Tag Archives: mariadenmark

Summer Wardrobe Recap 2017

Well the best laid plans they say……..

I got sidetracked by a couple lovely new patterns. a couple pattern hacks to old favorites, and a new hobby (knitting).

I had a serious duh moment when I was looking through Instagram at all my lovely friends tops, hacked into dresses. I took a hard look at my tried and true tops and thought “why not?”  So my two favorite makes of this year came into being, beautiful Art Gallery cotton jersey Tee shirt dresses.  I wish you could feel how incredible soft and cool these are.  I get tons of compliments and feel pretty in them.

To make them I just lengthened my MariaDenmark Kirsten Kimono Tees to a length below the knee. It flirts with a maxi length but not quite so much fabric. I adore them. I have already worn both more than once.  One of the simplest, easiest makes ever, I promise.  The green floral is a surprising versatile, flattering color. I almost never wear green so I was pleasantly surprised. The black/white stripe can be dressed up or down. Did I mention virtually no wrinkling? Definitely a fold into a beach bag for a weekend trip kind of dress.

I had some grand plans for some new top patterns that were released recently. With the exception of the Summer Jazz Top which came out beautifully most of my muslins were just poor fitting or really not my style.

I was sure the Springfield top was going to be my new Go To tank top. Yeah, not so much. It was surprising boxy and shapeless on me. I adore the Concord tee so I was baffled. To be fair it is a plus size pattern and I barely squeak into those. But still. I may size down into the 12 with the largest cup size and see what happens. I salvaged the top I made in an embroidered cotton into a short sleep dress.

So I made a new Sutton Blouse from True Bias patterns in a floral challis that I love. I will continue to look for a new tank/top pattern for summer. Although I am rethinking the Willow tank I used for PJ tops this spring. In some pretty cottons or linen…….that top could be a staple. (Update: I ended up making five tank tops and three tank dresses from the Willow pattern. It is so easy wearing and graceful.)

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So the final roundup is

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Leralynn Dress by Blankslate Patterns

I already had made two of these last summer in Black print quilting cotton and a grey silk linen blend that I wore constantly on really hot days. I made two more, one a black/white floral linen that is divine, the other a sweet grey gingham check in a cotton.

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MariaDenmark Tee Dress

  • green bird cotton jersey
  • Black grey stripe cotton jersey

 

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Grainline Scout Tee

  • Merlot coloured cotton
  • blue printed chambray
  • Blue/grey batik
  • dark blue chambray
  • embroidered  navy cotton

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Sutton Blouse

  • black floral challis
  • yellow fruit pattern challis
  • peach/grey beige lightweight mystery fabric

Addison tank

  • Cream poly floral
  • white embroidered cotton
  • blue chambray

SewCarolyn Parkside skirt

  • black linen
  • denim blue linen
  • black/red/grey paisley
  • blue floral cotton

 

The last items that I added that actually replaced the idea of a summer jacket was two gorgous shawls that I knitted as well as a loosely knitted cotton vest. All of these are working so far as a bit of extra warmth on cool evenings or in air conditioning. I am very pleased at how well they came out in yummy cotton yarns. The patterns are Vested Interest and the Marquise shawl on Ravelry, knit up in Bamboo pop silk cotton DK yarn.

 

 

 

 

 

 

MeMade May 2017

 

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It’s that time of year again! I love #MMMay2017 It’s so inspirational, for all the reasons that slow fashion is becoming a thing again. It’s hosted by Zoe Edward at ‘So Zo what do you know’. The sign up post is here.

 

I get stuck about halfway through for ideas for somewhat original pictures to post on Instagram. This year I want to focus more on styling those fabulous Indie patterns I have so many of. Focusing on a capsule wardrobe this year is helping me to narrow in on colors and styles that fit my body type and lifestyle. With any luck the pictures will be more cohesive and less just rolled out of bed and grabbed the first thing….

I have added a few more items to my “tried and true” I will showcase ( and hopefully blog about!) this year.  Blackwood cardigans, Lark tees, Parkside shorts, and one hour tops were added, as well as some WIP Ginger jeans that hopefully I will have done next week. I made two jackets as well, the Dover and HP’s kimono jacket. Can’t wait to show those.

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I hope by sharing my me-made wardrobe someone may take the plunge when they realize that basics can be less time consuming to make once you have a basic template but still fashionable and wearable daily.  I also plan to add my knit wear to my pictures. Socks, a sweater, and a couple shawls are all getting regular wear so I want to share those too.

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Can’t wait to see all the beautiful clothes the community is wearing! See you on Instagram at Nicholaix.

 

2017 Spring/Summer Capsule Wardrobe

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Once the Valentines day cards coming out I start thinking about slip dresses and flowery feminine tops. While I mostly sew basics I do need to replace or update 6-8 pieces at least Biannually.  I have taken a hard look at what I actually wear in the spring/summer vs what I want to wear. Slip dresses and miniskirts just aren’t happening, and neither are those fashionable tops that hang off the shoulders or have weird, I mean interesting, drapes. So here is my list:

  • A light jacket, most likely denim
  • 4 pairs of bermuda shorts
  • 3 knee length skirts
  • 4 tee shirts
  • 2 rayon or lawn blouses
  • 3  camisoles/halters
  • 3 shift dresses

There has been a flood of new patterns put out over the winter from both big and small pattern makers. While I have some tried and trues for skirts, shorts, and tees the others I would like to do something different.

