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Work It: 12 Months of Stash Busting

If you are a sewist, you might also work with the understanding that sewing and fabric shopping are two separate hobbies. Since buying a house, my fabric shopping habit has grown. Significantly. If you aren’t reading me here, a bit more bluntly – damn, I have a lot of fabric. Some of it I am saving for just the right project. Some is stuff I ordered online that wasn’t quite what I thought it would be. Some I’m holding for projects for other people (projects they are either waiting on me to have time for, or haven’t decided on actual details so I can sew). But there is sure a lot of fabric in my house. So this year, instead of using one pattern for 12 different pieces, I’m going to be sewing my heart out, using only the stuff I have in my possession already. (This is most of the fabric in my stash, but…not all. Clearly my organization is sometimes strong and sometimes terrible. Judge away.)

I’m sure I’ll be buying other fabric throughout the year, but for this series, I want to focus on clearing out some of the beautiful fabrics I already have. Bundles my sister and I are sharing. Loved pieces that deserve to reach their potential. Weird fabrics that I didn’t know what to do with. Every month I’ll choose something and give it a purpose. I might be breaking down a bundle to share with my sister or sewing something for other people entirely. I’ll be using patterns from across designers and sharing all the details so you can recreate any looks spark inspiration in you! I hope you enjoy this year’s version of Work It as much as I know I’ll enjoy sewing for it!

We are starting strong this month with a bundle we bought one of (why oh why do we always do this?) that we are both completely in love with. We had two yards of this sheer white with grey flowers (rayon jersey) and two yards of the lovely grey bamboo. This bundle is from So Sew English Fabrics and is so damn lovely. Both fabrics are soft and feel luxurious. I have to say the reason we were sitting on this for so long is that splitting two, 2-yards cuts between us was HARD! We bought this way back in April of 2017. Almost three years ago! Back when we were buying one or two yard cuts for most things. We have changed to buying two or three yard cuts so we have enough for whatever the fabric tells us it should be. (Sometimes it whispers, sometimes it shouts. You just never know until it is ready.)

Virginia and I pulled this bundle out, again (you can’t imagine how many times we’ve pulled this off the shelf to try to find what it wanted to be) and gave some real thought to what we could make with one yard each. Brainstorming was actually faster than I expected. Since it was an overlay bundle, I knew I wanted a tank out of the grey. My favorite tank pattern is the Strappy Cami from Rebecca Page Sewing. (Peeps! This one is a freebie for all subscribers!) It is the perfect basic tank for layering. Just fitted enough that it works under all my tops, but not so fitted it would double as shapewear. Basically, it is comfy AF. It is also super easy and quick to cut and sew. I love those quick sews! The bamboo is just so lovely to wear. And despite not loving sewing knit binding, it went so fast with this bamboo! Thankfully, Virginia picked the same tank, so it was a nice quick batch sew to make them both at the same time.

This leaves the overlay. What patterns do we love that I can get out of one yard each? Well, I had just finished sewing Virginia’s Camilla when we were chatting about this and it is one of my favorite 5oo4 patterns. Plus, if I go sleeveless and top length, I can sneak it out of a yard!! Decision made! I just love the drape with this sheer fabric. Camilla definitely highlights that drape. So, what does Virginia need with her yard? Well, her favorite shirt is the 5oo4 Jessie. Jessie has a sleeveless option that only takes a yard! BOOM!! All the decisions are made. We both have two new pieces that we can mix and match into our wardrobes.

Super excited to be starting another year of Work It and I hope you’ll join me to see this stash getting smaller all year!

Stephanie xx

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Work It: Edition 12

This is it! This is the last one of the year!!! AHHHHHHHHHHHH! Ok, I’m too excited about the entire outfit to wait to share. This month is all about the party! Whether it is a Holiday party, a New Year’s party, or an “I don’t have to work all week” party, December is a month of celebrations! I wanted to go full bold for this one.

Since this GORGEOUS scuba from Sly Fox Fabrics is so, so bold, I wanted to break it up a little bit by adding a side stripe, but also keep it pretty simple. But first, let’s talk about these fabrics. I used leftover modal from Edition 11 for this stripe. I cut so the more stable direction is running the length of my leg to prevent the less stable fabric from sagging in between the scuba. So far, it is holding up very well! The scuba is vibrant and just lovely to work with and wear. I could not be happier with how the finished pants wear.

