If you are loving the new Fall Patterns from Vogue as much as I am, you are probably already sewing for cooler weather. It struck me that they were showing some interesting designs and perhaps taking some welcome chances in this collection.
Posted by Susan Liane, The Smuggler's Daughter on 8/22/2017
I love dresses and I especially loved two of the dress patterns. It seems that everyone agrees with me about V9268 by Kathryn Brenne, as it has been the best seller so far and that it is even sold out in most stores and online. (Congratulations Kathryn!) It has been so nice to see what Kathryn Brenne has produced for the last few seasons. This one is easy, fun and striking, so if you do happen to find it, it will make a nice project for a sweater dress or some other knit.
What do you think of Vogue's new fall patterns?
Posted by Susan Liane, The Smuggler's Daughter on 9/28/2016
Vogue Patterns just published their Winter Holidays pattern collection and it is full of surprises, and some wonderful choices for your winter sewing. Overall, what is best about this collection is that there are some new names in the book.
Kayla Kennington has knocked it out of the park with her new pattern Vogue 9229. These tunics with overlays are very current and wearable for many body types. I love the sleeve and collar variations and feel like I could sew both View A and B, and end up with two totally different, yet fantastic, garments. These tunics are great for both work or evening attire. This is one that I’m definitely sewing.
Just out are the new summer patterns from Vogue and it is difficult to imagine any sewista not being able to find something among them to make her happy to sew. Here are my top choices:
Posted by Susan Liane, The Smuggler's Daughter on 3/9/2016
Posted by Susan Liane, The Smuggler's Daughter on 11/25/2015
Last year that was a lot of media buzz about large retail stores essentially forcing their employees to work on Thanksgiving. It seems that “Black Friday” simply had to start early. This year, on the other hand, there is a lot of media buzz about REI staying closed for Thanksgiving and “Black Friday” and there have been stories about how many retail chains are completely closed on Thanksgiving Day. Today I read an article about how the day after Thanksgiving is not such an important shopping day after all.
I, for one, have to admit that on many occasions, while cooking Thanksgiving dinner, I have been grateful to find out that a grocery store was open.
Posted by Susan Liane, The Smuggler's Daughter on 11/4/2015
I got the feedback that my latest review of the new Vogue Patterns was a bit negative for some of you nice people who read my blog. So, I am trying to keep it positive this time when I write about the latest offerings from Butterick.
I am pleased to say that there is one dress pattern that I would love to sew - #6280, which is a style that can be flattering on many different women. I love the opportunity to use a combination of fabrics - like a solid ponte on the sides and a print on the front and back. The neckline is a nice detail that adds interest and you can either include the side pockets or not. I’m seeing this in a black ponte like Maggy London's Jet Black Ponte on the sides and a print like the Red Volcanic Eruption in the front and back. Or you could use Betsey Johnson's Geometric print on the front and back - that would be a real stunner for the right sewista with a bit of silver in her hair.
I am pleased to announce the adoption of “Pumpkin,” a two-year-old Vizsla mix (some people call them Hungarian Pointers) and the sweetest girl you could ever meet. Pumpkin came to me from the County Shelter here is Southern Oregon where she landed after being picked up as a stray. It is so hard to imagine anyone just letting her go - but irresponsible pet owners are a subject for another blog.
Posted by Susan Liane, The Smuggler's Daughter on 10/27/2015
Anyone who truly knows me knows at least a couple of things about me:
Posted by Susan Liane, The Smuggler's Daughter on 10/15/2015
1. I own so many sewing patterns that I will never have enough room to properly store them all. I can’t resist buying more.
2. My personal philosophy when it comes to holiday clothing and decor is to “go gaudy.”
Given those two things together, one might assume that I will buy many of the new Vogue Winter Holiday patterns. Well, one would be wrong because I may be purchasing one or two of them - tops. "Too much" is the phrase that comes to mind.
Plenty of you have followed the recent goings on with the very beautiful sewing blogger “Cashmerette” aka Jenny. She blogs about her wonderful sewing projects and the particulars of plus size sewing, sharing her experiences and expertise freely in the sewing community. www.cashmerette.com
Sadly, we got reminded that plus size women often get hostility directed at them. A young man in his 20s went on her Instagram page and told her that not only was she not attractive to him, but that she should lay off the cake. Basically, he presumed that she is a piece of public property and that he is entitled to comment on her appearance and body size, in addition to telling her what she should and shouldn’t eat.
Posted by Susan Liane, The Smuggler's Daughter on 8/12/2015
Many of us use a sewing machine only a bit less than our personal computers or tablets. If you are anything like me, you hate to be away from your sewing machine for any length of time. But as important as a sewing machine is in our lives, few of us are aware of the important role the sewing machine played in the outcome of the Civil War, a critical moment in American history.
Posted by Susan Liane, The Smuggler's Daughter on 7/29/2015
When the month of July rolls around each summer, most people think about vacations, bbq parties, parades and days at the beach. Not that I don’t think about those things, but when July rolls around for me, I think a lot about sewing for fall.
Posted by Susan Liane, The Smuggler's Daughter on 6/26/2015
Death in the Family - Closure of The Sewing Workshop in San Francisco
Posted by Susan Liane, The Smuggler's Daughter on 6/10/2015
In the first half of 2015 the sewing world has seen a couple of deaths in the family. The Sewing Workshop - the sewing school in San Francisco’s Richmond District is one of them. To so many of us sewistas in the San Francisco Bay Area and beyond, The Sewing Workshop was a place of inspiration, education, fun and friendship.
