Such excitement !!!! The West City Campus annual Silk and Saffron II Fashion and Culinary Show will be on Friday, May 17th, from 4 to 7 PM. What fun !!!! You will be able to show the world how much you have learned !!!!! If you were in the Portfolio course, we will be displaying portfolios. Let me know if you will allow me to display your shoe box !!!! We will also display completed dress forms. We will be modeling draped dresses and PJs. What fun !!!!!
I also want to let you know that I got the flyers for the summer courses !!!! You can print the PDFs from the right side column. In the coming weeks, I will get the syllabi up on the blog. But for now, here they are:
Draping: We started working on our draped dresses this week. We are going to continue working on them, through May 15th…… May 17th is the Fashion Show !!!!
First Pattern: The prep work is done and the sewing has begun. Remember that you need to press and fit (try on your PJs) as you sew. Remember commandment #14: Thy iron is they friend. AND sewing commandment #13 says a lot: Seam lines are second chances for perfect fit.
http://www.ageless-embroidery.com/fontinprogress.html You can pick up a complete exquisite alphabet font – free from Ageless embroidery. You need to do it soon. The set will go on sale on May 1st. Remember, if you don’t have an embroidery machine, pick up this font in the PES format. The format is just about universal.
Check out these Sewing Bee videos from Great Britain!!!! Thank you Rita for submitting this !!!!!! Move over Project Runway !!!! Even though the videos are long, they are worth watching. You will learn SO much. The critiques are much more positive. They are judging the sewer’s skill !!!! Very Refreshing. AND OF COURSE…..I LOVE THE TROPHY !!!!!! Simple and worth all the work !!!!!!!
Final Episode 4:
See U all in class this week !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
YES….THERE IS CLASS THIS WEEK. SPRING BREAK STARTS SATURDAY, MARCH 23 THROUGH MARCH 30TH.
My computer is finally up and running. The slowdown was caused by 2 Avast add-on programs. Now that the Sandbox and Webrep were removed, I have my memory back and the computer moves the way it is supposed to…..FAST !!!!! Thanks for your patience. I think I have caught up with all my emails. I think………
Now I want to broach a serious subject: Accidents. They do happen. This one caused me to remove the “semester sign” from the wall. We can start counting semesters again, next Fall. Read the following. And I sincerely thank my student for sharing this with us!!!!!! At the bottom of the email, before I go into what is happening in the classroom, I have included pictures of ways to avoid this. Note: the idea was NOT mine. There was a student in one of my previous courses that thought of this.
From: A Student of Mine
Sent: Wednesday, March 06, 2013 8:47 AM
To: Joan McKenna
Subject: Re: Puppy update
Sami is 13 months old, past losing her baby teeth, but she is a chewer, and likes to have something in her mouth. We have several toys (stuffed creatures, nylabones, and real antlers) for her scattered around the floor so she doesn’t find the furniture or shoes to be more attractive to chew on. She finds a stick on her walk and will carry it throughout, and leave it on our doorstep til next time. We used to have ropes AKA “tug toys” around for her, but she gnaws on the loose threads and shreds the ropes. Any toy that has a loose thread is a goner, because that is the weak point of the toy. She will chew on that thread, and within minutes the toy is in pieces. In hindsight, that tomato must have seemed to Sami to be “the perfect toy”.
When I found her near the tomato, there were about 6 pins scattered about. Some were bent. This was my “old tomato” that I’d had since I started sewing, and it had little silk pins (like my mom used) in it. I didn’t know how many were on the tomato. She had a needle & thread in her mouth, the needle was dangling toward the floor, as if she’d pulled on the thread, and the needle just came along for the ride. I couldn’t tell if she had eaten more. She didn’t seem to be in pain. There was just a subtle sense that her usual contentedness wasn’t there, though I wasn’t sure if I was reading too much into her actions. She behaves the same way if she gets into something she knows she shouldn’t (such as digging up plants in the garden). I just took her in because I didn’t know, and that an x-ray is worth the cost for peace of mind. I’m thankful that I did, because as it turns out, she had a pin sitting in her stomach, which was relatively easy to get at, and will heal more easily that if it had continued on to her intestines. The other concern would be that it can perforate the lining and travel around in the body. Blech. In my brief Google search before taking her, I saw dogs with a dozen pins in them, all along the digestive tract. That was what I was imagining for her. When I saw her x-ray, I was thinking “All this for one pin!!” Anyway, I’m happy to share this info, if it can help save other pets and babies. It’s a $1200 lesson, but hopefully Sami will come out of it okay.
