Flat pattern making, pattern manipulation and pattern alterations
It’s taken me longer than desired to get back in the swing of things after the holidays and some vacation.Here is a top I made late last year. We had warm weather all the way through Christmas, so I made a nice keyhole top with a ribbed cotton knit I picked up a Joanns Fabrics a while back.
I used a simplicity dance pattern for a crop top and made a few flat pattern alterations to get this look. I have mentioned all the alterations at the end of the post if you want to achieve this look
I love this top. It shows off the shoulders and the back. No I don’t work out, but sometimes I like to believe that I do! The keyhole is sexy indeed.. you never know when you need to look good walking away right? 🙂
To accessorize, I threw on my favorite (faux) snake-skin pumps from Gianni Bini and a brown clutch… and this was a bad hair day… so I added a gold headband and threw my hair up in a bun.
And last but not least, to stay true to my roots… I always throw in a Bollywood pose for your viewing pleasure 🙂 Haha!
PATTERN: I used Simplicity 1077, view B as a base and made the following alterations:
SEWING : The top was easy to sew. I used my serger. Since I added a front and back facing, I confused myself a bit.. I usually don’t read pattern instructions.. If you are not doing a facing, this is a one hour top. Easy!
FABRIC: A ribbed knit from Joanns fabric. It was $6.99 a yard. Very casual knit but I put a more dressy twist on it
I love this top. It’s just so cute! And versatile… It can be paired with casual jeans and some pumps or a dressy pair of tailored pants and worn to church!
I am getting back in my sewing studio today after a long hiatus.. What have you been sewing?
Can you believe it is the last day of 2015?! My very last sewing project for 2015 is this gorgeous Little Black dress. I just wrapped up the sewing yesterday. Well I also started sewing it yesterday, so this is my one day LBD. Always sewing at the last-minute 🙂
I drafted the pattern for this dress using my bodice sloper, which I had made many moons ago in Fashion school. I wanted something that would be a nice fit and flatter my figure. so what better than a custom drafted pattern?
If you are curious as to how I created a custom sloper, I studied with Suzy Furrer at Apparel Arts. She is an amazing teacher and luckily, she is now on Craftsy. If you are interested in making your very own sloper and designing your own garments, I HIGHLY recommend her Bodice Sloper class. Suzy is an excellent teacher, and takes the intimidation out of pattern drafting. She is also very responsive.
I wanted a classic look, so I went for a fitted silhouette. I drafted a rounded neck, and princess seams on the bodice, and chose a midi length on the skirt. This look is very classy and quite appropriate for a 30 something momma of one!
And while this dress is a simple LBD, there is a surprise hiding in the back! Doesn’t a splash of hot pink just want to make you smile? Me too 🙂
The fabric is a beautiful cotton sateen and the pink is a shirting fabric, both are from Fabric Mart Fabrics. The flounce looks different from every angle. Such a romantic touch to a simple dress 🙂
And can we just take a moment to admire these shoes? These are giving me life!
Here is a close up of the circular flounce. Isn’t she gorgeous? I drafted this flounce by measuring how long I wanted this to be on the centre back seam. I decided on 10 inches. Then I drafted a circle with a 10 inch radius, and folded it in half to get a half circle. I will be doing a detailed tutorial on how you can draft this flounce and insert it into any dress or skirt pattern. Stay tuned!
Well my darlings, this is a great way to wrap up 2015. When I started this blog in January of 2015, I was excited about where my fashion adventures would take me. Today , on the last day of the year, I can look back and say that this has been a wonderful journey. I have got to know so many amazing women in the sewing community and have loved connecting with each and every one of you.
Happy New Year!!! I will see you in 2016 with my next sewing project! Until then, happy sewing!
It’s been a minute! I miss you all!! The last month or so has been CRAZY! I welcomed the month of December by breaking a rib! Apparently you CAN break a rib by coughing too much! I have not finished a garment since my winter coat, but that was a big one, so a break was well deserved!!
