Episode 81: #pfSewYourStash

Sponsors this month:

Create Domesticity $50 gift card!

Catch up:


I talked about a lot on the bonus episode, so I’ll just talk about new ones since then.

8/18/22Nocturne PajamasSew Liberatedself
8/19/22Sport ShortsFriday Pattern Coself
8/20/22Sport ShortsFriday Pattern CoJim
8/23/22HinterlandSew Liberatedself


Muna & Broad Melba

Caramiya Yesterday Dress

New Patterns:

The Smith Woven Jacket by Style Arc

Simpler looking jean jacket.  

  • Buttoned fly front opening
  • Full length sleeves with inserted tab
  • Slip through cuffs
  • Two-piece collar
  • Front pockets
  • Hem facing
  • Back pleat
  • Front and back yoke

They are suggesting linen, silk and rayon, but I’m thinking canvas would be so cool.  Especially that lightweight quilting type canvas.

Jennifer Lauren Handmade Luna Lounge set

Extended Size Range – A to F cups in sizes NZ6 to 34

Up to hip 159.5cm or 62 3/4″

Angelica Gown: Max 52” bust, 46” waist, free hip – does this qualify?

Angelica gown – something for cosplay or costume

The Angelica Gown pattern is an elegant and versatile variant of the ‘Italian Gown’ style fashionable from the mid 1770s to the early 1790s. This type of gown has a skirt and bodice cut as separate pieces, differentiating it from the earlier Robe à l’Anglaise which featured a skirt and bodice center-back cut as one piece.

Both views of the Angelica gown feature deeply pointed backs waists, high narrow backs with sleeves set far into the back, a full pleated skirt open at the front, one-piece ¾ length sleeves, side bodice seams, removable interior boning, and a hidden front-laced closure.

Sand Dollar Dress pattern: max 56” hip

The Sand Dollar Dress is a warm weather patchwork dress that is easy to make with nine fat quarters (18” X 21” quilting cotton). With its simple a-line shape, pleated edge and extended shoulder panels, this patchwork dress has a flattering shape and is right on trend.

This month’s theme: Sewing from our stash. #pfSewYourStash  I think this one will be far easier for me than you, Jenny!  Although, we aren’t saying it has to be only from our stash – and certainly not all month.  

Beverly:  Here are some categories I plan to tackle this month:

  1.  The oldest or close to oldest thing in my stash – could be fabric or notions, patches, tools even. 
  2. The Precious princess.  I have at least 6 pieces of expensive or one of a kind fabric that I am not using for fear of regret.  I plan to tackle at least one of them this month on something beautiful that I will love.  
  3. Something I’m avoiding in my stash – maybe it’s boring, or what ever.  In that case, there is absolutely no risk in painting it or embroidering it or making a wacky hat out of it.  If it was just going to sit there forever, it was already dead. Only up from there.  


  • I’m wanting to tackle my oldest pieces of fabric. 
  • Scraps use
  • Oldest patterns still unsewn
  • Fabric that’s languished in my stash (like sheers or other weirdsies)

75: #pfRepresent reveal

Clue for next month:


Style ArcFree patternJuly
FatittyFree labelsJuly
Caramiya – by JennyGardenia ChemiseJuly

If you’re interested in sponsoring, please DM Jenny or PunkFrockers and we’ll get it set up!

Catch up:

Beverly: I finished my first pair of Ginger Jeans! My top stitching needs a lot of work – I need to practice more with tension, etc.  I am using the Guterman Mara 30 (Tex 100) for the thread.  It is recommended for top stitching but maybe it’s too thick?  Others use something different?

As for modifications, I made the size 16, with a little shaved off the hips and a little added to the waist. I used Cone Mills denim from Core Fabrics – super dark blue.  It is 6% poly, 2% spandex.  I really like it.  The legs are long enough for me!  I forgot to lengthen them and they are totally fine!  


So – all I’ve really done in a week is make a couple dragronfruit tops to go over the dozen + Yesterday Dresses we talked about last time!  I feel positively draggy about my sewing.  I think this is because I’m mostly just organizing, and downsizing, in my home right now.  In organizing, I’m again realizing that I really only want to keep patterns that are printed on the tissue paper by – they fit so well on standard bookshelves and keep everything compact and neat – which is saying something for me!

New Patterns:

True Bias has expanded their sizing on the Shelby Dress and Romper, smaller sizes here.

The model surprised me: Left is small size band, right is large size band… 60/53/62

BUT, I’m glad it is expanded – this is another I’ve been waiting for.  It reminds me of 90’s dresses I used to wear over leggings.  

Love Notions Saltwhistle Top and Dress Max size: 58/50/60

Saltwhistle Top & Dress Features:

  • Meant for woven fabrics
  • 2 views: Peplum and knee length dress
  • 4 sleeve options: sleeveless, ruffle, short puff & 3/4 bishop
  • Square, faced neckline
  • Three tier options
  • Full bust option

Sizes: XS-5X (See Size Charts here)

Skill Level: Intermediate

Kyle & The Machine:

Two sizes: Mule Tote, and Maxi Mule Tote

It’s a one size fits all tote bag – lol.  I know we focus on clothing, but I actually bought this one and have plans for a few totes for farmers markets, gifts, and the like.

Skyler short/skort by RAD patterns:

There are two skirt options – a circle skirt or a fitted skirt; or leave the skirt off altogether for some great shorts! The shorts feature 3 length options – shorties, mid-thigh, and bermuda. They offer an optional crotch gusset and have pockets along the side of the legs.

This pattern is drafted for slightly hourglass proportions. We think it’s important not to gender our patterns, but we recognize that body proportions vary and want you to be able to choose the right fit for you. Our hourglass proportion patterns were previously referred to as “women’s” and are drafted for bust and hip curves.

#pfRepresent recap:  

How did we do???

