We are so pleased to feature Beth Chastant in this guest post. Beth shares her experience using our Women's Legging and Women's Dropped Shoulder sewing patterns. We hope you'll appreciate Beth's insight and beautiful finished product as much as we have! Enjoy!
My name is Beth Chastant, and I am a stay-at-home mom of 4 sweet kiddos. I started sewing 7 years ago out of curiosity and quickly became addicted to the creative joy you get from making something with your own two hands! I love to test patterns and learn new sewing techniques whenever I can. I have been a fan of Seamingly Smitten’s easy style and simple sewing patterns for a while, so when Jenny approached me about trying one of her patterns and writing about my experience, I jumped at the chance!
Seamingly Smitten’s patterns have been a favorite of mine for some time, so it was hard to find one that I had not tried yet! I chose her Women’s Leggings Sewing Pattern and the Women’s Dropped Shoulder Sewing Pattern. Can you believe that I have never made leggings before??
As we are headed into fall and winter, a cozy sweater and comfy leggings sound like a perfect pairing. I jumped online and ordered some of the brushed poly knit fabric that everyone has been raving about for my leggings. For my Dropped Shoulder Top, I used this delicious boucle type sweater knit that has been in my fabric stash just waiting to be sewn into something chic and comfortable. Ladies, let me tell you, brushed poly knit is a dream! It is as soft as a marshmallow and light as air, and the colors are so rich. This fabric has wonderful four way stretch and recovery and is perfect for leggings.
I put these two fabrics into the wash while I quickly printed and taped together my patterns. Jenny’s no trim pages make the assembly process so quick and easy. Her size guides are wonderful and always help me choose the perfect size. When cutting my pattern for the Dropped Shoulder top, I wanted it to be longer to pair with leggings, so I chose the tall cut line. I am pretty short, so choosing the tall cut line for added length was a perfect solution for me, but adding length to the pattern pieces would be such an easy adjustment for anyone wishing to make their top longer.
My sweater came together quickly with a serger. I decided to take a little width off of the sleeves to mimic those cute dolmans that a certain company sells…so I just reversed my sweater and pinned the sleeves to take them in to my desired width. After it was pinned I serged off the excess material. This would be easy to do with scissors and a sewing machine as well. Next up - hemming. A friend of mine taught me a little trick for hemming knits that really helps the fabric remain stretchy enough to create a single fold hem. I change my serger settings to 2 for the left needle, 2 for the right needle, 3 for upper looper, and 3 for lower looper. I find stretch is key when sewing a fold over neckline as opposed to a banded neckline. After serging all of my edges with the looser serger settings I folded them over and topstitched with a twin needle. Cute cozy top, voila!
Next, I laid out my fabric for the leggings. The leggings pattern was created with a wide ankle so it can easily be customized for perfect fit. I measured my thigh, knee and ankle to compare to the pattern and made adjustments accordingly prior to cutting
the fabric. Being rather short, I was able to cut some length off of the pattern as well. Once I had trimmed a little off of the pattern piece I cut my fabric. This pattern can be made with a regular sewing machine but I prefer to use my serger, as it sews and finishes the seam in one fell swoop. After my leggings were finished, I tried them on, and they were still a little loose. I put them on inside out and pinned the excess seam allowance in a few spots and returned to my serger to trim them off. I used a twin needle to hem my leggings.
These two patterns go together wonderfully for fall, and I will certainly be sewing up some more! Head over to the shop and pick your fall favorites and be sure to check out these two lovely patterns. Jenny is so helpful and responsive with any questions, and that is only one of the reasons that I love her patterns so much.