Monday, August 29, 2011

I didn't float away!!!

As you all know by now we had some major crazy weather in this part of the country over the weekend with Hurricane Irene. We lost power Saturday night, but it came back on Sunday morning. The only damage was to our vegetable garden. We're going to have to pick our corn early as the stalks have fallen over.

I originally was going to go to New York for Elizabeth and Robin's PR shopping day, but that was canceled. To make up for that, I made sure I stopped in at the 50% off sale that Fabric Warehouse was having, and I did behave myself. I walked out only spending $30 and got this lovely loot.

After that, I pretty much got my house and my mother's home ready for the storm by putting all the lawn furniture and items that might get blown away. Absolutely no sewing got done, but I did get time to think about what I wanted to sew next. I have planned that the cream and stripe fabric will become this skirt from Twinkle Sews.

I probably won't use the pattern from the book and will use one of the skirt patterns I already have used before like McCall 3830.

I've made this pattern up before and like it. It's my go to TNT pattern and I feel comfortable playing with it. The only thing I am missing now is the lace that I would like to use as the overlay over the cream. I will probably go to Joanns and look and see what they have. I might also check out a few sites online. A six inch lace should do it.

I'm thinking of using the Aztec like fabric for Vogue 1258.

The green and black fabric will become a top. I'm not sure which one yet, but we will see. I haven't designated a pattern for the red and black fabric yet, so that will sit in my stash for a while.

On the knitting front I got to work on my Chiton Pullover from Winter/Spring 2011 Knitscene.

I've been working on it off and on this summer and thought I better get cracking as summer is almost gone, and I'd like to wear it as least once before the cooler weather gets here. I'm knitting it with a yarn that I picked up at Maryland Sheep and Wool. It's cotton, bamboo and silk I think and I LOVE the colorway. I finished the drape neck front yesterday(I just love a drape neck) and I'm working on the back of the sweater now. Hopefully I can get that completed in the next week.

I'm off today and originally it was suppose to be a resting day for me, but I'm not to sure about that now. I might be moving my mother in as she has no electricity and PSE&G is saying services won't be restored till Sept. 4th. Oh well, back to the real world.

Happy Crafting everyone.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Jackson's Favorite Treats!!!

This weekend I decided to make doggie treats for Jackson. I made treats years ago when Byron was around and I forgot how much they both really liked them. Scratch that, LOVED them. I was going to try this new recipe last weekend, but got to it this weekend because the cookie jar was running low.

For those of you that are interested, here's the recipe I came up with from viewing other recipes online.

Preheat your oven at 350 Degrees.


1 1/2 cup flour
1 cup wheat flour
1 cup oats
2 tbp of Canola or Olive oil
1/3 cup peanut butter
1 1/4 hot water

In a large bowl mix all the dried ingredients together. Then add the oil and peanut butter.

Next slowly add the water and mix your ingredients together.

With a rolling pin, roll your dough out till it's 1/4 thick. With a cookie cutter, cut your doggie cookie shapes out and place them on a lightly greased cookie sheet.

Place the cookies in the oven for 40 minutes. Take out and cool.

I'll leave you with this parting shot.

I was trying to take the cookie away from Jackson. He was not having it.

If you liked this post, let me know. I'll post other treat recipes in the future, as I test and try new ones out.

Friday, August 19, 2011

New Looks on Sale for $2.99

Hey Ya'll. I just thought you would like to know that New Look Patterns are on sale on the Simplicity site for $2.99 until 8/22. I got the email this morning.

Monday, August 15, 2011

It's Maxi Time!!!

Believe it or not, I haven't sewn anything for the past 2 weeks, but I was thinking about this fabric,
and the maxi dress that would come out of it the whole time.

Now that I think about it, it might even be more like two weeks that I've been thinking about this dress. Isn't that sad? I think so.

I purchased this piece back in June at Spandex House. When I saw it. I t was screaming/whispering to me that it wanted to be a maxi dress. Anyway, I got busy doing other things and then when I had the time, I either thought about something else or looked at other patterns. I was also trying to figure out what pattern I wanted to use. I have a few tank top patterns that definitely fit the bill but in the end, I narrowed it down to Simplicity 2189. What helped me with my decision was that I didn't want darts in the bodice, and I wanted a no brainer as I was sewing this baby up after work Friday night for my company outing on Saturday afternoon. By the way I didn't look at the directions, I just did my own thing. Plus the dress is simple enough that you really don't need them. By the way, excuse the hair in these pictures. It's looking a hot mess. These pictures were taken after my job's summer outing and the weather was not the best. Let's just say Saturday was the precursor to Sunday's torrential downpour.

