Drafting a Knit Sleeve

When I posted my Upton dress in a few places I received a lot of messages asking me how to draft sleeves for it. You may have noticed I add sleeves to a lot of my makes. I added sleeves to the Cashmerette Upton, Simplicity 8379, and to my sort of unfortunate Collette Sorbetto. When I buy RTW the sleeves are most often the part of the top that does not fit me.

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Knit sleeve added onto my Simplicity 8379 dress.

My biceps measure 19″ around so you can imagine it is difficult to even grade up as most plus-size sleeves are 13″-15″ around including the seam allowance. I have tried the slash and spread method, but if you are adding more than 1-2″ it gets really messy. I have found that drafting sleeves from the bodice I am working on works out much better for me.

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A third Simplicity 8379

Yes, that’s right! I have now made 3 of these Simplicity 8379 dresses! This is one of my favorite dresses for all seasons. In the winter I throw on black leggings with it.

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The only alterations I make to the XXL are to add sleeves and add 2″ inches to the length. Easy!

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I will be putting up the self-drafting sleeve tutorial later this month, so keep an eye out. Happy Sewing!

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The incredible growing sleeve fix!

Happy New Year! This is the only bit of sewing I could get done in the last few months of 2017. I bought this sweater several years ago in the men’s section. I liked that is was $7 on clearance, super warm, and the dark green color. The only problem is that after wearing it for a few hours the sleeves would stretch out like crazy!1

So I decided to do a little altering! I could have removed the knit textured cuff and moved it up to make it shorter, but I actually like the length. I love long sleeves that cover my fingers! It’s like having build in mittens!

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What a year!

Whew! This year has been one full of change for me personally. We got married, we went on an overseas honeymoon, and upon our return we both started new jobs within weeks of each other. Also, I have been learning to knit, play the ukulele, and I am still trying to fit in some sewing and blogging.

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My best nine from 2017 (top to bottom, left to right): Vogue 8615, Kwik Sew3980 for my grandmother, Style Arc Adeline, Simplicity 8379, my first knitting piece, MARRIED!, self drafted tiki dress, Christmas 2017, the women’s march.

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Wedding Outfits and Donating My Wedding Dress

We finally got through our wedding weekend. Actually it was pretty great! Even as low stress as we tried to keep it there was still stress. Problems would just pop up, but we kept in mind that the most important part of the weekend was the actual wedding, and there wasn’t much to mess up there. Our wedding was tiki-bar themed so we really got into tropical prints! I wanted to share some of the outfits I made for the weekend.

For the rehearsal dinner I made myself a Cashmerette Upton and for my Mom I made the Cashmerette Appleton. If you are even thinking about buying a Cashmerette pattern I cannot recommend enough. These both came together really quickly and we were so happy with the fits!

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My best woman insisted that we have a bachelorette something or other. We had dinner and a couple of drinks at a tiki bar and then I went home and went to bed early. (I get really grumpy when I’m tired so I made sure I got enough sleep for the wedding day.) I have had this cocktail drink cotton in my stash for over a year and finally got to use it! It’s pretty much a self drafted dress. I made the Fenix Romper and then turned it into a high-low dress.

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My best woman gave me this adorable robe to get ready in. I had to hack it make sure it fit by adding the contrasting pink panel, but now I love it! It’s also sheer in the back, so it’s a tiny bit risque!

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The Wedding Dress

So I didn’t make my own wedding dress. I really wanted to, but then I found one on sale that I really loved and decided to buy it to reduce stress. It actually probably gave me a lot more time to make other outfits and all of the decorations for the wedding.

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This dress is from David’s Bridal. They really did have the best selection of plus size dresses in my area and I really wanted sleeves! (So many people offered to add straps to strapless dresses. Straps are not sleeves!)

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This is me swishing through the reception area before it was set up.
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We wanted a fun colorful tiki-bar feel for our wedding so we used a lot of palm leaves, pink flamingos, and cocktail umbrellas!

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This dress made me so happy, even though I did not make it. When I was researching dresses, I was definitely leaning towards this style. It took a lot of stress off of me, I think, to not have to make it. Now that it has served it’s purpose for me, I am donating it to Brides for a Cause, a shop in Portland, Oregon that donates a good portion of it’s proceeds to women’s charities. I hate the idea of it sitting in a box in a closet somewhere in my house, never to be seen again. I hope it makes another person feel as wonderful as it made me feel on my wedding day.

XOXO

Megan

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One Size Fits All Robes

For my wedding my best woman gave me this beautiful robe. It’s so soft and has big, fancy kimono sleeves. It is a really thoughtful gift and so beautiful. 1.1

Ok, here’s the thing. I generally hate robes.  I just don’t like to sit around without clothes on. Also, one size does not fit all. It really sucks when you go to put on a roomy-looking robe and then it doesn’t close. Sadly that was the case with my new robe. Instead of returning it, I decided to do a little altering! Here’s how.
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Vogue 9111 Sweater Dress

It’s finally sweater weather in Missouri! Hurray! I’m not nearly ready to knit a sweater, but I decided to make a sweater dress.

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I happened across Mimi G’s Vogue 9111 Sweater Dress Sew Along where she takes view B and turns it into a mini dress. If you just like the top there is a beautiful version by TipStitched. When I first started sewing I bought a lot of clearance fabric, and while that can be fun I quickly learned that sometimes it is better to pay more for a better fabric. I haves some things that pilled after a few washes or that unraveled very quickly.

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Cashmerette Appleton

My Mom wanted to wear a maxi dress to my rehearsal dinner and of course she could not find one that was a true maxi. When did maxi dresses start landing at your shins when you are 5′ 4″? So I pulled together all of my maxi or “could be” maxi dress patterns and we went through them together. She chose the Cashmerette Appleton wrap dress.

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We then went on a search for fabric and ended up with this double knit with beautiful red flowers on a blue background from Fabric.com. I’m pretty excited that I overbought and now there is enough leftover for a top for me too!

I promised her there would be enough cleavage coverage, so I cut the bodice out in a 22D and graded the front crossover out to a 28.

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A Nancy and Beth inspired Simplicity 8379

Did you know that Megan Mullally and Stephanie Hunt have formed a duo called, Nancy and Beth? I stumbled across them on Mullally’s instagram and I have fallen madly in love with them. They have big strong voices that sound great in harmony on all genres of cover song. There are elements of Broadway, performance art, blues, jazz, and folk throughout their music. I really dig the synchronized dancing. It’s sort of weird, sort of funny, and totally eye-catching and I can’t get enough of it.
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The first single is a strong choice; it’s a cover of Wynona Carr’s “Please Mr. Jailer.” The music video is so well curated and stylized. I wish I could live in it!

They start off in these sort of stretchy jersey sacks while they move in short, choppy movements in them. They sort of look like fashionable straitjackets.

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From Fenix Romper to Fenix High-Low Dress

So I tried to make a romper. The Fenix Romper.  The pattern is good, it comes together really quickly, but I just cannot see myself wearing it. It actually doesn’t look terrible while standing still, but it does scrunch in the crotch when I walk. I also felt a little like a child in it, and not in a good way, and I am not a fan of taking the whole thing off when I go the restroom. Yuck.

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Oh well! The good news is that this is a roomy pattern, meaning I have the opportunity to re-cut and re-fashion which is not always the case!

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