Turning Twenty goes ‘Zany’

I was looking at some recent models that have gone up in Hancock Fabrics stores, and was surprised to find one that had used the “Turning Twenty” book series – right after I put up my posts on the books!

But what really captured my attention was the bright, colorful, and somewhat wacky prints that were used. Then I realized these fabrics were all part of one collection, the new ‘Zany Garden’ fabric collection in Hancock Fabrics stores now. So I thought this was a great time to tell you a bit about those fabrics, and to show off some items that have been made with them.

Zany Quilt

First, the quilt. You can see why it captured my attention! Just imagine this as a quilt for a young teen girl – or for a woman who wants something other than the traditional color choices we often see. The colors are bold and exciting, and while the patterns don’t seem to go together at all – they really do work in harmony when brought together.


Here are some closeups of the quilt, the first one actually shows two of the quilt blocks in the picture. Can you see how they work together?




As you can see, the patterns are simple enough to work into almost any quilt that needs a ‘pop’ of color.


Another place I have recently seen these fabrics is in an apron. The pattern is by Simplicity, pattern #3818.

This picture shows a better close-up of the fabric detail. (Stripes are not easy to photograph well for a computer!)

Sleep Over

And this picture (taken at a bad angle, I know) shows the Zany Garden fabrics used in a night-shirt and sleeping bag. Pattern: Kwik Sew #3551

These are a few of the ideas I’ve seen for this collection, but there is so much more that could be done. A quilted book cover or small bag for a book that you frequently carry with you, a memo board for the game room, almost any type of accessory for a playroom for the preschool crowd! There are so many ideas – have you seen these fabrics yet? If so, have you made anything? We’d love to see some pictures!
Sheila Reinke, Heart of Sewing

Spring Garments – Part 2

As stated yesterday, I’m looking for that feeling of Spring right now, and found some garment displays in Hancock Fabrics stores recently that has helped restore my faith that warmer weather is coming!

Dressy Trio

Walking into one store, I was greeted by this attractive trio. These outfits fit that dressy/casual look we all crave in the early part of the spring. More detail on each dress is listed below.

White Suit

White Pant Suit – Suit: Vogue Pattern #1021, Blouse: Palmer/Pletsch McCalls #2818
This white linen suit has a polyester blouse (red with white polka dots) to accent it. Here is a ‘power suit’ that not only makes a statement, but is feminine without being frilly. The closure on the front of the jacket is hook and eye tape, just sew the tape into the seam and you have an instant front closure! Decorative frog closures could be used for a different look.

Black White Dress and Jacket

Black and White Dress with Jacket – Jacket: Simplicity Pattern #3797, Dress: New Look Pattern #6676
The Jacket is made from black linen. The original pattern calls for the jacket to be unlined, but the seamstress Bev chose to line it, which gives the jacket a little extra body. The dress was made from a gauze print, would be a cool dress to wear for an outdoor event in the hot weather. I can just see this at a summer party, the jacket allows you to dress it up, or it can be removed to make the dress a bit cooler.

Knit Top and Skirt

Knit Top and Skirt – Top: Simplicity Pattern #3837, Skirt: New Look Pattern #6843
This is another great pattern for a top, the pattern has 6 different styles which can really help any wardrobe. The top was made from a black knit fabric, and a red and black knit was chosen for the skirt. Bev, the seamstress, suggested using a stretch needle in your machine to make the sewing easier. Also, using a serger helped make the project a snap to make.

Pinstripe Jacket

Pink and White Pinstripe Jacket – Kwik Sew Pattern #3529
You can never go wrong with a pinstripe jacket for spring and summer. The details in this pattern add character to the jacket. Jacket has ¾ length sleeves and white buttons down the front. The seamstress said this pattern would be for what she calls an ‘advanced beginner’ – but not real hard to make. Unfortunately, the detail of the fabric was hard to capture with my camera, but it is a fine pink and white pinstripe that runs vertically (of course) down the jacket.

Grey Linen Suit

Grey Linen Suit – McCalls Pattern #5329
A great suit for lunch out with the girls! The lined Jacket is made from an embroidered linen and the skirt from solid linen. The original pattern for the skirt was not lined but Barb, the seamstress, decided to add a lining. Barb mentioned to remind you to pick up a new needle for your machine when you start a new project, and she said that she always the Schmidt needles. For this project she used a Schmidt size 12 needle.

