SEWING

DESMOND BACKPACK IN WAXED CANVAS

November 10, 2017

After going to Camp Workroom Social last year, a backpack has been high on my to sew list. Purses and tote bags just arn’t the best for lugging around your supplies at camp, so this project was a must before returning this October.

I have had the Desmond backpack pattern by Taylor Tailor on my list ever since it was released. My husband has a very similar backpack that he paid a lot of money for and wears when we do family hikes, so I’ve been drawn to this style. The rolltop means that it fits lots of stuff, is adjustable, and has that cool retro camping vibe that I love.

The outside of my bag is made up in some really cool waxed canvas that I bought at Fancy Tiger Crafts. They have a few really great colors including an orange/red and an olive that I almost got, but the neutral vibe runs deep in me so I went for the gray.

The hardware and strapping is all from Taylor Tailors shop. He sells them as kits which I love. It’s so hard to source all of the matching pieces and his is really great quality. They come in navy and black for the webbing and silver for the hardware. I would love to find a brass or matte black kit for the next time if it exists.

For the lining I went with this fun zebra print that I designed and printed a few years ago. It’s actually the fabric that I used on my 4 yr old son’s backpack so it’s fun to have it matching. It’s kinda a heavy quilting cotton. I went with this because I knew that the waxed canvas was thick and I was worried about all of the layers. Now that I have made it once, I would go with something thicker for the lining. The only place where you sew the two together is along the top edge (no corners or anything) so you really don’t need to worry about the thickness and a more rigid lining would give more structure to the pack which would be a plus.

I really can’t recommend the Desmond pattern enough. The instructions and pattern were fantastic and the sewalong made it super easy to sew up really quickly. I love that it is gender neutral so it would make an excellent gift for pretty much anyone. Now I just need to figure out who to sew one for or see if I can justify a reason to sew up another one for myself.

SEWING

TRUE BIAS PAPER PATTERNS

November 8, 2017

They are finally here – True Bias paper patterns. Paper patterns have been a long time coming. Yes, they were way more work than I ever anticipated, and took about twice as long, but I am so thrilled with the outcome.! Currently, I have four patterns in stock for paper. They are the Hudson pants, the Roscoe Blouse and Dress, the Lander Pants and Shorts, and the Lodo Dress. These can all be ordered in my shop here. The plan is to continue adding some of my older patterns as paper over the next year as I continue to print new patterns on paper as well.

Each pattern comes in a thick, rigid cardstock envelope with a photo printed on the front. The back of the envelope contains all of the information you might need, including the description, fabric recommendations, notions, size chart, and fabric requirements. I love how sturdy these envelopes feel. They stay nice and flat and protect your pattern and instructions.

Inside each envelope you will find an instruction booklet and pattern. Each pattern is printed on white tissue that you can either cut into or trace depending on your preference.

Please jump over to my shop if you would like to purchase a paper pattern. I am also doing wholesale, so check out your local store to see if they are carrying my patterns if you want it right away.

 

SEWING

EBONY TEES AND SEAMLY CARDI IN MERINO JERSEY

October 23, 2017

This was my second year as a counselor at Camp Workroom Social and I was determined to be smarter in the wardrobe department than I was last year. I wanted clothing that was practical, stylish, comfy and interchangable. I already knew that I was bringing one pair of shoes (some back lace up boots which were much better than the heeled ones I wore last year) so everything needed to go with those and jeans. My color palette would be black (no surprise there), gray, white, blue, and camel. These really are the colors I wear all year long anyways. I am such a sucker for neutrals.

This gave me the perfect excuse to sew up a few new things. After thinking about the criteria above, I settled on the Ebony tee in the cropped length and the Seamly Wrapped Cardigan which I had sewn up last year and loved. As for fabric choice, that was easy. I loved working with the merino wool jersey last year from The Fabric Store. They carry the perfect colors for my taste, plus the merino jersey feels so luxurious while still being washable. The perfect fall fabric in my book. I ended up going with mushroom for the cardi, and black and ochre for the ebony tees.

For the Ebony tees I wanted something cropped that I could wear with high rise jeans and still not show any tummy. I added about 5/8″ to the hem for added coverage. I would probably add a bit more next time for personal preference. Mostly because it tends to catch on my bra and get shorter as the day rolls on.

Otherwise the fit is great. I sewed up a size 8 with no issues. It was such a fast make and the fabric was a perfect match. I am obsessed with this ochre right now and want to sew everything in it. And the black was just a perfect everyday choice.

The Seamly cardi was sewn up in the mushroom color which is such a pretty, fall appropriate white. Not quite ivory, and not quite grey, a perfect blend. I also love how the color meshes up with the ochre and black.

I had sewn up the seamly cardigan before so I knew that the fit was good and that it was an easy sew. I did make the armhole a bit bigger because it was causing some bunching on my Ebony tee, but otherwise I sewed it up per instructions. My favorite part of the pattern is that there is a secret pocket on the inside facing to stash keys or a credit card. I still need to make the sleeved version of this pattern, but the sleeveless just feels like such a hip and practical layering piece for everyday.

