Introducing… Rigel Bomber Jacket January!

Hi, guys! Hope you’re all well! I’m really excited to announce a fun new sorta-sewalong, Rigel Bomber Jacket January! The backstory: During #bpsewvember, I posted a photo of my Papercut Patterns Rigel Bomber pattern and mentioned that I really need to make the time to sew it. Kat and Mel chimed in that they also want to make it, and thought we should organize to sew it together in January- fantastic idea! There were quite a few others interested in making this (Katie, Heather, Erika, Georgina, Oh, She Dabbles), and I’m hoping lots of you will want to join in, too! I know not everyone loves sewalongs, but I really like the opportunity to sew alongside other people and see how you guys make a pattern your own. Plus, it seems like it’s a pattern that quite a few of us already have, but need a little extra motivation to work through! And who doesn’t want to see a whole flock of babes outfitted in bomber jackets???? OK, let’s talk details! We’re going to sew throughout January and reveal our finished jackets at the end of the month. That gives you a few weeks to gather your materials and order the pattern, if you don’t already have it. Luckily, Papercut just released a PDF version of this pattern for those of you who don’t want to wait for a hard copy (plus it’s a bit cheaper, at around 15USD). Sweet! We aren’t planning to do a full, step-by-step sewalong, but Kat, Mel, and I will share inspiration and helpful tips. You can join our Flickr group to share images of your jackets, and we can share in-progress shots and chatter on IG and Twitter using #rigelbomberjanuary.  Keep a lookout for more details in early January! What a way to beat the post-holiday blues, right? But wait, there’s more! Katie from Papercut has generously offered prizes, hooray! Kat, Mel, and I will each choose a favorite Rigel and each “winner” will receive a free Papercut pattern! But really, we’ll all be winners cause we’ll all have sweeeeeeeeeet jackets!

Guys, I’m so excited about this! OK, so, snag a pattern, get your supplies together, grab a badge (designed by the super talented Mel!), and start planning your dream jacket! Rigel Jacket January Here’s the code for your sidebar: <a href=”https://gingermakes.com/tag/rigel-bomber-january/”><img alt=”Rigel Bomber Jacket January” height=”250″ src=”https://gingermakespremium.files.wordpress.com/2014/12/rigel-jacket-january.jpg&#8221; title=”Introducing… Rigel Bomber Jacket January!” width=”250″ /></a>

What do you think? Are you in? What fabric are you considering?

Ginger Made: Isabel Undercover!

Hi, guys! I hope you don’t mind if I share another wardrobe basic today!

One of the best things about sewing is that you can take an idea and make it your own. You know, when you see something and like it, but wish it was just a little bit different? The idea from this came from a sweater from Isabel Marant’s Pre-Fall 2014 collection (you guys, I super love her stuff and kinda want to wear everything in that whole collection, even if I would look less Svelte Parisienne and more Crazy Old Lady). I loved the colorblocking, particularly in grey and brown. They look really cool together and are a fun alternative to the black and brown combos I’ve been seeing lately in fashion spreads. I briefly thought about knitting my own version of this sweater, but I didn’t really like the chunkiness of the yarn (you KNOW you’d be sweating wearing that thing!). Instead I decided to find sweater knits to sew my own version for my November Mood Sewing Network project!

Papercut Patterns Undercover Hood | Ginger Makes

I’d hoped to find some rustic sweater knits to closely mimic the inspiration image, but when I saw these gorgeous wool jerseys at Mood, I scooped them up. They’re nearly identical to each other in weight and feel, which seemed important for colorblocking, and the colors are really nice. Yay!

Papercut Patterns Undercover Hood | Ginger Makes

I used my go-to raglan pullover pattern, Papercut Patterns’ Undercover Hood (minus the hood!) and tweaked it to add the contrast yoke detail. Wanna know how? I just dropped a straight line 5″ down from center front and then squared over to the side seam. I matched this to the side seam on the back piece and then squared over to center back so the yokes would line up. Add seam allowances and you’re good to go! Easy!