Posted by Susan Liane, The Smuggler's Daughter on 1/24/2015
Vogue’s spring patterns are out and there are some super cute designs that might even be worth sewing in time to wear to the big Sewing Expo in Puyallup. Here are five patterns that I will definitely buy and will probably sew:
Sandra Betzina is the standout designer this season with this dress to the left, V1442, stealing the show. I can see a cold-weather version of this in wool or even a sweater knit, worn with a simple top underneath. The version seen here is going to be great for summer. And it does look great in the stripe.
Posted by Susan Liane, The Smuggler's Daughter on 9/1/2014
Labor Day, the first Monday in September, was established as a holiday by the labor movement in the United States and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers. It constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.
The Smuggler’s Daughter has many customers in other countries, where Labor Day is celebrated on the first of May, as International Workers Day. Throughout the world, we workers have felt the need for a special celebration of what we have done for the world.
Of course, in 2014, many of us don’t have much affinity for the origin of Labor Day. Rather, it is a long weekend that has come to mark the end of summer, the beginning of the school year, a day off work, and perhaps a fun gathering with a nice bar-b-que. Nothing wrong with that.
For her stylish, comfortable clothes alone, I would love Eileen Fisher. But there is so much more to this designer and her company that I must ask, how do I love thee, let me count the ways...
Posted by Susan Liane, The Smuggler's Daughter on 8/20/2014
The major sewing pattern lines have recently released their new early fall patterns, and the collections include a few surprises, some asymmetry and a handful of head scratchers. Although I am a big fan of the indie pattern companies, the big four still dominate the market and the sewing community looks for fabric to work well with the new patterns from Vogue, Butterick, McCalls and Simplicity.
Posted by Susan Liane, The Smuggler's Daughter on 8/5/2014
OK - time to fess up. Have you ever told people that you were going away for a weekend, and then just stayed at home in your sewing room? Me, too. And as much as I am a patriotic American, the fourth of July just doesn't appeal to me. Everyone tells me that Independence Day is one of the two major holidays here in Ashland, Oregon (the other one being Halloween) and that I really must experience it - parade, fireworks, bbq in the park, etc. But what do I really want to do? Yep, you guessed it - stay home and sew.
Posted by Susan Liane, The Smuggler's Daughter on 7/3/2014
I just got back from a buying trip to San Francisco where I found lots and lots of terrific fabric that will be posted on www.smugglersdaughter.com starting in a couple of weeks. It was a successful trip and I bought designer fabrics, eco-friendly fabrics, knits, wovens, some very special digital prints from France, and an assortment of cottons from India.
Posted by Susan Liane, The Smuggler's Daughter on 5/7/2014
I like New Year's Resolutions and I have had some success with setting and achieving personal goals during this time of year. But have you noticed that the lines for cardio machines at the gym already get shorter when January is not even over? The standard resolutions to exercise more and eat less fattening food are perfectly good ideas, but they don't often stick through the first month, much less the first quarter.
Posted by Susan Liane, The Smuggler's Daughter on 1/7/2014
Trying to find something a bit different and don't have time to make all of your gifts this year? The only reasonable answer is to shop at craft shows. If you like original, hand-made gifts, and if you like shopping local, try out your local craft show before resorting to the mall or to a superstore. In Seattle, we have the Urban Craft Uprising - a large indie craft show with some great sewn items, and lots of other things like pottery, jewelry and the like. But I've got to tell you about the sewn products...
Posted by Susan Liane, The Smuggler's Daughter on 12/7/2013
Posted by Susan Liane, The Smuggler's Daughter on 12/2/2013
Southern Oregon is a lovely place with many nice things to do and see. Ashland is home to Southern Oregon University and the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. Medford is a bit larger town that is north of Ashland and has a few more chain stores and businesses that I'm accustomed to having around. Jacksonville is a tiny historic town that is west of Medford and home to a wonderful music festival - the Britt Festival. Between Ashland and Medford are two little towns, Talent and Phoenix. Talent is my personal favorite for its funky charm. Oregon's wine industry is thriving in this area and although I don't drink, I do think the vineyards make for nice scenery.
This place oozes good sewing vibes.
First, I noticed the cute holiday fabrics in the chain stores around labor day. Although I find them, and most of the crafting projects that go with them, to be too cutesy for my taste, I have to figure that the fabric stores wouldn't be displaying them if people weren't buying them. Right? Then I noticed the ugly holiday garments. I know we've all had fun with parties and contests for ugliest Christmas sweaters, but really. And the ready-to-wear Christmas offerings like the red or green jumpers, often do seem pretty, well yes, ugly.
Posted by Susan Liane, The Smuggler's Daughter on 11/8/2013
In this day and age, it is not a money-saving prospect. In fact, it can
be quite expensive to create original clothing and jewelry. And yet we
do it. It often takes a lot of time and effort – trial and error,
sewing and ripping, pinning and fitting... And it isn't like we have a
lot of extra time. But we still do it.
Posted by Susan Liane, The Smuggler's Daughter on 10/13/2013
that the reason I make clothes and jewelry is the incredible joy of
creativity and the satisfaction of individuality that makes me want to
sew and bead.