A lacy designer-inspired top

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Well, it’s time to deck the halls and ourselves too! It’s December, a month so cold and gray, we’d probably all go crazy if we didn’t have a few parties to attend.Today, the party I’m thinking about is here, in the blogging world, Designin’ December, a sewing initiative created by Linda of ‘Nice Dress, Thanks I made it’. The idea is to find an inspiring frock from a Designer then create your own version.

My lacy top was inspired by a Alberta Ferretti design that I first noticed in a Vogue magazine article.

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When I saw the lace detailing, it was instant love. I had to have that look in my closet. After studying the photo a bit, I realized the elements of the basic sweater were simple. It was really the lace embellishment that made it unique.  So, I found some red and black herringbone sweater knit in my stash and decided to embellish it with black lace, a combination that would work well for holiday dressing.

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The pattern I used is McCalls 6614, a simple, close fitting pullover top with princess seams and a narrow hem, but any basic knit top pattern would do as well. Of course, I wanted to use this pattern because I’m obsessed with princess seams, but they aren’t critical to the design. I opted to color block the side panels and the neck band for contrast.

The biggest challenge? Finding the right lace – – it had to be wide enough to be the focal point of the sweater. Needless to say, I became obsessed. After driving all over town in the rain, I finally found the perfect lace at Fabric Depot. To add the embellishment to the top, I simply marked the bodice pieces and the sleeve pieces with tailor’s chalk, then basted the lace to the fabric at my markings. Then, I finished assembling the bodice, adding the side panels and inserting the raglan sleeves. The raw ends of the lace were hidden in the side and sleeve seams.

This is an easy pattern but the placement of the lace was challenging, and it was hard to keep the fabric under it smooth as I based it on. The process was a bit time consuming, but I like the end result. This top will be easy to dress up or down, and it’s cozy too, a plus at this time of year.

After studying Alberta Ferretti’s designs, I’ve become a fan.

The fabrics are rich looking (brocades and velvets, among them) and her color combinations are inspiring. If only we could find anything close to those brocades in the stores….but I digress :).

I can’t wait to see everyone’s creations during Designin’ December. The fashion runways are full of inspiration, especially at this time of year, so who knows? There may be another designer inspired ‘make’ from me before this month is done.

Happy sewing and thanks for stopping by!

McCall’s 7243 – A holiday look that shimmers

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There’s nothing like a little glitter and glamour to deliver a festive mood when you need one! Holiday parties are just around the corner…a needed diversion from the cold and gray days of December, and they provide a great opportunity to dress up. Ready to wear offers a host of options of course, but most all of them are sleeveless. Hello? ‘Baby, it’s cold out there!’

This is another reason I’m glad I love to sew. With a bit of glitzy fabric and a favorite sewing pattern, we aren’t limited to those goose-bumpy options, are we? When I needed a dressy long sleeve top to conquer a wintery holiday event, my fabric stash came to the rescue.

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I chose McCall’s 7243 for this shimmering top.  It’s a close-fitting pullover top/dress with an interesting collar and a deep v-neck. There’s something glamorous about a v-neck, don’t you think? Very vintage Hollywood!

The reason I chose this particular pattern is that it had an unusual neckline for a knit top, a v-neck with a wide wrapped collar that gave it a bit of drama.

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I wondered if that would make this top a sewing nightmare, but the only difficulty I encountered was in the attachment of the collar and the mock wrap of the bodice. The diagrams were pretty limited. I had to study them and re-read the instructions several times to get it right (no, I was not watching Game of Thrones). The key for me was paying extra attention to the right and wrong sides of the fabric as marked on the diagrams as well as keeping the tissue pattern pieces close at hand for reference.

The fabric I used for this top is a glittery, furry moderate stretch knit that I found at Mill End (By the way, choosing a moderate stretch is the key to the fit of this top I think. Also,if your fabric has too much stretch, the collar might be limp). Although it’s hard to see the sparkle and color in the photos, it’s a deep aubergine, one of my favorite colors this fall.

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The collar is great and it adds a bit of interest to the back too. I especially like the way the collar fans out over the shoulders, giving the top a bit of drama. If you want to make the sleeveless version, the collar provides a cap to the shoulder, which could be really flattering. I plan to try that version when the weather improves.

Now that December is here, are you readying your wardrobe for festive events? I really love reading everyone’s blog posts at this time of year since there are so many sources of inspiration. I’ve seen a few velvet dresses this year – -might have to try my hand at one soon!

Happy sewing and thanks for stopping by.

