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5 Ways to Learn to Sew

5 Ways to Learn to Sew

5 Ways to Learn to Sew

We realize that not all of our blog readers have the ability to sew.  And as you know, we think sewing is a very worthwhile endeavor!  The satisfaction of creating something from raw material to finished product is like no other.  So today, we’ve compiled a list of ways you could learn to sew.

1. Learn to sew by taking a class online:

We’ve taken a class on Craftsy, and we can really recommend it as a way to learn to sew, or to learn a new sewing technique.  The classes are video tutorials and are well worth their money.  Beside learning from an accomplished instructor, you also receive at least one pattern, and there is a good format for interacting with your instructor and fellow students.  This is the best way to learn to sew in your own time because once you purchase a class, it’s yours forever and you can take it at your own pace.  Here are some absolute beginner classes we found on Craftsy.

Garment Basics

Sew Ready: Garment Basics (affiliate link)

What: Learn to sew a pencil skirt.

Length: Almost 4 hours instruction.

Price: 24.99

A-line Skirt

Design and Sew an A-line Skirt (affiliate link)

How Many: 5000 taken this class

Length: Over 4.5 hours instruction

Price: 29.99

Sewing Studio

Sewing Studio (affiliate link)

What: Learn Machine & Sewing basics  by making a pillow and skirt

Length: Over 6 hours instruction

Price: 29.99

2 Learn to Sew by taking a class in a store:

Many fabric stores offer classes in sewing.  You can choose from classes at your big box store, or a smaller more intimate class from your LQS, or local quilt shop.

For example, Sewing 101 at your local Jo-Anns will cost you $35, includes sewing supplies, and lasts 2.5 hours.  If you don’t yet have a sewing machine or have too many distractions at home and need the accountability of a class in person, this may be the best choice for you.

3 Learn to Sew by finding a mentor:

Skirting the Issue by Skirt Fixation

Let’s say you know someone who sews.  Ask them to teach you!  We’ve gladly taught others to sew, and you’ll find most seamstress glad to share their knowledge.  This is the oldest, and probably most tried and true method of learning to sew.

4 Learn to Sew by YouTube-ing it:

Made Everyday

It’s been said you can learn anything on YouTube, and sewing is no exception.  Some of our favorite sewing channels are:

Made Everyday with Dana  

Dana makes you WANT to sew everything, and she makes it easy and professional looking too.

Melly Sews

Melly’s channel is a weath of information, just like her website.  Plus she has some really quick and easy tutorials to get you started sewing something in no time.

Inside The Hem

This is a new collaboration by 3 experienced seamstresses.  We like what they’ve done so far, like demystifying reading a pattern, and we can’t wait to see what else they come up with.

5 Learn to sew by just diving in:

O+S by difficulty

When we review a pattern, we often give it a rating.  Sometimes we’ll even recommend a certain pattern for an absolute beginner.  There are some indie pattern companies that are known for their teaching abilities.  Oliver+S is a company we can highly recommend as we’ve sewn all their skirt patterns as part of our All The Skirts series.  Each Oliver+S pattern has a scissors rating from 1 to 4.    If you started by sewing all the 1 scissors patterns, and worked your way through them, by the end you would have an absolutely comprehensive sewing knowledge, and your child/children would have a stunning wardrobe too!   Each pattern also lists which skills are used, which is very useful!

That’s it for our top 5 methods to learn to sew!  Which looks the best for you?  Any other recommendations?

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Child Suede-Backed Sherpa Vest Tutorial

Suede-backed Sherpa Vest tutorial by Skirt Fixation. This vest is also reversible.

Suede-backed Sherpa Vest tutorial by Skirt Fixation.  This vest is also reversible.

Today I have that tutorial I promised for a reversible suede-back sherpa vest for children.  We found our Luxury Faux Fur-Sherpa Suede Gray at JoAnn Fabrics.  It is normally 24.99 per yard, but for a child’s vest you probably only need 1/2 yard.  Plus if you sign up for it, JoAnns will send you great coupons.  This fabric also comes in chocolate brown and light tan.  For a pattern we used the front and back pieces from the Downton Duffle Jacket from Peekaboo Pattern Shop but any shirt front and back pattern pieces will work.  All right, let’s get started on that reversible suede and sherpa vest.

Suede-backed Sherpa Vest tutorial by Skirt Fixation.  This vest is also reversible.

Step 1:  Cut out your back and front pieces from suede-back sherpa fabric.

Suede-backed Sherpa Vest tutorial by Skirt Fixation.  This vest is also reversible.

