Fall Style Blog Tour | Sophisticated Leisure

Style Maker Fabrics | Fall Leisure Outfit

Can you believe fall is finally here? It seems like we have been waiting forever!

It’s no secret, fall is my favorite season! I just love all the colors and flavors and the excuse to wear lots of cozy layers. In putting our fall collection together I started dreaming of all the sweatshirts, cardigans and coats I wanted to make this season. If you follow along with us on Instagram, you may have seen the stack of knits I snagged and already started sewing for myself. Sometimes I have little self control…

Style Maker Fabrics | Fall Sewing Plans

To kick off our Fall Style Blog Tour 2017, I decided to experiment with the “athletic” trend that continues to be popular this season. We are pretty casual here in the Pacific Northwest and I normally live in knits and jeans so this seems like a good fit for me and my lifestyle. Leisure suits, joggers, sweatshirts, hoodies and puff coats—all great pieces!

The release of Named’s FW17 collection sealed the deal! I immediately fell in love with their Gemma sweater and Ruri sweatpants. Sophisticated but comfortable, these patterns help elevate what could be overly casual into something that is more unique and dare I say stylish.

Style Maker Fabrics | Named Patterns

Now for the hard/fun part… picking the right fabrics. For Gemma, the pattern calls for medium to heavy weight knits that can be color blocked or reversed for the geometric detail at the front. After looking at a few French terrys and sweatshirt fleeces, I settled on a stretch velour in a really pretty heathered taupe with a cream reverse. I’m loving the darker neutral tones!

Ruri suggests a mid-weight sweatshirt fleece but I think any medium weight, thicker knit would do. Since I was going for a little less casual look, I laid out several different ponte knits but couldn’t settle on the right one. In the end I made kind of an unconventional choice, I picked out a stretch double twill (aka tricotine) in a deep espresso brown. Not only does it have a great weight and stretch for these pants but it is also the perfect color to pair with the velour!

With the fabric and patterns selected, time to get sewing! I sewed up both of these pieces over a weekend and only made a couple of slight changes. Based on the sizing I selected a size 8 (my normal size for Named patterns), but decided to lengthen both garments a bit. I am 5′ 9″ and tend to like things on the longer side, so I always look at the finished garment measurements to check the length or inseam. For the Gemma sweater I added 2″ close to the hem so I didn’t alter the piecing details. And on the Ruri I again added 2″, this time lengthening at the knee.

Actually sewing the Gemma was a lot of fun! It is like a sewing puzzle that you aren’t quite sure how it is going to go together. Named does a great job with the instruction, just be sure to follow them, especially when it comes to which way to press the seam allowance! The sequence in which the pieces go together is perfectly planned and interlock perfectly. The velour fabric I picked sewed together beautifully and was not difficult to work with at all. Probably the biggest thing to watch for is the direction of the nap on the wrong side. It doesn’t matter so much when it is on the inside but on the pieces that are visible you want to make sure you have them going all the same direction, in my case that was downward.

Style Maker Fabrics | Velour Gemma Sweater

One last minute change I made was flipping the funnel neck so that it matched the geometric accent. I like the additional cream contrast and the extra softness around my neck. I also didn’t have grommets for the drawstring at the hem so I made due with button holes. Not a big change but I thought I would mention it in case you don’t have grommets on hand either.

Style Maker Fabrics | Ruri Sweatpants Snap Hem Detail

I don’t have much to note on sewing the Ruri pants together. The process was straightforward and rather simple as well. I love the faux fly front and the partial elastic waistband. And those snaps at the bottom cuffs are spot on! The only change I made was since I used more of a woven fabric, I did serge the hem before stitching it in place just to prevent any raveling. In the future I might also figure out making the pocket bags slightly larger so that I can catch them in the waistband seam just to secure them in place.

Now for the big reveal…

Style Maker Fabrics | Ruri/Gemma Leisure Suit

Style Maker Fabrics | Fall Leisure Outfit

Style Maker Fabrics | Fall Leisure Sweater

I love how this outfit turned out—the perfect combination of sporty and sophisticated and the velour sweatshirt is so cozy! Not only would I feel comfortable wearing this out-and-about, I think it would also be work appropriate. Both garments fit great and I am definitely glad I lengthened both of them. The Ruri pants are technically designed to be more of a cropped length but I think I am liking this ankle length a bit better—perfect to pair with booties!

