Sew Easy Summer Pattern Round Up

“In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:” Philippians 2:5

Hey Everyone!

How are you?  Any special 4th of July plans?  I wish I was one of those people that gets into holiday sewing.  I always admire folks who take the time to make a red,white and blue kind of sewing project.  Or costume sew for Halloween. or make matching christmas pajamas for their kids.  Thats just not my thing. lol!

I am looking forward to the 4th of July holiday though.  My kids are away with their dad but my brother and his family are flying in from Arizona.  I am really looking forward to spending sometime with my nieces and nephews.

This week’s post is a Sew Easy Summer Sewing Pattern Round UP.  Like I mentioned when I announced this series I was looking to sew projects that had minimal pattern pieces (5 or less), no zipper or button closures.  Pretty much anything that I can pull up or pull over my head.  I also thought some of you might be feeling kind of craft lazy this summer also and would like to keep sewing projects laid back and easy.  Below is a list of what I pulled from the latest spring/summer collections from the Big 3 as well as a few indy patterns companies.

The Patterns

The Big 3 Companies

Vogue

V9374 Pull on Pants

V9375 MISSES’ VEST, JACKET AND PANTS

V9377  Misses Jacket and Belt

Butterick

B6691 Misses Jacket and Jumpsuit

B6680 Misses Dress

B6685 Misses Top and Sash

McCalls

M7942  Misses’, Children’s and Girls’ Top, Skirt, Shorts and Pants

Indy Pattern Companies

For this list I just linked you to a handful of company websites because many of them only have a handful of patterns on their site.  Many of which are stylish, very easy and beginner friendly.  Its worth the extra effort to spend time on their sites.  They often have really great blogs and tutorials in addition to their shop.

Paper Theory Patterns

Style Sew Me

Closet Case Patterns

Megan Nielsen Patterns

Friday Pattern Company

MimiG Style

Rosy Peña Patterns

That’s it!  A nice round up of some great and easy sewing patterns to help you build your handmade summer wardrobe without too much fuss.  Have a great 4th of July holiday everyone! Catch you next week…

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DIY One Shoulder Top Using Vogue 9318 and Pattern Review

“I lift up my eyes to the mountains- where does my help come from?
 My help comes from the Lordthe Maker of heaven and earth.” Psalm 121:1-2

Hey Everyone!

I hope you guys are having a great week! I finally got a moment to finish writing my review for this pattern.  My procrastination was due to me not having the right shoes to accesorize with this look.  I originally settled on a pair of Sam Adelman platform sandles because it was the best that I had and I still wasn’t happy.  Then I realized that I could just say screw the shoes all together and just crop the photos to more of a 3/4 view.  So this week, your not getting head to toe.  Besides, its about the top anyway lol!

Pattern Review

This week’s make is Vogue 9318 view A.  I really enjoyed this make and I originally intended on making both A and B as a set but didn’t have enough fabric.  So A was as far as I was able to get.  Then in the process of making view A,  I was inspired to turn it into a mini babydoll dress and I decided to make myself one in linen which i’ll be posting sometime in July most likely.

This pattern is a part of Vogue’s Sew Easy Collection.  Which I really like because they have some great design options.  There is only 2 pattern pieces for this top with a 3rd piece that is the elastic guide.  The sizing runs small-xxlarge. The sizing is very generous. I cut the large which was according to the finished measurements on the pattern envelope my size. But even that was a bit big.  I had to still take in another 2 inches of ease through the assymetric neckline.  Which I did by cutting the elastic inside of the casing down by 2 inches and that gave me a better fit.

I was able to cut and sew this together in less than 2 hours. The directions were straight forward and easy to follow.  Its definitely beginner friendly.

Fabric

I used a light weight stretch cotton in this very pale gray floral print.  I bought this fabric last year on a fabric shopping trip to Chicago.  But this is such a versatile pattern you could use: Linen, cotton, rayon, even a knit fabric would be nice if you sized down the pattern first.

Style Details

So my orginal plan of making a set was hampered by not having enough fabric.  So I styled it as separates and had the hardest time finding something in my closet to coordinate.  I settled on this denim skirt that I purchased from the Goodwill last summer. I already told you that the shoes were a bust and as always I like my accessories simple.  My favorite oversized hoop earrings.  And thats it.  A simple summer outfit.

 

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Well that’s all for now.  Until next time…..!

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OOTD: Thrift The Look: Boyfriend Jeans and boxy blazers

“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.” Philippians 4:8 (NIV)

Hey Everyone!

