Let’s Start Over

Yesterday I had this overwhelming pull to write to you. I’ve had it a few times this year, but not like yesterday. I could almost hear the text writing itself.

I guess I’ve felt guilty about not sewing. And since I haven’t sewn in quite some time I’ve just felt like I’ve had nothing to say. I see everyone I follow with a blog just go on about their day, writing. And I’m over here stumped. So much has changed for everyone this year. I honestly thought that life in a pandemic would force me to write more, to sew more, to really steer into my hobbies. 

I was so wrong. 

In July I tried pulling out a sweater pattern and tracing paper. Just to start. I traced and stopped. Would really like that sweater I was working on right about now. I never picked it back up. That’s not to say I won’t. I might. 

Here’s the thing. I made this blog to dedicate this space to my sewing journey. Since I stopped sewing this poor little space has been sitting here. It’s not that I feel bad that I don’t contribute to it. I feel bad because I still want to write, but somehow decided because I don’t sew, then what I have to say isn’t worthwhile. 

I know that’s not true. 

But so often we read that when we start a blog we need to niche down to be successful. I always stuck to that belief. Here’s what I figured out this year. 

I don’t care about the success of my blog. Not as far as monetary gains, popularity, or engagement. I don’t even care if I’m the only person who reads this. My priorities about this blog absolutely changed. 

When I first started blogging back in 2011? Times were different I wanted to be a writer. I earned a degree in journalism back in 2008 and I thought for sure I was going to be a writer. I thought this blog thing is just the start. Fast forward to today and I’m not a writer. I don’t want to be a writer. Ever. Professionally. I tried it, it’s not for me. No thank you. 

Now? I’m a photographer BECAUSE OF BLOGGING. I love learning my craft and I miss the days of just taking pictures of fabric or things around my house just for my blog. 

I’ve been so afraid of posting something STUPID that I don’t post. That it’s not COHESIVE with my other posts that I don’t post. I’m like that on on all of my social media accounts. I just don’t share. And the dumbest part about it is that I want to share. I want to tell the world about my new hobbies or recipes or books that I read. 

That’s the entire reason I thought blogging was so cool. I loved just sitting on the floor with my laptop in front of the space heater and reading about your lives. Then instagram came around and I couldn’t believe how much I loved that either. 

I’ve heard that blogging died, but is now coming back? I don’t know. Who can keep up? 

Here’s the thing. I want to stay true to myself. NO MORE pressure to stay perfect. No more pressure to only post about sewing. This is my gd space that I pay for. I should post what I want. It’s my journal (not my diary, hello, we’re not that close). 

This is about sharing my accomplishments. I can look back at my posts from a few years ago and wish I did a follow up. Or wanted a little more nuance. I can feel in my writing that I never wanted to take up too much space. And that’s ok. That’s how things are when you are learning. 

This isn’t a new years resolution. I don’t make those. This is me wanting to meet myself where I am in my life right now. 

And I have to admit to you all. This has all been a long winded way of telling you that I love painting my nails. I know. I could’ve just said that from the jump but I felt I needed to get things off my chest. We are friends after all. 

I’m proud to say that is this what my space looks like today. It’s messy, but easy to clean up. And it doesn’t take too long. And I can still listen to my beloved podcasts or youtube videos.

Please tell me you’ve started a new hobby during the pandemic? Was it sourdough? Was it knitting? Did you read a thousand books? Or were on TikTok for hours like me? And couldn’t wait to stop working just so you could get on TikTok and laugh? 

I hope everyone has the happiest of holidays. I hope I post more. Who’s to say. It’s my first few days off of work in months. So maybe I’m just relishing in the freedom. 

Thank you for your time and let’s catch up soon!

Closet Case Patterns: Ebony

Brenna checking her plants wearing Ebony top

Guys! We made it to 2020! I haven’t been here since 2018. I didn’t forget about you guys. It’s been a time for me. Maybe someday we’ll talk about it. For now, let’s get into why you’re here.

 So I made this Ebony top from Closet Case Patterns last June thinking I would immediately post it on the blog because I was so proud of my make. Well, here we are seven months later and I’m finally talking about how much I love this top.

