herringbone winter shorts

herringbone winter shorts
The flip side of San Francisco’s non-existent summer is a very mild winter, making this outfit possible in January. Paired up with some tights or knee socks, these shorts are great for cool weather, and pass the bike riding test with ease.

herringbone winter shorts

herringbone winter shorts Continue reading →

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Christmas eve lady skater dress

Christmas eve lady skater

On Christmas eve, I decided I needed something comfy to wear during our flight to Atlanta on Christmas day. Nothing like a silly self-imposed deadline to get motivated on a sewing project!

The Lady Skater pattern fit the bill perfectly. I considered using my modified Renfrew Top pattern for the bodice since I’m pretty happy with the shoulder fit, which is always the most challenging for me. But, why not try something new? I noticed the armscye was a tad longer on the Lady Skater. Perhaps the more relaxed underarm fit would be more comfortable.

As usual, I had to let the waist out and raise it up. I’m neither long or short waisted but I’m shorter than most at 5’2″. I prefer the look of knit dresses that hang from the natural waist. In the end, I had to take in a lot under the arm. It turns out the closer fit is plenty comfortable and looks better.

The fabric I used has been sitting in my stash for months. It’s a soft yet stable bamboo jersey with lycra. I love this color. I wanted to contrast the neck and armbands in a subtle way so I chose black. Totally digging on that.

Christmas eve lady skater

I added inseam pockets, even though I knew it would mess up the skirt drape on the sides. Too bad. I need pockets!!

Conclusion: I need more of these! Not only was I comfortable on my plane ride, I’ve been living in this dress several days a week ever since. Easier to wear than pajamas, seriously. For any of you out there that are nervous about sewing knits, this pattern is a great place to start. The directions are very thorough and chatty in a good way. Highly recommended!

While you can totally sew this dress with a standard sewing machine, a serger makes all knit projects go so much faster with a more professional finish. If you are looking for an affordable, entry level serger that is easy to thread, I recommend the Brother 1034D serger. My mother-in-law gave me one for my birthday a few years ago and it has completely changed the way I sew. I use it on almost every project, including wovens. I also use a twin needle to finish neck and armbands and for hemming – standard practice for knits if you don’t have cover stitch capability. One day, I might upgrade to a more full featured serger, but I honestly have no complaints with my current setup.

Moss skirt and Renfrew top

Moss skirt and Renfrew top

After the Cooper bag contest, I was really hungry for an easy garment make. So, I busted out my trusty Renfrew top pattern, this time with long sleeves. I extended the cuffs a bit for a color blocking effect of sorts – I like the way it turned out! Black and white stripes are totally me. I will be wearing this on the regular.

Now the Moss skirt is actually an old make for me that I failed to blog about in real time. My excuse: the photography. While I enjoy writing about my sewing projects, I suck at photography. 😦 To be completely honest, I kind of dread it. It takes forever because I have to shoot a million pictures to produce just a handful of acceptable ones. But, I’m getting better and faster with practice. So, I’m not letting it hold me back anymore! I even ordered a camera remote today so I can try taking my own modeling shots. Ok, back to the photos…

Moss skirt

Moss skirt back

Moss skirt waistband

Moss skirt pocket

I LOVE this skirt. As you can see by the wrinkles, I wear it constantly including the day I took the photos. I’m really turning into a skirts and dresses girl these days, LOL (my friends know me as a lifelong tomboy).

Do you like my wacky fabric choices? The main fabric is this plum colored fine corduroy with a tiny bit of stretch. I really like red and purple together so I picked a fun red print for the lining. I hemmed this skirt a little longer than directed by the pattern. It is comfy this way but I will probably go shorter next time. I also let out the waist a small amount but generally the cut of this skirt fits my shape well without modification.

I’m able to get away with bike riding but it is totally stretching my skirt out of shape. If I make another one out of a firm woven, bike riding most likely won’t fly. Speaking of flies, this was my first attempt at a zip fly. Thanks to Jen’s helpful tutorial, I had success on the first go. W00t!