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I am a wife and mommy to three, but in all of that- I am a seamstress who loves sewing and connecting with other people who love the art of sewing!

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Sunday, October 30, 2016

Review: New Look 6470

  Whew! October came and went it seemed like, didn't it? I started this top sometime at the beginning of October, and just recently had the opportunity to put the buttons on. Life has been insanely busy, especially with homeschooling my little people and then my husband had been on deployment, so any free time that I normally would get- I had been trying to just rest!  I  use to feel so guilty for needing a little break, but I got over that real quick, LOL! 

Do you ever make a garment using the same color scheme as
the garment photo? 
Okay, but let's get into this New Look Pattern, which was released in their 2016 fall collection, I believe. Can we just say that it was love at first sight for me when Simplicity released this pattern. Like, I didn't have to think about whether or not this would work in my wardrobe. I knew this was going to be made. This sort of top is the kind of thing that I love, love to wear the most and feel most like myself in, ya know?!

I know from previous experience that New Look patterns, for me, tend to need alterations and this pattern was no exception. However, I decided to heed the advice from one of my fitting classes on, which the instructor recommended when you are fitting patterns to start the alterations at the back. I must say this was such an eye opener for me. For instance, I no longer needed the FBA that I assumed that was needed. Seeing as prior to making the wide back alteration, the pattern was not meeting at my center front; however, after the broad back alteration, the pattern was now able to meet my center front properly. I'm not sure that this would work on every pattern, but I sure am going forward with fitting the back area first.

A close-up of the split hem, collar and inside. There wasn't a yoke facing included with
this pattern. However, it didn't bother me, seeing as how the bodice is attached to the lower skirt portion. This
area is serged also, so I didn't mind not having a facing in the yoke.

  Also, along with the wide back alteration, I added a 1/2 an inch to the side seams, which in retrospect, really wasn't necessary. I just wanted to ensure that I got the relaxed fit that I envisioned. So here are the basic constructions notes:
  • The fabric for the bodice was a cotton, poly blend that was just delightful to sew with :)... Please hear the sarcasm here,lol. The skirt, bottom portion was some type of rayon blend.
  • I made a straight size 18 in this pattern.
  • I added 1 inch to back for broad back and 1/2 inch to the side seams.The pattern called for 9 1/2 buttons. 3 buttons for the top half and 6 contrasting buttons for the bottom half.
  • I tried getting a good picture of the back, but the wind had other plans, I guess

Overall, this is extremely, well put together pattern. I didn't run into any issues with the view that I made,view D, so I am pleased as punch with this pattern. I'm even thinking of making another one of the views, since I know what alterations need to be made, and plus this pattern does come together rather nicely. Well, that's all I have for now you guys. I hope to get another project started this week, fingers crossed.
 ~ As Always Be Blessed and Nothin' Less and Continue to Stay Fearlessly Fierce! Candice

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Thursday, October 6, 2016

Fall sewing!

  I absolutely love this time of year. The leaves are covering the grounds with their beautiful colors of earthiness. The urgent desire to sip hot coca,while watching the sappy Hallmark holiday movies,lol. I simply just adore the coziness that this time of year brings; it just tickles my soul. However, there's just one tiny problem: we are stationed in a tropical climate that has one season, which is hot,LOL!  So imagine my surprise, mixed with excitement to see fall leaves on the ground yesterday while out with my little people at the park. I miss the changing of the seasons, especially fall but seeing the fall leaves on the ground truly put a smile on my face.

  Okay, I promise not bore you all with my love for fall and all. Y'all, I had grand plans of creating three separate looks from this one pattern, which happens to be morphed from M7429. Then life happened, and those plans got derailed. Last week, I lost one of my dearest and closest friends to breast cancer, and to me everything just happened so suddenly. At one point, it looked like she was making a complete turn around. I was even able to tell her how much I loved her, and then I received the news that my friend was no longer here. So, it has been a tough two weeks, but I know my friend is in a much better place, and I take comfort in believing the best.

