Category Archives: Sewing for Women

Maritime Shorts

Maritime Shorts :: Dandelion Drift

I am so excited to share theses shorts with you today!  These are the maritime shorts by grainline studio, and they are shorts that are a long time in the making for me.  I purchased this pattern over a year ago, immediately cut out the pattern, and then for some reason folded the pattern pieces up and set them aside.  Gah, I am so glad I finally sewed these, though!

Maritime Shorts :: Dandelion Drift

Let me start by telling you about the fabric.  I wish I had taken a before photo, but the fabric for these shorts are from a pair of thrifted capris.  I knew that I loved the fabric of the pants I had found and crossed my fingers that there would be enough fabric to cut out the maritime shorts.  The fabric is a great bottomweight with a little bit of stretch.  I barely could squeeze the maritime shorts out of the thrifted capris.  I didn’t have enough to cut out the back pockets, which I actually like the clean look with no pockets in the back.

Maritime Shorts :: Dandelion Drift

I sewed these up three weeks ago and literally have worn these every week at lest three times each week.  These are crazy comfortable and I think super flattering.

Maritime Shorts :: Dandelion Drift

I sewed a size 6, and didn’t make any changes.  Next time, though, I’d do a full seat adjustment to give my toosh a little extra room.

Maritime Shorts :: Dandelion Drift Maritime Shorts :: Dandelion Drift

Inside the shorts I sewed on a woven tag, and I love this tag!  It’s from Dutch Label Shop…a site where I designed and ordered my own labels.  The site is so easy to work with and the quality of the label is great!

maritime-shorts-inside

tag

Quick Recap

Pattern:  Grainline Studios Maritime Shorts

Fabric:  Thrifted Capris that I cut up to use as fabric.  They were a bottomweight with slight stretch

Size:  6

Adjustments Next Time:  Next time, I’d like to do a full seat adjustment.  My waistband in the back dips a bit.

Labels:  Dutch Label Shop

Maritime Shorts :: Dandelion Drift

Swing Dress Tutorial

Swing Dress Tutorial :: Dandelion Drift  Summer is my absolute favorite time of year.  I love the slow paced, unplanned days filled with spending quality time with the family.  I also loathe summer a little bit…it’s HOT!  With the heat index yesterday, it felt like 102* outside….yikes!  And it’s only June, which means July and August are just going to get hotter!!!

I love to wear a summer dress to try and beat the heat.  A couple weeks ago I sewed up this swing dress in this lightweight, flowy rayon lycra blend knit from the imagine gnats shop.  It is so comfortable and airy…I know it will be in heavy rotation from my closet this summer!

Want to learn how to sew your own?  It’s really pretty simple.

We’re going to start by making the pattern:

  1. Grab your favorite t shirt and trace around it.  Fold the t shirt in half, tucking the sleeves underneath so you can just trace around the front of the shirt.  Do the same for the back.  Now maneuver the sleeves so you can trace around them.  I like to use two pencils held parallel to each other side by side when tracing to give myself a 3/8 inch seam allowance.
  2. Now extend the side seam and center fold lines for the pattern you just traced to make it the length you would like your dress to be.
  3. We are going to slash and spread the pattern to give this dress some swing.  Draw three lines from the bottom of your front dress piece, stopping at where your natural waist would be.  Cut the three lines, and spread the pattern apart.  The center fold line should remain straight and the spreading should extend the pattern out toward the side seam line.  Do the same for the back pattern piece.  Trace around this slashed and spread pattern and you now have your swing dress pattern.  The sleeves will remain the same.

Swing Dress Tutorial :: Dandelion Drift

Now it’s time to sew.

  1. Cut out your pattern.  I used 1.5 yards of fabric and barely had enough to squeeze the swing dress out of it. I would recommend having 2 yards just to be safe!
  2. Grab your front and back dress pieces.  Right sides together, sew the shoulders together.
  3. Right sides together, sew the sleeves.  You’ll have to ease the sleeves into the dress slightly stretching them to fit.
  4. Sew the side seams, right sides together.
  5. Add a neck band, there’s a great tutorial here on what size you should cut your neck band and how to sew it into your dress.
  6. Hem bottom of dress and finish sleeves.

Swing Dress Tutorial :: Dandelion Drift

Swing Dress Tutorial :: Dandelion Drift

Your swing dress is done and ready to be worn!  I hope you are enjoying summer…and staying cool!  If you need a little more summer dress inspiration, Melissa from Melly Sews has a great series of bloggers featuring 30 different sundresses.  They have been great!

