Firehose

Lane Raglan | Handmade by Lara Liz

The Lane Raglan was actually one of my first PDF patterns that I bought but I never made it! I don’t know why I held off making it for almost a year but now I want to make a million of them! I actually put the Lane Raglan on my #2017MakeNine to try to motivate myself and maybe that it’s almost the halfway mark was my motivation?

Lane Raglan | Handmade by Lara LizLane Raglan | Handmade by Lara Liz

The Lane Raglan is a a raglan sleeve top (duh…) with fitted sleeves and shaping throughout the bodice. It comes will about a million different options –

  • Sleeve Options – Elbow, 3/4 length, long or long sleeves with a banded cuff
  • Hem – curved or handed hem
  • Optional pocket and thumb hole wristbands
  • FBA bodice pattern piece

This is hands down my favorite part about Hey June patterns. I’ve made the Union Street Tee and Charleston Dress and love that you can do a million different things with them!

Lane Raglan | Handmade by Lara Liz

I used a bamboo knit from... [read more]

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We’re back with a classic Sewcialist challenge: Tribute Month! 

They say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, so let’s pay tribute to our favourite sewcialists by copying their style!

Chose someone online or IRL whose sewing you adore, and take inspiration from a project, technique, sense of style or attitude. You could copy an outfit directly, or just ask yourself, “What would they sew with this fabric?” At its heart, Tribute Month is a chance to let people know that they inspire you. It’s a way to spread the love and celebrate each other!

Tribute Month is also a great chance to push your comfort zone:

  • Do you always play it safe? Choose someone who inspires you to be bold with colour and proportion, like Oona, Jasika, Mary Alice or Anna.
  • Is your wardrobe lacking interesting basics or workwear? Take a page from Carolyn, Margo... [read more]
You’re all winners! I could end this post there. But I won’t! It is quite a lengthy one, so stick the kettle on or, y’know, pour yourself a glass of wine! At any rate, any of the 400+ completed shirtdresses are totally deserving of a prize, or a gift. As you’re probably aware, the recipients...
This is the last construction post of my wedding dress! I'll cover creating the skirt, adding the bodice and the finishing touches.

You may remember in the photos of the dress toile the skirt was narrow and the train rather short. I was keen to fix this in the actual dress as it felt limiting (both in style and movement) and I wanted to show off the beautiful fabrics as far as possible. With a limited amount of fabric, the width of the skirt and therefore the length of the train was determined by the width of the silk satin. 



At 132cm wide, the early indications were that this would be close to what I had originally wanted. At the cutting out session, we took the skirt pattern and sliced it up the middle, laid it on the silk satin and spread it as far as we could. By this time I had my shoes and they demanded an extra 8cm of length to be... [read more]

sashiko10When I knew that I was going to have a double mastectomy and no reconstruction, I went looking for style ideas. I anticipated that my body was going to change pretty dramatically, and I was wondering if my style might need to change a bit, too. My “go to” outfit had been a solid color fit and flare dress, usually with a jacket or cardigan (on an 8-shaped body). I wondered if I would look more of an H-shape after surgery, and in fact I do. (Note – I strongly advocate that you wear whatever you want to! These are just my thoughts. : )

I searched the web (as one does these days!) for style inspiration. One of the common suggestions is to “look for gentle draping, soft ruffles, asymmetrical designs or patterns” on tops or dresses.  I was hooked by the idea of pattern on a dress bodice.

 

 

I’m a long-time sashiko fan. In part, I am drawn to Japanese... [read more]

One of my friends is a taxidermist with an amazing workspace, and he said he'd teach me some things a while ago. We were supposed to meet for the first 'lesson' when he messaged to tell me he was a bit too busy to really teach, but I was always welcome to just hang around instead. So I did, and brought my sketchbook!



(click for larger versions)
When I'm working in cut out paper the point is to simplify things as much as possible, reducing them to their essence. I liked drawing all these tiny details for a change! It has been a while since I did anything like this, drawing on location, and it's rusty to say the least. These two drawings (slightly larger than A3 sized) took three hours, and I kind of cringe at the perspective. But it was fun, and isn't that more important? My sense of perspective will come back eventually.