Beverly: I had all good intentions and just didn’t get what I planned done this month, but to be fair, I still have lots of time!  It’s only the 20th, so I have 11 more days! I received my Tauko magazine and the Helpa is calling me.  This issue, the featured models are a black woman and an old, round Asian woman.  I think anything in this issue totally qualifies for #pfRepresent.

Jenny:  Well, it’s still only 2/3rd of the way through the month – but I think I’ve done fine.  I’ve focused on patterns from one designer (CaramiyaMaui) that offers an unlimited size range (will draft if you exceed the limits of the size range) and diverse models on prior patterns (all are illustrations, not photos).  In addition, Caramiya has shown she cares about getting the curvy fit right before releasing anything for any size block.  

I still have a couple MimiG patterns from Simplicity that now meet our criteria on my table but need to dye some fabric before I can cut & sew.

Overall though, our first do-over hashtag was a bust – not many folks participated.  If you just weren’t feeling it, let us know why so we can adjust as we move forward.  In our poll asking what topics people would like, there was support for re-doing old topics, but right now I feel like we might not do that so directly in the future.  What did you think, Beverly?

Call outs:



JetAndTheBears: Patterns from SewHouse7 & Helen’s Closet with diverse range of models.  Patterns are FreeRangeSlacks & AshtonTop in a teal blue dyed duvet recycling

Sara.Fornia:  A new pattern by CaramiyaMaui – the tate body con dress.  Called out Caramiya’s commitment to size inclusion, noting that Caramiya will draft to fit your body if you aren’t covered in the available sizes.

RonaBirdSews:  HIghlighted a method of resizing tees you buy to fit you – buy the largest size, and use a tee pattern that’s right for your body.  Here the Muna & Broad Tarlee tee was used to refashion a TeePublic shirt.  Brava!

Beverly will be on a break for August – so look forward to some awesome guests hosts in the coming weeks!


Episode 73: Ideas for #pfRepresent

73: #pfRepresent – some of our favorite choices


Style ArcFree patternJuly
FatittyFree labelsJuly
Caramiya – by JennyGardenia ChemiseJuly

Catch Up: 


7/1/2022 Casita                       CrisWoodSews 

7/2/2022 Casita                       CrisWoodSews 

7/3/2022 Casita                       CrisWoodSews 

7/3/2022 Collage Gathered Matchy Match

I’ve mostly been working on tests for CrisWoodSews, but I also WON SEWING. The Collage Gathered dress hack I made with my dyeing samples is out of this world. 

See it here.

Woman standing outside wearing a colorful patchwork dress.

Beverly – I’ve made two things – three really.  I made the Simone pattern by Fibremood. I started by making it according to my measurements and it was too small.  I also used this very colorful fabric and hated it.  I then made it in a larger size and a more “me” fabric, though still a print and LOVE it.

Woman in bathroom selfie wearing ruffled top.
Woman standing, wearing ruffled top and shorts.

Next I made the Adams Pants by Daughter Judy Patterns.  This counts for #pfRepresent as the models for this pattern are both people of color and most of the images for the pattern are of a larger size model.  I love this pattern – will only make a couple changes – slight decrease in front rise, and normal back pockets. I chose the button fly option and used the fabric Jenny gave me from Ruby Star Society – blue/gray camo with gold around the camo splodges.  Wore them to work and they were comfortable all day!

Woman standing, wearing blue camouflage pants and a blue top.

New Patterns:

The Grainline Studio Archer Shirt has been upgraded up to 58/51/61.  This is great news as this is a classic shirt pattern with several sew alongs available for those that want to learn how to make a tailored shirt.  New size range has darts while smaller range does not.  

#pfRepresent- Our Lists – old favorites, new ones to try:


Magazine: TAUKO – great representation for size and ethnicity in models, tell the stories of many of the folks that are underrepresented in sewing.  

They showed the designs and told the story of non-binary artist Jesus Herrera.  They told the story of the black quilters of Gee’s Bend in Wilcox County Alabama. They highlighted Sonya Philip, who started sewing because she couldn’t find the clothes she wanted in her size and revolutionized the way folks feel about their bodies by making patterns for bigger bodies.

They also wrote about Carolyn Denham, one of the founders of Merchant and Mills, a grey-haired woman invisible to many.  They also featured Aja Barber in an article “Who wants dead white man’s clothes?” Aja is a black activist primarily focused on sustainability in the fashion industry.

I’ll be making one of their patterns this month – the SABOO, modeled by a visibly fat model, who also appears on the cover of the issue the pattern is in.

I’m also very taken with the Toril pants from the upcoming issue.  These pants have an option for a gathered flounce on the hem, which I really doubt I will make.  The pattern is modeled by two women – one is black, the other is asian – and also older than me, and round.  


Merchant and Mills EttaLarger sizes first photos (from each link)

Fibr and Cloth Yarrow Top and Tunic

  • Black designer/owner of the business- Alexis Bailey
  • Diverse models in both size and ethnicity.
Woman wearing headband, evergreen dress and black pants.
Three women sitting on a sofa. Left - woman wearing evergreen dress and black pants.  Middle - woman wearing pink top with leopard print skirt. Right, woman wearing graphic print top and jeans.

Fabric store: Melanated Fabrics – owned by Mimi G and Brittany Jones, based in Atlanta, GA USA

Pigeon Wishes (UK) – owned by Megan Valero and Duan YuHao who are a Chinese and Black couple



CaramiyaMaui: illustrations for patterns; a fav last year was the Chive Dress featuring Aaronica on the cover. Caramiya backs up visual representation by pushing to include larger bodies in tests for new patterns. 

Elbe Textules: first images are old models (grey hair, beard). 

Screenshot of Elbe Textiles website to show older models.

Simplicity: summer catalog is focused on size expansion. 34W is 58” hip; going further to 62” in fall. Currently mostly MimiG patterns. 

