Burda Style 01-2020-103 – Faux Suede Jacket

This faux suede jacket is my recent Minerva Maker project sewn with fabric gifted to me by Minerva.com. The fabric is buttery soft and was very easy to work with. The color I chose is called “Stone.”

I had noticed this pattern in the January 2020 Burda Style magazine. The magazine version was also sewn with faux suede. I had this jacket on my mind when I saw the faux suede on Minerva’s website.

I like the wrap style of the jacket. There are no fasteners but the jacket stays closed, which isn’t always the case with this style of jacket. I think the choice of faux suede helps keep the jacket closed. It’s “grippy” and doesn’t slip as much as other fabrics.

This jacket was easy to sew and the directions were straightforward for Burda Style. I removed one inch from the lower sleeve band. I normally have to add 1 inch to the length of jacket/coat sleeves but I could see these were plenty long for me. I could have removed another half inch as the sleeves are a little long for me. I chose to interface the sleeve bands. The pattern does not call for this but I thought the bottom of the sleeve might be too flimsy/floppy without the interfacing.

I lined the jacket with a leopard print satin.

I changed the belt carriers. The pattern called for very thin carriers to be sewn together in the side seams. I created more traditional belt carriers and centered them over the marking for the original carriers.

This was a fun project to sew and I’m pleased with my new jacket.

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Friday Pattern Company – Adrienne Blouse

Without any real plan for fall/winter sewing I’m sewing whatever inspires me. I’ve wanted to make the Adrienne Blouse by Friday Pattern Company for a couple of years but it never seemed to make it to the top of my to-sew pile. I’m still in need of some solid colored tops so it was time to get this one done.

The fabric is a crepe knit from Minerva that I purchased during the summer. The fabric has a nice weight and great recovery. This top is fitted so I didn’t want a knit that was too thin.

Speaking of fitted top, my measurements put me at a size small. I had read that there was quite a bit of negative ease with this pattern but I stuck with my plan to sew the small size. My small version wound up in the donation pile. I sized up to a medium and am much happier with the fit.

The weather is starting to get cooler here so with this top I declare that fall sewing has officially begun.

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Burda Style Tops To Finish Off My Summer Sewing

These two tops are the last of my summer 2020 sewing. The weather is still warm here on the Central Coast of California and I’ve already worn these tops, but fall is on the way and I’ve started to think of my sewing projects while taking out my fall fabrics.

I’ve been working from home since March and dressing more casually than I normally would for work. After working from home for a while I realized I needed more solid color casual knit tops.

Burda Style 07-2019-119 caught my eye after seeing a fellow sewist review it on PatternReview.com. I like the knotted sleeve detail. I think it elevates this top from being a plain t-shirt.

The next top I made was Burda Style 05-2020-106. I purchased this cotton border print last summer with a summer top in mind. The fabric goes from solid red to solid pink on the edges. I thought it would be fun to play with pattern placement.

The sleeve is completely lined by cutting the bottom of the sleeve on the fold. Instead of hemming the sleeve you fold it to finish the bottom. I hope I explained that in a way that can be understood. I’m not sure how else to explain it. My website is not known for being very technical.

This boxy top has side tabs with D-rings that allow you to cinch in the sides as tight or as loose as you want. The only change I made to this top was to sew 4 buttons instead of the 3 called for in the instructions.

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Vogue 9312 – Knit Summer Dress

Vogue 9312 is my most recent Minerva Makers project. For a while I’ve been on the lookout for a black and white print with which to make this dress. I chose a buttery soft jersey from Minerva that worked very well for this style of dress.

It’s not obvious in my pictures but there is a keyhole opening that gets created when you tie the front ties. The keyhole is not as large in my pictures because I cinched up the ties to raise the neckline. Loosening the ties lowers the neckline and broadens the keyhole. The pattern pictures show the keyhole more clearly.

I sewed View B and added 3 inches to the length. For reference, I’m 5 feet 7 inches. Adding the length was the only change I made to this pattern.

I like the depth of the neckline in the back. I sewed this dress with warm summer days in mind so the lower neckline will be appreciated. There is 3/8″ elastic encased in the empire seam. I often don’t find the elastic necessary in knit dresses but in this case I think it helps with the fit without looking like it’s gathered by elastic.

