Simplicity 1418


August Make a Garment a Month Challenge Project

The back of this Simplicity 1418 pattern caught my attention straight away.  Even at my size I think I can pull this off.  To be sure, I will make the version with a high modesty panel underneath the lattice work.  Wouldn’t want back fat showing now would I?  Though this is a modern pattern I think the dress style is reminiscent of the 1950’s and will fit within my new wardrobe nicely.

For the first time I decided to make a muslin.  All the pro sewist divas make them and after all one of my goals is to grow at my craft.  Yesterday I cut out the bodice.  Since the skirt is simply a rectangle with a cute pleat I’ll forgo making a test piece for it.  This muslin is a thrifted bed sheet.


Bodice front


Upon initial try-on the bodice seems a little tight at the waist.  The back details of this dress include a modesty panel and lattice-work.  I had the panel piece in place, but thought I didn’t have to worry about the lattice.  That being said, those pieces show exactly where to place the sides of the back.  I need to quit being lazy and add the lattice mock-up piece so I can get a better idea of fit.  That is, after all, the purpose of the muslin.  I really need to stop trying to cut corners if I am going to take my sewing to the next level, sigh.   That being said, I am wondering if I am not also going to have to at least cut out and mock up the top portion of the skirt.  I want this dress to fit properly in the waist area and my figure is not in proportion as per the pattern envelope.  I will be grading between sizes.

After adding the sleeves to muslin and subsequent try on, the waist is definitely too small and I need more space in the bust area.  Pattern alterations from what I can tell include:

  • Bust = + 1″
  • Waist = +5″
  • Hips = + 2″
  • Bodice length = +1″
  • Modesty panel = +1″ height
  • Hem = +2″

Bodice resizing. Added necessary inches via taping paper to the original pieces so I would not forget when cutting out the fashion fabric.

From where I stand this is a lot of altering.  Basically my measurements were not on the pattern envelope at all!

Project Particulars:

Fabric:  eBay seller – institchestn – $9.00

Muslin:  $1.00, thrifted bed sheet

Bias tape:  Under $2.00/pack x 2

Want to see last months Make A Garment A Month project?   June MAGAM project.


This is my first time applying a full bust adjustment.  Wasn’t as scary as I thought.  Many thanks to Mary of Idle Fancy and Elisalex for sharing their expertise. I did not see a big difference in the two tutorials with exception to color coding the stitching lines. As a visual learner that was very helpful.


FBA on a princess seam

This dress will be nice to wear to our Circuit Assembly in October.  Stay tuned as this cute little number comes together.






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Everything Goes Bag


As a newbie quilter I went coo coo for Cocoa Puffs over quilted totes.  In comes The Everything Goes Bag.  After being gifted a Vera Bradley tote bag, that I use to carry books in for worship each week, I thought “Certainly I can make one of these for myself”.  Come to find out there are myriad of quilted tote patterns for the taking online.  The Everything Goes Bag caught my eye initially because of the pattern title.  I desired a bag large enough to hold a Bible, notebook, songbook, highlighters, pens, another small Bible study aid book with a tad more room to spare and still look cute.  Ta-dah!  The Everything Goes Bag.  The bag measures 14.5″wide x 12″ high x 5″ deep.


Main fabric

Paris fabric has been catching my eye this spring and summer.  Can’t seem to get enough of it (hmmm, do I see a 50s style dress coming?)  This hit me as the perfect choice for my bag.  In addition to having the Paris vibe there is a splash of my favorite color incorporated – red.  This fabric is by Timeless Treasures Fabric of SoHo, LLC, Pat # PARIS-C 9661. This was an Etsy purchase entitled, “Paris Sepia Tone Eiffel Tower French Timeless Treasures Collage Cotton Quilt Fabric, seller:  ZeetZeet, $13.75.

Fabric B:  Stars on Rust, donated by a quilting friend.

Lining Fabric C:  Paisley print in rust, green, pink, white, from my stash.

Zippers:  Thrifted @ .10 ea.

Now I need some Inn Control or Soft-N-Stable for the outside panels and I can get started cutting.  Stay with me as this project unfolds.  I think this will be my September Make A Garment A Month Challenge project.






Sobriety from electronic sewing since 2012

P.S.  For a bit of eye candy here are some others’ interpretation of The Everything Goes Bag [click image for source]:

Everything Goes Bag 1

The Everything Goes Bag 2

Quilted Laptop Sleeve


My trust computer bag breathed it’s last breath and I’ve been carrying it in a big ole tote bag not really intended for that purpose.  Thanks to my local library worker I had my hands on a quilting book with a cute laptop sleeve and computer case pattern.  Being the impatient person that I am I couldn’t wait to get the long zipper needed for the case so I decided to make the quilted laptop sleeve with materials from my stash.


Initially I had decided to use quilting cotton.  Then I saw these denim jeans in my stash that were initially purchased to make a rag quilt.  Check out the safety striping!  A perfect fabric for wear and tear of a computer that will be pulled in and out of a case almost daily.  I cut away the hem, the top of the jeans, and the side leg flat felled seams to get a flat fabric.




