Tuesday, January 31, 2006

This Month in Sewing

One of my New Year's resolutions involved improving my sewing skills. January is over--or will be in an hour and a half--and I haven't exactly improved, but when I added up what I'd sewn it was more than I thought I'd done. So here's the tally:

  • One self-drafted thread catcher, made of a home dec fabric I found at the thrift store. (I'm planning simple curtains and maybe a throw pillow or two with the rest, and sometimes along about the time pigs take flight painting my sewing room to coordinate with the fabric.) It's weighted with a tile, padded so it can take pins, has a velcroed on (so it's removable) pin cushion, and a shaped bag for threads and fabric trimmings. The bag, which I'd meant to shape around the end of two liter bottle, is too big--I have to learn not to sew in the middle of the night--but it is weighted so well it doesn't even move when I jostle the ironing board enough to make the iron fall over.
  • One self-drafted wrist band pin cushion. (Okay, this project was partly gluing.)
  • A new apron to replace my made-from-the-back-of-a-denim-shirt-one. It's from the same self-drafted butcher-style apron I've used twice before and is made from a really cool lightning print fabric I didn't want to resist buying. (Someday maybe I'll tell a funny story I have about lightning and AS & UP.) I left off the contrasting bias tape on this one and just turned the fabric under, so I wouldn't detract from the fabric. (The old apron is being relegated to yard work use.)
  • Two robes made from McCall's 6264; it's OOP, but it's a basic loose, kimono-ish, unisex robe. It's an easy, quick project; the notches on the band don't match up to the notches on the front of the robe, but construction is so easy it's not a problem. For the first robe, I shortened the pattern to make it knee-length and have short sleeves. I had to do that because I was using a single bed size sheet from the thrift store and trying to squeeze an XL robe out of it (I still had to make the tie out of something else), but it worked out great. The sheeting feels really good against my skin and it's cool enough for MS summer, and with the dropped shoulders on the robe, the sleeves turned out more like three-quarter length than short. For the second robe, I used some really nice dark green flannel from Wal-Mart's dollar-a-yard table, and the result is a big, cozy robe for winter in a color I love and that looks good on a redhead. When you consider I can seldom find robes I like in stores, these projects were money and time well spent.

Here's to doing better next month.

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