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Farrah // Pattern Testing // Sewing For Women

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Women's Farrah Pattern // Sewing For Women

Happy Tuesday everyone!!

I'm so excited about the dress I get to show you today. I had the opportunity to test the Farrah Dress & Top, the newest from Chalk and Notch. Through today, it is available exclusively through UpCraft Club, and tomorrow it becomes available in the Chalk and Notch shop as well. Grab it while the discount applies!!

Women's Farrah Pattern // Sewing For Women

Okay, so lets chat about this fabulous dress!! I sewed View B in the dress length. View B features a center front ruffle, all views feature a front and back yoke, gathers in the back bodice, gussets, and a split hem detail. All of these details come together to create a seriously fabulous garment. 

Women's Farrah Pattern // Sewing For Women

The ruffle on my dress is from the very first version during testing. It underwent some pretty big changes, and ended up being longer and a slight v-shape. I have so much love for the final version (although, I think this version is pretty awesome too!), and I can't wait to get a chance to sew up another one!

View A, which I haven't had a chance to sew yet, has a ruffle detail at the sides that also becomes a flutter sleeve. You can check that out here. I really love both versions so much!!

Women's Farrah Pattern // Sewing For Women

The dress is fitted beautifully across the bust and then flows through the waist and hips. There is generous ease built into the pattern here, and if you prefer a slightly more fitted shape, it is super easy to blend sizes to achieve a closer fit. This is made even easier if you use the layers feature in the pdf to print only the sizes you want to work with.

Women's Farrah Pattern // Sewing For Women

I normally like my dresses a little more fitted, but boy, do I feel fabulous in this dress!! Fabric choice also plays a huge role here. This is a silky print from Joann's, it has very lovely drape and is also kind of "spongy". I'm not sure how else to describe it ;) Anyway, it made a perfect Farrah!

Women's Farrah Pattern // Sewing For Women

The pattern instructions are so good, as per usual with Chalk and Notch patterns. Every detail is covered and the illustrations are clear and helpful. I think my favorite part of the whole dress was sewing the gusset. Everything fit beautifully and that finished arm hole just made me so happy! I often struggle with arm holes that are too tight or too large and show my bra. This one was neither. Absolutely perfect. Yay!

Women's Farrah Pattern // Sewing For Women

The final version also has slightly more gathering at the back yoke. 

Women's Farrah Pattern // Sewing For Women

So what are you waiting for!? Run and grab your copy while it's still on sale!!

Women's Farrah Pattern // Sewing For Women

Women's Farrah Pattern // Sewing For Women

Coffee & Thread Pattern Tour // Ania Tunic

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Ania Tunic // Sewing For Girls

Hi everyone! I'm so thrilled to be a part of this pattern tour today!! Olga (Coffee & Thread) is one of the very first blogging friends I made in this amazing online community. She is super sweet, knowledgeable and creates amazing patterns!! I have sewn a few of them over the years. A couple of Mulberry Tunics here and here (which are now tucked away, impatiently waiting for boy #2 to wear them!) and last year's Eleena Dress, which she wore to church yesterday, and it still fits fine (yay!) except that it's turning into more of a tunic than dress length, yikes!

Image may contain: one or more people, child and outdoor

For the tour, I chose to make the Ania Tunic. I was smitten with this pattern from the moment I saw the first sample. There are many variations with this pattern (there is even a dress length version on the tour!!), with sleeve and pocket options, or you can choose to make it in a woven or knit! I love versatile patterns so much.

However for this version I decided to keep things simple. I used this amazing cut of linen/cotton blend from Miss Matatabi that I have been hoarding for a while and wanted to let the fabric shine.

*The fabric is sold out, but you can view the listing here for all the details on it*

Ania Tunic // Sewing For Girls

I sewed short sleeves since those get the most mileage around here and went plain with no pockets. I made a size 4 with 5 length. As always, sizing is spot on with Olga's patterns.

