Category Archives: Uncategorized

Sewing mojo / energy

My sewing mojo is completely gone. I am very concerned. I have no desire to sew anything! Everything feels too hard! I love sewing, it’s for pure pleasure for me. And now my life has taken even that from me. All the simple projects I could work on to get going again, just feel overwhelming. It makes me very bitter and angry that even sewing has slipped away from me, into the realm of things I “used” to do, before motherhood / wifedom took everything from me. I just don’t have time. I’m so slow with chores, because I am so tired. The toilets, the dishes, the laundry, the meals, have to get done, and it’s taking everything I have.

Will I recover? I don’t know. I don’t know.

I’m just going to have to force myself to start my day with sewing, before chores. No more than an hour. A step forward is a step forward, no matter how small. Thanks Dr Suess…

And also sewing patterns. I think I’m sick of me same old same old sewing patterns. Time to invest in ones that reflect my current outlook?


Kwik Sew 3275 size 8

More fabrics from the basement, and a pattern from my binder. Nothing new bought for this. Actually, really exciting news. While cleaning in my fabric hell I was able to combine 2 blue bags into 1! It was during that process I came across these pants, already cut out, with the pattern pieces still attached. If my memory serves me right I was attempting to alter the size 8 pattern to fit my 12 year old and discovered they were, again, too short. In frustration I threw them into the pit of dispair. Well, discovering them now is Gods perfect timing, as the 10 yr old just asked for more cozy pants.

Boys pants must have pockets. I chose a contrasting remnant to make the pockets. Too weird? I think the top stitching helps make them look store bought. I love top stitching. I really enjoy doing it, and I really like the look. Chalk line will disappear once I wash them….

I added a heavy ribbing waist for the elastic casing, but in reality, when he finally tried them on, they are a few inches too long, so I could have just turned under a waist band.

To compensate, I made a wide ankle cuff, and put elastic in, to keep the pants from dragging on the floor until he grows a wee bit taller.

Overall, I am very, very pleased with the completed pants.

And, it’s gone from my basement forever! That’s the best part!

T for me, It’s So Easy Simplicity 4418

I am literally totally in love with the way this T-shirt turned out. It is a long cry from perfect, mostly because of the plaid print that is nowhere near the grainline.

I laid out a couple of my favourite shirts. I measured the arms; both in length and in width. (Fat upper arms). I measured the length of the back of the shirt, and I measured across the bust under the arms. I took these garment measurements and I use them to help me choose the size pattern pieces. This is a very different message from using the measurements on the back of the pattern envelope or measuring my own body. Neither of those methods have proved successful for me in the past. It looks like I finally got a winner. If I own something already, and I love the way it fits, I will use that garment’s measurements for sewing like items.

On this particular project, I tried very hard to match the plaid on both side seams. I was not successful. I’m going to blame the print itself. It’s off grain, and I don’t even think it’s even from one section to the next of the fabric.

Let’s go with that. Regardless, I love this shirt, I love how dressy it looks on.

The pattern calls for a facing around the neckline. This particular T knit rolls very badly on the cut edge. Given that, I just didn’t want to deal with the facing underneath my shirt rolling up. I just turned under the seam allowance, and stitched it down flat, then trimmed the excess, close to my stitching line, to keep it from rolling.

The only thing about this is that there’s basically nothing holding the front together, at the centre top edge of the V. I tried to add extra stitching to reinforce this edge. Only time will tell if that was a good idea or not. I will definitely be making this pattern again in other knit fabrics. I still don’t like the idea of a facing on a T-shirt. I will let it percolate in the back of my mind, as I am moving on to sewing for my kids again now.

I cannot wait to wear the shirt to work!!!

Taking selfies is extraordinarily difficult. I just felt that the shirt looks so much better on me than it does on the couch. Please ignore my purple pyjama pants. It’s still -21┬░C here.

Scrapbooking – getting sorted

Digging in a floppy tippy bag, where all your printed paper is smashed together, seemed to make sense when I was hopping from one Scrappy Saturday to the next one. It made sense to have my paper portable in a heavy duty bag with good straps and zipper closures.

Now when I go, if I go, ever, I take almost nothing with me, usually only one project, with all the papers already selected.

Today I sat on my butt and built this cube with two dividers. It’s made with these metal grids and zip ties, and it is rock solid. And it weighs a tonne.

Lots of room to actual view my papers. Sturdy sides and dividers to keep my paper edges square.

This project has been bugging me for a long time. As I am still feeling like I’ve been run over by a truck, today was the perfect day to sit in one spot and fasten many zip ties.

I feel happy, however temporary. I got it done! I’m so glad to get this bag off the floor and out of this room! This metal cube is going up on a counter, right next to other scrap booking supplies.

I want to celebrate this personal victory!

Form and function! A thing of beauty!

Pillowcase gifts

This fabric is gorgeous. It’s a nice heavy quilting cotton with gold gilt accents. The name of the designer and manufacturer on the selvage was not readable on the piece I bought. It was only 8.99 a metre. My husband loves and collects books. I love and collect fabric. Pillowcases for his birthday seemed apropo.

In the end they seem a bit short. I did a super wide 6″ cuff, because I like that. The narrow hem on pillowcases seems less dressy. Next set, I will measure the length before indulging in a very wide hem. I had actually originally intended to add a deep green velvet as a trim, but ran out of time, and simply turned under a wide hem. They are alright, just the pillow might sneak out over time. I don’t know how he does it, but my husband has a habit of losing the pillowcase in the middle of the night.