Sundress2016Logo-Smaller

Swing Dress Tutorial :: Dandelion Drift

Indiesew + Seamly Sewing Patterns

Seamly Co Wrapped Cardigan :: Dandelion Drift

Hey there!  It’s Friday….woo hoo!  And it’s the beginning of summer over here…school’s out, which means a lot to this homeschooling mom.  We are always learning in our house, but I get to take off my teacher hat for a little while.  No more grading math tests or teaching grammar.  Just a little slow paced learning will go on over here for the summer!

But really you don’t want to hear about our homeshcooling break, you want to hear about the pretty clothes!  I have a fun little collaboration to share with you today.  Allie over at Indiesew has recently collaborated with Seamly, an ethical, USA based clothing company.  Allie has turned three of Seamly’s clothing items into sewing patterns so that we, home sewists, could sew these clothes up!

Seamly Co Wrapped Cardigan :: Dandelion Drift

There are three patterns Indiesew and Seamly are releasing, the Vallynne Tank, Basic Tee, and Wrapped Cardigan.  You can buy these patterns individually, or buy all three bundled together. I sewed all three up and absolutely love them all!  The patterns are all made well with seams matching up perfectly.  There are illustrated instructions for all which are very clear!

Seamly Co Wrapped Cardigan :: Dandelion Drift

The Wrapped Cardigan was sewn in a size small in a rayon spandex knit from the Indiesew shop.  It’s out of stock, but there are other colors with the same fabric content.

Vallynny Tank :: Dandelion Drift

The Vallynne Tank was sewn in a size small in a rayon lycra knit from the Imagine Gnats shop.  This is my second Vallynne Tank I’ve sewn (you can see the first here in my instagram feed) and I love this pattern.

Vallynny Tank :: Dandelion Drift

The third pattern that Indiesew and Seamly relased is the Basic Tee.  I’ve been loving sewing up t shirts lately.  I sewed this one, again, in a size small with another rayon spandex knit from Indiesew.

Seamly Co Basic Tee :: Dandelion Drift

I read somewhere to only sew stripes when you have the time to sew slowly.  I have found that if you pin your stripes parallel to the seam (not perpindicular, like you normally pin), it saves you time and actually does a great job matching up the stripes!

Seamly Co Basic Tee :: Dandelion Drift

Seamly Co Basic Tee :: Dandelion Drift

Let me give you a quick recap of all the sewing details.  I use these quick recaps as a sort of journal for myself so that when I sew the patterns again, I know what alterations I’ve made or want to make in the future!  This is an easy recap because I didn’t make any alterations to the patterns, and there’s not much I would change next time I sew them!

Patterns:  Wrapped Cardigan / Vallynne Tank / Basic Tee

Sizes: Small

Fabric:  rayon lycra knits (Cardigan / Tank / Tee)

Alterations:  I didn’t make any alterations.  Next time, I might shorten the cardigan an inch.  The tee is long as well, but I prefer the extra length

Allie has organized a handful of ladies to sew these patterns to give you a peak at how they look!  Pop on over to the other blogs to gather a little Indiesew and Seamly sewing inspiration!

seamly-collection-blog-tour@2x

June 8: Inside the Hem
June 9: The Doing Things Blog
June 10: Dandelion Drift
June 13: The Sara Project
June 14: Fa Sew La
June 15: Sew Mariefleur
June 16: Right Sides Together
June 17: Allie J.
June 18: Cut Cut Sew

Megan Nielsen Briar T Shirt

Hey there and happy June!  With May just finishing up I’ve had a good month long look into what I wear most often.  (Did anyone else participate in Me Made May?)  I may have not been great at taking selfies and documenting what I wore each day, but I did wear at least one item that was me made each day for the month of May.  You can peek at those in my instagram feed.

Megan Nielsen Briar :: Dandelion Drift

All of this led me to realize that I wear a lot of basics.  I wear a lot of jeans and t shirts.  I rarely wear heels, tennis shoes and sandals are what I grab almost every day.  And I don’t mind not dressing fancy.  But I do need a few more t shirts added into my closet!

Megan Nielsen Briar :: Dandelion Drift

I recently tried the briar t shirt pattern by Megan Nielsen.  I like the idea of having a variety of t shirts in my wardrobe.  I’ve sewn the union st. tee by Hey June and the Grainline Studio lark tee.  And I like each t shirt for different reasons.

Megan Nielsen Briar :: Dandelion Drift

The briar t shirt has a unique binding method that I love.  It leaves the inside and outside seams of the neck band clean and finished.  For this shirt I used a men’s old navy t shirt that I had purchased years ago.  I originally sewed the shirt in the hi lo hem like Megan had instructed, but decided it wasn’t my favorite.  I went back and chopped off the extra length in the back and hemmed the shirt in a straight line.  This is view three, the short sleeve t shirt in the longest length.

