Friday, August 6, 2021

Itch to Stitch Spirren Tank

 Hello everyone, and Happy August!

I am back today to share a top I recently tested with Itch to Stitch.  It is called the Spirren Tank, and as soon as I saw the line drawing details I knew I wanted to give it a go.  Also, with the weather hovering in the mid to high 90s I thought this would be a nice piece to pull out in the heat.

Here are the some of the details:

This is a knit tank (woo hoo) so the options are for a regular or full bust.  It is partially lined in the top front, with a curved V-neck, gathers at the shoulders, and pleats under the bust.  It is a fitted garment with fabric recommendations of cotton spandex, spandex jersey, and interlock (fabrics with 50% horizontal/vertical stretch).  I pulled out an animal print poly or rayon spandex from my stash and used it for my version:

I absolutely love how it came out!  This is a FITTED garment, with negative ease according to the size charts, and I made a size 2 blended to a 4.  Really, the only place I graded was along the bottom portion of the front and back bodice.  That is usually the place that has added width for me too.  

The details are harder to see with this print, but they are so lovely! The pleats add a gentle curve on the bust, while the gathers are slight (at least mine were).  

The neckline for the front and back pieces are applied via bindings:

The finish is very clean, and lays nicely with understitching.  I used fusible interfacing for various portions of the armholes, and front neckline per instructions.  This is not a normal practice for me, yet I liked how it came together.  


Front Lining

Top constructed except for curved front and bottom front

Overall, I highly recommend this top! If you are an advanced beginner, and familiar with working with knits you can definitely make this one.  Keep in mind that the slinkier knits can be more finicky to work with, yet if you take your time, go slowly, and use pins/basting then you will be fine. As soon as I finished this tank, I couldn't wait to put it on, and ended up wearing it to an outing with my Bestie.  I hope to make more!

This week through August 11, 2021,  you can purchase the Spirren pattern for an additional 20% off.  You may visit here to check it out.

To check out other tester versions of this top, please see here.  There were so many great versions, and so much inspiration for a wonderful Summer staple.

I will be back to share some of my Summer sewing progress with you.  Hint, hint, it was only one item, but I will try to rebound with my Fall plans, lol!

Stay sew-filled!

Wednesday, June 16, 2021

Summer Sewing Plans

 Hello everyone!

Here we are in the month of JUNE, and I have been seeing so many wonderful sewing plans popping up!  I decided that now is the perfect time to create my own Summer plans, and today I wanted to share them with you!

Last month ended up being pretty intense for me.  The kids finished school, I finished teaching, and I was EXHAUSTED! Whew! After celebrating my husband's 40th birthday in Hilton Head with family, I knew I needed to take a small break.  Here is a pic from our trip:

So, over the next two weeks following our return I began to bring some more intentional order to our home.  It is amazing what gets neglected while trying to keep other things in motion!!  One of these tasks was tackling my closet, and sorting through things I wanted to keep, donate, or throw out.  After I finished this, I realized my Summer wardrobe was pretty sparse.  What on earth did I wear last year?  Oh yeah...lockdown...lounge wear.  

Since I don't recall buying or making many things last year, I need to replenish A LOT.  My approach for Summer Sewing is to sew what I can until August 1st.  At that time I will turn my attention to preparing for the next school year of teaching.  For now, I came up with quite a few plans that I would like to see come to fruition:

From the left to right, top to bottom:

1. S8890: This jacket from Mimi G is one I keep forgetting about during the warmer months.  I think it would also transition well into Fall, and I am thinking of using a cotton twill for this version.

2. S8883: This is an inspiration top.  I saw a similar top on Pinterest, and fell in love with it!  I love the ruffles at the sleeve, though I may have to edit the one in the princess seams.  I have chosen a striped cotton for this one.

3. Ottobre top with lettuce edge sleeves: I like this variation with the lettuce edge.  I believe it is a rib knit used.  I have both black and red in my stash.  I am leaning toward the red.

4. Ottobre top with square neckline/gathered waist: I had this top on my Spring Break sewing list, and changed it out last minute.  I still want to make it in a purple mystery woven.

5. ITS Nittany top: I missed out on the chance to test this top, but adore it so much! I am excited to try this, and already have the pattern cut out.  I am not sure what fabric I will use, but will check my stash.

6. NL 6963: This is a pattern I have had for years! I think it is OOP.  I plan on making this one in a blue shirting, perhaps also in a striped cotton.

I also pulled out my pattern stash and began digging around for shorts patterns.  I will definitely adjust the length for all the versions I have chosen so that they are more comfortable for me.  I am thinking more of a Bermuda short, or a hem that falls just above the knee.

Here are my choices:

From left to right, top to bottom:

1. Ottobre 2/2017: Imagine my surprise when I found these in an old issue of Ottobre Woman!  I don't ever recall seeing them, but they are so cute.  I like the darts in the front, and the back waistband is elastic.  

2. Burda 6/2011: These are actually a pair of pants! I like them because they seem to be a fuller, roomier style.  

3. Simplicty 1887: I have had this pattern for a while. I bought it for the pants version, but upon seeing the shorts, decided to give them a try.  I love the tie at the waist, and the back waistband is elastic for this one too.

4. Burda 6/2011: This pair of shorts is also in the Burda magazine.  It is a less structured style with a side closure.  I would love to sew this in a fabric with a bit of movement.

I have not chosen the fabrics for all of these shorts patterns yet, but plan on doing so as I get to them.

I am open to adding a few dresses as well, though I haven't fully decided on the style I want.  I think that these plans will keep me plenty busy for now.  I will be back to update you as I progress.

Stay sew filled!

