Hello everyone! It’s been some time since my last blog post. Back in August, I shared a little bit of personal news over on Instagram and took a bit of an unexpected, but necessary break from posting sewing projects.
Over the past few years I’ve been dealing with headaches and migraines on a pretty consistent basis. The past several months they’ve been getting worse and I’ve been struggling with them. I’ve been seeing a Neurologist, and gotten blood work done, as well as had MRI’s and a CT Scan, which have all come back normal/clear. While this is a relief, it’s a bit frustrating to not have a more immediate answer.
I’ve been searching for a solution before going on any medication, and have spent the last month, to month and a half working on my health. I’ve been working on my eating habits and general nutrition, my exercise regimen, and I have been working hard on my mental health. While I don’t have an exact solution, I have been able to decrease many of my daily headaches by focusing on overall wellness.
I’ve been cooking, reading, cleaning, and exercising so much more that sewing hasn’t been my main priority. Although I did sew some new bags for Etsy, I didn’t work on any apparel projects. At first, I felt horrible about not having projects to share, but taking time to work on myself and a new daily routine has been preparing me to return to this space.
And now, I am so excited to get back to sewing! I have several projects that I’m ready to dive into – and a few to share here now! As mentioned above, I’ve been working on some new bags for Etsy, and here they are!
Fall Floral Backpack and Crossbody Bag
I’ve worked so hard on both my backpack and crossbody bag patterns over the years, and I am so proud of them! Each bag features a push lock (tongue lock) close, back zipper pocket, and side snaps to expand the bag. This is the first collection where I’ve used gold hardware and I love the look against this beautiful floral print. Each bag is made with secondhand floral upholstery cotton, and they are lined with reclaimed khaki cotton from FabScrap.
Here’s a little behind the scenes making the backpacks!
More new bags in my shop:
This bold floral collection is made from a secondhand 70’s print! (I also used this fabric for another project – a future tutorial to share with you!)
And some adorable zipper pouches made with reclaimed fabric swatches! Each bag is made with two coordinating fabrics, one print on each side, and are perfect for makeup, sewing supplies, toiletries for travel, etc.
Speaking of fabric swatches…for anyone interested in sewing with swatches, my Swatch Shop is finally up and running on Etsy! I’m selling both pre-opened swatch books and complete swatch books, as well as curated sets of swatches.
I am so incredibly excited to share this post! I’ve been working on this tutorial for a while and am so happy to finally share it! I absolutely love making bags, and know that bag making can be pretty intimidating, so I wanted to create an in-depth tutorial for one of my favorite style bags to make!
This tutorial is for a small lined crossbody bag with a push lock (or tongue lock) close, with a flat bottom, adjustable strap and exterior zipper! This bag is similar in style to the bags I designed for my etsy shop, but much quicker and easier to make! I’ve created a PDF tutorial filled with photos and instructions, and there’s a video tutorial on YouTube!
One of the things I love most about this pattern is that it is totally customizable! Don’t want an exterior pocket? No need to include it, or use the instructions to make an interior pocket! Want to make the straps removable? Stitch the strap ends to swivel hooks! You can curve the front flap into a half circle shape, and if you want, make the bag bigger or smaller by adjusting the measurements provided! This is a great bag to introduce you to bag making, or to get some more experience with bag hardware and zippers! (If you are looking for online spots for materials, I shop most hardware at Purse Supplies R Us on Etsy, zippers come from ZipIt, and Push Locks from Pacific Trimming!) The exterior fabric used in this bag is a large upholstery fabric swatch from my collection, and the lining and pockets are cotton.
I hope you love this bag! If you make it, let me know! I would love to see your version! Any questions, I am here to answer!
Hello, hello! In the past few months my apparel sewing has slowed down quite a bit and my bag making as been taking over! I’ve been working hard to add new bags to my Etsy shop, and finally designed and created my dream bag! (I’ll share more at the end of this post!)
