April has been a really busy month for our family with birthdays, events, schooling, and the home renovation we are doing. Because of it all, my sewing time has been little snatches of 15 minutes to an hour, here and there. As someone who hates incomplete projects and being in the middle of multiple projects at the same time, it’s been a source of annoyance and I have had to get really creative with fitting things in.
I missed out on testing a new pattern from Made for Mermaids, but knew I wanted to purchase it as soon as it released, and then I fell in love with a new pattern from Pattern Emporium and had to add it to my list. Since I knew these were both patterns I wanted to make right away, I ordered fabric for them and slowly worked on them both, at the same time. You can read about my first Pattern Emporium experience here.
The Made for Mermaids Siena is almost the exact skirt I pinned a bunch of times on Pinterest and as a woven pattern, I knew it would still be comfy to wear even with our rising temperatures.
The Siena has 6 different hemlines ( mini, knee, high-low in both above the knee or below the knee, midi, and maxi length), each with different tier amounts, plus the option to sew the tier seams with an enclosed or exposed raw edge. There are two different elastic waistband options, with three different elastic configurations, and an optional faux tie.
For this one I did the full maxi length with enclosed tier seams, and the basic elastic waistband, with one piece of wider elastic. I’m feeling very boho and crazy comfortable in this skirt.
For my height I added 2″ total to the skirt, adding 1/2″ to each of the four tiers, to keep it even. Once I got to the hem, I realized the length was almost exact for where I like to wear maxis at, and I decided to finish it with a rolled hem.
I love rolled hems, so fast, so clean, and such a fun little detail!
I like that I can wear this with my most worn Hey June Handmade, Union St. Tee, tied up, or this tank tied up or tucked in, and get a few different looks. I think the tied up tee is my favorite though. Which is your favorite top?
My son loves dinosaurs and shorts in French Terry. So, when So Sew English came out with a new Dino print on French Terry, it was an immediate purchase.
The last few pairs of shorts I have made for him, have all been without pockets. He loves pockets, but I don’t love the surprises those pockets leave behind in my washing machine. He really, REALLY wanted pockets in this pair, and informed me that he was now 7 and had a better memory. Even though Daddy is way older than 7 and still forgets. 🤣
He likes the fit of the Pattern Niche 11th Hour Gear Shorts and I love how quick of a sew it is. I always double check measurements before sewing and saw he had moved up a size, so I ended up needing to redo my pattern pieces. I’m glad I checked though, because he loves the shorts and we have a long summer ahead of us.
Since he heard his sister picking her shorts length, he wanted to as well, fortunately his desired length was really close to the pattern length so it was as simple as taking a smaller hem allowance. You can read about how I used this same pattern to make my daughter a pair of shorts a few weeks back, here.
Naturally our puppy, who is almost 6 months now, needed a matching scARF (a.k.a. super soft bandana). I had a two yard cut and was easily able to get both his shorts and the scARF out of it.
If you read my last few posts, you know I’ve been interested in trying new to me fabric bases, so I decided to try out the Brazilian Performance Rib from So Sew English for a matching top. The rib is listed as a horizontal rib, but upon arrival I noticed that it only had around 25% stretch horizontal and around 100% vertical, so I chose to use it as a vertical rib. Unfortunately my camera had a hard time photographing the rib, but the mint color is a perfect complement to the shorts.
On the right side of the fabric, there is a definite rib, and the wrong side is smooth. My son is a little sensitive when it comes to things being soft or having texture, so I wasn’t sure how he would like the rib as the neckband. After wearing, he said he doesn’t mind it, but it isn’t as soft as his Double Brushed Poly or other performance shirts, and that they are his favorites.
The fabric sewed up well, but I did notice that hemming was a bit odd on my machine, with all the ribbing. When compared to other performance fabrics I have used, it feels a little stiffer, again, because of the ribbing.
My husband wants a shirt in it to try too, I knew I should have gotten 2 yards instead of one.
I can’t get over how cute they look together 😍😍.
I used our normal go to t-shirt pattern, the Jalie 2918.
This post may contain affiliate links. This means if you make a purchase through that link, I may get a % back, at no additional cost to you.Thank you for supporting my sewing 💕
I can’t be the only one that loves to try new fabrics. I have my tried and true bases, that I go back to time and time again. But there is also something fun about trying new types and maybe finding another favorite.
