Named Clothing Gemma Dress with Stylish Fabric

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The holidays are finally here, and that calls for a fancy dress. Ever since I saw Named Clothing’s Gemma Dress in velvet, I’ve been wanting to try making a maternity version for myself. I couldn’t shake the idea out of my head so I decided to go for it. Honestly, I wasn’t sure how this was going to turn out. I’m happy to say, it worked! This pattern also comes with a sweatshirt variation that I’ll have to try post baby bump.

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I picked a royal blue stretch velvet from Stylish Fabric for this dress. I cut my dress out along the less shiny-reflective side of the fabric. I have a lot going on so I figured it would be more flattering to NOT catch the light on every bulge along my body but now I wish I had cut it the other way around. I don’t think it would be so bad. I do like the darker blue color of the less shiny side I chose though.

A lot of people ask me for tips about working with stretch velvet. It’s basically very similar to sewing with a knit fabric. You can wash and dry it. Make sure to use a stretch stitch or serger when sewing with it. Be aware of what direction you are cutting out your pattern, one direction of the fabric is more reflective and the other not so much. There’s not a right or wrong way, just depends on your personal preference. This is my fourth stretch velvet project in the last year, you could say I’m a fan.

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I picked a size based on my current bust measurement and added a little more length to the front skirt piece of the dress. I found it helpful to drape/stretch the fabric over my baby bump and see how much width I needed across, I ended up adding  2 1/2″ to the waistline. This is what my pattern piece looked like after my modifications:

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I’m not sure if that’s the BEST way to do it, but it worked really well for me. Just measure around your widest part and find it on the pattern piece based off of where the waist is marked. I’m currently 25 weeks along, and there’s still room to grow in this dress. I didn’t make any modifications to the back pattern pieces.

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I sewed everything together according to the directions. When you get to steps 8 & 9 I would recommend basting the pieces together first and once you match up your seams (it may take a few attempts) sew a straight stitch at regular stitch length just over the matched seams, and then serge the whole seam. This was the hardest part of the whole project for me.

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My hip measurements are a lot smaller than the size 8 measurements, but I didn’t adjust the pattern at all. I sewed up the side seams as they were, and then fitted the dress exactly how I wanted it at the side seams, and sewed them up again. I wasn’t sure how everything was going to fit overall, I ended up taking another 1/2″ out of the bodice side seams and sleeves, plus the extra fabric that I needed to take off at my hips. It worked great. I also lowered the back slit by 3″ for more coverage.

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Thanks for reading along, and happy holiday season everyone!

 

 

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Blush Fabric Tour

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I was so excited when Dana of @made_everyday asked me to be part of her Blush fabric tour. I knew I would make something for my daughter, and I let her pick what fabric she liked best. The Cat Nap Pink was her first choice of course, pink + cats= no brainer. I decided to go with the knit option and pictured an easy dress.

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Art Gallery Fabric knits are soooo soft. When I was cutting out this dress, I seriously just wanted to wrap myself up in this fabric. I went with the Millie Dress Pattern by Mix It Make It. My daughter only requests to wear dresses lately so I thought this would be a great addition to her wardrobe for preschool and church. I’ve made this dress once before. It’s a free pattern but unfortunately it’s not currently available. There’s word it will be relaunched soon, so keep your eye out! For reference, I made the size 4 and added 3 1/2″ in length to the skirt.

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We both love this dress so so much. My daughter has plans to wear it as many days in a row that she can get away with. She even woke up super late at night after I finished it to take a peek. Ahhh, I love making things for her.

Check out all of the other fun prints that are also part of the Blush collection below!

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I also included this video I found of Dana explaining the inspiration behind her new collection, check it out! Thanks for having me on the tour Dana!

Kyoto Sweatshirt with Stylish Fabric

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I found my new favorite fall sweater! I don’t know about you, but lately, all I want to wear is sweatshirts and sweaters. They are so cozy for the colder weather, and look great thrown on with jeans. I’m quickly running out of clothing options as my waistline grows by the day, so I decided to make two versions of the Kyoto Sweater/Tee by Papercut Patterns, and I couldn’t love them more. I’ve had my eye on this pattern ever since the day it released a few weeks ago. I used two different fabrics from Stylish Fabric, and I love how they each make the top slightly different. This pattern was super easy to make it work for maternity without having to widen the pattern at all. These tops will work great post maternity too. I love the added feminine touch of the ruffle on the sleeve, but also the loose, comfy fit.

Let’s talk about ‘my’ first version:

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First of all, this fabric! I’ve always loved waffle knits and this one had an added surprise factor that I wasn’t expecting. The waffle pattern was a bit bigger than I pictured it to be online (which I love), and the back has a slight brushed fleece like layer giving it extra coziness and warmth. It’s a thin weave but not sheer. Air flows through it keeping you cool and yet warm with the brushed backing. I always get so hot when I have to layer coats over sweaters, and this sweater is the perfect thickness for a added warmth without being too warm. I need to order all to the other colors!! I picked the mauve colorway for my first Kyoto Sweater.

