Lily Wrap Skirt- Let’s Sew Together

Designer Stitch is developing a set of Let’s Sew Together patterns that are designed to be sewn with a novice or friend that you can help along the way and share the love of sewing with.

The concept of having a line of patterns that are beginner friendly and bring people together is so lovely and Ann of Designer Stitch really hit the mark in the first implementation of her idea- the Lily Wrap Skirt.

Lily 1

Why the Lily works.

The design is interesting with the two sides that fold over each other, reminding me of origami and there’s something about the shaping that brings to mind mathematical curves and lines.

The Lily is not only a beginner friendly pattern but it is thoughtful in its design to make it easy to help someone brand new to sewing. For example: 1. A 1/4in seam allowance is used along the curved edge with the tab. The narrower seam allowance removes the need to clip along that curve saving time and construction steps. 2. Using hook and loop as a closure is simple and easy to apply and much quicker that other types of closures.  3. The need for fitting is minimized. You may need to adjust your darts, but no alteration to fit the width of your waist or hips is needed in this design.

The Lily also works because it’s a great project to use fun fabrics with and heck, a reversible skirt is fun for all ages.

buckle close up

Take your Lily to the next level

After making the Lily, I have a few notes on how to add some of your intermediate sewing skills to the project. 1. Upgrade your closures. I used buckles and a hidden slide clasp because I’m not planning on wearing mine as reversible. Sewing with D used some really cute buttons on hers. 2. Add a facing or interface your waistband edge. The waistband is a turned over edge, I think this is probably fine for most, but I just feel like I need a little more support in my waistband.

Lily 3

How to partake in the fun without a “novice” to sew with you.

The timing wasn’t right for me to work with someone who would need a little help learning to sew the Lily skirt, so I explored two other options. Firstly, I paired with Diane of Sewing with D to talk through the process using video chat in facebook messenger. Secondly, since Elizabeth of Elizabeth Made This and I live in the same city, we arranged to do a sewing meet up to work on our skirts together.

In the initial chat with Diane we talked about the pattern, fabrics, and ideas we were considering. We were able to work out any questions we had about the pattern, get a second opinion about fabric choices, and of course just chat about whatever. Our second video conversation took place after we both had most of the construction completed. We talked about what we might do differently the next time we made the pattern, shared pictures of button and buckles we were deciding on and gave our opinions, and of course more sewing chit-chat. Most of my sewing friends are online, so I really liked having the video chats with Diane, whom I’d been acquainted with for some time, but never actually spoken to or met with in person.

Meeting with Elizabeth in person was another fun way to work on the project. We shared some tea and cinnamon rolls and then as two moms with limited sewing time are want to do, got right down to the business of sewing. Now neither Elizabeth or I need hand holding, but it is really nice to be able to say “what are you doing here”, or “how are you coming along on this step” and so on. So much better than talking to myself in my sewing room.

Thanks Elizabeth and Diane for being my sewing buddies on this project!

Lily 2

The Pattern: Lily Wrap Skirt in size 4. I shortened mine by 4in to hit above my knee.

The Fabric: Navy cotton sateen and a cotton wax print from my stash.

 

As always, thanks for reading today.

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Laela Jeyne Summer Collection has landed

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.

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?

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 honest, I had a big fear about showing too much skin and I was pretty anxious that a cropped tank top and a knee-length skirt was not going to give me enough balance between reveal and coverage.

Well, sometimes you just don’t know until you try. I made up the tank first and was elated at the fit and coverage. Yes-coverage in a cropped tank. First off, the Dahlia tank comes with cup sizes A-E, so you’re saved an FBA to avoid a tight fit across the bust, the front and back hem line scoops very nicely for a more subtle cropped look, and a good neckline and sleeve width give good coverage up top.

With the tank complete, I moved onto the Rose circle skirt. The skirt partners perfectly with the cropped tank since you choose your skirt size by measuring where you want it to sit on you. Wear it low on your hips if you like or wear it high for more coverage. I made my Rose to sit right at my natural waist. I’m showing less skin this way and most of my mommy tummy is hidden.

The Rose comes in quarter, half, and full circle options; as well as multiple length options ranging from mini to maxi. I went with the quarter circle and the 20in length and it’s just the look I like. I’m so glad to have this versatile pattern at the ready. A circle skirt pattern is a wardrobe basic that I’ve been missing.

