Vogue 8884



I’ve had this fabric in my stash for YEARS.  I just needed the right inspiration and a kick in the pants, which is what happened when I strolled into Joanne’s last Fall.


I was flipping through the Vogue Patterns magazine and saw this stunner in plaid and I had to make it up.  Totally gorgeous, right?


There is a separate lining pattern, always a nice thing.



I used some built-in decorative stitching on the lining at the back neck.


This time, I remembered to add some piping to the lining for a beautiful touch. 


See this piped hidden pocket?  I took this straight from the book “Cool Couture” by Kenneth King.  A totally COOL thing!  It took some time and trial and error, plus some pocket-drafting.  But, what a COOL effect!




I’ve had this beautiful plaid fabric from Georgeous Fabrics in my stash for a long time.  It has a lot of stretch so I block fused the entire coat with knit interfacing.  I reinforced the button areas with even more interfacing, but I was concerned that any buttonhole would put too much strain on the stretchy fabric so I opted for snap closures.

The pattern is well drafted and came together with no problems.  Even the sleeves were set in on one try!! 

I recommend this pattern, it’s a few years old now, but what a classic!  The simple lines and easy fit can really showcase your beautiful piece of coating, gabardine, or even denim.  Or, you can do like I did and sharpen your plaid-matching skills.  Or, how about a beautiful pastel color for Spring? 

Happy Sewing!

Butterick 6389

I’ve wanted to make a Kantha quilt garment for a while, ever since this beauty came across my pinterest feed:

Vest front-I think this is like the circle vest/jacket with the bottom square??

Jacket version, same designer, Mieko Mintz.  How I love these!!

You can see these and much more at www.artfulhome.com

1. Find old sarees.  2. Make quilt.  3. Fashion into jacket.  - Mieko Mintz Red, Navy Circular Kantha Jacket, Santa Fe Dry Goods

I’ve been searching far and wide for a pattern to use for the coat, there are many that come close, but none that are exact;  I’m continuing my search.  I did find a pattern for the vest though, yay!

See the source image

I trolled the internet to study all versions of the vest and based on what I found, set about altering the pattern (I actually made a muslin for this!):

Add a center back seam and increase the lower side seam a bit.  For the pattern, I just tapered from size small at the arm out to large at the hem.

I added patch pockets per the model; I just  cut 2 9” squares and lined them to cut down on fraying.

I added a 1 inch wedge on the outer back collar; my muslin collar didn’t lay like I wanted.


I changed the bottom front to a square opening rather than the rounded opening on the pattern.



The beauty of the $600+ garments online is that they are reversible. You can see in the above photos that the seams are decoratively serged seams with contrasting looper threads.  That helps keep it reversible. This one is not, mainly because that under fabric (faded pink, lavender, and yellow) is not my favorite.  So, I did french seams throughout.  This won’t get worn reversed.




Finished the arm holes with bias tape. 

I wanted the collar edges and hems to be finished as per the model vests, so I separated the quilt layers and turned under 1/4” hems on both the upper and under layers, very much like you would finish a double cloth edge.  This Kantha blanket is actually 3 layers of very thin cotton.


Here you can see I let out the hand quilting and opened the raw edge.  Then I folded them back and hand-stitched the quilting back in place.  Yes, each thread got sewn back in place…time consuming!!


A cautionary bit for those of you thinking about buying “vintage”:  I bought this blanket from amazon, the description accurately says that they’re old and there is little control over what colors you get.  This came in the mail as a twin bed (roughly) blanket.   It was less than $20, so not very expensive.  The fabric is sun damaged and faded, threadbare in many places, and has rips and holes.  You can see the fading and holes in the above pictures.  I suppose that’s the charm of the garments. I’ll have to sew more patches here and there as it gets worn.

With all that said, I do really love this pattern and my finished vest!  Worn with black tights and a black shirt, similar to the model in the first shot, it makes for a great “art piece”.

I wore it out recently and felt like Joseph and his technicolor coat!

P.S.  I am now an empty-nester.  Since the departure of my photographer, off to college, I’m readjusting to life in general, but also to getting good pictures of my work. Bear with me, it’s a process!

Butterick 3013

I’ve had this busy bold print linen in my stash for a while, and just couldn’t figure out what to do with it.



See what I mean? Bold Print!  I tried to increase the photo contrast a bit so you can see more detail, but…I don’t think it helped!

This is a loose-fitting Sandra Betzina pattern.  The instructions are detailed and helpful.  The jacket is lined:


I block-fused the body of the jacket with a woven interfacing and left the sleeves un-interfaced.  I taped the seam line at the center edges and funnel collar with a woven fusible tape.  This is pretty much what I do in all my tailored jackets.  It provides a more stable edge and adds a bit of crispness.


