2019: My Life In Review

and provide for those who grieve in Zion— to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the Lord for the display of his splendor.” Isaiah 61:3 (NIV)

Hello Everyone!

After watching everyone post their top (9) 2019 posts on Instagram; I felt inspired to go ahead and post my own 2019 makes in review. Truthfully, 2019 has been a year of closure for me on many levels. The last decade has been filled with so many ups and downs.

The birth of my second child in 2010, followed by my marital split and moving in with my parents in 2012. The divorce in 2014, My many business successes and failures, purchasing my first car in my name in 2015 (my ex-husband bought my previous car), graduating from Fashion Design School in 2017, purchasing my first house, my second car and blog launch in 2018. Lets not forget landing my dream teaching job in 2019 at Mount Mary University. Not to mention the enormous level of personal and spiritual growth that i’ve gained over the years. Let’s just say, that I have definitely been living my life.

I don’t think that I intentionally, approached 2019 with a plan for closure. Instead, I found myself in places where I had to deal with some unresolved issues that were hindering my growth as a woman with purpose. The low self-esteem and body image issues, the fear and anxiety about being a single parent, the anger and unresolved feelings towards my ex-husband are just a few things that I had to come to terms with. I believe that God opened the door for me to look at my life in review. In those candid moments I was able to mostly pray and journal about it. Coupled by a few spiritually healthy people who lent an ear and prayer to me. Little by little I found myself getting free.

Even my confidence as a sewer, designer and instructor grew. What I love about my makes this year is that I found myself willing to experiment. To work through the sewing and design process. As the year progressed, I could feel not only my spirit getting free, but my design process became less cluttered. It is becoming easier for me to express myself creatively. Even when I make something that I don’t initially like, I still find a way to wear it. Which is liberating. Before i’d get down on myself about it, toss it or give it away. I even purged my fabric stash. I used what I liked and donated what didn’t work. I started to buy only when I had a clear vision in mind. Even my recent fabric haul at Joann fabrics was purposed. I had a clear idea of what I wanted to make with everything that I bought.

So what can you expect to see from me in 2020….? I see this new decade as a great new beginning for me and my family. You can expect to see the fruit of all that is new coming into my life. I know that sounds incredibly vague and deep at the same time (lol!). In all seriousness though, I am still planning out the details, but its the truth. I believe there is so much greatness getting ready to penetrate my life that i’m going to be able to share it with everyone that God connects me to.

What about you all…..? What was 2019 like for you? What are you most looking forward to in 2020….? I would love to hear about it and be in prayer with you. I wish God’s greatest blessings for you all in 2020. Happy New Year!

Until next time……..

Starting Over In Christ

Most importantly, starting my life over in Christ gave me the opportunity to see and experience the fullness of God in my life.

“Therefore if anyone is in Christ [that is, grafted in, joined to Him by faith in Him as Savior], he is a new creature [reborn and renewed by the Holy Spirit]; the old things [the previous moral and spiritual condition] have passed away. Behold, new things have come [because spiritual awakening brings a new life].” (2 Corinthians 5:17 amp)

Hello Everyone!

This week God placed it on my heart to share a piece of my testimony about starting over in Christ.

As a single woman with primary custody of my 2 children i’ve had to work hard the past 6 years to reframe my expectations of life.  When I got married in 2003 to my now ex-husband, I thought for sure that I had finally got to a place of stability in my life.  Prior to being married, I had made alot of poor decisions that cost me time more than anything else and at the age of 25 I decided that I wanted to shift somethings.  I decided to go back to college and finish getting my bachelor’s degree, I wanted to really make a difference in my community and got involved in activism, and I knew at some point I wanted the American dream.  Find a fulfilling career, get married, have kids, buy a house and enjoy life.

While all of that has happened for me. There were some major detours, pitfalls, and setbacks along the way.  The first one being that my ex-husband about 4 years into the marriage didn’t want to be married.  We separated for almost 2 years and then got back together had our second child and we tried to make things work but after 10 years it was over.  At the time I was an at home mom living on the East Coast trying to build my sewing business and pick up temp jobs along the way.

