Waterfall Maxi Dress

 

new maxi (1 of 4)

I am beyond excited to share this dress with you today. See I’ve been wanting a maxi dress for, like, ever. 😉 Unfortunately due to my height and figure it’s really hard to find one that’s flattering on me. (I have a very wide torso and am basically straight down with no waist definition at all- kinda the opposite of an hourglass) I’ve been thinking it would be fun to try to make my own maxi but couldn’t settle upon the perfect pattern for it. Sometime after making my waterfall tank– pattern by Sew Caroline, I realized that with some tweaks I could make that into a maxi dress pattern. But then I realized I needed some major fabric yardage to make this idea into a reality. Enter my Liberty of London for Target dress that  I thrifted over 4 years ago!! (yeah sometimes it takes me a while to get around to things-lolz) I found this dress at a Goodwill (along with a sweet Liberty of London tie for the hubs) and even though it was several sizes too large and had a weird off the shoulder thing going on, I knew I had to have it if just for the fabric. When I brought it home, I attempted some revisions on it, but they didn’t work out and it’s sat in my mending bin ever since.

new maxi (1 of 1)-2

 

I’m glad I waited to use the dress because it was perfect for this pattern. First off, I took the tank pattern and added about 25 inches to it- starting with the size M on top and angling out several inches to a nice A-line shape at the bottom. Then I took my dress and carefully

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Maritime Shorts: Blast from the Past

Note: Happy fourth of July to all my American friends! I’ve been trying to get this post published for several days but just now finally was able to finish it up. Sorry that it’s not super festive for this holiday weekend. I did actually manage to pull together some matching patriotic tanks for the boys (finished this morning-lol) but you’ll have to wait until next week to see those!maritime shorts- new pics (1 of 2)

 

So this pair of shorts is actually from last summer and never got blogged…because they just now fit! I made this pair of maritime shorts as my wearable muslin version, and I think I was dreaming about the reality of my after-baby body and they ended up being way too small. Yeah, oops. Well anyway I am happy to report that they do, indeed (mostly) fit me now as long as I haven’t eaten too much ice cream the day before. 😉

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Waterfall Tank

I got to be a tester for another one of Caroline’s patterns: the Waterfall Tank. (releasing Monday!) This was my first time using rayon challis and I think I might be hooked. It has such a great drape to it- perfect for garments. It is a bit fiddly to sew with so you have to be careful when you cut it out but other than that, its not too bad. I got this particular rayon challis at Wanderlust Fabrics (out of stock right now 😦 ). I just recently discovered them and highly recommend them as a good resource for knits and rayon fabrics. The quality is great, and they will even send you samples upon request so you can see the fabrics before you buy. I got two other knit fabrics with my order and am looking forward to putting them to good use in the near future.

waterfall tank tester (8 of 10)

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Chambray Blouse

I have knocked off another item off my selfish sewing wish list. Woot for me! I tell ya, putting this list on the internet was a great way to keep me motivated to finish it! Plus I’m on a huge selfish sewing kick right now and want to just keep sewing, just keep sewing (said in my best Dori impression).Weekend Getaway Blouse (4 of 5)

True to my word, I totally copied Kristin’s idea for a chambray blouse.

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Chambray+Meadow Tiny Pocket Tank

In my previous summer sewing post, I alluded to the fact that I had finished one of the items on my first wish list and here I am to share it with you. I am pretty pumped about this tank because it was one of those ideas that I had in my head and it actually turned out as well as I had pictured! I have seen a couple of color-blocked tanks and tank dresses around the inter webs (Sew Caroline has a version here) and really wanted to make a version of my own. I made one of these tanks last year, (blogged here) had some trouble getting it fitted correctly since I had just recently birthed a baby and my body was a bit out of proportion. V. happy to report I re-measured myself for this tank, was able to go down several sizes this time, and ended up with a much better fit! Yay for body normalcy finally returning.

 

TPT (1 of 5)

Pattern: Tiny Pocket Tank by Grainline Studios, size 8.

