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Sewing is therapy for me. I hoard fabric, patterns, notions, and spend more time shopping for fabric than I care to admit...

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Casual Friday outfit

Do you have a day you look forward to every week?  My day is FRIDAY!
Just like the rest of the world, I love Fridays! I get to wear more casual clothing to work and I daydream about what I am going to sew! For this month's post, I wanted to make a casual Friday outfit. I didn't want just any jeans but some sort of dressier ones--does that make sense? I also wanted a breezy top that was somewhat dressy as well but in some super awesome fabric.

So here is my outfit:

I choose to use the StyleArc Katherine Pant.  The legs are what drew me to the pattern--not skinny but also not too wide and those slant pockets are cute.  I knew they were just what I wanted to go with this amazing denim.  


This denim is the perfect weight for these pants and actually, it would work equally well for a shirt dress, jacket, or a structured top.  I love that it is printed and the floral design is right up my alley!

Katherine Pant - Straight leg tailored pant with seam detail

For my top, I used a New Look Pattern that I've tried before and love.  It is easy to put together and I thought the texture of the fabric with the draping would be very nice and I am happy with the result.   

I've always had issues with upper back leg bagginess.  After quite an extensive search, I found a link that talks about reducing that by equally lowering the bottom of the back crotch and also at the waistline.  You redraw the crotch to compensate for the lower seam line and then stretch the crotch seam to fit the front leg.  


You can kind of see what I did above.  Sorry I didn't take a before photo!  Stretching the inseams so that matched wasn't difficult at all.  

I think this technique worked well but when I use it again, I am going to try a 1/4" rather than a 1/2" adjustment.  I may have gone slightly overboard with the 1/2"!


For the top, I used a favorite New Look pattern.  I love the sort of twisted front and the split 

Image result for Images New Look 6303

I made view C.  

This fabric is from Halston.  Do you shop the designer fabrics?  This fabric is just so pretty and fun to work with.  

I used a single-layer for the sleeves, and a double layer for the front and back.  

I matched up the 'plaid' lines on the layers so it didn't blur the design.  

See the wonderful texture in the fabric?  

I enjoyed creating this outfit and now need the weather to warm up so I can celebrate a casual Friday in my new outfit!

Thanks so much for reading!

If you'd like to see the tutorial on the pant alterations, here it is!

Friday, February 3, 2017

Delila top by Angela Wolf

How cute is this style?  How comfortable it looks to wear and what a great pattern to showcase some great fabric!

For my muslin, I made view A.  There are only four pieces to this pattern and I made the simplest of the tops because it simply isn't warm enough to wear split sleeves or short sleeves right now.  

I've only made one other Angela Wolf pattern and I enjoyed it a lot.  It was well drafted and the instructions are so easy to follow.  The fit on this is pretty forgiving as well.  I made a medium.

My fabric has been in my stash for a while and I finally decided to just use it and this pattern came to mind.

My only modification to the pattern was to stabilize the shoulder seams using stay-tape.  

This is a great length--both the sleeves and the hemline.

You can let this ride up by your waist, or pull it down a bit.

I enjoy wearing this a lot!  It's comfortable and I think stylish!

Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

A new pattern by StyleArc

When I first saw this pattern on StyleArc's site I immediately fell in love and knew I had to have it! 

This pattern is called the Winona Knit top.

 Great knit top with lace-up feature

As you can see, it has rolled sleeves and a lace up neckline with a more relaxed fit.

I loved the challenge of the grommets!  Aren't they super cool?  

I am wearing a hot pink cami underneath this, mostly because it is cold outside!

I really love the fit on this.  My usual size in StyleArc is a 12 and that is what I made here.

I didn't make an FBA, but might next time due to the drag lines.  Or, perhaps that is due to the questionable quality of fabric I used.  This was from my stash.  

I love the length and those roll up sleeves are really awesome!

Ignore the look on my face.  My photographer caught me giving him directions.  If your DH is your fashion photographer, you know what I mean. :) 

See how comfortable this looks? 

I followed the directions for the grommets that was on the package.  These aren't exactly perfect and if you look closely, you can figure out where my mistakes are.

I only deviated from the pattern in how I made the rolled sleeve portion.  If you follow the pattern, you will see the seam allowances wrapping around to the inside of the garment.  I fixed this problem by sewing to the mark on the rolled portion of the sleeve with wrong sides together and then moving to the hemline and sewing to the rolled portion with right sides together.  I just didn't want it to look like a caterpillar was crawling out of my armpit region.  You can picture it, right?

This is a fun make.  Installing the grommets is easy and fun.  I plan on making this again soon!
Thanks for reading!

