Monday, November 19, 2018

Made by a Fabricista: Geometric Floral Double Knit Winter Dress (Butterick 6525).


Hi, all!

Happy November...and happy colder weather.  I dislike colder weather, so I am not exactly loving the weather right now (especially since it just snowed in November in Virginia--which is highly unusual).  But I do LOVE long sleeved jersey dresses, so I can at least dress like I am okay with the weather.

I have a very strong fondness for double knit fabrics.  They are warmer, they are thick, they are stretchy, they lay flat instead of curling up at the edges the way single jerseys do, and they are fairly easy to sew, even on a traditional sewing machine.  I was thinking about it, and I decided that if they invented linen double knit fabric, I would be in heaven (if this actually exists, please let me know!).

Most often, double knits come in a poly blend, and though polyester is not my favorite, they do travel well (no wrinkles) and they are durable.  They also hold color really well, so if you enjoy bright patterns, these are perfect for you.


I ended up deciding that for my November make I would try using this bold floral in a geometric design.  The minty blue mixed with black, white, fuchsia, and yellow was appealing.  (This color is sold out, but they do still have the orange version.) I do like Boden's bright and unique designs, so this clearly isn't a stretch for my taste.

The original intent was to make a dress/tunic from Ottobre, but the lines from the pattern sheet and tracing I would have to do seemed a bit overwhelming for this eighth grade teacher with high school recommendations, placement tests, grading, etc., on her plate.  So I will save Ottobre tracing for Christmas vacation and make it then with another fabulous fabric.


In the end I went to Joann's, saw that Butterick was on sale, and bought this pocketed dolman sleeved dress instead.  It was an easy enough looking pattern, and I figured it would look really cool in this fabric.

After sewing up the front, I placed on my dressmaker dummy to see how well the matching I attempted turned out.  Not perfect, but looks nice enough on my headless twin.

It was actually very easy to cut out and sew, but I did need to make sure of a couple of things.  First I wanted to make sure that the lines of the florals at least matched up at the marked points, as much as possible.  Though it wasn't perfect, you can barely tell if things don't match up exactly.  With stripes that are more prominent, you definitely should take care with matching.


Second, I made a huge error when applying the back inset to the back sleeve.  Ugh.  I found the directions very confusing compared to what my fabric looked like.  To be fair to Butterick, I was tired when sewing that night, but I do have the fact that their match points don't match (I tried it with the pattern pieces), so that is on them.  Boo, Butterick.  ;-)

This is what happens when you combine tired, a strong blur-inducing print, and an off match point.  Ha.

I ended up re-cutting and sewing the back again, and it was fine the second time.  It didn't take very long to re-do, but it could be because I just wanted to be done already.  LOL.

Third, they want you to sew the neckline by hemming it!  What?  I always use facings or some kind of binding.  Amazingly it worked, but I chose to fold down the neckline 5/8", pin it properly, and then hand sew it using this hem finish.  It looks great, but I can't decide if Butterick really knows this is the proper finish or were cutting corners by not including a binding or facing pattern piece.  Hmm.



The fit is okay.  I chose to make a medium throughout.  I am definitely a medium in the hip, but a small in the top, and I can tell it is roomy on me up top.  I think it looks fine, but I definitely have to wear a heel (or wedge) to add visual length to my body to make the silhouette less overwhelming for my frame.  I do think this style would really suit those who are bigger on top and smaller on the bottom half.

Even though it is not the ideal shape for me, I do LOVE this dress.  It is so cozy and comfortable.  The pockets are genius, and I really hope they make other patterns with a more fitted top with this feature.  I would definitely make that.  The pockets are really easy to sew up and look really nice.


I am wearing it today to school, and I know I will be comfortable all day.  These dresses are in overabundance in my wardrobe, and with good reason.

Have any of you made this pattern?  Do any of you know of other cute dress patterns that suit double knits?  I am always on a hunt for those!

I hope all of you have a lovely week, and do look forward to chatting with you all about another make in a couple of months!

Dina, My Superfluities.

