So I know I just had a blog post with a similar title, but this one is a bit different. I tried out several different options when I wanted to work out a fall style hack for my Love Notions Summer Basic. For this hack I wanted to have attached sleeves and it was super easy to do. I looked through the Love Notions site and quickly picked out the Sunday Romper.
The Sunday Romper has a dolman style sleeve which means there isn’t a shoulder seam. The body of the shirt and the sleeves are a continuous pattern piece. Typically if you want to have long sleeves on a Dolman, that is a separate piece to add length. Psst: I will show you tell you how to do it!
The first step of this hack is to print your pattern for the bodice of the Sunday Romper and the Skirt of the Summer Basic. I know the Sunday Romper comes with its own skirt, but the Summer Basic has more flare at the hem. In my size there was only about a 1.5 inch of difference between the bodice and the skirt width. I just added 1.5 inches to the center of the skirt and rolled with it.
Since I was hoping for a fall winter look, I used the lower sleeve cuff from the La Bella Donna pattern to lengthen! Just make sure your Dolman sleeve is the same width as your sleeve extension. Instant Long Sleeves!
Cut your pattern pieces in your favorite fabric! I used Darcey from Stitchin’ Pretties. This is an Alpaca Sweater knit and it is the softest fabric ever. I think I just sat wrapped up in it the entire time I planning this dress. The website notes this should be hand washed and dried flat or on low. I didn’t see those directions and washed in cold and dried for 50mins on normal heat. I didn’t notice anything weird, but I suggest following directions. Don’t forget this fabric is included in the buy 2 yards get 1 bonus yard free. 🙂 I love love love this deal!
So I made this dress a few weeks ago, but hadn’t gotten the chance to photograph it. I sewed this dress up because I was going out to dinner and wanted to look nice. I know I am not the only one who decides at the last minute “I have nothing to wear.” The struggle is real, folks! Finally, I have gotten some photos and now I am writing up a blog post to share with you all and tell you how I got my look! It is sorta a hack…Sorta.
Do you know what pattern hacking is? Do you do it? Are you scared to try it? Pattern hacking can be a lot of different things. It can be as “basic” as using a pattern as a base for a new garment or as “extra” as mashing several patterns together to be your dream garment. Sometimes I love one part of a garment, but need something different for the rest of it. This is all pattern hacking and this year, I have done a lot of it. I think pattern hacking is the easiest way to fill your wardrobe with well fitting items without trying out tons of different patterns. I use to be really scared of hacking mostly because sometimes I mess up and waste good fabric. It happens! Move on and try again. Luck was on my side with this hack though…or maybe I had an insider tip…
Psst: I had an insider tip. I knew that the Gloria top bodice was a perfect fit for the EricaSkirt! The Gloria peplum in its original form is my favorite top. I wear with with leggings and boots a lot, but it is also perfect with jeans and flip flops in the summer. I love that it is fitted through the bust and has a skirt attached with a seam just above the fuller part of my belly. I prefer this look on shirt as I don’t like anything that is tight on my stomach. I love that it comes with tons of options, but I also love that it is versatile with different fabrics. I have used Liverpool, Double Brushed Poly, Interlock Twist Yarn, and even a heavier Rayon Spandex fabric.
So I printed only the FBA Front Bodice, the Back bodice, Sleeves and Neckband from the Gloria and then printed just the skirt portion of the Ericaskirt from the Mambo collection. I chose the lower neckline of the front bodice and the long sleeves with cuffs. I actually wish I would have removed another half inch from these sleeves. I used a short length for the skirt because I knew I was wearing my dress over leggings or skinny jeans.
This beautiful paisley print fabric is from Sly Fox Fabrics. I ordered it last year, I believe and I held on to it way to long. Sometimes I have a hard time actually cutting into fabric I love. I am certain I am not alone in this, but trust me, the fabric isn’t going to run out. Cut the Fabric! Make the Clothes! Wear the Fabric! This is a single brushed poly.
Assemble bodice as usual. Follow the pattern directions if you aren’t sure how to make a basic top. Sew front and back bodices together at the shoulder seams. Sew sleeves in on the flat. Stitch along the sleeves and body of your top. Add neckbands and arm bands. Bodice done! Now the Skirt. Stitch up the skirt side seams. Place the bodice inside the skirt matching right sides together and clip along the bottom of bodice/top of skirt. Stitch together. At this point, I have serged my entire dress. Now you can top stitch around the neck band if you prefer. Hemming your bottom skirt with finish your look nicely!
