My National Thrift Store Day Haul (and how sewing has made me a better thrifter)

I’d say about 30% of my wardrobe is handmade and another 60% comes from my local thrift shop. If you’ve been reading for awhile, you know I’m a frugal gal, so it will be no surprise that my go-to store is of the secondhand variety. I have always been a thrifter, my mom raised me right! Haha. My kids love the thrift shop too, especially now that they’re often shopping with their own money rather than mine, making them more aware of how much bang they’re getting for their buck. So imagine our delight when we found out this past Saturday was National Thrift Shopping Day! Woot, woot! Our favorite thrift store here where we live is Savers and they marked all their t-shirts down to .99 that day to mark the occasion. We are also very lucky that our particular Savers offers a military discount of 20% off every single day. As an Army family, we are very thankful for your support, Savers!

I got to thinking about how sewing and thrifting go hand in hand, so I’m going to show you my haul from that day, but while I’m at it, I’m going to share with you how I think being a sewer has made me so much better at shopping in general, and specifically at shopping secondhand.

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Come read the ways I think being able to sew has made me a better thrift shopper! | Pin, Cut, Sew Studio

This post contains affiliate links, which means that while I am not paid to promote certain items, I will earn a small commission should you purchase items through these links. For more info, see my disclosure policy.

How Sewing Makes Us Better Thrifters:

We know fabrics.

Fabric content makes a massive difference in how your clothes will wear and wash, so knowing fabric content just by how it feels is a huge bonus when thrift shopping. And feeling fabrics is something sewists are pros at! Also, looking at the tag and seeing words like “viscose”, “nylon” or “linen” is Greek to many shoppers, but people who sew see those words on a regular basis, we know the cost difference between those fabrics and cheaper fabrics, we know which ones are breathable and which are sweaty, and we can tell which clothes are going to wash and wear well, and feel good when we put them on.

This is a viscose dress I thrifted on Saturday (with the tags still on!) The added bonus to knowing fabrics is knowing how to wash them. There are no washing instructions on the tag, but I know better than to put this one in the dryer!

Thrift store haul! Dress #1. Come see how I think sewing has made me a better thrifter. | PIn, Cut, Sew Studio

We know fit

Sewing clothing for ourselves gives us a sense of fit that the average shopper does not have. We all know sewists become quite particular about the fit of things over time, judging the fit of every garment that others are wearing, ha! Knowing how clothing is supposed to fit and being able to tell by looking at something whether or not it’s going to work is a skill that sewing develops in a person, for sure.

We know quality

There’s often a reason expensive brands are expensive, and quality has a lot to do with it. Sewers not only know quality fabrics, we know quality techniques and finishes. We study the construction of garments as a hobby, after all, so no one can spot shoddy workmanship quite like us!

This is an Eddie Bauer dress I got as part of my haul. Knowing quality brands when thrifting can really help you avoid purchasing cheap clothes that fall apart after a few wears. This dress is super soft and even the drawstring is high quality. It just feels really good to wear because of how well it’s made, the great fit and the nice, expensive-feeling fabric. (My shoes are White Mountain, similar here).

Thrift store haul! Dress #1. Come see how I think sewing has made me a better thrifter. | PIn, Cut, Sew Studio

We know what we like

When you spend your free time sewing your own clothing, you know what looks good and what doesn’t. Part of what people find frustrating or annoying about thrift shopping is that it’s such a hunt, you have to see everything to find the gems. However, when you shop with filters like quality fabrics, favorite brands, and styles you know look good on you, it’s easy to quickly pass over the junk to find the treasures. If I spot a high quality, nice brand sweater, but it has dolman sleeves that I know I don’t look good in, I move right along and remind myself someone else is going to get a real nice sweater because I passed it up.

Denim skirts and t-shirts seem like basics, but not all are created equal and not every jean skirt and not every t-shirt is going to flatter every body. I’m always on the lookout for a perfectly-shaped (for me) skirt and I scored this denim Gap skirt and Nike tee (new with tags and only .99 because of the sale!) as part of my haul on Saturday. (Find similar to my cute pink Nikes slides here).

Thrift store haul!  Come see how I think sewing has made me a better thrifter. | PIn, Cut, Sew Studio

We can alter and mend

This might be one of the best perks about being a sewing thrift shopper! So many people just give up on their nice clothes when they lose a button or rip a seam. Because we who sew can easily repair those minor flaws, we can score some great clothes for good deals. Also, simple alterations are easy for us to do and we can envision those needed alterations when trying on thrifted clothes. A too-long dress is not problem! Easy fix.