Saturday, November 17, 2018

Made by a Fabricista: Battle of the Cardigans

Happy Saturday loves!
I am so excited that this weekend the weather is finally cooling down here in Sunny South Florida which means its cardigan season.   This Fall, my goal is to create staple pieces including cardigans that can be styled from preppy to edgy. This month's sewing plans was to create a few cardigans from different pattern companies for my November Fabric Mart blog post just in time for Thanksgiving. I am sharing my thoughts about each pattern and what I like and would change next time around.  I wanted to use at least two commercial patterns, however, I did not select the right fabric choice for the Butterick I intended to use.  I did NOT make any modifications to the patterns and plan to make a few the next time around.


Size: MEDIUM 
Fabric: Red Designer Ponte Knit (SOLD OUT).  Fabric Mart has another red 
ponte knit available here
The Blackwood cardigan is an open front, fitted shape with extra-long sleeves. There are two variations available for this pattern: View A hits mid-thigh with hand-level patch pockets and View B ends at the hips without pockets. I opted to create View A without pockets for a chic look.


What I love:
The design lines are clean and chic.  The bands (neck and lower) and sleeve cuffs add a special touch to the look. This pattern is very easy to sew, and any body type can rock it.
The neckband requires 2 pieces instead of 4 as it is folded.  Typically the Big 4 pattern companies requires 4 pieces which is stitched together and has a seam.  The neckband is folded which gives it a classic look.



What I dislike:
The sleeves are very long for my personal taste so the next time around, I will remove at least 1- 1.5 inches from the length.  I prefer cardigans that can cover my bust area so this style would not be my first pick as the design is more of an open look. Fabric choice is very important and a thinner lightweight fabric will not be as structured as a ponte knit.  I originally planned to create the Blackwood using only the rib knit which is sold out but did not like the structure based on the look I was trying to achieve after I was done. I opted to create another one from a red designer ponte knit from my stash purchased from Fabric Mart.


McCall’s 6844 View A
Fabric: Paprika-Poly-Lycra-4-Way-Stretch-Woven (Made last Fall). Fabric Mart has a beautiful suede scuba poly lycra here.
M6884 is a cardigan with 4 views and two length options. I opted to create View B size small based on the reviews last Fall.  The instructions called for interfacing the collar but if using a thicker knit such as a ponte, the interface is not needed. This style is very classic and simple and can be worn with or without a belt.  Unfortunately, this pattern is no longer available on McCall's site and is out of print.

What I love:
The design lines are clean and simple, and the view variations can work for any body type. This cardigan can be worn with or without a belt. 
The sleeve length is perfect for my height and no adjustments were required.



What I dislike:
The neckband requires 4 pieces instead of 2 that is typically used with the Big 4 pattern companies.  It also stated to be interfaced but this may not be necessary if working with a medium to heavy weight knit as it will make the collar stiff. 
After reading several reviews, the pattern does run big for a knit type cardigan so the size I cut was a SMALL. 


Fabric: Ponte knit available here
The Madison Cardigan drapes beautifully and has a high low feature. This cardigan with princess seam is surely not just your basic cardigan. The silhoutte and shape takes it from classic to edgy.  If you are new to sewing and wanted to try out a great cardigan pattern, this is the pattern to start with. 

What I love:
The princess seam in the back adds a special touch and the pattern has a tailored 2-piece sleeve.  This pattern is very stylish and versatile and is not your everyday boxy cardigan pattern.  The possibilities are endless when styling the Madison Cardigan because of the high low cut. 
There are no collar or neckbands to work with and Eryn has a sewalong to walk you through the process of sewing up this cardigan.  I also love the fact that this cardigan style doesn't add too much attention to the hips and highlights my smaller waist!




What I dislike:
NOTHING!  This is a winner in my eyes!  The length is perfect and it definitely flatters by body type! After working with a variety of fabric to make these cardigans, PONTE knit is definitely my first choice. Fabric Mart carries some of the BEST designer ponte knit and I always grab a few yards when they go on sale. I do plan to try a thicker sweater knit the next time around and give it a try with the Butterick pattern that I originally planned to make.