But as the title says, my main reason for blogging today is to share my latest refashion! This piece has been several months in the making. I started dreaming about this project back in December! I wanted to share a little of my thought process, because it really was an idea that bounced around a bit before landing! One of the most common questions I get asked is where my ideas come from, so here’s how this one formed!
I had a pair of corduroy pants in my refashion pile, that I was stuck on what to do with. I started looking online for corduroy dresses, or jackets to gather some inspiration. I came across this adorable pinafore from Show Me Your Mumu, and started going down the pinafore rabbit hole!
I do quite a bit of fabric Tetris in my mind when figuring out if I can realistically make a refashion work. I knew if the pants were long enough, and I was able to cut them off with enough fabric to spare, this project would work.
I sat with the idea for a bit (some other projects got in the way of starting) and before I knew it the weather was warming up. I wasn’t motivated to sew with corduroy anymore, but the idea was still taking over in my mind. I started searching on ThredUP to find a replacement garment to bring the idea to life. Thankfully the perfect pair popped up in my search and the project was back on!
I started searching for a pattern for the bodice. (This is something that can be self drafted!) I came across the Amber Pinafore Dress from Named Clothing. I’ve had great luck with Named Patterns in the past so I knew it would be reliable for me. I tested the bodice with cotton fabric before cutting so I could work out any fit issues beforehand.
Now onto the tutorial! Sorry for the photo quality, I realized I was taking more video than photos for this project so some of these are from screenshots.
First, with the jeans on, mark knee length. This was my starting point to cut because I didn’t want to make my skirt too short. (I cut off an additional 2” once I had a better idea of length.)
Seam rip open each cut pant leg, leaving one side seam intact. Undo hem as well.
Cut bodice out of each pant leg. (For a better fit, the top of my bodice lined with the jean hem, and the bottom of the bodice lined up with my original pant cut line.) I traced my bodice piece onto each leg, making sure to match where the Jean seam line was for a consistent look. (Tip: mark on your pattern piece where seams need to hit!) Try to keep the bodice towards the ends of the leg to be sure you get the most use out of your fabric.
Once your bodice is cut, you can see how much fabric you have left to work with.
Next step is to turn the remaining jeans into the skirt. Going back to the top portion of your jeans, seam rip the inner legs.
On the front of the jeans, seam rip the fly section a few inches up, until the jeans can lay flat, and you can see the triangle start to form on the bottom. Don’t seam rip too far up, and don’t hit the fly zipper. This part of the project you may have to play around with a bit to get the right fit. Pin the triangle in place before adding any fabric, and try the skirt on to test the opening width.
Thankfully my front triangle didn’t need much fabric, so only a small portion of my fabric went into this section.
Continue this process for the skirt back as well. Seam rip the center back seam a few inches, and lay back flat. You may have to seam rip more on the back than the front. My opening was wider in the back, and I didn’t have enough material from one pant leg to properly fit. I stitched my remaining fabric together for a bigger insert. You can see I placed my new seam in the center of my insert, which takes extra time to pin and stitch properly, but creates a more finished look. I also folded the pant leg triangle sides in more to create a flatter piece.
The back was a bit harder for me to fit. I recommend pinning in place, then trying the skirt on to be sure it lays nicely.
After the inserts are finished, the rest of the material is for the straps! Now, on my pants, since I cut off an extra 2” from my original pants, I was able to use most of that for my straps. (You may not have that material to work with, but you can always make the back straps out of a coordinating fabric if you don’t have enough!) I had to add some length from my remaining fabric to extend the straps, as you can see with my seam lines.
My entire bodice is lined with cotton muslin. For reference, my straps were cut 2” wide and stitched with a 3/8” seam allowance.
Try your skirt on and pin bodice in place. I started by pinning the front, making sure to get my bodice pieces close to each other. Once front is pinned, pin back straps, making sure straps are comfortably tight. These will be pinned on an angle. Remove pinafore and double check the back straps to make sure their distance is even. If your jeans have belt loops, the back loop is a great center point to measure from. I hand stitched my bodice down, but you can certainly sew by machine.