Who made my clothes? It’s a question that Fashion Revolution have been urging us to ask since the Rana Plaza tragedy, in order to achieve greater transparency in the fashion industry.

When I saw that Fashion Revolution had developed a short online course with the University of Exeter, I couldn’t wait to get started. This first week has been about how the Rana Plaza disaster was reported around the world and then focusing on clothes we have in our wardrobes.

I’m already fascinated! For one exercise we took an item of clothing from our wardrobes to consider how many people were involved in creating it and it really got me thinking about how, potentially, a massive number of people have come into contact with our clothes from start to end.

I know a fair amount of my clothes are made by me, but there’s no point in using those for these tasks. Instead I pulled out a... [read more]


I think the title says it all, ;). I saw this gorgeous white roses on blue background cotton fabric at my local fabric store and knew I had to make a dress out of it. Plus 50% off!

The pattern was a mash-up of different patterns. I used the full circle skirt from my Butterick 6019 instead of drafting my own and the rest from Gertie’s Ultimate Dress Book. I used the strapless bodice with sweetheart neckline, side seam pockets, and used the strap piece from her faux sarong dress pattern to make 2. After tacking them on they ended up falling off my shoulders but I liked the look.

I used my size 8 strapless bodice pieces with a 3″ FBA (full bust adjustment). Then spiral steel boning along the seam lines with an additional diagonal piece as recommended by Gertie. Placed 9 pieces in all. Love my spiral steel boning cutters! I also added a waist stay to make... [read more]

The soft V neck on the Laminaria Swimsuit is really easy to sew and gives you results that are almost as nice as the sharp V neck, so if you’re not looking to give yourself an extra challenge, this is the way to go.

Cut your elastic to the length described in the instructions. Mark the center of the elastic with a pen. You can go ahead and write with a ball-point pen or permanent marker (instead of a wash-away marker) since it won’t be seen in the finished suit.

Pin the elastic to the inside of the suit. I like to use pins horizontally so I can take them out as I sew. The elastic is the same length as the fabric here so no need to stretch or gather anything. Make sure that your center mark aligns with the center of the V. The exact position of the ends of the elastic (whether they abut or overlap the side elastic) doesn’t matter since the point will be cut off... [read more]

Tunic bible chambray dress cording trim sewing Megan Francine
The pattern for this dress came from the book The Tunic Bible by authors Sarah Gunn and Julie Starr. I purchased the book shortly after it was released, but I had such a hard time deciding what tunic to make. I was really stumped as to which neckline to pick as there are 12! That being said, there are an infinite number of tunics that can be made with this pattern as the authors included different bodices, sleeves, lengths, and necklines. This pattern is so versatile, some of the combinations look nothing like a classic tunic. You should checkout @julie_starr on instagram to see her “Tunic a Day” posts to see all the different tunics people have made. I also love how they reference popular designers such as Tory Burch in the book for inspiration as it shows how to make such a classic sillouette trendy at the same time. 

The Tunic bible review chambray dress cording trim sewing Megan Francine
The Tunic bible review chambray dress cording trim sewing Megan Francine
I made an extra... [read more]

Main Blog tour graphic

After making my two sets of the Comfy Cozy pajamas, I knew I wanted to try more from Laela Jeyne patterns. Then she started giving hints on instagram of a new collection including a cool looking swim suit. Can you guess what’s next? Oh, yes. I’m hopping on a blog tour to show off the new Summer Collection from Laela Jeyne.

LJ summer label 2

I’m not ready to take on sewing a swim suit yet; but, inspired by Mallory of the Self Sewn Wardrobe I decided to take a big step out of my comfort zone and chose to make the cropped Dahlia tank top and Rose circle skirt*. Did you see me say cropped?