Do you have a favorite cardigan pattern?  Which cardigan is a winner in your eyes?  Please leave your comment below and let me know which one you would rock! As always, thank you so much for  reading and don't forget to stop by my Instagram page to check out my lastest make.  Wishing you and  your loved ones an enjoyable Thanksgiving break!!

One Love,
Marica - Overdrive After 30

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Made by a Fabricista: A Trio of Blue Shirts!

Liesl + co Classic Shirt in navy blue linen

Hi everybody, blue is one of my favorite colours and I love all shades of blue - from pale sky blue to midnight blue and everything in between. For this month's post I was inspired by some blue fabrics on FM's website, and I made 3 shirts out of them!

I've been wanting to try the Classic Shirt by Liesl + co since its release, so I grabbed some designer quality blue linen and gave it a try.

Saturday, November 10, 2018

Made by a Fabricista: Border Prints Are The Best!

Happy fall everyone!  I love making dresses for the cold months.  You can layer them with a jacket, wear tights and show off cute boots.  I found this gorgeous border print and knew it would be a dress.  Right?  Aren't the colors just beautiful?  This appears to be sold out, but FM always has gorgeous ITY knits (Which are on sale this weekend 11/10-11/11!) and if you search the designer section often, you'll come across some pretty, pretty pieces. 


Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Made by a Fabricista: Mint Wool Jill Coatigan and Double Knit Rivermont Dress

Hello Fabricistas! It's Meg from Cookin' and Craftin' and I've got a two-for-one post for you today... a coat and a dress, perfect for the chilly weather.


First, the coat: this is the Jill Coatigan from Seamwork, which Seamwork describes as "an easy-to-sew, over-sized coatigan that can be made in chunky sweater knits and thick wool coatings."

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Made by a Fabricista: Casual Button Downs For Boys



I genuinely love making clothes for my 3 sons.  From the time they were little guys tossing around my fabric scraps on the floor while I sewed, seeing the joy on their faces as I finish a new garment is something that will never get old for me.  So often they love picking their own fabric and planning out various aspects of each project.  Working with them has always been part collaboration, and it's wonderful to see design through their eyes!  I knew that these Hawaiian cotton lawn prints would be the perfect opportunity to do just that with my boys.  Let's talk about the fabric, the pattern, and what you can do to make awesome button downs for the tiny men in your life. 

Monday, October 22, 2018

Fabricistas Explore : Cutting Line Designs Part Two


Hello again Fabricistas! It is time for the next post in our Fabricistas Explore series! Today we have  bloggers Sue from Ilove2sew & Ann from SewBaby News. They have each chosen a pattern from the our newest pattern company arrival, Cutting Line Designs. If you missed Part One, make sure to head over & read that too! But make sure to come back & finish Part Two!

"By Popular Demand"

Sue from Ilove2sew


Hello sewing friends! 

A while back, Fabric Mart asked if there were volunteers to try the Cutting Line Designs patterns and 
since that was a new-to-me company, I jumped all over it!

I choose the By Popular Demand pattern as I loved the styling of the boxy jean jacket.  I’ve always wanted to make a jean jacket style with a boucle fabric and that’s what I did.  This fabric is a wool blend from the designer section from FM and I simply love the feel and colors in it. There are still a few yards of it in stock. You can find it here! While it is a blend, it took a lot of heat from the iron, with no ill-effects, so I believe this to be nearly 100% wool. 

For the instructions on this pattern, they were great!  This was like a sewing lesson to put together this jacket.  Everything was well-explained and illustrated.  I just love it when I don’t have to think too hard!  I did add one simple step and that was to add stay-stitching to the neckline.  I think this is important. 

I was so wondering how this collar would turn out with the unusual cut and design of it.  The upper and under collar are cut as one piece, thus eliminating bulk at the collar edges and giving such a gorgeous result!  I plan on using this technique in the future by adapting other jacket patterns from other companies as this is pure genius!  I don’t have any dislikes with this pattern.  There are some fun details, which are a little difficult to see since I used a darker, textured fabric. 

