Butterick 6592 Three Ways

Me Made May has been so revealing! My pledge this year was to wear the me-mades that were taking up valuable closet space, but weren’t getting much use. That lead to some ‘aha’ moments. 1. I prefer tops made of rayon, jersey knit, cotton lawn or linen (I hate stiff cottons!). 2. I love wearing skirts, pants but dresses…? Not so much (but I love to sew them!) 3. I do not enjoy wearing sleeveless tops or dresses not matter how hot it is. Yes, I have a few, but I never wear them! I’ve always had a thing about my arms, that less is more, LOL. 

That last conclusion led to one of this post’s projects. I pulled all of my sleeveless tops from my closet, determined to add sleeves. Easier said than done.  As you all know, that remedy relies on a stash of remnants that includes pieces of fabric from past projects. I used to have buckets of remnants, but that was before my commitment to ‘tidy up’. I was convinced those remnants weren’t giving me joy, so I discarded/donated most  of them a month ago! What I wouldn’t give to have them back again!!

The good news…I was able to locate enough fabric to add sleeves to this first version of my new favorite pattern, Butterick 6592. Yes, the sleeves are tiny, but I do love this top now.

I used Butterick 6592 for the three tops in this post, and it has alot to offer.  

The bodice can be made with or without a peplum, and there are three sleeve options, which makes the pattern a good value if you ask me. It’s a simple pattern to complete. The bodice is shaped by darts and the neck opening is finished with a zipper. Fit on this one is easy. I cut my usual size according to my measurements and it fits like a dream without tricky modifications.

This is view A, and for this version, I used a vintage linen table cloth that I picked up at a estate sale. The trick here was to place the cut out details in the right place on the bodice and sleeves. I used the scalloped edges of the table cloth as the finish for the sleeves. this is the second top I’ve made from a tablecloth, and it was so fun to sew!

The loose fit makes this top really comfortable and cool. Yes, it wrinkles easily, but that’s linen for you! I know this will be one of my favorite tops this summer.

This last version of B6592 is made from a remnant of silk I found last summer in the bin at the Mill End store here in Portland. It doesn’t photograph that well, but the blue is really lovely, with contrast bits of gray and off-white.

This is view B, the peplum bodice with a modified sleeve (no ruffle). Silk is so fabulous to wear – – I don’t know why I don’t treat myself to its luxury more often. I like this peplum because it isn’t too flouncy. For this version, I shortened the waist by 5/8 of an inch because the peplum is supposed to hit above the waist.

It’s always so fun to see how a single pattern can be used to create different looks. Any pattern that provides so many fun options, gets a big thumbs up from me! Besides that, it only takes a couple of hours to complete — Make it this weekend! I searched Instagram and Pattern Review for other versions of this pattern, but didn’t find much. I’m not sure why it isn’t popular, as I can see more versions of this in my future.

Happy sewing and thanks for stopping by!

Perth dress: #So50Visible

IMG_4344 2This new linen dress was inspired by the challenge on Instagram, the #So50Visible, created by the #SewOver50 gang.  The idea of the challenge is to find a pattern where the photo features a model who is over 50. Sounds easy, Right? If only…. In my search for a pattern, I couldn’t find any over 50 models in McCalls, Butterick, Vogue or Burda. Simplicity had only two. I was shocked.

When I turned to the Indie patterns, I found a few more, and I’m so pleased that my search led me to this fabulous pattern, the Perth Dress and Top by Carolyn and Cassie (Carolyn is from the blog Handmade by Carolyn). The photos of the pattern include Carolyn herself as a model…fabulous!!  I haven’t made a pattern by Carolyn and Cassie before (Cassie is her daughter), so this qualifies this make for the #BGchallenge (Breaking Ground Challenge) too!

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The Perth dress is a shirtdress that includes some classic menswear details like a traditional collar stand and generously shaped collar. It has all the trimmings of a shirt dress, but without all of the buttons (yay) so if you’ve postponed making a shirt dress because of the buttons, this option is clearly for you!

