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Saturday, August 5, 2017

Greenstyle Centerfield Raglan - Maternity Edition Tutorial

My favorite style of top to wear when pregnant is a more fitted top with side ruching. I especially prefer the bottom to be fitted underneath my belly. A more fitted top (especially one fitted under your belly) really helps to avoid the tent look, even in later pregnancy. It also means you do not have to constantly put your hand under your belly to show that your belly is not from overeating but is from a growing baby!

The great thing about this top style for those who sew is that you can pick your favorite tee shirt pattern and easily alter the pattern yourself. There is no need to buy a special pattern just for maternity. I own LOTS of raglan patterns and used one of my favorite - Greenstyle's Centerfield Raglan. The reason I like this raglan pattern so much is that it is so flattering in the bust area and is a more fitted raglan. (You can scroll to the bottom of this blog for a tutorial on how I did it!)

Raglan #1 - My first top was made out of the rayon spandex from Made Whimsy. I made a size XS. My first tip to sewing for your new maternity body is to always re-measure before using your pre-maternity patterns. I normally have a 32.5 inch bust, which puts me in the XXS in this pattern. At the end of my first trimester, though, I was already up to a 34.5 inch bust. 

 


And, of course, I wear my Moxi shorts a lot in pregnancy because the knit waistband is perfect for a growing bump!



Raglan #2 - For my next raglan, I used my Nala Cotton Lycra from Sincerely Rylee and sized up one size to a Small. The pattern recommends sizing up for a looser fit, and I know this top will definitely make it through the last stretch of pregnancy when I am needing all the extra tummy room that I can get. Also, cotton lycra is one of my favorite fabrics for this pattern. 

 

I also had several sweet photobombers throughout my photophoot! These pictures were taken almost a month ago, and I have gotten so much use out of my tops! I am also a bit bigger in the tummy and filling them out nicely.



Tutorial

Now, enough gushing over my tops, let's talk about how easily you can change your standard tee pattern to a maternity top. 

(1) Find your shorten/lengthen line for the bodice. If your pattern does not have one, this will typically be at the smallest point between the bust and hips. 

(2) Cut at the shorten/lengthen line on both your front bodice piece and your back bodice piece. You may choose to only lengthen the front bodice if you do not like the fabric gathers on your back. I find tops where there is length added on both bodice pieces to last longer and give you more growing room throughout pregnancy. 



(3) Add length. I am 5'2" so I only needed to add 4 and a half inches. You may need to add more if you are much taller. I added length by putting a piece of paper underneath the pattern at the point where it was cut into two pieces, and then, I cut the side seam to where it was straight and smooth between the two points. 
(4) Mark two points on your front bodice and back bodice pattern pieces on the side seams. The first point will be at 5 and a half inches below your armpit and the second point will be at 5 and a half inches above the bottom of the side seam. 

(5) Cut your fabric according to the pattern directions, transferring the markings with a washable marker or fabric chalk. 

(6) Sew your top according to the pattern directions. Stop right before you get to sew your side seams. You can skip steps (7) and (8) if you only added length to your front bodice. 

(7) Cut out two pieces of quarter inch elastic that are both 8.5 inches long. I used braided. If you added more length to your top than me, you may need to add longer elastic. A great way to know this before cutting out your elastic is to try your top on and pin it in place. Measure exactly how much ruching you want.

(8) Add the elastic between your two markings. The elastic will be encased in this seam by your serger. I use a clip or a pin to hold the beginning of the elastic at my first marking and then to hold the end of the elastic at my second marking. Using your serger, slightly stretch the elastic to make it fit. Do not start stretching, though, until you notice the elastic is secured in the seam at the top. I sew slow on this part to make sure all three pieces (the front bodice, back bodice and elastic) line up evenly. Skip to step 9.

(9) If you did not do steps 7 and 8 (because you only lengthened your front bodice piece), you need to do a gathering stitch between your markings on your front bodice only. Sew your side seam with your front bodice piece gathered. No need to add elastic if you are using this gathering method. 

(10) Hem and finish your top per pattern instructions. You are done! Enjoy your top!

Thanks for reading my blog. You may follow me on Instagram or receive updates by liking my page on Facebook. Need help with my instructions, please ask! I would love to help.

You may purchase Greenstyle's Centerfield Raglan here. It is such a flattering pattern that works well with stretchy fabrics like cotton lycra. 

