Sew Americana Blog Tour

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The Sew Americana Blog Tour has been around a few years, but this is the first time I have gotten to join in! This tour has been put together by Katy over at Wild and Wanderful and it features more than 20 popular sewing bloggers. I just happen to be lucky enough to make the list! Today is the last day of the tour so make sure you read all the way to the bottom of my post and then check out all of the bloggers on the tour! You do not want to miss out on all the amazing sewing shares.

Nancy Raglan 4x SFF (1)

When I signed up for this blog tour, I actually had zero clue as to what I would be making. This is not uncommon for me. In the sewing world, I work best under pressure. I sewed both of the tunics up the night before our photos were due! In all fairness, Sly Fox Fabrics came on board in the last minute to offer of some fabric to us. Of course, I couldn’t resist their amazing fabrics. I selected the Hideaway Floral print in Blue in Single Brushed Poly. When I placed my order, I knew I planned to make the Nancy Raglan top. I also planned to make another awesome Momma Mia and Me set! I purchased two additional 1 yard cuts of fabric to pair with the 2 yards of the Hideway Floral in Blue. I ordered 1 yard of red and 1 yard of light slate DBP to make contrasting sleeves. I think the best park of making raglans is using a contrast fabric for the sleeves. I selected the Nancy Raglan because it has a bunch of options. I have already made myself one of these tops and Momma Mia has a couple dresses from this pattern.

Nancy Raglan XL-2X (1)

I followed the pattern as directed except I added an extra band of color around the bottom of the sleeves. Instead of adding the sleeve band after assembly I added it before sewing sleeves and side seams together. I folded a 3 inch strip of fabric wrong sides together and clipped it right sides together to the bottom of the sleeve. I cut the color band off evenly with the sides of the sleeve and the serged it together. Next, I sewed the side seam as usual. I was careful to line up the edge of the color band so as it didn’t have a noticeable shift between the sides. This really wasn’t a ‘time saver’ compared to just sewing bands on properly since lining the edges up perfectly was kind of a pain in the booty! Next time, I will just make the bands wider and assemble as usual.

Nancy Raglan 4x SFF (2)

I sewed my latest Nancy top in tunic length. Mine is size 4x graded to a 5x. This pattern doesn’t include a FBA was some of the newer 5oo4 patterns have, but it fits ok. I cut my neckline at the crew neck line. My sleeves are the short length plus the band. For my sleeves, I added an extra 1 inch to the bicep area. I used the slash and slide method.

Nancy Raglan XL-2X (2)

Momma Mia is wearing a XL graded to a 2X then back to a XL. She is also wearing a tunic length, with a crew neck line and ¾ length sleeves plus the color band.  I made no other adjustments for her tunic.

Nancy Raglan 4x SFF (4)

Here are all the options included with the Nancy pattern.

The Nancy Raglan includes:

  • 5 bodice styles: Shirt, Tunic, A-line Dress, Swing Dress, Layered Dress (A-line with a loose fit overlay)
  • 4 sleeve lengths: Short, 3/4, Long, Extra Long
  • 4 neckline options: Crew, V-neck, Hood, Cowl
  • 3 sleeve finishes: Hemmed, Cuffs, Thumbhole Cuffs
  • Nursing access via invisible zippers and including a modesty panel.  The nursing access is available on all styles except the layered dress.
  • Maternity with ruched sides.  The maternity option is included with all styles except the layered dress.
  • Other options include: side vents on the tunic, pockets on the swing dress, and a banded bottom for the shirt and tunic.

Nancy Raglan 4x SFF (6)

Should you be inclined to add this pattern to your collection, you can pick it up here with my Affiliate Link.

Nancy Raglan XL-2X (3)

If you love my fabric, Here is a link to Sly Fox Logo

Monday, June 24:
Wild & Wanderful · The Petite Sewist · That’s-Sew-Kari · Stitched by Jennie · Marvelous Auntie M

Tuesday, June 25:
Petite Stitchery · auschick sews · Sew Simple Home · Sewing Novice · Striped Swallow Designs

Wednesday, June 26:
(Swimming in a) Sea of Estrogen · The Eli Monster · 5 out of 4 Patterns · bigflynotions · Stitching and Making

Thursday, June 27:
Middle River Studio · It’s Liesel · Sewing with D · Kitty Makes It

Friday, June 28:
Boo + Lu · Sequoialynn Sews · Seams Sew Lo · Made By Jaime · SewSophieLynn

Nancy Raglan XL-2X (4)

Nancy Raglan 4x SFF (3)

Thanks to everyone who joined in, sponsored or supported the 2019 Sew Americana Blog Tour!

