Thursday, September 17, 2020

Kaffe Fassett Shot Cotton Blouse & Skirt

I must say that my most favorite material to sew is hands down, cotton. Maybe because I am a quilter too, and I am more familiar with the material; better than any other fabrics. Also, I wear cotton dresses like this daily even when I am just staying home. Some people might think I am over dressed and being funny, but to me, I feel comfortable in them and they are all washable! I found this dark navy and blue stripe shot cotton by Kaffe Fassett at a local store and immediately fell in love with it. I was going back and forth trying to decide whether I should make a dress or separates. It looks like a dress, but it is actually a blouse and a skirt!

I just used a pattern from one of my posts Liberty of London Top & Skirt for the skirt. Revised a little to make it into an elastic waist instead of a zipper. For the top, I used Esme Top pattern from Lotta Jansdotter Everyday Style. I used this pattern to make a tunic a long time ago, but I really like the fit and I thought this would make a lovely top to go with the skirt. Speaking of the skirt, I even lined it! Fun thing is that I can wear this top and skirt together like a dress or separately. I know I will have fun fishing things from my closet to coordinate. :)

What is your favorite material to sew with and why? I would like to get out of my comfort zone and try new things during this sew my stash challenge, there are some sitting in my closet... I guess I will get my hands on them when I run out cotton (or maybe sooner!).

Monday, September 14, 2020

Liberty of London Wrap Dress

In my last post, I shared the wrap top I made using a pattern from the Japanese sewing book Kana's Standard II. In the book, her version is a dress. I loved my top so much so that I wanted to sew a dress. Not a dress with any fabric, I was going to sew with my precious Liberty of London fabric!
I tweaked a few things, results? I love it!! I lengthened the skirt by 4". Also, I cut the sleeves shorter, so they will be 3/4 sleeves instead of long sleeve. I did this after I was done sewing and trying the dress on. I loved the fit, but there are something bothering me and I didn't know what it was. Then, after a while I realized that with the long sleeves, long skirt and floral print, it made the dress a bit like out of Little House on the Prairie. I love it much better after I cut the sleeves shorter. I also had to make a pleat on the cuff to make the opening smaller for a better silhouette. They are not even noticeable; hooray for the printed fabric that hides mishaps well (grin)!
Speaking of printed fabric hiding things well, in the Japanese sewing book, she did a gather skirt, but I wanted to look less puffy, so I decided to do a pleated skirt. I didn't even measurements and mark the pleated lines, I just eyeballed it and pinned like crazy and sewed. It is hard to tell in the pictures, but can you see the pleats??
The last thing I did was to add a button and an elastic loop to the skirt so they stay closed. I love wrap dresses, but one thing I wouldn't want is a wardrobe malfunction when there is a strong wind and I don't think the public would appreciate a middle age women flashing everyone. hahaha Can you even find the button and elastic loop in the picture?
I feel like this pattern will be one of the go to patterns from now on for a wrap top or for a wrap dress. I can see this dress in my mind's eyes in a solid color too. Fall is around the corner, but I am going to wear this with boots and a comfy cardigan.
I am so glad that the dress turned out to be something I love and I am not regretting using the fabric, phew! My "sew my stash" challenge continues, see you at my next post. ;)

Wednesday, September 9, 2020

Long Sleeve Wrap Top / Kana's Standard 2

I don't even remember how long ago I purchased this light weight cotton fabric. I was "shopping" from my fabric closet and I knew exactly what I could turn this piece of fabric into. I remembered seeing a pretty wrap top in a Japanese sewing book Kana's Standard II. Perhaps, sewing garments so often over the past few weeks improved my senses and decision making skills? I sure hope so! :) I barely had enough to make this top and I am so glad I did! I love how it fits so perfectly to my body and I already wore this three times since I made it!
This can be easily dressed up or down and I could think of many ways to coordinate it with what I already have. I love this style so much that I know I will make more in the future with a different fabric.

Sunday, September 6, 2020

Summer Dress/Pattern review

I was going to sew something else next, but when I was going through my fabrics, I found this light cotton fabric in my stash.  I just LOVE this soft color and light weight cotton and wanted to use this for the next project.  I remembered that I had a pattern that I wanted to try and thought that the fabric and the pattern would be a perfect match.  The pattern I used is McCall's 7969. 