On to the hacks. As always, I started with the 5 Out of 4 Diane Joggers. For these, I cut 1/2 inch off each outside edge, so I could have a 1 inch stripe. I cut the stripe at 1.75 inches and just did width of fabric, then cut off the excess after attaching. I also cut the regular, hemmed pants length, and the high rise. The knit band is still my favorite, and I added 2 inches to the cutting height, so it is 1 inch taller than intended in the pattern. When sewing, I did slim the leg slightly on the inseam side. The only other change is the pocket. This isn’t my usual pocket hack! I wanted more of a slanted slat pocket. So, I redrew the shape and deepened the pocket slightly. Because the opening goes further down my leg, I wanted to make sure my phone wouldn’t fall out while I was walking.

That’s it. This one was a SUPER simple hack. I adore the stripe and chose to do the pocket facing in black as well, which I think adds another lovely touch. The pocket lining is out of the scuba, since I wasn’t sure if the black would show through or not. These are comfortable and fun. Plus, I can see so much fun with a solid fabric and a lace stripe or a faux leather stripe. Just so much fun to be had!

So let’s talk about this top. Oh boy! This is the 5oo4 Stella and she is a beaut!! The flounce is what drew me in and adds that party vibe. I chose not to add the optional straps because I have cute bralettes to show off but love the bare shoulder if I feel like donning the strapless bra. This pattern is super versatile though! It has a plain tank, a strappy tank, and shorts! Plus, all of those can mix and match to make a romper! Definitely a great pattern to fill different needs in your wardrobe! Plus, it was a really quick sew.

I considered doing the bra length option only (forgot to list that one!), but opted for the more versatile tank. Mostly because this tank has just enough ease to tie it up and wear it a couple different ways!! If you want to do this, make sure to choose a fabric with great recovery! Something like rayon spandex is going to show that knot after it is untied until you wash it again.

I adore Stella in this SFF DBP. I picked one of the coordinates listed on the scuba. This magenta is currently sold out, but the orchid was my next choice and is still in stock! I can’t wait to make Stella in other colors and dive into some beautiful prints. I think this would be lovely in a lace or mesh as a swim cover!

That’s the whole outfit! It was simple and easy to make and wear! So comfortable and lovely. It also makes me think of spring, while everything around me is brown and a little sad, so double happy! I hope you enjoyed this month’s edition of Work It and be sure to share if you try it!!

Don’t forget to enter to win 5oo4 pattern credit right here (click this link! Really!! Prizes!!! Who doesn’t love winning prizes?!)

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Work It: Edition 11

It is cliched, but I am SHOCKED it is November!! This year has flown by and I can’t believe I am almost done with the first year of this series!! But it isn’t done yet and I can’t wait to share another edition of Work It: 12 Months, 1 Pattern, No Repeats with you!

This month, I wanted to use the 5 Out of 4 Diane Joggers to be prepared for all the holiday stuff. Shopping for presents, decorating the house, basking in the crisp air, holiday get togethers with friends and family. All the fun stuff that the season brings!! To do that, I wanted fancy joggers!! To start, I needed the perfect fabric. Something with a little structure and some body, so it doesn’t drape too much. Something a little bold, with a lovely print, because everyone needs more patterned pants! Myself included. Structure and body means a nice double knit for me, so I perused the selection of liverpool fabrics from Sly Fox Fabrics. I love liverpool. It is lightweight enough that I can wear it all year in Atlanta and not be a puddle of sweat.

This GORGEOUS dusty mauve immediately jumped out at me. It has lovely fall vibes while still being fun and exciting! Plus, I am completely loving the pinks and burgundy tones this season. I want to wear them EVERY DAY!!!! Now I have the perfect fabric and am ready to tackle the hacks!

I had to add the same pocket I’ve been adding almost every month. I just love these pockets. Everything needs them! I also slimmed down the leg slightly, as I did here, so I wouldn’t end up with too much drape over my cuff, since liverpool won’t drape because of that body. I also chose the high rise cut line and added 2 inches to the short, knit waistband. This combo really gives me the exact high waisted look I was going for.

But the real hack to this one is in the cuffs. I cut the pants at the cuffed capri cutline. Then I made an entirely new cuff piece. I measured the height I needed from ankle to where the capri hits. I also measured my ankle and calf to make sure the cuff would fit as I wanted. Then I created this hourglass shape piece…

Then folded it with that angled edge matching. Then folding again, with the top and bottom raw edge matching. Sew along just the angled line and the cuff is made!! I tried it on to make sure the fit was alright and was ready to go!! For my next one, I’ll curve that angled edge just a little, so it stays a little more fitted in that weird area between calf and ankle, but I am super happy with how this cuff turned out!!