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Details: My favorite detail on this dress is the button and the front pleat. It’s so cleverly designed because, by buttoning the collar, you create the lovely pleated front of the dress.  There’s also a back yoke, a black pleat and lovely in seam pockets. The style looks structured but it has the ease and flow of a flouncy, fun dress. Because the dress is loose fitting, you choose the size by your bust measurement.

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The pattern is expertly crafted with some great constructions details that are carefully explained by Carolyn. The back yoke is constructed burrito style. If you haven’t tried it, it’s a fabulous way to get a clean finish on the inside. The front pleat and collar and stand look much harder than they are. There’s one button, but two buttonholes, and it was fun to see how, by buttoning the dress, you suddenly have this wonderful pleat in the front. The only modification I made was to the dress was to shorten the collar points by about a half of an inch, just because I like a smaller collar.

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The success of this dress depends in large part on the fabric. In order for the dress to have some lovely movement, you need a fabric with the right amount of drape, but also with enough body to support the precise construction required for a collar and stand. Linen is perfect for all of these tasks, so I chose a lovely mustard linen from the Mill End Store here in Portland as well as a contrasting white linen for the collar. This fabric was amazing to work with – – it has a slight texture to it, a rare find that I wish I had more of.

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I love my new poufy dress and am so happy that this challenge led me to a new, fun pattern. Thanks to Carolyn and Cassie for bringIMG_4344ing this pattern to life with a real life model who is over 50. And I’m so grateful to everyone involved in the #So50Visible challenge. It’s fun, and informative and it made me much more aware. Let’s hope pattern companies take notice…

Happy Sewing and thanks for stopping by.

Inari Tee/ Dress Three Ways

PicMonkey Collage-8As luck would have it, I have another ‘three versions’ post for you this week. The Inari tee/dress is such a versatile pattern, it’s impossible to resist a bit of experimentation once  it’s on the cutting table!

The lovely Inari tee/dress by Named Clothing has been around for a while, but it hasn’t lost its appeal for me.

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I love the boat neck, the high low hem, the relaxed cocoon fit and the side slits that give the look a bit of an edge. Then, there are the lovely finishing touches, the sleeve bands, the hem stitching….it’s the little things that elevate this pattern to bring the look home!

The pattern includes two variations: A loose-fitting tee dress and a cropped A-line tee. The dress is slightly cocoon-shaped, with an uneven hemline. There are slits at the sides of the dress and you can finish the neckline with a facing or a separate neckband. This pattern works with a light to medium weight fabric, either woven or stretch which makes it doubly versatile! The instructions are really complete and easy to understand on this pattern. I think even a beginner would find it instructive and satisfying to sew.

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My fabric is a linen/rayon blend from Joann’s that is medium weight with a nice drape. I love the way the side seams wrap around to the front on this dress, causing the cocoon shape. There’s something so ‘cool-girl’ about a cocoon shape:).

My other versions evolved from the cropped tee version. I am not a big fan of cropped tees unless they’re on a teen, and this tee is really cropped. So, I added a ruffled bottom to the hem of the bodice.

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This is my buddy, Mitchell…he had to be in these photos. His twin, Maggie is too shy to participate, but Mitchell loves all the attention he can get. He’s about six months now, such a funny, outgoing guy! Don’t worry about Maggie, though. She can definitely keep up. I’m guessing she’ll be pushing her way into photos soon enough.

IMG_7917I loved working with this rayon from Fabric Depot, and it feels so cool and light on. To make this version, I cut a hem band that was 1.5 X the width of the hem, and made it seven inches deep so that when hemmed, it would add six inches to the length of the bodice. I gathered it with a long sitch then sewed it to the bodice and hemmed it.

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My next version is made of lightweight shirting from Joann’s. The stripe on this fabric is so striking….just had to have it. For this version, I shortened the bodice on the cropped tee by two inches and widened the ruffled bottom by two inches as well so that the top would have more of a raised waist look. I wear this one constantly! The weight of this cotton is light, but it launders so nicely and wears well in any temperature.

