Ch- Ch- ChiTowns for the Ch-Ch-Changes blog tour

Ch- Ch- Changes blog tour graphic

The  Ch-Ch-Changes tour (hosted by Sewing by Ti) is all May long and my fellow bloggers and I are talking about changes to our sewing. Whether the change is a transition for the season, getting more organized, trying new things, reconsidering old things, or styling things.

At the begining of April my sewing plans and schedule reached their end and I’ve really struggled with putting together my next three month plan. It’s mid-May now and I still have almost nothing planned and find myself in a new place; finishing a project and then deciding what to do next. For this very organized and it’s fair to say regimented sewer, this is very strange and unsettling territory.

So I’ve been addressing the immediate. I’ve been filling wardrobe holes by sewing up some additional shorts for spring and summer. Sewing for the transitioning seasons isn’t a noteable change for me, but being less organized about it is a big change for me.

Yellow Chi Towns by mahlicadesigns 4

Yellow Chi Towns by mahlicadesigns1

On  a whim, I joined the tour and decided to make up another pair of Chi Towns to go with the Onyx shirt I made last year. I’ve had this mustard yellow linen I received from Sew Vagabond Shop in my stash waiting to make these. I sized down and made a few fitting tweeks to the pattern and viola. I’m thankful for another summer outfit and think I can use these mustard shorts with a lot of my existing tops.

Yellow Chi Towns by mahlicadesigns 14

With a trip coming up to warmer weather, I very quickly decided to make another pair of Chi Towns using a putty colored linen/blend from my stash. Other than having to fix the same spot on my topstitching 4 times, the second pair went together very quickly. I can see the benefit of sewing multiples of a pattern in succession. Perhaps I need to consider this when I get back to my normal routine.

Chi Town Chinos by mahlicadesigns label 2

Chi Town Chinos by mahlicadesigns 7

Chi Town Chinos by mahlicadesigns 2

Do you have any Ch- Ch- Changes going on this spring?

You can see what other bloggers on the tour have been talking about on the Ch- Ch- Changes themes. Please pay a visit and join the conversation.

Monday, May 8- Sewing By Ti
May 9th- Sewing By Ti
May 10th- Sewing By Ti
May 11th- Lilliepawillie
May 12th- Sewing By Ti

May 15th- Anne Mari Sews
May 16th- Mahlica Designs
May 17th- Ma Moose
May 18th- The Fairy Dust Bin
May 19th- Harper + Lu

Monday, May 22nd- Margarita on the Ross
May 23rd- Very Blissful
May 24th- Creative Counselor
May 25th- Doodle Number 5
May 26th- Ade Says

Sunday, May 28th- Sew Like a Sloth
May 29th- Anne Mari Sews
May 30th- Stitching and Making

As always, Melissa

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Chi-Town Chinos #SewingDare by mahlicadesigns

A couple months back I took a #SewingDare from Gillian at Crafting A Rainbow. Gillian’s challenge: “I love your mustard skirt, and how it stands out against the neutrals in your wardrobe… so I dare you to make something else bright that can mix and match into your wardrobe!”

My stash is almost all neutrals, so I  grabbed the most colorful fabric in there and started brainstorming. Generally I’m not a florals person, but this cotton twill has moved between my stash and my giveaway pile so many times it’s a little silly. The challenge and the recently released Chi-Town Chinos was a good push to getting cutting.

Chi Towns front

I really like the chino style of the Chi-Towns and have put the skirt version on my Sew Everything list. I definitely want more of these shorts, but that will have to wait for Spring sewing.

Chi Town Chino shorts

The Pattern: Chi-Town Chinos shorts from Alina Design Co. in size 10 based on my measurements. The pattern includes a shorts or skirt version and four options for back pockets.

I liked that you get all the pattern pieces ready right at the start and that the single piece front pocket is nicely finished with facings and french seams. There is a lot of attention to detail that makes everything about the shorts a step above.

Chi Town Chino shorts

The pattern and instructions have fitting built in, which is great for your first time sewing the pattern. The back pattern piece includes an extension that makes it easy to fit the waist and in my case a fuller seat. The instructions walk you through basting and fitting the back piece before you do your final sew.