Quilting double line stitching


The instructions called for a felt lining to cushion and prevent scratches.  Again,  I considered using cotton from the stash.  Thankfully I remembered the flannel charms used to make my grandbaby a rag quilt.  The colors are purple, turquoise, red, white, black, and pink.  Perfect to complement the outside dark blue denim fabric of the laptop sleeve.  Not to mention whenever I look at it I’ll think about my precious lil one.  That was the first rag quilt I had ever made.  For now the only rag quilt I’ve made, LOL.


Leftover flannel charms from a baby rag quilt

As a quilting newbie I’ll be getting some needed practice on matching corners and proper pressing technique.  The quilting is a double diagonal line on the top and vertical double lines on the bottom half of the sleeve.  Blue thread was used on one side but I decided I wanted the quilting to stand out and used red thread on the opposite side which did the trick.  The pockets of the jeans were stitched to the outside of the sleeve.   Get this, I did not cut the pocket away from the jeans so it is really a double pocket.  I pinked around the pocket for a decorative effect.  On one side the pocket is vertical and the other horizontal as I will be carrying the sleeve both ways.


Project Supplies:

  • Denim – thrifted jeans $1.00
  • Cotton flannel 5″ charms (from previous project)
  • Thread – free
  • Batting – free from local thrift shop

The pattern came from Quilt-opedia, Laptop Case – page 175.


Inside flannel lining

My sleeve fits perfectly.  I like it.  Surely I’ll be making more out of cute fat quarters which the pattern initially called for.






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Clog Dancing: Bluegrass and Beyond


I’d like to share something a bit different with you all today. One interesting thing about blogging is getting to know people a bit beyond the main subject of the blog. I’m sure many of you may have made friends IRL (in real life) via of sharing yourselves on your blogs.  Well, your girl, Lyric LOVES dancing!  Doesn’t matter which genre.

Along those lines, this dance video touched my heart as evidenced by the fact that I visit it again and again. In my world (read that my own head) I am an avid, wonderful dancer.  Though no one in this video looks like me still I feel that like laughter dance is a universal positive language. I am so grateful to David Hoffman for filming and sharing this video.  It makes me want to jump up and get busy!

Check out the lil lady in black shorts and black top!

This was a stumble upon just before posting. Mr. Bilz can come to my town and lead a dance class any day.

Shooot, you know what, I might just get myself a wood, portable dance floor and get my dance on all by myself at the homestead.  Yeah, that’s the answer!



Hand Sewn Regency Dress


For a period I will be sans my Tabitha sewing machine.  This will be a good time to make a hand sewn regency dress.  It’s something I have been thinking of doing for about a year.  This site may prove to be a godsend for making this dress.   Keeping things simple I have also chosen this pretty dress to be my June and July Make A Garment A Month project.


Transferring pattern to tissue

For this project I selected The Elegant Lady’s Closet pattern.  Following sewist divas’ advice to transfer the pattern versus cutting up the original seemed a good idea.  I have read Swedish tracing paper is the go to medium but I am on a budget and went to a dollar store and purchased regular old tissue paper.

These same divas also suggest making a muslin at the very least for the bodice.  Being a hard-headed sewist I did not.  This will be a bed sheet garment so worst case scenario I will have wasted all of $1.00.  I semi-paper fitted the bodice and hope that will do as I have no extra fabric.  As a matter of fact, I had to lay the bodice lining skewed to get it to fit.  The sheet is striped and obviously I will be laying the main pieces lengthwise.  Ahh, the things I do to fabrics and patterns when I sew.

Stay tuned by following along via Bloglovin’ or email as this hand sewn dress comes to life.  You’ll find links to the right in the sidebar or at the end of this post. It will be my first and I’ll be using the Elizabethan seam as found at Extreme Costuming.



Elizabethan seam, first attempt

Above is the garment back and side back sewn with the Elizabethan seam.  I can see how with the Elizabethan seam you’d better have an exact fit or else the ripping with be substantial.  I did not do a muslin and I have a feeling I may be eating crow about it.  As usual, I underestimated the difficulty of the task at hand.  Yet, I promised the good, bad, and bugly (butt ugly) with this sewing blog and will stand by my word.



Bodice Front


Bodice Back


Sleeve attached

At this point I am working on attaching the second sleeve to the armscye.

I see no problem completing this project by the end of July.  Sew, let’s see where this all takes us.  Stay tuned!

July 26, 2014

It’s time to put this baby to rest.  Reminding myself that I promised to show the good, bad and the ugly on my blog I am going to share this “miss” with you all.


