My Winter Module/// The Bottoms!

Today I have the bottoms for my winter module and they are both pants! I’m sewing up this module using only Fibre Mood patterns and will be recapping my whole experience in a couple of weeks.

First I have the Bea Culottes in this slub texture linen. I made the size 38 with no adjustments and am really happy with the fit. I had planned on lengthening these, but due to just a complete brain fart ended up having to cut them to the intended culotte length.

Which actually, I like! These are the most comfortable pants ever and I will be styling them like I would a skirt. I wanted to play with a more monochrome look and paired them with my Nikko turtleneck and I love how it looks.

I like the drape of these pants and they were pretty simple to sew up. The waist band is interesting with the buttons, they just open up completely to get in and out of, and the pleats are pretty in the front with darts in the back for shaping. I will wear these throughout the spring I’m sure!

Ok next is kind of boring, but oh so comfortable and completely wearable. The Benita Trousers are just wide leg elastic waist pants and I sewed them up in a couple of hours start to finish in this stretch cotton corduroy.

These are so basic but I think I will wear them a ton. It’s basically like wearing corduroy pajamas? I lengthened them and worried I should have lengthened them more, but actually this will work well with winter boots and keeping my pants out of the snow.

I’m wearing them with my first and favorite Toaster Sweater. I am warm, cozy, and still look put together. This is fashion in 2021 I think?!

I am always on the look for pants options that aren’t jeans and I’m happy to add these two to my closet! I’ll be back next week to share my topper and then my winter module is complete.

My Winter Module/// The Tops!

Today I’m sharing my three finished tops for my winter module! I’m using only patterns from Fibre Mood and I’m gathering all my thoughts and tips on using this magazine and will be sharing them in a few weeks. Let me know if you have any questions about Fibre Mood and I will either answer them or find an answer for you!

I’m going to go in order from least to most favorite and that means we will be starting with the Glory Top. I sewed up the size 38 in this beautiful Atelier Brunette Rayon and it was a dream to work with. I love the details of this pattern; the sleeves, that placket on the shoulder, and the gathering around the yoke.

However, I don’t really love how these details all look on me. It feels like a lot happening at my shoulder and the sleeves are too short. I have learned that I need to lengthen these patterns as most of them turned out too short. I will try and wear this as I love the fabric, but was a little disappointed with what the silhouette looks like on me.

The second top I have is the Bonnie. I love the color and texture of this crinkle cotton and and I sewed the size 38 with no modifications. This is a simple top and I loved the details of the sleeve and the side neckline. Again, it is too short, but I think the sleeves don’t look bad at this length. The directions for the pleating detail at the sleeve were pretty abysmal and it took searching other makes online to figure out that I just needed to sew them up like normal box pleats. Once I got it sorted out, I do love how they look!

I have it paired over a turtleneck here because I loved how they styled it in the magazine. I like how it looks and think it makes it more wearable for cold weather, but it does cause wrinkles. On its own, that isn’t a problem! I wasn’t sure while I was making this one, but it is incredibly comfortable and I can see myself wearing it a lot.

And my final top is my absolute favorite, the Alice Pullover. I made the size small in this gorgeous bamboo french terry. I would wrap myself in this fabric and just live in it every day if I could. It feels so luscious! This is a really simple pattern, I think I sewed it up in a couple of hours. But while it on the surface seems like just a sweatshirt pattern, the deep V in the back and the wide neckline make it so lovely. It reminds me of something I would wear in a ballet class, I love how it highlights your neck. I’ve been wearing it quite a bit and just love it.

I’m pretty happy with all these makes and it was easy to find pieces in my closet to pair them with, and that’s really the point of this module. Yes, they will all work together, but they need to easily fit into my wardrobe. I like that all three of these tops are different from anything I own and that Fibre Mood is able to take seemingly basic designs and add unique details.

My Winter Module: The Dress!

Last week I shared my Winter Module plans and I’m happy to be back today to share my first make of this collection, the dress!

