Tag Archives: stella hoodie

Updated: Sequin Cat Hoodie

13 Sep

Y’all remember that Stella Hoodie dress I made last year?

French Terry Stella Hoodie Dress

It was real cute for sure, but I think I literally wore it twice after completion. The fabric was a little too heavy to be comfortable as a summer garment (and I’m sorry, but a mini / sleeveless dress *is* a summer garment, fight me), and it was also real, real fucking short. Like, butt-cheeks-peeking-out-to-say-hello-whenever-I-lifted-my-arms short. And while I think it would make a good swimsuit cover-up, still, I’m gonna be real with y’all and point out that I go swimming about twice a year. There is no room in my life for a swimsuit cover-up.

So, overall, this garment was pretty useless. I thought it might work as a shirt, though, so I kept it around waiting on inspiration. After announcing the 2019 OAL, I went through my UFO drawer and decided to see if I could salvage the dress into something I might actually wear.

Sequin Cat Applique

Turns out all it needed was a little chop and some bling! And thank god I saved it, because this is seriously one of my favorite shirts now!

Sequin Cat Applique

Sequin Cat Applique

This was a really easy refashion. I removed the kangaroo pocket and tried on the dress to determine how long to make it, then cut about 2″ longer and used that as a hem allowance for a nice deep hem (I chose to make my hoodie cropped, as I’m really into the cropped shirt / high-waisted jeans look these days, but since the hem is so deep I can always un-crop it if I decide I want a longer shirt someday). I then stitched the hem with my coverstitch machine, same as the original dress hem. I was initially planning on sewing the pocket back on, so after hemming I tried the top on again to determine pocket placement, and that’s when this big ol’ blingy cat patch caught my eye…

Sequin Cat Applique

Isn’t this patch AMAZING?! I bought it at Hai Trim in NYC when I was there over Christmas. Honestly there are loads of cool patches in all the shops around the NYC Garment District, but I think Hai Trim has the best selection (and most are $12-$18, which I think is a pretty reasonable price). I bought it without any idea what I’d do with it, and have had it hanging on my wall in the months since. When I held it up to the shirt, I couldn’t stop smiling. As far as I’m concerned, it’s a perfect match.

Sequin Cat Applique

Sequin Cat Applique

I sewed it to shirt using Invisible thread, which is a thin nylon thread that kind of looks like a spiderweb. Usually when I do this sort of sewing, I just use regular sew-all thread – but I had recently read a Threads Magazine article that mentioned using clear thread to applique and I thought it sounded like a fun experiment to try. You load your bobbin with standard polyester thread, and use the clear thread in the top. Then you zigzag around all the edges, being careful to position the needle so that it lands inside and outside the edge of the applique with each zigzag. I would show you a close-up – but it’s literally invisible lol. So hopefully that makes sense! It is definitely more forgiving than using colorful thread, since you can’t see it at all – so if your zigzag strays off course at all, it can just be your secret.

However, the thread is really delicate and prone to breaking. I found that I got a better experience by loading my thread in a thread stand so that the thread comes from the top of the spool, instead of out the side (whenever I loaded sideways, it would eventually twist around the spool pin and break).

So far, this has held up fine in the wash! I turn the shirt inside-out and then wash/dry as normal (cold, regular cycle, etc). The threads did pop in one small section, but I think that was because a dog jumped on me lol. I just stitched it back down and it’s fine! All good!

Sequin Cat Applique

BTW if you’re wondering how the hell I got these BOMB-ASS PHOTOS (tbh the only reason this post is even warranted haha), we shot them in a professional photo studio in Portland, OR when I was up there earlier this year for a jeans workshop at Josephine’s Dry Goods! Since Josephine’s is such a small shop, we opted to move the workshop to this place so we’d have more space… and a great backdrop to take photos (which obviously I took full advantage of). I can’t take any credit for the quality of these photos as Bini’s husband set it all up- as well as let us use his equipment – but hey they are cool and I got some neat jumping shots!

Sequin Cat Applique

I really like my hair in this one 🙂

On a final note – I was creeping on Gucci recently and I was surprised to see this cat all over their F/W 19 collection, but specifically these sneakers

Gucci Cat

They call it “Mystic Cat” which I love but I think mine is better because it actually sparkles.

Sequin Cat Applique

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Completed: French Terry Stella Hoodie Dress

1 May

Here we have a tale of fabric bought wrong, then made right. Gather round, my children.

