Blame It On The Sun

oonaballoona | a sewing blog by marcy harriell | halter panel print maxi burda dress

I blame this dress on Stevie Wonder, and my inability to keep dates straight when it's SUMMERSUMMERSUMMER.

Last weekend, I suddenly realized it was the end of July, and I with no MSN project for the month! I mean, I'd planned not one, but two projects for this Hotter-Than-July, and hadn't touched a scrap of fabric on either. Both were panel prints--I do like a theme--and both were jersey. This gal is an Italian Poly, and her mate was Italian Cotton. Again, themes.

oonaballoona | a sewing blog by marcy harriell | halter panel print maxi burda dress

I went for the cotton first, as the fabric content was a bit higher brow. BECAUSE I'M CLASSY. However, the Cotton jersey went south quickly. Welllllllll...not quickly...more like a marathon day of sewing's worth of south. It ended up in the What Was I Drinking bin, which mainly holds cooler weather projects at the moment. Glad to have something summery to stagger down memory lane with! It'll be coming up shortly.

I gnashed my teeth and stomped my feet a bit, loaded all of Stevie's albums, and cut into the second panel print to the tune of "Did I Hear You Say You Love Me."  By the time I got to "All Day Sucker," I was shaking my booty in front of the bedroom mirror like I was at a barbecue with seven spritzers in me, slight heat exhaustion, and my all time favorite song on.


YEEEEEEAH PRINT PLACEMENT!!!! You know I love those (intentionally) placed cascading flowers, right?! YOU KNOW RUGGY CAN'T STAND THEM, RIGHT?!!!

He’s not a fan of the back. But it makes me laugh so hard it hurts. One could almost say I am exploding flowers! (Or, one could say I am "farting flowers." And that one would be Ruggy. Hey man, Everybody Poops.)

Shall we talk about the sewing for a minute? OH LET'S DO. After the botchery of my first panel try, I needed something quick that would make good use of the second print. Burda Magazine 07-2009-124 Halter Tie Dress to the rescue. It’s supposed to have a wrap back, but to make it even easier on myself, I modified the pattern into 2 on-the-fold pieces. I just used the CB placement marking as my foldline. Two pattern pieces, two panels, add slits, make a tie, whambamthankyama’am, July project saved!

I also used a good bit of Steam-A-Seam Lite in this jammy. This poly wasn't about to keep a crease on its own! Which reminds me, I need to get another Sewing Goodies post up in here. For now, here's the link to my favorite size, a two pack of 1/4" Steam-A-Seam Lite. (That link is affiliated, so cut & paste if you're not into that!) I'll have a proper review up soon, but I've already had three orders of this stuff--I love it. It's a reposition-able double stick tape that sets permanently with steam and heat--like Wonder Tape, but I prefer SAS! You don't lose the stretch of the fabric with this stuff. I used it on the side slits, hem, and neckline of this dress. I suppose you could heat set it and forget it, but I use it to keep the fabric nice and flat for topstitching. If you don't have a serger or coverstitch, this really helps in keeping things looking professional. Make sure you get the "Lite!"

(Side note, anyone else hate the new Miller Lite commercials? Being the inventor of the phrase "Lite Beer" doesn't make light beer any more palatable.)

Nothing Lite about this panel print, that's for sure. I find panel prints not only make you think out of the box, they almost do the work for you. And this one sure saved my tuchus this time around! Ever tried one?

this dress was made with my monthly fabric allowance as part of the mood sewing network. thanks for the (wonderful) stevie earworm, mood!


Ovulation Motivation

Can I just say, once again, baby makin time is EXCELLENT clothes makin time? You might remember my "flow chart" from a few years back, in which I quite scientifically explain the link between ovulation and uber sewjo levels of creation. No? It's over here. SO FACT-Y. (I'd put the graphic up again, but there's a misplaced apostrophe that bugs the shizz outta me.)

Appropriately, this month, I used that glorious fertile window for makin unmentionables. I was like an idiot savant, churning out free cut tanklets and bralets. When I danced around the living room after realizing my ample bosom didn't require darts, Ruggy gave his resounding approval: F#@! A DART. This quickly became the mantra for the weekend. And god help me...I went so far as to put together a bag of supplies for the making of THONGS. In my opinion, you've really hit ninja levels of sewing addiction when you're making thongs. (Especially when you swore up and down you'd never make underwear. Or jeans.)

I used the rest of my creation juice to make a free cut maxi dress, "spring" clean the storage area, and organize my very generous half of the closet. After all, I can't put my new pretties in the undies drawer alongside unused, underwired torture chambers. (Y'all, I hate underwires. And no, you can't make me wear them.)

(Apparently every paragraph of this post ends in a parenthetical.)

What's the thing (or thong) you thought you'd never sew?


Pleasedta meetcha, Cora!

Bright 'n shiny this morning, I was playing a round of email catchup after a glorious couple of weeks of musical rehearsals. I came across an old invite to beta test Cora, a new stash organizing app. The testing period well over, I sent my apologies, clicked on the link, tried the free version, and plunked down $3.99 for the unlimited version within, oh, about 54 seconds. It's the best cappuccino I've ever bought.

