Thrift The Look: Mix Animal Prints

“Yes, You are my rock and my fortress;
For Your name’s sake You will lead me and guide me.” Psalm 31:3 (amp)

Hey everyone!

How are you? I pray your weekend was filled with rest. Mine was a bit busy and included my children spending time with friends before they leave for the summer with dad, donuts and hot chocolate for breakfast, yard work and my daughter getting re-baptized and my son getting baptized for the first time. It was such a wonderful and spirit filled experience. I feel amazing and I am so thankful that even with all of the family and friend frenzy we still made time for God.  I’m so thankful!

Today’s post is the first of a new series that I am looking to introduce to the blog as an #OOTD called thrift The Look. I’m experimenting with different content creating ideas that do not always require me to sew or create a tutorial.

Since I’m already an avid thrifter the idea came to me to create on trend looks from second hand garments. This also fits in line with my desire to create a more sustainable wardrobe and sewing life. These posts will be in addition to my regular weekly DIY posts. Woohoo!

This week’s Thrift The Look is inspired by the 2019 animal print spring/summer trend. Animal print was a thing in the fall/winter and has decided to hangout for the warm weather months. Below is my inspiration image…

I kind of like the leopard on leopard look as shown in the middle image. But I also love the mixed print rocker girl vibe from the image on the right.

When I went to the Goodwill I had 3 different style ideas that I was hoping to find pieces that I could use to re-create the looks I was going for. The selection was a bit limited but I was super happy when I found a floral/cheetah print button front maxi dress circa 1990. It has flattering princess seams and sassy slits that extend from the princess seams starting just above the knee. It has a pretty bead detail at the back that looks a bit like an art deco tulip.  There is also a clever little casing with a drawstring at the back waist for further waist shaping. For the dress, scarf and t-shirt I paid a total of $11.52.

I was completely feeling it as a colorful duster over a t-shirt and skinny jeans. I found a black t-shirt with white writing that says “Love Wins” ( hello! I couldn’t resist it). To complete the mixed animal print look I decided it needed some more leopard action and headed over to the scarf section and found this cute leopard skinny scarf with black fringe. (which are trending come fall 2019 btw). This screamed rocker chic. It reminded me of Stevie Nicks or Steven Tyler of Aerosmith. Lenny Kravitz also likes his sexy scarves and tight jeans.

My look is probably more on the leopard street chic side than it is rocker girl. But it’s my interpretation of the trend right…?  To finish things off.  I put on my silver big hoop earrings and rummaged through my jewelry basket for as many stackable silvertoned braceletes that I could find. My shoes are Christian Siriano for payless shoes that I purchased last spring.  I’m happy with my look! I think its an approachable interpretation of the trend and a fun yet chic anytime of the day look!

 

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Well that’s all for now.  See you all on Wednesday for our usual DIY encounter.

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OOTD: Chunky Sweater and Cheetah Print Soft Skirt

 

“O come, let us sing joyfully to the Lord;
Let us shout joyfully to the rock of our salvation.” Psalm 95:1 (amp)

Hello Everyone!

I pray all is well with you!  Can you believe it…?! Thanksgiving has already passed and we are in full fledged Christmas season.  I am feeling so joyful these days.  I made the decision that I was going to rejoice my way into 2019.  I’m not going to let anything get me down.  Not even the early winter weather we’ve been experiencing here in Wisconsin!  I’ve already pulled out my heavy sweaters and very soon i’ll be wrapping a scarf around my neck.   Good thing for me chunky sweaters are all over the runway this season.

As I was scrolling through pinterest I was very intrigued by how designers are pairing oversized chunky sweaters with lighter weight soft skirts.  Below are a few examples. The look on the left is from Pabal Gurung and the look on the right is from Ulla Johnson.

Ulla Johnson коллекция | Коллекции осень-зима 2017/2018 | Нью-Йорк | VOGUE

It made me want to go through my closet and see if I had anything that I could pull from my existing wardrobe to play to with this look. To my surprise I was able to achieve a similar look with a rayon crepe cheetah print bias cut skirt that I recently bought from the thrift store and my favorite cream colored chunky knit H&M sweater that I had purchased from the Goodwill a few years ago.  In order to keep me from looking overly frumpy I loosely tucked the sweater in at the front and back.  Paired it with my new black suede stilleto boots from Forever 21 to give me height and provide a sleek silohuette.  Paired it with some yellow tassle earrings and voile!  My version of the designer look!

 

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

xoxo,

Iris

DIY Knit Asymmetric Peplum Top Using McCalls 7722

This top has so much drama with the sleeves and peplum and is so figure flattering. I was aiming for a chic street style vibe.

“And my God will liberally supply (fill until full) your every need according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:19 (amp)

Hello Everyone!