I decided to try the Dharma from The Fabric Fairy and since the description sounding highly appealing, I got it in several colors. I mean, doesn’t this sound intriguing ?? Dharma Heathered Jade Green Poly Spandex is stylish, and durable with a soft hand and wicking treatment, fast recovery, and great stretch. This fashion-forward color has cationic yarns used to create vibrant colors, an ultra-soft hand with excellent moisture wicking management. These high performing qualities make this fabric perfect for yoga apparel, leggings, or any activewear garment.
I got the Jade Green for a top and the Light Grey for a pair of leggings to go with. I was really curious how this same fabric base would act for both a top and leggings.
For the top I picked a pattern I have used a few times, the Tie Back Tank from Greenstyle Creations. Since I’ve made it several times, I was familiar with the fit and felt it would give me a good comparison for this new fabric base.
For the leggings, I chose the Sundial Leggings. I purchased the Sundial leggings when they released, but hadn’t had a chance to sew them up til now. I decided to do the, double crossover waistband.
This fabric was a perfect fit for leggings. It has great stretch and recovery, and it feels really nice on. So nice and smooth, I almost feel like I’m not wearing anything. Since it has such great recovery, the double waistband gave me a lot of tummy support, but I’m not sure how much I will like that when I have a tummy flare. I also noticed that my machine didn’t like the 7 layers in the front.
Using this fabric for the tie back tank, the first thing I noticed was that the fabric had less drape than my usual picks for this top. That translated in a stiffer fit, and a tentish look when worn untied. Once tied up, it looked nice, and the binding was super easy to do with this fabric. I will definitely wear this for workouts and walks, as the moisture wicking feature will be a huge plus.
I really think this fabric would be best suited to a fitted t-shirt, tank top, or sports bra, over a top that needs some drape to keep it from feeling boxy. I’m hoping I have enough scraps left from my leggings and tank, to make myself a sports bra so I can see.
The Tie Back Tank , one of my favorite summer tops, has a low or high neckline, binding or bands, and a racerback or full back. I did the low neckline, binding, and racerback options on mine.
The Sundial Leggings have a V shaped waistband, that can be single or double. It has no side seams and are available in capri or full length. I did the double waistband in the full length, with 1″ added for my height.
This post may contain affiliate links. This means if you make a purchase through that link, I may get a % back, at no additional cost to you.Thank you for supporting my sewing 💕
We recently (the week before Christmas) got a puppy and with his addition, we have been getting out more for walks with short running periods the past few weeks. He is almost five months old now and the walks have been much needed to tire him out in the evenings. With my health issues, I usually can’t do much of either, but I have been utilizing my recumbent bike and working on my leg and heart strength, and as a result I’ve been able to keep up with him. As a little, young puppy, he can only go for short periods while he is growing, which is perfect for my body as well.
When we started taking him out, I realized that I was grabbing the same athletic top, leggings, and bra repeatedly. AND of those three, only one was made by me. Insert shocked face. In my mostly me made wardrobe, I have neglected true athletic tops and bras. To be honest, the whole bra topic makes me nervous, but at the beginning of this year, I decided to cross that off my list and so here we are.
Baby steps y’all. I decided to tackle a matching pair of capris first.
The fabric I decided to use for this set, was a surprise that arrived at my house a few weeks back. It is this gorgeous teal, honeycomb texture fabric from Fabmere Fabrics. I still have no idea who my fabric godmother is, but they sent me one yard of the teal honeycomb and one yard of the olive green honeycomb. With only having a yard I mulled over how to best utilize it. After much debate, I decided to go with the Stride athletic tights from Greenstyle Creations. It has a really great insert piece that allows for just this type of fabric usage. Since I’m too tall to get full length leggings from a yard, and with our warming weather, going for the capri length was perfect.
I decided to try out the optional cross cuff and waistband pocket on this version as well. I have made several pairs of the stride tights in the past, and love the fit. That pair of leggings I was repeatedly grabbing for our puppy walks? Strides.
I really wanted the teal honeycomb to pop so I used some black athletic from my stash for the rest of the leggings.
