Army Green Archer Dress (My 100th Blog Post)

So… this is my 100th blog post which is bananas! I like documenting the things I’ve made but I’m also running out of free photo storage on wordpress and I’m not sure that I want to pay to have a blog. I would still document the things I’m making on instagram and take more notes in a journal or just on my personal project tracking spreadsheet. I should look in to the options and maybe re-upload some of my earlier photos in a more compressed size before I do anything too drastic.

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This is my fifth time making the Archer Shirt by Grainline studio but this one is a bit different from my previous versions. In the past I made a green and navy plaid flannel version (which was the second thing that I ever blogged and probably one of my most worn makes!), a chambray dot version, a white and grey plaid flannel popover version and a red flannel version. This is the first version where I’ve done any hacking. The most obvious change I made was to lengthen to a dress. I added a bunch of length and flared it out starting at the waist to make sure I would have enough room in my hips. I ended up taking it in a bunch in the hips after basting the side seams because I went a little overboard when adding extra room.

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I left the dress a midi length with a lower hem in the back than the front which I think looks modern and cool but may not be the most flattering on, especially with these boots. I also made a belt to wear with it which gives some waist definition. For the belt I just used the belt from the Closet Case Patterns Amy Jumpsuit which I had used before with my actual Amy Jumpsuit. Just like my actual Amy Jumpsuit I had to add a seam at the back of the belt because there was just no way that I was going to be able to cut that as all one piece.

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The other change I made to this pattern was to hack the pockets to give them more of a military vibe to go with the army green fabric. I used the same pattern piece as the original archer pattern but I added two inches to the width. I then just folded the pocket in half and sewed one inch from the folded edge. Then when you lay the pocket flat and iron it then it creates the pleats on the front pocket. I basted those down at the top and bottom and then continued with the pattern as directed. For the flap I just used the width of the original pocket and then just made it as long as I wanted it to overlap plus seam allowance.

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The fabric is tencel twill from Blackbird Fabrics. I originally bought this fabric a while ago with the intention of making an Archer button up with these pockets but I just sat on the idea for a long time. I finally decided to do it but I realized I had enough fabric for a dress length version. I honestly feel like I would get more wear out of a shirt than the dress (in part because its really cold in Wisconsin and I’m not wearing a lot of dresses right now). I figure I can always change my mind later and make it in to a shirt. But if I made the shirt, it would be much harder to make in to a dress later if I changed my mind.

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I’m super happy with how this turned out – especially the pockets! They ended up being pretty easy to put together and I’m excited to have another long sleeve dress since I don’t have many.

Lacy Wool Sweater Knit Hemlock

I got this incredible wool fabric from Stonemountain and Daughter while I was there for Thanksgiving in 2017. I didn’t want to use a pattern that had too many seams or too much going on because I didn’t want to distract from the lace pattern. I chose to use the Hemlock Tee pattern by Grainline Studios and I used all of the same modifications from my cloud knit version. I wear the cloud knit version all winter so it made sense to add another one to my closet. Also – did you see that Grainline Studio updated their Hemlock Tee? I’ve made so many modifications to my version but the new version comes in their expanded size range and also with different sleeve lengths and body lengths!

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This fabric is amazing to work with – its just so soft and cushy. It is definitely one of the more expensive fabrics that I’ve purchased but it is totally worth it. I’ve found that when I’m working with a fabric that I really love the whole time I’m sewing the garment I just love the process that much more.

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The fabric definitely doesn’t have much stretch to it just hangs a lot differently from fabric that I’ve used in the past for this pattern. This is especially easy to spot around the neckline. It doesn’t really stay on my shoulders as much as some of my other versions. However, I’m not super worried about this. I’m always planning on wearing this with a tank top due to the lace but also because the wool is just a bit too itchy for me.

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Willow Tank And Ginger Jorts

This post is going to be a 2 for 1 but I’ve made both of these patterns before! I made the Grainline Studio Willow Tank and the Closet Case Patterns Ginger Jeans as shorts. I’ve made two versions of the willow tank before (a cropped version and a regular version) and I’ve made three pairs of Ginger Jeans before. Version one is the high waisted version. I actually used left over denim from that version to make these shorts so its a pretty interesting comparison to see how far I’ve come since my first Ginger Jeans! Version two and version three are both the low rise version.

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Don’t tell my other willow tanks but this version is by far my favorite. The fabric just hangs away from my body and is so light and airy. It feels amazing to wear and I’m sure this is going to get lots of wears! I used the Loominous fabric by Anna Maria Horner. The design is completely woven in to the fabric!

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Just look how cool that fabric is! I got this fabric from a local quilting shop and they didn’t quite have enough fabric but I made it work and was able to fit it all on the fabric I had.

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I’ve made the high rise Ginger Jeans and two pairs of low rise but I’ve been wanting something more in the middle so I decided I wanted to try the mid-rise version. Since I’ve been struggling a bit with the fit I wanted to make a short muslin of the mid-rise before I go for the full length jeans. These shorts are definitely my best fitting pair so far but I’m still struggling with the crotch. This fabric does stretch out throughout the day and is a bit thinner and with a higher sheen than the cone mills denim I used for my other pairs so it definitely shows the wrinkles more. Other than that they fit pretty well though… I’m thinking that I might try the Megan Nielsen Ash Jeans though to see if those have the same issues with the crotch. Have any of you tried the ash jeans? From pictures it seems like people aren’t having as many crotch issues but it also calls for fabric with more stretch…

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I adjusted the back yoke since my last pair and they are fitting much better in that area! I feel like I’m really close on getting this pattern to fit exactly how I want it to but I’m also a bit discouraged that after 4 versions I still haven’t figured out the crotch… I took apart a pair of ready to wear jeans that were threadbare and I’m hoping to compare those to my pattern for the Ginger Jeans that I’ve been adjusting and the Ash Jeans and then decide what my next step will be.