Step 2: Cut your front and back pieces in 1/2 horizontally about 2” below the bottom of the armholes.

Suede-backed Sherpa Vest tutorial by Skirt Fixation.  This vest is also reversible.

Now you have 6 pieces.

Suede-backed Sherpa Vest tutorial by Skirt Fixation.  This vest is also reversible.

Step 3: Place your back pieces together SHERPA sides together and sew with a 1” seam allowance.

Suede-backed Sherpa Vest tutorial by Skirt Fixation.  This vest is also reversible.

Step 4: Open up the seam allowance on the SUEDE side of the fabric and edge stitch each seam allowance in place.  Repeat steps 3 & 4 for front pieces.

Suede-backed Sherpa Vest tutorial by Skirt Fixation.  This vest is also reversible.

Now you are back to 3 pieces!

Suede-backed Sherpa Vest tutorial by Skirt Fixation.  This vest is also reversible.

Step 5: Fold over the 1/2” of the fabric at the neck on the front pieces to the SUEDE side and edge stitch in place.  Repeat for back piece.

Suede-backed Sherpa Vest tutorial by Skirt Fixation.  This vest is also reversible.

Step 6: Fold over 1” of the SHERPA side to the SUEDE side along the hem of the front pieces and edge stitch in place.  Repeat for the back piece.

Suede-backed Sherpa Vest tutorial by Skirt Fixation.  This vest is also reversible.

Now you have your hems finished.

Suede-backed Sherpa Vest tutorial by Skirt Fixation.  This vest is also reversible.

Step 7: Sew the shoulder seams with the SHERPA sides together with a 1” seam allowance.  Open up the seam allowance on the SUEDE side of the fabric and edge stitch each seam allowance in place.

Suede-backed Sherpa Vest tutorial by Skirt Fixation.  This vest is also reversible.

Step 8:  Fold over 1/2” of the SHERPA fabric at the armholes to the SUEDE side and edge stitch in place.

Suede-backed Sherpa Vest tutorial by Skirt Fixation.  This vest is also reversible.

Step 9:  Sew the side seams by placing the SHERPA sides together with a 1” seam allowance.  Open up the seam allowance on the SUEDE side of the fabric and edge stitch each seam allowance in place.

Suede-backed Sherpa Vest tutorial by Skirt Fixation.  This vest is also reversible.

Step 10:  Fold over 1” of the Sherpa fabric at the fronts to the SUEDE side and edge stitch in place.

Suede-backed Sherpa Vest tutorial by Skirt Fixation.  This vest is also reversible.

Step 11: Apply your snaps according to manufacture’s directions.  It does take a little while to work the prongs through 2 layers of this fabric.  Just take your time, it’s worth it in the end!

Suede-backed Sherpa Vest tutorial by Skirt Fixation.  This vest is also reversible.

If you wish to use this vest as the lining in a jacket like we did, attach snaps to the insides of your jacket lining before constructing the jacket.

Suede-backed Sherpa Vest tutorial by Skirt Fixation.  This vest is also reversible.

Now you’re finished!!!  You’ve made a reversible suede-backed sherpa vest.

Suede-backed Sherpa Vest tutorial by Skirt Fixation.  This vest is also reversible.

Here you can see the little man wearing the vest with the sherpa side out.  The snaps make this vest fully reversible.

Suede-backed Sherpa Vest tutorial by Skirt Fixation.  This vest is also reversible.

You can see a few pieces of sherpa on the sleeves of the little man’s black shirt.  You don’t finish the edges of the exposed seams because this fabric doesn’t fray.  They will shed a few pieces of sherpa for a little while, but if you stick your vest in the dryer (on air fluff) for a few minutes, all those pieces will come off.

Suede-backed Sherpa Vest tutorial by Skirt Fixation.  This vest is also reversible.

The washing instructions for this fabric are: Machine wash cold, gentle cycle.  Non-chlorine bleach.  Line Dry.  Cool iron.

Suede-backed Sherpa Vest tutorial by Skirt Fixation.  This vest is also reversible.

You could use this tutorial to make a boy or girl vest, or a vest for yourself!

Suede-backed Sherpa Vest tutorial by Skirt Fixation.  This vest is also reversible.

Let us know if you use this tutorial to make one, we’d love to see it!

Some affiliate links are used in this post, but don’t worry, they won’t hurt you and they might actually help me make a few dollars to support my blogging, sewing and fabric habits!

