elizabeth_mn: (seaside)
I share a lot of stuff from work with you guys, and mostly it's just for the fun of it and because it's interesting. Today I am going to be really upfront about the fact that I am trying to sell you stuff. So feel free to skip.

We are having a big sale at Treadle, and every fabric in the store is discounted! Here is what's new and noteworthy for us costumer types:

Silk taffetas, including lots of shot ones. I won't pretend we can compete with the bargain warehouses price-wise, but this really is the good stuff, not thin and cheap like you get on ebay. You will definitely get what you pay for.

More! )
We are low-tech, but if you see something you like here or anywhere on our blog, you can call us at (651)698-9690 to place a mail order. Support a small, independent business!
elizabeth_mn: (seaside)
Here is the jacket I made for work last week. The pattern is Butterick 6140.

lana bolito jackets (2)

The fabric is lana bolito, a boiled/felted wool and rayon blend. The pattern was designed for this fabric, or one very like it, and has raw edges everywhere since it doesn't fray.

I liked sewing this. The fabric is spongy and forgiving. The pattern is roomy so I sized way down, and I may still take it in a bit in back when I take it home. I cut a small in the bust and hip and an XS in the waist, whereas the chart would have put me on the high end of medium. But that's pretty much par for the course with big 4 patterns.

I can see wearing it in spring with bright turquoise and fuchsia, with a short pencil skirt and leggings and a big scarf.

I have another work project this week, a blouse in a Japanese cotton double gauze floral. This fabric is wonderful and amazing. So soft and pretty! The pattern is a pretty basic princess-seamed, button down shirt with a collar band and no collar. My vision here is something to wear under cardigans instead of a long-sleeved tee shirt. If it works I will make more, in soft light flannel and lawn.

Sewing for work can be a little stressful with the deadlines and the pressure to make things perfect, but it is a nice perk since everything for the project is free. And sometimes it lets me try styles or fabrics I normally wouldn't.


Oct. 23rd, 2015 10:22 am
elizabeth_mn: (seaside)
More fun new crap at work: double-faced cotton sateen ribbons. They're so scrummy and I want all of them.

elizabeth_mn: (seaside)
The fabric store where I work, Treadle Yard Goods, is on Grand Avenue in St. Paul, a local fashionable shopping street that has emphasized small independent businesses for the last several decades.

There is currently a controversial proposal about parking meters on Grand that you can read about here.

I think meters are a terrible idea. People already complain constantly about parking being "a nightmare" on Grand, and I often have customers tell me they circled the block three times, or that the only reason they bothered stopping was they happened to see a spot out front. Then they go on to spend $100.

Our classes usually run about 3 hours. If students have to pay for parking too I think we will get fewer signups!

People might be fine paying meters for necessary things like doctors offices and banks, or even restaurants, but for the majority of non-essential businesses (as much as I hate to think of fabric as non-essential!) no way.

The only thing meters will do is divert shoppers away from independent, locally owned businesses and make them decide to go to the Mall of America instead.

I understand that the city needs money and I am totally willing to pay my taxes and support services, but there are better ways!
elizabeth_mn: (winter)
Before I did the last-minute hat, I spent a few days on this petticoat.

treadle 004

Technically it's a class display for work, but I also just wanted a nice new petticoat. Still trying to replace some of my older, crappier costume components. And also, you always need more petticoats, period.

It's the early bustle view of TV 170, made in plain quilting cotton. I clean-finished all the seams, mostly French but I felled the CB to each side so I could carry the same finish up to the split opening. I planned to cover the horizontal seams (where the flounce and ruffle join) with binding, but ran out of time. I will add it later when I can take it home.

I like this pattern a lot; it goes together so easily and the tucks are just adorable, but it feels slightly skimpy to me for early bustle. It's displayed here over this natural form petticoat (It's all I could spare at the moment) and a bustle pad. I think next time I might make up a new side panel that's wider and gathered, to give more side fulness to the silhouette.

