Friday, December 28, 2012

#reverb12 - Day 17, 18, 19, 20 and 21

#reverb12
I saw a link to this on Sew Fashionably Modest
There are daily prompts for the month of December that allow you to reflect on 2012 and plan for 2013. 



Day 17 - How did you make a difference?
Think of one person whose life you made a difference to in 2012.
What did you gain from this?
How will you continue to make a difference in 2013.

My life.
I made the greatest difference this year in my life.  I invested in my health & well-being.  I planned (and, not just in my mind) my meals - for both weight maintenance / loss and budgeting.  I released negative thinking.  I embraced changed.  I wrote a lot of letters (and, remembered that I enjoy writing letters).  I gave lots of cards (birthdays, special occasions).  All the things that I've talked about doing - budgeting, saving, sewing, baking - I did them this year. 
By investing in myself - I became a better me.
I'm more focused, grounded and less impulsive, but I'm also more present and in the moment.  I slowed down and once I stopped rushing from / to I noticed that I haven't spent much time these last few years savoring the present moment. 
I'm less on edge.
I'm smiling more. Real smiles, not the fake ones that I've been passing around (*smile*).
Although, I feel the greatest impact was on my life - others have commented that they can see a difference.
In 2013, I want to continue to invest in my life, but I also want to share more of my life with others.  I plan to start back volunteering in my community.


Day 18 - The color of you?
What color best represents the year you had in 2012?
What color would you like to invite into your life this year?

This year started out a white washed gray.  Lacking depth, lacking clarity, lacking perception.  I think I knew what needed to be done, but I hadn't taken any steps to do it.
Then, around the 3rd week of January the color changed to a deep purple like on the weather map when there are storms on the horizon.  And, there were a lot of storms.  Lots of crazy things that all happened between January - March. 
The color changed to red.  I mean like bank account in the negative kind of red.  Thankfully, that only lasted a few weeks before it was back to black.
There's also been lots of yellow like rays of sunshine dispelling the darkness.
I'd like to invite pink, lavender, and orange into my life in 2013 - since, these are Barbie colors and they make me happy!


Day 19 - How did you nourish yourself?
How did you nourish your beautiful body in 2012?
What self-care practices will you take with you into 2013?

I did the majority of my meals at home.  That's probably why I was able to lose 10 pounds and 10 inches since September.  I knew what was going into each meal.
I danced this year.  I always enjoy dancing, but I wrote it into my schedule this year.  Even if, it's just me and the radio - I spent quality time dancing.  Earlier in the year (while I was wearing a weave), I even danced in the rain and stomped in puddles.  That was so much fun!
I normally take vitamins, etc - but, I was extra vigilant this year.  Making sure that I nourished myself with the appropriate vitamins & minerals (and, my asthma was better this year than it had been the last few).  I also used more home remedies this year - instead of rushing to the doctor or the pharmacy (lots of hot totties).
I've spent more time doing my own hair - learning the texture... Learning what works AND what doesn't. 
I changed toothpaste (Colgate Optic White) and my toothbrush (Sonicare).  I switched back to Ivory soap and Neutrogena body oil. 
I started using Cover Girl Queen collection powder for my everyday foundation.  I stopped using Mary Kay Ultimate Mascara (please pray for me - I feel weak).  One tube costs $15, but it works so good - maybe, that's what I should use the rest of my Christmas money on....
I rested this year.  I mean - when I felt low and tired - instead of my typical onward and upward.  I stopped and rested.  I noticed that I've also slept better this year than is typical for me.
I read, and read, and read.  I've read better than 200 books this year.  Even though, there were quite a few that I re-read.  I love reading romance novels (and, I read plenty of those), but I also spent time reading books to help me on my journey.
I meditated.  This probably goes back to resting.  I slowed down.  I didn't rush.  I spent time praying, then I would follow it with time spent listening.
I don't plan on making changes in 2013.


Day 20 - What was lost and what was found?
What was lost in 2012?
What do you intend to find in 2013?

I've had some very toxic habits in my life leading up to 2012.... I lost some of the toxicity from my life.  I learned how to say "no" to myself and to others.  I made time for things that are important to me.  Really, 2012 has been much more about what I've gained than about what I've lost.  I've gained more self control.

In 2013, I hope to find a greater level of balance.  I stopped hanging out with friends as much in 2012 - and, as I start back volunteering and spending time with others.  I really hope I'm able to do it with the same sense of balance that I felt in 2012.


Day 21 - What's on your dream list?
What items did you tick off of your dream list?
What other unexpected dreams came to fruition?
What are the top 3 dreams on your list for 2013?

I already answered this question on Day 3 - I don't have anything to add.
 
Needles Up,
Always Audrey

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Look Before You Leap: Tweed Skirt

V8541 - Front - @ Work
V8541 - Side - @ Work
This Tweed fabric is absolutely beautiful (purchased during PR Weekend NYC) and it was a real nightmare when I first started working on this project....
One day, I'll learn to
LOOK
      BEFORE
                  I LEAP! 
See Frayed Nerves & a Tweed Skirt

No Review, just pictures (Thanks, Roz for the pics)....

This is my TNT (Tried N True) Elastic Waist Skirt Pattern from Vogue 8541. This is the fourth time that I used this pattern to make a skirt.

I cut the 16, but with frayed edges - I interfaced way, way after I cut (I know, brilliant!) - it's probably closer to a 12 or 14. The fit is pretty good (before I lost weight - I could barely get it over my hips), with the exception of a little extra in the back - I could probably fix that with two small darts. Right now, I'm just happy that the skirt is finished and, in time for New Years Eve! Oh, yeah!


V8541 - Back - @ Work
I learned so much while making this skirt....
 
* Interfacing: ha-ha! and, I ironed all of the strips of interfacing on right the first time. No, interfacing on the iron plate. Major win!

* Interlining: not sure if I did it all the way right, but it works. And, I'm so glad I added a thick poly tricot for the interlining, since the temp dropped 20 degrees today while I was at work. I wish I could find a very easy Vogue pattern that calls for an interlining - after I follow a thousand steps to do it the long way, I'll get the best way to approach it. I do know that I need to leave about 2 or 3 inches at the bottom loose. For ease in hemming. Live & Learn! (I say that way too often.)


Needles Up,
Always Audrey

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Finishing What I Started - Updated

All updates are in italics..... Now, that I finished the jacket - that was the most difficult project on the list - I feel like I'm making progress.   I would like to have the majority of this done before New Years. I want to start the year with a fresh project - My Yellow Dress. Or, a winter jacket.  Or, a Pink & White Jacket - just like I originally planned, way back when... 