Ania Tunic // Sewing For Girls

I love the details in the back as well. I just so happened to have the perfectly matching button and Kona Cotton Solids laying around. The inside bodice is lined in the same fabric that you see a teeny bit of here at the bottom of the neck line split. I don't think I sewed the bias onto that little v part the way it was written in the pattern. Oops. But it turned out very well and I love the little additional pop of purple there.

Ania Tunic // Sewing For Girls

Ania Tunic // Sewing For Girls

She is pleased as punch with this dress because purple is here favorite color "except GOLDEN is my VERY favorite color, Mom", so if you use your imagination, she has a little bit of both in this top. :)

Ania Tunic // Sewing For Girls

It's been a little while since we did a photoshoot with her outside, and apparently she has developed some top-notch new modeling skills since then! :)

Ania Tunic // Sewing For Girls

I love how this top looks with shorts and I know it will be just as great in the fall with a pair of jeans and cardi!

Ania Tunic // Sewing For Girls

Make sure to scroll all the way to the bottom for an amazing giveaway!

Ania Tunic // Sewing For Girls

Ania Tunic // Sewing For Girls

Ania Tunic // Sewing For Girls

Ania Tunic // Sewing For Girls

Ania Tunic // Sewing For Girls

Enter the giveaway here - and also you can take 20% off ANY patterns in the Coffee & Thread shop! Just use the code 'coffeeandthreadtour' 


Be sure to follow the tour, using the links availabe here! There is so much amazing inspiration and sewing going on, wow!

April 3
Enjoyful Makes || Idle Sunshine || ZowieZo Handmade || Angie Burgett

April 4
Handmade Frenzy || Replicate Then Deviate || Fairies, Bubbles & Co || Coral + Co

April 5
Made By Sara || Naeh-Connection || The Bag of Unexpected || Circle Meets Line

April 6
Skirt Fixation || Sewing Like Mad || Hello Holli || Buzzmills ||

April 7
Little Cumquat || Thread Bear Garments || Pearl Berry Lane || Plus 2 is 5 || Sew Chibi 

April 10
Stahlarbeit || Knee Socks and Goldilocks || Bonnie and Lottie || Sew Sophielynn 

April 11
Mouse House Creations || While She is Sleeping || Mix it Make it || By Dagbjort 

April 12
Gaafmachine || Beletoile || LBG Studio || My Cozy Co  || As It Seams

April 13
Moineau & Petit Pois || Just Add Fabric || Sweeter Than Cupcakes || Frances Suzanne || Sew Liberated 

April 14
Stitched Together || S is for Sewing || Boevenbende || Lafolie Sewing Booth || Sew Pony ||
With Love By Eva 

Panama Tee Dress "LBD" // Sewing For Women

Tuesday, March 28, 2017


Every girl needs a Little Black Dress hanging in her closet. Enter my favorite, versatile dress pattern. The Panama Tee Dress. This is my third version (I blogged the other two, here), and believe me, I am no where near done with dresses from this pattern!


For this version of the dress, I wanted a midi length. This was as impossibly simple as adding 4 inches to the hem! That's it. I also wanted 3/4 sleeves. I just shortened the long sleeves several inches below the elbow length cut line. 

Panama Tee Dress // Sewing For Women

I feel it's important to mention that fabric choice really makes this dress. I've used three different fabrics on this pattern and each one serves a different function, based on fabric choice. This is a dreamy 14oz stretch cotton spandex jersey from LA Finch Fabrics. When I ordered it for this dress they had only black available, but because they are awesome like that over at Finch, they now have several amazing colors to choose from!

Panama Tee Dress // Sewing For Women

Because the fabric is heavier and has such incredible stretch recovery, it fits pretty close to the body, but is still forgiving. It's basically my dream LBD. Comfy, yet really makes me feel put together.

And check it out below. It can even work for running around doing "momming" duties!

Panama Tee Dress // Sewing For Women

Panama Tee Dress // Sewing For Women

Panama Tee Dress // Sewing For Women

Panama Tee Dress // Sewing For Women

Have you tried this pattern yet? It's definitely one I highly recommend and I'm pretty sure you need it! :)

Outfit details:

Hampton Jean Jacket // Sewing For Women

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Hampton Jean Jacket // Sewing For Women

Hello everyone!!

