Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Yellow Bridges Dress (Emery + Simplicity 1419)

Helloooooo sewing friends! Meet the Yellow Bridges Dress. It is a mashup of the Emery bodice and Simplicity 1419 skirt. I started sewing this dress in September... or August. So long ago it has faded from memory... I blame the abominable state of the sewing room for sucking all my sew-jo away. I haven't sewn anything for months! Thank goodness for Christmas Break. And family that is willing to travel to you. Which forces you to clean the sewing room. And now it looks pretty, you want to sit and stay awhile. Oh, this old thing? Unfinished dress. Let's see... Zip / Press / Hem - done! That wasn't too bad, was it? :)

Pattern: Emery Dress (bodice) and Simplicity 1419 (skirt)

Fit / Alterations:

Bodice: Spent an afternoon working out the bodice fit with Ashley of Craft Sanctuary - you can see a few of her finished Emery's herehere, and here (which I tried on of course - why can't we always have finished garments in the exact size we need to try on before cutting in to our fabric?)

- Cut size 4 bodice (what?!) - my measurements put me at an 8, but we wanted a more fitted look. 
- Changed darts to hit at the size 8 apex, but placed where the size 4 was. 
- Vertical bodice/waist darts are curved
- Some roominess across the top (I am short from bust to shoulder), but everywhere else fits like a dream!
- I am sure there are other changes, but I have two different traced pattern pieces with scribbly notes and it was so long ago that I started this, I can't remember exactly what I did - ugh. Guess I will just have to make it again to be sure ;)

Skirt: Decided I wanted a pleated skirt to match the sharp lines of the bridges

- Cut a size 12 and adjusted pleats to match skirt to waistline of bodice

Fabric: Michael Miller Waterfront Park Bridgetown in Starfruit (Yellow) - also available in more colors!

Purchased at Bungalow Quilting and Yarn, an adorable shop outside Milwaukee, WI. In addition to a fabulous fabric collection, they have a bathtub of yarn. And the bathroom is wallpapered with old pattern pieces. 

Verdict: I didn't believe it until I zipped the finished dress up - it actually fit! And well! If you look at the product photos of the Emery, the fit is much looser. Thanks to Ashley, this one fits more like a glove ;)
The fabric is cotton, so a dream to sew. And this yellow color is so fun - I cannot wait to wear it to school!

Also, let's hope the newly revived sewing room will be inspiring for more sewing projects in the near future. I am focused on working through my existing stash. No new fabric. No new patterns. In fact, after my big sewing room clean and purge, I may need to get rid of some fabrics and patterns soon. Winter sewing destash, anyone?  

Hope you had a fantastic 2015, and here's to a New Year full of good things! Thanks for reading!  ❤ Sally

Monday, August 17, 2015

Bettine Dress in French Stripes

Pattern: Bettine Dress by Tilly and the Buttons

Fabric: Navy and white striped viscose from Anna Ka Bazaar (available online here)

* Purchased this fabric on my summer 2015 trip to Paris! We visited the fabric shops in Montmartre, which was wonderful. My favorite shop had to be Tissus Reine - such beautiful fabric selections! You can see my Paris fabric haul in this instagram pic. It was such a fun experience! The entire photo album of the trip can be viewed here, if you're interested :)

Fit / Alterations: Used size 4 pattern pieces all around

- Moved skirt pieces 1" from "cut on fold" line, adding a total of 2" to the front and back (4" all over) due to complicated hip curve and pocket - I needed more room for the junk in the trunk but didn't want to ruin the drafting by grading so far out. Gathered skirt slightly before attaching to bodice at waist
- Straightened skirt side seams (doesn't curve back in - goes straight down)
- No topstitching for facing - just tacked at shoulder seams
- For next time: sway back adjustment or something? There seems to be too much fabric in the back above the waistline

Verdict: This is maybe the most chic and versatile dress I have ever owned! Love the style, the colors, the stripes, the pockets, and especially the feel of the fabric. It has been my go to outfit ever since completion :) 

Friday, August 14, 2015

Summer Sewing :)

Helllooooooooooo wonderful sewing community! As I sit here writing this post, I see that my last legitimate sewing post was on April 30th - whew, that's a long time ago. So what I have I been up to? Well, to put it plainly, PRIORITIES. I realized that all my wonderful sewing and blogging time was taking away time from other things like exercising, keeping up the house, and even just relaxing with a good book. So this summer, I decided to prioritize these three things and see what happened. The good news is, I am now at the end of summer (back to school on Monday) and I feel healthy and fit, I finished physical therapy for my knee, I can sit on the couch and not see all the dishes/unswept floor/piles of clothes, and after this I plan to head outside with Neil Gaiman's "Fragile Things" and enjoy some reading. I did sew throughout the summer, as evidenced on Instagram, but blogging just never got to the top of my priority list. And that's okay. Here's a quick rundown of what I made:

1) Sewaholic Davie's Dress - ran big - had to take it in all over - cute design though! The top stitching takes a looooong time but the effect is more sporty and cool - love that contrasted with the floral print :)

2) Cap Sleeved Peplum Top from Bootstrap Fashion - first experience with this made-to-measure pattern company. Yellow striped ponte knit was cute, but the whole top was too big. Not sure if that's b/c I used a knit or put in my measurements wrong or the drafting. Love the fabric and may try to save it by cutting off the sleeves and taking it in at the princess seams.

