New Knit Dress and a Field of Wildflowers

  IMG_2366IMG_2404  IMG_2365IMG_2400 Happy Friday! I am excited to share a new knit dress that I wore two weekends in a row because I love how it turned out and I have no shame. I also wore it last week to a recent Charleston Bloggers Society event where I got to meet this little fella:His name is Lionel the hog and he has his own Twitter page . I’m kind of obsessed with him.

But back to the dress. I was excited to get my hands on 2 yards of this beautiful Art Gallery Fabrics knit from Katarina Roccella’s Skopelos collection. If you follow me on Instagram you might remember that I actually bought this darker blue color way in knit and I bought the lighter blue in a light weight cotton because I couldn’t decide which I liked better. I have already made plans to use the other one for another dress.  I guess when you know what you like, you know what you like.  IMG_2391IMG_2409For this dress I wanted to re create this beautiful knit dress that I found online from Anthropologie: anthro diy 2Anthropologie is my go-to inspiration for sewing projects. I love 99% of what they sell and they have the most beautiful prints that are on trend with what some of my favorite  fabric designers are doing. And also because Anthro’s prices can be pretty steep, its nice to see what I can do for a little bit cheaper. To re-create his look, I used the same method as I did for this dress, using See Kate Sew’s Penelope Peplum bodice pattern for the top and then a self drafted handkerchief hem skirt on the bottom. I used a white ponte de roma knit from Girl Charlee to create the contrast white cap sleeves, which in some of the photos makes it look like I am wearing a white t-shirt under my dress like a fat kid at the pool but I promise you, in real life it looks much better. IMG_2398 Oh you know, just casually making a wish on a dandelion like the 7 year old  girl that I am. IMG_2383 IMG_2382 IMG_2380 IMG_2370IMG_2402Here’s to hoping my dandelion wishes come true and a happy weekend to you all. See you next time.

priscilla

Dress Up Party and Review of the Genavieve Dress

This post was first featured on Sew Sweetness.com as part of the Dress Up Party. For contest rules, full details, and schedule, please click here!IMG_2291Hey everyone! I was excited to be asked by Sara of Sew Sweetness to join in on the Dress Up Party and share my review of the  Genavieve dress by Kzjo Studio. IMG_2287IMG_2302 When I saw the endless options that came with Genavieve pattern, I knew that this purchase was a no brainier. You can pick between three different lengths (tank, tunic, or dress) and then three different styles for the back yoke (deep-V, racer back, or buttoned back). So basically this one pattern will give you nine different variations to choose from! (I never made the honor roll in math class so don’t quote me on that number but I think it’s nine!)

Genavieve Top by KZJO Studio Pattern Preview 1 | Indiesew.com
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The fabric I used for the bodice is an Art Gallery Fabrics knit from the Wanderer Collection from April Rhodes.  Aztec and tribal prints are still very trendy this season so I knew this knit would be perfect for a fun dress. My local fabric store, Five Eighth Seams, in Charleston carries a large selection of knits, perfect for whipping up a dress that I can wear in this southern heat. For the yoke I used a solid navy quilting weight cotton that was left over from my Flatter Me Frock that I made in February.
IMG_2311 I didn’t make a muslin (as I usually don’t when working with knit fabrics because the stretch allows for a little room for error. Plus who has time to make muslins??!). I followed the sizing as it was listed and ended up cutting out a size small (size 6). I did end up having to take in my side seams under my arms a bit (about an inch on each side), grading out along the seam line so that I would keep the A-line shape of the dress. The suggested fabrics for this pattern include chambray, lace, knits, linens, eyelets, cottons, or any other fabric with nice drape. But with knits I usually do have to size down. So take that into consideration if you choose to use a knit for this dress. Also the dress has high-low hem so the back was a little longer which is just what I wanted. But if you are a taller gal and prefer for your font to be a little longer you may have to add a little length. I am 5’10 and you can see where it hits me high above the knee. IMG_2292
The directions for the pattern initially seem overwhelming but only because there are so many variations and different yoke styles, so you have to follow along and at times “skip ahead” a few steps depending on which style you chose. So if you are a Netflix sewer like I am, turn off the TV and pay extra attention or even high light which steps you need or cross out the ones you don’t so that you don’t miss any of the steps along the way.
IMG_2304 I decided to style this dress with some Steve Madden wedges (similar), a gold statement necklace, and a little denim vest. It goes well with my sun tanned… errrr… sun burned arms. (I swear at 32 years old, you think I would know how to apply sun screen by now. Please don’t tell my Dermatologist.) IMG_2286IMG_2284 IMG_2303Thanks for stopping by and can’t wait to see how everyone else dresses up their wardrobe for the summer!