 

 

 

 

Vogue 8831 – A long cowl for layering

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I’ve always loved fall fashion…the chunky coats, the heavy sweaters, all perfect to wear with boots!  But I didn’t know what true love was until I found sweater knits. When it comes to cozying up for winter, they are the real deal.

Fall means layering pieces for me, and when I sew a base layer, I think monochromatic. That way, I can go crazy with additional layers, adding color and texture over that simple base piece.  The trickiest part with that base layer for me though, is making sure it’s not too bulky. I try to stay away from the chunkiest sweater knits. I don’t want to look like the Michelin Man (although, I’ll bet that guy is warm!!)

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This ‘fifty shades of gray’ sweater is a base layering piece for me, cut from a cozy sweater knit that’s a bit of a mystery fabric. I found it languishing in my stash, hidden under a heavy piece of boiled wool that I’ve had for several years. What a great surprise! Since I’d all but forgotten about it, its appearance seemed magical, so I had to use it right away.

The pattern is Vogue  8831 (OOP but still available on-line. Vogue 9055 is similar), a close-fitting, pullover top and tunic with a draped collar, side front/side back seams and stitched hems. What’s great about this pattern is that it includes several cup sizes which means you can get the fit just right.

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I varied the pattern as follows:

I cut the short sleeves from the same fabric as the bodice then added a lower sleeve in a solid fabric, basically making two piece long sleeves.

I added cuffs of contrasting ribbed knit.

I added a band of ribbed knit to the bottom.

I cut the collar from a solid knit.

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Challenges? There were a few.  Matching stripes on princess seams is no picnic, especially when you’re working with a knit that wants to stretch when you touch it. I pinned and pinned and pinned, trying to make sure that stretchy knit didn’t shift. It turned out okay – – not perfect, but ripping seams out in a sweater knit is not easy.

In fact, this might be the biggest downside of sewing with sweater knit. Stitches get lost in the weave and you can’t ever find them again. And if you do find those stitches and try to take them out, you can easily rip up that fabric.  So….it’s best if you don’t make any mistakes (Ha, not happening in my world)!!!

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After getting a bit angsty over the whole thing,  I finally decided to give up on perfectly matched stripes in order to keep that sweater knit intact.

I love my cozy sweater! Because it’s long, I’ll wear snug fitting pants and skirts with it to balance out the oversized look of the top.  And, I can easily layer this up a bit with a long vest, even a coat over that.

Have you sewn any cozy layers lately? If so, I’d love to check out your makes! Happy sewing, and thanks for stopping by….

Butterick 5927: A warm front of plaid wool

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This plaid coat is my most recent attempt to brighten up my outerwear wardrobe with color.  The base color of the loose weave is avocado green, a trendy color this fall that pays homage to some 70’s legends, namely Kitchenmaid, Sunbeam and Kenmore (harvest gold or burnt orange, anyone?).
Plaid used to be the last thing I’d include in my wardrobe as it reminded me of private school uniforms. But plaid is all grown up now. It’s such a fashion mainstay, it made an appearance on more than one fashion runway this fall. Love the combination of colors and textures in these Prada plaids!
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If only the fabric fairy would bring me some of this!
 
This fall, I wanted to add a loosely structured, easy-to-wear coat to my wardrobe, something to just ‘throw on’ over jeans and cords and skirts. I also wanted a stand up collar to keep out cold wind.
This proved to be a tall order, since many coat patterns had fussy lapels, details I didn’t want. I finally settled on  Butterick 5927, a lined jacket with front variations and a stand up collar.
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I modified the pattern, adding 6 inches to the front and back bodice to make it less of a jacket and more of a coat (albeit a short one). I also added a couple of inches to the stand up collar with two buttons to make it a bit cozier and to protect against winter winds. To make the sleeves more weather proof, I added self drafted cuffs with buttons. 
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The pattern is a nice basic shape and the coat went together easily. The biggest challenge I faced was the fabric. It frayed like crazy!! So I had to take extra care with the seam finishings. Even as I finished them, they frayed – frustrating! But other than that, it was a pretty fast sew, really. I did the seams, collars, the cuffs, all of the hard stuff. But, when it came to the lining, I stalled. Don’t ask me why! I couldn’t get myself to just finish it. The beautiful black cotton/silk blend just sat on my sewing table for weeks. What the…?
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True confession, here. This is a recurring problem for me. I frequently stall when it comes to the lining. I dither around. Of course, lining a garment isn’t hard at all. So why not just do it? Good question! Anyway, to make a long story short, I finally broke down and cut the lovely silk and sewed it in. No big deal. And the coat looks so finished now. Hope I can remember that next time I make a lined garment!
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The mornings are cold here, and some of the days are gray, but the good news is, my outwear isn’t… It’s Kitchenmaid green! 
My fall sewing frenzy is in full swing now. I’m dreaming of projects with cold weather in mind, coats and jackets and layers. How about you?
Happy sewing – and thanks for stopping by!

