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THE DEAL!

I’m baaaackkk!!!!!!!

So, a while ago (months and months and months ago) I made a deal with Stephanie for an entire outfit.  I am talking, bra, underwear, pants, shirt, cardigan, an ENTIRE outfit.  In order to get this outfit, I just had to do one itty bitty teeny tiny little thing.  So, a little back story just to drag out the suspense.  Stephanie and I bought a house four years ago.  When we purchased the house, we looked for one specifically with a room dedicated for crafts.  Hence, a part of the reason we choose the house we did.  Like all new homeowners we learn new things every freaking day about house repairs and whatnot.  One of those things, which is what led to our DEAL is, we learned where the placement of our water shut off valve is.  We discovered, much to our dismay, that the valve was located in our crawl space in a horrible place almost impossible to get to.  Especially if we needed to turn off the water in a hurry, which while we never want to happen, is always a chance.  Sooooo, Stephanie and I made a deal that if I worked with our dad to move the water shut off valve, I would get this entire outfit.  This involved crawling into the crawl space to turn off the water so the valve could be moved. 

I beyond earned this entire outfit.  I spent a great deal of time sitting in a tiny area in a crawl space while moving the shut off valve.  Now, here I must give fair kudos to our dad, because without his expertise we never would have been able to move the valve.  I won’t share the horrors I lived through, oh wait, yes I will because I EARNED that damn outfit.  There were bugs, spiders, dead and alive, cockroaches (my absolute worst), and even a dead rat in a trap.  I highly recommend a pest and rodent service to every single person in the world.  I would never want to deal with any of them on my own.  I firmly believe our service is worth Every.  Single.  Penny.  I had to sit in the smallest space, where I had to wiggle on my stomach to get to.  There were issues cutting the pipe, so I had to wait while dad found our pipe cutter.  Let me tell you, I am extremely glad to never have to do that again. 

Rafiki and I posing for another picture!

Now, I made this deal a while ago with Stephanie.  Our dad came down in March, so this is when we were able to move the water valve.  And today, January 15, 2019, I have my full outfit.  FINALLY!!!!!!! 

I have the most beautiful cardigan, an amazing shirt, and pants, the most comfortable underwear, and a bralette if I was a little braver, I would share while wearing it on this post.  I guess this means I am not able to nag her about the outfit anymore.  I am sure she is happy to be done with it.  As always, the pieces she made are absolutely gorgeous.  She always does an amazing job and I never have a single issue with what she makes me.  The clothes fit perfectly (you have to love how well custom made clothes fit), and the fabric is exactly what I want.  Anyone else hate some of the fabric chooses companies make on the clothes they sell?  I have not bought a single ready to wear clothes for myself in an extremely long time.  Not that I did it a lot previously.  I hate clothes shopping, partly because of how crappy the clothes always fit from the store.  Stephanie is usually the one who buys my clothes when we actually buy ready to wear.  I am so not a standard size, in any shape or size.  Clothes never seem to fit me comfortably or properly. 

Getting the outfit took more than time.  Stephanie kept getting me to sit down with her to pick out fabrics and what I wanted.  Then…she kept losing the lists!!!  I finally gave up telling her what I wanted and when she sewed everything up, she picked what she thought I would want.  Now she has this handy dandy book she writes everything down in!  I may need to steal the book one day and add a bunch of stuff just for me to it.  With her giant list I am not sure she would even notice if I added anything to it.  Hmmm, I better make sure she doesn’t read this post, too, or she might pay close attention to her to do list. 

For all those who are reading this and are not the sewist in their family, I highly recommend making a deal for a full outfit, but I don’t recommend something as gross as getting into a crawl space.  I now have an amazing outfit, well, I’m sure you can see they won’t actually work as an outfit together, but I have a whole bunch of new articles for my wardrobe.  One day I will show you all the amazing wardrobe I have because of Stephanie.  I don’t have to many outfits that are still ready to wear.  It.  Is.  Awesome!!!!!!!

