#RefashionFriday · refashion · sewing

#RefashionFriday Dress to Jumpsuit

Happy Holidays everyone! Things around here have been crazy busy! With Christmas sewing and getting together with family, I haven’t spent a whole lot of time sewing for myself.

A jumpsuit has been on my sewing bucket list for a few months, but because of my petite shape, I honestly didn’t think I could pull off a “onesie” of fabric without looking swallowed whole. I tried a few ‘ready- to- wear’ jumpsuits on, and even from the juniors section, the proportions were all wrong. I figured I might as well try to make one, just to see if it could work for me!

Since this was a brand new experiment, and I didn’t want to waste expensive fabric on something that wouldn’t look great, I dove into my refashioning pile for fabric. This extra-extra-extra large stretch velvet dress was perfect! This dress was a 5x, and looked so miserable on the hanger, I don’t think it would have been touched by anyone else. It was also very clear anything and everything attaches to the fabric, so experimenting with this $4 dress felt like the way to go.

#RefashionFriday Dress to Jumpsuit - Trish Stitched

I started research for what was selling in stores at the moment, and came across this jumpsuit at Anthropologie. I loved the wider leg and belt that attaches at waist. Knowing my body type, I needed to find a specific pattern. Something that wouldn’t cover my entire body, something with a defined waist, and something with just a hint of detail. New Look 6493 had what I needed, and would allow me to adapt the pattern for what I wanted.

#RefashionFriday Dress to Jumpsuit - Trish Stitched

#RefashionFriday Dress to Jumpsuit - Trish Stitched

Since the pattern didn’t have the best reputation online (large bodice), I decided to make a muslin. After that, I found I needed to size down in the bodice and bring the waistline up about an inch. Then it was onto the real fabric!

#RefashionFriday Dress to Jumpsuit - Trish Stitched

This refashion was all about the creative cutting. I used almost every inch of the dress, and using anything smaller, I wouldn’t have been able to make this.

#RefashionFriday Dress to Jumpsuit - Trish Stitched

Besides the bodice being drapier than expected, I would consider it a great pattern. I had no issues sewing or following the directions, which is always a win for me! Following the tie detail on the Anthropologie jumpsuit, I made my own waist ties, and attached one in each side seam.

#RefashionFriday Dress to Jumpsuit - Trish Stitched

#RefashionFriday Dress to Jumpsuit - Trish Stitched

#RefashionFriday Dress to Jumpsuit - Trish Stitched

Pattern details:

New Look 6493 – View D

Bodice Size: 8

Pant Size: 10

Alterations made: Waistline moved up 1″, Belt sewn into side seams, Front neckline tacked down.

I originally measured to fit in a size 10 bodice but needed to size down to the 8. I still have plenty of room on top, and could go tighter, but it is comfortable. (For reference, I am a size 00-0, 4’9″)

I am now a converted jumpsuit lover! This thing is so comfortable, I can’t believe it took so long to make one. Now I just need a holiday party to wear it to!

(Below photos were taken before I hemmed the pants and cut down the belt by 1″)

#RefashionFriday Dress to Jumpsuit - Trish Stitched

#RefashionFriday Dress to Jumpsuit - Trish Stitched

 

Refashion Inspiration: 

This is such a great idea for bridesmaids dresses! Throw on a jean jacket and some fun jewelry and it’s the cutest outfit! See it here.

Refashions

How about making a mini romper for your little one! I LOVE this idea from Heather (heatherhandmade.com)

Refashion

 

In other news, last Saturday night, Drew proposed to me! After 7 years of dating, he asked me to be his wife! We went out to dinner where we had our first date, and then took a walk in the park. I was so cold, and a little nervous because it was really dark, I made Drew turn around after about 2 minutes of walking. On the way back to the car he told me he had a confession to make. The previous weekend he told me he was getting lunch with his friends, when he really drove out to see my parents. He asked both of them for their blessing, and showed them the ring.

