Hi my name is Sarah and I have a scrolling addiction to Anthropologie’s website. Honestly, I find inspiration for my sewn garments all over the place, but Anthropologie probably provides more inpiration than any other retail store. Fortunately, I sew, so I can often take a garment I see on their website and make my own version. About a month ago, I came across this fun ruffled sleeve tee on their site. I loved it. Ruffles are huge right now and I’m definitely loving the trend. I immediately thought of the Briar Sweater and T-shirt pattern and knew that I could make it happen. I’ve done quiet a few hacks with the Mini Briar pattern, but hadn’t sewn up the Women’s version for myself yet.
This pair of Harper shorts is made from a linen look polyester. Which i bought by accident thinking it was linen – until I tried to press it, and found that it didn’t conform and somehow never wrinkled even when i left it in a half finished messy pile in my sewing room…. if those aren’t some magical polyester warning signs i don’t know what is!
The lesson here is to read the label properly – on closer inspection of the receipt the fabric was “linen look”. Nice work meg, you’re a genius.
Oddly, i hate polyester and all synthetic fibres. I hate it on principal probably because i’m a nut. I don’t like the way they are made, or the fact that they don’t biodegrade. I don’t like that they don’t breath and make me perspire, and since i love pressing garments to within an inch of their life, i don’t like that synthetics rarely press well. I favour natural fibres, and basically avoid synthetics as much as possible.
And yet, as i say that, i find myself contradicting myself – because I really really love these shorts. Like really love them. Because: NO WRINKLES! I never have to iron them, and that is so much more of a win than i ever realised. The colour has stayed true and hasn’t faded, and the fabric hasn’t stretched out at all (which seems to always happen to me with linen?).
So then the question becomes – do the benefits of synthetic fibres outweigh the negatives? I feel like it’s hard for me to argue that synthetic fabrics are cheap and nasty, when here i am enjoying a garment made from polyester that has lasted well and doesn’t look like it lacks quality at all. Dare I say, they have been my favourite shorts this year. Uh oh.
So what do you think? Are you a poly lover or hater? Or does it even really matter all if you love what you made?
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As a person who loves to wear at lot of dresses and skirts, I find myself constantly trying to find ways to wear them in winter and not freeze my butt off. And i think i have finally found the solution – i shall now make everything out of scuba or ponte fabric!
I feel like I’ve found a way to trick winter. HA take that winter! They are so crazy warm but still structured enough to look polished. Having said that, I do feel I need to clarify that our winter is kind of a joke compared to say a the Midwest USA or Northern European winter. Our winters are more like Autumn. Very mild, still quite sunny with some rainy weeks, and temps barely grazing freezing on the coldest night of the year. Winter in Perth is actually my favourite season.
You may remember this top that I made last year – it’s a long sleeved Briar crop top with a slightly higher neckline made from a pretty amazing scuba knit (of which i am still hoarding 1m mwahaha). I still really love it and wear it constantly in winter, but must admit that the raw edges are starting to bother me. I may be bored with them? I think I need to finish them, but i don’t want to compromise on the length of the crop by turning under. Right now I’m leaning towards binding the edges in Fold Over Elastic. Any other ideas?
Meanwhile, this is one of the Axel skirts i made for myself during the testing process. I decided to leave the hem raw because if i’m honest, i was tired, and couldn’t be bothered hemming it. Which is silly because hemming takes very little time, but funnily enough, i actually really love the hem raw and have no intention of fixing it. Happy accident my dears! See how i contradict myself on the whole raw hem thing? Oh dear.
The fabric is a lovely thick ponte knit from Potter Textiles a few years ago. I used it in the sample for my Erin maternity skirt back in 2013 and have been hoarding the rest for a rainy day. I’m glad i kept it now, because its really perfect for Axel. Though it’s hard to see from a distance, but close up it has a really cool slubby texture that i just love.
So who thinks i should hem my skirt? Please so no because i’m still feeling really lazy hehe
Really excited to finally start sharing with you some of the Axel skirts i made for myself whilst developing the pattern! I know, I know, it took me ages… life gets in the way right?
This is Axel V3, the slit hem option, in a stripe knit from Knitwit which i’ve had in my stash for ages. I actually originally bought this to make a tee for Buddy, because for some reason i love making him stripey tees. But in all honesty, i got busy. I felt a bit mean cutting into it for myself given i’d bought it for him – which i know is probably kind of silly, but mother guilt knows no bounds! This fabric is a little thinner that i would normally recommend for an Axel, but it had good stretch and the stripes help avoid it being too revealing.
Anyway, I’m actually really surprised how much i like this skirt! As you may have noticed, i don’t often sew myself stripes. I don’t find them flattering, and I just don’t enjoy the careful pattern matching. So i’m pretty surprised to find that i actually *like* these stripes, and on my bottom half?! what?!
This fabric has really awesome 4 way stretch, so just for fun to add a bit of contrast i cut the waistband in the wrong direction. So pleased with this choice. Trying to match the stripes on 4 seams was frustrating enough, so i’m glad i didn’t have to do it on the waistline, as if it was off it would have just looked weird – plus i really love how it breaks up the print.
This has actually made me want to try a stripey waistband with say a floral skirt or something.
Now for the post title. I’m not going to lie to you my friends, my pattern matching on these stripes was mostly good but in some places, just not good enough. Not sure if you can see too well in the photos, but at the waistline, and close to the slit the matching goes a little eskew. sigh. Side seams and back are perfect, so you win some you lose some. I just didn’t feel like it was worth fixing (lazy?). Hoping it’s something that no-one except someone who sews will notice anyway (Right?).
Meanwhile, as you can see I have completely hopped on the whole lifestyle sneaker/ sports luxe concept. I’m actually incredibly grateful for it, and i hope sneakers stay in vogue for a while. Given the fact that i walk everywhere, this has been the best trend for my lifestyle. Get ready for sneakers with everything! And of course the last piece of this outfit is a cropped Briar – because i just live in those as you know :)
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Tshirts are one of the most versatile pieces. They are great for dressing up and dressing down. Vneck tees are great for adding some visual interest to an otherwise basic solid colored tee. I love wearing vneck tees. It makes me feel dressed up even though I’m wearing a comfortable tee. Learning how to sew a vneck is a great skill, and once learned it can be used on almost any scoop neck tee pattern. I used the Cara Maternity tshirt sewing pattern for this tutorial and to make my maternity vneck tee, but this can be applied to any tee pattern like the Briar or Mini Briar sewing patterns.