Fall is officially here but I’m still sewing for summer. I have a couple of simple pieces that I want to get done before embarking on my fall sewing. I have my first fall piece in queue waiting its turn. The weather here on the Central Coast of California will be warm enough to wear my summer wardrobe for a few more weeks so it’s still inspiring to sew for summer.

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Burda Style 02-2017-106A – Silk Flounce Top

I found this green silk in my stash while organizing my fabric a couple of months ago. I don’t know where or when I bought it but it was too beautiful to go back in the pile. I was determined to sew it this summer.

While going through my Burda Style magazines for inspiration, I came across this pattern and thought it would be perfect for the drape of the silk.

Fortunately this pattern was part of the “Sewing Course” section of the magazine. This section provides detailed illustrations and construction of the featured pattern. The top was not difficult to sew but I don’t know if I could have figured out how to attach the flounces without the step-by-step instructions.

I didn’t make any changes to the pattern except for raising the back opening by a couple of inches. Now that the top is finished I realize the opening in the back would not have been necessary. The top would easily slip over my head without it.

I like how the flounces turn this into a fancy tank top that can be dressed up or down. It’s a great addition to my summer wardrobe AND I sewed up another piece of fabric from my stash. Woo hoo!!!

Fall is shaping up to be pretty much like spring and summer and it looks like we’ll be hanging around the house some more. Though I’ve started thinking of sewing for fall, I’m still inspired by my summer fabrics and patterns so I’m going to keep sewing for summer for a while longer.

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Burda Style 07-2020-114 – Boxy Knit Top

This is the first year that I don’t have a sewing plan. I normally have patterns and fabrics lined up and ready to sew. I like having a plan as I look forward to seasonal clothing needs, events, and travel plans. Though I have sewn a few items as if we were going to be attending an annual event, I’m mostly sewing whatever inspires me at the time.

When I saw this knit top in the July 2020 Burda Style magazine, I thought it had some interesting details. I’m still working from home so knit tops have pretty much become my work uniform these days.

BS 07-2020-114

I like the asymmetrical neckline and pleats. The sleeves are also interesting. They have a separate pattern piece sewn to create a cuff that you can make with or without contrasting fabric.


This top was made entirely with leftover fabric from previous projects. The body is ponte and the contrast sleeve bands are lace underlined with satin. I organized my fabric earlier this summer and found quite a few pieces that can be used for smaller projects.


We still have a couple of months of warm weather coming up here on the Central Coast of California so I’m going to keep looking at my summer patterns and fabrics to come up with my next projects.

In the meantime I hope this finds you safe and well.


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Vogue 1625 – Floral Crepe Summer Dress

This dress is my most recent Minerva Maker project. When I saw this beautiful polyester crepe print on Minerva’s website I pictured it as a floaty summer dress. I purchased Vogue 1625 last year but had never found the right fabric until now.

Every year my husband and I attend a fundraiser where local restaurants and wineries serve up delectable dishes and wonderful wine. Even though the event is cancelled this year due to the pandemic, I thought it would be fun to make a dress that I would have worn to the fundraiser.

Sometimes polyester crepes can be challenging to sew or press but that was not the case for this crepe. The fabric behaved itself very well. The pattern was also a pleasure to sew as I found it well drafted with clear instructions. I did not make any alterations except to omit the exposed zipper in the back. I inserted an invisible zipper instead.

I wasn’t sure about the ties at the waist. I sometimes think that ties on the back of a dress can look like apron ties. I’m glad I didn’t remove them because I think the ties go well with the style of the dress.

I like the high-low length hem on this dress very much. The length of the dress worked out well for me. I’m 5’7″ in case you were wondering.

My husband captured the picture below as I was trying to show how the flounce had great movement.The weight of this fabric was exactly what I had envisioned for this dress.

Without any event to attend at this time, I’ll have to content myself with tasting and sipping the afternoon away on our patio.

I hope you this finds you and your families safe and well.