I got this top as part of my haul and it’s from Hollister. Not a store I would walk into to shop without my teen daughters (or with probably, if I’m being honest, haha), but I do love me some embroidery! It’s a little too swingy on me, I think, but I can just take hose side seams in if I decide to.

Thrift store haul! Come see how I think sewing has made me a better thrifter. | PIn, Cut, Sew Studio

We know what we’ll actually wear.

I had a friend once assume I have a huge wardrobe and was surprised when I told her I take up the least amount of closet space of anyone in our family. The difference is that I wear absolutely everything I keep, where most women have a closet full of clothes, but wear the same 10 things over and over. Because we spend valuable time making garments, it’s much more of a bummer when you find you never reach for some of them.

When I thrift shop, just like when I plan sewing projects, I consider what I actually wear on a daily basis. That’s why I always look in the tees, pants, hoodies, jackets and activewear sections of my thrift store. I was happy to find these Roxy joggers the other day. They’re nice quality fabric and I wore them all day on Sunday with no stretching out. I have a pair of black linen handmade joggers, but they’re definitely a lightweight Summer fabric. These will fill that hole for Fall!

Thrift store haul!  Come see how I think sewing has made me a better thrifter. | PIn, Cut, Sew Studio

I could probably write a dozen articles about ways sewing makes me a better fill-in-the-blank. What a great skill we have! Can you think of any other ways that you’re better at shopping because of your sewing life? I would love to hear what you would add to the list!

As for thrifting, I could write a dozen articles on that too. In recent months, we’ve found an Athleta linen jacket, these exact Adidas in like-new condition, Madewell jeans, a Victoria’s Secret swim suit with the tags still on and plenty more. Once you go thrifty, you’ll never go back! Lol, I just made that up, but it’s true.

Cheers!

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Bleach Dyed Denim Costa Tote

Does anyone else have to curb your enthusiasm for tote bag sewing? I love me a good tote bag pattern, but a gal can only use some many bags, right? I keep just a couple of favorite bags around, but when the free Costa Tote pattern showed up in my email from Helen’s Closet, I knew I had to make one soon.

I loved the cool denims that were used for the samples on the pattern, but I was having a hard time finding some and I wasn’t willing to spend much money to buy fancy denim. And that’s what spawned my recent bleach dying denim adventures! Kinda cool how projects roll into each other and new ideas are hatched when seeking creative sewing solutions.

I put two of those denim pieces to use to make a Costa Tote and I think I’m in love.

Costa Tote bag pattern from bleach dyed denim. || Pin Cut Sew Studio

This post contains affiliate links, which means that while I am not paid to promote certain items, I will earn a small commission should you purchase items through these links. For more info, see my disclosure policy.

I know this bag is pretty simple, but there are elements that make it just perfect. I absolutely love the deep pockets on both sides and the slanted shape of the pocket top adds interest. It’s also reversible, so those pockets can be inside if you want.

Costa Tote Bag pattern with bleach dyed denim. || PIn Cut Sew Studio

I really like the deeper hems at the top and on the pocket piece, I think the top stitching there looks really nice. You can see that I used straps purchased by the yard from Hobby Lobby for this version. I also shortened the top by 2”, just due to personal preference. This was easy to do, since sewing the top seam is the final step, so you can try it on for size before deciding to shorten it or now.

One more thing to note, it’s a big bag, so it takes more fabric than you might imagine. Keep that in mind when shopping around!

All in all, this bag is PERFECTION. Grab the pattern from Helen’s closet and go make yourself one! I’ve taken it to the pool and the library more than once already and I can definitely see it going on trips with me in the future, plus being put to use for my homeschool co op, where I’ll be teaching drama and creative writing this year. I also think I’ll sew a few for Christmas gifts, I know the ladies in my family would love these. If I were going to purchase some denim to make another, it would definitely be this one!

Do you have a favorite bag pattern? Please share!

I tie-dyed denim with bleach and used it to make a Costa Tote bag! Come see the details :) || Pin Cut Sew Studio
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I made a dress for $4.00!

I made a dress, thought I didn’t like it, got rid of the pattern, salvaged the dress, regretted tossing the pattern, then couldn’t find the pattern number anywhere!!

