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MAKES SEWING

SILK SUKI FOR SEW FROSTING

November 28, 2018

I  bought this silk crepe fabric over a year ago specifically to make a Suki kimono and I am so glad that I finally did. I am obsessed with it. It’s everything I hoped for and feels so luxurious to wear when I am getting ready in the morning. I am a big fan of robes so this is my third to make so far. All three get tons of wear.

 The fabric is a paneled watercolor floral of in silk crepe de chine that I bought at Mood. The edges were black so I was able to use those bits of fabric for the neck band, ties and sleeve cuffs. I really like how that helps the cool design details to pop. It also gives a more modern edge to the floral fabric.

 I really loved sewing this pattern. It was just challenging enough to keep it interesting and feel like I was learning new things, but easy enough to stay stay enjoyable. The instructions are great and I love the small design elements like the neck band detail which help this pattern to stand out.

I keep thinking about how great this would be as a holiday gift for someone special. Although I might not sew it in silk again because I’m not sure how this will wash. I think a rayon or voile would be perfect for my next one.

MAKES SEWING TUTORIALS

BODY CON MIDDI NIKKO DRESS TUTORIAL

September 28, 2018

 

The original Nikko pattern includes pattern pieces for a top (with or without sleeves) that is fitted, and a dress that is straighter through the waist and hips. I wanted to combine the two for a Nikko dress that is more body con like the top is. It’s a very easy hack so I thought I would share.

First of all you will use the top pattern pieces instead of the dress one since it has the more fitted waistline. I decided to use the sleeved version, but this would just as easily work for the sleeveless one. The only pattern pieces that you will be adjusting is the front and back. The neckband and also the sleeves or sleeve facings stay the same.

All you are going to do is lengthen the center front and center back straight down as those are cut on the fold. For the side seams you want to gradually angle it in about an inch so that it is fitted at mid calf. How long you extend it is up to you, but I would say somewhere between 20-30 inches from the original hem.

Once you have cut and sewn the Nikko according the the instructions, I find it really helpful to try the dress on inside out and mark any areas that I want to pull in a bit and make adjustments. I then hemmed it using fusible knit tape like the pattern suggests. Because the pattern calls for really stretchy knits you don’t actually need a slit at the hem, just make sure that you use a very forgiving stretch stitch to finish it.

Let’s talk a bit about fabric. I used a thick ribknit from The Fabric Store for this. I think that the thickness really is key to a body con dress so that it has more coverage. Rib knits are especially good for this. They kind of hide any lines or bumps that you may not want to draw attention to.

That’s it! Super easy hack for a fun dress. Can’t wait to wear it for date night.

MAKES SEWING

HARRIET BRAS FOR BRAUGUST

August 29, 2018

One of my goals for this year was to dive into sewing lingerie. It’s something I have wanted to master for awhile, but have been seriously intimidated by. I am a pretty confident sewist, but bras are one of those things that has felt like a new craft. It didn’t feel intuitive to me so the learning curve was steeper than I was use to. To get over my fears, I decided to take a class from Amy of Cloth Habit at Fancy Tiger Crafts.

It was such an amazing intensive where I was able to get over my mental hurdle and realize that bra making really isn’t that hard. In fact, start to finish, it’s just a few hours so you improve and get confident really quickly. The hardest part is fitting the bra since you really can’t check fit until you’ve sewn a whole bra. Luckily Amy gave us each a fitting during the class. The problem was that my body went through some changes right after the class and so my bra size changed. When Braugust (Bra August) was announced, I decided to use the month to really tackle the Harriet bra again.

During the month of August I made up three different versions of the Harriet bra. I made small tweaks to each one for fit, but all three are wearable. I can’t get over how pretty and delicate they look.

The light blue and black bras were my first two. The lace and findings for these bras both came from Tailormade. I love her kits. It makes it so much easier knowing that you have all of the small parts to make a bra.

