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Vogue 1507

This is my third #makenine2018 make of the year, and it’s made up in stash fabric. I love accomplishing goals! (Let’s not talk about the fabric I bought last week.)

I have had this beautiful Japanese cotton lawn in my stash for a few years, now. My mom got it for me for my birthday. I know she got it while on vacation, but I can’t remember where she was. Chicago? Boston? Mom???

I am absolutely in love with this fabric, but I had been really stumped over what to make with it. I wanted to make it into a sundress, but I didn’t want to look too young, and was afraid the pink floral might make me look like a big, creepy toddler in too twee of a silhouette. After seeing Sally Oh’s floral V1507 with her white Gingers, I knew I had my answer. Also I already had a pair of natural denim Gingers, so I knew I’d have at least one thing to wear the finished top with.

I took the advice of several sewists, and just good Big 4 sense, and sized down. I measure at an almost perfect 12 in Big 4 patterns, but went with a size 10. My shoulders are on the broader side. If that does not describe you, I would advise going down two sizes. The neck line is wide!

I tend to gravitate towards pretty simple projects and knit fabrics. While this is not a difficult project, the millions of yards of narrow hems mean that this is not an instant gratification sew. Also the weirdly shaped pattern pieces as construction order means that you basically cannot try on the top until the shirt is practically complete, which made it a bit of a nail-biter for me.

Here are some detail shots. This post is a bit of a photo dump. No a-blog-agies here. I was just feeling myself and this gorgeous fabric!

I love the facing on the top tier. The details are what make designer Vogue patterns so worth the effort!

I was pretty faithful to the construction methods described in the pattern. Finishing the yoke seam with bias tape was a new technique for me, and I really enjoy how high-end it looks. I really tried to apply that same finish to the armhole seam, but I could not get it to look good. It was really bulky, and even after calling McCall’s (awesome) customer service line, I was not sure which way to press the seam. Seriously, though, McCall’s customer service is amazing! The line rang, like, twice, and then a very efficient and knowledgeable human answered.

Cutting it out was also a beast. Because my fabric was only 45” wide, I had to cut everything on a single layer. I got really nervous that I was going to forget to flip a pattern piece and not have enough fabric to finish. Also, the sizes on the yoke pattern piece are mismarked. This really paralyzed me for a bit.

I’m sure I won’t get a ton of wear out of this top as it is kind of a statement piece, can’t layer very easily, and is a decidedly bra-free zone; but I love it! I kinda like that it shows off my tummy, a bit. By belly is a bit squishier and stripier since having a baby, and I’m trying really hard to embrace the changes.

I’m trying to think of what to pair this top with in summer. I tend to think that a wide top needs a narrow bottom, but maybe some linen culottes??? I’m pretty sure I am not that bold.

As mentioned above, the jeans are Ginger jeans sewn up in natural Cone Mill Denim from Threadbare Fabrics. They are my usual size (6 I think) taken in quite a bit on the sides. I used the pocket stay, tummy panel thing. I made this when I was about 6 months post partum and had lost quite a bit of weight from breastfeeding. Now that I’m closer to my normal, pre-baby weight, I regret being so gungho in taking in the sides, but denim relaxes, so whatev.


A subtle, basic sweatshirt

I am on a roll! This is my second finished garment from my #2018makenine.

Sweatshirts are one of my favorite garments to sew and wear. They are quick to make, blow nonsewists’ minds, and I wear them most days. My work has a very casual dress code, and is an icebox year round, so sweatshirts are essential to my wardrobe. Jeans and hoodies can get a little old, though, so this make is a good change of pace without actually having to stray outside of my comfort zone.

This is McCalls 7688. As soon as this pattern got released, I knew I needed those dropped shoulder ruffles in my life! And just in case the silhouette wasn’t loud enough on it’s own, I decided to whip it up in some HOT PINK fabric. I used sweatshirt fleece from my favorite source. I think it is this one. Both the fabric and pattern were already in my stash. Admittedly they were fairly recent purchases, but I think that they still qualify for my goal to use up what I have before adopting a bunch of new material and patterns.

There is not much to say about this make. It goes together really fast. I did it up all on my serger (with red thread, cause I didn’t have any pink and/or it’s a design feature). I did use my sewing machine to top stitch the neck band. I did the sleeve ruffle from view D in the A length.

I made up a size 10 without any modifications. I measure at a straight size 12 in the Big 4, but like pretty much every other sewist on the planet, I find that there is so much ease that I need to size down.I think I might shorten the neck band by a half inch, or so, if I was going to make this pattern again. It’s fine as drafted, but at least for the fabric I made it in, I think shortening it a hair would have helped it to lay a little flatter.

I will also say that the sleeves are nice and long. For me, this is a feature, but they might be too long if you are a little more petite in stature (I’m just shy of 5’ 6”, for reference).

I feel disproportionately fancy wearing this sweatshirt. Someone told me I look like cinderella. I’m not sure that was meant to be compliment, or the kind of thing you say because the involuntary look on your face requires some comment vaguely resembling a compliment. Either way, I’ll be swanning around in this beaut, feeling like pre-midnight Cinderella.



Juice Box Bomber

This is the first item completed off of my #2018makenine, and it is my new favorite make, ever. I made this for Ernie’s first birthday, and I am really hoping to make him a handmade gift for every birthday. It makes my insides feel mushy.

