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Work It: Edition 2.2

Let’s talk about all the changes in my life this year.  At the end of last year, I quit the job I’ve been working at for ten years and am now working full time in the fun, part time job I’ve been vaguely mentioning for the last few years.  I AM LOVING IT!  I get to work from home, with a team of people who are absolutely amazing, on work that I am passionate about.  This is the dream!  Now, I’m still working more hours than I probably should, but it sure doesn’t feel like it!  I wake up every day excited to get started on whatever projects are on my plate, and equally excited to see what new ideas my amazing boss might come up with!

These days, I spend my time doing all sorts of different types of things.  But the perk is I get to do it at home!!  The down side to this is having absolutely no idea what I want to wear every day!  I used to have a handful of work pants that I rotated through, with whatever clean tops match and were in my closet.  Now, I don’t want to wear the same work pants but I don’t want to wear pajamas every day either.  Basically, I’m a toddler picking out clothes every day and hoping no one notices or judges me, since that usually involves comfy pants on the bottom and a cute shirt that may or may not match on top.

I know y’all saw me fawning over leggings earlier this week. It couldn’t be helped.  They were amazing.  After wearing those leggings more than I’d care to admit, I knew I needed more.  This is the perfect bottom for me to work all day and still manage a put together look!  Since this was a pattern I already had, and I ordered fabric to make leggings forever ago, this is the perfect project for Work It!!

So, let’s talk about these leggings.  Yes, they’re the same ones I shared earlier this week on the Working Out with Rebecca Page blog tour.  Yes, I am ridiculously obsessed with how these leggings feel and wear.  But, I did make one change!  I had a little bunching at the ankle at the end of the day with the grey ones.  I found the knee to be hitting the right spot, so I removed this length from below the knee, but not at the hemline.

I grabbed this fabric from So Sew English two damn years ago because I wanted some workout leggings.  Now, I’ll wear them to work AND workout!!  They’ll be beautiful, neutral bottoms for all my lovely tops, but also look super good with all my workout tops!!  That’s what I call a win-win.

If you didn’t grab the Lily Leggings already, I have to recommend them again.  Completely in love with how these make me feel.  Thanks for hanging out with me while I sew through some of my stash!

Stephanie xx

PS I totes got a haircut and HAVE to share the before and after pics with you.  My hair guy, Ryan, is absolutely amazing and if you’re in Atlanta, you should check him out.  

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Working Out with Rebecca Page

Whether I’m actually planning to sweat through a workout, or looking for more an athleisure look, nothing gets me more motivated than a cute AF outfit. When I feel amazing, I feel like I can accomplish anything! That HIIT class I’ve been scared of. ALL the errands that need to be tackled. Even just a massive sewing day. Wherever I feel like wearing leggings and a cute top, new and fun will help me get shit done!

Rebecca Page has been adding some super cute options to their workout line. I’m obsessed with all the new stuff. But, I have been wanting to make the Lily Leggings since they came out last year and just haven’t had time! This was the perfect opportunity to throw one of the not-new patterns into the blog tour, and for me to finally make them!! (Bonus, I had the pattern printed and prepped already! Time saver right there!)

Lily has some really beautiful options. Chevron front or back, with a side stripe. Plus some kick ass booty shaping pieces! And a POCKET!! I went pretty simple because I only had 1.5 meters of this STUNNING fabric (I’ll talk about that in a minute). I didn’t want to risk cutting multiple pieces and messing up, so I went basic. But, I couldn’t resist adding the pocket!

This fabric though. WOW!!! This fabric is the yoga stretch from Discovery Fabrics. IT IS AMAZING!! I’ve worked with some pretty kick ass athletic fabrics and this one wins hands down. It is a bit pricier than I usually shell out for fabric, because I’m cheap, but this is worth EVERY PENNY!!! Seriously. If you’re looking to make leggings that you can feel comfortable in as pants, while sweating, chasing kids, having brunch; whatever you do in leggings, this is the fabric from which to make them. I need to order a bunch of black, so I can live in black leggings to match all my crazy shirts. But then I need all the colors, because hell yes!! Look at all those colors!!! This fabric matched with the Lily Leggings are the perfect legging. They don’t move anywhere, I can mix and match some super cute options for non-basic pairs, and never wear any other pants again!!

