Happy Homemade Sew-along // the hoodie

Did you finish your pull-over for the Happy Homemade Sew-along!?  Today is the day you want to get your pictures into the Flickr group!  Be sure to do that by the end of the day.  Someone asked me what time “end of the day” is and I don’t have an exact hour, but basically by the time Monday finally slips away from this earth, try and have your pictures in the pool.  Or before you go to bed tonight – whatever.  Then check back in on Wednesday for our round-up and to find out if you’re the winner of the sew-along prize!!

Happy Homemade Sew-along: Pull-over Parka // you & mie

Though you’ve seen my hoodie throughout the sew-along, I thought I’d share some pictures of it finished and on my daughter.  It’s always one thing to see a garment on a hanger and then another to see the actual fit on a person.

Pullover

I made my hoodie in size 2, based on my daughter’s measurements.  Looking at other people’s pictures in the Flickr pool, I probably could have gone a size up so it would last her longer, but at least she’s got a sibling who will grow into it eventually as well.

Happy Homemade Sew-along: Pull-over Parka // you & mie

Happy Homemade Sew-along: Pull-over Parka // you & mie

The modifications I made were adding the kangaroo pocket, lining the hood and also adjusting the shape of the hood slightly.  Meg mentioned the hood being too small, so I also angled the straight edge of my hood forward and then I rounded out the back of the hood a little.

Happy Homemade Sew-along: Pull-over Parka // you & mie

I think that it helped, but even still, there’s something a little strange about how this hood fits and the shape. I think it has something to do with the very open and low neckline.  When the hood is up, you can see how it starts at the shoulder, as opposed to closer to the neck like I’m used to.

Happy Homemade Sew-along: Pull-over Parka // you & mie

But besides that, I really love the hoodie.  In these pics, they are styled a little more appropriately for fall, but I like the versatility.  It can be layered for the cooler months, or paired with shorts and a tank top for warm weather, or thrown over a bathing suit as a cover up.  And I love that it looks great on all kids, boys and girls.

Happy Homemade Sew-along: Pull-over Parka // you & mie

The main fabric I used is double gauze that I bought at Bolt back when I visited Portland in 2013.  I’d been saving it for who knows what.  I have to say, I LOVE the way it looks as a hoodie, but part of me is really sad because I don’t think Yuki will wear this and I really really love the fabric.  The first time she saw the hoodie she said she liked it.  Then when it was time to put it on she said she didn’t like it.  When I said that it made me a little sad to hear that since I had worked so hard to make it for her, she said, “Well, I LIKE it, I just don’t want to wear it.” :( Hah!

Happy Homemade Sew-along: Pull-over Parka // you & mie

But this is basically how Yuki feels about it.  Sigh.  Maybe her sister will wear it someday…

The lining and drawstring were made with double gauze that I bought from Imagine Gnats.  It doesn’t actually match the color of the red stars, but close enough!

You guys know that I love double gauze.  It’s really soft and comfy.  Feels warm but still really breathable and perfect for hot weather.  I wish this hoodie fit ME!

Happy Homemade Sew-along: Pull-over Parka // you & mie

Anyways, it has been soooo exciting seeing all the of the hoodies pop up in the Flickr group!  I love how they are all so different!  Everyone put such a unique spin on it with their choices of fabric and other modifications.  It’s so great and really makes me happy that people actually participated!  Thank you SO much to everyone who sewed along!  Be sure to check back in on Wednesday!!

Happy Homemade Sew-along // elsie marley and you & mie

See the rest of the sew-along posts here:
Announcing . . .
Where to buy the book
Hoodie Inspiration
Mixing it Up
Fabrics
What you’ll need
Schedule and Sew-along Prize
Day One
Day Two
Day Three
Day Four
Day Five

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Happy Homemade Sew-along // day five

Happy Homemade Sew-along: Day Five // you & mieIt’s the last day of the Happy Homemade Sew-along!!  So excited to finish up our pull-overs today!  I know that some of you have already gone ahead and finished your hoodies, and some people are just getting started, and that’s totally fine!  Move at your own pace, you still have the weekend to finish up.  Or if you’re done early – go ahead and make another one!  :)

Today, we’re finishing up with steps 5 and 6.  If you prepped the hems back on Day 2, these steps are super fast.  But even if you didn’t, it shouldn’t take us long to finish this puppy up!

Happy Homemade Sew-along: Day Five // you & mie

Happy Homemade Sew-along: Day Five // you & mie

Fold the edge of your sleeve towards the wrong side 1 cm and press.  Fold again, this time 2 cm, enclosing the raw edge and press.

