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Double Gauze Sew Off

Skirt Fixation outtake

Many of you know that I’ve joined up with Becca (of the Free Notion blog) on the Sewing Stadium website.  There we host sewing competitions, Top Stitchers being our main gig.  (But if you have an idea for a sewing contest, approach us, we’ll help you develop and execute!)

Season 3 of Top Stitchers has just concluded, and today, Becca and I are holding the Grand Finale via a double gauze sew off!  I’ll be showing you some outtakes here and sharing some behind the scenes secrets, but be sure to click through to the Sewing Stadium website to see Becca’s double gauze creation and rate our sewing and vote for your favorite.  It’s all in good fun.

Skirt Fixation outtake

The photos you see on the Top Stitchers post today are actually the second photo shoot  we did for this outfit.  The first photoshoot ended up totally unusable.  The photos were hazy, blurry, and the humidiy had wreaked havoc with my hair.  But the above photo is the only one that shows the waistband of the skirt I made.  I used the Flirting the Issue free pattern from Anna Maria Horner and if it looks familiar, it’s because it’s the second time I’ve used this pattern.  The first time was with Nani Iro fabric.  This time I used Alison Glass Hand Dye Batiks Bouquet Jade Fabric for my skirt fabric.  It’s gorgeous fabric.

Skirt Fixation outtake

A little behind the scenes factoid: the older one of these two boys was sick and had fallen asleep when it was time to take these photos.  All he wanted to do was sleep, and then the younger boy decided he should be asleep too, so most of the photos show one or both boys with their eyes closed!  (I did manage to get two good ones, and they are over at Top Stitchers.)  In this photo you can see where I used my double gauze for our double gauze sew off.  My shirt is made of Cotton & Steel BeSpoke Cotton Double Gauze Solid Indigo Fabric.   The pattern is the Granville by Sewaholic Patterns.  (You can see the version Aria made here.)  I made a muslin first, so the fit is spot on.  The only change to the pattern I made (other than fit adjustments) was to make all the interior seams french seams.

Skirt Fixation outtake

You’ll have to visit Top Stitchers to find out why I was posing with animals, but in this outtake, the animals were doing a better job of posing that I was!  But in all fairness, a ladybug had just landed on my face…  Here’s another behind the scenes secret; my Halifax Hoodie isn’t finished!  Back story: the local big box store that has some sewing supplies stuffed in a back corner didn’t have any twill tape, much less 1” black twill tape I needed behind the zipper to support it.  So I used my Amazon Prime super fast shipping to get some fast.  My package arrived yesterday, but they sent 1/4” twill tape, the wrong size.  (Insert all the crying emoji’s here!)  So the zipper is just basted in place until I can make a trip to the Big City and get the right size twill tape.  The fabric though was perfect; it’s black french terry from Raspberry Creek Fabrics.  It has a subtle sheen to it, and I don’t think I’ll be taking this hoodie off until spring arrives.  That is after I finish the zipper!

Skirt Fixation outtake

The final piece of my outfit is this clutch, the Fairport Purse and Pouch which I reviewed last week.  The camera was having a hard time focusing on the clutch, not my face!  Speaking of camera, you may have heard us say before that all our photos are taken with my iPhone6.  That’s significant because Becca is a professional photographer and all her photos are gorgeous.  (So we could probably use your help in the voting area on “Presentation.”  Just saying!)

Skirt Fixation outtake

Becca and I decided for the grand finale we would recap all of the contestants’ entries in some way.  Long story short, that involved me posing in a very s*xy manner. But I couldn’t stop laughing long enough to get a decent photo!  Click on through to Top Stitchers to find out if I was successful.

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Aria’s makes for Selfish Sewing Week

Granville shirt and Syrah skirt sewn by Skirt Fixation

Granville shirt and Syrah skirt sewn by Skirt Fixation

Today we’re showing you what Aria made for Selfish Sewing Week. After her 4H project shirt and skirt she wanted to tackle something more advanced. After looking through our patterns, she made the very ambitious choice of a Syrah skirt and a Granville shirt. I wasn’t too worried about the Syrah skirt pattern, as she’s sewn several skirts and worked with knit fabric. But the Granville included a lot of new techniques she’d never used before; a collar and collar stand, button placket, button holes and buttons! But I did NOT want to discourage her, so took the perfect opportunity to “Teach the ONE 2 sew.” We decided to make her 2 shirts, side by side on two sewing machines. I would sew a step on a shirt with her watching, then she would sew that step on her own shirt. It worked out really well, and she ended up with 2 new Granville shirts. Today she’s here showing the shirt (and Syrah skirt) she sewed and telling you about her experience. Take it away, Aria!

Granville shirt and Syrah skirt sewn by Skirt Fixation

I was inspired by Mom cleaning out her closet to prep for her summer capsule wardrobe a while back so I recently cleaned out my closet and got rid of everything that didn’t fit me or I didn’t like. Soooo, I was a little short on clothes. Also we had several events coming up for which I would need a few more outfits. I had been looking at the Granville shirts Mom made (unblogged, but coming soon!) and also her Syrah skirt.

