Thursday, July 12, 2018

Summer Comfort

We’re in the dog days of summer and cute tops are what you need to get you through in style!  Dorcas has made just such a top that is light and fun and great to wear on those blistering hot days.  Thanks Dorcas!!

This halter top is Pattern #105 from the new July issue of BurdaStyle and this floral print viscose poplin from Sew Much Fabric is the perfect fabric for it! This pattern needs a lightweight, drapey fabric to show off the pleated detail on the bodice and the poplin fills the bill. 

Here is a line drawing for a better look:

I left off the ties and lengthened mine 2" but otherwise made no changes to the pattern. I will tell you that the side zip is not necessary. The cut-in shoulder style and deep V in front lets this top easily go over your head. Skip the zip!

I'm wearing my top with Grainline Studios Maritime shorts made from black double cloth linen (Sold Out--but you can view other linens here) that I got from Sew Much Fabric several years ago. Love that stuff!

Personally, I think my halter top is every bit as cute as the one in the magazine!

Maybe even cuter!

Thursday, July 05, 2018

Island Vibes

Andrea, from Sew To Fit, is caliente in her new two piece ensemble.  She used Teal Green Tropical Print Viscose Poplin with Vogue 9319 for the top and McCalls 7692 for the pants.  I'm seeing a lot of salsa dancing for Andrea in the very near future!  Thanks Andrea!

What you are looking at is a culmination of two patterns and one wonderful fabric working in tandem to bring my inspiration outfit together.  First the fabric, since I am a die hard fan of all things Sew Much Fabric, is the Rayon Poplin in a Teal Green Tropical Print, 100% Viscose.  It seems every fabric she sources, just has to end up on my cutting table!!  The drape....ooooh the drape!  So, let's talk patterns.


The palazzo pants, McCalls 7692, is an exact Nicole Miller design which was my TRUE inspiration.  I really, really wanted the shirt to match but that will have to be with a smaller print.  This large scale tropical print just would not have translated into this look for me.  

This is a V-neck top from Vogue 9319, a Very Easy pattern.  I much prefer the top with the long sleeves but this cute flutter sleeve sold me.  Some major pattern re-designing aka "hacking" had to be done for "my" kind of modesty. 

Pattern Designing: 
I redrew the front based on my personal "shirt/blouse" block, which is not the same as a regular "bodice" block or to some, the sloper.  After overlaying this Vogue pattern to get the main details, I then used my personal shirt block for the back.  The sleeve had to be modified to fit into my shirt block which saved me from needing to completely make a new sleeve.  

I am extremely happy with the outcome and totally intend to make many more tops like this based on my own block.  I can now play paper dolls with my basic shirt block beyond the norm.  This crop top has now been added to my pattern rotation of favorites.

Who's ready for some salsa!!!

Thursday, June 28, 2018

Burda Style July 2018

To purchase, go to
(Sold Out)

All Styles at a Glance

Line Drawings

Cool update of this classic 60s silhouette with pockets.

The infinity dress!

You can't get enough cute tops for summer.

The volume in this skirt is twirl worthy!

Plus Size
The simplicity of this dress lends itself to prints or solids.

Comfortable and cute dress to wear when you need a little retail therapy!

Tropical Mix!

If you can't stick a hibiscus in your hair and run to the tropics you can certainly dress the part!  I think Dorcas, Brand Ambassador for Sew Much Fabric, nailed this tropical chic look.  Thanks Dorcas!!

I loved my last paper bag waist pants so much I knew I had to make another pair when I saw this wonderful tropical print from Sew Much Fabric. Rayon poplin has the perfect weight and drape for pants with pleats, a full skirt or swishy dress. It's an amazing fabric that launders like a dream and barely needs the touch of an iron. These pants are from the custom trouser pattern drafted for me by Andrea of Sew To Fit.

I've topped off this summer duo with McCall's 7775 dress pattern which I shortened to be a top 

and I used the Kiwi Linen from SMF. This pattern is not for the faint of heart. As simple as it appears I found it to require some fairly major surgery to alleviate gaping around the under arm area. I estimate I removed a good 3" from each side in order for it to fit properly.

However, in the end, all of my dislike of fiddling with this pattern was made up by being able to look at this luscious green linen. I cinched the pant waist with a brown grosgrain ribbon belt that ties the two pieces together. The kiwi linen was the perfect topping for the island-y pants and I love the whole look!

