Sara’s not the only one with a June birthday. . .we are also celebrating Mikie’s birthday this afternoon! For Mikie, I used this super fun ninja animation fabric that I picked up in Hawaii last year, and made her a fun birthday bag. I recently picked up Simplicity 1823 and had been dying to make this hobo-type bag in view E. This is one of the easiest bag patterns I’ve found. It consists of 3 pieces: the outer bag, and top and bottom lining pieces. It only requires fusible interfacing for the lining, and there are no buttons, zippers or any other types of hardware at all. The bag sews up very quickly and is a convenient size and shape in the end. Being a very basic pattern, I think there are many ways to put your own spin on this bag.
Mikie's Super Fun Birthday Bag
I lined the bag with a green/white patterned material on top, and an orange fabric with white dot hexagons on the bottom. . .it will be a burst of color every time she opens her bag!!
I definitely want to make myself one of these!!
I love to talk sewing, so any time a good moment presents itself, I indulge. Last month I was showing the girls at work my latest projects, and one of them liked my purple striped maxi. Sara asked me to make her one, and it just so happens that we are celebrating her birthday this afternoon, so. . .
Sara's Birthday Maxi
I hope she likes it!! I used the same size that I cut for myself, only shortened it a bit. Sara isn’t as tall as me, but has a much bigger chest, so I hope this works out. I figure the stretch in the material should help me out. . .right?? I guess we’ll see soon.
McCall’s 6559 is a great pattern for a tank dress!! It is so quick and easy to make up, and a summer style that fits into everyone’s wardrobe. I am going to make myself view C next using this beautiful white material:
Beautiful White Layered Material
The cruise I’m taking in October has a “White Party”, and I believe this will be just the dress for the occasion!!
I’ve been trying to map out a wardrobe plan to create a more well-rounded closet. First on my list was a basic black top to go with some of the fun print skirts that I’ve made. I narrowed down my pattern choices and went with a highly recommended downloadable pattern.
The Colette Sorbetto Top pattern has been raved about over and over on Pattern Review for the past couple of years. I was long over due to make a version of my own, so finally I printed out the free pattern and gave it a try. . .it did not disappoint!!
I made the top out of a black cotton fabric from Denver Fabrics, and really only used about 5/8 of a yard. There is a great pleat detail down the center front of the top that I embellished with a white vintage lace for a pretty little pop. I am normally a size 6 in the big comercial patterns, but read Colette’s size chart and it’s a little different. I cut a size 2 from the pattern, but cut the length of the size 18. I don’t dislike the 2, but when I make this top again I will cut the size 0. To keep the length, I serged the bottom, folded narrow seam under, and stitched it into place. The neck and arm holes are finished with bias tape for a nice clean finish. What a treat this pattern is!!! It has a great fit with bust darts, a fun detail with the front pleating, and is a pullover!! The top also lends itself to endless creative possibilities . . .fun, fun fun!!!
Black Licorice Sorbetto Top
To get this amazing 2 piece pattern, all you have to do is go to the Colette Website, download it, and print it out. It’s a free download and also includes detailed instructions on assembling the pattern pieces, and all the steps on sewing the versatile top together. This was the first time I used a downloadable pattern, and it was surprisingly easy to put together and use. Now which Colette pattern to make up next?
The Breakdown: Pattern ~ Free + Fabric ~ $3 + Vintage Lace ~ $1 + Bias Tape ~ $2 = $6 Sorbetto Top
With my left-over 1 1/4 purple stripes, and motivation to spare, I made myself a nice little summer top from my remnant. I pulled out my already cut New Look 6648, and this top cost me literally nothing to make!! I made view d, the cowl neck version of the top. I wanted to do diagonal stripes, but didn’t have enough material left over. Instead I went with horizontal stripes, and a diagonal striped midriff band.
The Left-Over Freebie Top
I know it’s kind of silly to have a couple pieces made from the same material, but it always feels good to use up all of the fabric. The first time I made view d of this pattern, I used a material with far less stretch. I like the way this fabric looks and fits much better.
Pattern already owned $0 + Fabric left over $0 = Free Top!!