Granville shirt and Syrah skirt sewn by Skirt Fixation

Mom helped me with the Granville shirts by doing most of one of them alongside of me on the harder steps. Later on, when the other machine broke down we did it all on the same machine, which meant thread changes all.the.time. On the easier steps, like sewing up a straight side seam, or something easy like that I did both shirts.

Granville shirt and Syrah skirt sewn by Skirt Fixation

I love the way these shirts fit and also the elbow length sleeves on the short-sleeved version. Next time I make a Granville shirt, because there will be next time, I think I will make pockets on it.

Granville shirt and Syrah skirt sewn by Skirt Fixation

I love the way this skirt hangs and it even comes in several different looks. There is maxi, below-knee, and high-low. There is even a ruched waistband option! One of these days I’m going to make myself a shorter version of it. Isn’t Lauren such an awesome lady? The fabric was from Joann Fabrics. Making this skirt went pretty smooth but I was having a little trouble because it was my first time sewing with thin knits. When it was all finished, I found that it wouldn’t stay up. I blamed the thin fabric and many layers attached to the waistband. Then Mom suggested putting waistband elastic in. Mom very kindly sewed it in for me, as I didn’t have enough patience to do it, and I was VERY frustrated because I had already done SO much and it had all come to nothing. Well maybe not so much, but that’s what it felt like. Argh!!! Ever had that happen to you?

Granville shirt and Syrah skirt sewn by Skirt Fixation

One last thing, I wish that I had made pockets on the Syrah skirt. It isn’t included in the pattern, but Mom knows a few tricks for putting ‘em on there. ALL SKIRTS SHOULD HAVE POCKETS!!!! So from now on, any skirts that I make are officially going to have pockets!!!

Granville shirt and Syrah skirt sewn by Skirt Fixation

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Marigold Skirt {All The Skirts: Blank Slate Patterns & Hawthorne Threads}

Marigold Skirt by Blank Slate Patterns sewn by Skirt Fixation using fabric from Hawthorne Threads

Marigold Skirt by Blank Slate Patterns sewn by Skirt Fixation using fabric from Hawthorne ThreadsHave you seen the Marigold pattern by Blank Slate Patterns?  It’s a beautiful dress pattern, but did you know there is a skirt included in the pattern?  We’re here today to show you just how wonderful the Marigold Skirt is.Marigold Skirt by Blank Slate Patterns sewn by Skirt Fixation using fabric from Hawthorne ThreadsThe Marigold Skirt has two features that will have you reaching for this skirt over and over again.  First of all, comfort.  The wide elastic waist provides the ultimate comfort skirt experience!  For those days when it’s going to be a loooooong day; pull out the Marigold skirt.  The second starring feature of this skirt is the pockets.  Because POCKETS!  What Mom couldn’t use an extra hand or two, and pockets provide a little help when needed.Marigold Skirt by Blank Slate Patterns sewn by Skirt Fixation using fabric from Hawthorne ThreadsWe only made one change to the Marigold Skirt pattern, and that was adding length (surprise, surprise!)  The pattern pieces give the finished lengths for the above the knee and below the knee skirts.  For most women, they are probably accurate, but when you are 6 feet tall, the below the knee length falls above the knee and the above the knee length is ooh la la!  So I simply added 5 inches and ended up with a below the knee length.  This length is great for summer, but now that I saw how easy it was to add length, I’m itching to make a maxi version for fall!Marigold Skirt by Blank Slate Patterns sewn by Skirt Fixation using fabric from Hawthorne ThreadsLet’s talk about that fabulous fabric on the Marigold Skirt for a minute, shall we?  The fabric is from Hawthorne Threads and is from their new Fawn line of fabrics.  This fabric is called Forget Me Not in Aspen.  It’s feminine, delicate, and oh so summery!Marigold Skirt by Blank Slate Patterns sewn by Skirt Fixation using fabric from Hawthorne ThreadsOne thing we didn’t realize about Hawthorne Threads in house fabrics is that they are printed fabrics.  Never having received fabric from them before, we were pleasantly pleased to see the care instructions included.  Their tip about using a fine needle on Hawthorne Threads fabric was so helpful and necessary for a professional finished product.Marigold Skirt by Blank Slate Patterns sewn by Skirt Fixation using fabric from Hawthorne ThreadsSince I’m working on my summer wardrobe, I made a top to go with my new Marigold Skirt.  I used the Renfrew pattern from Sewaholic, without the cowl neck for summer.   I made a couple of adjustments from the last time I made it.   First I widened the shoulders, cuz, you know, tall girls have wide shoulders!  And I also raised the scoop neckline about 1 inch for modesty.  Let’s face it, I’m a Mom with 7 kids and I bend over to pick up kids or their toys approximately 7 million times in a day!Marigold Skirt by Blank Slate Patterns sewn by Skirt Fixation using fabric from Hawthorne ThreadsI used my favorite fabric from JoAnn Fabrics.  It’s the same as Annie’s Uptown Downtown dress, and now I know why she wore that dress almost every day this winter.  Comfortable!!!Marigold Skirt by Blank Slate Patterns sewn by Skirt Fixation using fabric from Hawthorne ThreadsThe last thing I did on the Renfrew shirt pattern was to stitch down the neckband, cuffs and waistband using a zig zag stitch.   This was only called for on the neckline, but adds some structure, interest and stability to the shirt.  And I dislike adjusting hems, so now these will stay put! Marigold Skirt by Blank Slate Patterns sewn by Skirt Fixation using fabric from Hawthorne ThreadsWe want you to join in the fun with Blank Slate Patterns and Hawthorne Threads, so we invite you to add any thing you made using a Blank Slate Pattern or fabric from one of Hawthorne Threads in house fabrics to our link up.

