138:  Sustainable practices in sewing

138:  Sustainable practices in sewing

Date: 10 October

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What have we been up to?


Mostly just more sundresses. I have ideas on how to change them up more but am stalled because I love DIY Daisy’s design so much!! 

And I went to a play and saw someone rocking the Tate Romper in the wild!! 


Skirt Skills skirt! Learned so much you got an A+

New patterns:

Grainline studio Myra (0-18) (14-32) (Max 61” hip)

Sew Over It Viola – Vintage inspired

Grafton knit dress by Cashmerette. 400 combos, 62” max hip. 

Eddy Pants from

Not a new pattern, but Style Arc has announced that every Sunday they will put one of their patterns on sale for 30% off just for that day.  If you like SA patterns, it’s worth subscribing to their emails to get the notifications. – Love notions does a similar thing on Fridays (specific pattern $5)

This week’s topic:



From Investopedia

What are the 3 concepts of sustainability?

Sustainability’s three main pillars represent the environment, social responsibility, and economics. (These three pillars are also informally called people, planet, purpose, and profits.)

From Sewing Dictionary:

Sustainable sewing means sewing in a way that leaves a minimal impact on the planet. Whether that is using eco-friendly materials, reusing old textiles, making garments designed to last for a long time, or ensuring you use every scrap of fabric reducing fabric wastage. 

Accounts to follow:

  • Frugilisima
  • CrisWoodSews
  • Liz Haywood
  • Birgitta Helmerson ZW patterns

Tips (from Sewing Dictionary, Paprika Patterns, Feel Good Fibers, Seamwork, and others):

  • Read this article by Seamwork on how to add sustainability to your sewing practice.
  • Make things that fit your style
  • Mend
  • GIve away the fabrics you’ve outgrown to others who will use them
  • Use what you’ve got instead of buying more.
  • Consider if the prints you buy are stylish or classic – will they go out of style quickly? Solids never do!
  • Buy secondhand.
  • Look after your sewing tools, get your scissors sharpened and your machine serviced rather than replaced.
  • Don’t buy more than you need.

What tips can you offer to others?  Share your sustainable practcies and tag us – we’ll pick some to share with our followers!

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137 #pfScaryStuff Intro

Catch up:


I finally made the Tate Jumper by Jessslous – it’s really cute, though my husband couldn’t stop laughing at the style when I showed him. A very quick sew in the denim Beverly got cut for me at mood when we went to NYC. I’m generally short waisted & have to make adjustments for that but here I had to go longer in the body by several inches. 

I’ve cut out my Sawtell but not yet made it – I’ve used an IKEA duvet cover for it & think it’ll be cute but I’ve gotten in my head about that front neck being too difficult so I keep moving it back to the bottom of the pile. 


4 T shirts to wear with skirts.  They are all made using a pattern that comes up just an inch too small for our show.  I’m sure folks can find any number of patterns that fit this bill – it’s a cap sleeved T shirt with a band at the bottom.  Why?  Because I think skirts look good tucked in but I can’t stand the feel of even a french tucked shirt in my skirt/pants.  This will sort of be mock tucked in.  Also planning some cropped options.  

More progress on my Skirt Skills skirt!  I made a mock up of the lantern skirt pattern.  -describe idea and initial draft plus changes.  Next is the basted fitting!  -I’m going to use the twill (circle embossed) that we got at the last shop we went into for fabric in NYC! Also thinking of lining it with SILK – sari silk I Purchased ages ago. 

New patterns:

Matchy Matchy Skipper Top and Dress

Waves and Wild – Jupiter Leggings 

Curvy (Femme) fit  Adult Male/Straight fit

Ooo! I love these! 

Willow belt by Sew House Seven – it’s on sale for $4.80, reg price $6 but I think this one would have made a nice freebie. Maybe I’m wrong 


I love these “scary” challenges because we get to see so many folks try all sorts of things that they normally wouldn’t do.  You can also choose to make a costume if you prefer to go that angle.  