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RP Sew Free For Summer Tour – Pet Travel Bed Hack

The Sew Free For Summer Blog tour is winding down, but I am sharing one more pattern hack with you. I used the FREE Pillow Bed Sewing Pattern to create a Pocketed Travel Pet Bed. I am also going to walk you through inserting a zipper to create a pocket. Be sure to read all the way to the bottom to find out how you can WIN so prizes!! 

RP Doggy Bed Hack (3)

I used the same size pieces that were give in the original directions, but only cut 4 backs instead of the 8 as directed. I also cut one additional piece which becomes the zipper placket. I cut it 4 inches by the 28.5 inches. I used a heavy quilting cotton for my project. Warning there are a lot of photos coming at ya! I often need a lot of pictures to help me when I am sewing something so I tried taking them step by step.

Step 1

Stitch front pieces together at the long edges to create one long piece. You can also finish the outer edges if you like. I wish I would have just for ease of not doing it later.

RP Doggy Bed Hack (4)

Step 2

You will need the extra placket piece you cut. I serged the edge to finish one side. This can 100% be done on a sewing machine with an overcast stitch or a zig zag. You can also double turn it and hem if you prefer not to see a stitched edge. I was lucky enough to find a 28 inch zipper in my stash and the color sort of matched so I went with it! Pin the zipper WRONG SIDE down to your unfinished fabric edge. This is a large zipper. With smaller zippers (on other projects) I recommend using wash away wonder tape to hold it down. Attach your zipper foot. My foot is double sided, but most are just one skinny foot. Stitch the zipper in place with a straight stitch. I butt the edge of my foot up against the actual zipper to keep my straight line. Sew slowly and it will be even. Also notice here, I have sewn over my pin. DON’T do it! It is dangerous and I have broken pins. I wanted to show you that I pinned it in place. Sew the entire length of the zipper down.

RP Doggy Bed Hack (5)

Step 3

Next flip your zipper over the fold, press and pin, then topstitch in place using a regular foot. I like to use this open toed foot when top stitching because I can run the outside edge along the zipper teeth or the inside of the ‘toe’ along the folded edge to give me something to use as my guide for straight lines. I often increase my stitch length to 3.0 when doing this. Also I usually use a thread that either blends in or complements the colors in the project. This is the same process I use for top stitching on garments also.

RP Doggy Bed Hack (6)

Step 4

Now we will attach the zipper placket into our pillow bed. I folded my placket in half along the length of it and pressed to create a memory hem to use as my reference line. I then used that pressed line and pinned it in place along the seam line where the middle two front panels are sewn together. Your pieces will be laying right side of the placket to the wrong side of the front pieces. Pin in place then stitch along the memory line and middle seam line. I stitched from the outside, so I could stitch in the ditch.

RP Doggy Bed Hack (10) RP Doggy Bed Hack (11)

Step 5

Time to attached the second side of our zipper. Lay your project out so that the zipper placket is folded over as you will see it from the right side of your project. This will ‘point’ you to the side where you will attach the second side of the zipper. Fold that front panel piece over to your zipper half that is installed. You will now have two front panels laying right sides together. You should now see how the pocket is coming together. Lay your zipper right sides together along the edge of the front piece. Pin in place and use the zipper foot to stitch. When sewing zippers with a larger pull you may have to raise your presser foot and zip the zipper out of the way to finish stitching in place.

RP Doggy Bed Hack (8)

Step 6

Flip and top stitch in place using regular open toed foot.

RP Doggy Bed Hack (9)

You should now have a project that resembles this… Pocket (with open edges still) on the right with two unfinished pillows on the left.

RP Doggy Bed Hack (12)

Step 7

I folded under my edges and top stitched. You could also open the zipper and fold it inside out and stitch around the edges. Then turn out again. Your choice. Be aware of your zipper. You CAN’T sew through a metal zipper! Sew up to it and stop. Then jump over the zipper and begin sewing again.

RP Doggy Bed Hack (13)

STEP 8

Ok, Let’s sew the pillow backs. You basically follow the original directions here with the exception of I just top stitched my finished edges along the seam where the pocket is. I also sewed in one of my handles at this step. The other handle goes in the original place at the opposite side of the pillows. You pocket will hang freely on the front of your travel pet.

RP Doggy Bed Hack (14)

STEP 9

You can now return to the original directions and finish your bed. TA-DA!!

