Monthly Archives: February 2014

Wednesday Quickie

Yay!  The weather finally broke here and we’ve been in the 50’s for 2 days!  Time to break out short sleeve shirts again!  Speaking of, that’s the subject of today’s Wednesday Quickie.

I have a shirt I like that has a problem.  It likes to gape…a lot… especially when you have to pick up a toddler every two minutes…It’s a bit embarrassing when you’re in Target and you’re almost hanging completely out… So I decided to fix it




This is the view from above (it was the only safe view..) Note the cute little buttons that can’t stay in their holes.


To the sewing machine!   I put on a zipper foot with matching thread and decided where I wanted to start the stitching, I went down 2 buttons (got to leave a little decolletage after all) and stitched all the way to the bottom on the right side of the buttons



The little buttons are very low profile and smooth so I just raised my foot when I came to an edge of one and put it right back down on top of it. Smooth sailing.



All finished up. Can’t even see the new stitching.

By the way you could easily do this with just a needle and thread if you don’t have a sewing machine.  I would just do the same kind of stitch you would use on a hem right along where the edges meet, takes less time than straight stitching through both layers all the way down. 


The new view from above



Ta Da! From Tart to Smart in 2 minutes flat! Have a great day!

The Smoking Jacket (or how I take a pattern and completely change it when I should just start with a different one in the first place)

So February 14th, Valentines Day is my wedding anniversary…(ugh..I know right? I wouldn’t have picked that date but options were limited by an upcoming deployment at that time).  10 years, 2 deployments, countless army schools, 3 children, one miscarriage, 2 uses of plan b, 2 shoulder surgeries, one vasectomy, a billion pounds gained and so very few lost is what we are celebrating this weekend.  In honor of that I wanted to make a Smoking jacket for the husband. Nothing says I love you like “Here is a jacket you may give yourself lung cancer in.” right? Thankfully, he is an infrequent pipe smoker so I have few worries on that count.  Anyway, onto the jacket making.

I saw this very awesome Burda pattern for a mens jacket that I loved but once I looked at the details (shoulder pads, etc) I psyched myself out of getting it. I love Burda patterns but I struggle with them more than other ones and this one is rated “advanced” plus it isn’t quite the right shape for a smoking jacket and had no liner. So I decided not to get that one and got this  vogue one instead.  I thought I’d just hack the bottom part off and use heavier fabrics and be home free…..Will I ever learn?….probably not

I picked an upholstery fabric because “manly” fabrics are really hard to come by and it was wide (58″) and cheap!  I also snagged a remnant (put your hands up if you love remnants!) of this crazy faux black alligator skin suede(?) stuff for the front lapels.

So the pattern altering went all right.  I cut all the pieces to 37″ instead of full length and didn’t notice much problem until I started assemble it.

Uneven as shit…. I ignored it at first and had a vague notion I would just cut the rest of it to match the short bits.  Then I put the pockets on and had hubs try it on.  It looked like it was made for a T-Rex (shout out to the Larson fans)


Off they came.


I remade the pocket since I had to take them off anyway.  I increased the size a bit for comfort.  I added some of the suede to the bottom of the body pieces to even out the edges and so the pockets could be moved down to a more comfortable place.

The hugeness of the robe began to bother me because I wasn’t putting a tie belt on this jacket so I decided to take in the sides a bit too.  I had to do it on the liner too.


Still wasn’t happy with the pocket.  Redid a 3rd time

Finally satisfied with the pockets.

The bottom edges of the faux alligator skin facings weren’t reaching the bottom edges of the body pieces so I had to add a bit of extra fabric in the middle of the neck part. Also, the interfacing on those pieces were preventing the fabric from draping right so I stripped it off as well as I could.

Husband tried on the piece many times during construction and he said he felt like the liner would rip if he flexed too hard (cause he’s sooo ripped… yeah..)  anyway I said why the hell not and decided to fix that too…Are you getting the idea that I should have just gone with the other pattern?

Husband says fit is fixed. Yay.

