Monthly Archives: August 2014

Zee’s Tee

If you have a boy, chances are you’ve seen that there’s not one, but two sewing bundles available to buy with some of the most adorable clothing and accessory patterns: Perfect Pattern Parcel and Pattern Revolution Bundle Up. Needless to say, I had so snag some patterns – it’s not very often that I get to sew for Easton… these give me the perfect excuse to do it!

08-regularshowThe first pattern I chose to sew up is the Zee’s Tee shirt by Tie Dye Diva. I chose this one because it has several different options for a color blocked shirt. For my first version, I used a t-shirt that was way too big (even though we found it in the children’s department, I’m pretty sure it was put in the wrong section of the store because even though it’s labeled as a ‘small’ it fits my dress form perfectly!) and cut it so that the shirt front retained the logo and design and used a contrasting fabric for the yoke. Because I’m attempting to move onto fall sewing, I decided to make this one a ‘mock’ layered tee – I used the original, short sleeve (cut down to size) and use the contrasting material to make a long sleeve. Because I went with this style, I did have to change up the directions a bit: instead of inserting the sleeve per instructions, I sewed up the yoke and side seams, basted the sleeves together, then inserted them into the armscye. Even though I did it this way, it fit perfectly and everything lined up well.

The fit is spot on, although the length of the sleeve is a bit too long for Easton so I’ll need to change that for future version. Otherwise, I’m really pleased with the way this turned out – it really transformed a shirt he loved (but was too big to wear) into something he can get a lot of use out of this fall. I can see a few more of these Zee’s Tees on my sewing machine soon.

Linky Thursday

Get ready for fall with a pretty cardigan for yourself andor your little girl.

It’s funny that I find this tutorial for a yoga skirt after spending time searching for one that I wanted to sew (from yesterday’s post).

Learn how to screen print (Silhouette Cameo is required) a tote. While you’re checking out the tutorial, be sure to enter to win a sewing machine and patterns!

Still looking for the perfect back to school look? Make a shirt or dress with a fun bus applique.

Easy to wear and even easier to sew – the Poncho Shirt.

A vintage look toiletry bag that’s perfectly sized for all your travel needs.

It only takes 4 squares to make this nightgown.

Love circle skirts, but not sure how to draft one? This handy worksheetcalculator can help! Or skip the calculator and dive right into this No Sew Neoprene version.

Perfect for babies or just because – this pattern for Endearing Elephants.

Both of my children love their body pillows. I’ll have to remember this tutorial for when they need recovered.

Maxi Skirt Sewing

08-maxiFirst off, I apologize for not posting yesterday – a family emergency came up early (early) in morning. Thankfully it was minor and crisis resolved!

Now, back to sewing…. Do you have a person who springs last minute projects on you? My daughter notoriously does this. This time she wanted a maxi skirt to wear for picture day (today) – of course not just any maxi skirt – one that had a thick waistband, snug fitting around the hips, no flarestraight skirt. I didn’t realize that there were so many patternstutorials that didn’t fit this description. I seriously contemplated using my tutorial for WeAllSew, but neglected to take measurements (and felt pressed for time so I didn’t wnat to wait to do this when she came home from school) so I nixed that idea.

Instead, I went with New Look 6288 and sewed it up straight out of the package. I went with the hip measurement (even though we are proportioned differently, we’re close in size) when cutting out the size. Sewing this one up was incredibly easy – from start to finish it probably took an hour and the fit is perfect (I did take in the elastic some, but otherwise it was spot on). The bad news? She made me sew this one up very quickly (it was a rush job), but then decided not to wear it to school…… humph!

The Sewing Party


This November 8, you can be part of sewing history: The first ever, all-day, online sewing and crafting event will be held with over 30 interactive classes that are taught by designers and educational experts from BurdaStyle, Etsy, Joann Fabrics and more…. all for only $40.

The Sewing Party allows you to select which classes you want to watch live, interact with the teacher and fellow classmates in a virtual lounge, and then have access to all classes for 90 so you can view them at your leisure. The topics span a wide range of interests from traditional subjects such as quilts, home decor, and fashion sewing to more modern themes such as textile design, cosplay, and upcycling.

