Textile Marbling Workshop

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After two years of only going to 100% necessary inside places, I cracked and took an in-person workshop. There were a lot of bare faces, but us masked folk all gravitated to the same table near the open the door. I didn’t realize how much I missed making stuff with other people until the six hours had whizzed by and I felt super energized. Anyway, I’m really hoping we’re all healthy after spending so much time breathing in a room together.

The end product of marbling isn’t really my jam but it’s a fucking fun process. Wildcraft provided a beautiful little booklet with instructions for doing this at home.

Each participant was given a cut of pre-treated cotton fabric, one cotton bandana, one large piece of silk, and an individual marbling tub. Each table also had a larger basin to share and everyone rotated through doing one large sample in the big tub pictured up above. I had so much fun playing I only took three photos during the workshop so here’s a short video of what the process looks like.

Marbling really forces you to let go – you don’t really know how the paints are going to interact with each other, or which colors are going to actually show up on the fabric. Most of the colors I’m drawn to weren’t very vibrant once transferred to fabric.

Knowing I was going to have a lot of small cotton samples, I tried to stick with the same colors so they could be used in a mini quilt project, which I started sewing immediately at home.

I decided to cut up this blue piece because the fabric wasn’t great quality, I didn’t think I’d ever use it as bandana (its edges were finished), and I needed something to bind the wall hanging with. All of my other scraps didn’t quite work with the marbled fabric.

I just pieced the samples together and did a simple stitch in the ditch quilting pattern. The binding was machine sewn onto the front then folded and pressed to the back for hand-stitching.

I added little triangles to the corners so it can be hung on the wall and drilled some holes in scrap wood to mount.

Sweatshirts | Daisy Chain Dale + Seamwork Lex

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I’m still very much in loungewear mode, so I whipped up these sweatshirts over the long weekend.

Seamwork Lex

This is the Seamwork Lex sans kangaroo pocket. I made a size 8 and reduced the length of both the sleeves and the body by 2″. The main fabric is a cotton french terry in the color ‘spice’ and the bands are a wide bamboo rib knit in the color redwood from Stonemountain. The rib knit is a bit too lightweight for this purpose, but it was the only stretchy fabric I had that sort of matched the french terry.

Daisy Chain Dale

This is the Dale sweatshirt, of which I’ve made three! See the color blocked one here. I made a size M with the long sleeves and no mods. The fabric is ‘maple’ sherpa and ‘toast’ 2×1 rib knit.

Nine Patch Scrap Quilt | part 2

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My quilt is done and here’s the post about it! Click here for part 1.

Since the first post, I decided to add another 15 blocks because I wanted all four corners to have a 9 patch block. With 98 blocks and a square throw shape, that pattern wasn’t happening. Plus once the top was all sewn together it was a smidge smaller than I wanted.

After the top was complete, I combed through my remaining scrap pile and pulled out all of the black and white fabrics since those seemed to be the most plentiful. Some of these ikats are from some of my first ever garment projects, which is pretty fun.

I waffled for a bit on how to bind this quilt. I started with wanting to use the greenish Calvin Klein bed sheet I’d used for my Tamarack jacket. Then I though about using the backing to do mitered corners. There was a brief time where I thought about doing prairie points to use up even more scraps but ultimately I went back to that thrifted bed sheet/traditional binding method.

I cut up the last of the bed sheet into straight of grain strips because there weren’t any curves that’d require a bias cut. I have a lot leftover which I’ll use to bind some small scale quilted projects. I really love this color.

Once the quilt backing was assembled, I realized I didn’t have enough space to baste the layers in my sewing room and would have to do this step in the basement. It took a couple of weeks before I got around to washing the basement floor.

For the quilting pattern, I wanted something that would showcase the blocks. A simple stitched in the ditch grid pattern was done and I love it. I had to move my sewing machine to my cutting table to quilt since my machine is usually up against a wall. It took a couple of days to quilt. I went too hard the first night and my hips were very angry from a long stand up sewing session.

I then machine stitched on the binding to the right side. To finish, I hand-sewed it to the back, which I did at the beach. I’d say this is the best environment for finishing a multi-year quilt project!

And here she is, my fourth quilt (see the others here). I ran around with it on the beach to celebrate.

Here’s my classic “I just finished a quilt” pose.

Daughter Judy | Barons Top

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There’s a new indie pattern designer to check out — Daughter Judy. Chelsea launched recently with four patterns and I immediately bought three of them!

I’m not in the brain space for pants fitting right now – even though I really need pants – so I decided to make the Barons Dress before diving into the Adams Pants. I really love the red photo sample and wanted to create something similar. I chose a 10oz bleached denim from my stash that even had some of the sun bleaching the red canvas sample has.

