Monday, June 22, 2015

Vogue 7883 Chic Casual


Aloha Friends,

Today I finished up Vogue 7883, a pattern for a loose fitting top with an asymmetrical hemline and wide-legged capri length pants.  The top was made with a textured, white cotton knit and handkerchief linen and the pants are made out of a pool blue, mid-weight tencel.  I am so pleased with the results.

Here is a run down on the top:

Right away I was concerned that the size 8 would be much too wide for my comfort, so I changed the pattern by not cutting the front and back piece on the fold.  Instead, I cut the pattern out on the fold line and took up a 5/8" seam down the front and back piece.  In total this brought the wideness of the top and neckline in by 2 1/2 inches.  Also, I thought it would be fun to make the two bottom front pieces out of a contrasting texture so this is where I used a white handkerchief linen.  This top can be entirely made out of a woven, but I made most of it out of a stable, mid-weight knit.  The other thing I changed was that I did not use facings to finish the neckline.  I used self-made linen bias tape.  Then I top-stitched with a wide, double needle.  I love how the handkerchief linen has a subtle see-throughness to it on the sides, but it is opaque in the front where the double layer is.  This top is so comfortable for warm weather!
Here is the back:
Oops, missed a thread scrap on the sleeve.  I made a narrow 3/8" hem.
If you've been reading along, you already know that I adjusted the pants pattern quite a bit, mostly in the front crotch seam.  I ended up pinching out at least 1" horizontally (which I tapered to nothing at about the middle of the back of the pants) and 1" vertically from the waist then tapering back into the seam allowance near the inner leg.  I also redrew the front curve.   I went ahead and added the side seam pockets and finished the waist with 1" elastic.


And here is the final look:
Side and Back Views:
In the end, I love how easy this was to make, how pulled-together it looks, and how incredibly comfortable it is to wear.  I hope I have time to make another set, but I may take a break from this pattern now to work on some other projects, like skirts and possibly a dress or two!  Thanks for stopping by!  PS: Kathy, the Japanese fabric is a woven :-)

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Seriously Bit!


Seriously bit by the PJ bug that is…..I just couldn't resist making 2 more versions of the PJ pants.  Take 3 is a cropped length made out of locally sourced fabric in a Japanese theme.  They are about 6 inches shorter than the other two I made because I didn't have enough fabric to make them full length.
Tank Top is RTW from Sport's Authority.  PJ pants are made by me. 
And my final version is made out of another color way and print of the Waverly Inspirations fabric I found at Walmart.  These are view View C from Vogue 7883.  For both versions I remembered I had some flat, 1/2" wide nylon cording which I used for the drawstring.  All four versions have the drawstring tacked down at the back of the waist.  That way I never have to worry about them slipping out in the wash.
Tank Top is RTW from Sport's Authority.  PJ shorts are made by me. 
I think the PJ sickness has finally left me, and I am currently suffering from Tencelitis.  Stay tuned….

Friday, June 19, 2015

Summer PJ's Take 2


Hello Again,

Continuing with the previous post, I made the adjustments to the front curve using this online resource. I am so happy with the results.  The PJ's now fit perfectly.  You might be able to see from the clothesline picture that the front of the PJ's is now lower than the back, unlike the other pair.  They are made out of an aloha cotton from my stash purchased here in Maui.  Onward to make a pair of drawstring tencel pants with on seam pockets.  I will show more photos of the fit when I construct the next pair of pants.

RTW tank top from Old Navy.  PJ pants made by me.
Hmmm….I may just make one more pair of PJ's before I move on to the pants version.  They are quick and fun to make with so many cottons available in my stash!

Summer PJ's Take 1


Aloha Everyone,

RTW top from Old Navy.  PJ pants made by me.