Style Maker Fabric | Gemma Sweater Up Close

Style Maker Fabrics | Ruri Leisure Pants

I can definitely see myself making more versions of both these garments. I’d love to try the Ruri pants in a sweatshirt fleece as recommended just to see how cozy they really are! And on the Gemma I think a color blocked version would be fun or one in all the same fabric with top stitching to accent the piecing. What do you think? Any other amazing ideas/interpretations?

That wraps up Day 1 of our Fall Style Blog Tour 2017. Join us again tomorrow for Day 2 over on the Chalk and Notch blog. We can’t wait to see what Gabriela sewed up—she picked out some pretty amazing fabrics!

Happy Fall Sewing!


P.S. Learn more about our fall fabric collection and get the full tour schedule HERE.

Summer Boho Vibe | Papercut’s Kochi Kimono

Kochi Kimono | Style Maker Fabrics

I have been on the search for the perfect kimono pattern for a while. Something shorter, a bit more fitted, just a simple, classic style. In searching I felt a little like Goldilocks—lots of patterns that were close but not quite right. Then, Papercut Patterns released the Kochi Kimono! Slightly more fitted through the shoulders and the sleeves aren’t too wide, this pattern combines all of the elements that I was looking for into one nice package!

Papercut Kochi Kimono | Style Maker Fabrics

Now to pick fabric to compliment Papercut’s Kochi. As it is still summer and quite warm here in the Pacific Northwest, I thought go with something light weight and with great drape. I also love that Anthro-inspired Bohemian style which lead me to choosing this amazing block print rayon challis.

Now to get cutting and sewing! If you have sewn with Papercut before you know these patterns run big, I am typically a medium but in their patterns I always make a small. To keep with the classic look I am going for I selected View C of the Kochi—no pockets or tie and added neckband. In looking at the finished garment measurements, the finished length was a bit shorter than I wanted it to be. I decided to add an 2″ to the body length, making the hem hit right about my hip. I added the length in the bottom third of the front and back pattern pieces. The back piece is almost square making this change very easy. The front required a little extra tweaking as one side of the piece tapers a bit. Don’t forget to also add the length to the neckband pieces!

Papercut Kochi Versions | Style Maker Fabrics

Sewing my Kochi together, ALL of the raw edges are finished with my serger. The pattern clearly directs you when to finish the edge before sewing and press the seam open or finish the seam allowance after it is sewn. I think the pattern did miss a couple so I made sure all my edges were serged. I also serged my hem and sleeves before folding them up and topstitching. On a heavier fabric I might be tempted to finish the raw edges with bias binding but for this I didn’t want a lot of extra bulk and that is a lot of extra work on a first try of a pattern.

The only other change I made to the Kochi pattern is how I attached the neckband. I decided to kick the Boho vibe up a notch and add a geometric trim insert in the seam. A great added detail without a lot of extra work. The first question was how to attached the neckband to one side of the trim? To keep a nice finished edge I folded the neckband right sides in and sandwiched the trim between the layers. Then, I stitched a long tube with 1/4″ seam, turned it right side out and pressed.

Neckband Hem Piece | Style Maker FabricsNext, to attach my new “neckband” to the kimono I finished off the front edge with the serger and pinned my neckband in place, starting at the back neck. Now for the trickiest part, at the hem I trimmed the neckband 3/4″ short of meeting the hem. Weird, right?

I also cut a roughly two 3″ squares from my fabric scraps and folded all the raw edges to the wrong side and folded this in half. This created a little hem for my neck band that is about the same width as the actual hem on the kimono. Lining everything up in place, I sandwiched each end of the neck band (about 1/2″) between the folded hem piece and top-stitched. You want to keep everything pinned so that it all lines up correctly.

Kochi Neckband Trimmed | Style Maker Fabrics

Last but not least, I stitched the finished neck band on using a 1/4″ seam allowance, taking care to catch only the edge of the decorative trim. Pressed the seam to the body of the kimono and I was set!!