I can't even express how excited I am to share today's post with you! This project is by far the most labor intensive project I have ever tackled, to date. And by far the one that I am most proud of!!!!!

The Hampton Jean Jacket is the newest pattern from one of my (if not the) favorite pattern designers, Alina Sewing + Design Co. Her attention to detail, plus clear instructions and illustrations make her amazing patterns top notch. In this pattern, she walks you through the process step-by-step and it's pure magic to watch this jacket take shape!

Before I dive fully into all the details, I want to make sure I make it clear, that while it is labor intensive, it is not that difficult! I believe an advanced beginner could handle this project with some patience. Keep reading for all the details about what I learned through the process!

Hampton Jean Jacket // Sewing For Women

Oh my goodness, where to even start... Well, I'll just start at the very beginning! 
Alina had each of us testers make a muslin. I would recommend this to anyone looking to make this jacket as well. A canvas drop cloth from a hardware store works well, and is an easy on the wallet option, mine was $6. I was between sizes, so this was especially helpful in trying to decide whether to size up or down. For this one, I ended up going with the larger size, because I wanted to make sure I would be able to get the most wear possible out of it! I can throw this on over a couple of lighter layers, I've worn it over a tee and long sleeve cardi and was still comfortable. I've also worn it over just a sleeveless maxi dress, and it still looked fabulous. There are also things to consider like how it fits in the shoulders and elbows when making a muslin and tweaking just a little to get a much more custom fit that you would from a RTW jean jacket.

Just to note a few changes between mine and the final pattern: The bodice and sleeves are both 1" longer, the waistband, collar, and cuffs are interfaced (mine are not), and the welt pockets are a teeny bit longer.

Hampton Jean Jacket // Sewing For Women


Next up, was choosing denim, prewashing (machine wash and dry completely to pre-shrink) and cutting it out! I used 10oz. Cone Mills Denim in Indigo from Thread Bare Fabrics. I have read so much about Cone Mills Denim and was so excited to get some in my hands. I am fan girling just like everyone else about this stuff. It is sooooo nice. I actually found it quite nerve racking to cut into, haha. I was so scared I was going to mess us this precious denim and not give it the life it deserved. I also feel somehow connected to it because it is made right here in NC, not that far from where I live! I had to chuckle about the fact that it was sent to me from California, though. 

Hampton Jean Jacket // Sewing For Women

After I got through the cutting part, the real fun began with construction! Before I started sewing, I sewed a couple of sample seams and practiced some distressing. Funny how I was so scared to mess up the denim when I was cutting it, but had no problem attacking it with sandpaper!! What I found worked best for me, and gave the results that you see, was to use 220 grit sandpaper and distress each seam by hand before topstitching. I paid more attention to the edges of the seams to give them a slightly worn in look. I also sneezed a lot, sanding denim is quite dusty. And blue! :)
Alina has a full post coming on her finding with bleaching and distressing denim. It is definitely a resource worth keeping!

Hampton Jean Jacket // Sewing For Women

Once I had the distressing method figured out, the real process of constructing began. It was magical from the beginning, because each seam was like a little nugget of gold after it was done and was so fun to admire. 

*It's been almost a month since I finished up my jacket, and just talking about the process makes me want to make another, it's just that thrilling!!*

I pulled out my backup machine for constructing the seams and then used my Bernina for the topstitching. If you have the option to set up 2 machines, I highly recommend it, because it helps things go so much faster. Otherwise, you will be sewing a seam or two, then switching to topstitching thread and back again. A serger is useful as well, but really not used very much. As you can see below, most of  the seams are beautifully enclosed with flat felled seams or as I did, you can choose to bind them in a couple of areas. In the final pattern, Alina also gives tips on what types of thread and colors to use. My only regret on this jacket is that I didn't use bobbin thread that matched my topstitching thread. If I were to do it over, I would use beige bobbin thread throughout on the inside, except for the places I used the binding and the pocket linings (I would have used white). It would just have made it look a little cleaner. But regardless, I am still extremely proud of this make and will show you the guts with no regrets. :)

Hampton Jean Jacket // Sewing For Women

Katie from Handmade Threads and Threadbare Fabrics gets full credit for this next tip. She suggested using wonder tape to hold the seams down when flat felling instead of using pins and it was awesome. Be sure to have a full roll or two on hand before starting though, but it is worth it!

