Hello, sewcialists!! Pauline here. I’m a homeschool mom of 2 teenagers and a tween living in the Bay area.  I blog at and I’m @sewuthinkucan on Instagram. As a self-professed stripe nut, I got really excited when Gillian announced Stripes as the February’s theme for the Sewcialists blog and allowed me to share a finished project with you all.

I love stripes so much I have to literally restrain myself from exclusively sewing with striped fabrics.  My all-time favorite sewing activity beside pattern hacking, is playing with stripes. Beth of the Sunnygal Studio blog dubbed me the “stripe whisperer”.

This year, I want to try to sew with a purpose and not just give in to my impulses, which are most mainly driven by what I love to sew rather than what I need to sew.


The things that are lacking in my... [read more]

I did it!  I completed The Day and Night Dress Challenge organized by Elizabeth Made This!  You can read about her Challenge details here.  I completed my Day dress – my “Coffee” dress last week.  I used New Look 6803 and this 100% rayon.  It was an easy pattern and I would happily make it again. […]

I’m really excited about this make! It’s so comfortable and I love how it looks with leggings and jeans. If you remember this was part of my #2018makenine. I’ve actually been making a pretty good dent in that list!

This is my first ever Ellie and Mac* pattern and I gotta say – I’m a fan! I’ll be making more of their patterns and more of this top, I’m sure.

This is the Women’s Travelers Top* and comes in a full range of sizes. It features a cowl hood, high-low hemline and optional pocket. I obviously choose to put a pocket in because of carrying around my phone or a random toy the boy hands me. I’m not really the biggest fan of kangaroo pockets because I feel like they can look weird but I don’t mind it on this one. It looks too high up in the picture but it doesn’t seem that way when I’m wearing it.

The hood is great because it’s large and drapes nicely.... [read more]

Having a plan B is always my way of dealing with difficult situations. What's the worse that can happen and how can I deal with it? Sure helps to take care of anxiety. And I have to say I was getting a bit anxious about making this pattern already. This is part of a collaboration with Simplicity, who kindly sent me a few patterns to review. No pressure, Alex! When I chose the patterns, I thought I'd be clever and choose a coat, to give me the impetus I needed to stop procrastinating and make a darn coat already. I started early January, with all the goodwill in the world, but I kept running into all kinds of obstacles. I had planned to publish a post at the end of January and here we are, beyond mid-February and still no coat. And I'm afraid that, for various reasons, that one might be a write-off. Funny thing is that I realised just what went wrong only when I... [read more]

The latest pattern from Chalk and Notch is here and it is SO GOOD! I know I say this literally every time she releases a pattern, but it’s hard not to say when it’s completely true. It’s probably no surprise that I’ve been constantly wearing this jacket since finishing it!

The Joy Jacket is a fully lined, mid-weight jacket with an exposed zipper, optional hood and two pocket options and optional hood and hem drawstrings.  This pattern is named in honor of Emily’s (Enjoyful Makes) mom who used to wear a jacket similar to this.  The love and sentiment that went into this pattern is amazing.


Now, I have to admit that before this pattern test started I was pretty nervous about having to learn how to line a jacket.  I had never fully lined anything and it just seemed so daunting.  However, thanks to Gabriela’s always great instructions, I successfully lined my... [read more]

This might be considered a crime to dressmaking, but I had completely overlooked the Closet Case Patterns Nettie Dress & Bodysuit until very recently. To be honest, I don't really see the need for crotch poppers in my life (or gusset) and as I'm not a huge fan of the scoop neck/back, I'd let it pass me by, only realising that combining the high neck and high back was actually one of the pattern's options after seeing Helen's fab version! I'm four makes into my #2018makenine already, so naturally when temptation presented itself in the perfect pairing of pattern and fabric, it felt about time to venture off plan...