Trash Into Treasure

IMG_2321 IMG_2333 IMG_2320  Earlier this month my mother gave me a bag of old clothes to bring to Good Will. Normally I would not even think twice to rummage through my mother’s old clothing that she has been hoarding since 1987, but these days I am always in the search for old clothing that I can use as fabric for my next project. And to my luck, I found this awkwardly shaped elastic linen skirt:IMG_6456I spent the better half of an afternoon seam ripping the the hem and the elastic band out of the skirt, pressing and pressing out years worth of wrinkles and seams lines, and cutting the skirt into two large rectangle pieces, with just enough extra for scraps/pockets/sleeves.IMG_2335 I recently purchased my first ever romper from a local shop, Tres Carmen Boutique. I have had my eye on this romper from Show Me Your Mumu for awhile now, and if you follow my blog its obvious that I am a huge fans of theirs. The romper is soft, feminine, flowy, and a beautiful floral print (All of their prints are AMAZING!) But at 5’10 with a looooooong torso, the romper was letting by big ass shine in a way that only a husband and possibly a nearby construction worker could love. So I decided I needed a little light weight summer sweater/jacket/cover up/kimono/cape or something that was longer in the back to give me some coverage but not to overwhelming to take away from the beauty of the romper. I knew this linen fabric was just the ticket for creating a DIY Bum Cover-Upper (trademark pending).IMG_2362IMG_2336 I didn’t use a pattern for this project, with the exception of using the Sew Caroline Kimono free pattern template as my guide for length. I cut one larger rectangle shaped back piece and two  much narrower front pieces (I guess they really should be called side pieces. If you can tell from the photos, the pieces are so narrow that you can not even close the jacket in the front. But that was never the aim of this garment. I simply wanted the length in the back). I had just enough fabric left for two little cap sleeves and pockets just for fun. IMG_2339 IMG_2350 IMG_2353ROMPERShow Me Your Mumu //   NECKLACE: World Market //   SANDALS: Lulu’s //   LINEN JACKET: Hand made

skirt to shirtLet this be a lesson that yes tall girls can wear rompers! But if you are still on the fence,  it always helps to have a little linen jacket to throw on as your safety net. And you never know what kind of fabric you might find from the bottom of your mother’s bag of old clothing.

priscilla

Buy or DIY: Tales of a Cactus Tank Top

IMG_2277So lately I have been seeing cactus inspirations everywhere. On towels, plates, clothing, you name it. And succulents have over night become the go to house plants these days (sorry orchids). I am not sure where trends get their start, but me being ever the trend-follower and not trend-setter, I decided that I had to have a cactus shirt for the summer! Stumbling around Pinterest, I found this adorable tank top from one on my favorite clothing lines: Show Me Your Mumu. However at $66  for a little ol’ tank top, I decided to pass on it.

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Then enter the cactus fabric. On a recent trip to Chicago, I found the smallest, most jammed packed fabric store I have ever been to and inside I discovered an entire section of fabric for $4 a yard! And in this section next to the faux furs and the Obama quilting cotton, was the cutest knit cactus fabric. So naturally I snagged a few yards and began my dream of owning a cactus tank top.IMG_2276 I used the same Together Tank pattern from Debbie Brooke Designs that I ‘ve recently completed (see here) as this is definitely my new favorite go to pattern for tank tops. I decided to extend the length by about 1/2 an inch because I remembered that the other one was just a tad short when I lifted my arms. And I used the same cactus knit print on both the front and the back instead of using a different fabric as in most Together Tanks. IMG_2274 IMG_2272The fabric, I must point out, is much thicker than it looks. Even though it has some good stretch to it, it’s definitely closer to a fleece knit then it is a jersey a jersey knit and although it worked for our nightly walk, I don’t think this fabric would make it in Charleston in the middle of summer. But at $4 a yard I couldnt say no. And I bought enough that may a cool Southwestern blanket or quilt could be in a future…IMG_2269I wore this new tank for a walk around the neighborhood with Will and the dogs last night so naturally I wore my green New Balance because duh…green. And paired it with some old school jorts that have been in my closet since before I knew Will,  long before I knew how to sew, and longer than my thighs and I care to admit. IMG_2264 Will told me he thought the “lines you sewed into the sides” were pretty cool. Thanks babe. And they’re called darts. But sure, we’ll go with lines. IMG_2253

cactus shirtIn the end I used less than a yard so I probably spent closer to $2-3 on this shirt! So even though the “buy” is probably more summer friendly and definitly more flowly, I finally got my cactus tank top that I wanted and found that you never know what you might if you walk into a new fabric store!

priscilla

 

How To Celebrate Not-a-Mothers Day: the 2015 Edition.

