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Refashion it

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It’s that time of year when So Zo hosts Me Made May.  It’s always hard to come up with a new spin on Me Made May, especially since nearly everything I wear I’ve made at this point.  This year, it seems Wardrobe Sudoku happened at a good time to give me some inspiration.  I’ll be hanging out on Instagram all month wearing combinations from my Wardrobe Sudoku grid.  It’s Wardrobe Sudoku Me Made May!

“I, Elizabeth of elizabethmadethis.com and IG @elizabethmadethis, sign up as a participant of Me-Made-May ’17. I endeavour to wear a combination from my Wardrobe Sudoku grid each day for the duration of May 2017′.”

wardrobe sudoku me made may

Turmeric Peach Smoothie pajamas

I wanted to throw one more top into the mix for Faye’s Tops that Pop sewalong before the end tomorrow.  As it happened, I’m in need of pajamas for summer, and I had just the fabric for a quick Greenwood tank.  I had some honeycomb print french terry in the form of oversized pajama bottoms that coordinated perfectly, so an impromptu last minute set was in order!  I’m calling the set Turmeric Peach Smoothie because that’s pretty much what the colors are.  Two quick refashions are what happened in the Bat Cave today.  And here’s actual Bat Cave pictures too because it’s been snowing all day!  Notice my new zipper storage.

Greenwood tank

wardrobe sudoku me made may

I used Straight Stitch’s Greenwood Tank for the top.  I used the low back option and added some crossover decoration with some tubes I sewed from the binding fabric.  The stripe is from a RTW tee.  I used the sleeves for a project for my son, so I had just enough for a tank.  The binding is cut from rayon lycra in the prettiest peach.  I have yet to figure out the settings on my new coverstitch machine, so I just zigzagged all the bindings down.  Since they’re pajamas, I think it looks plenty neat enough.

I added a little more of the binding on the side seams in the way of vents.  The back isn’t meant to be lower on the pattern–I just cut it poorly.  In truth, I just use the neckline of the Greenwood which I treat as a neckline add on to my TNT t-shirt.  I do that with a lot of knit top patterns.  It’s so much faster to grab style lines for me than to go through the hassle of refitting a pattern.  Then some days you line the hems up a little off.  Call it a design feature.

Hudson pants

wardrobe sudoku me made may

Rachel’s latest Hudson pants reminded me of my plans to refashion some pajama bottoms I had bought during pregnancy.  While they were comfortable at 40 weeks, they’ve been comically large for some time now.  I couldn’t let them go.  They’re made of really nice french terry with a honeycomb pattern and there’s this adorable embroidered bee on them.

Because I’m short and the Hudson pants don’t take a lot of fabric, I had plenty to work with.  I even had enough fabric to keep the embroidered bee intact AND put in the obligatory pockets that make the Hudson pants so awesome.

After hacking them up, my husband’s comment was, “Wow, those fit much better now.”  You have no idea.  They were a horror before.  It’s funny.  You think oversized things are comfortable, and then you wear things that actually fit, and they’re infinitely more comfortable.  These are more appropriate lounging pajamas now.  So, a quick project to add to the end of Tops that Pop (I keep calling it Pops that Top in my head! :D).

Anyone who did Wardrobe Sudoku–are you with me for a Wardrobe Sudoku Me Made May?   

Shop update Winter 2016

I’ve been working on making more items for SEWN Denver, this time with a more winter focus.  Before I get to those, I have 2 of my skirts listed in my freshly updated Etsy shop.  Each are $47 plus shipping.  Items will ship in a USPS Priority small flat rate box.  I’ll be adding more items to my Etsy shop.  Watch for updates here and on my Instagram.

 

Ric Rac pocket floral skirt

Waist: 29.5, Hip: 36.5″

sewn-aug-2016-ric-rac-floral-skirt

ricracfloralskirtfull

Ric Rac pocket floral skirt

Waist: 29.5, Hip: 36.5″

 

pipedfloralskirtfull

pipedfloralskirtflat

Green piped pockets floral skirt

Waist: 29.5, Hip: 36.5″

On to the new collection!

