Monthly Archives: April 2021

Yes, More Masks

Between our state requiring masks and Easton going back to school full time, I am spending a lot of time washing face coverings just to keep up with our demand. It doesn’t help that Easton only wears a handful of them because he prefers a particular fabric design (who would have ever guessed that masks would become a fashion accessory?). So, I decided that it was time to make a few more (this fun, plague doctor print is from Zor-Elle).

By now I’m sure everyone has a preferred pattern, but for those interested, this is a modified mask by Victory Patterns (it’s free). Since Easton has to wear his all day, he finds this design the most comfortable because it doesn’t sit (or pull) on his ears and, because it’s shaped a bit, doesn’t feel like it’s smothering him (or as he says, “it has breathing room”). Bret, on the other hand, prefers the basic, square style mask with the expandable folds (I had gotten some from Old Navy) because they don’t fog his glasses as badly.

And now back to some regular, fun sewing.

Linky Thursday

More great menswear patterns from Mood. This time it’s the Basquait Trousers.

This mug caddy would make a great teacher gift or just a cute way to keep your work or sewing area organized.

Decorator pillows are always pricy, but there’s no reason that you can’t easily make your own. Learn how to stitch up bolster and 2 different styles of round pillows with this tutorial.

With the weather turning warmer, I’m starting to see more patterns for swimwear – like this bikini (or this one that is definitely eye catching) or this adorable vintage style one piece.

Get two bags in one with this reversible tote pattern.

This spaghetti strap top is perfect for warm summer days and would look great lengthened into a dress.

Give your pooch some comfy digs. Learn how to sew a dog bed with this easy tutorial.

Looking to make mom a handmade gift? Stitch her up some pretty potholders.

Enter to win a charm pack or fabric panel from Gardensong Fabrics.

It may be getting warmer outside, but there’s still something comforting about snuggling under an awesome blanket – like this faux fur or upcycled sweater versions.

Cutie Booty

Let me start off by saying that I wasn’t initially sold on the Cutie Booty Boxer Brief pattern, but after seeing a handful of tester pictures that looked like something I might make (and the fact that I still had my coupon from my Fabric for Pirates bundle), I decided to give it a whirl. I’m glad I did.

I decided that if I’m making my own underwear, they should be “fun” so I searched my stash and pulled out a few remnants that I thought would work: T Rex Busting Through jersey from Jumping June Textiles and a black and white cotton stripe jersey from Girl Charlee (I also used a plain white jersey for the waist and leg bands). For this version I used the low rise, short inseam with the T-rex design on both the center front and back panels and the stripes for the sides. I contemplated just hemming the legs instead of adding leg bands, but after a test fit, decided against it since they became more “cheeky” type underwear and I figured I would struggle to keep them in place. I’ll consider trying this in future versions, but I think I would skip the cotton and try more of a poly blend that won’t stretch out of shape as easily while wearing them.

Sewing this up was very easy – all the pieces came together well and I didn’t have any issues putting this pattern together. The instructions are also easy to follow, so this is definitely a beginner friendly pattern. And the fit? Well, they’re extremely comfortable. I don’t usually wear this style, but I think these have completely changed my mind. Plus, how cute are they?

I definitely plan on making a few more of these – I’m even considering the mid inseam (which I wasn’t initially a fan of) for a pair of boxers to sleep in. I’m also curious how these would perform as shapewear (in a power mesh)- OOOh, the possibilities! Overall the cutie bootie boxer brief was a surprising winner for me, I’m glad I decided to give it a try.

Zip It

I’m on a zipper kick. I’ve added a few custom zippers and pulls to projects recently and now I feel like everything needs something special. So, lately, I’ve been buying interesting interesting zipper tape and pulls... here is my latest haul:

So for this round of goodies I picked up a couple of mystery packages – one for zipper tape (which is the black, white, & silver bundle – these were all fabulous, especially that silver) and one for zipper pulls (they included fun stuff like Deadpool, a plague doctor, a butterfly\moth, etc.) along with additional tapes (just check out that green and blood splatter!) and a few more pulls. While I picked up a few fun ones, I also made sure that I had some “regular” stuff as well so that when I make jackets, etc. that I have items that looks more ready to wear. As a side note, the regular pulls are very nice – very substantial and a great size.

Now that these have arrived, I feel the need to make a few bags. I recently discovered Bagstock patterns and have been seriously considering making their free Sunshine Crossbody. My biggest problem? Narrowing down what fabric I might use.

Time Out Tank

There is something to be said about a great basic pattern. I’m pretty sure that’s what drew me to Pattern Emporium’s Time Out Tank.

I decided to sew my first tank in the neon heather orange cotton spandex knit that I recently picked up from Girl Charlee fabrics. Both the fabric and the pattern sewed up very nicely – although I was sure that the binding was going to overlap, but never did (which just goes to show you, trust the pattern!).

As for the fit – it’s pretty perfect. I was sort of in between sizes, but decided to go with the smaller to start with (I was trying to avoid blending sizes so that I didn’t have to fiddle with potentially changing binding sizes). I’ve decided that (when I have time) I’ll try out the larger size (which I believe may end up be big in the underarms, but we’ll see for sure) for a summer pajama top and compare how they work out for me. Although by that time, I may have lost the “quarantine 15” that I’m currently sporting and the larger size may not be needed.

Needless to say, this pattern is a winner in my book. Not only is the neckline flattering, it’s a great wardrobe staple and there’s lots of potential for using up some of those smaller pieces of fabric I have stashed away. I’ll definitely be making more of these in the future.

