Friday, April 30, 2010

Hello, May Burda!

The May issue arrived today, DH brought it in from the mailbox and waggled it at me, but I was cemented to the couch.  Little Man and I are harboring a nasty cough/cold thing, so I spent my day hopped up on Robitussin.  When I didn't hop up and come running, DH knew exactly how sick I was!

There's a few goodies in this month's issue.  My favorite is this sweet little dress with the pleated front detail.
Why must it be in petite sizes only, though?  I'm thinking that I un-petited a Burda jacket last fall, maybe I can use those adjustments and muslin it...

The blouse on the cover is cute, I just hate long sleeves in the summer.  I can always make them short, right?  I don't think I'd use a sheer... or maybe, I would?
I love everything in the kids section.  Everything.

The top shown below is super cute, but the model photo is terrible and shows absolutely no detail.  Sometimes I wonder what their photographers or editors are thinking!?  I've never used elastic thread, so that would be a new challenge!

Meanwhile, I have 2 prom dresses to alter this weekend.  The red one needs to come in one more inch on the top (we can't have any wardrobe malfunctions at prom!) and the other belongs to another student of mine who got stuck with a size bigger than she needed, so I'm taking it in on the sides 3/4".  You should see this number... lots of skin showing! And I have to take it in by hand, the straps and trim is completely covered in sequins and beads.

Time for another dose of Robitussin.  See you all in a few days!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Weightloss Wednesday: Keep Moving Forward!

Third time is a charm, right?
I say that because this is the 3rd time I'm writing this week's post.  Not because of some internet mistake, but because I just can't seem to say what I want to say.  So, I'll try it one more time! 

I had a little pity party this weekend and nearly fell off the wagon.  No, actually... I nearly leapt from the wagon, screaming for chocolate and Doritos.  Long story short, I thought I would've lost more weight by now.  I'm down 7 pounds over the last 6 weeks, which I find frustrating.  I thought I'd be swimming in a pair of size 10 jeans by now!  Why is that?  Where did I get that idea?  My 1/2 pound loss for last week left me confused and frustrated.  But, why? It's still a loss, right?  Where did I get the impression that I would drop so much more?

-The Biggest Loser, where contestants drop double digits each week consistently.
-Valerie Bertonelli and Marie Osmond, who seem to get skinny overnight "eating delicious food".
-All those diet pill ads in magazines, showing a pudgy "before" and slender "after".

That's when it dawned on me...
The fine print that appears in every single diet pill/diet food/exercise program advertisement.
*Results not typical.

DH and I need to erase those atypical results from our brains.  We are doing the right things: Drinking water, counting calories, and exercising (almost) daily.  We are experiencing other small victories that we should be celebrating!
-He's lost 15 pound in the last 4 weeks.
-His resting heart-rate and blood pressure have both dropped significantly.
-I have dropped 3 inches in my hips and 3 inches in my waist.
-I can wear clothes I haven't touched in years again.
-We are both running, something he hasn't done in 15 years and I've never done my entire life.
-Working on this together has given us a shared "hobby", and encouraging each other through this has added a layer of commaraderie and togetherness to our marraige.
-We're learning to cook (and try) new foods and sharing more meals at home. Possible saving money by eating out less often, and definitely getting creative when ordering a pizza! (Did you know that Domino's has a calorie counter as you build your pizza online? So helpful! And grilled chicken on a pizza is really, really good!)

