Category: Pattern Making

Flat pattern making, pattern manipulation and pattern alterations

Birthday Skirt in Red!

HI Fashionistas!

The month of May is a month of celebration for me and my family. We celebrated my birthday and Mothers Day this past weekend, and my husband and I will be celebrating our 9th wedding anniversary this week.

So for the month of May, I sewed up a voluminous pleated circle skirt in a beautiful red shirting fabric. Here it is:

Initially, I had planned on creating a high low dramatic hemline, and that is what I was planning on wearing until mid of last week. But after trying it on, it felt very heavy and was not too flattering on me, so I chopped it off to an even hemline about 19 inches from the bottom of the waistband to get this look.

The skirt is completely self-drafted and I will talk about that more in this post.  Here is the back view:

A bit obsessed with these owl earrings lately..

I drafted the waistband for the skirt 1first. It is basically a rectangle. For the length, I used my waist measurement, plus 1/2 inch ease, plus an extra 1 inch for seam allowance (since I stitch using 1/2 inch seam allowance to attach the zip on the back). For the hight of the waistband, I wanted a finished measurement of 2.5 inches so the pattern height is 6 inches (double of 2.5 plus 1-inch seam allowance total) 

The breeze brings out the best in this skirt lol 🙂

To get this type of volume, I measured from my side seam to side seam on my body (let’s call this measurement W) and then drafted a half circle skirt pattern on muslin using a waist measurement of W. I then cut 3 from that pattern and paneled them together. Once that was done, the waist of the 3 panel skirt was larger than my waist circumference. So then I added some pleats to the skirt to make the measurement of the skirt match the measurement of the waistband. Since the waistband was drafted to my waist, all I had to do was freehand some pleats to make the two fit. And Voila! Extra volume!

So you know I had to twirl in this skirt!

I wore it for my 39th Birthday last month!

I also wanted to share a picture of Connor. He is 3 months in this picture. He has started smiling a bit, although he is stingy with his smiles. He is such a serious lil’ dude! 

 

And I also ended up wearing it for Mothers Day with a DIY top. It’s a fun skirt to wear! (not the best lighting)

I hope you are having a lovely may. It is getting toasty here, we have had temps in the 90’s this past week. The summer is going to be super hot, and I plan on staying home a lot and hosting a lot of playdates to keep myself and my kiddo busy.

I’ll see you soon with my next make, a summer maxi dress!

XOXO-

Vatsla

 

Statement Sleeves -Mcalls M6886 Modified!

Hi Fashionistas!

Long time no sew! I took a break from sewing for the month of March to adjust to a second child. It has been quite a transition, and I and my family are still getting used to the new routine, or lack of routine 🙂

Anyways, I am trying to get back into the swing of things. I am sewing, and here is my latest make!

I used this fabric.  It is currently sold out but I am hoping they will offer it again! It is a quilted double knit. Very soft, yet has good body and is thicker, about the thickness of a lightweight scuba knit. 

For the pattern, I ended up using this pattern, view C, but made the following alterations.

  1. Changed the neckline to a boat neck.
  2. Chopped off the pattern at the high hip (to include hem allowance)
  3. Shortened the sleeve
  4. Freehanded the lantern/ bell sleeve with pleats using some scrap fabric

The fabric is quilted and has some really gorgeous texture as you can see in this close up below. For the neck, I used a twin needle to do the hemming as I did not have enough matching spools of thread for my coverstitch machine.  I hemmed the sleeves by serging first, then turning under and using a straight stitch.

I so love the sleeves!  They are so poofy!

This is how I wore this top on Sunday, with skinny jeans … and a sock bun. Yes, there is a sock in my bun.. it belongs to my husband 🙂 I cut off the foot part and rolled all that hair up, the stuck in a ballpoint pen to hold it in place. It’s called mommy chic 🙂

For a more dressy look, I paired this with a skirt (which I will never wear anywhere since I have nowhere to go :), but it is so cute!

