Category: fabric

Pattern Review: Cheyenne Tunic

This shirt was such a long time making. The biggest hiccup in the whole process was the loss of my sewing machine for a month due to it being in service. I finally rescued it and with great joy was able to finally finish it. I do think in the end, making it so slowly was actually for my benefit. I figured out some mistakes along the way that I’m not sure I would have totally realized until too late if I hadn’t been forced to sew this shirt in so many small spaces of time.

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The Cheyenne Tunic pattern is by Hey June. I’ve made her Lane Raglan many times and love it so much. I was anxious to see how this tunic would come together.
I used one of the Hipster Grizzly Plaid flannels by Kaufman. I love the feel of this flannel and it hangs really well for this shirt. It did end up being a little bit harder to work with than I had thought, primarily due to the thickness. It’s not a super thin flannel and perhaps I might have done better if I would have made a muslin or even made this shirt first in a thinner cotton versus starting with the flannel.

Overall this is a very well written pattern. I ended up following the sew-along off her blog and it helped answer some questions that I had with the actual pattern directions.

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One mistake I did make was putting these arms tabs on the outside instead of the inside. I realized after I posted the picture on instagram (doih!) that these darn things come up from the inside and hook onto a button on the outside. Even though I had already completed the sleeves etc, I was able to take them off and restitch them on the inside. I did decide to only include one pocket on the front instead of the written two.

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I have never done plackets and cuffs before and I was super nervous about it. I’m still thinking that I did my cuffs backwards, but who will notice right? I did end up having to follow her directions on the sew-along and I watched a couple of other videos to help with sewing these together. I had a really hard time visualizing how they were supposed to work. But, yeah!, they all came together.

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I feel like the placket on the front went in pretty well and I ended up finding some buttons at JoAnns thankfully. Fit wise it’s a mix. The actual bodice fits me perfectly. The neckline is great and the shoulders are pretty square also. I’ve always got issues with sleeves and the sleeves area  little long on me. When I make another one, I’ll probably size down the sleeves actually and for sure make them shorter. I did end up shortening the cuffs a little bit when I was sewing, but I’d almost prefer them to be a little thinner than they are.

TSNEM: January Quilting

TSNEM: January Quilting

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The theme for this month’s Try Something New Every Month was quilting. First off, I have to say that I’ve long declared quilting to be the one sewing thing I don’t touch until I have an empty nest. Something about it just always seemed so crazy overwhelming. Piles of fabric, cutting, measuring and those huge quilts that you would have to lay out all over the floor. Not something I wanted to attempt with kids underfoot – no matter how big or small they were.

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Enter paper piecing and mini quilts. I did my first mini quilt swap last Fall and had so much fun with it. It wasn’t perfect, but I love how it stretched me creatively as I tried to combine a new skill with one that I truly love – aka embroidery.

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I happened upon a quilter that I love named Elizabeth Hartman last year too and her work has just convinced me that I can do this quilting thing on a small scale and get my feet wet before I ever launch into it large scale (as in – making that queen size quilt for our bed that I’m longing to make).

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One of my goals this year is to start figuring out how to combine this new found skill with embroidery. I would love to work more with adding my embroidery to mini quilts versus hoops and also adding more paper piecing ideas to my hoops. First up, this quilt square – well actually it’s a rectangle.

Not all who wander. Quilted embroidered wall hanging

I gathered up a bunch of Cotton and Steel and Heather Ross and some other fabrics I had lying around that reminded me of the outdoors. For some reason I had the quote “Not All Who Wander Are Lost” stuck in my head and just knew that this was the one I was going for first.

Not all who wander. Quilted embroidered wall hanging

It’s not perfect and I’m still working on my hand binding skills – but I’m so super proud of myself. I am proud of myself for taking that step to try something new and different. I hope you like it too! And if you really love it, it’s for sale in my shop! 🙂

pattern review {music box jumper} & {city gym shorts}

If you’ve followed my sewing adventures at all you know that I love Oliver and S. They are probably my favorite patterns to sew hands down. I’ve made at least half a dozen different garments designed by O + S and I thought this Music Box Jumper would be a piece of cake compared to some of the other patterns I’ve sewn. I was wrong.