Today I finished up my first pair of summer PJ pants.  I always love to make PJ's for each new season.  I generally like to use soft, 100% cotton fabric.  Amazingly I found this fabric at my local Walmart.  The selvage says "Waverly Inspirations" screen print.  The fabric is very soft and fairly thick.  I guess I would say it has a medium weight.  I wanted to test a Vogue pattern that I have had in my stash for eons.  It is Vogue 7883.
This pattern has an elastic waist and side seam pockets, but I made my version with drawstrings and no pockets.  I sewed up the size 8 and found out the front crotch is much longer and has more fabric than I prefer.  I am going to alter the pattern and make a second pair of PJ pants or shorts.  Once I have dialed the pattern in, I will make a pair of tencel pants with the side seam pockets.  I am also working on a test version of the top.  I think this will be a cute warm weather outfit.  I actually like how wide the legs are.  Stay tuned….


PS: Kyle asked about sewing with sequins in my last post.  The sequins on the fabric were quite small so I treated the fabric no differently than any other fabric that I have used when I sewed it up.  I did not have any strange puckering at the side seams, thankfully.  The skirt is fully lined so I also don't have any scratchiness at the seams either.  Thanks for the question.

Sunday, June 14, 2015

New Look A6303 and a Shiny Skirt


Aloha Again,

I had fun coming up with a new outfit based on a top from New Look A6303 in a linen/rayon blend and a skirt from some salvaged sequin fabric that came from a $9.00 clearance dress at Ross.  Let's start with the top.  Here is the pattern and my finished top:

You may have already noticed that I made view D.  However, the front neckline is slightly different.  I'd love to be able to say that I started with the "X" idea before I even put the top together, but that would be an untruth!  When I finished my top, the way you see it on the pattern envelope, there was too much distance between the front two panels, and the binding did not lay flat if I tacked the two front panels together at the marking on the pattern.  So I cut the center binding, stitched it at an angle, then stitched the tails to the shirt front creating an "X".  It's different, but I think it works.  In the future I will know to make the neck binding quite a bit shorter, by about 2 inches, I think.  I just didn't have the gumption to unstitch the original neckline binding and start again.  By the way, I made the size 10.  

As with most of the reviewers on Patternreview.com, my front shirt panels came out about 1.5 inches longer than the back of the shirt, so I had to stitch a deeper seam allowance along the bottom corners of pattern piece #1.  In the future, I will make my back panel 1.5" longer.  As you may have guessed, I did not make a muslin, so I hodge-podged along the way to "Make it Work".  Here is a close-up of my finished side.
I found an XL clearance dress at Ross made entirely out of this copper sequin fabric for $9.00.  I couldn't believe it!  I took it home and simply cut a tube skirt out of it since it has some stretch.  I used the lining that came with the dress to line the skirt and to make the elastic encased waistband.  Simple and fast!  It is hard to tell, but the linen/rayon fabric in the top is two-toned.  It has aqua threads and natural linen colored threads.  When blended, the fabric looks like it has a bit of a copper sheen to it.  That is why I paired the two together.  And here is the complete look!  I will enjoy wearing this for special nights out.  Also, I think the skirt would be cute with a fun graphic t-shirt too.




I do love the top and would like to try making one out of a nice silk fabric some day.  The armholes are finished with self-fabric instead of single fold bias tape, like the pattern recommends.  And just because he kind of matches, I spied this little fella on Thursday resting at the bottom of the sea.  I tell you it is a battle between sewing or snorkeling sometimes.  Have a great week everyone!


Saturday, June 6, 2015

Boho Burgundy and Lace

Aloha All,

Well that was a bit of a long break since the last post, but I am glad to be back and sewing.  School has finished up for the summer, and I look forward to challenging myself by tapping back into my creative sewing side.  This latest dress doesn't have much of a pattern.  I based it off of the tank top dresses I made here and here.

Basically there are two dresses.  The underdress is made out of an ivory-colored, polyester/lycra, stretch lace from Fabric.com.  To embellish the neckline I cut a strip of the stretch lace about 3 feet long by 1 inch wide, then gathered it down the center and attached it to the front neckline, which I cut slightly higher than the outer dress.  I finished the bottom of the lace dress by sewing a 1 inch wide trim lace to it.
The outer dress is made out of a rayon knit in a burgundy tie-dye print.  I have had this fabric in my stash for quite a while.  It came from Marcy Tilton's website.  It is a very nice quality, and it is slightly heavier than a tissue weight knit.  That is why I decided to layer it with the stretch lace dress.  However, the dress on its own will be an awesome swimsuit cover-up for the beach.