I cut out the size 14. I cut the neckline lower by about 2 inches because I wanted a lower neckline and added about 10 to 12 inches to the bottom flaring is a tiny bit. In the end I removed 3 inches from the bottom of the dress. That worked out perfectly because I used it for the armhole bands.

For the neckband I cut a long strip of fabri
c about 2 inches wide.

I sewed one shoulde
r seam leaving the other one open and attached the neckband to the dress before sewing the other shoulder seam closed.

This fabric was a little on the thin side so I lined it with tricot.

Overall, I'm very happy with this dress and would make it again. Here is my pattern review which goes over in detail what I pretty much just summarized.

Pattern Description:

Misses' & Plus Size shirt, pants and knit dress or top.

Pattern Sizing:

I sewed the 14, View A.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?

Yes and no. I change the length of the dress to make it a maxi dress.

Were the instructions easy to follow?

I really would not know. I did not look at them.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?

This pattern looks pretty good so far and there are a couple more items I may make f
rom it. I picked this pattern to achieve a look I had in my mind for a tank maxi dress.

Fabric Used:

Rayon Lyra from Spandex House.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:

I cut the front neckline deeper by 2 inches and the back neckline deeper by about 1 inch. I also lengthened the dress pattern by about 10 to 12 inches, but then removed from the length about 3 inches. 2 of the 3 inches I cut off I recycled and used for the armbands. I did not use the pattern pieces for the neckband and armband from the pattern. I just winged it.

In putting the neckline and neckband together, I sewed one shoulder seam closed. I left the other one open and pinned the neckband to the neckline, right sides together. Once the neckband was on I serged it, then sewed the open shoulder seam closed. This technique enables the neckband to lay flatter and I like the look much better than sewing both shoulder seams then attaching the neckband.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?

Yes. I want to possibly work on the neckline a little bit more and possibly go for a r
acerback look next time. Yes I would recommend this pattern to others. There are a few more items in this pattern that I want to try.


I'm pretty happy with the outcome of how my dress turned out. I was winging it and had a vision in my head with what I wanted. I got pretty close to it. The dress is very functionable for those lazy days of summer, and I looked and felt comfortable and chic at my job's summer outing.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Almost A Wadder

I have had New Look 6729 (OOP) in my stash for a couple of years but for some reason felt intimidated by the pattern. Why? I don't know because I was able to put it together pretty easily. I purchased the fabric from Fabric Warehouse about 3 or 4 years ago.

There was barely a yard of it, so I knew I had to be careful with how I cut the fabric. Anyway, I was in a rush to cut the fabric out because I wanted to wear it on Saturday and decided to cut and sew it on a Friday night before I ran out the door to go to the hair dresser to get my hair done. (I made this top in June by the way. Well, in my rush to cut out the fabric, I didn't check to see which way the stretch was and cut out the back. Of course to my horror I realized that I had cut the back out with the stretch going lengthwise. I freaked for about a minute and forged ahead, because there was no way I was throwing this fabric away. I liked the print too much. I cut the front piece out and made sure I had enough to cut it the correct way, sewed it up and left the arms and hem undone before leaving to get my hair done. When I got home I hemmed the sleeves and top then tried it on. In doing so I realized that the bottom of the top in the front was drooping in a weird way. I assumed that that was from me cutting the back out wrong.

I wish I had taken pictures to document my fudge up, but, of course I did not. (Mental note to self, start documenting everything. You never know when you may need this information again, or it might be helpful to someone else.) I put the top on Lola and messed with pinning in the sides a little, and it did the trick. I was able to get rid of the hanging droop in the front of the top.

Pattern Description

Pattern Sizing:

14, View C

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once
you were done sewing with it?

I think so.

Were the instructions easy to follow?

Pretty much. I didn't have any problems with them.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?

I liked the style of the pattern.

Fabric Used:

Rayon/Lycra Knit purchased from Fabric Warehouse.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:


Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?

Yes and yes.


This is a nice top to add to your wardrobe and would look good with slacks, a skirt jeans or a suit. It is a top that can be dressed up or down. Definitely a keeper.

P.S. I made updates to my last post on how to make the laundry detergent for those of you that are interested. (Serenity, Sheila, Karen).

Monday, August 08, 2011

Hey Mom!!!! I Made Detergent!!!

