A Velvet Jacket for Fall – McCalls 7254 Pattern Review

They tell me it’s officially Fall. ¬†The weather here doesn’t necessarily agree, but I live down south so that’s to be expected. ūüôā So what’s Fall without a new, pretty jacket? ¬†With the curvy lines of McCalls 7254 whisperingm7254 to me to make it, I couldn’t resist. ¬†And in nothing less¬†than red stretch velvet, because it’s almost red velvet season.

As a note, I purchased this velvet from FABRIC BRAVO- Better Service! on Amazon.  I ordered 2 yards and was sent 1 yard and 34 inches.  I emailed them about it and went ahead and used the fabric since I was able to squeeze my pattern pieces on it.  Lesson learned, though.

As a pattern review I made¬†View E in an XS. ¬†The sleeve on the pattern was short on me (I’m 5’8″) so I added 3″ to the length. ¬†I debated on whether to interface the collar. ¬†I eventually decided to do so, to ensure the collar would lay flat.

I like this jacket, the only thing lacking is pockets ūüôā ¬†I won’t complain though since velvet was not a recommended fabric. ¬†It’s supposed to be for sweater knits. ¬†The next time¬†I make it, I may not interface the collar, depending on the material I use. ¬†But until then I will certainly enjoy this one.

From Scraps to a Shirt – McCalls 7356 Pattern Review

When ¬†McCalls 7356 was released, I saw it and thought it would be interesting, especially in the C m7356and D views. ¬†But I didn’t want to go buy fun and interesting fabric for it¬†without a muslin first. ¬†Besides, I’m also on a self-imposed “use your stash” challenge, so I decided to go through it and see what scraps I had that might be large enough to fit the bill. ¬†Earlier this year I¬†had to purchase two yards of red satin for¬†the Fourth of July dress (since I went to Hancock Fabrics during their liquidation sale). ¬†I managed to eke View A and the godets for View B (just in case) out of the remaining scraps from that dress. ¬†I briefly contemplated using the leftover plaid from the Fourth of July dress as the contrast panels and ties as well, but decided that may be a bit much. Self editing is always a good idea! ūüôā ¬†I also used the red satin as the pockets and back pocket lining for the jeans below, but that will be for another blog post. ūüôā

As a pattern review, I made a Size 8, in View A, out of Red Shantung Satin. ¬†I omitted the piping and sleeves. ¬† I also¬†used the godets from View B as well, but they didn’t drape well once sewn, so I removed them. ¬†The pattern has wide facings for the V-neck and the armholes. ¬†I used them initially, but they were bulky and cumbersome. ¬†This weekend I decided that the armhole facings had to go and I ripped them off ( ūüôā literally) and replaced them with 7/8 inch single fold bias binding that was leftover from a previous project. ¬†It feels and looks better, on the hanger and on the body. ¬†I also did not use the hem depth specified on the pattern and simply finished the edge and turned it under by¬†3/8 of an inch.

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I would make it again in the future, but with several modifications. ¬†So, I’m glad that I made a muslin first. I would lower the V neck a little more, lengthen the top to a more visually pleasing length for my height, and use bias binding again for the armholes and possibly the neckline. I would also try to add the godets and ties if I were to use a much lighter weight fabric.

 

A Reminiscent of the Sea Dress – McCall’s 5292 Pattern Review

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A few years ago, I decided I was going to get back into sewing, and I¬†picked up a few patterns to start with. ¬†My mom cautioned me to pick 5292patterns of clothes¬†that I would actually want to wear, not just items that looked quick and easy. ¬†One of the patterns I bought was McCalls 5292. ¬†Then, as it is wont to do, life happened, and sewing was pushed to the way side again. ¬†Along with the sewing machine, McCalls 5292 was put away in a drawer and forgotten about. ¬†It seems that even McCalls has forgotten about it, because if you search for it on their website, it doesn’t come up. ¬†The picture to the right¬†is from the website sewing.patternreview.com. ¬†You can see my review of the pattern there as well. ¬†Fast forward to present day, As I was perusing my patterns while looking at this lovely, lightweight fabric of green, blue, and purple squares (one of the polyester¬†charmeuse¬†fabrics gifted to me by my mother), this one popped up and the yardage needed matched the yardage I was given. ¬†In my world, that’s a sign that this dress finally¬†needs to happen. ūüôā So I made it ūüôā

As a pattern review, I sewed View C in a size 10. I based my sizing decision on the finished garment measurements on the pattern. This is an older pattern that is discontinued and the sizing in the 4-6-8-10 range is smaller than most of my current patterns.