Unless you spent the year 1999 under a rock, you know Mambo #5! Lou Bega shared his love for all the ladies in the song and that is exactly what is happening on my blog this week! A little bit of Mambo love every single day!
So as an intro, I want you to know all of these skirts come loaded with options. All of them should be made with semi structured knit fabrics such as Liverpool, French Terry, or Ponte. I also have an insider tip… All these waistbands and pockets are interchangeable between the skirts! This is where I could make a joke about a Mambo threesome, foursome, or moresome, but Momma Mia reads my blog, so I won’t.
First off, I am showing you all the skirts at one time! These are the patterns I plan to share with you this week. Yes, All Of Them! As a bonus, I am sharing all the shirts also! 4 out of the 5 are brand new!
If that is all you need to see to know you NEED this pattern collection then here is the direction link to the pattern! FYI Momma Mia’s skirt is already a dress pattern on the 5oo4 site, but it rounds out the NO. 5! All of the options work with it!
Tina is the half circle skirt in the collection! First I need to question why have I never worn a skirt like this before? Ummm hello! Dare I say this is pretty cute?! It totally hides my stomach and the suspenders are pretty fun!
I choose the wide waistband option with suspenders and height adjusted the skirt by 2 inches as I am only 5’1. This is the mini length and it is suppose to be at or near knee length. If you prefer a shorter mini, just adjust at the height adjustment line. I always say the best part about sewing, it making items to you exact likes and dislikes! Maybe short skirts and tall boots are about to be my thing!
I want to tell you how easy this skirt was to sew up. I made it from printing to hemming in only a 2 1/2 ish hours. I love sewing with Ponte fabric! I picked up this print recently from Sew Blessed Fabrics. It has a nice weight to it which means my sewing machine doesn’t try to eat it when hemming. It serges neatly as well. My biggest issue was top stitching my suspender straps. For some reason, my tension was a little wonky and caused one to get very wavy. I pressed it the best I could then figured when worn it would pull flat anyhow. I am honestly not one of those perfectionist sewists. I go with the flow. If something looks bad, I will fix it. Otherwise, wear it and love it! If i didn’t tell you, you wouldn’t have known one of my straps was a little wavy. I tell you so that when you are sewing, you will check your tension and make sure yours is laying flat!
This awesome red and black plaid is a ponte knit. It screams with 90’s grunge rocker vibes at me and originally I planned to make some pants. When this pattern test popped up, I knew I was about to channel my inner Avril Lavigne and wear a shortie plaid skirt with suspenders! Yep, I went there. I have no idea where I plan to wear this outfit, but even it it goes to the grocery store on a Sunday afternoon; it will be worn!
The Women’s Erica Half Circle Skirt pattern includes the following:
Three Hem Lengths: Mini, Knee and Midi
Options include Suspenders, Patch Pockets or Side Seam Pockets
Three Waistbands: Tall, Slim, Lace Up Front
Tutorial includes a link to an extensive Skirt Fitting Guide to get your best fit!
Women’s Sizes XXS-5XL (see the last image for yardage and size chart)
Plus don’t forget Mix and Match with the other Mambo pattern options!
Surprise, no solid black top in my closet other than a RTW tank that I pull out in a pinch. It isn’t a poor fit, but I now know how to get great fit! So what’s a girl to do??? If you said use your black double brushed poly from your stash, you would be correct. I found this on my Stitchin’ Pretties shelf, so I must have forgotten about it. I hacked a black top to wear with the new Tina! So in my mind, I had great visions of a Camilla, but worn backwards with that amazing cowl swooping down between my shoulders. That isn’t what you see here. Things didn’t go exactly as I planned, but this knot back top is pretty cool also. So let me explain how I got to it!
I used the Easy Tee bodice front and did a Full Bust Adjustment. Next I cut the front bodice from a Camilla top to give myself all that extra fabric for my cowl neck swoop. I graded the armsyces to match the Easy Tee so I could use those sleeves. I assembled the front of my Easy Tee bodice like the back of the Camilla should be assembled. blah blah blah As it turns out this doesn’t work out like I had hoped, but I learned a few things along the way. I plan to revisit this idea so stay tuned. Anyhow, I still needed a pretty awesome black top so I put this top on my mannequin and played around. I ended up cutting straight down the middle of the cowl and serging those edges. Then tied a cut knot! 🙂 Easy Peasy, right?
Anyhow I am loving my first skirt from the Mambo collection, please let me know what you think in the comments! You can pick up your own copy of all these patterns while they are on sale by using my afflink!