Here is the back view of the top. Typically I put a CB seam in this pattern, but I decided not to in this one, as the fabric has a moderate amount of stretch, as opposed to more stretchy fabrics I usually use.

Ok- before I made this top, I actually made a scoop neck peplum with a cap sleeve, but I was totally cutting corners and I made a bad garment. So that one is getting cut and I will use the fabric into a top for my daughter. I also have some fabric left over so I will definitely be using that to make another top for myself!

Well, that is it! I am working on a red circle skirt for May, for my birthday!!

I hope that you are doing well. I would love to hear about what you are working on these days and I hope you are enjoying the spring!

I’ll see you in May with my next project- the red skirt!

ps- did you know Crafsty is giving an all access pass for 2 weeks for $1 right now? You can access all classes for $1 by clicking HERE

XOXO

-Vatsla

 

Maternity Shoot and my DIY Dress Hack!

Hi Fashionistas!

So last month, in the cold cold month of January, I did my maternity shoot and family pics before the babe arrives.

Christmas ended and it all of a sudden hit me, I had not even thought about Maternity pictures. We had not thought about which photographer to hire, where we would take the pictures of what I would wear. I liked the idea of combining the Maternity pictures with some family pictures since we don’t get family pictures done that often.  I was so tired of being preggo at this point, I did not want to make my dress, let along mommy and me dresses.. But after the dreaded looking around for the ideal dress and seeing the high cost of low-quality maternity dresses, I decided to make mine after all.

Here is the dress I made, I will talk more about how I ended up with the fabric choice, pattern and other details below.

I knew exactly the dress I wanted, based on my inspo pic I will share later in this post…


Here are my fav mommy and me pictures: I made her dress too, freehanded pattern 🙂

We also did some family pictures and here are some of my favorites, I want to get these 2 framed. Love my little fam!

And


 

The dress has a bit of a train in the back..

Photo credit for all these gorgeous shots to Bailey Smith Photography. 

As always.. I found my Inspo pic on Pinterest. I pretty much knew I wanted a form-fitting, off shoulder dress that was fit and flair.. after looking I settled for a royal blue.. I think the color is just gorgeous and pops in pictures.. Once I found the inspo pic, I went on to hack/ draft a pattern to make the muslin (in black below). I’ll talk more about how I hacked the pattern.

I also know the color suits me from having sewn it up before HERE in this peplum top

Lots of folks on IG and Facebook asked what pattern I used. I hacked this one up so let me share the details below!

Once I find an inspiration pic, I look for the silhouette or the style lines. Example … I ask myself what is the best way to accomplish this fit? Do I have a pattern that looks like this (even remotely), do I have a garment in my wardrobe that could be used as a base to lift a pattern?

Let’s start by looking at the inspiration pictures: Here are two I liked:

 

I figured I could accomplish this neckline with a raglan sleeve, one that goes from the collarbone to the underarm. I immediately thought of this RTW top I have  in my wardrobe :


 

So I lifted the pattern for the top and used it as a base: I used THIS method I documented on youtube a while back. This method will work for lifting the pattern from any knit garment (one lacking darts)

Then I placed the bodice pattern on my dress form to make sure it kinda sorta looked like it would work. This is a knit garment so I can be a lot less concerned about the pattern being perfect.

When I copied the pattern for the bodice, I had drafted it down to the low hip. Then I measured down from my own low hip to decide where I wanted the flare to start. That was 16 inches for me. Then I just flared the pattern out to as wide as the pattern paper was. I used the exact same pattern to cut the front and back of the dress. I also lifted the pattern of the sleeve from the RTW striped top and extended it to be full sleeves.

Using this pattern I sewed up this muslin, which all of you seemed to love! I had 4 yards of this sweater knit sitting around that I previously used to make THIS dress . so I used that for the muslin

Confession: I have been very indecisive in the end of my pregnancy.. and I could not decide between cobalt blue and royal blue.. so I made 2 dresses, one that I wore (Royal) blue and one in the cobalt blue below. When I tried on the cobalt blue dress, it just did not feel right. Below is the fabric that did not make the cut. That will be repurposed into a pencil skirt as soon as I drop the baby weight!