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Lane Raglan Cardigan

Lane Raglan Cardigan hack tutorial by Skirt Fixation

Lane Raglan Cardigan hack tutorial by Skirt FixationI promised you a tutorial on how to turn the Lane Raglan pattern by Hey June Handmade into a cropped, 3/4 length sleeve, cardigan. It’s really quite easy, so let’s get started.

First of all, you need to cut out your front pattern piece one size larger than you usually wear. The other thing you need to do before sewing is make your length adjustments. The length adjustments are really quite easy and don’t need photos to explain. Simply shorten the sleeves and the front and back pieces to the length you want them to be. Then add the cuffs and waistband as instructed in the Lane Raglan pattern instructions.

Lane Raglan Cardigan hack tutorial by Skirt Fixation
The button up front can be done two different ways, either before or after the garment is constructed. We changed it to a cardigan after sewing the Lane Raglan as instructed because we thought it made the neckband easier to deal with.

Lane Raglan Cardigan hack tutorial by Skirt Fixation
Step 1:
Cut the finished Lane Raglan up the front. The easiest way to do this is to lay your front pattern piece on top of the garment.

Lane Raglan Cardigan hack tutorial by Skirt Fixation
Step 2:
Add a piece of interfacing inside both fronts about 1” wide by the length of the front.

Lane Raglan Cardigan hack tutorial by Skirt Fixation
Step 3:
Fold over the interfaced part, along the edge of the interfacing, press, and edge stitch it in place.
Step 4:
Sew buttonholes and buttons. We chose to sew double buttonholes because we just love the sweet, vintage look of it.
If you were going to change it to a cardigan before sewing the Lane together, you would cut the front in 1/2 and apply interfacing as pictured above. The you would attach the neckband and waistband starting and ending at the fronts of the cardigan. Then, fold over and sew as instructed above.

Lane Raglan Cardigan hack tutorial by Skirt Fixation
So there you have it! Pretty easy way to make yourself a cropped, 3/4 length sleeve cardigan from your Lane Raglan pattern. And if you didn’t hear, the Lane Raglan has gotten (another) update! The first update included a hood and thumbholes. You can see our versions of that update in this blog post. As if it wasn’t pretty much the most awesome pattern ever, the new update includes options for a curved hemline, elbow length sleeves, 3/4 length sleeves, and a long hemmed sleeves with no band. The upper chest area and sleeves were slimmed down and the shape of the raglan sleeves were changed slightly for a more flattening shape. Also, there is the ability to make a full bust adjustment.

Lane Raglan Cardigan hack tutorial by Skirt Fixation
To see the original Skirt Art post we made this version of the Lane Raglan for, go to this post.  We used heavenly French Terry Fabric (Aruba Blue) from JoAnn Fabrics. (affiliate link)   To purchase your own Lane Raglan pattern from Hey June Handmade, go here.  It’s on sale for until 11:59 pm MST for only $7.50 which we think is a screaming good deal!

 

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Wavy Zipper Fix & Boy Knight

Boy Knight sewn by Skirt Fixation for Project Run & Play

Today I’m going to tell you more about the boy look I sewed for my Starry Knights entry into Project Run & Play’s week 3 sew along for the theme All That Glitters.

Boy Knight sewn by Skirt Fixation for Project Run & Play

First of all, I think most entries will be girl looks, due to the nature of the sewing prompt.  So I challenged my sewing friends on Instagram to try and sew a boy look also.  This is what I came up with.

Boy Knight sewn by Skirt Fixation for Project Run & Play

To start with, the Knight Hoodie by Charming Doodle is a great place to get some glitter/metallics happening.  The buttons and zipper were the places I chose to accentuate with bright gold.  I added two buttons to the tops of the pockets for even more glitter.

Boy Knight sewn by Skirt Fixation for Project Run & Play

I used Sweatshirt Fleece Fabric-Navy  from JoAnn Fabrics to make the Knight Hoodie, with Art Gallery Fabrics knit fabric for the sleeve and hem bands.  The hammered gold buttons came from JoAnn’s as well.  If you want to read my pattern review of the Knight Hoodie, click over to this post.

Boy Knight sewn by Skirt Fixation for Project Run & Play

Now let’s pause for a quick moment to talk about roller coaster (wavy) zippers.  This is a phenomenon commonly seen on the Knight Hoodie and other garments where a zipper is installed on knit fabric.

Even thought I tried really hard not to stretch the fabric while installing the zipper, I still ended up with a wavy zipper.  So I turned to those aforementioned Instagram sewing friends for advice on how to fix this one and how to prevent them in the future.