 Before life happened, I posted over on my IG account that I had planned to use another McCall's pattern to use as base to get the top and dress that I saw recently while at the mall.

 Well, yeah, no, that didn't end well, LOL!  You guys I had these grand plans that I was going to construct three entirely different looks from this one pattern. You know something like a Project Runway type moment, right?!  I morphed my patterns together that I was to use: M7429 and M7438, as I love the fit and flare style of that dress. I'd actually made this pattern up over the summer, and it was easily one of my favorite dress this past summer.

 Yeah, so I'd gotten my pattern morphed together, fabric cut out and I go to try the dress on ,and every seam on that "baby turtleneck" pops open, incredible Hulk style, LOL! Y'all, so I gather my feelings, and decide that I would just add some type of button hole closure, yeah, no! That created some some sort of  nonhuman, meta-human(Do y'all watch "The Flash"? My little boys have me hooked, season 3 started on Tuesday,lol) like hump in my back, so no bueno! I finally decided life is too short to be giving attention to this negativity, LOL and to just forge ahead with my lone star turtleneck top that I'd made earlier in the week. 

 It's still "all good in the hood", because I really need more casual everyday wear like this turtleneck, so I know it will be in heavy rotation. Although we live in a tropical climate, I know that I can't really immerse myself in all of the fall and winter trends, but I can make modifications to some of the styles to make them wearable while we're here. But here  are a few construction notes:

  • I used M7429 as a base (give credit where credit is due. I'm a firm believer in this)
  • I made a 16 bust and graded out for the waist and hips.
  • I eliminated the back seam and just cut on the fold. I didn't want to disturb the stripes,. However, the irony is that I didn't match them up all too well this time anyhow,lol! But to that I say: It's all good!
  • I used ponte knit which was left over from a M7432. I love when that happens :)
  • I added a did twin-needled hem for the armholes and hem.
  • And Viola! I had a new topper that I can mix match with other things in my wardrobe. I now realize that I need more tops, so in the coming weeks that's probably what I'll be incorporating in my wardrobe. But of course, we all know in our sewing world, that is subject to be changed,lol! 

  Welp, that's all I have for now, but I hope I can muster up enough energy to get started on a few tops that I need. We shall see! I wish you all well and plenty of sewing this week. 

         ~As always, be blessed and nothin' less and continue to stay fearlessly fierce! Candice

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Sunday, September 18, 2016

LRD Dress:Review McCall's 7429

 Y'all, let me just say right now; this pattern tried to do me in! Oh my goodness,lol! I haven't in a while had problems deciphering a pattern. The directions for the twist knot detail, which is the star of the show, btw; however, made zero sense to me, none! It wasn't until I watched a new to me blogger's video on this pattern, who also happens to be in the FabricMart Fabricista challenge. Thanks Brittany! 

 I think the confusion for me started in step 9: The directions instruct you to pleat in the fullness, so in my mind I'm thinking I needed to literally pleat the fabric, right?! Wrong! 

"Pleat in fullness on lower portion of front to fit between large circles on upper left front".

 In reality, what you are to do is to bring the front clipped piece that you made the 5/8" narrow hem at the left opening and encase it to the upper left front.

Left front narrowed hemmed section

Encase the left front narrow hemmed
section to the upper left narrowed hemmed section

It should look something like this.
I placed a pin in the forming knot, before
turning the dress over and going to step #10

 I thought it all was becoming clear once I made it pass step 9; however, it was a slight confusion in step 10 as well, ugh. I think it's safe to say that I was all too confused in making this pattern,lol. 

Step 10

 You really have to ensure that for step 10, that you are working on the wrong side of the fabric. Also, I found it helpful to mark the right sides of my fabric with tape, prior to sewing. I did this because my fabric was difficult to tell the wrong and right sides apart.

I would also mention that pieces :1,2, and 3 are cut singled layer on the right side of the fabric and I had to remember to mark my markings on the wrong side of the fabric. I made a test garment and totally fudged this up! I had my markings on the right side of the fabric, which in part, complicated an already confusing ordeal, lol..So please, please just make sure to mark the wrong side of the fabric,lol.. 