I got home from camp last week and these tops and cardi were the perfect addition for the trip. They felt like me while still being super comfy and without being too dressed up for camp. And now I have some great new layering pieces for fall in my favorite color palette.

The only other thing I sewed for camp was a backpack which I will be back to talk about on the blog later this week.

SEWALONG SEWING TUTORIALS

LANDER SEWALONG DAY 5 – WAISTBAND / BUTTONS / HEM

September 22, 2017

Welcome back for the last day of the Lander sewalong. I am so excited to finish these up and see all of your versions. Let’s get started.

 

Step 20 – First thing we are going to do is baste the side seams and check for fit. To create a basting stitch, all you need to do is lengthen your stitch length as far as it goes so that it’s easy to unpick if need be.

Flip the back pant around so that the right side of the back and right side of the front are touching. Line up the side seams and pin.

Baste at a 1” seam allowance. The 1″ seam allowance gives you lots of wiggle room in case you need to let it out a bit around the hip etc…

Try the pants on, and adjust as necessary. Make sure that you pin the fly closed when you try them on to get an accurate idea of fit once the buttons are on. You may also want to try them on inside out so that you can easily pin the areas you want to adjust. (The seam allowance at the waist must stay at 1” so that the waistband will match up correctly, but you can tweak around the hips to get a perfect fit.) If you find that you need more room in the waist you will need to cut a new waistband. If you want to take it in at the waist you can make due, although your notches will not match up and you will need to trim some off of center front.

Return your stitch length to normal. Stitch each outside side seam. If necessary, unpick any visible basting stitches.

Trim the seam allowances down to 1/2”. Finish the seam allowances together in your desired manner ( I’m serging) and press towards the back pant or short. Turn the whole garment right side out.

 

Step 21 – Fold the long edges of the belt loop piece together, right sides touching. Sew along the long edge at 1/2” seam allowance.

Trim the seam allowance to 1/8”.

Using a loop turner or safety pin, turn the tube right side out. Press the tube flat so that the seam is along the center back.

Edgestitch at 1/8” along both sides. Cut the tube into 5 equal 3 1/2″ sections. Discard any extra.

Step 22 – With the right side of the belt loop touching the right side of your pant or short, pin one raw edge flush against the top edge.

One should be centered over the center back seam, the next two centered over the side seams, and the last two flush with the inside edge of the front pockets. Baste the belt loops to hold them in place.

 

Step 23 – Press the unnotched long edge of the waistband up by 3/8”, wrong sides touching.

With 1/2” hanging off of the center front edges and right sides touching, pin the notched side of the waistband to the top of the pant / short. The notches on the waistband will match up with the notches on the front pant / short, the sideseams, and center back.

 

Step 24 – Starting at the left center front edge, stitch around the whole waistband, ending at the right center front edge. If you get a little pinch in your fabric like I did below, unpick that area and then ease it back in. This can easily happen since the waistband is stabilized with interfacing and the pant which isn’t may grow a bit with sewing.

Grade the seams to reduce bulk. To do this, trim the pant seam allowance to 1/4″ and the waistband seam allowance to 3/8″.

 

Step 25 – Press the whole waistband up and away from the main pant, and over the seam allowance.

 

Step 26 – Take the folded edge of the waistband and pull it down (right sides touching) towards the waistband seam along the right center front so that it overlaps it by about 1/16”. Pin.

Stitch at 1/2” seam allowance so that it is flush with the fly. Repeat for left side and clip corners.

 

Step 27 – Flip the waistband right side out. On the inside waistband, make sure that folded edge covers the seam by about 1/16” and pin in place. Press the whole waistband so that you get a nice squared edge at each center front corner.

 

Step 28 – On the front of the pant, stitch in the ditch in the seam between the main pant / short and the waistband, catching the edge of the folded waistband on the inside of the garment. The goal is that this stitching is virtually invisible since it is hidden in the joining of at seam. If you don’t catch the inside waistband for small amounts, don’t worry as you will be edgestitching in the next step which will catch it.

outside

inside

 

Step 29 – Starting at center back, edgestitch at 1/8” around the entire perimeter of the waistband, pivoting at each corner.

Step 30 – Stitch on top of each belt loop 1/4” below the waistband seam. You want this stitching to be secure so stitch back and forth a few times.

Press the belt loop upwards.

Fold the top down by about 1/2” so that it is flush with the top of the waistband. Press and pin.

Stitch back and forth a few times, about 1/8” from the top, to secure.

 

Step 31 – Sew the buttonhole on the waistband according to the marking on your waistband pattern piece. If you have some, use fray check at this time to reinforce your buttonholes.

Open all four of your buttonholes. If you don’t have a buttonhole opener you may have a hard time opening them since there are so many layers. You might want to consider getting one in the future if you think you will be sewing a lot of pants or jeans. It makes life so much easier. Although I have also heard that razor blade and a steady hand do wonders in a pinch.

