Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Made by a Fabricista: It's Cape Time!




 Hey there!  It's been a while, but I'm Jess, and I'm back with some more maternity-able garment delight for you.




When planning this project I originally had another pattern in mind; the Butterick 6301 maternity and baby wearing coat. But once I got this beautiful cashmere/wool coating in my hands, I felt like the silhouette of the coat just didn't do it justice.




 When Vogue released their Holiday 2017 patterns, I saw 9288 and I knew...


 ...I knew it had to be mine.  By that point I'd already gotten the fabric for the coat, and by some sewing miracle I had JUST enough to make the medium length cape (3 3/4 yards, which is exactly what view B calls for with 60" fabric).  Destiny, amirite?


But, a cape?  In cold, cold Wisconsin?  Is that really a good choice?  We'll just say I'm often way too practical in my sewing and I have wanted to try sewing a cape for YEARS, but the thought of time put into a not-oft-worn garment has always stopped me.


That said, I'd heartily argue that the silhouette of a cape is the perfect baby bump accompaniment.  Plus, with where the closures end at this cape (just below bust on me) it can be easily worn belted or not, regardless of your midsection's current state!  


 In a nutshell:  I used my pregnancy as an excuse to make this wonderment happen.  Practicality be damned!


If this fabric looks familiar, it's because it is!  Ann made a beautiful duffle coat with it.  It's a dusty purple Armicale wool/cashmere blend that is quite deliciously soft and has a wonderful drape.  It's currently sold out, but you can find some alternatives here.



And, what do I think of the finished product?  It's a little cumbersome to get on and off, with all of the buttons.  And, it's a little hard to use one's arms even with a front opening that high and generous.  This is a show-cape y'all.


Those specks on my cape?  Not lint; it was lightly snowing as I took these photos.


But, I do enjoy the drama of it.  It's so far from my typical wheelhouse.  I mean, how do you not do this when you're wearing a cape?


I had originally planned to line the cape with a "warm" winter lining that I purchased for another project, but with only 2 yards on hand, it just wasn't enough.  I think I could've squeaked by with 2 1/2 yards to line, but alas it was not meant to be. 


 In an effort to make it look nice on the inside still, I decided to finish my seams with pre-made bias tape.  Not as nice as I could've made myself, but my time and energy is at a premium these days.  I used the tape on every seam and also the hem, to the tune of four packages: about 16 yards of bias tape.  Mama mia!



And there it is...one picturesque lavender cape, one 3/4 baked baby, and a whole lotta glorious cashmere blend warmth.


Thanks for reading!  Until our next sewing adventure...


Jess



Saturday, January 27, 2018

Made by a Fabricista: A Blouson Bodysuit

Happy New Year! Did you spend some of your holiday break sewing? I did! Though, as usual, I didn't complete everything on my "To-Sew" list. I enjoyed every minute with family and friends...and my sewing machine. I hope by now you're back in the groove because 2018 is already in full swing.


I've have been so excited about the bodysuit trend, but it took a while for me to find the right bodysuit pattern. When Simplicity released 8513 I thought "woohoo! This is it!". I loved all the options especially the bell sleeve, wrap bodice and mock neck.

Simplicity Pattern 8513 Misses' Knit Bodysuits
from Simplicity.com

However, after I sewed up View B, I realized I don't (currently at least) have a bodysuit body. LOL In my opinion my tummy is a little too big right now to rock it. Which really sucks, not because I'm carrying a few (ok ten) extra pounds from the holidays - I still love my body - but because I really wanted to rock a bodysuit. I love bodysuits because tees and sweaters have a tendency to ride up when you sit and I hate when a burst of cold air hits my lower back, especially in the winter.


From kommatiapatterns.com


Thankfully I stumbled across the Ferri bodysuit pattern from Kommatia patterns while swiping thru Instagram. Turns out a blouson bodysuit is my perfect bodysuit. It offers the "stay tucked-in-ness" of a bodysuit, but the fullness of a loose tee. Raglan sleeves are already a fave of mine and the wide scoop neckline was a great bonus.