08-bra6I had a great opportunity to interview one of the educators for this big event, Maddie Flanigan, who is teaching one of the classes I’m most excited about… Bra Making with Madalynne! Maddie is a former technical designer for Anthropologie Intimates and her goal is to help everyone know the basics on how to sew a bra. Bra Making with Madalynne discusses the important issues of bra making such as finding the right pattern size, materials that can be used, and discussing notions. Best of all, she’ll be demonstrating how to make a bra from start to finish! Once the class is over you’ll receive a take-away packet that helps build on the topics that were discussed. Additionally, she’ll be available for questions in the virtual lounge, but noted that she will also be accepting email questions as well!

bra_5Maddie hopes to continue teaching bra making in future workshops and has plans on releasing her own line of patterns with a selection focusing on smaller busted women (A & B cup sizing).

Many thanks to Maddie for taking time out of her day to let me interview her and for allowing me to use some of of her beautiful bra making photos!



The T-Top

08-annteeEarlier in the week I decided that I would kick-off my fall sewing by starting an Ann T-Top. This was my first experience with a PDF from StyleARC (I should probably mention that they do not have PDFs for sale, these have been ‘freebie’ offers from partnered sites) and was pleased with how easily it came together. As much as I dislike having to tape together PDF sewing patterns, I really hope that StyleARC eventually offers some of their designs this way because it would cut down the international shipping timerates and give me more ‘instant gratification sewing’!

Stitching this one was simple – it’s a very straight-forward design and I think even a beginner could easily sew up this shirt. As far as the fit goes, I actually think I could have gone down one size. It fits nice, although I think I would have preferred a slightly snugger fit all over (I should mention that my material is extremely stretchy and thin so I could get away with a smaller size. You probably couldn’t do this if you used a beefier material with minimal stretch). The scoop neck is flattering and not overly large (so you’re not constantly adjusting the neckline because you’re afraid you’re going to have a wardrobe malfunction) and the gathers at the sides add an interesting touch. They also make me feel slightly uncomfortable. Why? I’m pretty sure that I had a maternity top in this style 6 years ago and I’m afraid people will be asking me when I’m expecting. I know, I know. It’s totally a ‘mental thing’, but I’m pretty sure that if I saw this in a store, I wouldn’t buy it for the exact same reason.

Even though I have a mental hang-up about this shirt, I’ll still be wearing it this fall. I love the color, the fabric is incredibly silky smooth, and it’s a comfortable style to wear…. I’ll just be sure to wear it with leggingsskinny pants so no one asks any questions!

Linky Thursday

With school back in session for many of us, I thought that it might be appropriate to find function, cute, and just downright fun tutorials to get everyone set for the year (most of these work well for the grown ups too):

THIS may be the cutest way to carry your lunch money (or snacks) to school. EVER.

Keep your water bottle at your side and your hands free with this easy Water Bottle Carrier tutorial.

Look fabulous when you drop your little one off at the bus stop with this Sequin Cardi.

Show your school spirit with a fun, game day dress. I think I am finally making one this year.

I love the tagline to this tutorial “The fun of a skirt with the convenience of shorts” – great for active girls (and playground fun)!

Sew up an easy pencil case in 30 minutes just by changing up the dimensions of my box bag tutorial (dimensions for the pencil case are at the bottom of the page).

Create a skirt from a shirt in just 10 minutes.

Tired of having your hair in your face all day? Keep it back with a pretty fabric headband (plus it’s a great way to coordinate your garments with your accessories). This stretch version is great workoutafter school practice version, too!

Carry your back to school books in style with this Slim Messenger Bag.

No pockets? No problem! Stow your pone with this handy Zippered Phone Pouch.

Alright, this one doesn’t have anything to do with back to school, it’s just cute: Wesley the Very Big Whale.

