Over the past year I’ve been blogging off and on still trying to figure out just what kind of sewing blog I’d like to portray. (And what I have time for!) In the end, I know I want to encourage other potential sewists out there to start sewing, keep sewing, and finding ways to afford sewing. Today, I used four free tutorials to create a unique look for this shirt. No money was shelled out for patterns and all of these tutorials are easily found online. In fact, I’m completely self-taught and find most of what I need to teach myself online.
Yes, that’s right, $3. And no, it’s not upcycled. Or thrifted. Well, ok, it’s kinda thrifted. I found the fabric at a salvage store. So, technically, the fabric is new, but was about to be thrown out, so I snagged it. And it’s not just any fabric….it’s a jersey sheet!
I absolutely *love* dressing for the Fourth of July. It’s the only holiday I dress for and I tend to go all out (including painting my nails to look like American flags). Don’t ask me why I love looking like an American flag though because I’m really not that patriotic. Sorry, but it’s the truth. I love Jesus more than my country. Anyway….you’re here to check out my fun outfits, and I’m so glad you came!
The beach ball is growing! I attempted to do fun pregnancy photos with all my pregnancies, but for some reason it’s actually coming together this time around. Who would have thought the 4th baby would get all this attention?! But, it’s really neat to have this special progression with my 4th and (possible) last child.
Here we are at 25 weeks:
It’s definitely summer here in Mississippi, and I’m avoiding going outside. I know that’s terrible because being outside is so good for the soul, but man it’s hard to stay sane in this outrageous heat being pregnant. This is my third Mississippi summer pregnancy and I know how to manage. AC and popsicles are my friend. BUT, my kiddos love being outside and the heat doesn’t bother them, so if we do go out, it’s to the pool or beach!
With the re-launch of my Etsy shop, I haven’t had much time to sew for myself lately. But, I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to try out some amazing women’s patterns and so, here I am sewing myself some love this week!
(Disclaimer: I received these two patterns for free, but all opinions are my own)
The main reason I agreed to this blog tour was because I saw that Blank Slate Patterns was on the list of pattern designers to choose. And I have been dying to try the Denver Tunic. I first saw Melissa’s Instagram post on a self-drafted tunic she made nearly a year ago! And yea, I just so happened to be the first to comment that she needed to make it into a pattern for purchase. And then about 50 others followed. So, thanks Melissa for making our dreams come true. 🙂 I was really tempted to purchase the pattern when it came out with the bundle back in the fall, but I try to hold off purchasing because I never know when someone will buy it for me or when I could possible have a chance (like this!) to receive it for a blog tour. All that to say, I would totally buy this pattern! Or strongly hint to someone to get it for me for Valentine’s Day or something….hint hint. (trying to help you ladies out here!)
I love cowl necks, love pockets and love tunics, so really this was a no brainer for me. I LOVE it! The pattern also comes in a dress variation and you can omit the cowl neck if you want a scoop neck…and I just saw that it comes in short sleeves! WHAT?! Ok, I’ll definitely be making one of these in the spring. Princess seams were something new to me (I really still feel like a beginning sewist), but the pattern pieces fit perfectly and I had no problem with that step. Really the whole thing came together quite quickly and easily. The hardest part was finagling my one yard of amazing Lillestoff knit into a pattern that calls for 2 yards.
See those sleeves there? Yea, they look awesome, but it was also a necessity. I only had enough width to make the sleeves down to my elbows, then added the band of charcoal knit, and then had a bit more of the Lillestoff to finish of the smaller bottom section of the sleeves. But, it worked! And I kinda like the contrast in the middle of the sleeve.
The Lillestoff knit that I chose was one I splurged on and purchased last January (at $26 a yard! gasp). I NEVER spend that much on fabric, but I want to start consuming less and really the best way to do that is to make quality clothes. The way to make quality clothes is to start with quality fabric. Lillestoff does not disappoint. I supplemented with a heather charcoal gray spandex knit from Girl Charlee. Their spandex knit, which tends to be a heavier weight is a great fabric!
I’ve already worn this Denver Tunic 3 times before the photoshoot. So, I know it’s going to be a staple in my wardrobe.
Now, on to the pants. Let me first start by saying: I have never made pants for myself. Ever. Not even PJ pants. But, I love a good challenge and figured a stretchy knit jegging would be a good place to start.
I chose the SOS Knit Pants by Patterns for Pirates. I’ve heard great reviews about her patterns, specifically her raglan, so I was excited to finally try out a pattern from her. This pattern has a huge range of sizes and two styles: skinny or straight leg. My measurements lined up with a medium, so I went with that and proceeded with the skinny version of the pattern. Everything was going smoothly until it was time to baste and check for fit. I tried them on and they were really loose. Kept increasing my seam allowance more and more and finally came up with what you see here:
It’s not bad, but still a bit loose. I really wanted to make these pants right and I just couldn’t. So, I’m actually showing you unfinished pants! Ha. They aren’t hemmed and I haven’t even attached the waistband or topstitched them yet. Luckily, the Denver Tunic covers all that up. But, I guess I have chicken legs and birthing hips (I do have 3 kiddos) and I need to continue to refine these pants to make them what I want them to be.
The pattern was great and everything lined up and the instructions were very easy to follow. So, since I’m a newbie at sewing pants, I’ll chalk it up to that and keep going! I do love these pants and cannot wait to finalize them because… green pants!
I actually used the same fabric that is shown on the front of the pattern, but I used the wrong side of the fabric. It’s a stretch denim blue/green, so I thought it would be fun to use the green side. Then I accented the front and back pockets of the pants with the blue side (which you can’t see here).