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All of my Inari makes will transition well into Fall because they’re perfect with a long cardigan or a short jacket. If you haven’t given this pattern a try, I highly recommend it. There are lots of inspiring versions in blog land and on Instagram, so give it a look!

In sewing happenings, Indie Pattern Month starts next week on the Monthly Stitch. I plan on participating in at least two of the challenges. I hope you’ll join me.

Happy sewing and thanks for stopping by!

Three Versions: Darling Ranges Dress

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I’m back from my wonderful trip to France (more about that later) and am trying to ease back into the real world. So far, between jet lag and the growing awareness that daily life is not *quite* as stimulating as vacation life, it’s been a bit of a struggle. Lethargy and lack of motivation has been the mood. However, I do have a plan. This weekend I’m going to take a quick trip to a fabric store to peruse the new Fall patterns and see where that takes me.

In the meantime, I want to share with you a pattern I’m quite in love with!

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Megan Nielsen’s Darling Ranges dress pattern has been around for a while so it’s easy to find inspiring makes on social media to cheer you on. It’s pretty versatile, with two options for the dress (with or without gathered waist) and a top. Before I left for my trip,  I made three of the dresses in quick succession. I hoped to blog it before I left, but alas…that didn’t happen! I love them all, but have a special place in my heart for the two linen versions, because, well, LINEN!

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My first version is made from a striped linen/rayon blend that I found at Joann’s early this Spring. I didn’t have quite enough to make the sleeves, so I had to modify, but I’m happy with the result. It’s easy to wear as is, or, with a tee under it, it will work well for Fall. The in seam pockets are great…very convenient without a lot of bulk. This dress went to France with me, and it did its job well. The tie is meant to go in the back, but I can’t stand the feeling of a tie when I lean back, so I extended the length so that it can be worn in front.

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This green version is made from plaid cotton shirting (ModernDomestic) so it required a bit of pattern matching. I eliminated the waist tie on this version to keep the fit loose. The sleeves are lengthened so that they’re easy to roll or push up. The pockets are self drafted and are cut on the bias.

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Version three is made from a lovely embroidered striped linen I found at Mill End store here in Portland. Here’s a close up of the fabric.

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The only changes I made to this version was to hem it about a inch longer. I also made the waist tie an inch wider so that it would look more substantial when I tied it in the front.

Fit and challenges: 

  • Shoulders – – Usually I have to do a narrow shoulder adjustment – – not here! So if you have wide shoulders, the fit on this dress may need some adjusting.
  • Fabric required – – Yes, this takes a lot of fabric! I tried to skimp a bit because I’m short, and ended up with a sleeveless version when I didn’t plan on one. Yes, the dress turned out fine, but (as usual), I should have respected the stated fabric requirements to avoid that situation.
  • Button placement – – The way they were positioned on the pattern would have left gaps where I didn’t want them, so I had to do some significant repositioning.

 

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All three versions are really wearable. My favorite is probably the last one, the embroidered linen, although I’m fond of the green version too. My husband has a strong dislike to that one – – his reason? “Some dresses aren’t meant to be made in green!” Hmmm…interesting and, well, thought-provoking. I hope he’s wrong, because I predict that version will be in heavy rotation this Fall. Will I make this dress again, or is three enough? Not sure…I’m tempted to make the waist less version, although I wonder if it will be too boxy. Thoughts? Please share.

Happy sewing and thanks for stopping by!!

 

Kobe Top in Embroidered Linen

I know many of you have started your Fall sewing, but I’m still enjoying working through my stash of linen and cotton. It’s just hard for me to switch gears when the weather is still so warm.

Linen is my absolute favorite fabric to wear in the spring and summer, and if it’s soft and a teeny bit worn, I’m in heaven! So, I love to pick up bits of linen (tablecloths, napkins etc) at garage sales, antique stores, anywhere I can find them. I was thrilled at a recent collectible market to find a large embroidered table-cloth that showed no visible damage or stains.