Photo Credit: My wonderful friend, Aimee Wilson of Capture, Craft, and Cook Disclosures: This post may contain affiliate links, which means I receive a small compensation when you purchase via my link. There is no cost to you. Any and all opinions expressed are my own.


Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Greenstyle Brassie Joggers and Shorts Pattern Review

It is probably not a secret, but I have this huge thing for Greenstyle Creations patterns. One of the first patterns that I tried from Greenstyle was their Brassie Joggers pattern, and this pattern got me hooked! I had 5 pairs in heavy rotation this past fall and winter. They were hands down the most comfortable pants ever. Once the summer began, I knew I needed several short pairs to keep me comfortable. I really only feel comfortable in a knit waistband when pregnant so these shorts work perfect. The pattern was written to include a casing with elastic, but I did not put elastic in any of mine. I did, however, still make buttonholes on some so that I have the ability to cinch them in when I am not pregnant.

The first pair that I made this summer is out of the Zenith and Quasar athletic brushed poly. This fabric works great for this pattern and fits the comfort bill perfectly.


Next, I made two pairs out of French terry. The light grey pair is made with a baby French terry and the red is a regular French terry, which is a little thicker than the baby. Both fabrics work great for this pattern. The grey was a remnant, so I did not have enough fabric to make it the regular shorts length or to use on the pocket. I also made the grey pair with a pocket bag instead of the pocket being attached to front with decorative stitching. The red French terry is from Made Whimsey. I also used their solid red cotton lycra for the waistband.

These make great lounge shorts



I used a mustard cotton lycra for my next pair of shorts and paired it with a cotton lycra stripe for the waist band. I used my double needle to topstitch the decorative part of the pocket on this pair.



This top is made using the Museum Tunic Tutorial on Anna Maria Horner's blog.

 I also wanted to include a few photos of the joggers that got the absolute most use in my wardrobe this winter. One was made in a Zenith and Quasar lighter weight athletic brushed poly. This weight is no longer available on the website, but I would buy too much if she listed it again, so that may be a good thing! On these I altered the pattern to have contrast binding around the pocket edge and to have a pocket bag instead of the regular pocket style.






 I am 14 weeks along in the above photos, and so, as you can see, some of the non-maternity shirts are getting a little short. The next photo is taken from Instagram of my pre-pregnancy self this winter. I wore these cotton lycra joggers all the time and could not get over how comfortable they were. Here, I am wearing them with a Sew Over it Molly Top in a rayon lycra. 


The hardest part about writing this post was to know when to stop making joggers and stop long enough to write my thoughts on this pattern! I have already made two since I took photos for the blog and plan to make many more. Hopefully, I can share those with you in upcoming posts.

Thanks for reading my blog, and I hope I have inspired you. You may follow me on Instagram or receive updates by liking my page on Facebook.

Photo Credit: My wonderful friend, Aimee Wilson of Capture, Craft, and Cook

Disclosures: This post may contain affiliate links, which means I receive a small compensation when you purchase via my link. There is no cost to you. Any and all opinions expressed are my own.



Friday, July 7, 2017

Hey June Mountain Pose Pants Review

Today, I get to share with you some of the exciting things I have been up to since my last post in May. After my last blog post, I found out we are expecting a baby! The best way to get pregnant seems to be to declare you are finished having kids and to give away most of your maternity wardrobe and baby gear and clothes. (Don't panic I kept my carriers and strollers!)

Once the morning sickness and exhaustion set in, my amount of energy left to sew was scarce, but I did have time to plan. The second trimester usually greets me with more energy, and this time it did not disappoint. My first requirement in maternity wear is that it cannot feel like it is touching my stomach. To stay up, though, most waistbands do exactly that - touch me. When I saw the Mountain Pose Pants by Hey June, I knew they would work perfect. These are not designed for maternity but work perfect for the occasion. Look at all that comfort, and yet, they stay up perfect! Not only are they drafted so well, the pattern is free! It is a great introduction to other Hey June patterns, which all come together very easily due to her wonderful instructions and diagrams.


I made a size small in the Mountain Pose Pants. My hips measure at a 36.5 and my waist measurement is constantly growing. I like how the pattern recommends trying on the waistband and getting the perfect wrap around fit for your waist. I made a charcoal pair and a black pair that are both in a cotton lycra and at capri length. The pattern has a defined knee so it is really easy to measure to get the length where you need it to fall. I knew these would need to be in heavy rotation and that these colors would go with so many of my tops. The pants begin to flare out right where my calf is and give the perfect amount of breathing room for the top of my calf.

