Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Sew-vivor: Round 4 Project Reveals

Hi Everyone! Welcome to Round 4, the last round of Sew-vivor Season 1!
Before we get on to the final project reveals, I just wanted to address last week's round. There was quite a lot of buzz in the comments. I'm pasting my reply:
 "Ok everyone... I was out of town over the weekend, but now I'm home, and its time to address the comments!

First of all, I want people to always feel that this is a place where you can say what you feel and speak your mind, which you have :)

As far as this being a popularity contest... that is exactly what I have tried to avoid from the very beginning. I don't like popularity contests either! In the beginning of the contest, I emailed the Top 10 contestants to ask if they would like to make it anonymous, but across the board, they voted NO. So the way the projects are revealed was up to them.

As far as voting, this is the first competition I've ever run, so I have learned a few things over the last few weeks. I feel the need to change the voting system so that the public vote won't be the only factor in determining the next round of winners. Voting for the final round will be different. In addition to the public vote, the guest judge's picks will account for a certain percentage, as well as having the contestants vote for each other. You will get more info tomorrow.

Next year when I organize Sew-vivor, I will manage the voting in this manner. The voting will be more fair, and the guest judges will have more say, based on the sewing projects. In my opinion, I don't feel that the voting has reflected who has the biggest blog. I do however think that the poll has been a little "off" at times.

And last, to address the theme, "Sew Something for Charity..." I have to say that each contestant absolutely followed the rules. I defined it as something to be sewn for someone else, including a charity, a friend, a neighbor or a family member. Each contestant interpreted that in her own way, and each contestant met the requirements. Now, if there was a certain project that wasn't your favorite, that is up to you, and I hoped you voted for your favorite project and its cause. But as your host, I do have to say that each each contestant was in line with the challenge, and there really is nothing to complain about.

Please keep in mind: I am doing everything I can to make Sew-vivor fair, not a popularity contest, and meaningful. Please do not just assume that its just a popularity contest. I am trying very hard to work out the kinks and have it set up the right way. This is all very important to me!

I appreciate the Top 10 contestants who were the guinea pigs this season. I have learned a lot about how to run a contest. There is a lot more behind-the-scenes stuff going on than you might think! I hope next year to implement the things I've learned to make it better!

Thank you to everyone who comes by to vote, and for following along this season."

This week's theme was...

Since there are 4 contestants this round, we have agreed to pull one prize from each prize package, in order to create a 4th Place prize. So, the 4th place winner will receive the $20 gift card from Contemporary Cloth, taken from each prize packages, to equal a total of $60.

I just want to take a moment to thank each of the Top 10 contestants who have participated in this sewing competition. They each brought so much skill, talent, and creativity. It has been way too hard to say goodbye to the other 6. 

For this week, the judging process will take place in 3 parts. Scores will measured by 1.) The public vote, 2). The Guest Judge's vote, and 3). The Contestant's vote (where the contestants, including the Top 10, will vote for their favorite project, but not their own). Each category is worth 33% of the total score. I have a spreadsheet ready to crunch all the numbers. A detailed breakdown will be available to see on Friday morning, when the results are posted!
 *The poll is at the bottom of this post!*

And now... here are the reveals. As usual, contestants appear in the order their submissions were received.

  CONTESTANT #1: Miranda from One Little Minute
Here we are, the final round of Sewvivor! Thank you to Rachel for hosting such a cool competition. She's put in tons of behind the scenes work to keep things rolling along, and I appreciate it! I am also so happy to have rubbed elbows with the amazing contestants over the last couple months. It is fun to meet new sewing enthusiasts, and they are all great people, too. Now, sometimes I feel like materials choose their own design, and that is what happened with my project for this week. When I spotted this wide tan and cream striped upholstery cotton in Charlottesville a month ago, I immediately saw this dress in my head. I believe wide stripes dream of becoming wide pleats, so I helped them on their way! As I draped the pattern on my dress form I played with the direction of the stripes. They are horizontal along the box-pleated skirt and the front panel of the square neck bodice, but vertical on the front side panels and back. I inverted the stripe colors on the elbow-length sleeve (because that was all I had left of my one yard of fabric!) Of course, I also added pockets. Polka dot pockets. I love the way the dress turned out. Box pleats are so classic, but the stripes, neckline, pockets and sleeves make it really interesting. In addition to the dress, I also wanted to step outside of my comfort zone for this challenge, so I added a pleated leather clutch to my entry. I had never before made a handbag, and never before worked with leather, so this was uncharted territory! The clutch pattern is well done, and the natural-colored calf-skin suede that I used is soft and dreamy. I lined the bag in vintage floral linen, and dressed up the brass zipper with a funky leather tassel. This dress and bag have quickly become two of my favorite things I've ever made! I hope you like them, too.

CONTESTANT #2: Jen from I Can't Stop Crafting
Hooray for making it to the final round of Sew-vivor!  
For months I've been meaning to come up with a good bedside table solution for Addie.  She has a tiny room, a mate's bed, and she needed a spot to put a few books and her alarm clock that would still allow her drawers to open.  I had the idea to mount a small shelf beside her bed back in July, and bought brackets for the shelf back in August.  Now finally it's all come together as a bedside table/mini vanity, perfect for a little girls room.  To add some extra girly-ness, I sewed a box-pleated skirt for around the shelf and matching stool.  The colors compliment her room perfectly, and Addie is thrilled with the result!  However, I know my girl, and she knows how to make a major mess.  To prevent future headaches for myself I made it possible, through the magic of Velcro, for the bedside table and stool skirt to easily detach for a quick wash up every now and then.  I was very intimidated at the thought of sewing pleats for this challenge, but I've got to say, I really enjoyed playing with pleats!  They weren't nearly as tough as I thought they'd be, and I think I'll be sewing more pleats in the future!

