Sharing these two new patterns I bought today that I'm really excited about: a DKNY coat (in the January @threadsmagazine) and a blazer pattern (hard to see the line details with the plaid but its's cute, I swear!) #bpSewvember

Christmas is less than a week away, can you believe it?  I have the luxury of being able to visit my parents in PA and work from their house, and in the evenings this week I’ve been planning out some projects that I’ll start when I get home after the holidays.

A few weeks ago I posted plans for a Gerard coat out of Italian wool from Mood Fabrics.  Well, I learned my lesson: order fabric swatches before buying online.  The wool arrived later that week and looks and feels absolutely gorgeous, but it in no way, shape, or form is it suitable for a coat, like it was classified on Mood’s website (since ordering, they’ve changed their search menu classifications).  Looking at the fabric description now, it says it’s a medium weight and would be good for a suit or dress, which I agree with.  So, I’m now going to use it to make a blazer.  I bought the above Vogue pattern for the jacket and made a muslin this week, but I think I’m going to look for a different pattern option – the Vogue blazer is completely cut on the bias and I have some fitting issues in the back that I don’t want to deal with.  Hoping the Simplicity pattern I bought for Pam Howard’s Modern Jacket Techniques class on Craftsy fits the bill!

As a side note, have you seen Sonja’s kick-ass Gerard??  Seriously, that girl has skillz.  And a lot more patience than I do to get the PDF pattern assembled!

And now, on to what will be called The Great Coat Project of 2015 – I present to you my fabric selection for Vogue 1365:


I found a beautiful cashmere coating fabric and coordinating rayon lining at Metro Textiles this month on a recent NYC trip – purple is a color I’ve been gravitating towards a lot this year, and the thought of a deep purple winter coat made me swoon.

As I’ve been sourcing my materials for this mega-project, there are some things I’ve been trying to take into consideration.  Cashmere, it turns out, needs to be underlined to give it structure and support when tailoring.  I’m thinking about using flannel for underlining (plus it’ll serve as interlining for extra warmth), but I’m scared that even after I preshrink it, it’ll shrink further.  I also invested in two different weights of hair canvas at Steinlauf and Stoller (so I can try different options), additional sew-in interfacing (just in case), shoulder pads from Sil Thread, and a buckle kit and coat snaps from Pacific Trimming.  And I’ve been reading up a storm: combing through my tailoring book for bits of info and tips, reading a new tailoring book Chris gave me for Christmas, scouring various blogs for tips on coat making, digging through Threads magazines, and so on.  I want to be as prepared as I can be to make this coat a success!

That’s pretty much it going on around here…the rest of the year will be pretty quiet.  I did bring my serger with me with plans to sew up some clothes for my sister this weekend, which I’m looking forward to!  More on that later 🙂


early fall 2012

From left to right: Simplicity 1880 in chevron crepe de chine, Simplicity 2054 in grey sweater knit (maybe), Simplicity 2145 in abstract crepe de chine, Vogue 1194 in raspberry rayon spandex, Simplicity 2368 in floral ITY jersey

It happens every year at this time: the weather starts to turn cool and my thoughts turn from sewing cute summer clothes to knitting comfy wool sweaters.  I always lose my sewing “groove” when the mercury starts to dip but I’m determined for that not to happen this year – my sewn wardrobe consists of only warm-weather clothing and that needs to change.

So yeah, what can I say – I love my dresses.  As much as I’ve tried this year to diversify and expand my sewing horizons, I always gravitate back to dresses, especially now that boot season is in full swing.  I have a nice collection of spring/summer dresses, but only one or two dresses that I can wear for fall/winter.  So that’s where I’m starting off for the fall, and then adding in some separates after I get dresses out of my system.  Plus, I already have the fabric and patterns on hand for all of these.  Sweet!

The other great thing about stitching up dresses for fall is that I get a complete outfit without that much of a time investment.  My job is about to get really crazy really fast (as in, next week to be specific) and I’m not going to have a lot of time to devote to sewing in the next two months I’m afraid.  These dresses are pretty straight-forward without a whole lot of fitting that needs to be done (except for Simplicity 1880 and Vogue 1194), so I can sit down for a few minutes each day and stitch up what I can.

Oh man, I’m so ready for fall…just not the craziness that is retail at this time of year.


I’m so excited for vacation next week – I’m going back to PA to visit my family for the week and I get to use my mom’s fabulous sewing room.  It’s a sewing sabbatical all week!  I’m gathering up my favorite tools and supplies to pack in my bag, but here’s a peek at what I’m aspiring to stitch up next week.


While in NYC for a work trip this week, I scored some beautiful fabric that would be perfect for a wedding I’m attending early next month.  It’s a turquoise fabric with a fuchsia hibiscus print and itscreams for some kind of retro summer sundress pattern like this McCall’s pattern in my stash.  I made this a looooong time ago and it was pretty simple to make, so all I need to do this time around is alter how the pattern fits.  You can see my original dress from this pattern that I wore during Me-Made May here.

I also have a striped cotton that would be perfect for this empire waist sundress, a Fashion Star pattern from McCall’s.  I may not get around to sewing the actual dress until I get back, but I wanted to utilize my mom’s cutting table so that I can easily get the stripes to line up properly when cutting out the pattern pieces.  I’m not so good with striped fabric!

This year will be the year that I tackle pants.  I made a pair earlier this year, just a pair of elastic waist wide leg pants, but that doesn’t really count as making “real” pants in my book.  Neither does this drawstring waist pattern, but I thought the pattern would be good for shorts out of the leftover fabric from my failed Vogue DKNY dress.  This would also get “shorts” checked off of my 12 in 2012 list.  Minus the patch pockets, please.

Speaking of 12 in 2012, I also want to make a half-circle skirt like this Simplicity 4236 pattern.  I bought a black and white floral batiste earlier this year for a button-down blouse, but thought that if I lined it with white cotton, it would make a really fun skirt instead (it’s a drag having to worry about a see-through skirt).

If I don’t get everything made, which I expect I won’t, it would be nice at least to get everything cut and prepped so that when I return to Boston, it would be easy to grab the fabric pieces for a project and just sit down and start sewing.  Add on top of all the craziness at work that I’m moving in about three weeks and that definitely leaves little time for sewing between packing and work.  This vacation will definitely give me the time I need to start wrapping up my summer sewing.

And then it’s on to fall…I’ve already started gathering fabric!