The tank top I am wearing with the pants is the Pony Tank by Chalk and Notch. It is a very quick sew as well and works perfect for hiding the baby bump in those early months. I made one tank top in a burnout jersey knit, and the other is in a floral whale print brushed poly from Zenith and Quasar.





 Look at that stripe matching!


I also had a chance to make one more top to pair with my new pants. This is the Hamburg Dolman from ShwinDesigns. It is a loose slouchy top that I knew would work great for a growing bump. I used a rayon spandex bundle that I had gotten from Made Whimsy. This rayon spandex is very soft and has great drape.
    


Thanks for reading my blog, and I hope I have inspired you. You may follow me on Instagram or receive updates by liking my page on Facebook.

Photo Credit: My wonderful friend, Aimee Wilson of Capture, Craft, and Cook

Disclosures: This post may contain affiliate links, which means I receive a small compensation when you purchase via my link. There is no cost to you. Any and all opinions expressed are my own.

Monday, May 22, 2017

Greenstyle Creations Moxi Shorts Pattern Review

Today Greenstyle Creations releases their newest pattern, the Moxi Shorts! I am planning on living in these shorts this summer whether at the gym, the beach, or out running errands. I got the opportunity to test the pattern over the past few weeks and loved watching all the hard work that Angelyn put in this pattern to get just the right fit. She also included a cheat sheet for fit adjustments in the pattern to make getting the proper fit for your body easy. I have to admit that I made 9 shorts during the test and can see myself making many more!

Fabric choice is everything in how these feel and look. The pattern was designed for a stretch woven with 20% stretch. Some knits like scuba, heavy supplex, or some French terry have less stretch and also work great for this pattern. I used three different fabric types for the shorts I made in testing: knit, stretch twill, and stretch chiffon.

First up, stretch chiffon:






 I used knit binding on both of my stretch chiffon shorts. There is an art to not stretching the binding too much when sewing so that it doesn't create a lot of wrinkles in your shorts. The thinner the knit, the better so that you do not have thick edges. The black binding is a poly spandex knit from Joann and the pink is a Zenith and Quasar brushed nylon spandex that is wonderfully soft.




Next, stretch twill:

These may be some of my favorite shorts because it felt like the fabric was made for this pattern! I was able to make the bias tape out of the same fabric without it being bulky, and it was pretty easy to work with. I made the waist band out of cotton lycra.

I had enough fabric left over to make my oldest daughter a pair too. She is only 8 but she fits great in the size zero of these shorts. She is pretty excited about her shorts and will be wearing them to play tennis.








 Here are some more in stretch twill. Both of these have a cotton lycra waistband and a stretch woven bias trim. The black top I am wearing is the Wardrobe by Me Wardrobe Builder Tee, and the tank top is the Greenstyle Jillian Tank.


Lastly, I loved using a stable knit for this pattern. If you are going to use a super stretchy knit, the pattern recommends sizing down. I did not need to size down for any of my knit fabrics.









Thanks for reading my blog. Hope you enjoyed all the photos of these awesome shorts. Grab your  Moxi Shorts pattern while it is on sale for 24 hours only. The pattern has an included brief. Compression shorts are also available as an add on to the pattern.

Where I shopped:
Stretch Chiffon is Nicole Miller for Joann and can be found here.
Stretch Twill with Orange Bias was also from Joann and can be found here.
Plum athletic knit was from Made Whimsy and can be found here.
Scuba was from Joann and can be found here.

Thanks for reading my blog, and I hope I have inspired you. You may follow me on Instagram or receive updates by liking my page on Facebook.

Photo Credit: My wonderful friend, Aimee Wilson of Capture, Craft, and Cook

Disclosures: This post may contain affiliate links, which means I receive a small compensation when you purchase via my link. There is no cost to you. Any and all opinions expressed are my own.



Saturday, May 13, 2017

Itch to Stitch Lago Tank

Happy Mother's day!! I am gearing up for the hot weather that we get in Texas every summer by sewing up some easy, breezy tank tops. When I feel sweaty and hot, I enjoy wearing tops that are not clingy, and the Itch to Stitch Lago Tank pattern fits this need perfect. It is fitted through the bust but has the perfect amount of ease around the waist and hips.

I was excited to have the opportunity to test the Lago Tank pattern for Kennis Wong last week but am even more excited to tell you that the pattern is FREE. So, you can make yourself a stack of these for this hot summer we have ahead. I was able to make four tops during testing. These really come out quick! My first two tanks are in a rayon spandex. Rayon spandex has great drape and works well for this pattern.