Winter collection dresses

For these dresses, I was looking for deeper colors and warmer fabrics with the classic silhouettes that I love.  Here we go:

Black and grey animal print velvet dress

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With princess seams, turtleneck, and a nice swishy skater skirt, this is a great dress for holiday parties.  This is my favorite dress from the collection by far!  The velvet is so cozy to wear, yet it looks so elegant.

There is an invisible zip in the turtleneck, so it fits closely, but will easily slip over your head.  There’s silver buttons on the shoulder that pick up the cool sheen of the velvet, though I wasn’t able to get them in pictures given my limited photo time yesterday [insert sad face here].

Bust: 32″ Waist: 29″

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Blue and green animal print colorblocked dress

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This dress started its life as a taupe/grey dress.  The print was great, but the overall color was a bit dull.  After a quick bath in Rit Dye More, the rayon/poly/spandex now is a pretty green blue.  The contrast princess seam panels and sleeves are from an olive cotton/spandex turtleneck.  This dress also has an invisible zip in the turtleneck.

Bust: 35″, Waist: 32″

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Brown suiting dress with large floral applique

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This dress started as a 3 piece suit.  I used the pants for the bodice and the skirt for the skirt.  It is fully lined.

My favorite bit is the floral applique. I highlighted the lines of the flowers with contrast magenta stitching.  The silk belt hangs from thread loops on the side seams for a little pop of color.

Bust: 35″, Waist: 30″, Hips: 36.5″

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Plaid Sweater Knit Dress

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This sweater knit was so nice to work with.  It’s a nice thick polyester stable sweater knit.  If I had had more yardage to work with, it would have made a beautiful long cardigan.  As such, I think it worked up well into this kind of 60s inspired silhouette.  I think it will pair well with tights and boots.

Bust :38″, Waist: 33″

Dresses are $68.  All of these dresses are now at SEWN Denver.  The store is at 18 South Broadway, Denver, CO 80209
The store phone number is 303.832.1493

 
Let’s keep the conversation going!  Check out my sewing dreams and inspiration on Pinterest, and keep up to date on my projects on Instagram and Facebook.

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Last week, I mentioned some of the items I’ve made for SEWN Denver, and here is my collection of Elizabeth Made This T-shirts that are at SEWN Denver right now.  There’s a lot of mixed textiles in this collection.  True to my aesthetic of “artistic apparel”, the tees feature upcycled goods and vintage bits of fabric.  They’re all a great choice for unique fall tees.

T-shirts are $46.  Details and sizes are below.  If you’re visiting Denver, or if you live here, SEWN is located just a few blocks south of Fancy Tiger on 18 South Broadway, Denver, CO 80209.  The shop’s number is 303.832.1493 if you want to ask any questions.

The Collection!

Elizabeth Made This t-shirts

Navy and riverside tee with flame cheetah trim

Bust: 30″, Hem: 34″

 

Elizabeth Made This t-shirts

Blockprinted pinking shears red raglan tee

Bust: 34″, Hem: 39″

Elizabeth Made This t-shirts

Navy stripe toile leaf applique tee

Bust: 34″, Hem: 40″

Elizabeth Made This t-shirts

Elizabeth Made This t-shirts

Deep purple mustard lace tee

Bust: 36″, Hem: 40″

 

Elizabeth Made This t-shirts

Elizabeth Made This t-shirts

Mixed blues and brown floral applique tee

Bust: 31″, Hem: 36″

Elizabeth Made This t-shirts

Purple and taupe tee with gold applique

Bust: 37″, Hem: 42″

Elizabeth Made This t-shirts

Orange stripe floral applique tee

Bust: 37″, Hem: 42″

Elizabeth Made This t-shirts

Purple beaded and embroidered tee with navy racing stripe sleeves

Bust: 30″, Hem: 34″

Elizabeth Made This t-shirts

Purples, navy stripe and floral applique tee

Bust: 30″, Hem: 34

Let’s keep the conversation going!  Check out my sewing dreams and inspiration on Pinterest, and keep up to date on my projects on Instagram and Facebook.

