Modkid Modified // Open Back Harper

Friday, July 24, 2015

Now that we have finished the Harper Sew-Along, it's time to mix it up a bit! The Harper Dress is perfect as is for summer and layers well for fall, and for an even more fun summer look, I have a tutorial for making an open back. The side panels still allow for plenty of coverage, and the top casing holds everything in place!

The only change to the pattern pieces will be for the back bodice. From the inner strap placement mark corresponding to your pattern size, mark a line 1/2" toward the center fold. This will be the cut line for cutting two back bodice pieces. Be sure to cut the back bodice pieces opposite directions. Also, baste the front two waistbands per the original instructions, but keep the back two waistband pieces separate for now.

Press the inner edge of the back bodice to the right side 1/2".

Place the back straps in line with the pressed edge covering the raw edge.

Top stitch along each edge leaving the top 2" unstitched as in the original instructions.

Pin the back two waistband pieces right sides together with the back bodice pieces sandwiched between them. Align the side and bottom edges of the waistband and bodice pieces. Stitch along the bottom long edge with 1/2" seam allowance.

Press the waistband pieces down wrong sides together. Topstitch along the top edge. Baste the waistband pieces together along the bottom edge.

Attach the skirt per the original pattern instructions.

When you measure the front bodice for the top casing, cut the back bodice casing to the same length.

When you attach the back bodice casing, you will only sew across the partial back pieces.

Once the casing is folded over and pressed, topstitch from arm opening to arm opening enclosing the entire casing.

Insert the elastic in the casing and topstitch the straps as you would for the original instructions.

Enjoy the breezy back!

Modkid Modified // Zoey Top with Shoulder Ties

Friday, July 17, 2015

You know I love the Zoey Summer Ensemble!! Today, I'm bringing you one more option for the Zoey Top!

I sewed this top in knit, but the process is exactly the same for woven fabrics. This is view B without the side elastic casings. To get started, cut all of the pattern pieces for view B except the casings and tabs. (Certainly add the casings if you wish!) You will also need (4) 14" pieces of 1/4" ribbon. I've actually used 1/2" bias tape sewn closed.

After sewing the shoulder seams, baste the ribbons right side down on either side of the seam very close to the seam on the wrong side of the fabric at the neck opening. Attach the facing pieces as you normally would catching the ends of the ribbons.

 When adding the bias binding around the arm opening be careful not to catch your ribbons in the binding.

After the arms are bound, pin the ribbons parallel to the shoulder seam.

Fold the facing down wrong sides together, so the shoulder seams are aligned and the ribbons are sandwiched between.

From the right side of the top, stitch in the ditch of the shoulder seam. Then, sew two casing rows on either side of the shoulder seam about 3/8" from the seam. Go slowly, so you don't catch the ribbons in the seams. If it catches, just grab your seam ripper and try again a little further away from the seam. (Not that that happened to me. :) )
Cinch up those shoulders, tie and bow, and enjoy your new detail!!
Be sure to check out our Zoey Summer Ensemble Sew-Along if you would like more step by step photos for sewing the Zoey. 

Harper Sew-Along // Results and Winners

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

We love to celebrate the sew-along participants who share their lovely creations with us!! The Harper dress looks adorable in every combination. And, just look at those happy girls!!
The first participation prize of 5 Modkid PDF patterns goes to Tracey Mazzei. The second participation prize of 3 Modkid PDF patterns goes to Jessica Phillips. Congratulations!!

I have collected all of the sew-along posts in our Harper Sew-Along Page, so you can access them at any time in the side bar of the blog. As always, our Modkid Fan Group loves to see what you make!

Home Dec for Apparel

Monday, July 13, 2015

When you think about home decor fabric, does your mind automatically turn to curtains, pillows, and maybe the occasional tote bag? I'm hoping to help you branch out of that box maybe just a little bit today. Home dec fabric actually has a place in the apparel world. All home dec fabric may not be created equal, but Riley Blake's Home Dec fabric has just the right softness combined with sturdiness to suit the right apparel pattern. 

Pants, shorts, and skirts are ideal pieces in which home decor fabrics might be used. Here, I've used Patty Young's Vivid Lattice in Navy for a pair of Zoey Shorts.

The body of the fabric yields a very clean pair of shorts that will stand up to lots of toddler play. I would also suggest Riley Blake home decor patterns for a Pleated Skirt and Sophie Pants.

I've also paired the shorts with a modified Zoey top made with Patty Young's Vivid Knit for Riley Blake. So, have a little fun with mixing prints and experimenting with unexpected fabric choices for apparel patterns.