I got to take some photos with my lovely friend Aimee for this test as well. I always love getting together with her, and I think we are finally getting together to sew or take photos more than just shop! My top here is made in a rayon spandex from Simply by Ti.


I also made an athletic tank out of athletic brushed poly from Zenith and Quasar. It is super soft and has moisture wicking so will be perfect for working out in the heat.



  This photo was an outtake but is my favorite due to my sweet little photo bombers with us that day.


Lastly, here is a Lago tank that I made in a jersey blend I got from Wherehouse Fabrics in Dallas. I love these colors and was so excited to find it on the remnant table for a great deal. Sometimes what they label as remnants can be upwards of 4 yards (or more!) so I may have several tops for the girls and I out of this fabric.  



In honor of Mother's Day, tell your mom you love her. If you are a mother, keep on paying attention to those little things you do for your kids that you aren't sure they even notice. I had to call my mom this past week just to tell her thank you for singing to me all the time growing up. So many of her songs of worship are etched in my heart and come out just when I need them. I still call her sometimes to sing a song to me when I can't quite find her version on YouTube. :)

Thanks for reading my blog! You can grab your free tank pattern here.

Thanks for reading my blog, and I hope I have inspired you. You may follow me on Instagram or receive updates by liking my page on Facebook.

Photo Credit: My wonderful friend, Aimee Wilson of Capture, Craft, and Cook

Disclosures: This post may contain affiliate links, which means I receive a small compensation when you purchase via my link. There is no cost to you. Any and all opinions expressed are my own.

Monday, March 27, 2017

GreenStyle Midway Bomber Jacket

Recently, I have been writing about filling my wardrobe with comfortable and put-together tops. Of course, my spring wardrobe would not be complete if I did not include some jackets to wear until we have some consistently warm days. So, let me introduce you to the cozy and stylish Midway Bomber Jacket. I was so excited to test this pattern for Greenstyle Creations. Angelyn drafted an awesome pattern that has such clearly written instructions for each step. The jacket is designed for a knit fabric with at least 50% stretch and has an optional lining and welt pockets. The jacket gives plenty of room to move and be comfortable, and yet, it still is slim and flattering. If you like a roomier jacket or are using fabric with less stretch, I would suggest to size up from your regular measurements.  

My first jacket was made out of scuba that I picked up on a remnant table at Wherehouse Fabrics in Dallas. The cuffs and neckband are made from heavy supplex from Zenith and Quasar. Instead of lining, I created a facing for the zipper, which helped me hand tack my pockets down to keep them from peaking out when worn unzipped. All my jackets were an XXS with one inch taken out of the bodice for my usual height adjustment, and 2 inches taken out of the sleeves. There is a clearly marked lengthen/shorten line that takes the guess work out of making height adjustments. Since I took an inch out of the bodice, I used 18 inch zippers on all my jackets.

The day we took photos was a pretty windy day so it was quite interesting trying to keep my hair in place. The top that I wore under my bomber jacket is a Toaster Sweater 2 from Sew House 7. It is a rather short top because I made no height adjustments for my 5"2' self, and yet it shows belly when I raise my arms and has pretty high side vents. My husband loves the top, but it is still growing on me.

The next Midway Bomber Jacket that I made is in an olive double brushed poly. I lined it with the same fabric as on the outside. This one took the longest to make because welt pockets on an unstable brushed poly is an exercise in patience. My jackets that were made out of scuba (which was recommended on the pattern) were such a breeze to make. The brushed poly, however, may have been worth it because it is so soft and makes a wonderful light jacket. I think this one will also work good for running or the gym.


The Midway Bomber Jacket has an optional stripe down the sleeve that looks great with color blocking. The sleeve on the jacket is a two-piece sleeve, which gives the sleeve such a great shape.


My last, but maybe most favorite jacket, is made with a floral scuba from Joann. It just screams Spring, and I can be such a sucker for a good floral.


Thanks for reading my review of the Midway Bomber Jacket. You can grab your copy of the pdf pattern here I hope that you also enjoy sewing yourself a Midway Bomber Jacket!

Thanks for reading my blog, and I hope I have inspired you. You may follow me on Instagram or receive updates by liking my page on Facebook.
Photo Credit: My wonderful friend, Aimee Wilson of Capture, Craft, and Cook

Disclosures: This post may contain affiliate links, which means I receive a small compensation when you purchase via my link. There is no cost to you. Any and all opinions expressed are my own.