Tuesday, January 29, 2019

My New Wardrobe Staple: The Greenstyle Studio to Street Top


I really enjoy sewing and wearing dolman tops. A dolman top is so flattering and forgiving as it skims the body. Dolmans are definitely a staple silhouette for any wardrobe regardless of your style. As a stay at home mom, I really prefer clothes that are downright comfortable but always appreciate when they make me look put together too. I just adore the sexy, slouchy style of a properly fitting dolman. I also own a lot of dolman top patterns. When I first started sewing more garments, I would buy a pattern just because it was a dolman. Haha! 


SO, now you are thinking, wow, this girl really loves dolman tops! I do, yes, I do! I had one problem, though, my favorite pattern company - Greenstyle -  did not have a dolman top in their pattern line up! So, what did I do? I asked Angelyn (the designer behind Greenstyle) to design a dolman top. I excitedly and nervously put in my request because I kind of wanted her to make my favorite AND read my mind as to the design. Surprisingly, she already had one drafted! The only request that I had for her was to add the option of a split hem, and I patiently waited to see what her design was. 


The aptly named Studio to Street Top, which released today, is the dolman top pattern that she created, and it is beyond what I could have asked for! As with all Greenstyle patterns, the fit is spot on. It has the perfect ease, tons of options, and works for being dressed up or for the gym! I am also excited to report that it is my new wardrobe staple. It is the perfect slouchy sweater to cuddle with my husband and kids and the chic top that makes me feel stylish when I am out running errands. My late 30s self is totally going to rock the crop top on date night and put it on over a tank when I run to the gym. You guys, I am so excited about this pattern that I could totally kiss Angelyn :)


Now, let's get into the pattern details and the tops that I made! 

Sizing. I made a straight XS based on my measurements. All of my measurements fell into XS so I did not need to do any grading or adjustments to the pattern. This pattern chart has an upper bust measurement, which is really helpful in selecting your size if you have a full bust that is more than three inches larger than your overbust. Otherwise, if you only use your full bust measurement, you may end up making too large of a size. 


Hemline Options. The pink plaid top above is made out of a jersey fabric and is made using the straight hem cutline. This one is more of a modest crop on me and only reveals my stomach if I lift my hands over my head. The pattern also includes a cropped high/low hem (my lilac/lavender top shown next), a longer length high/low hem (my green top below), and a tunic length split hem option (my striped one shown below)

Greenstyle Inspire Tights Sewing Pattern Review

Neckline options. For the back of the Studio to Street Top, you can have a crew, regular v, or deep v neckline. On the front of the top, you can have a crew or v neck. You may mix and match these in whatever way you like. For this lilac top, I used double brushed poly and did the v front with the deep v back. 

Greenstyle Creations Inspire Tights

The high/low crop is definitely the most revealing of the hemline options. I plan to wear this one layered over a tank. 


I absolutely love how the deep v back shows off the power bra. This is one of the power bras that I made last month. You can read that blogpost here. I wear this one to run in a lot, and it has the perfect support! 







My leggings are the Greenstyle Inspire tights made with athletic brushed polyester from the Styled Magnolia. This was my first time to make the Inspires, and I have since made another pair! They are quick and fun and will be in my rotation a lot now!


Fabric choice. You want to use fabric with a soft hand to it. Cotton lycra lacks the drape this top needs and will be more tent-like. On the other hand, rayon spandex will cling and hang a little too much on this top. I liked using a soft weight jersey (like the plaid top), a double brushed poly (like my lilac crop), a poly/rayon/spandex French terry (the striped mauve one), and ribbed knit (my cozy green one. I also think sweater knit is a great choice for this top and have some sweater knit picked out for my next one. 

  
The fabric you choose needs to have at least 50% stretch or your sleeves will feel too tight. The body is much looser so does not need as much stretch as the sleeves. 


This is the split hem that I love on this pattern! The poly/rayon/spandex French terry works so good on the split hem version. I think fabric with anymore drape looks too wavy on the bottom band, but fabric with not enough drape will look boxy there. 


Sleeve length. For my last top, I wanted cozy. I used a rib knit with lots of stretch on this one. You can tell that my sleeves are much longer due to just how stretchy this fabric is. I like to push them up throughout the day to keep them from getting wet when I wash my hands. I made my lilac top in the 3/4 sleeve length. The only option I have not tried on this pattern is the short sleeve view. Keep in mind that if you are using fabric with a lot of vertical stretch, you may have longer sleeves than expected, while if you are using fabric with very little vertical stretch, your sleeves may be a bit shorter.


For comparison, here are the two Studio to Street Tops that I made with a crew neck in the front:


Here are the two tops that I made with the V neck in the front: 


Which neckline and hemline do you like the most? I think my favorite for everyday wear is probably the crew back with the v neck front, but for the gym, I am loving the deep v back with the v front!