I knew when I planned this that I wanted to go bold this month. I wanted that look that makes you feel put together and fabulous, no matter what you’re doing! So, I went for it. All in. And sharing on the internet. After the bikini earlier this year, I didn’t think I’d struggle with a simple crop top! I surely did. I’m also sure I annoyed a few friends while asking for opinions. Love y’all!

The Lakeshore Tank was the perfect starting point for this top. It was so dang cute on Virginia as a full tank earlier this year and I’ve wanted one since I made hers. to make it a crop, I initially cut it a few inches above the banded cut line. Really wanted to give myself wiggle room for whatever length I actually wanted. Then I finished everything except the hem and tried it on. I clipped a few places around the front and lived with it a little bit. Sent a few pics off to get opinions on where it should hit. Then shortened it even more. If I’m doing it, might as well do it big, right?! I freaking love the end result. It is so comfortable and will be ridiculously versatile in my closet!

Part of that comfort is the fabric. I used modal jersey for this one and it is freaking perfect. It is soft and flowy. Has amazing drape and doesn’t stick to itself like DBP. So it sits exactly where I want it to without adjustments. I went for the nice basic black, but will definitely be making more out of ALL THE COLORS!!! Then, as I get even more comfortable with crops, I can venture into the knub jersey and brushed poly fabrics!

Since it is November, I can’t just live in a tank, and a crop at that. Clearly need a cardi to go with that! I knew exactly the pattern and fabric I wanted for this! I wanted the drama of a long Eleanor! Knee length was perfect (maybe I’ll try duster next!) And the ribbed knit was exactly the sparkle I needed. The flow of this in the wind gets me every time. I often leave pockets off cardigans if the fabric is light or fiddly (I tend to forget and just throw my hands in them pretty roughly), but I think I’ll go back and add them on this one. The fabric can definitely handle it and I think they’ll bring this one up a notch from outstanding to PERFECT!!! The burgundy was exactly the right color to compliment these pants. Sly Fox just released mustard though, and I need that in my life.

Basically, I am completely in love with each piece this month. They come together with just a little drama and are quite versatile on their own. I’ve already worn each of them separately and together!! Be sure to check out all the gorgeous fabrics over at Sly Fox Fabrics and all the fantastic new releases and wonderful patterns from 5 Out of 4 Patterns (keep an eye here too, as I’m in a test right now that I can’t wait to share! Shhhhh!!!) And don’t forget to enter to win free pattern credit from 5oo4 right here!

Stephanie xx

PS – My neighborhood has kitties. Apparently years ago, before we moved in, some asshole decided they didn’t want the kitten they adopted, so they just put it outside. Of course it wasn’t spayed/neutered, so now there are kittens. Always. The neighborhood takes care of them, feeding, capturing to spay/neuter, making sure they’re safe and warm, etc. There are three black kitties from the same litter who all hang out, so we named them Tall, Grande, and Venti. This is Tall. She is super sweet and loving. If I didn’t have four cats already, and she really needs a home with her sister, Grande (their brother is much more independent, but still sweet!), she’d already have moved right in. She decided to photo bomb this entire shoot and be adorable. Don’t worry, she got pets and food. But, if anyone wants to add some really sweet kittens to their lives, let me know! <3

PPS – Spay and neuter your damn animals. Seriously. The health benefits are ridiculous and not adopting these cats breaks my heart.

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Work It: Edition 10

Here we go again! It is October, I’ve already argued that it is the best month over on the Sly Fox Fabrics guest blog and I’m still not taking arguments about this. There is a crispness to the air, leaves crunching beneath my feet, and I can finally wear sweaters without sweating. Plus, my birthday, so best month of the year. Anyway, rant over, let’s talk about this month’s sews for Work It: 12 Months, 1 Pattern, No Repeats!

I needed some yoga pants. Not for actual yoga, but for curling up and having comfy, stretchy pants, that are a little bit too long, and easy to take a quick nap in. So I’m sticking a little bit closer to the intended design of the 5 Out of 4 Diane Joggers and just adding some small tweaks to get exactly the pants I’m want!

This is an extra easy hack! Starting with the full length, I added a little bit of width to the outseam of both the front and back leg pieces, 1 1/4″ each, and eased that extra width up to nothing about the knee. The inseam on these is a bit long for me and I did not take that out. I wanted these to be just a tiny bit too long, so when I curl up, I’ve got some extra cozy coverage. That’s it. That’s the hack. I used the same pocket hack I always use (here, here, here, and here), and chose the fold over yoga waistband. Now, I rarely, if ever fold over this style waistband, but I like the option. I also like the extra coverage if I do actually wear these for yoga.