Happy Homemade Sew-along: Day Five // you & mie

Pin and sew along the folded edge.  Repeat with the other sleeve.

Happy Homemade Sew-along: Day Five // you & mie

Fold and press the bottom of the pull-over the same way you did with the sleeve (but don’t pin and sew yet).  If you haven’t already, attach your strip of fusible interfacing to the center front of your pullover, just above the higher of the two fold lines.

Happy Homemade Sew-along: Day Five // you & mie

Find and mark the center of your pullover by folding it in half and finger pressing or ironing a little crease by the interfacing.  Using that center mark, measure 1.5 cm to either side and mark your buttonhole placements.  I transferred my markings to the right side of my pull-over and sewed from that side since it tends to look nicer.

If you are not familiar with making buttonholes on your machine, there are a few more detailed directions on page 59 that may help.

Happy Homemade Sew-along: Day Five // you & mie

Happy Homemade Sew-along: Day Five // you & mie

Fold the hem back up, pin and sew along the folded edge.

Happy Homemade Sew-along: Day Five // you & mie

We’re almost there!!

Happy Homemade Sew-along: Day Five // you & mie

Attach a safety pin or bodkin to one end of your cotton tape/drawstring material and thread through one of the buttonholes, all the way around the hem, and back out the other buttonhole.

Happy Homemade Sew-along: Day Five // you & mie

Tie it up and you’re DONE!

Happy Homemade Sew-along: Day Five // you & mie

So, what do you think!?  How did it go?  Do you like the pull-over?  Was it easy to sew up?  Will you use this pattern again?

I have yet to try this on my little one, so we’ll see how the fit is and if she approves, but I think it’s adorable and I hope she wears it!  I’ll try and take some pictures of her wearing it over the weekend and post them on Monday.  Be sure you get pictures of your finished pull-over (on the hanger or on a model – either is fine!) and add them to the Flickr pool by Monday, June 23 to be included in our round up and a chance to win the fantastic sew-along prize!!

I’m loving all the in progress and finished sew-along pictures popping up on Instagram and on Flickr.  You guys are doing an amazing job!  And I suspect we’ll see a lot more added over the weekend.  Can’t wait!  I’ll check back in with you on Monday.

See the rest of the sew-along posts here:
Announcing . . .
Where to buy the book
Hoodie Inspiration
Mixing it Up
Fabrics
What you’ll need
Schedule and Sew-along Prize
Day One
Day Two
Day Three
Day Four

Happy Homemade Sew-along // day four

Happy Homemade Sew-along // Day Four

It’s Day 4, and today we’re tackling the trickiest part of constructing the pull-over.  Meg is going to take us through attaching the hood to the pull-over and finishing the neckline.  My advice, take your time!  And once we get through today, it’s totally smooth sailing till the end.  Check out Day 4 HERE.

See the rest of the sew-along posts here:
Announcing . . .
Where to buy the book
Hoodie Inspiration
Mixing it Up
Fabrics
What you’ll need
Schedule and Sew-along Prize
Day One
Day Two
Day Three

Happy Homemade Sew-along // day three

Happy Homemade Sew-along: Day Three // you & mie

Day Three!  So we’ve prepped our pattern and cut our fabric and we’re finally ready to sew!  Today we’re going to be doing steps 1-3 of the Pull-over Parka from Happy Homemade: Sew Chic Kids.

Happy Homemade Sew-along: Day Three // you & mie

The steps are pretty basic, so our work should be fairly simple for today!  Just a note:
ALL SEAM ALLOWANCES ARE 3/8 IN (1 CM) unless otherwise stated.

Now, a kangaroo pocket is not part of the pattern, but I really wanted to add one, so I thought I’d show you how to do that.  If you’re not adding a pocket skip down to Step 1.

Yesterday, Meg talked a little about drafting the kangaroo pocket.  You can either cut out one and fold the edges over, or you can cut two and sew them right sides together and then top stitch that onto the hoodie.  I opted for the latter just because it seemed easier.

Happy Homemade Sew-along: Day Three // you & mie

Pin your pocket pieces, right sides together.  Sew all the way around leaving a 3 inch opening at the bottom.  Clip the corners off.  Turn right side out and press.  If you want, you can top stitch the pocket openings (diagonal lines), though this is mostly just for looks.  Then pin the pocket onto the hoodie (make sure to leave room at the bottom of the hoodie for hemming) and sew along the top and the bottom edge.  Be sure to backstitch at the ends to secure openings.

Alright, moving along to . . .