Ugh, sometimes my minimalistic tendencies backfire and this is one of those times! But the bright side is, I made a dress, I love it, and it only cost me $4!

This post contains affiliate links, which means that while I am not paid to promote certain items, I will earn a small commission should you purchase items through these links.  For more info, see my disclosure policy.

Sewing doesnt’t have to break the bank! If you’re sewing on a budget like me, I have tips for you! | Pin, Cut, Sew Studio

I got this fabric at my local thrift store for $3.99. It actually cost less than that because my thrift store has a 20% military discount! It’s a nice rayon i a gorgeous color and there were about 2 yards. The pattern was given to me by a friend who wasn’t really sewing clothing any more and needed to offload her pattern stash, so it was free. I wish I could tell you the pattern number, but alas, I cannot find it! I got rid of the pattern because I actually made this dress months ago and just felt like it was kinda frumpy. I got rid of the pattern! Dumb, because last weekend, I tried this dress on and decided all it really needed was to be two inches shorter. I made the alteration and ended up LOVING this dress, I felt great in it all day and my husband even commented on how much he likes this one. (I also like sleeveless dresses better when I have a tan, which I didn’t have when I first made it, haha).

So, I’m pretty sure I remember it being a Vogue pattern, but I looked at all 338 dress patterns on Vogue’s website and cannot find it. It’s probable that it’s out of print, since I have no idea how long my friend had it before giving it to me. If you have this pattern and can help me out with the pattern number, I will update this post!

But anyway …

If you’re sewing on a budget like me and get frustrated that it seems like an expensive hobby, be encouraged by this post, because a little creativity in how you acquire your materials can go a long way in keeping you in the sewing room. I’ve written a tip-filled article about frugal sewing, which you can read here, or by clicking on the photo below.

What are your best money saving tips for sewing? And what’s the best deal you’ve ever gotten on a piece of fabric?? We want to hear about it in the comments!

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Third time’s the charm: How I FINALLY found the perfect cami pattern.

Why am I always surprised that the most basic of garments are the ones that are often the hardest to get right? I guess the upside is that the hunt for the perfect tried-and-true pattern for these kinds of clothes makes it that much sweeter when you finally land on that perfect design!

This post may contain affiliate links, which means that while I am not paid to promote certain items, I will earn a small commission should you purchase items through these links. For more info, see my disclosure policy.

I tried three different patterns before finally finding the one that worked for me! || Pin, Cut, Sew Studio

Such was the case with my cami pattern saga. Ever since the Ogden Cami pattern came out, I’d been wanting to try to make some similar tops to add to my wardrobe. I mean, what’s hard about a basic v-neck camisole? Should be easy to find or adapt a pattern, right?? Wrong! I don’t but a lot of Indie patterns both because of the cost and the unpredictability, so I grabbed a vintage pattern from my drawer with similar lines and gave it a try. It’s beautiful! But, the fit is all wrong. The neckline is too wide and too low (I probably made a size too big; this was before my always-make-a-muslin days) and the back had a ton of extra fabric, even after I added French darts. I used Liberty fabric for it, though, so I’m still not ready to toss it in the bin. I still think I can make it better, so it’s currently sitting on my sewing desk awaiting a light bulb moment. You might remember this cami from this recent post. I love how the fabric scraps add interest to the binding and straps!

Sewing camis || Pin, Cut, Sew Studio

After that disheartening experience, I waited a few months and then decided to go ahead and buy the Ogden Cami pattern. I mean, sewists everywhere are OBSESSED with this pattern. And with good reason, it’s beautiful! It seems to work for everyone and the pattern hacking potential is endless. I whipped up my first version using the fabric from a thrifted full skirt my daughters outgrew. I made a muslin, made a full bust adjustment adding darts (when will I learn?) and went ahead and cut my fabric.

Sewing Camis || PIn, Cut, Sew Studio

I ended up taking the side seams in and giving them shape, giving more of a curve to the center back seam AND eliminating the half-length facing, as it just got hung up on my bust every time I moved my arms. I cut it into a normal facing and top stitched it 2” from the top. In the end, I do wear this cami, but only under a cardigan, because even after all that, the arm holes are too big and show my bra. (This is not a rant against the Ogden Cami pattern, it’s clearly a wonderful pattern. It’s not you, it’s me, Ogden Cami).