We were walking towards the only street light in the park, and he got down on one knee and asked me to marry him! The moment is still a little blurry, because as soon as he opened the box I jumped back and said “holy shit!” haha super romantic, right?

I’m still in shock that I’m engaged, and I still think it was all a dream until I look down at my finger and see it actually happened! I’ve actually been wedding planning in my head for years, so it’s a ton of fun to be contacting the people I’ve been dreaming about working with!

I am so, so excited to be marrying my best friend, it’s really a dream come true.

Since I started sewing, I’ve wanted to make my own wedding dress, and it will be happening! You’ll probably be seeing glimpses of wedding planning and dress making, but I won’t be showing the full thing until after the wedding!

Happy Friday!

Trish Stitched

Trish Stitched

Trish Stitched

 

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handmade wardrobe · sewing

Coming Up Roses Wedding Guest Dress

Hello, hello! I usually write blog posts during the day or in the early morning, but this night seems like the perfect time. I’m watching the ONLY craft show I know of, Making It, on NBC. Have you seen it? We are on week 2, so not deep into the show just yet, but it’s cute. I do wish there was a seamstress to represent the sewing community, but the makers on there are all very talented. And I am a huge fan of Parks and Rec, so seeing Amy Poehler and Nick Offerman together again is a dream come true! (Now if only Andy and April would make a surprise appearance!)

I finally took detailed photos of the dress I wore to my cousins wedding and am very excited to share!

Coming Up Roses Wedding Guest Dress - Trish Stitched

I didn’t intend on making a dress. After my weight struggles, I was feeling so discouraged, I just wanted to buy a dress, but once I started feeling more myself, I wanted to show off my hard work. (I was also really scared that the dresses in my wardrobe wouldn’t fit so making a dress that fit my current measurements felt safer).

I wanted a dress to accentuate my top half, something a bit low cut and flirty, because that isn’t my typical style. I had a really difficult time finding a pattern to go with the look I wanted. The skirt portion wasn’t as important to me, but I really wanted a bodice with boning, spaghetti straps and low V neck. This style is becoming very popular in the “wedding guest dress” world and I wanted a fashionable piece rather than a timeless piece. I was also looking for a pattern that included a full lining with clean finishes. There are so few occasions that I make pretty formal dresses, that every chance to test my skills, I want to take.

I always want to make indie patterns first. They normally fit better, and have detailed sew-a-longs with the pattern in case you run into any problems. The issue with a lot of indie brands is that they don’t dive far into the special occasion dresses. Sure there are a few full length options, and some fun flirty dresses, but I couldn’t find a pattern with the structure I wanted. Needing to turn to the “big 4” of sewing patterns, my first thought was Vogue. But they didn’t have anything I was looking for! (Man, some of these patterns are really bad!!) But I finally found the perfect pattern in McCalls 7720.

Coming Up Roses Wedding Guest Dress - Trish Stitched

Once the pattern was selected, I ran to Joann’s to find fabric. I knew I needed to start this dress fast, and didn’t have time to wait for shipping, so I headed to my local Joann’s where I found the perfect print. This rose print brocade was not on the “recommended fabrics” list, but I knew the pattern would be able to support the structure of the fabric.

With my measurements, I made a size 10. Normally in McCalls, I’m a size 8, but sizing up a bit was a chance I needed to take, as it’s easier to make something smaller than making something bigger! I also made a muslin of the top, because I wanted to be sure those measurements were accurate. My muslin fit well, as I was mostly concerned with the size around my torso, I was afraid I wouldn’t be able to fit in it once the zipper was in. Once I determined the fit was comfortable, I moved onto my fabric. The bodice came together very quickly. Even with the addition of boning, and a fully lined top, I was surprised it was a decently quick/easy sew.

