Sunday, July 15, 2012

Closet Shopping! Huge Score!

I was so excited to have a free weekend and finally get some time to sew.  But for some reason (maybe it was the pile of junk on my cutting table from the last 6 weeks of un-use?), I was drawn to my closet and decided to start decluttering.  I made a pretty good dent, and one of my best finds was a box of UFO's (unfinished objects), and oh my goodness, what a box!

First, though, I'll share some of the pants I discovered (in the same closet) shortly after I reached my weight loss goal.  I haven't been able to wear these for years, so I was pretty stoked.  I've already gotten a lot of wear out of all of them.  Yay!

First up is a pair of funky cotton pants.  These ones have surfing frogs on them, and they're the only pair that I ever put a cargo pocket on.  I wear them to the gym a lot.
These are a pair of grey poly/twill cargo pants, but I love the fact that they look like dress pants.  Now that I'm "managing" the upholstery shop, I'm trying to dress a bit nicer (but not so nice that I can't get dirty, right?), and these I really like.
I made them from this pattern.  I made the version with the higher waistband, and once I got them to fit, I played around with several pairs, and they all have different cargo pockets, etc on them.  They were my TNT pants back then.
I love these blue hawaiian ones.  They are made out of the thinnest cotton, and they're so comfy, they feel like I'm wearing nothin' at all!  I wear these to the gym, too, and I wore them a lot when we were camping.  I shrunk out of almost all my shorts and capris, so I decided to wear cotton pants like I used to, and by golly, they're pretty darn comfy!  They were all I used to wear in the summer.  You may also recognize these from Get Your Dance on 4 Hope.  Orange and blue are my favourite colours to put together.
As you get to know me better, you'll discover that I love camouflage.  These have 2 cargo pockets, and they are the darndest thing for wearing to work.  So handy!
My favourite grey ones were in the wash today when I was modelling all the other ones, so I grabbed this pic from the "sign hanging" episode.  I wear these pants more than any of the others.  They're light enough to wear in the summer, and they fit me just right.  They also have 2 cargo pockets.
These are my favourite pair of jeans that I have ever made.  I was absolutely over the moon when they fit me again!  I've washed and worn them so much, they have the genuine wear lines like all RTW jeans have.  When you sew your own, you know it takes eons to get that look.  These are also from the Alice & Olivia TNT pants pattern.
 That's it for the pants I found a few months ago.  Now we're digging into the totally awesome box of super cool UFO's (and some that are actually finished).  This skirt matches those jeans.  I think I made the skirt first, and then did the same pocket design for the pants.  These have never been washed or worn.  I don't think I was happy with the way the A-line skirt hung.  But you know what?  I don't really care anymore.  I think it's a cute skirt, and I'm going to start wearing it.  
This is what the pocket design looks like "freshly sewn".  I kinda like the way stuff looks when it's brand new.  Not to mention that I did a pretty darn good job on the topstitching.
This is the pattern I used.  In the photo, it's the red skirt, in the drawings, it's the orange skirt, view F.  I also really like View E, the blue skirt.  I'll have to make that someday.
I did made the belt loops, so I suppose I could wear a belt like this with it.  But it's likely that you'll never see the waist of this skirt, so why bother?  A lot of times I'll omit the belt loops for that reason.  I don't like wearing belts.
OMG!  You'll never guess what I found in my super awesome box!  70's bell-bottom jeans!  I am in love.  These are the coolest things I've ever put on.  I don't know what my problem was back then, but I'm assuming I gained a bit of weight, cuz they fit perfectly now!  All that's left to do is put on a button, and hem the bottoms!
There is a bit of gaposis at the back, but the hips fit so nice, and the waist is high enough, that I really don't care!  I might just stitch a piece of 1" elastic inside the waistband and call 'er good.
My dad always says I was born in the wrong decade.  I love the 70's.  And I love the way these fit!  The hips are nice and snug, and the waist hits just below my belly button.  Love, love, love!  
I'm very happy with the side view, although my face doesn't show it.  I took so many pictures today, I didn't bother getting "perfect" ones.
And I love the back view!  I did awesome topstitching on these, too.  I must have been on a roll back then.  I think I sewed most of this stuff between 2002 and 2004, after college when I was living at home.  I don't know what pattern I made these from, but I have two 70's pants patterns in my stash, and I'm going to figure out which one made these!  I think they were plain pants and I drafted all the jean stuff onto them.  I'm so excited!  I can't really wear them right now, because we finally got our summer heat wave, and the humidity is crazy.  But once it cools down, I can see myself wearing these all the time.  *squeal!*
Next in the box is a pair of jeans that does not fit so good.  I've had some bad luck over the years finding good pants patterns, so I'm quite thrilled that I fit into my Alice & Olivia pants pattern again, because I need a TNT.  These, however, are awful.  I know it doesn't look that bad in the photo, but scroll down.
Baggy, shapeless, old lady pants.  Yuck.
I should have gotten a clue from the pattern photo.  I'm much more savvy now.
But they make those drawings so darn cute!  Oh well.  You live and learn.  Never make a new pants pattern without a muslin.  Or you'll end up with a wadder.
Like, gag me with a spoon.