My first (and definitely not last) Nettie Dress!
I don't often sew with knits, but I was keen to invest some time in learning to work with them better, and create some tighter fitting clothes. I've seen this seventies-vibe rib knit from [read more]
The results are in - William GeeWilliam Gee are proud to present to you A Guide to the Best Sewing Blogs to Follow in 2018! We’ve been on a mission to find the top sewing bloggers in the UK (as well as a few international bloggers) and now, after months of speculation, we’re ready to reveal the winners of William Gee’s Sewing Blog Awards 2018…
We received thousands of nominations from an incredible collection of sewing blogs, patternmaking websites, dressmaking Youtube channels and creative Instagram profiles, so it took a little longer than expected to narrow it down! Keep an eye out for new categories this year, including William Gee’s Best Sewing Instagrammer, Best Sewing Blogs for Plus Sizes and Best Retro & Vintage Sewing Blogs.
Please note this is not an endorsed list – this is based on hours and hours of research from the William Gee team! For the 2016 list, head to Best... [read more]
Hola! Welcome back! As I've been purging my closet, I've gotten a chance to get a good look at some of the garments that I've made and reflect on how I feel when I wear them. What I realized was that I was more apt to keep older me-mades that had mistakes as long as they looked good on me. I also got a chance to look at the things that I've made more recently and noticed how I make much less mistakes and how professional they look as opposed to the older garments.

newer me-mades

Quick tangent: You know that feeling you get when someone finds out that you've made the garment you're wearing? How proud you are? How you want to show off a little? How you don't mind them inspecting it?

It got me thinking: Knowing my ability now, and how I can make things look (inside and out), I get nervous about people asking me if I've made an older me-made... [read more]
Handmade coffee sack burlap zipper pouch - etsy michigan -

This past weekend, I was able to spend some time sewing up brand new zipper pouches for the Lina and Vi Etsy shop! In the next few days, I will be adding a few new pouches, so keep up with our Facebook page to get the news when they are available! I have one large zipper pouch, which I will be sharing more details on here later this week, plus a brand new small pouch coming your way.

I am excited to have both the time and energy to start sewing again this month. As you know, January was pretty difficult to find the time as we had many weeks of colds and flu here. I'm thankful that those have now passed, and I'm back to spending some time in front of the sewing machine during the evenings and weekends.

To celebrate, I'm offering a Lina and Vi small burlap handmade zipper pouch as a giveaway this week! Giveaways are pretty rare here, so I can't say... [read more]

It may be raining and gloomy outside today, but it got up to 70 degrees this past week and so I have spring sewing on my mind! Actually, I started my spring sewing extra early this year because I'm going on a cruise(!) and wanted to make a few things for the trip, so confession: I have already completed a few of the things on this list.

You may notice there's a lot of Sewaholic on this list. I own a lot of Sewaholic patterns, but haven't gotten around to making many of the ones in my stash, despite having loved the ones I have made. This spring I'd like to rectify that!

In various degress of completion, here's my spring sewing list:

My white Gingers (full length)

White Ginger Shorts - I'm not a big shorts wearer but I bought a pair of jean shorts from Grana last spring and ended up wearing them a lot. It's not my favorite... [read more]

I’ve been waiting for weeks to share this particular design from my “Sew Your Own Activewear” book with you, and now seems as good as any! This week I’ll be talking about one of my favourite designs in the book, the Active Leggings! These started as a bit of a design progression from my super-popular Duathlon Shorts pattern, but as much as they may look similar, under the hood there are plenty of differences going on! For starters, the Active Leggings have much wider pockets (as phones have grown SO much bigger since I released the Duathlons in 2014) that are constructed differently, too, and feature a full-length leg that’s got lower leg visual interest.

They’re not a 100% like-for-like replacement, as the Duathlons were designed for cycling and running (hence the name) and the Active Leggings are for more general exercise, but I’ve made a... [read more]

I had to dust off the old blogging here to bring you the Joy Jacket Pattern from Chalk and Notch that just released today – it is such a good one and I can’t wait to tell you all about it.

The Pattern

The Joy Jacket pattern is your new spring jacket must have. It’s fully lined, relaxed fit and designed to be a mid-weight jacket. It features a center front exposed zipper and optional drawstrings at the hood and hem.

