Tag: rainwear

Make Nine, Top Makes of the Year

Make Nine, Top Makes of the Year

It’s time to look back at the first year here on the blog. It’s been a great journey! Here are my top Nine projects of the year according to Google Analytics!

Anyone Can make a cut and sew sweater|Chambraybluesblog|chambrayblues.com
Me in my new fuzzy sweater, I can’t wait to make more of them!

Make Nine, Top Makes of the Year

Last year I had a dream, a dream to start a sewing blog. I had a vision for this business ten years ago when I started my home decor blog but at the time sewing just didn’t seem like the right fit. I was busy home schooling Mom of 4 boys and just didn’t have time to sew much of anything, I had little space or equipment for a sewing studio. Home decor and lifestyle topics were easier for me to write about because it was all things I was doing anyway in my day to day life. Since then our sons have grown up and left home. Now I can focus on sewing, not just for me but for the home too. Thanks for all your support this last year on the blog! It’s been amazing, the sewing community is very supportive and a joy to be a part of. The sewing niche is a much small group than the home decor niche, and I have already made a number of friends and contacts that are very special. Sewing is a world wide top, much more than the home decor niche which seems to revolve mainly around American style homes and interiors. My home decor blog is still active, and I have recently rebranded. You can check it out at Cozy Traditional Home.com.

I have lots of new things planned for the new year ahead here on Chambray Blues which I am not quite ready to announce, but here are my top projects to date. I am always amazed at which projects rise to the top, I can never accurately predict what will be the most successful.

Make Nine List

Restyled Mens shirt back|Chambraybluesblog|www.chambrayblues.com
This shirt is made from 3 different menswear shirts.

Men’s Thrifted Upcycle Hack in 7 StepsĀ 

Upcycled Sewing Hacks

Upcycling is a big topic in sewing. There are several upcycyling projects that have made the list, I am so glad you all enjoy them! Being a good steward of what we have is very important to me, and I will continue to come up with new ways to use old clothes and fabrics!

Make Nine, Top Makes of the Year|ChambrayBluesBlog|chambrayblues.com
Design your necklace on a form or on yourself while looking in the mirror.

Scrappy Denim Boho Necklace

Upcycled Denim Hat|Chambray Blues Blog|chambrayblues.com
Love this adorable denim hat made from old jeans!

How to make an upcycled hat from old jeans

Make Nine, Top Makes of the Year|Chambraybluesblog|chambrayblues.com

Add style to your t-shirt with this easy pattern hack!3 Step Easy T-shirt Pattern Hack

Pattern Hacking Tips

Pattern Hacking is one of my specialties. When I worked as a designer in the apparel industry making the first pattern was my job. I love showing you my pattern hacking tips! I am making new videos for my You Tube Channel regularly with pattern making techniques. Be sure to subscribe for updates!

How to Sew a Sunny Raincoat|Chambraybluesblog|www.chambrayblue.com
Yellow Raincoats never go out of style!

Sewing Pattern Reviews

Sewing patterns have changed a lot since I learned to sew 40 years ago. Not all have changed for the better! I am reviewing patterns from some of the Indie designers as well as the Big 4 Pattern companies here on the blog, much more to come!

Sew a Sunny Raincoat

Ruffled denim purse with Cricut|Chambraybluesblog|chambrayblues.com
This tiny purse is perfect for kids or a casual night out.

Cricut Maker Projects

My relationship with Cricut sponsor has been a huge part of blog. They are a great company to work with and I am so grateful for the opportunity to work with them. Sewing with my Cricut Maker is so much fun! I will continue to have more great projects here on the blog using my Cricut!

Sew a Recycled Denim Ruffled Purse with Cricut and Simplicity

Riley Blake Quilt Kit for the Cricut Maker|chambray blues blog|chambrayblues.com
The Finished Spinning Wheels Quilt

Riley Blake Throw Quilt Made with the Cricut maker

Undies to Tees Boxer Briefs|Chambraybluesblog|chambrayblues.com
Look how colorful these boxers are!

Tees Refashioned to Undies, Refashion Your Shirts to Underware

Sew a Clutch with Strap|Chambray Blues Blog|chambrayblues.com
You can make this cute bag with your Cricut Maker.

Sew a Clutch Bag with Zipper

 

That’s the Make Nine list! You can see more sewists top Make Nine on Instagram using the hashtag #Makenine. Thank you for your support, looking forward to even better things! If there is a particular project or technique you would like to see me sew here on the blog, please send an email with your suggestion to Jessica@chambrayblues.com. I would love to hear your suggestions, they are very important to me!

