Author: JamieLMac

Floral Anna Maximus

I’m so excited to share this post! I’ve been wanting to make an Anna dress from By Hand London since I first laid eyes on it. I never really had a good reason to make such a dress though until last year. I was working on the Sew My Style challenge from Bluebird Fabrics. Anna dress was one of the patterns towards the end of the year. That was good enough reason for me. Unfortunately it never came to fruition. Me and Hubby bought a house. That ended up taking so much time that all the rest of the patterns for the challenge went kaput.

Until now! Me and Hubby were invited to a wedding. What more perfect reason to make a great dress!?! I decided to do the v-neck and the thigh high split. I was not thrilled with the sleeves on the dress. The bodice is all one piece that includes the sleeves. I reworked it to have a regular shoulder seam and include flutter sleeves.

I bought a pink floral rayon from CaliFabrics. I went back and forth on this fabric for awhile. I was afraid the light pink would wash me out. Finally, after encouraging words from others I purchased it. It’s so lovely and rayon is one of my favorite fabrics.

With a dress like this I knew the bodice was going to make or break it, so I had to make a muslin. I made three total. I had to take it in near the bust and let it out at my waist. Plus I had to make all the adjustments for the sleeve change. Oh, and my shoulder width is kinda small so I usually take out at least an inch vertically from the center of the pattern. Otherwise the neckline is way too wide on me.

I was terrified to cut my nice fabric and went super slow sewing it all, worried I was going to ruin it. I did use cotton for the facing to keep the neckline nice and crisp. I had a cream color that wouldn’t show through the fabric. I think it worked out well. I could have used the floral rayon for the facing but then I could have had a chance of the flower pattern showing through.

The skirt went so fast after that. I did not French seam anything but the seam of the split. Also didn’t hand stitch that shit. No way, nuh uh. That was not going to happen. I hate hand stitching anything.

I did learn a new skill on this dress. I put in my first invisible zip! It really is something to behold. It’s so much easier than I thought it would be! I even got the waist seam to match up. I put this guy in once and there it stayed. I’ve never had that with a zipper.

The flutter sleeves were a dream that I had for this dress. It was meant to have flutter sleeves. It makes such a romantic dress. When I add an element that I’ve never done before, I research the crap out of it. There was a long tutorial about taking your sleeve piece and slicing it into a big arc. Well I didn’t have a sleeve piece so I take a few measurements on what I had and crafted a test piece. It didn’t work out too bad. I needed to lengthen the underside to get the hem to even out all around.

The dress came out amazing! I felt super fancy and that thigh high split makes the dress move! This is a pic from the wedding venue. We had a great time!

I took wayyy too many pictures of this dress. I love it so much! I was good and condensed my amount of photos here. I probably took about 30 though! I feel so late getting in on the Anna dress madness. Totally worth the wait though!

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Cherry Crop

Still working through all that red sweater knit. Will it ever end? I’m not a red girl and making all this red clothing feels so wrong. The fabric was so cheap so I couldn’t say no. I like my little black cropped sweater for light coverage over sleeveless tops, dresses and such. Why not have it in red?

I’ve realized over the years of sewing that I need to make adjustments to a pattern on another piece of paper (essentially creating another pattern) and keep the original pattern intact. I might always want to go back to the original but I have a fast way to get my altered pattern cut. I used to write down my adjustments. This caused me to use the original pattern and then make adjustments every time. How silly!

Most patterns I make multiples of (see my love for Sorbetto from Colette). This cropped sweater has multiples uses and its simple enough to throw on over a lot of different outfits. I’m hoping to get a lot of use out of this… even though it’s red!

I created a pattern for the sweater body from the Briar Tee pattern from Megan Nielsen. It really made cutting this out a breeze. The sleeves are 3/4 so I folded up part of the original sleeve up to make it shorter. Easy peasy!

I cropped the top to a point that I was happy with.

