I pretty much know, at this point, that any pattern made by Adrianna from Hey June Handmade is going to fit me and look amazing on first try. Check out my Cheyenne blouse, Sanibel rompers, Lane Raglan hoodie, and leggings for proof. So, I was jubilant when she asked me to pattern test her latest creation, the Trevi Top and Dress. I went with a double gauze fabric from my stash to make this polka dot Trevi top. I am thrilled with the results, as expected.
The pattern for this simple, drape-y top has just enough detail of construction to be interesting and flattering. The tall neckline and high cut at the shoulders combine with a button placket on the back. To be honest, it’s not a style I would normally get into but I trust Adrianna so much that I agree to test for her and I am glad I did because it worked out.
Isn’t the button placket such a perfect detail? It always amazes me how much a button placket takes a simple shirt to the next level. Now that I am comfortable with the buttonhole maker function on my sewing machine, I’m way less intimidated by buttonhole making. In fact, I kind of look forward to it because it’s really so simple but looks impressive. If you haven’t played around with the buttonhole function on your machine, I have to encourage you to take an afternoon and conquer it. You won’t regret it!
A bit of nitty-gritty on this top. After looking at the size chart, I decided to grade the top from a size 6 at the top to a size 12 at the hips. I know, super dramatic!! I have really sizable (juicy and lovable) hips and I’ve found it’s better to just embrace the difference and account for it rather than be disappointed when something doesn’t fit. The thing is, however, this top has a lot of ease at the hips and I really overdid it. I mean, I still like how this top looks but it just doesn’t need to be quite so flowy. I also think, with this style, the size 6 was a tiny bit too small at my chest. There is a first time for everything, right? It’s not tight enough to be constricting, though, so it’s all good.
The fabric is a double gauze, as I mentioned. I got it two years ago in Portland at Bolt. It’s a lovely print from Kokka, designed by Ellen Luckett Baker. It made for a very comfortable and sweet but not overly sweet little top.
I made myself an olive and pink everyday blouse, y’all. And, it’s ticking all the happy boxes.
Tremendously wearable but not at all boring. Check! Comfortable but not frumpy. Check! Full of elegant but not-at-all fussy details. Check! Fulfills my commitment to make a blouse for Project Sew It. Check! Awesome addition to my handmade closet. Check! Check! check!
I’ve been crushing on this pattern since it came out. The Everyday Blouse was released through UpCraft Club and designed by Rachel, the Brazilian designer and endlessly talented sewist behind House of Pinhiero. (more…)
Every year I try to sign up for Sanae and Ute’s fabulous Secret Valentine exchange. I have managed it for the last two years and that is a good thing because when the deadline slips past me I end up super bummed and kicking myself with regret. The reason I love it so much is mostly because it feels so warm and fuzzy to be a part of secret exchange of handmade goodness. But, I also love the exchange because it gives me permission and freedom to create something with no real agenda. Ah, the beauty of open-ended making! This year I decided to make this hand-stamped tote with leather handles and shipped it off to South Korea, it’s new home. Isn’t it great that the secret valentine exchange is global?! I like the thought of sending something made with my hands around the world. It reminds me that the power of the handmade is amazingly universal and these days that reminder feels especially potent. (more…)
I am a sucker for two things: a handmade Valentine’s Day and a pretty table setting. So, when I got a copy of the book See Kate Sew * for review from Fons & Porter and was immediately smitten with the adorable, pocketed placemat and little wallets, I decided that our family needed a little “All You Need is Love” table setting for our Valentine’s breakfast. Ok, I’m a sucker for three things. I also LOVE breakfast. But, that is beside the current point.
When I first started sewing I was terrified to sew with fabrics other than basic quilting cotton. But the truth is, sewing garments in woven cotton fabric is really limiting, especially since most of us wear knit fabric for day to day wear. My love of sewing garments….really my whole mission to make my own clothing, increased triple-fold when I conquered my fears of sewing with a variety of textiles. As soon as you can sew rayons, jersey knits, sweater knits, silks and cotton lawn with confidence, you can make just about anything! I realized yesterday while I was writing about the cardigan for my mom that sewing with sweater knit fabric is one of those substrates that can be intimidating.
But, it doesn’t have to be! In the spirit of encouraging others to stitch up a more adventurous wardrobe I decided to share my simple tricks for sewing with sweater knit fabric. Let’s make it easy and not at all intimidating, shall we? (more…)
Hey look! It’s my mom! Isn’t she the cutest, most beautiful person? She was visiting us from Minnesota this weekend and we decided to go out for a fancy-ish dinner but she had nothing to wear. I grabbed this color-blocked Julia cardigan (literally pulled it fresh off my sewing table) and I soon as she put it on I knew it belonged to her. I hadn’t even worn once it myself but it was obvious it was fated to be hers. She just looks great in it, don’t you think? Honestly, meant to be. (more…)
What a strange time to be a maker. As so many of us are, I’m devastated by current events. The world feels threatening and unsettled and there are about eleventy billion people my heart is trying to scramble around to embrace, protect, shield. But, even as my emotions scramble, everything keeps shifting beneath my feet and I’m exhausted just trying to keep up with my Facebook feed. I’ve come back dozens of times to realize that what re-energizes and restores me is making things. My time behind the sewing machine is where I can construct something real and solid and certain. I’ve long joked that sewing is my therapy and that has officially stopped being a joke. The process feels vital and at the same time the results feel frivolous. It’s an odd juxtaposition. I guess this is a long way of saying that I made a boho-style cape and it’s not going to save the world but it got me through a tough time. Ha!
Ooh boy. (more…)
This weekend I picked up about a half dozen pink tops and sweaters at the thrift store and turned them into 21 pussyhats. I’m attending a local Women’s March on Saturday and wanted to wear the eponymous pink hat and knew several of my friends also would. I’m not much of a knitter but figured I could sew a quick and easy pussyhat with old sweaters. If you don’t know about pussyhats, they are the playful, pink “kitten-eared” hats marchers are wearing in the upcoming marches happening in D.C. and 200 other sister cities on Saturday, January 21st. You can read more about the idea behind the effort here. I know! Saturday is tomorrow! But if you are dying to wear a pussyhat, there is still time! These are so easy to make! There is definitely still time! Here is my DIY for quick and easy pussyhats. (more…)