Also be sure to enter the Rafflecopter giveaway for a chance to win 2 Blank Slate Patterns AND a $50 to Hawthorne Threads. Remember, TWO random winners will receive that awesome package!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

We can’t wait to see what you’ve been making!

 


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Selfish Sewing Week: Audrey {Part 2}

Gabriola Skirt sewn by Skirt Fixation

This week all of the adult sized people at Skirt Fixation are participating in Selfish Sewing Week!  You will see lots of sewing, skirts, and adult sized creations!  Here is part 2, from Audrey. 

Warning: You may need sunglasses for the remainder of this post!!!

Gabriola Skirt sewn by Skirt FixationAs I mentioned when posting my first Selfish Sewing Week outfit, I had originally made a different cardigan to go with my knit skirt.  But Mr. Skirt Fixation, whose opinion I value highly (beside the fact that he’s usually right!) didn’t think it worked with the skirt, so I made the Cambridge Cardigan, and you know the happy ending to that story!  But then I was left with a very cute, outfit-less Julia Cardigan.  Enter the most magnificent maxi skirt pattern I’ve ever made!

Julia Cardigan sewn by Skirt FixationI’d had my eye on the Gabriola skirt for quite a while, loving each and every version I’d seen of it.  My favorite, for the record, is this yellow one!  So during Tasia’s birthday discount, I grabbed the Gabriola pattern and a few others too from Sewaholic Patterns.  (The layering Renfrew is making a second appearance today; did you notice?)

Gabriola Skirt sewn by Skirt FixationThe Gabriola pattern takes some thought to sew up, it’s a nice challenge.  The yoke pieces in front and back take careful effort to keep from getting switched around.  Add to that I was making everything French seams.  So this is one well constructed skirt!

Gabriola Skirt sewn by Skirt FixationI made the Gabriola from white shirting cotton because I wanted a fabric I could dye and this one, from JoAnn’s, is 95% cotton, 5% spandex.  I also needed the fabric to be flowy and not wrinkle too badly.

Gabriola Skirt sewn by Skirt FixationEverything went just fine up until the dyeing stage.  I really wanted an ombre, deep wine colored skirt.  I even practiced the ombre dip dyeing technique on a different white skirt with some blue dye.  But somehow I ended up with…hot pink!

Gabriola Skirt sewn by Skirt FixationThis skirt is so vividly pink!  My girls loved it, but the boys, Mr. Skirt Fixation and myself were blinded by the pinkness of this skirt.  So it’s most likely going to be having another dye bath.  I’m not sure if I’m going to try the ombre again, or just go for one straight color.

Gabriola Skirt sewn by Skirt FixationAnother comment from Mr. Skirt Fixation was about the lay of the fabric on the front panel.  When walking, or with movement, or even sometimes hanging straight while standing, the front can fold inward between the legs creating a gaucho/culottes look.  While I am reserving my opinion on those garments for another day, I’ll just say that was not the intended look here.  And now that I’ve reviewed other versions of the Gabriola skirt, I notice it on some of the other’s versions too.  So if anyone has any thoughts on making the front straight across, I’d appreciate it because I will be making this skirt patten again sometime soon!  Perhaps a more lightweight fabric?

Gabriola Skirt sewn by Skirt FixationFor once I don’t look super grouchy during this photo shoot; probably because the ridiculous color of the skirt (1960s bubblegum pink!) has me laughing in nearly every photo!

Gabriola Skirt sewn by Skirt FixationBack to the Julia Cardigan for a few notes!  This time when I made it, I lengthened the arms, like last time, but I also added 2 inches to the length of the body, which meant I added it to the length of the collar also.  It worked really well, now the cardigan is as long or longer than my shirts.

Gabriola Skirt sewn by Skirt FixationA final note on the Gabriola skirt.  I really do love the fit, flow and everything else about this skirt…it’s just that color!!!  Thoughts, please?