This top has lots of fun topstitching, a high collar, center back button closure, and 3/4 length sleeves that are more like full length sleeves on me.

Because I love pockets, I added some side seam friends. Here is a lackluster photo collage of how I did this.

Things I would do differently next time.

  • Make the buttonholes on the placket before installing. I used a 10oz denim so the seams were THICK. I can’t quite remember which two I made first but ultimately I had to change the direction of one set, so the top two are vertical and the bottom two are horizontal. Even with my compensation plate, my machine was struggling.
  • Use lining fabric for both sides of the pocket to reduce bulk.
  • I’d serge the side and underarm seams separately, then stitch, and then press open if I plan to use a heavyweight fabric again. I had a little woopsies with my serger on one side seam. It was a case of not paying attention and rushing, so please don’t give me serger tips – I know exactly what happened. The patch is pictured below.

I’d recommend this pattern for advanced beginner to intermediate folks who have a good understanding of garment construction. The instructions do kind leave some things up to the maker, which I’m fine with but might be a little frustrating for some.

Color Blocked Bands

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I had a little bit of this heathered gray french terry leftover from making my husband a hoodie last fall. There was enough to make myself either a pair of shorts or a sweatshirt, but I rarely feel super inspired to sew loungewear.

Then Daisy Chain Patterns released the Dale sweatshirt. I really like its high neckline with a beefy neckband and the short sleeve option. I took inspiration from the photo samples to have some fun with the bands.

Although I had enough light gray ribbing for all of the bands, I opted to use every color of rib knit in my stash. I think this look is fun an a little weird.

To color block the bands, I divided the lengths by 5, added seam allowance, stitched them together with a lightning stitch, and pressed the seams open. This rib knit is very stretchy, so I wasn’t too worried that the extra seams would impact the stretch.

My measurements put me at a size 10/M. I think I could have shortened the length by an inch or two for a more cropped look. The hem band is kinda hidden by the length folding over it.

I might make another color blocked one with leftover black sweatshirt fleece. It’s a good way to use up those tiny rib knit scraps.

Larkin bomber | Seamwork

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On a rare trip to Joann Fabrics a couple years ago, I found this quilted fabric in the upholstery section. I really liked the grid pattern and it almost looked like some quilted denim jackets I’d been eyeing.

I thought it would make a really cool Ilford jacket, but I didn’t make a muslin and I didn’t really read through the instructions for the plackets and collar. Once I was able to try it on, it was far too big and I started to question how good those details would look in this bulky material.

No shame to the Ilford pattern at all, this was just a case of wrong size + weird fabric = mental pattern abandonment.

Another year or so later, the Seamwork Larkin was released and after passing by that abandoned Ilford in my closet, inspiration hit.

The pattern is not drafted for bulky material, so I knew it was a bit of a gamble. The poly batting is pretty lofty, so this time I thought I should do some tests before diving in.

I had enough scraps leftover from cutting out the Ilford to make a sample welt pocket and it was easier and nicer looking than I thought. On the final jacket, I deviated from the instructions a bit by hiding all of the edge stitching in the ditch and omitting the bar tacks. I think they look pretty sharp.

After the successful welt pocket, it was time to source more materials and cut up the Ilford. I wasn’t sure there would be enough fabric since the pattern pieces have very different shapes, especially the sleeves. I was barely able to get two sleeves, two fronts, and the back out of it. But I did, and pattern matched too!

For the Ilford, I had purchased a small amount matching Kona cotton for the under collar and button plackets, but didn’t have enough for the Larkin facings, welts, and zip guard. I bought more Kona cotton in the color I thought I had originally purchased, but it’s definitely different. Dang dye lots.

The new color, which didn’t match as well, was used for the facings inside the jacket, and the old, better matching cotton was used for the welts and zip guard.

Sourcing matching ribbing, lining, and a zip wasn’t the easiest, but I think the subtle color differences are kinda nice. I bought a lot of multiples trying to get the best match. WAWAK was out of the color zip that looked most similar, but once most of the tape was hidden, the one I bought ended up blending in pretty well. I found the ribbing and lining at Mill End. The ribbing I chose isn’t quite as robust as the other one and it collapses a little bit, but sometimes you gotta make those trade offs.

I made a straight size 8 with no modifications other than adding a little hang loop. Currently, my measurements are 38″ bust, 31-2″ waist, and 40″ hips.

Aside from the sleeves being a wee bit too long (what I get for rarely making a muslin), I’m super happy with this jacket! It was the perfect slow down project with some fun challenges from my funky fabric choice. I’ve worn it almost every day I leave the house and it’s a great mild winter layer.