I love how the outfit turned out and my fears about being too revealing where resolved by the design of the Dahlia tank and the fit options of the Rose skirt. I can’t believe how fast these patterns sew up and how little fabric I used. I think I spent about an hour on each of them and about 1 yd x 30in for each pattern.

So are cropped tops for you? I didn’t think they were for me, so maybe you should give it a try. If you don’t like it for streetwear, a cropped tank would be great for summer sleepwear.

Please, would you take a minute to look at what the other bloggers in the tour have made up from the Summer Collection? I’m sure they’d love you to stop by and share your thoughts.

Monday Anna’s Heirloom BoutiqueSwimming in a Sea of EstrogenOlive Ashby

Tuesday MahlicaDesignsPear Berry LaneSewing with Sarah

Wednesday Sewn at SeamsNini and AshThe Crafting FiendSew a Piece of Joy

Thursday I am Mami de SofionaSew and Tell ProjectMy Heart Will Sew On

Friday LoveThings!Idle SunshineLovely for LifeNeva Couture

 

As always, thanks for reading today.

You can follow me on instagramBloglovin, or by entering your email in the right side bar.

*Laela Jeyne provided the Dahlia and Rose patterns to use for my post. These are my straight up opinions.

This post may contain affiliate links, if you purchase through my links I get a small portion to help pay for my sewing hobby.

Ally Skirt and Onyx Shirt for the Knock It Off tour

Today I’m sharing an outfit I made for the Knock It Off blog tour hosted by Lulu & Celeste and Sprouting Jube Jube. The mission: Knock Off a look from a designer or rtw.

The challenging part of the tour parameters was finding my inspiration. I hadn’t followed designers or Ready To Wear (rtw) companies at all, but this was the perfect push to broaden my view.

Since I didn’t even know where to start, I had to work backwards. I knew I wanted to make a red skirt for summer, so I started looking at companies I’d heard people talking about- Anthropologie, Mod Cloth, and Urban Outfitters. I searched for red skirts and pinned the outfits I liked. Success! I found this outfit on Anthropologie that I wanted.

Photo from Anthropologie

Putting together the Knock Off was super easy from my pattern stash. The Ally Skirt and Onyx Shirt had the right silhouettes and I quickly hashed a plan to hack the Ally to get the look.

I made the Onyx in a size 4 using a cotton woven (an IKEA sheet from their clearance bin). Simple enough since I’ve made the Onyx before (here).

For the Ally I made a size small again (first Ally here) using a cotton sateen from Joann Fabrics, drafted an angled pocket, added 1.5in in height to the waistband, and added a zip fly and clasp closure.

I’m very pleased with how my outfit came out. It harkens to the inspiration photo and it’s my style and color scheme. I’m gettting better and better at hacking the patterns I own to get a look I want. It’s a learning process and of course there are goof ups like this one:

IMG_20170414_105924

I forgot to extend the waistband to account for the zipper fly extension. Whoopsie. I made it work by tappering it a bit.

I was a little short on fabric after drafting my hacks, so I was able to stashbust a little more of my quilting cotton stash for the waistband facing and fly shield.

I’m really happy with my outfit and that I can make myself a look instead of shelling out the $150 it would have taken for the Anthropologie version. Yikes!

My cost: Total: $13   Fabrics $9    Notions $4  Patterns: $0 Stash

If you’d like me to write up a tutorial on my Ally Skirt hack, let me know in the comments.

 

Now I’d like you to pay a visit the my fellow bloggers to see how they Knock It Off 

Monday, April 24  Lulu & CelesteCall AjairePaisley RootsAdventures with Bubba and Bug

Tuesday, April 25  Sprouting JubeJube mahlicadesignsSew and Tell Project

Wednesday, April 26  Lulu & CelesteSewSophieLynnNini and AshLittle Heart Threads

Thursday, April 27  Sprouting JubeJubesewingbytiInspinrationHouse of Estrela

Friday, April 28  Lulu & CelesteDuchess & HareCreative CounselorFAM

As always, thanks for reading today.

You can follow me on instagram, Bloglovin, or by entering your email in the right side bar.