What are some scary things you might want to try?


Episode 136: #pfBetterDoneThanPerfect recap

Catch Up


I’m on a tear with DIY Daisy’s sundress low waste pattern offered free on her website. It’s made to your measurements & I’ve finalized all my adjustments so it works for me the way I want it to. I’ve made about a dozen now, using linen, lawn, and high quality quilting cotton. I’m planning one with ruffles, and one in bark cloth coming soon.

I took a frame weaving class at Local Cloth in Asheville Nc. I love my result. I’m signed up to dip some fabric in the indigo vat as well this week. 

Beverly:  Altered a bunch of “men’s” tees – Three concert shirts, a shirt from our favorite local bookstore, and a festival shirt. My main way to do this is to cut off about 4-5 inches from the bottom, make the neckline wider and deeper, cut off half the sleeve, hem the bottom and the sleeve and use leftover fabric for new neckline.  Perfect new T shirt.

Work on Skirt skills! Altered my block and drew out two ideas for skirts – one is a narrow skirt with patch pockets, buttons up the front, flap opening in the back. The other is a lantern skirt.  

New Patterns:

Friday Pattern Co Bernie Belt bag

French Navy The Goldenrod Dress – up to 62.5” hips – so happy to see French Navy expand their size range!!!

French Navy Roscoe Sweater

#pfBetterDoneThanPerfect recap


135 Sewing Pride & Joy

15 Sept 

135 Sewing Pride & Joy  #pfBetterDoneThanPerfect

Comments have been disabled on the site due to unmanageable levels of very crude spam, but if you would like to comment, please visit us on Instagram or email us at punkfrockers @ gmail dot com.  

Who’s our sponsor this month? Ha! Trick question! We don’t have one.  Going forward, challenges are just for the fun of it.  Does that mean I can win too?  It means we all win.

Catch up:


I’ve made a couple new DIY Daisy sundresses. I love this style & it’s helping me to feel comfy with my bra showing. I’m also finishing up two secret pieces that will get revealed this autumn. 


Continuing with Skirt Skills.  I’ve made my first draft of the block, sewed it up and tried it on.  That was finished on Thursday and Brooksann says not to fit on the same day as you make up the mock up (what she calls a toile/muslin).  So I didn’t.  

You wouldn’t believe the instructions I am following!  

Other examples:

Thread marking

Stitch line pinning

Hand basting waist/hemlines

New patterns:

Swim Style Patterns Viola Vest – up to 60” hip

The Viola vest features overlapped side edges which have been rotated to create a slightly

flared silhouette, with angled splits at the sides. The neckline boasts a wide V and

simple armbands. Viola Vest has been designed as a layering piece or a top on its own. Our

instructions also include an option of how to create a longer closure at the side edges for a more modest look.

Itch to Stitch Cantabria Dress

The Cantabria is a lined, sleeveless trench dress with a double-breasted front, lending a contemporary touch. It’s ideal for sunny days and can be layered with a suit jacket or cardigan, making it perfect for transitioning into cooler seasons or air-conditioned environments. Craft it with breathable linen for a touch of casualness, or choose a suiting fabric for a more polished and office-appropriate ensemble.

Cantabria Dress Features:

  • Options for cup sizes
  • Notched collar
  • Sleeveless finished with faced armholes
  • Fully lined
  • Front and back princess seams with a back yoke
  • Semi-fitted with a knee length straight skirt
  • Double-breasted surplice front with buttoned closure
  • Belt loops with a detachable sash
  • Designed for non-stretch woven fabric

Sew Over It Cassie Dress

The Cassie Dress is one for the cottagecore lovers out there. If you’re after a really pretty make, look no further than Cassie with her fully shirred bodice, bound neckline, gathered tier skirt and gently puffed sleeves.