Papercut Patterns Undercover Hood | Ginger Makes

I love sewing with wool jersey… it’s stable and easy to sew, and responds to the iron more than most knits. It’s also really nice to wear. I love the extra bit of warmth you get from wool, and I like that it’s a classic, dressier alternative to regular jersey. And, just between us gals, I’ve been wearing my other two Undercover (non-)Hoods basically all the time and really need to give them a break, so I’m glad to add another one to the mix! [Sidebar: this is the second pattern I’ve made three times this year… what’s happening to me? Am I turning into a Pattern Repeat Offender?]

Papercut Patterns Undercover Hood | Ginger Makes

My finished sweater isn’t an exact replica of the inspiration garment, but it’s really wearable and is just my style! Plus, it’s much more affordable than Isabel’s version, which is out of my price range until she decides to make me her muse and pay me in clothes! (Are you listening, Isabel? Will work for clothes!) ;)

Now, let’s have a little fun! If you want to, post a link to a garment you’re inspired by and share how you’d like to make it your own! What pattern would you use to make it? What changes would you make? Do tell!

Ginger Made: Undercover Hood + Hudson Pants!

Hi, friends! Hope everyone’s had a wonderful weekend! Question for you: those of you who blog, do you find it hard to blog basics? I often find that I start wearing them right away, and once I’ve worn something a few times it feels kind of silly to blog about it! I’m also not sure if people are interested in reading about basics- too boring, maybe? But I decided to finally share these garments as I wear them ALL the time and it just doesn’t seem polite to ignore them.

Let’s start with the pants! These are the True Bias Hudson Pants. Kelli is a blogger I’ve admired for a long time- her style is just so cool. I kinda want to break into her house and steal everything out of her closet (and her daughter’s… Kelli’s made her some awesome clothes!!!).

I tested this pattern when Kelli was developing it, but these pants were made with the final pattern (I made two pairs during the testing process, but the fabric I had in my stash was earmarked for my sister, so I sent them to her. Then I somehow lost or threw away the test pattern, so I printed out the new one when I made these up). I am one size smaller in the waist than in the hip for this pattern, so I went with the larger size since it’s fitted through the hips and the waist is elasticized.

There’s not much to say about constructing these puppies! They’re very straightforward and quick to sew, and the end result is really cute. I’ve also made the Papercut Patterns Anima pants (Kelli and Katie developed their patterns independently at right about the same time, coincidentally… great minds think alike!), and compared to those, the Hudsons are a much slimmer fit (here are my Animas for comparison). I used a thick, strange knit from Mood. It’s definitely something synthetic as it feels almost… squeaky?… against my skin, but the print is so cool that I couldn’t resist it! I really like how they look in this print!

The top is the Papercut Patterns Undercover Hood… minus the hood! Katie sent me the PDF as a thank-you for testing the Anima pants, and I was really happy to check it out. It’s got the option for a hood (obvs) as well as a kangaroo pocket, and there is a cropped version, too, but I decided to do a basic pullover this time around. I used a wool jersey from Mood, an end-of-bolt remnant I’d had in my stash for a really long time, so I was glad to use it up! I made this for our trip to Iceland in July and it was absolutely PERFECT! We spent most of our time outside in kinda crummy weather, and it kept me nice and warm layered over a buttondown and under a waterproof shell. It was nice because at the the end of the day, I could take off my jacket when we sat down to dinner and I actually looked pretty presentable and not rumply and gross. I wish I had taken some photos of it in Iceland, but I think I had my rain jacket on the whole time! You’ll have to hop over to Cashmerette if you want to see awesome handmades-frolicking-in-Iceland photos. 🙂

I’ve worn the grey sweater so much that I decided to make another! I’ve had this grey and white stripe in my stash for a while and was planning to make a Breton-style dress with it. But let’s be honest- I’d wear that dress every once in a while, but I’d wear a pullover constantly! So it became another hood-less Undercover Hood! (Lladybird made a dress with the same fabric… cute, right?)

Papercut Patterns Undercover Hood | Ginger Makes

Here’s where fabric is funny: the striped fabric is stretchier than the wool, so the sweatshirt felt way bigger. Strange, right? After sewing it up, I took off the cuffs and hem band, shortened them by 2″ and 1″ respectively, and it looked much better. It was just a bit too slouchy before! Sidenote: is there a way to perfectly match stripes on a raglan sleeve? I just. couldn’t. do. it. Ugh! Hopefully it’s not too noticeable.