The marriage had become very toxic and abusive.  I wanted so bad to work things out with my ex-husband that I began to settle for whatever he was willing to give (which was pretty much nothing).  I also didn’t really believe in divorce.  That’s not really something that exists in my family, along with the fact that I was a Christian who had been praying and believing God for a miracle in my marriage.  All of this caused me to hang on much longer than I should have.

Then one day God released me.  He sent me someone who really encouraged my heart and helped me to see that if this marriage didn’t work out, my life would be okay. That God’s grace was bigger than a divorce.  It was the courage that I needed to walk away and let go.  I talked to my husband and told him that I would agree to the divorce.

That was the beginning of the journey to where I am now.  My initial response to the separation was a huge amount of denial.  I had enough faith to wake up every morning and tell myself your starting over, its going to be okay.  But I wasn’t really dealing with the emotional side of things.  I pretended like I had it all together but I didn’t and to be honest I don’t think it looked like I had it all together either.  On top of my own emotions, I had to still parent my children, deal with my families emotions regarding my situation, move back to Wisconsin and into my parents home, and deal with the fact that my ex-husband chose to live in another state leaving me primary responsibility of raising our children through one of the toughest seasons of our lives.

I felt like the roof had fallen in on me.  I was embarrassed by the idea of being divorced, I was struggling with my son who had a speech and cognitive delay issue (he’s completely fine now), I took a job as a nail technician and started to crochet hats and scarve sets to make extra money on the side, and my daughter really needed my love and attention.  It was hard, completely imperfect, But it was my faith in God, my family and my church family that helped me to keep going.

As hard as the situation was to deal with, I’m thankful that I went through it.  It hasn’t been easy but I can say that without a doubt, my faith has been strengthened and my life has greater purpose.

What I realize now is that the life that I planned for myself was not exactly the plan that God had purposed for my life.  When I got married I was not saved, I knew God but I wasn’t living in holiness.  Many of the choices that I was making was based on what I thought a good life was suppose to be.  The life that my parents raised me to have.  Which wasn’t a bad thing, but I was doing all of this absent of the wisdom of God.

Psalm 37:23 says:

“The steps of a [good and righteous] man are directed and established by the Lord,
And He delights in his way [and blesses his path].”

When I gave my life to the Lord 14 years ago, I was desperate for a change in my life and my marriage.  I wanted to become the wife and mother that I thought my family needed and I felt like I was lacking, because back then I blamed myself for everything.  I thought for sure if I got myself together then my husband would love me.

I was looking at myself and my situation through a faulty lense.  While there were definitely somethings that I needed to change, there was something bigger at work.

I wasn’t living my life lined up with God’s true intentions for my life.  It was like everything shifted when I got saved and I wanted my life previous to me getting saved to live up to the expectations of salvation in Christ Jesus.  I wanted all of my friends, my husband, my kids, my family, my career, everything to still be in my life and I wanted everything that came with salvation. Except thats not how salvation works. The word of God says:

“Therefore if anyone is in Christ [that is, grafted in, joined to Him by faith in Him as Savior], he is a new creature [reborn and renewed by the Holy Spirit]; the old things [the previous moral and spiritual condition] have passed away. Behold, new things have come [because spiritual awakening brings a new life].” (2 Corinthians 5:17 amp)

What I came to learn was that I was the one who accepted Christ into my heart not the life I was living.  I became a new person in the spiritual realm but my life had to catch up with my salvation.  The way I thought, the way I talked, the way I made decisions, my overall lifestyle was headed for a major shift at the point of salvation and I didn’t know it. The more I read my bible, attended church and bible study services, the more I wanted to know more about Christ and living a holy life. And the more it seemed like life as I knew it was crumbling.

I experienced a lot of shifts and changes that I wasn’t expecting. Overtime, my friend circle changed, my marriage got worse, I felt like God was positioning me for a career shift from University Academic Advisor to seamstress entrepreneur.  (Which did not bode well with my then husband.) The closer I got to God the more I became detached from my previous life.

Not all of it was hard, It was a gradual shift.  Alot of which was welcome, because with those changes I found more inner peace.  With the loss of certain friend circles came new friends, with the loss of old mind sets, came more wisdom, understanding and compassion.  With the loss of my marriage came the opportunity to completely start over and become the seamstress, designer, sewing blogger entrepreneur that God created me to be.  Single parenting has become easier over time. My children enjoy the summers away with their father and I get a parenting break along with an opportunity to socialize more, build my business and contribute more to ministry. My ex-husband and I have a better relationship and he’s become more supportive of my entrepreneurial calling and financially supports me and the kids while I build my business. I no longer live with my parents and less than a year ago purchased my first home.