Step 1. Sew sleeves to top

If you haven’t already, transfer markings from your pattern pieces to your fabric.  You’ll need to know which side of your sleeve attaches to the front of the pull-over and which attaches to the back.

Happy Homemade Sew-along: Day Three // you & mie

With right sides together, line up the “front” of the sleeve with the front piece of the pull-over along the armhole.  Pin and sew with a 3/8 in seam allowance.

Happy Homemade Sew-along: Day Three // you & mie

Trim and finish the edge with a serger or a zig zag stitch.  Press the seam allowance toward the sleeve.  Repeat with the other sleeve front.

Happy Homemade Sew-along: Day Three // you & mie

Now we’re going to repeat the same steps with the back.  With right sides together, line up the edge of the “back” of the sleeve with the back of the pull-over.  Pin and sew.  Finish the edge and then press the seam allowance toward the sleeve.  Repeat with the other sleeve.  Now both sleeves and the front and back of the pull-over should all be attached.

Step 2. Sew sleeve and side seams

With right sides together, fold the pull-over at the shoulder and bring the sides and sleeve edges together.  Be sure to line up the seams at the bottom of the armhole.  Pin and sew a continuous seam along the sleeve and side.  Repeat on the other side.

Happy Homemade Sew-along: Day Three // you & mie

Finish your seam allowance and press towards the back of the pull-over.

Happy Homemade Sew-along: Day Three // you & mie

Turn right side out and press.

Happy Homemade Sew-along: Day Three // you & mie

Woohoo, the body of your pull-over is constructed!  Set that aside.

Step 3.  Sew hood

Happy Homemade Sew-along: Day Three // you & mie

With right sides together, pin along the top and back curved edge of the hood.  Sew, finish edges, turn right side out and press.

I noticed that a few people plan on adding lining to their hoods.  If you are adding lining, skip the next step and continue with the lining directions below.

Happy Homemade Sew-along: Day Three // you & mie

If you’re not adding lining, you need to hem the front edge of the hood.  There are specific directions at the bottom of page 42, but it is a basic double fold hem.  Fold the edge of the hood 1 cm towards the wrong side.  Unfold and tuck the raw edge under, within the fold, and press.  Top stitch along the folded edge to secure hem down.

If you are adding a lining to the hood, you’ll need to cut out 2 hood pieces from your lining fabric, then sew them together like you did with the hood from the main fabric above.  Press.

Happy Homemade Sew-along: Day Three // you & mie

Place the main hood and the lining hood, right sides together, lining up the straight edge.  Pin together and sew with a 3/8 inch seam allowance.  Flip hood right side out so that lining is inside the main hood.  Press the edge of the hood and roll the lining in slightly so that it is not visible from the outside.  Top stitch along the straight edge of the hood and baste the two layers together along the bottom curve to make it easier to attach to the hoodie tomorrow.

Happy Homemade Sew-along: Day Three // you & mie

And you’ve just completely steps 1-3!  Tomorrow, we will attach the hood to the pull-over, add the elastic and finish the neckline, which are probably the most difficult steps in the whole process.  But Meg will walk us through those steps on Day 4!  How is your sewing coming along so far?  Have you been sharing your pics on Instagram (#happyhomemadesewalong) or Flickr?  Just two more days and we’ll be done with our hoodies!  I can’t wait :)

Happy Homemade Sew-along // elsie marley and you & mie

See the rest of the sew-along posts here:
Announcing . . .
Where to buy the book
Hoodie Inspiration
Mixing it Up
Fabrics
What you’ll need
Schedule and Sew-along Prize
Day One
Day Two

Happy Homemade Sew-along // day one

Happy Homemade Sew-along // Day One - Tracing the pattern and adding seam allowance // you & mie

It’s here!  We are FINALLY starting the sew-along!  Are you pumped?  I know I am!

First of all, it was brought to my attention that in my original sew-along announcement, I said that the deadline to enter your pull-over pictures into the Flickr group was June 30, instead of June 23.  Unfortunately, I listed the wrong date and I’m soooo sorry if this caused an inconvenience to anyone!  :(  The correct date is next Monday, June 23.  Of course, you can enter pictures into the Flickr group anytime, even if you can’t finish it by next week!  But if you’d like it included in the drawing for the prize or our round-ups, your pictures will need to be uploaded by next Monday.  Sorry again!

Today we are going to be locating our pattern pieces, tracing and adding seam allowance.  Honestly, these first few steps are often the most confusing and intimidating for me when I use a Japanese sewing book – even more than the actual sewing steps!  Using the English version helps A TON here, but it can still be a little confusing since it’s so different from using a PDF pattern, for example.  So I’m going to walk you through the steps and the great news is, this will help you with not only this book and pattern, but you can apply these tricks and skills to any Japanese sewing book since they basically follow the same format!