Resources
  1. The Studio to Street Dolman Top pattern can be purchased HERE
  2. The Inspire Tights pattern can be found HERE.
  3. The Power Sports Bra pattern can be found HERE.
  4. I bought the pink plaid jersey fabric in the DFW fabric district at Wherehouse Fabrics. I found it on the remnant tables in the back.
  5. The lilac/lavender double brushed polyester fabric was a scrap from my friend Aimee Wilson. She is so sweet to share her scraps with me, and I usually can find something fun to do with them. I always learn so much from her too so don't forget to follow her if you don't already!
  6. The lavender poly/rayon spandex French terry stripes can be found at So Sew English HERE
  7. The green rib knit came from Knitpop.
  8. The fabric for my tights is athletic brushed poly from the Styled Magnolia. I am really excited about the supplex she is planning on stocking soon (It includes florals and stripes!!)
  9. My running shoes are Brooks Ricochet. I am a big fan of Brooks for running shoes. I had IT band issues or shin splints or other issues until I found Brooks and now I have zero problems and haven't for years. I normally only wear their Launch series, but I am going to add the Ricochet to my favorites. If you are new to running or haven't changed your running shoes in awhile, get fitted and find a shoe that makes you happy too!
Thanks for reading! I hope I have inspired you. You may follow me on Instagram or receive updates by liking my page on Facebook. If you want to take a look into the things that inspire me, you can follow me on Pinterest. You may also follow my blog with Bloglovin.

Disclosures: I received this pattern for free as part of the testing process to give the designer feedback about the instructions and fit of the pattern. This post also may contain affiliate links, which means I receive a small compensation when you purchase via my link. There is no cost to you.  Any and all opinions expressed are my own.

Thursday, January 24, 2019

Made for Mermaids Lee Raglan for the Family



15 years ago I thought I would never have children. Oh how my heart changed!! After the first year of being married to my husband, I found a sweet doctor who listened, knew his stuff, and was able to help me, and God changed my heart to realize that I did want to be a mother. Within the year, I was pregnant with our first child. My life changed drastically, and I never imagined it would look like what it does now! It seemed like that was just yesterday, and now I have 5 kids!! 


Sewing is that hobby that I need, and I love how blogging allows me to document it all. My kids are so sweet about my sewing too. They will tell a complete stranger that their mom made their shirt while smiling from ear to ear. It has been too long since I have sewn each of them a shirt, so last week, I signed up to test the new Lee raglan pattern by Made for Mermaids and was able to make each of them (and even myself!!) a shirt!! I guess when you are homeschooled and your mom likes to sew, it becomes school picture day. I am so glad how sewing pushes me to get photos of my kids. 


 Today's blogpost will be about my thoughts on the pattern and what sizes I made for each of us. 





The Lee raglan has the option of a normal neckband (which I used on all the tops I made) or a placket. I love the placket look but knew I would be pressed for time with making so many tops. There is also a men's pattern available that I have not made (sorry hubby, I needed to sleep too!) There is a straight or curved hem option, and for the women's, there is also a tunic length. 




Let's start with some sweet photos of my youngest in her top. She just turned 1 (you can see that post here). I initially made her the size 1/2, and it fit but was a bit hard to get over her head. So, on her final raglan, I made a size 1/2 width with a size 1 length. The fit was perfect for her in this size!




She is wearing the free Bonny Leggings pattern to go with her top. 




For my 4 year old Aaron, I made a size 4 width with a size 5 height. 




He really loves to pose for photos and always makes me laugh (when I am not telling him to get down from something)




The fabric I used for his shirt was a gift from my friend Aimee. When he was two, she made him a tank top with this fabric, and it was his favorite shirt. He wore it ALL. THE. TIME. Almost all of his photos from 2 to maybe a few months ago have him wearing that shirt. I felt like I needed to tell people that he did have other clothes, and I had to wash it sooo much. I finally hid it from him because it was becoming a crop top and was stained beyond my ability to fix. I knew it was time to make him another shirt form his favorite fabric. 


"Today you are you, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is youer than you."




My 6 year old is his best friend. These two boys are pretty inseparable. I made the 6 year old a size 6 with 7 length.




The 4 year old is the active, full of energy kid. My 6 year old is the calmest and sweetest boy I have ever met. I can't tell you enough about what a sweetheart this kid is!




I love that this pattern looks so great on boys and girls. The sleeves are NOT cut on the fold, which is necessary on a raglan, since the front and back should have different necklines. I mention this because the first raglan pattern I ever tried for my kids had sleeves that were cut on the fold. It just didn't look quite right. This pattern has the perfect ease and yet is not baggy on the kids. I think it will be my go to staple pattern when I need to make a quick shirt for one of my kids or have some scraps to use up on them.


