Monthly Archives: June 2017

Hot Pants

I have come to the conclusion that I am not good about blogging in the summer. Apparently, I need to get myself more organized and blog the night before so posts are ready to go in the morning. So, starting next week, I’m hoping to be back on a more regular schedule and do just that!

With that said, I did head into the sewing room and make not one, but two pairs of Heat Wave Hot Pants.  This was slightly unintentional as I just planned on making a pair for myself, but Taylor saw them and wanted some too:

Somehow I managed to eeek out 2 pairs of shorts from 1 yard of fabric (the pattern matching looks much better with the first pair, though) – only because I made my first pair without pockets and used the thinner waistband.

But what I’m sure you’re most interested in is how did they sew up. This was a surprisingly easy pattern to sew and went together quickly. The fit was great for both of us too, especially in the thigh area (which I was afraid would be too tight because we both have thicker thighs)…. I am guessing that most people will have good results because they are made with a stretch, though. I also like that these shorts are higher waisted as well – it definitely makes for a more flattering pant – the downside? You will probably want a more fitting top to go with it.

Consequently, I am thinking of making a bodysuit to go with this one… I am super hesitant to do this because I haven’t worn one since I was in college and ugh, who wants to see me in that? However, I have seen lots of people with that combination and it looks great so I may break down and do it….. if I chicken out, I have decided that I’ll make the Cross my Heart Cami instead….. or do both. Either way, look for final fit photos once I am done!

Rivets

I love bag hardware. They’re shiny and can really elevate the overall look of your finished purse. So why did it take me so long to finally use rivets?

This is the second time I’ve used them in a project and am in love. It saves me from having to sew closely to D-rings and add an extra design element to my bag. While I can’t show you the final project, here’s a sneak peek of how those rivets look with a lobster claw clasp.

I purchased mine from Emmaline bags, which has a huge variety of colors and sizes. If you don’t already have one, I would also suggest getting a punch tool as well – it makes it a lot easier to install the rivets, especially if you’re working with heavy layers or thick fabrics.

Bob’s Burgers

Much of last week was spent working on deadline projects so all my selfish sewing ideas have been put on the back burner until they are finished. I couldn’t think of a better reward for completing the largest one, than to have some pre-order fabric arrive:

I am a big fan of Bob’s Burgers so I couldn’t resist ordering these prints from Silver Fox Fabrics. While I could have bought them all, I wound up getting two “panty panels” (Tina & Linda), a Beefsquatch adult tee panel, “Erotic Friend Fiction” print in a woven and cotton lycra, and Kuchi Kopi night light print in a cotton lycra. Besides the tee panel, I have no idea what my plans are for most of them, but right now I’m enjoying just looking at them…..

In the mean time, I plan on getting back to those personal projects that I’ve had sitting on my table. Up first…. George & Ginger’s Hot Pants.

Linky Thursday

Yesterday was the first official day of summer in the states. Get ready for the heat wave with this breezy racer back tank.

If you’ve been hunting for a beach bag that’s easy to sew but still looks impressive to wear, stop by Sew4Home’s latest tutorial for a beach duffel backpack.

Add more seating to your patio space with this pretty outdoor poof.

This top combines two of the biggest trends in sewing: flutter sleeve and off the shoulder.

Looking for a great way to keep the kids entertained during your 4th celebration? Check out this fun star bean bag toss game.

This fantail kimono makes a beautiful evening top to wear out or would make a wonderful gift to someone this summer.

Traveling soon? This perfect luggage tag tutorial is a great way to mark your bag.

This spring poncho tutorial makes sewing a new top for girls a snap!

A 10 minute toiletry bag? I’m in!

The hand towel that never falls off the rack.

Sign up for the Melly Sews newsletter and you’ll receive the pattern to make this pretty sundress.

Looking for something fun to do with the kids this summer? Try Kool-aid dying. This handy chart will help you find your perfect colors to combine for unique shades.

Wales Soccer

This week, Easton is participating in a British Soccer Camp. When I picked him up, he started off saying he needed a red shirt for tomorrow for his team color….. but I needed to use my “machine” (Cricut) to put Wales on it….. and his name…. and his number (from his spring\fall club)….. “Just make it look like a jersey”.

After a quick trip to the craft store to pick up a shirt and vinyl, I came home and made Easton a “jersey” for today. The image is from the internet (it is the actual Wales soccer logo) while the banner and lettering is from the Design Space Studio.

For a quick tee, I’m fairly pleased with the results…. especially because I was able to weld the banner and Wales lettering fairly quickly and without needing to look up how to do it on a tutorial!

 

Glitter Vinyl Embroidery

Once again, I’m working on some projects that I can’t reveal yet…. however, it’s probably alright to give you a sneak peek, right?