Image from's summer catalog showing expanded sizes.

71: #pfScrappy Reveal

Clue for Next Month’s theme:


Fibr & Cloth Studio Iris Pattern

Warp and Weft Textiles $100 gift card

Jennifer Lauren Handmade Any pdf pattern

Comment from Free Patterns episode: 

Linda gave us feedback that we didn’t mention Peppermint Sewing patterns in that episode.  They are a good resource that has tried to improve sizing – not always consistently.  We only gave a few favorite patterns and although they were some of my first sewing patterns and I loved them, many of those don’t meet the standards of the show.  The latest dress pattern they offered was a good improvement – the Bowen Dress – with a max body measurement of 60” hip (finished hip of 114”).  

Catch Up


Trillium Dress: Out of great fabric from NekoNeko fabric

Trillium from a cross woven linen from Mulberry Silks

First thing I made I’ll discuss when we talk about pfScrappy reveal.

I also made another Ashton Dress with yarn dyed linen I got from Gray Line Linen in NYC.  It’s turquoise blue one direction and black the other.  Gorgeous! 

Merchant and mills Florence pattern – top version : Small sizes, large sizes

New Patterns

I am so super excited about Merchant and Mills new Etta DressEtta Dress Larger sizes. This is a wrap dress, but loose fit.  It reminds me of a popular Big 4 pattern but with much better sizing and a slightly more folk look to it.  

I really like this one too. I think the lack of a close fit makes it more likely to stay closed at the chest. 

Helen’s closet’s new collection, called Studio

Includes three patterns, the Dawson a fitted tee shirt, the Moss Jacket, and Ruby Overalls. Right now they are on sale, buy two, get the other free.  The Ruby Overalls feature wide legs and include both cropped pants and shorts views. – Elastic back.  The Dawson Top is the ultimate layering shirt. With three neck options and three sleeve lengths, you can make a total of NINE different shirts with this pattern. The Moss Jacket is a pattern we have had in the works since practically the beginning of Helen’s Closet. Think of it like a woven Blackwood Cardigan! Moss includes two distinct views. View A is a short sleeved, longer layering piece. Perfect for layering over any outfit and easy to dress up or down. View A of Moss works great in lighter-weight, drapey fabrics. View B is a long sleeved, shorter jacket with a wide band collar. 

Style Arc Elsbeth Woven Dress

  • Gathered front bodice waist
  • Centre back invisible zip
  • Lower centre back skirt split / vent
  • Elbow length or full-length cuffed sleeves
  • Panelled, fitted skirt
  • No actual skirt side seams
  • Back bodice darts
  • Extended shoulder line

Woven fabric including cotton, linen, viscose, silk.

Line drawings of dress pattern and illustrations of two people wearing the dresses, one short sleeved and one long sleeved.

This is one I really like but I’m unsure if it’ll work for me. 

Lekala Pattern #2463

This company has a vast array of CAD patterns, very inexpensive.  This one is so cute and just $2.49 right now, although I think regular price is just an extra dollar if the price has expired by the time this comes out.  You can get the pattern in their “standard” sizes – 5X is 48” hip – ha!  Or you can put your own measurements in. We definitely suggest using a less expensive fabric for these patterns as they probably aren’t thoroughly tested. 

Line drawing of a dress pattern, front and back

Wanted to mention that Sew Over It’s summer capsule ebook has upgraded to their full size range.  Here’s a link to all the line drawings, size charts and fabric requirements for their 18-30 range and for their 6-20 range

Line drawing of a jacket sewing pattern
Line drawing of a skirt pattern



I’ve done well!  I already talked about the Georgie Tee dress I made in an abstract landscape using scrap linen and double gauze.  I also made a Fibremood Frances (this is a FREE pattern) using a 1 yard piece of linen that wasn’t a scrap but was in my stash forever because it was too small to use alone and some ice dyed scraps that Jenny shared with me!  

Not sure I love the pattern, but I like the scrap usage.  

I also did a bit of a cheat for the challenge – I changed a dress I wasn’t wearing – I first cut out the pockets.  Style Arc Sydney, and then cut off the bottom band because it was restricting my walking too much.  – Long legs and large stride I guess.  But then it was a weird length so I cut it off more to wear with jeans.  We will see if I actually wear it now.


Cashmerette Kineton: used scraps from other projects for my two-tone color blocked dress. 

Caramiya Dragonfruit dress: used scraps for ruffled sleeves 

Refashioned a dress into a cropped top

Unnamed dress: used scraps for yoke of a linen dress that’ll be coming out in additional sizes soon

Still time as we’re recording & I have plans … 


Call outs:



69: Free Patterns

This month’s sponsors:

Fibr&Cloth: Free Iris zero waste shirt pattern

Warp&Weft Textiles: $100 gift certificate

Jennifer Lauren Handmade:  Free pdf pattern (ISLA pronounced EYE-la perhaps?)

Catch Up


I’ve done more dyeing than sewing since we last met, and this morning I took a “how to paint on fabric” class offered by TopStitchAtl and Katie Kortman – and it was grant.  My results will appear in the show notes – we basically played around with paint, thick and think, and learned about mixing colors, using water to create soft edges, and such.  Very fun!

Painted fabric hanging on a fence to dry.
Fabric tied up and held together with rubber bands, placed in a cardboard box.
Woman wearing dress with blue and purple tie-dye, some parts of the dress are white.  Woman is facing away.

I did make a DragonFruit dress from b&w Ankara fabric with some white with black polka dots scraps as part of the double ruffle sleeves.  I’ve started tagging those sleeves as #KatieKortmanSleeves – it seemed fitting.


Want to mention some independent fabric stores that I have recently purchased from.  I bought some linen viscose noil and Merchant and Mills ribbing from Harts Fabric.  