Choose between two sleeve lengths: just above the elbow, or full length with an elasticated wrist. Cassie is a midi length dress, but you could also omit the extra hem tier to make her knee-length. Additional elastic is sewn in at the waist, to ensure the dress maintains its shape.

With no closures and the shirring in the bodice, you get the versatility of a woven fabric, with the comfort of a knit! 

They also offer a class for this to learn how to make it. The class is just under $30 USD, and includes the pattern, which is about $17 alone.

Topic:  What are you most proud of in your sewing journey? What makes you feel good about your sewing?  Is it a skill, a garment, or something else?  Let’s toot our own horns here!


My wedding dress. I’m really proud that I made my own wedding dress years and years ago.  I’d made several for others, but never really considered making my own since it might mean drafting patterns I didn’t have any context for in my size.  Ultimately, I made a drop-waisted dress with a boat-neck, gathered skirt, and simple straight ¾ length sleeves in a black and grey brocade.  I finished hand-hemming it an hour or so before our wedding.  My mother was appalled – her daughter married in a not-white dress.  I made my bridesmaids dresses, too – simple cotton dresses in a floral print picked by my sister, with a loose-fitting bodice, grown-on sleeves, and a gathered skirt.

My father’s kilt.  We traveled to Scotland to buy the fabric, and I stitched the entire thing by hand, sitting on the couch watching re-runs with my dad.  He wore it with pride the rest of his life.

A series of quilts from my father’s neckties.  I had a quilting group and we sat at tables and on the floor together pouring over his ties, to design & stitch up a set of three quilts in quick succession:  one of my dad’s hospital room, and one each for my brother and sister.  I’ve never had a group of sewing friends quite like the women who came together for me during one of the hardest times in my life as we waited for my dad to die.

The Moana costumes I made for myself, my husband, and my granddaughter.  She loved to dress up, and this was her favorite movie.  It reminded my of my tutu Marian, and I was so excited to create these.   I stamped fabric, and tea-dyed laces, and so forth.  We did buy a few thing (like the rooster hat my husband is wearing, and the beanie babie on my staff).  But she had so much fun, and loved how many people wanted to take pictures with her.  


Self-drafted Obrigada dress

Jim’s Cornell

First pair of jeans

Mom’s robe

Early make – kind of tricky pair of shorts


Ep 134 Sewing Failures

8 Sept

134 Sewing Failures  #pfBetterDoneThanPerfect

Comments have been disabled on the site due to unmanageable levels of very crude spam, but if you would like to comment, please visit us on Instagram or email us at punkfrockers @ gmail dot com.  

Who’s our sponsor this month? Ha! Trick question! We don’t have one.  Going forward, challenges are just for the fun of it.  Does that mean I can win too?  It means we all win.

Catch up:


We’ve continued swimming every other night or so which means I’m starting to consider sewing swimwear again. Any one listening have great recommendations for fabric & 60” + hip patterns? Two piece preferred. 

Beverly: Jim is home from guitar camp!!! Yay! We missed him way too much!  

Somehow screwed up the July bonus for Patreons – so sorry about that.  It has been fixed. 

I am working on my Skirt Skills class with Brooks Ann Camper.  She has a really interesting way of making a block, using NO STANDARD measurements.  So far we have determined our hip level, and our waist level.  By definition, the hip level is parallel with the floor, but this is NOT true for the waist.  Many folks of all different body sizes have angled waistlines, but standard clothing and patterns assumes a parallel waistline because when you make clothing for many or even patterns for many, you have to make a choice and you aren’t likely to make the “non standard” choice. 

We also measured out where anchoring darts and where curved side seams were necessary to make the block fit our bodies.  

In my previous online classes, we made blocks to our measurements but not to our BODIES.  For example, one instruction was to arbitrarily make a straight waistband, and to divide the difference between my hips and waist and then divide that up by a standard ratio to know where and how much to put in my darts vs side seams.  

My first draft of my block looks pretty boring but that’s to be expected based on my waist:hip ratio.  