O + S music box jumper

Don’t get me wrong, it is a pretty simple pattern. Just bodice pieces and skirt pieces – so not a lot to figure out how to construct. But for once I felt like the pattern directions were lacking. I mean, I’ve sewn pleats plenty of times, but it’s been a while and I don’t know how many times I reread the directions, pinned, pressed and then went back again because the pleats were off. They are still off on the finished dress, but at least they are off symmetrically!

Besides the pleats, I also felt like there was a step that I missed completely with the bodice. Maybe I just skipped over it when putting it together, but when I went to attach the bodice to the skirt they didn’t match up. I ended up taking out the center pleat a little to make it fit. But then when I went to make the facing for the buttons, I had to fold the bodice at the sides too – which didn’t seem correct. I’m not going to be quick to blame the pattern maker, because some of this could have been my own oversight, but I was a little frustrated when I was putting it together. Not my normal response when I’m sewing an O + S pattern.

Overall I don’t know that I would give this a one scissors rating. I really think it is a little bit of a tricky pattern to put together and if I was totally new to sewing and doing pleats, I would have been really frustrated by the directions.

O + S music box jumper

But…this fabric is divine and I really love how it turned out. This is Rae Hoekstra’s Lotus Pond collection for Cloud 9 and it feels lovely and lays so pretty. I will say that it leaves a mark though when you have to remove stitching. I don’t know if that’s a dye thing or what. I added some ric rac to the bodice and the hem and honestly that was the crowning mark. The chick loves it and so do I. Messed up pleats or not!

 

But because I like to finish off my sewing with something easy and successful, I decided to make a pair of shorts for my chick too. This is the free pattern by Purl Bee for their City Gym Shorts. I made a pair for myself a while back and they honestly are a weird fit for me. I think I’ll try again and make a size up. For my girl though, they ended up being perfect and a cinch to make. This fabric is some I had leftover from some other projects. The flowers are some Cloud 9 that was from JoAnns and the bias trim is Ed Emberley’s line from Cloud 9 too.

purl bee city gym shorts

The only hiccup I did have with these is that I think I mis-measured when I cut out the bias for the binding. It ended up being super skinny and a pain to sew on. Next time I’ll measure twice and cut once 🙂

throwback thursday {beginnings of typography stitching}

On Thursdays I pull from my years of archives and take a look back and where I’ve come as a stitcher and just reflect a little. Today’s look back is one of my first typography embroideries. Stitching words harkens back to the old samplers that women and children stitched back in the 1800’s and I like to think that my style of typography is continuing in that tradition…with a little modern twist.

from 2011: a little space themed typography:

the latest “typography” coming from my hands…

to the moon embroidery

and a closer look
to the moon close up

 

throwback thursday {my favorite ever}

On Thursdays, I take a look back in my archives. After blogging for almost 8 years I find it’s refreshing to take a look back.

If there is one outfit that is top of my favorites that I’ve ever sewn for my daughter it is this one. I remember the day I bought this orange Japanese fabric (at my first ever visit to Textile Fabrics in Nashville) and this was also one of the first times I had sewn from Oliver + S (which I count as the one pattern company that has truly grown and stretched my sewing skills). It is the one outfit that I will never get rid of an she didn’t wear nearly enough. I love it from all the tiny frustrations and errors to the sweet little covered buttons on the back. Enjoy this post back from 2009.

 

O+S Outfit

This outfit has caused me to bang my head on the wall more than once…but now that it is complete I totally love it!

O+S shirt back

I showed off the shirt a few days ago, so here is the completed back.

O+S button

I’m in love with the buttons. This is why I just loved this fabric, those little frogs peeking out!

O+S Skirt

Here is the skirt. The placket part is a bit messed up (not sure what happened there) but other than that it turned out pretty well, if I do say so myself!

Don’t you know what this little chick is wearing to church on Sunday!

Oh, the important stuff…the fabric is a Japanese print and the green is just something I splurged on at the local quilt shop. The pattern is Oliver + S: 2+2 Blouse and Skirt

And the quilt…next on the agenda now that I’ve whittled down my sewing pile (only to have it fill back up again after my girl’s weekend, but that’s another story!)