RP Doggy Bed Hack (15)RP Doggy Bed Hack (16)RP Doggy Bed Hack (17)

IN USE

When traveling, the pocket will hold toys, leashes, and treats. When laid out, it becomes a mat to set her food bowl on.

RP Doggy Bed Hack (1)

At this point, Millie was 100% over me making her ‘stay’ and ‘sit.’ She promptly took a nap on her new bed!

RP Doggy Bed Hack (2)

Don’t forget to pick up your free pattern here

Thanks for joining me on the on the Sew Free For Summer Blog Tour!  

More Inspiration

Please visit all the stops on the Rebecca Page Sew Free for Summer Blog Tour for more great inspiration:

Prizes

We will be giving away a pattern bundle of choice each day PLUS an overall grand prize of a $50 pattern credit. To stand a chance to win, all you have to do is comment on each blog, each day so stay tuned to the Rebecca Page Sewing group for updates from our bloggers!

Blog Tour: Halla Agnes Hack

When Kate of  Sewing from Scratch began talking about having a blog tour, I immediately jumped on board. I enjoy blog tours, they motivate me to be semi productive, and there is usually some sort of giveaway involved. Keep reading for that part!

So we decided to focus our tour on the Halla Agnes top/dress. Our plan was that we all use the same pattern, but make it our own and write a blog post about it. If you join Halla’s Facebook group, you can get a code making The Halla Agnes is a free pattern for you. So first off, if you are a regular reader of my blog, you know I don’t typically sew anything from Halla. I fall just outside of their size chart on the bust and waist measurements. As a rule for myself, I don’t sew a designer who isn’t inclusive in my size. That being said, sometimes I like to try new things.

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As part of my hack, I am going to speed walk you through a full bust adjustment and adding some extra room to the waist measurement. Additionally, I will be teaching you how to make a floaty sleeve and scooping out the neckline. Just to throw a little extra fun in the mix, I also did a rolled hem to finish my edges which was new to me! I didn’t realize how much I was doing to this pattern until I am sitting here writing my post. I promise, even with all these adjustments it is a fairly quick sew. Buckle up, Here we go! I want to start by saying, I didn’t full bust or belly adjust anything for cutting the back half of my pattern. So I cut it out first before making these changes.

First – Print and tape your pattern as usual. I have printed the largest size which is 30. I knew I would need to do a FBA or Full bust adjustment before doing any sort of hacking. I have taken a few photos to show you the process as well. I started by cutting this pattern horizontally at the line indicating the waist. This allowed me to work with just the upper portion which is what I wanted to adjust. I then used the slice and spread method to open up the bust portion and add a bit of extra room where I needed it. This first picture is my pattern cut at the waist line and the second is after my slash and spread.

Now that I have created a little extra room at the bust, I taped my top and bottom pattern pieces back together keeping the fold line even. You can see in the photo that the upper portion is kicked out about 1.5 inches from my FBA. I inserted scrap paper to fill in at the waist. I then graded from my new upper edge to the original hemline. This will give me a total of about 3 inches in the front of my dress. This will give me extra room for my belly.  IMG_4051

I also knew I wanted a length between the two included hem options. So I measured 2 inches down from the top hem and followed the curve when trimming the paper. I wanted to wear my top as a tunic over leggings or as a cover up when pool side so this length is perfect.

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Finally, I curved out my neckline a bit by cutting out a J shape from the pattern. I always err on the side of caution so my neck line doesn’t become huge. You can sliver trim to go wider, but once you cut fabric, you can’t put it back. Sorry no pic!

Let’s adjust our sleeves now! I almost always have to adjust the bicep of patterns, but by making this floaty sleeve I won’t be using my typical method! This sleeve includes is a “cut on the fold” pattern meaning you really only see one half of each sleeve. I flipped my pattern over and traced the second half of the sleeve on blank paper. Then tape it together so you have an entire sleeve pattern. Next, I used my rotary to cut some slashed to spread my pattern out. I used scraps of paper to fill in the gaps and now my sleeve pattern looks like this. Looking back, I wouldn’t have be upset if I had opened this up even more!!

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Now follow the pattern assembly directions and it is business as usual! I remeasured and cut my neckband at 85% to fit my wider scoop.

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Wind Gust showing off the “Swing” of my new tunic.

I picked up this fun floral print from Rosa at Sew Blessed. I love it and it is so perfect for summer!

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I used the rolled hem on my sewing machine to finish all the edges because this ITY is super slick and I felt like it would be a nightmare to hem neatly! Rolled hemming went insanely quick! I plan to use it a lot more for fabrics like this.

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I think I could even belt this and wear it as a short dress! I sure do love options!!

