Jessica shorts #2 with pocket embroidery

Here are my second pair of Jessica shorts! The first pair I made had to be taken in some, so I cut the same size and used french seams on this pair.

And in case you hadn’t heard, I was a featured maker on Kollabora this week! After seeing my first pair of Jessica’s they contacted me about this, and I was super excited! You can see it HERE.

4 White Jessica shorts with black pocket embroidery (Schnittchen Patterns) handmade by Conniya.

This is the same fabric as the white skirt I made earlier this summer. The fabric is semi-sheer, so I hemmed the short by hand using a slipstich. I’m wearing white leggings under them here, but earlier this week I wore them with short black leggings that had a lace hem, which is cuter I think. I should have lined the shorts, but by the time I decided this was the better option, I really didn’t want to go back and unpick all those french seams. I think these will be fine with long leggings as the weather gets colder.

DSC01714

I decided to add some cute pocket details since the shorts are one solid color. I drew the scallops with a water soluble marker and ruler. I used backstitches and french knots.

3 White Jessica shorts with black pocket embroidery (Schnittchen Patterns) handmade by Conniya.
2 White Jessica shorts with black pocket embroidery (Schnittchen Patterns) handmade by Conniya.

And here’s an awkward looking picture of the back.6 White Jessica shorts with black pocket embroidery (Schnittchen Patterns). Handmade by Conniya.Next up is some knitting and a pair of Lisa pants! And homework :/

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Schnittchen Patterns Jessica Shorts #1

I’ve been patiently waiting for a sew along or sewing competition to participate in, and Kollabora is hosting a little competition with Schnittchen Patterns! Kollabora users can choose to sew either the Jessica Shorts or Katja shirt. I’ve been wanting to make some longer, casual shorts so I chose the Jessica pattern. This is also my first time sewing pockets! The pattern is only $5 for a digital download on Schnitten’s Etsy page.

Here’s my first pair using a cotton print I got at Hancock Fabrics yesterday (you don’t want to know the customer service nightmare I went through to get this ha). This is not the pair I’m entering into the competition though! Those are currently in the works 🙂

Jessica Shorts_Schnittchen patterns. Handmade by ConniyaFirst of all, these were really big. I ended up taking in all the seams in by 1 cm more than was called for. The size plus the blue flower print made me feel like I was wearing men’s swimming trunks :/ Still not sure how much wear I will get out of these, but I think they look better in context with the hot pink shirt and baseball cap. They aren’t the most slimming shorts.

Closeup_Jessica Shorts_Schnittchen patterns. Handmade by ConniyaAnd here’s what it looks like with the shirt tucked in:

Jessica Shorts_Schnittchen patterns. Tucked in. Handmade by Conniya

Here’s how they’re supposed to look. The instructions are a bit confusing because they’re translated from German, but the photo tutorial (in German) online was helpful and this is an easy pattern. I also recommend having enough ink in your printer that you can read the directions and symbols when you print your pdf pattern 😛 I really want to try the Lisa pants. They also have more patterns on their website here, so hopefully those will be available in English soon!

jessica shorts picture

A Grand Announcement: Sister Cities Etsy Shop

I am really excited to announce that I have opened an Etsy shop with my sister Natasha Moreland! You can find it right here: www.etsy.com/shop/sistercities

SC etsy banner

Today I wanted to share a short story on how and why I decided to start this store.

I discovered Etsy my sophomore year of high school and was completely blown away. I had never seen anything like it before, and was amazed at the range of unique products and skills I saw. At this point I knew how to crochet but was only starting to experiment with making round objects like hats. I didn’t know of many people who enjoyed making things like I did, and I hoped that maybe I would have the skill and guts to open my own Etsy store one day. Since then I have learned to knit and also enjoyed graphic design, which I dabbled in while running the high school newspaper. It wasn’t until last winter that I joined the world of sewing, but I was immediately in love.

Sewing is such a great skill to have. Even if you don’t make your own clothes, you can better appreciate and understand what goes into making the Ready To Wear clothes you buy at the store. Sewing gives you an alternative to mass manufactured uniforms and opens up infinite creative possibilities. Making my own clothes has given me more confidence in the way I dress, and I don’t have to worry if my clothes were made by some underpaid worker in another country. I have more of a personal connection and appreciation for my possessions. I want to share some of these things through Sister Cities.

