First Make of the New Year

Blog, Creatives Create, Style & Fashion, What I Sewed

Soooo HNY!! I’m not making any promises other than posting more 😬

That being said let’s just get right into this make.

I’m into the following things HEAVY:

• Animal Print

• Tiered girly dresses

• Lux minimalism

• Brocade

Hence making this dress!!!

It’s the Fibre Mood “Mira” Dress with a bit of a hack to the sleeves (lengthened and a slight ruching at the shoulder).

It took about 3 hours to make and it was definitely worth it.

The minute I started putting this together, without getting cocky I knew this wasn’t going to be a long make. And that’s the trick. Even though it’s not a lot of pieces, you still have to move with excellence. Altogether 6 pieces and the major work is ruching. But I’m sure a ruffler foot could shorten the time as well.

Roar 🐯!

The only thing this little number lacks is pockets. But best believe the next one will have some. I’m not a huge mini dress girl BUT bayyyybeeeee there will be a few of these in my closet. And you can put leggings or tights or jeans on and boom 💥 a tunic.

The spread.

Tho minimalist and lux, this dress has a LOT of volume. If you pick the right material, you can truly make a “do all“ dress.

Happy making!

Building a Ladder… My First Coat.

Blog, Creatives Create, Style & Fashion, What I Sewed

I’ve been in this love, schmoozie feeling about sewing lately. Before, it was all about how fast I could pump something out. Then the Rona hit and lockdown followed. But, unlike the perceived masses that blossomed in lockdown, I sort of just kept myself still. Assessing myself, my feelings, letting God speak… LISTENING…

And in the listening, He gave me love back. Not by way of a bae, but in the restoration of loving the work of sewing. I wasn’t consumed with 3 hour sew projects – and no shade because a quick shirt or skirt … well there is always room for that. But shopping my stash and taking my time to create things that I KNEW I would love (yes that means I legit did muslin mock ups to correct and perfect before actually using the fabric of choice) was an experience I hadn’t felt in some time. When the world was forced to slow down, so was I.

The start of my jacket construction.
Me trying to sew… Rocco ready for fetch.

Now the truth is…I could’ve made this is in a day, but that would’ve drained me of loving the process and filled me with competition against myself.

So I went piece by piece. First and foremost… get you some quilted denim. The beauty of this make was that because it was quilted it required absolutely no interface. I used bias tape to bind my seam allowances instead of surging them. It looked cleaner and prettier against the quilted fabric.

I made two deep pockets that could hold my keys, phone, wallet and earbuds in one pocket, and my dog leash in the other… all without looking like I’m trying to shoplift a whole store 🤣. Pockets are a thing for me but also sleek placement as well. Though I’m not running the streets, I take Rocco for long walks i hate having to walk with a purse. I kept “we both have to benefit” in mind when constructing this coat.

The final result was perfect 👌🏽. My keys and wallet are in my pocket… guess which one!?
This jacket/ coat passes the crisp Ohio morning test. And raglan sleeves are so much more forgiving on broad shoulders!
I went with three buttons on the breast area to be able to access my pant pockets with ease. When you make something the beauty is you can make it to suit YOUR needs.
I made the top as well…
*proud maker smirk*

All and all this coat was a sweet make that continues to remind me that it’s okay to slow down and do something intentionally and with purpose. This coat is a pattern hack from a raglan jacket pattern that I own!

Second Time Around – The Little Dress that Could

Blog, Creatives Create, Style & Fashion, What I Sewed

So let me start off by saying I’m OBSESSED with Cynthia Rowley. I do NOT have CR money but her simplistic cuts, luxurious fabrics, her keen sense of when to puff or ruff(le)… my eye is always drawn to her looks. It’s something about the way she makes bolds look like neutrals and everyday wear. I’m sold. But like i said, she is COMPLETELY out of my price range. When i saw this dress i was sick!

It’s sooooooo cute and quirky. But irl I knew I’d need it a bit longer cuz… booty; so then it became me on a hunt for a similar pattern. Simplicity pattern S8909 came through like a trooper.

Y’all… dress A is practically the Cynthia Rowley dress sans the ruffled hem. AND ITS RAGLAN SLEEVE AND I LOVE A RAGLAN SLEEVE. So in my mind I was like BET! So I had some “tester” fabric in my stash I was willing to make this dress with.