Happy Tuesday! I pray that God bless you all with an abundance of peace this week. I was so excited to share this week’s make with you that I decided to post it a day early!

I loooooove this top! I got the inspiration from one of my favorite designers Johanna Ortiz. I love her work and have been keeping up with her collections for the past year. Below is the inspiration piece

While I love it as is. It’s cold in Wisconsin already and I wanted to make something more weather appropriate and practical for my lifestyle.

So I got the idea to create a knit version using McCalls 7722 for the bodice and sleeves and self-draft the peplum pattern. I created a pattern hack tutorial for the peplum. It will be up on the blog tomorrow.

This is a really great pattern as is. It has a cropped and longer length option as well as a few sleeve variations. It comes together quickly and the fit is good. I used view (A) for the bodice because it’s cropped and view (D) for the sleeves. I cut the pattern size 18 and it fit perfectly.

The fabric is a black ponte knit that I picked up at Joann fabric. I love the feel of ponte. The rayon in the fabric gives it such a luxurious feel and great elasticity. I plan on buying more for a few other knitwear projects.

This top has so much drama with the sleeves and peplum and is so figure flattering. I was aiming for a chic street style vibe. I paired it with my skinny jeans, a black obi belt and added more drama with black Stiletto suede boots that I recently purchased from Forever 21.

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

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.

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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 Summer/Spring Round Up

“But let all who take refuge and put their trust in You rejoice, Let them ever sing for joy; Because You cover and shelter them, Let those who love Your name be joyful and exult in You.”  Psalm 5:11

Hello Everyone!

I hope your week is going well! I’m a little behind on my post this week. I closed on my house last week Friday yaaay! And my children returned from their summer away with dad and I’ve been working on getting them ready for their first day of school. So It’s been a little hectic!

This week marks a benchmark for the blog. We made it through our first season! One of my blogging goals when I started The Modest Life was to have a place where I could develop and document my creative process.

So to have made it through our first season is a huge celebration for me. I’ve learned so much about blogging, but also about things like my personal style and photography. It has also challenged me to remain consistent and confident in what I create and share with you all!

So this week I thought it would be only fitting to post a round up of all of my spring/summer makes! I love them all but I definitely have a few favorites.  If you missed the original posts with the details of each make.  No worries!  I made sure to link to the orginal posts under each photo.  I’d love to hear in the comments which was your favorite look!

DIY Peplum Hem Skirt

DIY Top and Pants   

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DIY Evening Look

Upcycled Skirt Set with tutorial

Upcycled hi-lo top from a dress w/ tutorial

Sunday Wrap Dress

Denim Tent Dress

DIY Summer Dress

DIY Wrap Top

I also wanted to thank all of you for supporting The Modest Life. Your comments and likes of each post keep me encouraged to keeping going. I’m working on fall/winter and I can’t wait to bring you all what I hope to be really great content!

That’s it for now! Until next time!

❤️ xoxo,

Iris

DIY Wrap Top using Vogue 9315

“I keep my eyes always on the Lord. With him at my right hand, I will not be shaken.”  Psalm 16:8 (NIV)

“I keep my eyes always on the Lord. With him at my right hand, I will not be shaken.”  Psalm 16:8 (NIV)

 

Hello Everyone!

Happy Monday! I am so excited. This week marks a big milestone in my life.  I am crossing over into the world of homeownership.  I am thankful to my parents who have provided a home for me and my children for the past 5 years while I got on my feet after my separation and divorce.  I am finally at a place in my post divorce journey to tackle managing my own household again and i’m filled with anticipation for this new season that my children and I are walking into.  Well wishes and prayers are most definitely welcome!

As for this weeks make. I made Vogue 9315 view C.  I love this top!  It is also my last summer make.  I am in the middle of reflecting over this last season and gearing up for fall/winter. I can’t wait to share with you all the new things that I am planning.  See below for the details and photos.

Inspiration

The inspiration for this top actually came as a result of the skirt that i’m wearing.  I am a huge thrifter and Goodwill is my spot.  I found this blue/white cotton striped skirt with an assymetric ruffled hem at the Goodwill.  It is from the Target Brand a New Day.  I was new with the tags still on it.  Instantly I knew that I wanted to wear a white top with some kind of waist sash tie.  Originally, I wasn’t planning on making it but then I remembered that I had this pattern and my fabric already and decided that it would be the perfect compliment to my skirt.

Fabric

I used a white stretch cotton shirting that I purchased from Joann Fabric sometime in the spring.  It is light to medium weight and has a nice crisp hand.

What I did

I didn’t change anything.  I actually considered not adding the sleeves but I wanted to be able to wear it beyond the summer months into early fall.  I even followed the pattern directions.  They were very straight forward and easy to follow. I also plan on making this again.  I think it would be a very chic and cozy top for the fall and winter if I change the sleeve and make it in a ponte knit.