Which leads me to the other reason why I wanted to edit this post.  I want to share some of our favorite "pleasant surprises" from our new diet.  If you're playing along, maybe one of these will work for you, or maybe you have a fave that you'd like to share in the comments?
  • Quaker Oats Weight Control Oatmeal.  There is added protein (7g) and fiber (6g) to help make you feel fuller for longer, and you just can't beat a hot breakfast!
  • Speaking of a hot breakfast, DH has a new love: turkey bacon!  Even the Little Man likes it!  Along with a couple of eggs (only 80 cal. each), you'll feel full 'til lunch!
  • Fresh fruit. We are burning through a big bunch of bananas every couple days. Along with apples and seedless oranges and bags of salad mixes...  We sneak these in as snacks between breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and it helps keep hunger at bay to eat small meals more often.
  • Uncle Ben's Brown Rice bags.  They heat up in 90 seconds, and while the package says 2 servings, we can usually get 3 out of it.  Good variety of flavors and grains, and not too bad on sodium.
  • Yogurt and Granola = Nighttime Snack!  We've taken a liking to the Bear Naked Chocolate flavor (gotta have a little chocolate everyday, ya know?) and the Dannon Light n' Fit (80 cal.).  The granola is a little high in calories, but mixing it with the yogurt helps make you feel like you had a really great snack without cheating.  DH loves the 100 cal snack cupcakes, too, for when you just need a twinkie fix!
Yesterday I got back to the exercise routine and hit the treadmill with the tv on.  30 minutes, 2 miles, and 200 calories burned.  Can I just tell you how blessed I am to have such great kids?  We came home from school, I set them up with a snack and their favorite show, and headed downstairs.  Half an hour later, when I came back upstairs, the Little Man said to me, "Mumma, you dun essercisin' aweddy?"  Yup.  I'm pretty lucky.

Oh, and here's my "Fun Find" of the week:  Crock Pot Recipes for Dieting! Easy and Good for You!!!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Inside the Prom Dress (Finale)

The dress is done, but you (and I) will have to wait for pictures of her modeling it. The dress is even too small for my adjustable dressform!!!
She's not available to try it on.  There is big drama in PromLand, since her boyfriend (of 3 years) broke up with her last week (while the dress was half done)!  Prom is May 6, next Thursday...
So, her mom picked it up from school at lunch today (since she's too upset to attend school).
See that center back lined up perfectly at the zipper? I'm finally getting good at invisible zippers!
This is the back, with the zipper open.  You can see the hook and eye closures on the corselette, then the zipper closes up over it all.
This is the inside of the corselette. You can see the white grosgrain ribbon I inserted for hanger loops, and my "KB Designs" label.

Here is a close-up of the pleat front and knot.
Here is a close-up of the hem.  I could've done a better job here, I should've used the narrom hemming foot, but I serged the edge, then folded it over as narrowly as I could.  I was afraid satin was too heavy for the 2mm narrow foot, and would make the hem stand out, instead of lay flat.
I love the dress, it is really stunning, and these pictures just don't do it justice!  As soon as I take pics of her in it (I asked her mom to do it for me), I'll share them with you.  The completion of this gown has been a little strange, with the whole break-up issue.  Usually the girls are so excited to get their dress, and I get to see them go ga-ga over it.  I have a terrible feeling that this girl took one look at it, and started crying! 

Overall, it's a wonderful pattern, with great details on making the corselette.  I had never used a "Designer Vogue Pattern" before (Vogue 2847), so I was pleasantly surprised at the attention to detail and the excellent instructions.  I would love to make the shorter version for myself someday.  The fabric (crepe back satin from was nice to work with, but I'd love for a client to be able to afford my time and the good stuff (4-ply silk)!  This post has links to all the previous construction details (look for older links at the end of it).

Monday, April 26, 2010

Prom Dress Progress (and a Package!)

Sorry about the alliteration, I just can't help myself sometimes...

This will be short, as I am under the weather.  A nasty cold has beseiged my house, and I have 2 kids coughing on the couch as I anxiously await the arrival of DH (so I can go back to bed) and the opening of the pediatrician's office.  Keep your fingers crossed that DH remains healthy as he cares for all of us!

The prom dress is finished!  I worked on it Friday night, most of Saturday, and finished it Sunday morning.  It's really lovely, and I'm eager to see it on her!  For now, I'll just have to tease you with these photos I took this weekend as I was completing it.

This is 1 single skirt piece laid out on our dining room table, opened up to 60" by 60".  Huge!!!

This is the bodice top of the gown.  I love red...

There will be a full post once I have pics of her modeling it, promise!