Coming Up Roses Wedding Guest Dress - Trish Stitched

One of my alterations to this dress was with the straps. I never understand using ribbon for straps. I get that it makes life easier, since you don’t have to turn a skinny tube inside-out, but to me, real straps give the dress a more professional feel. If you look at the actual pattern, I made the straps much shorter, meaning they don’t technically sit where the pattern calls them to sit. This was a personal preference, and in reality, I could have sized down on the bodice, but I didn’t have enough fabric to re-cut.

Coming Up Roses Wedding Guest Dress - Trish Stitched

My original plan was to shorten the skirt to right above the knee, to keep with my flirty vibe, but after making the skirt that came with the pattern, it was a no brainer to keep it. I just had to cut a good chunk off the bottom to align better with my height. I cut off about 3.5″. I also thought the bodice would look too “long”, but once it was pinned in place, it hit appropriately and I kept the length.

The skirt pleats were…interesting. I had to read the directions over several times because the lines just weren’t making sense. These pleats are huge. Like, really big. It makes for a VERY full skirt, and by making it in a brocade, it was super roomy. I did love that the pattern called for sewing a hem band, rather than just turning up 5/8″.

Coming Up Roses Wedding Guest Dress - Trish StitchedComing Up Roses Wedding Guest Dress - Trish StitchedComing Up Roses Wedding Guest Dress - Trish Stitched

Coming Up Roses Wedding Guest Dress - Trish StitchedComing Up Roses Wedding Guest Dress - Trish Stitched

After completing the dress, and trying it on, I noticed there was a little gaping in the bodice, as my bust didn’t fill the bodice as it was supposed to. This alteration didn’t appear in my muslin, partially because I didn’t add the lining. I don’t think my bust measurement decreased that much within the 2 weeks I was making this dress, but that was one of the first sections of my body to go back to normal when I changed my diet plan, so the fit could be a mixture of things.

I, of course, didn’t want to take the entire dress apart to fit this issue, and I considered just leaving it, but as the point of my new dress was to show off my hard work, I couldn’t let it go. Since my dress form isn’t super true to size anymore either, I turned the dress inside out, zipped it up (which is not easy, thanks Drew), and pinned darts in place on my own body to keep it from gaping. (You can also see a little bit of pulling on the dress above the dart, which I’m not very pleased with, but my dart alteration happened the day of the wedding and I didn’t have that much time to fix it. Thankfully when I’m wearing it, it looks much better. If I remember to do so, I will go in and let the dart out on this side a bit more.)

Coming Up Roses Wedding Guest Dress - Trish StitchedComing Up Roses Wedding Guest Dress - Trish Stitched

This alteration wasn’t the cleanest finish, and you can certainly see where the dress was fixed, but the fit is much better this way.

I tend to stay away from alterations in finished garments, as that is an area that is super scary for me to wrap my head around. I don’t mind doing them for myself, but whenever someone asks me to fix something for more than just a simple stitch, I turn them down. I hope to get better over time, and learn the “cause and effect” of fit issues.

I LOVE the clean interior on this dress. I didn’t do any fancy seams, just finished with some serging, but you can only see them when you lift the lining. The skirt also has a very faint high-low look, which I love.

Coming Up Roses Wedding Guest Dress - Trish StitchedComing Up Roses Wedding Guest Dress - Trish StitchedComing Up Roses Wedding Guest Dress - Trish StitchedComing Up Roses Wedding Guest Dress - Trish StitchedComing Up Roses Wedding Guest Dress - Trish StitchedComing Up Roses Wedding Guest Dress - Trish Stitched

All in all, if I were to make this dress again, I would size down. I would also take the time to make a better muslin. I’m getting better at making a practice version, but sill need to take it further. (I’m still learning guys!) The finished dress is pretty and comfortable, and was a very easy sew, which all make me really happy with the outcome! Obviously the dress isn’t perfect, but I’m still proud of it.

The wedding itself was nice, and I’m happy the rain held off on the outdoor ceremony until we went inside! Since my grandparent’s passed, we haven’t been that close with my mom’s side of the family, so it was a little awkward, but I’m happy that my parent’s, sister and Drew make family events fun.

