Birch + Seamwork = LOVE

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Some of you will probably disagree with me, but I don't really consider myself a trend follower when it comes to clothing. Yeah, there are sewing patterns out there that a lot of us sewists will use, but when it comes to styles and brand names I'm not easily swayed by what is "in style" at the moment. Take those shirts with the shoulder cut outs. NO. Lululemon leggings for $128.00? NEVER. And wearing a bra as a statement piece. NUH UH. I guess I try to think long term when it comes to sewing and I want to make garments that fit my taste and are timeless, in that they are things that I will wear for a long time, not for a "season."

Despite everything I just said two seconds ago, here is the trendiest thing I have worn in a while 😂 I've seen a lot of off the shoulder tops and dresses this summer, so I'm guessing this is very "on trend" right now. But this comment/fashion advice is coming from someone who has been wearing black Converse and band shirts for the last seventeen years, so feel free to take any "fashion tips" from me with a grain of salt, haha!

The tunic length pattern is version two of the Seamwork Loretta pattern, sewn without any fit adjustments. It was a quick one to make (it's a Seamwork Pattern, so duhhhh) with only a few pattern pieces (front, back, sleeves, elastic casing, belt, and belt loops) which is great for the instant gratification project I needed in my life. The only changes I made for my version were minor ones: I cut the elastic a few inches shorter than the recommended length for a snugger fit and I didn't add the belt loops. Honestly, I'm not a fan of how they look and since I wasn't sure if I'd be wearing it with the belt (it has since been confirmed that this will be belted at all times) I kept them off. For future version two it will be loopless, possibly have a longer belt, shorter elastic to keep it on the shoulder (Not sure I can rock an off the shoulder look. It looks cute, but might not be functional. Will have to wear version one a few times to determine), I will use bias tape along the hem instead of folding over and stitching, and it will have some sort of tag in the back so I can tell the difference between the front and back. One of my favorite things about sewing is that I don't have to have annoying and itchy tags on my neck, but I'll definitely add a small loop of elastic or fabric. Not itchy and functional FTW!

This dreamyyyyy fabric is the new chambray from Birch in black. I love that it comes in 58 inch widths and that it's organic. Well, all of Birch's fabrics are organic, so that's nothing new, but it is always a plus for me when I'm buying it. I buy organic fruits and veggies, so why not organic fabric? To clarify, Birch did give me this fabric to make a garment, but I do buy from their line already, which is why I say I'm a fan of buying organic. I also like buying local, which is convenient for me since Birch's storefront is forty five minutes away mwahaha!

Back to the fabric, it's lightweight enough for this blouse. Wait, actually, it's pretty perfect for this pattern. It would also be perfect for the most comfortable Archer too. You guys know I'm an Archerolic, right? So basically this situation is going to happen soon since it is now technically Fall and I'll be living in Archers. Also, just decided that Fall and Winter are now considered Archer Season in my world.

Happy Saturday! Happy Fall!
xo Erin

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Knit Life

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Living the knit life since 2013 and falling more in love with it everyday. At this point I think I knit more than I sew. Typically, I like knitting things that I will actually wear (socks), but every year I treat myself to a sweater. With the mild climate here at the beach there isn't a huge demand for warm cozy sweaters, so they aren't usually on my needles. However, when Andrea Mowry released the So Faded sweater pattern I knew I wanted in.

Can I just say that I love indie yarn dyers? I love supporting small businesses (this goes for sewing pattern companies too!) and I loveeeeee buying yarn. It's actually probably considered an addiction at this point... Would that make it a habit or a hobby? Or both? The indie yarn used for this sweater was bought from Junkyarn. Kemper (the owner, dyer, and all around badass), made life really easy for me by dyeing up kits for the So Faded sweater and you can bet that I was sitting around waiting for her shop update because I HAD to get my hands and needles on these beautiful yarns. You can check out my Ravelry project page for more info on the yarns, or you can just stay here while I gush over Kemper and her fun speckled yarns idc. It's a fingering weight project (code for "this took forever to knit") and the yarn is made up of 75% merino, 20% nylon, 5% stellina. The stellina gives the glittery sheen that may or may not be visible in these photos, but makes me happy inside. And let's talk about the second yarn from the top. Two words: Leslie Knope. Yeah, that kinda sums up the fact that this yarn rules at life.

 So Faded (the pattern, not me being drunk) was a fun sweater to make and drama free aka had good instructions. It's knit in the round with circular needles, top down, and the sleeve stitches are left on scrap yarn and then knit after the body. Honestly, the most confusing part of the pattern was figuring out the math for fading the colors in and out out, but that wasn't even bad because Andrea gave the exact formula and you just had to plug in your numbers according to the size being knit. Maybe it's just me, but I freeze up and my eyes cross when I see math equations ugggggh. Guess you can tell that I wasn't the best mathematics student hahaha.

While the pattern was an easy one to follow it was time consuming to make. Making a sweater from fingering yarn is no joke and is not a quick knit by any means. This took around 3 months to complete, but I really lagged on the sleeves and worked on other projects in the meantime which added to the long time frame. If I worked on this project solely I could have gotten it finished sooner than I did, but life is way more fun with multiple knitting WIPs in my world.

My least favorite part about making this was weaving in all those ends. Jeeeeeze that took forever. I guess that's just the downside of "fade" projects in general. End result is worth it though. Fav part are the pops of garter stitch on the shoulders, it gives the pattern a little something special.

Would I knit this again? Maybe. No fault of the pattern, but man, it took a while to knit and it's going to be a minute before I'm up for another project of this scale. IF I do give it another shot I'm going to size down because I would prefer a closer fit. This is a little looser (my bad) because I thought sizing up would be a good idea and it wasn't. I wanted it to be more oversized and it didn't end up that way. So I should have went down a size or up a few sizes. Not complaining though, this will still be on my body WHEN THE TEMPERATURE DECIDES TO NOT BE 80-105 DEGREES EVERYDAY 😠😡😠😡 K, I guess that was a complaint and I don't want to end this post on a negative note, so I will emphasize that I do like my sweater and I like the black walls that my husband and I painted in my library. I have been wanting black walls for eight years (I can pinpoint the exact moment I fell in love with the idea) and it has finally happened. So excited. That's all.

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