Thursday, January 13, 2011

Paisley flower pin

I was traveling for the first part of January. On Sunday, I carpooled back from New Orleans, so I was in the car (thankfully not driving) for six hours. When I got home, after eating a refreshing salad of course, I wanted to do something creative. I had bought a pattern set for a bunch of different flowers that could accessorize garments or hair. I decided to make one of those. It was quite easy (although the pattern wasn't well written, which is too bad because it's the kind of project that probably attracts a lot of people who aren't experienced at sewing, and one of the diagrams was incorrect). I used this olive paisley fabric that had been made into an apron for a friend and a couple of turtle bibs. This project took up probably the last usable scraps. I don't know that I have anything wider than 3 inches left. I also used a button from this big bag of buttons my mom gave me a couple months ago.
Probably the hardest part of the project was deciding what color button to use for the center. I liked the big contrast a purple or red button gave, and I have a ton of white pearlescent buttons that looked pretty good, but the gold one really worked well. After making the flower, I turned it into a pin by shoving a pin backing into one of the back layers of petals. It's not the most elegant or most secure way to do it, but it was easy, and since there won't be a lot of tension or stress on the pin, it should hold fine. I think the pin will look good with a lot of different shirts I have. I tested it with various colors of sweater, and I think it will look really awesome with a bright pink or orange tank top in the summer. I got quite a few compliments when I wore it on Monday. I think these will also be easy but fun gifts to make for people.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Flashback dress

I don't know when I made this dress. 1998 sounds about right. It's definitely from an earlier era in my sewing, but about a year ago I rediscovered it when looking through a closet at my parents' house. I don't think I ever wore it much. It's a little too short for my taste (more so now than then), the neckline doesn't lie quite right on the left side (maybe hard to tell in these photos-we didn't take the time to take any good ones), crushed velvet is never really in style (or is it? I don't know these things), and it has almost no shaping in the torso, making it not ideal for a somewhat curvy lady like me. But despite those flaws, I liked it enough to keep it, and I actually wore it to dinner last week. I had just bought my first pair of leggings in preparation for my trip to Chicago, and I decided that the dress with the leggings would be modest enough. I also wore some new gray-beige shoes and an old-ish necklace. This is definitely not how I normally dress, but I thought it was a really fun, funky outfit. And I think the leggings also make it modest enough to ride a bike in, so I could even wear it to school!
By the way, I've never had leggings before, but I think these really make my legs look muscular. I'm going to have to keep that in mind.