style arc

Comfy Chic

Swoon scarf neck cardigan, Style Arc Sadie Pants

These are three of my favorite pieces that I’ve made recently! They may be “boring basics”, but I love them and wear them constantly.

First, the pants. These are the Sadie Pant by Style Arc, a pull-on pant with a flat front and a tapered leg with a hem split. I’d never made or worn this style of pant before, but I was looking for an alternative to my usual jeans, and I’d heard that Style Arc had a good pants block.

And it turns out they do! These pants fit me really well with no alterations. I was afraid the elastic-waist style would mean that they were baggy, but they’re actually quite slim-fitting. My measurements put me squarely in the size 6 and I have to do a little wiggle to get them over my hips, so keep that in mind if you’re grading between sizes!

I should also note that the length was perfect on me and I’m 5’4″, so taller ladies may want to lengthen them.

Style Arc Sadie Pants

Style Arc Sadie Pants

As with all Style Arc patterns, the instructions are very minimal. I had a little trouble understanding how the pockets are supposed to be formed, but I think I figured it out in the end.

Somehow I missed that the phrase “the elastic is a feature” in the description meant that while the front is flat, the elastic is supposed to be exposed around the sides and back. That wasn’t the look I was going for, so I had to do a bit of finagling to create a fabric cover for the elastic and sew it in place. In hindsight, I should have just lengthened the leg pieces at the top and folded them over to create the waistband.

The fabric is an absolutely heavenly tencel twill from Blackbird Fabrics. If it wasn’t so spendy I’d make all my clothes out of this stuff! It’s the perfect weight and drape for these pants and I love the feel of it.

So construction niggles aside, these pants are definitely a win! They’re super comfortable, but they still look nice enough to wear to work or pretty much any other occasion.

Style Arc Sadie Pants

Style Arc Sadie Pants

Swoon scarf neck cardigan

Next is the Swoon Scarf Neck Cardigan. This is a free pattern that I downloaded years ago but have just now gotten around to making up. I really like the design and it was easy to put together – what took the longest was definitely hemming all those edges.

I used a ribbed sweater knit from Blackbird Fabrics (sold out), and it’s perfectly cozy – just what a cardigan should be!

Swoon scarf neck cardigan

Swoon scarf neck cardigan

Swoon scarf neck cardigan

Swoon scarf neck cardigan, Style Arc Sadie Pants

And last but not least is the Sew Over It Silk Cami. I’ve been needing a woven tank/camisole pattern for a while, but I could never decide which one to get. Joining the SOI PDF Club and getting to choose a pattern is what finally convinced me to try this one out.

I almost always have to make upper body fitting adjustments, so I made a muslin first. I ended up shortening it by 1/2″ above the bust and used a 3/4″ seam allowance when joining the straps. I also took 3″ off the bottom at the center front and back, blending to 1 3/4″ at the side seams (so the hem curve isn’t as pronounced). So basically a lot of shortening all over!

The fabric I used is a really nice mid-weight rayon crepe from The Fabric Store – it feels very high-end.

The only other issue I had is that the facing pieces are a bit larger than the cami pieces. Maybe I’m missing something, or I made a mistake cutting the pattern out? I’ve already make a second version of this cami where I trimmed down the facing pieces to match, and they definitely lay inside nicer.

I like that the instructions give you a really nice finish with an all-in-one facing and French seams. I also like that there aren’t any darts so it’s quicker to sew. I’m really happy with the fit now, and I’ll definitely be making more of these!

Hope you’re having a lovely spring!

<3 Lindsay

Selene Skirt & Alexi Turtleneck

Selene Skirt & Alexi Turtleneck

Even though I’ve made quite a few Seamwork patterns and the Cooper backpack twice, this is the first time I’ve actually sewn with a Colette apparel pattern! I made this Selene skirt all the way back in July, so the construction details are a little bit fuzzy, but I do remember that the instructions were great and I don’t think I encountered any difficulties.

The skirt is made from some lovely raw silk that my grandma gave me. I decided to use some of it for this project, but I knew it would be a bit too lightweight for a structured skirt like this, so I underlined it with Kona cotton. Underlining really made a huge difference – it made the silk feel much more substantial, and it also keeps it from wrinkling too badly!  For the lining I used bemberg rayon.

Selene Skirt & Alexi Turtleneck

Selene Skirt & Alexi Turtleneck

Selene Skirt & Alexi Turtleneck

This is definitely one of the best garments I’ve made in terms of finishing. Lining, underlining, lapped zipper, vent, hand-sewn hem… these all make the skirt feel very high-quality. This was my first time doing a lapped zipper, and I think it turned out pretty well! I like that Colette includes vintage-inspired techniques like that. The notched pockets are my favorite feature!