Ally Skirt from Blue Dot Patterns

Frankly, I was very happy to let the current “denim everything” trend pass on by me. If I followed the trend back in middle school, I just don’t want anything to do with it.

And yet once again, my mind was changed by a pattern. The Ally Skirt is a six gore skirt with contoured waistband, length options, flap, pocket option, and top stitching.

Ally skirt on mahlcadesigns

Two ideas struck immediately when looking at the Ally; denim with copper snaps and yellow top stitching or corduroy in a camel/caramel color for that 70s feel. So very on trend right now. The new Ally Skirt just called out to be made up in denim.

I tested the Ally Skirt pattern for Blue Dot Patterns. Blue Dot Patterns may sound familiar. I’ve made up two Georgia‘s (here and here), hosted the Creative Sewing Challenge last fall, and one of my ideas for the Margo Blouse is on my sewing table now.

Ally Skirt by mahlicadesigns

I used a lightweight 7 oz. denim from my stash to make up my Ally in a size medium. With some pattern piece Tetris and using an extremely tight lay out, I was able to get my skirt cut out of 5/8 yard x 60in wide. If you have a directional print, fabric with nap, or narrower fabric; you’ll need more.

Ally Skirt by mahlicadesigns

Why I recommend the pattern: 1. Oh my is it so easy. All the pieces could get confusing, but the way they’re labeled and notched makes it no problem. 2. Diane, the pattern designer, even includes fitting as part of the pattern directions. Instead of a 1/2in seam allowance at the sides, I used a 5/8in seam allowance: Fitting Done! 3. A contoured waist band. I’m a pear shape so that’s perfect for me. 4. The style is classic and very on trend right now too.

Get yours! Get your Ally pattern for 30% off, for a limited time, directly from Blue Dot Patterns or from UpCraft Club.

Ally Skirt by mahlicadesigns

I chose snaps that were bigger than the recommended button size, so I skipped the top stitching at the outer edge of the button placket.

Ally Skirt by mahlicadesigns

Hey, I’m pretty proud of my top stitching here.

Ally Skirt by mahlicadesigns

That pocket flap is purely decor. I don’t need pockets in everything, so I’m cool with it. If you are in the pockets on everything camp there’s a pocket option for you.

I styled the Ally skirt with a cowl neck tee; with my banded Kirsten Kimono tee and RTW jacket; and a RTW sweater.

Ally Styling collage

The Ally should take you about 3.75 hours to complete. In a size medium with creative layout I used 5/8 yard of fabric.

Total cost: $6.50           Fabric: $3      Notions: $3.50       Pattern: $0*

 

*I received the Ally Pattern for free as a tester. Do I have to explain that these are my own thoughts about the pattern? They are.

I took a leap this week.

I’ve been making a few navy tops lately and didn’t really feel like they paired up well with the bottoms is my wardrobe. After a little brainstroming, I got an idea.

Goldenrod Yellow – Meet my toned down color palette and work some magic!

Union St Tee w/ S2451 skirt

I’ve had it in my mind that I cannot wear yellow because of some bad color choices in the past that made me look sickly. I’ve also been wanting a yellow jacket for the longest time and kept hoping to find the right yellow tone that would work for me.

S2541 Golderod Skirt w/ Union St Tee

Enter a TNT skirt pattern and this goldenrod fabric from my destash pile and a small prayer that this idea would work.

S2541 Golderod Skirt w/ Georgia Top

I think I have a small victory here. I can wear yellow and my wardrobe is now better rounded.

S2451 in Goldenrod

The pattern: Simplicity 2451 view D with front pleats removed in size 14. Removing the pleats was the only alteration. I simply folded/pinched out the pleats from the pattern tissue before cutting.

The fabric: I pulled this cotton(?) woven out of my giveaway/sell stack. I inherited it some time ago and it was so close to being donated.

Notes: My first time making a lapped zipper; oh my, so much easier than an invisible zipper. Despite reviewing my notes from the last time I made this skirt, I forgot to add some length. I had a narrower hem to work with than I’d like, but really no big deal.

Styling: I’ve paired my Goldenrod skirt with a charcoal Union St. Tee (unblogged), my lace Georgia hack, and a rtw blouse (meh).

