Little Black Dress circa 1970 Using McCalls 7802

I’ve begun to pray daily for the wisdom to make choices that help me to remain consistent in the face of pressure.

“But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere.” James 3:17 (NIV)

Hello Lovelies!

It’s another great week in Milwaukee, WI! Despite the drop in temperature and a few snow days, the sunshine has returned and overall the winter here has been mild. I’ll take it.

These last few weeks have been a little pressing as life as a single mom has been a bit hectic, but I am super grateful because this year I feel like God is really helping me to find balance through greater organization and self-care. I went back on my ketogenic diet plan. I talked a little bit about it on my Instagram stories earlier this week. I was pretty quiet about my keto journey and really didn’t talk about it to anyone outside of my immediate friend circle until earlier this week on my Instagram stories. I started my keto journey last year around the beginning of January and was pretty faithful to it. I lost about 20 pounds in 6 months. I’m still trying to get rid of at least another 30 pounds but I’m not in a rush.

I’m approaching this as a life style change. I’ve struggled with weight, food addiction and eating disorders my entire life. I’m at a point now where i’m exhausted and I just want to be healthy and balanced. Keto has helped me keep the inflammation in my body down, keep my sugar cravings in check and overall has blessed me with the energy that I need to keep up with my life . I started to make more time for the gym again and even joined my son’s Tae Kwon Do class to help with stress management.

It hasn’t been easy but God has been really showing me that life is about choices. I’ve begun to pray daily for the wisdom to make choices that help me to remain consistent in the face of pressure. The result is an Iris who frowns and complains less and trusts God and smiles more.

Which leads me to this week’s post. I smiled a lot while sewing this dress. I love, love, love vintage! I even have 2 great Pinterest boards for anyone who loves vintage that you can follow here and here . One is dedicated to vintage designer garments and another one is dedicated to vintage sewing patterns. Both are organized by decade so its easy to find the inspiration that your looking for.

Actually Mount Mary University has a great Archive dress collection that is so amazing! Some dresses date back to the late 1800’s. My draping class is making a visit on Monday to find inspiration for their final projects. I love going in there.

The inspiration for my came from 1970’s London Designer Label Biba. I love the aesthetic of Biba, Halston and DVF. Simple, elegant, and pretty. Below is an image of my inspiration.

I started with Mccall’s M7802 view b and the only modifications that I made to the pattern was to use an a-line flare skirt from another pattern that didn’t have the princess lines and I slashed and spread and raised the sleeve cap in order to create the fullness at the shoulder. I used a moderate stretch crepe knit fabric that was fantastic for this project. It was easy to work with and had enough body to give the sleeves the structure that it needed to hold its shape. The only change I would make in the future is to add an invisible zipper to the back. The stretch knit isn’t that stretchy and a zipper would make it a little easier to get in and out of. Otherwise this is a super comfy dress to wear. I styled it very simply with a pair of nude colored platform peep toed platform stilettos and boho inspired earrings in a similar color as my shoes.

I can’t wait for the weather to warm up so that I can wear this dress. I love the way it looks with a natural leg showing. It’s a versatile LBD that I think could be worn to a church, a wedding or a cocktail party.

Well thats all for now! Until next time…..

DIY Knit Dress Using McCalls 7999

Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith.……” Hebrews 12:1-2 (NIV)

Hello Everyone!

It is my sincerest hope that you all have been approaching your new year with great expectation and a zeal to chase after your dreams. I’m super proud of myself as I walked into 2020 with a revived sense of purpose and a desire to approach each day focused and excited for where God is taking me. It hasn’t been easy and I had to make some life changes.

For one. I gave up coffee and sugar again and I feel so much better. I was developing a nasty caffeine addiction. I’ve given it up in the past but end up right back on the sauce. While I love my morning cup of coffee, I was using caffeine to give me energy so that I could get through my busy schedule. The caffeine and sugar highs were making it hard for me to focus, my stomach started to become bloated and I was starting to have mood swings.

So when my church went on our annual fast at the beginning of January and the list called for us to cut caffeine and sugar from our diet; I knew it was a help line from heaven to make the change I needed.

I did it gradually, but after 3 weeks, I knew I was in a good place. My mind is more focused and my body’s nervous system has quieted down. I feel less anxious. I’ve re-worked my schedule so that I’m not constantly running. If i’m feeling overwhelmed by teaching, business, ministry and family responsibilities, I take a small break on my light days. Even if it means taking a short nap. I started walking even in the cold weather. This year the winter has been mild. Our days have consistently been around 30 degrees. I bundle up real good and walk for 45 minutes. The walk gives me the boost I need but it also has done wonders to keep the winter blues away.

I’m super grateful for the shift. I am definitely finding my version of balance.

As for this week’s post. This is a long overdue review of McCalls 7999 view C. I made this dress back in November. I’ve worn it several times already and I even put out a sneak peak pic on my Instagram page last month. I’m just keeping it real with you all. (lol!) I looooooove! this pattern. This was such an easy make. I had the pattern cut, made a short waist adjustment and sewn within 2 hours. I sewed the entire dress with the exception of the collar using the flat construction method on my serger. I love flat construction when it makes sense to use it. Especially when sewing knits on my serger. It speeds things up as you sew and finish your edges at the same time.

The pattern is straight forward and beginner friendly. There are only 4 pattern pieces and I cut it for a size Large. My short waist adjustment and taking out another 1 inch of ease at the waist was the only fit adjustments that I needed to make. I used a medium weight moderate stretch knit. from Joann Fabrics. It was on a 70% off clearance corner. I think I paid a total of $12 for about 3 yards of fabric.

I love it because it’s warm and all I need is to put on some control top black tights for shaping, smoothing and extra warmth underneath. I decided to keep it on a street style vibe and wore my black patent leather platform oxfords and statement earrings. I’ve also worn it with a black leatherette jacket to add a little bit of interest and layering for colder weather.

Well… that’s all for now! Until the next time.