Category Archives: hack

Yet Another Kielo: Basic Black Version.

Yes the title says it all, another Kielo make!  Named clothing are my go to pattern company, and my amount of Kielo’s are second to the amount of Inari’s I have (but no where near in number as I am Inari OBSESSED!)

There was a lot of inspiration on the Instagram from a few different Sewers, unfortunately the only one I can remember (and find) is Rumana’s version (aka @thelittlpomergranate) which she wore through different stages of her pregnancy.  No I am not pregnant myself (just fat) but I love the versatility of this garment.  And the fact I have not yet made a Plain black one is beyond me, since I have a black Jersey Inari that I wear to death!

So How did It sew?

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It is always smooth sailing with a Named clothing make, especially one of the classics such as this, Its a quick make, despite the long seams.  I also used the arm hack that is free on their site to make a long sleeve version. (you can get that here if you haven’t already)

As much as I love the dress, for the full on Goth effect that I always seem to gravitate towards, I prefer wearing it open.  So I went back to the sewing table and inserted a tiny hole under each of the ties.  Now when I want to wear it loose, all i do is tuck the ties neatly inside and the can not be seen.  Since making this I have also fiddled around with tying it on the inside or using a belt through the little holes.  All giving amazing new looks to the same garment.

I am pretty sure another Kielo will appear in my wardrobe in the future.  But I now feel I will have to wait for the perfect fabric for any future makes.

Hack: Inari to Basic Tee

Inari by named clothing, to me, is one of the best patterns ever. Not only do you get such a simple, sleek dress and top, but you can also hack this pattern every which way.

If you want to introduce someone to sewing, this is that pattern. Not only is it quick and easy, but its definitely a fashionable item.

Looking at my wardrobe, I decided I was in need of a good basic white tee to tie in a few pieces. Sometimes you need to take stock of your wardrobe, think why am I not wearing certain things more, and link them together with simple basics. Something about ‘dressing down’ a fancy skirt or even putting on a structures blazer over a simple tee is just really chic and effortlessly cool.

I knew I wanted an Inari like cuff on the sleeve, so I decided instead on drafting one, I would just use the Inari. I chose to use my bulk light jersey fabric. It is definitely the ultimate jersey tee fabric – Its very light, has a great drape and if you leave a raw edge, it looks amazing.

So How did it Sew?

Okay, so this tee, from beginning to end took about 45 minutes.

45 minutes from cut to on my body!

I did cut a few corners to make it how I wanted, but it shows things don’t need to take forever.

Whilst cutting it out, I simply folded the rest of the dress pattern to the length I wanted then cut out the fabric.  I was too lazy to even trace it, i just made do.   As I cut the side seam, it went from the armpit and fanned it out a couple of centimetres and followed the ‘bubble’ curve of the top. I also left an extra bit on the bottom so I had some playing room to tidy the hem.

A quick wiz though the overlocker and the top was almost finished. I ended up with the front slightly shorter than the back, but I think it has an edgy look. I tidied this up but using my ruler rotary cutter, the raw edge looks amazing, but only really holds together when cut neatly. I just tidied the dangley bits left by the scissors.

The hand sewing of the roll sleeve was a quick needle thread, and amazingly I fought the perfectionist in me, and it turned out not much different to how it would have if i had spent longer on it.

Overall, I am pleased as punch with this. I had intended to use it as a base to customise it by cutting it and distressing it, But now I love it too much as is.

 

Kalle Shirt Dress – LONG SLEEVES!

When the Kalle was first launched it was probably the most near perfect pattern.  I loved it.  But I longed for a sleeve hack.  The original Kalle sleeve as is, was far too short for me.  I tend to wear them layered under cardigans  I even asked my beautiful Instagram community for help for a hack in desperation – and still no luck.