Seeing Red!! An embellished version of Simplicity 3833

IMG_1136s This This Fall, there’s a new kid in town, the Little Red Dress. While the Little Black Dress and the Little White Dress have always been favorites of mine, there’s something fierce and unexpected about a red dress. For one thing, you can’t be a shrinking violet if you’re wearing red at a party. You will be noticed. You might feel a bit powerful, too.

I decided to make this dress from red because when I looked at my Fall wardrobe, only one word came to mind – Somber! Everything I saw was gray or black.  Eeek! Is there anything worse? I decided it was time to find a new favorite color. Then, I met this fabric. True love! It was the most perfect shade of red; not too orange or pink, but a true, cardinal red.

My lovely cardinal fabric became the back drop for embellishment, courtesy of the second round of the Pattern Review Sewing Bee. We were asked to make the fabric our own by using surface embellishments. It took me a few days to get my head around that one (clock ticking, ticking, ticking). But once I got used to the idea, the embellishments used by Italian designers, like Dolce and Gabbana came to mind. Inspired by their swoops and swirls, I decided to try my hand at it.

IMG_1438Because I suspected the trim and appliqué would be heavy, I decided to make my dress from a medium weight rayon (woven) with some body and weight. I’m glad I did that, because the finished dress is surprisingly heavy.  Just think what the royals have to deal with, given the size of their medals and jewels!
Dress Pattern: I used Simplicity 3833 for the bodice but added self drafted sleeves because I wanted them to be bell-shaped to match the a-line shape of the dress’s lower bodice. The embellishments on the sleeves are meant to match the themes on the dress bodice. I highly recommend this pattern. It’s really fun and easy to sew. The curved seam between the upper and lower bodice gives it a unique look, I think. I chose an a -line style because the skirt is wide, a nice blank slate for embellishments.

IMG_0928The embellishments:
  • Before constructing the dress, I made a template of the swirled pattern, so that the design would be consistent on both sides of the upper and lower bodice which I knew would be tricky.
  • Then, I transferred the finished designs to the right side of the fabric with basting stitches. Nightmare. I could have used one of those lovely invisible ink marking pens, but I discovered with a test swatch, that the ink didn’t disappear on this fabric. Since I knew I’d make mistakes, I didn’t dare use one.
  •  Following those markings, I laid the trim onto the fabric pieces, adjusting the curves as I went so that the swirls wouldn’t look forced.  This took forever as it had to be done in stages – – so that the curves of the swirls would be remain perfect and symmetrical. I hand basted each trim to the fabric to keep it from shifting, before using my machine to secure it with a appliqué stitch.
  •  I created the appliqué flowers and trim from lace, then appliquéd those embellishments to the center of the swirls.
The best part of this project, was deciding where to put the embellishments so that my figure would be (ahem) enhanced by the design.  I created the swirl design templates with the a-line shape of the dress in mind. The largest swirls were put at the center of the upper and lower bodice to create a focal point for the eye. The secondary swirls were placed at the side of the a-line skirt to draw attention to that shape, while also (hopefully) adding a slimming line to the design. The design of the front embellishments are carried through to the back of the dress in a continuous line.
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Part of the fun of this project was creating the design templates, then applying the design to the fabric in stages. This was a long process, but it was fun to do this in layers. Each time I added a new line of embellishment, the dress took on a new look, so the design sort of ‘evolved’.
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One challenge I didn’t expect was locating the right trim for the embellishments. To make the design have a bit of energy, the trims needed to be of varying weights and styles. I drove all over Portland, looking for trim and bought everything I saw. So, Portland-ites – – there’s nothing left for you!   If I had to do it again (with more time), I’d probably have ordered some interesting trims from other sources for more variety.
 Ultimately, this was a fun challenge and because of it, I now have a new special occassion dress. And sewing with a color as vibrant as Cardinal was definitely inspiring. I’m determined to add some color to my fall wardrobe, maybe some jade, a bit of gold, a touch of fuchsia? Lots of warm, vibrant colors.  I’m excited to start sewing with some lovely prints too!
How is your fall closet? Happy sewing and thanks for stopping by.