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Summer Sewing Wish List, part 2

Here’s part two of my summer sewing wish list. I had this all typed up and uploaded on Tuesday but my laptop crashed and deleted all my edits. Boo. 😦 Finally getting a chance to sit down and re-do it. In the meantime, I’ve managed to finish one of my items on my previous wish list! Woot. Will get pictures taken this weekend and have a post for you next week about it. If you follow my instagram (@oliversfancy) you got a sneak peek of it already and I hope are as excited about it as I am. 🙂

PicMonkey Summer Part 2 Collage

 

Archer Button Down by Grainline Studios, swiss dot fabric found at Hancock. Note: I don’t actually own this fabric yet, but I saw it on a recent trip to Hancocks and couldn’t come up with a reason to buy it but after I saw Kristin’s Archer I knew I needed to copy hers. I’m thinking a sleeveless version for summer would work really well.

Weekend Getaway Blouse by Leisl + Co., Robert Kaufman Chambray in Slate- purchased at Westwood Acres but no longer in stock. Again with the Kristin fan-club, I’m totally knocking off her version here…except for the pregnant part…no babies here for a long while!

Everyday Skirt by Leisl + Co., Robert Kaufman Chambray Union Woven Dot purchased at Pink Chalk Fabrics.

Well that should keep me busy for a while, huh? Gotta get these knocked out especially since I may or may not have already ordered some more fabric specifically for garment-sewing. I think I may have a problem…

Summer Sewing, Grainline Studios Edition

I have seen several other bloggers (Sew Caroline, for one) do a little collage of sorts to detail their seasonal sewing plans and thought I would follow suit. I have been slowly collecting apparel fabrics and patterns to beef up my handmade wardrobe the last few months and have actually have purchased all of the fabric/patterns that I show you. Meaning there should be nothing keeping me from actually making this clothing; except for that little thing called time and the two little people wanting some attention at my house 🙂 . It’s all about balance, folks…always a work in progress. I’m hoping that actually posting these collage ideas online will keep me a little better organized and motivate me to actually get them done! Kind of an online to-do list of sorts. Here’s the first one…note: the top is not necessarily meant to be worn with the shorts.

PicMonkey Summer2 Collage

Maritime Shorts Pattern by Grainline Studios, Fabric: It’s a Plus Canvas in Gray- purchased at Pink Castle Fabrics but sold out now, Robert Kaufman Interweave Chambray in Sorbet– purchased at Fabric.com

Tiny Pocket Tank Pattern by Grainline Studios, Fabric: Geos in Deep Marina purchased at Pink Castle Fabrics

Hmm, this unintentionally turned into a Grainline studios sewing list. I highly recommend her patterns for those who are looking for good women’s patterns. Also, I enjoy expanding my indie pattern designers list and would love to get some more ideas! Do you have a summer sewing list? Care to share?

Sugar Pop Top V 2.0

Art Gallery Sugar Pop Top (2 of 4)

I wanted to get one more top in before Selfish Sewing Week and Spring Top Sewalong were over. Technically Selfish Sewing week is over now, but since I finished this on Saturday, I’m still counting it! If you follow my IG account- @oliversfancy, last week I asked for advice on which fabric to use for my SPT version 2.0 and then realized I had forgotten about the Art Gallery fabric I bought specifically for this purpose. So, for my IG peeps thanks for all your input and I will come back to those fabrics at some point soon, but, first, here is my AGF version of the Sugar Pop Top.

Art Gallery Sugar Pop Top (1 of 4)

Art Gallery quilting cottons are a higher quality than normal quilting cotton and therefore are a really nice weight for garments. I love how lightweight and breezy this top turned out. But yet, it’s got enough substance that I don’t need to wear a tank under it. Perfect for the summer heat! Also can we talk about how cute this fabric is? I just love it! I picked it up at a quilting store in Asheville, but you can find some online at the Fat Quarter Shop hereArt Gallery Sugar Pop Top (3 of 4)

For this version, I added about 1.5 to the hem. I made the size L again but took in the sides 1/4″. I may try the size M next time and see how that works for me because I have plenty of room in this top. I also lowered the bust darts 1/2″. I wasn’t super scientific in my dart-lowering and one dart ended up being a teensy bit lower than the other one but other than that, they turned out really well.

Art Gallery Sugar Pop Top (4 of 4)

The Sugar Pop Top is a new pattern from Sew Caroline and is available for purchase here. It’s on my must-sew list for cute, spring and summer tops. You can check out my previous SPT here. What is on your must-sew top list? Any new patterns I need to know about? I’m always on the look-out for great patterns!