Grainline Hadley Tank

I’ve made the Grainline Hadley before in a double gauze but I’ve always loved the v-neck version. I think the neckline looks so good on everyone – so flattering and elegant! I used the Splatter Paint rayon fabric from Workroom Social. I absolutely loved working with this fabric – it feels more substantial than other rayon fabrics that I’ve used and is pretty easy to work with.

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I used the same size I had when I made my first version but after I was almost completely done I tried it on and it was way too big! I ended up taking in the side seams/ facing side seams quite a bit and now I’m happy with the fit! Next time though I’ll probably re-measure and probably cut a different size. I may also raise the neckline just slightly because even though it is very elegant its a little low for everyday for me.

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I also love the shape of the hem on this shirt. My first version was the higher neckline which has a hook and eye closure at the back. I don’t know why but my hook and eye never stay closed! I think I may need a narrow shoulder adjustment or something to get the top to lay flat against my skin to prevent it from coming open but until I figure that out I’ll just stick with the lower neck version that doesn’t require the hook and eye.

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This tank top is also perfect for layering underneath cardigans. I’m wearing it here with my Helen’s closet blackwood cardigan, which I love.

Photos in this post were taken by the lovely Emmanuelle of the Zoubi Zoubisou blog.

Black and White Striped Hemlock

I made this Hemlock Tee by Grainline Studios a while back with some black and white jersey striped fabric I got from Girl Charlee. I started by making no changes to the pattern since it is a one size fits all pattern and I wasn’t sure what to expect. After making it and trying it on I ended up shortening the hem of the shirt and the sleeves pretty significantly. Before I hemmed it I was feeling quite overwhelmed by the stripes. I still kinda think they make me look like a prisoner and/or a mime.

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Other than that this was a pretty quick and easy make. I actually made this before I made my striped sweater knit version and my cloud knit version but because it isn’t as exciting I ended up posting about those other two versions first. After making this version I decided that I wanted long sleeves that were a bit slimmer so all of my subsequent versions have a modified sleeve and also are modified for the split hem. I think the split hem adds a bit of visual interest to an otherwise pretty basic pattern. The Hemlock is a great pattern for showcasing a really nice fabric (which this is not). I really love my sweater knit versions but its nice to have this as a lighter weight more casual (prison??) shirt.

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Split Hem Linden Sweatshirt

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I got this amazing quilted knit fabric about a year and a half ago in the garment district in NYC. I used the Linden Sweatshirt pattern by Grainline Studio. I’ve made this pattern in the past twice – a black and white version with a split hem band and a cropped tropical version. It had been a long time since I made either of those and I forgot how much I like this pattern. It sews up super quickly and I absolutely love the way that all of my versions have turned out. My past two versions were made of fabrics that … I probably wouldn’t use again… I chose them more for the print/pattern than for the feel of the fabrics. But I still wear both of those sweatshirts all of time!

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I altered the pattern to have a split hem. I essentially just lengthened both the front and back pieces by different amounts. After I sewed the sleeves to the front and back pieces I finished the edges of the under arm/body pieces separately. I could then sew from the wrist up to the armpit and back down, stopping at the point I wanted my vent to start. I then hemmed the rest of the top, pivoting at the vents to sew the seam allowance down around both vents. I also lengthened the sleeves and omitted the cuffs on the sleeves. If I was going to make this again I would keep the cuffs because the seam on the sleeves is a little bulky and the hem cuff would at least contain the seam allowances at the wrists.

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The split goes pretty high and the back is a lot longer than a typical sweatshirt. I really like having the top lengthened because I like the drama of it and it makes it feel extra cosy.

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In the future I think I’d make a version out of a bamboo terry or a fabric that is a little softer since I think I would wear it so much. This version is super cosy and I love it but its a little bulky so its a little harder to wear.

Long Sleeve Double Gauze Hadley

fullsizeoutput_1647This is my first time making the Grainline Studio Hadley top. I made view A for this version using a Kokka double gauze fabric I got from Fancy Tiger. I made a straight size 2 and I shortened it by 1 inch. other than that I didn’t make any adjustments. (Clearly I finished this top a while back and took photos a while back since this is not what Wisconsin looks like right now!)

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I’m wearing this with my Lander shorts which I wore multiple times a week every week this summer. Maybe now that its cold out I should make some Lander pants?

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I love the back hemline and I’ve been super in to hem facings lately. I enjoy sewing them mostly but I also like the structure it provides. I think I’ve been sewing more of them lately because I’ve been making shirts with more dramatic hems. This shirt definitely has a lot of drama in the back – there is a lot of fabric back there. I like the shape but I worry that it is a little overwhelming. Normally I grade out at the hips because I’m pear shaped but I didn’t do that with this pattern because there is already so much fabric there.

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My main issue with this shirt is with the hook and eye closure – I can never get it to stay closed. I have this same problem on my Grainline Studio Farrow dress and I’m not sure what I’m doing wrong… Do I need a narrow shoulder adjustment or something so the back of my shirt moves around less? Or should I just switch to a button and loop? I really don’t know so for now I’ll just be re-hooking multiple times a day.