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Friday, July 31, 2015

July 2015 Instagram Round Up

And we're back, for the second installment of the monthly Instagram round-up! (Did you miss the first one? Get caught up here.) Let's see what me and my phone have been up to this month...

That's my work for the classes I'm taking this summer at the Academy of Art University! I was creating roughs for Fashion Design in this picture. 

This picture was the sneak peak/announcement for this post

Oh hey, that's Bundaberg. Bundaberg enjoys food, stealing food, and looking at food.

And another sneak peak, for this post.

And here's a close-up of the tracings for my final renderings for Fashion Design. They're a little faint in the photo, but this was right before I started coloring. Fingers crossed that it all goes well!

Then this really cool thing happened while I was painting. Psychedelic, yo. 

I was taking a picture of some street art and a cyclist went by and LOOK HOW COOL THAT IS. YAY CYCLIST. 

I took a field trip to the IDEO campus on the Embarcadero to interview some alumni from my school. I loved this sign, and then when you throw an Insta filter on, wham bam thank you ma'am. A great little typography post.

I was altering some thrift store shirts for my Construction class. There will be a post about it after I come back from my trip! 

I burned some midnight oil working on my final illustrations for Fashion Drawing class. I'm also going to make a post about the work I did for each of my Academy of Art University classes. Be on the lookout for that when I come back from my trip!

Speaking of my trip, be sure to follow me on Instagram (shameless of self-promotion) to stay up to date: @taftisseamstress. I'm going to be visiting France, Switzerland, Spain, and Germany for nearly 4 weeks. The blog will keep auto-uploading and I'll post on Insta, so don't worry about missing me!

Hugs, Taft W-K 

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Blue and Gray Quilt: Part 1

I started working on this quilt last Labor Day...and it's all handsewn. It took a month or so to track down enough fabric; I started out really picky about which ones I wanted to buy, and then realized that being picky was pointless, what with the amount of variety I wanted to have.

It's a simple, square design, alternating blue and gray fabrics, mostly patterns. It's also symmetrical on the horizontal and vertical middles. 

It's also entirely stitched by hand (shoutout to Netflix for keeping me entertained, woooo!). I sewed the squares into rows, then the rows into the top. The back is a simple gray cotton, which a little bit of piecing because it wasn't big enough to cover the whole quilt. 

Dang, I just love the back! Looks so clean!!

The blue binding is some random, bias tape binding I got at the Alemany flea market. Seems like they don't get a lot of teenaged sewing fanatics and two of the vendors were very excited to get rid of the sewing stuff I was interested in. Picked up some magnetic pin cushions with pins (are they still called pin cushions if they're magnetic?), that bias tape, and some vintage thimbles. 

Some of the fabric is old and from my stash (recognize that blue and white floral in the corner?), some of it is new and bought specifically for the quilt. I still have scraps of most of the fabric and hope to make a matching pillow or something when I'm done. 

Speaking of being done....that does not look like it is in my near future. I have been working on this quilt for nearly 10 months and I've only quilted three or so of the rows. My attention span is running out on this one. 

So I went to the fabric store and got matching thread for my industrial machine. 

(Her name is Blue Belutha. Sturdy, but most temperamental piece of equipment I have ever met since the lock on my freshman locker.)

Oh hey, that's me. I took a selfie with my machine, cause that's what my life is all about. Sewing in my room. By myself. (My friends say I'm a grandma trapped in a teenager's body. I do carry the quilt around in a wicker basket.) I might look a little crazy in the photo, but that's cause I'm CRAZY about SEWING. Damn, that was smooth. 

I'll keep you all updated on my attention span for this project. 
Much love, Taft W-K 

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Taft Learns How To Use More Material Faster (also, math equations)

I learned how to use a twin needle on my (mom's) sewing machine! It's very exciting and has upped my sewing game to a whole new level. 

For example, I now no longer have to fold hems twice. Since I'm lazy/busy/easily bored, I figure that covering the raw edge a twin needle zig-zag (lots of thread) is good enough. Which brings us to the title of this post...

Previously, there was 2 thread sources, but the twin needles creates a need for a third source, which means I use 1.5 times as much thread. Additionally, I zig-zag stitch to create the illusion of a coverstitcher (haha, so much cheating), which uses about twice as much thread (rough estimate on that one). 

Since I'm not folding the hem twice, it takes me half the amount of time to hem a garment. 

Now let's say I use X yards of thread in 1 hour. I'm using 1.5 times as many thread sources and 2 times as much thread per stitch. The time required has been halved. Let's math that one out real quick:

(1.5)(2)(X)yds/(.5)hrs = 6X yds/hr. 

That's about 6 times as much material per hour. This just either made me a really productive seamstress, or created a really expensive lifestyle. Thanks a lot, twin needle. Thanks a lot. 

Math for the win, y'all's. 
-Taft WK

Oh but just you wait! I never let you go without any pictures. So here's some pictures of my latest twin needle projects: 

A friend exchanged chocolate for a quick dress alteration. Bartering for the win. 

Not sure if that's what the back is supposed to look like, I'm still experimenting with the tension. 

I also used it to fix the armhole on this vintage dress that I've had since middle school. Just let the hem out every few years so it doesn't get too short...

The thread matched the fabric very closely on this one, so you can't see it very well in the pictures.

And finally you can see some other double needle work in this post, where there was a quick sneak peak. 

See you next week!
-Taft WK

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Gray Shirt with Red Hearts - Mothers Day Present!

And yes, I hang my head in shame. A post about the Mother's Day present I made is going up mid-July. But better late than never!

For this piece, I used the tunic pattern I've already made several times for mom. I changed the neckline to a scoop-neck and lengthened the sleeves so they reached the wrists. 

The fabric is a cotton-lycra blend knit I picked up at (wait for it, you won't see this coming) a Fabric Outlet 40% off sale! Shocker!

This was the little touch that made it special. I made little heart patches for the elbow. 

Some polka dot ribbon for the facing on the back collar. 

And whoa, what's that?! Is that, dare we say it, a hem finished with a double needle? Say what?! Cause that seems a little advanced. The double needle saga will be continued next week....

-Taft WK 

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Chevron Tunic for Mom

You've probably seen all the tunics and dresses I've made for mom and here's another! It's a fabric she picked out at Fabric Outlet. 

Apparently, she wore it to work and someone asked if it was Missoni!

The hems were tricky with this knit. There's a lot of texture which made it difficult to sew straight. You can see it when you look at the stitching up close, but is much less noticeable while being worn.

Be on the lookout, there's some alterations of this pattern coming up! 
-Taft WK

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

June 2015 Instagram Round Up

Hey y'all! I'm starting a new segment on my blog: monthly Instagram round-ups! My new method of announcing new blog posts on social media is to post pictures from each post on Instagram, which automatically sends the post to my Tumblr and Facebook. Pretty nifty, huh?

I thought it would be nice to share all those photos on the blog at the end of the month and link them to their respective posts. That way, nobody misses out! 

So, without further ado, I welcome you to Making Tembo's first Monthly Instagram Roundup....

I started out with a picture of the pillow I made for my friend Cam

Next was a sneak peak of my prom dress

I also shared a picture of my work space as I set up for a summer of making!

I learned how to use an upholstery needle while fixing a chair my mother and I re-upholstered together a couple years ago. 

Here's an example of some of the embroidery I did on my English project

And finally there was a close up of the shirt I altered with my box of scraps. 

And that's it for June! Follow me on Instagram to keep up real-time: @taftisseamstress

'Til next week,