Fancy Tiger One Hour Top Pattern Hack

Sunday, December 11, 2016

A couple months ago I did a massive wardrobe purge after I had a mini-meltdown over what to wear to Quilt Market. I've finally outgrown Ms. Frizzle as a style icon. My new goal of dressing Lisbeth Salander from The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo mashed up with a forest witch may not be that much more grown up, but having a predominantly black and gray wardrobe makes putting an outfit together pretty painless. The problem was, after 10+ years trying to erase/avoid my cringey middle school emo phase from my memory, I had a total of 2 black tshirts in my closet.

This year I've been learning how to live happily with less, so building a capsule wardrobe of interchangable basics has become my current project. The problem is I hate clothes shopping. I was able to pick up a few staples at Goodwill and discount stores before caving in and trying Stitch Fix. It was a home run (I bought all 5 items my stylist picked), but I still needed some basic, everyday short sleeve tops. Time for DIY!



Last year, I sewed my first knit garment, the Fancy Tiger One Hour Top (free pattern here). I used this ultra simple dolman sleeve pattern as a base for my new go-to tee. A common theme in the Pinterest board I made for my Stitch Fix stylist is unusual, witchy hemlines, and I wanted to incorporate this element into my tops. Additionally, I wanted them to be tunic-length so they'd keep my bum covered when paired with leggings. These modifications took me less than five minutes to draft. Here's how you can make your own handkerchief hem / sidetail tunic:

  1. Shorten sleeves to desired length, mimicking the angle of the the original armhole hemline.
  2. Add desired length to top, 6" in my case. Add enough and you could even make a shift dress.
  3. Add a large rectangle to the bottom hemline and blend in to underarm seam. For my tops, I extended the new hemline 12" to either side, then drew perpendicular 12" lines straight up. From here, I started to draw another line parallel to the hem, and curved it upward to blend into that underarm seam. 


Repeat all your alterations on the back piece of the pattern (the only difference between the front and the back is the neckline) and you're ready to sew! The sewing process remains the same as the original One Hour Top. The only difference is your underarm seams are curved now (highlighted yellow in the image above). To finish my handkerchief hemline, I did a 3-thread overlock stitch with my serger. I did a traditional hem on my test top, but I prefer the decorative look of the serged hemline. 

As you can see, this weird rectangle becomes unrecognizable in your finished top unless you hold the hemline out. Isn't that cool?!

Including my test top, I've already made 5 of these tunics! This one is made with the most gorgeous knit fabric I've ever encountered, a tie die rayon jersey. Of all the knits I purchased, this 95% bamboo rayon / 5% spandex blend was the easiest to work with too. The raw edges don't curl much (a huge pet peeve of mine) which takes the headache out of the cutting process. It's also heavenly soft. The only downside is I think the 60" width is incorrect; it's really more like 48" wide. Good thing Fabric.com has excellent customer service though. When I contacted them about the error, they sent me another 1.5 yards free of charge. That's enough to make a few pairs of leggings! 

Satellite Medallion Fabric Key

Wednesday, October 26, 2016


Earlier this month, issue 40 of Love Patchwork & Quilting magazine went on sale in the UK with my Satellite Medallion on the cover! This is my first time being published in a magazine, so being on the cover of my favorite quilt mag is extra surreal. 

Someone on Instagram asked for a quick visual fabric key for the pattern (prints are listed as Fabrics A-N) and I'm happy to oblige for those who want to duplicate this quilt! I've added the corresponding letters to the swatch photo below. The only fabric not pictured is Fabric I, a coordinating Artisan Cotton (40171 Red-Royal) from Windham. I believe it's listed as "Blue Red" on Hawthrone Threads. It's a lovely cross-weave with an iridescent quality, so I highly suggest using it instead of substituting a traditional solid. 


Poison Apple Mini Quilt Tutorial

Saturday, October 15, 2016


I recently caved to my childish attraction to shiny Disney goodies and purchaed one of the Disney park exclusive poison apple mugs off eBay after seeing them in my Instagram feed. I realized that the classic Snow White icon would make a cool Halloween decoration in the form of a mini quilt, so I got to work. 

I traced a screenshot of the poison apple in Adobe Illustrator to make my templates, and picked a few Kona solids from my stash. I used Kona Lipstick, Meringue, and Chestnut for my applique, a black Artisan Cotton from Windham for the background, and a Cotton + Steel striped print for my binding.

To make this mini, download the templates and print them at 100%. Use the background template to cut out your background oval. Trace each of the applique templates onto the paper side of a paper-backed fusible web (I used Pellon Wonder Under), and fuse to the wrong side of your fabric. Cut out your templates, remove the paper, and fuse the pieces to your background. Stitch around the pieces to secure them (I do this in one step when quilting). Embroider along the dashed lines if desired. I used my FMQ foot and brown thread because I wasn't in the mood for hand embroidery. Make your quilt sandwich (I like to use two layers of batting for extra dimension), and quilt as desired. Make 42" of 2.5" wide bias binding and bind your mini. 

If you post your mini on Instagram, use the hashtag #PoisonAppleMiniQuilt so we can see your handiwork!
 
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