It’s Time for Sew Fab Patterns’ Summer Blog Tour!!

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How exciting is it to learn about the Sew Fab Patterns Summer Blog Tour?? This week, there will be an amazing offer on 12 patterns for $26.95 (retail value of $113)!

I had to try out a couple of the adult patterns in the sale, and I was blown away at their versatility, ease of sewing, and stylishness!!

First, I sewed up Tie Dye Diva’s Mermaid Maxi. I chose the flared version, as I wanted that full mermaid look. I chose a metallic jersey knit fabric that would go from day to date night in a flash. It turned out so beautifully, and it made me so happy to twirl for the camera.

I sewed up a size 18 in the flared maxi version.

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This skirt is not only lovely, but also so much fun to bust out in a little dance to move the skirt. And, it wasn’t tight nor confining as some other mermaid maxis can be.
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The wind and my twirling really allowed this skirt to sing and swirl for the camera.
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This Mermaid Maxi is PERFECT for your back to school wardrobe or your next date night. Don’t hesitate to grab up this amazing offer today!!

Next, I sewed up Cucicucicoo’s Simple Leggings, and although the sew was simple, the possibilities are ENDLESS, making them far from simple!

I grabbed the cutest swim fabric that I had and sewed up a brand new pair of workout leggings in the 3/4 or capri length in a size 18.
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They were so comfy that I didn’t want to take them off! fullsizeoutput_4a62

Not only are the Simple Leggings great for workout capri leggings, they will be great for full length or shorts length leggings for athletic wear, for underneath skirts for modesty, dress codes, or fun fashion ensembles. You can also sew up fun base layers for the colder weather months, or a pair with a trendy tunic for back to school looks.

No matter how you style your sews, they will be amazing because these patterns are great! Don’t forget to get your Summer Bundle before the sale ends on August 26, 2019!!

Visit Sew Fab Patterns Summer Blog Tour to buy your bundle today!! And don’t forget to visit and share the love with all of the other stops on this awesome Summer Bundle Blog Tour!!
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Pockets…for Snacks!!!!

Like most of us, I find a lot of activewear to be pricey and often ill-fitting, or perhaps not passing the squat test. Even though I am plus-sized and disabled, I do work out to maintain my fitness levels and live my healthiest life. And like many, I use monitoring apps on my phone for fitness tracking, and also for providing distraction by listening to music, podcasts, or audiobooks.  I love nothing more than a good fitting pair of squat-proof workout leggings with pockets to hold my phone.  Also, pockets can carry very important items: SNACKS!!

Unfortunately, these days, I am left with only one alternative in order to get my unicorn leggings with the bells and whistles that I want: I make my own. This way, they fit all of my plentiful curves, even in a grand plié or deep squat…and hold all of my necessary things.

My favorite-fitting leggings have been the Penny Leggings (aff) by Sinclair Patterns. Unfortunately, these awesome leggings do not come with pockets. So, I decided to hack them in.

Before the hack, the Penny Leggings fit me perfectly and work for so many different occasions and fabrics.

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Since it is SO hot here in the summer, I decided to hack the shorts and capri length of the Penny Leggings. I started by printing and assembling the pattern as it is. The Penny Leggings are written so that they are a single seam legging pattern with a waistband. Next, I label the front and back areas of the pattern, to make sure that I don’t lose my place, nor sew up the wrong areas together.

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Next, I measure on my body where the sides of my hip are compared with the layout of the pattern and mark that. I want this point to be the center-point of my newly created Side Stripe that will double as the back of the pocket. If this is a bit difficult for you to do, you can always do a muslin with a rough guess as to where you want the pocket to be. My measurements fell with it almost being directly in the middle of the pattern, but slightly a bit to the front (but every body and pocket placement preference is different). You can also choose to make your Side Stripe wider than the 4″ that I chose. Whatever size you choose, you need to then add 1/4″ seam allowances to each of the parts that are cut and next to the newly created Side Stripe (so that when you sew the Side Stripe in, you aren’t losing 1/2″ on the width of your leggings with the 2 new seams that have been created on the sides of the new Side Stripe).

Here are my markings and cutting of the Side Stripes:

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In this pic, I am also marking where I would like my pocket placement to begin and end.4w9E+nHyQxe22KG%sS4EmQ

Now, I made a pocket template that would be the same width of the newly created Side Stripe and approximately 7″ long. You can choose to make this pocket as long as you wish, but I chose my length, based on the size of my phone.

