Food and Fitness

Monday, November 16, 2009

Yay, It's My Birthday/Butterick 5100

I love, love, love my birthday - so much so that I'll use any excuse to celebrate for the entire month of November even though it's actually on the 13th. On Friday I celebrated with a cake and dinner prepared by my husband and boys.

Yummo! White cake with rum custard filing and whipped cream icing.

Blackened catfish with Cajun lemon butter sauce served with mashed potatoes and broccoli. Pretty good for someone who never cooks.

Then on Saturday, I went to my mom's for my annual birthday dinner which ends up being our Thanksgiving warm up.

Cornish hens and dressing, greens, banana squash, corn and salad.

Followed by a yummy dessert of birthday apple pie (doesn't everyone get one of these?)

And homemade brownies for the chocolate lovers.

Of course I needed a new dress to wear and I settled on Butterick 5100 after some mishaps and great advice (see post below). Thanks ladies! Hubby took the pics so they are not the best but I wanted to post pictures of me actually wearing the dress.

Pattern Description: Pullover, sleeveless tunic in two lengths and dress have deep V-front neckline and extended shoulders, separate tie belt or purchased belt. D: cowl collar.

Pattern Sizing: Y(XS-S-M), Z(L-XL)

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? I think so.

Were the instructions easy to follow? The instructions for this were super easy with the exception of one bump in the road but other than attaching the facing to the neck after putting on the cowl, I didn't even have to look at them.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? I loved that this came together rather quickly (other than my aforementioned bump in the road). It could have been that I was working on it so late (3:00 a.m. - I know this was the reason I cut the front in two instead of on the fold and had to go back and get more fabric, the last on the bolt) or that the instructions/diagrams weren't clear but when it was time to put the facing on, I couldn't figure out where to place the cowl so that when I turned the facing it would work because they only showed the V-neck version in the diagram which is pretty straight forward. It wasn't until I put the dress down for a day or two that it came to me that with the cowl attached, you're supposed to attach the facing inside the cowl (right sides together) then when you turn the facing inside you have a nice finished seam. I'm sure they could have found a better way to illustrate this.

Fabric Used: Ponte Roma Knit

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made: I didn't make the belt because I just don't feel the need or think it would be flattering to have something cut me in half.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? I plan to make it at least one more time. In Black.

Conclusion: This is a great little dress. It's comfortable and stylish. When made in basic solids, it gives you a lot of options with the change of tights, tops and accessories. I made it for something else but this will make a great little work dress, something that allows me to look pulled together but is simple to make and wears well.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Inspired but no time.

Is it just me or do you notice that your mood is directly related to how creative you've been. I haven't made a wearable garment in about a month (I've only attempted two, 1 is a total wadder and 1 just didn't get finished when I wanted to wear it) and I am feeling more and more frustrated. I realized a long time ago that my sewing style was more that of an "event sewist" in that rather than just sew for sport, I would only pull out my machine to create a new dress or outfit for a special occasion be that Christmas, a wedding, graduation or something more basic like a family bar-b-que. It's been my association with PR and the inspiration provided by the very talented and supportive folks there that have me wanting to sew more/most of my wardrobe but now I'm at a point in my life where I have the least amount of time. This dilemma lends itself to all nighters and stolen moments, both of which for me have been main ingredients in the recipe for disaster. Case in point, after doing an FBA on M5752 and carefully constructing the bodice and waist band, I realized I didn't not fit the waistband and therefore cannot wear the dress, ruining my beautiful fabric. Disaster #1. On this past Saturday/Sunday I stayed up to 3:30 a.m. feverishly cutting and sewing B5100, (my second attempt by the way since the night/morning before at 4:00 a.m. I cut the front in two pieces instead of on the fold.) only to give up and go to bed after attaching the cowl incorrectly. While this is definitely salvageable, I didn't get to wear it the next day at brunch like I wanted to, which qualifies it as Disaster #2. Something has definitely got to give. I can't imagine not being able to create custom fashions for myself but if I don't get any sleep nothing productive is getting done anyway and who knows what the next thing I cut in half might be. Any suggestions?