Linky Thursday

Don’t have a lot of time to sew, but have the creative urge to make something anyway? Try working on an instant gratification project that takes 30 minutes or less to complete like this sunglasses case, pocket placemats (also good for 4th of July celebrations), or a quick, (one seam) maxi dress.

Looking for an adorable swim cover or just an easy dress to wear? Check out The Sewing Rabbit’s latest tutorial for a Trapeze Tank Dress.

4th of July is just a few days away, but there’s till time to decorate! Whip up a cute, star bunting in patriotic colors and prints and put them out just in time for your BBQ.

I am pretty sure that if we had a Hammock Chair on our porch, everyone would fight to sit in it.

Summer brings out lots of craft fairs which means there frequent discussions on how to price your goods to make sure you’re making a profit on what you’re stitching. This article is a nice read and has a handy calculator at the end to help you pay yourself for your work!

Learn how to transform a t-shirt into a cute halter top. Looking for something for the holiday instead? Check out this t-shirt recon by WobiSobi.

Father’s Day may have already passed, but it’s never to late to create a leather wallet for the man in your life.

Bowl covers aren’t just a pretty way to bring your favorite side to a potluck, they’re also a great way to go green!

Long time readers know that Personalized Name pillows are one of my favorite gifts to make for kids. Now you can make a similar project for your favorite little ones with this free pillow tutorial.

Look as if you’re carrying around a vintage letter when you print your own fabric to make this adorable pouch.



07-Jalie3463aOn Friday my new Jalie Patterns arrived in the mail and I couldn’t resist starting one right away! I immediately traced off Jalie 3463 – The Anne-Marie Tank and Dress (I decided on view A, the fitted tank) and decided on using the coral diamond print from June’s Knit Fix bag with a black jersey contrast for the fabrics.

Because I opted to use only 2 fabrics and didn’t want to break up the diamond print, I decided to morph the two side panels into one, solid piece. I like the end result for this particular top, but am excited to use more colors\prints next time around to give it a bit more interest. I love that this particular tank not only has a built in shelf bra (next time I will be sure to use a more ‘supportive fabric’ such as a stretchy powernet style material), but is finished without bindings (this does mean that you may have to have a bit more experience before sewing this one, but the results are very professional). The fit is wonderful, the shelf bra is comfortable, and I like that the back has a bit of elastic so it doesn’t slip out of place while you’re wearing it.

07-Jalie3463bAll in all, I love my new tank and can definitely see myself sewing this up again fairly soon – especially now that the temperatures are soaring here. While this particular top is meant to be worn casually (I am thinking that I will make a pair of matching shorts next), I intend on using some wicking material in future versions so I have a sportier top (I actually wouldn’t mind sewing up the cute peplum version too even though I don’t play tennis any more…. maybe I should take it up just so I can wear some cute outfits).

Next I intend on tracing the pull on jeans – if I could only find some stretch denim\bottoweight that has 20% stretch and comes in a color that I like (I would love a very light pink, but apparently that color is difficult to find!). Any one have a great fabric resource for this pattern?

The Summer Tee

06-summerteeAfter spending some time on Girl Charlee’s Knit Fix Facebook page, I saw someone who mixed two unexpected fabrics to make a fun shirt… so I decided to recreate that with the fabrics from my own bag. For my next project, I used the pink mint floral on black and more of the black crossed lines (from yesterday’s Mesa) to make iCandy’s Summer Tee.

The Summer Tee is a FREE pattern (although it only fits as a “medium”, it could be easily sized up or down) with a dropped shoulder seam and side slits at the hem. To bring a bit more interest to the front, I added two micro pockets in the crossed lines – initially I liked this look, but giving it fresh eyes the next day, I’m not sure how I feel about them. Overall, the fit is pretty good, it’s easy to sew (although, the directions are sparse and are more like ‘tips on sewing’ than anything else), and the style is definitely different than anything else that I own. In my book this is a good free pattern to try out for summer!

The Mesa

06-mesaKeeping with my (self-imposed) knit fix challenge, I decided to whip up a new project over the weekend. Using the black crossed lines jersey rayon spandex knit from my bag and Seamwork Magazine’s Mesa, I made a new, (adorable) dress! This is a simple shift design with a scooped neckline, side slits, and short, almost elbow length sleeves, that comes together in about an hour.

