38 Trips Around the Sun

Instead of being like a thousand other bloggers, I decided to write my New Years Blog Post for my Birthday! Yep, today I am 38. I am not usually one who gets crazy about turning a year older, except when I turned 25…”It was dark times Harry, Dark Times…” That was a rough one! When I think about the things I have done in the last year, I am pretty happy. I switched positions at my job, I bought my first brand new car, I realized it is ok to do fun things alone, upgraded to a new DSLR camera, took my first photography class and I even had time to sew some awesome clothes. I rediscovered my love for geocaching and hiking as well. Overall it was a good year, but I want to make this year even better.
I have spent several weeks/months really thinking of the direction I want to take my blog. I am just like every other blogger, I want to grow my audience and reach more people. I have noticed a lot of new faces following my social media accounts and for that, I am so grateful. It feels good to be noticed. I don’t know if the average person realizes how much work goes into being a sewing blogger. Pick a pattern, sew it up at least once (typically more), photos, photo edits, write blog posts, then share. 🙂 I do enjoy it though. I like knowing there is a record of my progress. I often look back at blog posts to remind myself of the changes I made to a garment and if I liked the fit or not. I love that other people will randomly find a blog post and leave me a message or pick up a pattern I haven’t mentioned in months. It makes me feel good knowing someone saw the joy in my blog. It also makes makes me feel good when I see kind comments from someone I don’t know.
Being a sewing blogger isn’t all sunshine and flowers though. Every single post is a risk. That seems a little odd, but it is true. Every post we make, every share we do, puts us up for being judged. Readers, I don’t know about you, but it doesn’t feel good to me. The comments people make shock me sometimes. For the dozens of good comments, there are always some bad ones. “Your shirt is too tight.” “You would look better with heels.” “You would look slimmer if…” “That color was a bold choice.” “Prints make you look bigger.” “Plus size can’t wear stripes.” and the list goes on…it is a long list. Note to crabby readers…your comments about me will never be harsher than my own thoughts. Why do people do this? Golden Rule, Folks. If you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all. As a sewing blogger, I have gained some confidence though. Sometime,s I even dare to say my outfit looks cute or nice. Baby Steps.
So let’s talk about goals for the next 365 days.
*Do more quality sewing. I do a lot of quick sews, well in the past I did a lot. I have greatly reduced the number of tests I am doing. I want to sew things on my schedule for what I want to sew.
*Learn new things. Master my fit issues ehm… pants, bras, etc. Somethings scare me to sew…Bras…tried it once and quit! Pants are a work in progress. For me, I need to realize my body isn’t a normal feminine shape. Most patterns account for hips and booty and I lack in both. But I am making huge strides in preparing to sew my own jeans!!
*Write at least 5 blog posts for designers or for blog tours. Always on the look out for blog tours!! Tag me if you start one. I want in!
*Test less, Upcycle more. I have seen several mentions lately that plus size upcycling isn’t as popular as smaller sizes. I do agree with this in a way, but I have been upcycling for YEARS! When I began sewing, I started by thrifting for anything with great fabrics! I made some cool stuff, now I have more sewing skills I should be putting to use! As a bonus, we are saving a little space in the landfills!
*Continue to be a positive influence online. I shouldn’t need to explain this one.
*Learn to say No!
If I haven’t lost ya yet, thanks for sticking around! This is going to be an awesome year and I can’t wait to update this post on my next Birthday.  Don’t forget to give my blog a follow and leave me a comment! 🙂
  • You can follow my blog by clicking the Follow button on the right side of my blog.
  • You can follow me on Instagram by clicking here.
  • You can follow me on Facebook by clicking here.
  • You can follow me on YouTube by clicking here.
  • You can follow me on Pinterest by clicking here.
 As always this blog contains affiliate links, which is a small commission I earn when you make a purchase from my blog links. Thank you for helping to support my sewing.

Dotty Mini Purse – Last Day!

World’s Longest Sew Along!

Holy Cow, Gang! I have been sick. Day after day in bed, A few doctor visits, a couple medications, an allergic reaction to said medication, Ugg The cycle is never ending! Before this post was even posted I was blind sided by an awesome migraine in the middle of grocery shopping.

Anyhow, enough whining and back to our regularly scheduled sewing!

Video number 3. Let’s learn how to shorten a zipper, create and install the zipper placket and race towards a finish!

 

 I did figure out how to merge the two videos into one video and after doing so, the program wanted to charge me 50 bucks… ummm not today buddy!

Let’s bind those raw edges for a finish!

Be sure to check out my last two posts for info on picking up the pattern.

LET’S ANNOUNCE WINNER’S

Marie Biswell

Ashwini

Sobana

I will be emailing all three of our winner’s and getting them set up with their free pattern!! Thank you so much for everyone who hung in there while I was unable to sit up and sew. I will be back soon with another sew along in the not too distant future!