3) By Hand London's Elisalex Dress - Made to wear to my cousin's wedding. After three muslins and with no time left, I finally cut it out of my pink and silver fashion fabric. I would move the waist seam down a bit, but it fits well everywhere else! :)

4) Lady Skater Dress - In floral ponte knit. Made several times. Still awesome.

4) Megan Nielsen's Eucalypt Tank - After finishing this top, I realized I may need to do an FBA! It fits perfectly in the shoulders, but was tight around the bust. I gifted it to my sister-in-law and plan to retry sometime with an FBA - help! Lol

5) Vintage Simplicity 8701, c. 1978 - A second version of one of my favorite, most worn handmade dresses (first one here) - still fits like a dream :)

6) Monetti! A mashup of the Nettie bodice and Moneta skirt with added bow in the back :) Fabric is navy with red anchor print knit.

7) Tilly and the Button's Bettine Dress - stay tuned for an ACTUAL blog post coming about this one!

And there you have it - an entire summer of sewing in one post! Lol. Obviously I didn't get into the super details, but some of these I have made before and others are super popular in the blogosphere so it's easy to find in-depth reviews. IF you have questions, comment below and I'll try my best to answer :)

So have you ever taken a break from blogging? And what did you do in the meantime?

Oh, and I almost forgot to mention - I also went to PARIS! And the South of France! In July! I will share a little more about this in my next post, but in the meantime you can view a photo album HERE. Happy viewing :)

Tuesday, June 23, 2015


Hi Everyone! Just wanted to let you know that I am DESTASHING my fabrics, sewing books, and patterns over on Instagram. My new page THE QUIRKY PEACH SHOP has photo listings of the fabrics and sewing books so far - patterns will be added soon! If you have an Instagram account, just leave a comment under the item you are interested in with your PayPal e-mail address. If you don't have instagram, you can comment here OR e-mail thequirkypeach (at) gmail {dot} com

Books are in Like New or Very Good (if vintage) condition. All fabric has been measured and priced. If it has been pre-washed by me it says "Washed" in the description. This was with your regular old Tide detergent ;) Yardage is priced around $5ish a yard with factors like quality, weight, rarity, design, and more taken into consideration. Shipping is the buyers responsibility and will be sent first class or priority mail USPS. Payment required before shipment. If you have ANY questions or concerns you can leave a comment OR email thequirkypeach (at) gmail {dot} com

Thanks so much! You can visit the shop HERE :)

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Coral & Gray Minoru Jacket

This jacket. This jacket has been an ongoing project since last June. That's 10 months people. That is an awfully long time to sew something. I am just SO happy to be finished! This was intended to be a wearable muslin, but the more I worked on it, the more I fell in love with it and wanted it to turn out perfect. This led to crazy things like redoing the cuffs a bajillion times until they were just right, or hand-stitching instead of machine stitching certain parts because it would look better. But I have to say, it turned out pretty fantastic, inside and out. Probably the best thing I have ever sewn, actually :)


The jacket is the Sewaholic Minoru, which has been in my stash for quite a while. The main fabric is a very soft gray cotton twill (I think) with poly floral print lining. I went with coral pink zippers and top-stitching thread. I may or may not have already had these perfectly matching boots and scarf in my wardrobe ;)

This jacket fits GREAT everywhere except the hips. When I started it, 10 months (and 10 pounds) ago it seemed like the finished measurements would be roomy enough for my junk in the trunk. In hindsight (teehee... hind-sight) I definitely should have graded out at the hips. I only have 4" of ease around the hips, which is okay, but when I put my hands in my pockets it is pretty snug. Oh yeah, pockets! I added the welt pockets from the Rigel bomber jacket pattern :)

Details At a Glance:

Pattern: Sewaholic Minoru Jacket

Fabric: Main - Gray Cotton Twill(?) and Lining - Floral Poly, both from Hancock Fabrics
Notions: Coral Zippers, Gray thread, Coral thread, Handmade label, interfacing

Size / Fit / Alterations:
- Cut a straight size 10
- Next time, I will add length to the jacket and grade out at the hips

Design Changes:
- Lined the hood, using a method similar to this one
- Added single welt pockets (pattern pieces from Papercut's Rigel bomber jacket)
- Omitted inside pocket
- Shortened cuffs, interfaced, and omitted elastic/gathers
- Contrast top-stitching to match zippers

Construction Notes:
Finish seam allowances in the hood/collar section well - they are not concealed in the lining
Hand-stitched main jacket / lining at collar instead of machine stitch-in-the-ditch
- Measure the zipper window in collar carefully :)   

And that's about all I can say about that. I am sure there were tons of other little interesting tidbits about the construction and what not, but it's been so long since I started that I forget most of it - haha. I am really proud of this jacket, and I am so happy it's finished!