I was only able to get a few photos wearing the dress, but it held up well on the dance floor! We have another wedding to attend in October, and since that is Halloween month, I think having this dress to wear will make the month go smoother.

Coming Up Roses Wedding Guest Dress - Trish Stitched

Coming Up Roses Wedding Guest Dress - Trish Stitched

Drew and I have been to A LOT of weddings in the past few years, and it’s been a fun adventure. We pretty much know what we would and wouldn’t want for our “big day”, even though we aren’t engaged hah! But lets be honest here, I’ve been planning for a long time – even though I keep it in my head. I have to say, the older I get, the simpler I want my wedding to be and elopement is looking like a really great option (although that would never fly with my guy!) There are a few things I know for sure, the man I want to marry and that I want to make my wedding dress. Having practice formal dresses get me a step closer to creating my perfect dress!

Dress Details:

Pattern: McCall’s 7720

Size Cut: 10

Alterations Made: Fabric Straps, Added bust darts, Hemmed 3.5″

Fabric: Pink Roses on Black Brocade – Joann Fabrics

Coming Up Roses Wedding Guest Dress - Trish StitchedComing Up Roses Wedding Guest Dress - Trish Stitched

sewing · Tutorials

Handmade Outdoor Cushions! {+ Tips to Make Your Own!}

When Drew and I first got our bid accepted on our house, we were fortunate enough to negotiate on some of the furniture already with the home. Some of those items were the outdoor chair set and fire pit.

After living in Hoboken for five years, we were SO excited to have a backyard of our own – and having furniture already there was a huge deal (especially when we had a whole house to furnish!). The only problem was the cushions that came with the chairs. They had been left outside in snow and rain, and gotten gross, to be completely honest.

We started looking up new cushions, but quickly discovered the selection is slim pickings and expensive! The original set was from Target, and the only cushions that we could find to fit were so boring. If you haven’t noticed based on this blog yet, I hate boring!

So I planned on making a new set. This was my only option right? I was extremely nervous to make a set because with every new project, there’s a chance it won’t work out and the investment in this was pretty big. We also had our Housewarming Party coming up and we NEEDED these cushions done!

Thankfully everything worked out- and I love them! We did a lot of research to complete these and I wanted to share some tips and supplies if you want to make your own!

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Making Cushions

I read a few blogs and some makers recommend 1 yard per cushion, and since I had 5 bottoms and 5 tops, I bought 12 yards of fabric. After cutting out the bottoms I thought I way overbought. I was actually freaking out because I was going to have so much material left over. But after cutting out all the fabric, I didn’t have that much fabric left after all! So I do think the 1 yard per cushion is a good rough estimate. (I always tend to buy a few extra yards if I mess up, or want to make additional pieces.)

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We still don’t have couches so I was able to spread out my fabric!

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{Scroll to the bottom of the page for all my links!}

The hardest thing to find was foam for the bottom seats.  I checked out the foam at JoAnns but it was not in the budget for me, as they wanted $50 per foam cushion! So we went the difficult route and “diy’d it”.

Drew and I found thick foam on Amazon that we would be able to cut down to the size we needed. Originally I wanted 4″ foam, but he ordered 5″ foam, so our cushions are really thick! To cut the foam, we used a hand saw.

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Amazon was also the go-to place for zippers. Since we wanted to be able to re-use the foam if we ever got bored of the fabric, I wanted each cushion to have an invisible zipper to change things up. I found a 20 pack and they were perfect.

Bottom Cushions:

Couch: 70″ long x 26″ wide. Foam: 5″ x 24″ x 72″

Using these measurements, we cut the foam down to 5″ x 24″ x 23″.