 I changed the neckline a bit; I made it higher to my liking, but everything else is the same. I love how the dress turned out, especially the sleeves!  The dress is a bit baggier than I imagined around the waist, but I like that style too, so it works for me! :)

Did you know that September is a national sewing month?  It gives me more encouragement to keep sewing from my stash! (hehe)  I still have a bunch of fabrics lined up to sew, I am just over here trying to match the right fabrics to the right patterns.  It is one of the most exciting and difficult processes in sewing garments, in my opinion.  As I keep sewing from my stash, I am learning a lot about myself;  for example, I have a fabric buying habit where I buy without specific plans, lack of skills/knowledge, and so on and so forth. But one thing I always knew and has been confirmed with the recent sewing challenge is that I really do love to sew.  when I am thinking, planning and sewing something, it makes me happy. It gives me solace when my soul just needs the extra strength. It helps me to connect with who I am without being distracted by outside noise. I consider myself blessed to find such things in my life. Hopefully, I will keep learning and improving my sewing skills through this sew my stash challenge (not to mention all the newly sewn clothes!). 

Have you been sewing anything new lately?  what is your favorite part in the whole process? 

Wednesday, September 2, 2020

Flare Sleeve Top and Simple Skirt

My recently turned 15 year old daughter is now taller than me and has started to borrowing my clothes. I always wondered when she would even be interested in my clothes. Turns out that we have different styles, but there are some common likes that we share. I am just happy that I could share some of my clothes and jewelries (a selected few) while we have a mother-daughter talk and enjoy each other's company. I was looking in my fabric closet; two fabrics stood out to me and pretty much right away, I knew what I wanted to sew with them. 

I just used the same pattern I used in my previous post and modified the sleeves, so it would flare out more. For the skirt, I measured her hips and based on that I drew lines directly onto the fabric to cut out the parts I needed. No pattern, the waist is just elastic, you can't get any simpler than that. :) I thought she might say "EWW" to an olive green skirt, but surprisingly, she liked it! They fit perfectly on her and she looked a bit grown up.

Monday, August 31, 2020

Liberty of London Top & Skirt

Where do I start to explain my love for Liberty of London fabrics? Ever Since I laid my eyes on Liberty of London fabric decades ago (I think I was in Jr. high), I have been a huge fan of their beautiful prints.  I got my first job in high school and bought my first Liberty tana lawn fabric. Even though it was a small pack of precuts, and I didn't know what I was going to make with them, I was so happy that I finally had a piece of beautiful and fine designed fabric in my possession.  Over the years I have bought from them here and there with the intent of sewing something, but cutting into gorgeous print is extremely hard for me! What if I mess it up, what if  I don't care for the clothing I made or I might find a pattern I like better?  Ugh... Welcome to the world of indecisiveness. 

If you have been reading my blog for a long time, you might know this, but I have used them for smaller projects such as; Shoes makeover, Mod podge mini tree, fabric thread on the wood spool ornament, Christmas ornament, and button bracelet

Ok, I got a little side tracked, let me go back to the fabric and this project... you might ask why I finally decided to use these precious fabrics. As usual, I was looking at my collection and thought to myself "well, my daughter is not interested in sewing, and I never know how long I am going to live. Why am I just letting that fabric sit on the shelf? What kind of "special occasion" am I waiting for?? I should totally sew something with them and enjoy it while I can!! I was going through another health issue at the time (it turned out ok, not life threatening) and made me think of organizing my life better;  both lifestyle and things I own. I took the plunge and decided to sew a wearable. Guess what? I have no regrets!

I used the patterns I drafted a few years ago, and modified them to create this look. I love how it turned out, but I would make a few changes to the skirt if I was ever going to make same skirt again. Also, I like how the back of the top turned out, but it was not planned. While I was cutting the fabric, I realized that I didn't have enough main fabric to sew the top, so I had to improvise and added the secondary fabric to the back, haha, I am looking forward to wearing this through the fall, I am thinking about where I put my favorite navy sweater...

Thursday, August 20, 2020

Bell Sleeve Top with Bubble Gauze Fabric

I shared my Bubble Gauze Dress post not so long ago. I bought this mint green bubble gauze fabric at the same time when I bought the fabric for that dress. I wanted to sew a relaxed top with a little bit of flare and I finally found a pattern that spoke to me for this particular fabric. The pattern I used was Burda style 6266. There are three version of this top, and I honestly think they are all very pretty.

I have a short torso, so I decided to shorten the pattern by a few inches, but everything else I cut out as directed. I love how the sleeves are so flowy.

Suggested fabrics were Crêpe, viscose-rayon, or cotton, but I really wanted to try this design with bubble gauze. Although I love how my top turned out, I guess it came out a little bulky... The next time I use this pattern, I am going to use something more light weight to see how that would affect the finished top. Eek! I am so excited!
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