I hope you enjoyed reading up on this make. Since this dress, I have made 2 baby blankets and a kimono duster/topper. I am so done sewing at the point, until after baby arrives!

I’ll try to share my 2017 review (high time) and also the blankets and duster with you (Its GORG)… energy permitting..

That’s all I have to share with you for now.. Who else is ready for warm weather? Do drop me a comment and let me know what you are working on.. I’ll be living vicariously through your sewing projects for a while 🙂

Take care and hugs. Excuse any typos… I’m still tired as a mother 🙂 Just trying to get through my to do list before we head to the hospital!

Vatsla. 🙂

Baby Shower Dress with Statement Sleeves- Mccalls M6886 Modified

HI Fashionistas!

Long time no see! I have done a bit of sewing in the last few months, but have not had much energy to blog about it. My pregnancy is coming to an end, I am only 10 days away from my due date, so It’s about time I share my 2 final maternity makes with you, starting with this gorgeous baby shower dress in a navy Ponte knit.

Would you guess what pattern I used? Yes indeed, its the TNT Mcalls M6886 with modified/ self-drafted sleeves 🙂

Since I was making a fitted maternity dress in a thicker stable knit with a pattern that is typically meant to use a generous amount of stretch percentage to its advantage, I had to get a bit creative. I measured my big ole bump and graded the pattern to be larger in the stomach. But because I could not depend on the stretch of the fabric too much (as opposed to using a jersey knit for example), I had to end up putting darts on the belly. I know that sounds strange. Most maternity clothes depend on ruching, but I find those so frumpy.. and it’s just not my style.. so I went for darts, you can see them if you are looking for them 🙂 The darts are in the front only, none required in the back 🙂


I styled this dress with one of my fav vintage furs. I downsized aggressively and sold the majority of my fur stoles last year, but this one I could not part with. My shower was on December 9, it was such a special day. Five of my dear friend’s co – hosted my shower. It was amazing. I’ll share some pictures of the shower with you below. It was cold that day! It even snowed a bit, but I refused to cover up this fabulous sleeves, so I wore gloves and the fur.. and a beautiful clutch purse that I picked up on my last trip to India. The shoes were a no-brainer. I mean, animal print d’orsay pumps.. how can one go wrong?!

I 1st saw this beautiful a thick anti-pill Ponte knit over the summer at Joann’s fabric. I’ve been unable to find a link for you online, but in the store, I have seen it in multiple colors, mainly a dark red, black, navy.

Here is the side and back view:

So these sleeves are so swoon worthy. I kinda freehanded them, kinda measured. I will have to dedicate a separate blog post to how the sleeves were made. Let me know if this is something you would like to read about! I might do a video, as its much easier to explain that way! It is basically the McCalls sleeves used as a base, and the ruffles are full circles (donuts) of varying circumferences, but uniform width.  I can show you a diagram and instructions if I do a demo. Just let me know!  You could add this detail to any base pattern!

The ponte does not fray, so the edges are raw on the ruffles.  Here is a “Behind The Seams” look at the sleeve. Click to play the video:

And normally I don’t wear much jewelry, just the same bracelet every day and my armlet, but this was such a special occasion, I pulled out an extra wide bracelet gifted to me by my mom, and the skinny spiral one that belonged to my mom’s mom.

 

I also want to share with you some pictures from my shower, planned by the sweetest of friends. Sometimes I am not sure what I did to deserve so much love . These are my dear friends: Leah, Kristy, Laura, Kristina and Julie. So blessed to have them in my life.

I hope you enjoyed reading this! I am due in 10 days.. so wish me luck.. I made another fabulous blue dress after this one.. hoping to share that with you as well before the baby arrives!

PS.. I am tired as a mother… so this blog post has not been spell checked.. or proofread.. 😀

I’ll see y’all soon.  I have 4 more things patiently waiting in queue to be blogged..

XOXO-

Vatsla. 🙂

 

Mommy and Me Skirts for Christmas and Upcoming Giveaway

HI Fashionistas!

