Momiform MAKEover – elevating the handmade mom uniform

If you come to my house on any given day, most likely you’ll find me in jeans and a T-shirt, with a cardigan thrown over top in cold weather. I spend most of my days chasing after my four ever-moving boys, plus homeschooling, so I need to be comfy. Back in my teaching days, I used to dress up nearly everyday, so my wardrobe has taken a distinct turn. When Lauren at Baste + Gather invited me to be part of her Momiform MAKEover series, I wanted to maintain the jeans and t-shirt comfort, but elevate the look a little bit.Momiform MAKEover - updating the mom uniform I came across all three of these fabrics on the same visit to JoAnn Fabrics, and the outfit together in my head immediately. Making over the mom uniform The cardigan is self-drafted. I’ve made another version, though I never blogged it. It’s a little drapey and super comfortable. Gwen Top and Real Deal Jeans 5 I am absolutely in love with this floral! This cardi is going to be a wardrobe staple from now on! Gwen Top and Real Deal Jeans 6 Awhile back, I adopted a pair of pink jeans at a clothing swap, and I was super excited about them. But after wearing them once, I realized they were a little too big. So when I ran across this pink denim, I knew I wanted to recreate them. Gwen Top and Real Deal Jeans 10 Using the Real Deal Jeans pattern from Winter Wear Designs that I used here, I successfully made my second pair of jeans (holla!!). I modified them a bit from the pattern again, but I’m getting close to the fit I’d like. Real Deal Jeans I love love love this pink! Gwen top and Real Deal Jeans 2The fabric is pretty nice, though it doesn’t have quite the recovery that I’d like. When I made them, the fit was fantastic, but they stretched a little and didn’t keep their shape as much as I’d have hoped. All jeans will stretch a little as you wear them, but I may end up taking them in just a little bit to account for that. But I’m still so happy with how they turned out!  Gwen top and Real Deal jeansThe shirt is the top version of the Gwen, from the new Pattern Anthology bundle, which is on sale through 10/2. I absolutely love the fit, and the functional button placket is such a neat detail. Gwen Top and Real Deal Jeans 3 I made the elbow length sleeves, so that the top could easily transition between multiple seasons. The combo of the polka dots and the pink jeans makes me swoon a little bit. Mommy Wardrobe Makeover The button placket is a little wider than most, and I love the interest it brings to the top. My machine hates buttonholes, so I fought with it until giving in to manual buttonholes (there may or may not have been tears involved…) Even though the placket is functional, it slips over my head easily and wouldn’t need to be. But nursing mamas, this is a pattern for you! Even the dress could be made with the placket – a nursing friendly dress!!Gwen Top and Real Deal Jeans 11 Honestly, this outfit is one of my favorite things I’ve ever made. It’s comfy and relaxed, but I feel a little more put-together than usual. I could easily go straight from taking care of the kids to out with my man in this outfit, just by throwing on a pair of heels. Assuming, of course, that I don’t have some sort of food or bodily fluid wiped on me somewhere. ;) Momiform MAKEover - making over the mom wardrobe

 I’m glad for this push to elevate my mom uniform a little bit!! Ever since I committed to sewing more for myself, I’ve tripled the amount of handmade clothes in my closet, and I’ve stepped way out of my comfort zone. If you haven’t started sewing for yourself yet, now is your chance: Lauren has put together a phenomenal giveaway and discounts, and I’ve seen some of the amazing outfits that are part of this series for your sewing inspiration, and you need to check them out!Momiform MAKEover

REMEMBER: Scroll to the bottom of this post to enter the two separate Rafflecopters! 50+ winners will be selected! Get 10% off your fabric order from now through October 1 at Michael Levine/ with code: Makeover10

Get 20% off your pattern order now through October 1 at UpCraft Club with code: MOMIFORM Are you MAKE-ing over your Momiform? Join the fun on Instagram with hashtag #momiformmakeover



Be sure to check out all the awesome series participants to get lots of momiform inspiration!