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I knew immediately that I wanted to sew a Kobe top by Papercut patterns, a pattern I’ve been interested in making for a while.

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I was attracted to the Kobe because of the interesting back.  I love the way the pleat falls across the back neck opening.

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When I bought the pattern, I dreamed of making it from a sheer fabric but then, I saw this linen.  I knew it would be perfect. Actually, now that I’ve made the Kobe, I can imagine a whole host of fabric options for it! Sheer silk, chiffon, rayon challis, sheer lace, anything with flow and movement should work well.

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The challenge of course was pattern placement. I wanted the embroidered details to take center stage. Because the Kobe is simple with only a few main pattern pieces, this wasn’t as hard as I expected.  I centered the largest part of the embroidered pattern on the front center of the bodice and did the same with the back. The trickiest part was figuring out how to do the hem, as I wanted to utilize the lovely embroidered edge. In the end, I did a muslin version to make sure I understood where the length of the front and back would fall on me. I’m really glad I did this because the Kobe is likely designed for someone who is quite a bit taller than me (5’4”). So I did a mid bodice adjustment of an inch. This really brought it up to a reasonable length.   

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On the sleeves, I used the same strategy – -I centered the pattern, and used the scalloped edges as a hem. This did make this a fast project – – no hemming needed!

I love my new summer top. Yes, it wrinkles, but hey, linen is worth it. And I’m happy to say, I don’t feel like I’m wearing a old table-cloth when I wear this, LOL. Have you ever made anything from an old table-cloth?

Happy sewing and thanks for stopping by!

                   

Arenite pants…An Anthro knock-off?

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In RTW lingo, these pants are called joggers.  This is a fact I gleaned from a knowledgeable and very trend conscious sales person at Anthropologie. Yes, I tried on several pairs of the lovely pants below. Yes, I did love them.

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But No, I didn’t buy them because, hey, I’m on a RTW fast.

I would not say this style is a look that I’m drawn to. As a rule, I’m not attracted to loose-fitting pants with big pockets. But honestly….the Anthro joggers won me over. The slouchy look, the stretchy waist band, the color, and the fit….Needless to say, if I wasn’t on a RTW fast, they would be hanging in my closet right now. Instead, I left the store with a firm committment to give a knock-off a try.

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The closest pattern I could find was Sew Liberated’s Arenite pants. It’s a favorite pattern of many in our sewing community and I did check it out when it was first released.  I found it…interesting, but just couldn’t see myself in that style so I took a pass.

 

But never say never, eh? The pattern design is just like the Anthro joggers!

Pattern review: I cut my version from linen, my favorite warm weather fabric. I modified the pattern slightly. Before cutting, I removed some of the fullness from the pocket so that it would hang closer to my leg. I’m not going to lie…as designed there’s just too much going on there for me. I had to lengthen the pants a bit (1 inch), a surprise since I’m only 5’4″ but as drafted, they’re a bit too short for the slouchy look I wanted.

There’s so much to like about this pattern. It’s carefully drafted with yummy details like a front top-stitched seam, optional cuffs and in-seam pockets. Another plus…the fit is very forgiving, so if you’re new to the world of sewing, these pants are a good place to start. There are french seams throughout and the instructions are quite detailed and easy to follow. This is only my second Sew Liberated pattern, and I was truly impressed! IMG_3902

Look Analysis. Well, this Anthro knockoff is close….but not perfect. The fit of the Arenites (on me) is looser than the Anthro joggers. Yes, the Arenites are comfortable, but the look isn’t quite as trendy as the Anthro joggers.  The color of my linen isn’t quite as vibrant as the RTW fabric, but that’s not a deal breaker. I am pleased that the Arenites do have the ‘jogger’ look and style I was going for. So, a cautious ‘thumbs up’ from me. I might give this pattern another try at some point… cut it a bit smaller through the hips, maybe use a drapey fabric like rayon for a totally different look. Hmmmm…..