Natasha and I decided this year that we were going to take the leap — we felt like if we didn’t try it now, then we would end up putting it off forever. So we swallowed our self-doubts and got to work. Everyone has to get started somehow. I always enjoy hearing stories of successful business owners and artists who had humble beginnings by walking around door-to-door with their designs or by selling scrunchies they made to their school friends. If they did it, then we can too!

We want Sister Cities to be a place where you can shop for yourself or for gifts to others. There will be women’s clothing, totes and small bags, and crochet toys/collectibles as well as anything else we dream up! Right now there are only a few things for sale, but many new items will continue to be added in the next few weeks. And we would love to hear feedback on the items you like the best and want to see more of– so stop by the shop and have a look and like our new Facebook page here.

The dreamiest skirt

A few weeks ago, I was up late at night sitting in front of the sewing machine thinking, “What can I make next?” I couldn’t stop thinking about these two pictures that I had pinned on Pinterest. I don’t know the source of the first picture, but the second is from Peter Som’s Spring 2012 collection.

long white skirt with side slit SS12 NEW YORK FASHION

Here’s what I came up with! This creamy white, drape-y, gorgeous skirt!Long white flow skirt_front view, Handmade by Conniya

Whenever I put it on I just want to smile and do this:

Twirling-in-white-skirt

Don’t you wish everything in your closet made you want to do that?! Anyway, let’s talk about the construction. There are four triangular panels, the waist is interfaced, and it closes in the back with an invisible zipper and a hand sewn hook & bar.Back view_Long flowy white skirt. handmade by Conniya

However, there are several technical issues with the skirt. First, I just estimated the triangle dimensions that I cut out because having a full circle skirt of this length would be a ridiculous amount of fabric. Second, I did not cut out accurate triangles because the fabric i was cutting into was SUPER long which meant ironing would take forever and I would end up standing on half of it while I ironed the other half. Third, I totally wasn’t thinking about the grainline— some of the panels were cut on the bias and some weren’t! D: OMG so embarrassing, guys. I blame it on being tired 😛
Long flowy white skirt_handmade by Conniya

As a result, you can see that the seams are a little wonky. Btw, those are all french seams. Ooh-la-la!

These issues made hemming it evenly really difficult. SHOUTOUT TO GRANDMA!!! I took it down to her house for advice and she ended up sitting on a little stool with a ruler and measuring the hem distance from the ground while I stood still in the skirt. And then she cut and pressed the hem so I could finish sewing it on my machine. And I also hijacked my grandparents’ computer and signed them up to follow this blog (Are you reading this, Grandpa? Be sure to show Grandma these pictures!)

Side view_long flowy white skirt. Handmade by ConniyaDespite a few mistakes, I am absolutely in love with this skirt. It’s a bit fancy for everyday but I think I will wear it anyway because fashion is about what makes you happy and confident, not what people in central and eastern Kentucky think about what you wear!

In Progress: Clouds and swirls A-line dress

It’s been a bit since I’ve had a blog post so I thought I’d make an update of what I’ve been working on.

I’m almost done with this dress. The pattern for the fitted part is based off of a dress that I cut up – I never wore it because of various fit issues so I took what I liked to make my own pattern. In order to finish this dress I need to 1) hem it, 2) take it in at the waist, and 3) fix the zipper/back hem. But isn’t this fabric dreamy? Stole it (with permission) from Grandma’s stash.

In progress. Clouds and swirls fitted top A-line dress. Handmade by Conniya

Originally I was going to just do a plain rolled hem, but now I’m kind of wanting to do something different. I’m a little tired of hi-lo hems so I’m not sure what else to do. I dunno…maybe I should keep it simple so it doesn’t distract from the top part or look odd with the two pleats.In progress. Clouds and swirls fitted top A-line dress. Front_straight_view. Handmade by Conniya The reason I need to take in the waist is because I made the pattern for an invisible zipper but used a lapped zipper instead. This should be relatively easy to fix – just rip out the zipper and increase the seam allowances on each side.In progress. Clouds and swirls fitted top A-line dress. Front_close_view. Handmade by Conniya When I redo the zipper, I also need to figure out how to fix the back seam where the two meet.  Right now it looks AWFUL. I think I will look up some online tutorials before I attempt fixing it.Clouds and swirls fitted top A-line dress. Back_view. In progress. Handmade by Conniya

I also made two pairs of sleep shorts recently.