New Look 6345: Sewing the Boho Look

IMG_3281Whenever I think of outdoor concerts, I think Boho, that loose, free-spirited look the cool seventies girls made famous. Think Ali McGraw, Stevie Nicks.

Ali (yes, we’re on a first name basis) had the perfect body for boho – -tall and lanky.

American actress Ali MacGraw, 8th March 1971. (Photo by Evening Standard/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
American actress Ali MacGraw, 8th March 1971. (Photo by Evening Standard/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

But Stevie DEFINED the look. Love the handkerchief hem here and those boots that made her look so tall.

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When I was invited to a concert in an outdoor venue, I looked to these girls for inspiration!

Of course, boho is one of those looks that doesn’t work for everyone. If you have curves, the flow-y dresses can make you look heavier than you are. And if you’re a short girl like me, well, most experts will tell you that loose, oversized clothes are a big no-no. They just swallow us up!

IMG_0512I guess there are worse ways to die though, right? Because I love a flow-y dress or top with a seventies vibe. Those loose clothes stand for independence! Free Spirits! Music festivals! Free love! Not to mention, the clothes are really, really comfortable.

When it came time to search for a pattern, I was surprised at how hard it was to find something with the vibe I was looking for. Finally, I found New Look 6345, a  dress/tunic with a handkerchief hem (very Stevie Nicks, don’t you think?).

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It’s a v-neck, fitted through the bust, with a loose skirt. That made it perfect for the concert, because, when I wasn’t dancing, I’d be sitting cross-legged on a lawn. I made the  length a bit shorter, because I knew I’d be wearing it over jeans.

The fabric I chose is a rayon print (blue and white, no surprise there) from Fabric Depot, with a repeating pattern that runs lengthwise. The rows in the pattern seemed like mini-border prints to me, so I couldn’t resist cutting some out to use as trim around the neck and along the bodice seam. Sounds like an easy modification, eh? Just sew a bit here and there….no problem!

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Truth be told, applying the trim to the neckline was WAY HARDER than it looked.

IMG_3215Because my fabric was a lightweight rayon, it had a freakish ability to stretch. And as I stitched my self-made trim to the neckline, I think I pulled it just enough to make the neckline gape.

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So frustrating. You can see that gape in this photo. There’s also a spider on that chair that is freaking me out, but I digress.

I probably could have prevented this problem by cutting the trim on the bias (?), but that wouldn’t have worked because the print pattern runs lengthwise. To fix the gape, I tightened the neckline by adjusting at the shoulder seams. It helped, although it still gapes when I stand in certain positions (as you can see above). The top is wearable, but maybe I should have put a stiffer bit of interfacing in the trim before adding it? Or maybe a hugely padded bra would fix the situation, but, you know, those cool seventy girls DO NOT WEAR BRAS.  Thoughts?

If I wear chunky shoes, and wear my jeans with this top, I do feel a bit like Stevie Nicks! Yes, it takes a bit of imagination, but you get my drift. Outdoor concert, here I come!IMG_3391

Happy Sewing! And thanks so much for stopping by!

Color-blocking a wild print into submission

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When it comes to fabric, I am not a big fan of prints. Yes, I love the way they look on others (the wilder, the better!) but on me? Not so much. Yet, my wardrobe needs a few prints to make it more interesting. After all, one cannot live on a diet of solid fabrics alone!

But for a shrimp like me, finding the right print can be challenging. I’m often attracted to prints that overwhelm my smallish frame. The fabric I used on this dress is a perfect example of my exuberance when it comes to color and pattern. When I saw this blue printed linen at Fabric Depot, I could not take my eyes off it. Yes, I’m a blue fanatic, and this was the most lovely shade imaginable.  Of course, the fabric jumped right into my shopping cart and made its way home with me.

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But when I draped the printed linen on my mannequin, I could not believe how bold and busy it looked. A serious case of buyer’s remorse! The blue was so bright! And those floral designs seemed to be swimming all over the place! I couldn’t imagine the fabric would ever work on  me.

But, I couldn’t bear to  part with it either. So, color blocking…to the rescue!

I’ve always been fond of wearing black with blue, so I draped black linen over the blue print, and, hallelujah, to my eye, it tamed that wild fabric down.  So, I went for it.

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The pattern I used is a Tried and True, Vogue 8840 (also seen here). I lengthened the tunic version by 6” to make it dress length. (The tunic itself is already pretty long on me, so it doesn’t take much to make it a dress.)  I cut the short sleeved version.

