Cap Sleeve Top – Free Pattern & Tutorial

I got this Cape May Sea Life Delight fabric from Joann’s 2 years ago and it’s still one of my favorites. It’s lightweight and cool, plus the cute sea creature prints just shout summer vacation and beach!

I’ve already made a cinched waist dress out of this fabric, tutorial here and video here, so I knew I wanted to make a loose top that could be worn casually with jeans or styled with a skirt for a meeting. 
Let’s make it!

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Quarter Circle Skirt (Woven Version) – FREE PATTERN & TUTORIAL

I’m so excited to be sharing one of my favorite skirt styles with you, the quarter circle skirt. It’s feminine and flattering on any body type so join me and make yourself one (or a few) today!

I’m doing 3 tutorials on different ways to make the quarter circle skirt. This is the 2nd of the series which uses a woven fabric and an invisible zipper. The FREE printable template is included below. If you haven’t tried the 1st woven pull up skirt version, check it out here!

I love this zippered version so much that I’ve made 2 already, both in linen. And since they’re both midi-length, I’ve been able to wear them to meetings and school events. 

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DIY RUCHING Part 2: Sewing a Ruched Garment

The Sewing Retreat has a great selection of elastic lace trims. So gorgeous!

I don’t get many opportunities to go shopping for clothes for myself so I love adding little timeless fashion trends to my wardrobe whenever I can, which means I can wear the same garment each year and still look stylish! The ruching sewing  technique has been around for hundreds of years and is still so dominant today, from wedding dresses to t-shirts and leggings. Another thing I love is the elastic lace trim ribbon which has a feminine and vintage-y feel to it. Combine the two and you have a classic and stylish wardrobe staple to enjoy for many many years!

In this 2nd part of the tutorial, we will sew a ruched garment from the ruching pattern that we drafted in Part 1. If you haven’t seen the first part of the tutorial, check it out here

For this project, I’m using an organic bamboo jersey fabric in natural and an organic cotton elastic lace trim, both from The Sewing Retreat. If you’ve been following my blog, you probably already know that I’m really keen on organic materials because of my eczema and aggressive Rheumatoid Arthritis – anything to help me feel as comfortable as possible during bad flareups.

If you want to make some ecofriendly fashion too, visit The Sewing Retreat and check out their gorgeous selection of organic fabrics and trims. Use code HAPPYSEWING to get a 5% off!

Now, let’s get sewing!

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DIY RUCHING Part 1: How To Ruche Your Pattern

If you’re an avid sewist like me you probably have a ton of patterns, and some you love so much that you’ve made many variations of it. Well, here’s another fun style to try – ruching!

I’ve divided this tutorial into 2 parts to keep it short and sweet. Part 1 is about adding ruching to any sewing pattern you already have – blouses, t-shirts, pants, dresses, and skirts. Part 2 covers the ruching sewing process using an elastic – I used an elastic lace trim ribbon. If you haven’t tried elastic lace yet, go treat yourself to some. It’s absolutely gorgeous! See Part 2 of Ruching here

Now, let’s talk about patterns. First, make a copy of whichever pattern piece you will be adding the ruching to – front, back, side, etc. I’m using a pattern that I copied from one of my tank tops. If you’d like to see how to make a pattern out of your existing garments too, check out this simple tutorial – you already know how your favorite garment fits so you know you will love it!

Let’s make a pattern!

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Quarter Circle Skirt (Easy Pull Up Version) – FREE TEMPLATE & TUTORIAL

My Outfit:
DIY Quarter Circle Skirt
DIY Ruched Tank Top
Do you want to make yourself a ruched top too? I’ll include a how-to link here later!

Every summer I find myself alternating between shorts and cropped jeans, so at the beginning of this year I promised myself that I would break my own boring tradition by adding more fun, flirty skirts to my wardrobe! I decided to go for the quarter circle style which is very much like the A-line skirt – it has a fitted top and a flared bottom. It’s truly a timeless wardrobe staple that flatters women of any age, size, or body shape. Trust me, you just can’t wrong with this style!

I’ll be posting a few tutorials on different variations of the quarter circle skirt made in knits and woven. Let’s start off the series with an elastic waist pull up version made in woven. This skirt was really easy on my swollen fingers and I was able to dress myself quickly with no issues before running out to do errands. Another thing I love about the quarter circle skirt is that it doesn’t use as much fabric as the full or half circle skirts. Winning! 