Papercut Patterns Undercover Hood | Ginger Makes

Now, this fabric is a really nice weight, and I didn’t want the little bit I had leftover to wither away in my stash, so I did what I had to do: I sewed a pug sweater.

I know.

I’m sorry.

Milla Milla Dog Hoodie & Sweatshirt | Ginger Maes

Somebody isn’t happy about his new sweater.

Pretty sure I’ve now officially entered Crazy Dog Lady status. I didn’t want to fuss around with drafting a pattern, so I downloaded one from Milla Milla, a Japanese company that offers PDF dog sewing patterns. It’s Very Purple Person‘s fault! She made matching shirts for her son and her dog that turned out really cute, so I downloaded the same pattern. Pugs don’t fit well into regular ready-made dog clothing because their proportions are different. Hear me out! They have thick barrel chests and basically need dog FBAs (OK OK OK I know I’m crazy!)! But this pattern was drafted specifically for French bulldogs  and since they’re also squat, chesty dogs, I thought it would be perfect!

Milla Milla Dog Hoodie & Sweatshirt | Ginger Makes

This is the Hoodie & Sweatshirt pattern, and it was surprisingly complicated! Once I watched the video showing how to sew it up, it was a breeze, but I couldn’t for the life of me figure out how the pattern pieces went together before watching it. Fellow pug owners, if you’re looking for the right size, just select “FB” from the drop-down menu. There’s also a version drafted specifically for dachshunds… it even comes in two sizes! So Anne, Juli… you’re covered!

Now let’s play a little game of “Who Wore It Better?”! Feel free to cast your vote!

I have no idea how to wrap this post up so I’m just going to stop talking. What’s on your sewing table? Have you ever sewed for your dog or cat? Be honest!!!

Ginger Made: Papercut Patterns Anima Pants!

Hi, guys! Hope you’re all having a great day!  Like many of you, I’m participating in Me-Made-May this year, and it’s revealed some holes in my handmade wardrobe. I find myself looking much dressier in May than any other month of the year just because my handmade clothing tends to be on the nicer side! I love having an excuse to run errands in the neighborhood wearing a dress and high heels and just generally feeling and looking like a total boss, but sometimes I just want to walk the dogs and/or watch Law & Order re-runs (let’s face it, the Briscoe/Logan pairing is the best) in sweatpants. So the release of the new Papercut Patterns Anima Pants was really welcomed Chez Ginger!

Papercut Patterns Anima Pant | Ginger Makes

I definitely didn’t know I looked this gross, but I’m completely invested in journalistic integrity so you’re stuck with my ugly pics! 😉

I was a tester for this pattern, and I don’t want to congratulate myself TOO much, but I picked out kind of the best fabric ever for this. I found a remnant on the end of the bolt at Mood, a 100% cotton, super squishy, super thick, RIDICULOUSLY soft knit. It feels like, I dunno, wearing a cloud? It’s so soft and amazing that I never want to wear real pants again! I knew I’d made a good choice when Markese at Mood unrolled the bolt and got upset that he couldn’t reorder the fabric.

Papercut Patterns Anima Pant | Ginger Makes

Since this fabric is really dense, a ballpoint needle wasn’t working right on it, so I used a universal needle and a zigzag stitch. I don’t know what’s going on with me right now, but I’ve been sewing all my knits on the sewing machine instead of my serger. Sometimes I feel like serged seams can be a little scratchy (maybe it’s my thread?), so I wanted to just zigzag this one. The seams pressed open beautifully and seemed to magically meld into position. MAGIC FABRIC, DUDES! I want MORE! Wahhhhhhh!

I really like that these pants have pockets. I often skip them in dresses, but with my Anita ponte pants, I regretted not having them every time I walked the dogs or ran out for a coffee when I didn’t have anywhere to put my wallet or keys. So these pockets are great! I stabilized the openings with my new knit stay tape, Extremely Fine Fusible Knit Stay Tape from SewKeysE. I wish I’d started using knit stay tape sooner- it’s really, really great.

Papercut Patterns Anima Pant | Ginger Makes

The downside of this thick knit is that, holy crow, my sewing machine did NOT want to make buttonholes on it. I stabilized the wrong side behind the buttonholes with regular interfacing first, and even that wasn’t enough. They really look disgusting. Maybe next time I will use a grommet instead- it couldn’t be worse than these awful, awful buttonholes!  I also didn’t have fun stitching through the elastic on the waistband. My machine wasn’t loving it and the results are a little sloppy, but hey, I’m making sweatpants, not a wedding gown, so, you know, whatevs.