Boy Knight sewn by Skirt Fixation for Project Run & Play

The common consensus was to always use interfacing when installing a zipper in the future.  As for this one, either unpick it and add interfacing, or try steaming the wavy zipper and fabric with a very hot iron.  The second option sounded much easier and quicker…and worked like a charm!

Boy Knight sewn by Skirt Fixation for Project Run & Play

Underneath his Knight Hoodie, our gallant knight is wearing an Oliver+S Field Trip Raglan T-shirt.  I’ve made this shirt so many times I could probably do it without the instructions and maybe even in the dark!

Boy Knight sewn by Skirt Fixation for Project Run & Play

This time I added the pocket because it was an opportunity to add a little bit of glitter.  The pocket fabric is Wild & Free Knit Midnight Roof  designed by Maureen Cracknel for Art Gallery Fabrics leftover from his sister’s dress.  The other two shirt fabrics are Art Gallery Fabrics knits from Imagine Gnats.

Boy Knight sewn by Skirt Fixation for Project Run & Play

And of course a knight would never go pantless, so our brave boy needed some trousers.  Once again, I used the Classic Chinos pattern by Peekaboo Pattern Shop and used Cotton Twill Khaki Fabric.   These are the same pants pattern and fabric Indiana Jones received last week!  I made our knight’s pants just a tad bit too long in hopes of extending the wearing.  The elastic around the back of the waist enables a longer wearing time also.

Boy Knight sewn by Skirt Fixation for Project Run & Play

So there you have it!  One brave, dashing, gallant knight.  With a lady-killer dimple!  Be sure to check out all the other sew along entries for All That Glitters, and the contestant looks too.  There is some fantastic talent to inspire you!

Now for the legal blah, blah, blah.  Affiliate links are used in this post, yada, yada, yada, be careful when clicking them because I just might make a few cents.  However, these legal disclaimers may never make sense. 😉

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Sewing A Button Up Shirt – Tips, Tricks, Tutorials & More

Everything you need to know about sewing a button up shirt.

Recently I took on the rather insane project of making 4 Marco shirts for my oldest son.  He has outgrown the 2 I made him last year, and requested some more.  Since I reviewed the Marco shirt pattern then, I thought I’d share things I’ve learned about making button up shirts.

Everything you need to know about sewing a button up shirt.

So here’s the post you need to read before you begin sewing a button up shirt.  If you love these tips, be sure to check out Adrianna’s post today over at Hey June Handmade for even more button up shirt tips not included here.

Tips for sewing a button up shirt:

  1. take it slow

Or maybe tip number 1 should be don’t attempt to sew 4 at one time!  After I got started on this project, I realized I would need sewing friends to cheer me on if I was ever going to finish, so I created the hashtag #thereallybigshirtevent on Instagram. But I digress.  Take it slow.  Don’t expect to get this done in one hour, one day or maybe even one week!

2. muslin

You really want a project this detailed to be one you (and the recipient) to love when you’re finished.  So make a muslin first.  This part IS really quick- you only need to cut the front, back and sleeve pieces.  Just whip them together and check the fit.  Make adjustments, and then get onto the good fabric.  (More on good fabric in a minute.)

3. pattern matching matters

Let's play find the pocket...
Let’s play find the pocket…

Before you cut into your good fabric, take a few minutes to think about pattern matching.  This is really important.  Pattern pieces you really need to plan before you cut: fronts to each other, fronts to back, button placket to front, pockets.

pattern matching on a button up shirt by Skirt Fixation

And if you get really, really crazy about pattern matching, you can get the button placket to match up.  Might need aspirin after this attempt though.

4. wide seam allowances

Be careful your seam allowances don’t get too narrow, even if your pattern recommends it.  You really don’t want to go back and restitch cuffs, collar, yokes after they’ve come apart because of tiny seam allowances.  Ask me how I know.  Once you’re done, you’re going to want to be DONE!

5. topstitch everything

Top StitchingTopstitching adds a professional finish, and reinforces those seam allowances to stay in place.  It also hold the seam allowances where they need to be for a clean cut while wearing.

Tools for sewing a button up shirt:

Recommended tools for sewing a button up shirt from Skirt Fixation

  1. glue stick

A glue stick will become your best friend.  Seriously.  Pins can’t hold those tiny fiddle-y pieces together half as good as glue.  It won’t gum up your needle, I promise.  Remember I sewed 4 at one time and experienced no gumming.

2. good quality fabric

I know I’m sounding like a broken record here, but you really want a project this in depth and detailed to last a long time.  Using good quality fabric ensures longevity.  When I couldn’t find a white shirting fabric good enough locally, I bought a high quality sheet with 600 thread count.  I really could notice the difference between this and the cheaper quality flannel I compromised on one of the shirts.