Found another bit that needed to be added to here…sigh…


I got it up to the point where all it needed was a button and I let it sit for a week or so.  I worked on about 5 other things (didn’t finish any of those either) and then asked hubs what button he wanted. He picked this one

I like to make a button hole test run on my machine because it can be fussy about doing them right.  The test went all right so I stitched one on the jacket

Button all sewn on




And Voila!  It is finished.  So, that is why you start out with a.) A real pattern exactly like you want or b.) have actual pattern drafting/tailoring skills.

Have a great V-Day weekend!


All Aboard the Crazy Train



Hello out there!  This might be a slightly rambly post.  I’ve got lots of thoughts so lets just do this stream of consciousness style.  Here’s  a sample of my thought train…

I don’t feel like an adult, I wonder why.  Shouldn’t I feel like a grown up?  I am 31 after all, shouldn’t that mean I’m all suave and mature and shit?  Yeah that’s so not me.  Maybe my inability to grow up relates to not wanting responsibility. 

Funny that I had 3 kids then huh? That’s enough responsibility for anyone.

I need to do the laundry.  Don’t wanna do the laundry. 

Need to empty dishwasher, don’t wanna. 

I want cake!  Don’t need cake.  Bad! 

I should work out instead.  Work..hmm…

I should work on that pattern I’m trying to make.  Why? No one wants to buy that pattern anyway. 

I need to finish the smoking jacket for Aaron, bleh, I hate buttons. 

I need to work on that hat for the baby so he can be warm.

He hates his coat, need to get a new one. He’ll probably hate a new one too.

I hate winter.  All the birds leave and it’s cold and I want to hibernate.  Do birds have nose holes?  If they do I bet they get frozen and that’s why they leave during winter.

Speaking of Frozen, I should try to make the girl zombie an Elsa dress. 

I’m hungry. What should I make for dinner…hmmm…Pinterest Time!


That, and variations thereof, roll through my brain in about 20 seconds ALL DAY LONG.  I’m sure I’m not the only one that does that but it does make stocking my new Etsy shop difficult which might be why there are only 2 items in it right now.  There is a handy new icon on the sidebar to click (it’s the E and it took me an hour to make it in photoshop so click it!) so you can check my wares every now and then. See you there!

I’ll Be Your Barista, Baby

So I pretty much had the best birthday ever.  I received lots of lovely cards and gifts, a tribute blog post (I mean who gets that?!) and my husband totally rocked the house and got me this espresso maker:



It has all these awesome features like an automatic tamping system and a mug warmer on top!



In case you were wondering, that’s luscious dark chocolate sauce warming in the mug!

I’m really happy with the results of my first attempt though I was pretty scared by all the loud noises this beast makes.  Apparently that’s normal?

Anyway, I will need some practice with speed so I can serve delicious espresso drinks that are also hot.  For whatever reason, a luke-warm mocha isn’t quite as appealing.   Jerry Seinfeld talks with Larry David about the effect heat has on food on this webisode of Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee:

Interesting thought, great show.  Check it out.



No joke, this mocha was as good as any I’ve ever had out.  Maybe even better because you can continue to replenish the whipped cream on this one without having to endure the waitress’ stink eye.


My latte art does need a little work though.  This was supposed to be a heart but something’s not quite right about it :/.  Though it might still work for Valentine’s Day.  Just saying.  Use your imagination.image

I called her up and I said, “You know that I’m drowning…”



This post is all about Bake.  Dear, dear sister Bake.  It’s her birthday tomorrow and I have not mailed her present (or purchased one for that matter, ahem) but I wouldn’t want her to think I have forgotten her.

I will not reveal her age, and how dare you ask you cheeky people, but to me she will always be an awesome, fantastic, beautiful (slightly moody) 16 year old (picture withheld per request).

She is always available to listen when I call to complain (hence the title of this post) and never tries to fix it like certain males that shall remain nameless.

She was always fun to be with (still is!) and I envied her energy and adventurous spirit.  My sister is much braver than I was (am) and fierce in the best kinds of ways.

She’s all grown up now and she rocks harder than ever, continually blowing me away with her baking skills and general life winning awesomeness.






Seriously, Bake, You Are AMAZING…. never forget it, I won’t.