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SEWALONG SEWING

SHELBY SEWALONG DAY 2 – ASSEMBLING FRONT AND BACK

May 28, 2019

Welcome back for day 2 of the Shelby Sewalong.

This first step is for the romper views only. If you are sewing up a dress version skip ahead to step 8.

Step 7 – With right sides touching, pin the center back pieces together along the center back. Stitch.

Trim seam allowances to 3/8″ and clip along curved areas as needed. Finish the seam allowances in your desired manner. I like to clip first, then serge (trimming it down to 3/8″ while serging) Press the seam allowances open or towards one side.

Step 8 – With right sides touching, pin one tie to each side of the center back piece, centering the raw end over the dots so that raw edges match up. Baste in place to secure.

Step 9 – With right sides touching, pin the side back pieces to the center back, matching notches. Stitch.

Clip curved areas of seam allowances, finish in desired manner, and press towards side back.

Set aside assembled back for now. I like to secure the ties in a bow now to keep them from getting caught in future sewing.

Step 10 – Now to assemble the front like you did the back. With right sides touching, pin the side front to the center front, matching notches. Stitch. Clip curved areas of seam allowance as needed. Trim seam allowances to 3/8″ and finish i desired manner. Press finished seam allowance towards side front. Assemble both fronts in the same way.

This next step is for the romper views only. If you are sewing up one of the dress you are finished for today. You will skip ahead to step 12 which we will cover tomorrow.

Step 11 – With right sides touching, pin the two assembled front pieces together along the center front crotch. Stitch from the lower edge up to the circle, and backstitch to secure.

Clip diagonally, close to, but not through the circle marking.

Clip along curved areas of seam allowance as needed, trim seam allowances to 3/8″, and finish in desired manner. Press finished seam allowance open or towards one side.

That is it for today. Come back tomorrow where we will attach the front to the back and tackle the facing.

SEWALONG SEWING

SHELBY SEWALONG DAY 1 – NECK FACING AND TIES

May 27, 2019

Welcome to day 1 of the Shelby dress and romper Sewalong. If you still need the pattern you can purchase it here.

Please note that the following instructions depict View A which is the mini length dress, but unless noted all of the instructions are applicable to all views.

Step 1 – Before starting, make sure that you have transferred all notches and symbols from your pattern pieces to your fabric.

I like to make a small (3/8″ or less) clip into the seam allowance for all triangle notch symbols and then I use a disappearing marker for all dots.

Also be sure to fuse your interfacing to the wrong side of the front neck facings and the back neck facing. Make sure you are not stretching your fabric at all when applying the fusible.

Step 2 – Staystitch the neckline on the front center and back center pieces at 3/8″ seam allowance in the directions of higher to lower. (Note that the back is in two pieces for views C and D not one as shown here.) I know you may be tempted to skip this step but please do not. The front neck especially will want to grow in future steps since it is cut on a bias. If you do not staystich it will not match the facing when it comes time to sew them together.

Step 3 – With right sides touching, and matching notches, pin and sew the shoulder seams of the front and back neck facings. Finish the seam allowances in your desired manner and press open or towards the front. I will be finishing my seam allowances by serging them, but you can also choose to zig zag stitch them or use pinking shears.

Step 4 – Finish the outer edge of your assembled neck facing in your desired manner. You do not need to finish the bottom or inside edges as they will be enveloped in other seams later on. That is it for the facing so go ahead and set it aside for now.

Step 5 – with right sides touching, fold each back tie piece in half lengthwise. Pin and stitch the long edge, using a normal 1/2″ seam allowance.

Trim the seam allowance down to 1/4″.

Step 6 – Using a loop turner or safety pin, turn ties right side out.

Press them flat. Fold one end under by 1/4″ and then again by 3/8″.

Stitch along the folded edge to secure the end. I find that if you put a piece of paper under the tie while on your sewing machine, it makes it much easier to sew that very small bit of fabric.

Once you are done stitching it you can pull it off of the paper pretty easily as the sewing machine creates a bit of a perforation on the paper.

Finish the remaining tie in the same manner.

That is it for today. Come back tomorrow to actually start sewing the dress together!

SEWALONG SEWING

SHELBY – FABRIC AND NOTIONS

May 21, 2019

I am so glad that you are all as excited about the Shelby Dress and Romper as I am. I have been wearing mine secretly for the last few months and can’t get enough of it. In fact I wore it three days of a 5 day vacation in the spring because it was just so fun to wear.

With the Sewalong starting next week, I wanted to write a bit about fabric and notions to get us ready. Sometimes this is the funnest part – dreaming up all of the possibilities. I will share a few fabrics that would work great for the Shelby, but of coarse these are just recommendations. I am excited to see what you come up with. First, lets talk about notions.

NOTIONS

Under notions the Shelby calls for coordinating thread, 2 yds of lightweight fusible interfacing, and 3/8″ buttons. I feel like coordinating thread is pretty self explanatory, so lets start with the fusible interfacing.

Make sure that the interfacing is lightweight or you will have a very stiff center front that does not match with the drape of the rest of your dress or romper. Any lightweight fusible interfacing from your big box store should be fine, but if you want to go the extra mile I love using the ProSheer interfacing from Fashion Sewing Supply. The quality and drape is noticibly different than your average fusible.