Anyways, let’s get started.

Happy Homemade Sew-along // Day One - Tracing the pattern and adding seam allowance // you & mie

On the directions page for the pull-over parka, it’ll list all the pattern pieces you’ll need.  For this pattern there is the back, front, sleeve and hood and the pattern label is “s.”  That letter is going to help us locate everything we need for this pattern.  First I’m going to go through all the steps using the English version of the book since I think that’s what most people are using.  But if you’re using the Japanese version of the book, I’ll help you locate the pattern for that book at the end of this post.

Happy Homemade Sew-along // Day One - Tracing the pattern and adding seam allowance // you & mie

Pull out your pattern sheets.  There will be two double-sided sheets labeled Pattern Sheet 1, 2, 3 and 4.  Each has a table of contents, if you will.  And you’ll see that the pattern pieces for “S” are scattered, one piece per sheet.  The back piece is on sheet 1, the front piece is on sheet 2, the hood is on sheet 3 and the sleeve is on sheet 4.

Happy Homemade Sew-along // Day One - Tracing the pattern and adding seam allowance // you & mie

I’m going to show you the front piece as an example. That is located on Pattern Sheet 2.

Unfold the sheet and you should be able to find the “S FRONT” pattern right next to the table of contents.  The lines are burgundy and all the S pattern pieces will be in that same color, which will make it easier to find and distinguish from the other overlapping patterns.  Congrats!  You’ve completed step one – finding your pattern piece!

Happy Homemade Sew-along // Day One - Tracing the pattern and adding seam allowance // you & mie

Now before you begin tracing, take a look at this diagram that is on the directions page of your book (below).  This little picture has a ton of important information and you’ll find yourself referring to it quite a lot.

Super crucial note – Japanese patterns DO NOT INCLUDE SEAM ALLOWANCE.  You must add it yourself!

Even though I know this and have known this forever, I still forget sometimes.  I can’t tell you how many times I’ve traced my pattern pieces super close together or close to the edge of the paper only to realize that I need to add seam allowance and have no room.  LEAVE ROOM FOR SEAM ALLOWANCE!

Happy Homemade Sew-along // Day One - Tracing the pattern and adding seam allowance // you & mie

Take a look at “front” pattern piece on the diagram.  It’s on the bottom right corner and you can see that it is placed on the fold.  The other edges will need seam allowance added.  The standard seam allowance is 3/8 in or 1 cm.  If there is no number specified in the diagram, you can assume that the seam allowance is 3/8 in (1cm).  Looking at the front piece, the only edge that has a different seam allowance is the bottom edge where it says 1 1/4 in (3cm).  Be sure to leave room for seam allowance when you trace your pattern piece.

There are several ways you can add seam allowance to your pattern.  Some people like to do it while tracing.  Meg shared a SUPER awesome and simple tip on one way to do that in her post during the Japanese Sewing Book Series.  There are also some tools that add seam allowance as you’re cutting.  I just do it the old fashioned way of tracing the pattern first, then measuring the seam allowance and drawing those lines separately.

Happy Homemade Sew-along // Day One - Tracing the pattern and adding seam allowance // you & mie

Trace your pattern!  I lined up the edge of my tracing paper with the edge of my front pattern piece that is on the fold, since that side does not need added seam allowance.  Making sure I had room on the other sides for adding SA, I traced the lines for size 2.  Be sure to trace any markings from the pattern as well.

Happy Homemade Sew-along // Day One - Tracing the pattern and adding seam allowance // you & mie

Use a ruler to measure 3/8 in (1cm) from the side seam and draw a line.

Happy Homemade Sew-along // Day One - Tracing the pattern and adding seam allowance // you & mie

For curved edges, I measure and mark the seam allowance every centimeter or so and then connect the dots.

Happy Homemade Sew-along // Day One - Tracing the pattern and adding seam allowance // you & mieBe sure to label your pattern with the name of the pattern, which piece it is, what size and also label any edges on the fold and trace any other markings.

Woohoo!  One pattern piece down, three more to go!  Follow these steps for the rest of your pieces.

Happy Homemade Sew-along // Day One - Tracing the pattern and adding seam allowance // you & mie

The other night, I got an email from Gail asking specifically about the sleeve pattern piece.  At the bottom of the sleeve, it tells you to add 1 1/4 in (3cm), but the seam allowance flares out at an angle.  The pattern doesn’t give you any information about how to determine that angle or why you’re doing it that way.  Since I was pretty stumped, I consulted my Japanese pattern gurus, Sanae and Frances to find out more.  Frances located this helpful link and like a light bulb, it suddenly all made sense.  That site is in Japanese, so I decided to make my own little diagram to help explain . . .

