Yet Another New Hobby

DSC_0656It has been a little over a week since I began using the homemade deodorant.  I love it!  I have had no odor whatsoever and my underarms actually look healthier.  I’m very satisfied with it.  I highly recommend switching.

I have been a bit neglectful of my blog the last couple of days because I’ve been busy thinking about making a dress.  I went to the store and bought a pattern and fabric.  Lavender is my favorite color FYI 🙂  A couple of days later, I bought fabric scissors and today I bought the measuring tape.  I have one, but it is way too small, so it’s basically useless for making clothes.

Tonight I cut out the pattern and laid it all out on the fabric that I bought.  It took over an hour to do that.  I had to make sure the lines were perfect.  After taking my measurements though, I freaked out because according to the pattern case I am a size 12.  That’s not right at all.  It’s weird because the complete measurements on the actual pattern are much truer to size, so I am making a size 8.

Anyway, I’m going to make my own Lolita dress.  I have no money, so this is my compromise 🙂

I don’t know why I didn’t make something out of a pattern before.  For so may reasons, it’s the perfect hobby for me.  There’s a lot to figure out and it’s not exactly easy.  It requires patience, which is something I need to work on.  Even so, the fact that it requires so much precision is good for me and actually compliments my abilities, not my weaknesses associated with OCD.  It fits my personality and work ethic.  I’m already having fun doing this.

I will keep everyone updated on it’s progress 🙂

Also, if you have any pointers for sewing a pattern, please share them!  I could use all the help I can get.

Thanks for your help and thanks for reading!


PS I’m super tired, so if I haven’t gotten to your comment yet, it’s because I’m going to sleep now!  I want to give thoughtful replies and just can’t do that now 🙂


79 thoughts on “Yet Another New Hobby

  1. Wow! Good luck. My sister bought herself a sewing machine, brought it home and it’s sitting lonely in the corner. I hope one day she’ll also start making dresses, for me. 🙂

    1. That’s hilarious for 2 reasons: 1) he leaped right onto the pattern that I had sprawled on my bed and I’m surprised he didn’t punch a hole in it, 2) he steals my straight pins…

  2. Good luck with your project! I think you will excel! I am not a sewer or a wood worker or anything that requires patience and precision. Heaven knows how I am good a cooking but that seems to suit my personality better. Once you understand the science behind cooking it is a bit slap dash and you are done, I like that. Loving the colour you have chosen, looking forward to the updates.

  3. CUt the fabric a little larger than the pattern. It never fails, at least for me, to come out just a little too tight. So, give yourself a little more wiggle room. Measure twice and cut once.

  4. I look forward to seeing how you go!! I’ve always wanted to try and make my own dresses. I think the closest I ever got was making a dress for one of my barbie dolls.. but it’s never too late to change that right?
    Hope yours goes well!! xx

  5. This is so cool! I can’t wait to see pictures! My only advice is make sure you leave enough edging around the pattern for sewing, about a centimetre, I think. It’s been a while since I’ve sewn clothes. Try to avoid anything with pockets or a zipper as both are a nightmare to sew! Good luck with it! 🙂

    1. Thank you! I just cut out the pattern tonight and it wasn’t too bad. The notches will help with lining it up. It does require a zipper, but Youtube has been helping me out with it! Thank goodness for that 😉

  6. Ok, first, go by your actual measurements, not the pattern sizes. Get some Swedish tracing paper and trace the pattern onto your new paper. You can mix match size points to customize your pattern. Cut out what you’ve traced, not the original. Write what it is and your #/measurements on the pattern place. Also draw the direction of your grain line.
    If your fabric is $$$ it’s worth making a muslin/scrap sample first, for sizing.
    Find the pattern on pattern review dot com for tips.

    1. Sounds like some good suggestions! You know what you’re doing I suppose 🙂 Luckily, I bought cheap fabric for my first go at this, so I’m not terribly worried about it not looking awesome.

  7. Megan, there are lots of sewing blogs out there, which is a great way to find out how other people got on with the pattern, what they found tricky, what they changed, top tips etc. I just did a search for “2176 pattern review” and there were lots of links, including this one.
    Looks like you chose a good pattern, people like it! I think it has a zipper, I recommend searching for some zipper inserting tutorials before trying that as it’s tricky to make it look neat, which I guess would bug you. You might want to try practising on some scrap fabric first, you could always use your scraps to make a little pouch with a zipper, there are loads of tutorials online. It means buying a second zipper (or ripping one out of some obselete garment), but it might stop you making a dress you don’t want to wear.