I also purchased some Merchant and Mills linen from Fancy Tiger crafts. They don’t have any more of the blue/purple color I got but have many others.  Mine is going to become a Cris Wood Sews Daydream dress, after i make one in a less expensive linen to test out the fit.

Working on a super-secret project that will be revealed by the time this goes on the air so I can talk about it.  

I got this beautiful fabric at Mood – cotton voile, black base, giraffes, peacocks, snakes, grecian ladies, flowers – you know- SUBTLE.  I’m making a shirt for Jim. It has a camp-style collar and pockets on each side.  I matched the pockets but not the pocket closures (too hard!).  I am making it short sleeved for summer.  This is an anniversary present. 3 years!

BEVERLY – OMG – I ordered this earlier this week.  LOL!  That’s hilarious – now I’ll be able to match you or Jim.  

I am super excited about the #pfScrappy theme.  I am planning a dress made with linen scraps pieced together to make an abstract version of the view where Jim and I got engaged.  Inspired by 

New Patterns

True Bias Emerson has had a size expansion up to 60” waist, 64.5” hip

Small sizes

Not sure if it’s a new pattern, but I wanted to call attention to the June bonus pattern for Style Arc.  It’s the Eileen Dress, and they have added some size diversity in models.  I wanted to mention it because we have noted their lack of size diversity previously.

  • Shirring detail on sleeve
  • Gathered side waist
  • Round neck
  • In-seam pockets
  • Centre back split,loop and button for woven version

Can be made in knit or woven fabrics (shown in knit on left, woven on right in photo).

New pattern:

Rivlin Ruffle Dress:  Max 64” hip

Line drawings of dress pattern in short, medium and maxi lengths

THisis a new to me designer. I shared the pattern on Insta, and the designer offered me a copy to try out.  I’ve already ordered the printed pattern from friend of the show ThePlottedPattern and can’t wait to sew this one up.  I think I’ll do knee length with tiny neck and armhole ruffles first…

New & Free pattern: 

Belt from CrisWoodSews – Cinch Belt

Person wearing lime green belt around tan colored dress.

Free Patterns

Free Pattern Database with Max sizes!

Making and Books Free Patterns Database

Buy a coffee for Making and Books

I did the math for you: 105 free patterns, 45 up to standard of show, 15 that will fit Jenny. Clearly there is a need for more free patterns in larger sizes.  I fit into all but 1 of the patterns.

Some of our favorites:


Deer and Doe Plantain shirt (up to max 58/50/60)

Small sizes

Large sizes

Person wearing maroon 3/4 length tee shirt with black jeans
Person wearing blue and white striped 3/4 length sleeve tee shirt.

Fibremood Frances shirt – haven’t made yet, but really want to!  

Person wearing white shirt with elastic gathered grown on sleeves.

Rebecca Page Toronto Tee – my favorite t-shirt pattern – max size 54/50/57

Person wearing blue tee shirt with red stripes and small pocket

Sew House Seven Elemental Skirt – max size 57” waist 65” hip

Person wearing navy blue tee shirt with heathered grey skirt.

Hey June Handmade Allspice Apron – I made these as gifts for my mom and Jim not last Christmas but year before.  Great opportunity for scraps!  I like this apron because there are no ties.  Max measurements 60” hip.  

Jenny:  I don’t really have many free pattern favorites – because mostly there just aren’t many choices in the types of garments I like to make.

Amy Nicole Studios – Krissa Top is a super cute cropped shell top with a split back. Easy and free to download from Amy’s site. Bust measurement: 30in-56.5in bust. 

 I haven’t made this yet – but it’s pretty cute, and now is on my radar. 

Sarah Kirsten – Morning Glory top is a cute open backed top with tie detail designed for woven fabrics, sent to you for free if you enter your email address. This is more of a template for how to make the top to your own measurements so there is no size range – you calculate the size of the pieces to fit you!

 I have made this a few times; my favorite version adds on a gathered shirt with elastic back, inspired by HandmadeMandy on Instagram.   

Overall, free patterns aren’t that exciting for me – I’m fortunate that I can afford to buy most any pattern I’m interested in.  While only about 15% of the list is accessible to me from a max hip perspective, that’s still better than in previous years.  And honestly, the last time I did the math, only about 30% of patterns in most data bases were accessible for me – so 15% of free patterns doesn’t sound so bad comparatively.  

I find that sizing is hit or miss on the upper end of commercial patterns, and that seems to hold true for free patterns.  

I’ll look forward to the news being better next year on the free (and paid!) pattern front for people with outsized measurements!

Favorites not on that list:

Mood sewciety – I wonder if the Plotted Pattern would offer a service to take these letter size and make into A0?

On the home page of their patterns, they have categories such as gender free and adaptive along with cosplay, basics, swimwear, etc. The patterns are crosslinked by key words. So if you find a dress and it is adaptive, you can click and get all the adaptive patterns, or zero waste or whatever category it falls in.  

The Cadia Shirt is one I think Jenny mighty like as a starting point based on sleeve style.  It is a zero waste pattern so you wouldn’t probably have to cut and paste!

Mannequins wearing three versions of the same top.  One grey with navy belt.  One blue and green plaid and one brown.  All versions have large gathered sleeves

You should also take a look at Frugalisima’s YouTube channel.  She often mentions free patterns and gives the maximum measurements so you don’t have to waste time with patterns that won’t fit you. In the Free Patterns Playlist she has 96 videos with free patterns – some will have only been free when she released the video, but many are evergreen.


B sides 2: Jim Doran- Joie de Vivre

JIm’s Website
Altoid tin with papercut black and white diorama. "Anatomy of a Crime Scene"
Click here to purchase
Brood X Animation about life of two special cicadas
Jim wearing his new custom shoes
Jim's Sandals

Jutta Neumann New York

Become a patron of Jim Doran today!

