From day to day, there are many advantages to sewing that are easy to forget. Obviously I love that my clothes cost less than RTW and are more unique. But today, while we did hella too many stairs at Amicalola Falls State Park, I was reminded of just how much I appreciate other aspects of sewing my own clothes.
We decided to start at the top of the falls and walk down the stairs to the viewing deck. Boy was this a bad idea. The views were killer, but after 600 stairs, and a whole lot of anxiety producing bridge time (I’m scared of bridges ok? They’re beautiful to look at. From a safe distance.), by the time we hit the bottom and turned around, I was hot. A little sweaty, too, and we hadn’t even started up the first leg of 175 stairs.
On that bridge, after walking back up that first leg, is where I started to realize a few things. First, while I was sweating, a lot, I wasn’t sweating through my shirt. This is the 5 Out of 4 Easy Tee I shared a few weeks ago, made from Sly Fox Fabrics Triblend. It breaths so well that even when I got back in the car, it showed no signs of the sweat I was producing!!!
Then, I also realized I hadn’t been adjusting my clothes throughout this entire excursion. These are Patterns for Pirates Peg Legs that I made years ago. They still fit really well! They weren’t falling down or shifting on me. Super comfy, and a nice athletic fabric I picked up from Fabric Mart that breathed really well, and dried fast when I spilled water on them!
The fit of the shirt is perfect. Just fitted enough at the bust to not shift around and fall off my shoulders. Flare enough that it doesn’t cling or stick to me.
Virginia is wearing the exact same outfit, except her leggings are made in swim fabric. I hope she was as comfy as I was all day!!
It was so nice to take a day off to enjoy some of the gorgeous nature so close to us, but so under appreciated. We turned the data off on our phones, put them on silent, and only used them to take pics. What a lovely way to spend a day, remembering to disconnect a little bit, and just be.
I hope you find some time for peace in our ever hectic lives.
PS – if you find water soothing, enjoy this video!
It is jogger time again and I am pumped to be sharing this outfit!! It is warming up here in Atlanta. Actually, that is misleading. It was never *cold* here. But, it is not quite chilly anymore. So, this means shorts and more time outside and general seasonal glee. So this month’s Work It: 12 Months, 1 Pattern, No Repeats brings some rolled cuff shorts and a great tee!!
If you’re keeping up with this series, you know in last month’s Work It I showed how I turn patch pockets into inside pockets. Inside pockets are my favorite pockets. All pants should have inside pockets. Basically, I am a big fan of pockets. Have I made that clear? So, of course I used this method to add pockets to these 5oo4 Diane Jogger shorts to make them even better!!
Then, I wanted to casual, fun look of a rolled cuff. But, I didn’t want to lose any length in my shorts by just…rolling the hem. Pattern testing has definitely pushed me into a comfort zone with my legs, but not all the way up to short shorts! I knew I wanted about a 1 inch cuff, double rolled. So, I just added two inches to the shorts length before cutting. I did the same waistband as the first edition of Work It, as well as the same drawstring so it matched my fabric!! I do think it would be fun to sew the drawstring wrong side out, to match the rolled cuff and now I’m pretty mad I didn’t think of it sooner. Might have to see what kind of scraps I have left.
I also decided to do these ridiculously comfy shorts out of the same type of baby French terry I used in edition one. It is so warm as pants, but so breathable and cool as shorts. Really a versatile fabric!! This is the two tone denim, but Sly Fox has SOOOO many colors to choose from. You can definitely find something to match or coordinate whatever look you want!
Of course I needed a shirt to match!! And browsing the site, I felt like I really needed something lightweight and a bit less…loud than I usually go for. Basically, I need some solid shirts in colors that aren’t ridiculously bright. I have a few colors of this triblend jersey already holding court in my stash, but this red was irresistible. The red is gorgeous in person and so, so soft.
I decided to go for the Easy Tee to complete this outfit. It is just the right level of fitted through the shoulders and bust, but the perfect ease below the bust for hiding all the food babies without feeling like I’m wearing a tent. Plus, how cute is that tiny pocket!!!