I like precision in my work, but I am embracing “Better Done than Perfect” as Brooks Ann says having a block fit perfect the first time is a disservice to ourselves because we miss the opportunity to do fitting!

New patterns:

These are not really new patterns, but at some point – maybe recently? They did nice size expansion.  I had to really search for an pattern that had not been updated, but they used to go to size 26 = 52” hip and now go to size 34 = 60” hip.  Stitch Witch patterns – check them out for all your ren faire needs!

Shown below: 

The Basque Dress

Daughter Judy Coe Trouser – up to 67” hip

The Coe is a high waisted trouser with a side seam that wraps to the front giving it a slightly curved leg shape. On-seam pockets at the front and patch pockets at the back with optional self belt. The inseam finishes below the ankle giving you a relaxed look.


Sewing Failures.  We’ve all had them – let’s talk about some of our worst fails.


My #pfProm dress!  I made this from a free mood pattern in a slinky taffeta and everything went wrong.  It was strapless, but the cups weren’t even close to fitting my body.  It was short, and puffy, and all around amazingly awful.  The drafting was bad, but I also didn’t toile (I should have).  I waited to the last minute and boy, was it not great.

All my undies.  I made them with fabric that was too heavy, and ended up not really loving any of them.  For one pair I cut up a tee shirt that was important to me – and came to regret it.  Now I buy my underwear on sale twice a year, and accept that I’m not meant to make my own.

My Noice Jeans – sort of.  The fit was amazing, I spent a long time crafting these only to stumble at the last minute.  I put the button hole on the wrong side of the waist band – and finished it, and cut it open, before noticing.  I keep thinking I need to send these to someone else to repair so I can really wear them.  I did a junky job at the end trying to make them work.  I’m really bummed by these.


Episode 133: #pfBetterDoneThanPerfect Intro

Show notes for this episode vanished into thin air so this is actually a good example of Better Done Than Perfect!

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 132 #pfMending recap

Sponsor for August: Punk Frockers Swag!

Catch up:


64YesterdayCaramiyaGrey line linensFlower printed
64YesterdayCaramiyaGrey line linensPink plaid
64YesterdayCaramiyaGrey line linensBlue stripes like Beverly’s

I already had to mend the Blue stripes Caramiya – it got caught in a door and tore, but along the seam in the lower edge of the skirt, which meant it was an easy repair.

Beverly: My entry for #pfMending – cut off two pairs of pants to make shorts 

I’ve started a new course – haven’t quite finished Creative Hinterland, but I’ve started “Skirt Skills” with Brooksann Camper!  So excited.  Will fill everyone in on what I’m learning in case folks are interested but like me – not really sure what it will be about.

New patterns:

Sew Liberated Chanterelle Pants and Shorts

Greenstyle Briny Top

The Briny Top PDF Sewing Pattern is perfect for swim or active wear. This clever, one shoulder design provides added comfort and support, and the optional extra strap and included 2″ Full Bust Adjustment Option makes it customizable for added support if desired. Enjoy freedom of movement whatever your activity with this stylish and comfortable pattern.

Lore Piar Tulip Trousers up to 72” hip

The TULIP Trousers Tailoring Edition are full-length pants with a baggy leg silhouette. 

The highlight is the 4cm high-waisted waistband, tailored to your body. An adjustable hidden buttonhole elastic at the back allows for a customized fit and maximum comfort. Attention to fit is evident with two back darts that contour your curves perfectly. 

Front darts create a beautiful folded effect, reminiscent of a blooming tulip,  adding depth and charm. Delicate thin belt loops add an elegant touch inspired by tulip stems. 

The practical welt pocket on the back side combines function and style. Functional side seam pockets with stay pocket bags.

Easy dressing with a front zipper closure, finished with a fly shield facing, invisible button, and a discreet hook and eye for a polished finish on the outside. 