Most importantly, starting my life over in Christ gave me the opportunity to see and experience the fullness of God in my life.  God as provider, God as comforter, God as restorer, God as my peace, God as protector, God as my counselor, and the list goes on.  Every trial that I have encountered in the midst of re-building my life in Christ was meant to root, build and strengthen me in my faith.

There is a cost to living in Christ but the blessings that I’ve received far outweigh the things that I’ve lost.

That’s all for now. I pray that my testimony has blessed you. Until next time….

 

 

 

 

 

God Will Qualify You

When God gives you a gift its not always something that you might be naturally good at.  Sometimes its something that is in you but requires a process of cultivation.  

but He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you [My lovingkindness and My mercy are more than enough—always available—regardless of the situation]; for [My] power is being perfected[and is completed and shows itself most effectively] in [your] weakness.” 2 Corinthians 12:9 (amp)

Hello Everyone!

Its been a while I know since i’ve blogged.  I have been super busy sewing for an upcoming fashion show and website launch for my Clothing Label Virtuous By Design.  I am super excited for this because i’ve been working really hard for the past year behind the seams researching the best business strategies, designing and testing markets for this  launch.  I’m believing that this is going to be a very successful and busy season.

Which leads me today’s post. The launching of my apparel line has me a bit reflective lately. As I was journaling yesterday morning I began to think back on my sewing journey. I really sucked at sewing when I first started, but I also really enjoyed it and soon found that I had a passion for it.  This journal entry very succinctly gives an accurate picture of the last 14 years of my sewing life.  I thought i’d share it with you.

April 2, 2019

but He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you [My lovingkindness and My mercy are more than enough—always available—regardless of the situation]; for [My] power is being perfected[and is completed and shows itself most effectively] in [your] weakness.” 2 Corinthians 12:9 (amp)

I remember all the tears I shed, all the countless moments where I doubted my sewing abilities.  All of the grueling late night sewing sessions where me and my sewing machine were battling in the process of getting a project done.

The moment when God called me to sew professionally and I told him “i’m not good enough yet.” but He told me “do it anyway”.

The moments when God brought me clients who had more faith in me than I had in myself and when I cried over every sewing mistake that I made.

Every sewing book and blog post that I read, tutorial that I watched, online classes that I purchased, every successful sewing project that kept me encouraged and every sewing failure that kept me humble.

Countless prayers for sewing mentors and instructors that I could turn to for confirmation that I was doing it right. Only to find out that your Holy Spirit was guiding me the whole time.

Fashion Design school, to teaching others what I know and now the official launch of a dream that was conceived before I was even born.  For your word says in Jeremiah 1:5 “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.”

Every triumph, every battle, every struggle, every mountain and every valley.  It was all in preparation for this very special moment in my life.  I now understand that my journey had to be painful…. You were teaching me that I didn’t need to be perfect to serve you.  I just needed to be willing to put in the work.  Thank you Lord for strengthening and perfecting me in the journey.

If there is anything that my sewing journey has taught me is that “God does not call the qualified.  He qualfies the called”.  When God gives you a gift its not always something that you might be naturally good at.  Sometimes its something that is in you but requires a process of cultivation.

Well that’s it.  I pray that my testimony encouraged you.  Until next time…..

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Sewing and Self-Care

“She equips herself with strength [spiritual, mental, and physical fitness for her God-given task] And makes her arms strong.” Proverbs 31:18 (amp)

Hey Everyone!

I pray all is well with you!  With the new year swiftly approaching 2019 goal setting or re-setting has been high on my priority list.  One of those goals is always self-care.  Tis’ the season to overeat then diet and detox. lol!  That’s not what today’s post is about.  I actually have been thinking about self-care from a sewing perspective.

What do you mean a sewing perspective…? Isn’t wellness a universal thing…?  Yes it is.  It is also my belief that no matter what you do professionally we as humans should strive to live a healthy lifestyle.  However, there are certain professions that physically demand more from us than others.