Happy Homemade Sew-along // Day One - Tracing the pattern and adding seam allowance // you & mie

 

If you add seam allowance to your pattern piece and it continues to angle inwards at the bottom, when you fold it up to hem, you won’t have enough width.  Your hem will be narrower than the sleeve and you’ll have trouble sewing that hem down without stretching or some pleating of fabric.  No good!

Instead, you want the excess fabric at the bottom of the sleeve to angle outwards so that when it’s folded up, it is at the same angle as the sleeve.  That way you’ll have enough width to reach the edges of the sleeve and hemming will be a breeze!

Does that make sense?

Happy Homemade Sew-along // Day One - Tracing the pattern and adding seam allowance // you & mie

Still, it doesn’t tell you exactly how to create these lines and honestly, I just eyeballed it.  You could fold the paper at the bottom of the sleeve to trace the sides (the bottom edge is slightly curved, but I think you could ignore that and it’d still be fine.  Either way, I wouldn’t stress about it too much, just do your best :)

Happy Homemade Sew-along // Day One - Tracing the pattern and adding seam allowance // you & mie

If you’re using the Japanese version of the book, all the steps are exactly the same, the only difference is that the pattern sheets are a little crazier and finding the pattern pieces you need is more difficult.

Up at the top of the directions, it tells you where you can find your pattern pieces.  In this case it’s on “side A.”

Happy Homemade Sew-along // Day One - Tracing the pattern and adding seam allowance // you & mie

Side A of the pattern sheet lists the four “S” pieces you’ll need – back, front, sleeve and hood.

Happy Homemade Sew-along // Day One - Tracing the pattern and adding seam allowance // you & mie

This is what that crazy mess of a pattern sheet looks like.  Look for the letter “s” and you’ll notice that all the S pattern pieces are green.  Others are black and some are shaded in green – this will help you tell the patterns apart.  Dig around – you’ll find all your pieces!

Happy Homemade Sew-along // Day One - Tracing the pattern and adding seam allowance // you & mie

Yay, there they are!

Then follow the rest of the steps above.

Once you’ve traced your 4 pattern pieces, added your seam allowance and labeled the pieces, go ahead and cut them out and lay them aside for Day TWO!  Also, if you haven’t yet, be sure to wash, dry and iron your fabric so you’ll be all ready to cut and prep for sewing tomorrow.

Be sure to share any in progress photos on Instagram (#happyhomemadesewalong) or the Flickr group and if you have any questions, leave a comment!  Can’t wait to see yours as it comes together!

Tomorrow’s post will be up on Meg’s blog.  See you there!

Happy Homemade Sew-along // elsie marley and you & mie

 See the rest of the sew-along posts here:

Happy Homemade Sew-along // schedule & the prize!

Happy Homemade Sew-along // elsie marley and you & mie

We’re getting sooooo close!  This is the last post before the sew-along starts, I promise!  Just wanted to let you know what the schedule was going to be for next week and give you a little bit more info about how to participate and what you might win if you do!!

So here’s the breakdown for next week . . .

Happy Homemade Sew-along: June 16-20
Day 1 (Monday): Trace pattern pieces and add seam allowance
Day 2 (Tuesday): Cut out fabric and prepare
Day 3 (Wednesday): Sew sleeves and hood
Day 4 (Thursday): Attach hood
Day 5 (Friday): Finish!

Meg and I are going to be switching back and forth with our posts.  I’m going to be covering days 1, 3, and 5 and Meg will be doing days 2 and 4.  But don’t worry, it won’t be confusing!  Come to either blog each day and we’ll tell you exactly where to find the information you’re looking for!

How to participate:
  • Sew with us or at your own pace
  • Share any in progress pictures on Instagram (#happyhomemadesewalong) or the Flickr group
  • If you have any questions, leave us comments and we’ll try to get back to you as soon as possible
  • Photograph your finished pull-over and add it to the Flickr group!
Sharing your finished pull-over:
You can add photos to the Flickr group at anytime, but if you’d like your picture included in our round-up or entered into our sew-along prize giveaway, be sure to do so by end of the day, Monday, June 23.  That way you have the weekend to finish up and photograph your pull-over!  *Please only upload photos that you are comfortable with us sharing on our blogs.*
And, of course, the prize!
One sew-along participant will be randomly selected from the Flickr pool to win an AWESOME prize package!
Happy Homemade Sew-along GIVEAWAY!
$30 gift certificate to Miss Matatabi
$30 gift certificate to Girl Charlee
2 yards of fabric from Imagine Gnats
AND . . . 
Secret gifts from Meg and Cherie!