To finish the skirt, I evened out my hem, serged the edge and hand stitched up 3/8”. I didn’t want to make my skirt any shorter, but this part is all personal preference!
What made this project work: mid-rise jeans. With the type of bodice I added, the waist of my jeans needed to come up, so starting with mid rise jeans meant they didn’t have to come up that much higher. This is something to consider if you want to make this style pinafore yourself, mid rise or high rise jeans would work best. If you have a pair of low rise jeans, you may have to re-fit the waist altogether and may not have enough material for the entire bodice (or you may have to build a different bodice. Search for “overall dresses” for another idea!)
Another tip, if you want more material to work with, use boot cut or flare jeans! My original jeans were technically a “crop pant” but because of my height, they were normal length skinny jean on me.
Want to go a step further? Add a little extra length to the bodice front and strap ends, and make the entire top removable with buttons! I did this for my skirt to overall pinafore refashion a few years back. It’s a great way to get more wear out of the garment! (Post here!)
And a quick note: here are the new bags I’ve been working on! These little crossbody bags have been in the works for years and I’m so incredibly excited with how they turned out! The exteriors are made from reclaimed and secondhand fabrics! Shop Crossbody’s on my Etsy!
Just a quick hello from me today! I’ve been busy doing sewing projects for a few of my favorite sites! Best part about these projects is that you can make them too!
My first ever downloadable bag pattern is over on Fabric.com!
If you are taking a short trip this summer, this bag is perfect for your travels! I wanted to create a basic pattern that would leave room for customization, and you can certainly customize this bag to have exactly what you want!
My car is finally unloaded, my sewing machine is well rested and I can actually start thinking about something other than booth design. Last weekend I attended my third craft show, the Tinicum Arts Festival in Bucks County Pennsylvania. Tinicum Park is located right outside of Frenchtown, NJ (the cutest little town) and I was excited to be part of such a big event. There were so many crafters- many woodworkers, potters and painters, even TWO broom makers! There were a few bag makers, but none as colorful as me.
It was a long weekend, and my stress level was super high because there are so many little details involved, it’s easy to forget something. Friday night we went to set up my tent and it was pouring rain so hard we couldn’t even put the tent up. My parents and I wound up leaving my tent and tables in my “spot”. The next morning my mom and I got to the field early to set up my booth. After the set up, the rain came back and we had showers off and on the entire day. Sunday thankfully saw lots of sun and people were more inclined to come out and shop. The weekend as a whole was long but I had some great sales and met some wonderful people which is what counts.
I’ve been planning my booth out in my mind for months and had new ideas I wanted to try for this show. The most eye catching addition was my name sign. I got wood letters from Michaels on super sale and my mom modge podged polka dot fabric onto each letter. My dad drilled two holes into the tops of each letter and I strung them together. We also spray varnished them so they were safe in the rain.
I’ve also been making a lot more recycled bags and wanted a larger display for them, separate from my non-recycled bags. So they got their own table, with some added shelves for height. I have a few more ideas for this section of my booth, to show the process that goes into a recycled bag.
I found this old flower cart in my parent’s barn and thought it would make a cute addition to the front of my booth to offer a small sampling of the bags I make. It was also a good opportunity to put my business cards on this table because when my booth was full, walker-bys were able to take a card and come back later.
Most of my displays stayed the same from my first few shows, as I wasn’t focused on changing their look. I love my tote bag display and the card holder display and won’t be changing them anytime soon. I would like to create a new display for my small pouches and my non recycled clutches. I love the suitcases but am ready for something new.
A majority of the comments I received were about selling on etsy. There were multiple shoppers who had their own craft and wanted to sell online but etsy intimidated them. I am a huge fan of etsy because it is an easy, inexpensive way to sell all over the world. I’m not an expert on the subject but know that etsy works for me. One day I would like my own standalone site but am happy with what etsy offers right now. If you are nervous about starting an etsy shop, just go for it! You will never be fully ready, and it takes so much work, but if you really want to sell your craft- do it!
