Patchwork Trend

Sew, this Fall it seems as though the patchwork trend is in full swing.  I say, “YAY” it’s fun sewing!  I made some patchwork jeans last night.  I love them!  I’ve tried patchwork before and it was a failure.  I blogged about my first try here. This go round I tried a slightly different method. Instead of putting the pieces together on purpose while assembling the garment, I assembled the fabric as patchwork. Here’s the result this time.
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How does that happen?  I used denim to create my patchwork trend.  I knew I wanted the top of the jeans dark, you know, to hide all those body imperfections, I hope. I cut out the pattern to short shorts length using the dark denim.  From there,  I pieced together whatever I could find to make a large enough amount of patchwork “fabric” to cut out the rest of my jeans.  It was fun! I used my seam ripper a few times, and had to piece some parts in at the last minute to make it work but overall, it wasn’t that difficult.

What was difficult was the Mimi G pattern I tried using.  Let’s just say, it was not made for my body.  I tried all sorts of alterations, none worked for me.  I did give it a run for it’s money and my seam ripper too.  I think the seam ripper saw more action on those jeans than the sewing machine saw.  I really wanted them to work, but just like ready to wear, all styles do not fit all body types.

The pattern I used, is tattered, it works like a charm and fits perfectly every single time.  I have used the pattern for three pair of shorts, three pair of pants, and now one pair of jeans.  I use Simplicity 1165 for all my pants.  The Mimi G pattern I experimented with was Simplicity 1167.  The pattern and instructions were great, my body just would not conform.[envira-gallery id="2202"][envira-gallery slug="patchwork-trend"]

I hope to get a lot of wear out of these jeans and try other fabrics using the patchwork trend as well.  I hope this has inspired you to mess around with the technique as well.  No matter what you do, ENJOY!


Featured image can be found here.

Building a Fall 2015 Wardrobe

I’ve been  looking at all the ways to build a wardrobe. Some will tell you Capsule Building a Fall 2015 wardrobe is the only answer.  For me, I love the idea.  But, what happens when I’ve sewn all my pieces?  Does my machine just collect dust for the rest of the season?  I found a Seasonal Shopping Plan that works on the basis of 2 or 3 of each item listed is enough.

  • Sweaters, Cardigans   (2 or 3)
  • Tops: Sleeveless, tanks, tees, strips  (2 or 3)
  • Tops: Blouses, Button Downs  (2 or 3)
  • Shoes: Tennis Shoes, Sandals, Heels, Flats, Wedges  (2 or 3)
  • Skirts: A Line, Pencil, floor length  (2 or 3)
  • Jackets: Blazers, Jean, Wool,  (2 or 3)
  • Pants: Straight Leg, Skinny, Wide leg, Boot Cut  (2 or 3)
  • Jeans: Straight Leg, Skinny, Wide leg, Boot Cut  (2 or 3)
  • Accessories (2 or 3) I know this must have meant 20 or 30! 🙂

So, looking at this list and using it as a guide, you would need a total of 6 tops, 3 sweaters, 3 pair of shoes, 3 skirts, 3 jackets, 3 pair of pants, 3 pair of jeans and numerous accessories!  Just kidding, she actually said 2 or 3. A total of around 24 items.

I can work with this!  Although no dresses were mentioned, which is concerning for me 🙂

Overall, the first step in building a wardrobe is defining your style.  I found a worksheet for this here. Art in the find has a wonderful graphic of ways to pair your clothing.  I would love to share the entire library here, but I don’t think there is enough space.  Please visit her page.  So much to learn from her.[envira-gallery id="2183"]
[envira-gallery slug="art-in-the-park-ideas"]
 I included a couple of photos to tease you. Click on the title on her site and a whole library opens up!

There are so many versions on the internet to help you along your way of defining what your wardrobe should and shouldn’t be. Another website has a workbook to help you along the way. Her workbook, PERSONAL STYLE & THE PERFECT WARDROBE can be downloaded in it’s entirety by clicking on the title above.

I really like her workbook.  She has questions I would never think of asking myself. For the perfect outfit she asks  “What is the ensemble perfect for?” and “What are the main accessories, hair and make up variations?”

I am no where near as creative or organized as these ladies.  I personally buy fabric with a vague purpose in mind.  Then make something with it, say a skirt.  At that point I realize I have no idea what type of top, jacket, or accessories are appropriate for said ensemble. Eventually, I get there and look good.  I just don’t take a straight path like these brilliant ladies.  I hope you find something useful for your own sewing here, ENJOY!


Cheap Thrills or Cheap Bills?

Expensive Looking Wardrobe on the Cheap

Cheap Thrills or Cheap Bills? Buying less expensive fabric can be a costly mistake if close attention is not paid to the fiber contents. Inexpensive fabric can be found everywhere if you are willing enough to spend the time.  I’ve been known to spend hours at Hancock Fabrics sifting through the bolts on their tables of spot the dot sale fabrics.  I have a rule for myself at those tables, it must be at least 50% off.  I usually go for the under $3 fabrics.

 I completely love a tonal outfit in linen.  It was one of my first loves in textiles, 30 years ago.  It’s an easy sewing fabric and looks fabulously expensive. I love the fact that this fabric is natural as well.  The fabric comes from the flax plant fibers. This is quite possibly the coolest fabric around. The clothing created from this fabric doesn’t have the fake feel of  synthetic fabric.  Linen gets better with age, it softens up nicely with wear.