Be a guest on Jim’s podcast


67. #pfSewNatural reveal

Clue for next month’s theme – this one is tough! Hint: the clue is in the chorus, not the title.

Catch up:


I made a really fabulous CaramiyaMaui Dragonfruit Dress from fabric from Julia Allison Cost Gallery.  I added sleeves from the Montrose Top by Cashmerette & it’s really lovely.  

I also made a Dragonfruit from Libery of London Tana Lawn in blue leaf print.  I added sleeves inspired by Katie Kortman, a Gilmore circle skirt, and a lantern-esque border inspired by Marilla Walker.

Made for Mermaids: Aaronica from fabric from Hello Friend Fabrics

Also: I made a cake.

Pink cake with yellow and pink decorations
Jenny’s homemade cake

Now I’ve started to cut out so many things:  I have the upcoming Cashmerette Club new bonus pattern ready to sew up soon – pictures will come when it’s released on 1 June.  In addition, I’ve cut out a linen version of the Ashton top with Katie Kortman inspired ruffled sleeves and a gathered skirt to make a dress.  Finally, I’ve also cut out another Jennifer Lauren Handmade Isla Wrap Dress – in a mid weight canvas black and pink buffalo check.  

I’ve started planning my makes for the TopStitchAtl retreat in June.  So far I know I’m taking fabric for a Blanca flight suit jumpsuit, and for several more Aaronica dresses by Made for Mermaids.  I’m wondering if I could do any ice dyeing there during free time – running out to get ice, and then having a grand old time dyeing things… What do you think?  Over the top?

Beverly: I did my first toile (one leg) using the top down center out system.  Pattern is Eve Trousers by Merchant and Mills (small sizes) (large sizes).  I kind of messed up because toile was out of actual muslin but pants are out of stretch twill (very cheap – wearable toile).  Found a few things out that may make my life easier:  I can grade to a larger size at the waist or I can leave the darts out.  Also, I may not need the zip to pull them up.  I never take the zip down on my jeans. I figure I could leave about an inch or so unclosed at the top and just use the button to make it a little tighter.  Not quite sure how this will work.  

Mood fabrics last weekend!  Posted the fabric I got on my feed. 

Also went to Gray Lines Linen and got some white linen with retro looking shiny white cord couching on it, some embroidered linen (do we still call it broderie anglaise if it’s not cotton?) and some beautiful yarn dyed blue/black linen.  

White fabric with shiny cording sewn into a curvy design
Couched Linen fabric for Beverly’s curtains

I’m in the mood to make cool summer tops and floaty dresses.  

Interview with Michelle from Warp and Weft

We talk about natural dying.

Book: A Dyer’s Garden

Great supplier for natural dyes: Maiwa

New Patterns:

Marilla Walker Anning 

Two women wearing different version of the same dress pattern, standing in front of a white wall
Marilla Walker’s Anning Dress

Size expansion on Closet Core Ginger Jeans – this is exciting to me because I’ve been dying to make them but refused to purchase before.  I immediately bought the pattern and went to Core Fabrics to buy denim and other stuff because $150 for free shipping.  

Style arc Mary Woven Shift dress

Update – new size range and more detailed instructions

#pfSewNatural call outs!

How did we do?  

I mean, I used natural fibers…. But that’s not really a stretch for me.  I had hopes of making an art garment inspired by nature but work and life had other plans this month.  I can still do it though!  Did you get your natural dying done with the stuff you got from Botanical colors? Turmeric?  

Jenny: I used natural fibers, and bought dye to do natural dyeing – but haven’t yet taken time to do it as of today’s recording.  There’s still almost a week left so it’s possible!


Robe in blue and green fabric with birds and trees printed on it
Woman wearing red striped top
Woman wearing blue top


Woman holding camera and wearing khaki colored top with flowers on it

Betsey_karl on instagram

Woman outside in lush green environment wearing blue floral print skirt

JamillaSinger on Instagram

Person wearing olive green pants

Sewnotapro on instagram


Episode 65: Sewing Getaways


3/10/2022StyleArcFree pattern – any monthMay
1/10/2022CaramiyaFree pattern – any monthMay

Catch up: Beverly

News from my house – new blinds!!!  Love them so much. Need to make sheerish curtains. What do you think of the white IL020?

Got a package from Jenny!  Hand-dyed fabric (ice dyed) Is this the IL020? Beautiful blue green color.  I think I am going to make another Elizabeth Suzann Georgia tee and use the scrap of your purple dyed piece as an accent.  Or should I use a solid one that matches? Like this:

Two pieces of fabric, iced-dyed blue green on the left, purple/red on the right.
Woman taking a mirror selfie wearing a tan shirt with a bold and colorful stripe down one side.

I hope I have finished my Seamwork Marlow top by the time we record.  My next big plan is to make some Merchant and Mills Eve trousers  (larger size band here).  I am going to use the “top down, center out” method of pants fitting that was created by Ruth @ithacamaven.  I follow Stacey @thecrookethem, which is where I heard of this technique.  Stacey is a fantastic pattern “analyst” – she frequently shows how you can tell if patterns are balanced or not, how two patterns are different in different areas, stuff like that.  She also recently showed how to make a shoulder sloper and I was fascinated.  I like it because she puts more math in sewing.


By Hand London Anna Dress: I’ve made an Anna using the bodice only, and a very full skirt from a Madra plaid.  I love the Anna dress, but it’s been so long I forgot that the V-neck is too low on me – lol.  I’ll have to add a modesty triangle, or otherwise fix the neckline to really get much use out of this.  It did remind me of how much I love a Madras plaid though!  The bodice on this one uses pleated/gathered cups to add space for chestal appendages.

New test patterns:  I’m not allowed to talk about these yet, but I’m so happy that these are expanding.  It’ll be up to a 70” hip, too!  

Unleashed Embrace Dress:  Tested this, will discuss later in this episode.