 

jeanius

When Portia Lawrie of Makery announced that this years #Refashioners2016 challenge was denim, I couldn’t not participate in the community challenge.  Between my catalog of my own jeans I’ve made and the wide variety of details collected on my Altered Denim board, it should be clear that when in comes to denim, I’m very serious about thinking beyond a basic pair of jeans.  So cutting up existing jeans and making something new?  That’s pretty much about the happiest challenge I can think of.  That I ended up with this Jeanius Pastel Denim Trench Coat–even better.  Who doesn’t love it when a plan comes together just like you want it to?

yoyo wristlet

Refashion Runway: Buttons

This week’s Refashion Runway theme is buttons.  I came up with this button yoyo wristlet.

The challenge of using buttons in refashioning proved to be more challenging than I initially thought it would be.  My original plan was to add buttons to a plain yellow cardigan I wear a lot or to make some kind of jewelry.  Ultimately, I decided that both of these would yield something that was more visually heavy than I was going for.

Buttons and yoyos

I’ve written before that I made a series of twin sized yoyo quilts before I had my machine.  I’ve always loved the texture of them and how the fabric is transformed when it is distorted into that little gathered circle.  So when I have off bits of fabric and time to spend hand sewing, I often make a few yoyos.  It’s my substitute for knitting or crocheting.

When I was thinking about this challenge, I had too many ideas.  I decided to go down to my sewing room and just look for materials.  I saw a jar of yoyos next to all my buttons, and I remembered that I had always wanted to make a little wristlet from yoyos.

Color!

These particular yoyos are made from a sample of Marimekko linen that I bought to see if I would like it as curtains.  Because I decided against the fabric as curtains, I felt no sting as I cut it up.  Out came my Olfa circle cutter and I got to work cutting and making yoyos.

yoyo wristlet

The linen’s vivid yellow and muted gray mixes well with the yellow, gold, and ochre buttons.  When you join yoyos together, there are naturally spaces between them.  You have a choice to back them, or leave them open.  As a purse, they really need a backing.  I pulled out this turquoise faille skirt.  I never wore it much after I made it since it was really just a kind of practice garment, so it was fair game for refashioning.

yoyo wristlet

I love the yellow against the turquoise.  It’s all daffodils and spring up in here.  The faille has the nicest hand and sews up so well.

Construction

I joined the yoyos together in 6 rows of 5.  Some face up, and some show the backside of each yoyo.  I hand stitched down the matrix to the faille with small backstitches around each yoyo.  It sounds like a lot of work, but it actually went quickly.  Because of all my practice at it, I’m really a fast hand sewist when it comes to yoyos.

After that, I cut around the yoyos, leaving a good border of faille so that the yoyos wouldn’t get caught in the seams of the bag.  I made a quick handle and a loop.  The loop and handle are joined with a metal ring salvaged from an old curtain I refashioned into an apron years ago.

The bag itself is just a simple zipper bag.  I added some heft to the faille by basting it to a scrap of canvas.  The lining is a bit of random cotton, and the handle/loop assembly is sandwiched in the side seam.

yoyo wristlet

Button sewing

Sewing on buttons is one of those tasks that I think most people don’t think about.  Usually the thought is: 4 holes, X shape, how fast can I sew on these buttons because I’m so over this project and want to wear my project.  But really, there’s a lot more possibility beyond the X.  These are some of my favorite variations for wearable garments:

yoyo wristlet

The arrow is probably my favorite.

For some button inspiration, I looked to this image from one of my Pinterest boards:

There are so many ways to sew on a button when making craft projects!:

On a bag, you can explore some of these stitches.  You can easily stitch on the outer edges of the buttons because there’s no need to leave the edges free so they can go in and out of buttonholes.   It’s a bit of decorative work that’s just satisfying to work on.

This yoyo wristlet ended up being the kind of quick fun project that started out with few expectations and became a study in materials and possibilities.

yoyo wristlet

Do you work on projects and just let your materials guide your plan?

 

Let’s keep the conversation going!  Check out my sewing dreams and inspiration on Pinterest, and keep up to date on my projects on Instagram and Facebook.

mixed media tank

This lace mixed media tank is one of the projects I’ve made in the past couple months post baby that I haven’t got around to writing about.  It’s part refashion, part working with available materials, and a whole lotta pattern hacking in between.  The inspiration for this one was this Anthropologie tank:

Laced Montage Tank - anthropologie.com:

I love how Anthropologie uses fabric, but I don’t often often copy their stuff literally.  This tank was an exception.  I like the woven bottom together with the lace stitched on top of the side seams combined with the comfort of a knit top.  The resulting tunic is just the kind of flowy summer top that I was looking to make.

