Rite of Spring Shorts and Kommatia crop top

Papercut Rite of Spring Shorts and Kommatia crop top Papercut Rite of Spring Shorts and Kommatia crop top

I was browsing the newest collection on Papercut Patterns’ website when I caught the sight of these shorts. The Rite of Spring Shorts is actually from their old collection, it has been around for several years now. Somehow I have never thought of them before. I happened to have some leftover denim that would be perfect for this pattern!

The shorts have a quite flattering detail with the side seams moving forward at the top. To accentuate this interesting side seams, I topstitched them with rust-colored thread. The rise is quite high for my petite frame so I shortened the length about 1.5 cm, otherwise they would come too far above my navel.

Papercut Rite of Spring Shorts and Kommatia crop top Papercut Rite of Spring Shorts and Kommatia crop top

The top pattern is by Kommatia patterns, a relatively new pattern company that I stumbled upon on Instagram. I bought the crop top pattern from their etsy shop. Usually I need to shorten any pattern because I’m short but I didn’t alter anything this time. Even without length alteration, the top is quite short on me. I’m not usually a crop top wearer though.

The suggested fabric is light ribbed knit. I found a ribbed knit dress at the thrift shop that I cut up for this top, it only needs a little amount of fabric! The instructions are clear and short. This is a simple piece of clothing anyway so elaborate instructions are not necessary.

Papercut Rite of Spring Shorts and Kommatia crop top Papercut Rite of Spring Shorts and Kommatia crop top

I love the result of both patterns and they look really good together, but honestly I feel this outfit is a bit out of my comfort zone. The top has quite a low back and I can’t wear a bra with it. The shorts are very very short although they are pretty comfortable to wear. I think I will pair the crop top with other pants or skirt that are not so short, and pair the shorts with other tops that are not so tight.

Shortie shorts

Shorts and white tee Shorts and white tee

Summer is coming and it means shorts season! Sometime ago I bought BurdaStyle Retro Classics Pattern Collection which have 9 patterns from the 1950s-60s, one of them is pattern for these shorts. I’m not sure what’s so retro about them but I quite like the double pleats on the front.

As usual for Burdastyle patterns, I printed them at 92% at cut size 38. They are quite short though, so I lengthened the hem about 5 cm. The fabic is cotton twill with a bit of stretch on them. Sewing the shorts was quite straightforward. The only thing that I don’t really like is the straight waistband. The shorts sit a bit lower than the waist, straight waistband on a woman’s body will usually leave quite a gap on the center back. To fix this, I took a wedge about 2 cm on the center back.

Shorts and white tee

Burdastyle shorts

The white tee was made with SJ tee by Papercut Patterns, currently my favorite tee pattern. This pattern actually has quite a wide neckline, I just made the neckband shorter and pulled them a bit while stitching.

These photos were taken with iPhone 6 and edited in Google photos. It has some basic light editing and filters, not too bad I think!

Shorts and white tee Shorts and white tee

In other news, have you ever heard about The Super Online Sewing Match (SOSM) on Sew, Mama, Sew? The first one was held about two years ago, and this year is time for the SOSM II! The Grand Prize Winner will receive both the Janome Skyline S5 Sewing Machine and the Janome 1110DX Pro Serger! I wish I could participate, but I’m one of the judges for this year.

If you’d like to become a challenger, you still have until June 21 midnight PST to send your audition!

Shorts pattern is Burdastyle Retro shorts, size 38 printed at 92%.
Tee pattern is SJ tee by Papercut Patterns, (PDF) size XXS.

Anima pants and Scout tee

Scout tee and Anima pants Scout tee and Anima pants

I’ve been wanting a pair of easy pants for daily wear when these knit pants were popping out everywhere. Turned out that Papercut patterns is having a competition for one of their pattern, the Anima pants, and that’s why there are lots of people making these pants.

Everyone’s version look so good that I had to order the PDF pattern and made myself a pair. You can also buy the paper version of this pattern, I love the instant-ness of PDF patterns. From the pattern description in the website: “A must-have staple item for those times when you need the perfect balance of casual and cool. Slim leg pant with elasticated waist, drawstring, faux fly front and side pockets. Can be made full, knee length with or without cuffs or as shorts.” 