* Pink Pants from V8541 - finish the hem on 1 pant leg. (Really, all that's keeping these pants from being done is one pant leg?) Completed 12 / 1 / 12 - I still need to take pictures.... And, I have put them on at least 3 different times to show friends. LOL!  12/26/12 - Here's a picture from a hanger.



* Purple Jacket V8541 - finish the sleeves and the hem. 12/17: Still in progress - I hemmed the sleeves per the pattern directions and they are too long. Ha-ha! Oh, yeah! This is my first jacket / shirt project. On the sleeve hem, I used one of the decorative stitches on my sewing machine (thanks, PR all the chatter about the Brother PE500 giveaway, had me thinking about embroidery). The sleeves are lined up, basted and pined - ready for the next step. 12/19 - WOW! This jacket is taking a lot of time.... I spent 1 1/2 hours this morning. I sewed the sleeves in (okay, so you can see a little bit of the ease stitching, ha-ha!) and it's near perfect. I did the pressing prep work for the hem.... Just the collar and finishing the hem needed. OMG! 12/23/12 Since, I had to work on Saturday - this afternoon was my only chance to get busy finishing this jacket - and, I did just that. IT IS FINISHED. I'm so excited - I hope the weather holds up, so I can show it off, I mean wear it to work tomorrow. See Purple Passion - My First Jacket
 

* Tweed Skirt V8541 - finish the hem on the tweed and the lining. 12/17: Laid out on the cutting board with everything needed to complete this project.  12/24: Back to this project.... I tried it on and I've decided the right length for the hem.  I've found a part of the bottom in the back that needs a strip of interfacing added to it before I can hem the fashion fabric.  Trying to decide if I should use the hem tape...  I've re-organized the list for completion.  12/25: Added interfacing.  No Hem tape.  Finished Hem.... IT IS FINISHED.
V8541 - Tweed - Skirt Front
    
V8541 - Tweed - Skirt Back
* S1885 Dress - After the fiasco with the collar, I never picked this dress back up. I need to re-visit and see what needs to be done to complete it. 12/17: I also placed this project on the cutting table. I looked at it - I also need to finish the hem. I need to rip out the current collar - re-cut it and start fresh. Now, that I've finished the collar on the jacket - I see where I went wrong.  12/24: I ripped out the entire collar.  I will re-cut the pieces and interfacing and start fresh.  I went through the instruction sheet - and, I found the problem (**confusing instructions**).  12/25/12: Decided to use the pieces that I had and an add on piece that was missing.  This is a sweatshirt alternative for the weekends.... The top of this dress is too big anyway - so, I took in about 4 inches in the collar by adding additional gathers in the front, sleeve cap, and back.  I'm still having a hard time with the Simplicity instructions, so I may just do it the Vogue 8541 way - putting the interfacing on top, so that it will lay down. 

* Print Dress from V1250 - make a decision on the hem, and move it from the UFO stack to the closet. 12/17: This project is laying on the cutting table. I will likely finish this one last - I'm not going to be able to wear it for awhile.

* Pink & White Skirt V8541- re-cut missing piece and finish the skirt. 12/17: I took the fabric out and it's on the cutting table. I'll be able to cut the missing piece - one evening this week after work.

* Pink Jumpsuit NL6757 - I'm not going to be able to wear it, but I will be giving it to my mom. I meant to get her to try it on when she was here in November, but it completely slipped my mind. I still need to complete the finishing steps on the halter top, insert the zipper, and finish the hem. I won't be able to finish these things until she visits in January.

 
Needles Up,
Always Audrey

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Christmas!

Wishing you and yours a very Merry Christmas!




Here's a look at everything that I received for Christmas....  (everything purchased was previously budgeted for - and, all purchases were made with Cash Money).  See Black Friday & MTMMO

All of my Christmas Gifts revolved around Sewing - well, this is SEW ReInvented Audrey!  Really, one thing led to another:


  1. New Sewing Machine (And, yes - I love it!): Brother CE8080PRW (purchased on Black Friday, but it was a roll back special at Wal-Mart)
  2. 9 New to Me (Out of Print) Vogue Patterns (Black Friday - great deal)
  3. New Look 6130 - There are so many reviews of this shirt on PR, I really wanted this pattern
  4. FABRIC! and Thread from Fabric.com (Black Friday)
  5. Pinking Shears - how did I ever live without these?  My projects are starting to look as nice on the inside as they do on the outside.  So winning!

I still have $25 in the Christmas budget, and I'm trying to decide on what to get.  In retrospect this is so funny, I would spend $25 without blinking.... Now, I've been trying to decide since Black Friday.  There are several sewing related books on my Amazon wish list.  Or, there are some dress maker shears.... Or, the possibilities are endless.



 
Needles Up,
Always Audrey

Monday, December 24, 2012

Purple Passion - My First Jacket


**This jacket was cut and started in May of this year.  I joined Weight Watchers in September, so the sizing is a little off from the original cut of the pattern.




Pattern Description:
Very Easy Vogue 8541, Out of Print, Misses’ Jacket, Skirt and Pants.  Unlined Jacket (in two lengths - I made the short one) has front and back darts, stand up collar, sleeves with darts, topstitching and snap closure.  I have previously reviewed the skirt and pants from this pattern.


Pattern Sizing:
16-24. I made the 18. I haven't learned how to do a FBA, so I cut the pattern per my upper chest measurement.  I initially cut this pattern out in May - with the intention of wearing it during PR Weekend in NYC.  I'm just finishing it (see my post - Finishing What I Start).

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing it?
Absolutely Yes!

Were the instructions easy to follow?
Yes, and, since this was my first jacket - I followed them very closely.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
I got this pattern on sale from Jo-Ann's for $3.99 - I am so winning!  This pattern includes a jacket, a skirt and a pair of pants.  I have made at least 1 item from all three.  What a deal!  And, of course - I made it, I love it!  

Fabric Used:
I used Polyester Crepe in Purple - it was about $4.95 per yard from Fabric.com.  I purchased enough of this fabric for a jacket and a skirt.... Yes, I made the skirt that I'm wearing in the pictures above.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:
1) The pattern calls for snaps to close the jacket.  I started putting the snaps on, but it makes the jacket look larger on me than it is (although, it is big).  So, I took the snaps off and I will wear the jacket open over a shirt.  If I take the sides in a little bit - then, I will go back and add the snaps.
2) All that talk last week on PR about the Brother PE-500 - really got me thinking.  So, I added a decorative stitch to the hem of the jacket, the hem of the sleeves and down the front (all the places the pattern called for top stitching).  I used black thread that I had on hand - although, trying to take pictures of it - I wish I had used some embroidery thread.  Live and Learn.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?
This is my most complicated pattern so far (I feel like I say that every time I write a review) - and, I love this jacket (even though, I didn't get the sizing just right)!  I'm on the fence on whether or not I'll make this jacket again - since, I have other jacket patterns that I want to try.
**I am not the best fashion photographer - although, I am getting better (I can't see it, but I feel it).  So, these are not the best pictures.  I don't have a tripod or a dress form (and, I want both), so I just took these pictures on a hanger on the wall in my closet.  "Why the closet?"  I do some of my best thinking in there (at least, that's what I tell myself).  LOL!