Hope you all are having a wonderful December. Mine is going by way too fast! I’ve been sewing up a storm lately. Last weekend, I wrapped up my baby shower dress and this past weekend, I finished these mommy and me skirts from a double-knit fabric:

For my daughter, I made a full circle skirt, and for myself, I made a maternity pencil skirt. I am seven months now! By the time you read this, I will be 33 weeks! Yipee!

Hers has a straight waistband and a zip on the back. Both hers and mine are self-drafted. 

I used a black and white double knit that can be seen HERE

Back view of her skirt:

Back and side view of mine:

She has her very own custom clothier, and wardrobe department

I styled this skirt two ways, 1st with a halter top with a bow, and next with this ruffle tee with 3/4 sleeves. Personally, I felt more “me” in the long sleeves,  since I feel its a more balanced look, and the top is longer. I do love the halter with the bow. It’s very chic!

Initially, I had planned on making mommy and me pajamas for Christmas morning.  It is my annual tradition, but the fabric did not have as much of a stretch as needed, so I switched to skirts!

And here is my latest obsession. Owl earrings! I shared with you the last owl earrings I gifted myself HERE. Well here is another 🙂

That’s all the fun I have to share with you!  By the time you read this post, I will officially be in hibernation mode through my due date 🙂

Hope you had a lovely Christmas!!  Happy New Year and stay tuned for my end of year/ new year fabric box giveaway!

XOXO- Vatsla 🙂

But before I go… some final silliness from my kid.

 

Craftsy Class Black Friday And Cyber Monday Sale Alert!!

HI Fashionistas!!!

Enabler Alert!! Craftsy has all classes on sale today for Black Friday and also Cyber Monday and it is the perfect time to buy a class or two if you have been wanting to add to your skill level or get into patternmaking, or couture sewing!

Hope that you had a fabulous Thanksgiving and are enjoying a nice weekend. I’ll be doing some online shopping for both fabric and online classes as soon as my kid goes down for a nap! See my review of all the classes I am already enrolled in and what I am buying today, as well as what I am putting on my wishlist!

I am purchasing the latest Coat Pattern Making class by Suzy Furrer for Black Friday. I studied pattern making with her in person at Apparel Arts and she is truly brilliant! I got to visit Suzy last year at the new school location and it is amazing! She is now also teaching on craftsy and I have all of her online pattern making classes

All classes are $17.87 or less. To get this amazing deal, click HERE

Here are the classes I am currently registered for. I highly recommend all of them. Suzy is an excellent teacher and also very responsive.

We studied pattern making at Apparel Arts in this order. Now you can benefit from her classes at home! If you want to learn pattern making, these would be the classes to take in order to build a good foundation.

Skirt Sloper : Click HERE

Here are a couple skirts I made for my final collection while studying with her:

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Bodice Sloper: Click HERE

From a bodice sloper, you can draft dresses, tops. jackets. Here is a dress and jacket I self-drafted using my bodice sloper:

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Dart Manipulation/Seam Lines: Click HERE

This class focusses on taking the basic slopers drafted for the body and then manipulating them into different style elements. For example, here you will learn how to change a basic darts on your sloper into princess seams, gathers, pleats, tucks etc.

Here is a good example of manipulating a bodice sloper into a sweetheart strappless neckline and also manipulating the darts into princess seams. (ps- that isnt alkee-hol, i just posed for my final collection :))

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Another example fo a self-drafted garment is this one.  You also learn about adding excess ease and then removing it in the form of pleats (which are dart equivalents)

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Creative Necklines: Click HERE

Collars/Closures : Click HERE

Sleeves: Click HERE

You know sleeves can completely change a garment. Dramatic sleeves are still in

. You can learn how to make bishop sleeves, bell sleeves etc. Here is a bell sleeve I drafted this summer.

