Category Archives: Sewing

Just for You : Night Circus Skirt

I decided to make myself something this week. Another creation from Just for You by Caroline Fairbanks-Critchfield and Sarah Markos (*affiliate link*).

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I made the Night Circus Skirt which is a 6 paneled skirt with a side zip. It sewed up quick and easy. My kind of project!

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I used this periwinkle bottom weight and since I only had one color, I top-stitched the seams down twice to define the panels.

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I am thrilled with how it came out!

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But I didn’t stop there. I also whipped up a hat using the free pattern for the Rosabelle Hat by Elsewhen.

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I used the same fabric.

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Now I have a cute skirt and hat, just in time for the rain to return!

What have YOU made today?

A Rainbow for Katy

Today is a fellow blogger’s birthday, and Audrey from Skirt Fixation has gotten a bunch of us together to give her a virtual rainbow to celebrate her day:

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If you aren’t familiar with Katy Dill, check out her blog No Big Dill. She is a fabulous seamstress and Mother of 6 (5 girls and 1 boy). Her photos are always beautiful and her posts filled with color. She inspires me to be a better sewist, and the little slices of her life she shares make my heart smile.

I have participated in Katy’s series Once upon a Thread several times (here, here, here, here, here, AND here), so far. Whew! It is, by far, one of my favorite series.

I also tested my sewing skills and joined her in her other series: Sewing all 26, and actually sewed something for every letter of the alphabet! How cool is that?

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Sew… I sewed up another tankini for my girl, but this time, I rainbow-tized it in honor of the Fantastic Katy’s birthday!

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I used the camisole pattern and the boy shorts pattern from the Coco Cay Tankini (both affiliate links).

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I sewed on some ruffled elastic to create rainbows.

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Sew happy.

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I hope you have a fantastic day, sister Leo (yup, my birthday is coming up too). I knew I liked you!

Skirting the Issue

It is that time of year again. When liZ and Elizabeth over at Simple Simon and Co and of Project Run and Play host:

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You can see my posts from previous Skirting the Issue events here and here.

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I made 9 skirts to donate, this year. Varying sizes because I used just what I had in my stash to make them.

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A new thing I added, this year is the size tags. I cut some twill tape, folded it half and inserted in the waistband. Then I painted on the number and a heart on each one.

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I actually had a little more of that sock monkey fabric to make another skirt (like last year).

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I love participating in this series. It makes me feel like I am a part of something bigger. Something worthwhile. Something that connects me to other sewists all around the world. Other women and girls.

Time to use our power for good!!

What have YOU made today?

Mad as a Hatter Pants

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When The Bee heard that I was sewing something up for this series, she jumped to her sewing machine and whipped up these crazy Mad Hatter style pants!

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My stash was full of small pieces that were perfect for this project. She sewed them all together into one large patchwork piece, and then traced a pair of pants that fit her.

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She has worn them out several times, and has gotten such a wonderful response! People are asking her to make them some.

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Crazy.

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She also made this white rabbit necklace out of an old pocket watch. She gutted it, and inserted this picture that she drew.

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She definitely had some fun with this!

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I hope you enjoyed our contribution to the celebration! Be sure to check out the others in the series over at Made by Sara.

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Sneak Peek at what is next

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Right now there is a fun series going on, hosted by Made By Sara. I’m up tomorrow. I couldn’t help but show you a sneak peek today, though.

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Come back tomorrow to see more!

Using up what is there

When I organized my sewing closet the other day, I came across a HUGE pile of clothing in there, meant for refashioning. Honestly, it made me feel sad to look at that stuff sitting there, not being used, and I really didn’t want it to go back in the closet. SO, I took it out, plopped it down on my sewing table, and made decisions whether or not to keep each garment. I even took it one step further by deciding right there and then what the ones I kept would be made into.

Then I made them into things!