    Can’t tell if your fabric is shiny, that will make it harder to wok with, search for help if it is,I think you can get fabrix stabiliser to spray on it that comes out in the wash.

    Have fun making it, it’s a gorgeous colour!

    1. I have googled reviews on this pattern and they definitely have been helpful. I have found some sewing blogs too 🙂 It’s a fun thing to do really. I am going to definitely be looking at videos of how to put the zipper in. It is more complicated than I thought, but I’ve found a few tutorials that seem simple and helpful 🙂

  8. Quite the endeavor but i wish you success on doing so. This way you end up having a dress you really love and even made yourself. As for sewing tips. I just handy enough to sew on a button 😀

  9. Maybe the sizes are from back in the 1950s? I know that what was considered an 8 has changed a lot over the years?

    All I can remember are the basics, but here’s what I remember from back when I sewed (my mom was a home-ec teacher, so I learned to sew at a pretty young age, but I haven’t in ages):

    – Use pins to pin the pattern to the cloth in several spots, preferably close to the edges. The pattern will get bumped around accidentally so the pins will keep it from turning out lopsided.

    – My mom had this board that was basically cardboard and folded up that she’d due all her cutting on. That or the very large dining room table. A flat surface is a must.

    – When sewing two pieces together, keep them pinned at various points. I don’t know if you’re using a machine or hand-sewing. A machine is less forgiving of small errors, but much much faster and more consistent.

    I think the gist of my advice is “abuse pins to keep everything where you want it”… I’m not sure if that’s helpful to you or something you see as really obvious, but that was what I struggled with the most back in the day. That and patience.

    Good luck!

    1. I have kept all of your tips in mind as I’ve been working on this project. I have designated a special table for my sewing table and have cut everything on it. Pins are definitely a must! I have been using a sewing machine. I would lose interest VERY quickly if I had to hand sew 😉 I’m super impatient! thanks for the help 🙂

  10. I have never done this, but I grew up watching my mom use patterns to make us clothes. My only advice is to use a sewing board and tons of pins. 🙂

  11. Hi there, thanks for liking my blogpost! I just popped over and am now following your blog. I actually also have OCD as well as Tourette’s syndrome. They are closely related, one often goes with the other (lucky me!). And, I do have to tell you, sewing has been one of the greatest salvations and joys that I have attempted. I only began sewing in December, 2012 and already I am, ummm, well obsessed. It does seem to engage a part of the brain that allows you to focus fully and I find even my Tourette’s just stops. Often the same thing happens when I play piano, but there is so much more satisfaction and things like math involved with sewing that I just love. I look forward to hearing about and sharing experiences with you!

    1. I am so glad to read this comment! I think you know exactly where I come from when I say that I need sewing. It sounds weird, but it does make me think critically and concentrate a lot. I have always wondered if I might have Tourette’s as well. I have a lot of tics, which come and go the more I am stressed. They were a lot worse when I was in school. Anyway, so glad to meet you and thanks for sharing this 🙂

  12. Megan,
    That’s great that you found a new hobby that fits your personality needs. I recently took up knitting because it fits my own personality needs–one being the need for something to do in social situations when I feel anxious. It helps a lot! Another way it helps is to make myself stop and unwind before bed–knitting helps my mind relax and process things a bit before I go to bed.

    P.S. I haven’t spoken up here before, but I have really enjoyed reading your blog!


    1. I have tried knitting and for some reason am terrible at it, but I’m glad it works for you. Sewing is a good way for me to concentrate on something other than the things I usually stress about. Thanks for speaking up! So glad to meet you 🙂

  13. Pattern sizes don’t equate with ready-to-wear sizes. They never will. It’s a good lesson in not letting the number on your clothes scare you!
    The reason the pattern seems big is wearing ease. You want a garment to be a little bigger than your body so that you can bend, breathe, etc. Commercial patterns often have extra ease so you can fit them after they’ve been assembled, so you’re probably still fine.
    I’m still thinking about making a dress for you! (And now I know that Japanese patterns will be okay. They run really small!) I think I can do it, so send me pics of what you’d want!