I’d spent money on that darn pattern though, so I wasn’t ready to give up on it. I made a second go of it a few months later, altering the arm holes and drafting a new front facing for it. This version is just ok too. The pattern is just not right for me and after all those alterations, it’s a different design than the Ogden Cami altogether.

Sewing Camis

I am not a quitter, though! I had made a dress several months ago that just hadn’t worked out, but I’d kept it in the drawer hoping I could use the fabric somehow. The skirt part was just big enough for another try at a cami. Digging through my drawer, I came up with McCall’s 2219, one I’d thrifted years ago and made the cut when I cleaned out my patterns last year. I think it’s out of print, but not super old, so not at all hard to find on Amazon or Etsy.

The perfect cami pattern || PIn, Cut, Sew Studio

The reason I’d overlooked it before was because it’s a bias cut design and I’ve been using small bits of fabrics for these camis, nothing big enough to cut pieces out on the bias. BUT, since I’d made those other camis, I had learned that if the pattern has bust darts (this one includes them!), then a cami will fit fine cut on the straight of grain. I cut it out, barely having enough and wouldn’t you know it …

The perfect cami pattern || PIn, Cut, Sew Studio

This pattern fit, FIRST TRY!!! No alterations required. I love the V neckline, and notice how much coverage the straps give me. The facing is exactly the style I had drafted for my Ogden Cami and the length is perfect. Now that I have a basic pattern to go to, I can hack this into other designs. A straight across neckline will be first, I think, then maybe a dress!

So, here’s what I learned. Once again, just because a pattern seems to be great on everyone else, doesn’t necessarily mean it will be great on me. I knew better than to buy a pattern without bust darts and with such floaty lines, when what I wanted was something completely different and more fitted. And I knew better than to try that first vintage pattern without making a muslin.

Lessons. Learned.

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Before you throw that sewing project in the trash ...

Every now and then, despite my careful muslin making, I sew a project that just flops. Either the fit is all wrong, it’s just the wrong shape on me, or the fabric was the wrong choice for the pattern.

Recently I made a dress that I came really close to throwing in the trash.

This post may contain affiliate links, which means that while I am not paid to promote certain items, I will earn a small commission should you purchase items through these links. For more info, see my disclosure policy.

I came so close to throwing this dress in the trash before I ever finished it! Come read how I salvaged it and what I learned. || Pin, Cut, Sew Studio

I’m always excited when Jalie releases new patterns and I bought the Michele Tank and Dress pattern almost right away and made a muslin of the bodice only. I knew this look wouldn’t be flattering on me without some shaping, so I took my time adding a full bust adjustment and even French darts in the front and back bodice.

Once I had it right, I cut out the dress from a rayon fabric I had. I didn’t have quite enough fabric for the lining, though! So I went to the thrift store and found a white rayon skirt full enough to do the job.

I got the dress sewn and it just looked awful on me. I’m short waisted and broad through the ribcage, so this floaty, almost babydoll design did not flatter, despite all my fitting work (though that bodice fit darn perfect, haha). I decided to try adding elastic to the inside waist seam allowance, but you know how braided elastic can stretch out when you try zig zagging it on … womp, womp.

I was bummed, but instead of tossing in the trash like I wanted to, I put it in my fabric drawer thinking I could salvage the skirt portion to sew something else in the future.

Fast forward a couple months and I dug the dress out of my drawer and on a whim, tried it on. You guys, it was sooo NOT as bad as I had thought! LOL! If the waistband could be more fitted, I’d totally wear this dress and the perfectly fitted bodice wouldn’t have to go to waste! I recently learned a new technique for attaching elastic to the seam allowance in a way that will hold it’s form, so I unpicked the zig zag, shortened the elastic by a few inches and resewed it using my serger.

Jalie Michele tanks and dress pattern. || PIn, Cut, Sew Studio

Perfect.

I hemmed the dress and wore it the next day. I learned a few things from this experience:

  1. First, never toss a project when you’re mad at it! Put away and come back to it later. Even if it’s still awful, you can use that fabric for something else!

  2. Don’t trust your initial feelings! In my defeat, I remembered that dress looking horrible, but when I tried it on again, it was not bad at all. Sometimes putting things aside and looking at them with new eyes can make a huge difference.

  3. I only just learned the elastic technique I needed to make this work. This goes to show once again, no matter how long you’ve been sewing, there are always new things to learn.