I still feel as though my nerves are somewhat shattered from the labour intensive and incredibly detailed dress I just finished. I feel wiped out by it. So in that way, simple straightforward pillowcases seemed like a gentle task to bring back my love of sewing. I’m debating on what to sew next, a T shirt for myself, or another 2 pillowcases for him for Valentines Day. But I’m so tired. Probably neither.

Burda 6520 view A

I will tell you straight up that this project pretty much solidified my decision to sew with knits and never use wovens again.

Anything you want to learn about sewing, this pattern has it all. Buttons and buttonholes. Gathered sleeves. Pleats. Set in Sleeves. Side Zipper. Darts. Facings. In Seam Pockets. The only thing I didn’t have to do was an elastic casing.

I found the pattern instructions straightforward, well explained, and the diagrams made sense.

I didn’t find it hard to match the plaid…where I DID match the plaid, centre front, and side seams. I found that part easy, actually. Looking at it now I wish I knew how to match the sleeves. But…I still don’t know how you would do that.

Just – so many steps. So many time consuming, fussy, finicky, steps. I would have like to have taken 3 months,- to slowly sew this dress right. I raced through it to meet the deadline, and it shows. I hope no one looks inside.

My aunt whom I consider a sewing expert, serges all her pieces as soon as she cuts them out. That would have been helpful in this project. Again, taking time to do it right the first time. Sigh.

I’m actually really burnt out from the stress of this project. So much manipulating and fussing with the pieces, the edges frayed quite badly. I did get my serger rethreaded and lumping along close to the end, because by that point the seam allowances were just so trashed.

I’m totally done sewing for a deadline. I love sewing, but I love sewing slowly and perfectly more. I’m even revamping the way I sew for myself and my family. No. More. Deadlines. One project at a time. Start to finish. However long it takes, working around the whirlwind that is my life.

Favourite Kwik Sew Kids Pants pattern, 2858

Happy New Year, everyone! I love this pattern. I’ve used it so many times. It’s cut out in a size 4. It was my first Kwik Sew Pattern, and it was the beginning of a love for Kwik Sew. I used it when my oldest was 4, and he is 12 now. Now I’m about to start on a pair of pants for my 4th child! I have used this pattern more times than I can count; I have shortened it, lengthened it, reinforced the pattern pieces, and sewn it over and over again. I am chomping at the bit to get going on this pair for my wee girl now.

In the end she loves the cosy softness and I love the pockets with trim. I shorten them because they are a size 4 but they are almost too short so I won’t shorten the pattern pieces next time I sew this pattern for her.


Nothing better to do when you can’t sleep than stare at fabric in your basement I suppose.

After a time of staring at my horde of fabric…

That wasn’t a mis-spell. Horde, as in a large army of…..things. Not hoard, as in, hoarding.

Anyways, after a great long time of  staring at my fabric, and having many deep thoughts about all manner of things, I have decided to re-arrange it. The fabric. Not the deep thoughts.

I “thought” it was good to store knits in one section, and wovens in another, but I have a better idea now.

Solids on one shelf, and prints on another. And by shelf I mean a space that is 3′ x 3′ x 6′. Jam packed!!!

I read in a sewing book that we should all buy more solids and less prints, and I couldn’t agree more. I would like to give credit where credit is due, but I can’t remember anything anymore so sorry to the lady that originally wrote the book.

I love mixing solids and prints in my sewing projects. Maybe the reason I am feeling less inspired these days, is the overwhelming number of prints I have to choose from, and the few selections of solids buried deep in the horde. Time to celebrate solids and give them the esteemed place they deserve!

Burda 9641 #2


Don’t I have great socks? Just when I was down to about 5 pairs of socks a friend emptied her sock stash and gifted me many pairs. This is the way the Lord provides.

Back to sewing. I do not sew my own socks. Yet. Back to sewing PANTS.

These are again pants for the 12 year old. I narrowed the leg substantially, tapering it down to the ankle, along the inseam. Pants are narrower in fashion right now, and I didn’t want pants for school to look like baggy sweats on him.

I made this version in black French terry. I have mixed feelings about the result. It drapes. It’s not what I expected for kids casual pants…

I can’t believe how long his legs are, and growing more every time I measure him for pants. I actually didn’t have enough fabric AGAIN.

As a result I made the waistband out of ribbing. I made the pockets out of T-knit. I ADDED a ribbing cuff, because these were a tiny bit too short AGAIN!!! And he still is a skinny kid. None of the store bought pants that are long enough in the leg stay up around the waist.

Next up, this same pattern, in a softshell. He has requested waterproof wind proof cozy pants that don’t look like snow pants.


Boys size 14, Burda 9641

As always, I welcome your comments and questions.

I find the legs a little wide at the bottom still, but when I look at the photos, I see that is how the pattern is. I rushed to finish these so I forgot to attempt the fake fly.

Not enough fabric for the full length of the waistband. I thought I could stretch the waistband to fit the pants. Ended up with a pucker. Damn.

This kid is desperate for pants that fit. If this PJ tester fits well, I will make this pattern again with more pockets, narrower lower leg, and fake fly…