Monthly Archives: June 2012

Flounce Sundress Tutorial

It’s tutorial time! If you were interested in stitching up the Flounce Sundress here’s your chance to make one for yourself! Let me start off by saying this design is adapted from Mimi G’s maxi dress so if you’d had experience sewing up that look, you’ll breeze through construction on this one. If not, have no fear, this dress is quick and easy to sew up.

1 1/2-2 yards of knitstretch fabric
1 package of 1″ elastic
1 package double fold bias tape
1 package of 1/2″ elastic
Measuring tape
Water soluble markertailer’s chalk

1. Fold fabric in half lengthwise (the most amount of stretch is running horizontal). Measure the upper part of your bust. Add 16″ to this measurement and divide by 2. From the fold, draw a line across your fabric to your finished number. Measure from your upper bust to your desired length (I had mine at knee length). Add 4″ to this number. Starting from the line you just drew, make a line vertically on your fabric to your desired length. Remove the rectangle from the fabric – this will be the dress. Now measure from your chest to your belly button and add 3″ to this measurement. On the wrong side of your dress, measure down to your belly button length and mark. Continue making marks across the fabric until you have a continuous line across your fabric (this will be your placement line for your bias tape casing).

2. To cut the ruffle, fold fabric in half lengthwise, again. From the fold draw a line across your fabric to your finished upper bust measurement. Measure down 7″ (if you have a very large bust I suggest this number be increased by an inch or so) and remove rectangle from fabric.

3. With right sides together, sew side seam of dress. Sew short ends of ruffle together, forming a continuous loop.

4. If desired, finish one long edge of ruffle. This can be done by using a rolled hem or small zig-zag stitch along the edged of the fabric. Since we are using a knit material, this step can also be skipped since a majority of these fabrics do not ravel.

5. Place right side of ruffle on the right side of dress matching unfinished edges and seams. Baste in place.

6. Fold over 2 1/4″ on top edge of dress and sew, catching both the bottom edge of the dress and the ruffle in your stitching. Leave a 3″ opening for inserting elastic.

7. Cut your 1″ elastic to your exact (your original number) upper bust measurement and thread it through the casing. Overlap the ends 1/4″ and zig-zag stitch across the elastic. Push the elastic loop through the casing and finish off the casing stitches of your dress. Distribute fullness evenly. (When worn, the ruffle will cover the elastic casing).
*I found that my elastic (even though it said it was non-roll) rolled horribly. If this happens to you, divide your dress into fourths and mark. Then stitch over the casing in these areas to keep your elastic from rolling inside. This is also an ideal way to keep your ruffle in place since the ruffle can be sewn to the casing at these points.

8. Open up your bias tape (press open the crease) and place along the belly button line you drew on your dress earlier and stitch. Overlap the ends by 1/4″ and fold over raw edge (to make a finished edge). Stitch along bottom edge of casing. Measure your waist, cut 1/2″ elastic to this length and insert through the waist casing. Overlap the ends 1/4″ and zig-zag stitch across the elastic. Push the elastic loop though the casing and distribute the fullness evenly.

9. On bottom edge of dress, fold up 1 1/4″ to wrong side and stitch hem in place.

Linky Thursday

Win one of three $100 gift certificates to Fat Quarter Shop.

Who needs a mesh scrubbie when you can make one of these cute soap pouches?

A great gift for dad (and just in time for summer vacation): the Road Warrior Organizer.

I am in love with this Oilcloth Beach Bag and I am determined to make one soon. My question? Where did they find the fabulous oilcloth prints?

Every little kid wants to be a superhero at some point. Help them run with that idea by making them a mask.

Perfect for a summer picknic – Ric Rac Napkins.

Working out? On the go? Just need your hands free? Check out this easy to sew wrist wallet.

Transform a t-shirt into cute summer dress.

An interesting way to re-vamp a t-shirt using a double zipper.

Color blocking isn’t just for clothes. Check out this gorgeous bolster at Sew4Home.

Looking for a new purse? This free one may fit the bill (I’m partial to the hardware).

If the dad in your life loves hats you’ll want to check out this tutorial for a man’s Gatsby Hat.

Create a two-tone maxi dress.

A Bag For All Reasons

I was a huge fan of Lisa Lam’s The Bag Making Bible – I truly thought it was the best bag making books on the market. So when I heard that she had a second book in the works, I immediately put it on my wish list. A Bag for All Reasons
finally arrived and I couldn’t be more excited! Once again the bags inside the cover are all fabulous – definitely something that I can’t wait to make. New to bag making and missed her first book? That’s ok too! There’s a section of a book that will help get you started (fabric prep, equipment, etc.) as well as techniques described (with lots of photos) to help you along the way. The best part, of course, are the 12 projects. All have full-sized patterns inside the spiral bound book and are so diverse there’s definitely ‘something for everyone’: iPad Cases, toddler backpacks, baby bags, school bags, laundry and bike bags, wallets and vanity cases just to name a few. Even though I haven’t made a project yet, from what I’ve read the instructions are clear and have lots of illustrations (and in come cases photos) to help you through the steps so no matter what your skill level, you should come out with a fabulous looking project in the end.

The Bottom Line: Another fabulous bag making book that is a must have for your book shelf. With two successful books under her belt, I’m hoping that Lisa puts out a third – because one can never have too many purses in their possession!

