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EAM – Around the Block Hoodie

Are you often the last person to discover something? Maybe you even picked it up, or saved a video, or whatever, forever ago, and finally get around to trying it YEARS later? Yeah. That’s me. Often. I see the thing that intrigues me. I make a note, mental or otherwise, to try/do/watch it. Then it slips lower and lower down the list, until I either forget about it, or so many other people are talking about it that I remember it and dive in.

That’s what happened here. I picked up the Around the Block Hoodie forever ago, when Ellie and Mac offered it on their Wacky Wednesday $1 sale. Because, it is a dollar. If the pattern is terrible, who cares? But if it is good, woohoo! They do these deals every week. Different patterns. Always $1. It is really a great way to try them out! And I am here to tell you, I’m mad I didn’t sew this one up sooner!!

This takes the guesswork and math out of colorblocking. The hoodie fits great! Was easy to cut and sew. And I love the faux strings! The way they are off to the side is different and fun. Using only partial strings here is a great way to not worry about them coming out in the wash. And less wasted string! Plus, I never have to worry about the strings not being the right length! One super long and hanging to the hem, while the other is all scrunched up in the hood. I might never do real strings again… At least for myself! The only thing that isn’t love about the pattern is the 1/4 inch seam allowance. I don’t know why that 1/8 inch makes such a huge difference for me, but when I’m serging, I just really want that 3/8 inch.

So let’s talk about this fabric! This is one of the Winter Temptation bundles available right now over at Sly Fox! It comes with two yards of the DBP print, one yard of the DBP ivory, and one yard of the red cotton spandex! Which was PLENTY to make this hoodie and have enough leftover for another project. Pretty sure Virginia is going to ask for the same hoodie…

This seems like the perfect cozy, comfy option for my holiday family zooms! I’ll be festive and comfy!! And if I announce that now, Virginia can choose to be matchy or not with her hoodie. That I already know I have to make. 😀

Go grab this pattern and your very own bundle (or make your own bundle!) and share your beautiful makes!!!

Stephanie xx

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Work It: Edition 10.2

So. I’m like super late on everything. Life has been…crazy. like, I thought I was busy before I started running a fabric store. Before, when I was working two jobs. Or when I did a master’s degree while working full time. Nope. None of that compares to the constant work I’ve been doing. Now, I’m not complaining at all. I LOVE my job. And my team. Well, teams. And being surrounded by happy fabric and sewing stuff every day!! But damn. I haven’t sewn. Like, bare minimum only to meet deadlines. That’s it. And not fun. So, last night I took the opportunity for a little bit of fun sewing.

This fabric has been in my stash forever! And since it just restocked, I figured I could use it and replenish if I need to! It is a gorgeous French terry from Sly Fox Fabrics, of course. So happy to be using stash fabrics. With all these gorgeous new fabrics at my fingers every, single, day, it is hard to remember the shelves of fabric I already own!

Since I’ve been so busy, I was really looking for the fastest possible thing I could make. The Cora Cardi popped into my mind because it takes maybe an hour from start to finish. But the cutting is at least half that and I’m tired. So, why not hack it?

I decided to use the selvage edge as my edge (because it looks nice) and go for sleeveless. But then I needed drama. I wanted it to be epic and dramatic and just a little ridiculous.

Mission accomplished. And I cut and sewed it in 15 minutes. I’m calling that a win!!!

Hoping to share more and more and have more free time coming soon. So keep an eye out and know that I’m missing all your wonderful comments, questions, and feedback!

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The Weekend T-Shirt Blanket

You might have noticed I’ve slowed down a bit on the blogging. While I’m setting up Sly Fox Fabrics, I’ve been a bit busy and not sewing as much. But I have fit a few things in! If you’d like to follow that journey, check out my summary blog over on the Sly Fox Blog. Plus, I made a dress out of one of the new fabrics that I’m completely obsessed with! I used the Summer Haze in Navy on the 5 Out of 4 Patterns Lucy and just love the combo!! On top of that, I also filmed a new class for this month’s Sewing Summit, which is all about upcycling!!! So if you like salvaging, upcycling, and generally limiting some of environmental impact, be sure to check out the entire week of classes!