Lace Mixed Media Tank

Pattern(s)

In terms of patterns, I combined no less than 3 patterns to get to my final pattern.  The tank part is Straight Stitch Patterns’ Greenwood Tank.  I liked with that pattern how the shoulder hit well enough to cover my bra line (not necessarily a given with tank patterns), but the armholes were too big.  I used my trusty Jalie 2921 to modify the Greenwood armscye to the circumference I was looking for.  The woven part of the tank is a modified version of the high/low peplum piece from Blank Slate’s Marigold.

Fabric

mixed media tank

For fabric, I used a cotton voile on the peplum leftover from this Mississsippi Ave dress.  I added a CF button placket to make it look like it’s the bottom of a men’s dress shirt.  I cut the same voile in bias strips to bind the neckline and armholes too.

The knit is from an old t-shirt that I’ve had for several years.  I originally bought it soon after my 2nd son was born.  I always liked the color, but not the poofy 3 layered flutter sleeves it had.  They were cumbersome to wear and I couldn’t wear a cardigan with the top because the sleeves were too bulky to fit inside the sweater sleeves.

mixed media tank

 

I carried a little bit of the green down into the sides of the peplum because…hips!  It also is a nice contrast under the lace.

The lace is vintage crochet lace that I picked up thrifting.  It is simply stitched down along the side seams.  I love this kind of lace for its softness and visual texture.  My Mom has always like prints that look like wallpaper.  It turns out I like lace and fabric that looks like (or came from) a tablecloth. 🙂

Project summary

mixed media tank

 

Proportionally the top is overall a bit too long on me.  If I repeat this design, I will definitely shorten the knit and the peplum as well as ditch the high/low element in favor of a straight hem.

Overall, I really love this top.  It was a good challenge to use multiple materials and patterns to get at the final top, and it’s super comfortable and lightweight for the summer heat.

My Monthly Stitch Post on this top is here.

My review of the Greenwood Tank is here.

What’s the max number of patterns and/or fabrics you’ve combined into a finished garment?

mixed media tank

Let’s keep the conversation going!  Check out my sewing dreams and inspiration on Pinterest, and keep up to date on my projects on Instagram and Facebook.

 

metallic bandage sweater

This week’s Refashion Runway theme is “metallic”.  I created this metallic bandage sweater using pretty much all the metallic things I could find.  This includes a white sweater with silver threads, a featherweight knit top, a pair of gold polka dotted shorts that I made that never fit properly, and strips of metallic gold linen leftover from this Marigold top.

Metallic Bandage Sweater

Pattern

For once, I didn’t use Jalie 2921!  Ha!  Well, sort of.  I actually started with Onion 5039, a great cowl top I’ve used on this striped top.  The striped version has always been one of my favorite tops to wear in the fall, and I’ve always wanted to repeat this pattern.  I did however use the armscye, sleeve and side seam shaping from Jalie 2921.  When you have something that fits as you like it, that’s just what you do.  The Onion’s sleeve is too loose for my taste because the armscye has more circumference than I need or prefer.

Sweater surgery

mbsweaterbefore

Sweaters are something that I refashion on a pretty frequent basis as it starts to become colder.  This week, on my thrifting expedition, I picked up a white dolman sleeve sweater with silver threads running through it as well as a light blue featherweight sweater with lace trim.  The blue is in my color palette, and I never pass up quality crochet lace.

I very painstakingly unpicked every last bit of the blue sweater to salvage the lace.  I’ll save that for another project as I wanted to highlight metallics on this project.  From the blue, I cut 3/4 length sleeves and the cowl piece from the front and back.  I unfortunately had to add a second seam in the cowl since there was no fold to use.  I hid this fact by sewing the cowl with the seams facing the shoulder seams instead of at CF and CB.

mbsweaterside

I had originally meant to sew a yoke in the polka dotted fabric and the white sweater as the bottom of the top.  This was not going to work because there was a giant coffee stain on the back polka dotted fabric.  The weights of the knits were also too different.