If you follow me on instagram, you probably saw a few of my recent posts sharing my sewing frustration with sewing these cross cuffs. The cuffs themselves were not difficult, but I messed up and did a step out of order on the cuff straps. On take two, my coverstitch went back to being difficult. So for take three, I went off course and instead of doing the cuff straps as the pattern instructed, I just cut my strips (3/8″ wide) out of the black fabric and omitted the clear elastic or the folding and topstitching.
I was having an off sewing day, so the cuff directions seemed harder for me to follow than I expected. I did use my trusty wash away wonder tape on them, which was a huge help. You can see it all on this time lapse video I made, including the changes I made to the straps.
It has been a while since I was super excited about a sew for myself. But let me tell you, when I pulled out the fabric (Double Brushed Poly from So Sew English Fabrics) for these new leggings, I could feel my excitement building. It only got higher when I decided to make a new top to go with it. This set has me feeling all the springy vibes and I couldn’t be more comfortable.
The leggings are a super quick and simple new pattern from Greenstyle Creations. I have a few go to legging patterns already, but this will be replacing my basic one. Why? There are a few reasons the Simpatico stands out for me.
The first thing I noticed was calf shaping. Unless leggings are super tight, I will usually get bunching above and below my calf. And if leggings are super tight, they can feel restricting and painfully tight at my calf. With these, I have no calf restriction and no bunching, they fit my legs perfectly.
Another thing I noticed and liked about the Simpatico, the three built in inseam length options. I’m 5′ 9′ with a 29″ inseam. With the three built in lengths, I fall in the standard length, and that meant I was able to skip adding for my height. The only grading I had to do, was going from my G everything to an E thigh. So it made this a really fast sew for me. Such a fast sew, that I had time to make a quick tie back tank to wear with it.
I just love how it looks tied up or left open, both work great with Simpatico!
My daughter is all about the crop tops right now, and while her Dad doesn’t like her looking so grown up, he understands her desire and so we are working on outfit compromises. Who knew that sewing would provide a way to bridge the inevitable clothing gap.
Part of the crop top pull, is how much cooler she is. It is hard living in our heat, being active, and trying to stay cool, so we have been exploring new garments and fabric bases. This recent sew really hit the ball out of the park for her.
First, here are all the blog hop details!! Each day there will be two bloggers, with new posts and giveaways! To enter for each giveaway, just visit each post (linked below) and add a comment to it. The blogs will be live each day by 6AM (Central Standard Time). So be sure to come back daily and check out each one. If you are just joining the blog hop today, you can still go back to the previous days posts and comment there to enter for them as well. All entries need to be in by midnight, Friday, March 27. The drawings will take place on Saturday. Read all the way to the end for my giveaway details 💕
Now, all about one of my favorite patterns for Spring and Summer. I found the True Bias Ogden Cami several years ago and fell in love with its simplicity. It is a semi loose fit shirt, made from woven fabrics. If you have been following my blog for any time, you know I love to modify and hack patterns to get additional looks with them. So after I made my first few Ogden cami’s, including a matching Mini Ogden for my daughter, I decided to turn it into a flowy maxi dress a few summers ago.
This is a simple mod to make. All I did was carry the outer seamline down to my desired length, tapering it out a bit as I went down. Slightly curved the sides up so it hung even when worn, oh, and added pockets into the side seams. I absolutely love how cool I stay when wearing this maxi, a huge bonus for me with our desert heat. I used a navy polka dot rayon challis from So Sew English for this one.
As our weather has already started to heat up here, I have been thinking of my spring/summer wardrobe and knew I wanted to add another Ogden Cami. The problem I had was deciding which one. Since I couldn’t pick, I made three. One, per the pattern, another with a grommet hack, and the third in a knit fabric.
This one was made with a beautiful modal spandex from Surge Fabrics. The only change I made to the pattern when using this knit fabric, was adding an interfacing to my straps.
I didn’t want my shirt to grow and migrate down when wearing, so adding that interfacing holds it in place. With the knit having more drape than a woven, and depending on the fabric you choose, I’d definitely recommend adding the interfacing to the straps and also basting your straps in to verify the shirt hits you where you are comfortable. I used Pellon EK130 for the straps.
I also want to note that I wear a bra with all my Ogdens. You can occasionally see my nude shoulder strap, but it isn’t something that bothers me, and if you wanted to widen the straps a little, you totally could.