Step 10: "Pin  lower edge of left front to upper edge of upper
left front, matching symbols. Stitch, using a Double-Stitched seam. Press seam down". 
Only the left side should be pinned and sewn at
this point and this is the inside of the fabric.
  Interestingly enough, that when you reach step #11. The front is pretty much constructed and comes together from there without much effort, whew! So here are the construction notes:

  • I made a 16 at the bust and graded out to the 18 and the waist and hips. I kinda of wished that I made a straight 16, but I was worried that it may fit too snug. Like, I wanted a form, but not too form fitting dress. If that makes any sense,lol.
  • I used a red Ponte knit fabric from Fabric Mart fabrics. However, it was a very thin, almost rayon(ish) feel, but the perfect weight for this dress. I love Ponte, it just holds all the women parts in so to speak. I don't think I would recommend anything like a heavy Ponte knit.
  • I  didn't have to add any length. I made view C, the longer length, but added the mock turtleneck from one of the other views.
  • I twin-needled the hem on the bottom of the dress, but if I were to do it again, would probably hand sew or blind hem the hem by machine. This dress was a lot more dressier than I figured it would be, but that's okay. It will be perfect for the upcoming holiday seasons for parties and such.

 Overall, I love this pattern, although it took a moment to figure out the construction,lol.. I'm unsure if I will get to this one again. If I do happen to make this one again, I will try to make a more casual version. However, I'm glad to have this one in my closet, as I know it will get plenty of wear for the upcoming Holiday season.

 I hope I offered a little bit of clarity, or what I found to have cleared things up for myself in making this one up. I hope you all swing by Brittany's blog, or YouTube as she does a wonderful job in doing a step-by step for this pattern. I hope you all have a wonderful week ahead. 
   As always, be blessed and nothin' less and continue to stay fearlessly fierce!~Candice
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Sunday, September 11, 2016

What the "magic closet" can do for a seamstress: Burda 6829

   You guys you want to know a little secret? I made this dress last year for my nine year wedding anniversary; however, I did not blog about it-simply because I hated it on me. This isn't my first time making this dress, as I made this dress before and reviewed it here. .

 You see, I had an event that I needed something a little dressy for an event this past weekend, and knew due to time constraints that I wouldn't have time to make anything new from scratch. So, I pulled out Burda 6829 from the throws of the back of my closet, just to see if anything had changed.

You guys that's been following me for awhile know I love playing with different hairstyles and looks *hence the long
ponytail :)..

Well, I'm so glad that I put this dress in the "magic closet" that you often hear in the sewing community. Because in doing so, I now had a sort of, new dress that I now loved! As seamstress, we can sometimes be so darn dramatic,lol! But there was a small issue! You see, I made this dress when we were stationed in Texas, but now we are stationed in Hawaii, which  is warm all year round; so I knew that I needed to remove the sleeves, in order to be able to wear this dress while here.

Before chopping the sleeves off..Oh, and my little lady says Hi!
LOL, do you see the toddler size finger print marks, sigh! I just love
her :)..

  For this iteration, I made the dress exactly the same, but you know that half an inch that I said that I would add if I ever made this again? Well, I added 1" to the side seams, HA! I made this dress in the largest size; this dress does not give you any wish or hope that your exercise regime is gaining momentum,LOL! I'm so glad that I added to waist for this one. It just makes the dress so much more comfortable to wear, ya know?! I also used a black Ponte knit for this dress. I know for myself, it just makes everything stay where it's supposed to :)..

   I wanted to mention also that I was a little concerned with taking the sleeves off and not having the seam allowance anymore. I was praying that it didn't cause too much of an issue with the armhole area. I thought that due to time, I would add a knit binding to the sleeve area, nope! It wasn't enough seam allowance, without showing to much skin in this area. So, I had to cut out the facing pieces, boo hoo, and slip-stitch them down, ugh! But, the bright side is that I had leftover black Ponte from the Simplicity pants that I made recently, yes! There's always lemonade to be made, when life throws you lemons, right? Right!