Now on to the pattern. This pattern fits big! I would definitely size down. My measurements matched up to a size XS, and I ended up taking in the sides and sleeves to an XXS. To make this maternity appropriate, I added 4″ in length to the bodice front and back. That’s it! I also omitted the sleeve bands and hem bands for this version, and rolled the sleeves twice and tacked them to a 3/4 sleeve length. The only thing I don’t love about this first version is the neckline. It’s a little too wide for what I prefer. Over all, I love the fit and look of this version, and I’m planning on wearing it ALLLLLL fall and winter. This color is so good too.

Okay on to version two. I loved version one sooo much that I wanted to make another one, but slightly different.

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For my second Kyoto Sweater, I used this navy and red floral printed on french terry. This fabric is a thinner french terry, but not too thin or sheer. It’s super soft and quite honestly perfect for this pattern. You definitely want to use a drapier knit so your ruffles aren’t sticking out too much.

I changed up a few things to perfect the pattern and added a few changes on this version. First of all I sized down to the XXS size. I only added 2″ in length to the front and back bodice pattern pieces because I added the hem band which added another 2″. (4″ total like version one). I also raised the neckline for a closer fit. I brought it in 1/2″ at the shoulder seams and graded down to 1/4″ at the center front seams. I also widened the neckband by about 1/2″. I added the sleeve and hem band to finish it all off. This one feels better fit wise.

This pattern is a fast make! I made each one in a single night. The fit is awesome, and I love that the sleeve details make it a little more interesting than a basic sweatshirt pattern. I spotted a woman wearing an almost exact sweater the other day with a big MK logo on it. I’m guessing Michael Kors? I felt pretty cool wearing my VERY OWN handmade version that looked almost exactly like hers, and I liked mine better. Everyone needs one for fall!

I love both versions and I’ve already worn them both (and only finished them yesterday). Thanks for reading along, and happy fall sewing!!

 

Kochi Kimono + Piper Top

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Hey everyone! I’m excited to share my Stylish Fabric make for this month: a lengthened Kochi Kimono by Papercut Patterns paired with the Piper Top by Christine Haynes.

I want all the sweaters and easy layering pieces for fall. Kimono’s are not part of my wardrobe and I thought it would be a fun garment piece to try out, paired with sweaters and jeans. I’ve also had my eye on the Piper Top, and thought it would work well for maternity.

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First, this Kimono! I sewed it up using this gorgeous wine floral chiffon from Stylish Fabric. It’s your typical chiffon fabric, and wasn’t too complicated to work with. I made Variation 3 of the pattern and added 16″ in length to the front, back and front band pieces. I really like the long “duster” cardigan look, and I thought it would be really pretty in a light weight kimono style variation.

The pattern was simple to make. I actually constructed both the kimono and piper top in one day. (One during nap time and the other at night). I’m really happy with the kimono overall, and I’m excited to try pairing other tops with it for different looks.

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Also, wondering why I’m so HUGE at almost 16 weeks. Third pregnancy probs or monster baby? Send help! I do have to say that I’m loving these maternity jeans from H&M. (I cut a few inches off the hemline).

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Now, for the Piper Top. I sewed it up in this rib knit hacci fabric also from Stylish Fabric. This fabric is light weight but still cozy. It’s the same material I used for my toaster sweater last winter, but in a different color-way. The Piper Top was super fast to make and the fit is pretty good. I made a size 6 compared against my current bust measurement, 3/4 length sleeve option and added 1″ in length. Next time around I think I would try it in a thicker knit, and add a little more length. I’m growing at a much faster rate than I expected!

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I really love both of these pieces, and love that I can wear them as maternity as well non-maternity come next fall. I can’t wait to show you what I have planned for my next Stylish Fabric post next month. Stay tuned!

Dove Blouse in Windowpane Plaid

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Introducing my windowpane plaid dove blouse! I’m in love with this shirt. It’s light and airy and perfect for warm fall days. I LOVE the bell sleeves, and v-neck details. My plaid matching skills could have been better on this one. Allie from Indiesew suggested using starch to help add more stability to the fabric, I’m planning on trying that next time. The pattern is from Indiesew and you can find the last of this fabric at Fancy Tiger Crafts.

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The pattern was a pretty quick sew with great instructions. The fit is great based off of my measurements. This pattern comes with three sleeve options: 3/4, flare sleeves and bell sleeves. The fabric is a rayon crepe, and a little tricky to work with, at least for matching plaids. I probably tried 4-5 different times and ways to make it match up, with no luck. Sometimes you just have to walk away, and walk away I did.

