Sewing Fashionista’s Bow-Tie Bash

roz

Rosalind creating her bow-tie.

I had a fabulous time teaching a very special group of ladies how to make a bow-tie.  The Sewing Fashionistas are a talented group of women with different sewing backgrounds.  They meet every other month to share their sewing experiences and present their current projects.  The meetings are hosted by Rosalind Gaither with Sew Much Fabric.  If you would like to expand your sewing knowledge, feel free to check out Roz’s blog at:  http://www.smfdesignsandfriends.blogspot.com/ or follow the Sewing Fashionista’s Facebook by clicking {here}.

Now check out all the fun:

To learn how to create the {JEREMY} Bow- Tie, the tutorial is below:

To view other uses of Bows, check out my Pinterest inspiration board by visiting {here}.  Thank you Roz for thinking of me and thank you to all my fellow Sewing Fashionistas for such a wonderful time.

Hugs!

Ann

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DIY Honeymoon Swimsuit : payitforward4edu.com

swimsuit

 

Greetings Everyone!

I thought this would be a good project to inspire DIY destination Brides or for those having tropical honeymoons.  Since I was hanging out with my children at the pool this past summer, I wanted to make myself a swimsuit.  First, I wanted to see how a specific silhouette would look on me before starting on my “real” bathing suit.  My goal was to visually make my waist look smaller and to cover my tummy.  The way I sewed the prototype is the same way I sew my children’s Halloween costumes…quick, easy, and budget friendly. Basically, lazy sewing:)  So here is the general process of how I made the prototype:

step1

(1) purchased a well-fitted tank top and 2 extremely large knitted tshirts (for accent colors).  2. As you can see, the tank top was cupped already to save time on making the padded bodice.  (3) I marked my waistline and (4) cut.

step2

(5) Next, lay the tank on top of the tshirt and measure out the width of the tank.  I wanted a 1″ waist band so I gave it a 1/2″ seam allowance on each side, (6) total width cut is 2 inches. (7) the waist band. (8) pin the waist band to the tank with right sides facing each other.

step3

(9)serge one side of the waist band to the tank . *if you do not have a serger, you can sew using a zigzag stitch. (10) Next, I created a paper pattern for my ruffle hem by using the same technique as my “midnight blue couture project”…click {here} to view the steps.  (11) Sew the ruffle fabric to the waist band. (12) and sew the the hem

step4

(13) I used my favorite swim bottom to create the swim bottom pattern.  I basically stretched it out to lay it flat and added a 1/2″ seam allowance (14) I cut from the 2 remaining accent fabrics and sewed it together, totaling 2 swim bottoms. (15) With wrong sides of the fabric facing each other (16) I serged on the elastic band to the three openings. (17) the swimsuit bottom.

last steps

(18) I folded the seam in and used a (19) zig zag stitch to secure it.  And that completes it.  I didn’t end up making my “real” swimsuit yet so I’ll save that for next summer, but I did get to wear my prototype a few times to the pool.  But the great part is, I got to pair it up with my big summer hat and my Smart Money Smart Kids book I got as birthday gifts —- Thank you Quynn for the hat and Thank you Nancy for the book:)  To check out my swimsuit inspiration board, click {here}.

inspiration photo

I would like to take this time to share about a special math education program started by my friend Quynn.  She has a passion for teaching math and started Pay It Forward For Education.  It provides FREE online interactive math tutorial sessions for 3rd grade through Algebra 1.  My son Big J is attending and loves it.  He loves the idea that he can possibly have a classmate from around the world and it has also enhanced his math skills.  If you would like to learn more about this program, feel free to email Quynn at piffe2014@gmail.com or check out the website at www.payitforward4edu.com.

Also, I was speaking with a friend from Canada, I heard the teachers are on strike:(  For my Canadian friends, maybe this is something you can check out for your children:)

Well, thank you for visiting and have a great evening!

Ann

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Personal Sewing : Black Floral Blouse

fabric choice

Inspired by the textured floral pattern

Hope you are having a wonderful Labor Day Weekend!

I was invited to be a judge for a High School Sewing Contest back in March 2014.  The successful event was organized and sponsored by Rosalind with Sew Much Fabric.  Since I was grading students on their sewing projects, it was only fitting for me to wear one of my own creations:)  So out to the fabric shop I went….while shopping for fabric, I came across this textured floral fabric and was instantly inspired.  I decided on a blouse and used a pattern I created for the “Ruffles & Pyramid Trim” Dress.  I also added long sleeves using the sheer floral fabric.  Here is a glimpse of the process:

 

Please click on the images below to enlarge: 

My favorite part of the blouse is the back clasp.  I used an old necklace and up-cycled it to become the back clasp.

necklace

 

Here is a closer look of the blouse.  The flowers are hand-sewn on along the hem and bodice lines to soften the sewing lines.

sideview

 

front view

Well, I hope you got inspired to sew and create:)  Have a wonderful Labor Day!