Next, I cut out a pocket that I will sew Right Side to Right Side with a cover stitch/zig zag/twin needle/stretch stitch to lock the pocket onto the Side Stripe piece (it might feel weird sewing the pocket in a way that feels upside down, but this it forming the bottom of your pocket, so when you flip it up, it actually forms the pocket area).  I chose for the pocket to sit on my mid-thigh area, but you can choose how high or low to seat your pocket.

Then, fold the pocket back so that the Wrong Side of the Pocket is facing the Right Side of the Side Stripe. Topstitch it in place to add more structure to your pocket and also to keep the pocket anchored while you sew.
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Then, fold down the top of the pocket and topstitch the very top to that your pocket has a finished top edge (Wrong Side to Wrong Side of the Pocket piece…to/from itself), making sure that you are not sewing your pocket shut by sewing the pocket to anything other than itself (NOT the Side Stripe).

Next, pin or clip the Side Stripe with the anchored pocket to each of the pieces of the pattern (Front and Back pieces with their newly added 1/4″ seam allowances), Right Side to Right Side. Then, sew each, sandwiching the new Pocket in between the Side Stripe and the Back or Front Piece, and then the other).
This is what it will look like when one side is completed. Then, complete the other side.
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Since the Penny leggings require one panel per leg, you will need to do this process twice, but they will be mirror images of each other.

When you are done, you are ready to move back to the tutorial for the Penny Leggings and follow the instructions for assembly. When completed, they will look like these:

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Please feel free to ask any questions, and I will do may best to answer them.

Thanks for joining me in my snack pocket hack of the Penny Leggings (aff) by Sinclair Patterns.

🎵’Cause I’m Free Fallin’🎵 in LOVE with RP’s Toronto Tee

 

I am SO excited to be a part of the Sew Free for Summer, Rebecca Page Blog Tour!!! This Blog Tour is all about fun, fresh, and free Rebecca Page patterns; as well as tips, tricks, and hacks to help inspire you to make your own amazing creations!

I chose Rebecca Page’s Toronto Tee, and I decided to hack it to be able to color block the top and add a pop of lace in the yoke and the pocket for funsies. I started off by assembling all of my pattern pieces. Then, I knew that I wanted to create a yoke appearance, so I measured where I wanted the yoke to end on the front piece. I decided on 1/4″ above the pocket position. 

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I marked this on the pattern piece before I cut it on the marked line.

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Next, I marked where I wanted the yoke to end on the back piece, marked it, and cut along the marked line, just like I did with the front pattern piece.

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Then, since I knew that I was about to create another seam, I added in a 1/4″ seam allowance. I added it in by slicing a piece to match and taped it straight on, but an easier way is to use tracing paper and just add the seam allowance on your tracing at the bottom of the new yoke pieces and at the top of the new bottom back and bottom front pieces. 

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This was where I was adding the seam allowance to my newly created hacked front bottom bodice and front yoke pattern pieces. 

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I decided to line the lace with solid RS (from Amelia Lane Designs), both in the yoke, and in the pocket for a touch of modesty, but you can color block with whatever knit fabric, and create your color blocks wherever you choose to draw your new seams in the pattern. You can even choose to only color block the front, or just the back.

The Toronto Tee is a more relaxed-fit top, meant to be comfy and cool while you wear it. So, if you are looking to create a more form-fitting top, try sizing down a size or 2.

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More Inspiration

Please visit all the stops on the Rebecca Page Sew Free for Summer Blog Tour for more great inspiration:

Prizes

We will be giving away a pattern bundle of choice each day PLUS an overall grand prize of a $50 pattern credit. To stand a chance to win, all you have to do is comment on each blog, each day so stay tuned to the Rebecca Page Sewing group for updates from our bloggers!

Breaking Ground with Phat Quarters Patterns


I was so lucky to be a part of the Breaking Ground Blog Tour this year, hosted Mahlica Designs and sponsored by Phat Quarters Patterns!

Inspired by Phat Quarters’ adorable patterns, I decided to break ground by hacking two of their patterns into adult sizes, as they currently only carry children’s sizes and patterns.

The first that I took from children’s sizes to an adult size was the Alderwood. It’s an amazing and unique pattern that has a cowl or hood option and lots of scrap-busting color blocking and piping opportunities.

Here is my finished plus-sized Women’s Alderwood:
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I used a brushed waffle knit for the majority of the bodice, and accented with quilted faux leather.

The process involves a few moments of math and resizing of each pattern piece, while taking into account things like women’s bust, waist, and hip differences from a child’s typical shape. Then, the fun begins!!

A note to all that seek to upsize a hack on a children’s pattern, remember that bodice adjustments need corresponding sleeve adjustments for shoulder width and armscye changes. Also, not every difference is a giant one. The piping on the Alderwood, for example, was almost the same size as the children’s pattern piece…but almost was still a change.