I can raise my arms without worry that I'm going show some belly!

I've been eyeing the Black Superwash Wool Jersey since it was listed and this seemed like a great application for it. It's light weight gives the full top some drape but the wool content should be enough to keep me warm.



When I first pulled the fabric out of the packaging I thought it was going to be too sheer, thankfully I was wrong. Also when I went back to look at the listing it is clearly described as Semi-Sheer.  The Semi-wool feel was accurate as well as it isn't itchy or irritating, though I do not suffer from sensitive skin.  Also, it has a slub like texture that doesn't show well in photos.



Sewing the bodysuit was pretty easy, especially if you've ever sew a swimsuit before. The trickiest part was attaching the elastic at the leg openings. The rest of the construction was the same as any raglan tee.


I really love the bodysuit, though I which it draped over a little more. When I make it again I will add 1.5" to the bodice hem and hopefully that will result in the look I want.

I highly recommend this fabric and this pattern. I think I'm going to order the gray as well. I'm thrilled with my results!

See you next month.

Tiffany
TipStitched

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Made by a Fabricista: Light Skinny Jeans


This winter I have had a major hole in my wardrobe, jeans! I decided in December that I would sew three pairs of jeans at the same time. I've found that sewing things in pairs (or in this case a group of three) is actually faster than if I sew the same pattern at separate times.This time I sewed two pairs of Ginger Jeans and one pair of Morgan Jeans. Here are my ginger jeans in a light denim, which I have been looking to buy for ages!


Fabric mart had the perfect light blue stretch denim in stock a couple months ago, but unfortunately it has sold out! Actually, this is the wrong side of the fabric. You can see from this photo above when I cuff my jeans, the right side of the fabric is a bolder blue color, but when I received the fabric in the mail the back side of the fabric was exactly the color of denim I had been on the hunt for!


The Ginger Jeans pattern is a great pattern to jump into the world of jeans sewing. Before I began sewing my own jeans, I thought sewists that made their own jeans were crazy. I thought it was way too time consuming and not something I would ever be interested in. But then I sewed a pair, or two, or three and realized it's actually a lot of fun, and worth every minute.


Jeans sewing is definitely time consuming and a heftier project than a t shirt, but I love all of the little details that go into sewing jeans. And when you take the project one small step at a time, it really is not complicated.


Heather, who designed the Ginger Jeans walks you through every step of the Ginger Jeans sewing process and also has a great pants fitting guide to help you solve any issues you're having with your pants.  

Call me a convert, I am absolutely addicted to sewing my own jeans. Nothing beats a pair of pants that are custom made to fit your body. 


With this pattern, I've found that if I blend between a size six at the waist and grade out to a size eight at the hips, it fits perfectly!  How about you?  Do you sew your own jeans?  Or are you like I was and think jeans sewing is crazy? 


Thank you Fabric Mart for this perfect light colored denim and thanks for reading along.  If you'd like to see the other two pairs of jeans I sewed this winter stop by my blog, Dandelion Drift!

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Made by a Fabricista: Spring Fever

I have been dreaming of Spring since the weather changed here in South Florida to the low 40s and 50s a few days this week which is cold for us.  After grabbing some great Spring color pre-cut fabric right after the holidays a few weeks ago on sale at Fabric Mart, I decided that sewing for Fall/Winter must come to an end even though we have a few months left. We do not get snow here in South Florida, but this winter, we have had a few days where the temperature dropped to the low 40s and 50s. Living in Florida, our typical temperature during the month of January and February ranges from the low 50s to the high 70s which is perfect for this maxi dress.


PHOTOS were captured in bright sunlight so fabric may appear lighter in color.

Being pretty tall, more than the average size woman, (5 feet 10 inches) with a small upper body and a pear shape body type, it is very difficult to find ready to wear maxi dresses that can be worn with heels that fits just right. I wanted to hack one of my favorite summer dress pattern Simplicity 8124 and create an elastic waist maxi dress that was breezy, versatile and fun to wear.


        This dress is oh so perfect for a Sunday brunch, date night on Valentine's day, or even a Happy hour event. 


