Monday, May 18, 2020

Review of Felix Pattern from Grainline Studio Patterns

Dear readers,

I quickly finished this shift dress, the Felix Dress, from Grainline Studio, in record time -- again the sewing for this piece (after cutting) took 2 - 4 hours.  I'm also getting spoiled by the detailed directions and sew-alongs for these independent patterns.  I think the basic sloper is great for my body (as is the Paper Theory sloper).  I bought the pattern and had it printed as Sewing.PatternReview.Com.  I've given up printing pdfs (unless bras, shorts and similar small items).  I made the longer version of the two.

The pattern photos:

I made it up in fabric from Superbuzzy that I've been dying to make.  The sizing is very very large.  I dropped two sizes to a 12 but should have cut the 10 (again!) or maybe even the 8!

I love pockets and am on a pocket blitz!

Again, I love this comfy dress -- and I can't wait to make again.  I plan to make the Grainline Studio Farrow dress as well - perhaps in a beige linen -- below:



Saturday, May 16, 2020

Review of the Paper Theory Zadie Jumpsuit - I'm last to the party and it is as good as everyone says . . .

Dear readers,

You haven't heard from me in a while; I've been publishing in academia like crazy and practicing law quite a bit but with the respite from going in the office with COVID-19 -- and my travel cancelled, I am having lots of time to get my craft on!

I finally made the Zadie Jumpsuit from Paper Theory.   It's a pdf pattern that I had sent to the copy shop (A0) -- I use either the shop if I buy the pattern from (if available) at -- or I found one recently I sent all my patterns to that I downloaded and it is reasonable and fast.  It's PDF Plotting by Keith Fabry, link is   I now feel incredibly organized.  

To sum it up:  It is as good as they say.  The pattern runs about two sizes large - and is fine for beginners.  But I would caution to check the pattern size measurements as finished on the envelope.  They even have finished bicep measurements! Helpful -- I wish all patterns had this measurement.

The front involves a bias tape finish -- but since I just sewed up 40 masks no problem.  I'm now, apparently, a bias tape expert.  And, why o' why did I ever buy a bias tape foot from Bernina.  I love Bernina feet but I must have lost my mind 8 years or so ago when I bought it. Maybe I'll find a good use for it yet, but the foot is too small with a 1/4" finished binding.  I prefer the clover clip I have, and the old fashioned way of attaching (sewing the back first then turn the piece over and sewing the finishing as a top stitch; I am using double side bias tape 1.5" binding).

Some reviewers claim that the crotch is too low -- but I have a long body so that works for me - I still shaped it up a bit -- took out a deeper crotch curve for the back pants.   Next time I'm going down a size (I downsized to a size 12 for this version).  I think a 10 would be a better fit.

When sewing - it took only 2-4 hours to finish (if that).  I serged the edges, and boned up a pocket pretty badly.

My fabric is Japanese linen from and I love it.

I plan to make this again, perhaps in a shorts pattern.  It really is that good.

More posts to come!

XOXO, Pammie

Sunday, September 3, 2017

Back to Bloggin'

Dear readers,

I'm sorry to say I've been very lax in posting these past two years.  It has taken me quite some time to turn the corner on my grief of losing my late partner of 12 years, J.  I also had a 'bout with a serious illness (all is well, now).  I feel like perhaps I can start posting now.  If you have experienced the loss of a family member, spouse, partner, parent or (god forbid) child - I have found certain things helpful.  A therapist, a widow's group, friends, travel; for podcasts, I liked "What's your grief?" and for books, for me (and I have probably read enough to get a Ph.D in grief) I particularly liked A grief obseved by C.S.Lewis, and Second Firsts. I also liked the (Joan) Didion books, and could appreciate Cheryl Strayed's book on the PCT but not until after a year had passed for those memoir type of readings; I needed some perspective.

Two of my favorite quotes are "No one told me grief felt so much like fear" (C.S. Lewis) & "Grief is sneaky, very sneaky  . . but life is sneaker and more alive than grief could ever be." (Second Firsts).  Although when you are in the raw mix of emotions, any quotes feel trite.

So back to the point of this blog:  I have been doing all kinds of craftsy things, and meeting my fiber goals.  I've been an active (somewhat) member of the Ventura County Handweavers and Spinner's Guild.  I have learned to weave on a rigid heddle and spin (see pictures below).  I've even been spindling, and finally I have a Mirrix tapestry loom BUT have not been successful (yet):

I've been doing all kinds of knitting, mostly hats as gifts (more on that in a later blog) and am finishing up a sweater now.  On Ravelry my name is pammieandtheps, here is a teaser but again, I will do a blog post on my adventures in knitting:
My sewing has taken a back seat to my other fiber goals but I've made a two skirts and a four blouses.  I've even made some bad forays into bra making (one successful -- one not so much).
My skirt, a rugged linen from stash, followed by a lined sequin skirt - which I completed last minute right before a party:

In other fiber-y things, I even started rug making (latch hook -- remember that?).   Yes, perhaps I've lost my mind!

Dear readers, I'm not ashamed to tell you I know a whole lot more about sheep than I ever used to.

