Thursday, January 16, 2020

Dream Weaver Dress




I generally, without a doubt, reside in a 1970s retro vibe with a modern twist. I love the colors, the fabrics and the patterns. So when I saw the Dream Weaver collection by Material Girl quilts, I knew what I had to do! Put on the song  by the same name by Gary Wright (psst, go listen then come right back), and hit my stash to find a pattern to play with these fun prints.


I chose to use the Diamonds design in the peach colorway.


                        

I found it was perfect to pair with this vintage Simplicity 6392 dress pattern from my stash.


I was drawn to the pleated maxi skirt and simple back detail. 


I love it but made a few modifications. The pattern calls for patch pockets but, I didn't want to interrupt this beautiful print.  I inserted them in the side seams instead. The waistline on the pattern had generous ease and was looser than I liked. I reduced the ease by creating a casing and inserting 1/4in elastic into it. This pulled in the fullness.


 I also opted to keep the bodice on grain for visual continuity.


It wears well on it's own or dressed down with a bit of denim.


 Dream big friends!


Happy Sewing,
Bianca











Tuesday, January 7, 2020

Reversible Kantha Jacket



Happy New Year! I hope your year is off to a happy and creative start. I have enjoyed the holiday season and a refreshed after a relaxing time with my family. I was gifted a set of  Kantha blankets  from my mother-in-law for Christmas that has kick-started my creativity.  



You can  read about this Indian stitch craft here and in a few books here. I love the look and feel of these textiles and have contemplated trying my hand at the slow-stitch process. With my schedule, I decided pre-stitched fabric was the way to go for now.  The set I received included 5 throw blankets in various colors and prints with options on both sides.


As is my default when I touch textiles, I knew I wanted to wear them! I reached way back in my stash for Butterick 5224 with an eye to make view B.

Image result for butterick 5224

This is a 2-hour pattern, but I made it in 6! Choosing my print layout and coordinating the 2 throws required took the bulk of the time as did my modification for reversibility. 


I went back and forth to get it just the way I wanted with the bold green and yellow swirls prominent. 


The deliberation was worth it to have a completely reversible jacket.

 

I love that the second side is a bit more mellow with stripes as the focal point.


The reversibility is achieved by flat felling the seams. I stitched the seams, trimmed one seam down to 1/4in. and folded the larger down, to encase the smaller. I then stitched close to edge. 


I double-folded the hem and stitched it down so there are no raw edges on the sleeves and lower edge.


I cut the facings along the edge of the blanket to preserve the hanging threads of the original blanket.


I cut the size medium on this and like the ease and structure of this jacket. There is definitely room to size down if you make this one.


My year is off to a fun and colorful new start. I hope you can say the same!


Happy Sewing,
Bianca

Thursday, December 19, 2019

Holiday Sparkle with a Fast and Easy Dress

The holiday season is upon us and it has brought cooler temperatures here in Texas! I am so excited to finally be consistently dressing in Fall/Winter wear. 


Holiday dressing is a great opportunity for me to add some sparkle to my wardrobe. I found this fabulous black, gold, and tan, cotton spandex jersey at Nature's Fabric. It has just enough sparkle to not be over the top.


I rarely take direct inspiration from pattern envelopes, preferring to put my own spin on my garments. With this dress though, I pretty much used the fabric to make the dress straight from Mccalls 7993. I added black cotton spandex jersey, also from Nature's Fabric, for the contrast.

This is a simple dress where the pleated and cuffed sleeves are a focal point.


 The cuff can be worn fully extended


 Or rolled back for a shorter look.


The stand collar can also be fully extended

Or folded down


This is a fast and easy dress to make. It is described as a "fitted" dress, so I was surprised by the generous ease in this size medium. I am happy for the looser fit, but if I were hoping on bodycon style, I would have been disappointed. 


I am very happy with this dress. The fabric is comfortable and easy to wear. I expect this will be in heavy rotation this season when the occasion  calls for a bit of easy elegance.

Happy Holidays and Happy Sewing,
Bianca


Monday, November 25, 2019

Sewing Themed Holiday Ornaments

Looking for a great way to celebrate the joys of a handmade holiday? I made these fun and cheeky laser-cut ornaments with a focus on sewing. Show your passion for your craft with these fun and whimsical ornaments. Each ornament is laser-cut from 1/4 in. craft wood and hangs from a ribbon. 


Sewing Machine to embellish it with your favorite fabric



"Roll with it" Rotary Cutter

Zipper with scissors


Shirt pattern with scissors

Dress with Pockets with scissors

Hem your own pants with
scissors

Each ornament varies in size use this 1-inch grid for reference.


Now available in my etsy store.

Happy Sewing,
Bianca

Thursday, November 21, 2019

Adding "A Little Bit of Sparkle" to the Everyday.


When I choose collections and fabrics I want to work with on blog tours, I like to have a plan for what they will become.

This was no less true with the newly released "A Little Bit of Sparkle" I really love the metallic prints Riley Blake is produces. They are saturated, bold with a soft hand.


When I received the fabric, I started laying it out and started cutting out a lovely pencil skirt ensemble. It was a style of clothing I wore frequently when I was the Dean of Discipline at a large local university; I guess I was feeling nostalgic. Little Miss, who has never seen me dress like that asked, "When are you going to wear that? 

Her innocent question reminded me of my goal this year to make more everyday clothes. Coming off of my dramatic make from the previous post, I felt needed to scale things back for this one. 


I chose to jazz up the Fall staple of a mixed fabric hoodie. I used New Look 6529

Image result for new look 6529
 to combine "Scatter Black" with French Terry.


The French Terry knit along the back allowed me to use the woven fabric on the front.

I enjoyed the print so much I added it to the end of the sleeve.  I also like how it almost camouflages the front pocket. 


I have made this pattern before and wore it to threads. I am glad I paused to switch my plan.


It is comfy and cute and perfect for everyday living with my little bits of sparkle like that little guy back there.


Happy Sewing,
Bianca