A package arrived Saturday morning from Bunny.  You may have read her post about the Little Blue Dress, and our agreement was that she would send me a piece of her stash in payment for the blue floral cotton.  Well... to say that Bunny is generous would be an understatement!  I was excited enough to get anything, but then to open the box and find not 1, but 2 treasures?!?!  She sent the prettiest blue embroidered linen (this will be a dress for me) and the absolute coolest book of French Designers Paper Dolls.  Little Miss Princess and I pored over this, pointing and smiling at our favorites.  I'll give you a peek inside another day (when I'm feeling better).
I love my internet sewing friends! This morning I also finished reading "The Collection", which was sent to me by Laura, one of my NYC sewing class friends.  To read about designers like Chanel, Patou, and Vionnet was fascinating, and then to see color samples of their work in the doll book was really magical.  Thanks to both of you!

Ok, I'm pooped.  Time to hit the couch.  Hope you're all in good health and sewing up a storm!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Weightloss Wednesday

Thank you for the continued support and well-wishes!  It's so nice to have you cheering me on!  These blog posts are helping keep me on-track and giving me reason to reflect each week on what I'm learning on this little journey.  Thanks for following along, it really does mean so much to me.

The Good News:  Sunday's weigh-in showed a loss of 1.5 pounds for last week! Yes!!!!  (DH lost another 3!  Isn't he doing great??)

The Better News:  When I ran on Sunday, I could run for longer periods of time, it took me less time to recover when I slowed to a walk, and I felt good enough to go an extra mile!

The Bad News:  When I got dressed for work this morning, the pants I made with the help of Kenneth King (pattern fitting master) don't fit any more.  They're too big now!

The Best News:  When I returned to the closet to find a different bottom for my outfit, I grabbed a pencil skirt from before Little Miss Princess's birth... AND IT FIT!!! 
(The top used to be snug, but not anymore!)

Like I said last week, the non-scale victories are keeping me motivated.  Shopping in my "old-skinny-me-closet" and fitting into this skirt is a huge motivator for me, and I'm now excited and looking forward to my workout afterschool.  For being a "non-athlete" my entire life, this feeling of liking exercise is a whole new page...

I've lost just over 7 pounds over the last month.  Not as much as I'd hoped.  A single digit number.  But...
I'm reminded of a funny habit my Mom had when she would start a new book.  She would place a bookmark at the half-way point, so she would now how much further she had to go.  I'm only 5 pounds away from my "half-way point", since my goal is to lose 25 pounds by the 4th of July.  Looking at it that way, gives it a whole new perspective, and makes me feel like my goal is totally possible, and closer than it seems.

I had a lot of success last week with the increased cardio (taking only 2 days off per week), so I'm going to continue with that plan.  Sunday I walked/ran 4 miles, Monday I biked 8 miles, yesterday I took the day off, and today I'm walking/running 3 miles.  I find the treadmill totally boring (I know someone who calls it the "dreadmill"), so I'm thankful for the great weather we've had, the sidewalks around work, the paved bike path in town, and the slow and considerate drivers on our back country roads!

If you're working along with me, keep it up.  There will be bad days/weeks, pick yourself up and keeping moving forward!  We are all stronger than we give ourselves credit for, and I know we can help each other meet our goals!  If you're interested, I've added a button on the sidebar for Spark People.  It's free and easy to use, so if you're looking for an easy way to figure out how many calories you should eat and how to track your calories easily, I hope you'll visit the website.  Keep up the good work!!!

ETA: The shoes are from Target, here's the link.  I do love them so!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Inside The Prom Dress (Part 1)

The Corselette
I'm using Susan Khalje"s "Bridal Couture" book and Threads Issue 145 as reference materials while making this dress.  The pattern is Vogue 2847 by Tom and Linda Platt.  I can't find a link to the Threads issue, but I did find this wonderful interview with Susan Khalje, who is an amazing teacher!