For my design changes, I eliminated the top pockets.  There’s nothing wrong with them, I just thought that with my choice of fabric, it looked like more of a barn jacket than a jean jacket, not what I was going for!  I took this in quite a bit.  My measurements put me in the medium range, but during my mock up, O felt like I was swimming in it!  I took it in quite a bit so it’s basically a small size. 
On the inside, instead of finishing off the edges with serged or zigzag edge, I make a Hong Kong finish with a cotton quilting fabric.  I love Hong Kong finishes! 

I would sew this pattern again and hope to make this jacket in a denim since that’s what would show off all the fun details the best.  I do recommend this pattern to anyone who wants a great and fun jacket pattern! 

 (Click Photo To Enlarge)

"Ebb & Flow"

Ann from SewBaby News

Pattern: Ebb & Flow
For The Ebb View:
Fabric Used:
A Pink, Grey and White Checked Linen/Cotton Blend Shirting. Found here.  Linen is a good choice for this style.
Were the instructions easy to follow?
Yes, they were very detailed, and I actually learned some new things about clipping neckline seam allowances!  The designer uses a lot of edgestitching which results in a very professional finish.
What did you like or dislike about the pattern?
I liked the ¾ notched sleeves, and the collarless neckline of the Ebb tunic.  It’s very simple and wearable.
Did you do any pattern alterations or design changes?
No, I made the size that fit my measurements without changing anything.  It feels a little big.  I might size down next time.  For my checked fabric, I worked hard to match the pattern.  I could see doing some interesting combinations of fabrics, making the yoke and back out of coordinating fabrics.
Would you sew it again?
Yes, I like this style- it’s very versatile.


  (Click Photo To Enlarge)

Any other comments about the pattern?
I also made the Flow version out of a brushed gauze fabric.  Unfortunately, my results on this one weren’t as good. The fit was odd on me, and the collar doesn’t look like the illustration. I probably will not make that view again.  But, I do like the Ebb version enough to recommend the pattern!

  (Click Photo To Enlarge)

Saturday, October 20, 2018

Made by a Fabricista: See it, Make it, Rock it!

Happy Saturday Loves!!

Have you ever been wowed by an inspiration look on Pinterest or Instagram and vow you will find a pattern or learn how to make it?  I was super excited when I came across a look on Instagram that I knew I could make and selected this beautiful deep denim blue linen fabric to create this month's look.
PERFECT for layering during Fall and WINTER!
Over the past few months, I have spent more time advancing my sewing skills and learning more about what fits my body type.  I am in love with wide leg pants, classic tops, and pieces that I can rock more ways than one.

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Made By A Fabricista: Dark Florals for Fall!

Hi Fashionistas!

I am into fall sewing for the last couple of months and this months project is building on last months black tie back top. When I picked out this gorgeous 100% Cotton Percale, I knew exactly what I had in mind. I wanted a poofy gathered skirt to complement the top I made last month. But first I styled it with my favorite button-down:

Saturday, October 13, 2018

Made by a Fabricista: Sew House Seven Jumper

I have been holding out on making a pair of super cute 'overalls' for a while but there are so many cute patterns and makes out there!  I decided to dip my toes in the water with Simplicity 8641 and yes, I know.  It isn't a full-on pair of overalls, but it has the overall styling, perfect for deciding if this is right for me.
Here's what that pattern looks like:

Image result for images Simplicity 8641

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Made by a Fabricista: My 3 versions of the Sinclair Skylar Knit Hoodie!

Pink and gray ponte Skylar Knit Hoodie (Sinclair Patterns)

Hi everybody, it's Virginie from Jazz Couture and I hope you're doing well! On the blog today I'm showing you 3 interpretations of the Skylar Knit Hoodie (Sinclair Patterns).

A while ago I selected some knit fabrics and I had envisioned wrap dresses, tops and maxi skirts. Well, Sinclair Patterns just released the Skylar Knit Hoodie and that totally changed my plans. I decided to go with my instinct, I bought the pattern and made 3 hoodies in a row. I'm so glad I did, they're just perfect for the changing weather we have here in eastern Canada!