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Pants : Click HERE

Here is a pair of pants I drafted in school. Not the best fabric choice, which caused the wrinkles. But being a novice, I can see why I selected this fabric. These pants with a stretch denim would be so cute! Hindsight is 20/20 🙂

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I also highly recommend her textbook, which is the Bible of Pattern Making. You can find it HERE

In fact, I just purchased a second copy because I misplaced my original one

 

I have also taken and reviewed the following classes in the past. They are both for tailoring a coat:

The first one is Essential Guide to Tailoring: Structure & Shape and the second one is Essential Guide to Tailoring: Construction

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You can read my review of these classes HERE and see the final garment HERE

Here is the latest coat I made, I should be posting this one to the blog soon!

I hope this post helps you see how these classes can help someone who wants to be a self-taught fashion designer. Gone are the days where you needed to take out crazy student loans and go to fashion school. regardless of whether you want to be creative and design for yourself, or be a self-taught designer and turn into a career option, the sky is the limit. With online learning, it IS possible!

In the last year, I added the following class to my library to make this chiffon skirt

I also added a coverstitch class

Let me know if you like online learning. I have the following I am adding to my wishlist and plan to score them on upcoming sales:

  • Sewing with Waxed Canvas: HERE
  • Couture Dressmaking Techniques:  HERE

Happy Black Friday and Cyber Monday Shopping! Have a relaxing weekend!!!

XOXO

Vatsla.

 

 

Mommy and me in Yellow Seersucker

Hi Fashionistas!! And Happy Thanksgiving to you!!! Hope you all are enjoying the short week and looking forward to the holiday. My lovely sister in law is hosting at her house and I am so happy to be a guest and not a host! Everone is bringing a dish. I am making a Waldorf salad, homemade cranberry sauce, and from scratch mashed potatoes. Yummy…

Anyways.. about this mommy and me outfit. I made my top back in August and I made my daughter’s dress in late September for her annual school pictures!

My top is a copycat RTW top and maternity friendly. I am 22 weeks pregnant in these pictures. I also did a DIY hack on these jeans by removing the pockets and inserting thick elastic in place of the pockets. It was so nice to be able to wear non-maternity jeans for once. They still fit now at almost 29 weeks, but definitely feel snug.

Let’s talk about her dress 1st. Isn’t it adorable? She didn’t like it at 1st. She said it looked like a shirt. Well, it kinda does I guess. With a vintage-inspired design, it has a yoke and gathers. I typically self-draft her dresses and keep them kinda kit and flared, with a more defined waist.. but why does a four-year-old care?! 🙂

I used this Butterick pattern for her. It’s the 1st time I’ve used a commercial pattern for her. Usually, I self-draft.

Here are the side and back view.

I used a hook and eye closure on that back, but I was so tired being pregnant and all, he handstitched it on for me, the night before her school pictures <3 Such a sweet husband and doting dad 🙂

Both her dress and my top have a facing applied. You can read in more detail about how to made my cold shoulder top HERE

By the way. taking her pics is quite amusing now. She either wants to pose like a fashionista or make funny faces. Candid pics are hard to come by

This has to be my absolute favorite pic of us. This pretty much sums up our personalities 🙂

Also- I had a complete case of mommy brain. I thought I was sewing up her dress from leftover fabric used to make my top, but her fabric is different. I thought they were the same. Oh well.

This is the morning I dropped her off at school and I still can’t get over this cuteness. Somedays I wonder… where did she come from? Is she really mine?

I am glad I finally got to post about this DIY. Like I told my husband, I can’t be posting seersucker after Thanksgiving. He was sweet enough to put her to bed tonight so I can catch up on some blogging. I have another super cute mommy and me outfit I made for us, as well as a gorgeous coat coming up. With energy coming back, I am hoping to get them posted over the next few weeks.

Once again have a WONDERFUL Thanksgiving. Will you be indulging in the Craftsy black Friday sales? I’ll send an email out to remind you when the sales hit the shelves!!!

Eat, drink and be Merry. I am very thankful for everything I have in my life. The fact that I am able to enjoy what I do have, instead of wanting more. Being content is such a precious thing.  Stay blessed my dears. See you very soon!

Love,

Vatsla 🙂

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