Monday, April 19, 2021

Sewathon Tops Finished

 Hello everyone!

I hope you are well!

I am back today to go over all the tops I made for my Spring Break Sewathon.  After Spring break ended I headed back to work with most of them finished, except for a bit of hemming and putting in buttonholes.  I got everything done this week, as well as worked on my Burda trousers--which are nearly done!!  

Here are the final results of the four tops I made:

This is the Verna Top included in Simply Sewing magazine.  You can find my review here.  I love this top! The ties are beautiful, and I love the way they sway when you walk.  On the back slit, I originally had a hook and eye, but was having trouble with it staying put. I got such great feedback from all of you.  I tried out the different methods recommended to me, and in the end decided to create a fabric loop and sew on a matching button.  It worked out so well! Now the top stays perfectly!  Thank you all!

This top is the Aisling blouse, designed by Jennifer Lauren and one I received in my Simply Sewing magazine subscription.  You can read more information about my process here.  The square neckline is definitely a favorite for me.  I am excited about this trend this year, and plan to create a lot more tops with this feature.  I used a lightweight breathable woven, and even on a warm day I was able to stay cool.  I highly recommend this top, and think it will be equally in demand when the Fall comes too!

This top is Mccalls 8067.  I cannot believe how this came out!  I had high expectations, and I think they were met.  Also, I really think the pockets on the bust was a good choice!  My original plan was to leave them off, and I am glad I gave them a try.  You can read my review here. I ended up finding some glittery pink buttons at Hobby Lobby to finish the top.  I thought about doing neutral navy buttons, but threw caution to the wind and decided to make this top ALL FUN!  I mean, that is why we sew right?  Because we can do the spunky, funky, unique, over-the-top, or understated--whatever suits us!

My last top is the Seychelles by ITS! Let me tell you! I just love this one!  I plan on wearing it to a family getaway for my husband's upcoming 40th birthday.  You can read about my review here.  There will definitely be more Seychelles tops--both short sleeved and long.  I have broad shoulders, and you can see that the pleat detail on the sleeve still looks great.  I was so worried about this, but the soft detail withe the rayon challis fabric is really nice.

Overall, I am thankful for the time I was able to sit and SEW!  For the rest of this month I will be back to squeezing in sewing where I can, and I have at least two more projects I would love to finish this month (not counting my Burda trousers).  And speaking of the Burda trousers, here is a sneak peek of how they are looking right now:

I plan on adding a jean button, attaching button loops, and completing the hem soon.  Right now I am amazed at the design detail for these trousers.  I don't own anything like this and I am so glad I chose to take a chance on it.

I look forward to being back soon with the finished trouser results, and my plan for what is next.  I hope this week is kind to you!

Stay sew filled!

Saturday, April 10, 2021

Sewathon Update #2

 Hello everyone!

Today I am ready to show you how I am progressing with my Spring Break Sewing, starting with days 3 and 4.  

On day 3 I started the day pumped because I had received my latest Simply Sewing magazine issue in the mail the day before.  I was not expecting it until a couple of weeks, so it was a surprise for me.  As I browsed through the included patterns, the Aisling blouse by Jennifer Lauren immediately caught my eye!  I loved the square neckline, and the loose "blouson" sleeves pictured in the photo on the pattern cover:

Once I saw it had bust cup sizes,  I decided that I just had to make it! I downloaded the A cup pattern front, and cut out the additional pieces from the paper pattern.  I chose a size 8 according to the finished garment measurements, and the fit was right on.  I did my usual adjustments, and sewed this in a floral print from Fine Fabrics.

I really love this soft print with the angular neckline.  I want to make a dozen more of these, LOL!  This fabric is light enough that I can wear it for a couple more weeks, but I will have to adjust the sleeve length for future versions because GA gets hot fast.

Here it is once I applied the sleeves on.  The bottom portion of the sleeve has an elasticated cuff that creates such a pretty effect.  You simply sew a casing, leave a small gap, insert your appropriate size elastic, and stitch the gap closed.  So lovely!

Since I made this top instead of the Ottobre one I originally planned for, I will put the Ottobre one on hold for now.  I may revisit it later this month after I finish the Burda trousers.

I finished day 3 feeling pretty good, and ended up getting a Covid vaccine that evening.  On day 4, I did not feel like myself.  My arm was sore, and my body was aching.  I pushed through the day, but took a lot of physical and mental breaks. I was determined to make the most of my time, yet it was tough.

I pulled out Mccalls 8067 and began to assemble it.  I sewed a size 12 in a striped rayon challis fabric from Denver Fabrics.  

I decided to add the bust pockets for this version.  I tend to forgo them on most of my garments, but thought they looked nice here.  Then again, maybe my decision came from my state of mind that day.  

Here is the nearly finished result:

I still have the hem left to do, and three 5/8" buttons to apply--of which I have none.  I searched my stash, but could only find smaller sizes.  I will have to make it back to Hobby Lobby or Joanns to find something appropriate.  But overall, I really like it so far!

I thought the side slit was a cute feature, and could definitely see this top as a wardrobe staple!  By the end of day 4 I was beginning to recover from the vaccine symptoms and get my bearings a bit.  

For the rest of the days I will be working on the Burda trousers.  I got a chance to trace the pattern pieces (8), apply seam allowances, and cut out my fabric.  I did some comparison to my Ginger jeans pattern, and while Burda is off in a few places, I will be taking a huge risk by moving foward without a muslin.  I hope any fit issues that arise can be solved by the seaming present on the pants.

I will be back in a couple of days to let you see the progress made on my trousers (fingers crossed).  

Stay sew filled!