I hope all is well.  My apologies for the late post.  My week has been a bit hectic.  I dropped my kids off to their dad for the summer over the weekend and then ended up with a mild summer cold.  So i’ve been nursing it while trying to get work done. But i’ve also fallen behind a bit on my blog posts.

Inspiration

This week’s thrift the look inspiration was a street style blazer look that I came across on Pinterest.  I love a great blazer with jeans. It’s easy to wear and is a go to favorite of mine when I need to look put together in a pinch.  Below are my inspiration photos.

Store Review

I love the laid back swag of these outfits.  In order to create my version of this look I took to the Goodwill of Oak Creek.  It was my first time to this particular location.  I liked that it wasn’t a big store and that it was clean.  They had a decent selection of items for me to pull from.  I bought quite a few things actually.  I went on a Monday late morning and it wasn’t too crowded.  The store staff were polite as well.

Styling

My complete look from Head to Toe came from the Goodwill.  Outside of the grey blazer, everything I purchased was from my Goodwill of Oak Creek visit.  Below are the details.

Blazer: 9 West purchased last spring at another Goodwill

She t-shirt: Ny and Company purchased at Goodwill of Oak Creek

Dark Wash Boyfriend Jeans: Ny and Company purchased at Goodwill of Oak Creek

Orchid Purple Suede Pumps: Guess purchased at Goodwill of Oak Creek (just a little tip.  when you purchase gently used shoes second hand.  I spray the insides with Lysol disinfecting spray. Before I wear them).

 

 

Well that’s all for Now.  Until next time…..

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DIY Tunic Top using Simplicity 8094

 

But as for me, I trust [confidently] in You and Your greatness, O Lord; I said, “You are my God.” Psalm 31:14

Hey Everyone!

I’ve been appreciating all of the love with the Thrift The Look series that launched on Monday.  Today’s post is a continuation of the Summer Sew Easy Series.  We are on Look #3 already and I can’t tell you how much I love this tunic.

I used Simplicity 8094. I bought this pattern last spring and I think it is out of print now.  I’ve found it on Ebay and Etsy though.  I love it for many reasons.  There are so many style variations that you can try with this pattern.  The first time I made it in a tribal print medium weight knit fabric and I made view E.

This time around I made the sleeveless option view D using a red light weight cotton from my stash.  I love the dramatic side slits that start at the waistline.  It gives a modestly sexy side profile ( can you use modest and sexy in the same sentence..?).  But if you don’t like showing that much silohuette you can always wear a tank top underneath, wear high waist pants, or just sew the slit a little lower.  Overall its a great casual everday look or you could dress it up by wearing faux leather leggings or a pencil skirt underneath.  Even wearing a pair of stilettos with your skinny jeans would amplify the look.

The pattern was easy to cut and sew.  I plan on making a few more of these.  I could see it in a nice printed rayon or linen would be beautiful as well. If you use cotton I recommend one that has a nice drape to it.  Nothing too stiff.

I styled it very casual with a pair of dark wash skinny jeans from NY and Company purchased like 2 years ago.  And my favorite cognac and snake print wedges that I purchased on clearance from DSW last summer.

Photo credits: my beautiful daughter Asabea.

 

Well that’s all for now. Until next time…..

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DIY Linen Pants Using Simplicity 8389

“For everything there is a season, and a time for every purpose under heaven:” Ecclesiastes 3:1

Hello Lovelies!

I hope your week is going splendidly.  I’ve been breezing through my Sew Easy Sewing Makes for the summer series.  Its been such a breath of fresh air for me.  Not just because I’ve been flying through my projects list.  But also because its been really liberating my thought process around my personal style choices.

For a long time now i’ve been struggling between creating things that I deem wow and blog worthy vs. what is truly my personal style aesthetic.  Working through my fabric and pattern stash has given me a framework to focus my individual projects while forcing me to take an internal inventory.  And i’m realizing the following:

  1. Buying fabric is like clothes shopping.  You can sometimes purchase things that are a hit and sometimes its a miss.
  2. I have alot of  summer weight woven fabric in bright colors mostly from natural fibers like cotton.  (A lot of cotton.)
  3. I’m not challenging myself to my full potential.  I keep buying the same kind of fabric and choose the same kind of projects. Pants are a prime example.  I hate working through pants fitting issues.  So I tend to stick to making dresses or skirts.
  4. I want to make things that are really pieces that I can incorporate into my everyday life.  Whether they are wow to others or not.