I hope you all are well, and I've been diligently reading my bloglovin' with your wonderful posts.

See you all very soon (A presto!),



Friday, July 10, 2015

Treadle Built and Consultation on Paint Colors

Dear Readers,

I finally turned the Singer 201K which I bought off Ebay and had a English Voltage belted motor into a treadle.  And, it actually works once I replaced the belt on the treadle and took out the old head.  I've tried to fix the veneer all year, but without good results.
I know many of my readers suggesting staining the piece, and that was my preference as well.  But I used so much wood filler to fill in serious cracks and missing and damaged veneer, my thought now is that I am planning on painting it.   That said, I wouldn't mind a few opinions with the paint colors.   I'm leaning toward the blue due to the contrast although it is very muted and doesn't come through perfectly in the pictures.  I was thinking perhaps a darker vintage-er green (such as a dark artichoke) might work as well.  Any thoughts?

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Does Absence Make the Heart Grow Fonder?

Dear readers,

Does absence make the heart grow fonder, or, does it grow more distant?  I hope the former.  I apologize for the long absence.  My partner, J. passed away unexpectedly over the Holidays on the East Coast during a visit.  That, with a medical problem he struggled with all last year, left no time or energy for blogging.
Zombies Anyone?
But, now, after an extended absence I am back with a series of posts to show you what I've been up to.  I also have converted a Singer 201K to a treadle, later post on that to follow.  I also bought a spinning wheel from a friend, but have yet to quite spin anything.  

In the photo below, I've displayed all the projects I've completed (in two cases the projects are in progress), appropriately staged on J.'s piano, as usual:
Let me go over the knitted hats, woven scarfs, and cowls, first, with more posts to follow.

First, the Zombie BBQ Felicity Hat -- yarn appropriately named from Lorna's Laces Worsted.  A two day knit from cast-on.   I made it slightly small (cast on 70 stitches) -- next time I might make it slightly larger.  The Ravelry information can be found HERE.

Ready for the Zombie Apocalypse.  Now, if I can just get some life skills!

Second, the Metalico Fresco Slouchy Hat, on Ravelry, made with Metalico yarn that I had left over from another project.  The Ravelry information on this project is HERE.
 Easy, soft and with stash yarn -- yeah!!

This project is Honey Cowl made with Madeline Tosh Midnight Pass Yarns (which my dad jumped that bridge in his car in Sarasota back in the day (it is no longer there)) from A Good Yarn in Sarasota.  Super easy, but kinda boring.  Still, I loved the result.  The Ravelry information is found HERE.

Next, I started making these for both me and  J., but really only finished mine -- my first pair of socks!  The Cow Springs Hiking Socks, made with Lorna's Laces Worsted.  I love the heel on these socks.  Fabulous!  The Ravelry information can be found HERE.

Finally, from my good friend and weaver, Allyson -- she wove a scarf from this fabulous chenille. The scarf is patterned after the first 8 bars of the melody of the song Empty Chairs at Empty Tables from Les Miserables. She surprised me with it after a movie, which brought tears to my eyes, 'cause that is how I roll now.  Perfect scarf for jeans too.  I love it!!!

More to follow -- I have shorts, tights, a v-neck knitted sweater and two knitted pillows.  I am also in love with the new Jalie patterns.  Before that I need to do some stash busting I think.   My sewing and knitting are slow, but I'm in no hurry.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Fall Equinox and Inspiration.

Dear readers,

Today is the first day of Fall.

I am busy knitting away on two pair of new socks (my first and I love them!!).  BTW, I absolutely love my knitted Funky Grandpa Sweater.  It's been hot but I've been wearing it as much as possible!  Who knew -- that I would knit sweaters I actually wear.
Above, Funky Grandpa sweater, blogged here, my painstaking sewn princess seam blouse, Butterick 5678 blogged here, and pencil skirt fom my sloper, blogged here.

In the meantime, I'm thinking about some Fall sewing.  I see the trends as plaids, dark florals, and bomber jackets, to mention a few -- here are some pictures of Fall inspiration (yes, I guess I need to link this blog to Pinterest):

Beautiful, but pricey bomber style jacket form Anthropologie, link here,   I love it!  But at 440.00US I think I can make just as good a version (plus, bombers present problems for my figure - reverse triangle/apple).

Below, from the blogger, Zanita Morgan - mixing plaid and dark floral - fabulous.  I don't think I could pull this off.  I love her blog and I'm not one to follow fashion blogs.
Below, I love this 1940s fashion from the STARZ series Outlander - Wonderful women's suit, I wish I had a better picture, but that jacket is fantastic with the detailing.
 Interesting use of plaid from Sarah Jessica Parker -- although this is a bit literal for my taste.
Dear bloggers, what are your inspirations right now?


P.S.  I'm thinking of starting a travel blog -- for my friends/co-workers I have a series of travel guides for certain cities (Monterey, Oahu, Olympic Peninsula, San Diego, Jacksonville), and if so, I am considering monetizing it -- something I would never do for this hobby/love of fabric arts blog.  Or, maybe because my sophistication/expertise level is much higher for travel?