Closet Core Blanca Flight Suit: Bought material to try too-down-center-out to see if that helps me get a good fit on my first boiler suit / flight suit.  My concerns are how quickly my hips become wider than my waist.  On every woven jumpsuit style I’ve made, there’s not been enough ease for me to sit down, or quickly remove if I need to use the bathroom even.  I have an upholstery canvas in bright blue with oranges all over it (my first alma mater’s colors) to try for this one.

Top Down Center out in brief: We’ve linked to it in the show notes, but basically, you fit the waist band separately first, then fit one leg (cut with extra ease in the side seam).  Once you’ve got both working as intended, you finish the second leg and >poof< you have pants that fit.

New patterns and updates:

Tilly and the Buttons has updated the Coco top and dress! It is now available for sizes up to 60/53/61.  It is an A-line knit dress, quirky 60’s look and it was one of the first things I made when I started sewing.  Very quick and easy sew.  Two different necklines to choose from, boatneck or funnel.  

The full size range is available as a pdf or as a paper pattern.

JH: I keep seeing this one everywhere and am interested in it.  I love the funnel neck in theory – but not always in practice.

Poppy Top from Pattern Scout – the top is a floaty, raglan sleeved top with a peplum on the bottom.  


The Poppy Blouse is a raglan peasant style blouse with three-quarter length bishop sleeves, a ruffle collar, and optional ruffle hem. It has an oversized silhouette, perfect for light, airy fabrics with a fluid drape.


Lightweight fabrics with a fluid drape, such as rayon, viscose, crepe de chine, and silk chiffon. Lightweight fabrics with a less fluid drape, such as cotton lawn, cotton gauze, and tissue linen are also suitable and will create a more voluminous silhouette.

Sew Liberated Studio Tunic – The Studio Tunic is a pinafore-style tunic that takes layering to a whole new level.

Lots of photos with knitting projects in pockets.  

Like a dress/apron.  Really need to wear over something.

StyleArc Millicent Wrap Dress:  This is a wrap bodice with a ¾ circle skirt & tie closure.  I love the sleeves which are full but not gathered (this is your sleeve style, right Beverly?).  I’m pretty sure that this is drafted for a much taller body than I have so I’d need to adjust as usual at the waist and skirt for length.

Unleashed patterns: Embrace dress:  This is a knit dress.  There are so many options here:  cross over bodice, high scoop neck; three sleeves (waterfall, set in, flutter), two skirts (pencil, pencil with flutter).

Up to 84” hip.  I made the size 26 from top to bottom, so check out my pictures for how that looked.  I love the flutter on the skirt.  Other notes: testing is always a fun process.  The first tests, the flutter fell about 2” from the side seam – so on my size, it was a side flutter (the images provided showed it where it is on me in the final images).  You’ll want to consider where you want the flutter to go based on what you’d like for you – on smaller sizes, this may mean adjusting the pattern pieces.

Dragonfruit Dress: this CaramiyaMau dress is finally out. 

Sewing events or other crafty events where you go away for the weekend or longer and sew/knit/etc.  Also included are Frocktails events.  Shopping getaways?

TopStitchAtl: June retreat.  This one is sold out.  It was $1,800 for an individual queen bed cabin (no AC, but a fan) in the mountains in Georgia, USA.  The schedule looks amazing.  Highlights (I’m attending this one!) include – there’s also 5 hours on Thurs, Fri, Sat, for working on making your own jeans (if you paid extra for the Jean’s workshop, I didn’t).


June 8th


  • 5-6pm – Greetings, collect your goodie bag and settle in
  • 8-9pm – S’mores at the Farmhouse Firepit
    June 9th


  • 9-10am – Morning Skills Demo with Nikki – seam finishing skills
  • 3-4pm – Nature walk around the Farmhouse Property
  • 8-9pm – Night swim or hot tub time

June 10th


  • 9-10am – Morning Skills Demo with Nikki – zipper skills
  • 12-1pm – Lunch at the Farmhouse
  • 3-4pm – Natural Dyeing Demo Part 1 with Brittani

June 11th


  • 9-10am – Morning Skills Demo with Nikki – pressing skills
  • 3-4pm – Natural Dyeing Demo Part 2 with Brittani
  • 8-9:30pm – Undies making party with Nikki
  • 9:30pm – Hot tub or pool time for a last dip!

June 12th


  • 9-10am – Pack and say farewell
  • 10am – Check out – feel free to continue exploring nearby for the day!

TopStitchAtl: Color weekend with Katie Kortman  : June 4 – 5 online.  Tickets are $149 & include Katie’s Wear Happy Color e-book and Wear Happy Color course, as well as the TopStitch Essential Shirt Pattern.  There are going to be live sessions, and recorded sessions available.  I’m attending this one pretty much entirely for the How to Paint Fabric session that will be live!

Here’s what we have planned for the weekend with you! 

Four main live sessions:

1. Fabric Painting Workshop: hand paint your very own fabric design

2. Sleeve Hacking Workshop: learn to hack a basic sleeve pattern three ways

3: Drafting Collars Workshop: learn how to draft a collar for an existing pattern or to stand alone

4. Live Q&A Session: ask Katie all about her experience on Project Runway!

Five video demonstrations recorded exclusively for this event:

1. Video demo: create your own buttons from scratch

2. Video demo: learn to jazz up your existing buttons with painted details

3. Video demo: learn to use embroidery to add fun detail to pockets, collars, and more

4. Video demo: learn how to add trim detail to a piece and how to make your own trim

5. Video demo: colorblocking a pattern 

The Sewing Weekender, May 21 – 22.  This is online only.  Tickets are about $25 US.  