Megan Nielsen Briar :: Dandelion Drift

Have you had any wardrobe realizations recently?

Quick Recap

Pattern:  Megan Nielsen Briar

Size:  xs

Fabric:  men’s old navy t shirt

Alterations: sewed version 3, omitted the hi lo hem and hemmed a straight line at the shortest point on the hi lo

This pattern was provided to me by Indiesew in return for sample sewing.  All opinions are always honest and my own!

Colfax Dress

Colfax Dress :: Dandelion Drift

So to date, I’ve sewn all of True Bias’s women’s and girl’s patterns, and I’d hate to break a streak!  Kelli has a new pattern out, the Colfax Dress, and I love the yoke and sleeve details!  I helped her test this pattern and her patterns are always really great!  They are so great that I cut right into some good fabric to test the pattern!

Colfax Dress :: Dandelion Drift

I sewed this version in Anna Maria Horner Loominous fabric.  (I grabbed mine from the imagine gnats shop, but she is sold out.  You can find it here though!)  The yoke and binding fabric, that was a thrift store miracle.  That is thrifted fabric that matches the loominous fabric perfectly!

Colfax Dress :: Dandelion Drift

I know this may sound funny, but I’ve shied away from wearing tank tops recently.  When I was in high school, I was known for having pretty muscular arms.  I was a swimmer.  And I was proud of it!  Well then I grew up and became a little embarrassed about my arms being muscular!  Well, my perspective has changed lately!  God’s made me prone to arm muscles, and that’s not a bad thing!  In fact it’s kind of fun!

Colfax Dress :: Dandelion Drift

I go to a boot camp workout and love knocking out push ups.  Well, I don’t love it in the moment, but at the end when I’ve done a whole workout that totals 100 push ups throughout the hour, I feel pretty strong, and pretty grateful for these muscles!

Colfax Dress :: Dandelion Drift

Okay, back to the dress!  Ha! I love the a line shape of the colfax dress!  I think it’s pretty flattering, and extremely comfortable!  I worked hard to make sure that the plaid of the loominous fabrc matched up on each side.  I didn’t have enough yardage to center any stripes on the back of the dress, but I was aware of my stripe placement on the front of the dress.

Colfax Dress :: Dandelion Drift

I have some fancy silk fabric set aside to make another colfax dress in the next couple of weeks!  Have you been doing any new sewing lately?

Colfax Dress :: Dandelion Drift

Quick Glance:

Pattern:  Colfax Dress

Fabric:  Anna Maria Horner Loominous

Size:  6

Alterations I made:  I moved the bust darts up and in

Alterations for the future:  I need to do a small bust adjustment next time, and add 1 inch to the length

Birkin Flares

Hey there, happy Tuesday!  I am so excited to share these with you.  I’ve had these Birkin Flares in my closet (and on me, because I’ve been wearing them frequently) for so long and really wanted to wait and share my opinion with you until I’ve had sufficient wear and experience with these jeans!

Birkin Flares :: Dandelion Drift

Okay, these are the Birkin Flares (jeans pattern by Lauren Dahl of Baste and Gather).  I have to start this by telling you, never, ever, ever did I want to sew jeans.  I’m not a fancy jeans wearer, not a fancy jeans buyer, so thought for sure I would not be a fancy jeans sewer!  Wrong.

Birkin Flares :: Dandelion Drift

I’ve been buying strictly thrift store jeans for years.  My size is pretty standard and it is easy enough for me to find decent jeans ranging in price from $1 to $5, so I thought there is absolutely no need for me to ever sew jeans.  Well, Lauren was designing this pattern and I read the high waist description.  That definitely appealed to me!  I cannot find high waisted jeans in a thrift store (unless they are a bad flash back to mom jeans of the 80s).  So I thought I’d give this jeans sewing thing a try!

Birkin Flares :: Dandelion Drift

I am in love!  I thought it would be hard and challenging to sew jeans, and it turns out it really isn’t that complicated.  It is time consuming, definitely a time investment, but also definitely worth it (I think)!  These are the most flattering jeans I own, and the most comfortable jeans!

Birkin Flares :: Dandelion Drift

Here are the details.  I sewed a size 27 and am pretty happy with the fit.  My jeans don’t sag at all.  I never have to pull them up or yank them back into their place throughout the day.  I think a large part of that is a good fit, but also good fabric.  I bought cone mills denim from Katie at Threadbare Fabrics and will absolutely buy more denim from her in the future.  I have sewn another pair of jeans in other denim and the quality is not the same.  I am a cone mills fan for sure!