**Again, these aren't the best pictures, but it shows the decorative stitch used in all the places that called for topstitching on this pattern.  On the cuff, on the hem and down the front. 


Needles Up,
Always Audrey

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Finishing what I started... Update

All updates are in italics..... I'm still making progress.  I would like to have the majority of this done before New Years.  I want to start the year with a fresh project - MY Yellow Dress.  Or, a winter jacket....

I have still been thinking about the SWAP - and, I'm still interested.  I just honestly need to clear up some of these old projects before I can really wrap my head around new ones.  Oh, and no pressure - but, I've been planning on wearing the Tweed Skirt on New Year's Eve and the Pink & White Skirt on Grandma B's birthday (MLK Day).  Really, I wanted to make a Pink & White jacket to go with the skirt....

* Pink Pants from V8541 - finish the hem on 1 pant leg. (Really, all that's keeping these pants from being done is one pant leg?) Completed 12 / 1 / 12 - I still need to take pictures.... And, I have put them on at least 3 different times to show friends. LOL!

* Purple Jacket V8541 - finish the sleeves and the hem. 12/17: Still in progress - I hemmed the sleeves per the pattern directions and they are too long. Ha-ha! Oh, yeah! This is my first jacket / shirt project. On the sleeve hem, I used one of the decorative stitches on my sewing machine (thanks, PR all the chatter about the Brother PE500 giveaway, had me thinking about embroidery). The sleeves are lined up, basted and pined - ready for the next step.  12/19 - WOW!  This jacket is taking a lot of time.... I spent 1 1/2 hours this morning.  I sewed the sleeves in (okay, so you can see a little bit of the ease stitching, ha-ha!) and it's near perfect.  I did the pressing prep work for the hem.... Just the collar and finishing the hem needed.  OMG!  12/23/12 Since, I had to work on Saturday - this afternoon was my only chance to get busy finishing this jacket - and, I did just that.  IT IS FINISHED.  I'm so excited - I hope the weather holds up, so I can show it off, I mean wear it to work tomorrow.  I will post a review once I get some pictures.  Here it is on the hanger.

* Tweed Skirt V8541 - finish the hem on the tweed and the lining.   12/17: Laid out on the cutting board with everything needed to complete this project.

* Pink & White Skirt V8541- re-cut missing piece and finish the skirt.  12/17:  I took the fabric out and it's on the cutting table. I'll be able to cut the missing piece - one evening this week after work.

* Print Dress from V1250 - make a decision on the hem, and move it from the UFO stack to the closet. 12/17: This project is laying on the cutting table. I will likely finish this one last - I'm not going to be able to wear it for awhile.

* S1885 Dress - After the fiasco with the collar, I never picked this dress back up. I need to re-visit and see what needs to be done to complete it.   12/17: I also placed this project on the cutting table. I looked at it - I also need to finish the hem.  I need to rip out the current collar - re-cut it and start fresh.  Now, that I've finished the collar on the jacket - I see where I went wrong.

* Pink Jumpsuit NL6757 - I'm not going to be able to wear it, but I will be giving it to my mom. I meant to get her to try it on when she was here in November, but it completely slipped my mind. I still need to complete the finishing steps on the halter top, insert the zipper, and finish the hem. I won't be able to finish these things until she visits in January.

12/23/2012:  I am so excited that I was able to finish the jacket - and, it looks good! 


Needles Up,
Always Audrey

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Fabulous Feature - Designer Top Stitching

My new sewing machine - Brother CE8080PRW



And, my very favorite feature (well, at least right now today).... Designer Top Stitching.  This sewing machine comes with 80 built in stitches,


 
I'm not the best photographer, but I tried to get some pictures of the detail on the sleeve of my jacket.  I used one of the decorative stitches to stitch down the hem.  I think I'll use this same stitch to add some additional detailing to this jacket.


V8541 Jacket Update - well, it looks like a jacket (and, that's great).  But, it is way, way too big!  No worries, I'm still gonna rock it (I made it, I love it!).  It would have probably been big on me either way, but with the 10 pounds I've lost (actually, 10.2 pounds confirmed on Thursday, December 20th) - it's looks extra large.  I should have cut a smaller size and made a full bust adjustment....  I just still haven't really learned how to do a FBA, so there's that problem.  Overall, I'm excited about the progress I've made and I'm looking forward to finishing this project.  I previously made a purple skirt from this pattern... I want to be able to wear the skirt and jacket together.  Oh, yeah - I'm winning (**happy dance**).

I'm glad I decided to tackle this project before the others - I'll be glad for some mindless hemming after doing all of this hard work.

Needles Up,
Always Audrey

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Inspiration from Carolina Herrera

I originally saw this dress on Diary of a Sewing Fanatic and I knew I would have to save this for inspiration because I LOVE THIS DRESS....


The picture is from Vogue Magazine's (the fashion mag) website.  So, here's a list of all of the things I love about this dress:

  • Color Blocked
  • Royal Blue
  • Embroidery Details
  • Color of the Embroidery Details
  • At the knee - length
  • Belt to bring it all together.
  • Looking at this dress makes me want that Brother PE-500 even more!  (**Hoping I win PR's Contest**)
And, it's hard to see it here - but, those shoes are total winners! 

Needles Up,
Always Audrey

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

#reverb12 - Day 14, 15 & 16

#reverb12
I saw a link to this on Sew Fashionably Modest
There are daily prompts for the month of December that allow you to reflect on 2012 and plan for 2013.

I don't have time to keep up with this, but since, I have been enjoying the process. I've been going back to the original post on I Saw You Dancing and working through the list of prompts.....


Day 14 - The path that brought you here?
What was the most important thing you learned in 2012?  How does this learning shape the path going forth?

I'm choosing to skip this prompt.  I covered the things that I learned in the post about Day 6 - "What did you learn?".


Day 15 - What tingled your taste buds?
What is the most extraordinary dish you sampled in 2012?  What made it so magical?

There were a few things that I've had this year that really made my taste buds dance and sing.... Most notably (in no particular order):

Fresh Bread (and, yes - I baked it).... Although, I think the blueberry loaf had the best smell / aroma, I loved the crusty on the outside - soft on the inside-ness and the taste of the homemade bread.  I also liked beating that dough.