We determined that each cushion seat would be 24″ x 23″ (as that was keeping in line with the size of the foam). With a 1/2″ seam allowance for each cushion, I cut out the following:

(2 x) 25″ x 24″ (top and bottom)

(2 x) 25″ x 6″ (long sides)

(1x) 24″ x 6″ (one short side)

(1x) 24″ x 7″ (short side with zipper)

I cut out 5 sets of the above, and did an assembly line style to make them. I started by inserting all the zippers. I cut each 24″ x 7″ piece in half (lengthwise) and sewed in the zipper. This band needs to be a little wider because the zipper alters the size. Sew your four side pieces together (with 1/2″ seam allowance), alternating long side and short side to form a rectangle. Then you attach the tops and bottoms. I wrote out a mini tutorial to show this method, as I’ve used it in handbag making too!

Sewing Boxed Corners

  1. With each seam, leave 1/2″ from end of stitch line. (If your seam allowance is 5/8″, you will leave 5/8″ free.) Backstitch at end.

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2. Line up sewn corner to the corner of piece you are attaching. img_68652339.jpg

3. Pin one corner together, pull the other corner away from seam. (do not catch other end in stitching)

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4. Sew seam until you reach the end of your initial stitching line made in step 1. Backstitch.

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5. Adjust the other side of your corner. You will now be able to line this corner properly, and start stitching where the other stitching line stopped. Continue stitching.

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6. Turn corner to right side out, and you are finished!

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I’m sure there are many other ways to do this, but I wanted something quick and easy!

If you are using this method, be sure to leave your zipper open halfway to be able to turn the cushions right side out!

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(Finished cushion showing the invisible zipper side.)

Top Cushions:

The old cushion set had a basic pillow on top, and we decided to mimic the look. I made each pillow with poly-fil and a broadcloth case. It is not weather proof – but this was the fabric I had on hand and I wanted to be as economical as possible. We also don’t plan on leaving these cushions out, but I still wanted a inner shell before the pillow case, so it will be easy to make new ones.

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I bought a 10 lb box of poly-fil, and after stuffing the first pillow, again I thought I way overbought, but it turned out to be the perfect amount!

I made a test pillow first in the size of our previous cushions and they came out way too small! I increased the size of the pillow and it was perfect!

The finished pillow was 23″ x 27″. (This made the fabric 24″ x 28″)

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(Invisible zipper on top cushion, inner pillow and finished set!)

I am so happy with the way they turned out, and now that I have my measurements down pat (and recorded on this blog!) I can make new cushions whenever we want a change! The only thing I would change for next time is adding a small handle to the back or side of the bottom cushions so they are easier to take in and out! (Leaving this tip here for myself! =p)  Here are all the links!

Supplies

Amazon: 

Foam : Get here

Zippers: Get here

JoAnn Fabric: 

Fabric: Get Here 

(The fabric is originally $21.99/ yd, I bought mine for $10.99/yd and used a 20% off my total purchase coupon!)

Poly-Fil: Get here 

(I used a 50% off coupon for my fil, but it’s currently on sale now!)

Broadcloth: Get here

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This post turned out a lot longer than expected, but I do hope it encourages you to make your own cushions if you’ve been thinking about it! Or using this fabric for another project because it is so beautiful!

handmade wardrobe · sewing

Summer Floral Blackwood Cardigan

Happy Saturday!

Last weekend Drew and I hosted our first party in our home, and it was a whirlwind. We’ve had multiple projects going on in and outside the house, so just prepping for people coming over was a huge chore. My future sewing space is coming along, our first floor bathroom had a serious facelift, and a gigantic holly bush is finally gone from the front of our house! I am preparing a blog post filled with our projects so far, but today I’m talking apparel!

I wanted a quick sewing project and was browsing through my stash for inspiration, and came across this beautiful knit I picked up in LA last year from Michael Levine Loft. If I remember correctly, I bought a yard and a half, thinking maybe a dress would be fun. To be honest, I didn’t want to mess with linings with this fabric and after leaving it out of sight for a bit, I thought this would actually make a really pretty cardigan. The cut outs add a fun detail, which I rarely see in a colorful knit.