The corselette is the most vital part of this gown!  It provides a strong internal structure for the top of the gown to hang from, and must be tightly (but properly) fitted to prevent the dress from falling down and also from her yanking it up all night!  Strapless dresses really require internal structure, and I want to make sure that I'm doing it properly!

I started with a regular cotton muslin, and since there are 16 pieces for just the "foundation", I labeled them all with a Sharpie marker to make sure they were going in the right direction and connected properly.
The first fitting yielded a decent alteration of 2 1/4", as she is so thin and the corselette needs to be tightly fitted.  I remarked the muslin, rechecked the calculations, and altered the paper pattern.  Khalje recommends making a corselette in a double layer of medium-weight cotton, to be sturdy, breathable, and perspiration friendly.

Again, with so many pieces (now I'm constructing 2 corselettes for the double-layer), I had my labeled muslin next to me to refer to, and pinned & stitched the pieces in pairs, keeping a set of the same pair connected with a thread chain.  I kept the correlating pattern pieces pinned to one so that I wouldn't get confused, and it all pieced together very quickly.  I pressed all seam allowances open, to later create the channels for the boning.
I placed bra cups on the wrong side of one completed corset, and hand stitched them down to the seam allowances at the top and bottom of each cup, invisible on the right side.  I then pinned the two layers wrong sides together, and stitched the channels for the boning.  Each channel is about 3/8" wide, and I placed them on every seam line, extending them from top to bottom (except for the seams on the bra cups, the channel stopped at the bottom of the cup).
I basted the layers together along the seam line at the top of the corselette, and turned the center back seams inside, but left the seam open for placement of the hook and eye closures.
I found myself in a pinch with the hooks and eyes, not wanting to do all that hand-stitching and not having access to hook and eye tape.  I punted, and picked up "bra extenders" at Joann's in black, which worked perfectly!
There are 3 sets of eyes and 1 set of hooks (4 on each extender), so I cut the strips apart and placed them end to end inside the center back seam.  I machine stitched them down so they are very, very secure, and very, very little black actually shows (and this is hidden underneath the gown anyway!
To finish the bottom edge, I used double-fold bias tape folded over the bottom, and topped it with grosgain ribbon for the waist stay.

So, how did the fitting go?  Very, very well!  She was able to get into the corselette all by herself (but missed a few hooks and eyes in the middle) and it only needs one more adjustment.  The front is a little too wide, so I need to take the center front seam in about 1/2" (for a total reduction of 1").  I threw the gown muslin back on her, and pinned and marked it up accordingly.  We added 3/4" to the top bodice edge for modesty, so I'll have to add that to the gown bodice also.
My next job is to alter the gown top to match the measurements of the corselette top, which isn't too bad.  The gown itself is pretty simple, with 2 (very large) skirt pieces, and the fitted band for the bodice.  She will be stunning, I can't wait to finish and show you the final product!
I love red, and this particular red crepe back satin is such a deep tone of red, and it's wonderful on her skin tone.  Every new formal I make becomes my new favorite.  I didn't think I could love anything more than the Homecoming Dress this year, but the Prom Dress is going to be stunning!

Here's my earlier post on the 1st gown muslin from March.
Here's the initial post with her inspiration for the dress.  Gotta love Taylor Swift...

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Hmmm... What's Wrong With This Picture???

This is kinda wordy, sorry.  It's just the way I am sometimes...

A few years ago, I saw this pic of Kate Hudson and fell in love with that vest!  I cut out the pic, stuck it on my sewing bulletin board, and never got around to making it.  Yeah.  Big surprise, right?
Then, the April 2010 Burda had the same pic for their end section on vests, and I said, "Hey! I saw it first!!!"  Of course, Burda didn't include a vest with a round overlap like Kate's, but it reminded me how much I loved it, and decided to finally make it.  If you want info on the real vest she actually wore, click here.

When I ordered the prom dress fabric, I was just $2 away from free shipping, so I ordered a yard and a half of white poplin for the vest. (Tired of reading yet?  Again, my apologies...)  It arrived this week, but I just got around to opening the package and what did I find?  Not white poplin, I'll tell you that!