Brenna wearing Ebony top

Here’s what I love about the Ebony pattern. It’s simple simple. It is exactly what it looks like and I love it. If you wear high waisted jeans and love the 70s style swingy cropped top look, you’re gonna love this top. The Ebony pattern reminds me of something Alison Roman would wear and if that doesn’t just make you wanna buy this pattern right now, I don’t know what will. Also, the samples on the models are adorable. Hello cute grey Ebony with a scoop neckline that I will be making hopefully someday.

I just love this swing.

Brenna twirling in Ebony top

The inspiration for my Ebony top came straight from something I pinned back in 2013. Doesn’t it feel good to actually use those pins every now and again? Like, I don’t feel like I’m shamelessly wasting my life on another internet platform. It reminds me of when I bust out the pasta maker for my KitchenAid. Like, no I don’t have space in my kitchen for ANYTHING ELSE, but look at these sheets of fresh noods. That’s all, your honor.


This is a light bouncy knit from Girl Charlie Fabrics that I purchased probably back in 2013. I’m almost positive it came from their cotton lycra section. Again, it’s been a while so who’s to say for sure. Honestly, I’m just glad I that I used fabric from my stash and didn’t order new fabric. I have a tendency to hold on to fabric like each piece is a sacred piece of art never to be used only carefully folded and stashed away in my plastic container from Target that I bought on sale for less than $7.


I made a straight size 4. Now, at the time I made this top, my arms were incredibly tight in it. I was working out more and probably had guns that I unfortunately did not appreciate. Now that it’s January and I haven’t worked out in a minute and stopped counting my macros to bulk up, I’m back to my tiny self and the sleeves fit fine.


The instructions are perfection. Look, this is a very straightforward sew. If you’re new to sewing THIS PATTERN IS FOR YOU. If you don’t want to spend time sewing THIS PATTERN IS FOR YOU. You don’t have to hem the bottom! I didn’t! It would have been waaaaaaay too short for me and I am so small and so modest. Let’s be real, this shirt is ready to help you bare some tummy so get ready.

Ebony top showing midriff
Ebony top baring midriff

Other notes, like most stretchy shirts, this one calls for stabilization at the shoulders. I sewed in twill tape in the shoulders and not clear plastic. For the love of god, I cannot figure out clear plastic as much as I try. The instructions give you the option of either one, so don’t think it’s not going to work if you choose twill tape.

But that’s it! I love this top. I think I want to make a sleeveless version of the dress. Not sure how that would work out or look. I can’t really think about dresses right now since we’re looking at a low of 28 degrees tonight.

Thanks for reading!

Fenix Romper by Califaye

Fenix Romper by WefthemSummer is almost over and I realize this romper post may be too late for those of us above the equator, but I’m here talking to you guys about the Fenix Romper from CalifayeCollections. Right before I left for New Orleans in July I was struggling trying to put together outfits for our trip. I mean, who goes to New Orleans in July? The answer is a bunch of wild bartenders for Tales of the Cocktail.

I knew I needed something that wouldn’t touch my skin, something rayon, breezy, and that didn’t look like I was going to some outdoors concert festival. I think I like the idea of rompers, but any time I’ve tried them on in stores they just didn’t feel right. Too clingy at the waist, too long torso’d, basically ill fitting.

The Fenix Romper is a great introduction into the world of rompers. I love the front and back V-neck. The silhouette is so lovely. It drapes beautifully around your body. The slightest breeze makes the entire outfit for me. The bottom wooshes around you while you walk. I feel effortlessly dressed up in this outfit.

Fenix Romper by Wefthem

I was a little apprehensive about this pattern looking at everyone’s makes on the interwebs. There’s a huge difference in fit between the pattern maker’s version vs the blogger’s. Maybe it was their fabric choice? Was it too stiff? This pattern NEEDS really drapey fabric to look good. The bum and leg closures look really unflattering when made with fabric that has more body.

The instructions are pretty clear. To be honest, I did mix the instructions from the True Bias Ogden Cami for the top and strap insertion. I really don’t like the look of using store bought bias for the straps. I know it’s easier, but the end result just looks like a bra strap. I’d rather take the time and make my own straps like in the Ogden Cami than using a different fabric. I didn’t even really read her instructions for the strap because I wasn’t interested in making adjustable straps. That seemed too tedious for the outfit.

