Sewing for my sister

I am both lucky and unfortunate to have a sister the same size as me. We can borrow each other’s clothes, but let’s face it, mostly she just borrows mine. One of the pros is that if I want to sew something for her, I just make it in my size!

Recently I asked my sister to buy me the Brigitte Triangle Bra pattern by Ohhh Lulu and I said I’d make some bras for her. I bought enough bra straps to make five bras, some hook and eye closures, and three types of elastic from Sew Sassy Fabrics. I highly recommend this website! They have tons of hard-to-find swimwear and bra-making supplies, some available wholesale. The site design is not the best, but I was really happy with the wide selection and my first order.

I LOVE this pattern! It’s super fun to sew up, and makes good use of leftover fabrics. It also saves a LOT of money compared to buying them at a department store (lingerie gets expensive). The best part though, is that it actually fits! It is hard to find RTW bras that fit me in the cup without being tight around my torso. By making my own, I can cut an xs cup and a medium band.

I’m sending the first three pictured to my sister. Here they are in opposite order sewn.

Plaid Flannel Triangle Bra_Ohhh Lulu patterns_handmade by Conniya

DSC01884

This is my favorite out of the five. Instead of using a knit fabric, I used plaid flannel cut on the bias. My fabric wasn’t very large, so I slashed the pattern and added a side seam to the band (with black topstitching). I tried to match the plaid at all the seams, but none of them line up exactly. I finished the top edges with foldover elastic (FOE) and the bottom by zig-zagging clear elastic to the WS then folding under and zig-zagging again. Since I was using 2 hooks and eyes for the back closure, I made the back band narrower so no edges would be hanging out.

Black triangle bra with FOE_Ohhh Lulu patterns_handmade by Conniya

A simple black knit, finished with FOE on all edges. Since the bottom is meant to be folded under, I had to trim excess fabric before attaching the FOE.

Pink and black triangle bra_Ohhh Lulu patterns_handmade by Conniya

This is the stretchy linen fabric leftover from this circle skirt. I used FOE for all the edges. However, the FOE on the bottom is a wider one with more of a plush feel. I got it from JoAnn’s a long time ago and had enough left to do this.

Pink and black picot edge elastic triangle bra_Ohh Lulu patterns_handmade by Conniya

Pink and black picot elastic closeup_Ohhh Lulu patterns_handmade by Conniya

Non-slip elastic closeup

For this one I experimented with picot edge elastic on the top, which is traditionally used in a lot of under wear. Since this is a woven fabric that frays, I zig-zagged the edges before applying the elastic. On the bottom, I folded the bottom under once, then attached non-slip elastic with two lines of zig-zags. As you can see in the photo, there’s a rubbery line that makes it non-slip that is surrounded by a plush texture. I prefer the more finished look of FOE, but this bra is still really cute when it’s not on a hanger.

Black triangle bra 1_Ohh Lulu patterns_handmade by Conniya

Black triangle bra 1 closeup_Ohhh Lulu patterns_handmade by Conniya

This is the first bra I made with a similar but different knit fabric from the one above. The top edges are encased in FOE, and the bottom has been folded to the WS with unfolded FOE inside. I should have overlapped the bottom of the cups more, which I did in all the other versions.

Hopefully my sister likes her bras! I’ll probably send her a couple of my other recent makes as well, which I’ll be sharing here soon.

Three skirts

I have less than two weeks left with my little sewing machine before I leave the country! I’m studying at Anyang University in South Korea this semester and then interning for six weeks in Chile (You can keep up with me on my travel blog ConniyaGoes). That means I won’t be able to sew. However, I’ve made several things over winter break that I have yet to take pictures of, so here’s the first batch!

Double Knit houndstooth circle skirt handmade by Conniya

This is a full circle skirt using a double knit hounds tooth print from Denver Fabrics. I was pretty disappointed in quality when I first received my order from them. However, I am liking it a lot more now that it’s in skirt form. This was my first time sewing double knit, which is a really stable fabric with just a little stretch. The waist is slight gathered by the 2″ elastic, and there are no seams. I didn’t hem it since the fabric was so stable at the bottom.

