Monthly Archives: July 2012


After a few distractions, I came back to my Ottobre Woman tank that I traced off before our vacation. The first thing that I noticed is that there is a bit of an error in the pattern pieces – it has two back pieces. I am assuming that #1 is the front and #2 is the back since this would not only correspond with bottom panel order, but it just ‘looks’ right (the front has a curved neckline, the back has a bit more straight). The other important thing… make sure you transfer all the markings – this will definitely help you keep your strips going straight and I thought helped with pattern matching so that you can achieve a nice looking chevron design.

So far, construction has been very simple, except I don’t really care for the addition of the clear elastic around the panels… and I’m not really sure that it’s necessary either. In fact, I think it creates an almost lumpy appearance when you wear it which is right around your midsection…. not exactly where you want an eye to be drawn to. My other complaint is that it’s a bit snug in the midsection as well so that you can see every lump and bump on your body. I’m guessing that it’s partly because of the pattern, but also my own fault because the fabric is a bit on the beefy side and just doesn’t lay as nice on the body as what a thinner or alternative material would have.

While this top looks great on the dress form, I’m just not thrilled with it when I test fitted. Consequently, I’m just putting it aside for awhile and will see how I like it in a week or two before I move on (or not).

E is for…..

I know after last Christmas’ gifts I said I wouldn’t make any more name pillows for awhile, but 6 months is a good break, right? Taylor’s best friend was over several weeks ago, checking out her name pillow and wanted to know where she got it. When she found out that I stitched it up, she immediately wanted one. So, after bringing her down to the sewing room to pick out fabrics, this is what I came up with… and she was thrilled with the end result. Whew!

Linky Friday

A perfect top for summer that can lead you into fall…. The Sheer Top at WeAllSew

Before you spend a fortune on studs, why not try something more accessible and easier to install? This Brass Fastener Clutch tutorial will show you how – it’s genius!

Have some old ties you’re just not sure what to do with? Turn it into a cute purse!

Now why didn’t I ever think of this? Recycle old jeans into potholders.

I believe it is fair to say that I love Wobisobi’s t-shirt tutorials, this one is no exception: No Sew, One Shoulder Shirt.

Create your own Blank Canvas Tee.

Have a plate of cookies to give away, but don’t want to lose your favorite plate? Then make your own…. with candy.

Need a quick and easy skirt to sew up for tonight? This one claims it’s the easiest in the world.

A Huipil is a traditional Guatemalan garment, but you don’t have to go there to make this easy top. Learn how to make your own with Rhonda.

Need a quick embellishment to add to your latest garment? Why not try this easy fabric flower?

Halloween is already making it’s way into stores. If you’re planning ahead for the holiday already, why not whip up this Rib Cage T?

Great to grab when you’re on the go and don’t want to carry a whole bag full of baby goods: Diaper Pouches.

A Change of Plans

This past week we spent quality family time together by going on (a much needed) vacation. When we came home last night I was prepared to sit down and get to work on this week’s Linky Thursday, only to discover that our air conditioner had died sometime while we were gone…. It was hot! Consequently, we packed up again and went to my mom’s (who fortunately lives in the same city) to cool off. Needless to say, Linky Thursday did not happen and you’re getting this post instead. Thankfully, someone is coming out this morning so you’ll find all those awesome links tomorrow!

Rock Chalk

If you’ve followed this blog for awhile you’ve probably seen me mention that I’m a University of Kansas alum… hence, I’m a sucker for anything Jayhawk. I’ve made everything from boxers to baby gear with the same print for years (there are very few designs and they don’t seem to change often). So you can imagine my excitement when I found this fantastic, bandana style Jayhawk print at my local quitshop! This fabric is destined to become a new pair of Tommy Boxers and very possibly a matching pillowcase. And just to show you that we’re getting the kids on board early…. we took them to KU earlier in the year – here they are in front of the Kansas Union posing with our mascot!

Trash to Treasure

I’m always intrigued with “alternative fabrics” and recycled materials when it comes to sewing. Sometimes you can tell exactly what the material of origin is, but there are times (I can think of several Project Runways, some online tutorials, and a few book projects) that it’s absolutely fantastic. I stumbled across this article about The Garbage Bag Gala (it also has some good tips on working with duct tape and plastic bags) benefiting the Salvation Army. From what I can see from this brief article, the duct tape and trash bag garments look very impressive! If anyone in the St. Louis area is attending this event or finds pictures of the gala online, I’d love to hear about itsee them!

A Different Tank

After spending quite a bit of time assuring the stripes on my Ottobre tank were lined up perfectly, I discovered that the instructions called for clear elastic. Unfortunately, this is something I didn’t have on hand so I decided to put that project aside and work on something I did have – Jalie 2565. Even though I haven’t used this particular pattern in ages, I love it because it has a great back. Unfortunately, after looking at the photo, I think it accentuates the fact I have broad shoulders, but hey, I’m wearing it with pride because the crown print is incredibly straight on both the front and the back, the top-stitching details (around the neckline and arm) are perfect, and the crown print reminds me a little of Juicy Couture.


It’s been quite some time since I used anything from a BurdaStyle or Ottobre magazine so I forgot what an eyesore they are to trace off. Thankfully, the project I had in mind only had 4 pieces so I wasn’t completely blinded by the end of the process! What did I decide on? A ‘chevron’ tank from Ottobre Woman Spring 2012 issue (unfortunately their blog and their website is horribly behind on updating the views from this magazine so I can’t directly like the image). After rifling though my stash I think I’ll be using a yellowwhite stripe fabric that I picked up numerous years ago from Needle Nook Fabrics – it’s stripey enough to make a chevron, but light enough that if I get slightly off on my sewing that it won’t be a glaring mistake!

Before I start cutting into my fabric for this next project (cross you fingers that I line everything up correctly the first time), I thought I would show you what the Jalie Empire Cross-over top looks like on (note to self: stand up straight!). The shoulders are adjustable (you determine how gathered you would like for them to look) so I went with a highly gathered look (I could do more, but I think it would look lumpy) and then ‘knotted’ off the ends. I’m really anxious to pair this up with a some white shorts this weekend!

Linky Thursday

Wow your friends when you whip out your new cell phone holder because no one is going to believe you made this ETUI Bag.

Perfect for outdoor dining or a fancy picnic: Outdoor Placemats with Flatware Pockets.

An eye catching dress, but this time it’s for little girl’s… The Petal Dress.

Amy Butler’s new line Cameo (swoon, I just love the blues) is out in stores. If you’re looking for a project to use it, why not try this free Amy Butler Blossom Handbag pattern?

No one would guess that this diamond cut out shirt once started out as a plan t-shirt.

Make an elegant masquerade mask from some unexpected materials.

Love a bag with a big bow? Then you’ll definitely want to sew up a Tohoku Tote.

Make your own Alexander McQueen jacket.

I could live in these drawstring pants.

I have a chair exactly like the one in this tutorial. Now I want to recover it.

Always shyed away from tie dye with your kids because of all the staining and mess? Now you can tie dye without the dye.

Keep yourself organized for back to school with this Car Organizer pattern.

Turn a beach towel into a tote.