Sewing is one of them.  I didn’t notice it when I was hobby sewer, because I made a garment for myself or a loved one and worked at my own pace.  But when it became a vocation for me and I started to sew for others.  I began to really notice the effects on my body.

I began to have lower back and neck pain.  I would feel physically drained from the stress of sewing under constant deadlines.  Which had its affect on my cortisol hormone and caused belly bloating and sudden weight gain.  I had constipation.  Overall, I was pretty miserable.

At first I didn’t understand what was happening but as I met some older women who worked for factory sewing companies they began to share their stories with me about the strain of sewing on their health.

One woman told me she had suffered a stroke from the strain and stress of her job. Leaving her slightly paralized on one side of her body.  Another woman shared that her eye sight had weakened from so many years of sewing.  One of my professors from design school use to contract sew like I did and she told me she had to give it up because of the stress as well as wore a back brace when she would have to sit sewing for long periods of time.

After hearing all of these stories, I began to realize that I needed to figure out a way to live out my sewing dreams without the expense of my health.

Proverbs 31:18 says: “She equips herself with strength [spiritual, mental, and physical fitness for her God-given task] And makes her arms strong.” Proverbs 31:18 (amp)

When I read this scripture two things dawned on me 

  1. While health is a promise from God; we have a responsibility to take care of our bodies.  It has been my experience that God will provide opportunities, resources and tools to aid in the journey.  But we still have to do the work and make the right choices.
  2. I also quickly realized that sewing for me has to include a self-care component.  When I workout before going into my sewing studio I noticed that I have less body aches, my mind is clearer and I can even sew a little longer or it doesn’t take me as long to complete projects because I make less mistakes.

However, like many people prioritizing self-care can be a struggle for me.  It is also something that I have to be intentional about. Through self-examination, I have been able to pin point stress triggors and map out wellness strategies that help me maintain a balanced life.

Here are just a few things that i’ve learned along the way.

  1. Rise early, pray and the read the word of God and journal often.
  2. Exercise at least 4 days/week.
  3. Eat healthy plant based meals.  I’ve tried to be a vegetarian for many years now and its not easy, especially because my family likes meat.  So I strive to eat plant based meals as much as possible and sometimes I include meat and fish.
  4. Drink a lot of water daily.
  5. Take a multi-vitamin.
  6. Limit sugar and caffeine.
  7. Try and get at least 8 hours of sleep daily.
  8. Enjoy my life. As a single mom I tend to get tired easily from work and kids.  Going with friends or socializing beyond phone conversations isn’t always on my list.  But I have afew activities that I try to hold onto when i’ve got a little free time.  Like salsa dance, lunch with a friend, or taking a yoga class with a friend.

9. Stay organized. Even if its a simple To Do List and a calendar app

10. Attend weekly worship service and bible study at church.

I know it seems like a lot but its not.  Outside of my church acitivies all of these things can get done anywhere from a few minutes to an hour at most.  And when I do these things consistently, I get to a place where I have energy, a focused mind, increased productivity and i’m a nicer person and mom.

So as your preparing for the holiday season and thinking about your 2019 goals, I hope that you include a strategy to maintain your health so that you can keep sewing for a long time.

Until next time!  Have a blessed rest of your week!

xoxo,

Iris

Pattern Hack Tutorial: Asymmetric Pencil Skirt

For today’s post I created a step by step illustrated tutorial for how to draft a pattern for your very own version of this project.

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

Hello Everyone!

Thank you so much for all the love and comments that I received for my Sew the Look: Asymmetric Pencil Skirt.  If you missed it you can catch up here.  Pattern Hacking is a new term for me but as I began delving into the world of sewing blogs I realized that it is a term used to describe how to alter a pattern in order to create another design. Actually in fashion school that is all we learned how to do.  You start with what’s called a sloper or block and you manipulate the pattern into the design that your creating.

For this particular project, I used Simplicity 8394  because it was very similar to the skirt that I wanted to make and I knew I could make it with very few pattern adjustments.  However, the great thing about this skirt project is that you can make it using a well fitting pencil skirt pattern as well.

For today’s post I created a step by step illustrated tutorial for how to draft a pattern for your very own version of this project. You can use simplicity 8394 if you like, but for this tutorial I show you how to make the pattern using a pencil skirt. Below is an image of what the illustrated tutorial looks like. You can also download the pdf copy of the  asymmetric skirt pattern hack tutorial here.

assymetric pattern hack tutorial

Please note that this is a patterning tutorial and not a sewing tutorial. It assumes that you have previous sewing knowledge and that you are familiar with using sewing patterns.