This is the Daniella Dress from issue 12 of Fibre Mood. I have a lot of thoughts about working with patterns from this magazine and I’m working on compiling them to put into one blog post. Please let me know if you have any specific questions, about this company or working with sewing magazines in general, and I will answer them for you.

I sewed up the size 38 (though called a size 10 some places in the magazine?!) out of this cotton modal jersey knit in the color ‘desert rose.’ This is a really simple sew and came together very quickly. This is a basic dress but with a few interesting details that I think elevate it a bit.

I love that the turtleneck is a little oversized and the sleeves have a small puff detail to them that’s trendy but not too in your face. I really love the long cuff and gathering of the sleeves. It makes for a very pretty, drapey look.

This fabric is a little more clingy, be aware of that if you decide to sew with a modal, but I’m not unhappy with the fit of the dress. I think this would be a great work from home option if that’s something you are having to do. Incredibly comfortable but you’ll look put together on any zoom calls you have.

I’m happy I started with this simple dress to give myself some time to figure out working with Fibre Mood. I’ve already worn it with my thick leggings and boots and I loved how it looked!

Whit’s Reviews/// 5 out of 4 Patterns

I have my first pattern company review of the year and it’s a good one! A few people recommended I look at 5 out of 4 patterns, and I’m so glad I did. At first glance I thought, ok, lots of basic knit patterns for the whole family. But upon closer inspection I realized that each pattern is full of options and that these basics are fantastic building blocks for your or your kids’ or your partners’ wardrobe.

I decided to sew the Candy leggings (these also can be made into yoga pants) out of this loud tie dye knit I picked up from Fabric.com. I made the size small and the fit is pretty perfect. I decided to make the Taylor Racerback tank to go with the leggings so I could have a little lime green party outfit. This is also the size small and I’m debating on where I want to hem it. At first I thought it was too long, but after wearing it I kind of like it. I’m going to actually work out in it before I make a decision.

What impressed me with making these patterns was the amount of options for each pattern. The leggings have multiple waistband options, options for a gusset or half gusset, as well as two different options for color blocking or not. The tank can have a gathered back piece, can be an aline dress or a swingy dress. The instructions are fantastic and really clear to navigate with all the options (sometimes I think this isn’t done well with companies and all the options can get confusing). They have an active Youtube channel with sew alongs, a Facebook group, and a membership to help support you. All of that to say I think there is a lot of value in these patterns and I loved that I could get bundles of both of these patterns and will be making my daughter both of these patterns soon.

Ok, so I loved so much about my experience sewing these patterns, but what is the company like? I’m so happy to share Jessica’s answers to our community questions and I think you will love her answers as much as I do. Please enjoy!

What is your design background? When and why did you start making your own patterns?

I am self-taught. I started designing patterns in 2015.  At the time, I was breastfeeding twins and there were very few breastfeeding-friendly patterns on the market. So, my first pattern was the Knot Your Average Shirt and Dress.  I also have a few personal fit issues and loathe shopping, so designing my own clothes was a win-win.  I got to design patterns I wanted to see in the world, but the act of sewing helped calm my anxiety. 

Who do you design for? Who is your Target Audience?

I am very much the girl next door and I design for the practical family.  We may not be flashy, but I love being able to make my children comfortable clothes that fit them.  For myself, I really like the sporty-relaxed look, so I aim for crossover pieces that can be anything from a sports bra to swimsuit to a summer dress.  (Those are my favorite!)

What level of sewer do you design for?

5oo4 has patterns for every level of sewist. I am passionate about helping sewists improve their sewing and encouraging them to sew outside of their comfort zone.  We try and create an experience where they are comfortable pushing their skills to the next level.  We do this through a combination of a Basics line that focuses on new sewists and then encouraging them to try new things through sew-alongs, video tutorials, and our membership, the 5oo4 Family, is the ultimate place for growth. 

What is your price point and why?

