megan nielsen

She Uses Tangerines

Sometimes my fabric calls out to me. It could be a random piece that needs a friend to make something fabulous such as my last post. Sometimes it’s a piece of fabric that I’ve had for a super long time that decides it’s time has come to be made into something fabulous.

A tangerine knit whispered to me and said a tshirt dress it shall become. I was working on another dress at the time but decided I could make them concurrently. It’s does get tiring to work on one project throughout the day.


I used the Briar tee pattern by Megan Nielsen as my base. I raised the neckline to match my black crop version. I cut the length as far as I could with the fabric I had left. By the time I got to the sleeves I didn’t have the length I wanted. I had to add a bit to the length so each has a small band at the end.


There’s quite a bit of fabric pooling above my butt in this pic. I must have been standing weird. It doesn’t normally do that. If I make another dress like this, I would like to add a bit more swing but it could also be taken in a bit in the back do there’s not so much fabric there.


I hurriedly finished this dress to wear to a friend’s birthday party at the end of March. The weather was warm so I needed something light and comfortable. This dress was perfect and I received a few compliments. At least, I recall that I did. I had a really good time *glug glug glug*

I’ve been searching my closet more and more for dresses when I get ready in the morning. This dress is so ridiculously comfortable. I think it might be a good idea to throw a few more of these in there. Maybe change up the neckline and sleeves; possibly do pockets!

(3rd verse)

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VD Dress

I’m not a Valentine’s Day girl but with a red dress it feels appropriate to talk about it now. Truth be told, I made this dress in an afternoon in December. I’ve been a horrible blogger lately. Hubby and I have bought a home and it’s been taking all my time. I good write an entire post just about all the things happening. Some has been planned but most hasn’t! I’m sure you can get the picture that I haven’t had much time to sew, let alone blog.

Okay, let’s continue with the dress!

I’m going to start with the fabric. It’s a red sweater knit from Wal-mart! It was part of my awesome score of 5 yds for $5. It’s a light to midweight, padow red. If it wasn’t so cheap, I would not have picked it up. I’m sooo not a red kind of girl. I can honestly say this the only red item in my closet.


The pattern for the dress is a mix of a Briar Tee by Megan Nielsen and McPattern Swing Dress. My original Swing Dress pattern is not a crew neck style so the introduction of the Briar Tee pattern helps to change up the neck. You can also see the tight crewneck on my cropped Briar Tee. I wanted more of a winter dress so that required long sleeves and I love an extra long sleeve so I added 3-4″.


The hem is a bit wavy but I’m not super annoyed by it. The hem is wide to give it a bit of weight. I’m not Marilyn!


There you have it. A nice simple red dress. It’s so comfortable and soft. I can easily curl up underneath it. Of course, it has some swing!


Add a heart necklace and I’m ready for Valentine’s Day!

Quick and Warm

When I picked up 5 yds of black knit fabric, my brain had to start coming up with more ideas than a long sleeve cardigan. Then I came up with the best idea! A 3/4 sleeve cropped sweater to wear with my Vogue 9001 maxi dress.

I used the Briar Tee pattern by Megan Nielsen. The cropped length would be perfect to hit me at the waist. I would need to bring in the neckline because I wanted a crew neck, find a happy sleeve length between the short and long, and lastly make sure the sides were fitted in tight. I didn’t want a big slouchy sweater.

I cut and sewed this in one day. More specifically, in an hour!


This fabric is so soft. The weight is decently light so it will be great for layering.


I took these pictures were taken way too late in the day so it’s me and my shadow. I had to take about two inches out of the sleeve width to get the fitted look I wanted. I cut the smallest size for the bodice. I only had to take an inch or so out of the sides.


I was able to turn up the hem on the bodice and sleeves 3/4″ for a clean edge.


The neckline is a 2″ wide strip folded in half and attached.


I love a quick and easy project. This was my final make in my old sewing room before I packed the girls up for the move. Frankie is smelling the night light for whatever reason…

August Project: #sewmystyle

It’s time for Project: #sewmystyle again.  August’s garment is by Megan Nielsen called Darling Ranges Dress.  Megan Nielsen was on the list earlier in the year for the Briar Tshirt.  That pattern was super easy to put together so I was hoping this dress would be the same.