Also, you can share pictures of your finished quarter circle skirt on the Zune’s Sewing Therapy Facebook or tag @sew_zune on Instagram. I’d love to see how you style it!

Here’s how to make it…

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Ruffle Swing Top for Kids – Free Pattern & Tutorial

I can’t get enough of ruffles! In my previous post, I made a Ruffle Swing Top for myself and just had to draft a smaller version for my little princess. It was so darn cute, that I’ve made 4 of them in the past 2 weeks! I love the open back look on kiddos so I made hers with a low V back.

For this project, I used this organic bamboo jersey from The Sewing Retreat. Madeline, like me, has eczema so I enjoy using cool and breathable fabrics made from natural fibers for her. Plus it’ll be perfect for the upcoming hot and sticky Southern summer.

Here’s a 5% off code you can use at The Sewing Retreat: HAPPYSEWING. Treat yourself and your little ones to some ecofriendly fabrics and sew along with me!


Now, let’s get started. 

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Ruffle Swing Top + GIVEAWAY

I am officially obsessed with ruffles! I feel like the only thing that’s been getting me through this chilly and extremely foggy weather is planning some fun summer wardrobe. I created the swing top with 2 layers of ruffles using this organic bamboo fabric from The Sewing Retreat. I have eczema and constant Rheumatoid Arthritis flare ups so I really enjoy wearing breathable, loose fitting clothes made from natural fibers. And since both my kids have bad eczema as well, I’ll be making outfits for them from this fabric which I’ll post the patterns as I make them. I’m looking forward to a super comfy summer wardrobe for all of us!

Also, I’m collaborating with The Sewing Retreat – one of my favorite online shops for organic fabrics and trims – to give away a $5 gift card as well as a 5% discount code so go treat yourself to some eco friendly fabrics and sew some pretty tops with me! Scroll to the bottom of this post to get the discount code, instructions on how to enter the giveaway and how to get this ruffle top pattern.

This ruffle swing top was one of the 7 looks from my capsule collection which was voted by several sewing groups on Facebook as the most fun to wear and easy to make for all sewing levels. A big shout out to my fellow sewists for taking the time to vote!

I spy a giftcard in a cute little envelope!

Let’s get started!

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Ruffle Pants – Free Pattern & Tutorial

Ruffles add instant cuteness to a pair of plain pants and they really are easy to make! Madeline has already outgrown all the pants I made for her and if you’ve been following me on Facebook, you probably have already seen that cute elephant flannel fabric I got from Joann’s a couple months ago so when I got a request recently for a ruffle pants tutorial I was more than happy to say yes! 

For this project, we are using *this pants pattern so print it out,  assemble, and cut out the size that you want. Then, let’s begin!

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Copy Your Favorite T-shirt – Simple & Easy Patternmaking Tutorial

Do you have a t-shirt that you absolutely love and wish you could just pop it in the printer to make a dozen copies of it in an array of colors and patterns? Well, you can (sort of) by making a pattern out of it! I’ll show you how to copy, measure, and true your favorite t-shirt pattern so that it’ll fit and hang the exact same way as your favorite t-shirt. I”ve also included how to make a long sleeve version as well. Let’s get started!

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How to Sew a Neckband – Simple NO Math Tutorial

You’re having a fun time sewing a seriously cute t-shirt or pullover – the pattern’s instructions are easy to follow, the fabric and stitches are working well together, the birds are chirping, everything is going well…until you get to the neckband. You look at the instructions on cutting the neckband and  it’s not making any sense to you. You frantically turn to Google for help and type in “neckband length” and a plethora of formulas show up, but which one? More frustration! 

Has this scenario ever happened to you? I remember when I started sewing simple t-shirts, the neckband was where I would spend the longest time doing because I was seam ripping over and over again. I had either cut the neckband too long so that it looked like a mandarin collar or too short that the neckline looked gathered. I’ve tried many different techniques since design school and this is the one that had stuck with me. It’s taken the guess work out of how the neckband will look once sewn in so it’s saved me time and sanity and hopefully this technique will save yours as well. 

You can also watch the video

Here’s how I do it.

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