😐😐😐😐😐😐😐😐😐😐😐😐😐😐😐😐😐

So…

A few things…

    Prints are tricky. In theory they work on paper and swatch and coquis but irl WHOLE OTHER BEAST
    I’m not a huge pastel girl so this was overwhelming
    Construction was simple enough
    If you’re focused; this dress can be completed and finished in 5 hours

And then this happened. Sizing for your shape is real and this is why pattern grading is clutch. The first run this was all bulk and the hem was entirely too long. This was the antithesis of a vibe and extremely discouraging BUT you gotta learn from your mistakes and often try again. So that’s what I did.

  • I shortened the hem AND bottom ruffle.
  • I went for a more easy bold pattern and made sure it was something I’d be more inclined to wear.
  • Created darts in the back for a more complimenting silhouette

This was it! the second try was a hit.

Though different; you can definitely see the influence and I love that!

What are your thoughts? Would you sew 🧵 this? Would you use a bold pattern or keep it simple?

I hope you enjoyed! Happy sewing!!!

Support your small business!

Community is EVERYTHING!

Reppin Sets

Lifestyle, Style & Fashion

I LOVE sets. Luuuuuuuhdem. They are easy wears they extend your closet. Who doesn’t love a matching set? It’s bare minimum 3 outfits in 2 pieces.

Then add neoprene into the mix and we fancy fancy!

So this set was a super quick sew that I made for resurrection Sunday and to this day, have worn the top again.

This was my first delve into neoprene fabric. When I tell you gorgeous… GORGEOUS! It was a mixture between this brushed faux suede and metallic that PHOTOGRAPHS beautifully

Let’s note a few things about this fabric

  • I got it at Joann’s Fabric it was 27.99 a yard with 40% + addtl 20% off coupon
    I bought 4.5 yards so technically not on sale fabric alone is over $100 😱
    I didn’t use it all “whew”
    This neoprene is two way stretch so you have to mind that when cutting out your fabric
    Neoprene is HOT AS HELL. So there’s that!

This whole thing was a simple sew (1 day) . A tube pencil skirt with pleated peplum and I hand drafted the sweatshirt top from a top I own – inspo blog on that in the next two weeks- and I LOVE IT.

If you aren’t into print; a simple color(s)will work with this also.

I actually plan on making more of these and will have pricing for sets available soon. I will say this style is flattering on most bodies because it really helped create a little shape where I lack. I’m not curvy (hourglass)but a pencil skirt and peplum bottom create a curve illusion.

Also sweatshirt tops are forgiving to the tummy so eat and be cute still!

I’d also like to note that I didn’t have to edit these pictures to bring out the detail of the fabric. That’s just really how crispy and beautiful this fabric is.

Its Me Made May!

Get into it!!!

Inverted Pleats & Rosemary’s Baby

Blog, Style & Fashion

I remember the day I made this.  It was the top of summer, the first summer in my new place – I remember because I still had premium cable – and Rosemary’s baby was on HBO.  Rosemary’s Baby ya’ll.  The top of summer in the middle of the day; a whole cult horror classic.  I had just swiffered my floor and though it was a nice day; I decided to work on my math (pattern making)

My mission? Pleats. Inverted pleats. Daunting little suckers because fabric and fullness are real.  Silky fabric required a LOT of pins.

It took 2.25 yards and 3 days to finish it.  it was a chocolate work of art.  But I was reluctant to wear it  a lot because oil transfer and oil is my choice moisturizer.

But silky satin skirts circa the 90’s are making a comeback (slip skirts… video coming) and pleats never left so I pulled this out for this nice breezy May day!

Things to note:

  • though the skirt looks slinky, pleats use a lot of fabric so this on a windy day is full out Marilyn Monroe vibes heavvyyy.
  • The wider the waistband the more cinched the waist looks.  If you are like me and don’t have hips, the pleating placement and wide waistband give the illusion of fuller hips.

  • If you drop food or are oily use light / print / or dark silky fabrics.  I feel like it’s a matter of time with me & chocolate wonder (its not her name but…)but this skirt is definitely spring vibes.

What are some of your experiences with silky fabrics?  Are you into pleats? Sound off and support your local creative!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

The Jane Re-Worked

Style & Fashion

“Make a t-shirt they say… it’ll be fun they say…”

It was.

