Thursday, April 19, 2018

Flower Power

Large floral prints and cold shoulders are all over the fashion radar for spring/summer 2018.  Dorcas, Brand Ambassador for Sew Much Fabric, looks stunning in both trends.  The fabric,  Black/Multi Color Floral Viscose Poplin, is sold out but this print in a new colorway will be in stock soon!  Thank You Dorcas!   

I fell in love with this dress when it premiered earlier this year in the spring Vogue pattern collection. Well, it's really the fabric I was in love with, the dress was secondary and I wasn't that crazy about it, but somehow it called out for a this huge floral. My first impression of the dress was that the cold shoulder was a bit trendy but when Roz at Sew Much Fabric told me she had ordered the very fabric that McCall's used for their model, I knew I had to have it. It's a rayon poplin with a great weight and the perfect drape a flowy dress like this would require. Knowing the fabric was on the way, the pattern started growing on me and then it was a must have. Now I can't imagine having made anything else with this fabulous floral. And here's the Vogue for comparison:

It was a very simple make. The pattern has cup sizes which, for me, is always a plus. The only modification I made was to decrease the front slit in the bodice which I shortened 2". It's a sleek fit and looks as nice in the back as the front:

The sleeves are fun. It's been a long time since I've worn a full sleeve gathered with a cuff. 

By the way, this fabric washes and dries like a dream! There were so many fun colors in this fabric I decided to use the grass green for all of my topstitching rather than predicable black:

Lukewarm turned to love for my new dress and think I'll have fun wearing it this summer!

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Spring Flowers

Prints are inspiring, whether florals or abstracts!

For The Office

Create a daytime professional look using Cream/Yellow/Grey Leaf Print Scuba Knit with your favorite sheath dress pattern.  Pair the dress with a jacket using Burda Jacket 03/2017 #114 with the Buttercup Linen or.....

...for a more subdued look, pair Fern Print Stretch Cotton with Burda Style 12/2017 #103 for the jacket and Black Stretch Cotton Sateen for a classic sheath dress!

Lazy Saturdays

Saturdays are for 
hanging out with friends, running errands or grabbing a bite to eat! Throw on an easy, chic dress like Butterick 6567 made with cotton fabrics Field of Flowers Stretch Cotton and Turquoise Egyptian Cotton.

If the weather hasn't quite caught up with spring and it's still cool use Vogue 1575 with Floral Print Satin Scuba Knit and Pink Tulip Rayon Jersey Knit.

Day Wedding 

Rock it with Butterick 6554 in Navy/Pastel Floral Rayon Matte Jersey Knit and make a wrap in Wedgwood Blue Polyester Mikado for a versatile coverup.

Spring is such an exciting season with the promise of beautiful flowers and new birth.  Whether woven or knit, be creative and have fun with the beautiful fabrics at Sew Much Fabric!

Fabric ideas posted by Beverly Gatterson, who teaches fashion design at the Art Institute of Houston.

Thursday, April 05, 2018

5 Ways to Wear Yellow this Spring for YOUR Skin Tone

Yellow is associated with happiness and optimism but most of us are unsure how to wear this sunshine color!  Lauren Battistini, chief color strategist and owner of LFB COLOR CONSULTING, is sharing 5 strategies to successfully add this trending color to your sewing list! Use these tips and head over to Sew Much Fabric and select your shade of Yellow!

1. Yellow is an inherently warm color, so cool or blue undertones have the most trouble wearing this hue. For cool, or blue undertones, or those that are more cool than warm, wearing a cool, crisp yellow and/or a soft butter yellow are your best options. The warmer the yellow, as in mustard or orange-yellow, the more sallow and uneven the skin tone will appear on those of you with cool undertones.
Buttercup LinenAmelia Lace-Sunset Yellow

Golden Amber Rayon Jersey KnitSatin Back Crepe-Canary Yellow

2. If you have to wear the warm yellows, even though they are not "your colors," consider bringing in cool tones as accents. Incorporate black either in the pattern or as a jacket. Pro tip: Bring in coolness to a warm yellow ensemble with silver jewelry. Yes, it does work, ladies, and be sure to wear that silver jewelry close to the face to offset the visual effects of the warm yellows.
Cream/Yellow/Grey Leaf Print Scuba Knit 

3. For warm undertones, this is your season to create several statement pieces in various shades of yellow. How do you know if a yellow is too blue or cool for you? Put it to your face and see if it makes you look dull or washed out. For deeper WARM undertones, too cool of a yellow will make the skin appear dull and flat. The right yellow will add warmth to your skin without turning you sallow or jaundiced in appearance.
Silk Charmeuse-Apple CiderDesert Sand Stretch Cotton Sateen

4. When mixing and matching your yellows with other colors in your wardrobe, it is most important to keep the intensity of the color palette consistent. Bright vibrant yellows combine best with other bright tones, and muted yellows pair best with other muted tones.
Buttercup LinenTangelo Rayon Jersey Knit
Chamois Wool Calvary TwillArmy Green Rayon Jersey Knit

5. With yellow, a little bit goes a long way. I love this idea of incorporating a tiny bit of yellow in a shirt or dress pattern, then investing in a yellow handbag or pair of shoes to complete the look. 
Field of Flowers Stretch CottonFloral Vine Cotton Lawn
Yellow is trending this spring and will play a big role in the fall.  Use these strategies to get to know your best shade of yellow or contact Lauren at LFB COLOR for a consultation!

