Simplicity 1425

From Old to New

While visiting my parents, my mom decided to dig out an old dress and force it upon me. “Here make something with it!” Ya know, because I make magic from old ugly things.  I did not take a picture of the dress before I started hacking it apart. I even told myself to do so.  I was watching tv and thought I could rip it apart while I sat.  Picture be damned! The dress was a long sheath dress with a slit on each side.  Nothing exciting.

I knew I had enough fabric for a shirt and possibly a skirt or something else. Hmm… I started with the shirt. I wanted to make a peplum top.  I fished out my pattern Simplicity 1425. I made this shirt before and it wasn’t too bad of a sew.  The dress already had the proper neckline and it was sleeveless so I really only needed to worry about the princess seams in the front, darts in the back and the peplum. Talk about a lazy sew.

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Sorry for the deodorant mark! lol I’ve worn it already to work and we haven’t made it to wash day yet. 🙂

I laid out the pattern on the top and realized that the pattern wasn’t going to work because the fabric wasn’t wide enough so I decided to wing it! I put the top on and starting pinning it on myself. I picked where the princess seams should sit and pinned the line on one side. I cut along the pins and left a 1/4 seam allowance. (well I tried. It was definitely not that big) I took that line and mirrored it on the other side by folding the piece in half and marking the cut in chalk.

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I was able to follow the pattern for the length, darts in the back and the peplum.  I did have to cut the peplum short in width because I wanted to conserve as much fabric as I could.

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I made sure when I was sewing it back together, that I unpicked the hemmed edges.  I could have sewed it up without doing so but it would have left funny lumps at the joins.  Taking a few extra minutes to unpick is so worth it! Instead of the pleats on the peplum, I gathered the piece to fit the width of the top.

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I was super worried about how to do the closure in the back.  I had a plan of adding an extra piece down the middle and sew it closed to about the waist and do some snaps to finish out the length. It was going to look like the extra piece was hiding buttons or a zipper but when I tried it on with the extra piece, it was too big.  I was able to sew the back closed and I can still slide it on.  The fabric has a bit of stretch that is just enough to shimmy down into place.  Score!

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As if a cute top wasn’t enough, I have enough to make a pair of shorts.  Yup, shorts.  Like I mentioned before the fabric has a bit of stretch so why not!  I named them Rose Butt before I even started on them.  Because that’s just what you do.

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I used my handy dandy workout capri pattern I’ve used a bunch of times.  They are slip on style and have an elastic waist.  Unfortunately when I made them the legs were a bit too tight.  So tight in fact, my fat started to try to decide above or below the hem.  It was not pleasant.

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Tis a bit blurry but you get the idea.

Instead of just canning the whole idea, I decided to revisit the dress’ start.  It had slits.  I can just add slits to the shorts and bam!  No need for my fat to worry about not being with its other friends.

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Now I will tell you, this will be the one and only time they are worn together.  That’s so not cool.  I want to make a big, swingy top to go with them.  Tight on the bottom but airy on top.  I prefer this rule in my life.  Never two tight items or too lose.  It just doesn’t work for me.  I feel like I’m sharing a lot… too much? Oh well.

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I didn’t want to wait until I decided what the top should look like before sharing the shorts so I did pair it with my Blackout Sorbetto for another look.  Two for one special!  Out with the old and in with the (two) new.

Holiday Dressing

I’m on a holiday roll here at Mac’s Crafts. First it was Hubby’s kitten shirt which has gotten mostly positive reviews from friends, family and random strangers. Also received kind words of “it fits well”. Can’t be everyone’s cup of tea right?

Last year I made myself some twirly goodness, otherwise known as a circle skirt with holiday fabric. This year I wanted a dress. I don’t plan to make this a yearly thing but I really wanted a plaid dress. The holidays was a reason to treat myself and make something that I can only wear a few times a year.

I didn’t use a dress pattern. Instead I used my peplum pattern Simplicity 1425 and figured I could add a circle skirt to the bottom of the bodice. Woo hoo got a plan. My fabric is cotton flannel from Jo-Ann’s. I went through all the plaids at the store and this one caught my eye. The flannel is soft and not heavy so I won’t sweat to death. Living in the AZ here peeps. Heavy clothing is not necessary just optional.


So here’s a shot of the bodice  nothing too exciting. It has princess seams for shape. Pretty basic and a good starting off point.