Now for the big reveal…

Kochi Kimono Front | Style Maker Fabrics

Kochi Kimono Side | Style Maker Fabrics

My Kochi Kimono is the perfect addition to my summer wardrobe. I love how the fabric feels almost weightless and kind of catches in the breeze. And that print… so fun for this Boho style. It kind of reminds me of a bandanna or even henna designs. Overall, the fit is just right and I like the added length and the side slits and it the perfect layering piece for a warm day.

Kochi Kimono Trim Detail | Style Maker Fabrics

I am so happy with my choice to add the trim insert, such a fun extra detail and the finish turned out amazing. Trims like this are so easy to add to just about any garment—insert them in an existing seam, split a pattern piece and slip it in between or even cut off the hem and add it just above it. I was thinking after the fact that adding it to my kimono sleeve hems would be another great option. Maybe next time!

Kochi Kimono Back | Style Maker Fabrics

Guess I need to start thinking about a fall version. Any thoughts of fabric choice? Maybe a soft wool or go crazy and try a stable knit? Oh, and pair it with a turtle neck! So many ideas, not enough time to sew…


Summer Watercolor Ebony Tunic

Redrawing the Ebony Pattern Pieces | Style Maker Fabrics

I have been practically living in my Closet Case Ebony Tees since first sewing up this pattern earlier this year! Now that summer is here in full force it is time to add another to my wardrobe.

Shibori Ebony Twirl | Style Maker Fabrics

While I love the amazing swing to the Ebony, sometimes all that extra fabric does get in the way and I long for a slimmer version. A few fellow sewists on Instagram tackled this issue using various methods but I decided to take the simple, straight forward approach. First, I traced a fresh copy of my front and back pieces on pattern tissue. On each piece, I then measured along the hem 6 inches from the side seam and drew a straight line up to the underarm. This decreased the circumference of the hem by about 24 inches (that seems like a ton, right?). I settled on the 6 inch amount by trying on my shibori version again and pinching in the side seams to get the fit I wanted—seemed like a good place to start.

Redrawing the Ebony Pattern Pieces | Style Maker Fabrics

With my pattern pieces trimmed down, I needed to make sure my side seams matched up. In looking at the original pieces, the back pieces should be trimmed/curved up to be even with the front. I laid the back piece over the front, matching the side seams at the under arms, and drew a gentle curve from the edge of the front piece out to the hem, shown below. With my alterations complete and I continued on as directed in the pattern and with the changes that I made previously for my 3/4-length raglan sleeve tunic.

Trimmed Ebony Pattern Pieces | Style Maker Fabrics

Now for the fun part, fabric choice! One of my favorite pieces in the shop right now is this watercolor stripe jersey knit. Lighter weight and perfectly drapey for a summer Ebony tee! I think my favorite part though it the color and the amazing movement and random look of the print. In cutting my pieces out I did my best to match up the “stripes” as best I could. The variegated look made this a bit more difficult and not an absolute match but close enough. I also decided to cut my sleeves out so they DID NOT match, embracing the abstract look of the knit.

Watercolor Stripe Jersey | Style Maker Fabrics

Sewing this Ebony up was quick and straight forward. I finished my necklines and hem with my cover-stitch machine for a professional look and I am loving the results!

Watercolor Ebony Front View | Style Maker Fabrics

I was worried I took out too much of the swing (24 inches is a lot!), but I think it was the just about the right amount, especially for the front. I might continue to tweak the back a bit, add a couple inches of swing back in and shorten the curve of the hem. Nothing major but I think these changes may help fix a bit of clinging that I noticed in wearing this top on repeat over the last week.

Watercolor Ebony Side View | Style Maker FabricsWatercolor Ebony Back | Style Maker FabricsWatercolor Ebony Front | Style Maker FabricsAll in all, I think my watercolor Ebony turned out to be the perfect addition for the summer wardrobe! And this pattern continues to move up my list of favorite patterns. If you haven’t sewing this one up yet, you need to now! And this jersey… I think the photos say it all!


Tropical Summer Gallery Tunic

Tropical Gallery Tunic Front | Style Maker Fabrics

Summer has officially arrived! As temperatures finally are starting to increase here in the Pacific Northwest I have been looking at my warm weather wardrobe trying to figure out what it is missing and what I want. One item I keep coming back to is a RTW tunic that I absolutely love wearing. It is a soft, drapey rayon and perfectly over-sized— just the right combination for summer.