Ann T-Top

If you subscribe to Gorgeous Fabric‘s newsletter, you may have seen a link to a FREE StyleARC Ann T-Top pattern (yes, free!) a few weeks ago. Of course, I immediately snagged it up and am thinking this needs to be one of my first projects for fall. I am still ‘on the fence’ about what color I should go with, but am thinking I will use this pretty Rosy Glow rayon jersey – not just because I like the color, but because it feels so soft! The details for this project are below:

Pattern: StyleARC‘s Ann T-Top

Fabric: Rayon Jersey from Gorgeous Fabrics

Total Cost:

Pattern….. FREE
Fabric……. $11.20
Notions…. STASH

Total Cost $11.20

Back 2 School

08-kidsschoolToday is the day! Today it’s back to school – the first day of 1st grade for Easton and the last year of high school for Taylor. While I’ll miss my children dearly, I am excited to catch up on everything around here…. and of course get back to some serious sewing! Today, however, is also the day that I clean the sewing room. As much as I would like to hop on my machine, I’ve reached the point that I can no longer find things (like seam rippers, scissors, small pattern pieces) and the only way I can enjoy stitching something up is if I’ve eliminated the clutter.

How do you sew? Do you like to keep a tidy room, sew through the clutter, or occasionally clean when your piles are too much to bear?

Kid Friendly (Earbud) Pouch

08-budpouchEarbud pouches are a great way to keep your headphones clean, neat, and tidy. Unfortunately, most are too small for tiny hands…plus let’s face it, most kids aren’t going to take the time to neatly coil the cords and zippers are just a potential disaster waiting to happen (I can foresee ‘cutting the wires’ with the zipper if you leave any part of the ear bud hanging out of the pouch because they’re in too big of a hurry to stuff it all inside). With that said, I decided to come up with a ‘Kid Friendly’ ear bud pouch: large enough to fit a pair headphones and an easy Velcro closure. It also features a separate lining from the exterior (which means the sewing soundslooks crazy, but stick with me because it will work in the end!). Here’s how to make your own:

Fabric scraps for exterior and lining (each should measure at least 6 x 10″)
1″ piece of Velcro

From exterior fabric
Cut 1, 5 1/2 x 6″ rectangle
Cut 1, 5 1/2 x 3 1/2″ rectangle

From lining fabric
Cut 1, 5 1/2 x 6″ rectangle
Cut 1, 5 1/2 x 3 1/2″ rectangle

Sewing: (all seams 1/4″)
1. If you are planning on embroidering a name, design, etc. on your pouch be sure to do this now before you start sewing.

2. With right sides together, sew the top edge of the 5 1/2 x 3 1/2″ exterior and lining rectangles together (if you have a one-way design, name, or design, be sure that your material is facing the correct way!). This will be your front pouch.

3. Turn right side out and press finished edge (topstitch if desired).

4. Open up front pouch, separating the exterior fabric from the lining. Center Velcro across the top of the exterior pouch piece, close to finished edge, and sew in place.


5. Keeping pouch sections open and with right sides together, place exterior pouch section on top of exterior flap piece (the 5 1/2 x 6″ rectangle). You will find that the lining section will hang over the flap piece just slightly. Sew from the top of the pouch seam, down the side, across the bottom, and back up the side (stopping at top seam).


6. Repeat step #5 with the lining. Your end result will be the front pouch sandwiched between the exterior and lining flaps (which remain unsewn at the top).


7. Sew second piece of Velcro to the right side of lining. Velcro should be centered, 3/8″ down from top, raw edge of lining.


8. With right sides together, place lining and exterior unsewn flap edges together and sew, leaving a 2″ opening for turning on top edge.

9. Clip the corners of all pieces and turn right side out through opening on top edge. Poke corners out with a chopstick or point turner if necessary.

10 Stuff lining into pouch and press. Slipstitch opening closed or topstitch top edge with sewing machine.



Fill your finished pouch with earbuds or keep it for yourself – it’s the perfect size for business cards, small jewelry, and more!

Secret Sewing

I have good news and bad news. The bad news is: I don’t have the “kid friendly” earbud pouch tutorial today. Apparently, I underestimated the time it would take for me to finish up my other commitments and start getting the kids ready for back to school (shopping, shopping, shopping!). The good news? I’m working on it over the weekend, so it will be ready to go on Monday!

Speaking of those other commitments…. I’ve been busily sewing away on several pattern testing items! While I can’t show you what exactly I’m working on, I can say that you’re going to love them! This grouping gave me the opportunity to work with fall fabrics and snap a few fun photos to put up on the blog when they are released!