The top I’m wearing is another version of one of my favorite Big 4 patterns this year, Simplicity 8601 (previously made and blogged here.) This version is white and gray linen (Fabric Depot); white linen on the front bodice and sleeves; gray linen on the sleeve ruffle and bodice back. The light gray really makes the ruffle ‘pop’ but I’m not sure that shows in the photos. I do love the waist tie look and am really loving this pattern! It seems to work no matter what fabric I throw at it!

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Although my  Arenites do not fit my figure as well as the Anthro joggers, I will enjoy them. Clearly, they fall into the my favorite clothing category – – secret pajamas! Perhaps, there’s a pattern available that would have worked better for my ‘knock-off’? Suggestions welcome!

Happy sewing and thanks for stopping by!

 

Putting Fushia Linen To Good Use

 

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I have a new favorite color; fuschia.  This fuschia linen jacket takes me back to my first handmade effort years ago, a Vogue Perry Ellis jacket pattern that I fussed over because it was so expensive! Everything about that project felt special to me, so I visited a specialty fabric store and splurged on three yards of beautiful fuschia linen. At that point in my life, I had an entry level job with a corresponding salary, so I was necessarily frugal and so nervous when I cut into that expensive fabric. Such a risk!! Even now, after years of sewing, that same quiver hits me when I cut into a favorite piece.

That was certainly the case with this lovely linen!

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When I shop for linen at the fabric stores in Portland, earthy, natural colors are easy to come by, but it’s hard to find vibrant, rich brights! So, I was so thrilled when I found this linen on-line (Fabric.com),  on sale at the end of last summer.

The pattern I chose for my casual jacket is one I’ve sewn before (here), McCalls 7333.  I loved and wore that jacket so much, I was really eager to try the pattern again.

 

There are many reasons to love this design; the drawstring waist, the off shoulder look, the tab sleeves, but I’m crazy about this magnificent hood!

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I’m not sure why I love hoods so much. Maybe it’s because I live in the Pacific Northwest where Rain Rules. Whatever the reason, I’m a fan of this one. I love the way the collar drapes nicely into the jacket lapel; so relaxed yet stylish.

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About the Pattern: The instructions were easy to follow. I found the sizing straightforward, but generous (XS-XXL). The style is very loose and the collar gives weight at the neck, making it quite wide, so if you cut a size too large, it could easily slip off your shoulders. Since I have narrow shoulders, I took 5/8 from the shoulders. I also cut a size smaller than my measurements, and it’s still a good fit.

One nice detail with this pattern is the two-piece sleeves with button cuffs. They add a polished element that gives this loose jacket some structure. They wereeasy and simple to insert as are the buttoned cuffs.

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It’s definitely linen season here (finally!) and I think this pattern was the perfect use for my cherished fabric. I’m wearing this jacket here with my Ginger jeans, which are in heavy rotation in my wardrobe! There’s another pair of those in my future too.

On my sewing table:  I’ve just cut out a Blackwood cardigan, and a new springy top for Faye’s Tops that Pop challenge (lots of inspiration on her blog)! Look for those posts soon. I’m also planning an update on my RTW fast experience and will be participating with Me-Made-May.

I love linen, and am always happy to find a new style that works with it. I have another green piece in my stash that I’ve been considering for a bright Spring trench. To do so, I’d have to underline the coat, I think, since linen is crisp but maybe not quite crisp enough. Have any of you ever underlined linen?

Happy Spring sewing and thanks for stopping by!

 

Color Blocking and Statement Sleeves

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Is color blocking still a ‘thing’? I hope so, because here I go again. I suppose the good news is that, even if color blocking is clearly ‘out’, the statement sleeves on this dress are clearly ‘in’! I decided to color block this dress when I found a yard of poppy linen and navy linen in my stash, and since my goal for 2017 is to make a huge dent in said stash, I promptly decided to use it.

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This is my second make using New Look 6519 which qualifies this pattern as a true favorite (first is here).  It’s comfortable and classic, and with the addition of the wide ruffle on the sleeve, it feels modern too.

