All twisted up and I don't know how to feel about it | Week 29 | #52wonderfilledweeks

Ah, where to start about this week?  Well, I'm tired so I will just cut to the chase...I need a new RED blouse/shirt/top... stat!  Next week my horn ensemble, the Chicago Horn Consort, is performing here in Chicago and the following week presenting at the International Horn Society's 50th Annual Symposium. To go with our theme of fire we decided on red, solid color tops and the traditional black pants.  I have one 2+ yard cut of bamboo lycra in my studio and a very short amount of time to get this done.  The thing is I am stuck on what to make for this in what pattern to use.  My first thought was to make another flutter sleeve LDT like I did in WEEK 24.  But I am not sure about wearing such a flowy top with my dress pants that are somewhat wide legged..I feel like two WIDE things, on a WIDE body = meh.  Since there will be photos taken (maybe even video) I'd like to look, or give the illusion of, being slimmer, HA!  I am also not a fan of the flutter LDT in a solid I have been searching for some different shirt patterns to see if something would speak to me.  I stumbled acrossed it one night searching through my various sewing pages on Facebook. The Lotus Blouse from Love Notions seemed to fit the bill.  What got me was the lead photo, which happened to be in a solid red! It looked great and everything I read said it actually hid/disguised "fluffy" bits. I bought the pattern and stalked the Facebook groups for a few days before I tried it.

 I always make a "muslin" (practice) version but this was important to do this time since I only have a certain amount of red fabric on hand and the clock is ticking.  I opted to try my first Lotus with some left over cream DBP so if it turned out nice I could use it for some of my remaining summer concerts (I still have 8 left!). I also had read that some people felt it ran big and long.  Knowing this ahead of time I decided to preemptively alter the pattern.   Based on my measurements I was between an XL on top and a XXXL nearer my hips.  I also knew I wanted to take out some length.  The pattern comes with a lengthen/shorten line which was really helpful.  Since the pattern is drafted for someone 5'5" and I am 5'3" I took out 1.5" (1/2" per 1" difference).  

(I purposely made my mark large.  Designer's work really hard on their patterns and you'd be surprised to learn that people will try and steal their hard work through pictures!)

I traced both the XL size and the XXXL size and graded between from shorten/lengthen line.  I used my french curve to redraw the curve for under the arms and a straight edge to grade the center front seam. 

Once I had the grading done on both the front twist bodice piece and the back bodice piece I folded down  the pattern on the shorten/lengthen line 3/4" (when you fold it over it doubles to 1.5") on each of the bodice pieces as well. 

I think preparing the pieces with my alterations took longer than actually sewing the shirt.  Well...cutting the pieces out was a little problematic as the front bodice piece is HUGE due to the twist.  

I was leery of how the center seam would end up looking and worried about the finish of the center seam but I followed the directions and it all worked out beautifully.  But I'm not sold on the shirt! I don't know if it's my alterations... I think it's a little too short now as the twist hits right mid c-section flap (yuck) and is a little tight in the hips...but then I took some photos to show you all and ended up liking it again.  What do YOU think? Is this a hit or miss??

Not sold.

At the wrong angle it can be very unflattering...but then again what shirt can't? Especially when you're fluffy!

Okay, okay, in solid red this might be nice...with a few more alterations.
I think I will split the difference on the shortening...and only take off 3/4" total, use a 1/4" seam allowance instead of the drafted 3/8" and add some sleeves and see what happens...and if all else fails, and it's an epic mess I will run to Kohl's HA! 

Truly though this was a really easy pattern to make and I think if I can get the tweaks just right it will be a staple in the Wonder closet!



Last week I told you about a cute little project we were working on for the 4 year old.  I finished it this week after waiting for some thicker laminating sheets. It's a behavior chart.  I got the idea from P's preschool teacher.  She had made something similar for their class last year and when all the kids landed at the top they got a prize.  P has been asking for a bike and we thought we could try and reward good deeds with moving up the chart and praising her positive actions.  Three days in and she's only moved one island (see below).  I'm hopeful that things will get better in the next week.

I used my Cameo to cut out each "level".  Then I glued the cut outs to regular white copy paper because that is all I had on hand!

Once they were all dried I ran them through the laminator.  I had some lame 3mm sheets and they just kept getting caught in the laminator so I had to order heavier sheets. 7mm did the it wrong I love a good lamination?

I trimmed the sheets down to a half inch.  ***TIP*** use a rotary blade for cutting this as well.  I just write "paper" on the blade and only use it for that medium.

A quick corner clip with my corner punch and we have nice rounded edges!

And all set up! She can move through out the day, left or right, but it's where she ends up at the end of the day that matters.  1 point = 1island or move on the map.  At the end she she will have EARNED a bike! I plan on adding a few stops along the way as well, like after 8 points she can go mini golfing or get a pedicure with mommy...I'm hoping this works.  We've had some real four year old attitude lately...

When I showed a friend she joked that P was "island hopping" LOL!


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