My fix for this was to use my coverstitch machine. It worked beautifully too. I’ve finished all my dresses this way now, and no more flipping or folding seams.

One of the things I did to help line up the stitching was to use the markings on the presser foot. That first grove was my guideline. It worked out really well.

Drafting Again

My new wires are here and it’s time to start drafting again! I’ve done a few drafts now, and that’s led to a couple of questions. I’m one or two answers away from drafting, what I hope is, my perfect bra pattern.

Happy creating!

Hallå Agnes in Jasper

My hallå agnes swing top & dress took a little overnight trip to Jasper with me and my hubby.

I loved taking both my swing top and my first finished swing dress on a short trip. Both being made from cotton Lycra, they were cool to wear, and were great for traveling.

The View

Seeing as we were in the mountains, it was more of a challenge to get a photo of me, when all we wanted to take photos of were the mountains.

Here’s a couple of photos of the view we had out our kitchen window:

Sitting at the kitchen table looking ahead there are mountains. They’re in the distance, but they’re there.

Then just turning my head to the right a little. More mountains.

Sheer bliss!

Here’s the view from our balcony without any windows or blinds in the way:

 There were mountains on all sides of us, but there were also trees. So some of our view was blocked, but we were still immensely enjoying being surrounded by nature.

Agnes Swing Top

 Being in such an idyllic environment, I had to take a few photos of my agnes swing top and dress.

This is the top. It’s so comfortable. But my top and I are simply the forefront to one of the most majestic views imaginable. Oh, I love the Rocky Mountains!

We weren’t quite in Jasper yet, but had our pup with us, so had to stop for a break on the way there.

My hubby decided he wanted a selfie with those gorgeous mountains in the background. I decided to peek over his shoulder.

 Agnes Swing Dress

   You know, I thought I really loved the agnes swing top and thought that would be my favorite. But after making a top and dress, I really really love the agnes swing dress.

I live in skirts during summer, but I think I’ll be living in the agnes all summer this year. I really love this pattern.

There are two more cut out that need to be sewn. I think there’s no time like the present.

Happy creating!

Michael Men’s Underwear

More Birthday Sewing

I had some other sewing plans for my son’s birthday besides the robe. I made him two more pair of the Michael boxers from Pin-up Girls’ Men’s Underwear Pattern.

The feedback from my son, who is an avid SAXX wearer is these are good, and he wears them.

To make up these boxers, I bought two bamboo kits like the ones shown above from Bra-Makers Supply (BMS). The last time I just used cotton Lycra from my stash. His news ones will be a lot more neutral in color. A nice gray with plush black elastic, and a navy with plush black elastic. I think he’ll enjoy both.

Here’s the last pair I made. (Definitely not neutral.) He also didn’t like the elastic I used for this pair (not from BMS).

Although the kits from BMS say they are bamboo, the material in the two kits was different. The gray heather is firmer, and doesn’t have the same hand as the navy; it was also easier to sew.

I should clarify that last comment. The underwear isn’t difficult to sew at all. I’d simply misplaced my washout tape and the waistband was a little more tricky than usual.

 Here’s the navy pair with his robe.

And here’s the gray pair with his robe.

My son will be well covered with new briefs and a robe.

Here are both pair of the Michael boxers.

 There. All the birthday gifts are sewn. I still have a bralette to sew, but after the robe and boxers, I think I’ll really enjoy it. Then some selfish sewing!

Final Thoughts

 My son loves them both! He’s worn them both already too. He does say they are not the same as SAXX, but hey, he’s wearing them. He also likes the plush elastic that Bra-Makers Supply sells much better than the elastic I sourced locally.

Happy creating and Happy Canada Day!

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 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.

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!

Rad Patterns Split Personality Undies

I realized very early on in my lingerie-making journey that I wanted ALL the lingerie patterns and books out there. I wanted them all so I could learn something from each one, and also have a very nice pattern stash.

That hasn’t changed a lot. I’m still buying patterns, even ones I said I’d probably not buy (she says, thinking of the new Harriet pattern – that is really similar to 2 other patterns she already has!)

Yup. I bought the Harriet pattern just so I can have it and look at it, and I’m sure, learn from it. It was just too pretty to pass up.

However, I’m not making a Harriet right now. I’ve still been working on my draft.

The pattern I’m trying now is an adorable pattern for panties or undies as the designer calls them.

Aren’t these just adorable? These are Rad Patterns’ Split Personality Undies. I’m looking at these and wishing I could find some adorable cotton Lycra (CL) in a print like that.

For now, I’m using some very basic CLs I have, both in a basic beige. I have two different tones, and decided to play on Paint to see which way I wanted to use them.

I have a lighter beige and a darker beige. I like them both, but am thinking of putting them together with the darker beige in the middle as shown on the high cut brief shown above.

Here’s the first look at them, and I like the color blocking look to it.

However, looking at them once they were sewn together, they looked even huger than normal. Have you ever made your own panties? Everyone warned me they’d look huge before they were sewn up. These looked huge even after I sewn them.

