Thursday, July 23, 2015

Burda Style August 2015

To purchase, go to
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All Styles at a Glance

Line Drawings

The ruffles add pizazz to a basic tank top.

This look is a nod to the 70's that are trending this fall.
Blouse #123-Silk Charmeuse-Apple Cider
Skirt #124-Midnight Tropical Weight Wool
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When you need a day-to-night look with just a quick change of accessories.
Dress #122A-Daisy Lace Knit-Coral
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This is a great transitional jacket for cooler days.
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Plus Size
Perfect for work and weekend glam!
Dress #126B-Bamboo Cotton Stretch Sateen
(sold out)

Comfy, cozy and stylish 
Coat #132-Camel/Multi Color Boucle
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Thursday, July 16, 2015

It Is Easy Being Green

I'm loving these chic pull on jeans Dorcas made.  They are just perfect for running around town shopping or meeting friends for lunch.  Thank you Dorcas for pointing out this lovely pattern-you look great!!

Jalie 3461 is a stretch pull-on jeans (long or cropped) with a wide waistband. The design features are a yoke, faux fly in the front, patch pockets in the back. It's fitted through waist and hips, straight from the knee down.  And I thought the instructions were very easy. Plenty of pictures. I didn't have any problem following them. 

I have 3 pairs of RTW pull on jeans (more like jeggings) that I really like and I was curious to see if this pattern was constructed in the same way and it is. I had never put a waistband together in this method and I like it. I like where it sits just below the waist but not in the "constantly having to hike" zone. Everyone has their preferences but I like the faux pockets whereas some don't. I like the faux fly front and all the topstitching that give the appearance of jeans. I like that they are straight from the knee down and can be easily modified to skinny, if desired. I don't really have any dislikes. 

My fabric is a beautiful cotton/spandex jacquard (the chartreuse is now sold out but the fuchsia is still available) from Sew Much Fabric. It has the perfect amount of stretch and great recovery. I've worn these twice and haven't had any loss of shape. 

I didn't make any alterations whatsoever, even to the length which is unusual as I almost always have to shorten pants. I struggled with whether or not to do the usual butt scoop that I do when making jeans and I wish I had. The waistband on these keeps it from riding down when I sit but I'd still like that extra bit of room and will do it on my next pair. 

I will make these again and I definitely recommend the pattern.
This was a fun sew and I'm really pleased with how my pants turned out. The gorgeous fabric was icing on the cake!

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Fabric Sale

Hop on over to Sew Much Fabric ( and stock up now without breaking the bank on freshly markdown fabrics and further discounts on already reduced fabrics.

Thursday, July 09, 2015

Orange is the New Maxi

Dorcas did a fabulous job taking a blouse pattern and tuning it into a lovely summer maxi! Thank you Dorcas for sharing this.

Vogue 9109 view C lengthened to a maxi.
The  instructions were very easy to follow. This would be a great pattern for a beginner.

One of the things I like about this pattern are the multiple cup sizes. I love the cut-in shoulders and retro styling. One slight dislike is that the top is rather big through the waist area. I might even add some darts in the back next time in addition to the alterations I made.

I used a cotton pique from Sew Much Fabric (sold out but other piques are here and here). Love both pique and orange! The facing is a poly woven I've had forever.

I made a few pattern changes: I took in the waist area at the sides and back totaling 2.5". I drafted a facing for the neck and armholes rather than using bias tape. I added 24" to View C to make a maxi and left the right side open from just above the knee down to the hem. Rather than a hook and eye I used a button and loop closure. I found a great Susan Khalje tutorial for making a thread bar here. I also plan to make bra strap carriers using this technique.

I will be making this again and absolutely recommend it.

Thursday, July 02, 2015

Lace and a 40th Wedding Anniversary

Tanisha contacted me for suggestions on fabrics for a very special occasion-her parents 40th wedding anniversary!  She wanted a formal dress made for her Mother to wear for the celebration. Local sewing engineer, Barbara Cruse, made this beautiful dress using Black Lace with White Backing from Sew Much Fabric for the gala and I must say it is stunning!  Thank you Barbara for sharing your experience on making this beautiful jacket and skirt.  

Photo Credit: Carlton Hamlin Photography
Mrs. Cosby selected Vogue 7963, clean lines with a portrait collar, very elegant.    

The only way to get a perfect match of the lace motifs was to use a single layer layout.  

I started with the bodice center front line of the overlap and underlap and worked to the back.  To make the skirt even simpler I cut it on the fold rather than 2 pieces. She has a flat bottom so it worked out well.  (When the client has a shapely bottom I make it in 2 pieces for the best fit.)

The fitting challenge was that she has a slightly curved back. The center back had to be lengthened a bit and eased into the side seams.   Her left and right side are different sizes, so one sleeve and bodice front were almost a size smaller and the adjacent back larger. This also made the front dip more and that was adjusted at the hem. Now you can’t tell a difference. The alterations for the skirt were at the waistline for a high hip and a low center front waist. The adjustment for this was to lower the hip 1” and center front 2”.

I used stay tape (not listed on the pattern envelope) for the outside edge of the collar and neckline.  She has a slightly curved back so I added an extra snap to eliminate the gap between the snaps called for in the sewing instructions. I also added a hook and eye on the collar center front to keep it closed.

This fabric was wonderful to sew on, I used an #80 Universal needle and didn’t have any problems.

The happy couple Mr and Mrs Hal Cosby
Photo Credit: Carlton Hamlin Photography