The only change I made to the Tee, was to slightly shorten the short sleeves. I find most t-shirt patterns at my size have sleeves longer than I prefer. So, unless I’m testing, this is a standard adjustment for me. And, since I was making a quick tee for me, I made one for Virginia too!
As always, the fabulous team over at 5 Out of 4 Patterns is giving away a $10 gift card!! Don’t forget to enter to win here!! Also, if you aren’t already a member, check out Sly Fox Fabrics Facebook group! Katy goes live every Wednesday and gives away some absolutely gorgeous fabrics!!
Are you sewing some Diane Joggers yourself? I’d love to see! If you hashtag #workit2019 wherever you share, I can find them!
You heard me. I’m wearing these babies to work! And looking good!! Not to mention feeling comfy as hell! This styling all comes down to fabric choice. The heavy ponte from Sly Fox Fabrics is the absolute perfect fabric for a work pant. It is thick, soft, and has ridiculously amazing recovery. (Seriously. I was actively surprised at the recovery.)
Once you have the right fabric, moving that pocket to the inside is going to up your game from comfy, cute, but still looks like sweatpants, to work wear! So how do you go from a patch pocket to internal pocket? Ridiculously easy. If you haven’t done this with pants yet, I highly recommend it! I find internal pockets faster to sew than patch (way less topstitching, which is always my least favorite part).
To start, you need to make one extra piece. You need a pocket piece that matches the inside edge of the current pocket piece, and the outside edge (and most importantly, upper corner) of the pants front. These two pocket pieces will create your pocket bag. The only other pattern change I made is, once the front pieces are cut out (because I’m too lazy to do it before), align the patch pocket piece with your front piece and cut out the same corner as the pocket.
From here, construction is super easy. Right sides together, sew the patch pocket piece to the front pant piece, along that curved edge. Also right sides together, so the patch pocket piece to your new pocket piece, along the outside curved edge. Turn everything out and baste your pocket along the open edges to your pant front. Then continue constructing these bad boys per instructions.
I did pants length, no cuffs, mid-rise, with a knit waistband. They are absolutely perfect! I wore this whole outfit to work on Friday and was so comfy, but cute all day. My pants weren’t falling down (that amazing recovery) or shifting weirdly like RTW often does on me. Great work outfit.
Speaking of outfits, let’s talk about this shirt. I’ve made the Camilla top for me once before and fell completely in love. (I wear it constantly!!) So I knew I needed another one (or 8). I’ve also been in love with the Lipstick Red DBP that Katy has been talking about in her videos FOREVER!!! This was the perfect time (and excuse) to use it.
I changed nothing about this top (except adding a seam to the back because it was faster than refolding my fabric). Graded for my measurements, cut tunic length, and adding elastic for ruching. I seriously need to make a bunch more of these. In solids, and fun patterns. In DBP, modal, even some beautiful rayon spandex!
What do you think of this month’s Work It outfit? Do you want to make your own? The wonderful team at 5 Out Of 4 Patterns wants to help you do that! Enter to win a $10 gift card below.
It is just the second month of Work It: 12 Months, 1 Pattern, No Repeats, and I am so excited for this outfit!! Hopefully you’ve already checked out the 5oo4 Diane Joggers and are familiar with all the amazing options that come with the pattern. (If you haven’t, why?!) This month, I wanted to ease into the hacks and craziness with something just slightly off pattern. I am going to share all my tips and tricks for stripe matching like a damn boss. And making a gorgeous top to match, of course!
These are the capri length joggers, hemmed. Still mid-rise, since that’s my personal preference, with a knit waistband. I sure kept those front pockets and the hack this time around is back pockets!!! Since I picked this absolutely gorgeous Sly Fox Fabrics double brushed poly, these are definitely a slightly more casual pant. As always, the DBP from Sly Fox is buttery soft and super easy to work with! This plaid is back in stock, but there are so many DBP fabrics to choose from, you can pick your fave and make capris that fit exactly what works for your closet!
Since I chose a plaid, and I despise mismatched stripes, I had to fussy cut these babies. And they were work every damn minute!! When I want to stripe match, I cut out the first piece, say a front leg. Then I use that as my pattern piece to cut the mirror image. Flip it over and start matching lines. Be sure to not manipulate it out of shape, or you’ll end up with a distorted piece.