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Closet Core Patterns – Pietra Pants & Shorts

While on my shorts making journey, I came across the Pietra shorts from Closet Core Patterns. I feel like I’m late to the party on this one. There are so many beautiful Pietra pants and shorts on Instagram. I’m glad I bumped this pattern to the top of my project list. The pattern offers shorts, wide leg pants as well as slim tapered leg pants. I originally bought the pattern for the shorts but after being so happy with the how the shorts turned out, I couldn’t help but sew the pants. I had been wanting to make some wide leg linen pants for a couple of years, so here was my opportunity.

The high waist and flat front are what attracted me to this pattern. I wasn’t sure how I would feel about the elastic back waist but I like it very much. The gathers are nicely distributed by sewing 2 two rows of topstitching along the 2 inch wide elastic.

I have plans for more pants from this pattern. Next up, I would like to make a pair with the tapered leg.

I made the shorts before the pants but I’m in love with the pants so I wanted to show them to you first.

I’m continuing to add shorts to my summer wardrobe. I’ve sewn more shorts in the last couple of months than I have in the last 10 years. That is not saying very much because I think I’ve only sewn 2 pairs of shorts in the last 10 years.

The pattern measurements put me at a size 4 but my muslin was a little big on me. I came down a size and was happy with the fit. These shorts have a nice shape and are very comfortable to wear. The instructions for the pattern are detailed and easy to follow.There is even a tutorial on the company’s website for sewing the pockets. I didn’t need the tutorial but a novice sewist might find it helpful.

I still have one more shorts pattern to try before summer is over. Stay tuned for the Grainline Studio Maritime Shorts. In the meantime, stay safe and well.

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McCall’s 7967 – Knit Dress

I took a break from sewing shorts to make this simple knit dress. I feel very fortunate that I’ve been able to work from home since the middle of March. Though my work wardrobe consists mostly of jeans and casual tops, I’m enjoying sewing garments that I’ll wear more frequently once we’re all out and about again. The anticipation of wearing something to get together with friends or spend a day in San Francisco makes me happy and hopeful.

The gathered sleeves and neckline variations are what attracted me to this pattern when it was introduced.

The dress has a similar fit to McCall’s 6886 which I have sewn multiple times. I lined the dress with swimsuit lining. The fabric is a mid-weight scuba knit but I like a lined dress even when wearing knits.

The pattern has you finish the neckline by turning in 5/8 inch before stitching. I would normally make my own binding to finish the neckline. I prefer a bound neckline finish, but the dress fabric combined with the lining was on the heavier side. I chose to follow the directions to turn the seam allowance and stitch the neckline with my coverstitch machine.

The only other change I made was to interface the sleeve band.

Once I was finished with the dress, I thought the pattern would make a cute top. Solid knit tops are something I’m realizing I need more of in my closet.

I hope this finds you safe and well.

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Simplicity 1464 – Shorts and a Skirt

Spending so much time at home for the last few months has me wanting to add shorts to my wardrobe. When the weather heats up I usually turn to simple knit dresses but I’m realizing that shorts and a top would also be good casual wear for warmer days.

I bought Simplicity 1464 with plans to make the skirt a few years ago. I never paid attention to the shorts until I was going through my patterns looking for shorts. I had decided I would try different styles of shorts and make muslins (hopefully wearable) until I found a couple of patterns that could become my go-to patterns.

I made view E. I added one inch to the length.

The fabric has been sitting in my stash for quite a few years. I still have enough to make a sleeveless shirtdress, which is what I had planned on making when I bought the fabric.

I like that the pleats are repeated in the back.

Below is a picture of the waistband. The shorts have a side zipper.

While I had the pattern out, I decided to make the skirt I had planned on making when I bought the pattern.

Just like the shorts, the skirt also has pleats in the back and a side zipper.

I made view B and added 4 inches to the length. Adding length was the only change I made to both the shorts and skirt.

Prior to making the shorts pictured above, I made a pair of shorts from Simplicity 1887. I bought this pattern to make these shorts a few years ago and never got around to it. I figured this was a good place to start my shorts sewing journey. I like the way they turned out. There’s not much to say about them. They were easy to sew and I didn’t do any modifications to the pattern.

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