Regency Dress Front Crossover


Regency Day Dress Back View

Project Wrap-Up – A Lyrical Perspective:

  • Pattern ease of use:  Well written, easy to understand instructions
  • Did the garment resemble the pattern:  Yes (basically, LOL)
  • Would I recommend this pattern:  Yes
  • Will I use the pattern in the future:  Definitely!
  • Will I hand sew another garment:  Maybe
  • Fabric:  Thrifted bed sheet – $1.00
  • Thread:  Free
  • Sewing needle:  Maybe .25

Comments:  Halfway through the project I realized this bedsheet fabric (most def a cotton blend) is HOT!!!!!  My goal in making this Regency day dress was to have something cool to wear while working on our land and chilling out at the homestead.  When I realized it was a hot fabric, my interest dropped 50%.  But, I am in a sewing challenge so I persevered on.  Oh, I admit to not hemming one of the sleeves – I was so done with this project once I decided I would not be wearing the dress  :-|.

One arm is a tad bit tighter than the other.  Not so much that I would not wear the dress had I chosen another fabric.  I am chalking the difference up to perhaps not hand sewing in a straight line.

The Elizabethan Seam – This was my first time trying this seam style.  I like the seam but I do not like mine – make sense?

I am pleased with the back of the dress in particular.  In general I do not like this dress, LOL.  Bottom line, I am chalking this project up to a non-wearable muslin.  At least I got to try the pattern out for future Regency day dresses that are sure to come off my dear Tabitha.

Thanks for hanging in there with me my dear sewists  ;-)






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Hand Sewn Simplicity 1717 Skirt


This fabric was easy to fall in love with. When I saw it, had to have it and a cute skirt immediately came to mind.  In steps the hand sewn Simplicity 1717 skirt.  This fabric is cra-cra busy and It’s all good.  It reminds me of the semi-tropical climate where I live.  Check out the little hula girls.


If I were younger and smaller I would have made this knee length.  You may read the pattern review that I wrote here.  This is my third hand sewn garment.  I had to pull out a new needle because the one I used for the other two items got dull and I noticed the finish was removed.  Can you say, “Change needles for each project, dear sewist”?

Project Stats:

  • Fabric: Leis, Luaus & Alohas Sheeting Natural Alexander Henry
  • Purchased from Etsy:  Zeet Zeet – $9.95/yd.; and Sobrightfabrics –  $9.00/yd.
  • Thread:  Guttermann cotton – $2.49
  • Double sided bias

This was a fun, quick project to sew and I think the skirt is sassy, flirty.  There will be more rolling off my sewing machine though the next time.




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Red Pencil Skirt


Imagine my joy when I found this tutorial Pencil Skirt Pattern Draft after the arrival of  fabric for my red pencil skirt  yesterday.

Lately I have been steering away from fabrics that me and the hubby call “oil”.  However, due to budget constraints and impatience I simply have to make a red pencil skirt to go with my peplum blouse.  This polyester poplin at 60″ width fit the bill.  I was pleasantly surprised when I opened the package and the fabric was prettier than what I initially saw on my DD’s computer screen.

This will be my first pattern draft and I am excited to give it  go.  The goal initially was to make this skirt to wear this coming Sunday.  I was going to take a RTW skirt, place it op top of the fabric, add seams and cut away.  For the waist area I was considering simple elastic because it will not be seen underneath the peplum (okay, and ’cause it’s darn comfy too).  Now that I have found the instructions for drafting a pattern I dunno if it will be a Sunday wear go.  Oh, and as I am visiting DD and my new grandbaby, yes, this skirt will be entirely hand sewn.

My skirt must have a kick pleat .  Look what I found Kick Pleat tutorial. Easy peasy; now let’s get started.

Screeching brakes – a new plan:

On an errand to a local fabric store this afternoon to get elastic for my skirt waistband I got pulled in the $1.99 Simplicity pattern sale.  Ay yi yi.  I’m not going to draft my own pattern (at least not today) I’ll be making

Simplicity 1465

Simplicity 1465

View B.

Perhaps I’ll put a kick pleat in it and not feel like I completely sold out, ha ha ha.  Stay tuned for my version of a red pencil skirt.

And heeere we are:



This is my second hand sewn garment.  Thankfully practice will make perfect.  Project stats:  Simplicity 1465 review.  Hand sewing beats not sewing but I’d be lying if I said I didn’t miss my Tabitha.





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Blog Roll Sewing Resources


This is my blogroll, my go-to list of useful reading when I need to learn a new skill or look up information. In no particular order you may find it a good resource too. It’s about paying it forward.

Sense & Sensibility Patterns
Vintage Patterns
Retro Chick Vintage Fashions
Wearing History Blog

Sewing How-To: Grading and Pattern Sizing
Vintage Pattern Sizing
Making Sense of Pattern Grading
FBA: Full Bust Adjustment

Sewing How-To: Vintage Patterns
Vintage Pattern Primer
Dressmaking Research

Reading Vintage Patterns
NVL Reading Vintage Patterns

Useful Tuts!
Resizing A Pattern-Jennie Chancey
Sizing Up A Vintage Pattern-American Duchess

Now you know there are myriad of sewing tutorials, advice, books on the Internet so if you have found a good one please let me know.  I’ll post it for all to enjoy!






Sobriety from electronic sewing since 2012