Ready to Wear Inspiration | Style Maker Fabrics

Rayon Tunic Ready to Wear Inspiration

In search for a pattern to create my own version I went to the sewing community on Instagram for advise. Hey June’s Cheyenne Tunic and Closet Case’s Kalle Shirt were among the recommendations, but the overwhelming response was to go with Liesl & Co.’s Gallery Tunic. Looking into this pattern further it includes the pleat details at the front and back and has that slightly over-sized relaxed look just like my favorite tunic. It is missing the gathered tabbed sleeves but that is something I can always add.Gallery Tunic Pattern | Style Maker Fabrics

Next, time to pick out fabric! I have been kind of obsessed with tropical prints this year and thought I should probably have a fun tropical shirt for the summer. Right!?

Tropical Fabrics Options | Style Maker Fabrics

With so many fun colors and patterns to choose from I decided to start out with my two favorite colors, blue and green. A little on the safe side I know but something that I can wear everyday and not feel like I should be on a beach somewhere.

Tropical Leaves Shirting | Style Maker Fabrics

In sewing up the pattern, the instructions are very clear and concise which is always appreciated. It also includes some great tips and tricks along the way that give you a very professional, finished look. I went with a size 8 in View A, the tunic length with a traditional collar, and didn’t make any major changes to the pattern. I did widen the sleeves at the elbow by about 1/2″ on either side, a standard adjustment for me.

Tropical Gallery Tunic Front | Style Maker Fabrics

This tunic came together quite quickly once I got the front pleat and placket done. The only other time intensive step was folding and pressing the curved baseball hem in place. As recommended in the pattern, taking your time with this step as the bias folding can be a bit tricky but turns out wonderfully with a little finesse and a good pressing!

Gallery Tunic Hem | Style Maker Fabrics

After putting this tunic on for the first time I never wanted to take it off! This rayon shirting was the perfect choice—soft and drapey like a rayon challis but just enough structure and stability that a more traditional cotton shirting might offer.

Tropical Gallery Tunic | Style Maker Fabrics

And let’s not forget to mention that leaf print! I love how this tunic length and curved hem really shows off the fabric. You also barley notice the pleats on the front and back and the color variation on those leaves is gorgeous!

Tropical Gallery Tunic Back | Style Maker Fabrics

All in all, a great first attempt at a me-made version of my favorite tunic. I think another version is in my near future with even wider sleeves and added tab detail. Hey June’s Cheyenne Tunic pattern will come in handy… This tropical version of the Gallery Tunic is sure to get lots of wear this summer! And I think I found a new go-to pattern to enjoy year round!


Spring Style Blog Tour: Denim Jacket and Wide Leg Pants

To kick our Spring Style Tour 2017 I thought I would jump all in with a new spring jacket! The question was, which one? In perusing the spring styles in ready-to-wear two silhouettes kept jumping out at me, 1) a classic denim jacket and 2) a sporty bomber jacket.

The timing couldn’t have been more perfect with release of Named’s spring collection and the Maisa denim jacket. That pretty much made the decision for me, along with the arrival of this amazing washed bleached selvage denim. A match made in sewing heaven!

Named Maisa Jacket Pattern and Washed Selvage Denim | Style Maker Fabrics

Sewing this denim jacket was definitely a step out of my comfort zone. It wasn’t something I could whip up in an afternoon but was one of the most rewarding projects I have ever sewn. I didn’t make any changes to the pattern and sewed a straight size 40. Not only does it look like something I bought at a department store, it is also something I never thought I ever could/would sew. I haven’t had a denim jacket in my wardrobe in many years and I am excited to say that this one is handmade!

Maisa Selvage Denim Jacket | Style Maker Fabrics

A couple words of wisdom when sewing a Denim Jacket:

  1. Stock up on top-stitching thread! It is amazing how much you will use as you topstitch just about every seam… TWICE. (I might have had three machines going for this project- regular thread, top stitching thread and serger)
  2. Stock up on needles! Some of those pesky areas where the denim is many layers think can be hard on sewing machines, needles and your patience.
  3. Take your time and don’t rush- patience pays off and it will all come together in the end. Even when you don’t think it will!