  4. Trust your gut with patterns. Just because it looks cute on everyone else doesn’t mean it will work for you (I’m lookin’ at you, Ogden Cami). I know what works on me and what doesn’t and I should have sought out a similar pattern with the right lines and the shaping I needed. In the end I made this one work, but that’s definitely not always the case!

I’m glad I didn’t toss this project in the heat of the moment and I hope I can remember these things when I feel like a project is a total failure in the future!

Side note: I’ve only just begun wearing bike shorts under my summer dresses. I know many people have done this their entire lives, but I am new to the bandwagon and I am loving it. I feel less fearful of every slight breeze, ha! They also just stay put under dresses better. I had one pair already, but needed another, so I ordered these and like them, so I thought I’d recommend them to you all and save you the trouble of wading through all the reviews!




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How Inspecting Store Bought Garments Can Improve Your Sewing Technique

I’ve been experimenting with some pattern mashing lately and so far most things have turned out pretty great! One example is this favorite garment and this dress I’m sharing today is another. I learned a few things from this project and I’m happy to share my light bulb moments with you!

I was really wanting a casual and easy summer dress. I’m set for church dresses, but more easy weekday dresses would fill a gap for me. I scored the rest of some beautiful brushed poly knit fabric at Hobby Lobby. It was being clearanced out so I got it super cheap and bought all that was left.

I thumbed through my pattern stash and couldn’t find any knit dress patterns that sung to me for this project, BUT, I did have a Burda knit top pattern I’d made before and like and thought I could hack it into a dress. Thankfully, it worked!

This post may contain affiliate links, which means that while I am not paid to promote certain items, I will earn a small commission should you purchase items through these links. For more info, see my disclosure policy.

I made a mash up a Burda top pattern and an Old Navy dress and learned some new techniques along the way! Come see how inspecting your rtw clothes can improve your sewing skills. || Pin, Cut, Sew Studio

A few notes on how I accomplished this mash-up. I have an Old Navy knit dress that I really like the fit of, so I measured the length of that bodice, using the measurement to fold my pattern pieces up to reflect that bodice length. I sewed the bodice as instructed, I only made a minor change in the neckline finish.

For the skirt, I used that Old Navy dress to draft the skirt by tracing it directly onto my fabric, pulling the waistline taught to get the correct measurement. (This is my favorite tracing tool of all time). I cut two, so the front and back skirt are the same. To my surprise, the skirt is more like a quarter circle skirt, not a gathered rectangle like I’d assumed and probably would have cut if I hadn’t bothered inspecting my Old Navy dress. I don’t think I would have been as happy with that result, so the lesson here is to inspect well-fitting RTW clothing more often!

The Old Navy dress also had an interesting technique for the waistline elastic that I copied and loved. Usually patterns for knits with elasticized waists will have you make a casing out of the seam allowance and draw the elastic through, but I always find that bulky and shifty. Other patterns will have you zig zag the elastic to the seam after it’s sewn, but I find the elastic stretches out too much and I often end up unpicking it to shorten the elastic and resewing. My Old Navy dress, however, had that elastic serged right into the seam. So once I’d pinned my skirt to my bodice, I cut elastic about 85% of the seam’s circumference (I used 1/4” braided). I marked it in quarters, pinned it to the waistline at those marks and serged the whole seam in one go. It worked awesome, I will always use that method from now on!

Burda 6428 meets Old Navy. Come see how I mashed a top pattern with an Old Navy dress and what I learned along the way! || PIn, Cut, Sew Studio

While we’re on the subject of serging, I cannot recommend my Juki serger enough. I’ve had it for over 6 years and it’s been a dream the entire time. I’ve never once needed to get it serviced! If you’re on the fence about getting a serger, take the leap, you will not regret it. And if they fancy ones are out of your budget, give Juki a try, it’s very budget friendly.

I’m sure I’m not the only sewist who takes a careful look at their own clothes or clothing at stores to see how they’re made. I scored an Athleta linen moto jacket at the thrift store a few weeks ago and I was wearing it at church and caught myself marveling over how they finished the cuff plackets on the sleeves, ha! (It had godets! So interesting!) Do you have stories of things you’ve learned from store bought items? Have you ever taken photos of clothes at the store to copy them at home? (guilty). Tell me about it in the comments :)

Cheers!

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The easiest top you'll ever sew!

This post may contain affiliate links, which means that while I am not paid to promote certain items, I will earn a small commission should you purchase items through these links. For more info, see my disclosure policy.

