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Warming Up to Summer Projects

June 12, 2010

I think I am almost adjusted to my new schedule – one that includes a full-time job that doesn’t have to do with my studio. The significance is that I can now get back in here to accomplish that which is most important to me! Sewing, stitching, serging, and all things sewing related.

I did complete one swim suit cover up for my Mom. It’s a tangerine color with sheer polka dots. It’s an a-lined dress with large circular pockets, scoop neck, and oversized armholes. My goal was to serge the whole thing. This almost happened. I decided to use the facings and turn them to the outside. Normally I omit them and do either a narrowly turned seam or a bias facing that allows for a clean and narrow finish. This time I decided the sheer knit required some body and the dress required some extra interest.

To complement the sleeve and neck detail, I applied the pockets to the outside as patch pockets.  When I make patch pockets, I always  cut two pockets for each and stitch them right sides together, trim and clip, turn and press, and then slip stitch the small opening. This promotes a correctly shaped and easily applied pocket every time. The trick this time was in dealing with the sheer polka dots and deciding what level of intricacy I was going for in assuring things line up. While I made the dots aligned on the pocket pieces, I did not go that far when applying them to the dress. It looks beautiful, comfy and airy! Now I just need to package it up and send it off to my Mom so she can enjoy it as well.

I’m on a mission to make something out of everything I have in my fabric stash…it’s a goal, not an obsession. Actually, I think it’s more like a game right now. It’s still a recent decision and so I am having loads of fun matching fabrics and patterns.

It’s interesting how I can pull out some of my favorite pieces and wonder what in the world I liked about it. This is especially true since I have some pieces I bought at various stages of my life and career, and in such a variety of places and climates! You can see how it is when I pull out the most beautiful piece of deep purple wool plaid with strands of red and gold in it while it’s 100 degrees in Florida and I’m looking at a stack of spaghetti strap summer dress patterns to choose between for my next summer project!

My next summer dress is for my most appreciative and talented young niece – she’s a young woman actually. 🙂 I have a delightfully happy print with large, apple green stylized roses on a lemon yellow background. She looks gorgeous in these colors and has also fallen for the simple dress pattern I chose. It is a loose-fitting dress with a deep ruffle around the bottom, and the neckline is formed with the drawstring going through the top and over the shoulders to pull it up almost halter style. Love it. If I were 30 years younger I would have lots of these dresses. As it is – she will get the one I would wear first!

I love sewing summer dresses. They provide such instant gratification through their simplicity and ease of construction coupled with their wonderful prints and colors. Since it’s so hot here in the summer, I actually begin staying indoors more which allows me more time to sew. My studio looks out over the pool, so I swim a little, sew a little. Summers are perfect because of summer projects.

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