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Category Archives: Pattern Review

Pattern Hack: Colette Moneta

Though everyone in the sewing blogosphere has probably already sewn at least one Moneta, I must say this is a wonderful pattern! Not only does the new expanded size range fit without significant grading, the design is a great base of many modifications.

Moneta Full

My first Moneta was made from the original pattern and I’ve worn it extensively in the month since I completed it.

It is my latest Moneta that I want to share today. This Moneta hack has some pretty details that make it the perfect dress to transition into the cooler months whenever they see fit to show up here in South Carolina!

Cropped Front Moneta Cropped Back Monetta
The two main modifications were to add a contrasting waistband and to add a cowl neckline. The waistband was a necessary “design feature” due to the lack of stretch in my fabric. This knit is super thick and after cutting the bodice I realized the bodice was a bit short. My simple fix was to add a solid black two inch wide waistband. I first added the waistband to the bodice then shirred the bodice to the skirt.

100_1981

The second modification was to add a cowl neck. I used this tutorial from Sweet Verbena as a guideline and I think the final result is fabulous!

100_1979

Pattern Review: In House Patterns Blossom Blouse

The In House Blossom pattern had been languishing in my stash for well over a year but after recently scoring a yard of Nancy Ann Liberty of London fabric, I knew I had to try it out.

Nancy Ann Fabric

I love Liberty Tana Lawn fabric but due to the cost, don’t get to sew with it as much as I would like. As soon as I saw this fabric on eBay, I remembered where I had seen it before…on Mad Men!

betty draper

I may not be as beautiful or famous as Betty Draper, aka January Jones, but I think my interpretation came out well!  If you ever have the opportunity to try In House Patterns, give them a whirl. This is actually my second In House pattern. The first was the Cool Cowl reviewed here and I think you will find their patterns to be easy to follow and fairly quick makes.

Blossom Front

Pattern Details: Size ranges from 32 to 42 bust so I graded up to a 48. I also increased the waist and hip pieces by grading out the side seams. All In House Patterns are pdf only which in my opinion makes grading much easier.

Things I liked about the pattern:

  1. Instructions were very clear and logical
  2. Grading was easy due to the pattern piece layout
  3. No FBA required because the pattern can be printed in A, B, C, or D cup sizes!!!

Things I struggled with:

  1. Sleeves! Since my upper arms were far outside the size range, I initially tried to grade up with zero success.
  2. I later tried tulip sleeves but could not make them fit comfortably so I finally gave up and made some bias tape from my remaining fabric and opted for a sleeveless version.
  3. The front curve at the neckline ended up a bit wonky due to my less than perfect cutting. This type of neckline requires PRECISE cutting to remain even. My solution was to make some ties so there is a keyhole detail instead of a simple vee. I actually ended up liking my final version better than the original so my “design feature” worked out!

Blossom Back

Pattern Review: Jennifer Lauren Vintage Bronte Top

After my success with the Afternoon Blouse, I was excited to see another vintage inspired top from Jen and I knew this one would be perfect for my upcoming July 4th parties.

Unlike the Afternoon Blouse, the Bronte Top pattern is intended for knit fabrics. As a relative newcomer to sewing with knits, my first attempt is by no means perfect but has already seen heavy rotation in the three weeks since I sewed it up. I have another version planned soon!
Bronte

Things I liked:
1) Tiling of the pattern allows you to print specific pieces
2) Long sleeve and short sleeve versions
3) Very clear instructions!
4) Button details at the collar can really showcase unique buttons. I used vintage buttons I got for 50 cents at a quilt show a few years ago and I love them.
Bronte Close Up

Things I had issues with:
1) The sleeves were a bit short for me so I had to lengthen the fold over part. Heather had the similar sleeve length problems which she provided a super helpful tutorial here.
2) Keeping the front neckline from stretching out was a big issue. I think next time I will make the neckline binding an inch shorter so the neckline lies more flat.
3) Easing the sleeves was hard for me and I didn’t get it quite right. The very top of the sleeve pokes up a bit but not so much that I won’t wear the top.
Bronte Shoulder

 

 

 

 

Kate & Rose Giselle Pattern Review

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I have been a fan of Kati’s since I first tried her Roza pattern so when she asked me to be a pattern tester for the Giselle dress I immediately jumped on board!

The Giselle dress is part of the Midtown Collection and features two versions on a traditional European style. There are two variations to the sleeves, skirt and midriff so the possibilities are endless!

Giselle

 

My beta version, which I dubbed the Luck of the Irish dress, is made out of thin cotton lawn. I used the skirt length from version 1 and opted for the narrow midriff and no sleeves. Even though my measurements are outside of the size range, the grading was straightforward and within a few hours, I had a lovely dress for spring!

Since I had so much success with my first version, I chose to use the Giselle pattern for my Dolly Clackett Mini Me dress. The fabric was somewhat sheer so I lined the bodice and add piping along the bustline. This version was reviewed here.

20140423_101637

My latest version, gives a nod to summer with a blue and white seersucker cotton and contrasting bias at the neckline. The fabric is much thicker than the previous two versions so the gathering is more pronounced but I actually think this is my favorite version yet!

050614

If three Giselles were not enough, I have a fourth in mind that highlights the midriff with embroidered floral designs from Kati’s Faraway Garden hot iron transfer pack. This pattern has so many embellishment options, it might overtake my TNT Roza as number one in my book!

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