Tag: promo: minerva

Full disclosure: This fabric was gifted to me by Minerva.com in exchange for a blog post on their site. It can be found right here.

Had to take a mini-break from sewing due to a fractured coccyx that made it difficult to sit for long periods of time, but I’ve figured out a sewing setup that works – involving pillows, donut cushions, and a different chair – so I’m back at the machines!

And I’m loving it. Especially this new make. The Be Adventurous pattern is by Ellie and Mac; I’ve made several of theirs and have always been satisfied with the results. I usually have to grade between sizes, but my measurements fall into a straight XXL with E&M. I cut the tunic length knowing it would be near dress length because of my height, and it worked out fine.

It’s a straightforward pattern, so for me, fabric choice was everything. This medium-weight scuba crepe worked fantastically well – I love big prints, plus the texture is lovely and the fabric has a heavy drape that’s just beautiful. It swishes fantastically! I tried to take a video but gave up after several failed attempts.

This is another fabric that gathers with ease, and stays in place while you sew it – I had no trouble placing the gathers and even on the serger I had no issues keeping said gathers where I wanted them while sewing the seam.

I debated for a while on whether or not to hem – the fabric cut very clean and there, of course, was zero fraying, but in the end I went for a single-fold twin-needled hem so the sleeves and the ruffle would match.

All-in-all, I love this. I’ll wear it all winter with leggings and all summer with… well, leggings. I’m not all about the bare knees, even when the weather is warm.

Hmm… now what do I make next?

Catch-All Finished! Handmade Sewing

Full disclosure: This fabric was gifted to me by Minerva.com in exchange for a blog post on their site. It can be found right here.

Flamingos in the middle of winter? Sure, why not. They keep me from forgetting that snow-town doesn’t last all year, and that warmer weather will come around again eventually.

And this is definitely a warm-weather fabric, at least without layering. It’s a softer-than-expected viscose challis with a wonderful crinkly texture and tons of drape. It likes to shift more than the stable wovens I’m used to working with, but I found that careful pressing and a few extra pins took care of that. I sewed just a little more slowly than my usual million-miles-an-hour, and both my sewing machine and serger had no problems with the fabric at all.

I feel like this fabric would make an excellent summer maxi skirt or long dress. It has the kind of flow that’d be lovely on something of that length, though it’s just a bit sheer so a lining would probably be ideal. I’ll absolutely take this top to the beach in a few months, but for now, adding leggings, boots, and a cardigan will be the way to go. Maybe even a long-sleeved top underneath, as well, for those particularly frosty Canadian mornings.

I’ve made this pattern – Made By Rae Trillium top – before, but always out of stiffer fabric, and this is a pleasantly soft interpretation. The few little pleats are less defined and the peplum drapes closer to the body than in other versions. The pattern includes both a top and dress version, with cap sleeves or without, and has recently been expanded to include plus sizing from 1-5, up to a 59″ bust and hip. Pattern sizing put me in an XL graded to a 1, but ease in the peplum meant I could sew a straight XL and have it work out.

My new flamingo top is headed straight into my wardrobe rotation, and tonight I’ll be dreaming of sunshine and my bare feet in the sand.

Catch-All Finished! Handmade Sewing

I just shared my first post at Minerva.com – I’m delighted to be a new member of their Maker team! Full disclosure: the Liberty of London Tana Cotton Lawn was gifted to me by Minerva in exchange for a blog post on their site, most of which I’m also sharing here now.

I may possibly have made an embarrassingly high-pitched sound when the parcel came, and I may possibly have made a lot of ‘ooo’ noises when I opened it. It’s light, smooth, and even silky. It’s just a touch crisp but with a lovely, almost fluid drape; I love cotton and cotton blends and sew with them all the time, but the quality of this fabric is miles above what I’m used to. Featherweight fabrics can sometimes be a challenge but this was a dream to sew.

Even the gathering, which is something I don’t tend to enjoy, wasn’t a problem because the fabric was so easy to manipulate and to evenly spread out the fullness.

I knew, for this, that I didn’t want to take a chance on a new pattern. I wanted to sew something that I’ve sewn before, something that I knew I’d wear over and over. I chose Chalk and Notch’s Fringe dress – I’ve made it several times and, amazingly, it fits my under-five-foot self without a ton of adjustments. All I need to do is shorten the bodice by two inches and I’m ready to go.

I’m a fan of Chalk and Notch patterns in general. There are only a few left I haven’t made, and I tend to sew them repeatedly because I’m always pleased with the results. The Fringe has two views to choose from, and either can be made as a blouse or a dress. There’s quite a bit of built-in ease – and if you’re like me, too much ease isn’t always preferable – so do check the finished measurements along with the body measurements to choose a size.

My body measurements fall into the size 20 but I sewed a 16. I usually do view A, but this time, for something just a little different, I went with view B.

And I love it. It’s light and airy and beautiful, and the fabric feels wonderful against my skin. It’ll be nicely cool when summer comes around again, but I’m not about to wait for that – leggings and a cardigan, or long-sleeved tee underneath, will make it a year-round dress. It’s definitely my favourite Fringe so far.

Fringe wasn’t the only Chalk and Notch pattern I sewed this week: I also made a new (slightly hacked) Page hoodie. I’ve wanted to make a sweatshirt with a lace overlay for months but couldn’t decide on a colour. I found this soft dusty green at the local fabric shop – 95% of their stock is quilting cotton but they’re starting to bring in small amounts of basic apparel fabric as well – and thought it would be perfect.

I used the length from the drawstring hem but the band from the other view, and I also cut the sleeves to elbow length and gathered them in to the cuff meant for long sleeves. The hood was going to be the same as the front but I thought I could get away with two layers of lace, instead, and I do really love how it looks. I love the whole hoodie, really, and – of course – I’m thinking about making another one. In a darker or brighter colour, this time, for a different kind of contrast.

And now I need to sit down at the machines again and finish a hot pink cat-print (yes) dress so I can take photos before the sun goes down.

Catch-All Finished! Handmade Sewing