The waistband also seems a bit excessive to me. It's so wide! And the drawstring is really only needed in back. A tiny detail, but I like tiny details.
elizabeth_mn: (seaside)
I started this dress before christmas happened and only got around to finishing it yesterday. It's a project I was assigned at Treadle. Okay, "assigned" is not quite accurate, more like suggested. We got several free copies of the new Decades Of Style pattern, the Decades Everyday E.S.P. Dress, and I was asked to make a display along with another of my coworkers. She chose a bold Mondrian-esque cotton print and I of course gravitated to this hot pink silk dupioni.

pink dupioni dress 006

Now that I have gotten over slubby silks for costume purposes (at first I used them because I didn't know better, then I knew better but used them anyway because they were cheap, now I just avoid, generally) I am all about dupioni for modern stuff. It's cute and fun and keeps it a little more casual. I am aware that a shiny bright silk might not have been the ideal choice for an "everyday" style pattern, but whatever, I went with it. I wanted a bright pink dress, dammit!

Here's a photo of me wearing it - I took this before I left for work so it was a little rushed.

pink dupioni dress 003

The pattern was interesting. I like the idea that Decades of Style is making a more casual line but keeping that vintage feel. The raglan sleeves are easy and comfy. The gathered skirt is a nice width. The square neck is not what I would typically choose for myself; it's a little high and not the most flattering shape for me.

I found the neck facings a bit fiddly, but not really any more so than your average sewing pattern. Facings are so ubiquitous in modern sewing patterns, but they are a feature that's almost never seen on readymade clothing. I always find them tedious and untidy. The suggestion of under-stitching to keep them from rolling out never actually works. I always, always either tack them at the shoulder seams, topstitch, or use invisible hemming stitches (hand or machine) to nail the thing down.

Still, altogether a solid pattern, with a nice fit and cute shape.
elizabeth_mn: (seaside)
I'm teaching a project class at Treadle on the Colette Moneta, a sweet little knit dress with a bunch of options. For the display, I made this (view 2):

moneta 001

I LOVE this fabric. It's a cotton/spandex jersey from Art Gallery Fabrics and it's covered with little butterflies and triangles.

moneta 004

moneta 003

This afternoon the dress will go to Treadle to display. I plan to take some nicer photos of it to promote the class!

The Moneta is a pretty nice pattern. As always with their patterns, the fit is great. There is negative ease (because it's a knit) and the proportions are nice. When I am sewing with Colette, I never need to worry about sizing down to avoid swimming in my clothes. The measurement chart is always right.

A couple little details I will change when I make it again: 1.) it's a little long in the waist. I know that's just how people are wearing things these days, but I like my waistline at my waist. 2.) The back neckline is inexplicably 1" lower than the front neckline. You can see from the photos on the pattern page that this is an intentional design detail, but I don't like it. 3.) Ditch the pockets.

I did not use my serger for this (gasp!). For the class, I don't want to make a serger a requirement, so I wanted my display to reflect conventional zigzag machine sewing. She suggests using a twin needle for hems, but I hate doing that, so they are just zigzagged also.

I turned to my trusty Sew U: Home Stretch any time I needed a reference or second opinion. Colette has their own knits book now but I haven't got around to buying it, and anyway, Sew U is pretty good, if a little dated.

moneta 007

If you (or anyone you know) are in the Twin Cities area, please check out our classes page. The Moneta class starts Oct. 3rd.
elizabeth_mn: (seaside)
Something for work!


Ok, that's not entirely accurate. It IS for Treadle, but I get to keep my displays when they are no longer needed, usually a couple months.

When I saw the printed corduroy with the foxes I just knew that F had to have pants made of it. I decided to do them as a display and the pattern I chose (New Look 6257) had a jacket too, so I thought why not? The jacket is made of lightweight wool flannel and lined in a cotton print. The collar in the pattern is stupid so I drafted a Peter Pan collar, using the tutorial here as a guide. I made covered buttons from the apple print.

The pants took an hour. The jacket I spent a few days on. It was pretty simple but I made a few silly mistakes and had to do a couple do-overs. Plus when I say "a few days," I really mean "an hour a day for three days," because I just can't seem to scrape together a nice long sewing session lately. It's all bits and pieces for me.

It is suddenly chilly here. 60s in the day and 40s-50s at night. So probably more autumn sewing like this will be on my agenda. I kind of want to make the same coat over again in a cotton twill or maybe a wide-wale corduory. And she definitely needs more pants!
elizabeth_mn: (seaside)
I finished these this morning and hung the display up at work this afternoon. I spent most of the time this morning futzing with my satin stitch. I just hate doing that one.