Well thats all for now!  Until next time….

xoxo!

Iris

Sew the Look: DIY corduroy pencil skirt using Simplicity 8394

“Let us not grow weary or become discouraged in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap, if we do not give in.” Galatians 6:9

Hello Everyone!

Happy Hump Day!  Every now and again I come across a ready to wear garment that I really like and want to add to my wardrobe only to find out that its either out of my price range or not in my size.  When that happens I try and see if its something that I can easily make myself.  So is the case of this cute denim pencil skirt I came across one day while scrolling through pinterest.  I posted the original image below.

Grazen Blue Jeans Asymmetrical Midi Skirt | La Petite Garçonne

I particularly loved the assymetric hemline and raw hem on the peplum.  I’ve been on an unfinished hem kick lately.  I like distressed finishes on a garment but in moderation.  And this skirt offers that balance for me. Below is picture of the inspiration skirt.

What I did

I used simplicity 8394  as the foundation for this skirt.  I’ve used this pattern before and I already knew that I liked the fit so all I had to do was alter the pattern. What was great about using simplicity 8394 is that I only had to alter the hemline of the skirt.  It already had the peplum in the pattern.  If you want to create this look for yourself but don’t own this pattern, I created an illustrated tutorial on how to alter this pattern using a pencil skirt. It includes how to draft the peplum pattern.  I’ll be posting that either tomorrow or Friday.

For my version I chose to use a rust colored stretch corduroy fabric that I purchased from Joann Fabric.  I wanted a heavier weight fabric so that I could wear tights during the colder months.

Style it

Fall weather is so tricky and dressing in layers is definitely the way to go.  So I created a sleek layered look with a black turtleneck, black leatherette jacket, black fishnette tights and my Madden Girl peep toe stilleto booties. The skirt gives the look a nice pop of color  and I added a cheatah print belt to add interest and definition at the waist.

DIY Maxi Skirt using New Look 6213 and Pattern Review

“So I have seen that there is nothing better than that a man should be happy in his own works and activities, for that is his portion (share). For who will bring him [back] to see what will happen after he is gone? “Ecclesiastes 3:22 (amp)

“So I have seen that there is nothing better than that a man should be happy in his own works and activities, for that is his portion (share). For who will bring him [back] to see what will happen after he is gone? “Ecclesiastes 3:22 (amp)

Hello Lovelies!

I pray everyone had a great week! I’m not going to lie. My week felt like such a struggle. Sewing, caring for my family and just general tasks felt like a burden. I found the above scripture during my study time the other day and it reminded me that everything that I’ve been called to do is important. And I should remain thankful instead of complaining. I found myself praying and remembering this scripture every time I started to feel burdened during my day. It helped me to stay focused despite how I felt.  I feel better now too.

How about you…? Do you have a favorite scripture that you remember or pray when your feeling burdened by life? I’d love to hear what it is.

As for this week’s make. I was so delighted to make this week’s skirt for the skirt making series.  If you missed my earlier makes you can check them out here and here .  I also shared a few tutorials that you can check out herehere, and here.

Inspiration

The inspriation for this week came when I stumbled on about 4-5 yards of a very colorful and lovely rayon crepe fabric at the Goodwill.  I only paid $5.00 for it.  I was so excited!  The print and color emits a bit of a boho vibe. Below is a close up of the print. Isn’t it pretty!?

I decided that this fabric would make a very chic fit and flare maxi skirt but had a hard time finding a pattern in the maxi length.  So I ended up lengthening New Look 6203 View J.  The skirt is a bias cut A line skirt.  Which is very figure flattering and reminds of a slip.  This pattern was a very easy make.  It was one pattern piece and the front and back were cut flat on the bias.  Which is gives it its shaping. and allows the skirt to skim over the hips and then flare out into the hem.

What I did

I lenghtened the pattern by about 8 inches to create the length I wanted and had to add about 6 inches at the hip and waist.  The one thing I don’t like about New Look Patterns is that their sizing runs small.  The other change that I made was the way I finished the waistband. The pattern did not call for a separate waistband.  It just folded over the fabric at the waistline and top stitched to form a casing for an elastic to be inserted.