Since the sewing on this one is pretty straightforward, I’ll skip to the fit… which is once again, spot on. It’s also a flattering shape so it should work with all body types (this pattern runs from XS-3XL). I was also surprised that I liked the neckline on this one – normally scoop necks feel as if they’re constantly falling off my shoulders and constantly needs adjusting, but so far, this one has worked well. The only thing I’m on the fence about is the sleeve length – it’s a bit of a strange length for me, although it definitely ‘dresses up’ the overall feel of the finished dress.

All in all, this is another winner from Seamwork Magazine… I think once I’m done sewing up my knit fixes, I should finally get to work on the Adelaide – that one has been calling my name since I first saw it!

More Shorts

06-shorts4Last week I mentioned that my mom wanted\needed some new pair of comfy shorts…. so I made another pair of Peek-a-Boo Pattern’s Summer Lovin’!

For this pair, I wound up using a remnant from the Anima Pants that I had sewn earlier this year and a white jersey for the pocket and the waistband. While I don’t have an ‘action shot’, the fit is spot on (this time I made a medium) and my mom has worn these several times since I’ve given them to her. Guess I need to make a trip to the fabric store for more notions so I can make her another pair!

Linky Thursday

Summer time often makes us rush out the door in a hurry. That’s when this Grab-N-Go pouch comes in handy. Perfect size for all your necessities without needing to carry a bulky purse!

I don’t need to elaborate this one, the title says it all: The Ultimate Pool Bag.

Showcase fabulous fabrics in your next bag when you fussy cut a Cat-Eye into cute little pouch.

Belt Bags\Fanny Packs are hip again! This is probably the cutest one (yet a bit small) that I’ve seen.

This is no ordinary make up roll. This one has a secret pocket, too.

It’s a blanket. It’s a tote. It’s…. both!

Perfect for yoga pants or athletic shorts, this tutorial will teach you how to add a pocket to your next knit waistband.

Give up pants and wear more skirts this summer! I couldn’t be easier than this Summer Skirt tutorial. Looking for something a bit dressier? Then try the Veronika.

Customize you next hoodie with the Cookie Hoodie Blouson add on.

Accessorize you wardrobe with matching (or not) fabric cuffs.

Make a sweet little girl’s dress with this Granny Chic tutorial.

Need another scrapbusting project? This adorable patchwork fabric basket would make a great housewarming gift or birthday present when stuffed with goodies (or even by itself).

This cute sewing machine stuffy makes the perfect pincushion or a great ‘voodoo doll’ for when your machine is acting up (you may need to translate the site for instructions).

I never thought of trying my hand at making socks, but this tutorial makes it look easy.


One More Hacci

06-floral sweaterAfter finishing up my Astoria, I was left with a nice little chunk of sweater knit to use for something else. The material reminded me of the casual sweater style tops that I see in PacSun\Hollister so I decided to use what was left to recreate that look.

I started off with Jalie 3355 (a pattern that I had purchased last year, but never used because finding sweatshirt material with any amount of stretch is darn near impossible!) and eeked out just enough material for all the pieces… However, upon sewing, I discovered that while the fabric has enough stretch for the body, it’s just not stretchy enough for the neckline\sleeves\hem band. Consequently, I had to re-cut the neckline and cuffs slightly larger (thank goodness for large remnant chunks), but didn’t have enough for the hem band. Fortunately, the sweatshirt (or maybe this would be better called a sweater) rolls to the right side to create a fun, casual look.

The end result is a cute (but not nearly as glamorous looking), casual top that is definitely going to be cozy to wear this fall (I’m thinking of pairing it up with a pair of denim shorts). I can’t wait to wear it!

4th of July Tank Inspiration

06-fourthinspiration(Bear with me as I give you some backstory to this project)

Before I even received my Girl Charlee Knitfix, I decided that if I received a red stripe (and especially the blue polka dot to go with it), that I would make the top similar to the one on the right. Looking at my patterns, I didn’t have anything quite like this style (the back is a racerback style that is ‘tied off’ with a matching polka dot bow) and since I didn’t want to morph two patterns together to get the look I wanted, I decided to hunt for something that was already drafted – that’s when I stumbled across the Free Spirit Tank. Not only did it have the tunic length and racerback, but it also had directions for a bow in the back too! It seemed perfect… until I did a test fit.