Ever since Gabriela teased this pattern on her Instagram I have been dying for it so I was so excited to see it was ready for testing!

Over the course of the test, I made both views – View A has a wide collar and View B features a hood. There are interchangeable pockets – either a square or angled pocket.

Chalk and Notch patterns are usually named after hairstyles (who knew?! Not me – my mind was BLOWN when Gabriela told us that during the test). This... [read more]

For #CurvyYearofSewing – Jeans and Trousers, I’d love to share with you my magical unicorn of pants patterns – Style Arc’s Flat Bottom Flo Pants.


Pattern name: Style Arc Flat Bottom Flo Pants

Style Arc’s Flat Bottom Flo Pant description:

“Every butt has a different shape! This stretch pull on pant is for those with a flatter bottom. The back side seam comes to the front giving this slightly narrow legged pant a slimming look and the back yoke adds to this flattering shape.”

These pants seem to be related to Style Arc’s Barb Pant. They’re both a stretch pull on pant with an elastic waist. I was drawn to the Flat Bottom Flo Pant by the promise of it being designed for my flat butt and the hope of having to do less pattern alterations to get a good fit.

Size range (with measurements): Up to size 30. That’s a 50.5 inch / 130 cm waist and 61 inch /... [read more]

Hello all! My name is Anna and you find me on our family sewing blog PeterSilie&Co (IG: @petersilieundco). I am really bad with sewing plans and sticking to time tables. But when the theme month came up last year, I decided to participate, and I therefore have to deliver something. I said “I will probably sew a hoodie-sweater-dress with this amazing fabric I have in my stash”… But 3 months is a long time to change plans. And I got fed up with sweater fabrics, because of two similar projects before. So today, there is no striped sweater-dress. Instead, I have (just for you) finally finished an UFO.

PeterSilieUndCo burdastyle 7 2017 101 Skaterdress (27)

It all started in (I think) July of last year. I had just seen the preview of the latest issue of burdastyle and there was this dress: fun, cute back detail, maybe a bit short and “American shoulders” in the German version — whatever these are... [read more]

That weirdo who is checking you out on the train is not a perv, just trying to understand WHAT IS THE DEAL WITH THAT DART!? 🤔

That weirdo who is checking you out on the train is not a perv, just trying to understand WHAT IS THE DEAL WITH THAT DART!? 🤔

Simplicity 1878
Size 10

2 and 7/8 yards of Nani Iro Orisome Double Gauze
Gold topsitching thread
Light gray thread

Do you ever have an idea in your head for a project that won't go away? I purchased this Nani Iro fabric in Boulder over Christmas and as soon as I saw it, I knew I wanted a loose flowy dress in the style of Stylish Dress Book. Unfortunately, I do not own this pattern book...nor did I want to purchase a new pattern book (I am trying to be more sustainable and sew my stash with the patterns I have...I am at heart an eco-hippy kind of gal). I was bummed and stashed this fabric.  But that nagging idea would not dissipate.
Determined. I was determined.  I ended up choosing to use Simplicity 1878 which is an out-of-print Lisette pattern for Simplicity called the Diplomat dress.  My measurements have me... [read more]

Sewing a coat is like sewing a car. It has a lot of parts and an order to assemble them in.
Every time I've sewn one, I've made a list of the tasks, the parts, and used my time to arrange them in the order I need them to get done in.
I am parking this list here for my future benefit.
There is one highlighted activity in the middle that came up this week. 
Oh, you'll see it right away.

The raincoat has a sleeve and upper body overlay as well as the main body piece, pockets that were internal and outside welt pockets. And it's fully lined. This made it complicated in ways that the winter coat is not.
Nevertheless, much of the same process applies.
So, for your entertainment, and an explication of how you can take a complicated task and break it down into a long list of five minute activities
(or: what I learned I could do during a child's nap time, when I had... [read more]

Seamwork Neenah Dress

This is the Seamwork Neenah Dress one of my #makenine projects, made with a stash fabric of forgotten origin (thanks to the Cora App I won’t be forgetting where I bought fabric in future). Although I can’t remember where I bought this fabric, I do know I bought it with the intention of making Neenah – and a year or so later, here she is!

