Knit fabrics
Merino wool jersey fabrics at Stonemountain & Daughter Fabrics

In September, Bay Area Sewists held a virtual meetup with Stonemountain & Daughter Fabrics about sewing knit fabrics. As the organizer for this Meetup group, I invited Stonemountain for a conversation about knit fabrics. Emily Gutman, one of the managers of this Berkeley institution, answered many questions and showed us various fabrics during our Zoom meetup.

Here are the questions I put together combined with queries from Bay Area Sewists members. Emily typed up brief answers in advance of the meetup, and I’ve expanded on her answers here. I didn’t really take notes during the meetup because I was also monitoring the chat for comments. So apologies, Emily, if there are any errors! Any sentences in the first person are my comments. All photos are from... [read more]

Today's the day to talk about the author of our pick for this round of the #LiterarySewingCircle! Simone St James has written 7 books, and has another (The Book of Cold Cases) releasing early in 2022. Her debut novel The Haunting of Maddy Clare won 2 RITAs and a best first novel award from Crime Writers of Canada.

Most of her stories focus on women in spooky situations -- lots of supernatural elements in all of the books in some way, and usually a romantic thread, although in The Sun Down Motel, there's not much romance, but much more focus on the women in the book themselves. But if you like spooky reads, any of her books are definitely in the genre. 

St. James is very interested in ghost stories and true crime, which shows in this book. You can sense this trend in her social media accounts, and also through this list of 5 suggested reads that... [read more]

 Scale model sewing to see how something goes together

Vogue Patterns 2922 oop, their image my copy cleaned up

So, how did I get here?

Scanning and cleaning up in Paint and copying. Getting the top to fit the model is always hit and miss, and I do it by eyeballing it (it's too big for this one, too small for another).
As this is copyrighted material, and I purchased this pattern and it's limited use, I will just show you how I got there

My photos of not my designs:

not my designs

Still not my designs

Actually only a couple of construction questions, once I wrapped my brain around the center front. 
Hint: it's just a big draped thing that hangs in front and you iron it to maintain that folded central shape.

I could sew this with the machine, but then I would have to get up out of this chair

Sewing set-in sleeves, something I do not do at 100% scale

So here we are.

And the... [read more]

Some things should not be over complicated. And styling a bookshelf is one of them. Welcome to Week 4 of the One Room Challenge. … More styling a bookshelf »

The post styling a bookshelf appeared first on My French Twist.

thee inspiration:

a waffle knit top with print balloon/lantern/puff sleeves


I had made this dress so long ago, it no longer fits. I only wore it a couple times so the material is still in like new condition. Rayon/challis fabric generally lasts really well and is easy to care for. Since the print is a patchwork I thought it would work great for this idea.

Most loose fit waffle knit tops come with dolman sleeves. dolman sleeve is a sleeve made from the same piece of fabric as the bodice. Almost a bat-wing type sleeve, the dolman has a dropped shoulder and a wide arm hole that then tapers down to your wrist. So the sleeves are made in two parts. Take your waffle knit top and cut the lower sleeve parts off. That's what you'll replace with your print fabric and use them as your pattern. 

You want to cut the new sleeves whatever width for the amount... [read more]

Picture this: You’re planning a trip to London. You’ve been before (albeit eight years ago) and you want to book a stay at the hotel you loved near Hyde Park.

But… What. Was. That. Hotel?

You have a few options: Scroll back on all your past trips in TripIt… or, you can search for the name of the hotel right in your TripIt for iOS app.

[record scratch] Say what?

Yes, you read that correctly! With a few keywords, you can now search within your travel plans (past and upcoming) to find trip details like restaurants you’ve booked, hotels you’ve stayed (or plan to stay) at, states or countries you’ve visited or plan to visit, and so on.

Stop scrolling and start searching

With our new search functionality in TripIt for iOS, you can enter a few keywords—e.g., “London hotel”—into the search bar and results will instantly start to... [read more]

Train rides through fall foliage. Fresh apple cider. Fabulously haunted hotels. Imagine sipping on a hot cup of cider and munching on homemade apple cider donuts from the country’s oldest orchard while riding a train up a mountain to view vibrant fall colors. This cozy feeling is a glimpse of what New Hampshire in the fall feels like! To help plan the best fall in New Hampshire adventure (with lots of leaf-peeping guaranteed), our writer rounded up the must-see towns and cities filled with scenic drives, state parks, apple orchards, historic bridges, and more. Throw on your coziest sweater and let’s go!

10 Charming Places to Experience Fall in New Hampshire最先出现在Stitchparade

Sippin’ on summer.

The post This Patillazo Watermelon & Lime Punch Is the Ultimate Summer Refresher appeared first on Camille Styles.