Then the BEAUTIFUL people from Closet case patterns bought out the long sleeve hack.  And it was EVERYTHING…

Images from Closet Case Website

Now, before we go on, just a little negative here: I have had many patterns that introduce a hack, for example the Keilo and Inari from Named Clothing both had a sleeve and collar hack.  Both of which were completely free.  On the other hand, I was so desperate for a long sleeve hack and was happy to pay for that privileged of not figuring it out my self.  Its just something to consider if you are reading this post before purchasing the Kalle and/or just the sleeve hack.  So its more of a neutral comment that a complaint, but I always like to support independent business, so its all good.

So How did it Sew?

I will leave the details of the Kalle make itself  to my previous post where I covered that, instead I will focus on the Sleeves:

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As you can tell I absolutely love it.  So much so (sew?) that I ended up unpicking a sleeve on a Kalle I was working on and adding the hack to it (black Version)

The fabric I chose for both Black and white shirt, I thought was the same.  It had the same texture embossed into it, but the white was much softer and had a slight stretch, as apposed to the black that was a bit shinier.  I enjoyed sewing with the white more, but both were extremely light and have great movement.

The sleeve was incredibly simple to install.  I like how they approached it with the longer cuff, and how it took up a lot of the sleeve.  It Looks chic and can be worn up or down.  What really makes this is the shape of the existing sleeve (if you have made the kalle it is before you put the cuff on) which gives the overall piece a great shape and much more than the average shirt/shirt dress.

With the sleeve, I feel I will get much more use out of this pattern.  I still need to make the short and the tunic length versions, but having sleeves, for me, opens up more possibilities.

Pattern Repeat & Hack: School House Tunic, rounded sports skirt

I am very good at storage:  this means that if you open my wardrobe, you will see a perfect capsule wardrobe with a few different trends… but with the hot weather, I have had to get the summer clothes out, and juggle it around.  This is where I remembered how much I love the school house Tunic pattern.  My summer one I made last year has practically been worn to death… I can definitely justify another one.

In an attempt to stash bust I found this fabric;  a grey cross/dot pattern that had a good sized repeat.  It was a narrow width, but more than enough for a schoolhouse with some to spare.

So How Did It Sew?

This is another one of those patterns I could do with my eyes closed… well not closed as that would be dangerous, but you get what I am saying.

This time I used a thick band of elastic on the sleeve, and I think it really adds to the overall effect of the sleeve, almost like a cuff.

The main objective of this to make it slightly different to the others was a tapered sport like skirt.  I rounded in the edges and gave them a small split.  I feel it adds just a slight difference to my other makes.  I really liked how it turned out.

 

Made By Me: 90’s Daisy Swing Dress

I have probably mentioned before my love of Motel Rocks –  I based one of my favourite makes on their style;  The Cross Swing Dress.  Using this same pattern I had drafted, I decided to do something I don’t tend to do… like ever….and that was to shorten the sleeves.

This was mainly inspired by the gorgeous fabric I picked up.  It is very light and has a slight stretch.  The pattern is printed on one side and is light on the other.

So How Did it Sew?

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Date Completed: 30th May 2017

I feel this Daisy pattern pops up in a lot in the 90s inspired fashion at the moment.  I did want to add daisy buttons. But I felt that might be daisy overkill and I risk looking like an overgrown toddler.

I love the fit, I did add some darts in the back so it wasn’t as oversized and gave some shape.  The only issue is due to the material being so light, it likes to catch a breeze, definitely one to be wearing with shorts underneath.  I have considered taking in the sides a bit to combat this, but I really don’t want to take too much away from its swing ascetic.

I dressed the look up with my grunge makeup, boots and hat.  I will probably wear this with some form of choker IRL.  The Tights are super cute from Boohoo Plus/Curve.

As for the shorts sleeves, I can honestly say I don’t mind them, in fact I find them more flattering than if I had just done long sleeves as I usually gravitate too.  Maybe this is the beginning of a beautiful relationship with my arms.

I have a scrap of this left over, I am tempted to make some more cute things with it… and yes maybe with daisy buttons!