I am not the least bit sad to see Fall coming to Ohio. The temperature is bouncing between the 70’s and 80’s. I have been hiking and geocaching mostly every weekend and enjoying the weather. It has felt wonderful to get outside and enjoy nature. The cooler temps in the mornings and evenings are already hinting towards the need for a jacket. When I was picked to sew up and share this amazing fabric I thought I wanted a fitted blazer/cardigan that I could throw on when it got cooler out, but as I got to working on it, it turned into a zip up jacket. So let me share all the info with you.
This print is called Supernova and the base is Liverpool. Liverpool is a semi structured knit that is perfect for blazers, cardigans, pants, jackets, skirts, dresses and even tops! I have used Liverpool for every single one of the garments and have loved every single one of them! I like that it has a “bumpy” texture and people always want to touch it. It is considered a structured knit which makes it perfect for beginner sewists. It cuts and sews easily with either a sewing machines or a serger. I love that it doesn’t roll up or shift around when stitching it. So Supernova is from Sly Fox Fabrics. Sly Fox has a great selection of all sorts of fabrics and they ship typically within 1 business day which is hard to beat, but important to me. I love that in every single order I have placed with them, they have included a color catcher sheet for washing, a print out of exactly what I ordered, washing instructions and it’s packed neatly when I open it. Customer Service is uber important!
Now for the pattern. Eleanor is a great cardigan pattern because it is easy to sew and well drafted so it fits nicely. I planned to use it as a base for a cropped Liverpool Cardigan. I figured I would wear it over a tank top and jeans and it will look nice. I cut the pattern to my size and according to the directions. I knew I wanted a hood and I planned to line it with a solid black Liverpool. Originally, I thought I would wrap my seams with a seam tape to cover my stitches that would connect my hood to my jacket. The pattern calls for a band to finish the entire front edge from the hem to the hood. So initially I sewed my hood on with the plan to add a band. When at the last minute, I decided I was adding a zipper in place of the band, I had to make some adjustments. I seam ripped off the hood and placed both layers right sides together then serged around the front part connecting both layers and hiding the front seam. Now I reattached the hood with black thread to match the lining so it wouldn’t really show when I wear the hood down. Next came the zipper. Now had I planned this better I would have cut the length of my jacket to be a normal length of a zipper. 27 inches isn’t normal. I needed a 27 inch zipper. I did some minor fudging and I made it work while making a mental note for the next time. I added this super cute zipper pull to my jacket because some days you need a little reminder.
A quick hem of the bottom and the sleeves and some simple top stitching along the zipper and I am calling this beauty finished! I absolutely love it! Now I want to make all the jackets and sew all the zippers! Have you sewn a zipper yet? Let me know.
If you have enjoyed reading my blog, please let me know. Leave me a comment and click the like button! I would be thrilled to see your comments.
Do you love this pattern too? Here is my my previous two Eleanor shares
Maggie has gotten a lot of love on my blog, but Melissa, the designer has been off living her best life for awhile. Good news though, she is back and drafting up a storm. I pulled out one of my most used Bella Sunshine Designs patterns for this series. A few months ago, I discovered that I really like tops with interesting sleeve details. I am working on putting together a series of shirt sleeve hacks to run right here, on my blog. Today, I am introducing you to my first one.
Let’s start with a reminder of the Maggie pattern. Maggie comes in a top, tunic, and dress lengths. I typically cut the tunic length as I prefer my shirts a little big longer. It comes with an included Full Bust Adjustment. There are 3 neckline options as well as 3 sleeve lengths! This version is a tunic, adjusted sleeves with a scoop neckline and pairs perfectly with leggings. I sewed a 24 bust graded to a 28 waist. Bella Sunshine Designs includes sizing up to 30.
This fabric is a beautiful new release from Amelia Lane Designs. It is called Dulce and is on new sale as it debuts. It is a double brushed poly and the colors are absolutely beautiful. You can pick the fabric up here. ALD has great quality fabrics and a wide variety of fabric bases. Also, super fast shipping, which is what is very important to me as a customer.
Maggie sews up quickly, but since this is the kick off to my Sleeve Hack Series, we are switching it up a bit. For starters, we are creating a gathered sleeve. Basically, I am going to show you how to use elastic to draw your sleeve up and create a new look. Sometimes, even simple changes make for a big impact. For this top, I printed the 3/4 sleeve length even though I only planned to do about an elbow length sleeve. The reason I went ahead and printed the extra length is so I didn’t have to redraft any of the arm even though I wanted a longer than short length. I measured about 2.5 inches down from the length of the short sleeve. I knew that adding the elastic would draw the sleeve up a bit and I didn’t want the sleeves to be too short. As always with Bella Sunshine Designs, I needed a Full Bicep Adjustment. I have talked about them many times on my blog and have a little video here if you aren’t sure how to do them.