Which leads me to today’s DIY project.  I bought Simplicity 8389 last summer because they seemed like an easy pull on pants pattern.  It has been lurking in my sewing room for a while and everytime I passed it, I would pick it up and look it over.  So finally about 3 weeks ago I decided to bite the bullet and try my hand at pants fitting again.

Fitting palazzo pants is much easier that fitting fitted pants.  I created one muslin before going into fashion fabric.  What I learned from the first fitting is that I didn’t like the rise of the pants.  On the model in the pattern envelope picture it looks like the pants are high waist.  But in reality they fit more like a mid-rise.  Below is a picture of me in the muslin. IMG_3045

On my curvy pear shape.  This isn’t a flattering cut for me in a palazzo pant.  So I made a few modifications which  I list below:

Modifications:

  • Raised the waistline 2 inches only at the side seams and back rise.  This made the pants high waist which is more flattering for my shape but it also added length to the back rise.  (I didn’t need to add to the front because it would have lengthened too much in the front.)
  •  Lengthened back crotch curve by 1in.  There was bunching at the bottom of my butt where the fabric curves into the crotch.  Which was an indicator that I needed to lengthen the crotch curve at the back.
  • The waistband was a bit of a challenge. For the following reasons:  a. The pattern itself was off by about 1.5 inches too short.  So I had to redraft the pattern to make sure it fit. And b. the back band did not stop at the side seams like in a traditional pant. It instead reach around to the front band at the princess lines.  Once I put the elastic in it caused a weird gathering and unflattering fit at the side seams. It gave me a bit of a muffin top.
  • I widened the waistband  from a 1.5″ wide band to be a finished width of 3″.  I also re-drafted the front and back bands to sew together at the side seams. This gave me a more flattering fit at the waist.
  • I took in 1 inch at both inseam and outer seam starting at the hip.  There was too much fabric in the leg.
  • The last thing I did was more out of trying to save my final project because the modifications created a great waistline, and fit in the seat. However, there was way to much room in the front rise.  So I opted instead to release the front pleats and convert the entire waistband to an elastic waistband instead of how the pattern was originally drafted and removed about 7 inches of ease from the front waistline.

My final is more of a wearable muslin.  Even with the emergency modifications there is about an 1.5″ of ease from the front crotch that needs to be removed.  However.  I really like the way they came out and wore them to church styled in the way they are featured below.  These pants have some great styling possibilities and i’ll be posting those as #OOTD on my Instagram page throughout the week. So stay connected.

Photo credits: My beautiful daughter Asabea..

Well that’s all for now! Until next time….

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DIY Poncho Wrap Top Tutorial

And we know [with great confidence] that God [who is deeply concerned about us] causes all things to work together [as a plan] for good for those who love God, to those who are called according to His plan and purpose.” Romans 8:28 (amp)

Hello Lovelies!

Its a great day!  The weather here in Milwaukee is starting to break and i’ve been experiencing a series of challenges and triumphs the past few weeks.  I’m so thankful. I am really hanging onto my faith and trying to see things from the glass half full mindset.

As for this weeks post. My DIY Wrap Top Tutorial is about a week later than I promised but I finally got it done yesterday and I like it.  I hope you do to.

It’s a pdf technical sketch pictorial with both cutting and sewing directions.  This is a great beginner friendly tutorial that requires no pattern and I was able to complete quickly.  Less than 2 hours.  You can download your copy of the tutorial in the link below.

DIY Wrap Top Tutorial

If you missed last week’s post where I went into further detail and shared my styled photos you can catch up here.

Let me know what you think and if you make it I’d love to see your version of it.

Well that’s all for now! Until next time….

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Shift Your Perspective: DIY 40s Inspired Wrap Top

“And we know [with great confidence] that God [who is deeply concerned about us] causes all things to work together [as a plan] for good for those who love God, to those who are called according to His plan and purpose.” Romans 8:28 (amp)

Good Day Lovelies!

I hope everyone is doing so well!  This weeks post is a result of some sudden yet unexpected blunders on my part.  I was planning on giving you all Look #1 of the Summer Sew Easy Series.  Complete with a diagram tutorial on my first make.  When a few things happened.

Blunder #1 I left the power cord to my mac book at the coffee shop last week Wednesday and didn’t notice it missing until Saturday and after calling the coffeeshop.  They said they didn’t have it. (so sad right…?)

Blunder #2 I had to order a new one on Monday morning and lucky for me I was able to pick it up at my local Best Buy on Tuesday only to come home and find out that I bought the wrong cord.  So I went back and very happily exchanged it for the right one later that afternoon.  Which leads me to….