I know, a cardigan in summer? But I LOVE summer. I love the heat and the sunshine, and the past week of heatwave in Jersey has not been any damper on my days. Even though temperatures have been in the 90s-100s, I still get chilled easily, especially when the air conditioners are constantly running (no thanks to Drew!). Because of this, cardigans are a year round staple. I finished my first Blackwood Cardigan a few weeks ago but just got a handsome hand to help with photos (thanks, Drew!). 

I bought the Blackwood Cardigan pattern awhile ago when Helen was having a sale, and it’s been sitting in my stash waiting for fabric. I’ve been meaning to try this pattern and nail down my size and fit, and now was the time!

Summer Floral Blackwood Cardigan - Trish StitchedSummer Floral Blackwood Cardigan - Trish Stitched

The pattern was wonderfully made and written and I love the two length options (have you checked out the inspiration on Instagram for this?! #swoonworthy!) I made a size Small, View A and it fits great. I had to shorten the arms a bit since petite body = petite arms, but other than that, no alterations were made.

Summer Floral Blackwood Cardigan - Trish StitchedSummer Floral Blackwood Cardigan - Trish StitchedSummer Floral Blackwood Cardigan - Trish Stitched

I serged all my edges before I even started sewing. Since the fabric is decently “see-through” I wanted to be sure the edges weren’t raw. I also omitted the pockets because I didn’t want this breezy cardigan to feel heavy with anything extra. I was also a little concerned with having a bottom band, and even the wrist band because I didn’t want the wrong side of the fabric to show through, but after completing it, I don’t mind the up close look.

Summer Floral Blackwood Cardigan - Trish StitchedSummer Floral Blackwood Cardigan - Trish StitchedSummer Floral Blackwood Cardigan - Trish Stitched

A few notes:

I LOVE that this pattern comes in layers. This means that when you are going to print your PDF, you only have to print your size!

This cardigan does not cover as much in front as my store bought ones. This is the style, and it is made for layering, but something to consider if this isn’t your ideal cardigan style.

I can’t wait to make more of these cardigans! This is going to be one of those “staple patterns” that I make a few versions of. Some will probably be pretty basic and boring, but those are going to be my most worn!

Summer Floral Blackwood Cardigan - Trish Stitched

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

handmade wardrobe · sewing

Denim Kalle Shirt: Extended Cop Top

Really now, where has the month of February gone? It flew by and I didn’t get everything done that I planned on! I’ve mentioned a few times about house hunting and finally moving out of Hoboken, and I don’t want to jinx anything but we think we found the one! I’ll definitely have more details about this soon enough, but for now you can see where my brain is at based on my pinterest boards. I have a whole lot of home ideas going on- with a ton of focus on my future sewing studio!

Because of all the excitement with the house, my personal sewing has not been getting as much attention. But this super cute Kalle top would not stop haunting me, so here she is!

Denim Kalle Shirt: Extended Crop Top - Trish Stitched

I have a slight obsession with Closet Case Patterns because Heather’s patterns are so fitting for my lifestyle. She designs practical patterns that are meant to be wardrobe staples, and the ones I’ve made so far (Bombshell Bathing Suit, Kelly Anorak, Ginger Jeans) have proven their versatility in my closet. I loved Kalle when she came out. She is a super cute pattern that comes with three options: Crop Top, Tunic and Dress. I really wanted to see others versions of Kalle before diving in, because all three of those options were not common pieces in my wardrobe. I would want a regular top version, but didn’t know the best way to design it so I thought eventually I would get inspiration from the sewing community.

Denim Kalle Shirt: Extended Crop Top - Trish StitchedChambray Kalle Shirt: Extended Crop Top - Trish Stitched

Fast forward a few months and everyone is making Kalle. Every time I open Instagram- there’s another version! So I finally caved and bought the pattern. To make it fit my lifestyle, I either had to shorten the tunic or lengthen the crop top. I really love the hem of the crop top, so I decided to go that route.