To finish off the look I sewed up Megan Nielsen’s new Flint pants. Wide leg and super comfy these cropped trousers are perfect for spring/summer here in the Pacific Northwest. They are also the perfect pairing for my cropped denim jacket in this drapey olive twill!

Rayon Twill Flint Pants Front | Style Maker Fabrics

Rayon Twill Flint Pants Back | Style Maker Fabrics

In sewing my Flint pants I did take in the legs a bit after sewing them together and trying them on before I added the waist band. The legs were a little too wide for me and my style. I tapered in, starting just below the pocket, angling down each side to about 1-1/2″ in from the side seam at the hem. This took each leg in a total of about 6″. That sounds like a lot but they are still plenty wide for me! I also trimmed the length 1″ and hemmed as directed.

Overall, I love how my new spring look turned out! It pushed me out of my sewing comfort zone and jump started my spring wardrobe. I have already sewn up another jacket (Rigel bomber) to go with these pants! Watch for another post coming soon with all the details.

Follow along with us as the Spring Style Tour 2017 continues tomorrow with Day Two! We will be traveling up to Canada to see what Rachel of Maker Style has planned for spring.

Happy Spring Sewing!


P.S. New to our Style Blog Tours? Check our the recaps from last spring and fall, HERE and HERE!

Statement Floral Safran Pants

Lately, I keep being drawn to florals— big, bold, striking florals! In fashion, I can’t help but love just about any pair of floral pants. I don’t know what it is but I love them! I’m not usually a floral person, but I think the juxtaposition of these bold prints on pants that creates something different that just draws you in. Add some unusual colors and crazy scale and case closed— I must make a pair now!

Floral Safran Pants Inspiration and Fabric Choices | Style Maker Fabrics

Perusing Pinterest, my favorite one-stop-shop for inspiration, I came across this outfit and knew this is the look I wanted to go for. Bold, fitted skinny jeans with a more casual top— simple but striking! I pulled a few fabric options, but settled on the one closest to my inspiration, a stretch sateen in rich reds, greens and a deep black background.

Deer & Doe Safran Pants | Style Maker Fabrics

Pants is one category of garments that continues to scare me a bit. While I have always had lofty goals of making a wardrobe full of the perfect pants, it just hasn’t happened. Whether it is the time, the fit, or whatever, I always find an excuse to avoid making them. Well, I am facing my fears and taking on a new pattern, Deer & Doe’s Safran Pants. I love the clean lines of this pattern and have been meaning to try it since we got it in the shop this fall.

Now, let’s get sewing! I settled on cutting a straight Size 42 based on my measurements, picking version B for the clean look and the ankle length. I raided my scrap bin for pocket pieces and got everything all cut and ready. Stitching my Safrans together was relatively easy and straight forward. Deer & Doe’s beautifully printed patterns offer each step broken down with easy to follow instructions and helpful diagrams. A couple of my favorite steps were the welt pockets and the zip fly. Both turned out perfectly and the instructions dissolved any fear and confusion I had about these more difficult techniques. Check out that pocket!

Floral Safran Pants | Side and Pocket | Style Maker FabricsI did baste my pants together to check fit, but I have found that that is more of a guideline to see if you are close. You can’t tell how they will really fit and feel until they are complete and you can try them out around the house. Not great, I know, but worth it in the long run. I am finding the more I pairs of pants I sew, the quicker the construction process is. This will make sewing multiple versions less painful and get me to the perfect pair of pants soon!

Completed Floral Safran Pants | Style Maker Fabrics

Overall, I am really happy with the look! I love this fabric and it is the perfect bold floral for a pair of skinny jeans. I still need to work on perfecting the pattern— I do have some whiskering around the crotch, as the pattern describes it, indicating I need to make the crotch a bit shallower on the front. I love that Deer & Does has included a couple pages of common fit issues and how to fix them! So helpful! I also plan on making them a bit longer on my next pair.

Floral Safran Pants Back | Style Maker Fabrics

To finish the look, I paired my fitted jeans with a slouchy Hemlock tee I made this winter out of a cozy sweater knit. Add a simple gold necklace and I was set. I definitely think keeping the rest of the outfit simple is the way to go, at least for me, and letting the pants really stand out. I like having one garment be the star and the rest of the look be the supporting cast!

