DIY Fall Inspired Fashion: The Freya Dress by Simply Sewing Magazine

Tuesday, September 19, 2017



THE FREYA DRESS PATTERN BY SIMPLY SEWING MAGAZINE


Fall is quickly becoming my favorite season, guys! I've always been such a fan of fall fashion with it's lux color choices, the layering, and of course, pouring over the all of the September magazine issues. This year, it seems like everywhere you turn, there's denim or 70s inspired style in the stores in the magazines, or online, so I was thrilled when I found a ton of denim fabric at Goodwill for $5.99.

Easy Summer Fashion: A DIY Wrap Dress Tutorial

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

SEWING TUTORIAL-DIY

The last couple of weeks have been so busy because I've picked up a bit of client work doing alterations, re-upholstery, and custom made dresses through word of mouth. I am kind of blown away sometimes by the fact that other people have been sharing what I've sewn with others and trust me with their projects. As a (mostly) self-taught hobbyist, it's crazy to think about how much my sewing has improved - even in the last six months. Like my husband joked the other week, "babe, you've come a long way since sewing pajama pants," which is kind of funny because for awhile, that's all I knew how to sew so we had lots of pajama pants around the house. haha. Truthfully though, I really enjoy sewing for others. I feel as though I am always learning something new whether it be a new skill, a project I've never attempted, different type of material, finish, etc. Plus, it still feels like I am getting that new fabric excitement over my client work without adding to my already out of control fabric collection.

Speaking of collection, I have to say that I am really proud of myself for sticking to my challenge set at the beginning of the summer to sew exclusively from my stash (you can find the challenge here). I've sewn exclusively from my fabric stash this summer - yay! In fact, this DIY wrap dress is from fabric that I thrifted about 6 months ago and only cost $1.99 - score. I love the little flower details on this 90s looking print. The fabric itself is that weird 90s scrunchy material that irons smooth and feels so soft after a good pressing. I just love this wrap dress and have already worn it three times in the last couple of weeks, including to work, and no one could tell that I made it myself. #goalsrealized 

To find out how to make this dress, scroll down to the bottom for a tutorial! 

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TACOMA, WA

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 Want to learn how to make this wrap dress? Here's how I did it!

Materials:


  • Sewing machine
  • Fabric (I had a yard and half of wide nap you'll need more if you don't have a wide nap)
  • Bias tape
  • Ribbon
  • Thread
  • Scissors
  • Pins
  • Ruler
  • Paper (this could be a paper ad, gift wrap, paper bag, etc.) 
  • A dress that fits loosely

Step 1: 

Find a dress that has a loose, flow-y fit. This is going to be your template to achieve your dress. Mine is a cream colored dress from H&M that is too see-through so I never wear it but love the fit and would love a similar style in a darker color. 

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Step 2:


Now we want to lay out our fabric and pin the dress to the fabric marking darts and where you plan to sew the dress ties into the seam. Don't forget to include a seam allowance! For the back piece, fold in and half and pin around the fold (photo 1). I outlined the front piece of the dress and took a picture so it's difficult to see but you'll open up the fabric and cut out piece 1 of the front. After you've cut out piece 1, lay it on the fabric right sides together and cut (photo 2).

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Step 3:

Now that we have our pieces cut, we need to sew our darts and any pleats that we have. I added a pleat in the black for a little extra room in the back of the dress and I really like the added piece of design.



Step 4:
Now that we've finished our darts and pleats that we may have, it's time to sew the dress at the shoulder seams, right sides facing together, at the seam allowance you've included.
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Step 5:

If you don't have a dress form, try on your dress in front of the material to figure out the drape of the front and if you've properly marked the ties for the wrap into the side seams. 

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Step 6:
Grab your ribbon, and cut two pieces rather long, and mark in the side seams when you want to place them. This is for our wrap ties inside the dress. 

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Step 7:

Once you've figured out the shape and made any adjustments that you may have, it's time to move onto the ties. I used the left over fabric to have a matching tie. Initially, I made my ties a lot shorter to have a thicker, fuller bow but the dress just looked way too big on me that way and I had to go back and make much longer, skinnier ties to wrap about the full dress. These pictures are for a shorter, thicker tie so make sure that the fit is flattering before committing to the short ties. I grabbed my ruler and measured the length, width, and diagonal line that I wanted with a 1 cm seam allowance. After you've determined your measurements, cut out your tie pattern and pin it to the fabric. Cut out your fabric. Now, with right sides facing, sew down the length and diagonal sections leaving the straight part of the bottom up. This is so you can turn the fabric right side out. After you've turned it right side out, iron, and then top stitch. 


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Step 8:

Now that we've marked all of our ties, we need to sew down the sides of the dress. Make sure that all of your ties of facing the right direction right side out. 

