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Fabric Binge

I spent a lot of last week putting the finishing touches on a Creative Machine Embroidery project, which worked out well because I’ve been waiting for a recent So Sew English fabric haul to arrive and probably didn’t need the distraction of new goodies when I’m trying to finish something important. I purchased this lot right before the new year – they were having 30% off all fabrics as well as 60% off ready cuts (2 yard precut fabrics) and I couldn’t resist picking up some things I’ve had my eye on. It also meant that they had a high volume of orders so I didn’t get my fabrics until yesterday (FedEx didn’t help expedite my shipment any faster, either). So, without further ado, here is my haul (and what I plan on doing with it):

TOP ROW:

  • 2 yards of Ivory\Pink Poppies Oakley Brushed Sweater Knit. This was just a fabric I couldn’t pass up – it’s so pretty and the Oakley sweater knit is easy to work with and feels great when you wear it. I thought the colors seems like they would make a great Valentine’s Day top, but we’ll see what it becomes in the end.
  • 2 yards of Eggplant\White Faux Glitter Ombre Peached Performance. This is a fabric I’ve had my eye on for awhile and since it was on sale, I found it in my cart. I can’t wait to make a pair of awesome leggings with it… and probably a matching sports bra too.
  • 2 yards of Black\Gray Tie Dye French Terry (sold out). I’m a sucker for tie dye! When I saw this, I thought it was perfect for making Easton a hoodie (he lives in hoodies throughout the fall and winter), but he wasn’t too excited about this fabric when it arrived. I plan on going ahead with making him one anyway, slapping a label on it and maying some graphics and telling him I got it from Hollister.
  • 2 yards of Taupe Leopard Right Side Loop French Terry (sold out). Apparently I’m also a sucker for animal prints, too. I’ve gotten the reversed loop French Terry before and love the weight (it heavier than most French Terry fabrics) and I love the interesting exterior texture. I was leaning toward Made for Mermaid’s Aspen Sweater, but we’ll see if the fabric weight might be too much for this pattern to look like how I hope.

BOTTOM ROW:

  • Newsprint Bundle: 2 yards Black Cotton Loop Terry and 2 yards of Black\White Newspaper Double Brushed Poly (sold out). Another style of design I can’t resist – newsprint. I’d love to make a fun dress out of the print with some sort of cardigan\cover up with the terry to go with it. Chances are, they’ll get broken up and I’ll use the terry for a sweatshirt and the print will become a future top.
  • 2 yards of Solid Navy Micro Viscose Cotton Spandex. The sole purpose of buying this fabric was because it matched the next one so well. I’ve seen this made into the Page Piko and liked the end result so I’m leaning heavily toward that pattern. I did order enough that I’ll probably have enough left over to make something else too.
  • 1 yard 80’s Jaguar Peached Performance (sold out). You guys, I wish you could have seen this on the site, it’s obnoxious, but fun… and will make a killer pair of leggings.
  • 1 yard Black Shimmer Foil Performance. Not only have I seen a lot of workout gear using a shimmer foil fabric, but holiday attire too. I am regretting only getting 1 yard, but we’ll see where this takes me.

WHEW, that’s a lot to keep me busy. Now to get my rear in gear and sew it all up!

Tee Shirt Recon

There are two things you need to know about my husband: 1) He’s really difficult to shop for. So around the holidays, I tend to buy him “themed” gifts… a lot of times that revolves swag from some of his favorite bands. 2) As much as he likes concert tees, he saves his favorites to wear for “special” occasions (concerts mostly). Consequently, he has a lot of t-shirts and sometimes I forget what he owns.

This is EXACTLY what happened at Christmas. I had purchased this particular tee twice (I think the last one was for Father’s Day and then again in December) – not only is it huge, but he still hasn’t worn the original one. So, I grabbed the extra and decided to reconstruct it into something for me.

One thing I took into consideration is how large the graphic is – I really wanted to preserve as much of it as possible. The second thing I decided is that I didn’t just want to shrink it down (and make a smaller sized tee) – I wanted a top that had more “style”. So, after searching the web, I decided to buy Made for Mermaid’s Corinne – a cut out style top that had lots of options. Before I get into detail about this project, let me show you the end result:

For this version, I opted for a shirt length and high bodice with short sleeves – doing this combination maximized the graphic (I only lost a teeny bit at the bottom) and allowed me to use all of the shirt for the front, bindings, and sleeves. Since I didn’t have enough for the back, I picked a cotton lycra print (The Styled Magnolia‘s Sanguine) that had the same “feel” as the screenprint (slightly different colors, but it still works, IMHO).