Next, I worked on the Camas, an AMAZING knit top that only seems like a basic T, until you see the opportunity for all of the bells and whistles that come with the pattern. I chose to mock one up with DBP from Amelia Lane Designs, and the fit was lovey and relaxed. I am going to do many more to cover all of the variations of the pattern, as each makes me giddy with anticipation.

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I can’t wait to break ground and sew up the rest of the Phat Quarters’ catalog in my size!!! (and to finally reveal a project that I’ve been working on for a few weeks! I am so excited! Stay tuned for exciting news and a giveaway!!)

Welcome to the Breaking Ground Blog Tour 2019 hosted by mahlicadesigns. This year over 25 bloggers from around the world are joining together to break new ground by trying a pattern designer that is new to them, try new techniques, new styles, or whatever way they want to push themselves. (Read on for Giveaway info)

The Full 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 15Sew 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.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

🎵I’ve Got a Placket, Got a Placket Full of Sunshine🎵

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I was fortunate enough to be selected to participate in the ReSEWlutions: Plackets Blog Tour from Winter Wear Designs (WWD) (aff), alongside a number of other very talented sewists and bloggers. This first blog tour of 2019 focused on the placket, one of many sewing techniques that can often feel daunting to a new sewist. *SPOILER ALERT* It’s actually much easier than most assume that it is!

I chose the lovely Hepburn Henley from WWD to sew up in a couple of different fabric bases. I wanted to compare and contrast what the fabric influences the finished look of a placket (and really, of any project).

First, I chose a lightweight double brushed poly (DBP) from Love Adore Knit Fabrics (the daisy and polka dotted fabric), and yellow bamboo lycra for the sleeves and the back.

To achieve this look, I followed the instructions in the tutorial, which led me to folding the placket  and sewing in the placket on top of the mostly-finished bodice. Topstitching the x onto the bottom of the placket helps add stability and allow for easier buttoning and unbuttoning of the top.

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The next Hepburn Henley that I did, I selected to do the faux placket option. I sewed it up with a bodice out of ombré hacci knit and DBP sleeves, faux placket, and neckband all from Seweird Fabrics. I doubt that I will ever do a henley out of hacci again, as it was a bit looser of a knit that I was wanting, but it was very warm, comfortable, and stylish. Regardless, I still love the finished look. The scoop neckline gives the Hepburn Henley that little something special, and having the option to have functional buttons on a placket or having a faux placket was lovely.

Make sure to pick up your copy of the Hepburn Henley either by itself or in the incredible Back to School for Teens and Women Bundle!

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Make sure to visit all of the other stops on this blog tour!!
January 29
Aurelie of Maglice&So (guest posting at WWD)
January 30
Kristen  (guest posting at WWD)
January 31
Jessica of Jot Designs USA
Feb 1
Livia of Liviality
#wwd #blogtour2019 #resewlutions #plackets

We Gather Here Today in Thanksgiving…a gathering tutorial

As we get ever-nearer to the Thanksgiving holiday here in the US, I am frantically trying to juggle all that has to get done, including my outfit. I have decided that I NEED to sew up a pattern that I own which requires gathering…a LOT of gathering, so I was thinking that maybe others would like to follow along as I give some hints and methods for gathering woven and knits.

Just so that everyone is on the same page, I am going to be demonstrating the techniques with a sewing machine, a serger, and explaining how one could even gather your fabric by hand sewing it. *gasp* Hand stitching isn’t everyone’s favorite method, but it works, if you are away from your machines or just prefer the analog life.

I am going to demonstrate these techniques with scrap fabric, so that the stitches can be clearly seen. With wovens and a home sewing machine, I recommend the two rows of parallel long straight stitches/basting stitches method. First, you sew 2 parallel rows of elongated (like a 4-5 length stitch) straight stitches (almost a basting stitch). **Don’t do a backstitch/locking stitch to start or end these rows of stitches.

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When you are done choose ONE ROW (I usually choose the top row) and make sure that you can gently pull the thread form BOTH ends. What you want to do is to gently pull from one side, predominantly, but will need to end pulling from the opposite side of the SAME thread/row (if you try to pull entirely from one side only, it could end with you pulling that thread completely out). Another choice that you have is to gather a little bit from the opposite side and tie a securing knot to keep it in place (or you could wait until the end, or live dangerously, if you know that you are going to sew over and secure both sides of the gather with your machine as it attaches to another pattern piece.

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Slowly inch from one side to the other, keeping in mind the gathering needs for that pattern (sometimes, it is only a few inches that have to be gathered at 50%, and sometimes it can be more or less of either of these measurements).

