Saturday, April 27, 2013

New Look Workroom 6120 Misses' Dress

When I saw this pattern I had to have it! I love the simplicity of the dress and the neckline. She looks fierce, and I could picture me in this. I have had this in my stash for a while along with the material, but it isn't really a dress one can wear in the winter. Not with the silky material I have.

Simon and I cut out the perfect material for this pattern! The pink will be for the sash. I hope that we chose to place the pattern in the most flattering placement of the fabric.

I thought this dress would be lickity-split easy. I am tired (teething toddler in the house), and there are a few steps they do not write down. They show it in their illustrations, but they don't tell you to do it. Thank goodness I knew better, otherwise I would have been lost.

I tried sewing the bias tape on the neck by machine and it turned out horribly! My sewing teacher helped me take it off. Seeing as we had only 30 minutes left to our class and the whole class I basically spent doing this, she took pity on me and pinned it back for me. She showed me how to sew a neck binding on by hand. MUCH BETTER! But it does take much more time. That is ok, I want to learn the finishing touches, and they take time.

I took a whole 3 hour sewing class to get to the pockets. Working with silky material is difficult. You can't be in a rush. I finished the top part, surged and all! The hem is so much easier to do when you serge the edges first. I rolled it up the first time, pinned it and did not like what I saw. I unpinned it and took my time. I have learned to S-L-O-W down. I have way too many sewing projects on my list. The object now is not to plow through them all to learn, but rather to learn attention to details. Hopefully I will get this done for my last sewing class next week!

Finally finished! 

I finally finished this dress! I took my sweet time with this project. The silky material is hard to work woth if you are not used to it. I pinned everything, then basted it before sewing. That way my material did not shift. I used a walking foot, which is a must.

What I really like about this pattern is the belt, which surprises me. I am not a belt person, but the shape of it and the wrap around is nice and feels comfortable.

Due to the nature of the material one must wear a slip or else run the risk of static cling! The skirt did not hang properly, but put a slip and that is corrected.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Dedicated, uninterrupted sewing time is a luxury these days

My sewing instructor informed me 2 weeks ago that there may not be a Spring session for Friday evenings. I spoke with Simone as we had decided that I did not need to take another sewing class this spring session. My last sewing class will be April 26th. With this date LOOMING ahead I got to imagining what the next few months would be like. I find it rather difficult to get 3 hours of uninterrupted sewing time for myself at home. I have 2 young boys (19 months and 5 yrs old) who are rather active. For those of you who have young children, you will understand my dilemma. I want the quiet time, the reflection time, and the dedicated time. These 3 hours are precious to me. It allows me to work on my projects in an environment where I can concentrate, where there are no distractions. I love that and I do not know if I can give it up.

I took to the internet to find another sewing class. Perhaps I want a newer challenge. One where the class is structured, one where I can build my sewing techniques. Perhaps lingerie or bathing suits. Club Tissue offers a bathing suit course, but it has already started. They do have a class on Tissue Extensible (stretch material) but I already know how to make leggings, shirts and a skirt. I would like to perhaps make lingerie. Va-Va-Voom! The problem is that these courses are in Laval, at 18h30. I live in Pincourt, off-Island westward = 2 bridges to cross at rush hour = MAJOR TRAFFIC.

I have 2 kids at 2 different daycares to pick up, go home, start dinner, wait for hubby, UGHHHHH But if it is for 5 weeks it is something maybe I can deal with. Maybe.

All of this uncertainty has made me anxious. I enjoy my sewing time and I am not ready to give it up. I cannot find any classes in my area, and I am at a loss of what to do. Simon suggested that I do take the next session, if it is available. Do any of you know of any sewing classes in the West end? Given in the evenings or weekend? 

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Spring line-up

I decided to forgo the next 2 sewing class sessions. I will reenlist only in September. I want to work on projects that I already know how to do. Pants for Simon, Pj's for the kids, Shorts for Simon, shirts for everyone. And maybe the swim suit that I started.

This liberates me on the one hand, and it stresses me out on the other. Those 3 hours every Friday night ensured I had QUIET time to sew. It gave me the luxury of me time, without kids screaming, crying, demanding attention. Now what am I going to do????? Simon says that whatever I need, just ask. But it just is not the same. So I have to push myself and dedicate the time. Scouts will end for the summer at the end of May, so Thursday and Fridays I will have free.

