A Sewing Project – Vintage Butterick 6852

October 13, 2017 at 4:00 am (Sewing, Vintage Patterns)

I don’t talk as much about my physical disabilities here on the blog anymore because I truly find that focusing on what I CAN do serves me much better.  I can no longer do a “marathon” sewing session because my eyes won’t work together when they are tired (which is why I listen to books on Audible rather than read them). That being said, I’ve been intentional about sewing one hour every day.   But, I’m finding that an hour a day of committed sewing results in some fabulous work!!  My next goal is to add one hour each day with my paintbrush in hand.  I surely can find two hours a day!!  (I’m always a work in progress.)

As I decluttered, I made some rather painful choices-I got rid of about 3/4 of my fabric and 1/2 of my patterns… (Gasp!!! Pain in my heart!!! Will I survive?!?!?!?)

I decided to tackle a vintage Butterick pattern circa 1950’s.  I love the line of this coat, especially the front seaming detail.


I made myself a deal (I can talk myself into many things…) If I’ve sewn 4 projects from my stash, I can purchase a piece of fabric.  And I’ve committed to purchase good fabric.  Unfortunately, Joann Fabric is no longer the place to find good fabric as they’ve moved into the “quilting and crafting” arena.   The fabric I used for this jacket is from Marcy Tilton. The fabric is sold by the 1/2 yard.

I purchased what I thought was enough for this jacket.  The only thing I didn’t take into consideration was that the pattern repeat was about 12 inches.  Ugh… but I was determined to make this jacket because that was my vision so, after about 3 hours of putting the puzzle together (i.e. the pattern pieces) I was able to make it work!! (Thanks Tim Gunn for that phrase!)

One thing to consider when using vintage patterns is their sizing is different even from today’s patterns.  In RTW, I wear a 4-8 depending on the fit.  In modern patterns I wear a 10-14 depending…  In vintage patterns I wear at least an 18!!  Yikes!!  Fortunately for me, I no longer look at sizes even when I’m shopping in the stores.  It’s all about fit!  This pattern, because it isn’t a fitted design has a bit of wiggle room.

My next few paragraphs will get a little technical, so if you want to just look at the pictures, that’s okay!!

One of the problems with fabric yardage and this pattern is that the sleeves and shoulders were included in the back pattern piece.   VintageButterick6852-7

Putting the back and sleeves on with the front required some more puzzle piecing.  The shoulders were actually a dart at the top of the pattern piece.


The piece was sewn into the front pattern piece, topstitched, then the dart was formed for the shoulder.  At that point, the back seam was sewn.  I had to get creative again…  because I had to take the pattern pieces right up to the edge of the salvage, it was showing after sewing the back center seam.  I solved that problem by taking a strip and topstitching it over the seam!

I also had never made a bound button hole before — THAT was another “first” for me!


I lined it — which meant I had to replicate the pattern steps again.  Fortunately I’m a fast learner and that went easier!

Overall I’m very pleased with the finished coat.  I have so many vintage patterns still in my collection and because my mantra is “if I don’t use it, it goes,” that means I must use these patterns.

After I’ve made a few more modern patterns, I will tackle another vintage pattern… because I still have lots to choose from!!


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My Happy Place

January 9, 2016 at 2:12 pm (Decorative Painting, mixed media, Sewing)

With my house undressed from the Christmas season, I am ready to hit the ground running in 2016.  I have some orders for my mixed media and subway art.  While I wait for some basecoating to dry, I thought I’d share with you pictures of my favorite place in our house (besides the coffee pot). 🙂

My little art studio is about 10’x 14′ in total.  I have to keep it relatively clean or else I cannot work.  I tell DannyO, he has the basement, garage, and woodworking shed for all of his hobbies and I have my little room… sort of like trying to get a Saint Bernard through a cat door!!

My little room has 7 large windows and because it is 3 stories high, in the summer time I feel like I’m in a tree house.  In the winter, it is a refuge for me as I hibernate.  I love to watch snow fall as I sit at my work tables.

I have covered the walls with posters from my daughter’s music endeavors, newspaper clippings about my son and family photos.  I have two file cabinets, which are stuffed full of books and patterns.  My fabric wall is pretty well organized.

I have a great place to put my paint and pencils and markers, a rolling cart from Ikea.  In fact, I’d like another one (hint, hint to my family… Mother’s Day present!!).

My Happy Place-1

I have a long table that holds my art projects.  I need that much space because I often work on more than one thing and need places for art to dry.  I have a picture of my Grandma Millie (more about her in a later post) and my original “Millie” sketch where I can see them all the time.  I have a card table for my computer and Silhouette Cameo.  I had to purchase a covered garbage can because Jazzy Joy has a paper towel fetish.  The more paint it has on it, the better.  It’s a good thing that Heritage Multimedia paints are safe!!

My Happy Place-9

I also have a dedicated sewing table.  I used to paint for relaxation but since I have orders to fill, I sew to relax!!  I have a few finished pieces to post another day.

My Happy Place-10

Of course, every happy place needs music!!  I have my iPod filled with about  5 days of music!!  I usually “shuffle songs” so I can have a variety.  DannyO got me a TV for my birthday and he has it mounted on the wall.  When the Steelers make me nervous, I go up to my art studio and move paint around while watching the game.  That way if they lose, I don’t feel like I’ve wasted four hours!!

Since I haven’t blogged in a long time, I am going to show you some pieces that I finished in the last six months!!

It is my practically perfect place for relaxation and work!!  Thank you for taking the tour with me!!  I hope you have a place in your home where you can be happy too!!

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