LJ 9

The axiom with cropped tops is balance your coverage: If you show a little abdomen, then have more coverage elsewhere like with a higher neckline or sleeves on your top. Full coverage on your bottom half; like a maxi skirt or pants is a good counter balance too. I’ll be... [read more]

I’m sure you guys have learned by now that I am probably the most selfish sewist ever! I HATE sewing for other people! I don’t like how hard it is to get hold of them for fitting, how they always want things I quite dislike (ditzy florals, beah!) and how in the end, I have […]
between Victoria, British Columbia, and Edinburgh, Scotland … and why am I telling you this?  Well today I started as this week’s “Fashion Superstar” over on CUT OUT + KEEP! CUT OUT + KEEP is an Edinburgh based craft community I would like to introduce to you. But let me start from the beginning … […]
You ever get a thought into your head and just can;t let it go? Well today I was thinking about crochet granny squares and how easy it would be to make an item of clothing out of them? You see I find crochet more relaxing than knitting probably because of the monotony.   Anyway a quick browse on pinterest showed me that whilst you can make a garment out of granny squares sometimes you just

Discovery and wisdom of the past month: “Change in location will change your wardrobe”.

And who would of thought that summer in TN is so rainy? Which in itself is a wonderful thing, and of course needs additional time for sewing. Long sleeves are getting back into my summer wardrobe and what could be nicer than light, yet practical cotton summer jacket.

insta fron jacket 1

So I went through my stash, (by the way, I selling through my stash currently – shop here) and found this beautiful crème and pale green cotton with subtle pattern. I only had one yard so I had to make it work. Since the pattern is very simple I had no trouble working with it, however taking in fact that this is patterned fabric –  I had to match the pattern and work with pattern repeat. Those of you who ever had the pleasure to work with very structured repeat pattern know that it can be a pain in your... [read more]

Thank you to Style Maker Fabrics for providing the fabric for this post.

Last year I made a simple little blush pink dress which quickly became my go-to dress for weddings, date nights, nights out, and even occasionally work. Although I still wear it, the delicate rayon has sadly become a bit threadbare, and the dress needs replacing! This time, I chose a much more vibrant pink--this hot pink rayon crepe from Style Maker Fabrics. Side note: if you haven't sewn with rayon before, you should. It's the nicest fabric, soft and drapey, and works for anything that you want to be pretty and floaty--without costing a fortune or being impossible to wrangle under your presser foot.

I'm very happy with the way the dress turned out and I think it will be a perfect replacement for last February's dress. If you ask my college friends, they will tell you my perfect party... [read more]

Hi everyone! Carrie here again to get us started on our Webster Top & Dress sewalong! The Webster is such a versatile summer sewing pattern (or layering piece for our friends in the Southern Hemisphere) and we can’t wait to see what you create!

Choosing your size

The first step in our sewalong is choosing your size in the Webster Top & Dress. There are two measurement charts: one is the Body Measurement chart, and the other is the Finished Garment chart. The Body Measurement chart helps you choose your size based on what numbers you get when you measure your body with a tape measure – it has numbers for your bust (around the fullest part), waist and hip. The Finished Garment chart shows you the size of the actual sewn garment – the difference between that and the Body Measurement chart is called “ease”, and it’s the... [read more]

This year's Me Made May (once again) highlighted my startling lack of tops to pair with my many culottes, growing trouser collection and the odd skirt. I struggle with finding appropriate summer tops as I'm fairly self-concious when it comes to strappy things, so when I saw the new Sakura collection from Papercut Patterns, the not-too-revealing Kyoto, with it's quirky ruffles, really excited me! It's also aptly named, as we're jetting off to Japan next month and plan to visit Kyoto while we're there! Here are the two versions I've made so far:

2 Papercut Patterns Kyoto tops
The PDF pattern was reasonably priced, and there really aren't too many pages to print. If you're savvy and only want to make the t-shirt version, you could save a few more pages by skipping the sweater sleeve (I'm saving that version for the winter). One of my only criticisms of the... [read more]

Hi Readers!

I am undoubtedly a dresses girl, but sometimes I want to throw on some slim-fitting jeans.  The thing is, when I wear skinny jeans, I don’t want to pair them with a curve-hugging top, and instead want to opt for a longer looser fitting blouse that covers up my mid-section.  Yep, I don’t want to show off my full tummy.