Awhile back I wrote a blog post about the Mexican Huipil that I scored at a thrift store. It’s still one of my favorite tops, though now that I know how much hand embroidery and care probably went into making it, I wear and wash it a bit less often, in the hopes it will last longer!

I’ve been wanting to copy the shape of this top for awhile and since I had a piece of rayon that was only about a yard, I thought it was a good time to try it.

Now I can truly say, this is the easiest top ever!! Anyone can draft a rectangle and that’s seriously all it is. A rectangle with a neckline. The back and front are the same.

Let me show you my finished top first and then I’ll show you how I did it and how easy it is, so you can try it too.

How to make a rectangle top. Super easy, anyone can do it! || Pin, Cut, Sew Studio

The cool thing about this being the same on the front and back is that you can get creative about the hemline and the trim, if you decide to add some. I had a small length of lace leftover from this (my most-worn garment this summer!) So it was enough to trim the front hem, but not the back. But it turned out to be a cool design feature! I can reverse the top and do a front tuck so that lace is in the back. I can’t decide which way I like it better.

How to make a rectangle top. So easy anyone can do it! || PIn, Cut, Sew Studio

Ok, here’s how you can draft a rectangle top for yourself. This isn’t so much of a full tutorial with step by step photos, but I think it’s enough info. And it’s just super easy, I think anyone could figure this out!

To cut the right size rectangle, you need to decide how long you want it. Mine is 27” in length (that includes 1” for seam allowance and hem. For the width, take your hip measurement and add 1”. Divide that number by four. My hips measure 39”, so after adding an inch and then dividing by 4, my rectangle’s width is 10”. Here’s my finished rectangle, for a visual.

How to draft a rectangle top. So easy, anyone can do it!

Ok, next draft your neckline. Measure 3” from the center front and 7” down from the top. Simply create a curve using the above photo as a guide.

You can see I have two notches on the side seam of my rectangle, one is 8.5” from the top and the other is 5” up from the bottom. When you sew your side seams, sew in between the notches, then narrow hem the sleeves and the slits. The slits help the top fit over your widest part (your hips) without making the top really wide everywhere else, so I wouldn’t leave them off unless you’re very narrow in the hips.

So here are the steps in order:

  1. Sew your shoulder seams.

  2. Stay stitch the neckline to prevent stretching.

  3. Finish the neckline with your preferred method. I made a bias binding and turned it to the inside and stitched.

  4. Sew your side seams between notches and press open.

  5. Narrow hem your arm holes and side slit openings.

  6. Hem the top and add trim if you want.

Done! If you have questions, I’d be happy to help further!

I’m a little baffled about why this basic rectangle top fits so well, when everything else seems to needs darts and adjustments up the wazoo for it to fit me right. But I guess I won’t question it ;)

I’d be thrilled if you pinned this graphic to come back to for later and for others to share too!

How to draft and sew a rectangle top. So easy, anyone can do it! || PIn, Cut, Sew Studio
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A Woven Cardigan and Hair Care Talk

This post may contain affiliate links, which means that while I am not paid to promote certain items, I will earn a small commission should you purchase items through these links. For more info, see my disclosure policy.

I am soooo happy with my latest make, you guys, I have literally worn it for the last three days in a row! I think I need a second one so I have one to wash and one to wear, ha!

Lemme just show you a photo, first thing.

Woven cardigan with Simplicity 8601 & 8707

(Find similar shoes here and my tank here — I highly recommend!)

I love this for so many reasons! I realized how great it can be to have a kimono style “topper” in the Summer, when you either want to protect against chill, sun, or just be more covered. I have worn my yellow chiffon kimono quite a bit, much more than I thought I would, but it’s honestly not the most flattering shape on me because of the drop shoulders and wide sleeves. I’m already pretty broad for my size through my upper body, so the kimono definitely adds more width.

I had the idea to make something similar, but with normal set in sleeves, when I was eyeing a woven cardigan my daughter has that she got at a thrift store. Hers has cute tie details on the sleeves and I had a light bulb moment! I remembered Simplicity 8601 has those tie details and that pattern was already in my stash and I’ve made it a couple times.

Woven Cardigan: Simplicity 8601 & Simplicity 8707 || Pin, Cut, Sew Studio

So, I used the kimono pattern, Simplicity 8707 and mashed it up with Simplicity 8601 in order to make myself a version of this cardigan. My method was as you’d expect, I used the main pieces of 8601, adding length and then altering the front pieces by placing the front of Simplicity 8707 on top and tracing that front line onto my fabric. The sleeves I cut as normal, of course.