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For anyone who has struggled with infertility, you know that there are a few days a year that sting a little more than others. The day you go to the baby shower for your co-worker who got pregnant by accident. The due date of the baby that you should of had but instead miscarried last fall. The yearly anniversary of the day you decided to start having a family. And then, last but not least, there is Mother’s Day. And with all the TV commercials and Hallmark moments, you find it pretty impossible to avoid this holiday. And to avoid the fact that another year has come and gone and you are still not a mother. I remember two years ago my husband saying this would be the last year we celebrated with our mothers and that next year would be all about me. I laughed and told him, “Okay, we’ll see.” And then this time last year, I was the one who said out loud “Alright, this is it. This time next year I will be a mama.” And now here we are. 2015. And I’m still not a mother. So I guess that leaves me with two options this Sunday. Sit in my room, sulking at the posts on my Facebook news feed? Or enjoy this last year as Not-a-Mother by doing all the things that one might do if you did not have any children. Spend the day having fun and enjoying what you have now and not won’t you don’t have. Because staying positive and finding ways to laugh instead of cry is the best thing you can do for your body. And if you send positive energy out into the world, the universe is sure to send some good fortune your way. (It’s a theory of mine; let’s just roll with it.) So to carry on the tradition from last year’s blog post, here are some ways you can celebrate Not-a-Mother’s Day:

  1. Sit around all day and binge watch all 12 episodes of Orange is the New Black on Netflix. (And yes Apple TV, I am still here. I haven’t left the couch. So stop asking.)
  2. Go out to a restaurant and sit at the bar instead of a table. Get elbowed by strangers and order a side of filet minion with lobster mashed potatoes that they serve in a martini glass.
  3. Have sex with your husband in the middle of the day in the family room. Repeat as needed.
  4. Take a flight out of town, grab a window seat, and sleep peacefully for the entire 5 hour flight.
  5. Invent a new drinking game. Maybe one in which you have to take a tequila shot every time one of the characters on Sons of Anarchy says, “I love you brother.”
  6. Camp out on Capers Island for the weekend. Bring nothing but a tent, your swimsuit, and a cooler full of adult beverages.
  7. Go see a movie in the theaters. When it gets out, sneak into the theater next door and catch another movie for free. (That does not count as stealing, right?)
  8. Go to an amusement park, stay the entire day, and only ride the really big roller coasters. Walk straight past all cartoon characters. You do not need their autographs.
  9. Go get a couples massage at that fancy hotel spa downtown and at the last minute decide to get a room for the night.
  10. Stay in bed until noon and when you finally decide to relocate to the family room, eat left over sushi for breakfast. Then see step #3. Repeat as indicated the next day.

The above post was featured on Society Letters, a collaborative blog that is a collection of letters and posts by several women from all over the world who are sharing their views, talents and life with readers. I was honored to be a guest blogger for this week’s Mother’s Day series. Check them out. You’ll be hooked.Society Letters

A Clever Crop Top Refashion

With April showers brings May flowers, sunshine, days at the beach, nights at the yacht club, and women of all ages running around in as little of clothing as possible.  Don’t get me wrong, I love a good mini skirt and a bare mid drift. However as the tides are turning, so is the clock. And it is time I realize that I am almost 33 and my body is definitely that of an almost 33 year old. It’s true what they say. Like sands thought the hour glass, so are the days of our lives. (I don’t usually use soap opera intros as a metaphor but this really works here. I hope I haven’t lost you already). So here I am, all up in my thirties and I am going to show you how and why I made this little crop top.

If you follow me on Instagram you might recall awhile back I made a white peplum top at the last minute to wear to a dinner party. I have worn it a few times since but I wasn’t loving the fullness of the peplum. I have made this pattern several times before and never had this problem but I think since this fabric was a ponte de roma knit, it was a bit thicker, and rushed while making the gathers so they were hitting my hips in all the wrong ways. So I decided to take off the peplum piece and see what I could do with very small, cropped white top.  The timing was perfect as my local fabric store, Five Eighth Seams, recently decided to start carrying different types of decorative trim. I picked up a few yards of this white trim for another project (I originally wanted to add it to the sleeves of this kimono but then ended up taking a different approach). I decided to use it this time by adding it to the bodice of that old peplum top and I love the results. Worn with a high waist pencil skirt that I got from my latest Stitch Fix, it was the perfect way to show just a little skin but not the whole package.The wind in Charleston this week has been absolutely crazy. So rather than waiting any longer to take photos or finding a new location, we decided just to go for it. So please excuse that sad excuse for a mop on my head blowing around everywhere. Fabric and Pattern details: Fabric: ponte de roma knit from Girl Charlee // Trim: purchased from Five Eighth Seams //  Bodice Pattern: Penelope Peplum from See Kate SewStyling: SKIRT: from Stitch Fix // SUNNIES: Urban Outfitters // NECKLACE: Nordstroms  (similar) // SANDALS: Lulu’s // WATCH: Word Market  (similar)