My only modification this time around was to make a very wide ruffled sleeve. I cut a wide (seven inch) piece of linen and made it as long as 11/2 times the diameter of the sleeve opening (version A). I folded it over, gathered it, then sewed it to the sleeve, so quick and easy. With this process, you can add a ruffle to just about anything!

Besides the self tie, I also love the slight v-neck on the back of this dress… so unique.IMG_1670

My only complaint about this dress is, as drafted, it’s a little short.

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I’m only 5’4″ and it’s almost too short on me, so if you’re tall, you might want to add a few inches to the length of the bodice. Other than that, this is an easy make. There are no sleeves to set in, you don’t need a back zipper, so seam it up and you’re good to go.

Does poppy qualify as a fall color? If so,this dress would be my first official Fall make. I think I love it, although I’m not really sure about the Navy/Poppy combination. I added the Navy band and ruffle to this dress to soften the bright poppy color, and I think it does that. However, I wonder if this color combo looks a bit like a uniform? I feel like I should be asking, “Do you want peanuts with your beverage? Thoughts? Would you pair poppy with navy?

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Color choices aside, this dress feels so good because of the weight of this wonderful linen. I know I’ll wear it, no matter what.

I would like to take a minute to thank all of you for the lovely, comforting comments about the loss of my furry buddy, Dustin. It’s been a rough couple of weeks, made easier by the knowledge that I have so many kindred spirits in the sewing community with whom I share much beyond sewing and creating. Thank-you for that!

I also wanted to give a quick shout out to two interesting challenges some of our sewing friends are participating in this month; the Fabric Mart Fabricistas Challenge, and the Pattern Review Sewing Bee. Check them out and cheer our friends to victory!  Also, in other news, the Sewcialist website is up again and they’re hosting a tribute month, another fabulous source of inspiration and fun.

Until next time, happy sewing and thanks for stopping by!

 

Wardrobe Part 2: Safari and Long Cardi

Hi All! I’m back with part 2 of my Sudoku Wardrobe adventure for Pattern Review’s Contest. These makes are two of my ‘accessories’, a linen safari jacket and a long knit cardigan. I think the fact that I interpreted the accessory category as a chance to add jackets or toppers to my wardrobe is a big clue that I live in Oregon! Honestly, one doesn’t venture out of the house, even in summer, without a wrap of some sort in hand. You just never know when the weather is going to shift and catch you by surprise.

This safari jacket was one of my favorite makes of this contest.

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Why? Because it’s detailed with double rows of topstitching everywhere!

Of course, I used my trusty #57 edge stitch presser foot to help guide me as I did on my denim dress last year. There’s something so satisfying about seeing those stitches lined up in perfect rows!

I’ve wanted to make a jacket like this for a while with a belt and pockets and buttons. I imagined a version with buttons on the upper pockets, but when I tried them on my jacket, well, it just was too much for me. So I left them off. McCalls 7365 is a loose-fitting, unlined vest and jacket with a self lined yoke, two piece sleeves, french seams and lots of pockets with tucks. It also has a cool back pleat, and a tie belt. There are lots of pieces of course, which makes this long project but it’s so satisfying and well worth the time. I love the two piece sleeves and the pleated pockets. One note though: the fit of the jacket is loose. Adjusting it would be a bit tricky if you usually adjust fit at the side seams because there are none. There’s a side panel instead.

The pattern instructions were great, the fit was good, and nothing was too tricky or confusing, definitely, a new favorite! The linen was from my stash, (YAY) purchased so long ago, I forgot where!  For the contest, the Sudoku grid forced me to pair this jacket with a skirt, but I’ll likely wear it more often with jeans and shorts. I want another version out of twill
 My other topper in the accessory category was a long knit cardigan.IMG_4826
I am such a fan of this shape. Earlier this year, I made this pattern and loved my wool knit version so much , I had to add a Spring version to my wardrobe.IMG_3967
It’s made from a denim colored cotton knit that I bought at Fabric Depot last summer. The fabric has just the right amount of stretch to make it wearable, but it’s not so stretch that it loses its shape. McCalls 7476 is one of my new favorites, and I have fabric for another version in linen knit. I cut this version a bit larger than my last because I wanted to take advantage of the light flow-y nature of this fabric. It floats a bit as I walk, which will make it a perfect summer layer.
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I also made an Obagi belt from leather, and used that as one of my accessories too.