Thankfully there was only one wadder in the box.  Anyways, onto better things!  I found a onesie!  I have no idea what size it is, but it's for a toddler.  I'm going to finish it off with ribbing at the cuffs and neckline, and give it to my friend's daughter, and she can wear it when she grows into it.  Cute!
I made a penguin sweater!  The sleeves are too short, and the body is a smidge too big, but I can fix both of those with ribbing.  
I'll probably wear this around the house in the winter, or as a layer under my winter coat.  The yoke line at the chest is way too high, and the zipper is so short, I can barely get it over my head.  Probably why I didn't finish it.  But I'll finish it and wear it anyways.  I love penguins!
Does this look familiar?  These fleeces are from the same leftover stash that I made my colour-blocked Jalie hoodie out of.  This one isn't quite as awesome, though.  The body fits better than the lime green/penguin one, the sleeves are a little bit longer (but probably will still need ribbing), and thanks to the hood, I can get this one easily over my head.
I'll for sure wear this one around the house.  I wear hoodies all winter, so I'm happy to have some extras!
I found another finished object!  This vest is pretty cute.  Albeit, it's too short and too big for me, so I'll find someone appropriately sized and give it away.  It has pockets, as you can see, and another cool zippered pocket on one chest.
Look what's inside!  More penguins!!!  
Boy, I was creative and productive back then.  I was working for dad in the shop at home, and I made a couple things out of upholstery fabric.  First, we have a garment bag.  This is another finished object!  Score!
And a drawstring backpack.  It has a big pocket on the outside, and the bottom is a circle with piping so it holds its shape fairly well.  I am so wearing this when we ride our bikes to the farmers' market!
UFO: vest for dad.
UFO: bright orange linen bell-bottoms!  I hope these are cut from the same pattern as my 70's jeans.  I guess I'll have to sew them up and find out!  Saweet!
UFO: long straight camouflage skirt.  I'm positive I didn't finish this one cuz it was too tight.  The fabric has some stretch, but not enough that I could get away with it until now.
With side slits!  I think this one kinda screams 90's, but I don't care.  It's light and airy and perfect for summer.  I just have to attach the waistband facing, and hem the slits and the bottom.
UFO: denim messenger bag.  I think I ran out of red bias tape, cuz that's all that's left.  
I was just thinking about making a sling bag.  How perfect is this?
But look!  I cut one out in denim and orange camouflage!  I originally intended to use the orange camo as the lining, because I can see the tracing lines for the inside pocket.  But I'm totally putting it on the outside.  Awesome, awesome, awesome!!!
UFO: denim shoulder bag with pink hawaiian piping.  This is probably the only thing I remember that I put in the box.  I've been wanting to finish this thing for ages.  I'll have to sew most of it on the upholstery machine, because of the piping.
And holy crap, I made my own bias binding!  I just noticed that now!  Woot woot!
Here is the pattern.
It will eventually turn into view A.  Cool, huh?  I also like B and C, but I'm pretty sure I'll never have time to get to them.  I've been using the same little purse since 2004, so it's not like I need a bunch of different bags and purses.  I don't like the word "purse" anyways.  If I finish this one, I'll use it as my purse, er, backpack.
I can't get over how many cool surprises I found in this box!  Last but not least, a penguin quilt made by my mommy!  I might use it as a lap quilt, or if I can find enough wall space somewhere, I'll hang it up.  This is like Christmas and birthday and every special occasion all wrapped into one!  I should declutter more often!
This was not in "the box".  It was in a big bag of perfectly good towels and sheets, all of which I washed and am going to use again.  I love to crochet, but like many other things I love to do, I don't have time for it right now.  I think I made this in the summer of 2001, before my second year of college.  I remember having this on our couch in our townhouse.
I would love to make a granny square skirt someday.  I think these squares came from a skirt pattern, actually.
I need to make a pillow and finish this one off.  These are made from the same square design.  I call this one Fire and Ice.  Fire:
and Ice:
Wow, what a lucky girl I am!  I feel like I gave myself a time capsule!  Stay tuned as I will update the UFO's as they become FO's.  I don't mind that I didn't get any sewing done this weekend.  My closet is clean, and I got a whole bunch of presents!  *big smile*


  1. How fun! You do a great job with making pants! I have been looking at Granny Square pillows thinking how cute they are lately!

  2. what a find! that stowed away box. You've got some wonderful "new" clothes!

  3. I love that jean skirt!

  4. Wow, you've got some awesome pants there. I'm hoping this fall to go through the process of testing/fitting pants as I'd love a TNT pants pattern...And I second Jen on the jean skirt - super cute!

  5. What great finds! I doubt my closets are holding treasures like that! I love the bell-bottoms! Yay for fitting into them!

  6. Just found your blog -- I love zumba too!! I especially love those orange/black cargo capris -- they would be awesome for zumba if they are stretchy. Glad you got some new "treats" and revisited old memories.I learn so much from all you experienced seamstresses.

  7. Wow, you had some pretty amazing items stashed away. How cool to discover so many great fitting pairs of pants. Decluttering definitely paid off!

  8. I love all the penguins you found! The quilt is especially awesome, and I think I own a onesie (bought, not sewn) made in the same penguin fleece you have on the coat :)

  9. Wow, this is just amazing. There are so many things to look at. Good one!

  10. I came across your page and couldn't resist going through it. These are some amazing items and ideas. Keep up the good work!