This is technically a wearable muslin. I’ve had this lightweight denim hanging around for years from another project, and thought a denim version would be good to have. I didn’t have any blue thread, so I went with white and quite like the contrast. I say this is a win in my book. This top is easy to wear, has a cute fit for being ‘oversized’, and after a few washes, will get that worn in feeling of a great piece.

Chambray Kalle Shirt: Extended Crop Top - Trish StitchedChambray Kalle Shirt: Extended Crop Top - Trish StitchedChambray Kalle Shirt: Extended Crop Top - Trish Stitched

The older I get, the fewer patterns I tend to buy. I’ve become very conscious about what’s in my stash and even though Joann’s has those great 5 for $5 pattern days, I realize that just because you have a million patterns to make doesn’t mean you will ever get around to actually making them. (I also have a few patterns from my own stash available on etsy because there is no way I’ll get around to making them!) I’m always on the lookout for basic patterns with options- and Kalle one is loaded with them!

Kalle has three lengths, two front button options, two collar options, and two back options – leaving lots of room to build your perfect style. My version is comprised of View A (full length placket) with a full collar, and back pleat. I cut a size 2 and to extend the crop top into a longer shirt, I added 4″ to each bodice piece at the lengthen line.

Chambray Kalle Shirt: Extended Crop Top - Trish StitchedChambray Kalle Shirt: Extended Crop Top - Trish StitchedChambray Kalle Shirt: Extended Crop Top - Trish Stitched

I’m excited to make more versions, and to finally add mine to the amazing Kalle Shirt Dress posts online! Have you made Kalle? Do you have the sleeve expansion? That may be the next version I have to make..

handmade wardrobe · inspiration · sewing

Black Tie Wedding Guest Dress

Today I wanted to share a dress I made (and wore) back in November, that I didn’t get around to blogging about!

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Drew and I were invited to two black tie weddings last year (both co-workers of his), and it was the first time I’ve been invited to such formal events. The first wedding in July resulted in my refashioned bridesmaids dress, and I originally wanted to make a black tie dress from scratch for the November wedding.

I had planned on making this Leanne Marshall pattern, and came across a really beautiful sequined vest I thrifted to use as the bodice, but all plans went out the window when I found an even better bodice option.

I found this amazing piece at a local Goodwill and couldn’t let it go. It’s 100% silk, beaded in India and a size small (perfect fit) for $5.99. At the time I had no idea what to do with it but this is one of those extremely rare thrift finds that you just have to buy (or is that just my logic?).

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I decided it was destined to become part of my dress for the November black tie wedding. The only problem was I didn’t want to cut into the embroidered bodice, and didn’t want to attach it to a dress I could only wear once. After mulling ideas around for while, the lightbulb went off (gotta love when that happens) and I had a plan!

By making a base bodice and an over-skirt, I would be able to tuck the embroidered top in and have it look like one full piece. Seamwork Ariane felt perfect for under the embroidery because wearing a bodysuit meant I didn’t have to worry about a tank top riding up all night and the pattern was already in my library. (For size reference, I’m just under 4’10” and made an XS and did not shorten the pattern)

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For the skirt, I drafted my own pattern. It is a simple A-line skirt with a gathered chiffon overlay. It’s a very basic skirt, but I really wanted the top to be the show-stopper. I loved the idea of a chiffon overlay, and went with a satin for the skirt. I do wish I went with a lighter fabric for the skirt because walking around and dancing felt heavy after awhile, but it still worked out.

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I am very happy I decided to make separates, and am so thrilled I didn’t need to cut the embroidered top to make this dress work!

Drew and I had a great time at the wedding, and they even had a mariachi band and donkey during cocktail hour! I had to beg Drew to take a picture with the donkey, and now he’s the one who loves the picture and shows everyone!

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Fabric Details:

Bodysuit: Techno Scuba Knit, Black (fabric.com)

Skirt: Telio Adore Duchess Satin, Black (fabric.com)

Skirt Overlay: Telio Zoe Chiffon Solid, Black (fabric.com)

 

I have two weddings to attend this year and am already planning my makes. They aren’t black tie, so my attire can be a little more relaxed. Here’s this year’s inspiration!