As my 2015 Ready To Wear Fast is coming to an end, I have been thinking about what all I have learned from it. I can honestly say that I have learned the importance of well-fitting wardrobe staples. Here is one of my favorite staples: The black pencil skirt. This is a RTW piece I have owned for a few years:
The things I LOVE about this skirt:
t has a slit in the back, which is a must for a fitted pencil skirt. I love this skirt paired with my self drafted DIY leopard top
I also dressed up the skirt for Christmas Eve service last year.
Because I loved this skirt so much, I decided to replicate it in a different fabric. So I created this DIY denim skirt below
It pretty much has the same fit. The fabric I used is a stretch denim that I had left over from fashion school. I had about a yard and it was just what I needed! I paired it with the DIY Frankenpattern top
Because my denim was a lot thicker than the black fabric, the self faced yoke/ waist band actually acted as a bit of “tummy control”. On my version, I added an invisible zipper instead of a regular version of the RTW skirt. I love invisible zippers. They instantly make your garments look high-end!
I wore it to Thanksgiving dinner last month with this DIY ruffle top I made
I also wore this to work a LOT with a crisp white button up shirt:
If you want to replicate your favorite garment, keep reading!
I have two preferred methods of copying an existing garment. I have tested and tried both and they work perfectly for me!
My preferred method to copy woven garments is the painters tape method that I documented a while back This works great for wovens with or without stretch. I have used this method to copy for my favorite skinny jeans HERE. The white jeans were copies from the skinnies on the left
For knits, my preferred method is documented HERE. I have used this method plenty of times with great success. The ruffled top on the right was copied from the left
I hope this helped! While I would never ever encourage copying another designers work by using this method, I feel comfortable using it for my personal sewing. I am guaranteed to get the perfect fit over and over again and it is very rewarding to sew for yourself when the clothes fit and look good!
I am so glad I was able to come hang out with you again! Please comment and let me know what you are working on! With a broken rib, most of my sewing has been put on hold, so I would like to vicariously sew through you!
Happy Holiday Sewing everyone! See you soon!
Peplums never go out of style! I recently got a request to demonstrate how I would create a pattern from a high low peplum on the ready to wear garment. I filmed this video for one of my readers and wanted to share if with you in case you find it helpful.
Here is the peplum I used for the demo. I made this one a while back by repurposing a dress and you can see the details of this top HERE
The video below talks specifically about how to create a pattern for a peplum, along with a high low variation, but the same technique can be applied to any pattern piece. For example, you could use the same technique to create a pattern for a bodice front and back. If the video does not open for you, you can view it HERE
If you prefer to draft the peplum from scratch, you can see my simple tutorial HERE
Hope this helps and let me know if you have any questions!!
I am currently working on my winter coat. Its my biggest project of the year! I made and fitted the muslin today. I am hoping to cut into the yummy fabric this weekend.
Hope you are having a WONDERFUL weekend.
I copied my favorite Dolman Top. It is getting chilly here and I wanted something warm and comfy. I am so in love with this sweater knit dolman top I purchased sometimes last year. I decided to create a replica using a double-knit I had in my fabric stash.
The double-knit is a thick material. It feels like sweatshirt material. Its warm and comfy. This HAS to be the most casual piece I have ever made. I usually stick to tops that are more on the fitted side. but I also like my sweatshirts!
Here is a close up of the original:
I did not even create a pattern for this one, since it is so easy to recreate. I simply folded my fabric and placed my original top on it. I cut around the outline eyeballing the seam allowance. I have a 3/8 inch seam allowance all over and a 5/8 inch hem allowance on the sleeves, neckline and bottom hem.
One of the main reasons this is such a simple top is that there is no separate sleeve to sew. As you can see below, the bodice and sleeve are one,
I like how to the stripes on the side create a chevron pattern…
PATTERN: This is what the pattern would look like if you used a commercial pattern
I simply traced my original tee as described above in the post. If you want to do it the way I did, but dont have a dolman top in your wardrobe, you can take any t shirt you own and do it this way: I have shown the original tee in blue and how you will trace around it in red to create your pattern. My front and back bodice are exactly the same with the exception of the neckline, which is lower on the back .