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Annnnnnd surprise! I have a little secret I’ve been hiding…

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We’re expecting baby #3 in March, and we couldn’t be more thrilled. I feel a bit like I’ve been dragging to get things done these past few months, but hopefully the exhaustion and 8:00 o’clock bedtime will soon let up. Get ready for lots of maternity hacks!

For this top, all I did was grade out one size from just under the dart to the hem and I also added 1″ in length. I raised the v-neck by 1″ for added modesty, it was a little too low for me. There’s definitely room to grow into this top and I’m hoping it lasts through winter. We’ll see!

Also, fall! It’s finally fall and I couldn’t be happier. The weather is so perfect right now, and I want to make all the cozy things. I’m loving all my makes from last fall/winter that kind of still fit, for now. Ahhhh I just love fall, and I may or may not be watching Gilmore Girls right now…

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Thanks for reading along, friends! I’ll be back soon with some more fall sewing inspo!

Velvet Ebony Dress with Stylish Fabric

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I’m in full blown fall sewing mode over here, anyone else? I’m trying to add pieces I can wear now while it’s still pretty warm and on through the fall as it starts to cool down. I can feel fall in the air! Velvet is a HUGE trend for fall this year and Stylish Fabric has just what you need! They have so many colors in this gorgeous, drapey stretch velvet. I saw this Old Rose color and instantly pictured a easy swing dress, specifically the Ebony Dress by Closet Case Files.

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I’ve used this pattern before for the t-shirt option. I wear it all the time, and was eager to try out the dress variation. I love it! It has just the right amount of volume without being too much. It’s super comfortable to wear and easy to dress up or down. I will be living in this dress! I made one alteration by adding 4″ in length, which ended up being perfect. I also chose the 3/4 sleeves length and added another 1″. Next time I think I would go up one sleeve size, and add a little more length. The armscye also feels a little high, so I would need to lower it a little on my next go. Other than that this dress is a hit!

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A few tips for sewing with stretch velvet!

  1. Pay attention to the way the light hits the fabric. It’s different from different directions depending on the nap. Decide what you like best!
  2. Treat stretch velvet just like a knit. Use a ball point needle or serger to sew. Finish hems just as you would a knit. (I used a stretch twin needle).
  3. I washed mine on delicate in warm water in my washing machine, and then dried it on delicate as well. It washes up great!

It’s really quite easy to use, and the results are stunning. It’s a perfect fabric choice for fall and winter! (and pretty much every season it seems!).

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Thanks so much for reading along. Now go grab some stretch velvet for yourself! It’s only $7.65 a yard and you cant beat that! Happy sewing friends!

This is a collaboration between Stylish Fabric and myself. All opinions are my own. 

Menagerie + La Maison Victor Dolores Skirt

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Is anyone else drooling over the new Cotton + Steel Rifle Paper Co. Menagerie Collection!? It’s so good! My favorite print of the whole collection has to be this gorgeous monstera leaf print though. I was instantly drawn to it. This fabric is a cotton rayon lawn blend, and really just the perfect weight. It’s not as shifty as a 100% rayon, but not as thick as a 100% cotton. It has really lovely drape too.

I chose this print for my Dolores Skirt, a pattern out of La Maison Victor’s magazine now translated into an English version! Let me tell you, this magazine is stunning! It’s filled with 8 sewing patterns, instructions and beautiful images of the finished patterns. It’s hard to pick just one! I also like that they included patterns for everyone: babies, kids, women and even men. I’m thrilled to be part of their worldwide tour celebrating the new English Version. If you’re from the United States, you can pick this up at your nearest Barnes and Noble store.

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All of the patterns in the magazine can be found in a center fold out. Everything is very clear and easy to understand. There’s two patterns per page overlapping one another marked in black and red. I used a green marker to outline the size and pattern I needed, and then traced it onto pattern paper. There are two pieces for each skirt piece that need to be taped to together to make the completed skirt front and back.

The instructions were very clear and the skirt came together in one night. I did take off about 1 1/2″ off of my hemline. No other adjustments were made. I really love the look of this skirt and the length is amazing. Midi skirts are having a major moment.

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I find that because I don’t have a lot of shape to my figure (no hips), skirts without a lot of volume aren’t very flattering on me. I love the bit of gathering along the waistline of this pattern to help add a little bit of volume for me. I really love the button front, I chose some wooden buttons from my local Joann Fabric store. I’m excited to wear this skirt into the beginning of fall. I love that I can dress it up for church, or wear it casual for an outing with my kids. It’s super versatile! Go grab a copy of La Maison Victor’s newest issue and sew up a Dolores Skirt for yourself! Happy sewing friends!

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La Maison Victor provided the magazine for this post, and Cotton + Steel provided me the fabric.