Unfortunately, the end result is TIGHT. I knew going in that the t-shirt probably had the bare minimum of stretch, so I thought that adding the cotton lycra would help… but I actually think the cotton print is the problem. This is the second time I’ve used this fabric and found that while it’s a beautiful custom (it has a great weight and the colors don’t bleed or fade), it just doesn’t stretch enough for most fitted projects. This top isn’t unwearable, but it is way more snug that what I wanted and I may or may not have to wear some spanx so that it looks smoother on. LOL I will also say that I am very happy I went with the higher bodice – my bust is a bit larger than my mannequin so the cut out sinks a bit lower than the photo…. I think I would have felt like I was going to have a “wardrobe malfunction” if I went any lower.

As for the pattern itself, it was very well written and easy to follow. I would definitely consider making this pattern again if I right occasion to wear it…. I’ll just make sure to make it is something wayyyy stretchier.

Linky Thursday

Very Peri is the Pantone’s color of the year – learn how to incorporate it into your wardrobe and grab a free shacket pattern too.

Give your bedroom a quick makeover with these easy to sew pillowcases (this is a fun way to use holiday and novelty prints).

If one of your resolutions was to tidy up rooms, these clear vinyl storage bags are a great way to stash loose items and still see what’s inside.

If one of your holiday gifts included a new iPad, here’s an easy backpack tutorial to take it on the go.

Looking for a quick hostess or bridal shower gift? This (half) apron and napkin set is quick to stitch since it uses hemmed toweling.

Enter to win 3 plush patterns from DIY Fluffies.

If your child, grandchild, or special little one got a new doll for Christmas, you’ll definitely want to look into stitching them a quit, pillow, and nightgown set.

Valentine’s Day is a month away. If you’re planning your projects now, you may want to start with these no-sew felt envelopes or some sweet lavender sachets.

Got cold feet? Here’s a free kids slipper pattern that looks to stitch up fast.

This Valentine’s Day Table Topper is a great way to make your dining area festive.

Learn how to create this soft and cuddly dragon toy.

Botanical Boho Crown

The other day I mentioned that I had a second project inside the latest issue of Creative Machine Embroidery Magazine… and here it is! A beautiful Botanical Boho Crown. This project is made by stitching out organdy roses and placing them on a braided hemp band with a faux greenery accents. When I created this project, I thought how perfect this look would be for a festival like Coachella, pairing it up with a tiered cotton dress (with boots), or even making one for a flower girls. The best thing about this project is that it is easily modified to fit any size head and the roses can be customized to any color.

This was a fun little project to create and those roses are GORGEOUS in every color I stitched. If you have an embroidery machine, I definitely recommend giving it a whirl – at least whipping up a few of these for Valentine’s decor!

Mesa Mobile

With all the excitement of the holidays, you may have missed the recent announcement of Creative Machine Embroidery‘s spring freebies release (and a peek at some of the projects inside the issue). While my projects aren’t included in the free files this time, my little llama\cactus project did make (part) of the cover – so I can finally show off my finished item: The Mesa Mobile!

This fun little project incorporates small stuffies that dangle from a hoop and can be strung up over your work area or baby room (but never within reach of the baby). The embroidery file for the llamas comes in a variety of sizes (you may remember that I first started on this project, I opted for the SMALLEST size – which was adorable, but way too tiny), so after you’re finished making this project, you can make more huggable sized versions as a coordinating gift (or in my case, pocket sized).

Be sure to grab you copy heading to newsstands now!

Linky Thursday

This hanging pocket is perfect for keeping items at your fingertips and so easy to move throughout the house.

Get your favorite room ready for Valentine’s Day with this Circle of Love quilt.

Got the sniffles? This keychain tissue holder is perfect for on the go.

The Avens Bodysuit is no ordinary top – it is definitely a head turner!

If you made the resolution to get more organized this year, this Divided Drawer project will help get you started on that journey.

Cold weather is here. Make sure the chill stays outside with this easy door draft stopper project.

Make nap time even cozier with this flannel nap mat project. This pillow bed is a similar concept, but may whip up just a bit faster (and uses actual pillows so that it’s extra fluffy).

Keep your hair out of your face and look trendy with this twisted headband tutorial.

Looking for a tote bag that has pockets and a zippered closure? The Lucy definitely fits the bill! Be sure to grab yours while the pattern is free.

Increase your sewing stash and enter to win this huge sewing bundle.