The show was as great as it was for one reason only. My awesome support team. My dad made sure my tent was sturdy, and even made me concrete weights to tie to each side. He made sure all the extra structures, like my tote rack and flower stand, were secure. My sister helped cut fabric for my name sign and showed up with her husband on Sunday for support. My boyfriend, Drew, was fully understanding of why the apartment was a mess and I had supplies all over the place the past few weeks. He also stopped by on Sunday for a few hours. And my mom…my amazing mom. She was there the whole time. She helped me set up, she was my “right hand man” and she made sure I ate. I am so lucky that even if my family thinks I’m crazy, they support me.
I don’t have any other shows coming up but I’m looking into some winter ones. Hoboken has a holiday show and I think it would be really cool to do a show in my own town. I’m also looking into a few larger shows in the city- Brooklyn specifically.
And I’m so happy I get to think about sewing clothes again! My sister’s baby shower is in a few weeks and I am almost done with my dress. I’m also making a dress for my sister to wear, which just needs a final fitting, and I’m making a special handmade gift for the baby! It’s crazy how quickly the time is flying by, July is almost over and before we know it, there will be a little baby bundle in our lives.
IT’S MY BIRTHDAY! Well, my blogs birthday! It has been exactly one year since opening my new etsy shop, and signing up for http://www.trishstitched.com. It has been a crazy year- so many new projects, so many new connections, I love my new home.
When I first started Trish Stitched, I was pretty much reinventing myself. My old name, Mini Pip, no longer felt like me and I was in a rut. I knew I wanted a name change but had no clue what to call myself. My name was no longer just about my etsy shop or my bags, but about my sewing adventures as a whole. Over the years, I’ve been sharing more apparel projects because I’m learning more and realizing just how much “handmade” means to me. I have such a special admiration for my wardrobe and it’s so cool to look in my closet and remember the occasion I made something for or how a garment was constructed. It’s a reminder of picking out fabrics, sewing the final buttons on or stitching a hem or how much I wanted a project to be over because I wanted to wear my new creation!
Because of my new name, I feel so much more confident talking to people about what I do. I can easily say, “I’m a seamstress! Wanna see my stuff just go to trishstitched.com!” I wanted the freshest start I could get and changing my blog from typepad to wordpress was one of the best decisions I could have made. There is such a wonderful community on here and it’s so simple to discover other blogs and get inspired by other makers. I can’t tell you how grateful I am for all my readers. When I first blogged under Mini Pip, I would barely get any views and a comment… that was rare! It’s been very slow growth but that’s made me appreciate all of you so much more.
A birthday is all about gifts right? So I’m doing my very first giveaway! I’ll be giving away a matching pencil pouch & card holder in my favorite print (in the photos below)! To enter, all you have to do is leave a comment on this post!! I’ll be leaving the giveaway open until February 24th, then announce the winner Friday, February 26th. This is only open to U.S. residents, sorry international readers!
And because I don’t want to give just one person a gift, there’s a little sale going on in my etsy shop! Take 10% off any bag in my etsy store with code YEARONE. I’m treating myself to a little cake so treat yourself to a new bag! Code is good until Friday February 26th.
I made the sweatshirt in the photos- It’s Astoria from Seamwork! Maybe it’s time I move away from the Seamwork patterns… nahhh, I love them!
And we continue the blog-a-versary with a new bag! Some of you may remember this post I wrote a while back about a bag I made out of vinyl. For the past few months (ok it’s been like a year) I have been trying to recreate this bag. That vinyl must have been a special treasure because I could not find a similar texture anywhere I looked! I’ve tried multiple times to make another version out of vinyl but there was always an issue. I knew I had to try a different fabric, but still wanted something sturdy and bold. That’s where canvas came in. I found some beautiful colors and decided to give it a go! AND IT WORKED.