To gather the lower, side edges I sewed a channel 11 inches long along the seam line, then threaded some silk ribbon through it leaving 3 inches exposed through the top of the channel.  I anchored the silk ribbon to the top of the channel and then gathered the edges of the dress up.  I tied the top of the ribbon together permanently with the bottom of the ribbon towards the inside of the dress.


I didn't hem the bottom of the rayon dress because the fabric naturally flips to the inside since the edges are gathered so much and tied on the inside.  I finished the neckline and armholes with self-fabric.  I cut strips of fabric 1.75 inches wide and two inches shorter than the openings.  I stitched these strips into bands by sewing the ends together then pressing in half.  I then divided my opening into equal fourths and my bands into equal fourths, matched up the fourths, then stitched them on using a zigzag stitch followed by a straight stitch.  I think I like this new combo.  And I know I will like the dress on its own at the beach.  Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, April 26, 2015

A Quick Sew with Kwik Sew 3740


Aloha Friends,

This last quarter of school has been so busy!  This weekend I was involved with a play (8.5 hours on Saturday), but I managed to get a little sewing in today.  I didn't have time to make anything too complicated, but living here, you don't often need "complicated".


I used Kwik Sew 3740 to make a simple black tank with a contrasting neckline.  The contrasting neckline picks up the light coral in the skirt.  Both fabrics in the top are cotton  jersey with a bit of spandex.  I simply turned the armholes in 1/2" and top stitched with my coverstitch machine to finish them off.  I cut 3 inches off the length of the top before I hemmed it with a 1 1/4" fold; also with my coverstitch machine.

The tank top was made to coordinate with the chevron stripe cotton/spandex knit skirt, which I made with a simple a-line shaped skirt panel.  This skirt panel came from Vogue7879 (Oop).  I used the front skirt piece for both the front and the back of my skirt.  Then I added a self-fabric waistband.  It is a simple pull-on knit skirt.  Both pieces are appropriate for work, regarding the width of the shoulder straps and the length of the skirt.

And here is the finished look:
  Side and Back Views:

I already knew the tank top would fit great, since I have made it before.  Knit skirts are pretty easy to fit, so low stress there too!  Yay, I have a new outfit for Monday.  Have a great week, and thanks for stopping by and for your comments on the last post!

PS: Sewsincere, Thank you for asking if I trimmed 1/2" off the back neckline of the dress in the previous post.  I did end up taking a wedge out of the back neckline that equaled ~1/2", and I tapered back into the center back seam about 6" down.  I had forgotten to mention that.  Hope that helps.

Monday, April 13, 2015

New Look A6125 Modified


Aloha Everyone!

My latest project is a modified version of New Look A6125.  This is a pattern for a short flowing dress that is fairly fitted at the top and then flares out into a trapeze shape.  The dress is designed to be fully lined and has bust darts for shaping.  It is also designed to have a center, back, invisible zipper.  However, I changed several things.  The printed finished bust is 37" on the size 10, and I knew that would be too much room for me so the first thing I did was trim 1/2" off the center front fold line.  Most New Look patterns are too wide in the neck for me, so I didn't expect this to be a problem at the neck opening.

Next, I added 3" to the length so that I could create a high-low hemline.  Instead of lining the dress, I cut out strips of bias binding and finished the armholes and neckline by stitching with a 1/4" seam, then under stitching, then turning to the inside and stitching again.  Here is the finished look.  I am very happy with how nicely the fabric behaved and how clean the finishes came out.  The fabric is a medium weight rayon.  Once again, this fabric came from Costco and was a large sarong.  I just loved the print and color combination.  The other thing I changed about this pattern was that I did not add a center back zipper.  It was unnecessary.  The dress easily slips over my head.

And here is the finished look!
I love how swingy the dress feels.  I know I will get a lot of wear out of this.  And because the neckline is high in the back, it is great for hiding racerback bra straps too.

That is all for now.  Hope your week is off to a great start!