The rust colored bra is probably my favorite and was the last bra I made. I had a bunch of white lace and elastics in my stash left over from other projects that I threw into a dye bath. All of the parts came out in different shades from light pink to dark orange. I am pretty obsessed with how ombre affect that this gives when you combine them all into one bra.

Now that I have a great fitting Harriet bra I want to take some of the scraps and try to make some matching undies. I am also interested in trying out a foam version of the Harriet. I see lots more lingerie sewing in my future as it seems to be the perfect palette cleansers between working on my own patterns and larger projects.

MAKES SEWING

ARIANA DRESS IN BLACK LINEN

August 22, 2018

 

I made the Ariana dress at the beginning of summer and am just now getting around to blogging it. Probably because I wore it so much. It was definitely my go to this summer and I only wish I had followed through and made at least one more before it started getting cold outside. It was one of three outfits I brought on a family trip to Japan and it also was the first thing I reached for when teaching a class or going out for dinner.

The Ariana dress pattern is from Style Arc. I found the instructions very sparse, but the drafting of the pattern to be great. So just keep that in mind. I probably wouldn’t recommend it to a true beginner. My favorite part of the dress is the back panel which is sewn up with elastic thread. This can take some practice, but it’s not as hard as it looks and it creates a dress that is super comfortable to wear.

I did need to make some fit adjustments, but the great thing about a princess seam is that full bust adjustments are pretty simple. I used my Beatrice dress form to figure out the fit adjustments to make, which was much easier than doing it on myself.

The fabric is medium weight linen from The Fabric Store with wooden buttons from my stash.

MAKES SEWALONG SEWING

YARI JUMPSUIT – LONG TIE HACK

June 13, 2018

The long tie Yari Jumpsuit hack was a brilliant idea that I got from one of my testers. This is a great hack for anyone, but is especially great if your fabric is on the lighter side, you want waist definition, and you don’t think that the fabric can sustain the weight of the D rings.

The ties will start at the D ring dot on the front, wrap around the back, and then tie in the front. So the first thing that you need to decide is how wide you want your ties and how long you want them. This is completely according to your personal preference. I decided to go with a finished tie that was 1.5″ wide. For the length, I took a measuring tape, placed in on my body approximately where the tie would start, wrapped it around my body, and decided on a length from there. Keep in mind that you may want the tie to be longer is you making the pant version than if you are making the short version.

Let me show you how you can do it.

Cut two ties that are about 60 inches long and 4 inches wide. I wanted the finished ties to be 1 1/2″ wide so I added 1/2″ seam allowance and then multiplied that number by 2 to create a tube.

Next, fold the ties in half, lengthwise, and sew up the long edge at 1/2″ seam allowance.

Next trim the seam allowance down to 1/8″.

Using a safety pin, turn each tie right side out.

Press the ties flat and tuck one short end in for a nice finish. Then edgestith around the three sides that won’t be showing. One short end (the open end) will be sewn into the jumpsuit so you don’t need to topstitch that one.

Try the tied on and estimate the finished length you want to the best you can. For reference mine are each 39 inches each on a size 8 although I think I would make them longer if I was making the pant version.

Center your ties over the D ring dots on your side fronts. You will not be using the D ring dots on the side backs.

Now you just need to sew up your jumpsuit according to the directions.

Here is how it turned out!

I am pretty excited about how it turned out. It’s nice to have another version of my favorite jumpsuit.

As you can see here, it wraps around the back, overlapping there, and then ties in the front. You could easily insert the ties into the back dots instead and have it tie in the back which would be another fun way to make it.

For fabric, I used an amazing linen blend from Blackbird fabrics. It’s the same fabric that I used for the cover sample of the Yari pattern. I love this fabric. I has a great nubby texture, doesn’t wrinkle as much as pure linen, and is such a fun color.

 

That’s it. Sure easy and fun hack. Let me know if you have any questions.