CHENILLE Sweater for Minerva

My fabric stash and my dresser drawers can attest to the fact that charcoal grey knit is my spirit fabric. I’m sticking to what I love with the grey sweater knit fabric that I chose to make a Chenille Sweater from Kommatia Patterns (now Studio Calicot).

Today you can read about the Chenille that I made for the Minerva blog. You can see the full details here.

Until next time,

Melissa E of mahlicadesigns

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ITS Spotlight on the Hepburn Turtleneck

Today I’m contributing to the ITS Spotlight September with three versions of the Hepburn Turtleneck from Itch to Stitch (ITS). I made my Hepburns in three fabric types to show off the different looks you can achieve with one well designed pattern. (Keep reading for tour details, a discount code, and a giveaway)

Version 1: Ribbed Knit.  Horizontal Stretch: 100%  Vertical Stretch: 60%  Weight: 9 oz.  Cotton/Rayon/Spandex Blend

My first attempt at sewing with knits about 8 years ago was with a ribbed knit on my sewing machine. I had no idea what I was doing and the result was a complete fiasco. I haven’t touched ribbed knit again until this project.

With a little bit of experience under my belt I had a few ideas on how to do it better. I spent a little time tweaking my overlocker settings trying to get them right. I felt like I was circling around my target but not hitting the bulls eye.

Finally I just googled for some suggestions. I got lucky when the first place I looked was using my exact machine. When I  adjusted the settings to match up to Indie Sews’ recommendations, overlocking in direction of greatest stretch worked perfectly. I then adjusted the differential feed back toward the 1 setting (feed dogs moving equally) when overlocking along the grainline. I used my walking foot and a lengthened zigzag stitch on my regular sewing machine for the hems.

Rib knit conquered !

Version 2: Sweater knit. Horizontal Stretch: 95% Vertical Stretch: 25% light weight.

I’ve sewn with this sweater knit before (here), so I was able to knock it out on my overlocker and then using a walking foot and lengthened zigzag stitch for the hems on my sewing machine. I think I need to pair this one with a cardigan to get a professorial look.

Version 3: Double Brushed Poly. Horizontal Stretch: 100% Vertical Stretch: 75% light weight. 100% Polyester.

I made this one specifically for layering. I think it will look great with my cardigans without being bulky and as a base layer for some outdoor winter activities.

The Pattern Hepburn Turtleneck from Itch to Stitch made in a straight size 8.

The Hepburn is on SALE TODAY ONLY as part of the ITS Spotlight Tour. Use code 916itsblogtour25 to save 25% off the Hepburn Turtleneck. To find more patterns on sale, visit all of today’s bloggers. Check the tour every day, for daily discounts.

The Fabrics Striped rib knit and double brushed poly from Boho fabrics. Grey sweater knit from DG Patterns.

I modeled my Hepburns with my well loved Lindy Petal skirt and Liana Jeans both from Itch to Stitch.

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

The ITS September Spotlight Itch to Stitch Blog Tour features these talented sewists:

September 16th 
September 17th 
September 18th 
September 19th 
September 20th 

Visit our Sponsors and enter our Rafflecopter Giveaway for a chance to win one of 2 amazing prize packages:

Prize # 1
Itch to Stitch: 3 PDF patterns of choice
Raspberry Creek Fabrics: $100 Store Credit
D&H Fabrics Co: $50 Store Credit
Simply By Ti: Prize of $20 Store Credit

So Sew English Fabrics: Prize of $40 Store Credit
Sly Fox Fabrics: $25 Store Credit

Prize #2
Itch to Stitch: 3 PDF patterns of choice
Beautiful Textiles: $100 Store Credit
D&H Fabrics Co: $50 Store Credit
Surge Fabric Shop: $20 Store Credit
Knitpop: $50 Knitcoin Credit

Viewridge top- pattern review

This spring I’m finally getting around to starting in on those woven tanks I’ve been meaning to make for the last three summers. It feels like I have oodles of patterns in the stash to try, but I’m starting with the Viewridge Top from Straight Stitch Designs that I won in last year’s Indie Pattern month on The Monthly Stitch.

 

I like loose fitting tops for summer, but gathers and pleats seem to add too much volume at the bust for my taste. The Viewridge does have small gathers at the front, but I think they are nicely balanced by structured side and yoke pieces.