RIGHT!??  Ok, I hope you’re pumped!  I know some people are still waiting for their books to arrive, others still need to go fabric shopping.  You still have a few days to gather your stuff, wash and dry your fabric, and clear your schedule and sewing space!
See you on Monday!
See the rest of the sew-along posts here:

Happy Homemade Sew-along // what you’ll need

Everything sew-along:
Announcing . . .
Where to buy the book
Hoodie Inspiration
Mixing it Up
Fabrics

*UPDATED TO ADD MORE INFORMATION AT THE BOTTOM*

Oooh, the sew-along starts in less than a week!  We’re in major preparation mode now and today I’m going to talk about what materials you’ll need to make the pull-over parka.

But first, did anyone try out some hoodie ideas with the sketch I provided last week?  Yuki and I had fun coloring a few in and trying some different combos.

Yuki's Hoodie // you & mie

Yesterday, I posted on Instagram one of the combos I’m considering.  And I also just added my favorite of Yuki’s hoodies in the flickr group.  You definitely want to check that out.  If you’ve got a sketch, don’t forget to share it!  #happyhomemadesewalong

ANYWAYS, moving on to materials.  Do you have your fabric picked out yet?  I’m guessing that some of you do and some of you don’t.  And that’s fine!  If you’re in the latter group, we’re going to help you figure that out today!  Meg is sharing with you some suggested fabrics types and an amazing selection of prints she rounded up.  And I’m going to tell you how much fabric you need along with any other materials required for this project.  Shall we get started?

First, you need to figure out what size you’re going to make.  Here’s the size chart included in the English version of the book to help you determine the appropriate size.

Happy Homemade: Sew Chic Kids size chart

The first number in each box is in inches.  In parentheses is the measurement in centimeters.

Most Japanese sewing books follow the same format: Pictures of all the projects in the first half of the book and instructions in the back.  In the Japanese version of the book, the pull-over pictures are on page 22 and 23.

Happy Homemade Sew-along // you & mie

Happy Homemade Sew-along // you & mie

You can see the directions are on page 54.

In the English version of the book, the pull-over is on page 24, with directions on page 60.

Happy Homemade Sew-along // you & mie

Flip over to your directions page and in the top left corner is wear you’ll find a lot of the basic information that you need to begin.

Happy Homemade Sew-along // you & mie

The pullover parka hoodie is labeled pattern “S.” The first section tells us which pattern pieces we are going to need.  In the Japanese book, it also tells you that you can find the pattern pieces on “Side A” of the pattern pages.  We can skip this information for now – we’ll be diving into that part next week.

Happy Homemade Sew-along // you & mie

The next section is about the materials you’ll need.  Japanese patterns don’t really give you suggested fabrics.  Instead, it lists the fabric used in the samples in the book.  So for example, while some patterns might suggest, “light- to medium-weight fabric such as quilting cotton, shirting, linen or voile,” Japanese patterns might say something like, “floral print cotton” or in this case, “herringbone cotton” or “tartan cotton.”  This information can be useful if you want to replicate the book version, but as far as recommendations, they aren’t very helpful.  Luckily, Meg is here to help you out with fabric suggestions!

What you should pay attention to though, is the number next to the fabric.  Here it says, “40 in (102 cm) herringbone cotton.”  That first number is the width of the fabric.  Be sure that the fabric you choose is at least the same width as the measurement listed here.

Happy Homemade Sew-along // you & mie

This section has a ton of numbers, so it’s a little hard to separate what’s what, but I’ve color coded it to make it easier.  Based on these numbers, here’s what I’d recommend buying for each size (I rounded up a little).

Size 2: 1 and 1/4 yards
Size 4: 1 and 1/2 yards
Size 6: 1 and 1/2 yards
Size 8: 1 and 2/3 yards

The other materials you’ll need are:
Fusible interfacing: 2 x 3/4 in
Cotton tape: 44 in
1/4 inch wide elastic: 2 and 3/8 in

The cotton tape is used to create a drawstring at the bottom of the pull-over.  You can use twill tape, bias tape, cording, ribbon, etc.  If you use bias tape, you’ll want to sew it shut along the open edge.

cotton tape

Besides fabric and notions, there a few other things that you’ll need to gather before you can begin.