Reyna Lay Designs | Call Ajaire | Golden Rippy | Love Notions Sew Not Perfect | Scientific Seamstress | Rebel & Malice Creative Counselor | Mabey She Made It | If Only They Would Nap | Boy, Oh Boy, Oh Boy Crafts Shaffer Sisters | FABulous Home Sewn | Fa Sew La | Baste + Gather Lulu & Celeste | Swoodson Says | Phat Quarters | Hey June | Stitch Upon a Time Climbing the Willow | Everything Your Mama Made & More | Näh-Connection | 110 Creations A Jennuine Life | Straight Stitch Designs | Sew Straight & Gather | KZJO’STUDIO Wild & Wanderful | Mae & K | Handmade Frenzy | HattieLu Handmade




momiform major sponsors

Special thanks to these major sponsors who generously donated the following items for the giveaway:

(There will a different winner for each line item so we can spread the love around!)

Janome – One Skyline S5 Sewing Machine* Indiesew – Four $50 gift certificates (four separate winners) Michael Levine / Low Price Fabric – Four $25 gift certificates (four separate winners) and 10% discount for readers through October 1 – code: Makeover10 UpCraft Club – Two $25 gift certificates (two separate winners) and 20% discount on patterns through October 1 – code: MOMIFORM

And the following pattern designers who graciously provided patterns for the series participants and/or contributed the following items for the giveaway:

Grainline Studio – Two patterns of your choice True Bias – Hudson Pants & Southport Dress patterns Colette -Two patterns of your choice Closet Case Files -Two patterns of your choice Sew Much Ado -Two patterns of your choice Sew Straight & Gather – Three patterns of your choice Golden Rippy – Two patterns of your choice 110 Creations: A Sewist’s Notebook Patterns for Pirates – Two patterns of your choice Itch to Stitch – Two patterns of your choice Mouse House Creations – Two patterns of your choice Hey June Handmade -Two patterns of your choice Peekaboo Pattern Shop – Three patterns of your choice Go-to Patterns – One women’s pattern of your choice GreenStyleCreations -Two patterns of your choice Puperita – One pattern of your choice Sofilantjes – Two patterns of your choice Charlotte Kan – One pattern of your choice So Sew Easy – Two patterns or one bundle of your choice OUSM Designs – Women’s Thumbs-Up Tee pattern E-Beth Designs – Two patterns of your choice Muffin Head Patterns – Any pattern of your choice up to $10 GrayDay Patterns – Sandpoint Top or Athena Top pattern (your choice) Scientific Seamstress – One pattern of your choice Stitch Upon a Time – $20 gift card 5 out of 4 – Two patterns of your choice Frianki Patterns – Two patterns of your choice KZ Jo Studio – Two patterns of your choice Straight Stitch Designs – Full collection of patterns Sewing Patterns by Aivilo Charlotte – Two patterns of your choice Striped Swallow Designs – Two patterns of your choice Rose and Lee Designs – Two patterns of your choice Sewing Geek Patterns – One pattern of your choice Filles a Maman – One pattern of your choice Bella Sunshine Designs – One pattern of your choice Liola Designs – One pattern of your choice Cali Faye Collection – One pattern of your choice Tinman Patterns – Orbit Skirt pattern Felicity Sewing Patterns – Two patterns of your choice Winter Wear Designs – Two patterns of your choice Ellie Inspired – Three patterns of your choice Love Notions – One pattern of your choice a Sparkly Baby – Two patterns of your choice Terra’s Treasures Designs – Two patterns of your choice

*Janome giveaway winner must be located in U.S.A. and is therefore on a separate Rafflecopter below. Machine must be picked up at a local dealer; it cannot be shipped.

Click here to enter the Rafflecopter giveaway

This second Rafflecopter includes all the other sponsor items since they can be awarded internationally! You must enter both Rafflecopters in order to be entered to win both the sewing machine and the rest of the giveaway items. All patterns awarded will be in PDF format. Enjoy!

// here to enter the Rafflecopter giveaway//

Wide Neck Tee for Remix the Stitch

My sweet friend Kimberly at Straight Stitch Designs is celebrating the one year anniversary of her pattern shop! She has accomplished so much in the last year. I’ve been such a fan of her patterns – I’ve sewn the Capitol Hill, the Ballard and the Greenwood, and I’ve loved So when Kimberly invited me to be a part of her Remix the Stitch tour – taking one of her patterns and mixing it up – I knew I had to sew along!