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This belt is basically just two pieces of leather sewn together with leather ties. I crafted the tassels by cutting strips of leather and sewing them to the ends :). Not sure I love how they turned out, but I do use this belt all the time!

That’s it for my accessories; The Moto jacket from last post, the Safari jacket, the cardigan and the belt…four pieces I’m glad to have in my wardrobe! Next post will be the tops I made.

I wandered around my sewing room a bit yesterday and noticed how airy and light I feel with a smaller stash :). That’s one of the best parts about entering a contest/challenge for me. I’m motivated to complete projects I’ve dreamed about for a long time, and I burn through my stash! I have to admit though. It is hard to part with some fabric, like the brown linen piece I used for the Safari jacket. I love the color and know I will never find a piece like that again. What? Do I have regrets? Not really, but I do get sentimental about fabric!  Am I the only one?

Happy sewing and thanks for stopping by!

DIY Cropped Pants and an Easy Top

img_7842Hi All! What are these? Cropped pants? Wide shorts? Culottes? Tell me, please. Whatever they are, they’re strangely reminscent of a poppy skirt I bought in junior high. Yes, it has been that long since I had anything in my wardrobe that was poppy! Can’t tell you why I’ve waited this long because the color is so fabulous. In fact, when you think of all the colors you can wear with it (black, navy, white, denim, maybe even army green?), you could almost call it a neutral.

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I’ve wanted a pair of wide shorts/cropped pants since I saw Mimi G rocking them on her website. Yes, I could have purchased one of her excellent patterns to make these, but I felt sure a shorts pattern I had in my stash would work just fine. But after I made them, I realized didn’t have quite the right top to go with them. You know how it goes. One thing leads to another….

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The cropped pants are a long version of Vogue 9008, a shorts pattern that is so versatile. You can make a flat front or pleated front version. I chose the pleats, but then I sewed them down to give the front a smooth finish. To get the full leg look I wanted, I lengthened the shorts by six inches, keeping the line of the shorts wide at the bottom. I love the effect. The shorts are snug at the top, but they flare out like a skirt at the bottom.

The pattern is pretty straightforward. It has a mock fly zipper, which is easy to insert, and you can add pockets if you want. The instructions were clear. It wasn’t hard, but with belt loops and a back yoke (which I love) this pattern is a bit time consuming.

I made them from poppy linen, purchased at Fabric Depot. It is midweight and I planned on lining the shorts with silk, but ended up taking the lining out because it made the legs too full and bunchy.  Yes, I wanted them to be full, but I did not want them to look like clown pants.

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The top is made from a cotton-linen blend that’s the color of denim. I love this fabric and wish I could remember where I got it because I’d love to have more. The pattern is Vogue, 8906.

It has front pleats that form the shape of the bodice, eliminating the need for darts. There’s a zipper in back. To make the sleeves a little more boxy, I added a sleeve band that is 5″ wide. It makes the sleeves look more ‘finished’ to me, and adds a bit of a retro vibe, I think. I also added a v-neck, and adjusted the facings accordingly. This pattern is super easy! I plan on making several more versions including one with buttons down the front. The fit was spot on for me. I didn’t even have to adjust for my narrow shoulders. Nice!

img_7846I’m not sure if Poppy is a fall color, but I’m going to be wearing this outfit now, because linen is so perfect at this time of year. I’m not sure if I’ll really wear this top with the shorts though. Together they might be too much flare for me. Maybe I should wear them with a top that fits snuggly, or maybe something tucked in? Opinions welcome!

I hope your sewing projects are going well. Fall is my favorite time to sew, because the new fabrics are so fabulous. Enjoy!