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!

handmade wardrobe · refashion · sewing

#Refashioners2017 Suits You: Suit to Coat Refashion

Happy Halloween! Life has been so crazy the past few weeks and I fell like I’ve fallen behind on everything! But I finished my suit refashion just in time for today’s deadline!

If you aren’t familiar with the challenge, Refashioners is a online challenge to refashion and win a prize! Last year the theme was jeans – and I made one of my favorite refashions- my denim bomber jacket. This year’s theme was “suits you”, taking an old suit and transforming it into something new.

I love seeing everyone’s creations, and while I’m pretty sure I will never win a refashioning challenge, it is so much fun to participate!

This year I had a plan even before the official rules came out. I felt so on top of my game, life was good. I bought two women’s suits, one pink skirt suit and a blue dress suit, and wanted to make coveralls. With the hopeful impending move, I had dreams of painting rooms and doing a ton of work to a house and thought a pair of coveralls would be the perfect wardrobe addition.

#Refashioners2017 Suits You: Suit to Coat Refashion - Trish Stitched

Well, here we are at the end of October and still no house. We lost another dream home last week, so house hunting has been a really tough journey, not just time consuming, but so emotionally stressful. Because of everything that has been going on, I didn’t get to my refashion, and last week I knew I was cutting it close. I had no desire to make coveralls, and needed a new idea- stat.

Pinterest to the rescue! I found this great coat on pinterest and my mind was made up. I had to have something similar and I could transform my suit into this coat!

This refashion was actually very simple, but took way longer than expected. I cut the suit jacket in half, and attached the bottom half of the skirt to the jacket. This way I was able to keep the original hem.

For the hood, I was able to use more of the skirt, and used the original skirt lining for the hood facing. I used the hood pattern from the Kelly Anorak. To attach, I just removed the jacket collar and sewed the hood into the opening.

#Refashioners2017 Suits You: Suit to Coat Refashion - Trish Stitched#Refashioners2017 Suits You: Suit to Coat Refashion - Trish Stitched#Refashioners2017 Suits You: Suit to Coat Refashion - Trish Stitched

I ironed out the suit lapels and turned them in. I originally wanted to add a zipper, but the ones I had were closed ended – which I discovered after sewing two different zippers in. So no closures here! But I like the open feel anyway.

I removed the sleeves to resize and change the cuff. I cut off about 2.5″ from the sleeve and made a new cuff with elastic. The sleeves are full length but I love them rolled up! The last step was to add slouchy pockets to the front. I used this awesome diagram from Madalynne, and took the fabric from the original jacket bottom.

#Refashioners2017 Suits You: Suit to Coat Refashion - Trish StitchedDSC_0345#Refashioners2017 Suits You: Suit to Coat Refashion - Trish Stitched

There’s nothing left but some scraps, buttons, skirt zipper and two massive shoulder pads that were removed almost immediately. I was hoping to add more detail and hardware like the original, but I ran out of time and supplies and really enjoy the cleaner finished look.

#Refashioners2017 Suit Me: Suit to Coat Refashion - Trish Stitched

Overall, I love my new piece. And I really love having a new piece that’s wearable. And, if you don’t follow me on Instagram (@trishstitched) you may notice my hair is a little different…11″ chopped off!

handmade wardrobe · refashion · sewing

Bridesmaid Dress Refashion

We are in the thick of wedding season right now, and Drew and I attended our second wedding this past weekend. When the invitation arrived, it called for black tie attire and my first thought was “oh crap, what do I wear?”. My second thought was “oh yes, what do I get to make?!”

The first step was to research what black tie actually meant, and I stopped at Rent the Runway for some inspiration. There was nothing I fell in love with but I did get a better sense of what was appropriate. Generally full length dresses but not ball gowns. This wedding was also when I would be meeting Drew’s boss and co-workers, so anything revealing was out of the question.

Of course, time went on and I still didn’t start making anything. The Spring/Summer is a really busy time at work so it just wasn’t in the cards to make a full handmade dress. I rummaged through my closet just for materials I could re-use, and instead came across the bridesmaids dress I wore for my cousins wedding.

Bridesmaid Dress Refashion - Trish Stitched

This was not my favorite dress. It was short, and the color wasn’t meant for someone pale, but the top had some beautiful detail. I thought it would be a great base to start with, and all I needed to do was add a new skirt!

I started looking for fabric online, with the idea of a print in mind (since that’s my style) and needed something to match the “champagne” color. I wasn’t finding exactly what I needed so I went shopping in my own stash! I came across a print that was left over from this dress, and everything fell into place.

