Back to the new me

Remember me? Saying "It's been a long time!" is quite an understatement. But that's not going to stop me because boy has it been a long time!

I'm not sure the me of 2.5 years past resembles the new me. Is it okay to resume blogging in old me's place? I hope so. I'll also apologize for old me. She really didn't mean to disappear. After graduation I moved to Dallas to start a new job and a new long distance relationship with my husband. Anyone out there doing or have done an LDR? It's no joke. Sure enough, once things got settled, I moved back to LA and back to a normal distance relationship (NDR?) where I made these adorable shoes from Homemade Toast,


to fit the adorable little feet of my brand spanking new baby boy!

Yes, like every other blogger out there, I had a baby. I love him. I love him so much that I wasn't even mad that he basically grew out of the shoes the second before I put them on.

With all the new changes that a baby induces, he has reignited my love of documentation and community. I have been sewing up a storm the past couple of years and I hope to share them with y'all but really I just want to have a place to share my creations again. Stay posted... I promise I'll be back before it's 2016!

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Reception Dress

Remember a long time ago, when I mentioned I wanted this Morgane Le Fay dress, well I didn't get it...I got something better. I made my very own mullet dress! Yes, I was doing the mullet way before Ms. Palermo. And guess what? The only full length photo I can find to show you is this one, notice how my strap is falling off. I tell you, first world problems.


This dress was really probably too advanced for me. I self drafted the bodice and skirt. The fabric was all purchased from Mood Fabrics of PR fame. I went with my now husband and we stood in the store looking at fabrics for literally hours. I finally decided I wanted a red dress (white doesn't really look very good on me) and that I wanted to make my very own poofy dress out of only silks. So I came home armed with yards of silk chiffon, charmeuse, china silk, and organza.


Somehow, through some incredible sewing magic, the chiffon and charmeuse became a bodice. The charmeuse and china silk paired up and made an under skirt. And the organza and chiffon married to make a poof ball.


I remade the bodice three times but nothing I did could get rid of that slight pulling at the area where the straps meet the bodice. I also struggled with the fact that I had to wash my sweaty sweaty hands, which only get sweatier while sewing, every 10 minutes to prevent them from staining the chiffon. Ask me how I know that I needed to do this. Suffice to say, bodice #1 fell to the sweat stains.

Pulling aside, I loved this dress. It was so comfortable and fun. I gave a speech in it:


We biked around the driveway:


We danced the night away:


And most importantly, it was comfortable enough for me to flutter around and chat with every single guest at the party.

Through whatever color-tinted glasses I may be wearing, this dress was perfect for the occasion and every time I look at it, it reminds me of that incredible day that I spent surrounded by so many supportive friends and family.


Our Wedding Party

In the process of cleaning up this little blog of mine, I realized that I never posted about my wedding party that happened almost one year ago. Please indulge me as I spend the next few paragraphs and dozens of photos blabbing about nothing but me.

My hubby and I got married in May/2010 on our seven year dating anniversary surrounded by both sets of parents and a pair of dear friends who offered to be our photographers. Months later (July) we decided that we wanted to throw a party with all our friends and that said party should be in September. Because you know, two months is plenty of time to plan a party.

We rented this house in Malibu where both sides of our family stayed with us for a week:


The house was beautiful inside and out but we wanted something more casual so we set up shop on the lawn:


I spend a mad couple of weeks sourcing table and chair rentals. We drove all over the greater LA area to every Ikea/Target/Walmart/Dollar store possible to find linen + silverware + glassware. Exhausted, we scoffed at the idea of making seating charts and the such. Our wedding party was one big seating free for all.


The general seating area was set up as some cocktail tables + some round 60" tables + lounge areas. The food tables were set up as four stations, salads, cheese+bread+olives, main and dessert. I asked the caterer to bring out the three main courses in 20 minute intervals to facilitate an environment for people to walk around and mingle.

We munched on appetizers from the caterer before dinner:


and bowls of chips from my husbands family were placed around the bar:


For dinner we had salad + lasagna cupcakes + pork belly + trout + veggies:

And for dessert we had cupcakes baked by my dear friend, and cake pops baked by my brother and his gf.

Each of the main tables was decorated with a card. On one side of the card was a year and the other side a picture of us from that year along with a brief summary written by one of us (odd years for me, even for him). Also placed on all the tables were trivia cards. We made 150 or so unique cards with little questions on one side and answers on the other. Some of the cards contained personal information about us (where we were born etc.) and some of the cards had little factoids (what is the boiling point of niobium?) on them to help get conversation flowing. Both of these seemed to be a big hit and I heard non-overlapping sets of friends talking with each other about something they read on the cards or in the year synopsis. Wedding win!


All the flowers were made by another friend of mine. We went to the LA flower market and bought 130 dollars worth of flowers and she spent the next day cleaning and arranging ALL of them. In return, I gave her some leftover cupcake mix. Fair trade, I think. She also helped me with the name tags on all the champagne glasses that we used to serve Clairette de Die to all out guests when they arrived.