 

In case you haven’t been around, here are some of the other posts that are not to be missed:

Sew Along Dinner Date Dress Reveal

Meet Mimi Goodwin, Successful Sewing Entrepreneur

Anyone Can Make a Cut and Sew Sweater

Sew a 3 Step Buffalo Check Cardigan

Sew Your Own DIY Christmas Decor with Cricut

Make a Chill’n Cricut T-Shirt Collection with #YogaLife

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How to Sew a Sunny Raincoat

This raincoat will make you feel cheery on any rainy day! Here’s my top tips for making a waterproof coat!

 

I feel in love with this yellow Gortex fabric the minute I saw it. Something about a bright yellow coat is so happy on a rainy day. This was my first attempt at sewing rain wear, and I learned so much from it. High tech fabrics such as Gortex are a completely different animal, here’s how to get the best results from your rainwear project. For this coat, I used pdf pattern #1030 the Waver Jacket from Paper Cut Patterns. Overall it was fairly easy to assemble, but read on for the one thing that the designer could have done better!

How to Sew a Sunny Raincoat|Chambraybluesblog|www.chambrayblue.com

Waterproof Fabric Tips

1. Water proof fabrics require special care when cutting. You can’t use pins because they put holes in the fabric. Also, Gortex in particular has a rubber backing that is very thick and pins won’t poke through it. You will need to use pattern weights, and lots of them when laying out the pattern to cut.

2. Fusible interfacing doesn’t work with this type of fabric. I tried ironing some on at low heat (so the fabric doesn’t melt), and though it seemed like it was working the glue did not hold in the long run. Use a sew in interfacing instead for this project.

3. A walking foot is essential for sewing this “sticky” fabric. One side of the fabric is slick, the other sticks like glue to everything. It gets stuck under the presser foot and doesn’t move as you are sewing. If you don’t have a walking foot, you could try using a piece of freezer paper under the presser foot to help it slide under the presser foot.

4. A sharp needle is a must. I used a size 14 all purpose needle for this project.

5. Good quality thread makes a huge difference, Gutterman thread was recommended by the fabric supplier and that’s what I used. Fabric was purchased from Seattle Fabrics.com.

6. Making buttonholes was challenging. The pattern had buttons and snaps as options, I decided on buttons because they were easy to find. I think snaps would have worked better because the button holer kept sticking to the fabric as I mentioned above and was very cumbersome to use. I made several mistakes with my buttonholes, and I just have to live with how they turned out.

7. You can’t rip out stitches with this type of fabric because it leaves holes. You only get one chance to do it right, and for the same reasons Gortex is just difficult to work with.

Waver Jacket Pattern Review

I have not sewn with many pdf patterns, as I usually just stick with one of the name brands. This pdf was overall well designed, but I spotted a couple of things that could have made this project turn out so much better.

1. The Center front wasn’t cut on the straight grain: This may seem like a small detail, but this one change could have made this coat so much better. Grain line placement makes a huge difference in how the finished coat hangs. As you can see from my photos, the coat appears to have too much fullness at center front, and hides the buttons when hanging. This is because the marked grain line was at an angle to the center front, generally a no-no in the design world. Particularly with center front button plackets, the front grain must be cut on the straight grain for the best result. I knew I should have changed it when I cut it, but for some reason I didn’t. Live and learn from my mistake!

2. Pocket placement could be better: The pockets are way to close to the center front. I did alter the pattern and added extra fullness at the side seam. The pockets should have been moved at least 2″ closer to the side seam.

3. Lining hem could be longer: Most quality coats have what is called a jump hem. That is, a hem that has 1/2″ or more extra length in the lining so that when you move your arms and shoulders the extra length keeps the hem hanging straight and doesn’t pull up as you move. This coat was not designed this way and I discovered too late that the hem pulls up in an unattractive manor when moving about. If I make it again, I will add extra 1″ of length to the lining. For now, I stitched the hem of the lining independently from the jacket, allowing the extra movement that is needed.

Overall this was a challenging project. The fabric I chose was not easy to work with, but I am still pleased with it. My purpose in making this jacket was to have something to wear for walking outside and working in the yard on wet days. The jacket serves it’s purpose even though it isn’t as perfect as I would like. The color alone makes me happy every time I put it on.

I have plans to try sewing a couple of other rain coats in the future, so stay tuned for more!

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If you like this post, check out these other posts:

Meet Mimi Goodwin, Successful Sewing Entrepreneur

Why Self Care Makes for Better Sewing

How to Read a Sewing Pattern Envelope

Sweet Mom and Me Apron Pattern Review

Scrappy Denim Boho Necklace Tutorial

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