So, you’re window shopping on a summer Saturday – or you’re headed to a sparkly roof-top party downtown?  No problem, the Indiesew Summer Collection has you covered. (Crazy hair colour not included!) 

This year I have been lots more successful in making more of my own clothes. I’m starting to sort out what fits and how to make it fit if it doesn’t. It’s a great feeling to actually be able to participate in #memademay15 – and not just watch everyone else doing it! Today I get to show you how I expanded my handmade wardrobe as part of the Indiesew Summer Collection Blog Tour. (and I am not just a little giddy that I am in a tour with all these talented bloggers!)

Indiesew has been creating seasonal collections for about a year now. I’m a huge supporter of bloggers, indie sewing patterns and online fabric shops (especially in Canada!). I love that the sewing community has grown up so much in the past few years.

Indiesew’s mission is to bring everyone together. They have amassed a large collection of the best indie patterns and you can purchase them, upload your photos and view others’ creations – loads of inspiration. Plus, sewing tips and tutorials on their blog. Their branding makes my designer’s heart super happy! (Yikes, didn’t mean to go on a long speech there – I really love the back story to their site!)

Speaking of supporting Canadian online fabric shops, I found the small-scale check shot cotton for my Ella Top at Flare Fabrics during Creativ Festival. I had been hoping to use a gray check or plaid and was happy to find it so easily!

It’s my attempt at a summery nod to the lumberjack shirt trend, and it’s super soft. Though it doesn’t have much drape, I was hoping for a bit of a boxy, long “crop tee” look anyhow. They also have an amazing oversized check and so many colours. Shot cotton, rayon challis and chambray are my new favorites for clothing!

PATTERN REVIEW: Ella Top, by Liola Patterns

Fabric: Gravel Peppered Check Shot Cotton (Flare Fabrics)

This top is the perfect summer project. It’s beginner friendly and uses just over a yard of fabric. (Less if you shorten it!)    I want to make more and live in them all summer.

Here are a few things I love about it:

  • The back yoke detail is fun to play with. You could use lace, bias or fussy-cut fabric!
  • The pattern only has 15 pages to assemble! Hooray!
  • It is fully constructed with french seams so there are no raw edges and no edge finishing to do.
  • Well written, illustrated instructions.

Thoughts on the fit & my alterations:

  • The fit is true to the given measurements.
  • I adjusted the sides of the top to fit size small at the top down to medium at the bottom. 
  • I also did a small bust adjustment and sway back adjustment like I usually do on #memade tops. (Don’t be scared, they are not hard and let you customize the fit to your body.)
  • Raised the neckline by 1″.
Things I changed from the original pattern:

  • I love the length of the original pattern – but it looked a bit long with the not-so-drapey fabric so I shortened it by almost 5″.
  • I used my favorite imagine gnats trick – using a knit instead of a woven to bind the edges, soooo much easier. Bias tape and I don’t play well together!

Things I might change next time:

  • Use a flowy fabric. I’d love to see one in rayon challis – the shot cotton is amazing, but does not drape really well.
  • Make on in the original length or longer, or make it into a tank dress.

PATTERN REVIEW: Ladies’ Harem & Lounge Pants, by Pattern Emporium

Fabric: Black Rayon Challis (Canadian Fabricland, no link)

Since I am not so much a trendy fashion follower on my own – I love having the Indiesew collections to help me out. I don’t think I ever would have made myself proper harem pants without a little push – and now I want them in every colour. (And floral… and ikat print!)

Here are a few things I love about it:

  • The MOST options ever. You can make these pants 9 different ways. If you mix and match the options are almost endless!
  • Well written and organized pdf instructions with clear photos.
  • Comfy, comfy, comfy!

Thoughts on the fit & my alterations:

  • The first pair I made were really baggy. I sized down 1 size for these even though the hip measurement is smaller than my measurement. I’m much happier with a more fitted pant.
  • The only alteration I made was to lower the front rise by 1″. They already sit low on your waist (love that!) and now they fit me perfectly.
Things I changed from the original pattern:

  • Nothing! Aside from my alterations to the fit.

Things I might change next time:

  • I’d love to try a pair in a knit fabric with contrasting hem and waist bands.
  • Also, maybe shorten them to 3/4 length.
  • I would love to re-visit these in the fall with a bit heavier fabric (maybe take in some excess from the elastic waist) and hem them using the lounge pant option.


Visit the links below for more Summer Collection inspiration:

Tuesday, May 19th: Rachel | House of Pinheiro
Thursday, May 21st: Katie | What Katie Sews
Monday, May 25th: Anna | Noodlehead
Tuesday, May 26th: Andrea | Knitty Bittes
Wednesday, May 27th: Erin | Sewbon
Thursday, May 28th: Sherri | Thread Riding Hood (Hi, That’s me!)

 Reader Feedback: What is your go-to clothing pattern to make for this summer?

Thanks for reading. Follow along and join me for “thread ride”!

Disclaimer: Indiesew provided the patterns used in this post free of charge as part of this blog tour. Flare Fabrics also provided a discount on their fabric in return for a mention in this post. As usual, thanks so much for reading! All opinions are always my own.