I love the red one, and I like the idea of the yellow/multi one, but. . . it didn't cohere perfectly. The big purple eyebrow at the top looks clunky and out of place, but I needed somewhere to put my satin stitch. Also the yellow-on-yellow doesn't show up much. I knew I wanted a gold tone in there but this one was just too close to the fabric color. I used what I had around.

I do love the way the shading stitch came out, though. Funny, that stitch never looks very good until you step back from it. And I like the way the 3-part motif ended up at the bottom.


The yellow one as you can see is mounted in the hoop; the red one is sewn over a piece of foamcore board.


I am so glad I did two of them because they have such different looks. Hopefully they will attract students to take the class!
elizabeth_mn: (seaside)
I have a beginning embroidery class coming up, and I am stitching displays to hang in the store for promoting the class.

Still damp from blocking but you get the idea.


Stitches from top to bottom: running, wrapped running, stem, chain, back, herringbone, cross, feather, split, couching, laid filling, satin, long and short, french knots, speckling. It seems like a lot to cover, but theirs will be much smaller, and those linear stitches go pretty quickly.

I am planning a second display. One thing I have learned is that people really respond to color more than anything else, so I am making the next one in modern brights.

I also plan to display it in the hoop because that is still so hip these days.


Aug. 15th, 2013 05:08 pm
elizabeth_mn: (seaside)
I've got a plan for The Husband's regency suit, but today I have no sewing time because I am devoting myself to updating (and scheduling entries for) the Treadle blog.

I've been doing the blog for work for about a year and a half now. I am really enjoying it, and I would like to think I have upped the quality a little. I'm definitely not at PurlSoho level (yet?) but our pageviews have more than tripled since I took over. So please, I would love it if you would check it out, or like our facebook page - you'll see almost all the blog entries since I tend to link most of them there.

Thanks, I promise the advertising is over now.
elizabeth_mn: (blue silk back)
All I managed to get photo-wise were a few really quick ones with my street clothes just before the corset was whisked off to work for display.


Reading about [livejournal.com profile] jenthompson's issues with wrinklyness in her corset, I should probably be ashamed of myself for calling this done, but I just don't have time in my life to make it (or anything, ever) any better than this.  That being said, I'm pretty happy with it!  It gives me a 2" waist reduction, the bust support is good, and the overall shape is nice and curvy.

Lots more photos! )
elizabeth_mn: (blue silk back)
About a week and a half ago I alluded to a display project I made for Treadle.  This is it:


One of my coworkers caught me one day and said, "Hey, I saw a pattern that you should make for a display."  Yeah, I tend to be easily convinced.

I really thought I was over dupioni but I love it in this skirt!  I find it both exciting and annoying that the pattern is a pretty plain pleated skirt, but because the accompanying photo is made in bright silk dupioni, it becomes eye-catching and awesome.
elizabeth_mn: (Default)
I finished the last couple and set up a little display at work to advertise my class.

I wanted to go simpler for this one, totally monochrome, everything self-fabric.  It's silk noil.

One more, and the display I made of them at work )

elizabeth_mn: (Default)
I posted this at my work blog, but it's too exciting not to share here, too. 

Treadle, as a member of the Fine Fabric Stores group, is finally able to sell McCall's, Vogue, Butterick, and Kwik Sew Patterns for a fraction of the labeled price.  Jo-Ann's and other big box stores have been able to do this for years, but independent stores haven't had this benefit.  Well, now it's our turn!

ALL Vogue patterns will retail for $12, Kwik Sew for $10, and Butterick and McCall's for just $7.50, everyday, effective immediately.  A great price, plus the knowledge that your purchase supports local, independent business.

If you're local to the Twin Cities, come check out Treadle; if not, you can look for an independent fabric store close to you on the Fine Fabric Stores website.
elizabeth_mn: (Default)
Our summer class schedule at work has finally arrived from the printer's!

You can see the whole thing online here: http://www.treadleyardgoods.com/classes

I am teaching two sessions of Basic Hand Sewing as well as the fascinator class.  This will be the most formal teaching I've ever done!  Wish me luck.  (Or, if you've ever been in one of my classes in the past, offer me tips on improvement.)

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