Thursday, March 29, 2018

Wrap Top/Pleated Skirt 2.0

In Dorcas's last post, she made a wrap top/pleated skirt into a fun weekend glam outfit.  Using the same patterns Dorcas has kicked it up several notches into a polished 50s style with a very modern update!  Have you used the same pattern more than once for a totally different look?  Thank you Brand Ambassador!!

If this skirt and top look eerily familiar, that's because they are a deux from my last post! When I find pieces that work well together it's a given that I will make them again right away. No exception with this Burda Style skirt (01/2018 #121) and knit top (Burda 6848).

This time I used the lovely Zig Zag Tweed (Sold Out) and White Rayon Jersey Knit from Sew Much Fabric and a guipure lace remnant from Promenade Fabrics which I used as a border and embellishment.

The construction of the skirt was similar to making a guipure skirt in that I determined the hem length and stitched that first. I then added the guipure border.  I cut individual motifs from the lace and started placing them. Uniformly to begin with:

And then I just kept adding here and there until it looked balanced to me:

Once the lace was all basted in place I stitched it down with my Bernina Stitch Regulator which is a pretty darn awesome little gadget for freehand stitching. I'm looking forward to playing around some more with it.

No individual motifs on the back since it is flat with no pleats. Here it's shown with my jean jacket:

The whip cream and cherry for my Easter treat is a silk charmeuse lining and my favorite Petersham ribbon waistband treatment:

The Burda top I modified by replacing the wide band on the pattern with wrap ties. I made the bodice as instructed omitting the band:

Then I cut two bands on the fold the width of the fabric to make the ties:

I made an opening at the right side seam to thread one of the ties through before wrapping and voila, a great wrap around shirt to complete my Easter Confection:

And I love it with my ribbon candy French jacket!

Thursday, March 22, 2018

Burda Style 4/2018

To purchase, go to
(Sold Out)

All Styles at a Glance

Line Drawings

Sleeves are still trending.....
Blouse #105B Egyptian Cotton-Optic White or 

Love the clean lines and sophisticated look!
Trench Dress #104  Desert Sand Stretch Cotton Sateen

Updated details for the classic blouse.
Blouse #105A  Egyptian Cotton-Turquoise

Fun look for the weekend!
Blouse #120 and Pants #114B Black/White Reversible Stripe

Plus Size
Contrasting colors are a great way to highlight the details of this skirt.
Skirt #126  Buttercup and Khaki Linen

This would also look great with a pencil skirt.

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Primary Colors

Samina artfully put together the three primary colors red, blue and yellow in a classic t-shirt.  Just so happens she wore it on primary election day in Texas!  Thanks Samina!

March 6, 2018 was primary election day in my state and I was dressed in “primary” colors; yeah – so literal that I was rolling my eyes at myself. But, it's kind of fun to dress literally for the occasion.

This pile of knits was ordered recently from Sew Much Fabric without any thought to the election season, or to the primary colors of the color wheel; yet, here we are.

The Top
Initially, I was going to use black knit for the neckband, the sleeve cuffs and the hem band, just for some contrast; because, this beautiful shade of golden amber doesn’t do any favors for my skin tone. But I love the color and black trim at the neck might be kinder and gentler.  Then plans changed and I used red for the neck band; and then, things took another turn when I used the cobalt blue for the cuff bands. Now the combination of colors became worthy of Tuesday’s primary elections!!

My go-to knit top pattern is the Renfrew from Sewaholic Patterns, and the “primary” top was the seventh time I’ve used it. I still wear the last six pieces and have been wearing them since 2014.

So, readers, many of us make it a point to wear certain items and colors on certain holidays. Red and green on the Christmas holidays, Red on Valentine’s Day and so on. I  took it a bit further to wear primary colors of the color wheel on primary election day. (It should be declared a public holiday, in my opinion.) Now, to plan a piece for wearing on the general election day in November – red, white and blue?  What’s the point if you can’t have fun with your self-sewn clothing?

Thursday, March 08, 2018

Modern Weekend Glam

Dorcas is dialing up her weekend glam look!  Comfortable fabrics like jersey knit and a pretty cotton print are easy to sew and wear.  Who says you can’t look fabulous and run errands, too?!   Thank you Dorcas!

Spring is finally here and I'm in love with these two pieces, both perfect for transitioning into warmer weather. The pleated skirt is Burda Style 01/2018 #121 and the knit top is a modified version of Burda 6848. Both of the beautiful fabrics are from Roz at Sew Much Fabric and each gave just the result I had in mind.

Burda Style 01/2018 #121
The inverted pleats of the Burda skirt needed a fabric with some body to achieve fullness without bulk. 

This Italian cotton broadcloth called Greystone Lassoed Flowers was just ideal and lovely to sew with. Crisp without being stiff and it presses like a dream.  Predominately a palette of khaki and grey, it's also steeped in sage with touches of apricot. Just my colors!

I pleated out some of the excess before cutting the lining pieces.

Finishing touches are the rayon lining and my favorite Petersham ribbon waistband treatment:

And now on to the Tangelo rayon knit top. Well, it's orange. Need I say more!? This is an 11 oz. rayon/spandex with 75% stretch in both directions. I knew I wanted a wrap top but also more coverage than any I had made in the past. I spotted Burda 6848 while pattern shopping and thought I'd give it a try:

I made View A but added a little experiment to it. I wasn't crazy about the wide band at the waist and decided to replace that with long ties that would wrap the waist and tie in front. I cut two 6" wide strips the width of the fabric, joined them to make one long piece, sewed the bodice to it and voila, a wrap shirt. And a favorite it shall become!

Fits great in the back, as well:

In my closet, this outfit will be easy to accessorize.  I'm really looking forward to wearing it!