FABRIC:I used a double knit from girl Charlee, but I used the wrong side on the outside of the top, as I loved the texture and I also liked the color better as compared to the correct side of the fabric.
SEWING : This was pretty simple to sew and can be a one hour top. There are only 4 seams to sew: 2 side seams and 2 shoulder seams. I completed the hemming with a coverstitch. You could also hem using a twin needle.
I hope you are having a wonderful week so far.Let me know what you think of this easy project.
Until next time!
Its time to start transitioning our wardrobes from summer to pre-fall/ fall and all I could think of was a fitted peplum top in a shade of white. I am so excited to share my latest creation with you. This off white peplum top I just finished sewing. All design details are at the bottom of th post if you want to make your own version!
My style is definitely casual chic. I love a comfortable yet cute pair of skinny jeans. These are such a wardrobe staple for me. I love pairing knit tops that are a bit more dressy with jeans. You never feel overdressed, yet you make a statement.
I wanted to make something that was a bit dressy, but still comfortable, so I chose to sew with a soft and comfortable ponte knit from Fabric Mart Fabrics. I chose an off-white color. For the pattern, I chose Mccalls 7126 View D as a base pattern and modified the peplum.
I drafted the peplum from scratch because I wanted a much fuller peplum and a more dramatic look. I wanted it to be a full circle (think of it as a mini full circle skirt), but I also wanted a high low effect. The peplum is about 3 inches shorter in the front.You can draft your own high low peplum using my tutorial described HERE. To get the hem to be stiff and show off the ruffles, I used a one inch wide horsehair braid.
The top has a little bit of peek-a-boo action going on in the back as the peplum hangs free on the centre back. I used a separating zipper on the bodice and chose to let the peplum do its own thing. This is definitely a sexy top, but classy and elegant at the same time.
Very pleased with the way the horse hair braid hem turned out. This fabric is not too heavy weight, but given that the peplum is a full circle peplum, it would drape very differently had I not used the horse hair braid. LOVE the stiffness of the hem and it makes twirling super fun! Even though this is a knit fabric, the look I was going for was a bit more structured, so I treated the fabric more like a woven. For example, I sewed it with my sewing machine instead of a serger, and I paid special attention to pressing the seams, using heat and steam generously, and pressing the seams crisp with my beloved tailors clapper. You can see my tutorial on pressing seams HERE. I also lined the entire bodice with a lighter knit fabric. I applied an exposed gold metal zipper on the back.
Moving on to how I styled this gorgeous peplum. I added this pretty silver and pink necklace, and this clutch purse. This is one of my favourites and looks so cute with the off white and denim. And I paired this look with my favorite snake skin pumps. (faux snake skin of course)
Can I just tell you that I love the fit on this top? Sewing tip: A peplum is most flattering on the natural waist, which is that narrowest part of the torso. It cinches in the waist and lengthens the legs.
Oh! And no blog post of mine would be complete unless I struck a Bollywood pose… so here goes….(This is me, starting into the distance, thinking of my prince charming..)
Update: A few people asked to see the back view with the zipper. I didnt have a good view of the back,zipper, but here is the best I have since my hair was covering the zipper.
My kid decided to come join me in the pictures! Oh and you know I’ve been gardening this summer…My iris has a bloom! So proud!
PATTERN: I used Mccalls 7126 View D as the pattern, but instead of using the peplum for view D, I drafted my own since I wanted a fuller peplum with a high low hemline. You can draft your own high low peplum using my tutorial described HERE
FABRIC: I used an off white ponte knit from Fabric Mart Fabrics. You can find their selection of ponte knits HERE
SEWING: I seriously loved sewing with the ponte knit. Its my first time working with ponte and I am pleased to say that is sews so well on a sewing machine as opposed to the less stable knits. This is definitely a good fabric to start sewing with you are a beginner with knits. It’s a stable, medium weight fabric and lovely to work with.
.I hope you enjoyed reading about my latest creation!
What are you planning on sewing this weekend? I am taking a short break this weekend since my daughter is turning two and its time to celebrate.