Purple.  Poly.  Lining.
Huh???  It even has a sticker label stuck to it that says "White Poplin"!  Again, I ask... "Huh???"

I've emailed, and I'm sure that it will get resolved.  It just cracked me up, and I knew that you would also appreciate it.  Today I will be working on the prom dress, and we'll be fitting the corset again tomorrow morning.  Surprisingly enough, the dress is the easy part!  I'll be updating again tonight or tomorrow, hope you have a productive (and mistake free) sewing day!

Closing Shot:  Little Miss Princess has a wonderful 1st grade teacher that rewards the kids every Friday for good behavior.  They get to pick a prize from a treasure chest, and she usually comes home with a plastic ring or necklace, or toy of some type.  Yesterday, she ran off the bus and said, "Wait 'til you see what I picked for a prize!!"  She dug through her bag, and produced this box.  "Can we open it, Mom?  It's a sewing kit!"

Sure enough.  A sewing kit... from the Ritz Carlton (!?).  How this ended up in the prize basket, I'll never know.  That my daughter saw it as a "prize" makes me smile, though!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Weightloss Wednesday!

Sadly, I have a very small weightloss to report this week... just 1/2 a pound! What a bummer!!!

But, really... it's a fabulous topic for the week.  What do you do when the scale doesn't budge?

Don't lose hope!
Get creative!
Work smarter, not harder!

I dug out the "TurboJam" dvds I bought via infomercial one morning a couple years ago, and did the TurboSculpt video on Saturday morning.  In my kitchen.  While the kids watched cartoons.  5 pounds seemed really light and too easy in the beginning (ha, ha), but by the time the video was done 45 minutes later, I was sore. Everywhere.

Sunday morning I jumped on my bike and went for a quick 5.6 mile bike ride (I heart Google maps)!  Nothing like a big dog jumping out at you to kick up your heart rate and add a little oomph to the workout...

Monday after work, we threw the Little Man in the jogging stroller and heading down the road for a walk, and ran when we felt like it.  He got a nap, we got a workout (pushing an extra 40 pounds is a bonus).

Tuesday was crazy for me (staff meeting after work, DH made dinner, fed the kids, ran off to kids sports class, home and get them ready for bed), so it was my "Day Off".

Today I'm going for a walk afterschool with a good friend, so I hope the weather cooperates.  She is also trying to lose some weight, but doesn't like to run.  Just moving for 45 minutes is better than nothing, so it counts as cardio!

When you have kids underfoot and have to find time for a workout, you must be creative.  Last week the neighbors watched me walk laps around my back yard and run the stairs up to the deck every 2 laps.  It was a great 30 minute workout, and the kids were too busy playing on the swingset and in the yard with each other to care what I was doing.  Did I look goofy? Probably.  Do I care what the neighbors think? Not really.

Sooner or later, my body will get with the program and the scale will change.  I know in my head that I am doing the best I can and making positive, healthy changes to my life, and thats all good, no matter what numbers I see staring back at me.  Non-scale victories are sometimes more important and have a greater impact, like feeling your jeans feel looser and being able to run more and farther than you could last week.

Hope you are all working smarter and having victories of your own!!!

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Simply Springy!

This is a wardrobe pattern from the Sew Stylish magazine collection, and includes this top, a jacket, pants, a skirt, and a dress.

I chose it for it's simplicity (no pun intended), without being boring.  I didn't notice that the front is actually 3 pieces (there's a seam line extending on either side of the front gathers), and added the little cap sleeve (which is really just a cap, not a sleeve).
The fabric is a "baby silk" from Joann's that I saw a couple weeks ago on sale for 50% off and new I needed a top to match the "Pixelated Pretty" skirt.  It's super soft, has a nice drape and weight, and is machine washable.  This is the second time I've worked with this fabric, and it won't be the last.
The only alteration I made was to the center back.  The pattern calls for a side zip, but that never works well for me in tops that I want to tuck in (bumpy-lumpy).  So I omitted the zipper, added 5/8" to the center back of the back neck facing, and added a small button closure.  It's a little bit of a squirm to get in, but has a really nice slender fit.  DH uttered a "Wow!" when I modeled it for him.  That's always a good sign!