 CONTESTANT #3: Jessica from Swenson Love
i have never sewn anything that involved pleats. i had to figure it out on my own and it was definitely hard at first but once i got the hang of it i enjoyed it very much. i may have fallen in love...
i found this fabric several weeks ago and i had to have it! i knew immediately what i wanted to do with it!
after researching this springs top trends, i was able to incorporate many of them into the outfit that i made for this weeks challenge.
pleats.stripes.metallic.maxi green.
i love this pleated skirt because the shiny, silk and chiffon stripes allow you to dress it up for a nice event by simply putting it with a pretty embellished blouse (made by me!) and a pair of gold sparkly heels!
or you can dress it down with a pair of wedges, t-shirt, some bright chunky jewelry, and a big sun hat (pictures of this outfit will be coming later on my blog)!
the creamy silk/crepe blouse is a simple boxy top with a vintage (1930's) gold, metallic embellishment.
i was inspired by {this} skirt. please note the price! yeah...
Check out my {blog} for more photos!

CONTESTANT #4: Kirstin from Kojo Designs
I'm just going to say it- I love pleats. Love them. In fact, I subscribe to the "Everything is Better with Pleats" motto. That said, for this final challenge, I decided to take a couple of things on my To Make list and, you guessed it, add pleats!
The finished products are the "Garden Party Frock," a polished dress to wear to Adam's graduation (kind of like this one by ASOS, but not backless), and the "Preppy Pleated Purse," a green and white vinyl purse. The purse's peekaboo pleats add that extra bit of preppy punch (also, love that belt-ish adjustable strap and the pretty piping). And when my sister-in-law saw the row of pleats on the bottom hem of the dress, she said, "Very JCrew-y!" Just what I was going for. The pleated headband completes the look.

See? Pleats DO make everything better, don't they?

These girls and projects are pretty rad. I've loved having them in this competition!

Also, a big thank you to each of you voters who have stopped by!
I would absolutely LOVE and appreciate anyone who would like to follow my blog! 
There are 3 easy options:
-You could click the blue button on the right sidebar that says "Join this Site."
-You could subscribe via RSS.
-You could follow along via Facebook, and click "Like."

 Only one vote is allowed per computer/device.

Check back on Friday to see who wins!

If there is a tie, I will let my husband be the tie breaker and choose :)

Thank you, thank you to each of these AWESOME sponsors!
They have graciously provided the prizes for our winners.
I hope you can stop by and show them some love! :)
150150150150150Photobucket150150150150150150150The Ribbon Retreat + Fabric150


  1. your doing a great job hosting this competition - there will always be opinions, let those people host a competition of their desire....

    You made it the way you wanted - and way to go!!!

  2. Job well done! I'm sure it's been a feat as the host and as the sewvivor no doubt, especially with last week's little debacle. It's too bad. Popular or not, it's a sewing competition, and this week I think it really shows who shines! All the contestants are incredibly talented, and it's been really fun to follow!

  3. uh oh...people being mean? It's tough when it isn't anonymous to not make it a popular thing. I kinda like anon. What fun entries though!!!

  4. I didnt comment last week but I can see where some of the frustrations came from. I liked all of the projects. In fact I've really liked all of the projects this entire season. Everyone deserves a win. I don't think the problem was so much about the voting as it was with the theme. It's hard to pin one persons good intentions against another and vote for whose heart is better. Because lets face it, anytime someone gives to another it's a win and without a doubut each of those projects put a smile on someone face and thats what charity is about. I'll be honest though, I almost didn't audition because it was one of the themes. I didn't like the thought of my good deeds being seen and then judged. Perhaps in the future a charity week where no one is judged or sent home? Just a thought. You should of course do what you want, it's your blog after all. You're doing a great job as host and and the contestants are doing a great job with their beautiful work week after week. Looking forward to future seasons!

  5. Keep up the great work! I love your contest-a lot of people don't realize all the hard work that goes on behind the scenes. I love each of this projects-it's going to be so hard to pick my favorites!

    Loved meeting you in real life at SNAP!

    Newlyweds on a Budget

  6. I have to say, I found out about this contest from one of the blogs I follow; however, I haven't always voted for her - just who's project I like best. Thanks for the great contest.

  7. Guess what, Rach? You can't make everyone happy so don't bother trying. Your contest, your rules.

    You're doing a great job. Love you, girl! XO

  8. I accidently voted twice. Hopefully the second one won't count!

  9. Well said woman! I feel like addressed all the "issues" firmly but still very kindly. It's amazing how personal all this can be and you are handling it all so well. Props to you. This contest is so fun BTW, what great women you've been working with. Can't wait till next year.

  10. Would it be possible to make it one vote per person per day next year? I came across someone in the very, very, very first audition thing that wrote on facebook that she kept clicking to vote for her own project which made me a bit disillusioned then.

    I love your blog though and I've loved the themes. Charity is a hard week to do although I do applaud you for putting it in. So often we forget that we can use our skills for others so thank you for bringing that to the forefront.



Thanks for your comment. Have a great day!
♥Rach H