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Over the weekend I was looking for a quick project that I could post about, and ran across this free pattern by Megan Nielsen that I had bookmarked a few weeks ago.  I had some purple jersey fabric left over from another project, just enough to whip it up!

How I wish I had made this top months ago!  I love that it doesn’t matter how much bigger my belly grows, it will keep fitting!  That also means that it fits my rule for maternity clothes: I want to be able to wear it both before and after the baby is born with minimal altering.  It seems like such a waste to spend time making a top that, at this point, I could only wear for another 8 weeks!  Pardon me while I go and freak out for a minute…

As the date for baby’s arrival gets closer and closer, I am finding myself nesting more and more.  I spent the better part of the last two weekends cleaning, purging, and organizing.  It has helped that it is finally starting to feel like spring around here, and I can partially blame my frenzy on the “Spring Cleaning” bug.  Hmm, maybe this is how I freak out?

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As my belly gets bigger, I have less and less clothes that fit me.  Both buying and making maternity clothes seems like such a waste to me sometimes, since I will only be able to wear the clothes for a few short months.  Because of this, I have started planning clothing projects that I will be able to wear while pregnant, and also after I have the baby.

I found the free pattern for this top on Burda Style.  I like the loose-fitting style, and the fact that it is made with knit fabric instead of woven.  To accomodate my tummy, I added about 4 inches to the length of the top so that as I get further along, I will not be showing skin along the bottom.  After I give birth, I will likely bring the bottom hem up again.

I was pleasantly surprised at how easily this project came together.  I was also happy with the fit.  There was only one size given with the pattern but I decided to go for it anyways, and it ended up fitting perfectly.  I also like that it hides the size of my belly a bit…at least when you are looking from the front.  I think I will end up making a couple more of these shirts because of how great the fit is.

On a side note, can you believe that I am wearing a tank outside in the winter!?  The weather here has been very mild.  I think someone must have heard my wish for less snow a couple months ago!

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I spent this weekend working on a few projects.  However, I think I bit off a bit more than I could chew because I didn’t actually complete any of them.  I worked on canning some chutney-like plum sauce (I was sure to include some more of those Colorado peaches in it, of course).  I started making a fabric shade for the hideous florescent lights in my kitchen.  I worked on another grill tool carrier for a friend.  I put up some new curtain rods in hopes that I would soon get to making some curtains for my apartment (yes, we have been living without curtains for about 2 months now…it definately makes getting from the shower to the bedroom interesting…).  So yes, so many projects, so little time.

This brings us to this little post today.  Since I don’t have any finished projects to show you, I thought it would be a great chance to feature some of your projects that you have posted to the Flickr group!

This first top was made by Pink Tulip.  I think it is very flattering on her, and the fabric is lovely.  I like that this top is long sleeved, so its obviously good for the cool fall weather up ahead, but the colors could work for spring as well.

Photo Courtesy of PinkTulipZA

Photo Courtesy of PinkTulipZA

 This next piece is by Ginny Rae of Aunt GiGi’s Craft Corner.  She used an old 90’s pattern to make a jumper that is stylish for today.  I love her use of plaid…I have been seeing it around a lot lately.  Like Pink Tulip’s top, this dress can be worn in other seasons too, depending on whether you layer it or wear it on its own.

Photo Courtesy of Ginny Rae

Photo Courtesy of Ginny Rae

 This last top is by April Rhodes of Sew to Speak.  I absolutely love the neckline on this tops…it is so unique!  Again, I could see this working for autumn with a long sleeved shirt underneath, or a blazer, and I could see it working for spring/summer on its own.

Photo Courtesy of April Rhodes
Photo Courtesy of April Rhodes

Great job on your lovely work, ladies!  I really enjoy seeing your projects.  If any more of you are interested in participating, just join our Flickr Group!  This edition of Build Your Wardrobe will be running through November!

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Last week I made this t-shirt for Mike, and I thought it needed a little something extra.  We have been having lots of rainstorms that have been a bit out of character for the area that I live in, which got me dreaming of all things Autumn…hot tea, crisp leaves under my feet, sweaters for every occasion, and pumpkins!  I used those storms as my inspiration for the detail for the shirt.  To make the clouds and raindrops, I used the back side of the fabric that I used for the shirt…it is a little bit darker, and has a different texture.  The effect is pretty subtle, so it doesn’t look too much like a child’s shirt.

