Sunday, June 17, 2018

Revisiting Maritime Shorts

 Grainline Maritime Shorts
with Jalie Scarf-collar Top

I've made these Maritime shorts before here.  Four years and a couple sizes larger now, I had to make a few more adjustments.  For starters, always a swayback.  Then I had to make a 1/2 inch full seat adjustment, as well as scooping out the back crotch just to be sure I had enough room!  ha ha
I didn't plan on making a muslin, but it turned out that way since there was no way they were fitting my bottom on the first try!  They were way too tight without any ease to speak of.

I also added 2.25 inches to the pattern length.  The pattern instructions have you turn up 1/4 inch and then 1/4 inch again.  I made my hem wider, turning up 1/4 inch and then another whole inch.  

I changed my back pockets this time.  With my "muslin," I made the back pockets according to the pattern; however, with such a busy print, you couldn't even tell they were there.  Recently I bought a pair of shorts (that surprisingly fit me very well....that happens almost never) and there were faux double welt pockets on the back.  I really, really liked that detail, so I made them.  I have to say, it was a little tricky getting them to line up evenly.  When I looked at my RTW shorts, those weren't perfectly aligned at all...big surprise, huh?  Needless to say, that took the pressure off and I knew I could do better at the very least--I think they turned out pretty good.

Here is a closer look at the faux double welts I made.

Now that I have perfected my overall fit, I want to change up the front pockets; I want them to be accessible on a slant.  So, I will play around with pattern drafting for that and if successful, I'll be making another pair of shorts with that detail soon.

My top is a previous make from here.

Here is a recap of my last four outfits that were made with the new Jalie pattern releases.

While on a recent family vacation to St. Louis, I made a new P4P Favorite Tee Dress to wear.

Thanks for stopping by ~ Shirley

Friday, June 15, 2018

New Jalie Pattern Rose Top

Rose Top 3881
Size T
Alterations:  Swayback and forward shoulder adjustment

Another great summer staple that Jalie has just released!  This is a cute button-up top, so easy to pair with shorts and jeans.

Your options include chest pockets with armhole binding or neck tie with armhole binding and ruffle.  Other nice details are back yoke and back pleat (which is a little hard to see with my busy print).

This is the BEST collar pattern piece and instructions I have ever followed.  I don't know how Jalie improved upon what others have not, but I completely 100% recommend this pattern for that alone!  If you have struggled with collars in the past or if you are new to sewing a collar, this IS the pattern you should start with.  You will have perfect results.

Jalie includes finished length measurements for the top, and as you can see this is a little long on me, but I am petite and chose to leave this at the length it was.  I like to tie my ends for a different look (picture at the end of this blog post).

You can hardly see my buttons--they blend in so well with the flowers.

I also French seamed my side seams to have clean finishes since all other seams are enclosed.  It looks nice inside and out!

I did find that my armholes ran a little low exposing my bra, which may be due to using Rayon Challis fabric, which is quite drapey.  Since there was enough ease, I was able to take in my side seams an additional 1/2" without negatively impacting my fit, which raised the armhole for me.

And here I am with my ends tied at my waist.  My shorts are Jalie 2908 Jeans pattern shortened.

Monday, June 11, 2018

New Jalie Pattern Mimosa

Mimosa 3890
Size T
Alterations:  1/2" Swayback Adjustment

The Mimosa is Jalie's new scoopneck tee!  Here I have chosen View C with short self-tie sleeves.  Other views include short rolled up sleeves with a breast pocket or long sleeves with a flounce.

Jalie includes finished length measurements in the pattern instructions so you can adjust for fit if necessary.  I love the length because it is perfect to wear with leggings.  I like to have a long enough length to cover my bottom.

I did use thin strips of knit interfacing to stabilize my hems on my sleeves since they require top stitching.  I tried without but could not achieve a stable straight stitch that I was happy with, which was probably due to my fabric stretch.

My fabric print looks like a big blob of ink on my shirt right at the center front! LOL  Pattern placement, something I don't always (never) think about until after it's too late.  

Coordinated my top with the new Clara Legging pattern.

Fabric for my top purchased at Joann's.
Fabric for my leggings purchased at

Thanks for stopping by ~ Shirley

Thursday, June 7, 2018

New Jalie Lisette Skirt Pattern

Lisette 3883
Size S/T
Alterations:  Shortened length by 2 inches, graded out to a T below the waist

Here is the new Jalie Pull-on Pencil Skirt!  I chose the knee length version with waistband.  Options include skirt with waistband, skirt without waistband, and color-blocking.  All can be made at mini or knee length.  Since I am petite, I did have to shorten the knee length version to bring it above my knee.  This is pretty standard for me with all patterns.  

I love, love, love this waistband!  It's wide, it feels comfortable, and there is elastic enclosed in the top that you can't even tell is there.  This is a very quick and easy sew.  Perfect for dressing up or for casual wear.