The jacket will be the HotPattern’s Fast and Fabulous Four Season Kimono Jacket. I bought this last spring and never got around to it. I want one in a denim and a dressier one in a brocade I bought at the same time as the pattern.

I want some thing to throw over long sleeve Tees and tank tops or a camisole in the summer so this should be perfect. This will be my first HotPatterns garment, I am looking forward to seeing how the fit works out.

I live in Bermuda shorts. I am of an age where I want a bit of extra coverage, not to mention that fact that I am very active outdoors. I perfected the fit on the Make It Perfect Essential shorts last year and plan four pairs to replace a couple I destroyed last year in denim. Two in lightweight denim and two in linen are on my list. Great basics that mix and match are always needed in my wardrobe and I wore these to death last year. My only regret was not doing a pair in a coloured fabric. I picked up some delicious royal purple mid weight linen over the winter which is set aside for a pair of these.

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Parkside Skirt

The knee length skirts aren’t a priority but more a wish list item. I made three Parkside skirts from SewCaroline that I also wore constantly in light blue and black linen, as well as a grey silk linen blend. I want one in a light white cotton or a summer print for this year for the odd cookout or beach trip. I would like to have a couple denim as well.

This pattern is wonderful. Big roomy pockets, flattering fit, and wide elastic waist made this one a tried and true as well as the easy directions and relatively quick sew up time.

I sewed up a ton of Tees last year trying up some new patterns that came out. I also need a few more because I destroy them in the garden or cooking. I always look like a four year old after an art project during a day of canning or baking. I would like a few pretty florals to counter some basic bottoms like jeans or linen skirts.

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MariaDenmark Kirsten Kimono Tee

My tried and true is MariaDenmark’s Kirsten Kimono tee. This Tee fit me great, no set on sleeves and is virtually instant gratification. The only modification I did was a slight FBA and lengthen just a bit to sit below my hip for coverage bending over (did i mention gardening?). Its a free pattern for signing up for the newsletter.

The second winner was up and coming Cashmerette Patterns Concord Tee.  This delightful top comes in cup sizes so no need to do an FBA. The fit was very flattering for me as well. Tons of options for long/short sleeve and different lengths are available.

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TrueBias Sutton Blouse

Two lightweight blouses will most likely be a couple more TrueBias Suttons. I perfected this one last year and love hem. The little details are actually quite easy and make it look very handsome. See my former blog post here. I have a few rayons and lawns I bought last year just waiting for the time for these.

The camisoles are a new thing for me. It was so hot last year even a tee was miserable. I want something to throw over a bathing suit too. TrueBias Odgen Cami looks great. I just finished a muslin for it and after some tweaks it looks great.

I also have two other I want to try. Straight Stitch designs View Ridge tank and SewCaroline’s Waterfall tank are on my short list. We will see how the muslin works out. Hot Patterns Joyful top looks awesome too. Too many patterns, not enough time.

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Blankslate Patterns Leralynn Dress

I am stuck on a shift dress. Last year I made two Leralynn dresses from Blankslate Patterns. I love them but I want something different. I am debating between TrueBias Colfax ,  Tessuti Patterns Ruby Dress or the Annie, or Seamwork Magazines Mojave. Too many choices I think.  I will probably muslin all of them and see which gets the most complements!

The first step is making a list of what you need and what you want.  Looking at what you already have is critical too. Do I really need four more sundresses?(NO!)

Keeping a wish list or colour board helps a lot too. I took pictures of swatches of fabrics as I make items or buy fabric. In the store I can pull it up from Dropbox on my phone to make sure the skirt fabric goes with the top I already made or if I already have something similar.

Thanks for stopping by to see what my sewing plans for the next season are. I will post as I finish each garment and let you know how they came out.

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TrueBias Sutton Blouse

PS This post may contain some affiliate links that add no cost to you if you click through but buys me a cup of coffee and more thread.

Free Sewing Patterns

Here’s a roundup of some of the freebie basics patterns out there that I have tried. I am sure there are lots more but these I have actually sewn up.

 

Sorbetto Top  is a fabulous basic from Colette Patterns that I have made many of. It uses just a bit of fabric and is a pullover, so no fasteners. You can use purchased bias tape or make your own to coordinate for the neckline and sleeves. It’s a great summer basic top and easy to make as well.  Tons of variation on this to make as well. On the one below I did an inverted pleat. Do a search on Pinterest and you will see a gazillion variations. They also offer a super cute bloomer pattern. It’s on my list but I haven’t got to it yet. I am a subscriber to their Seamwork magazine which offers a ton of great easy to sew basics for a considerably low price.

