Sewing Wish List: 10 Patterns for Spring/Summer

There are so many patterns floating around right now that I’m lusting after! Today I’m sharing a few that are on my sewing “wish list” that I think would be perfect for spring and summer.

1. Highlands Wrap Dress by Allie Olson

I have been dreaming of a v-neck, wrap top dress for a while and haven’t found one that caught my fancy until Allie of Indie Sew released the Highlands Wrap Dress.

A flowy version – perhaps a large-print floral rayon? – is on the short list of dresses I’m considering for a wedding I’ll be attending this summer.

Highlands Wrap Dress inspirationThis long version is pretty sexy and has me wondering if I should try the maxi length. Also totally smitten with Leslie’s nani IRO version!

2. The Orla Dress – Free pattern from French Navy

Y’all know my love of a cinched waist dress so as soon as I saw this pattern I knew it was one I’d want to try!

Orla Dress inspiration: I am completely smitten with Rachel’s plaid version and her floral version.

3. Off-the-Shoulder Dress – Free tutorial from Megan Nielsen

I’m really not one for trendy attire and have been particularly detesting most of the cold-shoulder trends as of late, BUT one iteration of this trend has me swooning: a ruffled off-the-shoulder dress.

I absolutely hate strapless bras + have gotten pretty conservative in my dress-ware as I’ve aged so I’m not totally sure this is a style I’ll embrace…however, Megan Nielsen has what appears to be an incredibly easy tutorial for making this dress that I just might give a try because it looks so stinkin’ easy and I think it might be appropriate for that summer wedding I mentioned earlier 😉

4. Dottie Angel Frock / Simplicity 1080

I picked up this pattern on sale at JoAnn’s quite a while ago. The pattern looks fairly simple and I love a dress with pockets.

5. Darling Ranges by Megan Nielsen

I picked up this pattern from Five Eighth Seams on a trip to Charleston last year. I finally got the nerve up to start the pattern over my holiday break. I got about half way done and hung it in my sewing room closet where it has been gathering dust for a few months. This is such a bad habit of mine. I’m planning to get back to it very soon so I can wear it for summer (it’s made from a beautiful voile – see it here! – that’ll be delightful during those hotter-than-hot summer days that await).

6. Montlake Tee from Straight Stitch Designs

I’m in need of some basic shirts. I purchased the Montlake paper pattern from Straight Stitch Designs a while ago knowing it would be a staple. From the scoop neck to flowy body of the shirt, I love this simple flattering design.

I also have Kimberly’s View Ridge pattern. It’s not a style my closet is in dire need of right now, but it’s definitely on my to-sew-soon list!

7. Watson Bra by Cloth Habit

I don’t have this pattern in my stash yet, but I’ve been admiring it pretty intensely for over a year now. I bought a beautiful bra-making-kit from Mercer’s Fabric while visiting Boston last year that I’m planning to finally use 😉

Watson inspiration: this simple gray version by Kimberly of Straight Stitch Designs, this pretty blue lace version by Grainline Studio, basically all version on the #WatsonBra hashtag on IG. Very impressed with how Erin turned it into a Nursing Bra!

Other bralette patterns I’m loving:

Resources: Ohhh Lulu has a great post on how to take your own measurements. Cloth Habit has a sew along for the Watson bra that I will certainly utilize. According to Sarah’s FAQ video, bralettes are totally wearable for almost all bust sizes!

8. Shoreline Boatneck Dress by Blank Slate Patterns

I’ve already made a tunic and I wear it as often as possible because it is so stinkin’ comfortable.

Shoreline Boatneck inspiration: I really love the pattern because of its versatility and I’ve been dreaming of re-creating Melissa’s cinched waist version which reminds me a little of the Fen Dress, but I really prefer the comfort of a set-in sleeve so I’m leaning towards the Shoreline Boatneck for this upcycle plan…

My grandmother gave me a few of my grandpa’s shirts the other week and I have an idea bouncing around in my head that I can’t wait to get started on!