White’s hard to photograph, so unfortunately the construction details don’t show up too well! I lowered the highlights, so hopefully you can make them out okay.

Selene Skirt & Alexi Turtleneck

Selene Skirt & Alexi Turtleneck

The turtleneck I made toward the end of last winter. The fabric is a lightweight merino wool from The Fabric Store. I used Style Arc’s Alexi pattern and the fit is pretty good, although it’s a bit too big through the shoulders and bust. I also shortened the sleeves and the body by an inch or two.

I actually just made another Alexi turtleneck last weekend from Kaufman Laguna jersey, and the fit is much better and tighter, so I guess it just depends on your stretch percentage. The pattern says it’s “suitable for any stretch knit fabric”, so not a lot of guidance there. It is a great basic though!

Selene Skirt & Alexi Turtleneck

Selene Skirt & Alexi Turtleneck

Selene Skirt & Alexi Turtleneck

Selene Skirt & Alexi Turtleneck

I have about two yards of the raw silk left, so if you have any pattern suggestions that it would work well for I’d love to hear them! I think I’ll try dyeing it a darker color for whatever I use it for next.

<3 Lindsay

Cate’s Cousin Top & Ginger Jeans

Ginger Jeans + Cate's Cousin Top

An old pattern and a new pattern!

My shirt is the Cate’s Cousin top from Style Arc. This is my second time using a Style Arc pattern – I bought a few of their knit top patterns during a sale a while ago, and last month I made the Alexi turtleneck. I haven’t blogged it yet, but I do like the pattern. I made it from a maroon merino jersey I bought at The Fabric Store in LA, which is also where this fabric is from. This one’s mostly rayon (nice and drapey), but it has a bit of wool in it too.

I was always kind of put off by Style Arc’s website, but they now have an Etsy store with all their digital patterns that’s easier to navigate. I think the main drawback is that their designs aren’t modeled so it can be hard to picture how they’ll actually look, and reviews by bloggers are few and far between. Their instructions are pretty minimal but seemed sufficient for non-beginners. Granted, I made some pretty simple tops, so I’m not sure what their instructions would be like for something more complicated. One strange feature is that when you buy the pattern you only get 3 sizes (4-6-8 or 10-12-14 for example) and each size is in a separate PDF file – not very handy if you need to grade between sizes. I also found it odd that the symmetrical front and back pieces of both shirts were full size rather than having a “cut on fold” line down the middle. I didn’t particularly mind, but it would have saved paper to just print the half size pieces.

This shirt came together easily and the fit seems true to size. I’ve never made a cowl before, so it was fun to see how that’s constructed. It’s definitely a comfortable and wearable shirt, but I’m not totally sold on the style. I’m not sure if either dropped shoulders or cowl necks are the best looks for me. I love the fabric though, so I’m sure I’ll be wearing it anyway!

Ginger Jeans + Cate's Cousin Top

Ginger Jeans + Cate's Cousin Top

Ginger Jeans + Cate's Cousin Top

This is my second pair of Ginger Jeans. View B this time with the high waist and skinny legs. When I basted them together the legs were a bit *too* skinny through the calves, so I used a 3/8″ (rather than 5/8″) seam allowance from the knee down. I used Cone Mills denim from Threadbare Fabrics which seems to be great so far – I’ll have to see how well it ages before I can reach a final verdict. Thanks to my Pfaff (I bought a used Ambition 1.0 a few months ago!) I think this is my best fly insertion and topstitching yet! My Pfaff also came with a “hump jumper” and I love that little gadget – it works like a charm when going over multiple layers of denim.

The fit is pretty good on these. I think there’s just a smidge too much fabric at the inner thigh (or somewhere in the crotch region). There also seem to be a lot of knee wrinkles, but I’m not sure if that can be corrected or if that’s just the way it is with skinny jeans. Any thoughts?

I’m glad I tried out the high rise, but I think a mid-rise is still my favorite height for jeans. On my next pair I’ll use Heather’s tutorial to make something in between Views A and B.

Ginger Jeans + Cate's Cousin Top

Ginger Jeans + Cate's Cousin Top

Ginger Jeans + Cate's Cousin Top

With the weather warming up I definitely feel like my sew-jo’s returning. I plan on doing a quick Wardrobe Architect run-though and getting my thoughts (and fabrics) in order. Lots of sewing ahead!

<3 Lindsay