CWE: A plethora of Lane Raglans (+pattern review)

The Hey June Lane Raglan has quickly become one of my favorite patterns! I have made three so far and plan to make a few more in the next couple of weeks (or months) if time allows. It is a super quick and easy sew and, depending on what material you choose, can look and feel super casual or super dressy.

My three versions range that whole spectrum with a super casual version made from $4.99 white knit fabric form hobby, a mid level casual grey version with a heathered jersey from a local fabric outlet, and dressy camel version made from a think ponte knit purchased at my local JoAnn fabrics.

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CWE: The basic knit dress (+ pattern review)

I live in knits and dresses have quickly become my go-to for a quick, easy dressing choice. This dress, which is both made from a knit material and, obviously,a dress, just so happens to be one of my first successful clothing makes ever!

For the first projects in my capsule wardrobe experiment I wanted things that would be easy, functional, and versatile for my wardrobe. The cream knit fabric for this dress was purchased at my local Jo-Ann’s store and was meant to be used to make a wearable muslin version of this dress but it ended up  turning out so well I have been wearing it as is! The pattern is a McCall’s “Learn to Sew for Fun” pattern, number m7313, and was specifically designed for the beginner clothes maker, making it perfect for me! I feel confident in my quilting and bag making skills but for some reason, making clothing has always challenged me, especially when it comes to getting the right fit. 

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Sewing My Own Clothes, a Capsule Wardrobe Experiment

I have been on a journey lately that I honestly thought that I never would be on. I have seen YouTube videos on minimalism, heard how AMAZING the Life Changing Magic Tidying Up is, and listened to friends rave all about how their life is so much more amazing now that they threw away all of their things but I honestly thought it was a load of crap, and part of me still does really, but I am coming around just the tiniest little bit. I am by no means a minimalist, and never intend to be, but I have been making a conscious effort to be much more intentional and frankly conscious about what I am allowing into my life and my home.

For me this journey started with letting go of certain people and relationships and removing a lot of the negativity in my life that way. This felt slightly isolating at first, I will admit, and at times it can still be hard but I think it is the best thing that I have ever done for my own health.

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Five Quick Sewing Projects for When You Have No Time to Sew

I think every one who loves to sew wishes they had more time to commit to it. I don’t think I have ever met anyone who creates anything really that doesn’t want more time to devote to their passion. For me obviously that passion is sewing but, as I have mentioned in about all of my previous posts, I have had really little time to dedicate to sewing lately.

When I do have time its really only in quick half-hour chunks or a quick few minutes in between all of the other things that I have to do on a daily basis. I shared a while back that I am in the process of making a quick, one block at a time, but repetition is never something that I have liked very much and I have found myself searching for other quick and easy projects that I can accomplish in a small amount of time. Five of these quick and easy projects have really stuck out to me and of course I just had to share them with you all as well! They are all projects that would be great for beginner as well so bonus points for that too!

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Revisiting an old favorite: Sampler Quilt

A few weeks back I spent some time revisiting some of my favorite makes from back when I started sewing. I couldn’t help but think of a sampler quilt that was one of the first “large” products I made. Looking at it now, it really wasn’t very good (the points were off and the colors didn’t match) but I was so proud of it at the time. Nostalgia hit and I had the hankering to make another one so… I did. But smaller!

I followed this block- of-the-month pattern, using leftover HSTs from my quilt block machine cover. I loved the colors in that piece so much that I figured a little, matching quilt to hang on the wall in the sewing room that I will one day have couldn’t hurt. 

The pattern is fairly simple and the whole thing took about two days to make and I love it just as much as I thought I would. Now to get working on that craft room!

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Sewing As Therapy: Love all Around Blocks

This last month and a half has been an absolute whirlwind. From starting a new job, buying a car, and trying to keep up with  every changing politics, January and the beginning of February proved to be more than stressful and its been quite a while since I have posted. Trying to be a productive member of society and a functional adult all at the some time proved more complicated than I was ready to handle.

Sewing has always been an outlet for me, a way to be creative and expressive in both a productive and intricate way. Lately it has become much more than that, however, it has become my way to practice self-care, to keep myself grounded and engaged it what is going on around me. Self care is a very common phrase in my own social circle, and I think its becoming more mainstream in general conversation, but all it really means is taking the time to take of yourself, in whatever way that means to you. For some people its a bubble bath with a glass of wine, for others it may be a walk in a local park with their dog, and, don’t get me wrong I love both of those things, but for me right now it definitely means hours of uninterrupted sewing.