Birkin Flares :: Dandelion Drift

The rivets I used are just leftover rivets I had on hand from this caravan tote.  I want to try actual jeans rivets in the future (like these).  I also just used a jeans button from JoAnn (again would like to try the buttons from TaylorTailor’s shop).  And the topstitching thread is from JoAnn’s (Gutterman brand).

Birkin Flares :: Dandelion Drift

Also, those t shirts you see up there.  They are Lark Tees and I’m talking about them today over on the imagine gnats blog…go check them out!

Quick Glance:

Pattern:  Birkin Flares

Size:  27

Modifications:  Shorten one inch (1/2 inch from each shorten line, one above the knee, one below the knee).

Fabric:  12 oz. cone mills denim

 

 

Roscoe Dress

Roscoe Dress :: Dandelion Drift

Hey there!  Happy Thursday!  I have a great dress for you today that started with the fabric!  I found this rayon challis print at JoAnn’s and bought as much as was left on the bolt.  I think it was right around two yards.  I looked at the patterns I owned and thought Kelli’s Roscoe Dress pattern would be a perfect match!

Roscoe Dress :: Dandelion Drift

Well, two yards is just enough for the roscoe top, so I crossed my fingers and hoped I could squeeze a dress out of my little yardage.  I didn’t bother trying to match stripes or the print at all, I just wanted my pattern pieces to fit on the fabric!

Roscoe Dress :: Dandelion Drift

I ended up cutting the top portion for view b of the roscoe and lengthened it as much as I could (I think it was 3 or 4 inches).  I didn’t have enough for the bottom ruffle, but that all worked out because the lengthening brought my dress to exactly where I wanted it to land!

Roscoe Dress :: Dandelion Drift

The roscoe dress sewed up easily and I love the way it turned out!  I measured for a size 4, but cut out the size 2 instead.  I hand stitched the bottom hem and the binding around the neck and sleeves.

Roscoe Dress :: Dandelion Drift

And I can’t leave without mentioning the boots!  I found these at the thrift store for $5!  They are frye boots, in great condition, in my size!  These are what thrifting dreams are made of!

Roscoe Dress :: Dandelion Drift

Quick Glance:

Pattern:  Roscoe Dress

Size:  2

Fabric:  Rayon Challis from JoAnn’s

Modifications:  Lengthened the top of view b 3 or 4 inches and sized down one size

Mission Maxi Dress

Mission Maxi Dress :: Dandelion Drift

Hey there! Hold onto your seats because this week I have two posts for you. I had a kid free evening at the end of last week and grabbed a handful of outfits, my sweet husband, the camera and set out to get some outfit pictures of what I have been sewing!  I even should have a couple more posts for you next week!  But let me start you with this first dress, the Mission Maxi Dress by Jamie Christina.

Mission Maxi Dress :: Dandelion Drift

I have embarrassingly had this pattern for a while, at least a year.  I’ve decided it’s time to start sewing the things that have been on my to sew list for too long.  I grabbed a couple of yards of this St. James stripe from fabric.com (it was on sale and actually still is).  I’ve used this fabric before (different color combo) for the Marianne Dress and knew that I liked the weight and stretch of the fabric.

Mission Maxi Dress :: Dandelion Drift

I have to tell you I was nervous about sewing this pattern.  I’ve heard that it is overly fitted and I would agree with that.  I took a few precautionary steps though.  My sizes put me in a size 6 up top and 10 at the hips.  I graded from a 6 to a 12 to make sure the dress was not tight on my hips and toosh, and I’m happy with how it turned out.  I sewed everything on my serger, except for the hem, which I used a twin needle.

Mission Maxi Dress :: Dandelion Drift

As far as patterns go, this is a very simple pattern without very thorough instructions.  If you were new to sewing knits, I’d tell you to hold off until you have a feel for sewing bindings first.  The instructions are definitely lacking when it comes to the bindings.  But everything else was great.  If you’ve sewn a t shirt or two before, you’ll be just fine with the pattern.

Mission Maxi Dress :: Dandelion Drift

I definitely would sew this again, and the only changes I would make next time is to raise the front scoop at least 1/2 inch to ensure full coverage, and I need to hem it a little bit shorter.  In fact, this dress is sitting by my sewing machine waiting for me to hem another 1/2 inch while I still have the twin needle on there!