What is the garment YOU are most proud of sewing? If you blogged it please include the link so I can check it out! :) Thanks for reading!

❤ Sally

Monday, April 13, 2015

Black and Blue - Hollyburn Skirts 1 & 2

Happy Spring Everyone! :) This is my latest sewing project, a Sewaholic Hollyburn skirt. The fabric is black floral cotton sateen, leftover from my Rigel Bomber jacket. I was so happy I had just enough to fit all the pattern pieces on, although some of them may not be quite perfectly on grain ;) 

The dress is a really straightforward sew - pockets, skirt seams, waistband, invisible zip, hem, done! This is View C, the shortest version, which I find to be a good length and I'm 6'0!! The only alteration I made was to nip in the waistband at the side seams. The straight waistband didn't sit quite right on my curvy waist. My favorite part is the bias bound hem - HAPPY YELLOW!

The skirt is so colorful, it goes with almost everything! I really like it with my new Maker tee by Megan Nielsen (worn here with my floral Rigel). My favorite pairing, however, is with a black and white striped top. I cannot get enough of stripes and floral! This boatneck knit top is from Target.

And a couple more detail shots - the fabric is just so pretty! 

This is actually my second version of the Hollyburn. The first one I made back in August of last year, in a solid "Tardis Blue" color to wear the premier of the new Doctor Who series with Peter Capaldi. 

I took some photos of the blue one back in February but never got around to blogging it. Funny enough, I am wearing the exact same top in a different color! What can I say - Hollyburn and boatneck stripes are a perfect pair :)

So what is your favorite skirt pattern? Do you have any go-to combos in your wardrobe? Are you a straight or curvy waistband sort of girl? Any photographed but unblogged projects in your queue?

Thanks again for reading! ❤ Sally

Monday, March 16, 2015

The Happy Whale Dress

Happy Monday, friends! Finally the sun has started to shine here in Chicago-land and I could not be more excited :) Last weekend was my cousin-in-law's wedding shower. The theme was tropical and she loves marine biology, so I decided to whip up a dress with this whale print cotton that has been in my stash since last summer. But these are not just any regular old whales...

They are HAPPY whales! Just look at those adorable little smiles :) When I saw them across the aisle in the "Baby / Nursery" quilting cotton section of Joann's, I had to have them. The print is definitely kitschy, but the colors are great, and so me, that I could only see it as a cute dress!

Now to find a suitable pattern...

I wanted something with a higher boat neck shape, because duh... whales=ocean=boats... and also it really lets the print shine. I didn't have anything in my stash that quite fit the bill, so I went off to Joann's to see what I could find. There were no "Big Four" patterns on sale, so I turned to New Look and found this great little dress pattern 6262.

I don't typically purchase New Look patterns. Partially due to the cost ($3.99 - gasp I know ;) versus on-sale Big 4 patterns ($1 - $2). BUT I made a great discovery - each pattern envelope includes the entire size range! Typically in the Big 4 I never know which size to get b/c my bust is usually in the smaller size and my waist/hip in the larger. And who wants to buy two of every pattern!? Or try to grade on two separate pattern pieces! All that to say, I am quite happy with having all sizes together and I will definitely be browsing the New Look catalog more often :) I mean, just look at this dress, and this one, or this one, which I totally forgot I made last summer...oops!

Here are the details:

Pattern: New Look 6262 - View B, no overlay, with lined bodice

Fabric: Novelty Quilt Print Cotton - Whales on Navy from Joann Fabrics (no longer available)
Lining: Ambiance Bemberg Lining Fabric - Medevial Blue from Joann Fabrics (still available)

Sizing / Fit: 12 bust, 14 waist, 18-ish hips/skirt
*For the skirt, I cut out a larger size, closer to 18, and just gathered to fit the 14 waist

Bodice is lined with bemberg (the best) lining, attached around the neck and understiched, along the zipper, and at the waistline - serged together at armscyes

Something wonky happened in the back with the lining and the back neckline twists. I'm not sure what caused this, but it could have been my hurriedly slapdash method of putting it together the morning of the party ;)

But it's not that noticeable from more than a yard away, so....

Haha... And that's really all I have to say! I totally love the print and colors of this dress. The pattern, New Look 6262, is a great dress pattern with lots of options - I really want to try the V-neck version as well!

And this dress pairs perfectly with my new pink coat from Anthropologie :) Yes I pinned it months ago to sew, but found it on sale and just bought it instead of attempting to sew it myself. It's perfect for these winter to spring months!

Pink.... buttons.... flared.... swirly.... pockets....

Sometimes when it's your dream coat, you just buy instead of make. What do you think? Would you buy a dream garment instead of sew it, if you could find it RTW??? Or am I talking crazy here? ;)

Thanks for reading!!!  Sally