Goldenrod Skirt collage

Simplicty 2451 view D should take you about 3 hours to make. A size 14 used 1yd of fabric, hem tape, and a purchased zipper.

Total cost: $2.00    Fabric $0-stash     Notions(zipper) $2        Pattern $0-stash

Have you been making any bold sewing moves lately?

Quilted Jade Skirt for SV Design Crew

Jade Skirt v.2

I made up a modified version of the Jade Skirt from Paprika Patterns using a wonderful quilted double knit from Sew Vagabond. I recently joined the SV Design Crew**.

Jade Skirt styling

The Pattern: I’ve made the Jade skirt before here, so I knew it would be perfect for making a mini skirt to show off the quilted texture of this fabric. To skip the folded front, I used the front lining pattern piece as my shell instead. I also lengthened the front and back pattern pieces to 16in. The Jade’s waistband is one curved piece, so to conserve fabric and keep the textured pattern of the fabric a little more lined up, I pieced the waistband instead.

I made up a size 5 again, lengthening it as I said above and then, because the fabric has a good stretch, I end up using a 3/4in seam allowance on the sides instead of 1/2in given in the pattern.

I’ve done an exposed zipper before with only a so-so result, so I wanted to try one again to give the skirt that extra something and to get a better hold on the technique. I struggled getting the zipper in without having little tucks and wrinkles at the bottom corners. I finally got it after a few tries and changing the order of construction. Now I know what I need to do to nail it next time.

Jade Skirt styling

The Fabric: A natural fiber quilted double knit in navy from Sew Vagabond Shop (available late summer) for the shell and a navy jersey knit from my stash for the lining. I’ve actually used a similar fabric before, but wow what a difference between the two. My Jasper dress made in a quilted jaquard made it into my February Fail post because the fabric was just an absolute disaster, it has that slick polyester feel and is snagging and pilling like crazy. This navy quilted knit is holding up so well after washing and even after having to rework that exposed zipper many times and a little seam ripping too.

Fabric comparison

I’ve styled my new Jade with a rtw blouse and my Burda 7140 faux leather jacket, with my Melly Sews Peasant Blouse, and a rtw plain white tee.

Jade styling collage

Making a modified Jade skirt should take you about 3.25 hours, assuming you get an exposed zipper in on the first try. In a size 5 with a pieced waistband I used 1/2yard of the quilted knit and 1/2yard of the jersey knit lining.

Total Cost: $3   Pattern: stash   Fabric shell: Free**  Lining: $1   Notions: $2

** When I make a qualifying purchase as part of the SV Design Crew, I receive 2 free yards of fabric to make what ever I want and Sew Vagabond Shop gets to use my pictures to show off their fabrics.

Burda 6928, the most boring skirt ever.

The last piece I’m sharing from the Sew With Me challenge is Burda Young #6928, a pieced straight skirt.

Burda Skirt
Burda Skirt

I ordered this fabric for its ivory/vanilla/putty color to fit in with my Core Wardrobe color palette. What I got looks exactly like unbleached muslin, it even has some of those flecks of color like muslin. I was under a deadline and sending it back didn’t make $ense, so I used it anyway. The resulting skirt is perfectly fine as a basic and fills a hole in my Core Wardrobe, but it’s resemblance to muslin and shape make it a pretty boring piece.

Burda Skirt by mahlicadesigns

Pattern Notes:

Burda #6928 View A, Size 12. Bottom weight cotton/lycra twill in Vanilla from Fabric mart (sold out)

Apparently the “Young” part of the pattern means no shaping through the hips. If you are straight up and down this pattern is for you, I am not. A pretty stretchy fabric and altering the waist band redeemed this pattern.

Burda 6928 Skirt by mahlicadesigns

I added 3in in length to make this mini a workable length for me (I’m 5’4″ and modest). The back waistband gapped a bit. Two 1/4in darts positioned right above the two back seams did the trick. I was not loving this skirt from almost the start, so I did not bother redrafting and recutting the back waist band. With the stretch of the fabric I was able to eliminate the zipper altogether. I also skipped the piping detail, which may have made this a little less boring but I was not inspired to do so at the time.

burda skirt detail

Burda 6928 should take you 2.75 hours to make, but honestly find a better pattern.

Pattern $1.99 Fabric $4.75  Total $6.75