Month: July 2014

Butterfly Tank Tutorial

I made this shirt about a month ago.  I’ve been meaning to get a tutorial together for it but well… I’ve been lazy.  I’ve also been working on other projects.  Like the mash-up from last week.  I created this shirt after buying one similar from a consignment shop.  I liked the consignment shirt but thought I could do a bit better.  Like the back was awkward and you couldn’t wear a normal or razorback bra with it. It had to be a strapless bra and those damn things don’t stay put. Here’s the finished product.
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Couple of the front…
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And one of the back. Since the back goes from shoulder to shoulder it’s regular bra comfort all day. The fabric is a kind of heavy polyester. It makes the top a little stiff but it keeps the tie in place so I’m happy. Fussy is not pretty.
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I took the measurements straight from the other shirt and added in the seam allowance of 5/8″. I typically wear a medium shirt. Depending on your personal size or how long you want the shirt, you’ll need to adjust the numbers.

It starts off with two rectangles for the front and back. Then one long strip for the tie. If you don’t have fabric long enough for the tie you can cut shorter pieces then sew them together to get the proper length.
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Once you get those three pieces cut, you need to add the arm hole area. I marked on my fabric the two measurements and then drew a gentle curve free hand style. Sew the two sides together.
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That’s all the cutting. Three pieces and a few cuts. Not too hard right? I hemmed the bottom of the shirt next. I knew the length would be right since the consignment shirt fit me well and I trusted my measurements that I took multiple times. Ya know the old adage measure twice, cut once? Well I’m crazy and measure three or four.

I used a serger on all my raw edges of fabric and I had the width on my machine set to 5/8″. When I ironed I folded it at the serger edge and folded once more ironing each time.
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Onward to the arms! Same type of deal here as the bottom but instead of folding twice I only did it once. Looking back I wish I would have folded over twice to make the arm holes just a touch larger. Again iron before you sew but you’re going to sew closer to the edge.
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This part might be the most difficult to explain. You’re going to fold the edge over and press. Fold it again at the 1 1/8″. Go ahead and sew up the back by top stitching straight across. Be sure you don’t sew the edges closed because the tie needs to snake through there. The front is different. There needs to be two button holes in the center about 1 1/2″ apart and 3/4″ tall. You’ll need to center them vertically as well in the 1 1/8″ section. After making your buttonholes sew that piece down like you did the back.
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Sewing the tie is easy. Sew a long tube, flip it right side out, press and top stitch. I made my ends pointy by folding in the ends before I top stitched them.
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Thread the tie through the buttonhole, around the back piece and up through the other buttonhole. If your tie is long enough you can tie it in a bow but I let my hang with a single tie.
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TADA! It’s awesome shirt time! Can you tell even I’m impressed with myself? lol
tada

Butterick Pattern 5526 & 5711: Mix and Match

I bought this pretty floral fabric from Joann’s during one of their Red Line sales. I couldn’t tell you exactly what it is but I’m pretty sure it’s some sort of polyester.
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I decided to mix a couple patterns. To be more specific, Butterick 5526 version D and Butterick 5711 version B. I wanted the feminine bodice cut of 5526 but the girlie puffy sleeves of 5711. I also left off the collar. I made pattern 5526 before using a plaid cotton. The pattern was easy and came together nicely so I thought I would give it a go again.

This fabric was a bit of a pain to deal with. It’s light and flimsy. Running it through my serger wasn’t too bad but doing any top stitching with my sewing machine ended up in a cussing match. I like to think that I won. I did come out with a great shirt.
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You can see that the fabric is pretty sheer. So I have a tank top underneath, which shows when the sun shoots through the fabric. The seams along the front and back of the shirt really help to give it a feminine feel. It also fits to the body accentuating curves and trust me I’ve got plenty of that! You can see the collar band in this pic. I mainly left the collar off out of laziness but I’m super happy with the results.
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So professional and squinty. The sun was all to happy to try to blind me. You can see the poofiness of the sleeve. It’s longer than the drawing on the pattern. I didn’t want my arm to feel like it was being choked so I added a bit of length.

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Here’s an up close and personal look at that little bit of top stitching. I only did top stitching on the collar, arm, and front bands. Normally, I would have top stitched the front and back seams but honestly you can barely see the seams anyways so it would have been a complete waste of time.

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I did buy another print of this fabric. I was planning on doing the same pattern but I’ve scrapped that idea. I’d rather do something else with it only because of the time it took to fuss with it.

Theirs vs Mine

Pinterest: Success or Fail?

For the hubby’s b-day treat, I made a peach cobbler. Since it’s one of my fav treats I figured it would be best to make him a backup dessert just in case I devour his peach cobbler on my own. I found a recipe for a Reese’s Cup Cheesecake. The recipe comes from Taste and Tell blog. The cheesecake looks extremely rich and chock full of the hubby’s fav candy.

I have never made a proper cheesecake from scratch with the whole spring form pan and all. I didn’t feel deterred by this. I’m pretty stubborn and with the mindset “if I see it, I can do it”, I started off.