Viewridge view B includes small gathers at center front. Photo from Straight Stitch Designs

The Viewridge should be pretty easy for an advanced beginner sewist due to the use of bias tape to finish the neckline and arm hole and making even gathers. Even so, I managed to make it difficult on myself. I didn’t press my fabric when I pulled it back out of my stash. Slightly wrinkled shifty and slippery rayon wovens are not fun to cut and I ended up with one piece slightly off grain. I definitely had some hair pulling as I tried to figure out why one piece ended up slightly lopsided (because it was off grain and wrinkly) and how to fix it.

As I was working through that, Rachel of Oakblue Designs was sharing her success in cutting the same type of fabric after treating it with a spray stabilizer. Noted.

I also found a small error on the pattern at the shoulder. The pattern marking doesn’t line up. Use them to help you know which pieces go together, but you’ll be fine lining up these pieces without them.

 

The Pattern: Viewridge Top from Straight Stitch Designs, view B in size 10 and shortened 2in at the adjustment line. I chose a size 10 based on my 37.5in bust measurement. The pattern instructions suggest that for larger cups sizes to try one size larger for the front pattern pieces than you use for the back pieces. I stuck with a straight 10 and feel like it fits well.  Overall I give the pattern an A, the instructions are well put together and the pattern is well drafted. That one misaligned pattern marking is easily overcome.

The Fabric: I picked up this floral rayon a year or so ago at Joann Fabrics. It’s beautiful and unfortunately it was only available for a moment.

 

As always, thanks for reading today.

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

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

You might like: My Ella Cami Set made in the same fabric.

 

Save For Later  Pin this image, so you can come back when you’re ready to start sewing your version.

Parker Peplum Dress Hack

I’m back today with a simple hack I’ve done with the Parker Peplum Top pattern turning it into a dress and using the organic bamboo jersey from DG Patterns Shop*

Turning the Parker into a dress is quite simple. All you need is a circle skirt pattern or draft your own. There are tons of tutorials online to walk you through it.

I cut my circle skirt 19.5 in long and simply attached it to the bottom of the completed bodice. Viola, Parker Peplum Top is now a dress!

 

The Pattern: Parker Peplum top from Seen & Sewn Patterns in size medium. I added a circle skirt to make mine a dress. The Parker is a loose-fitting peplum with an option for a regular tee.

The Fabric: Organic bamboo jersey in black and white stripes. This was my first experience sewing with organic bamboo jersey. It’s quite similar to rayon jersey in its weight and drape, but this has a silkier smooth feel to it.

 

As always, thanks for reading today.

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

*As a DG Patterns Fabric Ambassador I receive complementary fabric from the DG Patterns fabric shop to use any way I like in exchange for sharing about it with you.

This post contains affiliate links. If you purchase through my links, I get a small commission to help fund for my sewing hobby.

Save For Later: Pin this image, so you can come back when you’re ready to start sewing your version.

 

Breaking Ground with the Tracey Bee Top

I’m Breaking Ground with the Tracey Bee Top from new to me Seen & Sewn Patterns. I’m also hoping to break out of my ongoing sewing funk by using some energizing colors for spring in the midst of our ice and snow. (Oh hey, keep reading for tour details and to enter the giveaway)

 

What I like most about the Tracey Bee are the insert details. These create interesting design lines if you sew it up in a solid fabric and opportunities to mix fabrics if you like colorblocking.

I made my Tracey Bee with a rayon challis type of fabric. The drape is wonderful, but it did get a little clingey with static around my waist. Instead of a double fold hem, I decided to use a cotton bias binding and that seems to have helped the fabric stand away from my skin enough to resolve the problem.

 

The Pattern: Tracey Bee Top** in size L, cropped view. Due to the challenge of sewing inserts, I’d recommend this top for an advanced beginner or above. Other than the challenge inserts can offer, the pattern goes together easily. There was a small mismatch at the side seam when the dart was folded, so I sewed the dart at half the width and that resolved the mismatch and didn’t affect the fit for me in the least. (the designer is checking the pattern to correct).

The Fabric: Rayon woven paired with scraps of teal eyelet from the ole stash.

 

I’m still having a hard time getting excited about a next sewing project, but starting with fabrics in my stash that do give me some energy is a good strategy. I do wish it was warm enough to wear my spring projects instead of just looking at them.