To read more about the following, please feel free to click on a link:

High School Sewing Contest 

Ruffles & Pyramid Trim Dress

Sew Much Fabric

Thank you for visiting!

Ann

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DIY No-Sew Bow Tie : Francesca’s Bow Tie Bash

pinterest1

Greetings Everyone!

Summer has flown by so quickly.  Do you agree?

This past June I was invited to teach a “fun” class for Francesca’s Corporate Employees.  Francesca’s was voted one of the top Fashion Retail Companies to work for and I can understand why.  While visiting, I was impressed by their onsite gym and bistro/cafe provided to their employees.  I also got to tour their warehouse where merchandise was shipped and received.  But not only was their facility impressive, their employees were too.  Everyone I met had a contagious smile and they were such a friendly energetic group of employees.  What a privilege to have taught them.  They made the experience so fun.    Thank you Jen H. for thinking of me and giving me this opportunity!  :)  I was also told Francesca’s sponsored Project Runway: Under the Gunn — super cool!

Check out their lovely smiles:

Since I already had a Bow Tie tutorial, it was the perfect project to modify down to an hour.  Here were my goals for “Francesca’s Bow Tie Bash”:

*inspire the students to be creative

*teach students to learn a basic sewing technique=transferring pattern onto fabric using a tracing wheel/tracing paper

*create a clean professional finish Bow Tie

*more importantly, have fun in the 1 hour session

Here are other uses for Bow Ties: Hair Bows/Head Bands, great birthday or baby shower themes, use for gift wrapping, accessorize clothing, belts, shoes, jewelry, table scape, accent frames, etc.  You can visit my Pinterest Bow Tie Inspiration Board by clicking “here.”

I believe when a Company allows their employees to exercise their creativity, their productivity in the workplace will improve.  It gives Employees the opportunity to think outside the box and improve their ability to problem-solve.  I truly believe Francesca’s is going to be a very successful company.

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When I get into my sewing “zone,”  my mind starts to wander.  On one of those sewing nights, I reminisced about my childhood at 4 years old.   I remember waking up to a bag of bubble gum at the foot of my bed.  My Father would leave a bag of gum for us after a long day of work and studying for classes.  We hardly ever saw him while he was in school so I guess it was his way to let us know he thought of us.  He was like our secret Santa even though it wasn’t Christmas:)  When we woke up, we were the happiest children alive and it felt like Christmas.  To read a little more about my Super Dad, click “here.”   After this night of getting into my sewing zone, I went out the next day and bought a bag of bubble gum for my children.  We spent the summer chewing gum and blowing bubbles.  It was fun and I had fond memories from it.  I just hope my children will remember this summer too:)

Well, I thought I would incorporate my summer memories into the tutorial and to also thank Francesca’s.  So here it is….I hope you enjoy!  Just a warning…I’ve been feeling silly lately so you’re just going to see a silly side of me:)

{JEREMY} No-Sew Bow Tie pattern:

https://youtiquebridal.files.wordpress.com/2011/08/bow-tie-1-fashion-fabric-pattern.pdf

If you would like a little sewing, here is my original {JEREMY} Bow Tie Tutorial I made in 2012.  My videos have come a long way and I want to continue improving them.  Thank YOU for watching and for all your support as I continue my journey!

Hugs!

Ann

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Celebrate Life : DIY Pomander Tree

Final pomander tree

The Flower Pomander Tree I made for Cat’s Birthday Party: Video Tutorial Below

Greetings Everyone!

I hope you are all doing very well.  For those of you who have been following me, I know it felt like I disappeared this Summer but I’m still here.  For the guests who are visiting for the first time…Hello and Welcome:)

This is going to be a little personal post.  If you are here for the tutorials, you can skip right on over to my Youtique Bridal Youtube Channel by clicking “here” or feel free to skim over my blog posts.  For those who are deciding to move forward with the post….I hope you enjoy.  Either way, thank you:)

With 1 or 2 words, how would you describe or sum up your 2014 Summer?  Please don’t be shy, leave it in the comment section below.  Mine would be “Celebrate Life.”  My 2014 Summer has been filled with ups and downs — thank goodness for more ups:) As some of you may know, I lost a friend to cancer early this Summer.  Although I did not make it in time to say goodbye in person, I had the opportunity to visit Thuy-Anh at the funeral home and say it with my heart.  I left Canada with a reminder of how fragile life is and how time is precious.  So when Birthdays came along this Summer, it was the perfect time to spend it with friends and family to celebrate life.