06-tankFor starters, the bust on the Free Spirit tank is way too tight (at first I thought that the material just didn’t have enough stretch, but after double checking it, it’s around 40% so it has to be the pattern). Pair this up with the fact that it has a lot of extra material in the midrift and you have a recipe for wonkeyness … it made a weird, large ‘pleat’ right under my bust that looked terrible. Putting it on the dressform didn’t create the same pleat, but there is definitely more material going on in the front (and not the back) that makes it look too maternity looking for my taste. While checking out the top on my dressform, Taylor walked by and saw this tank, thought it was adorable, and decided to snag it. When I told her about my plans to add the pocket and bow, she said “Why would you want to ruin it?”. As a side note, the tank is also snug in the bust on Taylor, but much less so so it hangs much nicer on her.

So it looks as if the inspiration top, while cute, just isn’t going to happen. The Free Spirit Tank isn’t for me and I’m pretty sure that the fit is a bit off too.

A Vintage Style Astoria

06-hacciThis weekend I was determined to start sewing with some of the fabrics from my Knit Fix bag. While I liked a lot of the material I received, the one that really stumped me as to what I wanted to do with it was the teal mustard floral on gray hacci sweater knit (that’s a mouthful, isn’t it?). It seems as if every month everyone gets on hacci fabric – most of which get turned into cardigans…. so I was very determined to do something other than a jacket with this one. After flipping though my patterns, I stumbled across Seamwork Magazine’s Astoria – a pattern that I hadn’t even given a second thought to because I thought I would never wear a cropped sweater. However, between the vintage feel of this fabric and the 50’s vibe of the pattern (I sort of envision this as a Jane Mansfield type sweater), I think that this would make the perfect match…..

06-astoriaAnd I was right! Actually, this turned out way cuter that what I had even envisioned. Unfortunately, I was so excited to sew this up, that I neglected to do the most important part…. do some preliminary measuring to see how this would fit me. You see, even though I am short, I am very long waisted. So while the sweater fits the model and my dressform right at the waist (or slightly above it), it falls about 2 1/2″ above my waistline on me. I’m not sure if a high waisted skirt or pants would solve the shortness issue, either. Fortunately, I have a teenage daughter who this would look fantastic on!

The fit for Taylor is still short (longer than what it falls on me, maybe only an 1″ or so too short), but she can definitely get away with showing a bit of belly before I can! Plus she really liked the finished top. In the end, I think this was a win\win with the fabric and pattern…. However, if I sew the Astoria up again, I’m definitely adding some length!

Bag Reveal

Last week I decided put myself to a test: Buy a Girl Charlee Knitfix Bag and use all the material you receive (in a ‘timely’ manor)… no stashing, no trading, no selling – even if the fabric wasn’t something that I would normally buy. I kind of thought of it as a Project Runway challenge. In fact, in my head I could hear Tim Gunn saying, “Designers. On each of your work stations is a bag filled with 6 different fabrics. Use each of these fabrics to come up with garments that will complete your collection….”. Yesterday, I received my bag. Here is what was inside (the bag itself is centered on the right):



Overall, I love what I got in this bag! I’m not sure what to do with the diamond fabric although I did see someone post on social media a ready-to-wear dress that was made from this very material and I am trying to brainstorm what to do with the gray floral hacci other than the expected cardigan. While I mull it over, I think I’ll tackle the red stripe material – I’m thinking it will make the perfect 4th of July wear!

But wait.. there’s more! Four other fabrics that I ordered finally came in this week too!



I’ve been waiting for my Happi Fabrics digital prints to arrive for ages and am excited to put them to good use. The texture of the material is a bit different than anything else I own, so I may have to think about how I’m using them in garments. I also ordered a few yards of the Sugar Skull Star Wars print ….. yes, I ordered some (not in yet) in a different colorway, but had a sudden panic that what I did buy was a woven…. so I bought different material in a stretch just in case. Something tells me that I’ll be making a lot of Star Wars gear very soon!