One thing I did mess up on was the center seam of the front and back. I cut both on the fold not realizing that she has a center seam allowance. My bad. I just sewed a center seam down the middle trying my darndest to match the pattern stripes. I think she has the center seam there so that the romper folds down the center as you walk.

Because I’m so tiny, I removed 3 inches from the length of the body. I’m 5ft tall and wanted the hem to glide a little past my knees and come up on the sides. It does just that. Success.

Fenix Romper by WefthemAfter washing the romper, the facings did curl up above the neckline. It’s mostly on the side seams and the wild print hides most of my mistakes, so I don’t really notice it. I might hand stitch them down later, maybe next summer when I get a chance to wear it more often.

I’m not sure how long this make took. Not long. A few hours to sew, but I’m a very slow sewer, so actual time is probably not that long. You could easily make this in one day, says the slow sewist.

The wooshing is real with this romper.

Will I make this again? Probably! I want one in all black. It’s a great little piece for summer, especially if you’re in a humid city. I felt so effortlessly pretty in humid New Orleans wearing this romper paired with a top knot and hoop earrings (and so much Glow Mist from Pixi that I looked like a light bulb).

I guess we have to start talking about fall makes now don’t we?

Thanks for reading!



Sometimes when I’m struggle trying to pick out something to wear I ask myself one question “if you could wear anything in the whole universe right now, what would that look like?” And then I’ll pick the closest thing to that or put it on my sewing list.

This little routine exposes the big gaping holes in my wardrobe. Sometimes my closet feels like the swiss cheese of wardrobes when I’m getting dressed. It’s littered with pockets of items that I should probably have for my lifestyle, but have been too lazy to sew or the item has been nearly impossible to find in rtw.

This week I’m focusing on upscale casual. You know the restaurant/bar look. The one you wear your heeled boots to instead of those awesomely comfortable sneakers with your even more awesome vintage broken in hoodie. I’m looking at you 1980’s white UC Davis pullover with small unnecessary zipper. The outfits that might be kinda boringbalone, but then you throw on a scarf or statement jewelry and BOOM, now it’s an elevated look.

My goals this spring include some jeans, a jumper, a wrap dress, and a couple of basic tops into my sewing queue. BUT WHICH PATTERNS?!?! This might be my favorite part about the whole sewing process. The Hunt. That whole part where you get to draw out your ideas and look for the perfect fabric. You know, before the fitting woes take their toll on your dreams and gulp up an entire day then your left with a pile of fabric and shaky hands from all the coffee you thought would help you through the mess. Ahhhhhhh sewing.

I have some patterns floating around in my head:

  1. Ginger jeans 
  2. Roxanne top – but maybe not so hi low
  3. Hadley top
  4. Highlands Wrap dress

If you have any suggestions for some effortlessly chic patterns I WOUD LOVE to hear them!

Happy spring sewing guys! Thanks for reading!

Named Talvikki Sweater

Named Talvikki SweaterI have been dreaming about sewing the Talvikki Sweater from Named since last year. I even attempted cutting it out once, but when realized I didn’t have enough fabric I trashed the whole project. LIKE A DUMMY. I’m thinking we still have a few more weeks of cooler weather judging by the wintery mix I woke up to yesterday so there’s still time to enjoy cozy sweaters.

I straight up copied Heather’s from ClosetCasePattern’s version. NO SHAME. I loved how squishy and effortlessly cool it looked with the slide slit, but yet comfortable. The problem was I couldn’t find sweater fleece with any stretch. Luckily, I wasn’t the only person in sewing blogland who wanted to stitch up this pattern in a bulkier sweater without stretch. Named Talvikki Sweater Named Talvikki Sweater


I sewed the smallest sized based on the finished measurements. I’m 5 ft nothing and weight about 100lbs. So tiny. The Talvikki Sweater definitely made me feel small. I’m not saying that I’m swimming in it, but the style is meant to be less fitted and more forgiving.


Sweater fleece from Joann’s with little to no stretch. The only stretch it had was through the crossgrain so I cut out the fabric with the heathered flecks going down my body instead of across. I was too worried I wouldn’t get my head through the hole.