The fabric is medium weight cotton jersey in the color navy. I made size XXS with no alteration except for shortening the legs, as I’m not tall. You might want to check the length of the pants before attaching the cuffs. I like mine to fall just below the ankle.

Sewing the pants was just as easy as it looked. I did have difficulty when sewing the waistband though. The instruction suggested to stitch the top edges of both waistband and elastic together, then fold it over to the inside and topstitch from the outside, stretching as you sew.

Somehow I wasn’t able to do the topstitching as neatly as I want. I suspected that it is because I don’t have foot pedal, my sewing machine has to be turned on and off with a button (gasp!). So everytime I stretch and sew, I have to release the stretching to turn off the machine and it skewed the fabric. Well, after all these years of sewing I suppose should have bought a foot pedal….

Aside from the waistband (which is conveniently covered by the the top), the pants are exactly what I had in mind! I’ve been having lots of success with Papercut patterns, so I’m very happy.

Scout tee and Anima pants Scout tee and Anima pants
The top is Scout woven tee made with beautiful linen by naniIRO. The pattern of the fabric is called ‘Water window’. Such a perfect name, isn’t it? They remind me of watercolor painting exercise. The fabric needed a simple pattern that can showcase the beautiful color and I think the Scout pattern is perfect for this purpose.

Scout tee and Anima pants Scout tee and Anima pants

After I finished the top, I wore it rightaway and loved it so much that I wanted another in knit fabric. The only difference from the woven version is the neckline finishes. The woven Scout was finished with bias binding while the knit Scout was finished with folded strip of fabric. Here’s the tutorial by Jen for sewing the knit version of Scout tee.

Scout tee and Anima pants Scout tee and Anima pants

When I bought the naniIRO fabric for my top, I came across this interesting poly jersey fabric with raised texture. I think it will look beautiful for a winter cardigan but I wanted to make something with it for summer, like another Anima pants! I was only able to get 50 cm of the fabric so it became a pair of shorts. A pair of pants with this fabric for summer would be too hot anyway.

For the second version, I attached the waistband in different way. I folded the waistband over the wide elastic and serge the folded edge to the top edge of the pants. My serger has foot pedal so everything went quicker and -more importantly- neater.

When Shake saw me setting up the tripod and camera, she immediately posted herself in front of the camera. For some reason, she thought that I held some treats in my hand (it was just the camera remote) so here she is in every picture. Of course she got some treats after all because who can’t resist that face?! Also, a brief apperance by Sidra but he didn’t want to show his face 😀

Scout tee and Anima pants Scout tee and Anima pants Scout tee and Anima pants Scout tee and Anima pants

Top pattern is Scout Tee by Grainline studio (PDF), size XXS.
Pants pattern is Anima by Papercut Patterns(PDF), size 0.

Banksia top and Iris shorts

Banksia top and Iris shorts Banksia top and Iris shorts

Actually I’ve finished this top sometime ago before we moved to this house, but haven’t got time to take proper pictures. I’m still looking for a nice spot for taking pictures, I kinda miss the blank wall in my old apartment.

The pattern is Banksia top by Megan Nielsen. From the pattern envelope: “Semi fitted with button up placket front, and large peter pan collar it also features elbow length sleeves and shaping darts at the bust line. Pattern includes two different placket finishes based on skill level.” 

It was my first time sewing a button placket like this, and I’m happy that I learned something new from making this top. I made the top in size XS, no alteration. The fabric is very thin black cotton with red heart-shaped buttons on the placket. (edited: the fabric is quite cheap so it shrunk after washing, so I probably would need to do an SBA for my future Banksia top)

I think it is quite a cute little top, the shape is simple enough to be made in different fabrics for wardrobe addition. I’m planning to make another in print fabric for summer.

The shorts were made with Iris shorts pattern by Colette, it is one of their newly-released patterns for spring. I was pretty excited when Colette released these patterns, especially because they are now available in digital forms. It means that I don’t have to wait several weeks for shipping, I can sew it rightaway! Anyway, it turned out that I didn’t sew the shorts just until yesterday….

Pattern description: “These simple and cute shorts are so quick to sew, you could make them in every color. Pockets are set into a front side seam and optionally close with buttons. The shorts sport a 4 1/2 inch inseam length and close with an invisible side zipper..” I made them in size 2 with no alteration. Usually I’m a size 0 in Colette patterns, but the finished size measurements showed that there is only 1/2  inches ease around the waist. I thought that this is too little to be comfortable so I chose size 2. As usual for all Colette patterns, the instructions are very clear and constructions went quickly.