I did my best to match the plaids. Some areas are better than others. I top-stitched all my seams with red thread. I used a 20″ zip for the back closure. It’s not perfect but I’m worried if I rip it out and try to redo it, it will look worse. Zips and I only get along sometimes. We’re working on our relationship. But it does go up and down like it’s meant to. I say this is a win. By the way, I figured out how to wiggle and bend my arms just right so I can zip up by myself without adding the little tab I put on my polka dot peplum.

I made black bias tape for the arms and the neck. You can see my awesome serger’s work too on the seams. Makes for nice clean guts.


I used the flannel to make bias tape for the bottom of the circle skirt. I really forget how big the skirt is until I’m hemming the bottom. Never ending! I used two lines of stitches on the hem. One to get the folded edge nice and crisp the other to get the rest of the width tacked down. The red blends in really well so you don’t notice the two lines. I went wider with the tape on the bottom because I didn’t want the edge to flip up weird.


I made a belt for my dress too because I had a bit of leftover fabric. I followed Tilly and the Buttons instructions for a bow belt.  Totally cute right? Super easy to make. She didn’t mention a seam allowance so I used 1/4″. I bet it’s supposed to be larger because my belt looks wider than her’s. I’m really happy with it though so it doesn’t matter now but I’ll know for my next one.


I also used little snaps for the closure instead of the hook and eye. Sometimes those little buggers are fussy and snaps are easier.


One of the great things about this dress is that I get to use my petticoat from last year to give my dress some oomph. Yay for poof and twirly dresses! Here’s a good pic to show the amount of oomph I get from my petticoat. It’s not a lot but enough to give it some body.


I actually had to do a bit of repair to the petticoat because the ribbon I used on the bottom was crap. I fixed it with cotton fabric and a zig zag stitch. It feels much better and I like the brighter pop of red. 

Here’s my full holiday dress in all its glory. Bow belt and petticoat included.


I couldn’t leave you without sharing some twirly goodness!

Peppy Peplum

This peplum thing doesn’t seem to be going away. I’ve never thought I would try it because if you have hips, why would I want to acentuate that even more with a ruffle? Well everything changed when I saw Rachel at Sew Red-y in a peplum.  Her and I are about the same shape, even though she’s got 4-5″ of height on me.

I didn’t seek this top out, it just kinda happened. I popped into Hobby Lobby when they had $1 patterns. Wouldn’t you know that I picked up Simplicity 1425 which is a peplum. Then I was looking for grey denim at Fabric.com and found a cute black and red polka dot charmuese, which would be perfect for a cute peplum.  The sewing gods were telling me this needed to happen. Who am I to argue?


The pattern has 8 pieces. If I hadn’t had misunderstood part of the directions, I could have had this done in one sitting. It had princess seams in the front a darts on the back to help create that fitted shape.


The part that took the longest was the bias tape. I made my own out of some black poly I had. You’re only supposed to use it on the neckline and arms. I used it around the bottom of the peplum.  Charmuese is a little slippery and the thought of turning the bottom and stitching a hem sounded like a nightmare. Plus the tape gives the bottom a little volume. I do have to give a warning on the size.  Normally I’m around a size 8 or 10. I cut the size 12 because that’s what the envelope suggested. I’m glad I did otherwise it would have been way too small.


I did make a change to the pattern, which when I looked up reviews on the pattern, a lot of other sewist decided to do also. The pattern called for three buttons down the back as the closure. Was someone phoning it in that day or what? 3 buttons. 1 at the top, 1 in the middle and 1 at the bottom. Uhhh, are you not supposed to move when you wear this top? Is it like a mannequin Halloween costume? Who can wear this shirt with only three buttons and not feel like they’re about to bust out of it all day.? Would you know when it happened? I mean it has to be breezy anyways then with a button undone, who knows the difference? “Um, excuse me Susie, we need you to actually wear your clothes appropriately when you come to work.” Unless you work at a strip club then you need easy to remove clothing. Maybe that’s who it’s directed at. Sorry got side tracked…


Anyways, I installed a zipper in the back. The zipper separates at the bottom so it’s easy to get the top on and off. At least so I thought. I could easily zip the top up to my shoulder blades and then my arms couldn’t bend the right way to grab the zip and pull it the rest of the way up. Crap! I don’t go scuba diving or have any need for a wet suit but I’ve seen enough on tv to know that they have a pull in the back to grab to help zip yourself up. That’s pretty genius. I have some pleather that I can insert into the pull on the zip and create the same effect.


I can now get the shirt on all the way by myself. Go me! I think the top looks good on but the volume is a little distracting when I wear it. I can see it out of my perphrial vision.


It flys up like a skirt when the wind catches it. Also, sitting behind my desk, many people thought I had a dress on until I stood up. Oh well. I still feel adorable!