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Step 9:

We're almost done! Now, we'll want to grab our pack of bias tape and hem the dress. I used the bias in the arms, neck, and sides. I had white bias at home but I really wish that I went to the store to get black since it would match a lot better. To hem the bottom, I just gave it a roll hem where I folded the fabric a 1/2", folded it a half 1/2" again, and the stitched close to the edges. 

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All hemmed and ready to go?! Your dress should look something like this! 

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I hope that you enjoyed this week's summer dress tutorial and if you decide to make your own, please send me a photo - I would love, love to see it! 


Thrifting 101: 5 Tips and Tricks for Successful Thrift Shopping

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Thrifting tips and tricks

This week we're breaking it up a little bit to talk about thrifting tips and tricks! Lately, I've noticed that I've been receiving a lot of compliments on things I've worn that were purchased from a thrift store. I've also found that it's a lot of fun to see someone's surprised reaction when I tell them that I bought it used, at a thrift shop. Usually, they are shocked and tell me that they never find anything cute at the thrift store which, in turn, surprises me!

Easy Summer Style: A Maxi Dress Refashion + Tutorial

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

MAXI DRESS REFASHION UPCYCLE

Honestly, the last few months have been tough and this week has been especially stressful which made it difficult to sit down and write a post this week. Sometimes, refashioning and sewing is just the stress relief that I need but when faced with the technical aspect of sharing, sometimes I get a little stumped and procrastinate. I didn't know what I was going to say about this dress all week so, I've prayed about it and am hoping that the words flow and resonates with your heart, too.

Holiday Style: DIY Navy & White Lace Dress from a Tablecloth + Refashion Tutorial

Tuesday, July 4, 2017


Last week I was thinking about what I was going to wear for the 4th of July and try as I might, my mind just kept drawing a blank. I will confess that I am awful and will usually buy something new for the holidays (because - dresses!) but this year has been crazy and that option wasn't really on the table. However, what was on the table (literally) was a tablecloth that I meant to sew last month and just didn't have the time to get to. I purchased this tablecloth at Value Village a few months ago for $4.99 and really liked the design in the center as well as the floral design around the border. Immediately, I thought of making a spring dress, lined with mint, and a scalloped laced hem. Needless to say, spring flew by and the tablecloth remained just that.

My DIY Little Black Dress: Vogue 1102

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

DIY little black dress

Have you ever had an experience where you just looked at a dress and you knew that it was meant to be worn by you? Well, when I first saw Vogue 1102, I just knew that this dress was going to look stunning but I tucked it away in my pattern stash, waiting for the right time (and enough courage), to attempt my first Vogue pattern. 

DIY Peasant Top: How to Refashion this Season's Hottest Trend

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Trendy Clothing Refashion Maxi Skirt to Peasant Top

It's been awhile! Life has been crazy lately - then again, I always say this. If you've been following my social media then you know that Hugo and I were off having a blast exploring Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Park. Coming back from vacation and transitioning back into everyday life hasn't been easy, especially with all of the rain we've been having still - yuck! Adulting can wait, right?

Since it's been taking me awhile to get back into a routine, what better way to get back to it than a diy of this season's hottest trend? Every where you look, the 70's inspired peasant top seems to be  all the rage and the options are limitless! I'm finding a new love for 70s with their high-waisted flares, jumpsuits, free-flowing tops and dresses, and I've been wanting a peasant top ever since they found their way to stores earlier this year. Luckily these are really easy to sew yourself!

I found this maxi skirt a couple of months ago when I made a trip to my local Value Village. I was rather surprised to find it on the rack, especially since it was only a $1.99! The embroidery is so pretty and I fell in love with it immediately. Plus, the waist was smocked so it made it all the easier to transition into a cute top. Here's a good look at the before! 

DIY Home Tutorial: How to Update your Ironing Board Cover - the Easy Way

Tuesday, May 16, 2017


Lately, I've been feeling a little under the weather so keeping up with things around the house has kept me plenty busy. However, I've really been wanting to tackle my ironing board cover. I've been complaining about how gross it was for months and I kept saying that I was going to redo it but kept being pushed to the bottom of my to do list.

Last week, I needed to run to Walmart to buy thread and while I was there, I found a silver, gray, and white floral fabric that matched my upcycled computer/sewing desk perfectly. The bolt price was listed at a great price ($3.97 a yd) so it was an easy decision to take this lovely fabric home with me. I decided to purchase three yards and was pleasantly surprised to find that the fabric was even less than the bolt price bringing the total cost to $7.96. Now I have plenty of extra fabric to update other projects around the house as well!

Here's what my ironing board looked like before (please don't judge me - I know that it's terrible!):

DIY Summer Dress: A Navy + White Nautical Dress with Butterick 6318

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

DIY Nautical Dress

I can't believe that it's May already - how did this happen!? I'm also so grateful that it is. The sun has been showing itself here and there for the last month but we've finally started to feel some warmth. Hugo is thoroughly confused by the temperature change and, like a true Washingtonian, is already telling me, 'haaa, haaa, mama - haaaa' when it's 70 degrees out. It's still a bit too cold for summer activities but we've been keeping our sunny days busy with exploring and being outside.