Dupioni Drawstring Bag

I made another Madame Nightshade bag the other night and I can safely say this one was a success! For this version, I used a beautiful (neutral) dupioni and doubled the stabilizer – not only did this keep the bag from pulling away from the placement stitches while sewing, I also think that the design showed up much crisper on the top of the fabric. The final bag doesn’t cinch up any better than the first, but since this is only for a gift bag for a birthday present (and not a functional ‘everyday’ style), I don’t think the recipient will mind.

Flounce Dress

I’m in need of a new swimsuit coverup. I have no idea where the one I wore last year went, but apparently it grew legs and walked off. I’ve been seeing a ton of strapless dresses with a flounce and decided that was exactly what I wanted to make. So, I brainstormed how I could put this one together, shopped my stash (and found a fabulous buttermilk from Emma One Sock that I’ve been hanging onto for ages), and set to work this weekend. The picture on the left is the finished dress (you can see a closeup of the flounce here) and I’m pleased with the end result – although, I’m thinking of skipping using this as a coverup, adding a belt to it, and wearing it ‘out’ instead!

I’m contemplating making a tutorial for this design, but only if there is enough interest. Be sure to comment in this thread if you’d like to see how to make this dress for yourself – if I have enough commentstweetsetc. I’ll work on a post for later in the week!

Get Some Sleep

The days are getting longer, the sun is coming up earlier, and chances are you’re going to want to get some sleep while the sun is still rising (or maybe even sneak in a nap?). Now it’s easier to get some shut-eye with one of these quick-and-easy sleep masks (they’ll take you under an hour from start to finish)! I added fun messages to the font of each mask, but you can definitely skip this part, use iron on letters or designs, or use fabric sheets to print images (like eyes) prior to cutting. In fact…. I’m thinking I might make one using a set of eyes from Urban Thread’s Monster Factory. I wonder if I could get Easton to wear one that way so he’ll sleep in and stop getting up with the sun?

Linky Thursday

The tote you can make in under an hour.

Everyone needs an eye catching bag at some point. This Pyramid Wristlett just might fit the bill!

If you have children, you might know them as Orbeez. If you’ve visited the craftfloral department, you’ll see them marketed as ‘water marbles’. Now you never have to buy either because you can make your own!

It’s labeled a ‘workout shirt’, but I can totally see wearing this every day!

Seen The Avengers and want a crafty way to show your support? Make one of these fun Captain American tie dye tees.

Forget Father’s Day, I. Want. These. Coasters! (It probably also means I’ll want this book: Mod Podge Rocks!: Decoupage Your World)

Love to keep your appliances hidden, but don’t have the cabinet space? Then you’ll definitely want to check out this tutorial for a toaster cozy.

Jumpers are perfect for summer days – learn how to make one for your little girl (in all sorts of sizes)!

Still stuck as to what you can make dad this Father’s Day? Why not an easy-to-sew golf towel?

Put A Pin In It

It’s time for a change in my sewing room. It’s time… for a new pincushion! I figure that this ‘voodoo doll’ style isn’t just functional, it can double as a frustration reliever when things go wrong with my sewing! To create this little guy I traced a gingerbread cookie cutter onto my fabric. Instead of cutting around the lines or even just outside of them to create a seam allowance, I stitched the two pieces of fabric together (right sides together) on the traced line, left an opening for turning, then cut the remaining fabric away from the stitches. Easy! Eventually, I’m going to give this Sugar Skull a whirl on my machine as well, I figure that I need some sort of heftier material (like felt) before I do that.

What’s your favorite pincushion?

Good Luck

Want to know a surefire way to tell that summer is here? I almost forget to post for the day! It hasn’t been for a lack of writing, I spent the better part of last night putting the finishing touches on an upcoming article for Sew News (more details to come in a few months). Now that it’s ‘in the can’, I’m debating on what the next project to should be – I’m thinking something fun and summery like this McCall off the shoulder look in a mesh? I also have to share the news…. I finally won something…. well, 2 somethings…. on the same day! I’ve been absolutely drooling over Tula Pink’s Nightshade and was thrilled to get notice that I won 6, one yard cuts of her fabric from the FreeSpirit blog (for anyone that is interested, they do once a month giveaways of their fabulous fabrics). If that wasn’t enough, I won a $50 gift certificate to Urban Threads! I am sure that I have used up all my good luck for the rest of the year (but I might stop off to get a lottery ticket just in case!) so I’ll be sure to put my winnings to excellent use!

Two Interesting Fabrics

This weekend was productive. I had the opportunity to transform two difficult to work with fabrics into two fun garments. Since this is for an article, I can only give you a sneak peak, but I can tell you that both fabrics were from Joann’s April Johnston collection. The first is a ‘mesh ribbon’ rosette material that was fabulous to work with, my only complaint? The color. It’s a beige, although the label claims it’s ‘rose’. Too bad it has so my polyester in it, otherwise I’d attempt to dye it another color. The second fabric is a ‘fishbone’ fringe. I opted to cut this fabric the opposite way than it was intended (the fringe should be going vertical) which I think looks more pleasing, but the fabric droops some giving it an interesting effect…. I like to think that it makes my finished garment almost avant garde (actually, I’m anxious to see how this one photographs I think it should look really interesting).

How did everyone else spend their weekend?