This 2014 Summer was full of opportunities to celebrate life…

*My nephew Noah (Sister’s Son) and Timothy (Mr.T’s Brother’s Son) both turned one.  They are the most ADORABLE curious and fearless little boys.  Did I mention they are ADORABLE?

*Quality time with my niece Theresa for her birthday.  She is now a beautiful young lady trying to find her way in this world.  You will make it Theresa!  Hang in there and don’t sacrifice your integrity:)

*Mr. T turned a year older and we kept it simple by counting the number of white hairs he grew instead of counting candles.  Just kidding!  He got to cut his birthday cake at my parents:) On the same weekend, we celebrated my nephew Evan’s birthday.  He turned 5 and will start kindergarten this year.  I can’t believe it!

*We did miss a birthday celebration cause I had to leave for Canada:(…Happy Birthday Mark!  He turned 8 years old this year.  It would have been fun to play laser tag.  Maybe next year?

*My God daughter Sweet & Sassy Serena turned 4.  Her mommy wanted to keep it simple so we sang Happy Birthday to her on a Play Date.  I enjoyed this small intimate weekday gathering cause there was no pressure to decorate and plan…it was really nice:)  However, her 5th is going to be an all out party:)

*My good friend Fabulous Phoebe celebrated her 40th with a belly dancing class….so much fun!  I have to admit, my flabby belly was already dancing before this class.  lol!

*My best friend in the whole wide world, Cat (Cathy), celebrated her 40th pool side, nice and relaxing—exactly what I needed.  Btw, I’ve known this gorgeous girl since the 2nd grade.  We spent the whole party listening to 80’s music and reminiscing about our childhood and youth from loooooooong ago.  Great memories!  Here are a few photos of the Flower Pomander Tree I made for her Pool Party, you can also check out the video tutorial that inspired the tree at the end of the post:

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*My Brother Phil’s birthday is on the same day as my best friend’s…he celebrated in Cancun — missed him lots but can’t blame him for not being here:)

*And Uncle Thong (my brother-in-law)…he got caked in the face for his birthday celebration.  That was awesome!

*My Coach Okwui who whipped me into shape this year also celebrated his birthday.  He helped me rebuild my physical and mental health.  He’s a tough coach!  Check him out on Instagram Fitness Lab 101:   http://instagram.com/fitnesslab101

Besides birthday parties, my family and I spent a large portion of our Summer hanging out at the library, swimming at a pool (I like to hide under a big hat so my freckles won’t get darker), gardening (yes, I now enjoy gardening), and chewing a lot of gum (I’ll share more on this later:) gum I did get to start on a few quick personal sewing projects and I’ll share those with you in the future.  This past June, I was invited to teach a “fun” class at Francesca’s Corporate Office.  I really enjoyed the experience.  I’ll be sharing that with you along with my new video tutorial coming out next week…stay tuned!

Summer 2014 is now coming to an end…what I’ve learned: It does not matter how long or short your life may be, all that matters is how you lived your dash:)  Well, here’s a little poem to leave you with: Dash by Linda Ellis:


I read of a man who stood to speak
at the funeral of a friend.
He referred to the dates on the tombstone
from the beginning…to the end.

He noted that first came the date of birth
and spoke the following date with tears,
but he said what mattered most of all
was the dash between those years.

For that dash represents all the time
that they spent alive on earth.
And now only those who loved them
know what that little line is worth.

For it matters not, how much we own,
the cars…the house…the cash.
What matters is how we live and love
and how we spend our dash.

So, think about this long and hard.
Are there things you’d like to change?
For you never know how much time is left
that can still be rearranged.

If we could just slow down enough
to consider what’s true and real
and always try to understand
​the way other people feel.

And be less quick to anger
and show appreciation more
and love the people in our lives
like we’ve never loved before. 

If we treat each other with respect
and more often wear a smile,
remembering that this special dash
might only last a little while.

​So, when your eulogy is being read,
with your life’s actions to rehash…
would you be proud of the things they say
about how you spent YOUR dash?
 

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If you would like to learn how to make the Flower Pomander Ball, feel free to view the Flower Girl Pomander Ball tutorial featuring Guest Florist Tracy.  For Cat’s Flower Pomander tree, I used several different size styrofoam balls for visual interest.  Enjoy!

Rest in Peace Thuy-Anh Bui Abramson {Simply TABA}

What an amazing life filled with talent, faith, love, courage, and strength.  You are greatly missed Thuy-Anh {Saint name Maria Goretti}.

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Simply TABA Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/SimplyTABA/

TABA Obituary: http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/thestar/obituary.aspx?pid=171562985