Monday, January 30, 2017

A shirt to celebrate sewing!

I love sewing with cotton fabric and this super high quality quilt fabric was so inspiring!  

Can you see the sewing machines printed on this?  How cute are they? 

Here is the pattern I used: It is the Roxy by StyleArc.  

Oversized shirt with back interest

I love the slightly over-sized fit, the dropped shoulder seam, the placket, roll-up sleeves and tab, and the pockets!  

I am pretty proud of that placket!  It has been a while since I made one and this one turned out great!

For some reason, I think this top looks best with the sleeves rolled.  

With my muslin, I tried to make this a size smaller, but it just looked silly.  This isn't meant to be more fitted, it has to be oversized to look 'right', so make your normal pattern size.

That little lower split back is pretty cute as well!

The high-low hemline is another design feature that I love!

I love my new blouse!  I used black plastic snaps I applied with my KAM pliers.  

I love my new top!  

Thanks for reading!

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Another winter coat

I had to make another winter coat and this time in a trend...mustardy-yellow.  Can you blame me? This color is all over the place and I love it!  Instead of being a year or two late, I decided for once in my life to be (sort of) on time!


When I viewed this lovely yellowish wool on Fabric Mart's site, I knew I needed to make another coat.  

 BUY THE PIECE 1.75 yards Sun Yellow Wool/Poly Melton Coating 58W

Content60% Wool/40% Polyester
Color(s)Sun Yellow
WeightMedium; Falls Away From The Body
StretchNo Stretch
Use(s)Coat, Jacket, Cloak.
CareDry Clean

I knew my coat needed to be warm but with so many wonderful patterns to choose from, it was going to be a tough decision.  After much consideration that took into account the warmth factor, trendiness, and also wearibility, I decided to make a duffle-type coat.

Here is the pattern a choose.  It is a uni-sex pattern.  I'd previously made it for my son and knew what I needed to do to make it fit me.  I didn't care if the coat had a 'tailored look' or not, meaning that if it was a little roomy, I could wear layers under it as it is pretty cold in the Northern Plains in the winter months.  The shoulders are slightly extended, and I am perfectly okay with that.  


I modified the pattern just a bit.  I left off the side seam pockets.  I asked my son about those and he said he preferred the patch pockets, so I went with just using those.  

The hood is nice and roomy, a purely functional feature.  I typically don't wear a hat so the option of a hood is welcome.  

I made my own shoulder pads of this coat and covered them with my lining fabric.  I love making my own clothing because you can add details such as that. 

Below you can see how I finished off all the seams on the right side of the fabric.  

 There was only one seam I was unable to do this treatment on and it was one of the sleeve seams.  I tried, I just couldn't manipulate all that fabric under the needle and get it to look right.  

Since the fabric doesn't ravel at all, to finish off the seams, I choose to topstitch 1/4" on each side of the seamline.  Also, since the fabric is a bit heavy, for the some of the details, such as the patch pocket flaps, I cut that as one piece, rather than two, and simply folded it over and stitched.  I had a much better result than trying to get a nice neat flap with two layers of fabric and interfacing.  Those corners just wouldn't behave as well as I would have liked!  The fabric looks a little orange here, but it really isn't.  

Next, I interlined the coat by fusing a batting to the lining fabric.  I love using a floral or unexpected fabric in my coat linings.  When you open it or leave it unzipped, others get a view they didn't expect.

I also decided to add a zipper to this coat as it doesn't call for one but thought the addition would give some added benefits of added warmth and overall comfort from the wind chill that is so prevalent in the northern plains of the United States.  Dang it gets unbelievably cold here when the wind blows!  If you have ever been on recess duty for 20 minutes you will know what I mean.  Typically there are no trees or other obstacles to stop or slow down the wind...

No winter coat isn't complete with a bit of fun and I decided the addition of a little faux fur at the collar would add the flair I was hoping for!  Sewing with faux fur isn't hard at all, just take a few minor precautions.

If the fur is 'tear-able' do so.
That is if you can make a snip at the selvage and rip to the other end, do it.

This is so much less messy that cutting with shears or a rotary cutter. 

If you must cut, use a rotary cutter.  This is far less messy than shears.  

Clean the blades of your scissors or rotary cutter before cutting another fabric

Be prepared for the mess of faux fur!
In other words, you will probably need to vacuum when you are finished cutting and sewing.

My toggles were purchased from JoAnn's along with the faux fur and zip.  Everything else I used for this coat was from my stash.

Wow do I love this coat and with winter officially starting not that long ago, I know I will face some cold weather with it during 2017 and years beyond!

Thanks so much for reading!