Some additional details: I flat felled the seams in order to have the insides look nice and I bound the back neckline with denim bias tape. Not only does it look nice, it’s much stronger that way. I left slits in the sides about six inches from the bottom and added a pretty lace from Hobby Lobby. Oh, and my fabric is a rayon from Colorado Fabrics in Denver.

Flat felled seams: Woven cardigan with Simplicity Patterns || PIn, Cut, Sew Studio

I’m definitely serious about making a second version. This one truly goes with most things in my closet and it’s already proving so handy. I’m being quite picky about the fabric, though, so I’ll have to sew other things until I find the right fabric. A soft lace one would be pretty and I do have a piece in my stash, but I don’t think it’s enough. We’ll see!

Moving on! Sometimes I come across things that are unrelated to sewing, but I still feel are worth sharing with you because I think they’re awesome! And after all, anyone who sews clothing probably cares about fashion and therefore possibly also cares about hair care, right? So you see, it fits.

I have two hair products to recommend. I have naturally curly hair. A few times in my life, however, due to hormonal freak-outs, I lost a ton of hair. The first time that happened, it grew back pretty straight. The second time it happened, it grew back curly again. I was forced to cut it short and it was ridiculous to deal with for a solid year. But anyway, long story short, I acquired an awesome hair stylist, she helped me through this process and my hair is now healthy and curly again, not to mention thicker than it’s ever been. She recently sold me this curly hair product called KMS Curl Up Mousse. You only use a little and apply it to wet hair. When it dries, you have soft, not frizzy or crunchy, curls. I just noticed they also have this curl cream, which I think I’ll for sure order.

The second thing is a hair dryer. Mine died recently and I used this one at a hotel and loved it. I took a pic and ordered it when I got home. It’s compact and folds up, so easy to travel with, and the cord retracts. The cord is not super long, which I prefer, so it doesn’t become a twisted mess. It also has three speeds instead of two! So, while I find I usually air dry my hair now, it’s nice to have a good hair dryer when I need it!

I’m a pretty basic beauty routine gal, so when I find good things, I like to share! What are your go-to personal care products? If you have anything you swear by, I’d love to hear about it.

One last thing. Prime day is coming! If you are not an Amazon Prime member, you can snag a free trial just in time to get the good deals on July 15th & 16th. I’ll be sure and post the best deals for crafters as it gets closer!

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Black Rayon Linen Jacket: New Look 6351

This post may contain affiliate links, which means that while I am not paid to promote certain items, I will earn a small commission should you purchase items through these links. For more info, see my disclosure policy.


We’re currently on vacation in Colorado, seeing family since my husband recently returned from deployment. We’ve spent some time in Denver with my family and seeing friends (we both grew up here, met and married here) and today we’re heading down to Pueblo where his family lives. Every day has been so full, but in a good way!

So I’m just popping in to share a jacket with you that I made a few months ago, actually, but that’s gotten more wear than possibly anything else in this season’s handmade wardrobe.

This is the final piece made from my black rayon linen score, following the joggers and the dress.

New Look 6351 out of rayon linen || PIn, Cut, Sew

The pattern is New Look 6351 and I absolutely love the easy shape of it. I have said before, I was wanting to have a few jackets to wear instead of wearing mostly cardigans and this has proven a good strategy. It’s gotten a ton of wear, casual and dressy. It adds class to nicer outfits, where a cardigan just wouldn’t do the same.

I only made a couple changes. I did make a muslin, even though it’s just a jacket and decided to take some vertical wedges out of the back pattern piece from the hem to the middle back so that the bottom of the back fits closer to my body. This was the perfect decision, the back fit is my favorite! I also chose not to interface the collar piece because I wanted a more loose look than a crisp one.

Black linen jacket: New Look 6351 || Pin, Cut, Sew Studio

There are some great rayon linen fabrics on Amazon if you’re considering trying this kind of fabric! Like this one, this one and this one ( my favorite!) I think I’ve proven how versatile it is and if I had to choose a favorite fabric, rayon linen might be my choice, especially for summer!

In other news, I finally began a new Instagram account just for sewing! I will get around to changing the links here in the sidebar, etc … in the next week, but for now, please follow me @PinCutSew. You can also just click on the linked photo below. Cheers!