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The Things My Sister Makes Me Do

14711507_728065614649_8268011911975841328_oSo, Stephanie thinks a point of view of a non-sewist living with a sewist would be interesting to read, sooo…  my name is Virginia and I am Stephanie’s older, non-sewist sister.  I am the least crafty person in my family.  Still not sure why or how I got talked into writing for a sewing blog, but little sisters know when to pull out the persuasiveness and she definitely whammied me.  While my mom and sisters all have talents in making beautiful objects, I have no desire or skill to do so.  Living with someone with the ability to make clothes can be pretty damn awesome though (I seriously hate shopping and not having to go clothes shopping may be the best thing ever!).  However, you never realize how much room a “hobby” can take up.  When we were house shopping we specifically looked for a house where we could have a craft room.  We found one and have an entire room devoted to crafts, however, it is starting to move into other areas.  It is hard to complain when you get so many beautiful clothes out of it.Stephanie - Avery - Red - Top (2)

This does not mean I do not enjoy the end results of my family’s skills.  I am constantly asking for clothes and afghans to add to my ever-growing collection (I can already hear my mom sighing as I find another color and design for an afghan I want).  My closet is full of clothes Stephanie has made for me, and I am slowly and happily weeding out the ready to wear.  While I can’t say having her make our clothes is less expensive than purchasing them, I can say I am a lot happier with the fit and style of the ones she makes.  Before she started sewing, I would have thought sewing your own clothes was done to save money, it sure did not take long to realize that was a huge misconception.  Maybe a few decades ago but definitely not so anymore.

Watching the process of her making clothes is enthralling.  I don’t know why she asks me to join her in the craft room, when she is constantly asking me why I am watching her.  As someone with no skills in sewing, it is beyond mesmerizing to watch a piece of fabric become an item of clothing.  I have seen her make everything from underwear, to jeans, to a winter jacket.  Very recently she made me a jean jacket.  She doesn’t know I am mentioning the jean jacket today, it is for blog tour and is a surprise!  I feel that since I am writing for her blog I can sneak in a mention or two.  (She may regret asking me to do this)  Anywhos, that kind of skill is just awesome.

Now, all of this and me not being a sewist myself does not mean I do not get involved in the sewing process.  For some reason, Stephanie sometimes asks me to help in the process of making clothes. It is almost like she expects me to help make my own clothes (isn’t this why she has those skills and I don’t).  She will ask me to print and/or glue together a pattern.  I can tell you from experience that gluing together patterns is just about the worst.  The pages never seem to want to stick together for me, my fingers get covered in glue and ink, and the pattern ends up so big I have to cut it as I go or the whole thing falls apart.  I personally would be happy just fabric shopping and choosing what pattern I want with what styles.  Thankfully I don’t have to print much, but man when I do, those patterns are huge!  Since our printer is ancient I have to hang out by it and make sure nothing breaks or dies.  I think Stephanie is secretly hoping I will get fed up enough we can get one of those A0 printers.  I think she should start putting that idea into our parent’s heads for a birthday/Christmas gift (I know at least one of them reads her blog so…hint hint).12508879_10153827694472311_8091317085687337900_n-2391838579-1534789359469.jpg

I will admit fabric shopping is just about the best thing ever and my personal favorite part of sewing.  Of all the parts of sewing Stephanie has shown and tried to teach me, fabric is the one area I absolutely love.  If you ever want to get someone interested in sewing, I highly recommend starting there.  I find myself learning about fabric without even realizing.  When we go to Fine Fabrics I do decent at knowing what a type of fabric is just by touching it, and if I don’t I have no problem asking.  This is really helpful since we love to buy fabric from a few places online as well (company pug here:  Sly Fox Fabrics is my favorite!!!!).  There are so many pretty fabrics it is hard to remember we have a budget and can’t just spend all the money on the fabric.

