Monday, October 17, 2016

Santa Fe Tie-Dye Dress and Striped Tee

Helllooooo friends! Finally blogging my last two summer sewing projects, made from the same pattern:

Hey June Handmade's Santa Fe Top

First up, a knit midi dress in this groovy blue tie-dye print.  You may have seen it it on Instagram here or here! (technically also here, but in it's starting state ;)

This dress is so comfy and swingy it makes me want to dance! This blue/teal rayon spandex knit from Joann's is a little outside my normal style, but when I saw it I knew I wanted a tank dress out of it!
I also knew I wanted to wear it to school and therefore it should have a modest neckline (surprisingly hard to find on tank sewing patterns) and that is what led me to the Santa Fe Top pattern by Hey June Handmade.

To create the dress, I simply added a gathered skirt with an elastic waist casing to the sleeveless top - View A - which I cut on the fold instead of having a center seam. Originally it was maxi length, but I felt overwhelmed by the print so I cut it off to make a midi-length (oooh...trendy ;) *More visible in the instagram photos

My second project with this pattern was a striped tee in a bold black and ivory stripe rayon knit. This is view C of the pattern, without the center seam (cut on the fold). It is also very comfortable to wear, although the flowy silhouette is not as flattering from the side when you are more than a B cup ;)

My absolute favorite thing about this pattern is that it introduced me to knit neck bindings, as opposed to neck bands. The difference is that a neck binding folds over the entire neckline from underneath, completely encasing the seam allowance and helping the neckline to lay flat. It is a super clean finish inside and out. After making these two garments this way, I may never go back to bands again!

The only disappointment with this top is the fabric - after two wears it is already pilling like crazy. I am pretty sure I got it at Joann's, but I can't find a link. Are there any good tells of fabric quality (other than the price tag) before buying a knit like this??? Have any of your favorite sewing projects ever been ruined by bad fabric? Commiserate with me in the comments below! Lol - and thanks for reading!

❤ Sally

Monday, September 19, 2016

Sewing Friends, Marriage, and Flamingos

This is Ashley, blogger of Craft Sanctuary, and me, at the rehearsal dinner for her wedding this past July :) We like to tell people we met online. Which is true - thanks to the online sewing/blogosphere. When she moved to Chicago in February of 2014, we met up in person and have been super sewing friends ever since! Who would have guessed that two years later I would be attending her gorgeous wedding :)

Okay, anyways, back to the flamingo dress! I whipped this thing out in an HOUR - of course, the day of the rehearsal dinner. As you do. I had a dress already for the big day, but wanted to sew something to wear for my sewing friend's wedding festivities, and last minute, I had this flamingo epiphany!

This flamingo poly-crepe from Blackbird Fabrics had been sitting in my stash for awhile - it was sheer enough that it needed lined. My epiphany was that this dress pattern - McCall's 7405 - would be a snap to line, and the unstructured shape would be perfect for the drape of the fabric! And I could definitely sew it in an hour... right?

After cutting out the pieces, I stitched the lining to the main fabric along the armholes, which gave a nice finish. I then stitched the side seams and hemmed the lining and main fabric separately, serged the necklines together, folded over to make the casing for the neck-tie, topstitched, and pulled the neck-tie through. One hour. Done.

Pattern: McCall's 7405 -  Misses' Gathered-Neckline Dresses with Ties

Fabric: Flamingo print poly-crepe from Blackbird Fabrics (no longer available)

Sizing: Size 12 - fit is adjustable thanks to the ties, but I could probably have made a 10. I feel like McCall's patterns run large in the shoulders/arms.

The dress pattern comes with a pattern for your own tie belt, but I already had this awesome flamingo pink belt in my closet. The dress is also quite cute without a belt, especially in the hot summer, but I will almost always belt it as I like a defined waist.

So there you have it! The saga of the flamingo dress I made in an hour to wear to Ashley's rehearsal dinner. That crazed hour of sewing (and Josh saying "seriously... you're going to finish this before we have to leave?) was all made worth it when, at the rehearsal dinner, Ashley's Grandma came up to me and said "You must be Ashley's sewing friend - that fabric is so her!" :) :) :)

❤ Sally

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Gray Bow Chambray Southport

Hello there! Today I have a Southport dress (pattern by True Bias) made up in a gray chambray with white bows and dots (Gertie fabric at Joann's). This dress has been my summer uniform - as I'm sure it is for many other seamstresses - especially in a cool cotton fabric.

This dress is the second in my backlog of summer sewing projects, officially sewn around 4th of July - finished instagram photo here. Originally I was going to use this fabric for my sleeveless Sureau dress (evidence on IG) but the idea of the gray chambray as a casual Southport quickly took over :)

Pattern: Southport dress by True Bias

Fabric: Gray Bow Chambray by Gertie from Joanns (no longer available online - may be in the red tag clearance section in store)

Sizing: Size 6 bodice, with 1.5" FBA and 2" added length - For skirt, I cut the largest size at hips and graded to size 6 at waist

Overall this was a fairly simple dress to make. Look twice at the directions for the bias tape at the neckline - it was not my typical method so I had to do some unpicking, but I really like the finish. Oh! And my buttons are sewn straight through both button plackets - no button holes necessary - as this dress easily pulls on and I was feeling lazy ;)

When was a time you took a "seamstress only knows" shortcut in sewing a garment? Let me know in the comments below, and thanks for reading!

❤ Sally