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Category Archives: Embroidery

I’ve Been Busy…How About You?

I am usually a pretty organized crafter who tries to complete one project before starting the next but after losing my sewjo for a couple of weeks I am on fire! My projects took over the dining room this weekend and instead of home cooked meals on the table, we have this…

sewing in process

First up is my ALMOST completed cape for the Monthly Stitch August challenge. Forget that it is hotter than blue blazes at the moment, I must have a cape to parade about town this winter. More details to come on my cape next week.

cape in process

Next up is a totally random project I started Saturday. While I was organizing my sewing cabinet (otherwise known as trying to find a way to jam even more stuff in without the door flying open!) I found a kit for a quilted Christmas apron that I picked up at a local craft fair nearly two years ago. Never mind that I don’t know how to quilt, it is over four months before Christmas and I have tons of other more pressing items in my sewing queue. Even so, I actually enjoyed stitching the blocks together and will definitely use it once I finish. Next I will have to consult you tube for visual aids to quilt and bind the apron. If anyone has suggestions for good quilting instruction sites, let me know.

quilted apron

Also on my table is another Roza blouse (my 3rd!). Football season starts next week and I am a huge South Carolina Gamecocks fan. The University of SC is my alma mater and only an hour from my house. We often go to the games or watch them on television with friends so I decided to create a one of a kind blouse to wear. I did the embroidery of the USC mascot while watching TV last week and plan to stitch up the blouse this weekend. This version also uses up some of my stash so I get brownie points for stashbusting!

roza embroidery

And if that wasn’t enough I also have two items in process for the Sew Weekly Reunion. One is my first version of the By Hand London Anna dress for the Pantone Color Challenge. I am almost finished and hope to have a proper pattern review written next week but if you haven’t tried this pattern, you must get it to the top of your sewing queue stat!

anna dress

The other is for the Patterns and Notions Swap Challenge. If you recall from a previous post, my partner Amanda sent me two vintage patterns along with a cool set of buttons and a vintage tape measure. One of the sewing patterns included a knitted jacket pattern so I am feverishly knitting in the hopes of finishing it before September 1st. I would love to win the huge set of buttons offered as the prize.

pattern swap sweater

With all this positive creative energy flowing, what could be better than a gift in the mail? I recently won the Annette Tierette’s blogaversary giveaway and Anneke sent me a beautiful length of wax cotton fabric and lovely note all the way from Belgium. If you haven’t ever checked out her blog you definitely should. She makes cute clothing and always photographs her makes in cool industrial kinds of places which make her posts exceedingly more interesting!

giveaway gift

That’s what I’ve been up to this past week. Would love to hear about what you have on your sewing table!

A Little Embroidery and a Lot of Stashbusting

I am a hot/cold type of person, especially when it comes to my hobbies. I will often spend hours obsessing over a newly learned technique, pattern company, or fabric  to the exclusion of all else…until I get burnt out and toss it to the side for the “next new thing”. While this is great for becoming accomplished at a specific skill, this behavior leads to a lot of UFOs and an ever growing stash.
anna maria
This past week has proved to be the best of both worlds. First my recent love of embroidered clothing has resulted in two additional garments. The first is a restyled version of a basic Old Navy v-neck tee. The design is from Anna Maria Horner’s Needleworks Notebook which is a great book for anyone who loves Anna Maria’s style. She offers many different crosstitch, needlepoint, embroidery and crewel designs and I plan to incorporate a few of them into future projects. This was my first time using waste canvas and won’t be my last as it makes the stitches more even and the embroidery easier.
Roza version 2
The second embroidered garment finished this week was another Roza blouse. This Kate and Rose blouse is my new TNT pattern when I want to combine hand stitching with sewing. On this version, I used the Hungarian redwork pattern I found on NeedleNThread along with some fabric my daughter, Caitlin, had given me for my birthday back in May. The fabric is a quilting cotton so the final blouse is more structured and less flowing than the voile version but I still love it!