When Virginia and I were chatting about this Summit and what I might want to contribute, the one thing that jumped into focus was the BOXES of t-shirts we have stored. T-shirts from trips, from school, from activities. Just memories like crazy. I’ve been meaning to make some t-shirt quilts for a while, but the process is just so time consuming and I am severely lacking in time. Instead, I decided to tackle a much quicker project while using not only Virginia’s stored t-shirts, but also some scraps of her favorite fabrics! (Also entertainingly, she totally matched the blanket while we were working on it! I think she is in a color rut.)

This project was so, so fast. Even with filming, it only took a couple hours. Most time was spent on cutting out those squares. This makes it PERFECT for beginners. All straight seams. Simple techniques. And, thought slightly longer than a couple hours, it is definitely doable in a weekend. So there is low risk of starting, getting distracted, and walking away to let it gather dust in a corner. (Anyone else do this sometimes? No? Just me?)

Check out my class on the Sewing Summit for how to make this fun, cozy blanket. Plus, I couldn’t resist a few bonus options! Pillow covers are one of my favorite things because they’re quick, fun, and hella easy. Also, the envelope style cover makes it so easy to wash and change out the covers regularly! Making these out of knit fabrics made them even faster! Which was great! And, to add a little flair, I also show how to make these adorable knit tassels. This are great for pillows, keychains, cat toys, or even a festive string of garland!

Be sure to sign up for the FREE WEEK of classes starting 24 August 2020. And if you like the classes, or just want to be able to watch them after the week is up, you can grab an All Access Pass and watch them at your leisure. Plus keep an eye out here as I have more free time to keep rambling on while sharing my projects!

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Work It: Edition 6.2

I am so, so late with this post. But I have really good reasons. I don’t even think they count as excuses!! I did sew a couple old patterns in June, with the intention of sharing. Plus I made them to go over these cute-ass swimsuits. And I got to see a friend I haven’t seen since January!! Lots of really good stuff in June.

So, why am I late with this post? Well, it turns out a few weeks ago, I started rolling out a series of events that came to a head in the last couple weeks. When the amazing Katy announced she was closing my favorite Sly Fox Fabrics, I told my boss, Rebecca, about it, just in case we could do something. Well, Rebecca doesn’t do anything halfway, and she is one of the most supportive and encouraging people I have ever met. So, she and Katy struck up a deal and signed contracts and now I am going to manage SFF!!! So I’ve spent the last two weeks working to coordinate moving a whole bunch of stuff from Ohio to Georgia, learn how to order fabric, find somewhere here to actually put the stuff, etc. It is…a lot. It is thrilling, wonderful, exciting, scary, and completely fabulous. But a lot. Somewhere in the last two weeks, I forgot to write this post. I apologize for anyone who was looking for this and I hope you find it worth the wait!!

I’m sharing a mix of old and new patterns in this post because I am just completely obsessed with all of these pieces!! They are all from Rebecca Page Sewing, too!! Let’s start with the Laura. I know, I know, I made one in April. BUT! This time I made the dress in woven. You might recognize this fabric from a Work It post last year. Apparently I ordered enough for a whole extra piece! Virginia really loves how Laura fits and how easy it is as a swim cover up. And I love the end result of a woven dress that only takes about an hour to cut and sew.

Staying on Virginia, she is rocking the Two Piece Swim Set (ok, we all are!), in crop in this gorgeous green swim knit! SHE IS A MERMAID!!! Plus, we paired it with the swim bottoms, high waist, ruched front options. I did adjust for height and bust as needed and she is so comfy!! Perfect for some mix and match with her other swim pieces. And she loves the two piece that doesn’t really show extra skin! Isn’t she just gorgeous?

I’m also wearing the crop swim top, with the added zipper!! I love this touch. Makes it a little different and very much mine. I’m also rocking the high waisted bottoms, but no ruching for me. I added height as needed by comparing my rise to the finished measurement chart and I LOVE the fit of these. I am comfortable and feel supported. PERFECTION!

I paired my kick ass bikini with a sheer, stretch mesh high-low skirt. This mesh has been used for a few projects already, since I bought a ton of it from Fabric Mart. I love it. I completely hacked this from the Hayley High-Low skirt. Which is intended for wovens, has a waistband, and elastic at the back waist. BUT I LOVE IT!!! It feels exactly the right kind of ridiculous. I love that my suit shows through just a bit, especially the blue on blue. And how the white top looks with it! I definitely want to make this swim top out of non-swim fabric and rock some it as a crop!!!