Jalie bottoms are usually a size S for me, but when it comes to a skirt, lately I'm finding I need a little more room on the back side.  A size S graded out to a T was perfect for me.

My skirt fabric was a nice med/heavy knit purchased from Joann's Fabrics.
My top is also made from Jalie 2805.

Thanks for stopping by ~ Shirley

Monday, June 4, 2018

New Jalie Clara Legging Pattern

Clara Leggings/Shorts 3887
Size S
Cropped Version

I have found my favorite leggings!  I'm totally in love with the wide waistband version.  However, if you prefer, there is also an option for just elastic at the waist.  The wide waistband also includes elastic that is sewn in.  I have worn these leggings multiple times now and they stay up!  

Notice there is NO seam at the front either!  Make sure you pay special attention to where this area of your pattern piece lines up on the fold.  

I chose to make the cropped leg version.  I pretty much live in these for my at-home casual wear.

Another feature that sets these leggings apart from other patterns is the included gusset piece.  If you haven't sewn in a gusset, no worries.  As with all Jalie patterns, the instructions are thorough and include illustrations, making this super easy to do, even for a beginner.  Having a gusset definitely creates a better fit with added flexibility.

No outer side seam either!  There is only an inner leg seam.

Top is made using Jalie 2682.

Legging fabric purchased from Knitpop (Yoga Knit)
Top fabric purchased from Joann's Fabrics (Athletic Quick Dry Fabric)

These are so quick and easy to make!  I have 2 pairs already out of the yoga knit fabric.  Next I will be making several pairs out of athletic fabric.

Thanks for stopping by ~ Shirley

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Kalle Shirtdress

Closet Case Patterns
Kalle Shirtdress
Size 6

I'm feeling summer....well, at least a few times a week before it acts like winter again.  I had to wait a day for the wind to die down before I could step outside and get pictures.  It was slightly breezy and 60 here today in Oklahoma.

I'm really happy with the results of this pattern.  I made a size 6 based on my bust measurement.  As per the instructions, I did not grade out larger for my hips since there is plenty of ease built into the pattern.  I think it said if you are only off by one or two sizes you can get away with sewing it up based on your bust size.  Nice!

(Hey, finally a dress that matches my orange Sketcher sandals)

I did my usual swayback adjustment of 1/2 inch.  I also shortened the dress by 1 inch.  Normally I have to shorten patterns by 2 to 3 inches, but since the side seam ends higher up the leg, I kept it longer on me.  I also removed 1.5 inches off the bottom back piece.  Otherwise, the back hem would have been past my knee area.  There is quite a difference between the front and back hem, which is great for longer, not so much! ha ha

The dress looks beautiful inside and out.  The yoke (cut out twice) encloses the seam where the back dress is attached.  Also, shoulder seams are enclosed with the burrito technique.  I flat felled the side seams so they would have a neat finish too.  Bias binding is used at the hem.  The back pleat can be inverted if you choose.  The instructions are great and easy to follow, including those for the collar.  If you are more of a visual person, there is a sew along on the pattern website.

My fabric is very thin, so I have to wear a slip underneath.  I forget where I purchased this fabric, but I remember it was on clearance for less than $4 a yard, making this a very inexpensive dress!

There is also a pocket, but it blends in so well you can barely see it.

Thanks for stopping by!

~ Shirley

Friday, March 16, 2018

Ottobre Georgia Coat

Ottobre 2/2012
#20 Georgia Outerwear Coat
Size 38
Alterations:  Shortened 2 inches below pocket placement line

This is such a great issue of Ottobre for women!  I wish I could remember what this fabric was labeled as, but I remember "suede" was part of the description.  The inside of the fabric definitely has that suede feel and texture, but the outside feels totally different.  It makes such a lovely coat and is very light weight too!  I took all that remained from the bolt and knew that it would be a challenge to make a coat from just shy of the 3 yards I was able to purchase.  However, being 5'1 does have its advantages because I knew I would be shortening my pattern.

Ottobre calls this "super-easy" and perhaps it would have been if I had not decided to take the time to finish all my seams with bias binding.  I took about 3 weeks from pattern tracing to installing the snaps, longer than I usually spend on any sewing project.  I enjoyed taking my time on this one and made sure to stop sewing if I was tired.

I used black cord for the drawstring at the waist, which helped with my limited fabric amount.  I also purchased a package of cord stops. This was not mentioned in the pattern materials, so I'm guessing Ottobre would have you just "tie" them together maybe?  I like having the cord stops so the ends can hang loosely.

I decided to add snaps to the pocket flaps to keep them fastened down, using a total of 18 snaps for this jacket!  I was able to eliminate 1 snap since I removed 2 inches from my length.  These are nice, deep and roomy pockets.