My second Ogden was done exactly per the pattern instructions. I used a rayon challis from Surge Fabrics. I love how smooth and cool rayon challis feels. It has such great drape that it works well for dresses and tops, especially those you want movement with.
This shirt looks great half tucked in or fully loose and I feel very springy.
I fell in love with a shirt on Pinterest, that had a very similar look to the Ogden, just with tie straps being fed through grommets. I decided to use another rayon challis I had, this one from Sincerely Rylee fabrics. An added bonus to the tie straps, is making the shirt easy to adjust if you needed to, possibly even breastfeeding friendly.
I had to make a few more modifications to the pattern to make this look happen, but they are still relatively simple. Here are the steps I took to get this look.
I used Dritz eyelets, size 7/16″. Since the top of the bodice, where the straps attach, isn’t wide enough to accommodate this size grommet, it needed to be widened. I centered my grommet on the back pattern piece and then added an additional 3/8″ to each side.
I carried that extra width down until just past the bottom of the grommet. Then I tapered that into the original neckline and armscye. I smoothed out the lines and made sure to repeat the same steps on the lining pieces as well as the front piece.
I skipped cutting out the straps until the end, at which point I determined I wanted them to be three times the length of the original strap. Mine ended up being 28.5″ long. To make the straps, I folded them wrong side together lengthwise, and sewed around the three open sides. I left a few inch gap in the middle of the longest side, for turning. Then I clipped the corners and turned right side out. Tucking in the edges and topstitching over the opening to close it.
To sew up the shirt, I did step one, and then added a 1.5″ square of interfacing to the wrong side of the front bodice pieces. I wanted to leave a little room in addition to the seam allowance, so I placed it 3/4″ down from the top edge. I used Pellon 911FF.
You will then skip to step 4 and 5. When you get to step 6 & 7 you will sew the full neckline and armholes of the lining to the main fabric, right sides together. This will make your two pieces, one full piece. Snip your V in the front and back and clip all around following step 8.
You will then skip step 9 and 10, and do the edge stitching of step 11. Complete step 12, hem, and press. Then add the grommets. I set the grommet on the shirt, centered on that square interfacing we added earlier. Followed the grommet package instructions to attach, and it was done.
I was surprised at how quick it was to sew this grommet version and I am so glad I attempted it.
I hope you enjoyed all my recent Ogden Cami’s and modifications.
True Bias has graciously given a copy of the Ogden Cami as a prize, for one of my readers. To enter just drop me a comment below, letting me know which one was your favorite?
Thank you for joining us on this Spring Fling Blog Hop and don’t forget to visit the other blogs !!!
In the sewing community, Sewjo is commonly referred to as the desire to sew, or being inspired to sew and create. So how does one loose their sewjo? I have never lost mine until recently and it was due to a personal loss which threw me for a physical and emotional loop.
Once I started feeling better physically I assumed I would just get back to sewing. Sewing has always been my outlet when I’m stressed or dealing with health issues. But not this time. I had absolutely no desire to even step into my sewing room. It was so bad I even told my husband I wanted to get rid of all my fabric and machines, and just walk away. Drastic, I know, but that was where I was.
Knowing how much I love sewing and how it has been such a life saver for me throughout the years, he wisely told me to take a break and just breathe. So I shut everything off and took a weekend away to focus on our two children and our little family. We spent the time working on DIY projects around our house. I painted my daughters antique headboard and chair, to match the rest of her bedroom set. We painted our master bathroom and cleaned up the renovation mess. Then we started building the drawers we are putting into our closet. It felt good to get “something” done, it was a creative outlet, we got fresh air, and had lots of laughs while we challenged each other to Mario Kart.
Did I magically find my sewjo? Nope. But I felt refreshed mentally and true priorities were once again apparent. Priority number one, spending one on one time with my daughter. So when I asked her if she would like to have a girls date with me, she gave an overwhelming YES!! and promptly asked if I could make us matching shirts for our date. SIGH. Remember me, no sewjo to be found??
I couldn’t tell her no though. Her excitement was obvious and after the sadness it was apparent she needed that time, just as much as I did.
We spent some time going through patterns and all the fabric in my sewing room. After a week of dragging my feet, we finally had things figured out.