Wide Neck Tee from If Only They Would Nap

*this post contain affiliate links*

I actually started out with the Ravenna, but I made a cutting error that ended up… well, let’s just say it wasn’t working out in my favor. I knew I had to set it aside, and since I had three other Straight Stitch Designs patterns printed and ready to cut, I came up with a brilliant idea: combine the Greenwood with the Capitol Hill to make a wide neck tee!


It’s a super simple hack: I used the front and back of the Greenwood – the low back version, so the front and back are the same. Then I used the sleeve from the Capitol Hill. I shortened the Greenwood about 1/2inch from the shoulder to match up with the sleeve. I used a one inch binding for the neckline. I also graded the body of the shirt out just a little bit, as I wanted a slightly looser fit. When I make another one, I’ll also add another inch to the sleeve, since the shoulder is higher than the Capitol Hill, and I forgot to factor that in.

wide neck tee 5

This shirt is ridiculously comfortable. I looove the wide neck. Plus, I put it together from cut to sew (to photograph!) in less than two hours. So basically it’s faster to make a new shirt than to do a load of laundry. Clearly laundry is overrated.

wide neck tee 3One of the great things about owning multiple patterns from a designer is that often times, you can mix and match some of the pieces like the sleeves. I love Kimberly’s style, and all of the Straight Stitch Designs patterns have great features, fit well, and come together so nicely. They’re some of my go-to patterns for sure!

wide neck tee 4

I didn’t get a good picture of it, but the back of the neck mirrors the front. It’s unlike any other t-shirt I own, so it’s a fun way to mix up my everyday t-shirt and jeans wardrobe! I just adore this shirt! It’s starting to feel like fall, so this will be getting a lot of wear.

Wide Neck Tee 2

Kimberly’s having an amazing sale and giveaway in honor of her anniversary. Her PDF and paper patterns are 50% off and her stitch kits are 40% off through 9/20. I really can’t recommend her patterns enough!


Click here to enter the giveaway

Make sure you check out all the other stitchers on the #remixthestitch tour!

Happy sewing!

Tuesday, September 8th: Meg Cookin’ and Craftin’ | Jennifer Ginger Peach Studio
Wednesday, September 9th: Ajaire Call Ajaire | Heidi Handmade Frenzy | Stacey Boy, Oh Boy, Oh Boy Crafts
Thursday, September 10th: Melissa Rebel & Malice | Annika Näh-Connection | Abby Sew Much Ado
Friday, September 11th: Katie It’s Hard to Hear Up Here | Jane Buzzmills | Lisa Mabey She Made It
Saturday, September 12th: Elena Randomly Happy | Allie Indiesew | Jess If Only They Would Nap
Monday, September 14th: Jaime Made By Jaime | Lauren BASTE + GATHER | Sara Made by Sara
Tuesday, September 15th: Audrey Skirt Fixationy | Teri Fa Sew La | Hayley Welcome to the Mouse House
Wednesday, September 16th: Emi Just Add Fabric | Rachael Imagine Gnats | Teresa Dandelion Drift
Thursday, September 17th: Kaysie | KZJO’STUDIO Rita Conversas de Hermanas | Stephanie Swoodson Says
Friday, September 18th: Andreia In a Manner of Sewing | Nienke Pienkel | Abbey Sew Charleston

Easy to sew Lunch Sacks for Back to School

If your kids are headed back to school soon, you probably need to pack at least a few lunches this year. Rather than use paper lunch bags (especially on those days when your kiddo left the insulated lunch bag at school the day before), make your own cloth lunch sack that won’t get confused with anyone else’s!Cloth Lunch Sack Tutorial

You can make this lunch bag lined or unlined. If you have a sturdy home dec fabric, laminated cotton, etc. you can make this without lining. If you want to use quilter’s cotton, you will want to make it lined and interfaced.


  • 14in. x 27.5in. fabric (another for lining)
  • 14in. x 27.5in. interfacing if lining
  • snaps or velcro

Note: if you are not lining the lunch sack, make sure that you finish all edges with either a serger or a zig-zag/faux overlock stitch.

