Detective Houndstooth Sewing Pattern Launch

Did You Miss Me?

Some of you might have noticed that I haven’t been blogging lately. My insecure blogger-self hopes that you did. I’ve been locked up in my sewing room working on a super top secret sewing project. I’m so thrilled to announce that I’m jumping on yet another bandwagon and launching a sewing pattern line.  It’s named after my blog, Detective Houndstooth.

Det HT Sewing Pattern Banner

Mysterious Sewing Patterns

As you can see by my tagline, I’m creating a line of mysterious sewing patterns. I will be adding tons of fun puzzles and mysterious for  you to solve because sewing up a pattern isn’t enough of a challenge.

1) Ease: I won’t spell out the ease. You have to guess what it is by measuring the pattern pieces and subtracting the body measurement. I’ll keep you guessing by throwing in negative ease on a woven garment. You won’t know if it’s too big or too small until you’re trying on the garment. I can hear the laughter now.

2) Instructions: The instructions will be filled with fun puzzles. The steps will be out of sequence and once in a while I’ll leave out a step.  You fill in the blank. What fun!

3) Pattern PDF: I will be only selling PDFs. The PDFs will be printed on no less than 70 pages.  Pattern pieces will be put across as many sheets as possible for maximum mystery. Keep your eyes out on those itty bitty slivers of a pattern piece corner.

 

Upcoming Patterns

Due to the huge success of my free patterns which has made me a whopping -$52 (it’s a long story) I’m making the most downloaded ones into patterns. First up is a dress based on my very popular stacking ring pattern. The rings are easy to fit and hides a number of body issues. Separate rings are a great color blocking opportunity.

Det HT Stacking Ring Dress

My second pattern will be a hat based on my macaron measuring tape. Macarons are all the rage in foodie world. Now you, too, can be on the bleeding edge of fashion with this hat.  The retractable measuring tape can also double as a chin strap. Never lose your hat in the wind again.

Det HT Macaron Hat

The third pattern that I’ll be launching is in the functional fashion category, a lobster bib based off my of reuseable bag tutorial. This lobster bib folds up and can nicely fit in your purse. You’ll never be caught without one if you’re ever at a surprise lobster dinner. What? That doesn’t happen to you once a month? The roomy bag will catch all your spills with room to spare. *No lobsters were harmed in the making of this pattern.*

Det HT Lobster Bib

Testers Needed

Of course I won’t dare release a pattern without testing it out first. So if anyone wants to be baffled and befuddled by a sewing pattern, please let me know in the comments. You will need to give me feedback within 2 days of getting the pattern. It is mandatory that you participate in the blog hop and write reviews on 4 different sites.  You are highly encouraged to write only nice things. Any negative comments will be blamed on user error and dismissed immediately.

Don’t forget to sign up in the comments of this post.  So who’s in?

Happy mystery sewing,

Signature small

Macaron Measuring Tape

I needed a mental break after making the clergy robe.  The macaron measuring tape idea that was floating in my head for a while was just the simple project that I needed.  I cracked open a craft book I had purchased while in France on vacation which had a cross stitch pattern for a macaron measuring tape.  After translating it, it turns out the instructions were pretty sketchy and lacking many details.  So I set off to figure it out myself.

Macaron Measuring Tape

 

Selecting the Measuring Tape

I ruled out measuring tapes that were too expensive, cheaply made or weren’t the circular shape I was looking for.  Beware of cheapy ones, many of them are nylon and don’t have the fiberglass to help prevent stretching.  After a bit of searching I found a German company, Haechstmass, which specialized in measuring tapes.  Sold!  I bought a few a small quantity.

Measuring TapesMaterials

  • 4” x 7” fabric
  • 6” of 3/8” grosgrain ribbon
  • Peel n Stick
  • 5” x 7” batting
  • Round measuring tape
  • Seed beads (optional)

Supplies

Making the Macaron Filling

The filling only took a couple of tries to figure out.  I ended up settling on 3/8” grosgrain ribbon because it was the perfect width without too much effort, unlike the attempts with the fabric.  Grosgrain also comes in a large number of color and prints.

To make the filling:

  • Cut 5 7/8”  of 3/8” wide grosgrain ribbon.  Seal ends with liquid stitch.
  • Cut a strip of Peel n Stick ¼” wide by 5 7/8” long.  Attached the Peel n Stick strip along the middle of back side of ribbon.  Leaving the edges sticky-free allows you to sew into the ribbon a lot easier. I learned this the hard way.
  • Remove Peel n Stick backing and attached to side of measuring tape

Filling Steps

 

Making The Meringue

What gives the macaron’s visible cues is a flat, cylinder-like shape.  Macaron coin purses use a button form to create this shape.  Since I need the meringue to be soft in order to retract the tape measure, I couldn’t use this same technique.

To make the meringue:

  • Cut two 3” circles of meringue fabric
  • Cut six 2” circles of batting
  • Sew gathering stitch at a ¼” seam allowance by machine or by hand.
  • Gather using the measuring tape as a guide.  Pull threads to the inside.

meringue steps

  • Stuff fabric circle with batting.
  • Ladder stitch fabric circle to edge of ribbon. Repeat for other half.

meringue steps 2

Making the Meringue Feets (optional)

Though I like the macaron measuring tape at this stage, it was missing something.  It was also looking hamburger like.  (Note to self:  Future idea.. hamburger measuring tape)  One issues was that the cookie wasn’t the right 2:1 ratio to the filling.  I tried several different attempts to make the meringue part taller but couldn’t make it taller and retain the right shape.  What was also missing was that airy bottom edge of the meringue cookie called the feet.  Adding the beaded meringue feets killed two birds with one stone.

To make the meringue feet:

  • Slow method:  hand sew on Miyuki seed beads along the bottom edge of the meringue/top edge of filling.
  • Fast method:  glue on seed beads using hot glue or Jewel –It glue.  I haven’t tried this myself so test first on scraps before you ruin all your hard work.

Meringue Feet

Feet or No Feet?

So which version do you like, feet or no feet?  I love them both.  They’re so colorful and fun, I can image myself having a nice box full of these in different “flavor” combinations.

Finished macaron

Happy measuring,

Signature small