For the first time in 6 years, we raised our prices this January to $12 per pattern (and $10 for our Basics line).  All of our patterns include projector files and layers, plus TONS of options.  Most of our women’s patterns include FBA bodices (and we’re updating the ones that don’t) and we have a lot of patterns with both maternity and nursing options included.  We do not offer add-on packs, we pack our patterns with tons of options instead!

What is your size range? Why did you pick this range? What is the size, cupsize, and height that you design your block on? Do you have plans on expanding or changing this range anytime soon?

Our women’s size range is XXS – 5XL. Our main block is a size medium and our plus size block is a size 3XL. We use a B-cup for our regular bodices and a D-cup across all sizes for our FBA bodices. As for height- the easy answer is to say 5’7″, but we really push our sewists to understand that one person’s 5’7″ is NOT the same as another person’s, so please don’t focus on height. We have an excellent resource on our blog about why we educate sewists in this area.  Our men’s size range is XS – 6XL.  Our kids’ size range is 0-3months – 14. We aim to be as inclusive as possible and are working to update our older patterns (that stop at 3XL). 

Do you support Black Lives Matter? What are some ways that you are anti-racist and inclusive in your company on a day to day basis?

Yes, I support Black Lives Matter. I am vocal in my support. As a company, we monitor and deal with hate speech and/or racist comments. We have an open dialogue in our groups and encourage education.

Is there anything else you would like people just discovering your company to know?

We are also supportive of the LGBTQ+ community and welcome testers to test any product they would like to wear. We do not aim to exclude any portion of the community. 

We are hoping to diversify our testing pool this year. If you or a loved one would like to be a part of our tester pool, we welcome inquiries at info@5outof4.com.  

Pretty great right? Go check out 5 out of 4 patterns. There are pictures of all their patterns on all types of people, sizes, ages, I just love it. And after sewing two of their patterns, I can honestly say I love this company too! If you are wanting to add some great knits to you or your kids’ or your partners’ closet, start with them. 5 out of 4 patterns gets the Whit Makes seal of approval!

Mini Me Sewing

I had so much fun sewing for my kids last year that I’ve decided to try and make it a monthly thing. Seeing how fast they are growing, I don’t think this will be an issue!

This month I made my daughter a comfy tie dye sweatsuit. I used the Hudson Minis (I’ve made these now multiple times for all the kids, my husband, and for all of our Christmas pajamas!) for the bottoms and sewed a straight size 10.

The top is a Sloane Sweater from Love Notions in the size 10 with the kangaroo pockets and hoodie options added to version B in a straight size 10. I think this is a little roomy on her, but for a sweatshirt I think that’s fine and she can get more wear out of it.

This fabric is a Telio Rayon Blend French Terry from Fabric.com and it is lightweight but very soft and cozy. I love that the tie dye is a little more subtle (wait until you see my make tomorrow! Tie dye galore!) and she loves the color.

This make took me a couple of hours this weekend and the second it was off the sewing machine she had it on and only took it off when I forced her to bathe! I would call that a success.

I will absolutely keep making these patterns and highly recommend for comfy, functional kids’ clothes that have a lot of options for making different versions.

My First Coat! A Review of V9136

It’s here! My first coat! I am so happy with how this turned out and it has got me motivated to try more coats. I have had this pattern, Very Easy Vogue 9136, in my stash for awhile and it was a great first coat pattern to sew. It is very oversized, drop shoulders, patch pockets, and no lining. I love, LOVE, the collar on this coat and all the drama it brings.

I read a few reviews before getting stated and everyone said to size down, so even though my measurements put me right at a medium, I made the size small. I think it was the right call as it is still oversized but not too overwhelming. I did shorten the belt in the back by about an inch so that it would cinch in a bit more, but other than that I made this pattern exactly as called for in the instructions.

I bought this boiled wool blend coating in the color turmeric from Stylemaker Fabrics over Black Friday and was unsure if it was the right weight. In the end I think it works, but this coat could absolutely hold up a more substantial, thicker wool. I also think this coat would benefit from a lining and I don’t think it would be hard to do.