Since the skirt reminds of a slip I decided to finish the waistband like I would a slip.  I found a great slip making tutorial on the craftsy website blog and I found white lingerie elastic at Joann’s.  It was super easy to finish the waistband this way and gave the skirt the desired look I was going for.  My only regret was not finding black lingerie elastic.  Because the elastic is meant to peek out at the top having a matching color makes a difference. Outside of those adjustments I followed the pattern as directed and it was very easy to read and follow.

Style it!

Ironically this look reminds me of a deconstructed kimono.  I didn’t plan it that way.  I actually wanted a look that was chic yet cozy and comfortable to wear. As the weather is shifting to cooler temperatures I have to resist the temptation to put on anything that looks like a wearable blanket. lol!  The obi belt gives me the shaping that I need in my waist area and keeps me from looking frumpy as the skirt and cardigan have very soft silohuettes.

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

xoxo!

Iris

DIY Ankara Print Circle Skirt

“They who sow in tears shall reap with joyful singing.” Psalm 126:5 (amplified)

“They who sow in tears shall reap with joyful singing.” Psalm 126:5 (amplified)

Hello Everyone!

I pray your week is off to a great start! I wanted to start this week’s post off with a short testimony about the photoshoot for this weeks make.  These pictures caused me to reflect quite a bit. It started with a conversation that I was having with my daughter after she took my shots. As I was looking at them I had mentioned that they were some great action shots and that my smile looked nice. She said: “yeah mom! Because that’s your actual smile!” Her words blessed my heart and caused me to look more closely at the photos.  She was right. I was genuinely smiling and laughing.

My divorce brought a series of major life changes along with a series of trials that really shook me. I cried out to God so many nights worrying about my and my children’s future.  but I stayed steadfast in God and He used all of it not only to make me stronger; but to give me a testimony about the restorative power of a life in Jesus Christ.  His love has been restoring me from the brokeness and pain of my past.  One of my prayers for 2018 has been for God to restore my joy. When I saw these pictures it became evident that God was answering me. It really blessed me. I wasn’t just posing, but for the first time in a long while, my soul feels light and my smile is reflecting it.  To God be the glory!

As for this weeks DIY post! This skirt is already a favorite of mine. It’s a self drafted half circle skirt and let me first tell you that I messed up my measurements when I cut the fabric lol!. I forgot to add the seam allowance for the back seam. So it was a tight squeeze at the waist lol! But I didn’t want to scrap it and I only needed like another inch. So came the genius idea to add an exposed elastic waistband at the back along with an exposed zipper which I’ve been wanting to play with for a while. I love it !!!! It came out sooo cute and gave the skirt a ready to wear aesthetic that I like. Not to mention that it gave me the waist room I needed. It’s still a bit snug but I’m not struggling to breathe in it lol! I’m calling it my happy accident skirt!

I plan on intentionally remaking this skirt with the right waist ease and a thicker waistband.

Fabric

The fabric is an Ankara print that I bought I believe from House of Mami Wata. I love the print but the print quality and weight of the fabric I was not impressed with. It’s more of a quilters weight cotton and I considered lining it to give it more body but opted to leave it unlined so I could wear it in summer. I chose this print for the skirt because I felt like the colors were a great transitional fall look.

Style it

It took me a little bit to figure out the styling for this because I wanted to do something out of the box but remain true to my style. The top is actually a men’s shirt I bought to use as an up cycling project but liked the idea of print matching with stripes. So I just tucked it in and rolled up the sleeves and voila! The yellow necklace is from Ashley Stewart clearance and the shoes are Forever 21. I think this a great and vibrant transitional season look.

 

Well thats all for now! until next time!

xoxo,

Iris

DIY Denim Tent Dress using New Look #6511

This weekend had a few highlights and today’s DIY denim tent dress was definitely one of them.

“Many women do noble things, but you surpass them all.” Proverbs 31:29

Hello Everyone!

