Welcome to Fall 2017: You Just Gotta Laugh !!!!

Hello Fall Semester A-Team Students:

Apparently, I can not add anything to the website.  There seems to be a major glitch.  You can still get into the Downloads menu and print your Sewing Fundamentals 1 Patterns.  Remembers to do this without scaling or shrink to fit.  You can also print:  Toubleshooting your Sewing Machine.  I will be prepared to give you a syllabus tomorrow in the Sewing Fundamentals 1 class.   Wednesday, the Drafting syllabus will be given out. 

Enjoy the rest of your holiday.


Joan McKenna

It’s not the years in your life that count. It’s the life in your years. Abe Lincoln

president_bush_thanksgiving_day_dinner_in_baghdad_2003Hello A-Team:

Today’s picture says a lot about what presidents do on Veteran’s Day.  Because of the election, Veterans Day did not get as much recognition as it should have.  These men and women are ready to give the supreme sacrifice so that we can keep our country free.  At this moment in time, it is necessary that we all come together and believe in the democracy we live in.  Believe that the original gangsters, and troublemakers, who wrote the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution KNEW what they were doing when they wrote up the 3 branches of government:  Judicial, Executive and legislative.   Enough said about politics that really has not changed in over 200 years……………

The Classes:

Draping:  Your 5 piece sloper set is due this week.  So are your 3 croqui final pcitures.  This week, you will be draping the princess bodice while the instructor goes around and individually checks your homework for your final project.  The great directions are in your text book.  Toward the end of the class, we will delve into dartless shapes, necklines, collars and cowls.

Upcycling:  Last week, we learned how to sew up a one-piece facing.  This week, we will start working on sleeve plackets.  There are 3 of them, that I want to teach you.  The continuous, the 2 piece, and the 1 piece.  You will use them many times in your sewing career.

Flat Patternmaking:  Your Curved Dart Dress is due.  We will take pictures of your achievement!!!!  Also, your 3 croqui final pictures are due.  I will go around and individually discuss them with you.   I do not want your final project to be overwhelming.  While I am discussing with your peers, you will be flat patterning the bateau neckline with facings.  Style 0601.

This is a side note to this class:  Azizeh gets a gold star for what she did at the end of class!!!!!  I will let her tell you all about it.

Sew Fun 1:  This class is way behind.  So I cut out one class.  This coming week, we will be making a skirt with an elastic waist band, And we will be working on our bodice sleeves.

Links and Things:

tailor__s_poster   There is a great Movie Night coming up at Mesa College.  It is on Tuesday, November 15th.  The name of the movie is:  Men of the Cloth.  If you have the time….go see this.  It is about 3 master tailors.  The link will bring you to the movie poster.

Stretch Knit Ruler instructions.  The following PDF is for the ruler itself.  knit-ruler-free  Thank you very much, Jen !!!!

http://view.e.interweave.com/?qs=1767aaa6ecb32727c341e6ec294fff601861ee5c154a1ec4f9098c823d17bd3080ca09723fca74773617af817dc89f22bcae3cc8807460a1893c3b7d1ac752621ceda85908af021802faa626d61e00ba  13 free craft projects.

See you all in Class !!!!!!



We Make a Living by What We Get. We Make a Life by What We Give. Winston Churchill

gwenies-halloween-with-help-from-bob-patti-2016Happy Halloween to the A-Team !!!!

Since when did Halloween grow up.  It used to be for kids.  Just look at these cupcakes for a children’s party!!!!  I just love seeing the kids come by and get a treat.  And I like that they are accompanied by their parents…….

Tomorrow is Halloween.  Yes, there is class.  And yes, there will be treats………….. Come to class !!!!!

Draping on Body Doubles:  This week, we will be drape the basic skirt and pattern it.  We will also be using our croqui to design 3 garments for our final.  Pick something exciting from our text or explore something that is stuck in the file cabinets of your mind.  If time, we will drape the princess bodice.

Upcycling:  We are still learning how to do an inverted kick pleat in the morning course.  In the night course, we are learning how to sew a one piece facing.  And in-between, we are working on our upcycling project(s).  What fun !!!!!

Flat Pattern Manipulation:  We will be flat patterning sleeves and skirts.  Make blocks of your patterns and turn them in for a grade along with your bodice front and back.  We will start to flat pattern your first dress.

Sewing Fundamentals 1:  In the next class, we will be learning to make challenging seams.  Slot, French, Corded, Curved, Flat-felled and the Inset Right Corner.  In our spare time, we will practice making darts.

News and Links:

Job Offer !!!!!

From: Amy Meader [thecostumebarre@yahoo.com]
Sent: Thursday, October 27, 2016 1:06 PM
To: Joan McKenna;
Subject:  Great Job Offer !!!!!

Hi Ladies!

We at Tracy Bachman Designs in Poway are looking for people to sew for us evenings and/or weekends. Hours are flexible.  We make skating and dance costumes mainly for dance studios.  We are looking for people with basic sewing knowledge and we are willing to train.  Position pays 10.00/hr.  Would you happen to know of anyone that you could refer to us?  Truly appreciate your time!

Thanks so much!     Amy Meader      619-850-0920

Great News from Sew Pro’s !!!!!

So next Saturday is Sew Pro’s semi-annual trip to the Fashion District in LA.  They are offering a raffle for a seat on the bus !!!!  Yes, they still have about 6 tickets to sell.  BUT…one of the tickets is being donated and all you have to do, is call the Clairemont Store before Wednesday noon – November 2.  1-858-279-2500.  I will be on the bus.  Will you?????

Free Machine Embroidery Design  from Advanced Embroidery Designs.  Remember to download it in PES format, if you do NOT have an embroidery machine.  This is the most universal format.  Check it out !!!!!  This one, is for all you ballet dancers !!!!

Short YouTube Tutorials about Using Sticky Notes:   Another nifty tool found on PC (Windows) computers and often underutilized is the digital version of Post It-like notes, called Sticky Notes.  

Windows 7:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r-3jiGc21-4

 Windows 8:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qkIEwX8-N3k

 Windows 10:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2o8sXMY8HeU

 Mac version called Stickies:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-K3_pSRDx4w

 Don’t eat the candy.  Come to class !!!!!


Sewing Machine Needles Explained

NOTE: I normally work behind the scenes to maintain Joan’s site. Joan is allowing me to create some posts so that I can practice for when I create my own blog.

confused-faceHave you ever found yourself standing in front of the rack of sewing machine needles wondering what all of the numbers and categories mean? I remember feeling so overwhelmed the first time I had to buy needles that I just bought the universal needles and hoped for the best. Thanks to the chart below I can now buy needles like an old pro!

The reference chart below explains the various needle types and their recommended uses. This chart is from feathersflight.com. This site has some  great information for beginning sewers, including several other great charts covering things such as sergers and stitches. I’ll include a couple more in future posts.



Sewing Machine Reference chart is from www.feathersflight.com
Sewing Machine Reference chart is from www.feathersflight.com