  • Tracing paper.  The first thing we’re going to need to do is the find and trace the pattern pieces we need.  You’ll want as large of sheets as possible, like this, which can be found at most art stores
  • Ruler and pencil.  I’m assuming you already have one, but since we’ll be adding our own seam allowance, you’re not going to be able to do that without a ruler.
  • Safety pin.  It will come in handy when threading the cotton tape through the casing.

Is it time to go shopping?  I’m going to start with my stash and see if I have anything there first.  Looking for fabric suggestions?  Be sure to check out Meg’s post!  She has rounded up a drool-worthy selection of prints to consider along with helpful suggestions on fabric types.

We’re getting close!  Sew-along begins in SIX DAYS!

I love nani IRO!

To tell you that I love nani IRO fabric is pretty much as high on the list as “I love sewing” on the ‘duh-that’s-obvious’ statements about me.  I love nani IRO and that really shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone who knows me.  I found some nani IRO double gauze in my local fabric shop three years ago and I softly gasped at the beautiful painted flowers, then I sharply inhaled at the price, but then slowly sighed when I felt how soft and luxurious the double gauze was.  And I haven’t looked back since!

nani IRO is designed by Japanese artist, Naomi Ito.  I love the unique hand painted designs and the high quality fabric.  It’s really like nothing else out there.  I decided to go through and find my old nani IRO projects and round them up for you . . .

nani IRO projects by you & mie

Sweetheart Bubble Dress // 1st Birthday Dress // Floral Baby Dress
Everyday Skirt // Little Letter Halter
Signature Look Top // Foldover Clutch // A-line Tunic
Ethereal Dress // Neon Dot Double Skirt // Reversible Spring Coat

Looking back at these pictures, I noticed two things.  1. I’m really drawn to her dots and florals – she just does them so well.  I’ve never used any of her other prints.  And 2. Out of all of these projects, only ONE was for me!  I figure it’s about time to change both of those things :)

Nani IRO fabric isn’t cheap.  Before, I loved the way it looked, but could really only afford to buy little pieces, which is why it was easier to sew things for a kid, or use it for an accessory.  But after a while, I realized that even though I’d have to spend a lot of money buying several yards of fabric to cover my adult body, it would still be totally worth it.  I appreciate this fabric and will wear it a billion times more than my toddler ever will.  I spend the time, effort ,and money to make the garments – why shouldn’t I get to enjoy it?

So then I decided ALL THE NANI IRO FOR ME!  Haha, just kidding.  But you know, I deserve nani IRO, and I think that you do too . . .

The month of June has officially been named “nani IRO month” by Frances of Miss Matatabi.  She’s asked some of her friends to help her showcase the latest collection of nani IRO fabric and I’m pretty sure we all just JUMPED at the opportunity.  Be sure to check out her blog for all the latest projects being shared throughout the month.

For my first project, I chose a really unique fabric called Freedom Garden (A – France) and decided I wanted to sew something for me.  It is double gauze and comes in three colorways and the design is kinda crazy and out of control, but in a beautiful way.  I went back and forth about it – can I pull it off?  What would I make with it?  Is it too crazy?  I asked people on Facebook and Instagram what they thought I should make and I got some reeeally great suggestions.  But in the end, I decided to make a good ol Wiksten Tank.

Freedom Garden Wiksten Tank // you &  mie

I knew that this would, by far, get the most wear and I am in need of some basic tanks and tees for the summer and as I transition back to work.  Sure, I could have made a special dress, but honestly, I just don’t wear dresses very often.  This tank, on the other hand, I’ll reach for again and again.

Freedom Garden Wiksten Tank // you &  mie

LOOK AT THIS FABRIC!  It’s like Naomi Ito just went all craaaaaazy with her paints!  I felt like I was sewing and wearing some modern art.  Should this be a museum exhibit?  I love the variety of both bold and subtle colors in this fabric.  And the interesting variety of brush strokes.

Freedom Garden Wiksten Tank // you &  mie

Double gauze is dreamy fabric.  It’s soft and airy, it’s comfortable and breathable.  It’s lovely to sew with too.  The only things to look out for is that because it’s a looser woven fabric, it can stretch out when sewing curves.  And it can get wrinkly when it’s worn/washed.  But I still love it.  It just feels soooo nice.

Freedom Garden Wiksten Tank // you &  mie

I’ve made the Wiksten Tank before and I really like the fit.  It’s perfect up top and then conveniently covers my mid-section.