The pattern has nice pockets and flap detail.  It also has a nice cuff detail, plus 2-piece sleeves.


I did big sew-in snaps with big buttons on the front.  I didn’t want to sew button holes in this linen, scared it could increase fraying.


I didn’t even top-stitch anywhere…who would notice?  Seriously, this is a loud busy print!


Everything goes together quite easily, the fit is loose and boxy.  I think the pattern is long OOP, it came out in 2001.  It’s a nice classic fit, though.

Check back soon, still more to come!!

Simplicity 2472

Hello!! Well, I am a very bad blogger and I have a backlog of stuff to share with you, so I’ll start with a cute top I finished this Summer.


See the source image

It all started (like it usually does for me) with this beautiful top I saw in a catalogue:


This is a gorgeous georgette top from the Sundance Catalogue, price $128

How easy would this be to make?

I found a blue embroidered chiffon at Atlanta Fine Fabrics and used this easy pattern.  I just used the dress pattern and made it much shorter.


You can get a better idea of the color in this picture.  The fabric is a poly-chiffon with a lace edge, so I used the edge for the hem.


Simple to make, this is a front and back with cut-on sleeves.  French seams finish the sides and I turned up the sleeve hem for cuffs.

Easy peasy, as they say, which is probably why I didn’t write about it. 

More to come, I have alot of catching up to do!

McCall’s 7100


McCall’s 7100

I’m very late to the bomber jacket trend, I know.  I have no idea why, because this is an easy pattern to make up. 


I made it slightly more difficult by using this embroidered loose-weave cotton and lining the whole thing (bag-lined it by machine).


Loose fit and raglan sleeves mean no fitting issues for me.




Easy Peasy

There are a ton of versions of this pattern that have been made up all over the internet, and they’re all gorgeous.  I’m pretty sure I’ll make another.  I could use a slight FBA for the next one, maybe 1/2 inch.  This fabric is very loose-weave embroidered cotton; the stitching probably won’t hold for long, and I need to be careful not to bump into anything, because the machine embroidery and eyelet work are already becoming a bit “fuzzy”.

Still, though, it’s getting some good wardrobe rotation right now, and lots of compliments!

Highly recommended!

Vogue 2465

Back in February, I went clothes shopping in a new-to-me store called Doncaster.  It had great well-made clothing that seemed to cater to the ladies-of-a-certain-age crowd.  I tried on pair of beautiful black lace capris that fit like a dream, but at over $400, there was no way I could buy them.  They were pretty though.  I kept thinking, obsessing, even found a picture of them online:

Ideal for the office or for a night out on the town, the Lace Ankle Pant will add a stylish touch to your day no matter where you’re heading. -- Shop the Lace Ankle Pant at www.doncaster.com/ #DoncasterStyle

They’re simple, lined black lace capris.  You really could wear these anywhere, dressed up, down, you name it.

I can make that!

I found lace at Fine Fabrics in Atlanta, and I had some lining in my stash.

I started with a simple pants pattern I’ve had in my collection, Vogue 2465.



This is an old wardrobe pattern, the pants pattern had what I wanted, simple darts, no pockets, something I could alter easily.


Boy, do I love them, can I tell you?


Of course, black is so terribly hard to photograh

As for the pattern, it was merely a starting point.  I started with size 14, let out the darts, lowered the waistband, tapered the inside back leg (I do that with most pants patterns, eliminates baggy seats), raised the hem, eliminated the waistband, and I-dont-know-what-all-else.  I used the lining as my muslin, I know it’s a no-no, but there you have it.


Simple side-seam zipper





The brightness is grossly distorted in this picture, but you can see the lace-over-lining.  I’m quite happy with how they turned out!

Okay, so the shoes: another obsession of mine.  I’d been wanting these Prada oxfords for YEARS.  No kidding!  I’m a sucker for shoes with crazy colors.  These finally appeared on ebay, and I snatched ‘em!

Spring is sneaking up on us in Atlanta, I know it’s nothing like what others are dealing with (snow? really?), but today it’s rainy and chilly, here at the end of April.

Bye for now!

Vogue 8774 again

There is a great article written in the Oct/Nov 2013 edition of Vogue Patterns about jeans.  The article discussed, among other things, the use of heavy duty denim and altering a pattern for a boyfriend look.  I held on to the article with the hopes of one day trying the technique.  It only took me 5 years, ha!


picture from Vogue Patterns Magazine

Following the steps listed in the article, I adjusted the leg pieces to run along the selvedge.  You get the basic idea from the above picture, where the red lines are the adjustments made. I didn’t alter the back pocket, just kept it the same as before.  You can also see in the above picture that the authors opted for a straight waistband, but I liked the fit of the curved one from the pattern, so I kept it curved.