The problem is, I don’t have many tops that fit that description.  So I figured it was time to sew one up.  I looked through patterns and came across the Scroop Henrietta Maria Dress and Top.  I noticed this pattern a few months before, but I waffled on it for a while.  The thing is that I have a lot of vintage peasant blouse patterns and I wasn’t sure that I needed this one.  However, all of those blouses are at least 10″ smaller in the bust than I am and I’d have to grade them up.  And…. sometimes I am laaaaazy.  Also,... [read more]

Kyoto Sweater | Handmade by Lara Liz

Happy Monday from Disney World! I am down here for a work training, but Nathan and I were able to sneak in a day in Disney beforehand. I’ve been sharing parts on the weekend on my Instagram stories if you want to follow along! Warning: thKyoto Sweater | Handmade by Lara Lizere Kyoto Sweater | Handmade by Lara Lizare a lot of Pony Tanks that will be worn this week 🙂

Anyways, what you really came here for is #MeMadeMonday, so here we go! People have been going crazy over the new Papercut Patterns collection, Sakura, so I had to join in on the fun! While at first I wasn’t totally in love with the patterns, I decided there were a few I wanted to give a go! As a huge ruffles fan, I just couldn’t pass up the Kyoto Sweater! Despite it being so warm here in the Washington, D.C. area, who doesn’t love a cute sweatshirt to throw on at night or in the morning?

I’ve made a few other Papercut Patterns and had a pretty good idea about their... [read more]

So it's been awhile but I'm back with a new project!  I've actually done some other sewing too, but I'll tell you about that another day.  Today I want to talk about my #sewtogetherforsummer shirtdress!

Sew Over It Penny

#sewtogetherforsummer just finished yesterday, but for the past three months sewists around the globe have been sewing up shirtdresses as a part of the Instagram based sew along hosted by Sarah @sewsarahsmith, Susy @sewing_in_spain and Monika @rocco.sienna.  It's been an inspiring and motivating three months of seeing all the different patterns and variations being made up.

For my part I was consumed with indecision on which pattern to choose.  It was a toss up between either Sew Over It's Vintage Shirtdress or Cashmerette's Harrison Shirtdress.  I got as far as printing each pattern off and assembling the PDF sheets together, but that was it.  I just... [read more]

Earlier this month, I mentioned that I’m looking for a TNT summer tank pattern. Itch To Stitch Lago wasn’t right for me, so I thought I’d mention a few patterns I already love!

Summer Tanks - Jalie and Santa Fe

First up, the Hey June Santa Fe! This was my favourite pattern last summer, and I love all those versions still. It’s a swingy, loose style – although after wearing voluminous Ebony dresses all winter, the Santa Fe seems quite tame in comparison!

Summer Tanks - Jalie and Santa Fe

Anyone recognise this ITY from fabric.com? I also bought it in the red, blue and yellow colourway (instead of this pink), and I know I’ve seen a few other bloggers sew with it! 

Thoughts on this pattern:

  • It also has a t-shirt and colour-blocked versions – I’ve made them all!
  • I like the high neckline and cut-away shoulders.
  • I love the curved hem, but I’ve also made it with a straight hem, and... [read more]
Happy SewSew everyone,
Today is a quick review on a new commercial pattern that fits my way of dressing perfectly for summer heat.  It is a  new favorite for now.  How many times have we said this about a new pattern?  At the time of this posting, this is actually a favorite.  Later post will prove something new, so don't hold my feet to the fire please.
Read more »

Two months later......we have a dress!
Yep, this took me forever but it's finished and I'm wearing it so still winning :)

I got started on this back in May, cut out all of the pattern pieces, well those for the bodice and lining and then realised the fabric was no where near wide enough to fit a Flora skirt onto so left that for a few weeks. Over those weeks I slowly pieced the bodice together.


I had no intention of fitting this along the way, I cut out the pattern to my measurements and just hoped it would fit at the end. 
During that time I also decided to add a simple gathered skirt, I actually used the skirt from the Bonnell dress as it is slightly more shaped than a gathered rectangle of fabric.



Finished article...it fits! Well it does but weirdly it came out quite big in the waist. This fabric does have a bit of stretch, it could do with a couple of inches taken out but not... [read more]
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