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When you are done gathering the entire piece, it can look as tightly gathered as this.

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This method can also be used on knits, but I recommend just gathering on your serger, if you have one, as it is a lot faster.

For gathering your fabric with a serger, there does exist a gathering foot for most sergers, but since a lot of people that I know do not own this, I am going to demonstrate this with a standard presser foot.

First, you want to adjust your serger settings. I choose to move my differential feed to 2.0 (from N) and stitch length to 4.0 (from 2). This allows for the machine to do all of the hard work for you.

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Next, I assist the gather by bunching up my fabric in an orderly manner so that it feeds through the serger at an enhanced gather rate. If you only need a 25% gather, you don’t need to do this.

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When it is done, it will look like this.

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Finally, I will demonstrate how easy it is to gather by hand. You have a lot more control with this method, but it can take longer, depending on the length of your gather (for the Emma, it is a very long gather, and about 3 tiers of it (meaning 3 different gathers around the entire circumference of the dress). Hand sewing is not going to be my go-to here for this project (but that’s a personal preference).

First, you will make sure that your thread is knotted and start your gathering stitch from the wrong side of the fabric.

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Next, you will sew your stitches and either stitch and pull gently to gather to your desired gathering percentage,

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…or gather the fabric on your needle to gather it as you go.

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When you are done, you just knot off the end on the wrong side, and you are done!

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If anyone has any questions about any of these techniques, please feel free to leave me a comment or find me on Facebook.com/JotDesigns and ask all the questions that you have. Thanks!! And I hope that your holiday gatherings are relaxing, peaceful, and filled with lots of love!

Sew Thankful

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This is the time of year when my heart is filled with so much love and happiness, as we all celebrate the holidays. In my family, we try to come together to celebrate as a big, giant group, and usually have around 22 people around the dinner tables at Thanksgiving. I truly have sew much to be thankful for, even during the many, many years that my husband was deployed, and others where we had lost part of our family to cancer or other tragedies.  The love and libations continued to flow and keep me grounded and hopeful.

This year, I am focusing on homemade gifts to express my love and thankfulness for my family members and friends. I decided to blog about one such project that I am working on as a present for my sister. She is always telling us that she is my sistersicle at work because they keep the Texas temperatures near refrigerator temperatures. Because of that (and a REALLY awesome sale that I caught at Simply By Ti Fabrics), I have decided to make her a hoodie. I made myself one before using Sinclair Patterns’ Alexis Hoodie Dress, and my sister borrowed it and loved it, so I decided to make her one exactly the same (but with her dimensions so that it will fit her like a glove).

My sisters have always been there for me, despite our rather significant age differences, but no matter what, they try to be there with love and support. I try to do the same, and also love giving them gifts whenever I can. It’s not everyone who can say that their little sisters took care of them when recovering from a massive stroke, and taught them how to speak English again. My sisters did this for me and so much more. I can’t ever thank them enough or tell them that I love them enough.

I decided to use Navy with Pink and Blue Flowers DBP and Navy Glitter French Terry (which is currently out of stock, but Simply By Ti still has Black, Olive, or White Glitter French Terry in stock).

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You can see the navy color much clearer outside, and also see the fun accents this hoodie has, like the hood lining, sleeves, and pocket linings all being super soft DBP.

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I hope that she will be happy with her gift, and be as thankful as I am to have her in my life (and my other sister, too, in case she reads this. Haha).

Happy holidays to everyone!!

Please be sure to visit the other stops on this awesome Sew Thankful Blog Tour!!
Week of November 6th:

Week of November 11th:
Week of November 18th:
Week of November 25th:

Spooktacular Sewing Projects for Your Home

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The Sewing By Ti’s Monster Blog Tour was the perfect time for me to come up with clever ways to use my Simply By Ti fabric that I have in my house. I had the hardest time narrowing my options down, but my top 3 tutorials that I considered were making a pillow with witch stockings and shoes sticking out from the bottom, a pillow with bat, ghost, or candy corn appliqués on it, or making a pumpkin out of scraps or a bit of orange lycra from Simply By Ti.

The pumpkin won by a narrow margin. Hahaha

There are SO many variations for making your own pumpkins to decorate your house with your scraps, but for this tutorial, I used orange cotton lycra, black cotton lycra, a bit of twine or yarn, chalk or marking device, a ruler, and your sewing machine (or a needle and thread).

To start off with, I created a compass by tying yarn to my marking pencil. I know that I want about a 7″ pumpkin, so I was preparing for a 14″ wide circle…requiring my to cut out a 7″ radius to the circle that I need to cut.