I shortened the length of the sleeves by two inches and then cut the sleeve lengthwise down the middle and narrowed it by two inches to remove bulk from the sleeve.

Since the patterned calls for fabric with at least 30% stretch and mine had basically none, I had to modify the funnel neck by adding a half inch to the front and back pattern pieces at the neckline. Then I added one inch to the facing by placing the facing pattern piece one inch away from the fold line.

Stretch interfacing wasn’t necessary because my fabric is sturdy enough that it didn’t need it.

I did not hem the sleeves. It looks really stupid on me without the cuffed sleeve. So yay for shaving off five minutes of my sewing time!

Named Talvikki Sweater Named Talvikki Sweater

In Conclusion

This pattern is a quick sew. Seriously took only a few hours. The instructions are easy to follow. This is my first Named pattern and I am in love with their aesthetic. I wasn’t sure how to wear this sweater. The funnel neck is really wide and not something I’d normally wear, but I’m trying to branch out of what has been lovingly called “lesbian chic” style. You know, jeans, flannel, and a casual v neck with Vans slipons. This sweater makes me feel fancy, but also gives me a reason to wear bigger earrings. The earrings are the only way I’ve figured out how to balance that giant funnel neck that makes my head look like a tiny pea.

Will I make it again? Maaaaaaaybe. If I can find stretchier sweater fleece fabic that still has the structure, then Yes! I think a black one would look super cute and chic.

I’ve got one more turtleneck coming at ya shortly! Thank you for reading! Happy spring, guys!


Chambray Grainline Studio Archer

Seriously everyone has already made the Archer Button Up Shirt pattern from Grainline Studios and I feel a little beside myself for not making one sooner. I purchased the Archer pattern when Jen first released it in the beginning of time. I finally cut everything out last year and the pieces of fabric have been living peacefully in the same spot since summer 2017.

Sewing a shirt is not hard, but I thought it would be. I didn’t want to sew a button up because it always seemed intimidating no matter who said “don’t be scared this is easy.” They were right, obviously, and I feel stupid about it, kind of.

Here’s the thing about sewing a button up shirt: THERE ARE A LOT OF PIECES. Around 14 I think? Also, a lot of buttons. BUT, if you like sewing straight lines I promise you’ll like sewing this shirt. Just get over the big scary words like PLACKET, BUTTON HOLES, and COLLAR STAND. I swear they are nothing more than a bunch of straight lines followed by a couple of clipped curves.

If you have any concerns about the pattern, just follow the sewalong. Jen basically holds your hand through the ENTIRE project. And if you don’t like her version of how to put together the collar, use Andrea’s tutorial, she’s a wizard.

Fitting. The Archer Button Up is supposed to be a loose fitting shirt. I sewed a size two even though deep down I knew I should have sewn a size smaller (judging by the finished measurements), but I didn’t want to change too much on my first try. So my shirt is extra loose fitting and the shoulder drops past my actual shoulder too much, which I don’t want to hate as much as I do. I did shorten the sleeves by two inches. Also, why on earth I didn’t shorten the bodice blows my mind. I’m 5ft nothing, this thing completely covers my ass.

Dear Brenna, you are tiny, please shorten bodice by at least two inches. Thank you.

I made a note to myself a year ago that I should sew the side seams and sleeve seams at 5/8 instead of ½, but totally forgot. Next time.

Fabric. I purchased this poly cotton chambray about six years ago on ebay. Love the color and it presses well. The copper buttons are from an Etsy seller from a few years back. And the fusible interfacing is from Fashion Sewing Supply. Love their stuff.

Not that you can tell in the photos, but I accidentally used interfacing that’s too stiff. I don’t know which one I used. I have several different weights, but I don’t remember which one I cut out, so that’s pretty cool. It makes the drape on the shirt more stiff than I wanted, but again, first time. I’m not going to be hard on myself.

I love the shirt and want to make another one in a drapier fabric like rayon challis or voile.

Guys, thank you for reading and it’s finally spring! We did it!


Monday Mood


You guys, it’s been a while. So much has happened since last January, but lets not get caught up in the details, unless you wanna talk about turtlenecks. That’s right, I can’t stop looking at them. If there is one thing that’s been on my mind recently, it’s turtlenecks. My number one guess? I suspect it’s the sub arctic wind chills we’ve been having in the Midwest. I can’t even look at my beloved rayon challis without piling on another layer of socks.