Hampton Jean Jacket // Sewing For Women

Probably the most difficult part, but really not even truly difficult, it just required patience, was the sleeves. There's a bit of topstitching that needs to be done after the sleeve is a tube. But it just takes breathing, (I always forget to breathe! Ha.) and taking your time, plus making sure your fabric is moving evenly so the topstitching stays consistent. There are places where mine is not perfectly so, but I don't mind, I'm sure no one will notice except me anyway!

Hampton Jean Jacket // Sewing For Women

 I'm still in a little bit of disbelief that I actually made this. Like I said before, although it is a very time consuming project, it's not that difficult! And seeing it come together is empowering! It has given me the burn to make more difficult things. I have swimsuits, jeans, all the bottoms, really, and slow sewing tops in the pipeline now! Life has been a little difficult and crazy lately, so I haven't been able to start on most or any of it, but I've had time to do fabric shopping! :)

Ok, that was a rabbit-hole... Back to the jacket. I seriously love all the topstitching on this garment. Heart eyes, all the heart eyes.

Hampton Jean Jacket // Sewing For Women

The last steps are to make the button holes and hammer in the buttons. A couple of the others convinced their machines to cooperate in using topstitching thread for the buttonholes, but I didn't quite have that coaxing power. I ended up using regular thread in the same color and doing 2 passes on each button hole. This worked great and unless you really look closely, you can't tell. Also, my plan was to do a keyhole style button hole, but because of the bulk of the intersecting seam at the very top and bottom of the placket, it didn't want to play nice. I was able to do this style with no problems at all on the front pockets and back tabs. So I ended up doing regular button holes on the placket. Now that I'm thinking about it, I realize I didn't try to use my seam jump thingy-ma-bob here. I will have to try that next time, and maybe my keyhole button hole dreams can come true. :)

Hampton Jean Jacket // Sewing For Women

The final step is to throw that freshly made, crisp denim jacket into the washer and dryer at least once, maybe 2-3 times. It will give it an amazing crinkly, worn-in texture, just like what you crave in your favorite jean jacket.

Hampton Jean Jacket // Sewing For Women

Well, there you go guys. My most prized me-made garment, to date. So far my favorite reaction to telling someone I made my jacket was "WHAT!? I thought those were only made in factories!" Empowering I tell you! Also, if you have a chance, search for some videos that show how jeans ARE made in factories. It is extremely fascinating. And might make you wish for some of the crazy machines they get to use. :)

 I hope you've enjoyed reading about it and seeing it. I sure have enjoyed reliving the experience! And I hope I have inspired you to make your own! You can do it!! Alina has a sew-a-long coming as well and it will be super helpful for any little tricky bits!

Hampton Jean Jacket // Sewing For Women

Hampton Jean Jacket // Sewing For Women

Hampton Jean Jacket // Sewing For Women

Hampton Jean Jacket // Sewing For Women

Hampton Jean Jacket // Sewing For Women

Hampton Jean Jacket // Sewing For Women

Hampton Jean Jacket // Sewing For Women

Hampton Jean Jacket // Sewing For Women

Hampton Jean Jacket // Sewing For Women

Be sure to check out the jackets my fellow testers made!!! They are all incredible. Click on the links below to access their social media and/or posts.

Leslie - Threadbear Garments
Teri - Fa Sew La
Heather - The Pug & Needle
Katie - Handmade Threads
Jill - Becoming Bright
Ashley - @littlebitco
Anya - Anna Zoe
Jodi - Back40Life

 Pattern:

Fabric: 
  • Waterfall Raglan
  • Necklace - made by me - supplies from Hobby Lobby
  • White Rockstar Capris - Old Navy
  • Leopard Print Flats - Target















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