When I tried on the white sweater, it was pretty itchy.  The fiber content is rayon/cotton/metallic, so I’m guessing it’s those metallic threads that are irritating my skin.  Since the polka dot fabric wasn’t going to work on the right side of the sweater, I used it to line the inside yoke.  The right side of the yoke is more of the white sweater.  There’s now no red itchy skin, plus there’s a fun lining for this top with extra metallic element!

Embellishment

Using a similar technique to my Silk Scarf Jeans, I zigzagged strips of the metallic linen in little X shapes down the center of each sleeve and along the yoke seam.  They look like bandages to me!  Just like the silk, the weight of the linen vs. the sweater knit was so lightweight, the linen sits perfectly on top without taking away from the quality of the sweater knit.  On the sleeves, the linen and the blue knit are pretty much equal in weight, adding a totally different quality.

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Macgyver and Me 

I should have known that I’d have to line the bottom of the sweater, but I didn’t bother to cut a lining initially.  I know most people don’t line knit tops, but I hate that many, many knits are sheer, but I hate wearing camisoles underneath knit tops even more.  All that shifting of fabric around ignites my Princess and the Pea sensibility like just about nothing else.

Still, I always seem to have RTW knit camisoles though I don’t wear them.  They’re probably from an era where I was wearing them under things and buying them by the 5 pack or so until I realized that I hated them.

mbsweaterinside

Turns out, those old camis are a really comfortable solution for lining an itchy sweater.  I simply cut it off under the arms and sewed it to the yoke’s seam allowance.  It’s my Richard Dean Anderson one second on the timer left solution.

metallic bandage sweater

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Let’s keep the conversation going!  Check out my sewing dreams and inspiration on Pinterest, and keep up to date on my projects on Instagram and Facebook.

 

zipper top

I’ve read The Renegade Seamstress for a long time now, and I’ve always enjoyed Beth’s Refashion Runway.  I had hoped to compete this year, but this season is an All-Stars edition.  I’m in the middle of just getting my sew jo back post baby and starting to sew for a couple of local boutiques who like my work.  I might be biting off more than I can chew to try and sew along with the contestants, but I’m going to give it my best because refashioning is very much the theme of my work for the boutiques.  This kind of challenge really fires up my brain in the right direction. My contribution to this week is this very 80s zipper top.

zipper top

This week’s theme is velvet.  I asked, and Beth mercifully granted my request of using velour instead.  I say mercifully because velvet is not a fun fabric to sew with.  The high pile makes for layers that shift continuously.  It also has very little stretch, so you can’t really ease the layers back together when they shift like you can with other fabrics.  Velour on the other hand is not so terrible to sew with.  Being a knit, it does ease relatively well, and the layers don’t shift quite as badly as with regular velvet even though they can stretch out of shape.  Plus, I had a velour hoodie on hand.  It’s missing an arm because I used it for another project.  I decided to go for a top that would use the velour plus some rib knit from a maternity hoodie that I bought at the beginning of this pregnancy.  I liked the color and had already planned to refashion it after my daughter was born.

fringe collar dress

I didn’t intend to not write for nearly 4 months, but as it has turned out, I’ve needed very little in the way of clothes this pregnancy.  The advantage of having had previous pregnancies that started at a heavier weight is having more than plenty of clothes for the last few weeks when it feels like nothing fits.  But I did go ahead and make this fringe collar dress.  I had this lovely fringe trim leftover from my tablecloth dress, and I’ve been looking for the right project to use some of it.  Hey, and fringe is in right now!  Yay!  After months of absence at the Monthly Stitch, I finally could finish a challenge!

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Fringe Collar Dress

I made Burda 7287 some time ago after being inspired by Kyle’s version, and it has become one of my favorite winter dresses.  Paired with or without the detachable collar, and the fingerless gloves that I wear literally all winter, it’s been a versatile staple in my wardrobe.  For this project, I decided to make the other view on the pattern where you sew on the collar at the neckline and add trim to the bottom edge of the collar if you like.

fringe collar dress

I cut the main part of the dress from some really nice interlock that I scored at the thrift store a couple of years back.  It was one of those days where fortune favors the person willing to go a hunting through the muck and mire when I pulled out this fun black and white print made by Kaufmann.  There was no less than 5 yards of it and I paid $3 or $4 for it.  It’s soft and does not stretch out at all like a lot of interlocks do.  It’s stable enough too that I’ve used some of it to muslin dresses I make in ponte like my opera dress.