Baby it’s cold outside, but snuggling with this cute polar bear plush might just keep you warm.

Testing Threads

Before I start any major project that incorporates embroidery (especially if it’s for Creative Machine Embroidery), I like to test out my thread and design choices. This gives me a chance to make sure that I’ve adequately stablized my project, that any thread changes (I tend to do this a lot so that the design “matches”\coordinates with the fabrics better) don’t look crazy together, and that I can play around with potential placement. It’s a bit more time consuming, but I think it makes for a smoother project in the end. So, that’s where I’m at today. Testing. It’s not the most exciting part of my day, but I’m hoping that by the end of the week I’ll have a (more) finished product.

While I can’t get into a lot of details about what I’m working on (because it is for an upcoming article), I can give you a glimpse of what it might entail.. I say might, because it could change some again before I’m done – this particular item has morphed from the original idea we had talked about and I think I’m sort of excited about it. With that said, it’s time to grab (another) cup of coffee and get back to work!

First Project of 2022

The first project of 2022 goes to… Greenstyle’s Sav’s Sweatshirt (cropped version).

While this is the second time making this pattern, it’s the first for the cropped style (full disclosure, while I love cute, cropped looks, I’m always hesitant on making them for myself since I’m never sure how they’ll look on me, but after seeing so many make this, I really wanted to give it a go). Originally, I had plans to make this a solid look – I even ordered a sweatshirt fleece just for this project. However, after the material arrived, I was less than thrilled with how it felt – while it has a sweatshirt face, the back almost feels like… felt. Washing it didn’t make it feel any better, so I decided to scrap it and look around my stash instead. That’s when I decided I would (finally) use this Ombre Faux Glitter Stripe from So Sew English.

The end result did not disappoint. I’m pretty sure this stripe fabric is cuter than any solid I could have picked out and the overall fit is great – in fact it looks perfect with a pair of high waisted leggings\pants, but would definitely work if you wanted to wear a tank underneath, too. If you’re like me and not sure about the cropped look, I recommend checking into this design. While it is cropped, it’s not tight fitting so it looks flattering and you get the trendy style without needing to be self-conscious about the size.

New Year, New Projects

At the end of the year, I always like to reflect\review the projects that I’ve created. I generally keep a “diary” of things I’ve worked on and little anecdotal quips – sometimes about how much fabric I may have used, changes I may have made, etc. But this year was different. This year, I think I was in a slump – largely because I felt like I had very little to wear\accessorize out, other than our living room. I even slacked on journaling about my projects.

But I decided this year is going to be different. This year, I’m making ALL THE THINGS and even if I don’t make it out of the house in 90% of them, I’ll just have to look fabulous in my living room instead (I’m thinking 1950’s housewife attire in a dress, pearls, and heels to clean, LOL). I’m also making sure that I keep track of everything (both sewing AND embroidery) that I make so that next year, I can show myself what a kick ass year I had.

With that said, I’m stitching out my first project of the year as we speak. While it’s not 1950’s housecleaning attire, it should be super cute and ready to share tomorrow! What is everyone else stitching up for the new year?

Linky Thursday

If part of your New Year’s sewing resolution included outlining your projects to keep your organized, then Mood has the calendar for you. The first two months also include sketching croquis, inspirations, and fabric inventory (I’m sure it’s not nearly long enough for me, LOL).

New Years Eve is tomorrow and if you’re still looking for a great “black tie” style, this tutorial will teach you how to make your own bow tie.

It’s been quite awhile since I’ve visited the Tula Pink website. While I don’t think I have it in me to make a very large quilt, this small version is very interesting (and her Cruiser pillowcase cover always turns out fantastic).

Loungewear in your future? This easy long sleeved top will be a great addition to your wardrobe. Pair it up with this free jogger pattern and you have yourself a great set!

Since I’m not a quilter, I never really know how to use those fun jelly rolls that I see in stores. So this cool basket weave pillow is a great idea on how to test them out!

I’m not sure if this Flower Doll is cute or creepy, but either way I’d like to sew one up just to see how it turns out.

This glasses case probably would have been a great stocking stuffer, but since Christmas is over, you can selfishly sew one up in time for spring!

I’m starting to feel the urge to stitch up some bags…. I’m thinking my first one of the year may be a duffle. This weekender bag is calling my name, but a more traditional shape like the Reign and the Saturday Bag are pretty cute too.

Looking to build your stash? Enter to win a whole bundle of sewing goodies!

It’s getting cold outside! Learn how to stitch your little ones a Decker Beanie.