I’m planning to follow this Shoreline hack using his white linen button up shirt for the top of the dress and some army green rayon I found at JoAnn’s when testing the Auberley dress for the bottom.

9. Maxi Circle Skirt – By Hand London has a calculator!

I’m not huge on maxi dresses because 1) I’m so short, 2) I rarely have enough fabric, 3) the summer humidity where I live is best suited for uncovered legs 😉

BUT I have some Birch Floral rayon from Rifle Paper Company’s Les Fleurs collection that I think would be so lovely as a circle skirt! If I end up not having enough for a maxi, I’ll go with a midi or mini.

Maxi Circle Skirt inspiration: Mac of Harper+Lu made a gorgeous maxi circle skirt and has some tips for using By Hand London’s circle skirt calculator.

10. Sleeveless Auberley Dress by Blank Slate Patterns

I participated in the first round of testing for the Auberley, but unfortunately couldn’t move to round 2 because I was going out of town so I don’t actually have a finished version 😦 It’s been on my list for a while – the construction of the bodice was actually pretty neat and I enjoyed it quite a bit (it was my first time lining a bodice!).

Auberley inspiration: I really love Melissa’s sleeveless version! Plus, you know I’m a sucker for a cinched waist & pockets 😉 Also head-over-heels for this embroidered version!!

Limiting myself to 10 patterns was tough! There are loads, loads, loads more on my list. Perhaps this is why I have such a hard time focusing on / finishing a project?! Nonetheless, I hope you enjoyed the list!

Tell me what you’re sewing for spring/summer in the comments below {because – let’s face it – I need more patterns on my wish list! 😉 }

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My First Date Night Dress and Slip

Y’all know my love for April Rhodes‘ fabric from my first quilt, but did you know she also designs garment patterns?! I hadn’t made any of her patterns yet, but I’d had the Date Night Dress pattern in my “to-make” pile for a while.

I’m trying to make more clothing to build my handmade wardrobe. The Date Night Dress pattern is pretty straight forward so I figured it was a great piece to jump back into garment-making with.

The Date Night Dress

To begin with, my sister’s birthday was coming up so I made a “muslin” to test the pattern which I planned to give to her for her birthday (she fits typical clothing sizes better than I do). I shortened the size Medium by 2 inches and it was still a bit long for her, but she claims to like it 🙂

Here is how it turned out:

datenightdress2

Katie’s Date Night Dress!

That adorable floral knit fabric is from Girl Charlee.

For my own Date Night Dress, I shortened the pattern an additional 2 inches (4 inches total) and brought the neckline in and up a bit. I used a burgundy linen blend fabric that I picked up a JoAnn’s for my version.

datenightdress1

My Date Night Dress!

Fits perfectly! I’m so glad I took the time to adjust the pattern as I was going to best fit me. Now I’ll easily be able to whip up future, well-fitting Date Night Dresses with ease!

The Simple Slip

One of the cool features of the Date Night Dress pattern is that it comes with a second pattern: a simple slip! When Rachel from Sew Happily recommended this pattern to me, she recommended making the slip because the arm holes are quite large (which is actually really nice when you live in an area with extremely hot and humid summers like we do… Hello, air flow!). Since neither of the materials I used were translucent (and I thought a matching bra or undershirt would suffice), I considered skipping it. But I knew a slip would be worth my time because of its versatility so I gave in.

For my slip, I ordered this rayon challis fabric in ivory from Imagine Gnats. It was so soft! Perfect for a slip. With 2 yards, I even had enough left over to make my own bias tape for the straps:

bias tape

I shortened the slip the same amount that I shortened the dress. I ended up cutting off the first set of straps I made (I think I attached them wrong – there was a double layer across the back that didn’t look great) and bringing the armpit in a bit (for some reason it was gaping open awkwardly on me). It was worth the modifications because the fit is great on this one too!

slip

I’m excited to keep plundering through my “to-make” list so stay tuned! I reorganized all my patterns last weekend and rediscovered a lot of great tops and dresses I had forgotten about (like the entire Just Add Jeans collection from Pattern Anthology). I’ve already got a Day Tripper top (pattern by Shwin Designs) underway and hope to have it finished soon – pictures to come!