Making short term projects, something like a dress or a bag, gives me a great sense of accomplishment and is my go-to when I have a longer time frame to commit to sewing on any given day, but having that large chunk of time doesn’t always happen. In an effort to make a bigger project smaller,  I have  started a long term project that I think is doing me even more good that a bunch of those smaller projects, a quilt from May Chappels Love All Around Block.

In my post about what projects I wanted to tackle in 2017, of of the big things on the list was a quilt. I originally wanted to make a sampler quilt but changed my mind when I decided to participate in sewing up SewCanShe’s monthly mini quilts and a tiny sampler quilt that I will be sharing soon. I still couldn’t get the idea of making a full size quilt however but I also knew that I really did not have the time or the space to commit to making one in a conventional way and time.

Instead I am making a couple blocks a week of this beautiful and meaningful pattern and, hopefully, by the end of the year I will have enough blocks for an entire quilt. What I have been doing so far its making a block for each time I am touched by the kindness of a stranger in my own life and a block for each time I find myself worrying about my own future, or the future of America. I am hoping for enough blocks to make a twin size finished quilt by the end of the year, but who knows, maybe I’ll end up with enough for a full or a queen size. So far I have about thirty blocks completed and more in the works every day it seems.

 

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Custom Sewing Machine Cover: Free Tutorial

Ever make a project that you are so pleased with that when it is done you just cant help but stare at it and smile? Because I just did! The project I am talking about of course is my new, beloved sewing machine cover for my always beloved sewing machine. It has slanted sides to fit snugly over the wide base of my Singer Curvy machine and the BEAUTIFUL (if I do say so myself..) quilting on the front just makes my heart happy every time I look at it.

The design of the cover is actually really simple, I mean it is just a lined, open, oddly shaped rectangle, but a sewing machine cover can do so much when it comes to streamlining the look of the space the machine occupies and protecting the machine. For me, my machine sits out on the desk directly across from the foot of my bed always. Living in a small apartment, there really is no other place for it and while I love the functionality of having it out and always ready to go, it doesn’t really fit with the polished, uncluttered feel I like to have in my living spaces. 

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Twisted Four Square Quilt Block Tutorial: Exclusive for Sew Uprising Followers

A new year means that it is time for a new tutorial designed exclusively for Sew Uprising blog followers! Today’s tutorial is for one of my favorite quilt blocks to sew, a twisted four corner block. It is a very simple quilt block, using only HSTs and full squares in the design, and is quick and easy to piece. Put a bunch of them together, however, and I just love the clean, geometric pattern it creates!

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Sewing To-Do list for 2017

I am a serious planner. I love developing a clear plan for what I am doing, where I am going, and how I am going to get there, no matter what my end goal is, whether it is a large scale project or my daily routine. It is a habit I have tried to kick before but now I am just embracing it as one of my many quirks. There is no use fighting who you really are right? So in the spirit of embracing my intense desire to over plan every aspect of my life, I sat down last week and planned the six sewing projects, some still rather vague and some very specific, that I want to accomplish most in 2017, and to help keep myself accountable I wanted to share them all with you too!

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SewCanShe Mini Quilt of the Month – January 2017

I am so excited for this new year and all of the projects it is going to bring! One of the big things on my to-do list this year was to make  a sampler quilt and potentially even follow along with a block if the month type project in the process. I was going to wait until later in the year to accept to accomplish this but, being me, I was way too impatient and was itching to start working on it ASAP.  I am forcing myself to know better than to commit to such a large project while I am still on the hunt for a new job. Instead I am commuting to a series of mini-projects, Mini Quilt’s of the Month!

When SewCanShe’s Mini Quilt of the Month post popped up on my Facebook feed I knew instantly that this would be a great compromise to my uncontrollable desire for a big project and my very real lack of of time. It helped that I had a stack of fat quarters that I had collected on my travels last summer sitting on the top of my stash, just begging to be worked into a project and it was breaking my heart to be letting them just sit there. I am hoping that I will have enough fabric to create most, if not all, of these little beauties throughout the year from that fabric so that I will end with a beautiful, matching set to display in the sewing room that I will one day possess. 

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