I hope you are all in great health and sewing along. Please share your makes with me!

Dotty Mini Purse Day 3

How are your purses coming along? They are pretty fun aren’t there?

Today’s video will show you how to finish up your outer bag assemble and basting in your lining! It is finally taking shape!

I have our third video up and running and you will want to check it out!

 

Have you picked up the pattern yet?

Here are those links. You can use either one.

Etsy Shop Link

Website Link

Did you know You can also follow along with the Sew Along and enter the raffles for a chance to win a free copy of the pattern! Just read to the bottom of this page and enter the rafflecopter. I have 3 PDF patterns to give away to my readers.

Now sign up to win a free pattern by clicking below!

A Rafflecopter Giveaway

  • You can follow my blog by clicking the Follow button on the right side of my blog.
  • You can follow me on Instagram by clicking here.
  • You can follow me on Facebook by clicking here.
  • You can follow me on YouTube by clicking here.
  • You can follow me on Pinterest by clicking here.

Chezvies Dotty Mini Purse Sew Along Day 1

Dottie Purse (4)

Welcome! Let’s get started with the Chezvies Dotty Mini Purse Sewalong.

I will be sharing the sew along here at my blog so give me a follow by clicking the follow button on the right hand side of your screen. I will also be sharing some Youtube videos to guide your through some of the parts, but you will still need to pick up a copy of the pattern. The pattern is currently 20% off. This works out to about $4.10 American. Don’t wait because the sale is ending soon. 🙂 Here are those links. You can use either one.

Etsy Shop Link

Website Link

Did you know You can also follow along with the Sew Along and enter the raffles for a chance to win a free copy of the pattern! Just read to the bottom of this page and enter the rafflecopter. I have 3 PDF patterns to give away to my readers.

Sew Along Day 1

Strip piece the outside squares for your bag. You can choose to follow along with how I am strip piecing my denim scraps, go for solid pieces, or make up your own rules! I love when a pattern is this versatile. Your bag will be one of a kind and I can’t wait to see it!

Here is my video showing you exactly how I am strip piecing my bag.

So for today – Finish the squares for the outside of your bag.

Now sign up to win a free pattern by clicking below!

A Rafflecopter Giveaway

  • You can follow my blog by clicking the Follow button on the right side of my blog.
  • You can follow me on Instagram by clicking here.
  • You can follow me on Facebook by clicking here.
  • You can follow me on YouTube by clicking here.
  • You can follow me on Pinterest by clicking here.
 As always this blog contains affiliate links which is a small commission I earn when you make a purchase from my blog links. Thank you for helping to support my sewing.

 

Dotty Purse

Dottie Purse (4)

Surprise! I made a small purse! I know I don’t share many small projects on my blog, but this is a fun one! I couldn’t resist the tester call that promised a patchwork purse. I quickly signed up, and pulled out a fat quarter bundle. I also grabbed one piece of purple print to add to the mix and draw out the hints of purple that were in the FQ. I dug deep in my zipper stash to find a matching one. I am happy to report, I had everything in my stash to make this version of the purse. I didn’t have 1/2 inch D rings or Swivel hooks to add a strap though. I kinda like this size for a bag to just throw in my work or overnight bag though so it worked out well.

Dottie Purse (2)

This cute little big came together quickly and used a few techniques I hadn’t seen before. The zipper installation was a little mind blowing, but I will 100% use it again! With proper directions and the included photos, you won’t have any trouble with assembly.

Dottie Purse (3)

I love the pops of colors that are everywhere. I made my own bias tape so I could use the dots. I have used polka dots for some many quilt binding so of course, I had to use it here. The sneak peek of the inside polka dots is cute as well. I couldn’t really make a purse called Dotty without polka dots, right?!?! If you prefer your top sides closed, I think you could do a simple whip stitch to close them up.

Dottie Purse (2)

This adorable purse/tote pattern is now available. Here is a link. The pattern is currently 20% off. This works out to about $4.10 American. 🙂

Etsy Shop Link

Website Link

BONUS: I have some super exciting news! In the upcoming days, I am going to share some video sew along for making your own Dotty purse.

BONUS BONUS: I will have a couple of free patterns to give away!

Let me know what you think of my cute little zipper pouch and stay tuned to sew along with me!

Breaking Ground- Blog Tour 2019

Welcome to the Breaking Ground Blog Tour 2019. This year over 25 bloggers from around the world are joining with me to break new ground by trying a pattern designer that is new to them, try new techniques, new styles, or whatever way they want to push themselves. (Read on for Giveaway info)

Breaking Ground Blog Tour (5)

Welcome to my stop on the Breaking Ground Tour!