Most of them, I just need to make simple adjustments so that Falafel could wear them. I cut a lace dress and made a cute skirt, in minutes. One of The Bee’s old shirts, actually fit Falafel as a dress without any alterations.

The one I am sharing today was also super easy, and only really took about 10 minutes to make. It started with a pair of fantastic yoga pants made from organic hemp and cotton that someone gifted me. I could not allow myself to get rid of them even though they were FULL of unrepairable crotch holes. And although that fabric is super worn (I wore these all the time), it was too precious a fabric to let go. I mean how often do I get to buy organic hemp/cotton? Uh, never.

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I traced a pair of leggings that fit my girl. Left the existing hem on these pants. I added a yoga band at the top by sewing a few pieces together.

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The seam on the band doesn’t line up with the one on the pants, but I am OK with it due to the trickiness of salvaging fabric when refashioning. C’est la Vie.

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Then she had to try out some yoga poses.

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And made up her own.

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I cannot even tell you just how good it felt to reduce that pile in my closet, and to just stop procrastinating. I know that those kinds of projects usually get pushed until “later” because they are not as glamorous or fun as sewing something new (uh, like bathing suits). But “later” can turn into weeks, months, and years. It feels much better to be rid of that baggage.

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And now she has some very cute yoga pants, amongst other easy-to-wear-and-be-a-nut clothes.

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What have you done today?

Juice pouch tote tutorial

I am back to sewing with juice pouches. Ha!  I guess I am becoming predictable. You know you can either find me talking about that camisole pattern or juice pouches, lately.

I did get a request for a tutorial from a reader asking how to make the Juice pouch totes. I needed to sew up a few more, so I figured I would photograph as I went.

Let’s gather some materials to make a Juice Pouch Tote!

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To make one of the bags you see in the photo above you will need:

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23 empty, clean juice pouches.

{Read here for some helpful tips on working with this funky material}

You will also need a heavy duty sewing machine needle, a sewing machine, thread, sewing scissors, AND scissors that are NOT your sewing scissors (for trimming the juice pouches), 1 package of extra wide double folded binding, strap material (I used 2 pieces cut to 39″ each of cotton webbing), and clips (such as clover clips)

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Because we collected these from a variety of sources, there are all different designs on our pouches. I think that makes it even more fun. So if you have choices, too, lay out a row of four in the order you like.

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Take just two, overlap one edge on top of the other, and sew with a zig zag stitch, securing them together. I always lay the one on the left on top of the on on the right, but this is entirely up to you.

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It should look like this when you are done.

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Continue on until all four are sewn in a line. Then repeat with another line of 4.

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Now that you have two rows of four, trim each row so that they are nice and neat, and you will sew them together with a zig zag stitch. I sew the one on the top, on top of the one on the bottom. Does that make sense? Maybe you can say “she sells sea shells by the seashore” 10 times fast. You know, just for fun.

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Anyhow, repeat the above steps until you have two panels of 8.

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Now grab that binding and cut a piece that will fit across the top of one of them. Clip the binding, sandwiching the top edge.

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Sew it on (I used a straight stitch, but you could do any that you would like). Repeat for other panel.

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Take one strap and clip on to one panel. I started at the bottom on one vertical seam and looped up and around (making sure not to twist) and down to the bottom of the other vertical seam.

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Sew down the entire length of the strap on each side of the strap. I even continued my stitches on the loop of the handle. Repeat for other panel. Then place both panels aside.

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Grab 7 more pouches to make the sides and bottom. Place them one on top of the other, but this time, vertically.

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You will sew 5 of them going in one direction, and then flip the last two upside down and sew them on.

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You will have a long line of pouches now.

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Cut a small piece of bias tape for each end. Clip on, then sew in place. Trim the excess off the ends.

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Grab one of your panels, and face it down. Lay the long strip on top facing up (so that wrong sides are together). Clip it along one side to start.