Complete Look | Floral Safran Pants | Style Maker Fabrics


Best part of all— I have some amazing new floral pants just in time for Valentine’s Day! And I am well on my way to perfecting a new pants pattern. A few slight changes and maybe some of our new stretch denims for another pair of pants to enjoy this spring.

Happy Sewing!


A New Wardrobe Basic— The Ebony Tee

This week one of our favorite indie pattern designers, Heather of Closet Case Files, released her tenth pattern, the Ebony Tee! It’s a classic tee in a fun swing style that you can’t help but sway, twist and twirl in. As knits are always one of my favorite things to sew, I immediately started laying out fabric choices and planning a couple Ebony Tees for myself.

Ebony Tee Pattern | Style Maker FabricsThe pattern calls for just about any weight knit depending on the look and style you want. I love the movement of this swing style so I wanted something that would drape nicely and hang closer to my body. I have been eyeing this shibori bamboo knit for a while now (its just so soft!) and thought the large scale of design would be perfect for this pattern. It also is a beautiful weight— not too heavy, not too light, with great stretch, recovery and a fluid drape. I also thought this comfy basic would be fantastic in a French terry. Since I can never have too much grey in my closet I picked out this variegated French terry. It’s closer in weight to a jersey, giving it lots of drape and making it a great choice for a cozy Ebony dress.

1 | 2

Heather includes three different variation in the pattern— a cropped tee, mid-length dress and raglan tunic. She also includes different sleeve lengths and neckline options letting you design your Ebony to suit your style and wardrobe. I decided to keep my first version simple and go with the mid-length dress (View A) with long sleeves and a jewel neckline for my French terry— might as well take the comfort to the max right? I changed up my cutting layout by flipping my back piece over and rotating it 180 degrees. This maximized the size of my remaining fabric and let me out two sets of sleeves. I often find that sleeves don’t fit me quite right on the first go and since I had the space I planned to do a test set of sleeves.

Alternate Ebony Cutting Diagram | Style Maker Fabrics

Alternate pattern piece layout for the Ebony dress.

This planning paid off as the first sleeve was quite tight and not long enough. If your fabric is a bit narrower, you don’t have this space or your fabric is directional and you can’t flip the back, you could always sew a separate muslin of your trouble piece or even of the whole garment to test it out. I ended up widening the sleeves by half inch on either side and lengthening them by three inches. This pattern did not have the handy lengthen/shorten line on the sleeves so I used the sleeve side-seam notches as my lengthening point.

Other than those few changes, my Ebony dress was a breeze to sew together. I serged the entire garment and finished off the hems and neckline with my cover-stitch. Start to finish, I was done in an afternoon and am loving the results! Secret pajamas is the first thing that comes to mind. Paired with leggings or tight and I am set for a comfy day at home or out and about running errands. As this dress has so much body, I also tried belting it for a more fitted look.

Jumping right back into sewing, I selected the raglan tunic version (View C) using my shibori bamboo jersey. The high low hem of the tunic will really show off the dye pattern and be perfect to wear with jeans, my ultimate go-to! I decided to add three-quarter length sleeves and used my altered sleeves from View A as a guide. For a bit more relaxed fit, I widened the sleeves another half inch on either side and kept the added three inches in the length. For this version, as the fabric was a bit more directional, I did follow the cutting diagram as directed in the pattern. Again, construction was a snap using the serger and cover-stitch. I didn’t even have to change thread colors as I used white for both of my Ebonys!

Shibori Ebony Hem | Style Maker Fabrics Shibori Ebony Back | Style Maker Fabrics

Shibori Ebony Twirl | Style Maker Fabrics

After sewing both of these up I can definitely see why Heather has been living in her own Ebonys over the past we months as she was finalizing the pattern! While we were taking these photos I couldn’t help but twist and twirl. And check out that back! I love how this tunic length shows off the fabric so well. Did I mention it is as comfortable as it looks, if not so?!

Closet Case’s Ebony is a great variation on the classic tee and a fantastic way bring a new silhouette into your closet. I can’t wait to sew up more of these this spring. I’m thinking a stripe jersey might have to be next, what do you think? I definitely recommend this pattern, with so many options to choose from you are sure to fine the perfect match for you and your style!

Happy Sewing~


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