Papercut Patterns Anima Pant | Ginger Makes

There’s a drawstring waist with a channel for a waist tie, but I used a fun neon yellow elastic from SIL Thread instead of a shoelace-style tie. I’ll be honest- I bought the elastic because it had a fun cartoon of a gecko with a long tongue on it and lots of Japanese writing, so I’m not really sure what it’s meant for, but, gecko!  It’s stretchy, so I can leave it tied and it stretches to fit when I slip the pants on or off. Yay!

Papercut Patterns Anima Pant | Ginger Makes

The pants are finished with a cuff, which I really like. You might want to check the length before you get started if you don’t like the blousy effect of the pants scrunching up at the cuff, but I think that looks cute. I’m 5’6″, just for reference, so you can see the length on me.  One thing to keep in mind when you’re finishing with cuffs is the stretch of your fabric.  If you’re using a really stable knit with very little stretch, you may need to cut your cuffs a little wider.  You don’t want them to be too tight!  Also, I am a size larger in the waist than I am in the hips, so I chose the larger size, just in case my fabric wasn’t stretchy enough.  This seemed to work- I’m happy with the fit.  These are about the easiest pants you could sew!

Papercut Patterns Anima Pant | Ginger Makes

I guess it’s bad that I really love these, but it’s nice to be able to wear me-mades and still feel like my usual trashbag casual self.  I’ll try to take these off from time to time and actually wear real clothes… but I won’t make any promises.

Oooh, I keep forgetting to announce the winner of the Nettie giveaway! After excluding folks who didn’t want in and my own comments, there were 150 entrants. The winner was #78…

Amy of Sew Well! Congrats, Amy! I’ll have the pattern to you by the end of the day!

Alright, confession time: what do you wear when you’re lounging around the house?  Do you wear fluffy skirts and lipstick when you walk the dogs, or do you put on a baseball cap so hopefully the neighbors won’t recognize who it is still in pajamas at 11AM?

Ginger Made: Papercut Patterns Pneuma Tank!

Hey there, party dudes! Hope you all had a great weekend!  Today I have something a little bit different to show you- exercise wear!  Before we get started, I’ll just warn you that you’re about to see some pasty white limbs… it’s been a long winter!

When Katie at Papercut Patterns asked me to test her new collection, I was really excited.  I guess I’m a bit of a shallow person, but I hate working out in old t-shirts.  I’m already red and sweaty- I definitely don’t need frumpy, disgusting clothes to make me look even worse!  But I’m also a bit of a cheapskate and don’t want to pay premium prices for things I’ll only wear to run in.  So this collection really addresses a wardrobe gap for me.  (Sidenote: Melissa at Fehr Trade has a nice collection of workout clothing, too, if that’s something you’re interested in, but I don’t like to wear super fitted clothes for running.  But if you do, check out her patterns!)

Papercut Patterns Pneuma Tank | Ginger Makes

Seems like a regular tank top…

The Pneuma Tank is a sports bra with attached tank panels.  You can make it as just a sports bra, too, but I like having more coverage when I run.  From the front it looks like a regular tank, but there are openings at the side and back that show the bra underneath.  The pattern is available as a paper pattern or as a PDF, which is nice, since Papercut Patterns were previously only offered as hard copies.

Papercut Patterns Pneuma Tank | Ginger Makes

… but what’s that peeping out?

I used a nylon-spandex blend from Spandex House for the bra, which gives nice compression.  It takes just a tiny amount to cut out the two pattern pieces, about 18″ x 18″!  You could make a matching bra from leftover scraps any time you make a pair of leggings!  I love that it uses so little fabric!

Papercut Patterns Pneuma Tank | Ginger Makes

Why, it’s neon leopard!!!

The pattern calls for bra strapping instead of fabric straps, which is a cute touch.  I chose this fun pink color from Pacific Trimming and used less than two yards of it.  The jersey I used is thicker than what I should have used, but I wanted to use up something from my stash (it’s some sort of double knit from Mood Fabrics, leftover from my very first knit garment, this Renfrew top!) and I had just enough to make this.  It’s a little bit bunchy right under the straps where it’s gathered and stitched to the bra- using a regular-weight jersey would solve this problem.