I will definitely make more of this top, it was very easy, has a wonderful fit, and is a true wardrobe staple.

Skirt: Simplicity 3841
This skirt pattern from the Threads collection, contains a number of pleated pretties, knee-length or longer, narrow pleats or wide.  I've had this one for a few years, and was pleasantly surprised to find that I'd already cut the pattern at some point in time.  Must've changed mind...

As I was finishing the blouse, I started thinking about what else I had to wear it with.  I flashed back to last spring when I bought this beautiful cotton print for a pleated skirt (that never got made).  I dug through the stash and found the fabric, but couldn't find the skirt pattern I had in mind.  So, this was my next choice, and I'm so glad I never found the first one! I love this skirt pattern!!!  1 piece. Yes, just 1 pattern piece!  I whipped this baby up yesterday morning, it was that fast and easy.

The only change I made was that the pattern instruction have you stitch the pleast lines from top to hem, then press and release the stitches below the pleats.  I wanted soft pleats, so I didn't extend the stitching, did only the pleats, and it went much, much faster!  It also helped that I used my tracing wheel and carbon paper to transfer the pleat lines onto the wrong side of the fabric.  I used 1" grosgrain ribbon to stabilize the waistband (no facings) and a zipper from the ebay zipper stash.

The fabric came from Haberman's in Royal Oak, and last time I was there (Feb.) the bolt was still on the wall...  It is 100% cotton, and has the feel of a bedsheet.  I will have to wear a slip under it, but I don't mind.  I was too lazy to line it, and didn't want to add any bulk.

I had a crazy thought to make one more top to match both skirts and enter the Mini-Wardrobe Contest at PR, but I don't think I will.  I hate doing storyboards, and this wasn't a plan, it just came together.  I got this Hot Patterns shirt for Christmas, and saw Angie doing a HP sew along.  I'd like a short sleeve (or sleeveless) white shirt, so I'll probably trace this off this week, and use the white Ralph Lauren shirting I got from Ressy's co-op. 
I love Spring Break... (no work, lots of time to sew).  It was a great week off, but tomorrow I have to report back to the trenches for the last 10 weeks of school.  During that time I've got a prom dress to make, an AP Statistics test to prepare my students for, and a weightloss plan to stick to. Yikes!!!

Oh, 1 more thing... if you are married with kids, you've got to go see "Date Night" at the movies.  I laughed so hard, I was crying.  The opening scene? The one in the morning with the kids in the bedroom? That's my house.  That's my life.  I don't know how they knew, but they did.  Too funny!

See you in a few days on "Weightloss Wednesday"! Keep up the good work!!!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Pixelated Pretty

Simplicity 4599, skirt D. Out of Print
I've had this pattern for years, and made the jacket, cami, and skirt before.  I love the simplicity and fit of the skirt, but haven't been able to fit into this pattern.  See previous post "Weightloss Wednesday"...

Now that I've lost a few pounds and inches, I can fit into this lovely again (size 14, woo hoo!), so I grabbed some fantastic stretch cotton sateen I got from Gorgeous Fabrics not too long ago, and whipped this up on Monday and Wednesday. (I got the last of the fabric, so don't bother looking... mwah ha ha!)
It can't get any easier than 3 pattern pieces, ya know? I'll admit, I cheated on the inside a little.  Instead of turning the facing edge under and hand-stitching down, I serged that lower edge, which finished the seam cleanly and anchored the facing, too.  Yes, you can see my bright blue zipper peeking out, that's okay, I don't mind.
I've got a cute little top partially assembled to go with it, using Simplicity 2570.  I should have that finished tomorrow, and I'll photograph the ensemble together and post again this weekend.  Love the shoes? Target! My store was out of my size, so I ordered them online, along with another pair you'll see soon.
ETA: Here's the link for the shoes! Like I told Laura, I think this is called "enabling"!!!