Now, I made up this Josephine last year, shortly after it released and have been meaning to share it with you because I adore it. It is so damn comfy and I feel really cute in it. The mint/teal color is one of my favorites and it looks amazing with leggings, jeans, even a pencil skirt! Plus, it really is the perfect shirt to throw on over a strappy yoga bra/tank before and after class (or at the grocery store). Next I need to make up a really cute bralette with all kinds of cute straps showing in the front!! This one is made from some sort of mystery knit from Fine Fabrics. It is like a sweater crossed with liverpool. So I’m just going to say a double knit and call it a day. Whatever someone might call it, it is comfy, cute, and easy to wear!

This entire week all these talented bloggers will be sharing all kinds of different patterns and ideas from Rebecca Page. I am SUPER excited to see what everyone came up with, and I hope you are too! Plus, Rebecca Page is giving away prizes, of course! So read all the way to the bottom to link to the giveaway and be sure to check out every blogger all week to see what kind of inspiration comes your way!

Stephanie xx

Be sure to check out all the bloggers Working Out with Rebecca Page:

Monday 24 – Sarcastic Sewist

Tuesday 25 – Sew Much Charm, Sequoia Lynn Sews, Modestly Dolled Up

Wednesday 26 – The Graham Crafter, La Casa Cactus

Thursday 27 – Sewing and the Trivium, Patchwitch

Friday 28 – Blooming Skies

Saturday 29 – Let’s Go Hobby, Just Sew Something

Sunday 1 – D’coudre, Patchwork and Pastry

Plus, enter to win a prize! Daily drawings and one big winner at the end of the week!! Enter HERE <3

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Tucker Brewing Craft Market

Holy shit, y’all! I’m doing a craft market!! I’m equal parts excited and nervous, but I could not be happier to be diving in at Tucker Brewing! They have such a fun beer garden, great beer, and I love how important supporting local is to them. Because they are a local, family based business!

This has definitely been a process! Less than a month ago, Virginia sent me the info and I decided to jump in to see how it goes. I made a list of things I wanted to sew, approximate quantities, and how I wanted to display stuff on my table.

Of course, as soon as I signed up, I got sick. Was down for a damn week. That definitely put a hitch in my sewing schedule. But, with a few long nights, and Virginia jumping in to help at the last minute, I have inventory!!!

I so enjoyed the entire process of picking fabric and matching outers to linings to zippers. I love each of the pieces I made and hope Tucker does too!

I also love that I was able to use some of my favorite patterns!! I knew I needed to make up some of the Rebecca Page Zoe Zip Pouches because everyone needs those. They’re so versatile and make great gifts!

Then I added in some of the key fobs I shared a while back. These are one of my favorite things, so I’m hoping Tucker thinks so too! I also made just a couple lanyards to go with them. These were surprisingly fun to make and I need to remember to blog how I make them for you!

5 Out of 4 released their scrunchie pattern while I was prepping so I made up a handful of those! They were fun and I was able to do the hand sewn finishing on my lunch break! So convenient!!

I made a few items I can’t share just yet! So enjoy the stickers on a few pics and keep and eye out for when I can share the fun!

I definitely wanted one type of larger item on my table. Something that draws the eye and is a little luxurious. Immediately the Rebecca Page Cora popped in my head. Probably because I was wearing one of mine! It is my favorite cardigan. So comfy and easy to wear. It feels like jim jams!! But every time I wear mine, I get tons of compliments! That’s a win!

So if you’re in the Tucker area, and want to shop small tomorrow (30 November), stop by Tucker Brewing to support local crafters! Mention this post at my table and I’ll give you a subscriber discount. 😉

Stephanie xx

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Frocktails and Patsy

When I heard Frocktails was coming to Atlanta, I knew it was the perfect opportunity to meet some local sewing people! Bought my ticket, gave a little thought to what I had in my closet that would be cute. Just let that sit in the back of my mind and start to get excited. Then, I got an update email from them that there would be a straight up red carpet and professional photographers. What?! This obviously means I need a sparkly dress. I don’t know why, but that’s what my brain tells me.