Green Jacket

Green Jacket and Pants – Easy To Sew Simplicity Pattern #3506
This would be a comfortable outfit to take on vacation – can’t you just see it for a day on a cruise? Top is a green linen solid and the top and pants are made from a challis fabric. These fabrics will make for a cool and comfortable outfit for any type of casual day wear.

Well, I hope you’ve enjoyed this glimpse of Spring. Taking a small break from projects – but I’ll have something new up very soon! Write in and show us what you’ve been doing to get your wardrobe ready for spring!
Sheila Reinke, Heart of Sewing

Spring Garments

A new crop of garments has been spotted in Hancock Fabrics stores, and I thought you might like to see a few of them. Perhaps it will inspire you to go hunting for a little piece of spring for yourself. (Goodness knows that the weather isn’t providing most of the country with spring feelings yet!)

Child's Jacket

Child’s Jacket – McCalls Pattern# 5509

The flare at the bottom of the jacket was cut from a circle. This makes the edge a bias, which means it wants to stretch when you hem it. To solve this problem, Mary (the seamstress) first serged the edge of the hem, then stitched a decorative rick-rack to the edge, and finally she turned the top of the rick-rack under and top-stitched to create the hem. The rick-rack stabilized the bias edge so there was no stretching.
Mary suggested using a sharp new needle to sew with because the sportswear fabric she used was woven very tightly, and a sharp needle worked the best. She also said to read the instructions and follow closely, because there were some steps done differently than she expected.

Fashion Topspace

Fashion Top – Simplicity Pattern #3535 Inspired by Project Runway.

This top was made by a seamstress named Virginia. She said it was easy to make, and with no notions it was very inexpensive to make. The fabric used for this top was a 60″ wide rayon fabric. At that fabric width, the pattern required less than a yard of fabric for up to a size 16 top – not bad at all! It’s a great pattern for any age, and for just about any level of sewer. When your garment is complete, you tie a simple square knot at the bottom of each sleeve. The day I took this picture, I discovered my daughter had just picked up a new top – the same style from a department store, square knot on the sleeve and all!

Rain Cape2spaceRain Cape1

Rain Cape – Pattern unknown

While visiting one of the Washington stores last week I saw a great idea that I just had to share with you. They get a lot of rain in that area of the country, which makes these very appropriate for outdoor sports. The seamstress purchased some of the collegiate tablecloth vinyl fabric and sewed it into a hooded poncho. The bottom edge of this project was a fast finish by just serging the edge. You could pick from several patterns to make this great project. The store carried the vinyl there for two colleges so of course they had to be fair and make one for each of the colleges.

Eyelet top

Eyelet Top and Pants – Top: Simplicity Pattern #4127, Pants: Palmer/Pletsch McCalls Pattern #5142

Now this is the perfect outfit for the hot days of summer. The top was made from a white eyelet fabric, cut so that the scalloped edge of the eyelet creates the hem. This gives it a nice, flirty feel. The straps on the top were made using the same ribbon that is used at the empire waist, tying the whole look together. The pattern for the top actually has 6 different styles, which makes it a great pattern investment.
The pants were made from a light sportswear fabric, but the pattern is also popular for making jeans. Again, this makes for a good pattern investment as you can choose different fabric types and weights. Can’t you just see yourself going to a picnic in something like this?

Black Poly Dressspace

Sleeveless Dress – Butterick Pattern#5079

When you look at this dress you just know this dress is going to be comfortable to wear. The fabric is a stretch knit and is in the colors we are seeing everywhere right now. Those of you who have looked at the Flikr gallery before have seen this dress before, but I’ve received some questions about the pattern so I decided to include with this post. Hopefully, this will help to answer some questions you may have. I have been asked how the knot on the front of the dress is constructed.
There is an opening left in the center of the top. Another piece of fabric is added to the top and is pulled through the opening which causes the gathers on that piece to make it appear as if there is a knot. There really is not a knot at all, but this technique makes a good illusion of one.
Sheila Reinke, Heart of Sewing