This Patillazo Watermelon & Lime Punch Is the Ultimate Summer Refresher最先出现在Stitchparade

It has been a WHILE since I’ve posted to the ‘ole blog but I’m excited to share one of my latest makes. If you’ve been around here for any period of time, you might know that the Fairfield Button-up by Thread Theory is my go-to pattern when sewing for Nick. He wears button-ups ALL the time, so this pattern just makes sense. Go check out the Minerva site to get more details on Nick’s newest Lara Handmade shirt!

This post was written as part of the Minerva Brand AmbassadorTeam and I was provided the fabric  for the Fairfield Button-up free of charge.  However, all opinions are my own. 

My last project for the PatternReview mini wardrobe was this Burda skirt from 2019. It's a blend of pattern 109 & 110 from the November issue -- the length & back vent of 109 but the D-ring feature from 110. It was also my muslin for my intended fabric, a checkerboard canvas print, which I am planning to also make a matching jacket for because who doesn't want a checkerboard suit?

Anyhow, this first black version was made of some suiting that I thrifted a while ago, very nice quality. I cut a 44, but found that I needed to take the waist in by nearly 3" -- partly because I can't stand skirts that sit below the natural waistline. Size 44 fit very well everywhere else so just narrowing the waist was the main adjustment I made. I trimmed down the side seams by 1/2" on each side and took some width in on either side of the zip. For future, I... [read more]

 This Week on YouTube:  October 16th- October 23rd, 2021 Tuesday- Sewing the final Clueless Jacket Part 3.  In this livestream Sew & Chat, I will be working on the completion of this iconic fun jacket for my granddaughter.  I invite you to join the process as I work to add the lining and the final touches of the jacket. This Sew & Chat will go begin Tuesday at 5pm CST.

 Yesterday, I spent most of the day working on my second Laundry Day Tee. I was applying the neckband and things went wonky from there. I realized that my stitches were not sewing at the length I had set. The neckband itself was behaving poorly.

When I go through with this, it was a hot mess. One thing I hate is removing neckbands in some knit fabrics as there is a disaster waiting to happen. Because the stitch length was not correct, it was a bear to remove the stitches and of course, I ended up with holes in the front bodice.

I finally was able to get the neckband off, but it was a hot mess. I am going to try to save the neckline. I have enough fabric left over to make a cowl neck hoping this will salvage the top. I am sick to my stomach because to me this is a gorgeous fabric, the quality and the colors.

I have had some issues with my machine recently; when I turn it on... [read more]


Wear, Repair, Repurpose / Lily Fulop
NY: Countryman Press, c2020
160 p.

This cute little book about mending was published last year, alongside a bunch of other mending books now that it's becoming a trend. But this one is a fun one by a young instagrammer (@mindful_mending) and is clearly aimed at those really new to the idea. 

It has sections on visible mending, darning, patching, basics like sewing on a button or repairing a split seam, and starts with an overview of techniques (including standard embroidery stitches) and basic tools needed. It's clear, simple, and not overwhelming for someone totally new to the sewing world. The layout is also good -- attractively designed, with coloured text blocks and good illustrations and clear photos. The images aren't necessarily gorgeous and styled but I like them more for their everydayness. 

The second... [read more]

Now that I have mastered painting with dye without it running, I thought I would try the opposite. I have done this on silk a lot a few years ago, but my only try on thicker fabric at that time wasn’t a success.


With silk, because it is so thin, it doesn’t matter what you do, you just slap on the paint any which way and it works it’s magic.

I wanted to try something similar on linen. Last time I hung my garment on the washing line and made patches with the dye. This time I used my current technique of laying the cut out garment pieces on a sheet of corflute, and I thought I would do stripes of three different blues with a thick brush.

Easy peasy! I didn’t thicken the dye, just mixed water with dye powder, and this time I also added the soda ash, because I was only painting a short sleeveless top using a big brush, and I thought... [read more]


It's time for some more sewing inspiration for our Sun Down Motel readalong! Today we're looking at Carly's contemporary timeline. I'll start with characters and see what we might want to make. 

Carly is our main character in this timeline, and one of the first times we see her she describes herself for us:

"I looked down at myself: worn jeans, old boots that laced up the ankles, black t-shirt that said BOOKS ARE MY LIFE beneath a stretched out hoodie, messenger bag. Add my dark-rimmed glasses and ponytail and I was pretty much a cliché."

We'll start with the Carly Cardigan by Treasurie. It's not quite a stretched out hoodie, but it is a knit sweater, so pretty close! 

To really catch Carly's student look here we could also make the Carly Bag by IThinkSew, a very messenger bag influenced shape, although a little more compact. Enlarge... [read more]

Welcome to week 3 of the One Room Challenge! This is, by far, my favorite week. I’m helping my daughter-in-law Lilly transform her small … More diy mudcloth curtains »

The post diy mudcloth curtains appeared first on My French Twist.