Pink circle skirt handmade by Conniya.

Another full circle skirt using a pink linen also from Denver Fabrics. It was not at all what I was expecting when I ordered it online. It is actually quite stretchy, and a pretty low quality. I decided to go ahead and make it into a circle skirt since trying to return it wasn’t going to be worth the effort. It has an interfaced waistband and lapped zipper in center back. To finish the hem, I attached a light pink single fold bias tape and hand stitched it to the underside. It wouldn’t usually be this wrinkly, but I was afraid my brother would change his mind about taking pictures if I took the time to iron it first hahaha.

Skirt handmade by Conniya. (Peplum skirt_Salme Patterns)Finally, a fitted skirt from the same double knit as the circle skirt. I used my peplum skirt pattern without the peplum (Salme Patterns). I really love this one! I think it’s really flattering and the slight stretch of the double knit makes it comfy. I used an invisible zipper in the back, and finished the hem by turning it under once and top stitching with a slight zigzag so it could stretch. The seam between waistband and skirt could sit a lot better, but it’s hard to use an iron on this fabric due to the way it’s printed.

 

Have a great day and don’t forget to follow me at www.conniyagoes.wordpress.com!

A handmade Christmas part I

This is the dress I made for my friend Rachel! I thought it would be fun to sew something for her this year because we’re the same size and I really like making dresses 🙂  I used the Sonja dress pattern (Salme Patterns) that I had already altered to fit me.

Handmade Sonja Dress by Conniya

The fabric is one I already had. I am unsure of the fiber content, but it definitely has some poly in it. Unfortunately that didn’t keep it from getting a bit wrinkly after being wrapped up. The dress is fully lined with a navy cotton for the top and slick navy poly for the skirt in the hopes that it won’t stick to tights in cold weather. I used store bought double fold bias tape for the neck and armholes.

handmade Sonja Dress by Conniya I got the pattern to match really well at the front waist and fairly well at the back zipper.

Back view_Handmade Sonja Dress by Conniya

Now I just need to finish the other handmade Christmas gift I’m working on! Only a few days left.

Completed: gray knit and purple paneled peplum

I have two new shirts completed! I couldn’t think of an alliteration for this knit top, but it’s still awesome. I had just enough leftover fabric from the skirt I made a while ago to make a matching top!

Gray knit top and matching skirt.  Handmade by Conniya

I just love coordinates– just look at my Pinterest page haha. But this shirt also works well with the dreamy white skirt. This shirt is so comfy and the white skirt fabric also feels great against skin. Who says fashion shouldn’t be comfortable?

Gray knit top. Front view. Handmade by ConniyaI left the edges raw on purpose because I thought it looked cool. I still think so, but when paired with this skirt, I think it would look neater with a binding. I might go back and do that if I can scrounge up enough scrap fabric.

Gray knit top. Back View. Handmade by ConniyaI’m looking forward to making many more variations of this top. I’ve already got another one in the works. All I am going to say is…COLOR BLOCKING! It’s gonna be sweet.

This top is the same pattern as the clouds and swirls dress I’m still working on. (I’m wearing flip flops in this picture, which I don’t normally do- I HATE wearing flips flops btw)

Purple peplum top with gingham panel. Handmade by ConniyaI actually started this one before I started the dress version. Since I didn’t have instructions to follow, I ran into some time consuming technical difficulties (mostly regarding lining methods).

Purple peplum top with gingham panel. Front view. Handmade by ConniyaI’ve been wanting to make something with gingham for a while now. This gingham is from Grandma’s stash of fabric she let me go through. There wasn’t much of either of these fabrics, so this project made really good use of them. The shirt is more of a crop top. I would have made the peplum longer but I ran out of fabric. Since I’m not the belly baring type, I need to make a skirt or something high waist to wear with this. I’m really wanting to venture into the land of sewing pants and make some black trousers.

Purple peplum top with gingham panel. Back view. Handmade by ConniyaTo make the straps stay in place and be comfortable, I used elastic casing for the top back part. It’s a little bulky, but it works.