First off, I want to thank all of you for the wonderful comments you gave me on my dress in the last post. You guys are the greatest, and if you ever want honest opinions or are not sure if something is working for you, you all give just the right advice. It helps a lot, especially for someone like me who sometimes second guesses myself. Anyway, not to change the subject, but I am. Let's talk soap.

Never in all my years did I ever think I would make Laundry Detergent, but I took the plunge yesterday and did it. I use to make handmade soap years ago and loved it but stopped about 5 years ago. I've been thinking about doing it again, it's just a matter of space, and time. Anyway, one of the reasons I decided to try making my own laundry detergent was because I have a problem where certain detergents make my skin breakout after I've washed my clothes in them. The liquid detergent I have been using for the last few years is the Arm & Hammer for Sensitive Skin with no perfumes or dyes. I have problems with finding this detergent on the shelves sometimes and usually have to buy it in bulk when I see it on sale.

I came across this recipe and cross referenced it against this other recipe the other day for making your own natural laundry detergent and figured, "hey why not give it a try". It's free of toxins and dyes which is not only good for you, but also good for the environment. Once everything is mixed up, you let it set for 24 hours and you are good to go.

I used a bar of Ivory soap. You grate your soap up with a grater and place it in a large pot with 4 cups of water and melt it on the stove. Once the soap has dissolved into the water. Turn the pot off;

you take 1 cup of Arm & Hammer Washing Soda and pour that into the soap water. Stir until dissolved. Next you add

a 1/2 cup of Borax. Stir until dissolved.

Take a large size bucket and add 6 cups of boiling water hot water to it. Add your soap mixture next very slowly and stir as you go so that they blend nicely. Then take a gallon of warm to hot water and add to your mixture. Once all the water is added and stirred. It will look like this.

(stirring all the ingredients up)

The next and final step is to add the the essential oil. This is my favorite step because I get to scent it with whatever essential oil or oils I like, so basically I decide what I want my clothes to smell like and it's natural.

(What the detergent looks like after the essential oils are added)

For this first batch I decided on lavender and orange. Let's just say, it smells heavenly in the container. This is what it looks like 24 hours later.

(Detergent24 hours later after it sets.)

I saved two loads of laundry so that I could try it out tonight. I have to tell you. I just finished folding the first load. I made sure I had some of Mr. D's clothes in the load because his clothes can be pretty funky sometimes. These clothes came out unscented which is fine but, they are clean. This stuff really works and these are all ingredients that you can purchase at your nearby grocery store. If you can't find all the ingredients there, check out Amazon.

Monday, August 01, 2011

Vogue 8724

It has been a while, but with me these days, you all know that's no surprise. This heat has not been helping either. I was going through a dry spell for about 2 weeks where I had no mojo and then a little birdie by the name of Cennetta tweeted in my ear by calling me up and telling me to get stepping "Just cut something". I went through the motions and cut out Vogue 8724.

The fabric is from Spandex House which I purchased in June on one of my excursions to NYC.

This baby is a lot more colorful than I'm use to but, I've been trying to put more color in my life. When Mr.D first saw the fabric he was like "wow babe, I don't know." After all was said and done, we both liked it. The back of the dress consists of 3 long pieces. The center back and 2 side pieces.

That for me was different but I like how it turned out. The pleats in the center were a nice element to the design of the dress. In sewing them I had to do a bit of tweaking but it worked out okay.

The different cup sizes were a nice bonus to the dress pattern as well. For an added touch, I added a large button to the center of the pleats. Originally I picked out the button in the photo above but I wasn't crazy about the size so I went bigger.

Pattern Description

Close-fitting knit dress with custom fit cup sizing in two lengths with overlapping front pleats.

Pattern Sizing:

I made the 14.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once
you were done sewing with it?


Were the instructions easy to follow?

The instructions were very straight forward and I had no problem with them. This particular pattern has different cup sizes for you to choose from. I cut the B Cup. I did have a slight issue working the center pleat, but I worked it out and placed a large button in the center for embellishment.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?

I actually do not dislike anything about this pattern. The dress is very comfortable to wear. The way this dress is designed it hides my flaws pretty well.

Fabric Used:

Rayon/Lycra knit I purchased from Spandex House in June.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:

None. I worked it straight out of the pattern envelope.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?

Yes, I want to sew this one again, if not just to work the 2 center pleats out better than I did this time. I would recommend this pattern to others. The dress is very flattering on.


I have worn this dress several times now, and each time I get a compliment. It is definitely a keeper.


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