1. Fold fabric nearly in half, stopping 4.5in. from the top.

2. Mark four lines on the fabric: 3 inches from the bottom, make a 2.5 inch line (this green line is faint in the picture); mark two lines 2.5 inches in from the sides, 4.5 inches long.

3. Cut down the top two lines and then across to the sides, removing two small rectangles.

4. Cut along the 2.5inch line near the bottom of the fabric – cut through both layers.

5. Pull the bottom section of fabric away.

6. Sew along the sides.

7. Flatten the bottom. It may not lay completely flat just yet.

8. Cut off the small rectangle of fabric (you won’t need this piece)

9. Sew along this edge to form the bottom of the lunch sack. Repeat on the other side. If you are using a serger, leave the tails long and tie them off – don’t just cut them off! If you are using a sewing machine, make sure you backstitch at the beginning and the end.

10. If you are using one layer of fabric, finish all around the top edge. You can serge, zig-zag, or do a rolled hem on either your sewing machine or serger. If you are lining your lunch sack, skip this step.

11. If you are lining your lunch sack, apply interfacing to one of the pieces of fabric. Repeat steps 1-9 with your second fabric. Turn your lining inside out and the outer piece right side out. Put them together as seen in the photo.

12. Sew the raw edges together, leaving an opening on the front flap.

13. Turn the lunch sack right side out through the opening.

14. Press and topstitch all around the top.

15. Fold in the center of the sides.


Then attach either velcro or snaps inside the sides.

16. Attach snaps or velcro onto the front flap to finish

Then send your kiddo to school in style! (I shortened the red lunch sack about 3/4in.)

You can stop buying paper lunch sacks (win for the environment!) and personalize your kiddo’s lunch bag to fit their style – use fabric with their favorite character or embroider their name onto it.


The lunch sack opens up nice and wide when unsnapped, giving you plenty of room for all the yummy foods that will fuel your little one through their school day.


Happy back-to-school sewing, friends!

Cloth Lunch Sack Tutorial from If Only They Would Nap

I Sew Love This

I adore when other bloggers share things they find and love; things they’ve found interesting or noteworthy. New tutorials, free patterns, great article, fun inspiration. So I’m starting a new tradition here, called I Sew Love This, where I’ll be sharing things I love from around the internet. I imagine they will be mostly sewing related, but I reserve the right to share anything I find that I love. ;)

i sew love this - on if only they would napCrafterhours shares a coupon code for a pattern every Friday, giving you a chance to buy it for only $5! Today’s Friday Fiver is the Soleil Dress from Baste + Gather. It’s super adorable, and only $5! Who doesn’t love that?


If you’re going to make pants, you want to make them as professional looking as you can. These tips for sewing professional looking pants from Handmade Boy for Peekaboo Pattern Shop are fantastic, and a must-read, especially if you’re new to sewing pants.


This is a great round-up of $10 DIY Gifts from Andrea’s Notebook. Handmade gifts can still be meaningful and look great, without breaking the bank. (Also, you may see one of my tutorials in here!)10-dollar-gifts

My girl Melissa from Sew Like My Mom has this fabulous free pattern for Ginger Shorties in sizes 12m-8. Perfect for sewing up for under all those play dresses for back-to-school.


Speaking of back-to-school, Stacey at Boy, Oh Boy has a fantastic collection of Free Back-t0-School Patterns and Tutorials. So if you’ve spent all your money on school supplies and fabric, no fear! You can still sew the clothes your kiddos need.

Back-to-School Sewing Patterns

And for some inspiration, I love this Alice Dress sewn by Mie at Sewing Like Mad! Such a beautiful fabric, and it could easily transition from summer to fall.Alice--2

What are you loving?? Share a link in the comments!

Happy sewing, friends!

Snapdragon Dress + Giveaway!