The next thing I want to to with this pattern is to add sleeves and raise the back. I actually hate wearing sleeveless tops- I usually only wear them at home or with a cardigan. I’m also wanting to experiment with flutter sleeves.

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 Laurel dress in blush pink rayon challis

It’s done, it’s done, it’s finally done! I present my Laurel dress in blush pink rayon challis (with light gray polyester/cotton underlining). This was my first Colette Pattern, and my first time sewing with rayon. I feel like I spent hours cutting out and basting the pattern pieces because I didn’t want to mess up with this slippery fabric. My dress feels great, and I’m happy with how it turned out.
These pictures were taken after going to the movies– I promised I ironed it before I went out!

View 1_ pink rayon challis Laurel dress. Handmade by Conniya

I love the pattern, and I definitely want to make more of this dress. The only intentional change I made was to lower the neckline because it was choking me. Unintentionally, the hem ended up a little short because I had to make up for the uneven fabric at the bottom of the back seam. Darn you, slippery fabric!View 2_ pink rayon challis Laurel dress. Handmade by Conniya

OHMIGOD THERE’S A TREE COMING OUT OF MY HEAD. My brother took these pictures haha.
View 3_ pink rayon challis Laurel dress. Handmade by Conniya

I can’t decide whether I should make the bottom half a size smaller or not. There’s plenty of extra space down there, but I want it to stay loose enough that sitting down is still easy and comfortable since this fabric has no stretch.

Back view of pink rayon challis Laurel dress. Handmade by Conniya

I really like the bright, coral-ish pink I chose for the bias binding ❤Sleeve and collar closeup of pink rayon challis Laurel dress. Handmade by Conniya

And here are a couple shots of me and my sister, Natasha. Aww, sisterssss ❤

With Natasha_ pink rayon challis Laurel dress. Handmade by Conniya Squishy faces with Natasha_ pink rayon challis Laurel dress. Handmade by ConniyaAfter this we went and petted the dwarf bunnies at Orschelyn’s. I want a pet bunny one day!

Holding a dwarf bunny, wearing pink rayon challis Laurel dress. Handmade by Conniya                   Holding a dwarf bunny while wearing my Pink Rayon Challis Laurel Dress. Handmade by Conniya.

P.S. You’re not crazy; the blog DOES look different. Hope you like the changes. I’ve added a blogroll to the sidebar with some of my favorite blogs. Check ’em out!

Knit Scout Tee with contrasting pocket and sleeves

I’ve been on a roll since I got my sewing machine last December. I’ve only been sewing for about 6 months and look at all the things I’ve made! I would love love love to participate in Me-Made May next year, which is when you’re supposed to wear only clothes you’ve made yourself for the entire month. I’m still a looong way away from being able to do that, but I think it’s possible. Being able to make my own clothes is so empowering, and refashioning thrift clothes is a great way to save money and reuse what might otherwise be thrown away. Now, onto the post!

This is the Scout Woven Tee pattern from grainline studio. It is a beginner level pattern, and costs $6.50 to download. I used this navy ponte knit from JoAnn’s  that I already had on hand, but I’m looking forward to making this in other types of materials and different colors.

Front view of knit scout tee with geometric striped pocket and sleeve binding. Conniya

I drew up the pocket pattern from scratch, and cut up an old Billabong tube dress for the contrasting fabric. I love the pattern and color scheme of the fabric, but I just never wore the dress much.Side view of knit scout tee with contrasting pocket and sleeve bindings. Conniya

I was in between sizes, so I just went with the larger one. It’s meant to be loose fitting, but I think I will go with the smaller size next time.

Closeup view of ponte knit scout tee in navy blue. Conniya

This is the second time I’ve had to use easing to sew on a short sleeve. I simply cannot get it to look right! As a result, these sleeves have a bit of a gather, but not so much that I can’t deal with it.
Knit scout tee with contrasting pocket and sleeve binding. ConniyaAnd here’s this picture, because it’s funny 😛

 

In other news, I got an A in my intro to financial accounting class today!