Thursday, June 14, 2018

What to Wear to a Summer Wedding

How fun to attend summer weddings!  Let’s look at some inspiration for making some  amazing outfits for these special occasions.

 Afternoon Wedding or Reception

An afternoon wedding or reception calls for semi-formal attire.  A beautiful floral, like this light weight viscose poplin, is lovely for celebrating the newlyweds!
Pattern: Butterick 6556

Destination Wedding

If you’re heading to a destination wedding that's in a warm climate, a beautiful dress made in a bright tone of linen is just the ticket!
Pattern: Burda 06/2018 #102

Evening Wedding

An evening wedding is formal but not as formal as black tie.  A cocktail dress is perfect for this night time event!  
Pattern:Vogue 1566

Black Tie Wedding

You can pull out all the stops for a black tie ceremony!  A floor length dress adds to the elegance of the occasion.  
(Sold Out)
Pattern: McCalls 7154

There is a lot of flexibility when it comes to fabric and color choices for weddings and related events.  Use your imagination and have fun shopping from the fabrics at Sew Much Fabric

Fabric ideas posted by Beverly Gatterson, who teaches fashion design at the Art Institute of Houston.

Thursday, June 07, 2018

Summer is Calling!

The best way to show-off a fabulous print like Lava Print Rayon Matte Jersey Knit is with a simple silhouette.  Dorcas, Brand Ambassador for Sew Much Fabric, did just that to create this knockout look! Who says neutral colors in a print can’t make a bold statement!  Thanks Dorcas!!

My original thought for this yummy rayon knit called Lava Print Rayon Matte Jersey Knit from Sew Much Fabric was to make a top to go with the linen suit from my last blog post. However, it was nudging me in the direction of a dress instead because it wanted to be shown off. (Yes, I really do think my fabrics speak to me!) I chose the tank dress view of OOP McCall's 6355 that I've made SO many times and it's a pattern I dearly love because it's so versatile.

The colors in this fabric are all beautiful and it does look molten:

I lined my dress with beige performance knit and it worked great. I found a really helpful tutorial on how to machine finish the shoulder seams of a lined, sleeveless dress. I will definitely use this technique again. I was going to use my in progress photos using the technique on this dress but it's so narrow at the shoulders that the photos were more confusing than helpful.

This little tank will get lots of wear this summer. It was the perfect simple pattern to highlight this smokin' fabric!

Thursday, May 24, 2018

June 2018 Burda Style

To purchase, go to
(Sold Out)
All Styles at a Glance

Line Drawings

Love the mash-up of the 2 necklines!

This boho chic dress has just enough sophistication for the office.

Fun top for weekend get-togethers!

A snazzy sequin tank top is a great way to dress things up for casual summer affairs.

Plus Size
So comfy and pulled together for hanging around the house.

This is a great alternative to the pencil skirt for the office.
(Sold Out)

Neutral Ground

I love linen!  When Dorcas, Brand Ambassador for Sew Much Fabric, decided to make a linen suit I was so excited!  She selected a fabulous Burda Style jacket from a recent issue and highlighted the design details with an animal print binding.  The printed knit top pulls everything together!  Thanks Dorcas!

Nothing says summer like a linen suit and I've put together two great Burda patterns along with khaki linen from Roz at Sew Much Fabric to make an outfit that I think will be a real workhorse in my wardrobe. The jacket is Burda Style 04/2018 #102 and the minute I saw it in the magazine I knew I had to make it. It was a challenge but nothing difficult so I thoroughly enjoyed making it. Really, the only time consuming part was tracing the 17 pieces!

This jacket has so many cute design details. The front, of course, but I also love the curved cuff on the sleeves:

and also the safari jacket styling in the back:

The pants are Burda 7062 which I've made many, many times and always come back to for a great fitting pant. And I was crushing on the rayon knit Roz has in stock called Random Dot (Sold Out) so I used it to complete my outfit pairing it with New Look 6470, a TNT in my stash:

I'm completely smitten with my linen suit and can't wait to wear it. Linen is so comfortable to wear in Houston's heat and humidity and it launders beautifully, too. Run on over to Sew Much Fabric and I'll bet Roz has linen in one of your favorite colors!