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Rayon Linen Dress: Simplicity 2591

This post may contain affiliate links, which means that while I am not paid to promote certain items, I will earn a small commission should you purchase items through these links.  For more info, see my disclosure policy.

I wrote awhile back about a large cut of Nicole Miller rayon linen fabric I got for so little money, it felt too good to be true. After I made those linen joggers (still going strong in my wardrobe!) I wanted to make a dress out of the same fabric.

Unfortunately, Simplicity 2592 is out of print, but oftentimes you can find oop patterns on Etsy, so if you’re interested in this pattern, try that. There’s not really another one like it out there currently that I’ve seen, so I’m so glad I kept this pattern! I’ve actually made this dress several times before, I’ll try to dig up those photos and put them at the end of this post.

Anyway, here’s my dress. I’ve gotten quite a bit of wear out of it already, it goes for any occasion, really, and can be dressed up or casual. Also, pockets ;)

Rayon Linen black dress: Simplicity 2591 || Pin, Cut, Sew Studio

I did a massive clean out of my sewing patterns about six months ago and it made a huge difference in my sewing workflow in ways I didn’t really expect. At the time, I was working on cutting down on decision fatigue in my daily life, so I cleaned out my wardrobe and pretty much every cupboard and corner of my house. I was left with one drawer of patterns and it’s so nice to have fewer choices. It’s easier to picture those patterns hacked into other things and easier to picture a pattern in my stash as I’m shopping for projects. Also, because I’ve actually made probably two thirds of the patterns in my drawer, I have a great collection of tried and true patterns.

This dress is definitely one of those tried and true. Even though my style has changed quite a bit since these early versions, it’s still such a classic dress. (It’s so crazy pulling these old photos. They’re from only about 5-7 years ago, but I feel like I look like a totally different person!)

Simplicity 2591 || Pin, Cut, Sew Studio

Do you have any tried and true patterns? Are you a large pattern stash person, or a small pattern stash person? Do tell.

Cheers!

Rayon Linen black dress, simplicity 2591 || PIn, Cut, Sew Studio
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Kimono Style: Simplicity 8707

This post may contain affiliate links, which means that while I am not paid to promote certain items, I will earn a small commission should you purchase items through these links.  For more info, see my disclosure policy.

I’ve had a piece of chiffon from Hobby Lobby’s 2018 Spring fashion line for awhile now. I think I bought it to make a ballet skirt for one of my girls, but who wants to hem a chiffon circle skirt? I avoided that for the following year and just decided to make a simple kimono for myself instead.

I used Simplicity 8707 because it was already in my stash and as I was making it, I kept thinking, “this probably won’t look great on me, I probably will never wear it”. Well, the joke’s on me because I made it last week and have worn it three times!

Sew a Kimono: Simplicity 8707

This was an instant gratification project, it took maybe two hours from cut to finish. I added a vintage 60’s lace to the bottom and it’s the perfect touch. There are so many great things about a kimono in the summer! It’s lightweight enough so you’re never hot, but can protect you from a cool breeze, or keep you from getting sunburned when you’re out. If you’re self conscious about the backs of your legs as many women are, you can wear your shorts with a kimono and feel totally covered. I wore it to church to add color to a pretty plain dress yesterday. I’ve even worn it as a robe in the evenings. Let’s just say I hope this is a fashion trend that sticks around!

Kimono sewing inspiration, Simplicity Pattern 8707

There are a lot of great kimono patterns out there right now! Here’s what I could find:

As for fabrics, lightweight choices are the best, for sure. I’d go with a chiffon, silk chiffon, rayon challis, or anything flowy. Hobby Lobby has some good choices in their spring fashion line. Here’s a secret to Hobby Lobby fabric shopping. They receive a new line of fashion fabrics twice a year, for Spring and Fall. There are always amazing choices and the prices are unbeatable. They often go on sale, or you can use your 40% off coupon with their app. BUT, they don’t restock these fabrics once they’re gone and they don’t sell them online, so if you’re there and fall in love with something in the seasonal garment sewing line, buy it!

If you don’t have a Hobby Lobby, don’t worry ;) Fabric.com’s partnership with Amazon is the best thing to happen in the sewing world since rotary cutters. Ha!

Here are a few affordable choices for your kimono:

And lastly, here is some great inspiration for your kimono!

Kimono inspiration

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I definitely want to make another one or two for this Summer!

Cheers :)

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