Saturday Lineup

  • Jenny from Cashmerette shares her top 5 fitting tips. Everything from measuring yourself correctly to why bust cup options are a must.
  • Statement pockets: Juliet Uzor is here to show you how to customize your next make with a statement pocket or two!
  • DIY Skirt Tutorial: DIY Daisy is going to show you how to cut the incredible Sophie skirt from her new book ‘Sew it Yourself’. If you love a curved seam, then this is going to be right up your street.
  • Zips 101: Lisa from the Avid Seamstress is sharing how to insert different zips into your garments.
  • Geri from Geri in Stitches will show you how to get started with marble dying
  • Behind the Scenes: Meg from fabric shop Pigeon Wishes is sharing how she’s pivoted her business to serve indie fashion brands.
  • The Making of a Magazine: Have you ever wondered what goes into making a sewing pattern magazine? The lovely team at Fibre Mood are here to show us what’s involved.
  • Sustainable Fabrics: Harriet from Sew Me Sunshine is talking about what to look for when shopping sustainably for fabric.
  • Maria from Sew Organised Style is creating an exclusive podcast episode for the Weekender.
  • Sandy & Judith from #sewover50 are talking about sewing for changing body shapes.

Chatty Videos:

  • Tugba from @i.of.the.needle
  • Riccardo from @rifallo
  • Ele from @sewnbyele
  • Emily from @emilynatsai
  • Sara from @yoursara_k
  • Michelle from @michelle.a.sews

Sunday Lineup

  • Make Trousers that Fit with Alison Smith. Alison will talk us through some of the most common pattern alterations so you can achieve the perfect fit for your next trouser project.
  •  Alice and Co are back this year! ‘Sew you think you can’t draw?’ They are showing you that putting your design ideas down on paper makes them easier to realise.
  • Quilted Jacket Tutorial: Sam from Purple Sewing Cloud is here to show you how to add quilting techniques into your handmade wardrobe, by hacking a jacket pattern to add a quilted element. It will make you look at all your sewing patterns in a new way.
  • Adding Hand Embroidery into your Next Make. Alexis from Fibr and Cloth Studio is demonstrating some classic embroidery stitches and how you can apply these to your clothing.
  • Behind the Scenes: Grace who runs Beyond Measure gives us a sneak peak of her beautiful studio, how she works with artisans to create new products and gives us a tour of her new growing space where she is creating a garden for dying fabric.
  • Bust Adjustments: Mandi from Make With Mandi is here to show you how to do small and full bust adjustments on patterns.
  • Using your Sewing Wins to Plan your Future Makes with Jess from Muna and Broad
  • Styling your handmade Wardrobe: So you’ve made a load of stuff but how do you wear it together? Marie from Marie Stitched Up is here to talk about how she does it.
  • Charlotte from Charlotte Emma Patterns will be teaching you how to cut a sew a baseball cap with a downloadable PDF pattern.

Chatty Videos:

  • Mijke from @sewitcurly
  • Atia from @thebrightblooms
  • Georgie from @heysewgeorgie
  • Corrie from @corriesfancygoods
  • Jacinta from @pinkmimosabyjacinta
  • Jenny from @johassler

Ideas: travel to a class & stay overnight, shop meet others.  

I did this recently in the Raleigh Durham, NC area.  I met up with several sewists & we ate, went shopping (Mulberry Silks, Freeman’s Creative, Craft Habit Raleigh).  It was lots of fun!

  • Pick an area with several shops if possible (some cities have a garment district which can make this easy: Philadelia, NYC, LA, Atlanta)
  • Choose a local lunch place with good seating
  • Go out of town for a class, and bring friends along!
  • Connect with local sewists
    • Tag your plans with local sewing tags (example: CarrboroSews, AshevilleSews)
    • Reach out to community members you already know are from near that area
    • Plan a road trip with local to you sewists
    • Just introduce yourself while shopping and see who wants to join you for lunch

DC Frocktails was last night.  I was scheduled to go but couldn’t make it.  These events are good for folks that would like to get together with other sewists, but don’t want to make an overnight commitment.  They are events where people dress up a bit, there’s dancing, prizes, and meeting up with lots of other sewists. 

The weekend before last I went to Maryland Sheep and Wool, which is a huge festival of mostly hand-dyed gorgeous yarn.  I wish sewing had a similar thing.  I guess it would be much harder to do, as yarn is already bundled for purchase, but I would love it.  It’s an opportunity to go see lots of beautiful yarn that you normally don’t get to feel in person, and be around other fiber folks, but not really have to talk to them.  I go with a group of friends that I met through scrapbooking in 2007.  (I met them at a weekend event in Detroit!)

Please check out our Patreon.


64: Me Made May

Catch up:

Beverly – Well, since last we spoke, I didn’t sew much, but I did get engaged and went on a beautiful Puerto Rico vacation! If you are interested in this trip, please look at my instagram grid from Sunday, May 1 through Monday, May 2.  

I did make one thing.  Remember when I needed a plain, flowy top to go with the heavily patterned Closet Core Pietra Shorts I made? I remembered a #pfTNT pattern, the Style Arc Selina Woven top.  I have made three versions of that top now and I love it.  I am including a photo in the show notes of the top with those shorts.  It is a flowy top with ruffled sleeves and ruffle at the hem.  I made it in lightweight black broderie anglaise.  


I’ve made 5 Trillium Dress by Made by Rae since we last spoke I believe – two from Alison Glass yarn dyed woven cottons from Seams Fabric (citrus and pink/purple), one from a STOF quilting cotton (but a wide fabric) from by way of Amazon, one from a Tana Lawn by Liberty from, another check from (wide), and finally the one I’m wearing while we record tonight: a linen hand dyed from my dyeing session in early April. IC 64

I also finished my wearable toile of the Ashton Top from a cotton woven (source unremembered).  I like it – but the next one I’ll make a size smaller since the most important fit point seems to be my upper chest.

Oh, and I finished up my Calder pants – and didn’t wear them for my volunteer activity.  I need to make a top to match, and then I can wear them out and about.