The construction of this coat is fairly straight forward and honestly it is a relatively simple make. I took the time to make fabric covered buttons and I love the look of them. There was much debate (online in reviews and in my house!) on the placement and number of buttons. This is an asymmetrical coat and the one button floating there bugs some. The solution has been to just add one more button above it. I didn’t do that, but it was a hot topic on the review boards.

The only part of this coat I don’t love is the back yoke facing. I didn’t have enough fabric (story of my life…) so I used a cotton in my stash. It is fine and no one will see it, but the self fabric would make the insides as pretty as the outsides. It’s also why there is a seam in the yoke, but that doesn’t bother me at all.

Other than that, I am very proud of this make. I didn’t know if I’d love the dropped shoulders but I will say this silhouette makes wearing a coat with sweaters and bulkier tops very practical. It is warm and cozy and I look forward to wearing it all winter long!

Like I said, this is a great beginning coat and it has got me revved up to keep going and try some new techniques. Next month I have a lined rain coat coming up and then a blazer after that. I think near the end of the year I may try another warm winter coat. I don’t know that I would ever make this particular pattern again any time soon, simply because it is just such a statement coat, but I do think it would work in a lot of different fabrics.

First Make of the Year!

This week has been a little crazy (and listen, I wrote this out before the crumbling of democracy yesterday…) The kids are home for a buffer week before going back to school and most of my days have been spent helping them with science fair projects (note to self; I never ever ever want to be a science teacher). I did get to slip in a few hours for some sewing, look at me actually making my resolutions happen!, and I’m happy to share my first make of 2021 with you.

This fabric has been in my stash for a few years now and I could just never commit to a project. It’s a gorgeous floral print, but the fabric was really narrow and that limited what it could be. I got in my head that it would make a beautiful Wilder Gown so I started cutting it out and realized I didn’t have near enough fabric (so maybe I haven’t changed much in the new year?) I decided to push ahead though and see what it would look like at a tunic length.

I… kind of love it? And I actually think I might wear it more than a full length dress?

This is the size medium and basically it’s the bodice from the dress with long sleeves and whatever was left of my fabric. It’s very loose and flowy (read comfortable) but the beautiful fabric makes it feel like I dressed up a little bit. I have it paired here with skinny jeans and I imagine that is how it will probably get worn. Easy for getting on the ground and playing with Sam but cute enough to run out and…. do whatever it is that people did in the before times?!

This pattern is hugely popular in the sewing world and I feel like the last person to make it! It is a really easy sew and I get why people are obsessed with it. You know I love nightgown adjacent, and this feels like exactly that. If you were newer to sewing and looking at this pattern, I would highly recommend it. If I can get something cute out of it with way less fabric than it calls for, I have all the faith in the world that you could make something cute for yourself! Plus fitting is easy and drama level is high. What more could you ask for?

My Birthday Dress

There is an expression in the sewing community ‘sew frosting’ and this make right here is allllll frosting! I’ve been sewing a lot of cake recently- the practical, wearable pieces in my wardrobe that I reach for over and over- that I wanted a little frosting for my birthday.

I saw this fabric in one of Star’s instagram sales. Every Thursday she has a preview of fabric that is either vintage or deadstock that she puts up for sale on Friday. When I saw the preview of this gorgeous velvet knit, I knew immediately that this would be my birthday dress. (go follow her shop site at Shop Well Fibre!)

I made V9311 and I sewed it up yesterday during Sam’s nap- it really was that easy to make! I made the size 10 and did take in quite a bit at the sides of the bodice so that plunging neckline would be just right.

I am obsessed with the drama of this dress! The neckline, the sleeves, the split, and the floor length. It’s amazing and it’s exactly what I pictured when I held this fabric in my hands for the first time.

Do I have anywhere to wear this? Absolutely not! Do I care? No! Knowing that it is hanging in my closet waiting for me is enough. Or maybe I’ll just traipse around the living room all month in it, I don’t think my kids would be shocked at this point.

Making something glamorous and completely impractical for my birthday was so fun. I wish you a little frosting in your future!

