Wednesday, April 29, 2015


Literally, housekeeping is why I've been so quiet. I've been working on getting my front porch into shape, planting grass and flowers, doing a bit more deep cleaning, etc. etc. etc.

This porch really took a beating this winter. I swear it didn't look this bad last year! I've been wanting to fix it up for a while, but had to wait for the weather to start cooperating.

It's pretty far from done, but I think the white makes it look a lot better, no? I can't wait to get those steps done, though. I figure I've already spent almost 9 hours on this, and I've probably got at least 4 more in store. I think I can, I think I can!

I also made some creme brulee recently, after having wanted to for years (literally). Doesn't it look mouth-watering? I'm definitely going to make this again. It's probably a good thing that this takes 2 hours to set - should keep me from making it *too* often!

But since you (probably?) don't come here to hear me talk about housekeeping or baking, I've got a quick sewing project to show you.

The chevrons have been on my Pinterest to-do list for a while, and I was in the mood for something quick, so I figured I'd throw it together. They were actually more complicated than I thought! But I figured it out in the end, that's all that counts, right? The back side is from a re-purposed skirt. I thought this pillow would go nicely in my monochromatic guest room, which it does!

Also, Me-Made May is coming up! My pledge for this year is: 

I, Alicia at, sign up as a participant of Me-Made-May '15. I endeavor to wear at least one handmade item each day (that I leave the house) for the duration of May 2015. Additionally, I will make a special effort to wear every handmade item I have at least once.

Are you taking part in MMM? What's your pledge?

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

That 70s Dress

Is it just me, or are the days racing by? I can't believe how fast this spring is flying already, or how lucky we've been weather-wise recently. When I was home for Easter I took advantage of said weather to get a few pictures of one of my latest makes:

I really can't decide if I love it or hate it. My mom's first reaction upon seeing it was, "That looks like something my mom would've made me wear." Gee, thanks! ;-)

I grabbed about 2.5 yards of this border-print linen at a garage sale last year. (I'm now regretting some of the things I passed up, considering how cheaply they were letting them go for.) This fabric was clearly from the 70s, and there were quite a few sun-damaged spots. I had to get a little creative with my cutting, but overall there was more than enough fabric to work with.

I wanted to have this done in time for my Puerto Rico trip...last October. That obviously did not happen, ha. I used Simplicity 4070 for the bodice, which I've been thinking of as one of my TNTs, but considering the fitting issues with this one (way too big!) and the last one (way too small!), I think it needs to be stripped of its title.

Along with using the border print for the simple pleated skirt, I thought it might be a nice touch to use it on the straps, too. Kind of pulls the whole thing together, at least theoretically.

Looking at these pictures made me realize just how bad some of the fitting issues are. Honestly, though, I don't know if it's worth fixing. I'd love some honest opinions here - too kitchy, or potentially cute?

Friday, April 10, 2015

UFOs and Pretty Insides

My goal this year has been to finish more of my UFOs (unfinished objects). I have quite a big box full of them, most of which I don't have the energy, the creativity, or the skills to finish. This skirt, however, was not hiding in that box, which was probably why I'd forgotten about it!

I cut it out last year in the midst of my Cascade kick, and when I rediscovered it, I couldn't remember why it ended up as a UFO in the first place. I decided to pay special attention to the inside finishes so that I could parlay this into participating in my first Monthly Stitch roundup: pretty insides.

The side seems are finished using French seams, and since the hem turns too tightly in some places to do some of the fancier finishes, and I can't find a rolled hem foot for my machine, I just did a basic hem, but cleaned it up using fray blocker and trimming it down. Even the inside waistband looks pretty!

[Awkward picture, but it's the best view of how the skirt really hangs - I chose a *really* windy day for these pictures. Also - isn't that mural awesome?]

Well, after finishing it all up, I realized it was in the UFO pile because the waist ties are a bit short. Oops. Oh well, it's definitely still wearable!

On my way out of work that day, the landlord's wife made a comment about how spring-y I looked, to which I had to respond, "Thanks! I made this!" She was sufficiently impressed, ha, and started grabbing at it to feel the fabric. I love getting to brag a little, don't you?

Friday, April 3, 2015

Spring has sprung!

At least on my dress...If I can't have flowers in real life yet, at least I can have them on my clothes. Floral prints seem to be the only things I want to work with these days, and I know I'm not the only one. Glad to see that trend continuing this year!

This dress actually has a bit of a back story. Last...May, maybe? I cut out B5748 with about a yard of this pretty quilting cotton that I picked up at a *major* estate sale. (I'm honestly still upset at myself that I didn't get more while I was there/have a better look around. This lady was the ultimate fabric hoarded.) I didn't have enough floral fabric to cut the bodice on the fold, and the skirt had to be pretty tiny with what was left over, but I got it all sewn together pretty quickly (using more quilting cotton to line the bodice). I was so excited about it that I even cut out a second right away. I wore this to work one day, and then had my mom take some pics for me to post over a long weekend. It was only when reviewing and editing those pictures that I realized just how SHORT the dress was! 

I definitely didn't feel comfortable wearing it out anymore, but with all of the craziness going on last summer, this got thrown into the UFO bin for me to deal with later. Well, later ended up being a bit longer than I thought, but I finally pulled this out last weekend, when I was in the mood to sew but didn't quite feel like starting anything new. I found some matching red quilting cotton and added about 4-5" to the length. I was worried it wouldn't look right, but I think it looks pretty meant to be here, right?

Obviously quilting cotton gets pretty wrinkly, but all in all, I'm happy with this dress. I even got a compliment from a random lady on the street yesterday!

Here's my awkward back view. I like that it's cut a little lower - although I'm really not sure I'd wear it without a cardigan...

Has spring sprung where you are yet? If not, what "cheats" are you using to deal with it?