Thanks for all the supportive comments on my "getting healthy" plan.  It's so nice to know that I've got cheerleaders out there! I'll admit that this morning the realization dawned on me that the pants Kenneth King helped me fit the muslin for will now be obsolete, and I was a little bummed.  But, I guess I'll just have to get back to NYC for another class so he can help me fit a new skinny pair, huh? (Can you here DH laughing from where you're at? I can...)

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Weight-loss Wednesday

Three weeks ago I jumped back on the weight-loss bandwagon than I've fallen off of repeatedly.  Usually, I can manage to hang on for about 2 weeks before we hit a bump in the road and I get dumped in the dirt again.  This time, I'm sitting in the center of the wagon and have DH anchored in with me, so we are less likely to get tossed off!  I reached an all time high weight that I'm not quite sure how I reached, but I don't want to stay here.

Why am I telling you this? What does this have to do with sewing?

I'm telling you because making a public declaration means I'm really gonna put up a fight to report back with good news (like, I haven't touched chocolate or soda pop in 3 weeks)! You've seen me try this before (aka The No-Sewing-Until-I've-Exercised-Plan, epic FAIL), so I'm hoping I won't let you down this time.

Sewing Connection: I'm already down one pattern size in the bottom!  One of my favorite skirts has been too tight to wear, but I've really been wanting to make another, but refused to re-draft it larger.  I slipped it on yesterday and zipped it up, no problem!  The new version will be ready to show you later this week!

I found a paper where I had written my measurements this past November.  Between just my waist and hips, I've lost 7 inches.  That's 5 pounds and 7 inches gone.  Hopefully, forever!

I mentioned that DH is taking this journey with me, which I am so thankful for.  Fighting the bulge together will mean that we'll be able to lean on each other, encourage each other, and applaud each other.  I've got the man eating yogurt, granola, carrots & celery, and brown rice.  Holy crap! Now that's dedication!!!  He lost 8 pounds last week, so once he saw that, he's was all-in!

The plan we're following is the Logical Healthy Plan.
1.  Drink more water.
2.  Get more exercise.
3.  Eat healthy food.

No Atkins, no Weight Watchers.  We are using the free Spark People website to track our nutritional goals (calories, carbs, fat, protein), so that's really taking a lot of guess work out of it.  I've set a goal of 25 pounds lost by the 4th of July, but really, I just want to feel better about myself.  I want to be able to run with the kids, and set a good example for them.  I want to make beautiful (skinny) clothes and fit in my old favorites still in my closet.  I want to be able to run (and like it) and bike for miles with my family and friends.

So, I will take Wednesday of each week to update you on our weight-loss journey.  I know it has nothing to do with sewing, but... too bad.  If you don't care, don't read it.  But I know that I've got the perfect fabric for a Cynthia Rowley dress, and if I can make it a size smaller now than I would've a month ago, that's a really cool thing happening in my sewing space!  And DH is taking me out to show it off when it's done, so that's an even cooler thing!

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Alice in Easterland

"Children's/Girls' Dress: Slightly flared dress, lower-calf, has fitted, lined bodice, dirndl skirt, back zipper.  ABCDEF: tie ends.  ABE: short sleeves."
Fabric: A garage sale find from last summer.  She noticed it first, and really liked it.
When I started the dress, I laid out 4 fabrics for her to choose from, and both her and Daddy liked this one the best!
Construction:  Super fast and super easy.  The bodice and sleeves are lined, which finishes both the neckline and sleeve hem.  I topstitched the neckline and edges of tie ends to keep them nice through the washer and dryer.  I absolutely love the sweetheart neckline on this!  The sizing is right on the money, too.
Overall: A new favorite! We never have this beautiful of weather on Easter in Michigan (winter coats are usually necessary), but today it's going to be 65 and sunny.  She'll be comfy and cute, so it's a win-win!
(When she was dressed and hair done, I couldn't stop thinking of Alice in Wonderland.  Long blonde hair in a headband with a blue dress...)

Happy Easter, everyone!!!