Honeycomb

Sometimes, projects just don’t work out. Sometimes it’s just the pattern, sometimes it’s the fabric, and other times is just my fault. This is a post about the latter.

You see, I was very excited to pick up a honeycomb athletic knit from So Sew English fabrics so that I could try out this cool textured fabric in a legging… apparently so much so that I neglected to check the direction of stretch. While this particular material had 4-way stretch, the greatest amount didn’t run against the selvage, but with it. So, when I cut out the pattern pieces, I followed the grainline prompts (never thinking to double check). Once I started sewing, I realized my mistake, but continued sewing (sans waistband) just to see how they would fit. As expected, they were pretty tight. I might have gotten away with wearing them a few times before popping seams, but I’m sure that would happen while I was out and who needs a wardrobe malfunction like that? I’m keeping an eye out for more fabric like this so I can give it another whirl.

I also tried out a new pattern with this one: Greenstyle’s Simpatico Leggings. I really can’t attest to how they worked out, but I do like that the calves are contoured and not just a straight fit. I’ll have to give them a try again sometime down the road to see how that works out for sure, but what I’m really after is a legging with no exterior seam.

Linky Thursday

There is definitely a lack of menswear patterns available, especially free tutorials. But, this Dean Jacket makes up for it because it’s pretty fabulous (and would look great with this unisex Brando Tee).

This free frog plush reminds me of those adorable, colorful (yet poisonous) tree frogs you can see at reptile houses (comes with applique templates and embroidery files)!

I’m pretty sure I need to figure out a way to make an adult version of this circle dress.

This pen case opens (almost) completely open, making it to store almost anything (not just pens).

A cute way to keep your hair back, a faux knot headband.

This tiered spring mini dress sews in just two hours!

Statement sleeves are very popular right now. Learn how to make a puffed sleeve for your next garment.

Enter to win either a charm pack or fabric panel from Gardensong Fabrics.

This phone wristlet (video) tutorial even has card slots and looks to fit some of the larger phone sizes.

Everyone needs a great tote to carry. This washed canvas version is the perfect size, plus it can expand more because of the snaps on the sides.

Stary Laura Loungewear

Last week I had mentioned that I made an additional Laura Loungewear set, but neglected to show it…. well, here it is! For this version, I used a super soft peachy (I believe that they had called it orange), star French Terry from So Sew English.

I’ve already talked about this pattern so much, I’m sure that there’s not much left to discuss (except I really do love these sets!). This pair was for Taylor which I sent off to her in an Easter basket this year. She’s had the chance to wear this a few times and loves them just as much as I do.

Speaking of loungewear, has anyone seen Seamwork’s cute releases for April? The Cal Pajamas and Maeve Nightgown are calling my name (and the Fabric for Pirates bundle might be just the right fabric for these).

Barbie

I don’t sew a lot of retro style clothing, but as soon as I saw the Barbie Top, I knew that I had to make it. This also meant that I had to sign up for Gertie’s Patreon, but more about that later. First let’s talk about this pattern.

The Barbie Top is a mock turtleneck that has 4 sleeve options: sleeveless, short, 3/4, and long. When I bought this pattern, we were somewhere in between seasons so I felt like the 3/4 would be my best bet. I also wanted to channel that retro vibe by making my shirt in small stripes (too bad I didn’t have a black and pink or black and white on hand) and decided to use a piece that I’ve been hoarding for ages: Gorgeous Fabric‘s plum stripe butter jersey (I originally purchased and used some years ago, then snagged the remnants that she had when it went on sale and refused to use it until I found just the right project). This pattern is pretty straightforward, all the pieces came together well, and the instructions were clear (there’s also a video tutorial available as well). And the fit is perfect. I plan on making another one in a short sleeve version with some tattoo flash fabric, which should be fun.

So what’s the downside to this pattern? It’s only available if you are a Patreon member. With that said, all the patterns that have been exclusive to Patreon (currently there are 11) are available to you through Patreon. Additionally she posts video tutorials for her patterns through the site, has occasional events, and she (quarterly?) releases Charm Patterns (that are available for purchase on her personal site) as a download as well. I’ve been a member for several months now and have liked some of the other releases, but not sure when I’ll get around to trying them out.

I Did It Again

You may remember that last month I ordered a Patterns for Pirates fabric bundle and was somewhat underwhelmed at my box. While lots of people raved about the material, I found that it just wasn’t quite my style (I tend to pick bolder prints) and lacked a lot of stretch to use with any of the patterns that I could (immediately) think of. But, it didn’t turn me off enough that I wouldn’t try it again. Well, guess what? I did it again… I got another bundle.

This time around I’m much happier with what I received: a pretty purple rib knit (with plenty of stretch), sew in tags (there’s 3 different styles total), and a discount code for a pattern. I’ve washed the fabric, but haven’t nailed down what I want to make with it – it’s very soft and has a great drape, so I have a lot of options. The tags have already been put to good use – I used a sparkly gold one on the inside of my Laura Loungewear bottoms (and it matches the material perfectly). As for the pattern, I’m holding out until closer to the end of the month to decide. Their latest pattern is the Be Bold Bodysuit and I think I’m over wearing those for now…. but I’m open for suggestions!

Overall, I liked this bundle, but I’m still not sure it’s enough to sway me to do this monthly… but I might try a single package again if I’m looking for a surprise.