The first pair are a bit poofy at the hips, which is fine for sleep shorts. Elastic was sewn directly into the wrong side of fabric. I like this print a lot ❤

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The second pair has encased elastic and the side seams are overlapped and topstitched. photo

And isn’t this wallet adorable?! I thought so!Kitty Cat wallet. Conniya

Have a great day! And if you have advice on inserting zippers, let me know or comment with a link!

Scout Tee #2: palm trees

The scout tee returns! This time with a fun palm tree print. It would be more complete with matching shorts, but that will have to wait for a bit. What? Too many palm trees in one outfit you say? NEVER!
Full front view 2. Palm tree woven scout tee. Handmade by Conniya.

This was made from shirting material, so it’s a lot lighter and breathable for summer than my last scout tee. And if my frizzy hair didn’t give you a clue, it is incredibly humid outside. Yay, Kentucky summers!
Hands in pockets. Palm tree woven scout tee. Handmade by Conniya.

This would have been completed days ago but I got stuck on the neckline. I redid it several times trying to get it to lay flat against my neck. Eventually I took it to Grandma who pressed the bias tape to make it thinner and told me to stitch in the ditch (i.e. stitch directly on the seam). It worked! Thanks, Grandma ❤

I feel like the sleeves are a little poofy. One day I will have perfect sleeves, but not today. It’s always the easing of the cap of the sleeve that gets me.

Front close view 1. Palm tree woven scout tee. Handmade by Conniya.

Notice something odd about the back?…….The print is upside down! I think this is actually the first time I’ve sewed something with an upside downside print. I have a hard time finding prints I like, so I tend to steer towards solids. Having the back upside down doesn’t really bother me. I think it’s kind of funky to have the front going up and the back going down!Back close up. Palm tree woven scout tee. Handmade by Conniya.

Like my new sunnies? They are literally the only circle glasses for sale in KY I think. $5 st Claire’s if you want a pair haha.

1_1 Round sunnies and pal tree woven scout tee. Conniya.

I used my dad’s tripod and camera to take these pictures outside my sister’s new apartment. After realizing how awesome tripods are, I ordered my own last night using some Amazon credit I had leftover from selling back textbooks. It’ll be here in two days! Thanks, Amazon Prime.

In case you didn’t know– If you are a student, you can get free Amazon Prime membership for 6 months. This means free two-day shipping on lots of items, but it the free trial DOESN’T include prime instant video. After your free trial is over, you can purchase prime membership at half price. If you’re interested, use this link to sign up (I get $5 of Amazon credit for anyone I refer):

http://www.amazon.com/gp/student/signup/info?ie=UTF8&refcust=P55ENRTZPMTSMPFDSX65Y2IM7Q&ref_type=generic 

Vertical striped seersucker skirt with hi-low hem

You know when you have those spur of the moment urges to just make something but have no specific plan? Well this skirt is a result of one of those times. Usually things like this end up wonky, but I’m quite happy with how my skirt turned out!

Front view (2) of seersucker hi low skirt. Handmade by ConniyaThe fabric is cotton seersucker– white with blue stripes. A comfy and cool alternative to shorts for summertime. The waist is encased elastic, and there is a light gray polyester/cotton underlining that is a bit shorter than the hem.

Close front view of seersucker skirt. Conniya

It’s hard to tell in most of these pictures, but the hem is actually raised in the front and lowered in the back. I simply traced a curve for the front and flipped it upside down for the back.

DSC01184Close side view of seersucker skirt with hi low hem. Handmade by Conniya

Originally, there was going to be a matching sleeveless top with red bias binding and horizontal stripes…I made a few too many mistakes, so I’ve thrown it into  my “I’m-tired-of-messing-with-you pile” to take another look at in the future. Full side view of seersucker blue and white striped  hi low skirt by Conniya.

Instead I’ve thrown on this super comfy and so flattering t-shirt. I’m seriously in love with this shirt. It was on clearance + my boyfriend’s employee discount, so it was a super deal! I want to trace a pattern off of it sometime so I can make more.

Seersucker skirt. Handmade by Conniya

I love how poofy it is! So girly and fun ❤Seersucker skirt in blue and white. Handmade by Conniya

And here’s a funny picture when I was pushing the hair off my face and look kind of like a ballerina.Seersucker skirt. Funny ballerina pose. Conniya