Bridesmaid Dress Refashion - Trish Stitched

This refashion was so simple – and it resulted in something so different from the original piece! I took a maxi skirt sloper I made for my black maxi to make the skirt- just a basic sloper with darts removed.

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I was able to leave the zipper in place and sew the skirt right to the zipper, making this dress – FREE! I also wore the same shoes that I wore as a bridesmaid!

Bridesmaid Dress Refashion - Trish Stitched

The wedding was stunning. It was a very intimate ceremony and reception – we were part of the 75 invited guests. It was a fun night of dancing, with the Empire State Building so close by.

Bridesmaid Dress Refashion - Trish StitchedBridesmaid Dress Refashion - Trish Stitched

I do have one more formal wedding coming up in November, another of Drew’s co-workers. I’m really hoping I have time to make the Leanne Marshall pattern I picked up, but fall is another busy time at work, so I will have to get started soon!

Have a great weekend!

handmade wardrobe · sewing

Sew Together For Summer – Simplicity 8084 Silk Shirt Dress

Over the past year I’ve acquired three silky prints in my fabric collection – and I had images of all three of them becoming dresses. I’ve actually been wanting to make a shirt dress with one or more of them, but other, more pressing projects always got in the way. When the Instagram challenge #sewtogetherforsummer came up on my feed, I thought it was just the excuse I needed to finally make my dream shirt dress!

This challenge was introduced a few months ago, and I said to myself “I have so much time…I’ll wait to start”. Why. Why do I always say that?? Please tell me I’m not the only one to procrastinate! I actually did shirt dress research way back when the challenge started so I had my pattern ready to go, but didn’t decide on a fabric choice until yesterday morning!

Since I knew I wanted to sew with one of my silky fabrics, my pattern options became limited since a wide range of patterns were more suitable for chambrays or cottons. After looking over a ton of shirt dress patterns, I came across Mimi G’s Simplicity 8084 and loved the cleanliness of the pattern. The buttons were covered up with a placket as to not disturb the look of the fabric, and it had sleeves, which is something I was looking for!

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This was my first time sewing with a Mimi G pattern, and I enjoyed it! I will say, when the pattern said there was a youtube sew-a-long, I was expecting a little more than a 30 minute video. It did help me with my problem areas (sewing on the plackets and collar) but I think I’m used to the super detailed sew-a-longs from indie patterns, so I expected more.  This was just a small observation I had, definitely not a deal breaker if you are thinking about making this pattern! I’m happy the video was even offered!

In general, the instructions were good, again there were some parts I think could have had more detail but construction was pretty painless! The dress took a full day to construct, it actually took a few hours just to cut my fabric as I was being super careful to get the print even.

Sew Together For Summer - Simplicity 8084 Silk Shirt Dress - Trish StitchedSew Together For Summer - Simplicity 8084 Silk Shirt Dress - Trish Stitched

There is one thing I need to point out for my petite friends. When I was tracing the pattern, I knew I would have to shorten the dress a bit. When I know I need to do this, I pay close attention to the “shorten here” lines, because I know I will use them. This pattern is so petite friendly!! There are actual lines that say fold here for petite! I didn’t specifically measure how much I was taking out, but I think it was about an inch – which was just enough! I figured I would take the hem up a little if needed, but I didn’t even need to do that! (For taller seamstresses, you may want to consider lengthening the pattern). I don’t remember the last time I sewed a Big 4 pattern without making some sort of fit alteration that wasn’t included in the pattern. So huge props to Mimi G & team Simplicity for the fit on this one!

For reference, I’m 4′ 9″ ish and cut a size 10.

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The only thing I didn’t do was make the drawstring out of my fabric. I have SO MUCH of this twill tape that I like to use it every time I need a drawstring. It’s much faster, and I like the contrast it offers.

I’ve mentioned before I don’t really wear dresses, but this has such a casual yet put together feel that it isn’t just a summer dress I’ll only wear once a year. I needed a go-to dress that I could just grab out of my closet if needed and this is it!

I picked up the fabric from Pendleton Woolen Mills in Oregon – it was on sale for $5/ yard. Guys, it’s SILK! For $5/yd! If I sewed with silk more often, I would have bought so much more but I contained myself! I’ve started buying fabric in place of objects as souvenirs when on vacation – so I’ll consider this my Oregon trip dress!