Another new thing I am trying for my blog is more videos!! I am by no means a professional, but I think this gives you a better idea of what you should do. I think a lot of the time just seeing what is happening is helpful. I have recently created a Youtube Channel for my sewing stuff so feel free to like and follow it so you don’t miss any uploads.
Here is the embedded video from my YouTube Channel. Please feel free to give me a follow and a share!
Easy enough, correct? I love the slightly gathered sleeve and hope you do also!
Do you need to add the Maggie top to your collection? Here are some links for ya!
Thanks for visiting my stop of the Rebecca Page Double Duty blog tour! All of the bloggers have been sharing some great hacks to help you get more bang for your pattern bucks! I am kinda a thrifty gal, so when this tour came up, I couldn’t wait to join! Then folks started talking about their ideas and I thought I was probably in over my head. I kept several ideas in mind, but I knew I wanted to hack the Circle Cardigan into a garment I could wear in more than just winter.
My original cardigan was made from this amazingly soft and snuggle worthy, Hacci Sweater knit. I love it, I wear it often. I will miss it when winter ends and the heat of summer rolls around. BUT just because sweater season will be ending soon, doesn’t mean I should put away The Circle Cardigan pattern. Let’s hack it for warmer weather! Here we go!!
You will need:
The pattern printed in your size. If you need to grade it, now is the time! You just need to print the short length and the ¾ length sleeve. The band is up to you, I just hemmed the circle.
Fabric and matching thread
Sewing machine, Serger is optional
The first thing we need to do is shorten the overall length of the cardigan. I decided to remove 6 inches from the bottom length. I used my ruler to mark 6 inches up from the bottom of my current pattern piece. I began at the center back and worked my way towards the side. I knew I wanted to grade inward so it would still be a circle cardigan. I made graduated marks at 5 in, 4 in, 3 in, 2 in, then finally 1 inch.
2. Now use a French curve to connect all of these marks.
3. Trim the pattern into your new shorter length and set aside. Get your sleeve piece out.
4. I shorted my sleeve to slightly above the 3/4 sleeve option. This is up to you. What length do you prefer? Cut out your fabric. Mark the center of your sleeve. I drew a line down the middle then used my ruler to cut a long 2 inch rectangle out of the center. Again the length depends on you, but leave enough to have room for seam allowances and hemming.
5. Outline the rectangle with wash away seam tape then folded the edges back. You will have to make small snips at the corners so it lays flat. Just tiny ones will do the trick! I topstitched here to hold it in place as well.
6. Next we need to make tubes. I just cut several long strips from my scraps. They are 1.5 inches wide by whatever length my scrap was. I serged them into long ribbons then used my medium tube turner to quickly flip them.
7. Now take your sleeve and lay it wrong side up on your ironing board. I used pins to “shape” my opening. I measured to be sure it was mostly square. I then pinned it to the ironing board. Now use a marker to divide your opening into equal sections. I did 2 inches apart vertically and eyeballed it to be level horizontally. I then made a criss cross pattern with my tubes and pinned down the points. Carefully, pull your entire sleeve up and off the ironing board. I stress carefully because I flung pins everywhere the first time. 🙂
8. Stitch criss cross tubes in place. Sew slowly! Remove the pins are you go! Lengthen your stitch. I went up to 3.0! If your presser foot starts to push your criss crosses, just lift the foot up and set it down on top of them! Breathe! You are in charge here. See how my corners are a bit rounded out? Continue making square corners so it looks neat from the front side! When you have stitched all the way around, cut your threads. I also trimmed the tails of my criss cross tubes. Be careful. One slip and you will be sad.
Are you ready for the big reveal?!?!
Criss Cross Sleeve Complete! Perfect vents for warmed temps!
I am loving my new spring look! I wish the grass was greener in this pic, but in truth it is still 30* with another snow storm heading out way!
Let’s Talk Fabric: Both of these prints are from Sly Fox Fabrics! Sly Fox ships within 24 hours so you could be wearing this combo before next weekend!
Double Brushed Poly Glen Plaid in Mustard Houndstooth is the cardigan print! You can shop here.
The colorful Mandela Print has been sold out for awhile, so feel free to beg the Foxes for its return. I love this print here and think it would look amazing with the houndstooth.
This blog post contains Affiliate Links. This means that when you make a purchase from one of my affiliate links, I receive a small commission. That helps me to buy more fabric to show you new and upcoming patterns. 🙂 So thank you!!