Since I have a house full of boys, I jump at the chance to make dresses for my nieces. My lovely friend Melissa from Sew Like My Mom sent me her new Snapdragon Dress pattern, and if I had girls, I’m pretty sure this is all I would make them.
Snapdragon Dress pattern by Sew Like My Mom sewn by If Only They Would Nap

If you’re a regular reader, you know how much I love Melissa’s patterns, and oh my goodness, I am in looooove with this one.

snapdragon dress 9
This dress is super versatile – there’s the tank version that I sewed, but you can also choose from three different sleeve options. This pattern is so perfect for every season!

snapdragon dress 3

I love all the gathers … even though I hate the actual gathering process. ;)

snapdragon dress 8

I used a fabulous double knit from JoAnn’s that I’ve seen in a few different colorways. The polka dots are on one side and the stripes are on the other, so I mixed and matched throughout the dress. If I hadn’t started making this dress (ahem) the night before we left to visit, I would have hacked the pattern a bit to make this dress reversible. But I guess now I just have to make another one!

snapdragon dress 6

The knit is so soft and the design of the pattern is made for girls who love to run and play, my niece actually wore it for 48 hours! I’m all about making clothes that kids can play in, and this dress perfect for it.

snapdragon dress 7

Even when playing means waiting for your cousins to move out of the way, so you can bike through.

snapdragon dress 5

This might be my go-to dress pattern for the little girls in my life!

Snapdragon dress 1

And Melissa is so amazing, that she is giving away a copy of this PDF pattern to one lucky winner!! Click below to enter to win your own PDF copy of the Snapdragon Dress pattern – giveaway closes Tuesday night.snapdragon-listing-main1

 Click Here to Enter to Win!

Striped Birthday Tank

Boy number three turned four yesterday. To celebrate, I made him a striped tank.

striped tank 1

The tank is self-drafted and upcycled from an XL men’s tank top.

striped tank 6

The stripes on this tank are so rad. I love finding t-shirts on clearance to use as fabric, because sometimes you can find some fabulous prints that you can’t find elsewhere.

striped tank 4

Tanks are quick and easy; I made this one in less than 20 minutes – including a serger re-thread!

striped tank 5

He loves this tank so much, he insisted on sleeping in it as well. Point one for mama-made!

striped tank 7

I used ribbing for the neckline and coverstitched the armholes. You can get this same effect with a double needle.striped tank 8
I love four. When they’re really out of toddler-hood, but not quite a kid. You can reason with them, but they still curl in your lap and need you to kiss their owies. So perfect. :)

Happy sewing, friends!


Safari Kudzu Coveralls

It’s no surprise how much I love the Kudzu Coveralls pattern, from Sew Like My Mom. I’ve made them as both pants and a dress, and there’s pretty much no end to my Kudzu love.Kudzu Coveralls pattern by Sew Like My Mom
These pants were supposed to be for Easter. You know, in April. But then the kids got hit by some illnesses, and handmade outfits got put on the back burner.

kudzu coveralls
These are a quick sew and have endless possibilities. I just adore little boys in overalls. I mean, is there anything cuter??

kudzu coveralls 3

Since this little guy is my baby, I wanted to keep the coveralls young. Because I’m going to keep him looking the part of the baby as long as possible. ;) But I also really love this seersucker version from Stacey at Boy, Oh Boy, Oh Boy Crafts for an older boy.

kudzu coveralls 5

I made the 2T size for my two-year-old. He and his cloth diaper fit perfectly.

kudzu coveralls 6

I cut and partially sewed them so long ago, that I can’t remember if I made any modifications. Probably I didn’t measure the cuffs and just eyeballed it.

kudzu coveralls 2

Babies in overalls. There’s nothing else I need in life.

Happy sewing, friends!

The Honest Truth of a Handmade Wardrobe

If you’ve been following me on Instagram at all this month, you’ve probably noticed a trend. Along with many other sewing friends, I embraced the challenge of Me Made May: wear handmade clothes every day of May. And then take a slew of awkward selfies and let the world see just how dirty your mirrors really are.Me Made May collageNot too long ago, I prioritized sewing for myself. Instead of waiting for the perfect circumstances to sew for myself, I just did it. But since I spread out my sewing time between the boys and myself, I hadn’t realized how much I had actually sewn for me! I didn’t take pics of everything I wore in May, because let’s be honest… everyday selfies are really not my style and you can only stare at yourself in the mirror so many times before you realize yes, that really is the face you make when you take a selfie and no, you can’t do anything about it.