Overall, I am so glad that I made the necessary adjustments to this dress, and now have a new little black dress that now has a purpose in my closet :)!  Well, that's all I have for now. I'm going to re-work a McCall's dress, that I put in timeout this weekend,lol.. But, I'll talk more on that later, but I hope everyone has a great week ahead. I can't wait to see all your lovely creations!

As always, be blessed and nothin' less, and continue to stay fearlessly fierce! ~Candice

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Sunday, September 4, 2016

A little culotte action with McCall's 7445

 Y'all, so I was really feeling the McCall's early fall release this season. I have several picks from this collection that I would like to eventually get to, but this Melissa Watson for Palmer Pletsch pattern M7445 had to be sewn up immediately!

I made view C

 Of course, there are literally thousands of culotte patterns, but I loved the pocket detailing on these pants. I don't know? I think it just made them that much cooler :).  What I love so much about the Palmer/Pletsch brand is that they include fitting tips in their patterns. I mean, how amazing is that right?! Well, I've been on a pants kick lately, especially, with taking several courses on Craftsy for fitting pants.

  For the fabric, I used a stretch denim, which meant I could have gone down a size in the hips, at least. I love tissue fitting because I don't always have extra time for muslin's, but that just shows how much fabric can differ from tissue fitting. I used my normal sizing at the moment, which is an 18 at the waist and below; however, with the stretch of this fabric- I could have gone down to a 16 in the hip area. I guess I just didn't want to over fit these pants, as these pants are designed to have a little ease. Culottes,in general should have a little ease,right?!

Just opted for a machine hem, as is seen in RTW culottes. 

 I think that this pattern is drafted wonderfully. I didn't have to make any adjustments to the pattern. I initially added an inch to the hem, but removed this extra length, because it made my pants appear to be to short, like "high water" pants territory, lol.. No, bueno! I just removed the extra length and all was good in the hood again,lol.

Inside shot of the zipper area. I interfaced this area. This pattern
is not drafted with a zipper shield, but one could easily alter
if you want a zipper shield in your pants. 

 You hear all the time people say, that pants making isn't difficult, and it's not! I think the most difficult part is the fitting. I mean, you can have a pair of pants fit in one fabric, but a change in fabrics, can produce different results at times. I still really do love pant sewing. I told you guys that along with being on a pants kick. I've also been on a Craftsy kick,lol! Well, I've been also taking a few classes from Janet Pray on Craftsy. Let me just say, publicly, if this woman was giving a class on ten different ways to say hello. I would be there,okay, LOL! This woman, knows her stuff, as simple as that!

The inside waistband and the zipper end done with the burrito technique. 
 I learned a new technique on finishing up the waistband, which differs heavily from the pattern instructions. Janet Pray, teaches how to do the "burrito technique" in finishing waistbands. I would explain, but I'm afraid that I would do it no justice.Y'all, it's amazing! You know how normal pattern instructions would have you to finish the end bits with a slipstitch, which is totally fine, but mines always came out a little "suspect", LOL! I know that Craftsy may not be everyone's jam, but seriously, some of the classes can really up your sewing game.

The outside waistband.. I am now a Janet Pray fan girl, yes indeed!

 I've also started sewing the crotch seam, just the curve with a stretch stitch.  This is to prevent your pants from splitting in the crotch or rear area. Have you ever sewn a pair of pants before that when you bent down to grab something, your pants split, or you heard that cracking of stitching sound? Yeah, we've all been there a time or two,lol. Well, you can use a stretch stitch in the crotch area, and no more cracking or breaking stitches in this area, at least, LOL!.

Well, you guys that's all I have for now. I am going start working on another McCall's pattern, but I promised the hubby a shirt first. Geesh, doesn't he know that I am a selfish seamstress,lol! For all my stateside peeps, I hope you guys all have a safe and wonderful Labor Day! And I hope you all have a wonderful week ahead!