2 Egg Omelet with Jerk Turkey (Boars head), Munster Cheese & Rotel - UNBELIEVABLE!  And, yes I made it!  This was so delicious and because it was so stuffed to the top with the turkey, cheese & rotel - I was enough (with toast) for two meals.  Of course, I went totally overboard making these omelets this summer, but I enjoyed each one.

Spaghetti (to the 1000th degree - something else that I made).... One of my co-workers Gary, has a garden and he brought me some fresh basil, oregano, etc.  These fresh herbs with basic grocery store brand tomato paste and sauce - slow cooked for 3 hours.  I don't need to say anymore.  I made a huge batch of the sauce.... and, tried it 3 different ways - with ground turkey and turkey sausage, with ground chicken and with imitation crab meat.  Each way it was delicious - and, the last part that spent about 2 months in the freezer tasted better than when I first made it.

Stewed Chicken with Peas & Rice - Caribbean Fiesta, a Jamaican restaurant by my Doctor's Office.... I'm normally rushing to the Doctor's office (crazy traffic) and I'm normally rushing to get back to my side of town (why does it always rain when I go see Dr. Bob?).  But, while I was over there in April - I was hungry, so I made the time.... OMG!  The portions were huge, and the taste so, so delicious.  Needless to say, stopping by this little piece of heaven is on my list when I'm on that side of town.  The Doctor's office is about 45 minutes away from my house.


Day 16 - Who inspired you?
Who inspired you in 2012 and why?
What gifts did they give you?  And, how will you carry these forward in to 2013?

In 2012, I started making / meeting (mostly, online) sewing friends...  I officially joined Pattern Review and did the NYC shopping trip.  I started my blog.  And, I reached beyond my comfort zone - and, found a great community of friends.

The gifts have come in many different shapes and sizes.  Sometimes, I've read all the things that went right... Or, wrong.  Sometimes, it's been an alert that new patterns are available.  Or, that there's a great sale going on.  Especially, with PR - there have been several patterns that I have passed on after reading the reviews (and, I do pull up PR even if I'm standing in the store before I purchase a pattern).  There have been tons of advice and even free tutorials (Thanks, again Mimi G - I made a pencil skirt!). 

In 2013, I hope to forge greater friendships, really learn how to use my new sewing machine (did I mention I love sewers who post videos on you tube!) - and, move on to better projects with better finished results.


What about you?
What tingled your taste buds?
Who inspired you?


Needles Up,
Always Audrey

Monday, December 17, 2012

Finishing what I started.... (Update 12/17/12)

I had other commitments last weekend - and, I wasn't able to spend anytime sewing.  Progress is being made on the list, but it has been slower than I expected.  All updates are in Italics.

I worked and ran errands this Saturday, so this weekends' sewing activity was limited to what I could get done on Sunday afternoon.  I worked for 4 hours on my list.... Don't judge me, I'm slow!  I also re-organized the list in the order that I will work on my "finishing" projects.

* Pink Pants from V8541 - finish the hem on 1 pant leg. (Really, all that's keeping these pants from being done is one pant leg?) Completed 12 / 1 / 12 - I still need to take pictures.... And, I have put them on at least 3 different times to show friends.  LOL!
* Purple Jacket V8541 - finish the sleeves and the hem. Still in progress - I hemmed the sleeves per the pattern directions and they are too long. Ha-ha! Oh, yeah! This is my first jacket / shirt project. On the sleeve hem, I used one of the decorative stitches on my sewing machine (thanks, PR all the chatter about the Brother PE500 giveaway, had me thinking about embroidery).  The sleeves are lined up, basted and pined - ready for the next step.

* Tweed Skirt V8541 - finish the hem on the tweed and the lining.  Laid out on the cutting board with everything needed to complete this project.

* Pink & White Skirt V8541- re-cut missing piece and finish the skirt.  I took the fabric out and it's on the cutting table.  I'll be able to cut the missing piece - one evening this week after work.

* Print Dress from V1250 - make a decision on the hem, and move it from the UFO stack to the closet. This project is laying on the cutting table. I will likely finish this one last - I'm not going to be able to wear it for awhile.
*S1885 Dress - After the fiasco with the collar, I never picked this dress back up. I need to re-visit and see what needs to be done to complete it.  I also placed this project on the cutting table.  I looked at it - I also need to finish the hem.

* Pink Jumpsuit NL6757 - I'm not going to be able to wear it, but I will be giving it to my mom. I meant to get her to try it on when she was here in November, but it completely slipped my mind. I still need to complete the finishing steps on the halter top, insert the zipper, and finish the hem. I won't be able to finish these things until she visits in January.

Needless to say, the cutting table looks like a Christmas workshop with all of the projects laid out on it.....Looking forward to completing more projects and clearing up more mental / dining room space.  Have a great day!

Needles Up,
Always Audrey

Sunday, December 16, 2012

#reverb12 - Day 13

#reverb12
I saw a link to this on Sew Fashionably Modest
There are daily prompts for the month of December that allow you to reflect on 2012 and plan for 2013.

I don't have time to keep up with this, but since, I have been enjoying the process. I've been going back to the original post on I Saw You Dancing and working through the list of prompts.....

Day 13 - Some Selfie Love?
Please post your favorite picture of your self from 2012, self portrait or otherwise!


Glade Road RaceTrac
This is my favorite picture from this year....
It was a great day in March. 
I was smiling on the outside and on the inside. 
I loved my weave - if I can find it again, I'll rock it again. 
Makeup - not too much, not too little.
I was wearing a cheerful red dress - I love color.
And, I just finished eating some fried chicken.  LOL!
If you haven't tried the fried chicken at RaceTrac - you should.  It's great!


Needles Up,
Always Audrey

Saturday, December 15, 2012

#reverb - Day 12

#reverb12
I saw a link to this on Sew Fashionably Modest
There are daily prompts for the month of December that allow you to reflect on 2012 and plan for 2013.

I don't have time to keep up with this, but since, I have been enjoying the process.  I've been going back to the original post on I Saw You Dancing and working through the list of prompts.....

Day 12 - Your Most Intense Emotions?
What made you dance in 2012?  What made you weep?

**When I started this list, I was thinking that this has been a really, really hard year - at least, emotionally.  But, in reality - this has been an exceptionally great year - with a sprinkling of hard moments.....**

Laughing: Mommie came to visit me in January - and, I was so happy to see her..... This was a great visit and especially at the beginning of the year!

Crying: During my mom's visit - I received some bad news - like the worst possible news you can receive while your mom is visiting you for a few days.  I would have cried anyway, but it seemed much more tragic and depressing with my mom here.  Is it wrong for me to want my mom to think my ATL life is great?  I really don't think so....

Shopping (does shopping describe an emotion - you can relate it to Utter Elation): Fabric shopping in NYC - need I say more.... Although, I'm still don't want to cut my "good" fabric.