I picked up a cotton shirting from Jo-Ann’s.  I could not decide on a fabric for this dress.  I shopped and shopped online but ended up going to Jo-Ann’s and deciding that I would not leave without something.  The shirting is a navy blue with swiped on white dots.  The cotton is light but still has enough body that the dress won’t fall flat. I did read over the post by Emily at Self Assembly Required.  If I would have retained it a bit better it would have helped but I’ll get to that in a bit.  She did mention that the sizing was a bit off and I agree.  I cut a size small.  I never do that… also just had a moment of déjà vu.  Have I had this sizing issue recently? I also went with version 1 that has a gathered skirt.  I think the other dress looks like a hospital gown with buttons in the front.  Maybe that’s just me.

As I mentioned I cut a size small.  The top sews up fast and I did sew it in the flat as the pattern suggests.  I really didn’t see why it was a necessary suggestion but hey, who am I? I repeatedly tried the bodice on because I was nervous about the fit of a small but my measurements fit into the finished garment sizes so I was going with it.  I attached the skirt and started to finish off the placket.  That’s when the brain became the blame.  I should have remembered from Emily that she thought the bust darts came up too high.  I tried it on after finishing my plackets and realizing how much space I was losing.  Uh oh! I fit but it was tight.  That does not work! I pulled out a majority of one placket.  I was not going to tear this whole dress apart.  I resewed it about 3-4 times before it became acceptable and I fit appropriately.  After I was sure about the one dart, I ventured to the other.  So much better.  I do want to look at those darts a bit more though before another go at this dress.  They do go too high and I think they eat up too much of the bodice.


It took me a bit to decide on the length of the sleeves.  I thought about hacking off the length and creating short sleeves. I ended up keeping the length to my elbow. I think a tulip sleeve might be a fun alternative for a future version. Do you also notice the back gives me some badonkadonk?


I chose little white buttons that would match the dots on the fabric.  They do have a bit of a pearlescent kind of sheen and I think they complement the dress so much better than plain navy or standard white buttons.


I’m not sure how much of a hem the pattern suggested.  I always hem my dresses last and at that point it’s what I want not what the pattern tells me.  I made it a bit shorter than my knee.  This tends to be the typical length I’ve been hemming my dresses at.  See Simone and Sorbetto.  All 3 are the same length.  I go with the old rule of, as long as it’s past my fingertips it’s acceptable.


I wore this dress all day at work and not one wrinkle.  Can you believe that? Especially of a 100% cotton?  I’m amazed and totally delighted! Even with the 100 degree weather, I was still comfortable.  I did add a little belt to enhance the transition from the bodice to the skirt. Is it weird that I love this picture because I have creepy dead eyes?

Very happy with this dress and pattern.  A long bust dart won’t make me dislike this pattern.  Next up is the Yona Wrap Coat by Named Clothing.  I’m looking forward to this one and dreading it all at the same time!

June: Project Sew My Style

I’ve had this garment of the year long #sewmystyle project done for over a month. I mistakenly made it last month thinking it was May’s project but that was the doomed Pocket Skirt by CaliFaye. This month’s make is way better! It’s the Briar Sweater & Tee by Megan Nielsen. You may have seen that I wore this shirt twice during #mmm17. It’s pretty awesome!


I bought an fantastic rayon knit from Girl Charlee. It’s two shades of blue; electric and navy. It’s soft and really light. Perfect for a summer tee. I chose the full length shirt over the cropped version. As I’ve said many times before, I’m not a cropped kind of girl but I was concerned about the length on the tail of the full length version. I like a good butt flap but an extreme tail might not be cute.


The shirt is super fast and easy. Fast to cut out and just as fast to stitch. All done in one sitting. I normally don’t do that. I have to think different aspects through before I continue on.  Nothing to think through. It’s a t-shirt! Front, back and sleeves. Simplicity at its finest. Check out that stripe matching!


I did have a mishap. I snipped the sleeve! I was trimming out extra fabric on the sleeve hem. The fabric is so light that I didn’t realize I had more than a single layer and SNIP! Crap! I tried to fix it by sewing the little flap I had dangling to cover the hole. Kind of healing itself. That did not wash well at all. I used a bit of cotton fabric the same navy color and put behind the hole and stitched around it. I think this will work so much better.
Nothing else to really say about this one. I enjoy wearing it. The butt flap is a little much. It gets caught on my booty. I would like to try out the cropped version in a sweater. It would look cute for layering.That’s all folks!  Have you made the Briar tee? What are your thoughts?