French Terry Stella Hoodie Dress

I bought this french terry from Mood Fabrics on a whim back in September. I usually swatch fabrics before ordering online – even with my knowledge of fabric and fibers, you can still be surprised by texture, hand, and color – but sometimes I get a little wild and order shit blindly. It usually works out fine, but every now and then it can backfire. Guess what happened here.

So, the french terry – it’s a glazed french terry from Helmut Lang (since sold out, yo’re welcome), which I figured would be great because 1. Helmut Lang is always expensive; and 2. It’s fucking french terry, how could you go wrong?

This, this is how you go wrong. This is one of the weirdest fabrics I’ve ever received from Mood. It was stiff and kind of scratchy, remarkably similar to how your bath towel feels when you dry it on a clothesline. I’m not going to sugarcoat this – I was really disappointed that I wasted part of my allowance buying it, because I absolutely hated it. The color was nice, but color doesn’t mean anything if the fabric itself scratches you when you touch it.

French Terry Stella Hoodie Dress

I did try washing the fabric multiple times to see if perhaps there was a sizing on it (or if the glaze has something to do with it?) that would be removed and thus soften it – but no matter what I did (hot water, cold water, different detergents, high dryer heat, etc), it didn’t change the hand of the fabric. I stuck it on my shelf and tried to figure out if there was something I could do with it. I don’t back down from a challenge, but sometimes I have to roll a problem around in my head for a minute before I come up with a solution.

During this time, I was sent an advance copy of Tilly’s newest book, Stretch! (hello, hi, that’s an affiliate link). I love most of the patterns and projects in that book, and the one that really stuck out the most to me was the Stella Hoodie pattern. I am not a huge fan of the athleisure trend, so the joggers were a bit lost on me (it’s fine if you wear them, but those are PJs are far as I’m concerned, and I don’t wear PJs in public), but I looooooved the pictures of the hoodie lengthened into a dress! I thought my weird french terry might work with that pattern – and, at the very least, it would probably function great as a swimsuit coverup.

French Terry Stella Hoodie Dress

French Terry Stella Hoodie Dress

French Terry Stella Hoodie Dress

I made the size 2 of this, based on my measurements and the suggested size from the book. I don’t remember how much length I added, whatever the book suggested (probably 8″ or 10″ – and then I cut some of it off when it came time for hemming). I did simplify mine a bit from the book – rather than line the hood and the pocket, I just turned under the seam allowances and stitched them down. The whole thing was sewn on my serger, other than the button holes (which my machine had no problem sewing, although I did back them with a little piece of fusible interfacing first), and the hems were done on my coverstitch machine. This fabric was very, very, very easy to work with – stable, not at all shifty of curly, and only shed a little bit when cut. It pressed nicely, which was great for getting those sharp hems.

French Terry Stella Hoodie Dress

I originally envisioned a black drawstring for the hood, but red was all I had on hand. I actually like it! It’s a nice little sporty pop of color. God, I sound annoying.

French Terry Stella Hoodie Dress

French Terry Stella Hoodie Dress

French Terry Stella Hoodie Dress

French Terry Stella Hoodie Dress

French Terry Stella Hoodie Dress

French Terry Stella Hoodie Dress

If you’re curious about my leggings – they are the Virginia leggings, made ages ago (in 2015, I think). My fabric is a wool knit from Paron in NYC. And those white lines are mock flatlocking done with my serger (where you sew the two layers together and pull them apart, or whatever it says to do in the instruction book I honestly I don’t remember haha) – which I 100% did because I didn’t have enough yardage to cut full length legs, so they had to be pieced. I added additional piecing so it would look intentional. It actually, in retrospect, looks kind of stupid, but honestly I usually wear these as long underwear so whatever I don’t care.

French Terry Stella Hoodie Dress

So that’s about it for this little dress! I actually quite like how it turned out – despite being apprehensive up until the very last minute of hemming. It’s cute and sporty and I feel cute in it. I think it will make for a good swimsuit coverup – but it also works as a cute little dress. As much as I didn’t like the fabric when receiving it, it works really well for this garment since it hold its structured shape. And since the garment is not close-fitting, the fabric isn’t scratchy or uncomfortable to wear. A very pleasant surprise!

In other news, if you’re still holding out for a good french terry, may I recommend this french terry from Mood Fabrics. I got a few yards of this and it is GREAT – super soft, super stretchy, super drapey, super bamboo (yas bamboo). Plus it comes in tons of colors!

**Note: The fabric used in this post was provided to me by Mood Fabrics, in exchange for my participation in the Mood Sewing Network. I also received the Stretch! book from Tilly & the Buttons as a gift, but was under no obligation to post a project from it (I just really like the book!). All opinions, as always, are my own!