Before I went any further with them, I pulled out a pair that do fit me.

These aren’t going to work out. My next step is going to be to take my Master Pattern from Sewing Panties: Construction & Fit and use that to make a similar style. I know that way they’ll fit.

So, it’s back to the panty drawing board for now. I do have something to share about a future project that’s in the works. Here’s a little peek.

I love these fabrics! It’s Canada’s 150th birthday this year, and I’m celebrating. You’ll have to wait for a bit to see the finished project though.

Happy creating!

Plans for Another Bra

I have to say, I really do love sewing bras. There is something very addicting about that little bit of lace, material, and elastic. I also have to say, I really loved making a bra from a pattern I drafted. When I made my first bra five years ago, I never thought I’d do this!

I was thinking now I have a pattern I love completely, and that fits so well, it’s time to get on with my Spring Wardrobe. However, I decided one more test bra first. I can always use another black bra.

Materials 

For this bra, I chose some lovely black lace with red details. Along with that lace, I chose black duoplex and power net, but red elastics to make the red in the lace really pop.

This is one of the gorgeous laces I bought at Fabricland last year for $2.50/meter. Oh, I had fun stocking up on those laces.

Alterations

For this bra, I made the underarm smaller. I add 1/8-inch back to the bottom of the cradle as the thinned band under the cradle was a really tight sew last time. As well, I added 1/4-inch to the top of the cradle where the wire ends as it was just a touch short there.

You might be wondering how all these alterations worked out? Let’s take a look.

Here’s my newest bra from the front:

I really love the red elastics on the top and bottom of the band.

Here’s the side:

I’m asking the famous Mrs. Weaver for a bit of help again. The side of my bra is doing what this very pretty Empreinte Maya bra is doing. (Photo from Amazon.ca)

See how the bra pulls in at the wire line at the side? Mine is doing that, and I need to figure out what I need to adjust to make it not do that. Thank goodness for all the professional bra-makers out there!

And here’s the back of the bra:

It’s such a pretty bra! I love the lace and the red elastics. Looking at this photo of the back, I can see I need to trim those red elastics just a smidge more.

Lastly, here’s the bridge – I widened the bottom of it. You can see here with my navy bra beside it that it’s wider.

I need a little more room there, so this is much better.

I’m especially pleased with my sewing this week as I’d hurt my knee and all my sewing was left-footed sewing.

Happy creating!

P.S. You may want to read Just One More Stop at the Fabric Store.

Did you see Orange Lingerie has just published a new bra pattern? It’s lovely!

You can find the Fenway bra on Etsy.

Patterns

After working on drafting a bra from measurements, my work wasn’t done with the draft. The next step is to use that draft and make a pattern. Let me show you a little of the progression so far.

Drafting

Here’s the draft. It doesn’t look anything like the pieces I’ve seen in bra patterns.

Horizontal Seam

Then, a few more steps and things start to look more familiar. Beverly takes you through it all in her manual. Take a look at these pieces. These actually look like bra pattern pieces.

I’m not the biggest fan of a horizontal seams. I used one when I made my Heather bra.

Common Bra Seams

Here are some different seams shown in bras (photos are from Bra-Makers Supply and Sewy):

Vertical Seam

I’ve also tried the vertical seam when I made KS 3300. Once I started making my own patterns from the draft, I had to try each pattern. This part of the process was definitely fun for me. The photo of the vertical seam is from the Sewy website. It’s their Linda bra pattern.

Diagonal Seam

My favorite seam in bra-making so far has been the diagonal seam. That’s the bottom left in the photo collage above. A diagonal seam is what we find in the Classic pattern or the Shelley pattern from Pin-Up Girls patterns.

I also love the power bar and split lower cup on the Shelley. Here are a few of my favorites from that pattern.

I love this pattern, and know I will make it using my drafted pattern!

Curved Seam

The one I really wanted to try was the curved seam. All the gorgeous Cloth Habit Harriet bras I’m seeing were making me want to buy that pattern too. I had to be very strict with myself not to buy yet another pattern I have. The photo in the first collage is from Sewy again. It’s their Isabell pattern, which I have. I also have a clone of a Fantasie bra that is a curved seam too. I didn’t need one more pattern, but I was tempted! However, I did want to make one when I was making the patterns.

Patterns I Made 

Here are all my new patterns. I just need to add seam allowances to some of them, and make little changes like adjusting for a flat spot, thinning the band under the cradle, and lowering the bridge.

I also drafted my a new cradle and band.

Happy Creating!

P.S. You may also be interested in Sewing Bras: Foam Lace & Beyond.

Here’s some exciting news.

Merckwaerdigh

The news is from Merckwaerdigh’s Etsy shop. Here’s what Margreet said in her post on Facebook: “SPRING … a perfect time for a major change! As of today all listings in the Merckwaerdigh shop at Etsy are FREE SHIPPING!!!

She is raising her cost a bit, but what she is adding to the costs will still be lower than shipping costs! Yay!