Let’s talk patterns. True Bias just released this little diddy and I am truly excited about it. Not only does it look super easy sew, BUT I’ve been wanting to remake that sleeveless turtleneck dress from CupcakesandCashmere for a really long time. It’s so chic and put together. You could easily throw on a slouchy cardigan or get some structure with a blazer. Ugh. I love it.

I’ll just breeze through the next two because it’s 15 degrees outside and I want both of those patterns made in sweatshirt fleece, on me, right now. They’re like casual athletic, but super stylish. My favorite version, hands down, is from Closetcasepattern’s genius Heather Lou. THIS SWEATER is the business when it comes to combining fleece and elegance. They pose as sweatpants, but you’re holding a champagne flute. (But not like the people who show up to brunch on Sundays legit wearing sweatpants acting like they’re too busy to put on real pants. Let’s be real).

That’s all. I miss writing on here and I miss sewing. Until next time guys!



Colette Patterns Aster in Dotted Kaufman Chambray

Colette AsterI purchased the Aster pattern  by Colette Patterns the moment they released it into the universe back in 2015.  That image of the woman with the wide brimmed hat and crisp blue chambray button-up sold me. I could not get over the cuffed sleeves and the curved hem. If I had it my way, I would live in button-up shirts. Plus, V-necks are just magic when put on tiny torsos like mine.

Since this shirt was destined to be paired with black skinny jeans and Vans sneakers, casual chambray was the only option. I got this fabric from Fabric.com and I love it! The color! Oye! A perfect soft wine fabric dotted with baby white spots that are positively small and not too girly. The texture! So crispy fresh with a little give. You know, cool denim without looking like a denim shirt. We’ll call chambray the tender denim.

Colette Aster

The instructions were wonderful. I didn’t really need to use the sewalong, although I had them in front of me just in case. You never know when something might look weird.

Two problems with construction.

  1. BIAS TAPE. For whatever reason, the bias tape was really small. Like, I’ve never made it that small before so finding the right size stumped me. I cut down bias tape from already purchased tape to 3/4″ and that seemed to workout.
  2. THE CUFF. I worked on that cuff origami for seriously four hours. There was something about how you wrap it around or whatever that blew my mind. Thank you to everyone who posted pictures of your Asters because I zoomed in and stared at your sleeves for what seemed like days.

Everything else was fine. Even the neckline! I thought the neckline instructions were pretty straight forward. The only thing I really messed up I somehow made the shirt uneven in the front. Who cares though!

Another thing I learned in this project is how to store your interfacing. Let’s just say I totally forgot about where I stuffed my pile of interfacing, and had to reach for the parchment paper to carefully iron it out. Yeah. It’s nicely rolled up in a cardboard tube now. Thanks, Internet.

Colette AsterNow lets talk fit. I changed nothing. HEAR THAT WORLD?! Sewed up a straight size 0. I didn’t even shorten it. For a moment when putting the sleeves together I thought my tiny arm wouldn’t fit through the even tinier hole, but everything worked out just peachy.

Two things I don’t like:

  1. I don’t like is how it stays puffed out. Now, I know it’s because of the stiffer fabric. And I have washed it a few times so it’s softened up quite a bit. As a matter of fact, I hated the top until I washed it twice.
  2. The neckline. Guys, it doesn’t lay flat. I too thought mine would be different, but here I am with a neckline that doesn’t quite lay on my shoulders.

Things I LOVE:

  1. The overall fit is great! It has the most forgiving amount of ease without looking dumpy.
  2. The neckline and hem make this shirt.
  3. The cuffed sleeves are adorable and a great length.

Colette Aster

Colette Patterns Aster is a great pattern if you can figure out the cuffs and I think well worth the effort. I want to make it again in white rayon challis or in a navy rayon poplin. The front pleated version looks like a dressier version and would be super cute in a drapier fabric as well….like black silk. Ugh. With gold jewelry. Stop. It.

Not sure what to make next…I’m printing a pattern out as I’m typing right now, but not sure if I’m ready to commit to it yet. Happy sewing!! Thanks for reading!