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I really liked the neckline and flared skirt, but my fabric was so lightweight, i decided to underline the skirt with the same fabric i used for the lining (a hunter green pongee lining fabric). ¬†It was a little extra work, but I think it paid off in the finished product because the skirt hangs and wears nicely, without getting caught between my legs when I walk or stand. ¬†Since the skirt is underlined,¬†Instead of a 1-1/4″ hem, I used a narrow hem of about 5/8″. The only other alteration I made was simply for a clean finish on the interior. ¬†The instructions have you machine stitch the midriff and midriff lining pieces together and then stitch them as one to the skirt, leaving that seam visible on the inside of the dress. For a cleaner finish, I stitched the midriff and skirt together, and then hand sewed the midriff lining down over that seam allowance. ¬†Yes, I chose to hand sew of all things. ¬†What can I say? My mom was right :), I like the look and feel of it better than leaving the raw edge.

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I like it and I’m glad I finally made it. ¬†And look, I included a twirling shot just for y’all! I think it would make a cute peplum-style top instead of a full dress and who doesn’t like options? ūüôā ¬†What do you think?

A Festive Fourth of July Dress – Vogue 8972 Pattern Review

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I was invited to a wedding in Detroit, over the Fourth of July weekend. ¬†I wanted to be weather appropriate and festive, and coordinate with my date, but instead of going dress shopping, I went fabric shopping. ¬† He decided his tie and socks early on, and¬†I decided¬†to coordinate with them. ¬†I also wanted a full skirt and a fitted bodice, so I dug into my patterns and came up with about four that might possibly¬†work, then decided on one I hadn’t gotten a chance to make yet. ¬†Vogue 8972, with it’s waist shaping and full skirt option, was my number one draft pick. ¬†We went to Joann’s with no avail. ¬†Then, on a last minute decision, we went to a liquidating Hancock Fabrics, and found the fabrics that said¬†this dress was definitely meant to be.

As a pattern review, I made View D¬†in a size 6 with an A cup bodice. ¬† Oh yeah, let’s talk fabric!¬†For the dress, the bodice – Red Shantung Satin, the midriff – Red, White, and Blue Plaid Cotton, and for the skirt – a Navy Blue that shimmers to Black Crinkle Taffeta. For the lining, bodice is self lined with the same Red Shantung Satin, the midriff is lined in a very lightweight White Satin, and the skirt is lined in Navy Blue Pongee Lining fabric.

As a design change/alteration, I used an invisible zipper and did not topstitch it.

I think it came out well. In future iterations I think I will scoop the neckline lower and possibly change to the B cup bodice pieces. ¬†I also eventually want to make one of the sheath views.¬† By the way, the bolero is from McCalls 3033, with lengthened sleeves,¬† shaped back to match dress, and lined in plaid. ūüôā¬† What can I say, I like to match. ūüôā

Excuse Me, Your Back Is Showing – McCalls 7191 Pattern Review

I was looking through patterns for a top that I could possibly wear for dance competitions this summer, and came across McCalls 7191. ¬†It seems I can’t resist a V-neck pattern. ¬†My mom gifted a blue and green lightweight woven to me from her stash (Why she had polyester in there? I don’t know, because she’s a cotton girl from way back! But, I got more pretties from her that you will see soon, so no complaints here ūüôā !) that I thought was perfect for it, so I got to work.