It’s been over a week since I’ve made anything, so I decided to binge a little today and make 2 things!! We will start with my tank maxi dress. McCall’s 6559 has been laying on my 3 yard piece of purple/natural striped jersey knit just screaming at me to sew it up. I’ve been dying to make this simple yet adorable maxi! It’s all over Pattern Review at the moment, and everyone is posting such cute versions!! Very inspirational!!
Before cutting the fabric out, I decided to hold the pattern piece up to make sure it was long enough. . .good thing I did, because I ended up adding 3 inches to the length. Now, I had a huge inner struggle over just tacking on 3 inches to the bottom, or by following instructions and adding it to the “lengthen or shorten here” portion of the pattern. I overcame my laziness this time and did it the right way. . .yay!! I think it turned out much better this way with the fit. This was the first time I adjusted a pattern before cutting it out. What took me so long? I really couldn’t tell you, but I’m so glad I started now!!
Looking at the picture above, and remembering my last few creations, you may be wondering if I picked up every single color of this striped fabric that I could get my hands on. . .yes, yes I did. I would have gotten more had Denver Fabrics carried any other colors. I’m quite addicted to stripes at the moment. . .I seriously can’t get enough of them!!
As for McCalls 6559. . .2 pieces + 4 steps = Happy sewing!! These stripes when from a shapeless pile on the floor to a fitted tank maxi on my body in no time!! I will definitely be making this one again, and probably very soon. There are a few different variations and a shorter version that could be a lot of fun to experiment with.
Pretty Purple Striped Tank Maxi
Another plus about the maxi pattern is that it only used 1 3/4 yards of fabric. . .hmm, what to do with the other 1 1/4??
Pattern $2 + Fabric $12 = $14. . .not bad for a maxi!
Well, I strayed from stripes for a second. . .and went to my ultimate favorite polka dots!!! I’ve been dreaming of a pretty little dress made of this black and white polka dot knit with blue roses since I picked it up from Denver Fabrics a little while back. This gorgeous print is one of my favorites ever!! Recently I picked up Simplicity 1804 from a Joann Fabrics 5 for $5 sale. . .the perfect pick for my darling fabric! I chose to make view A at the shorter length of views C and D. The pattern really gives you a lot of options and some fun details to chose from.
Gorgeous fabric and Simplicity 1804
I cut and marked the material a few days ago, and got around to sewing it today. At times I can be a little lazy, and finding that the disappearing ink I used to mark my dress had vanished, I decided to wing it a little rather than mark everything again. Not the smartest way to go, but my dress still turned out well enough for me to wear out tonight.
Roses Are Blue and Polka Dots Too Dress
What a fun, romantic, summery dress!! I’m so happy with it! I love the v-neck, the sleeves, and the fun twisted drape under the bust. This is a great looking pattern and I can’t wait to give the other views a try.
I’ve been trying to use my serger on knit projects more lately. My conventional sewing machine and serger split this job pretty evenly. I love the speed and finished edges of the serger, but I’m still getting used to not having a measuring guide. I’ve been sewing a long stitch on my regular machine at 5/8″, then using that line as a guide to serge the seams to try to get a little more comfortable with my serger. This weaning method is helping me, and todays dress was the first time I attempted a seam without a guide! For the arm edges and hem, I serged the end and then folded it up and stitched it in place. I find this method faster and easier than pressing a narrow hem and stitching it.
The breakdown: Pattern – $1 + Fabric – $10 = $11 Dress
Next project. . .maybe a purple and white striped racerback tank maxi!!
Right now I’m completely obsessed with stripes, knits and yellow. . .and here I pulled them all together to create a super summer top!! I dug McCall’s 6333 from the bottom of my pattern stash and finally cut the tissue. The pattern suggests using crepe de chine or tissue faille for the project, but we all know I’m crazy about knits right now, so I deviated a bit. I chose view B, the loose fitting racerback top, for two reasons : 1) It looked like a cute loose top I could layer over a cami. 2) It had front and back panels as well as side panels which allowed me to play with the direction of the stripes!! I went for diagonal stripes in front and back, and horizontal stripes at the sides.
Rays of the Sun Top
I wore it out today with a blueish-purple cami underneath, stretch jean capris and neutral flats.
The breakdown: $1 for the pattern, and $6 for the fabric. . .$7 top, yay!!