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Hemlock Tee is a tee from Grainline with lots of options. You have to sign up for their newsletter but thats not a problem, she posts sewing tips and lots of great ideas. I made a couple of these and was impressed at how easily it came together but as a curvy girl I found the dropped arm constricting. The sizing, however, is spot on. It’s just an awkward cut for me. That being said, I throw around huge bags of dirt and 5 gallon pots so, for the average person, this one is a really nice long sleeve option as well as a nice test for their other patterns. I have made quite a few of their Linden sweatshirts and Scout woven tees, they are T and T’s for me. The Tamarack Jacket is on my sew list.

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Kirsten Kimono Tee is my all time favorite. It’s a freebie from Mariadenmark sewing patterns that fits me very well and sews up so fast I can make one to wear in the morning if I am desperate.  It nips in just enough at the waist for some definition and the shoulders are comfy without being sloppy. I did modify the neck a bit for my personal preference. This one is also available for signing up for their newsletter. I wear the Yasmin yoke skirt quite alot as well as the Just a Tank top.

 

Zoe top and Libby Skirt are both from Tessuti Fabrics. They have other freebies as well but I have sewn up these two. The Zoe is a great stashbuster for bits of lace and chiffon. Libby is a great basic a-line that looks smart in everything from quilting cottons and denim to a tweed or wool. I have several patterns from Tessuti including the Annie dress and the Alice top. I love the elegant, romantic look to most of their patterns which showcase their lovely fabrics. Definitely worth a look.

Isabella Banded Skirt is the cutest twirly skirt. I went a little crazy and made a few when it was released. It is the easiest skirt pattern ever, basically a rectangle with an elastic waist. You have to join their Facebook group to get this one. Bella sunshine designs had adorable little girl patterns which, sadly, I don’t sew for anymore but if you have little girls this one’s a must look.

Last but certainly not least is the So Sew Easy website. I have only sewed up one of their dresses and a tote bag. Debi previews a huge lot of patterns for free and sometimes starts charging for them so grab it if you like it. Her site is chock full of tutorials and inspiration as well. I didn’t find them to be horribly curvy friendly but they would certainly be fabulous for regular sizes.

Here’s a start to your basics for your wardrobe that will keep the cost down. The great thing about freebies is you can preview the designer and see if you like the sizing and shaping of their garments. I have found some of my tried and trues this way.

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PS This post may contain some affiliate links that add no cost to you if you click through, but buys me a cup of coffee and more thread.

My Favorite New Skirt for #handmademonth

In the pursuit of some handmade wardrobe clarity for #handmademonth, I made some decisions about the whys of the me-mades in my closet that I don’t wear as often as I would like. Because the ones that are in my closet do fit well and I like.

I think that, by far, the biggest culprit is the lack of neutral basics to go with the flowery, flowy prints and pinks in all shades that I love.

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I need some solid tops to go with my patterned skirts and some more solid bottoms to go with all those blouses.  I was also surprised that I have worn out all of my long sleeved shirts. Not a single one left.

Realistically some of those bottoms need to be denim and some of the tops need to be white or black(and long sleeved). Another basic I seem to be missing is sweaters for our brutal winters. I have pulled out six patterns that I have made and plan to make a couple of each. If I get really ambitious(not likely), I would love to have a me-made coat…….

I live in skirts and tights so I did MariaDenmark’s Yasmin Yoke Skirt first. It’s the perfect denim skirt and a great basic.

Have a piece of clothing that as soon as it comes out of the dryer goes back into rotation? This skirt will be one of mine .

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The pattern from Mariadenmark was a fast easy sew, had fitting tips included in the pattern (that never happens right?, and is a great basic to go with almost anything.

Yasmin Yoke Skirt has front pockets, which are just big enough to hold a smallish phone and a lipstick. It has a nice waistband to hold in baby belly and define your waist. I like that it can be done in two lengths, short and sporty or longer for work.

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The only detail that was not beginner is an invisible zipper. Although if you grab the invisible sewing foot for it it becomes very, very easy. Just remember to slightly pull the stitch line away from the teeth. Ask me how I know…..
I did this in a grey stretch denim. I think I need a couple more of these if I can decide on fabrics, maybe a tan cotton and of course black heavier weight denim.

#Handmademonth

I saw this on Instagram yesterday and was instantly fascinated. I have a pile of memades but I don’t wear as often as I should. The boys wear theirs almost daily. What’s the difference?

Most of mine are fabulous tops and I just don’t have bottoms that go with them that fit into my lifestyle. I love to throw on a dress most days as well and those have not been at the top of my list for awhile. So I am going to fill in some of the holes in my memade wardrobe and start wearing the garments I worked so hard on.

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Left to right, grey stretch wool blend Clovers(Colette), two Sorbettos( a free Colette download) in flowery cottons with different back fabrics, two Simplicity C1969 in lightweight stretch cottons, two Suttons(True Bias) in rayon and challis, two Akitas (Seamwork)in bright cottons, Kirsten tee( a free download from MariaDenmark) in sweet print jersey knit, two Mabels in ponte’.

 

PS This post may contain some affiliate links that add no cost to you if you click through but buys me a cup of coffee and more thread.