Confession time: I know it’s terrible, but when I first found out I was having a boy, I mourned all of the ruffly, beautiful dresses I would never get to sew. But, you guys, I think that boy sewing might actually be incredible!

Something that I’ve been wanting to try for a while is stenciling with freezer paper and fabric paint, and this felt like the perfect project to try it out on. It seems like a great way to add a unique touch to very wearable boys clothes. I think it was a good choice to buy the world’s biggest roll of freezer paper because I’m never going to stop!

I knew I wanted to incorporate our nickname for Ernie, “Juice Box.” I sketched out a few variations of the design before settling on this. Once I had my design, it was just a matter of drawing it onto the paper, cutting it out, ironing it on, and then dobbing on the paint.   

For the jacket, I used Brindle and Twig’s Zip Jacket. I made a straight size 18-24, since I want Ern to be able to wear this for a while, even if it starts out a little big. I love Brindle and Twig patterns, and I have sewn up a few. I think that their tops tend to run a little longer than you find in ready to wear.

I used some really nice sweatshirt fleece from The Rain Shed. I bought it in person, but it looks similar to this one. I am so lucky to live fairly close to such an awesome specialty fabric store! I used some leftover ponte knit I had in my stash for the bands and cuffs. I have a lot of the red left, and I am really considering making myself a matching jacket. Maybe the Augusta Hoodie from Named, sans hood???

The whole thing sewed up really fast. I love the way the insides look super clean without any need for a lining. The construction of the hem bands with the facing concealing all of the raw edges was new to me, and I really liked learning a new technique. After a few wears, I think that the facings might need some additional treatment, since they like to peek out sometimes. I might hand stitch them in place… or I might leave well enough alone. Finished is beautiful!

I used my serger for most of the piecing. I love the way serged insides look. This could easily be sewn up on a regular old sewing machine, but I’ve got to justify the price of my beloved Babylock Imagine by using it on every project. Lol.

And… One more goofy pic of me trying to teach a toddler how to model, while I try to teach myself to take pictures, while I try to teach myself to blog.



Plans for 2018

This is my first time doing a make nine grid. It never really appealed to me, but something about seeing everyone adding check marks and x’s to last years grid, really got me fired up! I love a list. So satisfying! (In fact, I’ve already started trying out options for adding check marks in anticipation of completing some of these projects.)

I’ve always maintained somewhat of a fabric stash, but since having a baby last year, my stash growth has far outpaced my actual sewing output. Planning, dreaming and shopping is much easier to do while holding an infant, than real live sewing is. (Also, have you all heard that having a baby changes your body? That shit is for real.) When I had to start buying additional storage containers and exploring apps to organize my stash, I knew something had to change.

This year, I want to focus on using up what I already have. I am not putting a complete moratorium on fabric shopping. I just want to slow down, appreciate what I already have and really evaluate what I actually need.

This means that my make nine is really focused on simple projects that I can accomplish in short sewing sessions interspersed throughout the week (gone are the days of 9 hour marathon sewing sessions!). I also tried to consider what fabrics and patterns I already have, although completing some of these items will require some shopping (damn!).

  1. Brindle And Twig bomber jacket for Ernie’s first birthday. I am planning on making this in red sweatshirt fleece with some black ponte knit for the cuffs and bands. I have both fabrics in my stash, but the pattern was a new purchase.
  2. Ginger Jeans. I’d really like to make at least two new pairs. I have some black Cone Mill denim and a light wash denim in my stash that are just begging to be skinny jeans. I already have made four pairs of Gingers, so the pattern is already in my stash, too.
  3. Vogue 1507. My mom gifted me some beautiful japanese floral lawn fabric for my birthday a few years ago. The print is beautiful, but I’ve really struggled with what it should be. I think that this will be the perfect match. I did not already own the pattern, but I went ahead and picked it up at the last Vogue $4.99 sale.
  4. McCalls 7688 in some hot pink sweatshirt fleece. The pattern and the fabric already live in my stash, so basically a free sweatshirt! I’m going to be doing a mashup of views A and D. If this turns out well, I might splurge on some Liberty fleece.
  5. The Lander Pant is the most beautiful thing I have ever seen. I can not wait to get these on my body. Unfortunately, in order to stick with my goal of using up what I already have, these will have to wait for my fall wardrobe…of course I am only human, so may just buy some springy/summery fabric. The fabric that I have earmarked for these is some pumpkin colored twill that I picked up from the Pendleton Woolen Mill a few years ago.
  6. The Hunter Tank. I am already voting this Least Likely to Succeed. But, having already committed to it on Instagram, I am powerless to remove it from my nine. I absolutely love it, but after searching through it’s hashtag on Instagram, I have come to the conclusion that it takes more boob to pull it off than I have on hand. Also, I don’t own this pattern, or fabric to make it. But, I think it is so cute! It would go great with landers, a high waisted skirt I have, gingers, or pretty much everything. I’m talking myself back into it.
  7. Another classic that I have everything I need already in my stash. This is the Lil Papoose moccasins. I’ve modified the pattern a little bit over the 5 or so versions I’ve made over the years. Ernie will be needing the next size up. I’ve got some nice thick cowhide for the sole and some lucious deer hide for the upper.
  8. A halloween costume for Ernie TBD.
  9. Some summery shorts out if some stash rayon, using a vintage Butterick pattern from my stash. I have actually had this pattern twice. The first time I took it from my mom’s stash, but then I lost it. So the second time I had to buy it on ebay.

I am so excited to get started on my plans and make some space to buy new fabric!