Blunder #3 where it is Wednesday (blog posting day) and I realized that because I had already made and photographed my  project I still had time to post only to arrive at the coffeshop ready to work on creating the PDF diagram tutorial and I forgot my mouse and mouse pad at home.  Which I absolutely need to illustrate in Adobe Illustrator.

So this is probably where I…. at any other moment in my life, would have shut down the computer and cried or walked away and ate a bag of salty chips. lol! (the struggle is real).  But God has been doing such a wonderful thing in my life lately.  And that is…. He’s been helping me to shift my perspective.  While yes…..!  I was feeling a little frustrated and yes! I did shed a tear or two yesterday about the power cord issue.  I decided who cares if it doesn’t work out the way you want it too..?! What is the solution?  and keep going.

So here is my solution to this week’s post.  I am sharing with you all today Look #1 and the tutorial i’ll share tomorrow.  And I am totally smiling as I type this.  Its all good!

This week’s post is inspired by this 1940’s wrap top that I’ve seen on Pinterest for a few years now and i’ve always wanted to give it a try and liked the idea of making it for this series.  Its suuuper duuuuper easy to make and only really requires 1 yard of fabric for the average s-xl sized woman. If you are plus sized you will probably need more yardage.

I used a border printed stretch cotton panel that I purchased in Chicago last summer.  The fabric looked like it was printed with the idea of using it to make a gathered short skirt or tunic top.  Neither of which appealed to me.  I just really liked the print so much that I bought some.

I styled it kind of 90’s inspired with a denim skirt that I thrifted from the Goodwill last summer and yellow block heeled sandals and my favorite craft inspired (but store bought) statement necklace.  Its an easy summer outfit that I plan on wearing often.  The shirt is super comfy to wear and In addition to a skirt I could see it paired with shorts, wide leg jeans or palazzo pants, even as a swimsuit cover-up could be nice.  Below are a few pictures.  I even put together a collage of photos demonstrating how to tie it on.

floral wrap shirt 7floral wrap shirt 4floral wrap shirt 2floral wrap shirt 1

floral wrap shirt 8

Well that’s all for now.  Thanks for reading.  Until next time…..

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Summer Sew Easy Series

 “casting all your cares [all your anxieties, all your worries, and all your concerns, once and for all] on Him, for He cares about you [with deepest affection, and watches over you very carefully].”  1 Peter 5:7 (amp)

Heelllo Everyone!

I hope all is well with you! I’ve been super busy trying to manage multiple hats and as a result blogging has been on the back burner. New changes are coming as I am seeking to merge both areas of my business.

I value simplicity and order. So I am working to streamline my business so that the various components complement one another and allows me to be consistent with my output.

But I am so ready to get to blogging again. I miss creating and sharing content. I think I had a blog block.  For the life of me I wasn’t sure what I wanted to write about.  Until today.  I had a light bulb go off and I decided to write all about it.

One of the things that I love about summer is that I actually get a vacay.  My children go and live with their dad for the summer and I get to be single and while I miss my kids;  I love the extra time that I have.

Time that my work-a-holic tendence can really bloom if i’m not careful.  but i’m honestly getting tired of that and I want to enjoy life a bit more.  So I decided that I want to maximize my time in the sewing room so that I can sew fewer days and live more.  Which leads me to announce the Summer Sew Easy Series.

I’m thinking easy pull over tops and dresses, pull on palazo pants, wrap dresses and skirts, upcycled pieces, small accessory projects.  Patterns that have less than 5 pieces to them.  Or better yet require no pattern to create.  No zippers, no buttonholes.  Just easy breezy.  Things that can be accomplished in an afternoon.  Things that I can raid my fabric and pattern stash to create ( because I really am practicing sustainability in my sewing I have only bought new fabric to make samples for my apparel line and even started saving the scraps for smaller projects instead of tossing them.)

I already started sketching some projects on my first set of posts and working on creating a hit list of content ideas. I think I might share them with you all on my Instastories later this week or over the weekend.  So stay tuned!

What about you all…?  What are your summer sewing plans? I’d love to hear about them.

Until next time……

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DIY Blue Crochet Cardigan

Happy Hump Day!  I’m so happy to share with you all my last crochet sweater from the January Gallery Night/Day exhibit.

“If we [freely] admit that we have sinned and confess our sins, He is faithful and just [true to His own nature and promises], and will forgive our sins and cleanse us continually from all unrighteousness [our wrongdoing, everything not in conformity with His will and purpose]. “1 John 1:9 (amp)

 

Hello Everyone!

