It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Stitchmas! No matter what your religion, if sewing is your jam then Stitchmas is your holiday. Now, that doesn’t mean that you have to sew all of your holiday presents. No way. In fact, most of my holiday gifts are from Oxfam, The Animal Rescue League, or Greyhound Friends. All it means is that you should make some personal happy time to sew and to hangout with other sewists! Namely, at our Stitchmas Party on December 14th. There will be giveaways, free stuff, snacks (vegan too!), and deelishis adult beverages. The signature drink is the Bobbin for Apples, a festive concoction that will really help us get our cheer on. Also anything you buy during our party is 15% off! That includes sewing machines, so if you need a last minute surprise or a special treat for yourself, we’ve got you covered. There’s free parking in the lot off Albany and don’t worry, we won’t force you to sing carols.* The party starts at 5pm and lasts until we run out of jolly. See you there!
*You can, of course, sing as many carols as you like, especially beloved are those in which you have replaced every word with “meow.”
I recently made some good life choices and some, well, more questionable ones. The good ones involved sewing up a sweet mid-length version of By Hand London’s Anna Dress. The other involved…my hair. You see, periodically I get the urge to trim. The totally unnecessary urge to trim where no trimming is necessary. I say to myself, “Just a snip or two to even up the sides,” and then all of a sudden I have a sink full of hair. I did this very thing a week ago. What you see now is after Robert from Liquid straightened up my straightening. Shorter than I planned, but, let’s be honest, I didn’t plan anything at all! So, it’s real short-like. While I’m waiting for it to become a chin length bob again I’m going to live it up with some wild spiky bits. Like I’m a character in the Sandman comics. Or Siouxie Sioux. Or a radical sci-fi heroine. Any of those will do.
As for the Anna, I love it. I ended up opening the side seams just a bit on this version and doing a full bust adjustment on the pattern for next time. Oh, and I skipped the facings for bias tape, as is my wont.
Next up, I’m working on a collared shirt for John in our white Pinpoint Oxford shirting, a coat for myself from some wool curtains(!) I was gifted, and maybe another Archer. Looks like I’m not the only one who is addicted!
PS: How do you like the new site?? I decided to change it up after noticing that Target’s store brand was using our main font. I mean, I like Target. A lot. But I know it’s time for something new when they’re scooping our branding.
Or should I say KITTEN CABOODLE?? Get it?? I’m hilarious. Sublime Stitching has just released a new tool kit with cutie pie kittens in tee shirts designed by famed illustrators The Berkleys. It’s also the right size for cards and cash, if you don’t need to stash some scissors in your bag. Though, everyone needs scissors in their bag, right? Anyhow, it’s new. It’s cute. It’s $16.50 and it’s in the shop now. Meowsers!
Did y’all have a Caboodle when you were young? Mine was purple and hot pink and actually resides in the shop’s back room holding paints. But this post isn’t really actually truly about Caboodles; it’s about kits! Sassy new sewing kits to be exact. You may have noticed the nifty tins and pouches on our front table. Well you get to choose your preferred holding device depending on which kit you choose.
The Deluxe Kit is a $78.50 value for $60 and contains:
Metal Blue Q cigar box of your choice (art supplies, sewing supplies, random crap, treats, and more!)
Retractable Tape measure
Traditional tomato pin cushion with emery
Pin tin full of pearl-headed pins
1×8 ruler and inches & bits seam gauge
Universal sewing machine needles, 10 pack asst sizes
DMC hand sewing needles
4 full sized thread spools (black, red, navy, white)
Grey’s Brand Pin Magnet
The Basic kit is a $56.75 value for $45 and contains:
Blue Q sewing pouch of your choice (airmail, art supplies, color swatches, cameras, bikes, and more!)
Traditional tomato pin cushion with emery
Pin tin full of pearl-headed pins
Universal sewing machine needles, asst sizes
DMC hand sewing needles
2 full sized thread spools (black and white)
Makes a great gift for you or another beloved sewist. Come take a look, or buy from our Etsy site here and here. See you, sweet sewists.
Hey y’all. You may have noticed that things look a little different around these parts. Also, some things (like all of the blog posts!) are currently missing. Links are also probably pretty wacky right now, too. We plan to have all this stuff fixed in a day or two, so stay tuned! In the meantime, go sew something, you sassy minx.
Hey y’all. I made a second Archer Shirt, this time from Tule, a collection by Leah Duncan for Art Gallery Fabrics. The print is called Quietude in Dusk and it’s like the grown-up cousin of Sarah Watson’s animal face fabric, which has been wildly popular. I thought about using that, but just wasn’t sure how many times I’d reach for a novelty shirt. Cute, but I’m glad I went with the floral. I love it, especially after laundering. I’m really bad when it comes to prewashing: just too impatient! But I’m glad I did this time. I also prewashed my next Archer, which will be from Victoria and Albert voile. Yumz!
No big modifications from the last iteration, just shortened the arms on the actual pattern this time instead of chopping an inch off the bottom and an inch off the cuff like last time. I used the non-notched cuffs on this one. I also put the first button down 3.5″‘ like the rest of the button spacing. It just hits me better there. Less gaping. I also used this tutorial for turning the collar and was very impressed with the pointiness that resulted! Used shell buttons, like I almost always do.
All for now, friends. Tonight I’m working on a fancy-pants Laurel party dress in black Radiance cotton/silk. Par-tay!
If you have seen any sewing blogs recently, chances are good you’ve seen a few Archers. It’s a pattern from Grainline Studio and only pdf at the moment, but you better believe that as soon as they are printed we will have EVERY SINGLE PATTERN. You are working on that, right Jen???!?!