Still, I don’t wear black.*  So I knew I needed a way to break up the black so I didn’t get the horrid zombie look that I get when I wear it.

*Well, I will wear black if I’m contractually obligated, i.e. a violin gig, but I’m never happy about it.

I found an XL rib knit sweater in one of my blues while a thrifting one day and I loved the springy feel it had.  Remembering how soft a rib knit sweater had made my Denver Tunic, I decided to combine the blue with the black and white.  It would keep the black away from my face and make for a cozy collar that would look great with the added tablecloth fringe.

fringe collar dress
Keeping the black away from my face.

Though it wasn’t obvious at the time that I deconstructed it, the sweater had raglan sleeves, so I didn’t have quite enough yardage to make a full length sleeve as per the pattern.  Instead, I carried down the black and white to the bottom part of the sleeve, cutting it at an angle like this:

fringe collar dress

The pattern’s sleeve is well past full length on me, which makes sense given that the arms are intended to have thumbholes.  Though I’ve tried many many times to create a good solution for thumbhole tops, I’ve never really been comfortable wearing them, and these are no exception.  In past tops, I’ve done what patterns suggested, just leaving a gap in the side seam which inevitably twists and is generally so small that it cuts off the circulation to your thumbs.

To avoid numb thumb, I cut a 1″ square where my thumbs hit and then used some of the rib knit to bind the edge of the hole.  Now, there’s more than plenty of room for my thumb and the base of my thumbs, so there’s no chance of the blood being cut off to my thumbs.  Still, the thumbs pull on the sleeve when I have my arms extended, like when I’m driving or playing my violin, and they sadly do not offer me any extra warmth.  So next time, I’ll stick with either the sleeveless version with added fingerless gloves, or simply shorten the sleeves to a normal full length on me.  I think thumbhole tops are just simply not my thing along with wrap dresses, maxi dresses, and button-down shirts.

fringe collar dress

As for fitting, I merged this pattern with Burdastyle 6-2010-132 which is a crossover style maternity dress.  I always loved how the Burdastyle pattern fit.  A lot of maternity patterns have excessive ease, flare and gathering that just ends up making you look and feel like a marshmallow, but this one is cut in a really slimming sort of way.  It gives you enough room for the growing baby, but nothing crazy beyond that.  Still, I’m kind of over crossover styles.  I had experimented with merging this pattern with my normal t-shirt for a pajama top, and I liked my experiment enough to go ahead with a dress.  All it required me to do was to match up CF lines, overlap the crossover section with the lower front panel at the seamline and use the neckline of the non-maternity dress and the outer edges of the maternity panel where it was needed.  No extra tracing, no extra fitting or pattern work.  This was a fast and dirty alteration.

I did keep the seam allowances bigger than I otherwise would have, and I simply sewed them instead of serging them off or trimming them as I would have on a regular knit dress.  My logic was that I’d only be wearing this as a maternity dress for 2 months tops.  With the extra seam allowances intact and unfinished, it’ll be easy for me to go back and open up the front, removing the elastic and cutting it to fit the original lines of the non-maternity pattern.

My favorite feature is the collar.  The rib knit drapes so well, adds a nice layer of warmth and looks great scrunched up with a vintage brooch.

Overall, it was good to get back in the saddle before all the craziness happens in a month or so with my body being any number of sizes.

My updated review is here.

fringe collar dress

How much have you ever made for your own pregnancies?  Do you shelve your machine momentarily, relying on RTW maternity options, or sew up a storm to weather the season?

 

Let’s keep the conversation going!  Check out my sewing dreams and inspiration on Pinterest, and keep up to date on my projects on Instagram and Facebook.

 

Baseball Fan Dress: Elizabeth Made This

In my household, we’re Giants’ fans.  Though I had no allegiances to any sports teams when I got married, my husband has convinced me that baseball is a worthy thing to root for.  After sitting through hundreds of hours, it finally clicked for me that I was invested in this sport and this team.  It gives me and my husband something to talk of at length.  And dash it all, if Grant Brisbee isn’t a brilliantly funny writer.  His columns alone pushed me over the edge into fandom.