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I placed a knot at the end of 7″ of my yarn to act as my center/anchoring point.NEldOTKyTEabYj1EBnGL7QM35eTFHXQ36xLRd0CZGoxw

Then, I used a pattern weight to hold down the knot so that I can trace my circle with the marking pencil.OxV6nxFnTj6HowEVGpbgEwm19e+70KTke1H9ooNpgzmQ

Then, I trace my circle out of the cotton lycra. This works for any fabric, but knit fabrics will come with more stretch, so you might want to take that into account when you decide on the size of your pumpkin base circle.
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A rotary cutter is a great way to cleanly and easily cut out your circle.
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Next, you want to add in the faux pumpkin ribs. To do this, it is easier to trace in guide lines to sew over.DsQRSTtVTxyOv1efT+ExLQ+ZyUbK4QTUKl+7K%HeD+MA

Once you have sewn all of the ribs down the sides (I chose to do 8 ribs from the center, which I did by sewing 4 straight lines from end to end, crossing in the middle). After this, baste in 2 lines at the very edge of the circle so that you can gather your pumpkin into shape after stuffing it with more scraps.mAhXwhSMRGy3bcBQnNrf3QvBWb%OswR3eOkHKRQ9E9Gw

Then, you can cut your stem. I did a oval 1/2 of the size of my circle, but a circle would work, too. jB99JBxkQviBvd1%s4frFA

I, then, shaped the hat on the gathered “stump”. You can choose to finish the edges of this piece or not. I left it with a rustic feel and know that CL doesn’t tend to fray like some fabric choices.
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After a few hand stitches, anchoring the stump onto the pumpkin base, you can add any embellishments that you would like on the “stump”. I chose to use a bit of yarn to make it look like a hat.fullsizeoutput_3b9f

Voilà! An adorable pumpkin to decorate your house with!! I am planning on using this season’s hottest fabric choices to make more! (Like flannel plaid or quilted knit that Simply By Ti has in stock…and maybe a faux stretch leather pumpkin!) DwmtDT3C628BK6L6O7A

WWD’s Fashionista Jacket Will Make You Want To Strike a Pose

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It’s time for fall, and you know what that means: Falling leaves, falling apples, and falling temperatures!!! It’s the PERFECT time to sew up some outerwear inspired by this Winter Wear Designs Outerwear Blog Tour!!

I decided that I NEEDED to sew up Winter Wear Designs’ newest pattern, the
Fashionista Jean Jacket. It has a great clean scooped neckline, a gorgeous placket, and a banded bottom, meant to look great with any number of layered garments!!

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I used a brocade woven fabric from http://www.Seweird.com to sew up my Fashionista, and chose the welt pocket option. There is also a side pocket option for this awesome jacket.

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With awesome touches like having a front and back yoke and cuffed sleeves, the Fashionista will be your go-to for seasonal transition pieces and miles of style!

Fall in love with every stop on the tour:
October 22
Ilse of Sew Sew Ilse
October 23
October 24
October 25
Meriel of Elli and Nels
Jessica of Jot Designs USA
October 26
Livia of Liviality

OMeGa!! Nailed it! A Stop on the Winter Wear Designs Hack-a-Thon Blog Tour

September is a month of fresh starts for so many at school and a time of renewal as we head into another fall season. What a perfect time to make what we have “new” again by hacking our available pattern resources into all new garments?

I love scouring Pinterest for new ideas, and I found a tank top that I Really liked the look of. I loved the lace yoke to add that special little something.

Here is my inspo pic:
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(from https://bedfordfair.blair.com/p/168453.uts?src_code=BFAWG&cid=pl_bf_google_pla_gen&gclid=EAIaIQobChMIhOiC_su83QIVRBxpCh1JswgoEAQYBSABEgJ80vD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds)

I mean, how cute is that?! Plus, it’s casual enough that I can wear it almost anywhere. I looked through my patterns, and found my Winter Wear Designs (aff) Omega Top and Tunic For Women Sizes xxs-XXXL. I decided to use some 5″ black lace that I had, which provided a nice overlay for the yoke. I am super in love with my jacked Omega!

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What kind of hacks are you planning for your wardrobe? I know that I can’t wait to have more time to hack even more outfits from my inspo boards on Pinterest!

Don’t miss out on the daily giveaway posts in the WWDFUN FB group!!!
https://www.facebook.com/groups/918196014871086/

Don’t miss out on any of the stops along the tour!!!!
9/24
Jess of Jot Designs
9/25
9/26
Livia of Liviality
9/27
9/28
Patricia of Sew Far North