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Thanks for stopping by! Once you’ve entered my drawing, be sure to find the others on the tour for even more chances to win! We’re EACH giving away 1 Halla Pattern code. That means 5 chances to win!! All draws will be made on Saturday, May 11, 2019 so you have time each day to read, enjoy + enter each sewist’s contest.

Monday – Kate from Sewing from Scratch adding a V-Back to the Agnes Dress (for an additional entry, visit her YouTube video, too!)
Tuesday – Gwen from Crafty Curly Couture making the Agnes Tank
Wednesday – Sequoia from SequoiaLynn Sews demonstrating an FBA, floaty sleeves and a scoop neck.
Thursday – Laura from Custom Made by Laura colour blocking the Agnes Tank
Friday – Stephanie from Sarcastic Sewist adding a quilted yoke and slim dress line to the Agnes Shirt.

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Spectrum of Shapes ~ DIBY – Adrienne

Several months ago, The Sarcastic Sewist and I were chatting about how to keep our blogs rolling during the new year. We decided that we would do a bit of a comparison on how we, as curvy sewing bloggers, are adjusting patterns to fit our bodies. We spoke with another curvy blogger, Chaney of Twinkle Toes and Company, and she hopped on board with us. We choose to work with the Adrienne from DIBY.Club. This pattern is cute and fun. DIBY also has the largest size range that I personally test for. Our rules were simple. Make the pattern and adjust it to your liking and for your personal fit. We plan to do this quarterly so stay turned for the Spectrum of Shapes tour!

DIBY Adrienne (2)

I knew I would need to blend sizes, which is often the first step in getting a custom fit. At the Diby.club, I am a 30 bust and a 26 waist and hips. Here is a great link to the DIBY blog about measuring. I printed my pattern and followed the fit advice included with the pattern on grading. I knew that I wanted to add some length to the top because the side detailing makes the open sides pretty high up on me and I don’t want to show my business or my belly to the world. I added 3 inches to the length. I added this above the bands so I didn’t have to work out an adjustment for that, but DIBY explains how to do it in the directions. I am kinda lazy at sewing and was also in a hurry so… LOL Anyhow pattern adjusted and sizes blended next up, I am ready to sew. If you want to see my first round of making the Adrienne, here is that link.

DIBY Adrienne (6)

I used this great Shark/Underwater print for my top. It is a Cotton Lycra base which means is has excellent recovery. The pattern called for very drapy knit with low recovery actually. I tend to avoid things what don’t bounce back from pulling and stretching as I am kinda rough on clothing. I believe that is why my shirt is more structured than most others.

DIBY Adrienne (8)

I chose to make the crew neck this time as my previous one has a cowl which makes it a little heavy for warmer weather. This top features a center back seam that allows the shirt to have a little more contouring and makes it super easy to cut out especially when you have small amounts of fabric! That was not my case as I bought the entire bolt of this print!

DIBY Adrienne (5)

I also made the elbow sleeve option and added a narrow band instead of the larger cuff. I love the overlapping side bands and with the video on the DIBY blog they are super easy to install.

 

Overall, I am happy with my top, but wish I would have gone down one or two sizes. I think it is this fabric which makes it appear a little bulkier than I prefer.

DIBY Adrienne (7)

If you would like to pick up the Adrienne pattern from DIBY club feel free to use my Aff. Link here . If you need more convincing… just visit my friends below over the next few days! Also be sure to sign up for a chance to win a free pattern from the DIBY Club down at the bottom.

Be sure to check out the other gorgeous bloggers sharing
their gorgeous shapes with all the right alterations of this lovely DIBY Adrienne!

Sequoia Lynn Sews

Twinkle Toes and Company

Sarcastic Sewist

Don’t forget to enter to win a free DIBY pattern, so you can sew up your own DIBY to fit your lovely shape here!

I have shared my Aff. Links in this post. That means I make a bit of a commission onany patterns you purchase. It doesn’t change your price at all, just shows me your love. 🙂

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  • You can follow my blog by clicking the Follow button on the right side of my blog.
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Breaking Ground- Blog Tour 2019

Welcome to the Breaking Ground Blog Tour 2019. This year over 25 bloggers from around the world are joining with me to break new ground by trying a pattern designer that is new to them, try new techniques, new styles, or whatever way they want to push themselves. (Read on for Giveaway info)

Breaking Ground Blog Tour (5)

Welcome to my stop on the Breaking Ground Tour!