Monday, October 8, 2018

Fabricistas Explore : Cutting Line Designs Part One

Happy Monday Fabricistas!

Welcome to the very first post in our Fabricistas Explore series. Today we have a special two part blog post for you! We have selected four of our lovely Fabricista Bloggers to try out patterns from Cutting Line Designs, the newest pattern company added to our store. Today we have bloggers Dina & Marica. Make sure to check back Monday 10/22 for part two with Ann & Sue!

"This or That"

Dina from My Superfluities


Pattern: This Or That
Fabric Used: Striped Linen and a Brushed Floral Jersey
Were the instructions easy to follow?
I loved that they were so very detailed, but to be honest, they were SO detailed that I was a bit overwhelmed at times at the sheer amount of information.  I think a beginner will be appreciative, however, some of the explanations were a bit clunky, so if Cutting Line is interested, I think a sewalong (online or a video) for these patterns would be wonderful for a sewer who might like a bit more handholding.  
I especially liked how they clearly marked when to use what seam allowance.  It was also marked on the patterns themselves.    
What did you like or dislike about the pattern?
I dig that there are two different shirt patterns in one package.  I love the simplicity of the box top and the definitely more intricate design features of the this or that top.  It is like, "Hey, I'm going on a trip, let's make one fancy top and one top for tooling around town in..."  Very ideal for people who like to tackle two projects at once, but only can stomach so much intricacy in design and need a simpler design for one of the projects.
I feel like the designers were very careful with their measurements and it translated to a very easy time when applying the bias trim to the neckline and sleeve hems.  That is a mark to me of a very well though out pattern. 
Did you do any pattern alterations or design changes?  
I had to grade from a small to a medium at my hips in the this or that top.  I may need to bring the stairstep hem on the top as I am not sure the longer length in the back and side with a shorter front hem flatter my frame.  I think it is super pretty as is on my dressmaker dummy, but on me, meh.  I did tack it up with the hem all even and it looked really nice, so I may do the alteration sooner than later.
I did really like the box top on me, and it fit well right out of the package, with NO alterations necessary on the x-small/small size! Yay!
Would you sew it again? I would!  I think the unique design on the this or that top is very interesting and the fact that you can play with color-blocking or stripes (as I did) or different patterns or textures makes it a winner.       
You also can never go wrong with a top that takes no time at all to sew up like the much less involved box top they offer with this pattern!

 (Click Photo To Enlarge)


"Light & Shadow"

Marica from OverdriveAfter30

VIEW A:


Fabric Pattern: Light & Shadow
Were the instructions easy to follow? 
The instructions were well written and very detailed. The steps were easy to follow and any beginner would understand the instructions.  My only issue was I did not read carefully for the facing and assumed the pattern required two pieces.  I spent about 10 minutes trying to figure it out realizing that the neck facing is just one piece.  I also at first did not understand pressing the interface towards the outer piece and realized after.  It still turned out just fine.
What did you like or dislike about the pattern? 
I love the pattern after making it. The only issue, I would have graded the small to the medium from the waist down based on my body type.
Did you do any pattern alterations or design changes?I did NOT make any alternations to the pattern but will the next time around and grade between sizes from the waist down.
Would you sew it again? 
Most definitely!
Any other comments you'd like to add about the pattern? 
This is a classic top and I plan to make this using a sturdy knit such as a PONTE knit during the fall.

 (Click Photo To Enlarge)



VEST:


Fabric Used:   Goldenrod 100% Linen
Were the instructions easy to follow?  
The instructions were well written and very detailed. The steps were easy to follow and any beginner would understand the instructions.
What did you like or dislike about the pattern?
I love the pattern after making it.  At first, I was skeptical about the cowl neck but after sewing it up, I fell in love.
Did you do any pattern alterations or design changes?
I did NOT make any alternations to the pattern.  I honestly felt for this view, I would lengthen it by about an inch the next time around.
Would you sew it again? 
Most definitely!
Any other comments you'd like to add about the pattern? 
For the cowl neck, linen is perfect and drapes beautifully.

(Click Photo To Enlarge)