 

Step 32 – With your fly lined up, use a disappearing pen or similar tool to mark your buttonhole placement through your cut buttonholes. The marking should be on the inside (closest to center front) edge of your buttonhole.

Attach your buttons to the right fly and right waistband accordingly. If you are using jeans buttons and this is your first time, don’t fret. It’s easier than you think. Use a sharp object like an awl to poke a hole.

Put the male end of the button through the back of the hole and then place the female part on top of that.

Turn it upside down onto a hard surface and use a hammer to hit the back of the button so that it secures it in to the front section. You can kind pull on the button to make sure that it is attached, but you can usually feel it securing.

 

Step 33 – Fold the bottom raw edge of the pant or short up by 1/4”, wrong sides touching, and press.

For the shorts, fold up by another 1”. For the pants, fold up by another 3”. Because there is such a wide hem, this is a good place to try on the pants and adjust the length a bit. Pin and press.

Topstitch at 7/8” for the shorts and 2 7/8” for the pants.

 

That’s it, you are finished! Give the whole thing a final press and wear them proudly. I will take photos of mine and post them on the blog next week. Please tag me if you post yours so I see them. You can use the tags #landerpant #landershort and #truebias.

 

If you have any questions or comments, please comment below or send me an email. Thank you for sewing along!

SEWALONG SEWING TUTORIALS

LANDER SEWALONG DAY 4 – CROTCH AND FLY

September 21, 2017

Welcome back for more sewing today with the Lander Sewalong. Today we are going to tackle the crotch and also the fly. If you have sewn normal zipper fly before, I think you will love trying this button fly. It’s much easier. If you have never sewn a fly before all, this is a really good first one to start on.

 

Step 11 – First we are going to finish the seam allowances of each of the inner legs separately. I am going to serge them. They have to be done separately now so that they can be pressed open once stitched. Otherwise you will end up with a lot of bulk right at the bottom of your crotch which just isn’t comfy.( I accidentally serged the crotches first. Don’t do that. You can do that in step 12. Ooops.)

Pin one front to the coordinating back along the inner leg, right sides together. Stitch at your normal 1/2″ seam allowance. For Views B and C, you may find that the distance between the crotch and first notch is a bit longer on the back leg than the front, if so,  you will need to stretch it slightly to fit.

Press seam allowances open. Repeat for other leg.

 

Step 12 – Finish the seam allowances of the right and left crotch separately.

Pin the left leg to the right leg along the crotch seam with right sides touching. Starting at center back and backstitching, stitch until you get to the dot on center front. Backstitch at dot to secure.

 

Step 13 – Finish the outside curved edge of the left fly with either a zig zag stitch or serger.

With right sides touching, pin the straight edge of the left fly to the center front edge of the left short or pant. Let the back pant and right front fall down and out of the way during this step. I like to put one pin right at the dot to help me know where to stop stitching.

Stitch from the top down to the dot and stop, backstitching. It’s better to stop one or two stitches short, than to stitch too far. If you go too far and catch the right side, you will need to unpick. If you stop a bit too short, there will be more topstitching and such to secure that area in the next few steps so don’t worry too much.

Grade the seam you just stitched by trimming the seam allowance of the interfaced fly to reduce bulk.

 

Step 14 – Flip the left fly to the inside of the left front and press.

Fold in the seam allowance of the bottom section of the fly that was not stitched and press.

 

Step 15 – With your pant right side out, place the stitching guide provided with your pattern pieces on the left fly.

Mark along the outside edge for the curved topstitching and transfer the markings for the buttonholes.

Starting at the top of the pant, sew the curved topstitching down the left fly, backstitching at the end.

Next, stitch the buttonholes.

Turn your garment inside out and clip the seam allowance of the right front crotch curve 1/2” below the dot.

 

Step 16 – Fold the right fly in half with right sides touching. Sew along the bottom angled edge.

Clip the corner and trim the seam allowance.

Turn right side out and press.

Finish the long open edge with a zigzag stitch or serger.

 

Step 17 – Like you did for the left side, pin the right fly to the right front. Let the left side and back fall down and out of the way.

Stitch from the waistline down until the dot. Backstitch to secure. Just like the left fly, it’s better to be a few stitches too short than too long. Make sure that you are not catching the edge of the left fly in the process.

Flip the right fly to the inside of the short or pant.

 

Step 18 – Press the seam allowances below the clip towards the left pant. I like to use a tailor’s ham to help get all of the seam allowances on the crotch towards the left leg without making any creases.

Topstitch at 1/8” through all layers from the right side, starting at the dot, backstitching, and ending at the top back waistline.

 

Step 19 – Pin the fly so that everything is laying flat and lined up. To help secure the fly, sew a small (about 1/2” long) bartack through all layers at the bottom of the curved stitching and another at an angle just below the first buttonhole. I like a zigzag width of about 2.5mm and length of about 0.2mm for my bartacks, but that is preference. You may want to try a few on some scrap fabric to figure out your preference.

 

That’s it for today. Tomorrow we will completely finish our pants and shorts which includes sideseams, waistband, hemming, and buttons.