Seamwork Neenah Dress

Based on my measurements I graded between an XS and S. I cut the sleeves in size XS and initially found them too tight, so unpicked and sewed again with a very narrow seam allowance. I cut two inches off the length of the sleeves, but left the dress length as per the pattern.

Seamwork Neenah Dress

I really like the fit of this dress. It skims the body nicely without being clingy. There’s a little bit of pooling at the back, but in a casual style like this I don’t think it’s worth worrying about. It’s worth noting that the turtleneck pattern piece... [read more]

Hi All,

J and I went away to Madrid for my birthday, it was great! Needless to say, while shopping I picked up some material. There was a street with three large fabric shops, I had a field day looking around

The week before flying out I was making this dress not knowing where I’d wear it, I was sewing it as a toile at first.

It was warmer in Madrid than the UK but not so warm that I could wear an off the shoulder dress unfortunately.

I realized that I didn’t have an outfit to watch Black Panther on my birthday, more than a good enough excuse to dress up!

I made a dress for a client using a Mimi G Styles late last year. This time I had the help of a RTW dress to recreate it

Here’s the lay plan first:

I know it’s blurry but I have a thing for laying out the pieces before I sew then together. Not only does it show the process, it looks like a jigsaw piece... [read more]

I’ve made a few more things for Joe and used a few new patterns. I don’t make him clothes too often as he gets lots of lovely garments from friends and family, but he is just about growing out of some and was in need of a sweater or two for this ongoing winter snap here in Seattle. I realized I didn’t have a basic crew neck sweater pattern and, while at this point I probably could have come up with something myself, I went ahead and bought the Brindille and Twig version. Then I went slightly crazy and decided to make another sweater and a pair of sweatpants from the Ottobre Kids 06/2017 edition at the same time. “Kids stuff is so quick to make” I told myself and, while this is normally true, I hadn’t looked too closely at the Ottobre patterns and they were a lot more complicated than his usual makes!

kids clothes.jpg

Brindille and Twig... [read more]

This is the second Sew Over It Ultimate Wrap Dress that I've made, but the first one was scrapped due to rubbish fabric.  I do love a Sew Over It pattern, as I don't have to shorten the bodice.

There are two different skirt and sleeve lengths on the envelope illustration, but not on the actual pattern.  This confused me a bit, but a bit of googling proved a few people had found this.  Also the bodice and skirt are all one piece, so there isn't a waist seam.

Sew Over It Ultimate Wrap Dress

My fabric is a mid-weight poly jersey from The Textile Centre for £3.99 per metre.  I had 2 metres, which was plenty for a size 10.  I did shorten the sleeves considerably though.

I also didn't use the facings, as this fabric is a bit thicker, and also I didn't get on well with the facing on this dress.  Instead, I used clear elastic, which I attached to the... [read more]
It's been on my to do list for ages, and I finally did it! And, even better, they fit really well!
I've sewn jeans for the kids before, but not to myself. I like the process with sewing jeans, with all the details and top stitching. It does take some time, but it's worth it at the end.
The pattern I used is from Ottobre design, no. 5/2017. I started with a size 40 and did some adjustments, mainly adjusting the waist since they were way to wide. I took in about 2 cm in each side and also a few centimeters in the centre back. These adjustments gave a more curved waistband, and that really helps with getting rid of the gaping waistband in the back that I always struggle with when buying jeans. Other adjustments were letting out the side seams a bit at the hips and shortening the front crotch, both by taking in the inner seam a centimeter and wedging out one more... [read more]
Sunday Lately is a fun way to share a little more about myself while reflecting on the past week. Practicing… some flexibility. Every thing was a little mixed up this week. My work schedule, school schedule, a stomach bug, teacher conferences, and a holiday. I like predictability, so this was good practice to not be wound … Continue reading Sunday Lately on mahlicadesigns #164
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