This plaid doesn’t mirror, so I just did my best to make sure major stripes were similar, and that the hem, crotch point, and waist line all match between the two pieces. I repeat this for every mirrored cut, but didn’t cut out my pockets yet!! So, now I have the best base for successful stripe matching. But it doesn’t end there!! When I’m prepping seams for sewing, I actually use excessive clips, which is super rare for me. (I’m lazy.) I clip as many major lines as I feel like, sometimes all of them, but no more than about 5 inches apart. This really helps me make sure my fabric isn’t shifting at all while I serge. It is also a visual reminder of where my stripes are so I pay more attention. (Did I mention the lazy?) If you’d like to take an extra precaution, or you’re a bit more hesitant on the serger, you can totally baste first!
Now that you’re ready to put your seams together smooth and matched, before you start actually sewing, let’s talk about cutting out pockets that disappear after sewn. Lay out your front fabric face up, then place the appropriate pocket pattern piece on top. I used clips to mark where my major lines crossed. Then found a fabric scrap that matched, lined up my clips with those major lines and cut! This is where I break out the wonder tape once again. Why go through all the effort above and risk having the pockets shift while you’re adding them? I use two sets of wonder tape here. The first to fold back and secure the seam allowance. The second to attach it to the pants before sewing. Gorgeous, hard to see front pockets accomplished!
I’m ready to sew the pants except the back pockets. Add your front pockets all pretty, sew per the pattern. My additional tip here is for the knit waistband. This is my favorite way to sew bands of all sizes, waist, neck, arm. Anything you need to sew into a circle, then fold in half, matching raw edges, before attaching to your garment. First match your short edges, as the pattern instructs. Then fold that sucker in half. This will result in a seam with the necessary fold already started, making it easier to fold and quarter before attaching. It also ensures that seam doesn’t twist and shift while you’re wearing it, which I hate! Win, win.
Back pockets are trickier. For back pockets, placement and size are key to highlighting your assets as well as possible. This is a great read for how to best tweak your pockets for your best booty. I played with back pockets from other patterns to find the right size for this pant. Then I pinned them to my butt (in the mostly finished pants of course) and took super awkward pictures until I found the ideal placement. Then I used the same method of clipping major lines and finding fabric that matched placement. I folded down the top 3/4 inch and topstitched, then I also used wonder tape here to fold back the seam allowance on the other four sides and again, to ensure they stayed put while sewing. Be sure to reinforce the top corners, since that’s where most the pulling will happen.
Done! Let’s talk about this gorgeous top. I picked up this mustard modal jersey during the pre-order last year and it is so soft and drapey, the recovery is ridiculous, and the color is stunning! I made this Knot top for my sister last year and have been jealous ever since. The pattern only goes up to 3x and these hips don’t cooperate for that. So I graded out and adjusted for my height. But, the thing is…I didn’t reread these instructions before I started. (And I am always telling people to read, read, and read again. Fail.) I remembered the knot being the hardest part and forgot a crucial step. If I had read them, I wouldn’t have assumed I made a mistake when adding length, as I would have know the front SHOULD be longer than the back. So, instead of matching the hemlines up to the underbust seam, then gathering the front bust to match the back, I did the opposite. I knew the fabric had great recovery, so this would give me some beautiful ruching on the front only, and would solve my length problem. Turns out to be a super happy mistake! I LOVE how the bust fits, even though it isn’t gathered, and I was planning on ruching with elastic anyway. Mission accomplished.
So, I hope you’ll join me in sewing this months pair, or get ready for next month! And to help with that, 5oo4 is giving away another $10 gift card!! But, before we get to that, congrats to last month’s winner, Priscilla Shamulailatpam!!! Enter this month’s giveaway here! And don’t forget to check out all of the beautiful patterns from 5oo4 and the ridiculously gorgeous fabrics from Sly Fox Fabrics!
There are sews I don’t talk about here. Sometimes there is a solid reason for that. (Guys, my mom reads this blog. She doesn’t need to see some of the lacy bits I definitely don’t make.) Sometimes it is just lack of time. Even small pieces are fun to share and talk about. I could ramble about the simplest sew for way longer than I care to admit. There are just so many fun details to sewing!! Writing about them though, means taking photos, which I also like doing! But these things take time. Time I sometimes just don’t have.