Project #1) Kwik Sew jeans 3504 for Simon, this time straight leg and in the brown heavy material

Project #2) Kwik Sew shorts 3884 for Simon

Project #3) Jalie underwear 3242 for Tyler, Simon and me

Project #4) Jalie T shirt 2918 for Simon

Project #5) Pj's for the boys

I reserve the right to change this list at any time, I reserve the right to modify it in bits or in its entirety. I reserve the right to add subtract, reorder or just plain abandon at any time. No stress!

What are your plans for sewing?

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Kwik Sew 3639: Simon's overalls

This past Friday my serger went Kazooki and a needle was broken, the machine is crooked and does not work. I just got the bloody thing and already I broke it. I am not sure what I did, but needless to say I am PI**ED. So, that bathing suit I started is put tot he side for now. The technician at the sewing machine store is not in today, he is sick. It will have to wait until tomorrow.

So what do I start, then? I guess I will start Simon's overalls before it gets too hot for them. I have images of him wearing these A-La-Mike-Holmes. So does he, and in both our dreams he is a pretty close match. He chose a dark brown material that matches very nicely. I already bought all the notions, so all I need to do is trace the pattern and cut out the material. Then S-E-W! I figure this pattern I will require some help on the finishing touches. A good pattern to learn some new techniques. Straps, clips, snaps, side zippers, overlays....


I took Simon's measurements and it says he is a medium. I am leery of Simon and sizing. He has gained a bit of **humm** muscle and his waist is not the same as it was last year. As you may recall, I had to give away my first pair of Kwik Sew jeans as they were HUGE in medium and I had to rip out the stitches in the small and sew it with 1/4 inch seams. What to do, what to do? i decided to copy the pattern in medium and make up a muslin. I have never made a muslin. I will research what is the best way and how to do it. I really do not want to sew another item for Simon that is unwearable.


I cut the front and the back out of the material I had leftover from the Ghost. We bought a cheap sturdy white material at Halloween to make our ghost. We got it for super cheap, I think $1/meter.

The muslin was quick and easy to make. I decided not to make the bib and suspenders, as I only wanted to make sure the pants fit over the waist and hips. The overalls take quite a bit of material, and I have a limited amount of white material. The necessary pieces are the front and the back.

This is my first muslin I have made. I am fed up of sewing something new, spending all the time and effort to make something only to find out that it does not fit. Making a quick muslin will allow me to work on the overalls without that nagging feeling in the back of my mind that it was not going to fit.

The overalls are made to go over your clothes, so they are sized larger. The mediums are a true to their sizing. The small would be too small for Simon.

 Here are the front sections without the front bib and waistband. It is a good fit (finally!).

After the kids went to sleep, and stayed there, we went downstairs to lay out the material and cut out the pattern. There was just ONE LITTLE SNAG.... There was not enough material. I had bought the material in consequence of cutting a small, not a medium! For once I actually bought the suggested amount of fabric. I did not up it to the 1/2 meter. WHY??????

I had to put everything away and cut out the fabric for my dress instead.

 My sewing class was cancelled due to the snow and freezing rain. At least I was able to discover this during my own time, and not waste another class! The last class I left 1 hour early as I broke my machine, grrrrrr.

I will buy more material if I can find the same one tomorrow.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

My Serger is BROKEN!!!!

MY POOR POOR BABY IS BROKEN! I do not kn ow what happened. It was fine. I was serging. The I go to turn it on, lift the presser foot, insert fabric, press the pedal and POWWWW CLANK! Now the needles are touching th eplate, things are crooked, and I have no idea why or what happened.

I was so distraught last night. I just got the thing, it cost almost $500 and it is not working. I woke up at 5am thinking it was all a bad dream, then reality hit. Good thing I bought it from a reputable place. I brought it to the store and I have a 1 year warranty. Hopefully this is covered, as I have no idea what the hell happened. The technician only comes in on Monday, so fingers crossed.