3. rolled hem foot

Those bottom hems are tiny, and a rolled hem foot will make your job lots easier.

4. good quality pattern

A pattern that teaches you as you go, with tips and tricks from a knowledgeable author.  Suggested patterns in a minute.

Tricks for sewing a button up shirt:

  1. pattern matching doesn’t matter

“Wait a minute, you just said…”  Yes, there are places pattern matching is pretty important, but there are also places you will not be able to match the pattern even if you’re a pattern matching genius.  These are those pieces: yoke, cuffs, collar stand, collar.

Fabric placement options for yokes

So what to do?  You have options; cut those pieces on the bias, a different direction, use fabric without a pattern, or just don’t sweat it.

2. add a tag

If you’re adding a tag to the yoke or collar stand on the inside, do this BEFORE you start sewing the pieces together, that’s the way the professionals do.

3. use contrast fabric

Possible contrast fabric placement on button up shirts

There are a couple of places you can sneak in fun fabric, the inside collar stand, the inside yoke and inside the cuffs.  Just pay attention to which way you are attaching them so they end up on the inside.  Not that’d I’d know anything about that. *cough*

4. Interfaced piece away from feed dogs

When you’re sewing two pieces together and one of them is interfaced, say the two collar pieces, place the one without interfacing down against the feed dogs when you are sewing.  It will be just a little bit stretchier than the interfaced piece, but if you have it against the feed dogs, there will be no puckers when you’re finished.

5. add tiny buttons

How to add collar buttons to a button up shirt from Skirt Fixation

Maybe your recipient prefers a button down collar.  Just add a small button hole at the corners of the collars.  Cut them open, poke through to make a mark in the desired spot, and sew on a small (smaller than 1/2 inch) button.  Follow the same procedure to add a button to the button placket on the sleeve.

Tutorials for sewing a button up shirt:

If you get stuck, or you just can’t visualize the next step, try these amazing tutorials:

Best patterns for sewing a button up shirt:

Once again, a good quality pattern makes all the difference in frustration levels and finished products.  Here are some we can personally recommend:

Beside these 4 button up shirts I sewed for my oldest son, I’ve made myself a couple of button up shirts this year.  It’s getting easier with the above tips, tricks, tutorials and patterns.  During the time I was sewing these 4 shirts, I became obsessed with all things button up.  All ready-to-wear button ups were fair game for my studies.  Mr. Skirt Fixation has been my biggest cheerleader all along.  He got me to sew my first button up shirt, and always encourages me to improve.  For example, he sent me this link.  Then I realized just how far I have yet to go…

To be continued!

Remember to check out Adrianna’s post today over at Hey June Handmade for even more button up shirt tips.  And leave your tips for sewing a button up shirt in the comments.

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Pajama Pants (Sorry, no skirts today!)

Pajamas sewn by Skirt Fixation. All fabric and pattern sources listed.

Tis the season to make pajamas!  Last year I made pajama pants for (almost) all of my kids, and this year I decided to treat myself to some new pajamas.

Pajama set sewn by Skirt Fixation

When you are a 6 foot tall woman, pajama pants that fit just don’t exist unless you’re willing to put forth some large amounts of money or make them yourself.  The last (and only) pair I bought for myself more years ago than I can remember were so worn out that it finally came down to Mr. Skirt Fixation throwing them away.  Yeah, they were really that bad!  So this time I decided to sew some for myself.

I turned to one of my favorite pattern companies, Jocole.  You may remember when we sewed up all their skirt patterns for All The Skirts: Jocole & Urban Sew.  They don’t have a pajama pattern, but I was pretty sure their Ladies Basic Leggings pattern could be modified into exactly what I wanted.  I added a cuff to the bottom of the leggings and BAM!  instant pajama pants.   (It was super SUPER easy to do, and I’ve got a tutorial for how to add cuffs to the Basic Leggings pattern on the Jocole blog today.)

I did make one other modification to the Ladies Basic Leggings pattern.  The finished inseam (without the cuff) is 30 inches.  My inseam is 36 inches.  So I added 5 inches and the cuff, and these are actually long enough!  I’m so delighted I’m ready to whip up another 5000 pairs for myself!  This pattern comes in sizes XS to XXXL, so it’s pretty much going to work for anyone.  And with just one pattern piece, the prep work goes like lightening. I love the way the elastic waist is inserted, and as with all Jocole patterns we’ve sewn, the instructions are thorough and well illustrated.