This is a fun pattern for a layering top, so I’m sure I’ll be trying it again. I think it would be fun to try print blocking next time in a fabric other than stretch knit
Finally!! I’ve been wanting to try my hand at color blocking for many months now, and finally, today is the day!! I loved how my last project turned out, so I used New Look 6648 again in the D view this time. The pattern features a sleeveless cowl neck top with a gathered waist piece. The simple 2 part top lends itself nicely to color blocking. For my colors, I went with grass green, and ocean blue. From start to finish, this pattern is one of the quickest and easiest that I’ve sewn up to date.
Color Block Top
This will be a fun colorful top to wear in the upcoming 90 degrees+ weather this summer!!
I’m in love with stripes!! They are all over the place right now! I decided to make my own black and white striped top using the very popular pattern, New Look 6648. Pattern Reviews “Best Of 2009-2011″ haven’t done me wrong yet. . .and this is now one of my new favorites! The pattern for view A consists of 4 pieces (front, back, middle band and neck band). I had the whole thing put together in about 2 hours. . .talk about instant gratification!! It’s a nice loose fitting stretch knit top that is perfect for summer. The only thing I’m a little disappointed in is that I didn’t have my head on straight when I cut the middle band piece. My stripes are going horizontal on the shirt until you get to the mid band. . .then they go vertically. . .oops!! I hope this grows on me, because I love the top otherwise.
B&W Striped Top
I’m sure I will be making more versions of this top in the near future. I am also pretty confident that more striped pieces will be making their way into my wardrobe this summer. . .I just picked up a soft yellow/white striped jersey knit today!!
Last week I made a trip to Denver Fabrics. I limited myself to 4 cuts of fabric. . .it was tough, but having my boyfriend there kept me in line. I found a 3-yard precut of this beautiful stretch knit fabric for $12 and couldn’t pass it up:
I’ve been dying to make a maxi for a while now, and this 3-yard piece of beauty will be my first one! I made Simplicity 3503 earlier this year in view D (the knee length halter). I love the way it fits and the fact that it has pockets, so I decided to make it again in the maxi halter version of view C.
Neon Garden Maxi
I’m 5’9, and the length of the skirt falls perfectly for me!! I got super lucky. . .probably should have made sure it was long enough before I cut! In order to keep the length, I hemmed the dress by surging the end, folding it up and stitching it again.
With 75 degree weather outside, I took my new maxi for a stroll downtown with Matt. We stopped at a new little taco cafe for lunch. . .it was delicious! We wanted to spend some more time out in this beautiful weather, so we decided to go visit some animals at the zoo. Just as we were walking in to the first exhibit, we stumbled upon. . .
I love the zoo!! Happy Spring!
My once nearly topless handmade wardrobe is now getting a healthy dose of shirts!! I found another fun knit top pattern!! Don’t worry McCall’s 6288. . .you’re still my fav, I’m just giving you a little break for now. . .I do mean little. . .seriously, it could be over tomorrow. Butterick 5609 can also make up a cute little top, and for a mere 7/8 yard of fabric at that. The top features a cute keyhole cutout and a lined upper half. With the tight fit, and the lined upper half, I can get away with wearing this baby without a bra woohoo!! Hey, I have to enjoy the few upsides that come with having little ladies. With this perk, I may attempt the one shoulder version in view C.
Blue Keyhole Top
Also. . .
How fun huh!! PatternReview.com is running two super fun contests at the same time!! It’s amazing what you can make out of just one yard of fabric. I may try a couple more patterns for this contest. Most one-yarders make for quick and easy projects. . .I love the make-this-morning, wear-by-lunch projects!!
For the last year, this red and blue dot material has been hanging out in my stash anxiously awaiting to be given a shape. It’s a super soft – fabric.com – clearance find. . .one of my very first. I made Vogue 1250 in a solid a few weeks ago and loved the fit, so now I’m doing it in a print that makes me think of candy!! Coincidentally, PatternReview.com is running a “Best Patterns Contest”, and Vogue 1250 happens to be on the list.
Such a cute pattern. . .I just want to eat it up! I would like to do one more of these dresses in black for a little cocktail dress – then maybe I’ll lay off of it for a while. Hey, at least I didn’t make McCalls 6288 again, right?