Papercut Patterns Pneuma Tank | Ginger Makes

Sewing this is really straightforward.  I stitched it up on my sewing machine, using a stretch needle for the bra portion and a regular ballpoint needle for the tank part.  The tank openings are just turned and stitched, and the bra openings are finished with elastic.  It’s nice to be able to decide how tightly you want the bra to fit around your rib cage so you can really customize the fit.  Mine is supportive enough that I can run in it, but I have a small chest, so may not work for running if you need more support.  This would also be nice in a softer fabric like a cotton-lycra for lower-impact activities like yoga.  You could even sew this up as a swimsuit top!

Papercut Patterns Pneuma Tank | Ginger Makes

It’s a little tricky to get into the top without twisting up the straps, but that’s easily sorted out.  One thing I’ll be keeping an eye on is the stretch recovery of the bra strapping.  I can imagine it stretching out over time, which could be annoying, but the straps are the last things you add to the tank, so you could go back and shorten them easily if you needed to.

Papercut Patterns Pneuma Tank | Ginger Makes

I’m excited to have some fun with my workout wardrobe, so I’d like to make a few more of these!  Since I used stash fabric for the tank, I only used about $6 worth of fabric and elastic for this top, a far cry from what stores like lululemon charge!  I’m going to keep an eye out for nice stretch mesh- wouldn’t that be breezy for sticky summer running?

Papercut Patterns Pneuma Tank | Ginger Makes

Love the curved hem!

Now all I need is motivation to run! Last year I really enjoyed running, but this year I’m struggling to force myself to do it.  I’m having a really hard time getting up early enough to run and shower before the dogs need to go out.  Any tips or tricks from my running readers?  Or are there other kinds of exercise that you prefer?

Papercut Patterns Pneuma Tank | Ginger Makes

This is a stretch, right?

*Bonus points to Kat for pointing out that the names of the pieces in this collection (Anima, Soma, and Pneuma) mean Mind, Body, and Soul.  Deeeeeeeefinitely did not know that.  Can we just blame my ignorance on the American public education system?

 

Papercut Patterns Bellatrix Blazer!

Hi, guys!  Merry Christmas to those of you who celebrate!  It’s been a busy week full of travel, family, and friends, so I got a bit distracted and forgot to post my most recent Mood Sewing Network garment!  I planned to make a Christmas dress, but at the last minute decided to make a piece that I could wear well after the holidays.  This time of year I often find myself with functions to go to after work, but I don’t have time to go home and change first.  Sometimes I drag a cocktail dress to work and change in the ladies’ room, but I decided that it would be easier (and less stressful!) to make a day-to-night piece that I can toss on top of my work outfit when I feel like getting a little festive.

As soon as I saw the new Papercut Patterns collection, I fell in love with the Bellatrix Blazer.  I like that it’s a bit different from a traditional blazer pattern with its rounded collar and cinched waist– it’s so stylish and fun!  I knew this would make the perfect holiday jacket.  It closes with one button, has a bit of a peplum, and has in-seam welt pockets.  It’s fully lined, too, which makes it even more luxurious and versatile.  The blazer also has slightly-shaped sleeves– they’re a little longer on the front side of your hand than on the palm side, which is a great detail.

I used two black cotton sateens, one very shiny (for the lapels and welts) and one more matte (for the body) to give it a bit of a tuxedo look.  The shinier sateen had a great deal of stretch to it, but since every piece I was using it for needed to be interfaced, I could get away with it.The blazer is lined with a charcoal-colored silk charmeuse for a wee touch ‘o’ fancy-schmanciness.

The pattern is really easy to put together, but it does take a little time.  I made a muslin, but didn’t end up making any fit alterations at all.  I was intimidated by the welt pockets, but they were really easy to do.  The best part is that because they’re in-seam pockets, you don’t have to do any scary slashing on your jacket front!  Yay!  I really like this pattern, and definitely recommend it.  It’s sleek and sassy in black, but I bet it would look really cute in colors (I’m thinking of a red one– wouldn’t that be cool, in an equestrian way?).  I also like the idea of making a short version to wear over dresses.