Here’s what I learned from #memademay:

  • I need to clean my mirrors more. Seriously, that’s the first thing I learned.
  • I don’t make enough everyday garments. The few days that I didn’t wear handmade, it’s because I just wanted to wear a T-shirt and I didn’t have one. T-shirts have already been added to the to-sew list.
  • I wore my yoga pants to bed or to work out, so I didn’t feel guilty on the days I didn’t choose handmade during the day. I like to be a rule follower.
  • I have a few handmades that I just never reach for. I liked them when I made them, but I just don’t anymore. I need to pass them along to someone else who will enjoy them.
  • I totally enjoyed hearing “You MADE that??!” more often. It really never gets old!
  • I should sew more cardigans. I wear a lot of cardigans.
  • I don’t wear as many dresses as I’ve made. So either I have to stop making dresses or I need to actually wear them. Stopping is silly… wearing is not.
  • I wear my hair up way too much. I’m working on that.
  • I. Can. Make. Jeans. I wear jeans nearly everyday, so I need to perfect these and make some more.
  • I have way too many clothes. Compared to a lot of women, it probably isn’t a lot, but I really only wear a tiny fraction of the ones I have.
  • Handmade clothes fit well. Duh, right? When you make garments specifically for your body, they should fit you and flatter your body (after you get those first-time-make kinks out, of course). I have a lot of ready-to-wear clothing that doesn’t fit will or doesn’t flatter me, so I’m not sure why I’m letting them take up space in my closet.
  • Wearing handmade is empowering! Maybe that sounds cheesy, but it really is true. I don’t feel like I have to rely on stores to have what I want to wear in my price range. I can make what I want when I want it. Being able to take a piece of fabric and create a wearable garment really is an accomplishment. And I feel good in what I’m wearing!

me made may collage 2It was super fun to see that I really can wear handmade everyday if I choose too – and to see the holes in my wardrobe that are keeping me from doing it all the time. But I think I’ve made such progress in my handmade wardrobe! And it really gets me excited to keep sewing and really fulfill the handmade wardrobe dream!

So… Jess Generated June? Does that work?? ;)

Greenwood Tank: a wardrobe staple

I’ve been thinking to myself lately how much I needed a good knit tank pattern. Luckily for me, Straight Stitch Designs (affiliate link) is releasing the Greenwood Tank today!
Greenwood TankWarning: if you sew one Greenwood Tank, you will be unable to stop and will need to sew more. As part of the testing team, I’ve already sewn three! It’s such a fast sew, pretty soon I’m going to have one for every day of the week.


The Greenwood Tank comes with options for a regular high back or a low back that mirrors the front of the tank. I chose the low back option (even though I failed to actually take a picture of the back!).


I shortened the straps a bit, but this is something I have to do quite often with ready-to-wear clothing and PDF patterns. Once I did that, the fit was fantastic. Also fantastic? This knit from JoAnn’s. I’m in loooove with this floral!

DSC_6510I had a little bit of this luscious Anna Maria Horner knit left from this dress, and it was perfect for this tank! This will definitely be an everyday wear this summer.

DSC_6559This tank really is a wardrobe staple. Depending on your fabric, you can dress it up or down. The knit binding on this tank is one of my favorite ways to do binding. Kimberly has a great video to walk you through this if you’ve never done it before.

DSC_6497I loved the Capitol Hill and the Ballard, so I knew right away I would love the Greenwood. Kimberly’s pattern instructions were easy to follow, as always, and it came out with a superb garment!DSC_6352So what are you waiting for?! Hop on over and check out the newly released Greenwood Tank! It’s 30% off through Sunday, and if you’re anything like me, once you start sewing them, you won’t be able to stop :)

Happy sewing, friends!

Disclosure: I received this pattern as part of the pattern testing group, in exchange for my feedback.

Super Skinny Pants over at Melly Sews

My post for the Blank Slate Sewing Team is up, so head on over to Melly Sews and check out the Super Skinny Pants I made for my little man!

super skinny pants