Next let’s talk about buttons. If you are sewing a romper view you will need 5 buttons and if you are sewing a dress view you will need 7 buttons. Also keep in mind any extra buttons you may need if you add any length to your pattern. The buttons should be about 3/8″ (of course you have artistic discretion on this). I have been really into the shell buttons with this pattern myself. I like that they are pretty much a neutral but also have that kinda 90s vibe that is perfect for the Shelby.

A couple other things that you may want that are not included in the notions description is something to turn your ties with. A small safely pin works great, but if you already have a loop turner that will work too.

A couple of items to consider for your buttonholes. I always use fray check on my buttonholes and let them dry before opening them. I also like to use a buttonhole opener with a small hammer to cut my buttonholes open. These are both completely optional, but if you are committed to sewing they might be things you want to add to your tool box.

Lastly, I would think about your sewing machine needle. Since the fabric you will be using for the Shelby is most likely lightweight, I recommend buying a needle that matches. I have used both the universal lightweight needles and also the microtex needles on my samples with great results.

FABRIC

Now for the fun part, lets talk about fabric. The pattern works best with lightweight woven fabrics with drape such as rayon challis, linen, crepe, silk and voile. It works equally well with prints or solids although keep in mind that with all of the pattern pieces matching an obvious repeat would be hard. That doesn’t mean don’t use a print, I personally would just embrace the randomness if you do as pattern matching that many pieces would not only be a time suck but also take so much fabric. All that being said, here are few great options from some of our favorite indie shops.

RAYONS

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6

LINENS

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6

SILK

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6

I hope this gives you all a great start and makes you excited for the Sewalong. I can’t wait to get started next week and see what you come up with.

I you still need the pattern you can find it here.

SEWALONG SEWING

INTRODUCING THE SHELBY DRESS AND ROMPER

May 14, 2019

I am so excited to finally be releasing my newest pattern, the Shelby Dress and Romper. I have been wearing this pattern on vacations and every warm day possible and I can definitely say that it is the summer outfit of my dreams. It has a serious nod to the 90s with a modern fit. The design includes princess seams, a back waist tie, a deep V neck line and button front closure. It’s very comfortable and easy to throw on but makes me feel so put together and ready for a date night at the same time.

We will talk more about fabric next week, but for now just know that this dress is perfect for the flowy summer wovens in your stash. These fabrics may include rayon challis, silk, light weight linen and crepe to name a few. You will also need some light weight fusible interfacing and small 3/8″ buttons to complete the project.

The pattern is labeled intermediate due to it’s buttonholes and sleeves, but I do think that a beginner could handle it if they broke it down into small steps and used a forgiving fabric. In fact, we will be doing a full sewalong of the Shelby pattern starting Monday May 27th to assist anyone in sewing it up, so please join us for that. I also have a few really fun hacks planned so be sure to check back for those in the coming weeks.

The Shelby is available as both a pdf and a paper pattern and is drafted for US sizes 0-18. You can find more information in my shop here. I can’t wait to see your versions.


SEWING FOR KIDS TUTORIALS

HUDSON ALTERNATIVE DRAWSTRING METHODS

March 8, 2019

After sewing up hundreds of Hudson pants since it’s release, I have come up with a couple of alternative methods for sewing up the waistband / drawstring which make for a faster sew. This method works for all versions of the Hudson patterns, although I find it especially helpful for the kids Hudson pant pattern and here is why. I love the look of a drawstring for finishing the pant, but it is not very functional for a child, especially those who are on the younger side. Not only do those draw strings get pulled out and lost, but they can be a real struggle for those who cannot tie bows yet, but need to use the bathroom by themselves at school. So, instead of doing a full drawstring as the instructions suggest, I have come up with these two quick methods that give me the look I want without the headache of the actual drawstring.

Method 1 – This method is as simple as sewing up the pants as normal but omitting the buttonholes. I still like to do the stretch topstitching on the waistband for the look and also to keep the elastic from twisting in the wash, but that is optional. This method is especially good for those who are scared of sewing buttonholes. Once you have the pants prepped you also want to take a small piece of drawstring, tie a bow to the size you want, and finish the ends of the drawstring so that they don’t unravel.

Now it’s as simple as centering the bow on center front and then sewing back and forth on either side of the knot. If you are using a matching thread you won’t even be able to see the stitching and no one will know that it is a faux drawstring. Make sure that you are sewing through all parts of the bow on the sides of the middle knot to make sure it doesn’t untie.

That is it for method 1. This is honestly what I use the most for my kids Hudsons because it’s easy and gets the job done.

Method 2 – If you want to take it a step further and are not scared of buttonholes, you may want to try method 2. It’s a bit more involved than method 1 but still easy and creates the look of the drawstring without the ability for it to get pulled out.

You are going to sew up your Hudsons just like the pattern suggests including sewing and opening your buttonholes.

Then you will need to two separate pieces of drawstring with one end of each finished. The raw ends will be inserted into the buttonholes.

Take each raw end and insert into each buttonhole by about 1/2″. The 1/2″ should be pointing away from center front, inside of the waistband. Stitch back and forth several times, just to the outside of the buttonhole, catching the 1/2″ in the stitching the secure.

It should look like the drawstring is in the entire waistband, while actually it is only in the front.

Tie the two drawstring pieces into a bow and you are good to go!

I hope you found these two methods helpful for the next time you sew up some Hudsons!