 

Pattern Repeat: Helmi Hack

After purchasing the Suzy Mag Issue Two (I am so upset I got to the party late and didn’t get an Issue one) I have been very much inspired to attempt the Helmi again.

Sometimes you just need to be reminded that you have/love a pattern.  This is one of the reasons I love the online sewing community So (…Sew?) Much.  Its so inspirational with everyone bringing their ideas to the table.

2017-06-15 02.13.04

Picture from Suzy Mag Issue Two (see link at bottom for details)

The picture that struck me most was the long sleeve Helmi Hack in a gorgeous Liberty Tana Lawn.  Now, I am not one for having a Liberty Lawn just laying around, but I did have this beautiful Tropical Print in my stash.  It seemed a good substitute, yet in keeping with the original fabric tones and concept.  I had bought it purely as I loved the fabric, and had NO idea what to use it for… it was one of those can’t leave behind  purchases!

My Previous Named Clothing Helmi I had worn a lot, but could definitely use an updated version of, but not a complete replacement.  It’s one thing I love about sewing; just with a different fabric or slight pattern hack, or another collar/sleeve option and you have a completely different garment.

So How Did It Sew?

Date Completed: 8th May 2017

It was a lot more work than my first attempt, this was mainly due to the added hacks taking up a lot of thinking and planning time overall.  One issue I had was not knowing what Suzy mag had done on the back:  They said ‘optional storm flaps’.  In the actual Helmi pattern it is made almost as a waistcoat added into the garment.  After some internal debate, I decided that I was going to ignore the back of the storm flap part and just sew the front into the side seams.  I came to this conclusion mainly because if you look at the pattern, this back piece looks better/is designed for the shirt, as there is no waist seam as with the dress.  I didn’t want the flap, then the indent of the waist so close to look odd.  It made it a bit more fiddly, but I personally think it was the right step.

I didn’t really go for pattern matching, especially on the side seams.  I felt the Tropical pattern was at that size and fullness that I could pull off not matching it perfect.  Although, I did make sure the front flaps and collar were symmetrical, as well as both the arms being the same.

As suggested by the mag, a long sleeve hack is really simple to do.  I feel I have mastered a new talent of the sleeve placket now,  I drafted it from scratch and the extra care on this really makes this piece.

I love this dress – one thing I require for my summer wardrobe is light long sleeves (that can also be rolled up) One of the reasons I began this sewing journey was because I was unable to find specific things like this to buy in shops.

I can’t wait to wear this in regular circulation in my wardrobe, especially on holiday.

Also, check out Suzy Mag if you haven’t already.  It really is the best sewing mag out there, its so fresh and original, and full of inspirational articles.

Rip! Mod Dolly – Shirt Dress

This Dress has been forming in my mind for a while before it came to be.  But it was finding the perfect fabric combined with already making a good shirt dress that moved it on.

In my online fantasy shopping ( we all do it) I again looked at ModDolly.  I know that they have out sized me, but a lot of their styles lend themselves to flattering a plus size figure like mine, that’s why I love their stuff; The day they figure this out and make my size is the day I become very poor.

Already having copied their Black and white Peter-Pan collar dress (see here) I spotted this beauty and the plans started to form:

(photos from ModDolly)

I then found a brown plaid fabric, which was extremely similar to the Rust from Mod Dolly:  I spotted it on the end of a massive fabric shop, and chucked it in.  This piece was made off the back of a Grainline Alder shirt dress, so I decided to adapt and hack the pattern to make this:

So How did it Sew?

(Completed: 28th February 2017)

It was an easy Sew, considering I had just completed a Grainline Alder with sleeve hack, just before this one.  The only adjustment was the skirt:  I simply folded the front of the pattern at the required length and cut it out, adding a simple straight rectangle gather skirt to it.  I am a very Lazy sewer!

I love this cute little grungy Dress, I love the fabric as it has a soft light feel and it is extremely close to my original inspiration.  I am considering adding a belt to give it more structure as apposed to just being the kind of dress you chuck on.