  •  Faux Suede

As a child I remember my first touch of this fabric and my grandmother’s quick response. Obviously she had high regard for this fabric’s price and quality. Once known as ultra suede, now known as vegan because it’s difficult to tell the difference between the faux and real. There is an incredibly informative post about sewing with faux suede here.

The benefits of cotton are quite similar to those of linen due to the natural fibers.  Cotton breathes and feels better than synthetic counterparts.  It’s low maintenance, doesn’t pill, and retains it’s shape. The  best fabric for leggings or stretch knit is a cotton spandex blend.

  • Rayon

Rayon looks more expensive but pills and shows wear and tear quickly.  But, in a pinch, and if good diligent care is taken, this is a great inexpensive substitute.

  •  Acrylic

I love working with this because the results look close to RTW (ready to wear) end products. Looks expensive, but looses shape easily, handle with care.

  • Polyester

I hate the feeling of this fabric regardless of how expensive it looks. But, to each his/her own.

What do you think?


Sewing the Season’s Colors

Does it matter if you are sewing the season’s colors or not?  To some people, yes! I’m not so much into the capsule wardrobe as I am into colors. I love the changing seasons, I’m old school, the colors change too.  According to Pantone this season’s colors are of the 70’s.  In the 70’s I was too young to care about the colors I wore or what entity decided those colors.  As long as it had Raggedy Ann on it I was happy!

I became curious, who is PANTONE? Why do we care what they think about color?  I did a little checking on Pinterest. They have actually been doing this color prediction since 1963.  I have no idea why America just recently found this information provided by Pantone as relevant.  Well, I have been shopping for my fabric to use in the coming seasons. I did not take my Pantone list with me, take a look though, Pantone is pretty dead on with my choices.  Here are my choices.[envira-gallery id="2095"]
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Pantone’s choices are below[envira-gallery id="2098"]
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I love the way the stones were added to the color to show just like on the color wheel, there are tints and tones of the color which are completely acceptable. WWD, Women’s Wear Daily breaks down the colors and explains them more in depth the pictures below are from their site.[envira-gallery id="2100"]
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I’m over the top excited about my new wardrobe this season.  I picked up sewing again a year ago and have not bought any clothing since. The exception is Thrift Store purchases, those are used as fabric.  I’ll be adding another post with more color information for those interested. Also, I’ll be compiling an album of Pantone Fall 2015 you’ll find here. As the weather changes so will your wardrobes, ENJOY!

Palazzo Pants

Palazzo pants are like grown up, dressed up, sexy, yoga pants.  They they look like skirts until you walk in them.  I made three pair over the weekend, all of them look completely different but I used the same sloper. And by sloper I mean pants that I have and already like the fit 😉 You can find a diy Palazzo Pant Video here. They are super quick and easy to make. I used a yard of 58″ wide fabric for each pair.  But, I’m short so 36″ is plenty for my size.  If you need to add length a bottom contrast fabric, or waist will do the trick.

Short girls are leary of wearing that massive amount of fabric in wide legged pants. I feel they make me look taller and leaner, I’m a rectangle shape and 5’4″. Heels, horizontal stripes, and high waist fools the eye into making the shorter girl look tall.   There are lots of other styling tricks that can help you out with looking taller, too.

I made mine about two – four inches from the ground, I’m not a fan of pants dragging around me all day.  I love this style, I created a Pinterest Board. These are my very favorite looks from that Pinterest board so far[envira-gallery id="2066"]
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I really like how versatile palazzo pants are, they can be casual, dressy, or anything in between.  I’m currently working on a pair like this.  [envira-gallery id="2072"]
[envira-gallery slug="palazzo-pants-with-contrast-and-bow"]I think ultimately they are year round pants.  So roomy, wearing tights underneath in the winter for warmth or wearing lightweight ones in warmer times of the year. Plus no one has to worry about the things that happen when wearing maxi skirts.  To me, these pants are the best solution for people like me who love looking girly, but realize sometimes a dress or a skirt just won’t work!  I hope you try making some of these of your own and share your photos with me.  ENJOY!

Something NEW at Lucy’s Lab

[envira-gallery id=”3519″]Guess what?  There is something new at Lucy’s Lab, you can now, follow my blog with Bloglovin! Oh my goodness, I am so excited to show you something NEW at Lucy’s Lab! [envira-gallery id="1960"]
[envira-gallery slug="1960"]Also, I’ve been gathering photos from fashion magazines and have created a photo journal. I love it!  It’s a great way to skim and not have to scroll through a blog post to find some pictures to inspire you! Eventually I hope to have a lot more inspirations and tutorials for more of the clothing for fall.  I’ve already described to you how to make a vest in this post [envira-gallery id="1696"]
[envira-gallery slug="fur-vest"]  Personally, I cut out all the photos in the magazines that inspire me.  So far I’ve destroyed one magazine and have two more magazines to go.  Anyway, then I get out scissors, glue, and cardboard.  Yes, I pretend I’m in grade school again! I make a collage of the things I like.  Kind of a “to do” list for myself. Eventually I look through the fabrics I have and compare them to what I have on my collage. At this point I’m racking my brain thinking of how I can use the fabric. It happens, in time.  I feel so wonderful wearing what everyone else wants, even better, they can’t find it in the stores even if they try.

Isn’t that why we all sew?  To be unique and different?  They say blue and emerald green are going to be a color combination this year.  I’m stoked to find that out the same day I purchased some blue paisley for pants.  I don’t wear much blue and was really fretting about what I was going to do.  You know, what goes with blue?  Grey and black are always safe, oh and of course another of my least favorites, red.  LOL….see how my problem was growing? I hope you ENJOY the change of seasons.