I put together some instructions and a pattern so you can make one too!  If you are making this for an adult, you can use the pattern as is, but if you are making this for a child, you may need to shrink the size of the pattern to fit on a smaller shirt.

Here are the Stormy T-Shirt Instructions.  Enjoy!

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Ever since I started this whole crafting hobby, I have wanted to make Mike something really nice.  Something he could use  on a regular basis.  He always gives me little projects to do for him, like patching a sweatshirt, or sewing a hole in his jeans pocket.  However, it always seems that I never get around to it.  His sweatshirt has has a little rip in it, and he can no longer carry his wallet in his back pocket because of how big the hole has gotten.  It just seems to me that all the little projects take a bit of time, and produce little satisfaction when I am done with them.  And it doesn’t help that you all might get more than a little annoyed if all I posted were little mending projects.

So, the other night when I had a bit of extra time, did I tackle all the little projects Mike has been kindly asking me to do for the last year?  Um, no.  I made him a shirt instead.  Luckily the shirt turned out very well and he is very happy with it.  I used the basic t-shirt pattern from Burda Style, which was very easy to put together, though it doesn’t really come with instructions, just the pattern cut outs.

To sew this, I started by sewing the front and back together at the shoulders.  I then pinned the sleeves onto the shirt, and sewed them together.  Then I sewed along the sides of the shirt, starting at the end of the sleeves,and going all the way down to the bottom of the shirt.  The last thing I did was hem the sleeves, bottom, and neck.  I don’t have a serger, so I didn’t serge the fabric edges, but they seem to be holding up well so far.

I plan on doing some cool design on the front of it.  Actually, I planned on doing it last night, but no fusible interfacing.  Oh well.  Maybe this weekend.  I just hope the shirt won’t suffer the same fate as the jeans and sweatshirt.

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I went camping again this weekend and those things I made really came in handy!  My water bottle holder became a pouch for all the little pieces of rose quartz that I collected throughout the trip.  We got back yesterday, and I had just enough time to put together this little top.

The main body of the top is made from an old pillowcase that I had pre-marriage.  I have been saving it because I love the pattern on the fabric.  It is hard to see in the pictures, but it is a white on off white floral pattern…perfectly subtle (as you all know…my favorite!).  The straps are made of 1/2″ bias tape that I had left over from this blanket.  The flowers are made from some cream colored cotton.  I cut out petals in the rough shape of figure-8s and sewed two on top of each other.  I then took four of these figure-8 petals, folded them in half and stitched them together in a random order.  I made five of these “petal bunches” and then stitched them along the right side of the top.  I really love the size of these flowers.  At first they seemed a bit too big for me, but they make me feel so feminine!

Last night I also altered a pair of trousers that I have been meaning to do for a long time…I put them on inside out and placed the pins along the outer edges where I wanted the seam to be…very easy with great results.  I will definately be doing this with all my jeans and trousers that don’t fit me.

And finally, I couldn’t resist posting this picture from our camping trip.  This was a farm that we saw on our way up into the mountains.  The sky was so clear with these massive fluffy clouds.  Absolutely beautiful!

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I have had this dress shirt for a few years now.  I originally bought it because I loved the fabric, but it was a bit to big for me, so I never really wore it.  I have been admiring all the summer tunics that have been in style this summer, so I decided to make the top into a tunic.

What you will need:

  • dress shirt that is two sizes too big for you
  • seam ripper
  • matching thread
  • scissors
  • pencil
  • straight pins
  • iron

1. Remove the collar with the seam ripper.  Re-stitch the along the top where the collar once was.

2. Remove all the buttons from the top.

3. Measure 6″ down the front and mark with a pencil or a straight pin.

4. Turn shirt inside out.  Align the front button panel with right sides facing.  Secure with pins.

5. Stitch just on the inside of these button panels, starting at the bottom and ending at the mark you made in step 3.  Iron seam open.  At the top, the button panels will be folded in half.

6. Stitch the top of the folded button panels at 1/4″ (or smaller if the button panels are smaller).

7. With the shirt inside out, measure 6″ (more or less for shorter or longer sleeves) up each sleeve and mark with a pencil or straight pin.  Cut sleeves at this mark.

8.  Fold cut sleeve over at 1/2″ and iron.  Stitch along sleeve edge at 1/4″.

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