This Saturday I had the “pleasure” of this quick sew. The quotes are because I managed to complete this even after two + GRUESOME hours of teaching dance WITH a crazy earache that I found out was a middle ear infection after spending hours at a minute clinic.

Wild. But it goes to show how quick this could be if you’re fully able bodied.

So the deets:

This is the Jane Pattern from Seamwork worked in a large. I could’ve fit a medium I’m sure but I really like loose fitting tees.

I reworked the construction of this after making one per their instructions and feeling highly “meh” about it.

Instead of sewing (I actually used my serger for this project) the sleeve to the bodice in a continuous motion; I opted to attach the sleeves by using the inserting method. It falls better IMO.

Collar / crew neck construction

So I saw the logic in how and why they make their collar look like a long flag that you cut on the fold but I like the “formula” way better because I personally think it lays better. But let’s be honest. If you’re using a serger it’s gonna lay just fine.

This knit fabric was incredibly tricky, I still ended up taking about 6/8 of an inch off of each side. I’m going to take that L and say it was me and not the pattern tho. But even with that trim and the 1/2 inch seam allowance you use with serging it, it’s still quite blousy so there’s that.

Now my bother did say the following “Jaikeyl; don’t go making mad white tees, Hanes already cornered the market” and I DO agree. BUT if you see a cute knit or cotton print that you can’t resist OR you always wished your tee sleeves went to your elbow *cough cough easy pattern hack* this is for sure something to keep in your sewist arsenal.

We All Fall For Fall

Blog, Style & Fashion

I want to go on record saying I do not like the fall. I find it odd how people romanticize death. That’s all this season means to me. Death of summer, of warmth, of nature….of green. But people go mad over boots and sweaters and coziness. 🙄. Orange and browns. Meanwhile I’m blue. Because Seasonal Affective Disorder is real and because those are the colors I’m wearing.

My “neutrals” have never been browns or oranges… mainly because of my coloring; so I always tend to lean to cooler colors in the fall and winter rather than warmer colors.

Isn’t it odd people go warm tones in cold months and cool tones in warm months. Eh. Like I literally feel “eh” during this season.

I like to sort of hide but still look crisp because I don’t do well dressing “sloppy”. I look like a disheveled Mokie from Fraggle Rock so to keep my sanity, I keep it sharp(ish).

The top is Zara. They don’t have it anymore but if you’re into zippers this one is comparable.

The jeans are H&M – I looked all over… they are gone bro. But these jeans from F21 come close.

The shoes are Aldo’s

The hat is Forever 21. Though I honestly feel like I lucked up on the f21 find because most of their fedoras give off “cheap”; Urban Outfitters stays killing the game.

I’ve not yet acquiesced to boots or booties (even though my feet were chilly) but the pumps lend a sharpness that booties wouldn’t. Also the cool blue was in line with the color scheme but still accepting of cooler temps. It was a great balance to a dark top and hat.

Also shout out to Zennioptical.com for my frames! I can see and they’re dope!

Fall cometh. And even I can’t escape it so fashionably… I adjust.

Community is everything y’all; let’s build.

Fashion Catfish

Blog, Style & Fashion

So Hi! 👋🏽

Happy extended summer as I don’t fully recognize fall…😒

Here’s my anecdote about how I came to make this super dope jumper:

When I attended FIT, a few of my teachers commented on my ability to see a garment or a picture of a garment and be able to draw a rough pattern by sight. One teacher said “you have a wonderful counterfeiters eye!” Color me offended. And I mean UPSET. It greatly impacted my scrutiny on myself on whether I was “copying” or “creating” when it came to anything. It took me a second to realize that being influenced by what you see doesn’t make you a copier and that everything is a variation on the basic precepts of pattern design.

Fast forward to the here and now and fast fashion has become an opportunity for fashion scamming. With the intro of all of these “online only” fashion boutiques fashion catfishing is ever increasing. What do I mean? You see a picture of a thing and it’s poppin. You shell your cash out wait weeks only to get it and it look like “who did it and ran?”

I got got one time but I was a lucky one. I got my money back; however more and more people aren’t getting their money back and it is a helpless feeling.

Now, I’d seen a jumper online that I absolutely LOVED. But it was from a Chinese manufacturer that had TERRIBLE reviews

Like HOW CUTE IS THIS?!?!