I’m going to say outright that making this cheesecake is expensive! Luckily I didn’t have to buy a spring form pan, I borrowed it from Mom. The recipe calls for a 9″ and she had a 10″. That’s pretty much the same thing.

RECIPE
Crust:
30 Oreos
6 tablespoons Butter Melted
Dash of Salt
Filling:
32oz Cream Cheese
5 Eggs
1/2 cup Whipping Cream
1 1/2 cups Brown Sugar
1 cup Creamy Peanut Butter
1 teaspoon Vanilla
12oz Reese’s Cup Miniatures
Ganache:
1/2 cup Whipping Cream
1 cup Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
8oz Reese’s Minis

I’m not going to go into complete detail on this because you can check out Taste and Tell’s blog for a complete break down. Start out by making the crust and squishing the mess into the spring form pan. It’s all nice and shiny from all that butter…makes me a little sick.

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So here it is after baking.

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See how the sides that I so carefully built fell down? Bunch of crap. Oh well, we trudge on! When making the filling I strayed from the recipe. I know, I know. Not smart for someone that has never made a cheesecake like this. I do not care! I have no fear! 🙂 Instead of using all the brown sugar I may have only used 1 1/4 cups. I was talking to Hubby at the time and not paying strict attention to what I was doing. I also didn’t use all the Reese’s miniatures. I used probably over half. I figure this is saving me a few hundred calories, not that this is in any means a low-cal treat. This is how many I used. I think it looks like a ton of little cups. You can see the on lookers in the back that will be eaten at a later time by Hubby.

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I baked the cheese cake for 1hr and 20min again straying from the recipe. I’m such a rebel. It has a slight brown color across the top. I don’t know if this is right because the original recipe doesn’t really tell you what it should look like. I was starting to think this recipe is for people that have made cheesecakes before. Not good for me.

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Here she is cooled and out of her spring form. I really wasn’t sure when was a good time to remove it. It didn’t say. I was terrified either it would stick to the sides and just tear into pieces or run everywhere like a gooey mess. Neither happened so I was already feeling triumphant. Now onto the ganache.

I’ve never been good at melting chocolate. It constantly seizes up. I’ve tried the microwave method and stove top. Neither are my friend. So creating a ganache had me quaking’ in my boots. Honestly it didn’t come out bad. It was smooth but seemed a little runny. I tried letting it cool off a bit but it still wouldn’t thicken. Again the recipe didn’t tell me what my consistency should be. Chocolate syrup? Hot fudge? Mine was leaning more towards the syrup. I poured it on very slowly afraid of creating a giant pool of chocolate on my counter. I sprinkled not even half the bag of minis on top and here’s what I ended up with.

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I’ll admit she turned out pretty. The amount of time it took to make her was ridiculous! People, it took all day! Needless to say, I don’t care how much Hubby loves it, it’s never being made again. The taste is okay. I don’t know if it’s because it’s my first cheesecake and I don’t know what I’m doing but I give it an “Eh”. Not “Best cheesecake ever!” and not “Eww that’s awful”. I’ll say it’s a Pinterest Success. It’s edible, Hubby likes it, and she’s easy on the eyes.

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Hubby’s Peach Cobbler Birthday

Today is my hubby’s 30th birthday. He’s not one for cake so I get to bake something random for his b-day treat. He decided on peach cobbler or as he called it “peach pie”. What excites me about this recipe is that it’s my g-ma’s and it’s awesome stuff! It has a hard crust on top like a pie. (That’s probably what confuses the hubby)

WARNING: Before you think about making this dessert, I want to be kind and let you know that this does not turn out well in a gas oven. Don’t know why but my mom’s many failed attempts are enough proof for me.

RECIPE
Top:
1 cup Flour
1/2 cup Shortening
2 teaspoons Baking Powder
Filling:
32 oz Frozen Peaches
2 tablespoons Flour
1/2 cup Sugar

Throw all the filling ingredients in a sauce pan and heat. G-ma says until boiling but since I’m using frozen peaches I wait until they are squishy.
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At this point, go ahead and preheat the oven to 350. It should be good to go after you make the dough. Take the peachy filling and pour into a 8×8 dish.

The top is a whole three ingredients. Not too much work there! I take a fork and cut the shortening into the flour and baking powder. It eventually all works together. G-ma says she would add milk to her dough but I don’t because mine isn’t dry enough to need anything else. It’s definitely something that you can determine on your own.

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You can see from the pic above how it’s working together. Once it’s all combined just squeeze it together with your hands into a nice ball.

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Roll the little dough guy out on a floured surface just like you’re making a pie crust. You’re going to roll it into a 8×8 square. Before covering the peachy goodness put a few small squares of butter on top of the peachy filling. Then lay the freshly rolled dough on top.

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Bake the cobbler for 35-40 minutes. And it should come out like below. The top will not be crusty. Not yet! When it cools a little bit, pop it in the fridge for a while. After it completely cools pull it back out and give that crust a poke. Crusty perfection.

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Top with vanilla ice cream (my fav) or reddi-wip (hubby’s fav) and enjoy!

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