Whit’s Reviews///The Ilford Jacket

I am back with another Pattern Company review (check out my past one’s here!) and I am so excited to share this company.

Friday Pattern Company is a fairly popular indie sewing company, you’ve most likely at least heard of their patterns like the Wilder Gown and maybe you’ve sewn up a few of their patterns.

I really wanted to highlight this company after listening to Chelsea, the owner, talk about it on this episode of Love to Sew. I highly recommend giving it a listen! I found Chelsea to be so inspiring, on so many levels, but particularly on how she set up her business. From the get go she decided to make sure she had giving back built in to her business plan. Instead of saying, ‘when I make x amount of sales’ she immediately just took 5% off of the profits from each pattern and gave them to charity. I LOVE this. From the word go she decided to make her work about something bigger than herself. It makes me want to support this company, but it also makes me look at my life and see where I can build in giving back.

I also love how diverse her marketing is. From gender nuetral patterns, to showing different sizes, abilities, and races in all their marketing, Friday Pattern Company makes it clear that their designs are for everyone. I love that and I love that they are actively trying to make their sizing even more inclusive.

Here are the questions my readers helped me come up with and Chelsea’s answers to them. To see my thoughts on the specific pattern the Ilford Jacket, check out my youtube video here!

What is your design background? When and why did you start making your own patterns?I have been sewing since I was a child and went to school for fashion design. I always knew that the fashion industry wasn’t really for me and  in 2017 I started Friday Pattern Company. 


Who do you design for? Who is your Target Audience?I don’t really have a target audience as I hope that anyone who feels inspired by my designs feels welcome to sew them! I love that I have a very diverse customer base. 


What level of sewer do you design for? I always keep the beginner sewist in mind when I design. I love designing things that are accessible for someone who is just getting started. A lot of my designs are also somewhat modular and hackable so that more experienced sewists can use them as a jumping off point.

 
What is your price point and why?My PDF patterns range from $12-16 and my printed patterns range from $18-20. This is in line with the industry standard and the price that I need to charge to support myself and my business along with the charities that the patterns benefit.


What is your size range? Why did you pick this range? What is the size, cupsize, and height that you design your block on?I am in the process of updating my size range. When I first started Friday, my sizing was XS-XXL (up to 46” bust). Once the company grew I added more sizes up to 4X (up to 54” bust). And then I felt that that wasn’t a large enough size range so I am now bringing all of my patterns up to 7X (up to 60” bust). Different patterns have different additional sizing options. Some have multiple lengths, some have multiple cup sizes. The height that my block is built on is 5’6”.


Do you support Black Lives Matter? What are some ways that you are anti racist and inclusive in your company on a day to day basis?I do support Black Lives Matter. 5% of the proceeds from all of my patterns go to charity with each pattern benefitting a different charity. Most benefit charities that support marginalized communities like the ACLU, the Trevor Project, the Loveland Foundation, RAICES, and more. Beyond that I make sure that all of my marketing and social media reflects the inclusivity and diversity that is at the heart of Friday Pattern Company. 


Is there anything else you would like people just discovering your company to know?Friday Patterns are designed to be fun. I believe strongly in the transformative power of the joy that comes with learning to sew your own clothing. If you’re sewing with a Friday pattern I want you to have fun and feel inspired to express yourself! 

Thank you Chelsea for taking part in this series! I knew going in that Friday Pattern Company patterns were worth spending your time and money on, but I hope this post proved it. I can’t wait to see what this company does in the years to come!

My Fall Module/// Full Reveal!

Thanks for following along with me this week as I walked through all the pieces I made in my Fall Module. To recap, you can find all the links to my makes below. Check out my YouTube video for a full walk through of everything! I really enjoyed planning out my makes this way. It’s a great way to be intentional about what you’re sewing and get a few good, wearable basics in your wardrobe.

Links to Blogposts///

Skirt

Trousers

Cardigan

Wrap Top

Green Sweater

70s Blouse