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Color blocking modifications:

Cutting: For the color blocked pieces in the front, I cut one piece of white linen that was six inches wide and the length of the center seam of the dress. I also cut two black strips, the same length as the white piece, but only  3” wide.

Application: After sewing the center front seam on the dress, I pinned on the color block strips, using the center front seam as my guide. The white strip was centered on that seam, and the black pieces were edge stitched to each side of the white strip. After I did that, I added a bit of trim that I had in my stash on the seams of the color blocked pieces to make them pop a bit. I also added a black linen band to the bottom of both of the sleeves to pull the color theme together.

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Once the color blocked strips were sewn on, I finished the tunic according to the standard instructions.

The linen was a dream to sew on, and it breathes even when the air is hot and thick. And the pattern? There is a reason it’s one of my tried and trues. It’s so easy to modify and it fits well. My color blocked dress is still pretty bright for me, but at least its wearable. And I had so much fun playing around with the fabric on this one!

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Happy summer, happy sewing, and thanks for stopping by!

McCalls 6883 morphs into a top!

It’s a little late in July for red, white, and blue. Never-the-less, this Cotton and Steel print begged to be worn.

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I was first attracted to this fabric because of the crazy mish-mash of red, white and blue checks sprinkled on a back drop of cream. But, when I touched the fabric, I had to possess it. The weave of this rayon is so fine, you imagine you’re wearing silk.

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That’s what motivated me to make this fabric into something really wearable, a wardrobe essential I’d have reason to wear again and again. For me, that means a go-to top that can be worn with jeans, or dressed up with a skirt or some nice pants. I wanted something that looked casual, yet structured. So,to challenge myself a bit, I decided to make the top by using two patterns combined; the bodice of a fitted dress and a peplum from another pattern. I couldn’t tell you what inspired me to put these two patterns together (no, there was not wine involved, I swear). But, once the idea grabbed hold, I had to give it a try.

The neckline of the dress (McCall’s 6883) is what made me buy this pattern. It’s a wide neckband with a bit of a vintage vibe.

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To shift the dress into a top, I cut it off at the natural waistline, then attached a loose peplum, adapted from Vogue 8815.

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This is what happens when I go crazy for a neckline, but not so much for the rest of the pattern!

Modifications to McCalls 6883:

  • I cut the dress as designed, but shortened the bodice to the natural waist. I was able to get this modified pattern from a scant yard of fabric.
  • The lower bodice of my top is the peplum from Vogue 8815. To make sure it would fit on the modified bodice of my dress, I measured the bottom of the bodice,  as well as the waist of the peplum. I discovered there was an inch discrepancy between the two, so, in order to make them fit together, I had to widen the peplum waist by 1”. When attaching the peplum to the dress, I used a 5/8” seam, which placed the peplum slightly above my waist, which is where I wanted it. Yes, I was sweating this a bit, but miraculously, the bodice and peplum went together with very little pain and suffering.

Fabric: Cotton and Steel Rayon purchased at Fabric Depot

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Lately it seems, I’m modifying my existing sewing patterns rather than buying new ones. This is probably a good thing, since my pattern stash is HUGE.  It’s also a good way  to get the style I want, while using a pattern I know will fit me.  The risk though, is that the new version of my old favorite will be so wonky, it looks like a big mistake! Still, even though risky, I enjoyed this process of combining patterns. It used a part of my sewing brain that needs to be stretched from time to time, so I’ll probably do it again.

I hope your summer is fabulous and fun, and that you’re getting a chance to wear all of your favorite makes! Thanks for stopping by!