    1. Hey! Sorry I’m so delayed in answering your comments. I came down with a cold, so I’ve been so tired. I’d love for you to make one for me 🙂 I have no idea how much something like this would cost, but we can work that out. I am not sure what I would want myself. I’m leaning more toward the sweet or classic style, but am flexible 🙂 Whatever you’re more comfortable making. I don’t want to bombard you with something too advanced. I don’t mind discussing this through comments, but just in case, you can email me at thewarinmybrain at hotmail dot com

      1. Sweet and classic are what I do best! I usually wear a blend of the two styles. Some of my work is on my lolita tumblr, which is
        Feel free to check it out. I’d suggest a jsk first, because it’s wearable in any season. The more lace and ruffles, the spendier it gets, but as far as I’m concerned the sky’s the limit!

      2. Awesome! I think a jsk would be great. I love your tumblr ^.^ I like the floral prints quite a bit, but I’m open to anything. I think you probably know better! Could you maybe email me with some pictures of what you think would work and give me an estimate? I can give you my measurements and such then 🙂 Thank you!

      3. Nope. One is a replica (shame on me!) and the other is bodyline. They’re nice simple styles though, so something similar is no problem.
        Usually if I made it I say so in the post.

      4. Ah, ok 🙂 I looked further and saw that. You do great work! I wish I could do something like that. I’m working on a dress now, but I’m so slow, I need perfection in everything I do. It will probably turn out to look like a sack of garbage, but oh well 🙂 Anyway, just send me an email!

      5. Don’t be so hard on yourself! I have around 20 years of sewing experience! (I started seriously sewing around age 10) Practice is the key.
        I’ll drop you an email as soon as I can with ideas and estimates. Feel free to email me a range you’re comfortable spending and I’ll work with it.
        Good luck with your dress! It will be fine as long as you work carefully! 🙂

      6. 🙂 thank you! I’ve done a lot of sewing in the past, but only on quilts that I’ve made with supervision from my grandma. Never clothes, so this is interesting. I will send you an email now 🙂 The only reason I’m so quick is because I work on the computer ALL day 😉 So no worries!

  14. What a cool project! If it were me, I’d leave more than a cm margin for sewing, but I have peasant fingers.

    My grandfather was a physicist in the old USSR…and he made his own shoes. I would love to have learned this skill from him, but it wasn’t to be. He was killed in one of Stalin’s purges, long before my birth.

    So I’ve taught myself old-school sheet-metal work. Amazing what you can do with a few different hammers.

    1. That’s an amazing story about your grandfather. You must be very proud of that. Reminds me of a story my grandpa always told us, that my ancestors had to eat their shoes on the voyage here because all they had left to eat was the leather on their shoes. I don’t know if it’s true totally. He always told tall tales 😉 My grandmother was a fantastic sewer and quilter, which I’ve learned from her. She passed away 6 years ago. I don’t want to lose that skill.
      I’ve always admired metal working and have thought it was such a beautiful craft. What kinds of things do you make? FYI, I love anything cat 😉

  15. It is a bit scarey to see the difference in shop and ready to wear sizes but the actual number doesn’t really matter.
    If the finished measurements printed on the pattern pieces are the same as yours then you will need to cut your dress out a bit bigger than the pattern because you might not be able to move without splitting seams otherwise. The best thing to do is always to check the fit as you go along then you won’t be disappointed at the end.
    Hope that helps.

  16. Megan, how I commend you for your hobby, this is the perfect project to help with the aligning and harmonisation of your left and right brains, using both precision and creativity is truely healing for your ocd.
    Have you tried drawing mandalas? Theres one on my most resent post.

    Also the lavander coloured dress will help you to think positive as it charges your crown chakra and third eye.

    The joint work of both male and female sidea of the brain is greatly healing.

    Peace, love and light

    1. The concentration and precision needed to sew is definitely healing in a way. I have never tried drawing mandalas, but I will check out your post. I’ve never even heard of that before 🙂

  17. Have fun with this!!! I got into sewing because I wanted to make nice things on a small budget – it’s very rewarding… and there’s a lot of potential to make perfect fitting clothes!

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