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!

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Noodlehead Super Tote

Last week I fell in love with the functionality of Noodlehead’s Super Tote pattern & bought it. Best purchase of the week!

My sister has been asking me to make her a “teacher bag” for the longest time. I knew a “teacher bag” meant lots of space and lots of pockets so I’d been putting it off…until Sew Caroline’s Super Tote in progress on Instagram caught my eye. Now that looked like a bag big enough to function as a teacher bag, travel bag, conference tote, beach bag, diaper bag, cat carrier–oh, the possibilities!

So, I did what any trained researcher (#DataDiva) does and started stalking Noodlehead on all social media platforms (including browsing the #SuperTote hashtag on Instagram to see how other people’s version of the bag turned out). Upon my research I discovered this pattern would be well worth the $8 and moved forward with making this my next project.

It was nice to give my brain a rest from designing and just follow someone else’s pattern. I have been struggling with zippers and I really liked this bag’s recessed zipper — it might be my new solution to zipper-top bags!

I’m a very slow, methodical artist (but I heard that “Slow Design” is a real thing now so I’m in luck) so this bag took me two weekends to complete. I was also being very diligent about following the pattern (and taking breaks to reheat my coffee).

I started with cutting the pattern pieces and taping them together while watching TV with my Mom on Mother’s Day (I can’t sit still for very long so this was my best compromise to “relaxing together”).

Tip: Pin the paper pattern pieces to the cut fabric pieces to keep track of which pieces are what. This will save you time later when you’re shuffling around fabric pieces trying to figure out which one is the back exterior vs the front pocket.

I have a fabric hoarding problem that worked in my favor for this — I had enough fabric lying around to make a pairing that made me swoon!

fabric

The floral pattern fabric on the left is a vintage scrap from Butterfly Vintage. It matched perfectly with some mint upholstery fabric I picked up at Fabric 101‘s warehouse sale this past winter (I think I got a flat of almost 3 yards for $5! If you’re local to Columbia, keep up with them on Facebook so you’ll know when their next sale will be so you can stock up). The brown pattern fabric on the right is also from Fabric 101. I had intended to make curtains out of it for my kitchen, but as most of my fabric does, it became a bag instead.

label

Have you seen my new labels?! I’m slightly obsessed. A friend (and local machinist) makes them by etching my logo into metal scraps. Since the labels are metal now (instead of cloth), I have to hand stitch each one. They’re well worth the effort because they’re so chic!

Also obsessed with how perfect the mint accented the floral pattern! I decided to buy brown piping instead of attempting to make my own. Perhaps next time I’ll give it a try, but the store bought stuff gave the top of the front pocket a professional feel 🙂 I also used a magnetic clasp to hold the front pocket shut. The magnetic clasp and lining of the front pocket were optional, but I recommend both.

I had a hard time capturing pictures of the inside of my bag so you may want to refer back to Noodlehead’s post for better interior pictures of the pattern.

Here’s a shot of the inside of my Super Tote:

inside1

I used some light-weight pink cotton scraps for the interior pockets.

One thing that wasn’t clear in the pattern was whether top of the pocket fabric (over the elastic) should be laying flat or if it should be cinched. I stitched mine flat at first and went back and cinched it. I think the cinching was supposed to be implied, but I’m not great at reading between the lines 😉

super tote inside

See the pleats on the side? I love the feminine touch it gives the bag!

super tote pleated side

Until my dogs evolve to having opposable thumbs, I settle for the Hubs as my informal photographer. That being said, my photographer made sure to include my wolf shirt… (yes, I am way too old to own a wolf shirt from a tween clothing shop, but whatever. Sometimes you just need a wolf shirt).

super tote1I hope you like the bag! This pattern would make the perfect summer project! If sewing isn’t your thing, I am planning to make more to add to resliced’s shop on Etsy. If you’re interested in placing a custom order, you can do so on this page – we can work together to pick out colors and patterns for your Super Tote.