Pajama Pants tutorial by Skirt Fixation

For a pajama shirt, I turned to one of my most comfortable shirt patterns, the Lane Raglan by Hey June Handmade.  I’ve made this pattern so many times it was fast and easy to whip out another shirt.  Here are 5 reasons why the Lane Raglan makes a perfect pajama shirt: 1-no itchy shoulder seams.  2-long sleeves for cold winter nights. 3-cuffs to keep the sleeves in place while you’re sleeping. 4-waistband keeps the shirt down while you’re sleeping. 5-perfect neckband, not too tight, not too loose, juuuuust right!  (I used the updated neckband this time, and the neckband came out perfectly!!)

Pajama set sewn by Skirt Fixation

For my pajama fabric, I turned to Craftsy.  Did you know that as well as offering classes and patterns (like our FREE Pegasus Skirt pattern) they also have crafting supplies?  When I saw this rayon knit ombre knit fabric, I just had to have it! Here’s the (affiliate) link, it’s called Midnight Ombre Floral Knit Fabric.  And it turned out perfectly for my new pajamas.

Pajama set sewn by Skirt Fixation

Since both these patterns were so easy and fast to construct and Aria has had a huge growth spurt, I decided to whip out another pajama set for her. Using the same patterns I made her some Ladies Basic Leggings (no cuff, and only 3 extra inches added to the inseam) and a Lane Raglan.  Her fabric was leftover from this skirt I made myself.  The black fabric on both our pajama sets came from Girl Charlee.

All PJs

These pajama sets were so quick and easy to make I think I will be making myself a few more pairs.  After all, why limit yourself to just one pair of pajamas when sewing them is this rewarding?  Sometimes you just need to pamper yourself.

Do you make (or buy) pajamas this time of year?  Please share your sources in the comments.

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Reversible Gemma Blouse Tutorial

Reversible Gemma Blouse tutorial by Skirt Fixation

Reversible Gemma Blouse tutorial by Skirt Fixation

Today I have a reversible Gemma Blouse tutorial.  Yesterday I showed you the first Gemma Blouse and Skirt pattern I made, and promised you a tutorial on how to make it reversible.  First the tutorial, then more about this particular Gemma Blouse and Skirt.

The Gemma Blouse and Skirt is a Violette Field Threads pattern.  Since it is fully lined it is easy to make the Gemma Blouse completely reversible.  Just follow these steps:

Cut out 2 sleeves of each fabric.

Omit steps to sew on cuff.

Reversible Gemma Blouse tutorial by Skirt Fixation

Pull apart lining and main fabric bodice pieces and pin each sleeve to it’s matching bodice.

Gather the top of each sleeve as instructed.

Sew each sleeve to it’s matching bodice piece.

Reversible Gemma Blouse tutorial by Skirt Fixation

Gather bottom of each sleeve to 1/2 it’s original width.  Baste gathers in place.

Reversible Gemma Blouse tutorial by Skirt Fixation

Fold over bottom of each sleeve 1/4 inch and iron in place.

Repeat for the hem of each bodice.

Reversible Gemma Blouse tutorial by Skirt Fixation

Pull apart the lining and bodice and unfold ironed over hems.  Pin together underarm and side seams RST.  Sew.

Reversible Gemma Blouse tutorial by Skirt Fixation

Turn the shirt with one right side out.  Tuck the arms together.  Refold and line up hem at bottom of sleeves.  Carefully pin them together WRONG sides together.  Sew.

Repeat for bottom of hem.

We used snaps instead of buttons, but if you choose buttons and buttonholes, simply sew on 2 sets of buttons one on the right side and one on the wrong side of the fabric.

Ta-Da!  Your Gemma blouse is now completely reversible.  Two shirts for the price for one!

Reversible Gemma Blouse tutorial by Skirt Fixation

The fabric for the Gemma skirt and the wine color were both purchased at Walmart several years ago.  They were just sitting in the stash, so, it was time to see the light of day.

Reversible Gemma Blouse tutorial by Skirt Fixation

The blue chambray was leftover from making a shirt for my son.  The pink collar and pockets is a soft baby linen also used as the lining for the Gemma Blouse yesterday.

Reversible Gemma Blouse tutorial by Skirt Fixation I think it would be fairly easy to make the Gemma Skirt reversible also.  Just cut out two skirts and sew them wrong sides together when attaching at the waistband.  Similar to the way we made the reversible Swingset Skirt.

Reversible Gemma Blouse tutorial by Skirt Fixation

Be sure to visit yesterday’s post to enter the giveaway for 10 PDF patterns from Violette Field Threads and $100 to spend at Raspberry Creek Fabrics.