The shape of this bag is perfect. The color is everything I could hope for. I am SO HAPPY with how this came together. It is the most labor intense bag I make, and has the most hardware so it takes time to put together but it’s worth it. This bag features an adjustable strap, turn lock close and interior slip pocket.
The crossbody is my favorite style bag, as I love just throwing it over my chest and going. The size is also ideal because it is large enough to fit all your daily essentials (sunglasses, phone, small wallet and keys) but small enough that you can’t “garbage it up” with things you don’t need.
I decided to start making these in solids and adding florals to the lining-because I can’t make a bag without florals!
The time has come for the next holiday! Valentine’s Day is just around the corner! I’ve been adding bags to my etsy shop pretty frequently and the Valentine’s theme has not been forgotten!
This floral print is one of my absolute favorites because it reminds me so much of Cath Kidston. It was gifted to me by a customer at my parent’s farm a few years ago and I just never knew what to make with it until I saw it paired with the polka dot print!
These small pouches are such a fun size. I originally made them to hold check books, but while check books aren’t so much in use, there are so many other items to hold! Now I use my pouch for pencils and pens. I also take one with me when I travel to hold my electronics cords.
I originally made the smaller pouch to hold gift cards, because I hate getting a gift card with no thought. When it comes in that little paper holder, it’s so boring and impersonal. Putting a gift card in this little pouch is like giving two gifts because the pouch can be used long after the card is gone! When I carry around a smaller bag or clutch, I put my money and ID in the little holder.
I also recently discovered they hold a small collection of lip balm and will hold lipstick!
I absolutely love making these small bags because I get to have so much fun with fabric. In general I gravitate towards loud prints, and when I was first making all I saw in the market place on etsy were solid, boring brown and black bags. Yes, they are beautiful and well constructed but boring is not my style and I don’t think I’m the only one with that mentality!
I love color. I love how seeing certain colors can brighten your day and lighten your mood. I like to use the phrase, “Life is too short to carry a boring bag”.
Just a quick post to let you know that there’s a little sale going on in my etsy shop! 15% off everything with the code: HOLIDAY15. I have so many new pouches, totes, coin purses, and gift card holders- perfect for gift giving! And something brand new, I’ve now opened my shop to international shipping! I’ve wanted to do that for a while but was just nervous. I’ve never shipped overseas but ya just gotta go for it, right?
The code is good until end of the day today (November 30th)!
Oh hello there little blog, I seem to have been neglecting you lately. I swear there is a good reason, but let’s just say: I’m tired.
I was recently hired back at my old job with Anthropologie for Holiday Help. It was only two weeks of work, so nothing crazy but it was weird going back. It’s also Turkey Season at the farm. We don’t raise turkeys but we take orders for Thanksgiving. A lot of people don’t understand that we are just a small farm and it is basically my mom, dad and I working. So my stress level has been pretty high.
I did my first Holiday Craft Show a few weekends ago as well! It was in South Jersey, and while I’m glad I did it, I will not be attending that show again. I’m starting to learn my audience, and the venues I need to be looking for. The show was very “home party” (think Sentsy, Avon, etc) and not many people with their own handmade items. I need to start looking into Juried shows, in more notable areas. But I’m happy I went, I learned more about my booth set up and made some good connections and I’m excited to do more shows.
In other sewing news: I thought I found the perfect pattern to sew through Burda Style but didn’t realize that the instructions do not include photos. I’m a very visual learner, so the whole process of putting this thing together has not been fun. The collar is a mess but I’m stuck with how to fix it. I just can’t look at it anymore but hate that so much time has already gone into it. I’m going to leave it for a while and hope that a little time away will help my brain figure out fixing it. (Don’t mind the black, I ran out of plaid fabric for the facing and had to improvise)
So that’s what I’ve been working on. Not much to share right now but hopefully I’ll have some awesome projects up here soon!