Sew Together For Summer - Simplicity 8084 Silk Shirt Dress - Trish Stitched

I also have to re-press the placket down, I see it’s peaking open in my photos! I finished this dress last night and made Drew wake up early to photograph my dress for the challenge deadline (today!). He’s a good sport.

Looking for some shirt dress inspiration? Check out the hashtag #sewtogetherforsummer on Instagram!

handmade wardrobe · sewing

Cargo Ginger Jeans & Fashion Revolution

Happy Monday everyone! I hope you all had a wonderful weekend. Today I’m sharing a project that has been on my mind for months.

When I first graduated college, and was still living at home, I was able to save some money to spend on clothing. I’ve always been very careful about spending, and take time to buy something I really want. I found a pair of green cargo pants that were made with sustainable materials, from an eco friendly fashion site just starting out. They were around $50, so I was pretty happy to purchase. A month after purchasing, I didn’t receive my pants. I was somewhat devastated – I saved all this money, carefully found the perfect pants and now I don’t get them? I contacted the company and the CEO called me trying to explain. She didn’t really apologize, didn’t really say much of anything, just that the order was on the way. So you could say I was pretty turned off by the entire experience.

Eventually I got my pants. And they were too big. It was such a hassle to get them, I figured if I returned, it would take forever to get my money back. So I kept them, and wore them even though the waist was way too high and large. I don’t wear them very often, but always had a vision of making my own pair- that actually fit. And as far as I know, the company is no longer selling apparel.

With this dream of making cargo pants, I bought Kauffman Stretch Twill from Fabric.com back in December. I didn’t want to attempt these pants until I finished a second pair, so I would have a little more experience. Jeans sewing is still very new to me, and with each pair I make, I’m getting closer to the perfect fit. My last pair was pretty close because I was able to lower the rise and take some inches out of the waistband. The fit came out SO MUCH BETTER than my first pair, but I took a little too much out of the rise, and the waistband was still a little large. For this pair, I added a little more to the rise, and took an extra inch out of the waist.

Cargo Ginger Jeans - Trish StitchedCargo Ginger Jeans - Trish StitchedCargo Ginger Jeans - Trish StitchedCargo Ginger Jeans - Trish Stitched

Clearly these are very tight. I’m pretty sure it’s because the fabric is twill, not denim and there wasn’t as much stretch as my previous pairs. But even with that, they are comfortable and over time I know they will be worked in. I wanted to add some detail to the pants, but didn’t want to make them too overdone. I added some textured pockets in back, and a pocket to the leg.

For the back pockets, I pretty much stole the idea from Suzy Bee Sews. Her pockets came out awesome and I had to have them for my own behind. I made up the pockets as I went, so I’m sorry there’s not a guideline for doing it yourself, but it’s rather easy to play around with.

Cargo Ginger Jeans - Trish StitchedCargo Ginger Jeans - Trish Stitched

For the side pocket, I roughly followed the tutorial on Imagine Gnats Site from Dandelion Drift. I used the shape of the pocket, but added a center pleat for interest. The original pocket was too large to sew onto my thigh so I cut it down a few inches all around and closed it with a few snaps.

Cargo Ginger Jeans - Trish StitchedCargo Ginger Jeans - Trish Stitched

I still have a fear of installing the grommets on my jeans. I had an issue installing the button and needed Drew to hammer it in, so grommets freak me out. Since they are the very last step, the LAST thing I want to do is make a hole I can’t cover. I’m actually looking into grommet hardware because I want to add grommets to some handbags, so eventually all my handmade jeans will have more hardware.

If you follow me on Instagram (@trishstitched) you would have seen my pretty floral pockets! The fabric came from a stash I found when cleaning out my grandparent’s house. They were napkins, and now they will line the pockets to my favorite pants.

Cargo Ginger Jeans - Trish Stitched

In other news, it’s Fashion Revolution Week! I wrote a post about it last year, which is still very, very relevant- feel free to read! This is a cause very near to my heart. I am still on my way to a 100% me made wardrobe and have come pretty far within a year. I’ve been working hard on my handmade jean collection, and my basics like t-shirts as well. I’ve made a bra, but still need to work on undergarments. It’s a long process, but well worth it to me.

Cargo Ginger Jeans - Trish Stitched

{Pictured here are my Cargo Ginger Jeans, Kelly Anorak, and Copy & Paste Tank}

If you are interested in learning about the subject, I recommend watching The True Cost on Netflix. It is an informative and eye-opening documentary, and a good place to start to learn about the real fashion industry.