Summer sewing plans

Someone once wrote, “those who can’t do, plan”. As my time at the sewing machine is now limited, I’ll be subjecting you to another seasonal sewing plan post. This post is actually a little overdue – spring hit a good month ago and we’re already experiencing warm weather in the mid 20s. So I better get a move on if I want to wear these items soon!

1. Named Inari Tee Dress
Technical drawing of the Named Inari Tee Dress, a boxy cut dress with short sleeves, a scoop neck and asymmetrical hem.
Named Inari Tee Dress

A navy and white stripe knit fabric, with gold glitter spots.

I guess I’ve become one of those people who makes a million Archers, Hemlocks and Inaris, and I’m not mad about it. My wardrobe is sorely lacking in summer dresses, and I happened to have some leftover fabric from a Spotlight haul suited for the task – a cotton/spandex knit in navy/white stripe with gold glitter spots. I’ve got vague plans of making this in time for The Monthly Stitch Indie Pattern Month, but deadlines are not my friend these days.

2. Black bengaline pants
Technical drawing of the Style Arc Elle pant, a slim fit stretch pant with an elastic waistband.
Style Arc Elle Pant

Last summer, I basically lived in my Style Arc Elle Pants, made in bright coloured Spotty bengaline. With the recent realisation that I had no black summer-weight pants, another pair of Elles was on the agenda. This time, I intend to add pockets, but I’m not quite sure how.

A slash pocket would stretch and gape, but back patch pockets are awfully impractical. I could really do with a side pocket a la the Patterns for Pirates Peg Legs Add-On, but I’m not sure how to finagle that with the existing side seam curve of the Elle, and I don’t think I could be bothered figuring it out either. Sewing brains trust, Gondor calls for aid!

Meme: Aragorn from Lord of the Rings,

I’ve also got a couple of 3/4 length bengaline pants from the op shop, waiting for their elastic to be replaced and patch pockets sewn on.

3. Style Arc Blaire Shirtdress
Technical drawing of the Style Arc Blaire Shirt & Dress, a loose-fit button up shirt or shirtdress with cut-on sleeves, separate button band and collar, and empire waist. Accompanied by an image of blue tie dye denim.
Style Arc Blaire Shirt & Dress

When I bought the knit for my Inari Dress at Spotlight, I noticed a tie dye denim hiding in the clearance section. For $12.50/m, I couldn’t leave it behind, despite having no immediate plans for it. Seeing Jen’s fabulous Blaire Dress on Instagram inspired me to designate this fabric for the same pattern. I’ve already made a Blaire Shirt with lots of added length in the bust area, so it will be a quick process of muslining for length and hip room (straight dresses catch on my lower half) before cutting into this fabric.

4. In the Folds Collins Top
Technical drawing of the In the Folds Collins Top, a pieced trapeze-shaped top with scoop neck, asymmetrical hem and sleeve option. Accompanied by images of two different rayons, one pink with cranes, the other beige with abstract brown floral.
In the Folds Collins Top

I have some leftover rayon from the Sew Over It Sylvia Robes and the Inari Tee I made last year. With the small pattern pieces of the In the Folds Collins Top, I think I can squeeze a top out of each of the colourways. Trapeze-shaped tops aren’t usually my thing, but in a flowing rayon it might be a better fit for my style.

5. Black linen pants or dress
Pattern envelope of Butterick 6139, a 90s style shift dress with lowered empire waist, optional sleeves, skirt wrap and pockets, in knee or maxi length. Next to it is technical drawing of Ottobre Spring/Summer 2/2018 #11. Hazel pants, a straight leg woven pant with elastic waist in sizes 34-52.
Butterick 6139 & Ottobre Spring/Summer 2/2018 #11. Hazel pants

This isn’t exactly a concrete plan, more some vague ideas. I bought some black cotton/linen on sale at Spotlight with the intention of making lightweight pants. However, when I inspected it at home, it proved to be really thin and see-through.

I’m not sure if it would suit pants, like these Ottobre Hazel Pants from their Spring/Summer 2/1018 Women issue, or a 90s-style sleeveless dress, Butterick 6139 (which I’ve made before), or nothing at all due to its opacity (or lack thereof). I think I’ll have to play with draping it into shapes in the full sun so I can tell just how scandalous it is before making any pattern decisions.

What are your seasonal sewing plans?

Author: Siobhan S

20 something, living in country Australia. Spoonie profile: ME/CFS, dysautonomia, anxiety. All about sewing, knitting and food. Unapologetic disability advocate.

19 thoughts on “Summer sewing plans”

  1. I hope your health holds up so you can get these made. Plamning has its own pleasure. Re pockets in the Elle pants: the similar Style Arc Airlie pants have pockets (see how-to video), showing it can be done. They look like welt pockets. Easier would be to add regular jean type pockets, but extend bag to waist, as Erica Bunker has done, to stop them bagging

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Karey! Someone else recommended the Airlie Pants too – I will have a look at Style Arc’s video and see if they’d suit. And great idea with the pocket stays. I’ve sewn them before but wouldn’t have thought to use them in this application.