Now I’m on the lookout for a fancy dress that isn’t too fancy, so I can wear it again if I want. Something that won’t take too long to make, but is not something I already have in my closet. I polled a few friends and got suggestions on styles they’d put me in and ended up in a style I’ve worn on a few locations. Definitely didn’t step outside my comfort zone here, as suggested, but I am just a sucker for classic, vintage vibes!!

Off to Fine Fabrics to find something inexpensive but fabulous! A few more annoying texts sent to friends to help me decide. Turns out they have so many pretty, sparkly fabrics to choose from!! And I rarely explore the fancy fabrics aisles. (That’s the official name.)

Home again to start hacking the pattern! I started with the vintage, gorgeous, ridiculously fabulous Patsy Party Dress from Rebecca Page Sewing. This has been on my “wish I had a reason to wear it” list since I saw the first line drawing. NOW I DO!!! I used the free version, but the add-on pack is amazing. Seriously gives you every fancy look you could need for a strapless dress.

This pattern also includes all the info to give structure and support so if you want to go braless and still feel supported, you can. There is info on interlining and how to add boning. There’s a blog post on adding a waist stay for even more support. (Peeps! I wrote this one! You should check it out.) In my desire to just sew quickly, I wanted to totally skipped most of this. I did interline the entire thing only because the sparkles are a little sheer. I would have added the waist stay, but ran out of time. More on that later.

Now, I love the vintage strapless look of the Patsy, but I needed to add straps. I wanted sparkly, cagey, strappy delight and I wanted that to start from more of the sweetheart neckline. I also needed to do a full bust adjustment (the free princess seam FBA download is super easy to follow and worked PERFECTLY!) A quick muslin of the bodice to check the FBA is the perfect opportunity to start this hack.

I pinned the muslin to my bra (the one I’m wearing under the dress, so everything sits in the same place) and marked how low I want the sweetheart to sit. I didn’t want to lose the vintage feel, so I didn’t go cleavage low. I took off the muslin and used my french curve to ease that point into the side of the center front piece. I didn’t want to lose any bra coverage on the side either, so just drew a nice, smooth curve. Cut off this bit and pinned it back on. It was exactly what I needed!! So a quick transfer to the pattern piece and I’m good to go!! (Keep in mind seam allowance when you do this!! You’ll lose 1/2″ from the top edge.)

The only other change I made was adding the strappy goodness. I wanted straps on straps on straps! Straps for days! Interwoven and heading in unexpected directions. Just straps. I wanted them narrow, but not so narrow that I’d throw them across the room while trying to turn them right sides out. I cut strips 1 1/4″ wide and sewed with a 3/8″ seam allowance. The fabric is super lightweight and it was really easy to turn them. Eight straps later and I’m ready to ask Virginia for help in figuring out where to place them.

This process was…fun. I clipped them to the front where I thought I wanted them. Then asked Virginia to pin me into it (that back is hard to pin myself!). Small tweaks and another check, and they are basted on; then I’m ready to figure out back placement. I tried something I thought I’d like and hated it. Virginia to the rescue! She moved straps around and clipped them where she liked them, with many photos shown to me so she could adjust and tweak. After triple checking that they were interwoven correctly (pro tip, they’re not…don’t look too close), I sewed them in between my main fabric and lining. A really good press and deciding not to understitch, and my bodice is ready to be sewn to the skirt.

Why didn’t I understitch? Well, I find those straps make it difficult to get a smooth line across the entire front of the bodice. My machine tends to bump a bit when I get to that extra thickness, and I don’t want to be sad every time I see it, or take it slow and responsible to get it right. But I still don’t want my lining sneaking out. So what the hell choice is that?! Bad sewist!! I just cheated the lining to the wrong side. When I pressed, I pulled it down a scant quarter inch lower than it is supposed to be. Really, really good press here and pinned the lining lower than the bodice all the way down, and across the bottom. Why? You might ask. Because I’m cheating on the next step too.