Our own Crafty Foxes have put out scads of these lovelies. Check out Ashley’s and Katy’s (avec butt ruffle) and Ping’s (plaid matching! gah!) and Lucinda’s. Ooh and I just discovered this sassy dress version. That might be next on the docket. I finished my first the other day and started on a second last night. The version below I made from Liberty of London’s Hello Kitty Tana Lawn, which I got for like $16 a yard online somewhere. Tana is usually like almost $40 a yard, so this was really a steal! I generally prefer more affordable options like Alexander Henry Hollywood Lawn, Westminster and Free Spirit Voile, and Robert Kaufman Cambridge, so that’s what we carry at the shop. Hard to pass up The Cat, though. She was a staple of both my childhood and teen years. All the cool girls at my high school were decked out in Sanrio all the time. Not that I was one of them, mind you. I was just.. you know.. there. Can you tell I don’t miss high school much?
Moving on! I used ShirTailor interfacing for the collar, cuffs, and button band, though I switched to Touch of Gold (a little lighter) for the one I’m working on now. Not for any particularly strong reason, just wanted to see how I liked it.
I didn’t make any major alterations, just had to shorten the sleeves by about 2″. I have really short forearms!
Continuing the High School theme, Senior Portrait-style:
Look! I’m tough! Yeah!
This one of the buttonholes before I chiseled it open. The Sensormatic buttonhole foot on the Creative Performance really rocks my socks. You just tell it how many millimeters to make the thing and waah-lah! It’s there! I used Aurifil variegated longarm quilting thread for the entire shirt, including the buttonholes. It’s 100% trilobal poly, a little silky, and VERY strong and I’ve been using it for as much stuff as possible. It comes on huge cones that will never run out. If you’re at Crafty Foxes, feel free to give it a whirl. If other folks like it as much as I do, I’ll try to stock it!
Next time you’re in, why don’t you show me YOUR Archer?? Oh, and don’t forget that on Halloween, you can get one item for 35% off if you sing the shop Happy Birthday! (For sewing machines, off MSRP, but that’s still pretty darn good!) The shop’s 3rd birthday is on the 31st. It was my 35th on the 6th so that explains the percentage off! (Holy cow, 35? Ok, breathe, Sarah.) All for now, lovelies!
About a month ago I ventured into the wilds of Minnesota to witness the nuptials of my lovely and dear mother in law, Kathy, and her beau. The wedding was charming and sweet, just what I’d expect from her. What I’m really writing about today, dear readers, is her DRESS. She sewed it herself from a vintage pattern and it was so beautiful. There was an overlay of iris-printed chiffon and not a stitch was out of place. I know that I was supposed to be thinking about love and marriage and commitment and all whatnot, but during most of the ceremony I was wondering how she got her sleeves inset so perfectly (not a pucker in sight!) and admiring how the surplice top was laying exactly flat and not gaping at all. I’m sure that you will all sympathize with me upon seeing the delightful images below. Behold!
Kathy is a flautist (fluter?) and played some lovely tunes at her own wedding, just like she did at mine and John’s.
Bonus shot: sassy lady pirate pose!
So that is my rad mom in law! Now you can see why a sewist’s mind might wander to all things dressmaking at certain times.
P.S. (My own mom is pretty rad too, but a little camera shy. I’ll have to do a future post on her breathtaking quilts!)
The inimitable Katy and Laney (who are now SUPER SEWING FAMOUS, let me tell you! BurdaStyle Project of the Week, Kollabora, and Grainline all featured my sweet friends) let me join their blogging splendor this Sunday by taking glamour shots of me in two of my Sureau Dresses. I’m working on a third, a peplum shirt, that I should be able to finish up this Wednesday at Crafty Foxes. I’m using Victoria and Albert Museum voile and this snazzy Aurifil thread that I’ll rave about when I post it. Ok, on to the GLAMOUR:
First is the one I made with Color Speck Chambray and some of my favorite Czech glass buttons. They’re going on the peplum top, too!
This is the Dear Stella Buds fabric from the Dear September post. The first picture isn’t exactly what I’d call glamorous, but I thought it was pretty funny. I have just discovered that the Boston location of Maison Decor has closed, just when I finally decided to buy some paint there! Bad timing, Sarah.
Checking out my sassy Fryes. I might have a shoe problem. I was never really a “shoe person” before, but man Frye has really got my number lately.
Entitled: Oh, what a feeling!
You probably get Snippets from Colette Patterns, don’t you? Those weekly words of wisdom sent out on Tuesdays from their sweet nest in Portland, Oregon? If you don’t, you’d better sign your sassy self up, because they are packed with useful tips. This week’s was especially near and dear to my heart (I just typed “deer” instead of “dear” – guess it’s Dear September!)
Reader Angela B.’s tip for this week was:
Sometimes when I use a traditional measuring tape, it will slip off the fabric, or my neck, and ends up on the floor. My measurement is then lost and I have to start all over again.
To remedie this problem, I use a 14″ Dritz Measuring Gauge. This is a double-sided tool with 14 commonly used small measurements on each edge.
It works great for measuring seam allowances or small hems. It also fits into small areas for fast and accurate measurements.
The email had a picture of a Dritz brand measurer which, while definitely useful, is NOT as lovely as OUR special fancy custom made version, which we call Inches & Bits.
The inches and bits ruler is one of the funnest, cutest, not to mention usefullest (those are all words, right?) li’l tools I’ve ever used. We sell them in the shop and on Etsy and they’re gems. Oh, and the 1″x8″ ruler now has metric and imperial! Bonus!
A traditional seam gauge is great if you need a non-standard measurement, but if I’m doing something that uses a standard size (which is most of the time), then I’ll reach for my Inches & Bits. There’s even a little hole to test where exactly a quarter inch lines up on your machine. Good for quilters and garment sewists alike! And you get to have a ruler engraved with dear little Bobbin the Fox.