Instead of just enjoying these beautiful sews for myself, or whoever I’ve made them for (hopefully) enjoying them, I’m going to share them! At the end of each month, I”ll gather up quick photos of each of the sews I haven’t shared yet, and combine them into one roundup post! I’m really excited, because, if we’re being honest, I tend to forget what I sewed even just three weeks ago. It just lives in the owner’s closet as if it were always there, and I move on to the next sew.
If we are trying for chronological order, then I’m going to start with the few things I managed to sew for my other sister while she was in town visiting. We had epic plans for ALL THE SEWS while she was here. Unfortunately, she picked up a bug at the airport and shared it with me. So the two of us spent the time she was here feeling terrible. On her last full day in Atlanta, we managed to make three pieces!
The first is this gorgeous ABB Tee from DIBY. She needed a warm, thermal shirt, so we grabbed this amazing brushed thermal from Mily Mae Fabrics. Goodness, y’all, it is so soft!!! I wish I had a better pic of just how beautiful this grey is. It is rich but soft. Definitely reading a bit more green in the pic she sent me. But, trust me, it is gorgeous. The fit on her shirt is perfect! But, due to the above mentioned illness, we didn’t get any modeled photos. In fact, I completely blanked on grabbing photos at all and had to ask her to grab a couple for me after she was home (and had worn it a few times!). This is a great basic top, and clearly appropriately named. (Also, it is free!!!) 😀
We also made a couple of her favorite tanks out of some lovely ITY we picked up forever ago at Fine Fabrics. She loves the fit of the Patterns for Pirates Free Spirit Tank. We don’t alter it for her hips, so it fits more like the Essential Tank (which is my favorite tank!). This is definitely her most requested sew, so I’m so glad we were able to get two done before I needed a damn nap.
I’ve been meaning (and needing) to make Virginia and I some comfy ass undies for a while. I won a gift card from Surge Fabric Shop a while back. I of course, immediately spent it on some gorgeous undie-worthy fabrics, because I’d heard some amazing things about their fabric for them. They’ve been sitting, waiting for me to actually make time for them. I even picked up FOE forever ago!! I’ve only got a pic of one pair of these comfy Bunzies, because Virginia got hers and I wasn’t going to ask for them back. 😀 (You might recall she got another pair out of this gorgeous navy from THE DEAL. I really need to make even more. They’re so fun!)
Now, I am not always going to be able to talk about each of my sews. I do still pattern test and sometimes, they just don’t release immediately. So, keep an eye out for a post soon about what I used this GORGEOUS Sly Fox Fabrics DBP for. I’m completely in love with it and so excited to share. This colorway, evergreen is currently sold out, though you can sign up for alerts if it comes back in stock. But they also have it in black and plum. (I’m secretly obsessed with the plum.)
After I sewed up that ridiculously soft fabric, I jumped back to some sewing for my other sister. While I was sewing, she was gluing and organizing patterns. She ended up with a great Made for Mermaids Nina that I made during testing and she just loves the fit. So, this is one of the patterns she prepped while I was sewing. She picked out this great french terry from Fine Fabrics. It is soft and lightweight. She doesn’t have this one yet, but I’m excited to see how it looks on her!
She has also been asking for a zip-up vest forever. It is one of the first things she asked for and I just haven’t made it a priority. (Have I mentioned I am a terrible sister?) I printed the 5oo4 Aspen Vest two autumns ago (seriously, 2017) and just hadn’t done the fit alterations she needed, even though I have a full bin of gorgeous fleece she has picked up from Joann Fabrics for a few vests. So, she finally gets one. And I have the pattern ready, after I see how it fits and make any change that might be necessary. I hacked this one to be completely self-enclosed, rather than using elastic to finish the edges. It is so, so soft. And I totally can’t wait to see what she thinks!!
Did I mention that she has no idea these are coming to her as soon as our visiting cousin heads home? If she reads this, it will be a (hopefully happy) surprise!! Love you, Vicki!! 😀
That is my sewing list for this month. It has been a productive, fun month and I can’t wait to see what February brings! What have you been working on?