For such a simple hack, I had to have just the right fabric. The Cotton Spandex from Sly Fox Fabrics is PERFECT!! It is exactly the right weight to be comfortable but not stifling when I get toasty. They carry it in some absolutely gorgeous colors, tool, like the Jewel I used on these pants! My notes on working with this fabric are that it is well worth it in the end. But, as with all cotton lycra/spandex blends I’ve worked with, it does stick to itself and curls like mad. It can be a bit frustrating at times. Next time I break it out, I’ll have a glass of wine handy, for sure! The end result is totally worth the extra effort though! Just give yourself a little extra fabric time.

I do have to say, the perks of the Cotton Spandex are that gathering it is super easy! It is stable enough and not at all slippery, so the small gathering I needed to do for this super cute Taylor Tank was quick and painless! The rest of this tank was equally worth the effort!! This is my first Taylor Tank, but sure won’t be my last!! I love the fit, the widths of the bands, the aforementioned gathers in the back. Basically, I love it all! And this Dark Grey CS is the perfect neutral tank to add to my closet. It will look lovely with all the crazy workout pants I already have, too!

Be sure to check out the rest of the Work It hacks, as well as all the gorgeous patterns over at 5oo4, and fabric at Sly Fox Fabrics. And, of course, enter to win the monthly giveaway of 5oo4 pattern credit here.

What do you think of this month’s hack?

Stephanie xx

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Halla Agnes

So, I really love Halla patterns. The team is fun. Their designs are unique and delightful. Plus, they often include lots of options. Agnes is one of their freebie patterns that I downloaded forever ago. And yet…this is my first time sewing the Agnes!

Of course, the entire premise of this blog tour is that we all sew up our own versions. We could hack or change. Do whatevs. I decided to make just a few changes. First, I used the slimmer dress cutline for width, but the top length. I don’t typically love wearing swing tops, as I tend to look like a I’m wearing a tent. This width is the perfect loose fit tee, without being too loose fit. I also shortened the sleeves slightly. (I am always shortening short sleeves on patterns. They are almost always too long.)

But, I couldn’t stop there! I also wanted to add a fun, but subtle, feature. Becky, over at Big Fly Notions, made this great dress a while ago with a quilted accent at the shoulders. It stuck with me and I wanted to do my own version. I wanted kind of the faux raglan sleeve in the front, but a full yoke in the back. And I wanted it quilted!!

I eyeballed the whole thing, but angled the faux raglan about halfway down the armscye curve and drew the yoke straight across the back about 2/3 the way down the armscye. I actually connected the two yoke pieces into one at the shoulder seam. Don’t forget to add seam allowance!!!

I have been talking pretty big about adding more solid colors to my closet and this was the perfect opportunity. So, I grabbed this great Dark Raisin DBP from Sly Fox Fabrics. I cut two yokes, two sleeves, and one each of the front and back. With both yoke pieces, wrong sides together, I started pinning. First the center of the bottom edge. From there, I marked 2 inch increments all the way out to the armscye curve. Then I marked the center of the back neckline. I used a ruler to add additional pins to make my pattern for 2 inch diamonds. The fun of this is that you could use any pattern you wanted!! I used matching thread, but contrast could be fun too!

Then I constructed the top as instructed. Front to yoke. Back to yoke. Sleeves, sides, neckband, and hem. It was really fast, which I always appreciate. And the fit is spot on!! I clearly need to make more of these. And since the sister already tried to steal this one, she’d probably enjoy one or two in her closet as well.

Halla, being the awesome company they are, has given us each a pattern code to give away!! I’m going to choose a random comment on this post, Saturday 11 May as the winner here! Read all the way to the bottom for my fellow bloggers and don’t forget to enter on each blog to maximize your chances of winning!!

What do you think? Need an Agnes in your closet? What other Halla patterns have you been eyeing, that you’ll pick up if you win?

Stephanie xx

Thanks for stopping by! Once you’ve entered my draw, be sure to find the others on the tour for even more chances to win! We’re EACH giving away ONE Halla Pattern code. That means five chances to win!! All draws will be made on Saturday, May 11, 2019 so you have time each day to read, enjoy, and enter each sewist’s contest .

Monday – Kate from Sewing from Scratch adding a V-Back to the Agnes Dress (for an additional entry, visit her YouTube video, too!)
Tuesday – Gwen from Crafty Curly Couture making the Agnes Tank
Wednesday – Sequoia from SequoiaLynn Sews demonstrating an FBA, floaty sleeves and a scoop neck.
Thursday – Laura from Custom Made by Laura colour blocking the Agnes Tank
Friday – Stephanie from Sarcastic Sewist adding a quilted yoke and slim dress line to the Agnes Shirt