  As always, Be blessed and nothin' less and continue to stay fearlessly fierce! ~Candice

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Thursday, August 25, 2016

Untitled post

  Hey you guys! This is going to be a very different post than what I've ever posted on this blog publicly. 

   I've been wanting to write about how times have changed our once small sewing community, into something large and ever growing sewing community. I love seeing the vision behind others creativity, it's one of the things about sewing that I love most, the creativity.    

  However, It's becoming so disheartening to see and witness other people, women, bash other women for their choices in how they choose to have their voice and creativity to be heard.   

   I feel that no one has the given right to try and diminish and criticize a person to potentially  hinder another persons voice, without truly knowing a person's story. You never know the person who you criticize for living lavishly, could have been homeless at one point, or not knowing where their next meal was coming from, or the woman who you criticize for wearing clothing tighter than you ever would.

   Yet, you don't know that this person, at one point, may have had body issues and finally realized how awesome they were all along. I also believe that you don't owe anyone an explanation for how you choose to have your voice be heard, and that people will always find something to criticize. What I'm saying, is before you are so quick to judge and criticize a person; please reflect on the issues of oneself that could cause a person to harshly criticize a person for embracing all that they are! It makes you wonder? Is this coming from a place of "I shoulda, coulda, woulda" if I didn't allow anyone to hinder my voice. But, if this you! It's never to late to find your voice again!

  However,  I want to encourage anyone who has ever dealt with negativity from anyone trying to hinder their voice, their greatness, the magic that makes you, you! I want you to know to never allow another person to silence "your" voice, your creativity, your greatness!  Be great on purpose, and really give them something to talk about HA! Ps. This is not personal, just was on my heart..

             As always, "Be blessed and nothin' less and continue to stay fearlessly fierce!

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Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Avocado's anyone? Simplicity 8124 Review

     Hey y'all! I'm back with a review from pattern designer, none other than Cynthia Rowley. Can we just say that I am a true fan girl, like seriously! I love, love her design aesthetic'; her designs are so fresh and now, right?!
  I seriously believe that this pattern might make the  best patterns on PR this year, too. This is a simplistic pattern, as there are only three pattern pieces, yes, only three, so major score! You have your front, back and the sleeve pattern pieces; that is if you are doing view A. View A, is the view that I made. I made this is in a medium at the bust and graded to a large at the hip down. BIG mistake, big! This design is intended to have a lot of ease, but man, the ease is astounding,lol!
However, the ease is printed on the pattern sheet, so that was my bad :)..

  For my next version, I will make the entire dress, or top in a medium.  I added 4" to the front and back pieces, because these pattern is designed to be relatively short.  However, I've been on this uneven hem  or "handkerchief" kick lately, so this dress has a slight "handkerchief" hem like my previous Cynthia Rowley pattern.
A little inside action.. ( I took this on my phone camera, so the color
isn't as vibrant :(...)

  I knew at first glance that I had to have this dress, and with seeing this type garment everywhere in the RTW. I knew I needed my own. I used a avocado green linen fabric, that I purchased from Fabric Mart fabrics during one of their many great sales.

The neckline  casing
  There's really not much too say other than, that this is truly a great pattern. It's so great for the summer seasons. Just check and make sure your good with the sizing, because once the sleeves are on, it's pretty difficult to take in the sides if you need to. I have another one planned, like in , the fabric is in the wash, lol! So, that's a great pattern in my book! Well, that's  a wrap!

               I hope you all are having a fantastic week, filled with plenty of sewing!

            ~Be blessed and nothin' less and continue to stay fearlessly fierce! Candice
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Sunday, May 8, 2016

Sandra Betzina, girl you rock! V1496

Vogue 1496

 Can I just say: Come through Sandra, come through! LOL. I absolutely and positively love this dress. It's comfortable, especially seeing that I raised my "V-neck". Hey! I have three little people, and one toddler who loves to grab at mommy's clothes,lol! I ended up wearing this for brunch for Mother's day- minus the shoes, though! LOL! I love me a heel, but I live for comfort :)...