We decided on the tank version of the Knoxville from New Horizons Designs, in grey rayon spandex, and some fun vinyl writing. The Knoxville has the twist knot or bottom knot, shirt or tunic lengths, five sleeve options, and three neckline options including a cowl. We chose to do the twist knot, shirt length, and the scoop neck options for our tanks.
It was the first time I have made this pattern and it was hard to muddle through. Not because of the pattern or directions, but because I desperately didn’t want to sew. I did it though, and the end product was smile worthy. If you want to see a time lapse of me sewing them up, you can on my YouTube here.
Something I wanted to mention was that I graded to a larger hip, per my measurements, but I probably could have done a straight size as the shirt has a nice amount of ease in the waist and hip. Fabric choice will also affect the amount of ease and drape of this shirt.
One other thing I noticed was on my front bodice, the side with the knot, was considerably longer than my back bodice on that side. After a quick search in the Facebook group I found that certain fabrics can get stretched out at that part due to it being cut on the crossgrain. The solution was to ease that extra amount in when sewing the bodice together. I did that on mine and it worked well. So keep that in mind when you go to make your own version.
Now we are all ready for our girls date this weekend in our matching Knoxville tanks and I found a little of my sewjo.
Here’s to taking those little steps and finding the joy in sewing again. 💕
P.S. Yes, I chopped 14″ off my hair 😂
This post may contain affiliate links. This means if you make a purchase through that link, I may get a % back, at no additional cost to you.
Yup, Pinterest strikes again. This time I was testing a new pattern from Sonia Estep Designs, the Hollywood. When I made my muslin fit, I tried it on before adding the sleeves and I knew right then I needed it to be a tank. Naturally, I scrolled Pinterest to get some color ideas and came across this fun version.
Yes! This was happening. I went fabric shopping and found steel cupro slub and black cupro pique from Surge fabrics. I have really liked cupro the last two times I used it. It has a little stretch vertical, and about 50% horizontal. I love that it doesn’t have a ton of vertical stretch, which helps longer garments like these pants or a skirt, keep its shape. It is just annoying to make something and then it grows inches after putting it on. No issues with that using this cupro, and it has nice drape.
Now, I took my hack a little further than just making it a tank, by color blocking my neckband and arm band pieces to match the bodice colors. I also added in the solid black stripe on the legs. Doing the extra color matching added some more math, but over all, converting it to a tank is relatively simple.
Since I liked where the fit was on my non sleeve muslin, I knew I just needed to do a small adjustment to the armscye and make bands. I wanted to have a finished armband of 1/2″ to keep it close to the look of the current neckband. With the seam allowance of 1/4″ for the bodice piece, I marked and removed 1/4″ from the armscyce, which made my finished tank hit the same place as the sleeveless muslin. Be sure to make this adjustment on both the front and back bodice pieces.
I love to keep my pattern pieces together as much as I can, so I usually tape in the center of my cut, and make a kind of hinge. Then I can fold back the piece I need to remove to make a tank or leave it down for a sleeved version.
To figure out my bands, I measured the new armscyce and multiplied it by 90%. I like to use 90% for cupro since it has less stretch and I didn’t want my armbands tight, just a comfortable fit. My bands ended up being 17 3/8″ x 1 1/2″ for reference. To make a simple tank version, that is all you need to do. You would follow the pattern tutorial for assembly, with the exception of skipping steps 6 & 7, do step 8, and then attach your armbands.
Now for the “extra” stuff 😂 I really wanted my armbands and neckband to match the bodice colors exactly. To do that, I needed to make my neckband two pieces, and one of my armbands, two pieces as well.
For my neckband I needed gray for one front bodice piece and the back bodice piece, then black for the other front bodice piece. So I measured those two pieces separately, multiplied them each by 85% (yes, 85%. I was worried it wouldn’t hold me in if I did longer, but in retrospect, 90% would have worked as well with this cupro) and cut the two out, using the same width as the original neckband piece. I then sewed them right sides together to make my complete neckband.
For the one armband that had a black front and a grey back, I simply measured the front bodice armscye and multiplied that by 90% for the black portion, and measured the back bodice armscye, multiplied by 90%, to get the grey portion. Sewed the two pieces right sides together, and had the matching armband.