Reversible Gemma Blouse tutorial by Skirt Fixation

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Millie Fleur Canvas Jacket

Chloe Ruffle Jacket sewn by Skirt Fixation using Art Gallery Fabrics Canvas by Bari J.

Chloe Ruffle Jacket sewn by Skirt Fixation using Art Gallery Fabrics Canvas by Bari J.

Recently I had the privilege of being a Quilt Market maker!  For anyone who doesn’t know, Quilt Market is a trade show that occurs in Texas annually.  Everything you can imagine that is related to fabric is there.  Many of the displays at Quilt Market are new lines of fabric soon to be released for fabric stores to peruse and purchase.  So fabric supplies and fabric designers sew up (and ask others to sew up) items using their new fabrics.  So I had the honor of sewing up some canvas from Bari J’s new Millie Fleur fabric line into a jacket to be displayed at Quilt Market.

Chloe Ruffle Jacket sewn by Skirt Fixation using Art Gallery Fabrics Canvas by Bari J.

I wanted to make something very splashy for this special occasion, so I chose the Chloe Ruffle Jacket and Cap pattern by Peekaboo Pattern Shop.  I knew from experience, that a Peekaboo Pattern Shop pattern would make my job easier, there would be no mistakes in the pattern or difficult to understand instructions.  And I was right!  I made a size four since that was the largest size I could manage to get out of the Millie Fleur canvas piece I receive from Bari J.

Chloe Ruffle Jacket sewn by Skirt Fixation using Art Gallery Fabrics Canvas by Bari J.

Bari J. probably sent me all the fabric she had, but this was the “strike-offs” which is printed funny as a test before the real fabric is printed.  And then I insisted on making the cap because, just look at that cap!  But it uses a large circle of fabric.  This is an adorable little pattern, and I made a few more changes to make it even more eye catching.

Chloe Ruffle Jacket sewn by Skirt Fixation using Art Gallery Fabrics Canvas by Bari J.

Instead of spreading out the gathering across the sleeve cap, I gathered it tightly only at the top.

I shortened the “skirt” of the jacket by 1.5 inches.

Chloe Ruffle Jacket sewn by Skirt Fixation using Art Gallery Fabrics Canvas by Bari J.

Instead of gathering the “skirt” of the jacket, I pleated it for a more dramatic look.

Chloe Ruffle Jacket sewn by Skirt Fixation using Art Gallery Fabrics Canvas by Bari J.

The sleeve opening is narrowed at the bottom.

Chloe Ruffle Jacket sewn by Skirt Fixation using Art Gallery Fabrics Canvas by Bari J.

I lengthened the ruffle pattern piece along the front so as to make a tighter (and more eye catching) ruffle along the front.

The inside lining of the skirt is not gathered at all so as to not add bulk.

Chloe Ruffle Jacket sewn by Skirt Fixation using Art Gallery Fabrics Canvas by Bari J.

Instead of making buttons and buttonholes, the buttons are merely decorative and there are snaps inside the jacket.

Chloe Ruffle Jacket sewn by Skirt Fixation using Art Gallery Fabrics Canvas by Bari J.
Images captured from Quilt Market.

These changes were all very easy to make, and produced a finished product that captured many an eye at quilt market, so I’m told!  It probably also helped that people spent more time in front of Bari J’s booth as she was creating (and giving away!) live paintings.

Chloe Ruffle Jacket sewn by Skirt Fixation using Art Gallery Fabrics Canvas by Bari J.

You can see the inside of the fully lined Chloe jacket and cap are lined with white fleece Ultra Cuddle Fabric.  The source is JoAnn Fabrics, and it makes the jacket able to be worn all winter long.

Chloe Ruffle Jacket sewn by Skirt Fixation using Art Gallery Fabrics Canvas by Bari J.

Also, cuddle is definitely the right name for this fabric!  It pairs with the Millie Fleur canvas perfectly.Chloe Ruffle Jacket sewn by Skirt Fixation using Art Gallery Fabrics Canvas by Bari J.I was careful to fussy cut the fabric for the covered buttons so as to accentuate Bari J’s Millie Fleur canvas fabric in all the right places.  I found little flowers and a butterfly to center on the buttons.

Chloe Ruffle Jacket sewn by Skirt Fixation using Art Gallery Fabrics Canvas by Bari J.

The collar is genuine leather.  It is so extremely soft and supple and adds to the artistic feel of this little jacket.  Plus, the smell of leather!