Let’s start with what does “Breaking Ground” actually mean. According to a quick google search this morning ‘”Breaking Ground” means to initiate a new venture, or to advance beyond previous achievements. When this blog call came out, I joined right away. I had no clue what I would sew and went back and forth for a week or so until I settled on a bag. I searched online for tons of bag patterns, not finding anything I loved. I also recently started this new budget deal with myself, so I didn’t want to spend 10 bucks on a pattern. I decided I would look through my own stash of patterns and see what I could come up with. Thankfully, I remembered I had a book dedicated to making bags. I have made one Market Style bag in the book several times. It was a simple tote bag that required very little skill. Since this tour is about Breaking Ground, I knew I was meant to step it up a bit. So here we go…

Breaking Ground Blog Tour (6)

This bag contains a lot of elements I have never done before. I learned how to insert a separating zipper, made 5 different shapes of pockets, used actual purse hardware and made a legit handle. I feel like I used yards of interfacing and top stitched miles of thread. To top it off, I used 4 different fabrics because that’s just how I roll. I followed the pattern almost to Kay Whitt’s design with a few exceptions.

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To start with I needed 4 fabrics. Of course, I picked all different prints. None of them match each other and I used 3 different fabric lines. Don’t panic, I know some of you are all matchy- matchy, but I can’t stand that! I also used some large D rings I scavenged from an old beat up bag I already had. I keep interfacing on hand so no need to risk my budget deal with a trip to the fabric store.

Breaking Ground Blog Tour (2)

This pattern had 10 ish pages of directions in the book. I know, I agree, that is a lot of work. I worked through them one step at a time over the course of  2 weeks. I finished around midnight this morning. Some days, the struggle really is real. This pattern is labeled intermediate and I agree. Though none of the steps were overly difficult, they took a lot of time. The photos that accompany the directions are basically line drawings with color. On some steps this was helpful, but many times I wanted to see a real photo of what I needed to do.

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The only step of this pattern that seemed off to me was the side pockets. The side panel and the pocket piece were cut the same width, but then you add a 1 inch pleat to the pocket. This made the pocket one inch smaller than the panel, but the directions say to line it up. Ummm No Can Do! I also had a small hiccup at this step because I attached my top binding over the folded edge instead of the raw edge. This required that I line the pockets up across the bottom of the bag instead of them floating an inch from the bottom. Not a deal breaker and this girl wasn’t ripping the pleated and binding off, nor was I starting the pockets again. I also redrew the pocket flap on the outside as this patterns that are included when you buy the book have done missing. I just used my curved ruler and went for it.

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The inside of this bag contains on sectioned off pocket and one pocket with an elastic top. I wouldn’t have minded both of these pockets being a little deeper or even a zipper pocket for small things like chapstick.

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As I was sewing this bag up, I thought I would maybe try to make a bag each month. We will see. I would actually love a matching wallet to go with this bag. Maybe next month.

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So my thoughts: I love the outcome. I honestly feel like I stitched miles of thread into this bag and zippers aren’t so bad. I wish the pattern listed all of the cutting steps at the start and not randomly in the pattern. I feel it would have saved time to cut and interface everything at the start of the project. I was clearing off my cutting table and ironing board way too frequently. I also wouldn’t have minded some real photos instead of just line drawings.

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Do I feel like I am Breaking Ground? Absolutely! Here are the other Ground Breakers! be sure to check them out, but read to the bottom of my blog to sign up for PRIZES!!!

The Full Tour includes all these creatives… we hope you’ll visit us each day:

Monday March 11That’s Sew Lily, Sewing A La Carte, Mijn 11jes & ik

Tuesday March 12mahlicadesigns, Embrace Everyday, Jot Designs, auschick sews, Raising Stripling Warriors

Wednesday March 13Musings of A Seamstress, Very Blissful, Sew4Five, Just Sew Something, Hazelnut Handmade, Crafting Through Time, Tales From A Southern Mom

Thursday March 14Make It Sew with the Bear and Pea Atelier, Ronda B Handmade, SequioaLynn Sews, Sewing with D, The Sewing Goatherd, OOYAmade, My Golden Thimble, Custom Made by Laura

Friday March 15Sew Cute Couture by Kathy, Sewing Novice, Ronda B Handmade, Momma Bear Sews, MeMade, My Golden Thimble, Lulu & Celeste

Click Below To Enter Both Giveaways

Breaking News: our tour sponsor Phat Quarters is offering 2 patterns of choice from her pattern shop to one lucky winner.

Enter Here!

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We’d love to see how you’re Breaking Ground this month. Share with us what you’re working on by using the hashtag #BreakingGround2019 across social media.

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