PHOTOS were captured in bright sunlight so fabric may appear lighter in color.

When I came across this Rayon Challis fabric (here), I knew it was perfect for a jumpsuit or maxi dress. After receiving a VOTE via Instagram to create a maxi dress instead of a jumpsuit, I decided to go with a pattern that was an easy sew for a beginner.  I had two maxi dress patterns in mind, a wrap dress or off the shoulder.  Being that I am not a big fan of wrap dresses, I knew that this style was definitely a win.  Cyntha Rowley's Simplicity off the shoulder dress pattern (8124) has 3 main pieces for the dress or top  (bodice front, back and sleeves)  and any beginner could simply create a self drafted pattern piece for the skirt.
Opted to cut the XS based on my bust measurement.
 I measured slightly above my chest to my natural waist for the off the shoulder top bodice and added an extra inch to the bodice length to create the casing.  I also measured the width of the top to create my skirt.  (SIDE NOTE - The bodice top/dress front and back pattern pieces are cut on fold so the skirt front and back pieces (rectangular) were also cut on fold). I opted not to draft the skirt on paper but to use the width measurement of the top and cut directly on the fabric.  I truly had no issues and created a 1 inch elastic waist casing after attaching the skirt and the bodice.  I also  added my own personal touch, a small paper bag casing for both the shoulder and sleeves.  




 I am totally in love with the fit, length and silhouette of the light weight rayon challis fabric.  





I am excited about some of the new McCalls patterns and can't wait to cut into the great pre-cut finds to create my Spring capsule that I plan to wear during my Spring Break vacation in March.

Thank you so much for stopping by and don't forget to grab a few yards of this amazing Rayon Challis before its sold out!

Photos Taken by my amazing 9 year old daughter Arielle.

Don't forget to stop by my blog as well -  Overdrive After 30!
Love Marica

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Made By A Fabricista: Receiving Blankets for Baby Boy

 HI Fashionistas!

I am just one month away from my due date and this week I am working on getting my hospital bag ready and wrapping up any loose ends to be best prepared for when baby arrives.

I made a receiving blanket with a beautiful blue seersucker on one side and a soft flannel on the other side. It is such an easy DIY and I documented the steps to took to make this super simple DIY. Then I could not stop myself and made a second one with this fishbone embroidered seersucker.




Arent these so cute?

Here is what the flannel side looks like, which is soft and would face the babe


This is how I made the blanket:

I started with one yard of this seersucker fabric and this flannel fabric. The flannel is a shirting fabric. It is so soft and thick enough to be perfect for the blanket.


Step 1: I folded the fabric selvage to selvage, chopped it off along the fold and used one piece, and then trimmed down the edges to make sure it was a rectable with straight edges.   I cut the seersucker fabric first using its lines as a guide. Then I used the seersucker as a template to cut out the flannel.


Step 2: Placing the right sides of the fabric together, I sewed along all the 4 sides, leaving a 4 inch opening to easily be able to turn the blanket inside out (see bottom right of blacnket). I'll show this with the second blanket as it was a smaller cut and easier to photograph



Step 3: I turned the blacket right sides out, gave the blanket a good overall press, neatly tucking in the seam allowance on the 4 inch opening.

Step 4: I topstitched with a decorative stitch. In the process, I closed up the 4-inch opening.  I have to tell you that my domestic machine does not get a lot of use, but I have a makeshift studio set up in my closet at the moment.  It's hard to get into my studio these days, which is in the basemement.. so my brother machine is getting lots of attention!

Love the top stitching.. so cute!


I tested out a few decorative stitches before deciding on this one!





That is it for my latest DIY! The royal blue thread was already in my machine from this other sewing project I just completed a few days ago, my maternity dress for family pictures.... so that worked out perfectly. I am really digging all shades of blue lately.


I hope that you enjoyed reading this little DIY project of mine. I am going to attempt one more project, a robe/ duster before the baby arrives! I have the most beautiful  emerald green damask fabric picked out for that! I'll be working on that fairly soon.

Xoxo
-Vatsla from Fashion Behind The Seams