      Liked by 1 person

        1. Huh, I was thinking along the same lines! Great minds eh. What worried me there was the possibility of the actual slash of the pocket sticking out and gaping due to the stretch and tight fit of the pant.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. That was my concern too, hence plan to extend underneath pocket bag to centre front, shifting stress to pocket over tummy instead of trouser front

            Liked by 1 person

      1. Hi! I’ve recently made the Airlie pants and while they look great they aren’t deep enough, so I would advise adding at least an inch to the depth so as to get workable pockets!
        I’m in the midst of thinking about what I’m going to make this summer too. Sometimes I think planning is more fun than the sewing!

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Ah, thanks for the heads up! I’ll be careful to check the dimensions if I end up making them. Agreed that planning is the fun part! Cutting out patterns, not so much.


  2. I need to make Ramona a Halloween costume. She wants to be Vanique, this vampire stuffie that she got at Ikea a couple of years ago. (She named him that.) So that is the project that is stressing me out the most this month.

    With the weather getting colder in the Northern Hemisphere, I need to consider my footwear situation. The sneakers I bought when Ramona was a newborn (almost six years ago!) are finally starting to give up the ghost. That was back before I really knew how to sew, but things are different now! In pursuit of a 100% handmade wardrobe, I bought the tools & supplies I need to make my own sneakers. So I’m excited about that.

    I also really want to make a new bag, some fresh new undies, pajamas for myself & for Ramona, tights, a gray plaid hi-lo shirtdress, maybe the new Chiara pants from Tessuti…I have more ideas than time, really. I need to sit down & prioritize.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am loving the idea of Ramona wanting to dress up as her doll! A vampire doll, no less. Could you supplement the costume with cheap store bought or thrifted clothes? If it’s stressing you out. She’ll only grow out of it 🤷

      Making shoes does sound very exciting! There are a lot of nice handmade shoes popping up on Instagram and I certainly admire the work that goes into them.


  3. I’ll be eager to see your Collins top. I wouldn’t have gravitated toward it either, but someone on PR did a lovely take: it sewed up really well in 3D. Onward.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’ll have to look at the reviews on PR! I’m hoping it will work out alright in the rayon and with a few adjustments, as this kind of shape usually translates to Homer Simpson in a muu-muu on my body.


  4. I haven’t sewn for a month now. An MS relapse knocked the wind out of my sails. I love reading your plans. And your fabrics are so lovely! Hoping you can push forward! (((HUG)))

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Well you know I love these plans! ❤ I love the fabrics you have chosen and can't wait to see how everything comes together! As for adding pockets to the Elle pants, perhaps you could do something similar to the Persephone pants? They'd be discreet but also accessible, since they'd be right up front. (I'm no expert so take this suggestion with a heaping helping of salt!)

    It's Fall here, and as Morbo would say, my plans are "belligerent and numerous!" 😉 I have some obligation sewing to do in the next 2 weeks (whyyyy?!?!?!?!?) but after that I should be free to focus on my list. Said list is more than I could possibly sew in 6 months but it has helped focus my ideas, at least! I also promised Tom I would try making him some underwear now that I have a coverstitch machine, so that will be an adventure for Fall also. O_o

    (PS: I tried leaving a comment a minute ago but had left this tab open too long and it errored out–if I duplicate myself please feel free to delete the 2nd one. Sorry!!)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I had to stare long and hard at the Persephone pattern then finally read the pattern description to figure out where the pockets were! Haha. They would work well, I think – the Colette Clover had a similar design. I’m very inclined towards the Style Arc Airlie right now, as their pockets work on a similar principle (slim, near waistband) but are more visible and most important, bigger!

      Obligation sewing is the WORST. Let’s hope that gets out the way shortly! You might already have a pattern in mind, but I’m a big Jalie fan for underwear. Their patterns have a huge size range (like, kids to adults) and lots of variations. In some patterns you get completely women’s and men’s styles all in one!

      All humans are vermin in the eyes of Morbo!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Oh no, I should have just said how they were done–my bad! I assumed you had seen those pants around enough and knew all the scuttlebutt on them. Sorry!! The Airlie look really nice, and the pockets are stylish as well as functional!

        Fortunately the obligation sewing is my own doing, but it’s still hard to find motivation! But everything needs to be done before the end of the month so it will definitely be done with soon! The underwear are going to be interesting, as I’m copying an existing RTW pair; I even managed to find the exact same fabric. Hopefully it will be a solvable brain puzzle to de-construct and rebuild them, lol.

        Liked by 1 person

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