Stay tuned for another post about the modification I made to the Zoey Top.

If you are looking for a cooler weather apparel option, the Paige Hooded Blazer might be the perfect thing!!

There is only one stop left on the Home Dec Love Blog Tour, but be sure to check out all of the previous inspiration!!

Harper Sew-Along // Day 5

Friday, July 10, 2015

Time to wrap up your Harper dress!

Measure the top of your front bodice between the arm openings. Add 1" to this length and cut a piece of bias tape accordingly. Press each short end to the wrong side 1/2".

Open up the bias tape, and pin right sides together with the raw edges aligned at the top of the bodice. Sew along the first fold line.

Fold the bias tape to the wrong side encasing all of the raw edges. Topstitch from the right side catching the bias tape underneath.

Feed your 1/4" bias tape through the casing with a safety pin. Secure the elastic at each end of the bias tape. Pull the elastic and trim it at the casing, so it will snap back into the end of the casing. Repeat the casing and elastic for the back bodice.

Position the straps back over the bodice and topstitch the remaining 2" and around the end of the straps completely enclosing them. Repeat for all 4 straps.

Create 3/4" buttonholes, 1/2" from the end of the back straps.

Sew (2) 3/4" buttons (or 4 if you'd like the dress to be adjustible) to the front straps.

Do a happy dance, because you are finished!!

Be sure to add photos of your completed Harper Dress to our Facebook Group before the end of the day Monday, July 13th to be entered to win one of the prizes. You can share photos on Facebook and Instagram with hashtag #harpersewalong. We will post the winners next week!

See the rest of the Harper Sew-Along here:

Harper Sew-Along // Day 4

Thursday, July 09, 2015

Grab your bias tape, and let's get started! Note: Seam allowances are 1/2" unless noted otherwise.

Open up the bias tape. With right sides together and raw edges aligned, pin the bias tape to the bottom of the front skirt. Stitch along the first fold line (about 1/2") from side edge to side edge. Trim off any excess bias tape.

Press the bias tape down along the fold you just stitched. Repeat for the dress back. Keep the bias tape open for now.

Pin the front of the dress to the back of the dress right sides together. Stitch along the side edge from the bottom bias to the arm opening making sure the waistbands align. Finish the seam and press the seam allowance to the back.

Fold the bias tape toward the wrong side of the dress encasing all of the raw edges. Press again if needed. Topstitch along the top edge on the right side catching the bias tape on the inside.

Open up more of the bias tape, and pin around the arm opening right sides together starting at the top and curving around to the back. Pull slightly as you pin the bias tape to help it lie flat. Stitch along the first fold. Clip the seam allowance at the curve.

Fold the bias tape to the wrong side encasing the raw edges. Topstitch from the right side catching the bias tape on the inside. Repeat for the other arm opening.

See the rest of the Harper Sew-Along here:

We’d love to see your progress!! Show us your photos in our Facebook group. You can also share photos on Facebook and Instagram tagged #harpersewalong.

Harper Sew-Along // Day 3

Wednesday, July 08, 2015

We are really going to see the Harper dress taking shape today!! Note: All seam allowances are 1/2" unless noted otherwise.

With right sides together pin the waistband to the front bodice.

Sew the waistband to the bodice along the bottom raw edge and finish the seam.

Press the seam allowance toward the waistband and topstitch from the right side. Repeat for the back bodice.

Place two pocket pieces right sides together and sew around all four sides leaving a gap at the bottom. Clip corners and turn right side out pushing out the corners. Press well.

Pin the pockets in place according to the chart making sure the gap is at the bottom of the pocket.

Topstitch along the sides and bottom of the pocket. Repeat for the other pocket.

Gather the top of the front skirt panel. Be sure to check out our Tips & Tricks for Gathering!

Pin the bodice to the bottom of the skirt waistband right sides together. My pins are on the bottom because it is easier to photograph this way, but I like to sew with the gathers on top. It helps to keep them straight as I go.

Sew along the bottom of the waistband and finish the seam.

Press the seam up toward the waistband and topstich. Repeat for the back bodice and skirt.

(Sorry to switch up fabrics here, but I made a slight error with this step on the first one. I wanted to be sure you had a good photo, so I'm sewing up another version.) Feed the 3/4" elastic into each waistband using a safety pin.

Secure the elastic at each edge of the casing within the seam allowance.

See the rest of the Harper Sew-Along here:

We’d love to see your progress!! Show us your photos in our Facebook group. You can also share photos on Facebook and Instagram tagged #harpersewalong.
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