Dancing: Sewing in a straight line - I made my first "wearable" dress and I had 6 - 9 straight seams and they were all mostly straight.... I danced, I laughed, I smiled, I blogged, and yes, after I wore it - I shed a few happy tears.   Made My First Dress

Totally Amazed: I felt this a few times this year, but the best of the best.  I set an aggressive goal to pay off some some smaller debts that I've had in my life way, way too long.  It meant - I had to set and keep a spending plan.  It meant - I had to buy a coffee pot and make coffee at home (no more, popping over to Starbucks for a relaxing "cuppa" after a hard day at work).  It meant - that I need to cook breakfast and lunch at home for work.... But, I did it - and, I was so totally amazed.  Just thinking about the moment when I realized that I hit my goal - I'm still smiling! 

Winning: New Sewing machine with all the bells and whistles that I could possibly want and in my budget!  Okay, so it wasn't official until the lady at Wal-Mart rung it up... I may have been spotted doing my happy dance at the checkout.  Dance, even if they are watching.

Punk'd (another questionable emotion, but accurately describes how I felt at the time): I went looking with my pal Roz for a car.... The address on the dealership's website ended up being a blue house with a sign - around the corner and across the street from the car lot.  Although, we already felt like we had seen it all, we went to the location of the car to view it.  I really should have listened to my first thought.  Only to feel more punk'd (if that's possible) because the car looked like it had been keyed on one side.  That wasn't mentioned on the website.  And, the inside of that car smelled like something bad happened (I can't think of any other way to describe that smell).  Major OMG!

Blessed: Making this list, I'm able to really see that through it all I've made it... I am truly blessed.  Maybe, I should have described this emotion as Loved.  Because, thinking over this year - that's what I'm feeling... I am truly loved.


What about you?
What was your most intense emotion this year?

Needles Up,
Always Audrey

Friday, December 14, 2012

TNT Pants

I've been slow to post this, but I made another pair of pants using my favorite - okay, (until, I got my new Vogues) my only pants pattern! - V8541. 

I don't have any pictures in these pants, although I've worn them 3 times.  They were finished except for the hem (on one leg) in September and when the weather changed earlier than I expected - I stopped working on them.  Yes, you read right I only needed to finish one pant leg.  I did the entire hem (blind stitch) by hand. 

I didn't post this on Pattern Review because I've posted about this pants pattern before.

Pattern Description:
Very Easy Vogue 8541 – Out of Print – Misses’ Jacket, Skirt and Pants. Pull-on pants D have elastic casing and straight legs. I only made the pants. This is my 3rd time making these pants.

Pattern Sizing:

16-24. I made the 16.  **I've been doing Weight Watchers.  I cut these pants at the end of August, but they are feeling baggier now.  Oh, yeah!  That's a great problem.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? Absolutely Yes!

Were the instructions easy to follow?
Yes.  Although, since this is my 3rd pair - I didn't really use them.
What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
I made it, I love it!

Fabric Used:
I used a polyester suiting in Antique Rose - it was on clearance for $1.95 per yard at Fabric.com a few months ago.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:
No changes made.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?
Super easy to make and you can dress 'em up or dress 'em down.   I especially, appreciate the comfort level during long days at work.  Yes, I will make these again, but I recently ordered some new patterns, so it may be awhile before I come back to this one.  

Needles Up,
Always Audrey
 

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Inspiration from New York & Co

I love this dress.  The back is all black, but I can't figure out how to show the picture.


Needles Up,
Always Audrey

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

#reverb12 - Days 8, 9, 10 and 11

#reverb12
I saw a link to this on Sew Fashionably Modest
There are daily prompts for the month of December that allow you to reflect on 2012 and plan for 2013. I didn't sign up (I've got enough commitments for the moment), but I like the idea of taking time to really reflect on the past year.

Okay, so I said I didn't have time to keep up with this, but when I have a few moments - I've been going back to the original post on I Saw You Dancing and working through the list of prompts..... More than likely, I'll finish all of the prompts - just not on the exact schedule.


Day 8 - What was your most important relationship?
Considering the idea that nothing lasts forever: what was the most important relationship that you fostered in 2012?  How will you continue to nurture it in 2013?

The most important relationship that I nurtured in 2012 was with the online community of sewists.  Although, I've been lurking in the background of several blogs for a while, in 2012: I joined Pattern Review, I started following sewing blogs, I attended PR Weekend in NYC, and, I opened myself up to people who are passionate about about sewing and are able to understand fitting frustrations. 

In 2013, I'll continue to blog and follow blogs.  I've purchased some new patterns that I'll start working through - so, I'll have some different things to post about on Pattern Review.  Although, I won't be able to go to San Francisco for PR Weekend - hopefully, there will be an opportunity to meet up with others on the East Coast.  I will attend the Original Sewing and Quilting Expo in Atlanta.  And, I'm looking at joining ASG.


Day 9 - Your favorite book?
What was the best book you read in 2012?  Why did you read it?  And, why was it your favorite?

This was a hard one for me.  I love to read and I've read many books this year that I referenced all through out the year.  Before I reveal my favorite book - here are the honorable mentions: 1) romance novels (I have 6) by Johanna Lindsey (everybody loves a Lindsey - especially, me); 2) romance novels by Betty Neels (I have 5); 3) Vogue Sewing, Revised and Updated; 4) the Left Behind Series - I'm on book 8 (I know, tardy for the party); and, 5) How to have more than enough by Dave Ramsey.

Book - My Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey

I've read this book at the beginning of each year for the last 3 years.  I read it this year because now, it's like part of my annual rite of passage.  I read the book - I compare this year's answers to year's past.  I evaluate what's going right financially - and, what's going wrong. 

What made it my favorite book this year?  I was in a mental space to really follow the principals laid out in the book.  I mean - everybody I know is in debt - it's just a way of life. I think it just took time for me to determine - debt is not how I choose to enjoy my life. Now, I'm working towards being financially at peace.

This book isn't 3 steps to wealth and prosperity.  It's a no-nonsense approach to using the income you currently have and working towards building the wealth that you want.  It's broken down into 7 baby steps.  Although, if you join the web community there are a few pre-baby steps as well.  I started working through the baby steps.  I made a commitment to stop using debt (see Day 10, about my greatest risk this year).  I took an honest and total look at my finances - I mean, I looked at everything!  I cut some of the unnecessary from my life (really, Audrey Starbucks twice a week is not conservative spending).  I made a realistic spending plan (there are things that I need - sometimes, it's a cup of Starbucks).  I completed Baby Step 1 - save a basic emergency fund.  And, now I'm on Baby Step 2 - paying off debt.  Although, there's a part of me - when I first read this book - that felt like it was impossible, I believe I can do it.  I will do it.  I want to be debt free. 