   I was immediately drawn to this pattern when it was released. I just had to wait for inspiration for fabric, ya know?! I used a fabric that I purchased from "Gorgeous Fabrics" quite some time ago. I believe it's a neoprene fabric.

  If someone has this fabric and could verify this, this would be awesome! I know it's a stretch fabric, though. I was a little worried about using "neoprene", as this was my first go with this fabric type. The worries were unwarranted- seeing as the fabric behaved quite well; Thank goodness!

Clean finished facing. I got this tip from a Sandra Betzina video.
I love this method for interfaced facings. It gives the facing such a neat and
tidy appearance.

 Let's talk about sizing. I was all set for the size, based on the back of the envelope, but this pattern has a ton of ease. Like a ton!  I believe I went with a size D, and this gave me plenty of ease, but without it being too big  Sandra's patterns are sized using letters- versus numbers.I was new to all of this, just like a fish out water. LOL!  Y'all, I had to adjust! I kept looking for numbers, ya know?! But there were none :).

  However, when I sewed it up, and tried on the garment. The fit was just right. I'm afraid if I had used "my size" range for the bust, which would have put me in the size E.

 Then the dress would have not fit great; it would have been much too big, based on the finished measurements.  Although the dress is meant to have a lot of ease, I didn't want it to be an over abundance of ease. I  mean, a dress designed such as this can get really unflattering fast, especially if it looks frumpy.  However, all of the ones that I've seen thus far of this pattern, have be FABULOUS!

A pic of the alterations to the pattern. I raised the V-neck 3 or 4".
I may have over done, idk. I just wanted to be sure that it
was little people proof :).. I also made sure that after I altered the
front to alter the front and back neck facing, and that it met at the center front.
I also had to raise the dot (you can kind of see where I had to readjust the dot to
get it level,lol).

  Like, if you're wanting a body con- then this certainly wouldn't be your thing. I love it! I know, I know. I've been saying a lot, but it's true. This pattern is all that! I wouldn't be surprised if I saw this vote best pattern over on PR this year.

 I initially started out with the longer length, but after trying it on, it felt a little frumpy. I mean this is a loose fitting dress, so I needed a little oomph, ya know?! So, to compromise, I chopped off about 2" of the bottom of the dress, and we were back in business again. It still allowed me to show a little leg, and to wear a heel without the dress becoming much too short for me.

A close-up shot of the armholes before sewing the side seams. You
sew the back yoke to the dots on either side and stop sewing at the dots. These make the
armholes. I do want to note: Please do your hem here, as the pattern instructs. It really does make
life simple. Of course, I did it the hard way, as I was so pressed to try the dress on. I must work on patience,lol!

   I also thought about leaving off the pockets. The horror I know,lol! I'm so glad that I didn't, because the pockets are such a cool detail in this dress. The pockets are essentially sewn on top of the inside of the dress and concealed, and topstitched on the outside.

I totally forgot to make sure the print was even on the side. It's a little off,
but not enough to cause me to lose sleep :)....

  What else?! Okay, so besides altering the V-neck to raise the neckline, and clean finishing the facing. I also cut my back pattern piece on the fold to not disturb the print in the fabric. I think Sandra mentions this in the instructions, but don't quote me,HA! I'm feeling much too lazy to dig out my pattern instructions in my sewing room..Y'all, that would never get old. I promise pictures, soon, though!

I cut the back pattern piece on the fold, so I wouldn't disturb the
print in the back.

I would certainly recommend this pattern, and I'm glad to have this one in my wardrobe for sure. I know this will get plenty of wear. Now, to find another suitable fabric, and I'll be all over this one again :). I do have a question: Is neoprene, the same as scuba fabric? Let me know y'all!

  I know that there are so many great patterns and prints  that I've been seeing lately. This neoprene, is lightweight and definitely comfortable, so hopefully I can another fabric type like this one again. I hope everyone had a great Mother's day weekend!

                    ~Be blessed and nothin' less and continue to stay fearlessly fierce!

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