The Canny Pattern from Addie K

Oh, boy am I excited to share this post with you today!

I had the honor of being a pattern tester for Addie K‘s The Canny tunic. There are so many great things I want to tell you about this pattern!

But first I’ll tell you that the pattern launched today on Craftsy at a stellar discount (so grab it now!) – check it out here. {PS: Guess who’s one of the models?! Yours truly…and blushing – I’m so honored!}

It’s the perfect project if you are wanting to dip your toes into garment making or if you want practice working with knits (stretchy fabric can be quite scary [and frustrating] when it comes to sewing, but Addie has some great tips to help you out – read them here).

It’s even perfect for an experienced sewer who is looking for the most comfortable outfit ever [just add leggings!].

{Photo credit: Addie Martindale}

{Photo credit: Addie Martindale}

After reading one of the most eye-opening posts about women’s fashion recently [find the seriously amazing post from Crab & Bee here], I decided I was ready to venture back into garment making.

A friend sent me the link to apply to be a pattern tester for Addie K‘s new tunic pattern and after reading the details I knew I wanted IN on that project!

And lucky me: Addie accepted me!

The pattern is amazing! It has only 2 pieces – which let me define what that means: less pattern piecing and taping (read: less time prepping), no separate sleeve attachment (my gosh…have you ever attached a sleeve?!), and something you’d consider making multiple times (proof below!).

Fangirl moment: I got to meet Addie last week & she's quickly become one of my favorite people! This is a picture of us at a shop-in on Sunday - I couldn't wait to show her my 2nd version of the Canny (pictured here) - AND check out her tunic: it's another pattern she's working on that I'm anxiously awaiting trying out!!

Fangirl moment: I got to meet Addie last week & she’s quickly become one of my favorite people! This is a picture of us at a shop-in on Sunday – I couldn’t wait to show her my 2nd version of the Canny (pictured here) – AND check out her tunic: it’s another pattern she’s working on that I’m anxiously awaiting!

Addie recommends using a twin needle for the project. At first I was a little skeptical (because what is that?!), but I read her post about using twin needles and felt a little more confident. I busted out my machine’s manual and – lo and behold – not only was my machine fully capable of using a twin needle, it even came with one!

twin needle

Twin needle in place – you can even seen some of my funky stitching from testing it out!

Using twin needles creates a professional hem for your garment that allows stretching (and in my little experience appears to be much sturdier than a plain zig zag). So before you get started, read Addie’s tips for using twin needles and give it a try!

The style is loose enough to be super comfortable, but not so frumpy it’s unflattering. Here are a few more pictures of how mine turned out:

the canny

canny2

canny4

There’s a cute story for how I came upon this pretty mint and peach patterned fabric: I came home one day to find a giant bag full of fabric on my door step. Inside the bag was a little collection of handmade cards:

cards

My neighbor has 3 precious little girls. Each of them had colored me a card thanking me for being such a great neighbor (which melted my heart!). They had found the fabric while thrift shopping earlier in the day and wanted me to have it.

Obviously I had to make these little sweethearts something special out of it. Remember those infinity scarves I showed you during the Handmade for the Holidays Blog Hop? Yep, those 3 went right over to those sweet little girls!

If you do anything today, I hope you go buy The Canny tunic pattern from Addie K – you won’t regret it! Addie has worked so hard designing this pattern and it really shows in how amazing the final product is (and how easy the instructions are to follow!). By purchasing the pattern you’re supporting a small (local!) indie pattern designer’s creative dream! 🙂

Find the Canny pattern here. Happy sewing!