#pfMend recap

Special call out to Lori Somebody_or_others_mom for her dedication to different interpretations of #pfMend #pfMending – mending her relationship with forgotten projects is my fav!


131 Sewing On Vacation #pfMending

131 Vacay sewing & shopping #pfMending

Sponsor for August: Punk Frockers Swag!

Catch up:


I’ve cut out five dresses & a jumpsuit. Not much sewing though…


Jim’s birthday button-up shirt

My matching dress 

New patterns:

Helen’s Closet Lawrence top and dress

Staystitch Malibu Shirt

Love Notions Tinley Shorts, skirt, and skort

Mood patterns – Veronica  Blouse if (Free)

Vacation sewing /shopping


London: Liberty of London

Edinburgh: custom woven tartans

Istanbul – the bazaar


Atlanta: actually got a serger here once! On a business trip! 

On long business trips, I sometimes bring a sewing machine, iron, felt pad. I cut out stuff before leaving home, and use my evenings to sew instead of watching tv. 

Beverly :

NYC: Mood, J and B fabrics, Gray Lines Linen

Day to Day Textiles – $25 6 yard genuine wax ankara – bought a really nice navy cotton twill with “bubbles” on it.  

Moon Tex – same fabric for $40 hahaha – but several nice fabrics

Pacific Trimming

M & J Trimming

Hand sewing project – don’t forget instructions!

Porto, Portugal:  Mundo Dos Tecidos (World of Fabric)

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130 Sewing Likes & Dislikes

130 likes & Dislikes #pfMending

Sponsor for August: Punk Frockers Swag!

Catch up:



Style Arc Teddy Designer top – #pfSewPrecious.  Handwoven fabric from Loom and Stars that Jenny gave me over a year ago.  I made the top without the collar and the facing stitched down and I love it.  Also interfaced the hem facing and it is perfect!

Caramiya Dragonfruit dress as a top – lightweight cotton lawn

New patterns:

Nosara Shirt from Itch to Stitch

The Evergreen Top and Dress from Lesper Lines

True Bias Aster Top and Dress

Likes & Dislikes



  • changing needles
  • cutting fabric out
  • French seams
  • Freshly laundered fabric
  • Rotary cutters
  • Bias tape


  • Changing rotary cutter blades
  • Cutting fabric with scissors
  • Taping patterns together
  • Buttons & buttonholes
  • Fitting

Do you know that I basically never fit patterns to my body specifically ? I’ll shorten a waist, or raise a waist, but don’t do FBAs or full biceps, or shoulders, and whatnot. 

Beverly :


  • Sleeve and popover plackets
  • Altering patterns using my fancy rulers – I enjoy FBAs, altered necklines with facings, moving darts around, moving shoulder seams forward/back, converting from sleeves to sleeveless, etc.
  • Making slash and jeans pockets
  • Making button-up shirts
  • A clean work area
  • Making pretty insides to garments
  • When I can “mend” or alter a garment to make it something I want to wear.
  • Buttonholes on my Babylock
  • Wearing rayon/viscose/tencel garments


  • Cutting out fabric
  • Filling the bobbin mid project
  • Cleaning my serger (except the big cleans when I take it all apart and change knives)
  • Buttonholes on my Pfaff
  • Sewing 100% rayon/viscose/tencel.
  • Wearing button-up shirts

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129 Favorite fashion inspiration #pfMending

Sponsor for August: Punk Frockers Swag!

Catch up:



Sawtell dress by In the Folds

New patterns:

By Hand London Draft it Yourself – Lucy Dress

The Emily Top – Sew over it

The Keira Shorts – Sew Over It

Favorite fashion inspo


Aaronica – TheNeedleAndTheBelle

The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel


Sara – Fabric-scraps

Mood Fabrics draping & illustration videos



Beverly :







Pinterest  – search by item and when you find something you like and click on it, there’s a bunch more like it below.  I have a sewing board, a “my style” board, and boards for specific garments.

Rate & Review us!

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