Style it

This shirt neckline and the ruffles on both the sleeve and skirt hem make this look pretty sassy! I also didn’t want to accesorize this look in a way that would cover the pretty neckline of the blouse by adding a necklace.  So I decided to add a punch of color with these light mustard yellow tassle earrings and beaded bracelet that I purchased from one of my sisters in Christ who has an accessories business called Mendy’s.  She has some great statement pieces.  You can check out her website here.  I carried the yellow into my shoes.  They are a yellow strappy blocked heeled sandle (unfortunately you can’t see them very well because of the lighting) that I purchased from Forever 21.  and as I mentioned above the skirt is a ready to wear piece that I purchased from the Goodwill. I hope to wear this look to my cousins wedding in early September.

This week’s photoshoot was dampened by the rain.  However, I was able to use the gallery space inside of Redline Milwaukee where I rent my studio space.  I got some good shots in.  There are quite a few this week as I wanted to play a little bit more with various photo angles and poses.  I’m starting to get more comfortable with this modeling thing lol!

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That’s all for now!  I pray that you all have a blessed week.  Until next time….

XOXO,

Iris

 

 

 

DIY Summer Dress using McCalls 7774 & 7627

“In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.”Matthew 5:16 (amp)

“In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.”Matthew 5:16 (amp)

Happy Monday Everyone!

I pray that this week has greeted you with excitement and anticipation for a great productive week ahead!  That was my prayer this morning.  I’ve been busy lately and started to feel a little run down but I decided to give myself a very lazy Sunday in order to prepare for this week.  Sometimes you have to give yourself permission to do that.

This weeks post is a DIY Dress that I have been slowly bringing together over the course of the last 2 weeks.  I knew what I wanted initially but as I was putting the pieces together I found myself taking a more organic design process.  Making changes to the design as I went along.

Inspiration

This dress was inspired by a lot of the very feminine and soft dresses that i’ve been seeing on the runway. Spring/Summer 18 designers featured them and the trend is extending into fall 18 as well.  I knew I wanted something soft and feminine but also practical.  Something that I would actually wear.

Fabric

This is an Ankara print that I purchased from House of Mami Wata .  She has an etsy shop and I am really enjoying her print selection.  She also has very prompt delivery.  I got my fabric in 2 days.  I chose this fabric because at first glance it just looks like a regular cotton floral print but it has a textured black background that lets you know that its a wax print.  Which I  love.  Here is an upclose picture of it.

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What I did

  1. I used McCalls 7774 view C for the skirt.  While I liked the gathered waistline as well as the pockets I didn’t like that the bottom was just an attachment to add length.  I wanted more of a flounce or ruffled bottom.  So I slash and spread the bottom pattern piece adding about 10-12 additional inches to the pattern piece which added an additional 20-24 inches of  fullness to the hemline.  It gave the dress a more dramatic flare.
  2. For the bodice I used McCalls 7627.  I have been playing with wrap dresses and tops all summer and wanted to play with a faux wrap bodice for this dress.  It gave me an attractive neckline and because I made this pattern already for the Sunday Wrap Dress I knew that the bodice would fit.  The only thing I did was add 2 inches to the wrap front so that it would extend completely to the side seam.  This made the dress more comfortable to wear and gave me complete coverage in the bust area.
  3. The other change that I made was to shorten the dropped shoulder to end at my shoulder line so that I could add a sleeve.
  4. For the sleeve this is a self drafted flounce sleeve.  Which is basically a circle skirt on my arm so to speak.  I just measured the circumference of the bodice armscye and followed the instructions for finding the circumference of a circle skirt.
  5. I didn’t follow any of the instructions for this pattern and I tried a few new finishing techniques which I was very happy with the results of.  I installed my very first lapped zipper which I am really enjoying and plan on doing again.  I used black single fold bias tape to finish the hem of the dress instead of a double fold hem and for the sleeve I used my serger on the narrow napkin fold hem setting to give it a clean finish.

Style it

This dress has it going on all by itself. (lol!)  The print is so bold and the flounce hem and sleeve only add to the character of the dress that I decided to keep the accessories to a minimum.  It needed a belt to break up the print and I found this burgundy colored belt with a gold buckle at Target for $15. and the shoes were a recent purchase from the DSW clearance rack for $30.  They are Madden Girl.  I chose them because it gives the dress a modern edge and me the height that I need to balance out the fullness of the dress.

This weeks photo shoot was fun.  I have to thank my long time sewing student Yvett for being this weeks photographer.  This is her last year of high school and then she’s off to fashion design school.  I love her drive and focus.  A great young person! who does some cool stuff with an iphone camera!

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Well thats it for now!  Have a blessed week!

xoxo!

Iris