From the Archives: White Boat Neck Blouse

Now that the weather is getting warmer, I have been taking out some of my first garments that I made last year.  One that was super easy to put together is this Simplicity 1364 Vintage Jiffy Pattern.  I remember loving that it was a vintage pattern and how the packaging advertises that the top is made with just 3 pattern pieces.  How easy is that?  The stye of this top works with today's trends: white, vintage, and embroidered fabric (see below).  When making this top, I learned how to apply facing to the neck and armholes.  I made sure that I took my time putting on the facing.  I cut size 14 out in View C.  These days I don't cut that big of a size, however in this case the sizing happened to work out well.  The length of the top is perfect and I have plenty of room in the arm holes to move (but not showing my bra).  I may be able to get away with cutting out size 12 if I make this blouse again.  Last year I bought a pretty Gertie swiss dot fabric that I think would be cute.

As for the fabric I used for this top, I found it a Joann's in the eyelet section.  To me, it doesn't really look like an eyelet but instead has as beautiful embroidered hibiscus floral pattern.  Since I'm still learning about photography, I couldn't capture the fabric is the light I was shooting in so here is a close up to get a better idea of the print (newbie photographer problems - ugh!). 

I remember liking this pattern and looking forward to wearing it the following summer.  And yes I am!  This is a great pattern for beginners sewing with woven fabric, inserting neck and armhole facing as well as inserting a zipper.  By the way, I LOVE that the top has a long zipper in the back! Don't you dare leave that out! 


Two Pretty Isla Dress

I'm getting my summer wardrobe ready for the upcoming intense Texas heat!  I'm excited to make cute little dresses that I hope to wear rather than shorts and a t-shirt.  I found this adorable Isla pattern from Made By Rae (I've blogged about MBR before here) and just love the shape and ease of it.  It has cute capped sleeves, fitted bodice and gathers at the waist.  The Isla pattern can also be made as a shirt but I decided to make two dresses.  For both dresses I used fabric purchased from Girl Charlee and both are cotton jersey knit.  Both fabrics do not have too much stretch which was something that I had overlooked.  I ended up making an adjustment the second time I made this dress.

The first dress I made is in this pretty turquoise and floral fabric, I cut size Medium.  As I started making the dress and trying on the bodice, I realized my fabric didn't have enough stretch.  The bodice felt a bit more snug than what I'm used too.  The arm holes also seemed just a bit small too.  I also felt that the waist line could have been a little lower as well.  The directions on the pattern say you can lower the waist an inch for longer torsos but I don't think my torso is that long.  I cut the pattern as is it.  I was pretty happy with the result but wanted to see how it would fit with the bodice being a little bit bigger.

The second dress I made is in this fun yellow print.  I cut out a size Large for the bodice and left the skirt part as a Medium.  I think this adjustment worked out better for the little stretch of my fabric.  So lesson learned!  Pay attention to how much stretch the pattern calls for!!

Anyway, I really love this pattern.  I think this dress is perfect for warmer weather in a light weight knit fabric.  The pattern directions were every easy to follow and I recommend this for beginning sewing students.


Step Hem Denim Trend

Have you seen this step hem trend around on denim jeans?  It's jeans that are cut off with the back leg hem about an inch or so longer.  In general, I love the distressed denim trend that's been around so I really like this different take on the distressed look.  I was reading my favorite style/sewing blogger Merrick's Art recently and when I saw she had a tutorial of the step hem, I just had to give it a try. 

While I was my local favorite thrift store, I found my favorite brand of jeans (Levi's) in a straight leg and mid rise waist.  Perfect to try out the stem hem!  The tutorial was easy to follow and took no time at all.  I cut about 6 inches off of the hem since the jeans were quite long.  I also used my seam ripper to give the jeans fraying a head start before I tossed them in the washing machine.  I'm happy with how they turned out.  Have you tried distressing a pair of your own jeans yet?