The pattern has stunning finishes, inside and out. But, I’m looking for quick and dirty and this is just for me. So, I’m not doing the lining how it is suggested. I’m treating the entire bodice as one at this point. Sewed my skirt on, then attached my zipper, after adjusting the back to take out extra width since my fabric stretched out a bit during construction (this step is included in the pattern and is one of the most important ones to get the right fit. It is worth the extra time. Promise!). Usually the zipper would be sandwiched in between the outer and lining, so there is no way it sneaks out and is seen. But, I’ve got straps RIGHT THERE. They give me some coverage for a little seam allowance sticking up. I can serge the back edge, make sure to get that zipper tape fully secured, then, if needed (and only if needed), it can be tacked to the lining with just a few hand stitches. Then I won’t even need those straps as a just in case. Yeah, I’m lazy. But I just saved myself from hand sewing the bodice lining all the way around the waist. Calling it a win!

That’s it. The dress just needed a hem and it was good to go! I left it hanging to let it stretch out fully. Hemmed it and decided if it needed a waist stay. (Why not? It doesn’t take long.) It turns out I ran out of time for hemming though. The outer fabric needed to be hemmed by hand. It was just the prettiest option and it. Took. Forever. So my lining is currently unhemmed and I didn’t have time to add a waist stay. I finished the outer hem an hour before I needed to leave. Whoops! Still had to pick some shoes, and a hairstyle. Thankfully, I played with some lippie options and watched youtube videos to learn how to put stuff on my face earlier in the week. A little help from the sister and I’m off to Frocktails.

This event was really fun. It was cool to be in a place where everyone had this crazy, common interest. I met some awesome new people. Some from just around the corner, some a bit further away. Some brand new, but oh so impressive, sewists, and some ridiculously experiences sewists!

I did finally get to meet Jessica, from 5 Out of 4 Patterns! She lives not too, too far from me and we’ve never met! That was cool as hell! And the superstar Aaronica, who is as fabulous in person as expected!!

All in, it was a really cool night. My feet and throat hurt (I’m old, but the music was too loud), and I definitely had a slow start this morning, but it was a night I won’t soon forget! If you have a Frocktails event near you, I highly recommend making some time.

Stephanie xx

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Rebecca Page Zoe Zip Pouch

Do you love a pattern that is super quick, super cute, super easy, and also makes a great gift? I know I do!! I still haven’t made one of these cuties for me, but have just loved giving them away! These gorgeous little zip pouches are beautifully finished! Ranging from tiny and perfect for headphones or change, all the way up to huge and perfect for a shoe bag while traveling or slipping your ipad into, this set has you covered!

Let me tell you about how quick these are. From cut to done, One of these takes me about 30 minutes. That’s nuts!! If you’re looking for a last minute holiday gift, this is a great idea!! It is easy to fit in between all the hustle and bustle that comes with this lovely season!

Part of that quickness is that it is a really simple pattern. Five cut pieces of fabric, some interfacing, and a zipper. I am a big fan of batch sewing, so I prep each available step of the pattern all at once, then sew, press, and prep for the next step! This helps me power through all my sewing a bit faster, and helps with that impatience I fight with for just wanting to see the finished product!

Now, this lovely set of 5 bags is a gift for my sister. She is forever asking for zipper bags. Always. She has asked me to make them, then gave up and asked me what pattern I use. I didn’t really have one I completely loved, so now I can recommend this one!!! She has no idea these are hers, so I’m excited to see what she thinks. 🙂 (Vicki, you can open that box.)

Then I had to make two for a couple friends. Just little, I’m thinking of you, gifts. They’re so quick and such great scrap busters, that I’m pretty sure everyone I know is going to end up with a Zoe Zip Pouch. Eventually!

I used quilting cottons for all of these pouches. I really like that i can grab leftovers from other projects, fat quarters, and end of bolt sale fabrics and have plenty to make most of these. My preference is for a mid-weight interfacing with quilting cotton. It gives enough stability to stand by itself without being a pain to turn right sides out. You really can make these out of almost any woven, just pair it with the right weight interfacing for the right level of stability and ease of sewing.

Let’s talk a little bit about versatility. These are so easy to hack! From simple colorblocking, to adding a strap or even pockets, this little zip pattern is here for all your needs! If you’re interested in some hacks, check out the Rebecca Page Sewalong group on Facebook. I’m going live to show how to sew this up, then to show a few fun hacks to give even more options!!

Grab your copy of the Zoe Zip Pouches and let me know who you’re sewing them for!! (Hopefully at least one for you!)

Stephanie xx