Sami did well in surgery, will be staying overnight, and will hopefully be back home with us tomorrow afternoon. The other day Sami seemed interested in the “tomato”, and
I thought it was because it looked like a chew toy. I found out today that it is filled with sawdust!!! It probably seemed nearly irresistible to her with loose threads & wood scent!!
Thought you might want to share this with your class…
Thanks!Here is the fix:
A. B. C.
A. This container if for half used onions tht need to be stored in the refrigerator.
B. This container stores tomatoes.
C. C.This box is an old floppy disk box.
Draping: We are in the final fitting process of the dress form slipcovers. We had one student who started padding her dress form, last week. This coming week, is the final week of fittings. Don’t forget to get a fellow student to mark your soutache braid lines. Over the break, you will need to pad your dress forms. April 1, is when I start teaching how to drape. You will need your text book and all the other supplies asterick’d (*) in your syllabus supply list. You have a few weeks to finish your arm. It would help, if you could zig-zag some of the soutache braid on, before you pad your dress form. Remember the order for padding your dress form. I demo’d the process: Sew the slipcover with default stitching. Cut all seam allowances to ¾ of an inch. Clip all seams one inch apart. The form, should be set about 1 inch smaller than your measurements. Try the slip cover on the form. See where you need to pad. Measure, cut and sew your bottom drawstring pull. Pad the form. Put on the bra. Stuff the key for the form, inside the bra. Put on the cleaner’s plastic covers so you can easily slip your slipcovers on. Check your bust, waist and hip tolerances: Should be within ½ to 1 inch. You will probably need to adjust your soutache braid once the slip cover is on the form. Now is the time to cover your armholes and neck edge. Finish your soutache braid application. Finish your arm.
Portfolio: Last Tuesday, we finished our collar insertion and learned all about pleats and how to personalize them. Last Thursday, we practiced V-necklines, and learned how to read a pattern envelope by seeing a power point presentation. This coming week, we will be learning how to sew on closures, buttons, snaps, sequins, beads,patches and hooks and eyes. On Thursday, we ill be learning how to deal with patch pockets.
So I keep seeing that Pine Sol commercial where the lady is wearing shoes that clean her floor. And I keep thinking HOW do they dream these things up????????????
I found the following @ Wal-Mart. I just could NOT believe it !!
My pick for the best dressed at the Oscars 2013.
A note about Cleaning Irons. An iron with rough or sticky spots on its surface can be cleaned by running it, set at low, over a piece of paper with salt on it. This household hint was from the SALT Helpful Household Hints Book. Sometimes, you can get these books through Publisher’s Clearing House. And you can also enter their sweepstakes……………
Last Monday was President’s day. School was not in session. Oh yes, here is another date to mark on your calendar. The REAL Columbus Day is October 12, 1492. Thank you, for submitting this, Selenia. I received the following from Margy. Here is the truth about what happened to the US calendar. She remembered.
I knew Lincoln and Washington and Martin Luther and Cesar Chavez. Back in the late sixties they changed some of the holidays to be Monday and Fridays, to encourage people to travel and see more of the US. Now that gas is so high no one can afford to travel and so we all just get 3 day weekends. It is also cheaper for companies to turn off heat and air conditioners for 3 days rather that one day and turn everything back on for another today of work and off again. Of course we cannot change the 4th of July, or Christmas and New Year’s, or Thanksgiving (set by congress), and few others set by congress. So as you said Mark the Calendar with the correct Date and celebrate, and enjoy 3 day weekend.
Remember to sign up with Sew Pro’s for their annual bus trip to the LA Garment District and M & L Fabrics. Call Rosemary or Deanna at Clairemont for bus details: 858-270-4700.
What’s Happing in the Courses:
Draping: We only met last Wednesday. We are in the process of fitting our dress form slipcovers. This means, use ONLY basting stitches. If you don’t; UNSEWING for changes will be tough. Remember to always wear the bra you will be using on your dress form for the fittings. Remember to work on your arm, too. Angel went to the lecture at Mesa: Behind the Scenes of the Fashion Star Reality Show. She told us all that she learned a lot !!!!! This week, we will concentrate on the fittings. Next week, we should be ready to start padding out our dress forms…….
