Flannel & Lace Sewing Tutorial


I finally have my first sewing tutorial put together!  I got the idea for this top while looking around at the store Altar'd State.  I thought the idea of adding a bit of femininity to a bit of a masculine shirt was cool.  When I saw this top at the store I knew I could put this together for half the price by using a shirt from a thrift store and everything else from the sewing store.  The flannel was easy to find, I found it at Thriftland in the men's section.  What drew me to it where the colors and pattern of the plaid and it's super soft.  It's also OshKosh, so I knew that this shirt was old and of good quality.  There's also a special place in my heart for the OshKosh brand.  Anyway, the lace was a bit more of a challenge to find.  I didn't see anything I liked at Joann's.  After researching a little about lace and the type I had in mind, I discovered I needed to find a tulle trim with an embroidery on the bottom.  I ended up finding what I wanted on Etsy from a seller in China.  I got 2 yards of the tulle trim for $10. I also decided to shorten the sleeves and adding faux sleeve tabs.  I thought the shirt came together quickly and looks cute.  It's great to layer over a graphic tee with leggings or jeans.  Here is how I put it together:

1. Measure and cut 3 inches from the bottom hem line of the flannel shirt.

2. Measure and cut about 8 inches from the bottom of each sleeve.  For me, this was where the split on the sleeve cuff ended.

3. Next, baste stitch about 1/4 inch from the raw edge of lace.  Gather the lace a little by pulling on the bobbin thread.

4. Press up a 1/2 inch hem on the bottom of shirt.  Pin gathered lace trim to 1/2 inch hem (the edge of raw lace should meet raw edge of flannel). Sew together with lace side up to keep raw edges even while sewing.  Press hem again on flannel side.

5. For sleeve hems, press up 1/2 inch hem,  then sew.

6. For sleeve tabs, measure and cut 2 pieces from scrapped fabric (mine where 8 inches x 1 1/2 inches).  Fold and press length wise, right sides together.

7. Sew one short end of tab, turn corner and continue down long end, leaving about 1/8 inch seam.  The other sort end will be left open.  Turn right side out, clip corners, press.

8. Determine where to place button and sleeve tab.  Measure about 4 inches from sleeve end, mark where sleeve tab will be placed (tab may be longer than needed).  I measured about 5 inches of the tab to come up and over sleeve end.  Sew open end of tab on inside of sleeve.

9. Pull up sleeve tab to outside of sleeve, adjust  how much of sleeve you want gathered, sew button through all layers.

Houndstooth Vest


It's finally starting to feel like fall here in Texas, which is exciting because I can finally put away my shorts and flip flops (no I'm not one of those Texans who wears flip flops year round) and bust out all of my chillier weather clothes.  Since I'm in Texas, it will still get up in the 70's during the fall (and winter) now and again so we're in perfect layering weather.  What better way to layer than with than a vest.  Not those puffer vests, but a cool, classic one like this!  I've had this McCall's vest pattern (M2260) in my stash for years.  I think this was one of the first patterns that I bought when I first got my sewing machine many years ago.  I'm glad that I never attempted this pattern back then because I know I would have totally messed it up.  Now that I've had some experience sewing garments, this was the perfect time for me to give it a go.  It's actually a really simple pattern and great for an advanced beginner.  The fabric I used is a light weight wool blend that I bought last year from Hancock Fabrics.  Two things to keep in mind while sewing this, you may need to allow a very narrow seam allowances for the ties.  I had to do mine over again because my fabric was a little thick and I had trouble turning it inside out the first time around.  Also, be sure when you are sewing down the all of the facings to make sure the fabric is laying down nice and flat so it doesn't shift and not line up correctly.  I'm so excited to wear this super chic vest!

"V' Cut Out Blouse


I found this fantastic Simplicity pattern S0991 while browsing the pattern drawers at my local Joann's.  What drew me to this pattern the most is the "V" cut out on the front.  I can't get enough of  the cut out trend and thought this would be a great chance to try it out.  I went with the easiest view (View F) because I didn't want to run the chance of making a lot of mistakes, plus I wanted to finish it as quickly as I could.  The neckline snaps in the front and there are also two pleats going down the front.  And..uh...mistakes???  Of course!!  It was so funny when I sewed the pleats.  After placing and ironing the pleats I actually sewed all the way down the crease.  Eeek!  Then I realized the boo-boo that I made, took out my trusty seam ripper and made a mental note about pleats.  Anyway, I'm really happy how this top turned out.  And the material and print worked out great.  I used a woven rayon that I found at Joann's.  I think this top would be great for a night out or a special event.  I paired this top with black skinny jeans and open toe booties.  Also, I tried finding this pattern on the Simplicity website to link it and I couldn't find it. I guess it may be just exclusively sold in stores.


Here is the package of the pattern:

Velvet Leggings


This week I was so excited to take my forth sewing class at Stitch Lab here in Austin, TX.  The class was called Advance Knits: Leggings Class.  Now, I'm no where near what a seamstress would call "advanced" however I do feel a bit more comfortable sewing with knits, plus I took the prerequisite class a few months ago called Know Your Knits.  For the leggings class we used McCall pattern M6173.  I've been a bit nervous about sewing pants because fit can get tricky so sewing knit ones would be a great opportunity to try it out without a chance of too many mistakes.  Our teacher Channy is a fantastic instructor.  She took us through all the tips on fit, fabrics, and making adjustments based on how much stretch your knit had.  As for the fabric that I chose, I guess I wanted to do something a bit different.  One of the fabric suggestions on the pattern is velvet with stretch.  So when I hit up my local Joann's, they had a pretty decent collection of stretch velvet and for a great price of $4/yard!  Score!  Now I wouldn't feel terrible if I totally messed these up.  It's also a plus that velvet is on trend this season so I went for it!

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