(What? I equate non-fabric purchases to the cost of a specialty coffee. Don't you?)

Basically, Cora is your stash at your fingertips. I've tried other apps for this purpose, I do like to organize, I do, but none are as simple and elegant as this one. I mean, look how pretty. And functional! It was designed by a sewist, for sewists. You snap a pic of your fabric, add a host of information (as little or as much as you want), lather, rinse, repeat. (Speaking of lather, there's a toggle button for "pre-washed." LOVE IT.)

At the moment, I have a whopping 4 fabrics uploaded. But that screen will soon be a grid full of my teeny stash! Even my teeny stash can benefit from a little scrollabilty, yo! Every time I go hunting on my open ikea shelving unit, I have to refold the whole shebang. NO MORE. People, this is life changing stuff here. And I'll let you in on a dirty secret: I also have a small enclosed shelf, hidden behind a hobbit sized door, for out-of-season fabric. AND I NEVER KNOW WHAT'S IN THERE. I'M ABOUT TO CORA THAT SHIZZ LIKE I DON'T EVEN KNOW WHAT.

I don't normally shout about new loves so quickly, but I'm just so pleased with the little amount of time I've spent playing with it! The free version lets you upload 5 fabrics, so you can test it out. You'll easily find out if it's your bag after 5 fabrics, lemme tell you. It took me one upload. In a nutshell: scrollable, sortable, searchable, portable stash. You can get it here!

(Full disclosure: I paid for Cora, and I don't get any kickbacks or whatnot. You might notice that last link includes "kalkatroona" in the address, but that's just so that the creator can keep track of where clicks are coming from. An organizer in everything, our Hélène! In our flurry of emails this morning, she also wanted to let everyone know that she's very open to suggestions, feature requests, complaints, etc...lastly, the sale price of the unlimited version ends July 15, so snap it up before then if you want it for the cost of a mocha latte! ;)


Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making harem pants

Ruggy had one word for me when he caught an unexpected eyeful of these pants:


I responded in the only way I could: I began to croon "The Girl From Ipanema" (Frank Sinatra version), and gave him a nice, leisurely sway of my viscose clad hips, rotating sloooooooowly around for the full 360 view....

At which point he really started hollering: STOP IT NO STOP NOW I'M GOING TO ASSOCIATE THAT SONG WITH THOSE THINGS

He really likes that song. Not so much the pants. These pants are not the droid for Ruggy. Actually, I'm not a fan of the look of this shape either. But the first time I made a pair of harem pants and tried them on, the feel of them was like...the heavens opened up and started singing. Or maybe it was just the musical kids at rehearsals, since I only wore them in Texas, when I was away for work, far from Ruggy's pained eyes. I reserve my Ruggy Repellant for when miles separate us, kind of like a consolation prize, I guess. See: here; and here.

Joyously, the only thing separating us at the moment is our odd hours at the gym. When his workout time rolled around, I took the opportunity to don these and shoot them by myself, because I love my man, and I know which ensembles are better done solo. Alas! His workout was truncated, and upon my return, he was greeted with an image that apparently seared his retinas.

Sound drastic? Y'all, he REALLY loathes them. And listen, it goes both ways, there are plenty of items in his closet that make me want to go postal. I am thinking in particular of a dusty mauve, hole ridden, oversized T shirt that gives him a...pallor..like all the lifeblood has been replaced with antifreeze. Not a good look. But we bear each other's eccentricities.

This little eccentricity started out as an off-the-shoulder peasant dress. Those colorful side panels were center front and center back of a voluminous, gathered alien swath that looked like it was trying to swallow me whole. (Maybe it still does... but at least the mouth of it is only getting as far as my hips.) Would that I had photographic evidence of said dress. It might make Ruggy feel better about the pants. Basically, I succumbed to a trend which does not look good on me, realized my mistake, and then turned to another trend that does not look good on me as the solution.

When things went south with this Mood Sewing Network make, I couldn't bear giving up on this paneled beauty. (I'm shocked it's still on the site, considering the price and the print!) WARNING: NONSENSICAL EXPLANATION AHEAD. To "save" it, I laid the dress out flat, dissected the raglan off-the-shoulder sleeves, cut it open at the side seams, and made a new, longer seam from hem to top, creating a trapezoid shape. Then I googled "make harem pants" for an approximate shape, and sewed them back together. It's basically a trapezoid with a wide curve on the bottom edge, from leghole to leghole. I used the original, truncated shoulder elastic casing for the waist. Yessssss, again, pictures would help. But when I get on a stubborn roll, I just keep the freight train rolling. 

I think that a lot of my garments get finished because I'm far too stubborn to take No for an answer. Ironic that Ruggy's answer to these are exactly that.

I tell you what though: they are SOOOOOO comfortable. I don't care if the final product gives me junk on both sides of my trunk!!! But, these might be reserved for Girls Night and Rehearsal Wear.

I'm okay wth that. I LIKE specialty clothing.

these extra special pant were made using my mood sewing network fabric allowance. ruggy does not join me in thanking mood this time around.