It fits perfectly well around my waist and not too big around my hip, although it is size 2. The crotch is quite close-fitting, and I think it makes the back area looks better than the usually low-crotch RTW pants. However, there is a lot of lines around the center front, also there’s a bit of diagonal lines in the back side. Maybe I should have made some fitting alterations to the pants, but I have no idea what kind of alteration that I need to eliminate these lines.

Anyway, the fabric is a meter of twill that I found in my stash, and I have completely forgotten where I got it from. I think it is linen/cotton mix and it is very comfortable against the skin, perfect for summer.

I’ve been sewing standing up since moving to the new house, and I like it! It saves space and I can sew in the kitchen/dining room. The sewing machine and serger are placed on the window ledge, which is quite the ideal standing desk height for a small person like me. I will get a bar stool later so I can have option for sitting down. The room is now called ‘mama area’ in the house because that is where I spend most of my time 🙂

Banksia top and Iris shorts Banksia top and Iris shorts

Banksia top Iris shorts

Banksia top Iris shorts

Top pattern is Banksia by Megan Nielsen, size XS.
Shorts pattern is Iris by Colette patterns, size 2.

Lace shorts (and a haircut!)

Another pair of pants! Or to be exact, a pair of shorts. This time they are for me, made with lace fabric that I bought last summer in Swany, Kamakura. I can’t believe I’ve waited one full year to finally used this fabric!

Lace shorts Lace shorts

The shorts have very basic shape with a couple of darts on each side, no pockets, and an invisible zipper on the side. The pattern is from Blouse, Skirt & Pants Style Book ―パターンのバリエーションを楽しむ―. I used style #11: Tight straight pants as a base for my shorts. The lace trim on the hem is from Maya Road, another prize from my Spring top winning .

Lace shorts Lace shorts Lace shorts

When I first saw this book, I was not very interested because I don’t really like the illustration. I bought it anyway after browsing the inside and now I don’t regret buying it. The book has rather different approach than other Japanese pattern book. It features six basic styles for tops and six basic styles for bottoms. Then we are shown how to make alterations on each styles to create new pattern. I think this book is good for anyone who wants to learn pattern drafting.

from Blouse, Skirt & Pants Style Book

Blouse, Skirt & Pants Style Book

You can see that I just had a haircut! Nothing too spectacular, but it was my first professional haircut in the past five years or so. I hate going to hair salon because it always takes a long time and I had never felt fully satisfied with the result. So I started cutting my own hair ever since. But recently I’ve been lazy and as a result, my hair grew to a mess that I couldn’t deal anymore. Time for a professional help!

In an intensive research (Google) for hair salon with English-speaking staff, I found this blog post by Zhing about Watanabe hair dressing in Harajuku area. I went there last weekend to check it out, decided to like it and made an appointment for yesterday. They asked me if I wanted a particular hairstylist and I chosed Kenichi Momoi because he was the one who cut Zhing’s hair and I also like the sound of the name (I don’t know why!)

I told Momoi that I wanted to get rid of my dried ends and kept my bangs. He immediately understood what I wanted and cut my hair exactly as I wanted it. Momoi was very polite and soft-spoken, he made a nice chit-chat but not too much. As I’m not too crazy about chit-chatting while my hair is getting blown by a noisy hairdryer, I was very happy about it. Another plus point, the haircut was much faster than I’d expected so I didn’t have time to get bored. I stepped in at 4 pm and stepped out at 5.30 pm.

Anyway, this is also my first time in Japanese salon. Japanese salon is so efficient. In Indonesia -where I came from-, there are always lots of people in the salon, but here I only have Momoi for haircut and blow-drying and one girl for washing my hair. When the haircut is over, he stood behind the cashier to accept the payment. And there is no tipping in Japan! I always get confused about tipping in salon, especially because there are so many people who take care of my hair.

I think this might be one of the rare times when I love my hair after a trip to hair salon! Will go back for sure! ♥♥♥
Lace shorts Lace shorts

Shorts pattern is based on style #11: Tight straight pants from Blouse, Skirt & Pants Style Book ―パターンのバリエーションを楽しむ―

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