Friday, April 14, 2017

Sewing up Spring with French Terry

Spring! I'm so happy to see you again! As someone who hates winter and cold weather with a passion, I just love this time of year! The windows in the house are all open, the kids are outside playing again, and the promise of summer is in the air.

Today's post is part of the "Sewing Up Spring" blog tour hosted by Sewing by Ti. I am in need of clothes for warmer weather, so I am very happy to be a part of this tour! I sew more when I have deadlines, so this was a great push to sew some clothes that fill a need in my closet.

Someone nearby is burning wood, and the smell coming through the open windows reminds of burning prairie, and subsequently reminds me of spring. If you are from a prairie state, as I am, I'm sure you understand why! Since we moved to the Kansas City area, it is too urban for prairie burning, but it was a yearly occurrence every spring back in the Flint Hills of Kansas where I am from.

I love where we live now, but I do miss that smokey smell this time of year! Not to mention the beautiful sight of watching a controlled fire sweep across the plains, leaving behind a wasteland of ashes. Yet the tallgrass always grows back, reminiscent of the new beginnings and growth that spring symbolizes. So thank you, random neighbor who is burning wood right now, it just feels right to take in that smell as I write this post.

(Side note: My dad used to write a blog and articles about the tallgrass prairie. I used to make fun of him for it, who has a blog about grass? But look at me, I just wrote two paragraphs about the prairie myself. I guess it's in my genes, I can't help it. Don't tell my dad.)

Our weather has been fluctuating a lot lately, which is not unusual, but it does make it hard to know how to dress sometimes. I'm kind of over dressing for winter even if some days the temperature says I should. I'm over winter. Most days now, thankfully, seem to be staying warm and I'm ready to dress the part.

I wanted to make something that I would wear a lot. I'm trying to only sew things that will be in regular rotation in my closet. My every day style is pretty casual, but I love fun colors and prints.

Ti, from Simply by Ti, was kind enough to send me some of her fuchsia French terry and I bought some of her denim colored cotton lycra to go with it. You can find the fabrics used in this blog post here.

I knew immediately that it had to become a Love Notions Terra Tunic (affiliate link*) and Peg Legs (pattern is free if you join their facebook group.) Perfect casual outfit!

French terry might seem like a surprising choice for a spring or summer outfit, but it's exactly what I wanted! I had a RTW maternity dress made from French terry and it was never too hot even when I was nine months pregnant in the summer. So I knew it wasn't a crazy idea.

There is quite a bit of variation with this type of fabric though, it can be polyester, cotton, rayon, with or without spandex... They all feel, stretch, and drape differently and some are more breathable than others. Keep that in mind when choosing your fabric for your project! I wouldn't use a polyester French terry for warm weather. This particular fabric from Simply by Ti is cotton/spandex blend. It is very breathable! It is a nice heavy weight, so I will still have to test it on the hottest days of summer, but today I was perfectly comfortable wearing it in 80 degree weather. It would work great in the winter as well, if I sewed the right garment, I love how versatile the right kind of French terry can be.

It wouldn't be spring in Kansas without some wind!

This fabric was a dream to sew up. It has some four way stretch, but is very stable and easy to work with. I have some left over and I'm hoping that I have enough to make my toddler a summer romper with it. It would be so cute!

This is not my first time making a Terra Tunic, you can read my previous blog post about this pattern here. However this was my first time sewing the V-neck hoodie option. There are six neckline options in the pattern, and I might just have to make them all! It's a soft V-neck, and very easy to sew up. I love it!

I lined the hoodie with an oatmeal colored rayon jersey and I think it's a good compliment to the bright fuchsia!

I sewed up the pattern exactly as written/drafted except for the following small changes:

-I lengthened one inch at the waist on the front and back piece. (That is my usual adjustment to all tops, I love that Love Notions has the bustline, waistline and hip lines clearly marked, it makes it so easy!)

- I added two inches of length to the back piece at the hemline. The back is longer than the front in the original pattern, but I wanted a more dramatic difference.

- I added a self drafted kangaroo pocket. The pattern has optional welt pockets, which are awesome, but I wanted something sporty. If you would like to make your own kangaroo pocket on the Terra Tunic or another pattern of your choice, I made a tutorial which can be found here.

Split hem

I can't keep my hand out of the kangaroo pocket!

The other fabric from Simply by Ti, was the denim colored cotton lycra that I turned into Peg Legs. This cotton lycra is not very heavy but it's completely opaque, so great for leggings that will not be too hot. Because it's not quite as firm as other fabrics I have used for Peg Legs, I decided to slip some elastic in the waistband. It worked great, but now I'm thinking I might just take it out, I have become spoiled by no elastic in my leggings since I started sewing them myself.  I think it will still work just fine and I should have done that in the first place. 

This also would have made a great basic tee or tank, but sadly I used all my fabric on the leggings. Boo. I might have to get more now that I'm envisioning a tank top.
I am very happy with my new outfit! After receiving this fabric, I went back two separate times to order fabric from Simply by Ti. Each time, the fabric shipped right away and I was so surprised by how fast it was in my hands! I used some of Ti's rayon spandex to make this dress, and the rest will hopefully be sewn up soon! Like I mentioned earlier, I desperately need warm weather clothes and I am slowly getting there.

Thankfully, there is lots of sewing inspiration for me on the blog tour. Check out all of the other lovely makes listed below! (Please note that the links will not be active until its scheduled date.)
April 1- Sewing by Ti

April 3- Sewing by Ti
April 4- Crafty Like a Rox
April 5-The Socially Awkward Seamstress
April 6-The Socially Awkward Seamstress
April 7-Robynne & The Bobbin

April 9-Sew Like A Sloth
April 10-Thats Sew Lily
April 11-Hazelnut Handmade
April 12-DoodleNumber5
April 13-Crafty Like a Rox
April 14-Sewing by Ti
April 14-MaMoose

April 17-AMsews
April 17-Robynne & The Bobbin
April 18-Rebel & Malice
April 19-Very Blissful
April 20-The Fairy Dust Bin
April 21-Sewing by Ti

April 23-On Wednesdays We Sew
April 24-Tenille’s Thread
April 25-Ma Moose
April 26-Margarita on the Ross
April 27-The Socially Awkward Seamstress
April 28-Sewing by Ti

*There are affiliate links in my post. I receive a small compensation for any purchase you make using an affiliate link. I have a sewing addiction, so I greatly appreciate it. All opinions are my own and I do not promote a pattern I do not love.


  1. That is a great outfit. I just love the fuchsia and I hadn't even realized the pattern had a v-neck hoodie. That is my favorite neckline!

    1. Thanks Ti, I love the fuschia too!