This sounds insane, but this is my first black blazer!  I’ve never owned one before!  I feel a little square and boring in it, but I know it will go with so many things in my wardrobe.  I definitely feel older and more put-together wearing it, for better or for worse!

What’s your favorite way to take an outfit from day to night?  What are the most versatile pieces in your wardrobe?  Did you sew any special holiday outfits this year?

Here’s a little detail short– it’s tough to photograph black garments!

Ginger Made: Papercut Patterns Meissa Blouse!

Hi, guys!  I hope your Mondays are off to a great start!  Don’t be too jealous, but I’m having the best kind of Monday– a day off of work!  🙂  Before I dive into my patternmaking homework and hopefully some sewing, I wanted to share one of my newest projects with you!

Papercut Patterns Meissa Blouse

The lovely and talented Katie of Papercut Patterns asked me to test one of her new patterns, and I jumped at the chance to try out her Meissa Blouse pattern!  I love, love, love buttondowns and wear a basic plaid buttondown to work basically every day, so I was really excited to try out a shirt pattern that’s a little different.  The Meissa Blouse has feminine details like a gathered yoke (in the front and the back), a rounded collar, and a curved hemline.  Fun, right?

Papercut Patterns Meissa Blouse

My plan was to make this with peach-colored voile (which existed in my mind), but when I got to Mood NYC, I couldn’t tear myself away from this Theory brushed cotton.  It’s SO soft, like, CRAZY soft, and definitely what you want to wear in cool November weather.  It’s solidly medium-weight, which I knew was pretty risky for this blouse.  It would probably look a lot nicer in a lightweight fabric– the gathers would sit nicely and the whole thing would be really floaty and sweet– but I wanted to push the envelope and see if I could get away with this heavier fabric.  It probably looks a little sloppy, but I like my buttondowns really slouchy anyway, so I can live with it.

Papercut Patterns Meissa Blouse

Honestly, I’m a little surprised by how much I enjoy sewing shirts.  They seem difficult and fiddly, but it’s really fun to put them together.  This pattern came together really quickly, despite the fact that I’m really terrible at gathering.  I probably spent more time trying to get the gathers even than I did on any other step in this process (again, this probably would have been easier if I’d used a lighter fabric).

Papercut Patterns Meissa Blouse

Love that hemline!

I made a size XS, my size according to the chart, and I didn’t make any alterations.  The shoulders are maybe a little wide, but I get the same thing in my RTW shirts– not sure if I have narrow shoulders or if this is just a style thing.  I might lose a little width through the upper arms and add a little to the lower arms next time– it fits nicely through the forearm/wrist, but because they actually fit, I can’t roll the sleeves up very far, which is my preferred way to wear a buttondown.  I topstitched the shirt with gold thread to give it sort of a denim look.  Actually, that leads me to a question– how should I style this shirt?!  I generally wear jeans to work, but I don’t really like the denim-on-denim look, and I don’t have much else besides jeans to wear this with!

Papercut Patterns Meissa Blouse

I think this pattern is super cute and I’m excited to see more versions of it popping up on the blogosphere!   Actually, I really like the whole collection, but the Bellatrix blazer is definitely high on my list for fall/winter sewing!  I’d like to make a longer version to wear over jeans and a cropped version to wear over dresses!  Not to tempt you too much, but there’s a 15% off sale right now, plus free worldwide shipping, PLUS the listed prices are in New Zealand dollars, so the blouse, for example, is about $17 USD.  Not as bad as it looks at first sight.  (NOTE: I’m not paid to shill for Papercut and I don’t get a cut of their sales or anything– I’m just a fan!).

Come to Mama… Is it weird that I want a metallic version just like this?! Love it! [photo stolen fro Papercut Patterns]

Also, I’m SUPER tempted to try the Rigel bomber, too, after seeing Sophie’s version this morning.  How cute is this jacket?!  And how cute is she?!  Answer: the CUTEST.  I’d love to rampage through Sophie’s closet just once!  🙂

Adorable! Check out Sophie’s blog, if you’re not already following it! [photo stolen from Cirque du Bebe]

Alright, how about you guys?  Any new patterns you’re excited about?  What’s your favorite of the new Papercut collection?  What’s on your sewing table these days?  My next project is a dress for my neighbor’s granddaughter– it’s been pushed to the back burner for a while, but I really need to knuckle down and make that next!