Once I get those pants finished I’ll have one amazing all sewn-by-me outfit! Here are the details on what I used and changes I made.
Total cost: $28.13 (fabric, thread)
Pattern: Denver Tunic by Blank Slate Patterns
Alterations made: Added the appropriate length amount to the original pattern because of my neck->waist measurement (Melissa breaks this down for you in the pattern). Then I added another 3 inches to the bottom of the pattern. Essentially, I made a Medium with an XXXL length. Then decreased 2 inches from the height of the hem band.
Total cost: $9.92 (fabric, thread, elastic)
Pattern: SOS Knit Pants by Patterns for Pirates
Fabric: Stretch Denim Blue/Green Spandex Knit from Girl Charlee ($6.50/yd) (looks like it’s out of stock, but here it is in blue/orange. And how fun would orange pants be?!)
Alterations made: Took in a lot from the width of the pants. But, still making alterations to complete this look!
Thanks so much for stopping by to see my new look, now be sure to check out the rest of the ladies throughout the next two weeks.
Ever heard of Ottobre?! I quickly became a big fan after I saw all the awesome things you can sew up with their patterns. I dropped BIG hints to my man, sending him links, telling him how awesome our kids’ clothes will be, and basically saying I didn’t want anything else for Christmas. Well, it worked! He bought me a subscription for a whole year! And I loved it. Every quarter I would squeal with excitement when Ottobre came in the mail and drool over the magazine (and perhaps Instagram them every. single. time.). And this past Christmas he surprised me by including the women’s magazine to my subscription (yea, my hubby is the best). I’m getting somewhere with all this, don’t worry.
So, I drool over them, Instagram them (is Instagram a verb now?), and glance through them time and time again, but hardly ever sew up their patterns! This month, that’s going to change. Big time.
I’m challenging myself to only sew Ottobre patterns for the whole month of October. Today I’ll start with one for myself (and this may be the only I get to sew for myself…)
After birthing 3 kids and nursing all of them, my body just ain’t the same. And all my shirts are way too short. I’ve played with the idea of adding a band to all of them, but that just won’t look right. So, instead, I’m slowly making myself a shirt here and there. This one is my first Ottobre pattern for me! And I’m pretty satisfied with it.
I love the cap sleeves, although the white fabric doesn’t stretch much, so they are a bit tight. But I’m happy with the overall look and length. I also love this navy/green stripe fabric, but again, there’s not much stretch. When I’m done nursing I know I’ll truly be in love with this top, but it’s a bit hard to feed my baby in it right now.
After reflecting on all this, I just might make myself something else this month. Perhaps something a bit more nursing-friendly and stretchy. We’ll see…
Ottobre 2/2015, #17 Jersey Top
Navy/Mint strip from Girl Charlee
White is selvage scraps from a Girl Charlee chevron fabric
If you’re up for a challenge, join me! You don’t have to only sew Ottobre patterns all month, but if you do sew one, let me know! I’ll be over on Instagram with #OttobreOctober and #OttobreOctubre. Or email me with your looks at sew.thrifty.blog[at]gmail.com or link up in the comments.
I look forward to see what you make!
This summer is my brother’s wedding! He’s been dating longer than I’ve been married, so to say I’ve been waiting for this moment is an understatement. But, since he waited 7+ years I’ve learned how to sew, and I now get to sew all our clothes for his big day. First up…ME!
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The dress I’ll be wearing to my brother’s wedding:
My brother and fiance described their wedding as simple, unique, and classy. It’s going to be an evening event outside in the mountains of Aspen, Colorado. You’re jealous, I know. 😉
Right away I knew I wanted to make myself a navy blue maxi dress. At first I was going to make the bodice some funky print with the skirt a solid navy, but the more I played around with fabrics the more I liked the simple (hey, just like the wedding!) look of all navy. Then, I can accessorize with different prints and colors when I want.
Navy fabric is from Girl Charlee here.
My bracelet and necklace here are made with selvages (free!) of knit spandex fabric from Girl Charlee.* Plus, the necklace doubles as a headband when I want a more casual look.
I was fortunate enough to be given this pattern from the Women’s BundleUp. That being said, I was able to choose my pattern, and this was the exact type of dress I wanted to make for myself for the wedding. This pattern is Love Notions Bluezette dress. There are so many options with it. Seriously, there are 30 different ways to sew it up and that’s without adding your own twists or hacks. There are two bodice styles, three different places you can wear the waist, and three sleeve lengths. And then there are five skirt styles too. Add all those plus the endless options of fabrics, and you’ve got yourself an entire wardrobe of lovely dresses!
Here’s the breakdown:
I love that I’m getting to wear a dress that cost less than $15, was handmade by me, and finished in less than 2 hours!
The time includes cutting the fabric, sewing, trying it on at several stages, adjusting, and finishing. I sewed the non-lined version, leaving out the waist elastic and left the skirt unhemmed. For the maxi skirt, I made it thinner than the pattern because I ran out of fabric, but it turned out great, and I only had to use 1 yard for the skirt part!
Go check out all the patterns in the BundleUp for Women sale. They are only available in this bundle price until May 8, so be sure to get what you want before then. Depending on how many patterns you buy, each pattern costs from $4-4.50 (50% or more off)!
And see what all the other ladies have done with the other patterns in the BundleUp package – there are 11 patterns and so many options!
Thread Riding Hood – Gingerbear
Hibbadorary – Pensebrox
Sew Starly – If Only They Would Nap
Be sure to come back for the rest of my handmade wedding series, where I’ll use free patterns to create some fun and fancy looks (and as always, thrifty!):
Thrifty Handmade Wedding: The Boy
Thrifty Handmade Wedding: The Girl
Thrifty Handmade Wedding: The Baby