All of this sunny weather has reignited my love for dresses and surprisingly, I have a very small amount of casual dresses to wear. Most of my dresses are intended for work or have cutouts/shorter hems from when I was thinner and didn't have a little one to chase. Since my life has changed, my needs and wants in a dress have also changed. I want little fuss, something I can move in, and something that won't cycle out of fashion so quickly.

DIY Springtime Wreath From the Dollar Tree (and it only cost $5 to make!)

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Dollar Tree DIY

I'm not going to lie to you, it's been a tough week. Anything that could possibly go wrong, went wrong. On top of that, I could use a mom break. Toddlers are hard. Since this week was a just-stay-afloat kind of week, sewing was the last thing on my mind and I focused my energy on other things.

Like, a trip to the Dollar Store.

Which, by the way, was a mess in and of itself. Evidently, carts aren't allowed outside of the store so I had to figure out how to carry my purse, diaper bag, bags of merchandise, and an angry toddler across the parking lot with non-automatic doors. Fun, fun. And this was right after Hugo grabbed a bunch of fake florals from the shelf, bit plastic off, thereby requiring me to swipe the inside of his mouth to grab said plastic. Of course, this only upset him so he bit my finger with his front teeth so hard that my finger swelled. Lovely. Oh, and it rained. Like, poured. Thanks, Washington!


I digress. So, while I was at the Dollar Tree, I picked up a few things for gardening (I am determined to make gardening a thing this year), yard clean up, as well as a few floral things to make a wreath. Guys, I have not made a wreath in forever which is silly because I love wreaths. In fact, my last wreath was the DIY Rustic Wreath that I made two years ago - crazy! So I figured that instead of sharing a sewing project (with my luck this week, I shouldn't be touching a sewing machine), I would share this really easy DIY springtime wreath that only cost five dollars to make. And, you can find all the materials at the Dollar Tree - yay! 

Hello Dear Kids: A Romper Pattern Review

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Pattern Review

This week I want to talk about Hello Dear Kids' romper pattern (R18)! I've been following Hello Dear Kids on Instagram for the longest time and am constantly impressed with Mijeong Jeong's designs but I hesitated in purchasing an online pattern because I didn't know what to expect - especially with mixed reviews on Etsy.

After checking Joanns for a toddler boy romper pattern, and not finding what I had in mind, I decided to purchase the Hello Dear Kids' pattern (R18) a few days before Easter. A couple of months ago, I purchased a yellow and white seersucker fabric for $2.99 from the thrift store and it was perfect for this romper design! I was really excited to give it a try and I am really glad that I did!

So let's talk about pattern details, pros/cons, and those mixed Etsy reviews.

Pattern:
  • The pattern is available for immediate download & is non-refundable. 
  • If purchasing a bundle of patterns, you can use a shop code to receive a discount for bulk purchases. 
  • Sizes 6 months - 7 years are included - yayyyerr! 
  • Sizes true to commercial sizing.
  • The files are divided into 2 parts: tutorial & pattern 
  • The pattern pieces include a seam allowance and instructions clearly illustrate how to assemble the pieces. A measurement check is also included. Pieces do not include notches or button hole placements. 
  • The tutorial offers step by step instructions with pictures prompting you as you go.  
Pros & Cons:

Pro:

  • The design is adorable. I love how traditional yet trendy it is. Plus, this is a GREAT way to create a summer capsule wardrobe for your little one. 
  • There are so many sizes included! The sizing was also perfect - Hugo wears a commercial size 2T and the 2-3T option was just the right size.
  • I also love that the design is unisex. I just see myself getting so much use out of this pattern!
  • The instant download is really convenient and pictures of the process eliminates guess work. 
  • The rompers sew really quickly and can be sewn in an evening.
Con:
  • The only thing that I really didn't like is the lack of button hole placement. It would have saved time if they were included and improved accuracy. 
Pattern Review

Etsy Reviews:
  • No seam allowance included: I think that Hello Dear Kids went back and modified the pattern to add a seam allowance because the seam allowance is clearly marked. 
  • Complaints about spelling/English: I didn't think this was a fair comment, you can clearly understand the meaning that is being conveyed. 
  • A lot of guess work/not for a beginner: If you're relatively new to patterns and sewing, this pattern may not be for you. Honestly, I didn't experience any difficulties but since notches and button hole placements aren't included, I could see how this could be a challenge for a beginner.
  • Don't cut the waistband on the fold: I also saw a lot of comments in the reviews discussing whether or not to cut the waist band on the fold despite the pattern saying that it should. I followed the assembly instructions, cut on the fold, and it worked well for me.
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Overall, I love this pattern and I plan to use it again soon. Hello Dear Kids has a lot of really cute patterns out there that I want to try and I can't wait to add them to my pattern collection. Now, I just have to chose which one should be next! Let me know if you have any suggestions! 


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