As if all the awesomeness of my friends weren't enough. I also have an awesome mother-in-law that made me a guestbook. I asked her to paint me anything that she felt symbolized my relationship with her son. She surprised me the day before the wedding with this.


The intertwining of the swans. The use of the color red. The chinese character. It is perfect and I love it. My guests had a fun time signing it too and it now resides hanging in our home.

And finally, the reason why I even thought about posting this on a sewing blog, my dress....

to be continued....

don't be mad, this entry is already wayyyyy too long.


Unintentional Knockoff

Pardon my asian glow I partook in the imbibing of uh, hmm, a *little* alcohol before I got around to taking this picture.

In one night of sheer project-runway-i-got-nothing-to-wear-to-the-wedding-make-it-work adrenaline, I made this little number.


And I loved it. I really liked that I finally used up this pretty goldenrod silk twill that had been sitting in my stash since forever. I liked the black velvet belt. I liked the exposed zipper (sorry, no good shot of it). I liked how everyone complimented me on my dress. And, then, someone asked me if it was Lanvin for H&M.


When I got back to the hotel room, I googled the dress and suddenly I got very critical of my dress. All I could think of was how awesome the Lanvin for H&M dress looked. In contrast my ruffle looks way too small. Suddenly, I could see the twisting in my bodice that really could have benefited from the use of boning. I began to wish that I had chosen my proportions differently. Basically, it became one big sewing pity party.

Now, a few weeks later. I've mellowed out. I can still see all the things that need improvement and will definitely incorporate these things into my bag of tricks next time around. At the same time, I am warming up to the initial feelings I had about the dress. Has this over critical analysis of your sewing ever happened to you?

Dress details...
Pattern: Started w/ Burda Easy 2011 One-shoulder dress, made it more fitted and added the flounce.
Fabric: 2 yards of silk twill. Two yards of tan lining fabric from Fabric Mart.
Cost: $7/yard for silk. $0/yard for lining (free bundle). $1.70 for zipper. ~$16
Sewing: One shoulder dresses could use some boning for support. The back waist on the dress needs to be taken up an inch or so.


Spotted... Vogue 1224 in Hawaii

vogue 1224

Not much left to be said about this little number.

Notes for record keeping....

Vogue 1224, Tracy Reese dress

Fabric: Knit jersey from Fabric Mart plus 1+ yards of Power Mesh for lining the skirt portion

~$18=$13 for jersey + $5 for power mesh

10 in the bodice and graded out to a 12 in the hips.

Next time I would lengthen the bodice by 1/2 inch.


Wave, wave, Hi!!!!

Hello, do you remember me? I'm that blogger. You know the one that posts intermittently and then completely falls off the face of this earth. I haven't been here. At the same time I have been here in the sewing community, sneakily following along on everyone's blog.

I have been sewing. A lot. Sewing things like this little summer dress.

simplicity 2250

simplicity 2250

Pattern: Cynthia Rowley 2250

Fabric: Navy blue silk/linen blend from Michael's Fabrics underlined w/ a white cotton voile from Dharma Trading Co.

$10 for fabric, $10 for lining, $2.5 for zipper = $22.50

Most of the reviews I found on this dress indicated a host of issues. To increase my chances of a good fitting bust, I decided to go with the size indicated by this article, which led me to cut a 10 in the bust grading to a 12 in the hips. As you can see by the pull lines in the back this was a tad too small. It's not apparent while you say, stand. But it becomes apparent while doing things like sitting at a 7-course chinese dinner. Take a guess as to which one of those activities I did in this dress. Let's just say that reduced rib expansion capabilities limited my food intake which is never a good thing.

I followed the instructions to the letter and had no difficulties. And although some reports indicated that the lining piece was drafted too short for the bodice, I didn't have this problem. I did mark the darts and pleats very very carefully, like quadruple checked them. The problem I had was that the bust cups in the lining piece were significantly smaller than the bodice cups. It also sort of annoyed me that the instructions said to finger press the pleats/darts on the bodice because now it looks a bit frumpy. Oh well.

Things I like:
1. The shape of this dress.
2. The fabric+pattern pairing. I couldn't decide for the longest time what sort of fabric to make it in. I noticed that it is hard to see all the pleats/darts on certain patterned fabric which led me to a solid fabric. Then, I didn't want to use a light solid fabric because I was afraid it might look messy. AND I wanted to shop my stash. It might not be so obvious from these pictures but I think the blue does a good job of showing off the darts/pleats w/o making it look too messy. And, the fabric is super soft and holds up pretty well, even after 4 hours of sitting and eating.
3. The pockets!
4. The elastic ruching in the back.

Thing I don't like:
1. I wish it were 1cm looser.

Some other great reviews

P.S. I missed you all. I hope to be more regular now that I have settled into my new routine.


Wedding dress update #1

Okay blog readers, please, be honest with me, this bodice style is not flattering on me huh?


For some reason I am strangely attracted to this style of bodice. I think it might be the princess lines and the straps, yes, it probably is the straps. What do you think? I'm worried that the square shape of the bodice doesn't sit well with my very square shoulders.

Any input would be greatly appreciated (and sorry for the poor picture).