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I am obsessed with Colette’s latest pattern, Myrna (middle photo). Maybe it’s the fabric that drew me in, but I love the bust details and the short sleeves, and think this would be a great pattern for a summer wedding.  I’ve also been loving cap sleeves lately, and I’ve been craving to make a dress with an interesting back.

(Top left is from Modcloth, top right from Rent the Runway, the other two no longer have working links)

In reality, I have so many handmade dresses in my closet that I really don’t need to make any new ones. But it’s always a good idea to stretch your dress sewing skills every once in a while, right?!

handmade wardrobe · sewing

Printed Hemlock Tee

Back in November, Drew and I went to California for his friend’s wedding. We bought one way tickets months before, but none back as we figured we would use this time for a vacation. We had no plans, no hotels, no plane home but we were up for an adventure.

We decided to do a small tour of California, starting where the wedding was in Santa Barbara and working our way towards LA, to LAX. At each stop, I had to look up fabric stores. That’s a given, right? Our second stop was in the beautiful town of Ojai where I found this amazing fabric store Cattywampus. I love finding smaller shops because they usually have fabrics you can’t find anywhere else, and they sell curated goods that are usually online only.

Cattywampus has a beautiful location and really fabulous finds. I’ve secretly always wanted a boutique, and over time have wanted a fabric/craft store that held classes (I even found the perfect location that was for sale a few years ago) and this shop is everything I would want.

Their fabric selection isn’t very large, which means they really care about each bolt that’s on the shelf. I had a hard time deciding what to get and walked away with two cuts. (I blame my carry-on suitcase and knowing we would be fabric shopping in LA). One is an adorable hedgehog print that I’m saving for a fun bag lining; the second was this stunning lightweight cotton. I was really drawn to the print and was told it was hand-printed in India- which just made me love it more.

Printed Hemlock Tee - Trish Stitched

I knew I wanted to make a top out of this print. Something simple, to let the print really shine. I had a few options in mind, including a Lou Box Top and Mandy Boat Tee. Ultimately I chose a new pattern: The Hemlock Tee from Grainline Studio. This is a free pattern that I’ve wanted to try for a while, and thought it would be a nice look for this fabric. (Just sign up for Grainline Studio’s Email List for the free pattern!)

Printed Hemlock Tee - Trish StitchedPrinted Hemlock Tee - Trish Stitched

The Hemlock Tee is one size, so I did some major alterations to make it fit petite. I didn’t like the neckline, as it was way too wide for my frame. I cut out 1/2″ from the CF on the pattern, meaning 1″ was taken out from the center in total. I probably could have done an extra 1/2″, but didn’t want to cut too far in. I also shortened the pattern 4″, and hemmed an extra 1″, since the pattern is very long. The last alteration was while sewing the sleeves. I only cut 4″ of the sleeve pattern, hemmed the raw edge and folded in until the bodice seam. I saw a few hemlock tee’s with the folded sleeve and loved the look so I had to try it out for myself!

Printed Hemlock Tee - Trish StitchedPrinted Hemlock Tee - Trish Stitched

Printed Hemlock Tee - Trish Stitched

After wearing my Hemlock and taking photos, I can definitely take it in a little bit. I can just hear my mom saying “this does nothing for you!” haha! But I absolutely love the boxy look. My daily uniform is slowly becoming skinny jeans, booties and boxy tops. As soon as I put this top on, I wanted to make a pair of black skinny jeans and a cute cardigan to finish off the look. There’s nothing quite like a motivating make!

My final thoughts on the Hemlock Tee: for a free pattern it’s a great base. I do love the look, and how many hacks there are in the sewing world for this pattern, but for petite figures, this was not a cut & sew. I am however, excited to have another pattern that is great for both knits and wovens and encourage you to check it out if you haven’t already!