I found I did not need the extension or need to do a full butt adjustment in my size, but I did have a lot of excess fabric in the back of the legs below my seat. I think this is an indicator that I need to size down and do a full butt adjustment for the smaller size.  I ended up removing 1 in at the inseam and side seam of the back piece only. I like the fit I have now, so I probably won’t experiment with going down a size.

Next time I will also adjust the front crotch curve. I find it scoops out just a little too much for me.

I’m pretty impressed that most of the fitting issues were worked out on the first try by following the pattern instructions.

ChiTowns back

The fabric: One yard of Cone Mills cotton twill and about a FQ of lightweight cotton both from inherited stash.

I’m pleased that the shorts do work with several tops, but honestly the jury is still out on this print. I’ll need to give these some wearing around before I decide if they are “me” or if they will be downgraded to around the house shorts.

Chi Towns feature banner

The Chi-Town Chino shorts took me about 5 hours to complete, including fitting and adjustments. I’m hoping to cut that down to 3.5 hours next time.

Total Cost: $13.75    Fabric $0 (inherited stash)        Pattern $12      Notions: $1.75

City Gym Shorts in linen

As the seasons change, I always have a few things that pop up as a semi-urgent need. What I’m needing right now are some warm weather pajama bottoms/around the house shorts. I confess I wear my pjs late into the afternoon sometimes, so I want them to look decent enough to answer the door in or make a run to the mail box in with out embarrassment.

City Gym Shorts by mahlicadesigns

My ideal plan was to use two linen skirts in my upcycling bag to give me a pair of black and a pair of oat shorts. The oat color skirt is MIA, so black it is for now.

City Gym Shorts by mahlicadesigns

I think I got a great pair of shorts that work for casual wear and comfy pajamas too. Win win.

City Gym Shorts by mahlicadesigns

For my next pair shall I add pockets?

City Gym Shorts by mahlicadesigns

The Pattern: City Gym Shorts from Purl Soho Size 38-40in hip. No alterations.

The Fabric: Upcycled linen an store bought bias tape.

The City Gym Shorts should take you about 2.5 hours to make; longer if you make your own bias tape.

 

Total cost: $3     Fabric $0      Notions $3       Pattern $free

 

Kirsten Kimono Tee and the Lindy Petal Skirt for Indie Pattern Month

I’m diving into the Indie Pattern Month contest over at The Monthly Stitch. This weeks contest is all about separates. Hey, that’s what I do! This time though, I’m aiming to make them play nicely together. Let’s see.

Kirsten Kimono an Lindy Petal by mahlicadesignsI’m putting together the Lindy Petal Skirt from Itch to Stitch in a size small (blogged here) and a new work up of a personal favorite, the Kirsten Kimono Tee from Maria Denmark with a small modification, in a size medium.

The Lindy was made using a wonderful French terry in charcoal gray from Raspberry Creek, one of my Core Wardrobe colors. I made a size small and shortened the length by 1in. Next time, I may slim down the hip area to reduce some of the lumpiness there. The pattern is well put together, with easy instructions for making alterations. The Lindy is easy to make, a great stash buster at less than 1 yd (for me anyway), and looks so smart.

Kirsten kimono ans Lindy Petal by mahlicadesignsFor my second try at the Kirsten Kimono I sized up to a medium. (first version here). I like my summer tees a little looser, so this fit is better. For something a little different this time I wanted to add a 2in bottom band. I reduced the tee length by 4in when cutting as it was looking pretty long, and then added on the 2in band. The Kirsten Kimono pattern does not include seam allowances, argh, so I trace mine with 3/8in seam allowances for serged seams. The sleeve has a 1in hem allowance added and is sewn down with a stretch stitch.

I used a light weight mystery knit for the Kirsten Kimono, a prize from Elizabeth Made This during Sew Mama Sew’s giveaway day. It’s a bolder color than I would normally choose but I’m so glad I got to try it out.

Lindy Petal Skirt & Kirsten kimono by mahlicadesignsI like the two pieces together, but tucking in the tee gives a little bit of lumpiness under the skirt. Untucked is fine, but only just fine.

Lindy Petal & Kirtsten Kimono by mahlicadesignsTake a look as I pair it with my Cobalt Shorts. I like these two together.

Kirsten Kimono & Cobalt shorts You can check out what others are making for the contest over at The Monthly Stitch.