Day 10 - Your greatest risk?
What was the greatest risk you took in 2012?  What was the outcome?

I made a decision to stop using credit cards.  I know, it seems like the risk would be in using them - LOL!  But, I mean - I stopped living like my credit card was the back up plan.  I put on my big girl panties, made a reasonable spending plan, and a conscious decision not to use my credit cards (yes, that's plural) anymore.  The craziest part, is that I kept one of them.... Thinking, if I travel I'm going to need my credit card - although, I did use it to check into the hotel in Vegas, at checkout I used my debit card to pay the bill.  And, the best part - after my trip was over, all I had was my fuzzy memories and sore feet because I didn't have a credit card bill lurking in the background.

Day 11 - What was music to your ears in 2012?
What was music to your ears in 2012, literally or metaphorically?

2012 has been the year of the Re-Invention of Audrey, so there have been lots of different noises that have sounded gloriously beautiful majestic and, even miraculous to my ears!  They are listed below in no particular order.

The first time I told myself "no, you have to wait to buy that." 
A major departure for me, but also a major revelation.  Even though, I can't hear it - there's a yellow sticky note on the front of my debit card that says "Is this a NEED or a WANT?" I always answer the question. 

The humming of my sewing machine....
And, when you consider the number of seams that I rip out and re-stitch on everything I make.  There was a considerable amount of humming from my "magic maker" not to mention muttering (we'll call it happy noises) from me.  LOL!

Well, I didn't hear a sound - but, I felt like I did - when I got my first credit card statement that showed a zero balance.  Oh, yeah! 

And, especially right now - in this moment.  I'm listening to the tap of my fingers against the keyboard.... and, it is music to my ears....


What about you?
What was your most important relationship?
Your favorite book?
Your greatest risk?
What was music to your ears in 2012?

Needles Up,
Always Audrey

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Monday, December 10, 2012

#reverb12 - Day 7


#reverb12
I saw a link to this on Sew Fashionably Modest
There are daily prompts for the month of December that allow you to reflect on 2012 and plan for 2013. I didn't sign up (I've got enough commitments for the moment), but I like the idea of taking time to really reflect on the past year. 

Okay, so I said I didn't have time to keep up with this, but when I have a few moments - I've been going back to the original post on I Saw You Dancing and working through the list of prompts..... More than likely, I'll finish all of the prompts - just not on the exact schedule. 

Day 7 - What will you take with you?
What is the one thing you want to take with you into 2013?

I want to take a greater awareness of myself - abilities, limitations, hopes, fears, dreams & desires - into 2013.  In 2012, I've spent more time alone than any other time in my life (and, I'm an only child).  I've really worked hard learning me.  In becoming more aware of myself - I've truly accepted who I am.

I want to continue to list out my goals in terms of my physical life, spiritual life, and work life.  I want to balance these goals with a realistic spending plan that will help me be more financially at peace.  I want to continue to grow my creative self by sewing, crocheting, and I want to try to make a quilt and learn to knit.  I want to continue to cook delicious foods that make me look forward to being at home.  I want to take a week vacation to my favorite place - Home, my dream destination

But, mostly I want to be able to look over 2013 and feel the way I feel about 2012.  I've had ups and downs, but I made it - and, I'm so much better for the journey!

Needles Up,
Always Audrey

Sunday, December 9, 2012

ReInvented Audrey - Q & A

Here are some frequently asked questions and my responses:

Question:  Why do you refer to yourself as "ReInvented Audrey?"  Why not just Audrey?
ReInvented Audrey:  Since, I was 21 - I have always referred to myself as "Lady Audrey," "Miss Audrey," and sometimes, especially for screen names as "MissLadyAudrey."  I'm approaching a milestone birthday in 2013 (I'll be 35 in March) and I'm ready to change how I see and think of myself.  Besides, let's face it - I'll never - say I'm just Audrey.... That's so not me! 

Question:  If you bought your first sewing machine last year.  Why did you buy a new sewing machine this year?
ReInvented Audrey:  I started taking online sewing classes about 2 years ago (way before I had a machine).  Even though I knew I wanted to create garments, I wasn't sure how much I would actually use a sewing machine.  Initially, I didn't make a big investment (just in case).  I purchased the $50 special (Brother LX-2000) from Wal-Mart on Black Friday 2011.  It's a very basic machine - there are only 2 stitches -  straight and zigzag.  When I reviewed my total sewing - what I've been able to make, how much time I've spent using the sewing machine, and, the total amount of enjoyment.  It made sense to purchase a sewing machine that I can grow with as a seamstress.

Question: I haven't heard you mention Weight Watchers in a while.  Any progress?
ReInvented Audrey: Yes! I've lost 10 pounds since Labor Day. That's great! This past week, I wore 2 pairs of the pants that I've made and I need to take them in - since, they are so baggy. But, this is a great problem for me.  And, yes - I wore the pink pants and forgot to take pictures.

Question: It seems like you are posting a lot lately.... What's going on? Will you always post everyday?
ReInvented Audrey: Ha-ha! I am posting a lot, right now. I normally work a flex schedule - mostly, Tuesday through Friday, 10 hours per day - as long as I meet certain criteria. But, from Thanksgiving to MLK Day (since, I work in Accounting) I have to work five days a week for year end close. This recent change in my schedule - along with an amazing new sewing machine - has me geeked up and posting like crazy. When I return to my regular flex schedule. I'll likely go back to averaging about 1 post per week.

Question:  Sometimes, you talk about a Money Makeover. What is it?
ReInvented Audrey:  In 2011, I decided that 2012 would be the year that I re-invented me.  Reinventing simply means "to bring into use again."  I knew that I wanted to sew.  I knew that there were some other crafty / homemaking type skills that I either wanted to learn or perfect.  But, that's not all.  I really needed to reinvent my budget (now, named spending plan) and learn how to stick to it.  Of all of the aspects of the reinvention that I have attempted to date, this has been the most challenging.  My Money Makeover - isn't just about creating a budget (when I first started - I used to hate this word).  It's about setting boundaries, limiting Unnecessary spending, living by a plan, telling myself "NO," identifying needs vs wants, and changing a lifetime of "bad" spending habits.  I follow Dave Ramsey's plan (My Total Money Makeover).



Needles Up,
Always Audrey

Saturday, December 8, 2012

#reverb12 - Day 6


#reverb12
I saw a link to this on Sew Fashionably Modest
There are daily prompts for the month of December that allow you to reflect on 2012 and plan for 2013. I didn't sign up (I've got enough commitments for the moment), but I like the idea of taking time to really reflect on the past year. 

Day 6 - What did you learn?
Compare the “you” from the beginning of 2012 to the “you” that you are now. What new skills or talents have you learned or discovered this year?