Portfolio Class: Last Week we learned all about seam finishes and 3 seams: the slot, classic French seam, and the serged French variation. There was also free time to catch up during Thursday’s class. Being that only 6 people stayed, I am assuming everyone is all caught up with their cutting, fusing, serging, tracing and marking. Prep work really is a lot of fun!!!!! It makes sewing so much easier. This week, we will learn 4 more seams and how to control fullness. These lessons will make it easier for you to read a pattern guide, which you will have to do when you use ‘Your First Commercial Pattern,’ starting April 11.
Links and More: Commandment #XVIII Expose Thyself to Historical and Technical Sewn Product Inspiration.
The following 2 links are from Kris. These sites are DYNAMITE costuming sites. Thank you Kris !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
This link is from John. It will give you insight into today’s fashion designers: http://showstudio.com/collections/page:1 Real-time reportage and analysis from fashion’s most influential Collections. Thank you, John !!!!!
Normally, the needle type used for sewing a particular fabric crosses over to embroidering that fabric.
For instance, you sew a knit with a ball point needle and you embroider a knit with a ball point needle.
Do you know the two instances when the proper needle for sewing a particular material is not the proper needle
to embroider that fabric?
The two materials are satin and leather.
Satin is sewn with a sharp point needle, but in embroidery, there are many needle penetrations in a close proximity.
This concentration of stitches delivered by a sharp point needle can cut the floating threads on satin fabrics.
A light ball point should be used for embroidery on satin. A small blade size such as 70/10 is ideal for this lightweight fabric.
Leather is usually sewn with a “chisel”, “wedge” or “narrow wedge” needle point. These needles, also called “leather needles”,
were developed with cutting points to help make a very straight seam.
But even the needle manufacturer will tell you that these cutting point needles should NEVER be used for embroidery.
They cut your leather because of the concentration of stitches as compared to a seam. They can also cut any previously applied embroidery stitches.
For example, if you apply lettering over a fill, the stitches in the fill would be cut by the cutting points when the lettering is applied.
The best needle point for garment leather is a light ball point. It punches out a nice round hole with enough room for the thread to exit without breaking. Very thin or fragile leather should be embroidered with a sharp point needle.
These final weeks of class, are all about using the knowledge that you have gained all semester. Go for it !!!! Show me how much you learned !!!!
Please Join Us!
Note: I will be bringing to class your hours up to January 10th. Since this is about half your grade….ask me what it is. Remember: Below 30 hours, the rule is not to give a grade. 30 hours gives you an incomplete. 80% of the hours listed for the course gives you a C or better, if you complete your project(s).
Drafting and Flat Patternmaking: We are in the midst of making our final patterns. They should be completed this week. Then you have about a week and a half to make up a sample garment. How Exciting !!!!! I am ready with my cell phone camera !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Using Your First Commercial Pattern: Last week, I demoed sleeve input, elastic waistband insertion, collars, and buttonholes. Five students have finished their PJs. I have pictures. One student made “PJs” for her cat! She even took pictures of her cat. They are moving on, to their second project.
The only demo that didn’t go as planned was buttonholes. I couldn’t figure out why. As an instructor, I wanted to make this easy for you. So over the weekend, I Googled it. I discovered that flannel and fleece buttonholes were troublesome for a lot of sewers. The following is what I found. Next week, I will demo buttonholes again and they will go better.
Tip: Always do a couple of practice buttonholes on a scrap of the fabric you will be using. Some fabrics, like knits or flannel, are kind of spongy and don’t feed as easily. You may need a longer stitch length on these. If your fabric is stretchy or slippery, you can stabilize it with a little fusible interfacing on the wrong side before stitching your buttonhole. Once you’ve done a practice one, cut it open and make sure that your button goes through easily.
Now perhaps you’d like to adjust the stitching on your buttonhole. The buttonhole on the left has a longer stitch length of almost 1mm while the buttonhole on the right has a very short stitch length of .25mm. While a shorter stitch looks nice, be aware that some fabrics don’t feed as easily and they may jam when the stitch length is too short. So always do a couple of practice buttonholes on a scrap of your fabric.