Its all comfy and chill…

And I KNOW I could freak it in the fall but the company oshoplive.com has some heinous reviews and I don’t have $40 to waste plus the designer in me was like “Jai… look at the construction; this is a simple sew…” it felt like a Biggie lyric “took home ready to die, listened, studied it!” These are extra long gathered baggy pants with suspenders…

And here is where inspiration vs. copying steps in…

I’m not here for buttons and I truly wanted a simple sew so I made it a onesie rather than a button up. I had some GREAT Indian Batik fabric from JoAnn’s

Cotton & crisp. And two types of blue… what’s not to love?

I actually made it longer than the original I saw (the shoes I’m wearing – ASOS – are 6 inch platforms) because I wanted a maxi dress meets pants feel.

The “suspenders” are snap buttons because I said what I said… I wanted a quick sew.

I trimmed the top with ribbon that I’d had for almost 20 years!!! (That’s another story but I could SMELL MJ Trimmings on it when I ironed it ♥️)

This outfit gave me ethereal meets functional meets funky meets black girl magic! And this is no shot to the one I saw but side by side I’d pick my inspired version any day. And MAKING something leaves little room for you to be disappointed because you have the ability to keep going until you love it.

So all in all this is the story of how fashion catfishing inspired me to make this super dope jumper. I will be making a limited amount to be sold at the end of the month! Elastic top instead of ribbon to give a better one size feel. How would you make this fellow freestyle seamstresses?!?!

Community is Everything! Let’s build!

Pearls for the Girls

Blog, Style & Fashion

I was never into pearls. Even as an adult they still seemed too “mature” for me. But pearl studded jeans are where it’s at.

Not as strong as rhinestone studded jeans; but a few steps above embroidered jeans.

They’re definitely “ladylike” statement jeans. Wore them to brunch and felt like Carrie Bradshaw.

The top was ASOS; but I got it at a discount store (DfWH). But here are a few choice ASOS options here and here.

The pants are from H&M but they don’t carry them anymore but here’s an affordable option here.

The shoes are from justfab.com the Marlo Bootie (shootie) they’re sold out but I’d get on the wait list for these if I were you. They are worth it. They remind me of Barbie shoes.

This was a perfect “Hello spring! Hello brunch season!” (In my best Whitley Gilbert impersonation) outfit.

Gentlemen Prefer Brunettes – Adventures in Sewing

Blog, Style & Fashion

I love being inspired by the size and style of the women in the 50’s (more realistic, less cosmetically altered) and the artistry of couture from the 1930’s – 1950’s.

Beauty was the whole package and not just a “shape”. It was what the woman wore and how she carried herself. That was my inspiration for this dress.

I’m not exceptionally small, I’m not curvy at all; but as Lisa Stansfield belted “I’m all woman” and 💯 % luxurious.

My inspiration came from this burdastyle pattern.

IMG_6241

I’m not a fan of Starburst darting, especially darting like this that pulls to the middle. I have a straight figure and regular sized bust so this would create no real accentuating of anything. At best, this would only highlight my pooch ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

But the simplicity of the cut and the godet train drew me in and I said “self… you can make something like this!” So I pulled out my basic bodice and straight skirt slopers and got to work .

The result was this super dope delicate mermaid flare at the bottom and a wild dope train.

stairwellGatsby standing

This cut (mermaid/ fit & flare) created curves where non exist! Lol and the obi belt that i made to “snatch” my waist; I ended up using as a shawl because I’m really going to learn to appreciate my shape this year!

The godet train gave me my full, entire, whole life.

This fabric was my favorite. I’d been holding this for over a year waiting for the perfect reason to bust this out and use it. It was very Gatsby – Art Deco. Rich gold, pale gold & black – and the design of the fabric was just aesthetically pleasing to me, it stood out, it was rich looking but not gaudy.

It made me feel VERY luxurious. And sometimes a lady just needs to feel that old Hollywood luxury (minus sexism and bigotry)

I ended up having a BLAST at our church banquet and the dressed proved that I could eat AND dance in it. It was a great night and a great (Gatsby of a) dress!

Dress: “The Gatsby” – The Style Cooperative – price upon request

Coat – H&M – gifted but you can get something similar here

Accessories – cuff – gifted

What inspires you?

This slideshow requires JavaScript.