* How to tell myself "NO"
I really figured this out concerning my finances, but it branched out into all areas of my life.  At the beginning of the year, I was just so consumed with having everything right now.  I want it, I need it..... In reality, I don't need it and as soon as I look at the next thing - I don't want it anymore either.  This is the main reason that I've stayed away from the mall (Oh, Cumberland - how I've missed you!) and the bookstores (Barnes & Noble, perhaps we shall meet again in the future). 

*How to accept love for what it is
I have always felt like if someone loves me that there's this burden I have to prove that I'm worthy of the love or to work to maintain the love.  And, finally this year - I've learned to accept love.  If it's being offered I can accept it and that's all.

*How to make an omelet
I've always felt like - I would really know how to cook when I learned how to make an omelet.... I'm there!  Oh, yeah!  That's probably why I felt I could start baking and trying all types of other things.  And, once I got it.... I was trying to figure out what all the mystery was about in the first place.

*I've learned alot about my body.....
It feels like it's so hard for me to learn about my body because I'm always taking thyroid medicine, or hormones, or steroids, or something.  But, this year - even with all of that - I've really worked to listen to signals that my body sends.  When to play, when to work, when to pull back and relax, and when to shut down and sleep.

How about you?
What have you learned in 2012?

Needles Up,
Always Audrey

Friday, December 7, 2012

Feature Friday - Blind Hem Stitch

Brother CE8080PRW - New Sewing Machine




My Favorite Feature - Right Now, Today:

Blind Hem Stitch

When this stitch works... I mean, when the user knows how to use the machine properly to complete this stitch - it is wondrous!  OMG!  I'm able to hand sew using the blind hem stitch, but it takes time to complete it.  And, I mean - a lot of time.

The very first time I attempted to use this function on my new sewing machine.  I got it mostly right - I just needed to adjust the stitch width to get it perfectly right.  Then, everything went down hill from there.  So, I removed the stitches, so that I could re-sew it.

Mental Brake....

That's gotta be what I happened because - after that, I tried about 7 more times to use the blind hem stitch and it was every type of wrong that you could possibly imagine.  There are a lot of things that I can just look at it, try it once and get it.... But, the functions on this machine take a little more thought (and, I need to remember that).  And, the line drawings in the book only leave me confused.  So once again, I turned to you tube and found a great video on the Blind Hem Stitch from whoyoum: Blind Hem Stitch - First Steps with Brother CE8080PRW

Thank God for you tube!  And, thank God for Nadia & whoyoum for posting these great videos that I'm able to watch over and over again.

**I'm so going to get it!**  Now, that I've watched the video about 10 times, I realize that I was (repeatedly) placing the fabric the wrong way under the foot.  Even though, it looks right when I put it under the foot.  I have a busy weekend planned, but hopefully, I'll be able to squeeze in a little time on the machine to get some more practice in..... Actually, since my goal for December is to Finish what I start - I have a few projects that I could practice using this stitch on.  I'll let you know how that goes.

This has got to be the best thing ever! Well, at least until I figure out the next best thing.

Needles Up,
Always Audrey

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Inspiration from Valentino

I love this purse so much!
Valentino - Spring 2013 Collection
I can't wait for Spring!
 


Needles Up, Always Audrey

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

#reverb - Day 4 & 5

#reverb12
I saw a link to this on Sew Fashionably Modest
There are daily prompts for the month of December that allow you to reflect on 2012 and plan for 2013. I didn't sign up (I've got enough commitments for the moment), but I like the idea of taking time to really reflect on the past year. 


Day 4: How will you celebrate you?
How are you going to celebrate yourself this festive season.

**Warning: This is a total departure from what even I know to be normal for Audrey Sew ReInvented Audrey

I want to make a new dress (I have the pattern and the fabric). 
I want to bake a cake (I recently purchased a covered cake platter). 
I want to spend a day (or 2) - watching old movies, eating popcorn, maybe reading blogs, and eating cake.
And, that's it....
None of this revolves around spending money, shopping or spending money. 
Who is this girl?  Sew ReInvented Audrey
And, what has she done with Audrey?  ReInvented Her

Day 5: What was your dream destination?
What was your dream destination in 2012 and why?

My dream destination: HOME

I've found that I've spent the last few years (but, really probably my whole life) trying to go/get to the next place.  Never really savoring the moment, always rushing to embrace the next moment.  Never enjoying the spend (purchase), always gearing up for the next.  In 2012, I decided to spend more time at home on purpose.  I've worked on making my home comfortable, relaxing, and enjoyable.  This year, I took my first ever week-long destination trip and stayed HOME.  It was one of the best (and, cheapest) vacations that I can remember having in a long time. 


What about you?
How will you celebrate you?
What was your dream destination?

Needles Up,
Always Audrey

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Monday, December 3, 2012

#reverb12 - Days 1, 2 and 3

#reverb12
I saw a link to this on Sew Fashionably Modest
There are daily prompts for the month of December that allow you to reflect on 2012 and plan for 2013.  I didn't sign up (I've got enough commitments for the moment), but I like the idea of taking time to really reflect on the past year.

Day 1 - How are you starting?
I'm in a good place.  Actually, I'm in a better place than I've been in for a long time. 

Physically - I have seen a noticeable increase in my health and general well being.  I'm doing Weight Watchers to lose some weight to be in a healthier weight/BMI range.  I have been taking all meds and vitamin D (for my thyroid) as prescribed.  I've been more consistently balanced this year.... exercise, work, dancing, relaxation, nutrition, sleep, prayer, and meditation. 

Financially - Wow!  This year has really been amazing.  I always set goals (monthly, yearly, 5 years, 10 years),but I don't always follow through with the plan.  This year, I made a realistic plan for how I desire to live and I made a feasible spending plan reflecting that goal.  I learned how to tell myself "no" this year.  This is a major departure from how I normally live and I'm so much better for it.

Creatively - Another, Wow!  I've challenged myself - a total re-invention.  I have been sewing, creating, and learning more and more to increase my skills and ability (not to mention my enjoyment).  I started baking this year... I made homemade bread for the very first time ever!  I made a banana cream pie, and several delicious loaves (I like these best).  I learned how to make an omelet - and, subsequently, I went omelet crazy.  I learned how to crochet - I made a scarf.

At Work - I'm facing a lot of challenges with the implementation of new software.  I've been dealing with a level of frustration that's far greater than normal (we could have tested this software before we started rolling it out).  This has given me an opportunity to really evaluate and examine my work life.  I'm usually just striving for a happy work / personal life balance, to the point that I don't always consider my actual "work" life.

