when it rains it pours

Happy Halloween!

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I won’t go into any construction detail, quite frankly the construction is atrocious. This was actually the first thing I sewed when I got back into sewing earlier this year. I had bought broadcloth on sale for $0.50/yd and had gotten almost all the way through when I realized that I could have prevented the puckering by changing the tension on the thread. I had thought it was just doing that because the fabric was cheap. So I never finished the dress and stashed it away.   When it came time to brainstorm costumes I really liked the idea of the Morton Salt Girl ( you know, food scientist and all). I decided to just use this dress because who cares if a costume puckers?  So I dug it out, added the zipper, and finished the hem. easy peasy.

I had the most fun making the salt canister. I figured that since the girl was little the salt canister was much bigger in proportion to her body. So I made mine out of a can of oats. I printed out the image and taped it to the can. I cut two slits in the lid and fashioned a pour spout out of tinfoil. I added a strap out of fishing line so that I could wear it like a purse and free up my hands if I had to. Finally I strung some irregular glass beads on fishing line to act as the salt pouring out.

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I hemmed and hawed over whether or not to get a wig.  I eventually decided against it because I had only spent $8 on the costume to add a $20 wig seemed stupid. Also the dress isn’t an exact replica so the hair didn’t have to be either.   I did however do a faux bob. It freaked a lot of people out who thought I had really committed to the character and cut my hair.


All said and done it was a lot of fun. Every year at work more and more people are starting to wear costumes. Im glad the tradition is catching on because otherwise no one would ever get to see my effort.

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Blouses, Billows, and Nail Biting

While on vacationing Seattle we went to a to District Fabrics.


I was pretty excited since up until this point I have purchased everything form JoAnne’s which has a pretty limited selection. Although I was really eyeing some fabulous Italian wools I couldn’t imagine forking over that kind of money so I ended up with 2 yards of a beautiful kelly green silk with a sort of a herringbone pattern.


My idea was to make this blouse from the McCalls archive collection (view A)


I dutifully bought some silk thread as soon as I got home, I didn’t want to spoil the fabric with a thread that would distort it with the first wash. I laid the fabric out, placed the pattern pieces, and got stage fright. I suddenly was worried that I was going to ruin the most expensive piece of fabric I had ever bought. I decided I should do a wearable muslin first.

Back to JoAnn’s and I walked away with a white shirting fabric with a stipe woven in. At a 1/4 of the cost I felt much more comfortable If I screwed this one up.

As I had intended this to be a wearable muslin I didn’t take too much care to finish the inside. In fact the pattern itself has no finishing suggestions.  I found the sleeves to be interesting. I once again escaped having to do a set in sleeve. Instead is this kimono style with a gathered bit at the end which gives the impression of a nice billowy sleeve.


The only part on the garment that I finished was the band around the lower arm. My thought was that this was the one part that would be rubbing against me so it deserved a little extra attention. I used  some of my massive amount of left over snug hug.

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Because I picked a stripe you can see the style lines a little better. The lower bodice is up and down but the top  is cut at a bias.

Sorry about the wrinkles. This fabric is not very wear friendly :(
Sorry about the wrinkles. This fabric is not very wear friendly 😦

The end result is OK. Im not a fan of how the tie works. It leaves a lot of extra fabric up top that looks a little messy and not very polished. The construction of the ties also serve to make you feel like you’re being swallowed by a giant origami puzzle until you can orient yourself. As for the fit, this pattern doesn’t have any fasteners which makes it very quick to sew BUT it means it has to have enough ease to fit over your head. I think that it looks a little big but I had so much trouble getting it on that I would be hesitant to size down.

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After seeing the finished blouse i’m not so sure if I want to use my fancy silk on this pattern. What to you think?