Jacket made by Skirt Fixation and displayed at Quilt Market

I just love Art Gallery Fabrics, and this is the second time I’ve gotten to work with their amazing canvas fabric.  The other jacket I made was also at Quilt Market in the Art Gallery Fabrics canvas booth!  Talk about some famous jackets.

Chloe Ruffle Jacket sewn by Skirt Fixation using Art Gallery Fabrics Canvas by Bari J.

Seriously, I was so excited to be a quilt market maker.  The only thing better would be to have been there in person.

Chloe Ruffle Jacket sewn by Skirt Fixation using Art Gallery Fabrics Canvas by Bari J.

Since I didn’t have a 4 year old daughter to model the jacket, I had my 4 year old son put it on for a few photos before I sent it off to Bari J.  But I promised his brothers I would block out his face!  I just wanted to show how cute it was modeled.

Chloe Ruffle Jacket sewn by Skirt Fixation using Art Gallery Fabrics Canvas by Bari J.

I can’t wait for this Millie Fleur canvas to be available in stores.  Since the Chloe Ruffle Jacket pattern goes up to size 8, I just might make one for Annie in her size.  Or find a new pattern and make something for myself!

Chloe Ruffle Jacket sewn by Skirt Fixation using Art Gallery Fabrics Canvas by Bari J.

This blog post uses affiliate links which means if you click through them, I might make a few pennies.  You know, so I can support this fabric habit I have!

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Mini Senna Tote

Mini Senna Tote sewed by Skirt Fixation

Mini Senna Tote sewed by Skirt Fixation

The second to last piece in the Modern Chloris mini wardrobe collection is the mini Senna Tote. I wasn’t sure if I was going to have time to complete it with all the other pieces I had planned. But Annie insisted. And part of the idea behind the mini wardrobe collection was child input, so…

Mini Senna Tote sewed by Skirt Fixation

The rose pink pleather really reflects Annie’ choice. She would have all pink all the time!  The rose pleather, or vegan leather if you prefer, came from Girl Charlee.  They have just about every color you could need!

Mini Senna Tote sewed by Skirt Fixation

The main fabric used to make the mini Senna Tote is called Kladi Underlight. Recognize it?  That’s because we chose the other color way for the maxi skirt from the Aquatic Countryside look.  It’s from Katarina Rocella’s Skopelos line of fabric, as are all the fabric in this mini wardrobe collection and was generously given to us by Art Gallery Fabrics.

Mini Senna Tote sewed by Skirt Fixation

The contrast pocket and inside fabric is from our fabric stash, it might be shot cotton, and we used it to line the dress from this mini collection also.

Mini Senna Tote sewed by Skirt Fixation

Annie carried her mini Senna Tote for the Flower Market look, but it does go with everything in the mini wardrobe collection.  Really it might be both of our favorite piece from the whole Modern Chloris collection!  It’s so delicate and miniature looking.

Mini Senna Tote sewed by Skirt Fixation

Okay, here are the top secret details on how you can make a mini Senna Tote for yourself, I mean your little one!  You need Senna Tote pattern.  Print out the pattern pieces at 50% instead of 100%.  Be sure to add back seam allowances because they will have been shrunk by 50% too.  Sewing a 1/8 inch seam allowance could get pretty tricky on parts of the mini Senna Tote.  Ask me how I know!

Mini Senna Tote sewed by Skirt Fixation

The cool part of making a mini Senna Tote is that it takes less materials and less time too!  I think I will make one at 75% next!   In that case, you would add 1/8 back to the seam allowances I think.  The easiest way to figure out the length of zipper you will need is to measure your shrunken pattern piece.  In our case, we were using a zipper we harvested off of a thrifted purse.  We couldn’t find the right shade of zipper, but the purse was as cheap as a zipper plus the shipping it would have cost us to get exactly the right shade of pink!

Mini Senna Tote sewed by Skirt Fixation

To figure the length of the straps, the easiest thing is to just measure with a measuring tape on the intended recipient.   The 50% measure doesn’t work too well here either.  We made the straps at 50% width, but you would widen these if you wanted.  These work perfectly for Annie’s little hands.

Mini Senna Tote sewed by Skirt Fixation

Annie absolutely adores her mini Senna Tote.  She stores all her most special treasures in it and has (so far) managed to keep it away from her little brothers!

Mini Senna Tote from Modern Chloris mini wardrobe collection sewed by Skirt Fixation

Here is the link to the Senna Tote I made myself, for comparison.  The other Mini Senna Tote versions I’ve seen are Groovy Baby and Mama’s for Stylo Magazine and Alexis of Whimsy Tailes on Instagram.