Diamonds and Ruffles Scout Tee + instructions

The Fall semester is finally over! That means time to sew and watch TV! To celebrate the end of finals, I made this lovely scout tee Friday. I wore to out on Saturday to see The Hobbit and already know I’ll be wearing it a lot more. Skip to the bottom of the post for instructions.

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Fabric is from Grandma’s stash. It’s definitely cotton, but has a really cool soft/slick texture to it as well. It’s a really crisp white with subtle little diamonds that catch the light.

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What I really love about this shirt is that it’s really loose and comfy, but can be worn casually or dressed up. I need to hand sew some tiny belt loops on the waistline so the skinny belt will stay up without having to wear it too tight.

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This is a really easy modification to do, although making the ruffles even takes foreverrr. I have a love hate relationship with ruffles. Here are the steps I took:

1. Slash the pattern at the “shorten/lengthen” line and then cut out fabric as usual (just leave off the bottom part you cut off).

2. Sew the shoulders, bias neckline, sides, and sleeves as usual. I used 1/4″ double fold bias tape and used a slipstitch to hand sew it to the inside of the garment.

3. Cut out two long rectangles for the ruffle. The length of my two rectangles were about 40″ each (from selvage to selvage for each rectangle.” Make them smaller or larger depending on your shirt size and how full you want the ruffle. The height of the rectangle should be how much length you want to add to the shirt + seam allowance (I did 1/2″ at the top and 3/4″ for the folded hem). Make the rectangles really long, and you have a tunic or dress

4. Sew two lines of basting along the top of each rectangle 1/4″ and 3/4″ away from the edge. You’ll be sewing between these lines in a minute. Or use whatever method of gathering you want. Basting just means use the longest straight stitch on your machine.

5. Sew the rectangles right sides together so you have a tube and press seams open.

6. Gather the rectangles by pulling both thread tails and evenly redistributing the ruffles. This may take a while. Keep doing this until the rectangle is the same length as the edge of the shirt.

7. Match side seams and pin the gathered rectangles to the shirt edge, right sides together.Use as many pins as necessary. Keep fussing with those ruffles and get them evenly distributed! No one likes ripping out stitches later.

8. Using a straight stitch, sew the top and bottom together with 1/2″ seam allowance.

9. Pull out the basting. Finish the seam with a zig zag stitch, serger, or your preferred method. You could also sew a skinny piece of elastic onto the seam at this point if you want the shirt to be fitted at the waist.

10. Roll the bottom edge under twice, press, and hem.

TA-DA!

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 ๐Ÿ™‚

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 ๐Ÿ˜›ย 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

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 ๐Ÿ˜›
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 Conniyaย 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 Conniyaย When I redo the zipper, I also need to figure out how to fix the back seam where the two meet. ย 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 โค

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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!

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 โคSleeve 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 โค

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 Conniyaย  ย  ย  ย  ย  ย  ย  ย  ย  ย 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.ย It is a beginner level pattern, and costs $6.50 to download. I used this navy ponte knit from JoAnn’s ย 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 ๐Ÿ˜›

 

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

Sewing Projects Catch-up: pencil skirt, maxi skirt, and thrifted dress

It’s taken so long for me to get pictures of some of these projects that I’ve resorted to self-taken iPhone pictures :/ Sorry about the quality

This first one was one of those huge, old-lady maxi dresses you see a ton of in thrift shops.

Before version of thrift store dress. Conniya

The dress has two side seams and one seam running down the back. I took in the side seams and shortened it, not bothering with bust darts because I was fine with having a loose fitting top. In order to make the neck and shoulder area to fit, I also had to take in the top of the back seam.
Full length view. Thrifted and altered dress. Conniya

I really like the neutral palette. This pattern is similar to the one on my favorite romper that is too big for me now, so I’ll think of it as a replacement ๐Ÿ™‚Torso. Conniyacloseup of neckline. ConniyaThis pencil skirt is made from some charcoal gray ponte knit I got at JoAnn’s. I absolutely love it! I have some in light gray and navy as well, but haven’t decided what to do with it yet.

Front view of ponte knit pencil skirt in charcoal gray. Conniya

I based the pattern off of another pencil skirt, but made this one a tad bit longer. I wore this skirt to an interview yesterday.ponte knit pencil skirt in charcoal gray. Conniya

I love this outfit! I picked this adorable pink crop top up in the mall on clearance. It’s pretty cheap, but I figure I can cut it up and make my own replicas whenever I’m done with this one. This skirt started out with an elastic waistband (in February), but I didn’t like how it looked. I ripped out all the old stitches and made a new waistband and inserted a zipper. This was the first time I’ve done any gathering before. It’s not very even, so I’m thinking about ripping out the stitches and redoing it. I have leftovers from this fabric so I might experiment with different lengths in the future.

Full length. Pink crop top and white eyelet cotton maxi skirt with side split. Conniya

I swear I measured everything, but the waistband ended up being a little tighter than I would have preferred. It’s very high waisted now, but it’s still a good length.White maxi skirt with split. Waistband closeup. Conniya

 

 

Thought I’d throw in a little extra here! I dyed this white t-shirt purple ombre last summer. My brother dyed one for himself too.
purple and white ombre shirt. Conniya

Big plans coming soon! And I’m still working on my Laurel dress ๐Ÿ˜€ Stay tuned.