Try turning your fabric around and making the buttonhole the opposite way. This might help you avoid the seam unevenness. I do it this way when making buttonholes at the top of a line dresses, boys jonjons, etc. and the layers of fabric are too thick. Normally you would start at the top, but mark the length and start at the bottom of the buttonhole. Sometimes it works:)
I realize that most of you, did not realize that last week was the week that classes resumed from Winter Break. This email/post marks the beginning of the end of the Fall 2012 courses. You have come a long way in your learning. In the next 3 weeks, we will tie everything together !!!!!
I have sent an email about room 209 being so cold. They issued me a work number. Until then, make sure you bring something warm to throw on. I believe the air conditioner goes on between 6:30 and 7:30 PM.
Check out the blog: www.sewalongwithjoanie.wordpress.com. I have gotten 2 out of the 3 spring syllabi done and up in the right hand column. The only one that still needs to be completed is Draping on Body Doubles. Both Sewing Fundamental Courses (Sewing Techniques Portfolio and Using your First Commercial Pattern) are there, ready for download and printing. Check out the Britex Image. I did put some other interesting things up for you. Troubleshooting your sewing machine is very very good. It came from a great sewing machine store in Chula Vista.
In Drafting & Flat Pattern Manipulation: We are starting to make the patterns for our final half-size project. I can’t wait to see how this progresses. It is exciting to me to see you use your skills to flat pattern your slopers into a dress of your own creation. Of course your hours grade comes into the picture @ grade time. You need 80% of 105 hours which is 84.
In Using Your First Commercial Pattern: Everyone continued to work on their pajamas. Several had completed their PJs, and were starting other sewing projects. Just remember, I need to see the final finished garment(s). I need to take a picture of you and the pajamas. In this way, if anyone questions my grading, I have the pictures to show. Plus, your hours grade stands as is. Every week I add your hours. The course is 72 hours. You need (80%) 57 hours to go on to the next course: Sewing Fundamentals II: Intermediate Sewing.
Note that I can no longer change grades if you complete a required project after I send in the final grades. Everything must be completed by the time your course ends.
Good Things to Know:
Flu, Colds, and Other Bugs: How to Stay Well During Virus Season
By Mehmet C. Oz, MD, and Michael F. Roizen, MD
Busted! We admit it: We can be manic about shooing people home at the first snuffle or sneeze, even if they swear they feel well enough to work. Fine; work from home. Just don’t spread that virus. (Here’s the secret to shrugging off colds.)
Part of it is selfish. We don’t want to catch a bug or see half of the staff get it. Part of it is on your behalf. The more often you come to work sick, the more likely you are to get really wiped out down the road.
The evidence behind this: Researchers (love their nitty-gritty brains) have figured out that if you come to work sick at least six times during 12 months, you’re 50% more likely to be out for weeks within the next 18 months. Why? They think that when your body never gets a chance to completely recuperate, you get more and more run down. Eventually, your immune system cracks, and the next little illness spells big trouble. (Here’s another reason to stay home.)
What if you can’t afford to be sick? Follow our six basic YOU Docs rules for boosting your immunity. They’ll help you stay well in the first place.
1. Get enough ZZZs. You need 7 1/2 to 8 hours of shuteye. Every night!
2. Get enough vitamin D3. Take 1,000 IU a day; 1,200 after age 60.
3. Get your ahhhs. Both periods of big stress (e.g., the holidays) and quick hits (e.g., parking rage) take a toll. Carve out 10 minutes a day for meditation, deep breathing, and serene stretching. Don’t let stress get the best of you.
4. Walk. It keeps your body humming and your head clear.
http://wt.dlisys.com/nancysnotions/NN121334.asp?e=&src=&x1= There are 2 things about this Nancy Notions sale campaign that are intriguing. The fact that you can buy Klasse needles in bulk and @ a great discount and the fact that the fat quarters are all color co-ordinated. The needles, we can all use. I often feel that is what I use my Joanne’s coupons for. And the fat quarters, would make a marvelous color coordinated purse during the summer session in the computerized machine embroidery course.
http://www.bfc-creations.com Check out this embroidery design website. They have lots of freebies scattered all over. If you don’t have an embroidery machine, yet, always pick up the freebies in .PES format. They have graciously said they would give the class a discount on the designs to be used in the summer embroidery course. Details to be worked out after the new Spring semester starts.
http://www.printsew.com/ Very interesting. I signed up for this. I want to see how they will print on a standard home printer. If any of you have tried this, let me know and we will compare notes. I did everything they required. I got my password. I got the free program “File Open.” I could NOT get this site to let me download the pattern. AAARGH!