Clipboard Wall Art

Clipboard Wall Art

January, the time when people scramble to get their lives together and organize everything. I have a solution for you: GET CLIPBOARDS. Not only do they look good, but they also serve a function.

The problem started when the bare walls in my living room began driving me nuts. I was on the lookout for some type of mood board or inspiration wall that didn’t involve cork board. Sometimes I think cork board can go from functional cute to really effen cheap Bed Bath and Beyond wall decor at light speed. My wall needed something that illuminates my sources of inspiration, but also doesn’t look like elementary school Brenna pasted stuff on the wall. Enter the oh-so-multitasking clipboard.

This wall art not only brightens up my room, BUT it also holds my WIP’s, future patterns, along with scraps of fabric and other pieces of life that I want to see everyday to keep me moving. I’m pretty pumped that I found these in the dollar bins at Target. Gold is my new color/choice of metal right now. Shiny gold everything. Try and stop me.

Clipboard Wall Art

The clean lines, the grid pattern, and the shiny metal clips on my wall command organization. I want to clip everything under those tabs. To harness them in place, I used one Command strip per clipboard so I don’t have to worry about holes in the wall and I can move these guys around in case I want to add more (I want to add more).

I was just thinking how I could up my organization and motivation and then Beth from Sew DIY busted out this free download for your sewing journal. I could totally print out a page a month and post it on my wall….I’M. SO. PUMPED.

Sears Kenmore 1430

In the best news, my macheen is back!! Her timing belt was busted AND her tension was off!  UGH Just look at her now. All beaming and ready to sew. Unfortunately, it’s the busy season at my job so I’m down right exhausted after work and my numero uno rule in sewing is NEVER SEW WHEN TIRED. I’ve made too many mistakes to just jump right into a project when I should be jumping in bed.

Fashion Sketch Inari tee dressFashion Sketch Linden Sweater

I’ve been sketching up some patterns I want to work on. These aren’t winter appropriate outfits, but these silhouettes are just speaking to me right now. I have the jewelry for them so I MUST sew them up and wear them. I drew up this short sleeve Linden Sweatshirt last year,  but couldn’t find the right fabric. This year I WILL find the right fabric. The Inari Tee Dress will be sewn up in some black fabric and paired with this gold plate necklace that I got for Christmas. It just goes to show I need to start making my lists of things to make this year.

HAPPY 2017 everyone! I can’t wait to see everyone’s makes this year! Here’s to finally getting our list’s up and running!





Colette Aster

I started this project months ago. I loved the v-neck and the curved hem. The drape seemed like it would be perfect in both rayon (my favorite fabric) and a chambray like fabric. When I finally got to putting things together last week I was super pumped and ready to wear this wine colored polka dot chambray (found at Fabric.com) button up.

Right now, this is where I stand with the Aster. Seriously, five minutes into sewing and machine starts misbehaving. The tension wouldn’t hold and I’m left scrambling to find the answers from the sewing gods on Google. Colette Aster

I LOVE the back of this top. I made a muslin and ZERO problems putting this part together. Colette does a great job with the instructions. HOWEVER.

WHO THE F!?&%$ uses 1/4 in bias tape?!?!? FO REAL. Be honest. This is where things get wonky. MAYBE. I mean, just MAYBE. I am totally unlearned to this whole, teeny tiny bias binding neckline. It’s totally possible. I spent a grip load of time rifling through texts trying to find how the BLANK wide, this bias tape should be. Don’t worry internet, I figured it out…..But holy BA JESUS. That was confusing.

Colette Aster

It was at this very seam that my machine went kaputz. The thread began to tangle relentlessly, the tension refused to maintain its equilibrium, and I knew at that that moment she needed to go in for a tune up.

Don’t worry, though, I get my machine back tomorrow and we’ll be back on track by this week. I want this shirt. GUhHHHH. Just look at that Color!.

Also, I couldn’t resist the urge to freaking glitter this bulb….I have glitter in my house, ok!?! What is a human supposed to do with an adorable light bulb when it burn out?!? Just throw it away?!

Glitter Light Bulb Ornament

Merry Christmas!! Happy Holidays!! I hope everyone has an AMAZING HOLIDAY WEEKEND!!!