And if those two weren’t enough, I also finally finished my pink gingham Sorbetto which has been languishing in the UFO pile for months. Nothing much to say about this one except I learned how to do an FBA during construction and added two buttons from the clearance aisle at Hobby Lobby for embellishments. Sorbetto is definitely a great stashbusting project!
Gingham Sorbetto
My final item for the past week was a super quick skirt for Caitlin made from a houndstooth fabric that has been in my stash since I first started sewing in 2011! I initially made the mistake of buying a bunch of quilting cotton that really wasn’t the best for apparel sewing but it looks cute on her and helped reduce my stash.

My sewing mojo is in full swing so I am going to take advantage of it. What’s going on in your sewing room these days?

Kate and Rose Roza Blouse Pattern Review

I am definitely on an embroidery kick lately and my wardrobe has grown by two garments this past week. The first is the Roza blouse from Kata of Kate and Rose.  I originally found her through the Colette patterns flickr group when she posted an embroidered Sorbetto. After checking out Kata’s blog and trying her free embroidery pattern (originally discussed here) this indie pattern designer is quickly becoming one of my favorites.

front roza

The Roza pattern is sold through Kata’s etsy store and is available in both paper and pdf versions. I bought the pdf version because I wanted to wear this blouse to my son’s graduation party last Saturday with my Hummingbird skirt and I didn’t have time to wait for the pattern to be mailed. The pattern is a basic raglan sleeve with several options to allow for customization.

  • View A is a long sleeve, gathered front top
  • View B is a short sleeve flat front top with a high-low hem
  • View C is a short sleeve flat front dress

I actually mixed and matched the views to make my blouse. First I had to grade up the pattern in the bust and hips since the XL was still a bit smaller than my measurements.  I chose the flat front short sleeve version but decided on a straight hem.  Luckily the sleeves were large enough so no modifications were necessary to the raglan portion. The sleeves actually have a band and are supposed to be gathered but I prefer the look of plain sleeves so I simply used a small hem instead. I also blind hem stitched the bottom hem by hand.

The fabric is from Joel Dewberry’s Notting Hill collection and is a cotton voile Pristine Poppy in Citron. Not only is the perfect weight for our hot and humid South Carolina summers, it was also part of my stashbusting sewalong pledge! For the embroidery, I knew I wanted a swirly monogram so after searching MANY monograms, I chose a free font called Monogram KK. I then used a tutorial from Project Wedding to intertwine my initials. I printed the monogram, traced it onto a piece of white linen using my light box then stitched it by hand using three strands of DMC embroidery floss. I love the result!

monogram roza

Since I was short on time, I did not make a muslin (who am I kidding, I never make a muslin!) but next time I will probably not grade up the sides as much as I did on this version. The blouse hangs a bit in the front as you can see in the photo below but not enough to make me want to go back and modify anything this time around. Overall I am very pleased with this pattern and already have another one planned using the Hungarian braided chain stitch and this embroidery pattern for the front panel. If you haven’t ever incorporated embroidery into your garment sewing, you should definitely give it a try!

side roza

Mid Summer Sewing

While June was filled with a frenzy of Hummingbird and Bombshell sewalongs, July is following a much more relaxed approach. I have cut my pieces for the Colette’s Hawthorn dress but not gotten around to stitching them together yet. Instead I am spending a lot of time reading my favorite sewing blogs and plotting some stashbusting garments. While reading about Tilly’s holiday wardrobe, I fell in love with her “Life’s Too Short” skirt and knew I had to make one for myself. I typically prefer straight skirts as I feel they are more flattering to my pear shaped figure but the red line weave fabric of Tilly’s skirt sold me. Fortunately Tilly was kind enough to mention the fabric specifics in her original post so I was able to find the exact fabric from Jimmy Beans Wool.

Tilly Twin 2

The result is a super comfy gathered skirt that fits wonderfully with my summer wardrobe. I mostly followed Gertie’s gathered skirt tutorial and used exactly two yards of fabric. The seams were serged and I blind hemmed the bottom by hand.

Nicely Finished SeamsI also embellished a plain white t-shirt using a free embroidery pattern from Kata of Kate and Rose. Kata provides a wonderful tutorial for using t-shirt stabilizer which worked beautifully. Since I was working on a white fabric, I simply traced the pattern onto the stabilizer then stitched it directly onto the shirt. I am happy with how the embroidery took a basic t-shirt and “fancied” it up. In fact one of the girls at work said I reminded her of Snow White in my new ensemble!

Embroidery Close Up

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