Thanks for stopping by!

priscilla

Three Years + Chicago

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I wear a lot of different hats these days. I’m a speech pathologist who works both a full-time job and a part-time job. I’m a “mother” in a sense to my pets and anyone who has pets knows that having a dog is a responsibility all on its own. I’m a friend. I’m a daughter. I’m a daughter-in-law. A sister. A sister-in-law. I’m a sewer. I’m a blogger. And I’m a candlestick maker (ok that last one was a joke).  Sometimes I bite off more than I can chew. I wish that 16-year-old Priscilla could see me now. How very popular I have become in my 20s and 30s.  I haven’t had a single weekend this year that someone hasn’t come into town to visit or we haven’t gone out of town to visit someone, or had a wedding, a baby shower, or a birthday party. But I absolutely love it.  I love having a calendar that is packed full with things to do to keep my mind busy and my heart full. But with all the go, go, go, I have to stop and remember that the most important hat that I wear is being a wife. And I have a co-pilot in this flight that I take through life. A husband who does not always want to be going and going. And with all the hustle and bustle it’s easy to forget that even though I live with him and he is the last thing I see before I close my eyes at night, the time I spend with my husband is just as important as all the other things on my calendar. It’s easy to forget to make a moment that is just for the two of us. But luckily once a year an anniversary comes around. And reminds us to fall in love all over again. So this year we celebrated in the Windy City with a quick but much needed side trip to Iowa to see my sister and her boyfriend. And  this week I celebrated the fact that despite my constantly moving, annoyingly loud, irrationally opinionated, sometimes clueless, cry-baby self, that this man (despite his better judgement and despite what I can only imagine were warnings from others) has put up with me for three years and still lets me have the honor of being his wife. What a lucky girl I am and I thank God, the universe, and anyone else that is listening that he stumbled into my life and swept me off my feet. And that three years later he still looks across a crowded room at me and smiles. IMG_6322 Its funny how my husband and the Cubs mascot make me look so short. You would never know that I am 5’10 but I promise that I am!IMG_2123IMG_6351It was so cold the first few nights in Chicago and all I packed were a few headbands. So I made a make shift ear muff and ending up looking like Tupac accidentally. IMG_6375 The flowers in Chicago were amazing!!! The city must of spent millions on tulips and that is no exaggeration. IMG_6392 IMG_6412 IMG_6390 Standing on a glass floor that was 1,353 feet high was probably one of the scarier parts of the trip. But you don’t ride the elevator to the top and then chicken out.

IMG_6396 More tulips in Hyde Park.IMG_6404 The Ferris Wheel at Navy Pier. Very touristy but you know. When it Rome.

IMG_6408 Do you have extra large bikes for rent? No, ok…

IMG_2100 IMG_2105 Fun at Millenium Park

IMG_2111 IMG_2120 IMG_2146 Don’t tell the Yankees but I was a Cubs fan on this evening!

IMG_2157 IMG_2159 The Art Institute of Chicago is actually kinda amazing. We were having some fun with the more popular pieces of art. IMG_2183 IMG_2196 IMG_2201 One of Frank Lloyd Wrights’ houses for my architecture enthusiast husband.

IMG_6255I love my sister so much. She keeps me young, active, in shape, and always laughing.

IMG_6259IMG_6262Hope you enjoyed these pictures from our trip. If you stopped by for some sewing project updates, have no fear. We are back in Charleston and I am about to dust off the sewing machine for some upcoming projects so stay tuned for that.

priscilla

Let’s Get Together

together tankIMG_2075IMG_2093The rain has finally stopped… for now. So I was excited to get out of the house this weekend for a little barbecue with some friends over in the Old Village and to also get a chance to wear my new top, the Together Tank! I tested this pattern recently and I loved how it turned out. This pattern was designed by my friend Brooke of Debbie Brooke Designs. This is her second adult pattern, the first being the My Dress, and I must say, the best tank top pattern I have come across so far.