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When you get to the bottom, curve it around and clip in place. Do this all around until you reach the other side on top. Sew it down with a zip zag stitch. Start again at the top and go the length of the side. When you get to the bottom corner, stop and clip your thread. Pivot the bag so you can sew across the bottom.
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This part is a bit tricky. You will need to fold and hold it down in place to make this easier (the old fold n’ hold, eh?). Then sew to next corner, and repeat. juicetute20m

Yay! You have one side sewn on. Repeat process for the other panel. juicetute21m

You will have to learn what way to fold your bag so it is not so cumbersome and awkward going through your machine. Go slowly and stop when you need to. juicetute22m

It should look like this. Put it aside and grab the remaining piece of binding. Cut it in half. juicetute23m

Open up one side of one of the pieces. juicetute24m

Fold edge over. juicetute25m

Fold the ends back and now it looks neater. You will use this to wrap around the raw edges you just created. Start at the top.

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Clip in place. When you get to the bottom corner, turn it, and it will form a little mitered corner. Keep clipping around. juicetute27m

Sew with a straight stitch around the bag. Stop at the corners, and pivot (like you did in the previous steps). When you get to the top,  before you sew all the way, tuck in the end of the bias tape to make it neater on this side. Sew it down. Repeat for the other side of the bag. juicetutebag2m

You are done!! Get more juice pouches and repeat:) juicetuetebags3m

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial! Please let me know if you make one using it. I would love to see your juice pouch creations, too. And as always, let me know if you have any questions!

Another use for that cami pattern

Just when you thought I was done, I made something else with that same pattern!

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This time, I lengthened the camisole pattern and made matching shorts.

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The fabric I used is some that I was saving from my trip to the Sewing Expo. I have no idea who made it, but it is so very soft and lovely. I wish I bought the whole roll!

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I made the knit bias tape from some scraps I had left over from this dress (another one of my favorite patterns).

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The Bee took one look at her sister wearing this and said “nice pajamas!”. Well, I actually didn’t make them as pajamas, and she will probably wear this outfit in public, but yes, I suppose they could also be sleepwear!

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For the shorts, I just traced a pair of bicycle shorts that she has, and made them slightly larger (so there is room to grow). Super easy!

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I think this child has some great Summer staples, now.

Do you like to sew clothing for Summer? What is your go-to pattern?

Camisole dress

Remember that Gold bathing suit I made using the Classic Camisole pattern *affiliate link* as a base?

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I made my girl a summer dress out of that same pattern!

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I started with sewing up the size 5/6 camisole pattern. I lengthened it first, but then decided to make a dress out of it, so I cut off the excess fabric at the bottom.

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Then I made a circle skirt. I just winged it! Please don’t think I am bragging, because in all actuality I think this aspect of my personality is a mixture of luck and crazy.

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Every time I have ever tried to make circle skirt (especially out of knit), I just eyeball it. I go conservative on the waist curve (because  you can always widen it later). The length, you can always shorten.

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I also made it so that there were two half circles, and again, the side seams were fully adjustable if I needed to trim a little off.

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The sides are cut a little higher which gives this dress a dance-y feel.

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She LOVES this dress. Goodness, so would I! It is the perfect summer outfit.

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What is a pattern you have changed to make into something else?

Princess Falafel and the Gold Tankini

I could not resist a little nod to Star Wars. Although this is far from that kind of suit.

I started with the Coco Cay Tankini pattern that I have tried for the first time before, here. I made it again, but still had the same shoulder problem. I have no idea.

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I liked how the boy shorts came out though.

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I thought I would try something different.

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So I sewed up the Camisole Pattern (also by Peek-a-Boo Pattern shop) using swimwear fabric!

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She LOVES it. The fit is perfect, and it was a super quick sew.

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She even wore it to an Art Show at our local library (with a skirt) while she tried on necklaces made from different natural materials.

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I think everyone needs a gold tankini!

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Now, if it only came in MY size!

What have YOU made today?