I’ve had glitter vinyl sitting in my stash for quite some time (I have a strong desire to make cool purses with this fabric), but still haven’t taken the plunge. Last week, I decided that I needed to stop eyeing the vinyl and just work with it….. so I started by embroidering it. I attempted to do some research on how to stitch it up, but really didn’t find much so I went with a heavy weight cutaway stabilizer, a new needle, a lightly stitched design, and the ‘hoopless method’ – basically treating it like a (real) leather.

The results? Awesome! I honestly think this is the way the way to go if you decide to work with glitter vinyl. Definitely use a lightly stitched design because I can see anything too heavy will eventually rip up the material (even the design that I used has a lot of running stitches that continually stitched over and over may be a bit much in some areas). Now that I’ve tackled this, I definitely will try it again…. I have 3 more colors in my stash to play with!

Picnic Dress

I can finally show you some pattern testing that I’ve been involved in now that it’s live! George & Ginger released their Picnic Dress pattern today (you can grab one for $4 until midnight tonight 6/16) – I loved mine so much that I made it twice!

This pattern for stretch knits (I made mine in a double knit from Needle Nook Fabrics) and features 3 sleeve lengths (as well as a sleeveless version) as well as a gather bodice and skirt – so it’s very flattering for all figures.

Sewing this one went quickly and came together beautifully. I do suggest that you sew slowly  and carefully when you reach the gathers, as it is very bulky and many people noted that theirs seemed to struggle with this part (my machine didn’t have any issues, though). It was definitely a fun sew – which is why I made it twice (plus I really, really wanted a sleeveless dress in this print for summer).

 

Linky Thursday

May the 4th may be over, but you can easily make it Star Wars day, everyday with these fabulous droid pillows.

This beach maxi dress isn’t just perfect for hitting the sand, it would look great for an evening out too.

If you’ve been looking for a good coverup for after the pool, be sure to check out this fun, hooded version. Need an accessory to go with it? Be sure to check out this oversized beach bag!

This generously sized hobo bag doesn’t just look great, it’s easy to sew too.

If you haven’t tried waxed canvas yet, this travel bag is a good excuse to give it a try.

Keep your  bag tidy (or just make it easier to switch between purses) with this 10 pocket purse organizer.

Get your home ready for the 4th of July with this patriotic ruffled pillow.

Protect your tablet with a pretty, quilted iPad case.

This knotted shopper is a pretty way to head to the farmer’s market or just a way to jazz up your daily shopping routine.

If your summer is full of chauffeuring kids between activities, then you’ll love this Tote with Many Pockets – it’s great for stashing projects, devices, snacks and more! After you check out the tutorial, be sure to enter this week’s fabulous fabric giveaway.

Make coasters in just 10 minutes.

 

Modern Cutwork

Be sure to stop by newsstands this month for the latest issue of Creative Machine Embroidery magazine. In this issue I have an article on how to create the cutwork blouse that you see on the cover. I really liked working on this one, it has such a summery vibe to it. In fact, I liked it so much, I made a second version in blue with different (geometric) designs and longer sleeves – it’s amazing how a ‘theme’ change can change the mood of your blouse!

Also in this issue is a stylish beach wrap. You may remember the pattern from one that I created several years ago for Sew It All magazine. However, this time around I used a fabulous gauze (instead of a knit) and embellished one long edge with sea themed embroidery. The result is a very light and airy cover up that feels fantastic (trust me, I tried it out before I sent it on). Never worked with gauze before? Don’t worry there’s plenty of tips to help you – it’s a lot easier than you think!

Birthday

Somehow 20 (yes, 20, I know, I’m in shock too) years have flown by and it’s this girl’s birthday today.

This year Taylor requested that I make her cake (don’t judge, I’m not a skilled decorator) and decided that we should recreate the same photo that we took when she was 4. The result? Awesome.

In addition to baking, I also sat down and made a pair of shorts for her. When she saw the cover for Sew Caroline’s Weekend Style, she fell in love with the Saturday Morning Shorts – how could I resist not whipping up a pair for her birthday?

While the shorts turned out adorable, I will admit had a few issues with this pattern. First off, I never could find the seam allowance – I’m sure it was in the book somewhere, I just never could find it. After skimming a few parts of the book (specifically the part about French seams), I figured that it must be 1/2″ and went with that.

Secondly, the printing for the front of the shorts was missing several sizes. I haven’t seen errata for this book, so I am assuming it was a printing error on my part(?) although the back pattern printed off just fine. Fortunately, the size I needed was one of the ones that did print so I didn’t investigate further (yet) as to what the issue was.

Lastly, I had no idea how much elastic to cut for the size I made. The expectation is that you’ll measure yourself and cut accordingly, but since this was a gift (and I didn’t measure Taylor beforehand so that this would be a surprise), I had no idea…. so I winged it. Hopefully they fit.

Aside from these issues, this was a super quick and easy pair of shorts to make….. I’m kind of wishing I had a pair myself, now!