Mission Maxi Dress :: Dandelion Drift

Here’s a quick glance at the details:

Pattern:  Mission Maxi Dress

Size:  6 graded to a 12 at the hips

Fabric:  St. James Stripe

Changes I’d make next time:  raise front scoop 1/2 inch, hem slightly shorter

Mission Maxi Dress :: Dandelion Drift

Indiesew Spring Collection 2016

Sanibel Dress :: Dandelion Drift

Hey there!  It’s almost spring time which means that Allie over at Indiesew has put together a new collection.  I really love looking at her collections and seeing which patterns she has grabbed together and made a great little wardrobe out of.  She always sews and photographs things beautifully (just look at the amazing patterns and photos below)!  This time around she has these great five patterns bundled together for the Indisew Spring Collection:

2016-spring-collection-pinterest

I grabbed the Sanibel Dress and a few yards of rayon fabric and started sewing.  The fabric is from JoAnn’s and I love that they have started carrying more and more rayon prints.  This piece of fabric, though, I fell in love with the wrong side.  It’s really supposed to be a black and cream print, but I love the muted gray and white tones of the wrong side, so I sewed it wrong side out.

Sanibel Dress :: Dandelion Drift

Sanibel Dress :: Dandelion Drift

The Sanibel dress came together really easily.  It does have many steps since it is a collared button down, but I really love these projects that are a little more time consuming!  They leave me feeling like a sewing genius (when really I’m just good at following instructions, ha!).  I sewed a size small, grading out to a medium in my hips.  There’s enough ease in the pattern, though, that I think I would sew a size small all the way through next time!

Sanibel Dress :: Dandelion Drift

Sanibel Dress :: Dandelion Drift

I was meticulous with my pattern matching on this project.  The pattern matches everywhere (across the front buttons, the pockets on the skirts, side seams, even the back yoke).  Pattern matching isn’t complicated, just a little more time consuming.  I definitely think it’s worth the extra time and effort!

Sanibel Dress :: Dandelion Drift

Sanibel Dress :: Dandelion Drift

For the tie on the dress I wanted to do something other than fabric, but couldn’t find any cording in the right color.  I grabbed white cording and dyed it gray with some black acrylic paint mixed with water!

Sanibel Dress :: Dandelion Drift

Okay, enough about my dress, back to Indiesew’s Spring Collection…I’ve sewn the Birkin Flares (you can see them here in my ig account) and they are another one of those projects that leave you feeling like a sewing genius!  The birkins are my best fitting jeans that I own and I definitely need to carve out more time to sew jeans!  I also cannot wait to sew the rest of the patterns from the collection.

Allie has organized a group of ladies to show off these patterns, you definitely should go take a look at them!

spring-collection-blog-tour-schedule@2x

February 24: Fleurine | Sew Marie Fleur
February 25: Teresa | Dandelion Drift
February 26: Lauren | Right Sides Together
February 29: Erin | Sewbon
March 1: Beth | Sew DIY
March 2: Emily | In the Folds
March 3: Caroline | Sew Caroline
March 4: Lauren | Baste + Gather
March 5: Sophie | Ada Spragg

Ultimate Wrap Dress

Ultimate Wrap Dress :: Dandelion Drift

I truly think the wrap dress is the most universally flattering silhouette.  Because of this, I decided I definitely should try my hand at sewing the Ultimate Wrap Dress pattern by Sew Over It (paper pattern from Indiesew).  This is the first wrap dress I have ever owned, and definitely won’t be the last!  I love how it turned out!

Ultimate Wrap Dress :: Dandelion Drift

Ultimate Wrap Dress :: Dandelion Drift

I sewed this dress up in black bamboo knit fabric from fabric depot (seems they are out of stock right now).  Bamboo knit might just be my favorite fabric ever.  It has gorgeous drape and holds up well in the wash.  I used to love rayon knit for it’s drapiness (I don’t think that’s a word but we’ll go with it) but I have never found a rayon knit that doesn’t pill in the wash.  Is that just me?  Well, bamboo knit, I’ve found is absolutely perfect!

Ultimate Wrap Dress :: Dandelion Drift

I sewed a size 8, which is a bit smaller than my measurements place me, but I was in between sizes and thought the knit fabric would be forgiving enough.  Everything was sewed up as explained in the instructions and the only change I made was to shorten the sleeves.

Ultimate Wrap Dress :: Dandelion Drift

I’ve only had a chance to wear this out once, and wasn’t 100% comfortable that the wrap would stay closed up top, so I have it secretly safety pinned to keep the bust line closed.  The skirt portion of the wrap is absolutely perfect, completely covering everything without any fear of flashing!  Next time I sew this, I think I’ll add an inch to lengthen the skirt portion.

Ultimate Wrap Dress :: Dandelion Drift

This ultimate wrap dress definitely makes me feel very feminine (without being to showy)!

Want to see some other great wrap dress sewn around the web?  Here are a few I love!

Ultimate Wrap Dress :: Dandelion Drift