My 8 year old wanted the curved hem option on her Lee raglan. I made her a straight size 7 based on her measurements. She asked for the same fabric as her baby sister, and since I was working with scraps, I only had enough for her front. I paired the pandas on her top with some yarn dyed stripes from Made Whimsy on her sleeves and a Made Whimsy solid for her back. 




For my 10 year old, I made a size 10 and graded the bottom to a 12 to accommodate her hips. I noticed on both of my older girls, the height for their size was perfect; while I graded to a taller height for both boys. This sweet 10 year old loves the simple raglan style. She usually says no when I ask to make her anything too frilly or girly! She is also the photographer behind many of my blog photos!




Now for my top..... I made a size Pink for bust and hips and graded to Purple for my waist. My overbust fit in a size Grey, but I struggled with the FBA and knew that a straight Pink would fit just fine. I used cotton lycra on all the kids tops and used rayon spandex for mine. I love how the neckline looks on this top. I am always a fan of a lower neckline, and this one was super easy to pull down and nurse in. 



I still really love the floral with stripes trend and hope it is not going away anytime soon because I plan to wear this top soo much! 




Resources


1. The Women's Lee Pattern can be found here.
2. The Kid's Lee Pattern can be found here.
3. The Women's and Kids Lee bundle can be found here.
4. The rayon spandex for my top came from a Sincerely Rylee mystery box. She usually has stockings of amazing deals every Friday. If  you are quick, you can grab a box too at an insanely good price. 
5. The solids and striped cotton lycra for my kids' tops came from Made Whimsy. Her solids are always my favorite, and I try to keep each color on hand at all times - especially black!
6. The cotton lycra grey screw/nail print and pink panda prints came from Jumping June Textiles. The black/white stars came from TKB Prints. The Suess print came from Wonderground
7. My pants are the Patterns for Pirates SOS pants



Thanks for reading! I hope I have inspired you. You may follow me on Instagram or receive updates by liking my page on Facebook. If you want to take a look into the things that inspire me, you can follow me on Pinterest. You may also follow my blog with Bloglovin.

Disclosures: I received this pattern for free as part of the testing process to give the designer feedback about the instructions and fit of the pattern. This post also may contain affiliate links, which means I receive a small compensation when you purchase via my link. There is no cost to you.  Any and all opinions expressed are my own.



Tuesday, January 22, 2019

The Ellie and Mac Autumn Spice is so Nice!


It's Wacky Wednesday at Ellie and Mac!! Every Wednesday Ellie and Mac marks a select number of patterns down to only $1 for one day only. This week the Autumn Spice Top Pattern is part of the sale! 

I was so excited to sew up the Autumn Spice top and have had it on my list ever since it released. I loved the lines on the pattern and knew it was just what I needed to use up some of the scraps overflowing from my bins. 


I absolutely love my finished top. The pattern comes with the option for the first color-blocked seam to fall above the bust or below the bust. I made the below the bust because visually the color blocked sections looked more even to me. I think the finished length of the top is more of a tunic length on me, which is perfect over leggings or as a warm and cozy sweater. The pattern has sleeve lengths of short, 3/4 or long. I made the long sleeves, and it's a perfect length. There is also a long sleeve-cuff option if you want to have three layers of color-blocking on your sleeve.

For fabric, the pattern recommends your fabric to have at least 50% 4-way stretch, but it is not tight fitting, so you could possibly get away with less stretch, especially on your middle and bottom color-blocked sections. I used a lighter weight, soft baby french terry for my top two layers and a heavier-weight bamboo spandex jersey for the bottom white. 


I have to say, though, that this top took longer for me to make than I had expected for two reasons: 

(1) It took me awhile to decide on fabric because I can be so indecisive when picking which fabrics I think look good together. I have learned there is a fine balance between fabrics complimenting each other or for me looking like a quilt. I really love quilting, but I have quite the opposite clothing philosophy as I do quilting. My quilts are packed full of color, and my clothes tend to be a bit more subdued. 

(2) I really took my time to top stitch and steam my seams really well. This fabric was soft and thin and would not have looked very good without me taking time to do what I knew it needed.


I love the shirt tail hem. It was easy to do because you hem the shirt before you sew the side seams. 


I think this is going to be one of my go to shirt patterns when I have scraps that I need to bust through. It is a great top for people who love to order scrap boxes and get cuts of fabric that are less than one yard. 


Resources
  1. The Women's Autumn Spice Top pattern can be found here
  2. You can find all the patterns that are part of Wacky Wednesday (and free patterns) HERE
  3. I don't remember where my fabric originally came from. They were all scraps I found in my bins. 
  4. My pants are the Patterns for Pirates SOS Pants. I blogged about them here
Thanks for reading! I hope I have inspired you! You may follow me on Instagram or receive updates by liking my page on Facebook. If you want to take a look into the things that inspire me, you can follow me on Pinterest. You may also follow my blog with Bloglovin.

Disclosures: This post may contain affiliate links, which means I receive a small compensation when you purchase via my link.