Sugar Pop Top

I finally got a top made during the Spring Top Sewalong! And this is a good one! I got to pattern test a new top pattern for Sew Caroline this week called the Sugar Top Pop. Isn’t that a fun name? I have been hoarding this Koi fabric for a while just waiting for the perfect top and the peter pan collar won me over!

sugar pop top

I really like this new top. It has quite a few fun features: a subtle hi-lo hem, a flutter or cap sleeve option, and the peter pan collar. While I am having fun collecting apparel-weight fabrics, I liked that this top looks good made in a quilting cotton. It is also pretty awesome that the fabric happens to match my turquoise pants.sugar pop top

I made the size L based on my bust measurements but then graded down to a medium at the bottom to fit my hip measurements. I used the cap sleeve option but added a little bit of a gather for a pretty effect and to make it easier on myself to set the sleeve in. I love how the sleeve and neckline are finished with bias tape- making such a clean finish! I wore this top out to church the same evening I finished making it, and I got so many compliments on it. It really was quite fun. And I may or may not have worn it again today so I’m thinking I should probably make myself another one! It’s a great top for summer because it’s a breezy style and you don’t have to wear a tank under it.

sugar pop top

I have it on good authority that this pattern should be releasing next week sometime, so you will have time to get it and make yourself one before spring top sewalong is over! It is definitely one that I would recommend you add to your repertoire. Caroline does a great job with her pattern! I’m already plotting out which fabric I want for my next one (or two 🙂 ).

sugar pop top

A Bianca Dress for Easter

 

double gauze bianca dressWell, it’s done folks. My lovely Bianca dress is all finished and oh so beautiful! I think it’s my favorite handmade item so far. Part of that has to do with this great pattern from Rae and the other part of it is due to this amazing fabric- double gauze from miss matatabi fabrics in Japan. I have seen fellow bloggers use double gauze for a while and wanted to try it, but the price tag has always deterred me. Enter one middle-of-the-night nursing session with Eliot, an awesome sale posted on IG, sleep deprivation, and I just HAD to buy some of this fabric. The next morning I had a bit of a scare wondering what I had bought in the middle of the night and put myself on restriction from etsy browsing during night-time feedings. But it was worth it when I got this lovely fabric in the mail. And really, the sale price was so good that even with shipping from Japan, this dress (not including lining) only cost me $27! Not bad for a custom-made Easter dress, I’d say.

double gauze bianca dress

Only problem now is that I want to buy all the double gauze! It is so heavenly to wear. Okay enough rambling about fabric purchases; on to the dress details…

double gauze bianca dress

Pattern: Upcoming Bianca Dress/Top from Made by Rae

Pattern Mods:

  • Followed directions to lower front facing 7/8″ based on my measurements (very important to check because it totally changes the fit!)
  • Added 4 inches to original length (what I believe would be 2 inches to the final version of the pattern) to make it knee length.
  • Added a white batiste lining: Now let me pause here for just a moment. I added a lining after the fact when I realized my double gauze was completely see-through (oops). The lining would have been fairly easy to add if I had done it while I was making the dress, but it was kind of a pain to do after the fact. I attached the skirt and bodice separately. The skirt is just a rectangle sewn down one side to make a tube, serged at the top and bottom hems, and then hand-sewn to the elastic casing. Bodice is machine-stitched at shoulder and arms seams but hand-stitched on all other seams- i.e. lots of hand stitching! It’s not the best stitching job (and that’s putting it nicely), but you can’t see it once the dress is on, and I figure this will be a hand-wash only dress so I don’t need to worry about the lining fraying or coming apart in the wash. For future reference though- check your garment for opacity before construction!

Fabric: As previously mentioned, Nano Iro double gauze from the Miss Matatabi etsy shop. (FYI I managed to squeak it out of 2 yards of fabric even with the added length)

double gauze bianca dress

Now that’s enough selfish sewing. I’m tired of editing pictures of myself- gets a bit awkward after a while. Plus, I have a lofty goal that all 4 of us will be in something handmade for Easter, so next week it’s KCW and clothes for the boys and then after that another Negroni shirt for the husband- fingers crossed for good naps and productive sewing!

double gauze bianca dress