For the crotch and fly, I used the technique outlined in the Angela Wolf Class on Craftsy. Easy peasy!



This is heavy 12 oz denim with no stretch.




I had the fit down with the previous pair I made, so no further adjustments were necessary.

These turned out great!  They’re just how I wanted, loose and comfy.

Vogue 8774

I’m Still searching for the perfect fitting jeans, how about you?  I’ve made quite a few pairs of jeans over time, 3 pairs of the wonderful Jalie 2908’s  and a copy from RTW. Well, I’m back at it now, and up for a  sewing challenge.  I’m apparently on a jeans kick, and lately I’ve been liking the boyfriend patchwork look.

from Pinterest.

Журнал Burda

from Pinterest

Even one of my favorite clothing lines CAbi has a patch-y jean this season:


  I’ve had this pattern in my stash for a while, it appears to now be out of print.


I made up the muslin from some home-dec fabric:

20180215_162617  20180215_162651

I cut a size 14 and made a few alterations.  I like the loose leg so I left that alone.  The pattern tells you that it sits a good 2 1/2 inches below the natural waist, which was way too low for my comfort; I raised the rise an inch on both the front and back pieces.



I redrew the back upper leg using the size 12 line.  It brings in a bit of the baggy seat. 

To avoid the head-slapping moment that I had, don’t forget to change your fly and fly facing pattern pieces as well (in this case, I added an inch to those pieces).





I took in the center back seam at the top about 1/4 inch, which meant I cut a size 12 back yoke.  I also cut a 1/2 inch wedge out of the yoke horizontally, tapering to nothing at the side seam.  Now, I know what you’re thinking:  those back seams look weird.  Yes, I made this pair of pants from old cut-up jeans and other denims from my stash.



I’m clearly out of practice on my topstitching, and I topstitched the crotch seam on the wrong side.  Bias binding on the fly is a nice touch.


Despite all the stitching flaws, these are some of the most comfortable pants I’ve made in quite some time.  With more washing and wearing, these will get broken in nicely.  While I was making these, I was watching the Jeans class by Angela Wolfe on Craftsy.  It’s a great class and I highly recommend it!  It’s got great tips that I used for this pair, like using sand paper to distress denim, hammering bulky seams flat for easier stitching, and cool topstitching tips for the back pockets.  There is a wealth of information.  If you want to improve your jeans-making, go buy this class!  For my next pair, I’ll be using this pattern and some heavyweight all cotton denim.  Happy sewing!

StyleARC Adeline Dress and more Alabama Chanin work




Adeline Dress

Hello!  Last week, I wandered a bit aimlessly into my sewing room and 3 hours later, I had a completed dress.  Has this ever happened to you?  It happened to me.



I cut a size 12 based on my measurements and made no fitting adjustments, except to raise the hem an inch.  This is an easy one-piece dress.  The only time-consuming parts are the neck and hem facing.  You can see in the above picture the hi-lo hem, very cute.  This is a heavy linen from my stash.  You can make it with a back seam or not; I had to add it here because I didn’t have enough fabric for 2 big pattern pieces.  I didn’t topstitch the neck facing, just tacked it down at the shoulder seams.


And now, some hand-sewing!

Wondering what to do with leftover jersey?  Make a scarf!  It’s a great canvas for surface embellishment!


I had some leftover stenciled blue jersey from my Alabama Chanin dress.  I cut a long rectangle and used some orange jersey from my stash.


It’s all simple hand-stitching, something to do while watching TV.


Vogue 1792


It’s a rare thing when I use a pattern more than once, but I’ve made this pattern up 3 times now!






It’s long out of print, but the lines are very classic.  One day I’ll make that beautiful sheath dress!


Interesting how different the jacket turned out when using a knit!  Behold the slouchy-ness!


I made no changes in the fit, but I left off the bottom band.  I added the hand-stitched binding to sleeves and hem. I think I’ll add a snap or other clasp (hand stitched, natch).

Hand topstitching completes the Alabama Chanin inspired top.




Slouchy, comfy knit, classic wardrobe-building!

#alabamachanin, #schoolofmaking.

I’m not stopping with the hand-stitching.  I had a bit of the leftover stenciled blue knit so I layered it with an orange knit from my stash:



You can see the in-progress stencil work layered over plain orange knit.  A simple running stitch outlines the shapes done with 2 strands of orange dmc embroidery floss.  It’s going to be a large scarf/shawl.

Happy Handwork!!

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