Still, up until this point, I’ve had one problem with my Giants’ fan status:

I’ve had no fan gear whatsoever.

I’ve made some attempts to wear team colors at games–showing up in a black cardigan over my heathered peach t-shirt.  Unique as my solution was, it was kind of lame in the fan department.

How have I made it through 3 World Series without even a hat?  I have no words for that.

Since my family and I were able to go to a Giants’ game recently in San Francisco, I decided I had to remedy this no fan gear situation.

Baseball Fan Dress

Baseball Fan Dress

This dress has lots of fun features: a chevroned colorblocked mid-section, front mid shoulder gathers, and ruched sleeves.  This is a great dress that shows your team pride and allows your own DIY creativity to shine through.  Guaranteed, you will end up with a unique dress that is a cut above the standard fan t-shirt.  Wait, you’re not a Giants’ fan?  I won’t disrespect you.  You can make your own baseball fan dress by upcycling any team t-shirts.

Baseball Fan Dress

You can serge the entire dress or sew it entirely on a regular sewing machine.  The choice is yours!

Baseball Fan Dress

Materials:

2-3 t-shirts, as big as you can find: 1 MLB team t-shirt and 1 or 2 shirts to coordinate with itbaseball fan dress

Your favorite t-shirt pattern (mine is Jalie 2921, with a scoopneck addition from a different pattern) with a short or cap sleeve

A version of your favorite t-shirt pattern that you’ve already made or a t-shirt that fits you well

Patternmaking materials: clear ruler, tape, tissue paper, pen, scissors, marking chalk or pen

Pins

Masking tape or painter’s tape

Thread

Seam ripper

Machine needle suitable for sewing knits (my machine prefers 75/11 Stretch needles, but yours might do better with a ball point needle)

Iron

Directions:

  1. Trace off your t-shirt pattern onto a fresh sheet of tissue paper.  This pattern requires you to alter the front and back pieces.  You will not need to alter the sleeve pattern.
  2. Put on your favorite t-shirt and mark with a pin where the bottom of your bust is at CF.  Mark with another pin where your natural waist is.  Draw a line with a marking pen to connect the two points (or thread trace).
  3. Lay the FRONT PIECE of your pattern tissue over the t-shirt and transfer the under bust and waist mark.  Draw a straight line to connect the two.  It should be a line that angles downward.
  4. Draw another line parallel to the first line in step 3 that is 2″ wide, then draw another line 2″ wide.  This will create the two panels on either side of CF.baseball fan dress
  5. To create the skirt, extend the bottom of the front piece down to your desired length (I chose to end mine just above my knee which required an additional 13″).  Flare out the hem slightly to give yourself some walking ease.
  6. Cut apart the sections at the lines, adding seam allowances on every side you cut.***  Front top to bottom, label the new pieces Front Bodice, A, B, and Front Skirt. You will also need to add a seam allowance at CF on pieces A and B.  
  7. Lay the front skirt piece over the back so that they are lined up at the side seams.  Mark where the seam line hits at the side seam and at CF.  Repeat steps 3-6 for the back piece.  Label the new pattern pieces Back bodice, C, D, and Back Skirt.  Don’t forget to add seam allowances on every side you cut plus at CB on pieces C and D.
  8. In addition to these pieces, cut a rectangle 1.25″X4.5″ for the sleeve casings, and another rectangle 17″ X 1″ for drawstrings.
  9. Optional:  On the front bodice piece, draw a line parallel to the shoulder seam about 3″ down from the shoulder seam.  Cut apart the pattern at the seam line, adding seam allowances on either side of the line.  Slash the top part of the shoulder piece from the bodice end to the shoulder seam line in 4 places.  Spread the pattern 1/2″ at each slash and tape the resulting shape onto new tissue.  You will gather the bodice end of the shoulder piece into the bodice piece when you sew.baseball fan dressbaseball fan dress

***I prefer 1/4″ seam allowances on knit fabrics.  That’s the regular seam width on my serger, but even if you sew this with a regular machine, 1/4″ seam allowances will help you be really accurate when you sew the chevroned sections since your needle will be physically very close to the seam line.  If you prefer wider seam allowances, add whatever seam allowance makes you comfortable.