The fabric has a crinkled look to it, so I was particularly careful when ironing so they weren't removed if it could be avoided.

The collar is one large rectangular piece of fabric.  I like how you get a different look depending on whether you snap it up or leave it lying flat around your shoulders.

The instructions never said to cuff the sleeves.  However, they look to be in the photo.  If they aren't cuffed, they are extremely long.  I secured each cuff with tiny stitching at the sleeve seam and at the other side of the cuff.

A hem is used as a casing for self-fabric ties at the very bottom.  You can't see it in the photo, but there is about a 4 inch angled split between the base of the backside pattern pieces where the ties extend. You can barely see the CB seam of the jacket.

Thanks for stopping by ~ Shirley

Friday, February 16, 2018

Kielo Wrap Dress

Named Kielo Wrap Dress
Size 38

Alterations:  Forward shoulder adjustment, swayback, shortened by 4 inches

I found this beautiful sheer floral at Joann's Fabrics; it was on sale and total cost was $18.  I have always wanted a sheer dress for summer.  Not quite summer yet and although it was 70 yesterday, I stood in 40 degree temps today for these photos.

There isn't anything technical about the construction, but since I chose a sheer fabric knit, I did sew French seams where ever I could.  I played around with scrap fabric trying to figure out the best way to make the neck and armhole hems.  With the fabric being so light, bias binding seemed to weigh the fabric down too much, making it fall forward a bit.  What worked best for me was to cut 3/8 inch strips of knit interfacing for those areas and then hem by turning under 3/8 inch.  I also interfaced both sides of the fabric ties.

My daughter said, "step out so you can see the vent."  Since I shortened the overall length by 4 inches, I had to break that up in 2 places.  I removed 2 inches above the knee and 2 inches below.

I wanted to open the dress so you could see the ties and my daughter said, "you look like a napkin!"  ha ha

I really love this pattern and will definitely be making it again, probably shortening above the knee.

What to do for the under garment?  I ended up tracing a RTW t-shirt I had and made it dress length.  I purchased this mauve viscose spandex fabric from Stylish Fabrics for $3.68 a yard.

Thanks for stopping by ~ Shirley

Thursday, February 1, 2018

Distressed Black Denim Jeans

Jalie 2908

I've made these before a few times for myself and my girls.  Previous versions are hereherehere, and here.  This is my second pair that I have distressed.  Distressing is really a lot of fun!  I used a coarse piece of sandpaper for my distressing.  I learned from my first pair of jeans to be more cautious around corner edges.  I was far too aggressive last time and put a hole in my fabric.  I expected more from my distressing than my achieved results this time.  So much of the dye would wash down the drain every time I cleaned my hands that I just new these would look heavily distressed.  Oh well.  I'm still happy with them though.

Another fun part of jeans making is hammering.  You want to hammer those seams down before top stitching, which makes for easier sewing and consistent stitch lengths.  Hammering also distresses the fabric, so if you don't want that, you should hammer on the wrong side of your fabric.  My husband gave me a block of wood so I would have something to hammer on.  

I used gray top stitching thread.

I did not use rivets.  I really wanted to and have used them before, but this time I bought some nipple rivets.  How do you put those in?!  I failed and managed to bend up several and gave up trying.  I used bar tacks instead.

As before, I made a swayback adjustment to remove the back gap I get.  This time I also shortened 1 inch above the knee and added that inch back in below the knee.

My shirt is the Jalie Dolman top.  I've made so many now that I have lost count.  It is definitely my most favorite casual knit shirt to wear.

Thanks for stopping by ~ Shirley

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Jalie 3669 - NICO - Men's Raglan Tee

Size S 
Fabric Type:  Cotton Spandex Gray & Olive

I love this pattern!  If you are like me and trying to sew for a teenage boy, you have all but exhausted sewing with the Big 4 patterns...a long time ago.  Once your son hits about 14, it's pretty much on to men's patterns, hoping they won't be too big.   Problem solved with Jalie's Nico which comes in 27 sizes!  You can sew for the tiniest of tots all the way up to a men's XXL.

Sewing the Nico comes together quite fast and easily.  What slowed me down was deciding what type of hem and thread color choice I wanted.  I have a new Brother CV 3550 which does the top cover stitch you see used on the shirt hem;  I love using a two-color thread combo here.  I also like how it gives it a hint of color to match the sleeve.  

The first raglan I sewed for my son, a gray/blue combination, I tried using the top cover stitch around the neckline which ended up looking too thread heavy if that makes since.  It's always a struggle for me combining different color fabrics in a raglan and being happy with one thread color choice over another.  It is either going to blend or contrast.  I think I finally hit on a good balance this time!

I could have sewn up a size smaller, but I like there to be a little room for growth with the assurance he can wear it for a while.  

Thanks for stopping by ~ Shirley