Not a lot more to say about this little guy. The sleeves and hem are turned up at 3/4″ and stitched. The neck is a 2 1/2″ wide strip folded in half and serged on. I don’t even bother top stitching it. It lays so flat.

Not sure if I like this outfit but I wanted to get a pic of the top. I have so many things completed but I’m so lazy about taking pics. Check one more garment off my “yet to blog” list. Woo-Hoo!

Cheeky Nights

I love cotton sheets. 100% cotton is my jam! I had one set that I used and washed so much the fitted sheet fell apart.  I was left with a sheet that had no mate.  What was a girl to do? Make shit out of it!

I decided I would first make a nightie. I wanted a light, short nightie for the hot AZ summers. I picked a vintage reprint pattern from Simplicity, 8126 to be exact. It totally looks like a nightie so it’s not a far stretch.

I never made this pattern before but since I’m making something to sleep in, I wasn’t too worried if things didn’t turn out perfect. I did crop the shit out of these photos so no inappropriate tushy will be flashed!

The biggest pain in the behind was the elastic across the shoulder. It kept popping out of the stitching. I think I had to fix it at least three times before I knew it was finally secure.

I folded up a lot of the bottom to make a super short nightie. I really didn’t want to get all caught up in it as I tossed and turned in bed. I stitched a bit of decoration along the hem to help it lay flat. I also thought I could make little bloomers to match. Have yet to even think about planning those out.

This is so light and comfortable to sleep in. It’s exactly what I was hoping it would be. I still have quite a bit of sheet left so maybe the bloomers and possibly a robe are in my future.

Sleep tight!

Swing It

This is the third time I’m posting this style top. It’s a McPatterns swing top. I’ve made it previously in black and orange. This one is in a checkered suiting from Fabric.com.

Since this is a me-made-pattern, I wrote the sewing instructions on one of the pattern pieces. I’m sure you’re thinking I lost them but I didn’t, I just didn’t read them correctly.

The whole thing turned out just fine but the straps on this one are almost twice the width of my originals. It doesn’t look bad but I’m annoyed it doesn’t match the others exactly. Just one of those things that no one but me will notice but drives you crazy. I can’t be the only sewist that has this issue right?

I made white cotton bias tape to hem the bottom curve. I love making my own bias tape. I believe I’ve only bought the stiff stuff from the store twice but that was way more than enough.

These tops have a nice length in the back. No worry about low-rise jeans or forgetting to put on a belt that day. No one will see your panty flash!

I end up wearing this one at work a lot. Funny enough, I also used this fabric to make a pillow that lives in my car. It’s my “I’m tired at work and I need a nap in my car” pillow. That’s it on this one. Until next time!

Gauze Guys

If you follow my Instagram (@jamie_l_mac), you’ve seen I’ve mentioned a place called Fabscrap (@fab_scrap). It boils down to them recycling leftover fabrics from different companies in New York. You can checkout out their mission statement and shop their fabrics on their website.

I purchased a “cool yard pack” about a month ago. I chose to start with a pale blue gauze I received first. I thought this was going to be the fabric I would have forever and not know what to make with it. I did some research on Pinterest, like ya do. I found a loose peplum top.

I pulled out an old favorite of mine, Sorbetto from Colette (btw I still use the original version of this. Not the new fancy one). I omitted the bust darts and cut the top only down to my waist. I also cut a straight line down from the underarm to keep the top loose.

The peplum is made from a rectangle of fabric that is sewn together in the back. I serged the top and peplum together and top stitched the seam allowance up. The hem is turned up twice for a clean edge.

I made baby blue bias tape to put around the neck and arms. I was worried about being able to see it too easily and end up an eyesore. It actually blended in really well.

I think I was overdue for a relaxed summer top. This really fit the bill. Since the fabric is so light I do need to wear a tank underneath. I’m sure there’s people out there cool with just a bra but the world does not need to see that!


To leave you on a happy note, my best “blue steel”, stylized of course.