IMG_2086I cut a size 6 and made no adjustments to the pattern. The fit turned out really great. And the directions were easy to follow and easy to complete. In fact, I completed the entire pattern in one evening from start to finish. The tank styles well with jeans or shorts untucked, but I decided to go with a cute fit and flare skirt and with the tank tucked in.IMG_2085The summers here in Charleston get really hot so I don’t want to have to line my tank tops by adding that extra layer of fabric. But I also hate the feel of stiff cotton bias taping in my arm pit. The Together tank is the perfect solution to this because you use knit ribbing to finish off your arm holes plus it adds a nice detailed look to the finish. IMG_2063the Fabric: The voile was an easy fabric choice to go with for this pattern. It drapes really well and since you only 3/4 of a yard, you can splurge on some nice voile or rayon that usually costs more than regular light weight cotton.  I love this print and it if looks familiar to you its because I used the pink and white knit from the same collection earlier this year, remember? This fabric is from the Recollection line by Katarina Roccella and I think she is just so talented. Looking forward to seeing what else she creates!

IMG_2082My hair has been a hot mess lately. One day its curly, one day its not. And then somedays, its this hybrid version that we have here today. Let’s not spend time on this. Just focus on the shirt. IMG_2068PATTERN: Together Tank- Debbie Brooke Designs // FABRIC on FRONT: Voile  from Recollection by Katarina Roccella for Art Gallery // FABRIC on BACK: Ponte de Roma knit from Girl Charee // SKIRT: Urban Outfitters (similar) // PEARLS: family gift from China /SANDALS: Old Navy (similar)IMG_2066 And one more shot from the barbecue this weekend with my friend Nicole, who was looking amazing in a kimono from Forever 21. She has the best style!11154793_10152653971526734_8759468647449297393_o

 

priscilla

An Easter Dress + an Indie Pattern Mash Up

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SHOES: LC Lauren Conrad // NECKLACE: gift from a friend  // BODICE PATTERN: My Dress from Debbie Brooke Designs // SKIRT PATTERN: The Riding Peplum- Party Dress by April Rhodes

Last fall, Will and I went to New Jersey to visit some family and I indulged in a trip to the garment district in Manhattan to see what I could see. This time I stumbled upon Paron Fabrics on West 39th Street and couldn’t believe the prices! I scored this four way stretch, mint-colored, lace knit that was discounted for $8 a yard. I have been hoarding it since last fall hoping to make something for this spring and I figured an Easter dress sounded like the perfect occasion.

IMG_1955For this dress I decided to do a “pattern mash up.” This is where you take the bodice pattern piece of one pattern and mix it with the skirt pattern piece from another design.  I have done the My Dress before (see here) but never in knit. I decided to go with this pattern for the bodice since I would be wearing this to church and I wanted to have just a little more on my shoulders instead of going entirely sleeveless. The only change I had to make was to size down a size to allow for the stretch of the knit, so I ended up cutting out a size 4 for the bodice. For the skirt piece I used the  Party Peplum Dress piece from April Rhodes, since I wanted this dress to be a little more flowy then the pencil skirt that comes with the My Dress. I have done this dress before (see here) and it is still one of my favorite dresses to wear. It has a nice high-low hem and is fun and “twirly.” I cut a size medium and didn’t need to make any adjustments to the fit.IMG_1973 The only thing I wish I would of done differently is added length to the bodice. I said that the last time I made the My Dress yet I once again forgot. That would of made the waist line a few inches lower and also the bottom a little lower. So I ended up not hemming the bottom of the skirt once I noticed it was going to be pretty short. It would of been nice to have hemmed the bottom but I am hoping the knit doesn’t unravel with too many wears.IMG_1969The lining of the dress is also a four way stretch knit in the same mint color as the lace. I picked this up on my same trip to Manhattan for under $10 a yards!IMG_1989The necklace I am wearing is probably a little too cliche to be wearing on Easter but I thought it was perfect so who cares! It has three tiny robin’s eggs and was a gift from my dear friend Nicole. I wish the place that she purchased it from in Charleston still existed because I get asked about it every time I wear it.  I found a similar one here, here, and here.IMG_1985These shoes are pretty killer and I was really excited to get a chance to wear them. Who knew that Lauren Conrad was making shoes now. Last I saw her she was fresh out of high school, living in the Hills, and getting wild and crazy.  Now she’s all over Kohl’s like she owns the place.IMG_1995IMG_1952That’s it for a my Easter dress! I have some more plans up my sleeve to mash up a few other patterns so stay tuned for that! Hope everyone had a happy and healthy Easter!

priscilla