As a pattern review, this one is described as “semi-fitted, pullover tops have self-lined yoke back, back hemline variations, V-neckline, French darts and narrow hem.” ¬†I¬†used a size 6 and made¬†View A. ¬†The instructions were easy to follow, and the only change I made was instead of slipstitching the yoke per the instructions, I stitched the neckline in one pass, so the raw edge lays¬†between the overlay and yoke unseen when worn. ¬†As a note, there are four layers of fabric across your upper back when doing view A. ¬†Also the muslin showed me the arm holes would probably be too small. ¬†To accommodate that issue, I cut extra length on the armhole facings and deepened the armholes to taste after it was put together before applying the facings.
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I like this top and will sew it again. ¬†On the next iteration, I will alter the pattern to deepen the armholes, lower the neckline slightly, rotate the¬†bust darts down slightly, and possibly lower the overlay in back. It conceals the bra completely while standing still but not necessarily while moving. ūüôā ¬†Not truly bothersome for me, but if it can be fixed, why not? ¬†ūüôā

An Easy Cotton Dress – McCalls 7315 Pattern Review


I thought I was going to like McCalls 7315. ¬†I really did. ¬†I saw the fabric on the live model from the pattern envelope in the store, but didn’t really like it. ¬†I even almost bought the watercolor satin fabric shown on envelope for view D. ¬†I’m really glad that I didn’t. ¬†It is a very easy pattern as advertised, I just don’t like it on me and for me. ¬†I thought I would like the V-neck and asymmetrical hemline. I don’t like either. ¬†The neckline is too high and the hemline seems unbalanced on me.

As a pattern review, this one is ¬†described as “dresses with¬†neckline variations,” (1 variation) “fitted, lined bodice, skirt cut on crosswise grain, shaped hemline, wrong side shows, back zipper and narrow hem.” ¬†I used a size 8 in view D with no hem band in a Floral Cotton Print from Hancock Fabrics (yes, I am so sad they are closing; however that liquidation “sale” is ridiculous and will not benefit from¬†my patronage).
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The pattern is very easy as it states, that much is accurate. I just don’t like the end result. If it is¬†what you’re looking for though, then it should be an easy and relatively quick project for even a beginner to take on. ¬†ūüôā

Ooohh, It’s Alpaca! Faux, Of Course – McCall’s 7057 Pattern Review

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Here I am again, sewing with fur. ¬†I had my eye on McCalls 7057¬†for quite a while and collected it sometime ago. ¬†I couldn’t ever find a fabric i wanted to make it in when I went to the fabric store, until fur went on sale again. ¬†I was spending time with my family and my mom needed cotton thread to finish her quilted Christmas place mats, so we¬†took a field trip to the fabric store. ¬†I wandered into the fur aisle, while she decided what colors she wanted. ¬†As I focused in on a beige faux llama, my mom walked over and redirected me to this faux alpaca in black, white, and gray, saying, “You know you like soft…” ¬†Yes, yes I do like soft fabrics, and it was 50% off, so it came home with me. ¬†After it had been purchased, I mentioned the label said it was faux alpaca and she said, “Like on American Gangster.” ¬†Thanks, Mommy.

As a pattern review,¬†I made View B in an XS, which was listed on the pattern as having a bust of 37″. ¬†In the pattern drawings and photos it appears longer with the pockets higher up on the pattern than it turned out. ¬† The instructions were easy to follow; I thought about interlining it with fleece but decided not to. ¬†Since I used fur I eliminated all topstitching. I lengthened the sleeves by 3″ at the lengthen/shorten line prior to cutting out the pieces. I made a couple thread loops for the belt and I left my edges raw, except for the faced front pieces.

I would sew the pattern again. I would also recommend it to others, with the caution to measure appropriate lengths and check pocket placement for their individual needs. ¬†I like this jacket, there are varying ways to wear it and the hood is actually deep enough for all my hair. ¬† I got several compliments at work and people randomly rubbing my arm or asking to touch it. ¬†One co-worker told me that I was super soft and cuddly. ¬†I can live with being cuddly. ūüôā