Yesterday we received the call that my baby is fixed and ready! It seems that something must have jammed and displaced the loopers. This affected the timing. I am not sure of all the technical details, as my husband is the one that spoke with the technician. The bottom line: We probably threaded it wrong. With the we, I mean me. There I was in my class saying how easy it was to thread. Uhhhh, yeah, DOH! Silly me. Don't tell anyone, ok?

The good thing is that they repaired this all FREE OF CHARGE! That is why it is so important to buy your machines from a reputable store. One that offers service, repair, lessons... Excelle has a technician that goes on site. This means you do not have to wait for them to ship it out, then have it serviced, then shipped back to the store. I had the misfortune of hurting the machine on a Friday evening. And then on the Monday the technician was sick, otherwise I would have had it back much sooner.

Once everything settles down Simon and I will book our free lessons for the Serger. I think it would be very beneficial if we took them sooner rather than later.I just need my Mom to take the boys while we do this. Hopefully in the next few weeks.

I asked Simon to thread the machine and test while I am not there. I do not want to be blamed if it breaks again. See???? It wasn't me, I did not do something wrong! And I am afraid to break it, for real.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Kwik Sew 3527 Sleepers size T4

I wanted a toddler sleep that had a zipper that allowed me to change a diaper, the hunt was on. None of the Big 4 made such a pattern. It seems so logical, to have a pattern that allows one to change a diaper, n'est pas? One with a zipper or at least snaps?

That is where Kwik Sew comes in. There are 2 patterns. 3527 and 3922. I needed to make Tyler something first as he has been feeling left out of the clothing give away. Never mind that Simon made him 2 Angry Birds since this weekend, he has to have the next item of clothing. Tyler may not be that great at snaps, so let's try the zipper pattern first.

Tyler chose a Car's McQeen fleece fabric from Club Tissus. Simon called it the Cars material, and I thought it was knock off pattern. But to my delight it really is Cars! Cool. I cut both Tyler's and Sam's at the same time. This pattern is so straightforward and so easy that it took me about 2 hours in total. Awesome! The body is one piece. The pattern has raglan sleeves, with the option of cuffed ankles or gripper feet. I chose the cuffed ankles as I had a felling they would arrive short otherwise. For both boys they fit perfectly. Tyler's could be longer, and I will make it again in a T4 with length added to the arms and legs. Maybe, if I have the time.

 There was one snag... I did not have a zipper long enough. I sent Hubby to the store and he came home with a mega zipper. Very heavy, but it was the good length.

Against my better judgement I installed the zipper, but too far down. The zipper stop is too low, oops. 

Tyler is so proud, and he matches his decor!

The pattern coupled with the fabric makes him look like a real race car driver. he could not be any prouder!

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Simplicity 1783 pants: take 2

I loved Cynthia Rowley's Simplicity 1783 so much that I made to immediately make them again, but in black this time. I have a pair of black dress pants but they are a but too large. And they are in a very heavy material. It is now getting nicer outside and I wanted a good pair of black twill pants. Seeing as these were so easy to make, i decided to make them again right away. This way I can solidify the pant construction while the procedures are still fresh in my memory.

The construction of the pants went super well. usually the second time you try something, the better you are at it. I was really impressed with myself and my confidence was boosted. Time for the buttonhole. The dreaded buttonhole from my Singer Esteem. It ate it up. *&^%$#!!!!! I brought it to my sewing class. For some odd reason, there are no foot attachments for the Husqvarna's in my class. Odd! My sewing instructor, Pauline, was going to bring in her machine so we can do the buttonhole properly, but she kept forgetting.

Time went buy, I got discouraged. Then we bought our Janome 8200 . I was still scared to do buttonholes, even though this machine is completely automated. I finally worked up the courage to finish this during my vacation. I was able to do the button hole perfectly. Then I lost my hook and eye closures! ARGHHHHH!!! I still did not have anything new to wear to my sewing class.

New Look 6936 Misses Dresses

During my vacation I wanted to make a pretty dress that I could wear to my Friday evening sewing class. I picked up 3 meters of a beautiful sparkly stretchy material at $1.50 a meter from Tissus Mayda . It was such a beautiful material, it caught our eyes right away when we went in there. We were shopping for drapery tape, but Simon saw this material and he wanted me to make a dress with it. So eager am I to please!