 Hello! Happy autumn, I guess! 

For the first time in a very long time - maybe ever, in fact - I find myself not actively hating the onset of autumn and winter. I think it might be to do with the fact that I now live in a home that has central heating (our flat in Leamington was brutally cold in winter as the only heating was from two ancient storage heaters and all the windows were single-glazed and draughty) but it's probably some sort of autumnal denial because we have been enjoying some unseasonably warm weather recently.

Since I last blogged, life has continued to shift in interesting ways. The short-term job I had been doing from the beginning of June came to an end in mid-September, and I was offered a permanent job in the same organisation but in a different department. Working there had not been my plan when we moved - I had job offer... [read more]

Another simple tee to wear under jackets for my Fall wardrobe! This is a very good quality jersey that I picked up at a garage sale a few years ago, from a really nice man who had been a tailor and was moving house. I found a lot of excellent fabric there. 

I only had a small piece though, so thought about which pattern to use for a long time. I finally just went with the Kirsten, as I have made it twice before, and wear those simple tees a lot. I found while I was home a lot I was reaching for them often. 

I really like the fit of this one -- now that I've made my adjustments, that is. As drafted it is pretty straight up and down so if you have a larger lower half like me, you'll probably want to add width at the hip. The first one I made was very tight, so I added wedges of extra fabric to each side, then altered the pattern piece itself for... [read more]

These fabric pumpkins turned out so cute. I found the perfect sized pumpkins by The Spruce. You can get their free sewing pattern here. They have it titled as pumpkin pillows but if you just follow their tutorial for the body, you can add whatever type of stem you'd like and use whatever kind of fabric. I wasn't looking for pillows, more like just for decor but again the sizing of these worked out great. I took the large pumpkin pattern and scaled it up about two sizes more to make the really big pumpkin.

I also found this tutorial for upcycled pumpkins. If I didn't have so much of this fabric already I would've definitely done this one. You can check out the how-to by Evie Bidell, here.

I have had this orange burlap material for years and it never occurred to me that it would be great for some fake pumpkins. It would be good for some fake carrots too but... [read more]

Introducing the new VideoPress. Still the finest video service for WordPress—now even better.

Video is one of the most powerful tools on the web. It can spark ideas, emotions, conversations, sales, and much more. VideoPress already offers people the ability to upload and serve hours of high-quality video flawlessly around the globe, ad-free. But VideoPress should inspire people to create and share their best ideas as well. 

Now it does. The refreshed player offers creators an intuitive, lightweight design that puts their content in the spotlight.

Creating doesn’t always come easily, so sharing should be a breeze. That’s why VideoPress is fully integrated with the WordPress editor. From effortless drag-and-drop options to broad customization, every feature within VideoPress can be experienced on your WordPress site, without redirecting audiences to external... [read more]

The blog Spitalsfields Life is just a gift, this post is particularly pertinent

Button Maker.

photo by the Gentle Author of Spitalsfields Life

Meanwhile, I am hemming dresses

Girls come in all sizes for this choir. There are four choirs I'm hemming, but the pants choirs are already done.

Altogether there are 22 for this one, 8 for the other, with a couple more coming in. I'm actually half way done at this point.

And mending pants/making a pattern of favorite pants for Em. Sacrificed one pair to patch the crotch of the other, and traced off a pattern to make more.
Should get a couple more wears out of them and fill in the holes on the outside

And I am one photo short on another Miyake post and I WILL take that photo tonight. Work has been busy, marking hems ate up time, and homework for what was... [read more]

All bags are made with upcycled denim and other clothing. They are zippered with pockets inside and out. The strap is adjustable as always.

These took a bit to finish . I started them a couple months back but they're listed in the shop now and ready to ship! You can check out the bags, here.


It's Thanksgiving Weekend here in Canada so I'm taking the long weekend off -- no review today! If you are also Canadian, then Happy Thanksgiving to you, and be sure to eat a lot and relax :) 

A friend invited me to room with her on a trip to Playa del Carmen that she was going on with a group of her friends in August, and of course I said yes!  Leading up to the trip, I sewed up a bunch of summer clothes.  My idea was that I wanted a lot of loose, flowy clothes made from breathable fibers, preferably with no zippers or buttons.

I definitely wanted some maxi dresses for strolling on the beach and I have several gorgeous rayon knits that are just begging to be made into a wrap dress.  But the only wrap dress I had previously made that I actually liked was the Named Olivia, but that wasn't quite the style I was after.  So I took a look at my pattern stash and decided the Striped Swallow Summer Dawn had the look I was after.  It has lovely gathers at the shoulder seams, fluttery sleeves and ties that wrap all the way around the body.

Since I'd never... [read more]

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