Freedom Garden Wiksten Tank // you &  mie

I did make a couple of slight modifications to the pattern.  I lengthened the tank by a 1/2 inch for just a little extra coverage.  I also raised the neckline by about 2 inches, because as much as I like the look of the original neckline, it was always just a little too revealing and I felt uncomfortable at work since I’m constantly bending over to work with young kids.  Since I noticed a little gaping at the neckline in the back with my previous Wiksten, I made the same alteration as Rae did to decrease that, except I only moved the pattern over by 1/2 an inch, instead of a full inch.  Worked fine for me.

Freedom Garden Wiksten Tank // you &  mie

I can honestly say, I don’t have anything else in my wardrobe quite like this!  It’s fun to have a little something different from everyone else too :)

Freedom Garden Wiksten Tank // you &  mie

Be sure to check out the entire nani IRO stock in the Miss Matatabi shop.  They are all soooo gorgeous.  I have several other prints in my stash just waiting to be sewn up, but I mostly just like to stare at them and pet them :)

Don’t forget to check out the rest of the bloggers participating in nani IRO month!  I’ve got another project coming up later this month with more nani IRO – but this time with a fabric I’ve NEVER sewn with before!  Wish me luck :)

*This fabric was generously given to me, but everything I said is 100% my own opinion – I wouldn’t lie to you about nani IRO!  And trust me, I spend my own money on nani IRO too. ;)*

Happy Homemade Sew-along // mixing it up

So we’re gearing up for the Happy Homemade Sew-along!  It’s the week of June 16-20.  By now, you should either have the book in your hands or maybe you’re waiting for it arrive.  Today, Meg and I have some hoodie inspiration for you so you can start planning YOUR hoodie.

One of the reasons we picked this pattern to sew, is because the possibility for simple modifications is endless!  Now there is nothing wrong with sewing up the pattern exactly as directed, but if this isn’t your first time sewing this pattern or you are looking for something a little different, here are some ideas of ways you can mix up the pullover parka pattern.

Hoodie Modifications // you & mie

The original pattern features a hood, 3/4 length sleeves, a drawstring for the bottom and a partial elastic neckline.  Let’s talk about some ways you can mix it up!

*We aren’t going to be walking you through any of these modifications during the sew-along, so if you want to alter your pattern, be sure you know how to do that on your own :)*

 

SLEEVES

Hoodie Modifications // you & mie

Two easy modifications is to change the length of the sleeves to make either a short sleeved or long sleeved top.  Or, you can lengthen the sleeves and make an elastic casing for a gathered cuff.

 

HEM

Hoodie Modifications // you & mie

Instead of adding a drawstring along the bottom hem, you can use elastic for a similar look but without the hassle of tying.  Or you can just hem it regularly and omit that gathered hem altogether.  By lengthening the hoodie and extending the side seams into a slight A-line shape, you can make this into a hooded dress!

 

POCKETS

Hoodie Modifications // you & mie

Adding pockets is another simple and practical way to update this pattern.  You can add a patch pocket, a kangaroo pocket, in-seam pockets or even welt pockets.

 

COLOR BLOCKING

Hoodie Modifications // you & mie

The raglan style sleeves of this pattern naturally lend themselves to color blocking.  You can chose different fabrics for the sleeves, the hood and the front and back.  If you are comfortable modifying your pattern to break it into segments for color blocking, that just opens up a bazillion new combinations and possibilities.

 

EMBELLISHMENTS

Hoodie Modifications // you & mie

You probably know by now that I am a big fan of fabric stamping, stenciling and painting to create one-of-a-kind fabric and garments.  Well this is the perfect opportunity to add your unique mark to a piece of clothing for your kid!  And how much would your kid love it if you added something they are really into?   This pattern is perfect for adding applique or embroidery.  And have you seen my Panda Raglan Tee tutorial??  ANIMAL HOODIE, need I say more?

Well, there are some ideas to get your hoodie planning started.  And like I said, you don’t need to make any modifications to the pattern to make an awesome hoodie!  The easiest way to make your garment “you” and unique is in your fabric selection.  We’ll be talking more about fabric next week, but in the meantime, why don’t you download this blank hoodie template and start brainstorming ideas for your hoodie!?

Hoodie Modifications // you & mie

You can either right click/control+click and select “Save Image As” or download a PDF version HERE.

Print it out and grab some pencils, markers, or paint to play with different ideas for your hoodie.  Be sure to check out Meg’s post for a round-up of hoodies to give you more inspiration.  Check out your fabric stash.  Play around with colors.  This is just for fun so you can make your picture as realistic or outrageous as you want.  Then upload your picture to the flickr pool or post it on Instagram and tag it with #happyhomemadesewalong so we can all be inspired by YOU!

Can’t wait to see what you come up with!