*Pattern done! Let’s sew!*

Construction:

      1. Use your seam ripper to remove the neck binding of your team t-shirt.  Set it aside.baseball fan dress
      2. Before you start cutting up your t-shirts, plan out how you want to use the t-shirts for color blocking the mid section. Make sure that you center your team logo over the front bodice.  If you alternate the colors at the side seams, you’ll have to flip over your pattern piece as you cut.  You might want to draw yourself a quick sketch to help (in real life the back will not so much wider than the front, but drawing in GIMP is a new experiment for me).  baseball fan dressHere’s a cutting inventory:  [supsystic-tables id=”1″]
      3. Cut your pattern pieces from your various t-shirts according to your diagram.  Make small clips with your scissors on the front bodice, front skirt, back bodice and back skirt to mark the CF and CB points and also at the top of the sleeves caps. If you can, try to incorporate the hems from the original t-shirts on the sleeves and the front and back.
      4. To keep the colorblocked sections (A, B, C, D) straight, mark each piece with a piece of masking tape near the side seambaseball fan dress
      5. Place right sides together of the A pieces at CF.  Sew down CF using a narrow zigzag stitch (.5 width, 2.5 length).  Press open the seam.  Repeat for the B, C, and D pieces.
      6. Place the A and B sections right sides together and stitch from side seam to side seam, pivoting the needle directly at CF.  If you’re nervous about matching the seam, stitch a few basting stitches right at the CF intersection.
      7. Repeat step 6-7 for the C and D sections.
      8. Sew the front bodice to the top of the A sections in the same manner as you did the chevroned sections, pivoting at CF.  Sew the front skirt to the bottom of the B section, also in the same manner.
      9. Sew the back bodice to the top of the C sections, and sew the back skirt to the bottom of the D sections, pivoting at CB.
      10. Using a long, straight stitch, sew 3 rows of gathering stitches on the wider section of the front shoulder pieces.  Pull on the bobbin threads to gather the stitches.  Placing right sides together, sew the front shoulder pieces to the front bodice.  Remove the gathering stitches.  Press the seam towards the bodice, then topstitch the seam close to the seam.
      11. Place the front and back of the dress right sides together, and sew the right shoulder seam.
      12. Place the raw edge of the ribbing against right side of the neck edge.  Sew the ribbing to the neck, pulling on the ribbing only as you sew.  The goal is for the ribbing to lie flat…if it doesn’t, remove the stitches and pull on the ribbing more firmly so that you end up using less ribbing.  Cut off the excess ribbing.
      13. Sew the left shoulder seam and the ribbing seam in one.  Backstitch at the end of the neck to secure the stitches.
      14. Fold in the raw edges of the casings and press (I cut the casings with one of the short sides on a hemmed edge.  If you didn’t, hem one short side).  Placing the hemmed side of the casing towards the bottom of the sleeve, lay the casing vertically in the middle of the sleeve and pin the long sides.
      15. Fold the raw edges of the drawstrings towards the middle of each drawstring piece and press.  Fold the pressed edges of the drawstrings together and stitch down the fold.
      16. Fold each drawstring in half and thread it through the top of the casing so that it sits just below the pressed edge.
      17. Starting and ending at the hemmed corners, topstitch around the 3 pressed edges of the casing, backstitching at the hemmed corners. Be sure that you catch the drawstring at the top of each casing.  The drawstrings can be pulled up and tied if desired at this point.
      18. While the dress is still flat, sew in the sleeves, matching the clip to the shoulder seam.
      19. Placing the front and back together, sew the side seams and sleeve seams in one step.  Be careful to match the chevrons at the side seams, basting, if necessary to make sure you match the seams.baseball fan dress
      20. Hem the sleeves and bottom of your dress if you didn’t reuse the hems from your original t-shirts.baseball fan dress

baseball fan dress*That’s it!  Wear your Baseball Fan Dress to the park with pride!

Your team won’t win if you don’t cheer!*

baseball fan dress

 

My review is here.
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