I have had this pattern for a while and did not know which fabric to use with it. The model looks like a pole that is leaning a bit too far forward, but don't let that stop you!

I chose view D, with the scoop neck and longer length. I serged the seams together, but forgot about installing the elastic. I did a really really silly move and messed up the stitches I was SOOOO mad and I thought it was ruined. I used a proper stretch stitch and I did not think I would be able to take out my seams.

I put the project aside, cursing of course. I decided that this Friday’s class would be all about the finishing touches. I had 2 shirts to finish off with Bias tape and this dress as well. I went to Club Tissus to buy bias tape (and a few other things, natch). I got a really pretty shiny blue bias tape to compliment it at 0.67 a meter.
After over 2 hours I was able to take out all the silly stitches and I used wide single fold bias tape to install the elastic inside.

I put bias tape on the neck and sleeves. It added a nice touch to the dress and snazzied it up.


I tried on the dress and decided that the length was nice below the knees. We looked at the different hem lengths and decided that below the knees was best suited.

Now this pattern says 2 hours, but because of my error and the added bias tape it took me over the course of 2 days to complete it. I was so happy with the results and I was able to wear it for Easter dinner and to work the next day. 

I would love to make this dress again as I love how it falls and how it moves. The problem is that I have so many other patterns and fabrics. Maybe after a year when I get all my outstanding patterns done, I will come back to it.

Canada Asia Threads / Machine A Coudre Asie

I stumbled upon a store called Canada Asia Threads / Machine a Coudre Asie, located at 9176 boul. St-Laurent. It is on the corner of Chabanel and St-Laurent. Their phone number is 514-383-6643 / 514-383-6570

Their store front has many used industrial sewing machines in the store front window. He sells used machines and parts for industrial Overlock machine.

When you enter the store it takes a few secinds to get your bearings. There are rows and rows of threads. There is every imaginable color of thread. If you don't find it here, it does not exist!

We bought a 5000 yard cones for $1.50 each. the smaller cones were $0.90 each. At this price you can't go wrong. They did not have the extensible serger thread however. we went next door to Cansew.

They sell some notions and supplies here as well. I did not investigate too too much. I bought black elastic, 1 1/4 inch wide and 3/4 inch wide. The WHOLE roll was only $4!!!!

If you are going into the area to buy supplies they are worth a stop for sure!

Monday, April 1, 2013

American & Efrid Canda

I discovered American and Efrid today. Rather, I sent Simon on his day off. He went to Canada Asia Threads to buy serger thread for my bathing suit. Good thing we asked, it takes special thread. Off he went to Can Sew where he picked up extensible thread for Lycra at $13 for serger thread 1 pound, and $15 for 1 pound of thread he can use on the sewing machine and the serger.

Off I then sent him to American & Efrid to buy his Kai left handed scissors. Now I know I paid too much for my Kai scissors at Fabricville. I paid $100 and his scissors were $71, Big difference.

At A&E the 1 pound spools are $12. My sister's boyfriend was telling us of this store yesterday. He buys his mother's notions for embroidery there. He then ships it to her in Scotland. What he pays for around $200 here she would pay $1800 in Scotland! WOW! I also picked up a box of 36 Pencil chalks for$17.

A&E sells threads, Ludlow textiles, wire & cable, Robison-Anton thread, Embroidery notions and backings, adhesives, Bemis clear elastic, Chalks and pencils, cleaning supplies, Cords, cutting room supplies, elastics, faswell hook and loop, Fratelli Leoni elastics, Fulflex rubber elastic,  Kai scissors, Odif adhesives, packaging, pattern paper, pins, snaps, clips, tagging accessories, webbing and twill tape, welt cord. The list is endless.

They are located past the 25 (highway to the Tunnel). Just take the 40 east and take the exit Roi-Rene. They are located at 8301, Ray Lawson Blvd, Anjou. Their customer service is great, they speak perfect English.

8301 Ray Lawson Blvd. Anjou
Phone : (514) 352-4800
Fax : (514) 352-5075
Toll free : 1-800-361-0787
Email :

You can see their catalogue online here.