Stephanie has certainly tried to get me more involved in the entire sewing process, outside buying all the fabric.  I am sure she would be thrilled if I decided to start sewing with her.  Although, then she would have to share her machines and I’m not overly sure how that would go over.  I will ask her questions that she is always happy to answer, but still no desire to sew anything.  I do know how to sew, at least something simple, and if she handed me a garment and said sew this seam, I can do it.  I just don’t have any desire to learn how to put together an entire piece of clothing.  Our grandma and mom taught all of us how to sew at a young age.  Unlike Stephanie, I never caught the bug and only did what I had to, usually just in school.  Anyone else remember having to take a sewing and cooking class in school?  Do they still make you do that?  DSC_0103Anyways.  Stephanie has really found her passion in sewing.  This is probably why she loves doing pattern tests and helping other sewists learn new techniques and improve overall.  I think she is hoping one day I will cave and ask her to teach me how to make clothes.

She has even started to get me to help cutting out fabric.  I can not believe she trusts me enough to help in this area.  I have a slight reputation for sabotaging things I don’t want to do (ask my dad about a lawn mower when I was a teenager), so I don’t understand why Stephanie trusts me with the fabric.  To be fair, she is pretty smart in having me cut fabric for my own clothes as there is an extremely less chance of me messing that up.  No matter how many times she tells me about cutting on the fold, with grain, and a whole lot of other technical things I don’t remember, I can never seem to keep it all straight and ask her the same questions over and over again.  Not sure how she has the patients to deal with that as it would irritate the hell out of me.  She just keeps on trying though.  Keeps telling me, the more I help the more she can do.  And damn if I don’t want some more work clothes and pretty clothes for my wardrobe, so I keep falling for it and end up helping her more and more.  I did help a bit with my jean jacket (mentioned again!).  This time with cutting and sewing.  Anyone else seriously hate ironing?  Such a simple task is just the worst for me.  I will wear an entire wrinkly outfit before I iron.

She has started to do more than just sew (hello blog), so now she is getting me more involved there as well.  I am still not sure how I even ended up writing this for her.  Apparently, she thinks torturing me and asking me to write what amounts to a paper on my summer break is fun.  Oh well.  Life with a sewist is interesting.  She is constantly trying to find time to work her part-time job for a pattern designer, while doing pattern tests, as well as sewing for herself and those around her outside of her full-time job.  If you sew your own clothes, you know people are always just amazed by what you can do and ask you to sew for them as well.  Stephanie is always being asked to sew clothes for people who know her (that is a whole other topic entirely, people really don’t appreciate how much time and work goes into create items of clothing from scratch).  Since I mentioned it, don’t be surprised if you see a post about it from me in the future.

So how am I supposed to end all my rambling thoughts????????

P.S. I don’t really have any of the pics of me or anyone else in Stephanie made clothes so I chose random funny ones. 🙂

 

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Fourth of July

Parades, fireworks, carnivals, Tilt-a-whirl, marching band competitions, sparklers, cookouts, and all things American flag. I have enjoyed some truly memorable Fourth of July Celebrations. My first away from home included a baseball game, a naturalization ceremony, and fireworks over the Mississippi River. All of these amazing events come together to make my absolute favorite holiday.

 

What better way to celebrate any holiday, let alone my favorite, than to make kick ass shirts? I’m the first to admit I would have hated the idea of matching shirts to my big sisters when I was a kid. Gah, mom, I’m not my sister!! Not that I can ever recall the parents trying. But, sisters in their 30s? Hell yes! Let’s match!!!

This year we started early. We kept an eye out for wonderful fabric (thank you So Sew English) and matched it to a bolt I picked up when Hancock was closing.

Then Virginia jumped in and worked the Silhouette while I made the shirts. (Moo Shoo helped me hem). And I think we knocked it out of the park!! These are fun, patriotic, and, if we’re being real with each other, I’ll wear this all damn year!

All three of these are Patterns for Pirates slim fit raglans. It’s a great basic raglan pattern that fits these hourglass ladies well. All three came together in just a few hours and I could not be happier with the result!

Happy Fourth, everyone. Enjoy the freedoms we have and thank the people who fight hard for them every day.

Stephanie <3 <3

PS – Photoshoots with sisters are really effing fun.