Ruching with Elastic Thread

Well, after many tries and much online research, I finally figured out ruching with elastic thread on my own lovely Brother sewing machine! Turns out, it's really very simple and requires only a tightening of the bobbin holder screw. Here's the tutorial which proved absolutely essential: 

So here's my first attempt at ruched sleeves. I also decided to finally use a couple of embroidery patterns I bought a long time ago. I decided to go with red thread this time, probably because I was inspired by my red elastic thread :)

Another part of this project was figuring a work-around for my embroidery machine size limitations. PE770 doesn't recognize patterns that are larger than 130 by 180 mm. But there is a way to use auto-split along hoop boundaries. Here's the Embird tutorial I followed:

Anyway, the result is a very nice, light summer embroidered top. I'm wearing it today and absolutely loving it! :)

Mock Wrap Dress

I finally figured out the wrap dress! This is a fantastic pattern and once I modified it, the dresses fit like a glove! I'm very tempted to use up my entire knit fabric stash on these :)

This is the pattern that I used :)

Easter Dress for Gabriela

Another special occasion - another special dress for my baby girl Gabriela :) Easter is coming up in two weeks, and for the last 4 nights, I've been measuring, pinning, embroidering, cutting tulle for the first time, gathering and putting together this dress!

By the way, the smaller the garment, the more time it takes to put together. Small sizes are deceptive. Children's clothes are just as complicated and require just as much work to produce as adult garments.

But I digress. I got all the fabrics and the trim for this dress at Pacific Fabrics. I found the Easter Bunny embroidery pattern online and it really was my very first attempt at applique. I think it was quite successful. I watched a few videos on how to do it, invested in two pairs of special applique scissors, and then got to it.

The bodice of the dress is simple yellow t-shirt knit, the skirt is a cotton print, and the underskirt is silk lining fabric with two layers of gathered tulle (blue and yellow).

Happy Easter, Gabriela!

Bell Sleeves

I think these bell sleeves are all the rage now. It's a great way to spice up an otherwise ordinary top, so I made a few :) On the last top it was also my first attempt at working with Clover's tassel maker :)

My First Machine Embroidery Patterns

I finally found the time to go back to Embird and figure out how to digitize :) somewhat. I am still very much into redwork embroidery, not trying anything more complicated. I've always loved these Picasso sketches and they proved to be quite easy to digitize, so voila! And then I made this peasant blouse with them and some white cotton remnants I had in my stash!

Gathered Waist Dress

I got this print at Vancouver's Dressew Supply. And I recently modified my gathered waist dress pattern to have a different neckline and proper sleeves. Add a long string of white pearls and black boots and it's a chic look that works morning till night :)

Gabriela's Baptism Gown

I don't know how many of you read this blog, but you may have noticed that I haven't posted in a while?


I had a baby last July and since then had virtually no time for cutting, fitting, or sewing. 

But when it came time for my daughter Gabriela's baptism, I knew that I had to make her clothes myself :) Such a special occasion demanded a custom-made gown, bonnet, and slippers!

And it all turned out rather well, imho! Though I should have added ribbons to the slippers. One of them kept falling off, since Gabriela (or Gigi, as I call her) is a very active baby, and so she was baptized like Cinderella, wearing just one slipper :) 

Please excuse me for boasting a bit, but I am proud of this. An invisible zipper on a lined dress in such a small size is no easy thing. The lace and lining are from Pacific Fabrics, and the trim is from Nancy's Sewing Basket.

One lovely thing about working with good lace - no need to worry about finishing the hem or the sleeve edges. The gorgeous fabric takes care of it for you!

So here are some shots of the clothes and my favorite model Gabriela Nikita Owen :)