The Braking Ground Blog Tour includes all these creatives… we hope you’ll visit us each day:

Monday March 11That’s Sew Lily, Sewing A La Carte, Mijn 11jes & ik

Tuesday March 12mahlicadesigns, Embrace Everyday, Jot Designs, auschick sews, Raising Stripling Warriors

Wednesday March 13Musings of A Seamstress, Very Blissful, Sew4Five, Just Sew Something, Hazelnut Handmade, Crafting Through Time, Tales From A Southern Mom

Thursday March 14Make It Sew with the Bear and Pea Atelier, Ronda B Handmade, SequioaLynn Sews, Sewing with D, The Sewing Goatherd, OOYAmade, My Golden Thimble, Custom Made by Laura

Friday March 15–  Sew Cute Couture by Kathy, Sewing Novice, Ronda B Handmade, Momma Bear Sews, MeMade, My Golden Thimble, Lulu & Celeste

Breaking News: our tour sponsor Phat Quarters is offering 2 patterns of choice from her pattern shop to one lucky winner.

Enter Here!

***

We’d love to see how you’re Breaking Ground this month. Share with us what you’re working on by using the hashtag #BreakingGround2019 across social media.

As always, thanks for reading today.

**This post may contain affiliate links. If you purchase through my links, I get a small commission to help fund for my sewing hobby.

Tessa Sweater Dress- featuring DG Patterns Ribbed Knit

The Tessa Sweater Dress I made to share this week helps me get close to having all the winter wardrobe pieces I need this year. I really like wearing dresses, but it can be hard to feel warm enough in the cold months, so I’m hoping a nice sweater dress will do the trick.

When Daniela listed this ribbed sweater knit in her shop, I knew I wanted to try sewing with it and hoped it would work for a sweater dress. I’d not sewn a dress with sweater knit before, so I was a little concerned that the length of the piece would cause the fabric to stretch and lengthen when worn. In this case I believe the structure that the ribbing offers and the smaller weave keep things in nice shape.

My plan was to sew up the Tessa Dress last minute to wear for Thanksgiving. I’d look nice, be comfortable all day, and have room for an expanding belly. I came down sick just before the big day and only just got the meal prep I was responsible for complete with the help of my husband- thanks my dear.

Sewing was not happening when I just wanted to crawl into bed, so the Tessa and I missed Thanksgiving. No worries though, I got to wear her to my office Christmas party last week and had a wonderful time.

The Pattern: I used the Tessa Sweater & Dress Pattern from DG Patterns in a size 10 based on my measurements. Through the hips I graded down to an 8 for a closer fit. Depending on the stretch of the fabric, I could easily sew up a straight size 8 next time.

The Fabric: Striped ribbed sweater knit (similar) from the DG Patterns shop.

As always, thanks for reading today.

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

You might also like the Lazo Trousers I made in the DG Patterns’ Organic Tencel.

Save For Later: Pin this image, so you can come back when you’re ready to start sewing your version.

*As a DG Patterns Fabric Ambassador I receive complementary fabric from the DG Patterns fabric shop to use for a project in exchange for sharing it with you.

Onyx Shirt in Elephant Print Crepe

I’m slowly getting back into the swing of sewing again with the Onyx Shirt made with the Elephant print crepe woven from the DG Patterns Shop*

I’ve made the Onyx shirt twice before, so I know the fit is just right without any alterations, but this was my first time using the longer sleeve add on for the pattern. I chose the 3/4 sleeve length for a less formal look and because there is a cuff option.

I’m very pleased with my crepe version of the Onyx shirt. I will be watching how well the folded cuff keeps it’s shape in the crepe. Since the crepe does not hold a crisp press, I may need to tack the cuff in place on the outer edge.

The Pattern The Onyx Shirt (with sleeve expansion pack) from Paprika Patterns in a straight size 4. Since I was using a crepe woven for the top,  I used French Seams throughout to keep those seam allowances nice and neat and prevent any fraying down the road.

The Fabric The Elephant print polyester crepe from DG Patterns. This seems like a light/medium weight woven to me. It’s a good weight woven for summer or fall wardrobe pieces. I used a universal size 9 needle and the lowest heat setting on my iron to work with the fabric.

As always, thanks for reading today.

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

Save For Later: Pin this image, so you can come back when you’re ready to start sewing your version.*As a DG Patterns Fabric Ambassador I receive complementary fabric from the DG Patterns fabric shop to use for a project in exchange for sharing it with you.

*The post may contain affiliate links. As an affiliate, I receive a sales comission to help with my sewing hobby.