Saving the best for last, this is my friend Lisa. I don’t think I’ve shared any photos of her on here before. We worked together for almost a decade before I left my last job. She has always been supportive and wonderful and happy to model tester pieces for me. This time, no tester pieces. I made pieces to her actual measurements and she is gorgeous in them!!! Starting with the swim…She is rocking the ruched tank option, along with the zipper. I really love the unique construction and built in support on this one. (I made Virginia a tester one early on and she wears it all the time. I clearly need one.) Lisa is rocking her tank with the ruched back, flat front, mid-rise swim bottoms. This swim patterns has so many interchangeable options!! I want to make an entire capsule of different suits out of this one.

Lisa is rocking my new favorite shorts. This are from the Sports Shorts and Leggings pattern. Another one with interchangeable options, you can make leggings of all lengths, shorts, or shorts with leggings. These are the shorts alone, but I fancied them up by putting a lacy fabric over some plain white. These came together so beautifully. They are effortless to wear, look fancy, but feel pajama-y. The perfect shorts.

Basically, it was so fun to make all nine of these pieces. Coordinate, mix and match. Just love it. The rest of this fabric is either scraps of unknown origin, or it is from the local Fine Fabrics. One of my favorite parts of sewing is digging through fabrics, mixing and matching til I find the right combo for my project. Which makes me extra excited for my new adventure with Katy and Sly Fox Fabrics.

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Work It: Edition 5.2

This month, I am so excited to be making more swimsuits!! We are lucky that our local pool as implemented a TON of safety features so they could open! We are going to be checking it out next week to see how safe it is, get some sun, some exercise, some water. We always need new suits! More suits! ALL THE SUITS!!!

Virginia’s favorite swim bottoms are the Bondi Swim Shorts from Rebecca Page Sewing! She loves the ease and comfort, plus coverage. She made her first two pair last year and has been asking for more in more colors. We also grabbed enough of this polka dot and stripe fabric from Fine Fabrics to make suits for both of us and that other sister who lives far away! So it just made sense to make her favorite bottoms in this fabulous fabric!

But for a top, that’s a whole different thing. I’ve been thinking about hacking a swim top for myself for…a year, at least. I doodled out my idea and showed it to Virginia. She immediately stole my idea and asked if I could add a skirt to it. Thief. But also, super cute addition to my desired top. So I can’t be mad.

I mashed two patterns together, and made up my own bits for this top. The bust is from the 5oo4 Escapade. (We both love this pattern actually!) I didn’t cut the back on the fold, and in fact shorted it by several inches. I also cut a 1.5 inch strip to make the loops and ties on the back. There is elastic in there for extra support. The loops are 3 inches long and next time the ties will be 30 inches because they’re a tiny bit shorter than I’d like them to be. Thankfully, she doesn’t actually need to untie this one to get it on. I evenly spaced the ties in between the seam allowance along the back and basted them in place. I also basted the ties and some elastic at the center V. Make sure the loops and ties are in between the layers, right sides facing, before sewing. But the elastic needs to be on the wrong side! Ask me why I’m so adamant about those placements…. I put elastic along all the edges of the top, after I sewed the seam. Keeping seam allowances as bulk free as possible.

Turn it right sides out and press. Yes, press. Pull the center elastic and zig-zag over the top to get some ruching. Really show off the decolletage. Then you can baste or serge the two layers together along the bottom edge if you want. I’m lazy and didn’t, but swim is slippery and you might prefer it.

For the skirt, I used the 5oo4 Laura peplum piece. I finished the scoop in the skirt just like in the tutorial, then attached it to the bottom of the bust pieces. It turned out the scoop was a bit wide for Virginia, so I was planning to just add a center seam and take it out. But when I clipped it to ask Virginia what was comfortable, she LOVED the pleat that I clipped out. So we went with it! It turned out so dang cute. She just loves the end result and I can’t wait for us to wear matching swimsuits. That’s going to happen.

I hope you’re all enjoying the warmer weather and sunshine, and staying safe and whatnot.

Stephanie xx