When sewing, you will just match up those seams with the coordinating bodice seams and attach. The tricky part for me was the neckband. Since the shoulder seam is not the quarter point, I had to be extra careful with how much I was stretching and make sure the color block seams met. Of course it was my armband that ended up a little off, but for the most part, it looks like one seam.
I should note, I did all my color blocking and measuring, AFTER I had already graded the pattern and added length for my side waist, rise, and legs.
The last modification I made to the pattern was adding in the black stripe to the legs. After looking at my pattern piece and the pinspiration photo, I decided I wanted to make the stripe around 3″ wide. I didn’t feel like making two separate pattern pieces for the color block, so I took my front pant piece and measured in from the outer seam, 2.75″.
I measured and marked the entire length of the pants piece and then connected the marks to make a smooth line. I used the same “hinge” technique for this and cut up and down the line, leaving my secured piece in the middle.
It is very important that you account for whatever seam allowance you want to use for sewing these two pieces together, or your pants will be too small.
I like to use 1/4″ so when I cut out my grey piece, I cut 1/4″ out from the pattern edge. Then I flipped the main portion back and cut out my black stripe, again adding 1/4″ to the color blocked edge. I figured out that my rotary edge is about 1/4″ away from the blade, so I just line that up with the fabric and it cuts and adds the 1/4″ all in one step.
Once you have your stripes and front pant pieces cut out, you will just sew them right sides together, to create your full pattern pieces, and assemble per the pattern tutorial.
I am ridiculously pleased with this final jumpsuit and know I will be making other versions of Hollywood with the tank modification. What do you think? Pinterest Nail or Fail?
Enabler alert. The Hollywood is from Sonia Estep Designs and on sale for 50% off until January 26th, 11:59pm EST. The pattern options include a crossover bodice with three sleeve lengths, a shorts romper (in three lengths), a pants jumpsuit, and a skirted shorts romper. Plus you can do a simple mod and make your own tank version 😉
This post may contain affiliate links. This means if you make a purchase through that link, I may get a % back, at no additional cost to you. Let’s be honest, we all know it goes right back to adding to my fabric stash.
This really isn’t a hack, more of a simple mod, but I couldn’t resist the title of Hannah Hem Hack. It was just too much fun.
I’ve made a Hannah in quilted, a quilted and brushed French Terry combo, and a poly skimo hacci. You can see them here. So when I decided to recreate this pin ($68 price tag, no thank you), I pulled out my left over plaid super plush from last year.
I really wanted to have the black contrast collar, so I cut into my hoarded black super plush, for the collar lining and it was just right.
The Hannah pattern is banded at the bottom and the sleeves are cuffed, so to recreate this pin, I needed to alter it just a little for a hem.
To start with I added the amount of the bottom band, to the hem of the bodice, plus a bit more for my 1″ hem. I usually like a 1/2″ hem, but for super plush I prefer a larger hem since it is so squishy. I made my marks off the bottom of the original bodice pieces, and drew a line to indicate my new bottom hem.
Then I needed to draw my new side seams. Since it has a slight widening at the hem and I didn’t want to continue that line and make a flare, I brought it in a little and blended into the original side seams.
When all was said and done, I ended up taking an inch back off the hem after I tried it on, which gave me a total addition of 3.5″. I did this to both the front and back bodice pieces.
I followed the same steps for the sleeves and added 4.25″ to them. The only difference to the sleeves was that they taper in at the hem. Since I didn’t want them too tight, I wrapped a scrap piece of fabric around my wrist to determine how snug of a fit I wanted. Then I added a little to the fabric length to account for seam allowance, and that was what I made the width of the sleeve at the hem. Then I blended the lines in to the original sleeve seams for my new pieces.
I made no other changes to the pattern and with those two simple mods, I now have a hem option Hannah.
The Hannah is on new release sale for $5 until Sunday 11/3, midnight EST. The fabric is super plush from So Sew English. With a total price tag of $30, it is a bit more up my alley, and it’s custom fit to top it off.
This post may contain affiliate links. This means if you make a purchase through that link, I may get a % back, at no additional cost to you. Let’s be honest, we all know it goes right back to adding to my fabric stash. All opinions on this blog are my own.