Vogue 8894 – Stripes, Blue and Linen

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When I first saw this fabric, it seemed made for me.  It has most everything I love; two shades of BLUE, stripes and… it’s linen! Can you blame me for snatching it up? I was ecstatic, yet, once I got it home, it languished in my stash. I couldn’t decide what to do with it. Fabric love can be so paralyzing! I overthink, worrying that the style won’t do it justice, or that it will never look as good as it does on the shelf.
But our recent heat wave pushed me to act. I did not have a thing to wear (honest!!). Everything in my closet felt heavy and hot. This made my lovely fabric’s future quite clear. It would become an easy-to-wear, cool summer dress, a frock that could handle even a 100 degree day.
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The pattern I used was one I’d had in my archives, a basic Vogue I bought during a sale, then never used. To be honest, there are many (!!)  similar patterns in my archives, ‘honest mistakes’ purchased during some crazy-good 5 for $7 sale. I’m a sucker for those sales. No matter what, I can’t buy just three patterns. I have to buy five, because, well, it’s a good deal! Needless to say, that mindset results in a pattern stash that is unwieldy and huge. Some of those lovelies will never be opened, or cut. What to do, what to do? Does one vow to use all of them so that not one pattern will be wasted? Or is it better to admit defeat and send some of them to pattern heaven?
I digress, though.
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Pattern: I chose Vogue 8894 from my archives, A v-neck dress with a close fitting bodice, a raised waist, hemline variations and sleeves, and a back zipper. It was easy to put together, and the instructions were clear. I made my usual adjustments for narrow shoulders, and the fit was spot on.
Fabric: Linen from Fabric Depot.
Design Modifications: The pattern is designed with 3/4 length sleeves. This just didn’t feel right for summer. So I cut them off, and added a 4″ sleeve band. To make a long story short (Ha!), I  cut four (4) four inch wide pieces that were the width of the shortened sleeve. I sewed them together (right sides together) then turned the band right side out. The finished bands were then stitched to the sleeves.
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Contrast: The dress seemed too plain, probably because the pattern doesn’t have a lot of complicated design elements. So I added contrasting twill tape at the neckline, the shoulder seam and the sleeve band seams.
Hem: I opted for the straight skirt. Instead of a high low hem, I chose a straight hem.
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Lessons learned: Adding contrast was an after thought. I wore the dress once, then decided it needed a bit more pizzazz. Since the fabric was so great, I decided to go the extra mile and add contrasting twill, even though the dress was done. This was torture, since some of the seams had to be opened so that the end of the twill tape could be hidden in the seam. Since I’d  overlocked some to keep them from fraying, this was no easy task. In the future, if I get a bee in my bonnet to add trim/twill tape, I will decide that before (!!) I finish the darn thing.

That being said, I like the dress much better now, so I will probably wear it more, making the extra effort worth it. And the pattern is probably a keeper, an easy to fit, wearable dress.  I’m glad I found it in my archives.
I’d be interested to know what your strategy is regarding patterns. If you haven’t used them after awhile, do you send them on their way, or do you hold on to your patterns forever? If so, how do you organize/store them? Have a great weekend, and thanks for stopping by!!

Eyelet: A fabric with a higher purpose

Eyelet fabric – – Not only does it look great but when summer reaches its boiling point, eyelet has a higher purpose. Its lovely holes keep you cool!
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 A classic fabric, with a ladylike vibe, eyelet has gone through a major upgrade this season, with fresh colors and textures that give it a stylish pop! It’s the new perfect hot weather fabric, a must in Oregon, where you can never be sure your destination will be air-conditioned. So, if you don’t want to SUFFER, you wear only crisp cottons, lightweight linens, or, even, a breezy colorful eyelet.
Since it’s been hot and muggy in my neck of the woods, I’ve discovered that my wardrobe is a bit skimpy when it comes to summery tops. So, when I spotted a piece of blue (!!) eyelet in my stash, I knew immediately what I wanted to make from it: a sleeveless top.
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The fabric: This eyelet has been in my stash for awhile, so I’m not sure where it came from. The fabric is a great shade of blue, that’s not really a navy or cobalt, but somewhere between those two colors. Love!! When I first saw this fabric, I thought I’d need to underline it, but the holes are really small, so I chose not to because I wanted the top to be super light and comfortable. I don’t mind a bit of skin showing through.
Pattern: I decided to modify one of my tried and true patterns, Vogue 8815,Unknown  images-1
a top with a raised waist and sleeve variations. My favorite version is view C because the raised waist has a unique curve to it.
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It’s an easy pattern that I’ve made before (see it here). View C is supposed to be a pullover, but I added a back zipper just like view A and B. The instructions are well drafted, so this pattern would work for a beginner.
Modifications:  I made the pattern as is, but added a tie at the natural waist line to give it a different look and a bit more shape.
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To make the tie a part of the top’s design, I marked the natural waist on the pattern, then sewed the tie into the side seams at that place. This way, when the tie is pulled to the front, it adds some shape at the waist and makes the peplum fall in easy gathers.
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I think I’m going to wear this top a lot since our summer is starting off with a bang. It can be dressed up with jewelry or worn with jeans.
Last but not least, I must give a shout out to you all. Usually, I don’t sew that much in the summer, but I’ve been so inspired by the summer creations posted on my favorite blogs (visit the blogs on my list to the right to see what I’m talking about here), I’m sewing like crazy! Thanks to all of you, and Happy Summer!!