Happy Monday!  I hope your weekend was as refreshing as mine was!  I really enjoyed myself its 2 weeks and counting before my kids come back from their summer away with their dad.  And while I miss them, I have been really enjoying my time off.  So i’m trying to get my list of things I wanted to enjoy this summer completed before their return. Some of them being going on a hike (never done that and this year I said I was going to do it.), take a summer river boat cruise and visit the Wisconsin State Fair.  I know nothing too exciting but things I have never done or haven’t enjoyed in a while.  

This weekend had a few highlights and today’s DIY denim tent dress was definitely one of them.  I finished it late last week and had the opportunity to wear it this weekend.  It was a hit everywhere I went.  I got compliments like:  ” That is the cutest denim dress ever!” and I love that dress your wearing!  Its so sassy!”  I’m a pretty shy person by nature so compliments can be hard for me to receive because of the attention.  but because I designed and made it.  It kind of made me feel a little inflated inside.  Not big headed.  but big hearted.  It encouraged my heart!  So big thanks to every women who took the time to notice my dress.  I give God glory for it!

On to the DIY part!  I used New Look #6511. I normally don’t use New Look Patterns because their sizing tends to run small.  So I end up having to make too many alterations.  But this one was good because I used view A and it was a crop top which I lengthened into an a aline dress.  I then self drafted the ruffle pattern.  I used a chambray fabric that I found at a thrift store for about $4.00 it was about 5 or 6 yards.  To give it some interest I used both the wrong and right side of the fabric. top stitched the seams in the front and sides with a dark blue denim thread and left the neck line and hem line raw and made fringe from the raw edges.  Armholes get a lot of wear so I decided to finish the hem with bias tape and top stitch it down. 

Style It:  I kept it simple and boho allowing the dress to be the star.  The shoes are a pair of wooden platforms from Sam Edelman that I picked up on super clearance at DSW about a year ago for $10 (I know awesome right!)  They are actually very light and comfortable.  The necklace I found at Ashley Stewart for $9.99 a cloth covered beaded necklace.  Its very light and comfortable to wear as well and who doesn’t love yellow!  So for a total of about $24.00 I have a complete head to toe look.  I love it!

 

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That’s it for now!  Can’t wait to share with you my next look.  I pray this post inspires you to run out and make your own sassy denim dress!

Until next time!

xoxo,

Iris

 

 

 

Sunday Wrap Dress and Pattern Review McCalls M7627

The best feeling in the world to me is to go to church and honor God by wearing something that I made with the gift that He gave me.  

“……to bestow on them a crown of beauty
    instead of ashes,the oil of joy, instead of mourning, and a garment of praise
    instead of a spirit of despair.They will be called oaks of righteousness,
    a planting of the Lord for the display of his splendor.” Isaiah 61:3

 

Hello Everyone!

I’m so sorry I haven’t posted in 2 weeks.  The last two weeks have been very busy and i’ve been working on releasing a pre-fall mini collection for my clothing label Virtuous By Design.  Which is exciting!!! but has pulled my attention in other places.  However, this week I got a small opportunity to work on this wrap dress.  I absolutely love a wrap dress. They are timeless, figure flattering and very comfortable.

I made it to wear to church using Mccalls M7627, view C.  I don’t know about you guys but I love getting dressed up for church.  Especially when I get the opportunity to make my church attire.  The best feeling in the world to me is to go to church and honor God by wearing something that I made with the gift that He gave me.

Below are a few pictures of my make along with a brief pattern review. I want to thank my mom for being my impromptu photographer for this post.

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Pattern Description: wrap dress with full circle voluminous skirt. I love this dress!

Pattern Sizing: I made it with a size 18 and graded to a size 20 at the waist, but I should have made a 16 and graded to an 18 at the waist. It really does run large.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? Yes!

Were the instructions easy to follow? Yes

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? I loooove the shape of this dress.  It is very figure flattering, I’m not always a fan of facings but for this dress it gives it a very clean finish and makes sewing and finishing a breeze.

Fabric Used: 100% cotton.  It is an Ankara print that my children brought me back from their family visit to Ghana last summer. The sash I made using a polyester fabric that I intended to use as a lining for another project but the color was perfect and I needed the extra fabric.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made: no.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? Definitely. This is such a fun dress! I am going to make one for my mom for her birthday.  She thinks its pretty.

Conclusion: this was a fun dress to make and I am really happy with it. It makes me feel so pretty.

Well that’s it for now! Until the next time!

xoxo,

Iris