Me Made May: NEW PATTERN collection from Deer and Doe!

What is Me Made May?  What is it for?  Really good blog post from Zoe Edwards (@sozoblog on Instagram) – creator of #MeMadeMay

Sew Liberated – Got an email from Meg McElwee, the founder and designer for Sew Liberated saying that this year she’s breaking up with sustainable sewing.  Here’s a great blog post explaining why.


#MeMadeMayFat #MeMadeMePlus ❤️ first things first: @sozoblog has a series of posts describing the purpose of the Me Made May challenge 🧡 my likely imperfect summary is that the goal is examine the place of #MeMadeClothjng in your wardrobe 💛 it’s a self reflective opportunity regarding your wardrobe, sustainability, and you 💚 it’s not specifically a making challenge 💙 I spent the last week or so going through the main hashtag a

nd finding very little of the body diversity I look for in a challenge 💙 I spent the last week or so going through the main hashtag and finding very little of the body diversity I look for in a challenge 💜 I felt overlooked in the same ways I did last year, the year before 🖤 I couldn’t find an endorsement of tags to help fat sewists be more visible 🤍 I won’t be following the main tag because I’m not feeling great about my feed being overrun by designs I can’t access because of my #BodaciousHips ❤️ I’ll be tagging my posts when appropriate so that I can be part of the what makes the fatness more visible 🧡 and I’ll follow the #fat and #plus versions of the tag to see what’s out there that was designed for me 

After posting this, I heard from dozens of other fat sewists who felt similarly.  Things that came up again and again were feelings of being left out, disappointment in the number of shared items were sizing wasn’t easy to find, but in the end, sizing also wasn’t inclusive, that the originating posts don’t in any way call in fat sewists (it always feels like we’re supposed to accept that since we make our own clothing, there’s no need for us to see ourselves represented – we can represent for ourselves if we just use our imaginations, or something).

Sewing for the Weekend natural dye episode

Dyeing with Turmeric

Another one – cold turmeric dyeing


Episode 63: #pfSewNatural Intro


StyleArc – pattern

CaramiuyaMaui – pattern

Catch up:


I’ve picked my fabric for my #pfTNT Ashton by Helen’s Closet – I’ll be using a fabric printed with sewing pattern pieces & suchlike.

I’ve sewn up another Gilmore Skirt by Cashmerette.  This one is in a denim and the fabric is so wonderful in this pattern – great body & flow.  I’m sure I’ll make another in a different color denim.

I’m in the middle of a pair of Calder pants by Cashmerette from some canvas that I had printed.  These will be bold & fun – I hope i like them!

I also made the WILDEST Dragonfruit dress by CaramiyaMaui (not released) from a bright, large print, Ankara fabric.  I added pompoms in case it wasn’t bold enough.  I’m not sure I’m bold enough for it!

Coming up:  A Trillium by Made by Rae – with a full circle skirt!

Oh, oh!  And I made five pillow cases from 1.5 yards of cotton quilting fabric each.  Very basic – just measured a pillow, added some length, and went for it!


Made by Rae Trillium – I made my #pfTNT of Jenny’s tnt.  I chose Black Brussels Washer linen.  I tried to use elastic in the bobbin and it was a fail.  Came out flat, didn’t gather.  Watched a few YouTube videos, called in #Jennyfixitforme, no avail.  Decided to zigzag in some ⅛” elastic. Did 4 rows of this and it looked very nice.  This part took me half the day to work out.  Then I made the dress pretty quickly.  I tried it on and the elastic irritated the hell out of me.  As I raise my arms, the dress naturally goes up a bit and then the elastic keeps it up so I have to pull it down.  Ugh.  Not for me.  Took the elastic out and I really love it.  I love how the capped sleeves look, but not how they keep my arms down.  

Beverly in her black trillium dress before removing the elastic in the back. The dress fits ok, but she’s not comfortable with the elastic. Removing it made it perfect!

Max tee by Chalk and Notch – this is a “muscle tee” and has both armhole and hemline facings.  It took me a while to make (2 hrs) and I worried I wouldn’t like it but I do!  Nice and roomy, comfy tee.

Reynolds dress by Helen’s Closet – so delighted with my second one!!!  This one is made in blue/grey linen (IL019) from  I widened the straps – added about 1.5” total, so half that for the strap width.  I took out the curve and seam in the back, cut on the fold.  I love it!  I also needed to change the under arm area.  I washed the first one and found it was still a bit gaped, so I cut out a wedge that was 1” at the armpit down to 0 about 6” down.  The pattern actually seems to have a triangle on the back at the armpit so it easy to change going forward.

Sew Liberated Nocturne Pajamas – I made my first version – the top as a nighty, using some Liberty Cotton Poplin that I got for ½ price several months ago.  I always planned it for sleepwear and this pattern is perfect.  I am so pleased with the fit of the shoulders but plan to alter back to top size and make shorts to match.  Not enough fabric for the shorts, but will accent with it so they match.  


Our theme for May is NATURE! So excited to see how folks interpret this theme. 

Natural fibers

Naturally dyed fabrics

Naturally Dyed Fabrics – Loom and Stars

Dying fabric at home with natural dyes  This is what I plan to do!  Pillow cases!  So many pillowcases!

Fabrics with leaves/flowers/etc printed

Embroidered natural elements

Inspired by nature: color or shapes or silhouettes

New Patterns: 

Max Tee by Chalk and Notch: Do I need another tee pattern? It seems I do.  I don’t even know if I’m going to like it.  It’s a self-proclaimed muscle tee!  The version I have cut out is the hip length + 1 inch.  I lowered the neckline a bit and went for the typical tee neck binding.  It has a hem facing and also facing around the arm holes.  They call for tricot interfacing, but I have to draw the line somewhere.  

The Saguaro Set from Friday Pattern company