Let’s start with what does “Breaking Ground” actually mean. According to a quick google search this morning ‘”Breaking Ground” means to initiate a new venture, or to advance beyond previous achievements. When this blog call came out, I joined right away. I had no clue what I would sew and went back and forth for a week or so until I settled on a bag. I searched online for tons of bag patterns, not finding anything I loved. I also recently started this new budget deal with myself, so I didn’t want to spend 10 bucks on a pattern. I decided I would look through my own stash of patterns and see what I could come up with. Thankfully, I remembered I had a book dedicated to making bags. I have made one Market Style bag in the book several times. It was a simple tote bag that required very little skill. Since this tour is about Breaking Ground, I knew I was meant to step it up a bit. So here we go…

Breaking Ground Blog Tour (6)

This bag contains a lot of elements I have never done before. I learned how to insert a separating zipper, made 5 different shapes of pockets, used actual purse hardware and made a legit handle. I feel like I used yards of interfacing and top stitched miles of thread. To top it off, I used 4 different fabrics because that’s just how I roll. I followed the pattern almost to Kay Whitt’s design with a few exceptions.

Breaking Ground Blog Tour (10)

To start with I needed 4 fabrics. Of course, I picked all different prints. None of them match each other and I used 3 different fabric lines. Don’t panic, I know some of you are all matchy- matchy, but I can’t stand that! I also used some large D rings I scavenged from an old beat up bag I already had. I keep interfacing on hand so no need to risk my budget deal with a trip to the fabric store.

Breaking Ground Blog Tour (2)

This pattern had 10 ish pages of directions in the book. I know, I agree, that is a lot of work. I worked through them one step at a time over the course of  2 weeks. I finished around midnight this morning. Some days, the struggle really is real. This pattern is labeled intermediate and I agree. Though none of the steps were overly difficult, they took a lot of time. The photos that accompany the directions are basically line drawings with color. On some steps this was helpful, but many times I wanted to see a real photo of what I needed to do.

Breaking Ground Blog Tour (8)

The only step of this pattern that seemed off to me was the side pockets. The side panel and the pocket piece were cut the same width, but then you add a 1 inch pleat to the pocket. This made the pocket one inch smaller than the panel, but the directions say to line it up. Ummm No Can Do! I also had a small hiccup at this step because I attached my top binding over the folded edge instead of the raw edge. This required that I line the pockets up across the bottom of the bag instead of them floating an inch from the bottom. Not a deal breaker and this girl wasn’t ripping the pleated and binding off, nor was I starting the pockets again. I also redrew the pocket flap on the outside as this patterns that are included when you buy the book have done missing. I just used my curved ruler and went for it.

Breaking Ground Blog Tour (7)

The inside of this bag contains on sectioned off pocket and one pocket with an elastic top. I wouldn’t have minded both of these pockets being a little deeper or even a zipper pocket for small things like chapstick.

Breaking Ground Blog Tour (4)

As I was sewing this bag up, I thought I would maybe try to make a bag each month. We will see. I would actually love a matching wallet to go with this bag. Maybe next month.

Breaking Ground Blog Tour (9)

So my thoughts: I love the outcome. I honestly feel like I stitched miles of thread into this bag and zippers aren’t so bad. I wish the pattern listed all of the cutting steps at the start and not randomly in the pattern. I feel it would have saved time to cut and interface everything at the start of the project. I was clearing off my cutting table and ironing board way too frequently. I also wouldn’t have minded some real photos instead of just line drawings.

Breaking Ground Blog Tour (1)

Do I feel like I am Breaking Ground? Absolutely! Here are the other Ground Breakers! be sure to check them out, but read to the bottom of my blog to sign up for PRIZES!!!

The Full Tour includes all these creatives… we hope you’ll visit us each day:

Monday March 11That’s Sew Lily, Sewing A La Carte, Mijn 11jes & ik

Tuesday March 12mahlicadesigns, Embrace Everyday, Jot Designs, auschick sews, Raising Stripling Warriors

Wednesday March 13Musings of A Seamstress, Very Blissful, Sew4Five, Just Sew Something, Hazelnut Handmade, Crafting Through Time, Tales From A Southern Mom

Thursday March 14Make It Sew with the Bear and Pea Atelier, Ronda B Handmade, SequioaLynn Sews, Sewing with D, The Sewing Goatherd, OOYAmade, My Golden Thimble, Custom Made by Laura

Friday March 15Sew Cute Couture by Kathy, Sewing Novice, Ronda B Handmade, Momma Bear Sews, MeMade, My Golden Thimble, Lulu & Celeste

Click Below To Enter Both Giveaways

Breaking News: our tour sponsor Phat Quarters is offering 2 patterns of choice from her pattern shop to one lucky winner.

Enter Here!

***

We’d love to see how you’re Breaking Ground this month. Share with us what you’re working on by using the hashtag #BreakingGround2019 across social media.

a Rafflecopter giveaway