Day 2 - Your most significant spend?
I think my most significant spend in 2012 - was what I didn't spend.  Since, I've been really looking at my spending plan - there were a lot of things that I normally do (spend), that I didn't do this year.  I've spent significantly less time, money and energy in the mall, in bookstores, and in restaurants.  I challenged myself to cook meals that: 1) are nutritious and delicious, 2) are fun and/or easy to make, and, 3) I would enjoy eating.  Since, I started really sewing again at the end of 2011 - I've been paying more attention to the quality in stores and I've been shopping less.  Instead of always suggesting that we (my friends and I) go out and do (spend) something - I've offered to host more things at home. 

Since, I didn't spend money on the typical stuff I had money to spend on some things that I really wanted and enjoyed: fabric shopping trip in New York City, girls trip to Las Vegas, two trips to see family in South Carolina, a new sewing machine, a covered cake platter (cakes are in my future), and I also paid off some debt (still, working on Sallie Mae, but that's another story).

Day 3 - What do you really wish for?
The premise of this question is based on having only 1 year left to live.  Determine what you would wish to do in that year. 

I have several things that I would like to do (my bucket list), but if that's not how my life turns out.  I'm okay with it. 
I LIVED. 
I've danced like there's no one watching (even, if there was).  I have loved.  I've been young and dumb (maybe, the youngest and the dumbest).  I have given - especially, my heart and my time.  I have served.  I've listened and really heard what was being said (and, yeah - I've ignored some things, too).  I have laughed - sometimes, until I cried.  I've cried - sometimes, until I had no choice but to laugh or smile.  I've watched the sun rise and set.  I've bought flowers - just so I could look at them on my dresser when I wake up in the morning.  I've traveled - although, there are some places that I would still like to visit.  I've taken risks.  I moved to Atlanta.  Did I mention that I have danced?  That includes *happy dances*.  LOL!  More, than anything else - I can honestly say that I have tried.  I haven't gotten everything right, but I haven't gotten it all wrong either.

I even told the handsome guy at work, that he's handsome (**wink wink**).  He still blushes when I see him.  And, that makes me smile even more.

What I'm trying to say is that when I think about it - I don't have that one thing left to do.  I plan to continue with the re-invention of Audrey.  I plan to continue sewing and learning.  I am interested in learning how to knit or do needlepoint, although, I'll probably do some more crochet items before I move on to something else.  I want to spend more time with my loved ones.  I want to write a book.  I want to be debt free.

**If you are unfamiliar with me and my blog, you may not be aware that I had radiation several years ago.  Since, I was so terribly sick before and after my treatment, I made a commitment to myself to live and not regret.  So, many of the things that would have been on my "if only" list, I have already attempted.


What about you? 
How are you right now? 
What was your most significant spend of the year? 
What do you really wish for?

Needles Up,
Always Audrey

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Update - Finishing what I started.....

Of course, I had some things for the non-sewing parts of my life that I needed to take care of on Saturday.... But, once all of that was done.  I made a point of spending time "finishing what I started."

I realized that there are two other projects that I need to include in "finishing what I started..."
* Pink Jumpsuit - I'm not going to be able to wear it, but I will be giving it to my mom.  I meant to get her to try it on when she was here in November, but it completely slipped my mind.  I still need to complete the finishing steps on the halter top, insert the zipper, and finish the hem.  I won't be able to finish these things until she visits in January.

*S1885 Dress - After the fiasco with the collar, I never picked this dress back up.  I need to re-visit and see what needs to be done to complete it.

And, yes - I finished the hem on the pink pants.  I can't believe I hadn't finished that sooner.  Once, I take some pictures - I'll be sure to post.

Tweed Skirt - I took it out.  The sewing machine and the skirt are ready for when I get back home later today. 
Jacket - I went over the instructions on the jacket (V8541) for finishing the sleeves and hem.  OMG, I almost forgot that I'll also need to sew on snaps.  Not sure how long that will take.

Wow!  That was really productive - considering I only had about 2 hours, here and there yesterday.  I'm not only clearing up the studio, but I'm also clearing up mental space.

I was reading about the plans for the 2013 SWAP (Sewing with a Plan).  I'm so intrigued.  But, it seems hard to make such a detailed plan (or, coordinating) - at least, that's how it seems from the storyboards that I've viewed.  I don't know.  I'll keep working on my "finishing" list and I'll determine if the SWAP is right for me.

Needles Up,
Always Audrey

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Finishing What I Start

I have a bad habit (well, depending on your perspective)....
I like to start things. 
Starting things isn't the real problem....
The real problem is that I procrastinate when it comes to finishing what I start.

This weekend, my promise to myself is that I will finish what I've already started before I start anything new.

Namely, I need to finish the following projects before I can start on new projects (and, I have some new projects that I am itching to get to):
* Pink Pants from V8541 - finish the hem on 1 pant leg.  (Really, all that's keeping these pants from being done is one pant leg?)
* Print Dress from V1250 - make a decision on the hem, and move it from the UFO stack to the closet.
* Tweed Skirt - finish the hem on the tweed and the lining
* Purple Jacket - finish the sleeves and the hem
* Pink & White Skirt - re-cut missing piece and finish the skirt

I think I see a trend... Everything is a spring / summer weight (so, there's no immediate gratification) and everything needs to be hemmed.  Surely, this will be motivation for me to figure out how to use the blind hem stitch on the new sewing machine. 

Hopefully, my next post will be a review of something that's completed and hanging (or, soon to be hanging) up in my closet.

** I really need to finish up these projects to make room in the studio, since I received my new fabric (Tuesday - wow, fabric.com that was super fast) and patterns (Friday).

Needles Up,
Always Audrey

Friday, November 30, 2012

Feature Friday - Automatic Threader

Brother CE8080PRW - New Sewing Machine


My Favorite Feature - Right Now, Today:

Automatic Threader

Okay, so it took me about 30 - 40 minutes to get it..... More like the magic threader.  I mean, I would luck up and make the automatic threader work, but I couldn't figure out how.  Until I watched this you tube video posted by whoyoum:  First Steps with Brother CE8080PRW Computerized Sewing Machine

I can wind a fresh bobbin, do the upper threading, and use my automatic threader in about 2 minutes (and, that includes time for my happy dance!).  Now, that's fast!

This has got to be the best thing ever!  Well, until I figure out the next best thing.

Needles Up,
Always Audrey

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Dear Button Holes, I'm No Longer Afraid!

I hope you don't get tired of hearing this... Because, I doubt that I'll get tired of saying it.

I LOVE MY NEW SEWING MACHINE!

Here's the 8 Button Holes that I can now make!

This weekend after getting it set up.  I started playing around with the different button holes.  OMG!  There are 8 different button holes.

I used black thread on pink fabric, so that I would be able to see everything clearly. 


Closer view of Button Holes

Needles Up,
Always Audrey