Happy Hump Day!  I’m so happy to share with you all my last crochet sweater from the January Gallery Night/Day exhibit.  While it is the last sweater from this small collection it is not my last crochet project.  As a matter of fact i’m finishing up another crochet crop sweater.  I’m calling it the Brighter Side Skinny Crop Sweater.  Chunky yarn was fun but I wanted to create a more slim down version of the Brighter Side Cropped Chunky Yarn Sweater.

So stayed tuned i’ll be debuting this new piece in the coming weeks.  Along with sharing with you some crochet tips and tricks on my instastories.  If you don’t follow me on social media my handle on instagram is @themodestlifeblog and you can find my facebook page under the same name.  You can also click the links on my homepage to get to my pages as well.

Onto this week’s make.  This sweater was my first piece from the collection that I made.  It also took me the longest to make.  I wasn’t happy with it. It felt like it needed something extra.  But everytime I added the extra it didn’t feel or look right.  I went on back and forth like this right up until the week of the exhibit.  In the end I settled with the mantra “if ain’t broke, don’t fix it”.  It also by far was the biggest hit with the people who came to see the exhibit.  Even men gave me compliments on the sweater.  Telling me “it was their favorite.”  Go figure….

My inspiration was born out of an impulse.  I bought this yarn to make a homedec pillow for my bedroom from a crochet pattern using Bernat simply softee yarn (which is not so soft by the way).  I didn’t like the way it was turning out and thought the color would make a pretty sweater.  So that’s how it all started.

Ironically, while it is not my favorite piece, it is my favorite photographed piece from the entire collection.  I really like the images that the photographer was able to capture with this look.

I kept it simple and casual when it came to styling. Black faded washed skinny jeans, my rust colored mule heeled slides.  I also had the t-shirt custom printed to say “handmade”.  I felt that this collection definitely had a handmade feel to it and wanted to celebrate that. I actually plan on playing with various styling options in the future and sharing on my social media as #OOTD.  So get connected to see what I come with.

I used a size 13 crochet hook which is bigger than what the yarn called for and used a single crochet to the back loop only to create the ribbing texture in the body of the fabric and a single crochet for the sleeves.  The ribbing I made using a sc to the back loop only. I used a combination of acrylic and acrylic/wool blend chunky yarn.

Photocredits: Latoya Gale Studios

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Well that’s all for now!  Until next time…….

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DIY Chunky Crochet Duster

“Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth.”

1 John 3:18

 

Heeelllllllooooo Everyone!

Happy Hump Day!  I am really feeling on fire today.  I’ve been in a bit of a slump lately. The winter blues was kind of holding me down a bit.  But I give God glory because after church service this past Sunday I felt like I got a second wind.  And in good timing too.  I have a lot to get done.

In today’s post I am sharing with you all my second look from the January gallery night and day exhibit.  If you missed the 1st look you can read about it here.  After I made my brighter side chunky yarn cropped sweater,  I knew that I wanted to make a second piece with the same color story and concept.  Which gave birth to this crochet duster.

The inspiration for this piece came from European street style.  I was seeing all kinds of crazy and colorful oversized knit sweaters and dusters on european blog sites and the desire to create a crochet version of these insanely cool and fun looks was ignited on the inside of me.  One of the things I was loving about my inspiration images was that they didn’t weave in the yarn ends from color changes.  It gave the pieces a more rustic and laid back vibe that felt artfully imperfect (Not to mention that it gave me an excuse not to have to weave in my yarn ends).

I entitled this piece “Laid Back Cool”, because I could envision myself walking down city streets window shopping, sight seeing, or just meeting friends for coffee or lunch.

To bring the look together I paired the duster with my favorite fringe hem skinny jeans, a Ralph Lauren Polo man’s button down shirt that I thrifted, a crossbody bag, my favorite tassle earrings that I purchased from Mendy’s ( she’s great and I love her pieces.  You can get a better look at the earrings here and shop her site from here).  The shoes were a recent acquistion from Forever 21.  I caught a post christmas sale.  I normally don’t engage in Fast Fashion but from time to time because of my budget, I entertain it.  These shoes were on sale for $15 so I bought a pair in rust and a pair in black.  For the shoot I wore one of each because I thought it added to the eclectic vibe of the outfit.

I used a chunky weight wool/acrylic blend yarn, a single crochet stitch to create a simple textured fabric and a jumbo size Q hook in order to maintain a drape in the fabric.  It features bold and bright color blocking tempered by stripes in a neutral black/cream colorway.

Photocredits: Latoya Gale Photography

 

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