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Astoria Overalls - Ruffle Straps and Wave Tucks

Niina Kivelä

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Adding Bodice Detail and Ruffles to Astoria Overalls

Guest Blogger: Heidi Geren

Hey everyone! Heidi here. I absolutely love the Astoria overalls, don’t you? When someone in the Facebook group posted a picture asking if there was a ruffle strap option, I knew that I needed to try it. I also saw some pictures of wave tucks on Pinterest and fell in love with the detail, so I decided to add these to my bodice as well. Below I have provided step by step directions to help you achieve this same look. I can’t wait to see what you create!

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Adding Wave Tucks

Cut a long rectangle that is the height of your bodice and approximately 4 times as long.


With a water soluble fabric marker, draw vertical lines every .5” all the way down your rectangle.


Next, take two lines that are next to each other and match them up. Use a pin to secure, and iron the pin tuck to one side. 


Repeat this process for the entire rectangle. You should have a rectangle with lots of pin tucks all the way down. Make sure to press very well with your iron. 


Next, sew down each visible vertical line to secure the pin tuck. Now mark a horizontal line every 1”. 


On every other horizontal line, turn the pin tuck in the other direction and secure with a pin. 


Finally, sew down the lines to secure the wave tucks. Now you have a rectangle with wave tucks!


Lastly, use your pattern piece to cut your front bodice out of this piece of fabric.


Ruffle Straps:

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Measure the length of your strap piece. Cut 4 rectangles that are twice as long as your strap and 2” wide. 


Using something curved, like the edge of a plate, curve the ends of your straps.  


Pin two ruffle pieces together, right sides together. Sew along the curved edge with a 1/4” seam allowance. Clip the curves and turn right sides out. Press with an iron and topstitch with a 1/8” seam allowance. 


Repeat for the other ruffle strip. Sew a gathering stitch along the long straight edge of both ruffles.

Constructing the straps:

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You will need to do this a bit differently than the directions in the pattern so there is room to insert the ruffles. Fold your strap piece in half and press. Unfold. Fold each long edge down 1/4”, wrong sides together and press. Fold in one end by 1/4” and press. 


Now fold the strap in half and press. Gather the ruffle strip to be 1.5” shorter than the length of your strap. Open your strap piece and place your ruffle inside. 


Make sure that you place the front and back of the ruffle up 3/4” from the end so the ruffles don’t get caught in the bodice when you are sewing it. After your ruffle is sandwiched inside the strap, topstitch along the strap opening with a 1/8” seam allowance. Now you have a ruffle strap and a wave tucked bodice. Proceed with the pattern directions to complete your Astoria overalls.

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Cambridge Skinnies: How do I wear thee, let me count the ways!

Cassie Banks


Have you seen the Cambridge Skinnies?  These awesome skinny pants are so cute and super versatile.  I've sewn up three pairs of Cambridge Skinnies to demonstrate a few different ways to wear and embellish them.

Embroidery Detail

When I first laid eyes on the Cambridge Skinnies I couldn't stop thinking about how adorable they would look with some embroidery detail on the back pocket and front pocket inset.  For the embroidered pair, I chose a light blue chambray. 

The first thing I needed to do was find an embroidery file that was the appropriate size and concept I was looking for to embellish the pockets.  I found this cute scroll detail on etsy as well as a floral embroidery file that perfectly complemented the Hazel top that I was envisioning pairing these pants with.  Both embroidery files were purchased from a shop called A Proverbs 31 Wife 


I embroidered the design onto the fabric first and then cutout the pocket so I could make sure that the placement was exactly how I wanted it.


Next, I tackled the inset piece.  For this one, I needed to determine the placement with consideration to the seam allowances on the top and sides of the pants and place my pattern piece accordingly.


Once I had my pocket pieces cut out, I proceeded with the pattern as written.  As you can see the finished result is super fun and easy to achieve!


The Rocker Skinnies

For my next pair of Cambridge Skinnies I thought it might be fun to do something a little fun and funky.  I found this stretchy, faux leather appearing material at Walmart and it fit my idea perfectly. 

I had initially planned to sew this pair with heart shaped pockets, however, this material turned out to be pretty tricky to sew with and therefore I scrapped that idea for regular pockets instead.


So this pair was sewn by the pattern, exactly as written.  The fun comes in deciding how to style this fun pair of pants with a funky top or boots.  My daughter tells me they are terribly comfortable and stretchy and will be a staple piece in her fall wardrobe!


The Distressed Skinnies with Lace Underneath

For the final pair of Cambridge Skinnies I sewed up, I wanted to make a distressed pair with lace underneath.  I believe there is a couple of ways to achieve this appearance.  I started by sewing up a pair in plain, non-distressed blue denim.

I'll be honest and tell you that I had no idea how to distress jeans, so I did what any reasonable girl would do and I googled it!  I found out that the best way to do it is with a few supplies.  Here is everything I used to distress these pants and create the appearance of lace underneath the distressed areas.


I started by taking sandpaper and scraping up and down and back and forth all over the front and back of the pants.


Next, I created two small horizontal slits about 1/2-3/4 inch apart.  Then I used tweezers to pull the threads as well as further distress the area between the slits.  To make them even more distressed I went over those areas with sand paper.  I repeated this process over again in several places on the front side of the pants.


I repeated this process over again in several places on the front side of the pants.


The last part involved adding the stretch lace underneath the distressed parts.  For this part I used spray fabric adhesive.  This was a bit of trial and error, but I found what worked best was to place the stretch lace over the area and then spray the adhesive on top to apply it. 


These turned out to be really fun and comfortable! 


I hope you've enjoyed the Cambridge Skinnies sewn three ways!  Be sure and sew up a pair or three and share them in our facebook group! 


Tutorial: Two New Looks of the Phoenix Top & Dress

Jane REuter

Phoenix Paneled dress version
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A few weeks back a customer reached out to me about creating a certain look, that her daughter wanted, using the Phoenix pattern.  We worked through and it was such a simple and fun process that we decided to share it with all of you.

The top we were trying to recreate was a square circle skirt just like the Phoenix pattern.  However, the skirt was made up of several different fabrics.  So here’s how we did it.  Instead of cutting one square for the skirt.  We cut 10 rectangles and sewed them together before cutting out the waist opening.

The process is really simple and requires just a little math.  When making the Phoenix top, the size of the skirt is determine strictly by your child’s height.  Use the size chart to find what height she is and look at the skirt measurement for that height.  My daughter is the height of a size 12 year.  Therefore, her skirt piece for a top would be cut 36.5 x 36.5.  After hemming her skirt 1/4” two times on all edges of the rectangle, as called for in the pattern, her final skirt would be 35.5 x 35.5.

Step 1:

skirt dimension in cutting chart – 1” = new skirt dimension

I want the final skirt made up of 10 rectangles or 2 rows of 5 fabrics.  First I’m going to figure out the height of each rectangle (or row) by dividing 35.5 by 2.  As a result my rectangles would be 17.75” tall.  Now I just need to add my seam allowance back in.  Each side of the rectangle will need a 1/2” hem, so my final rectangle length is 18.75

Step 2:

New skirt dimension / 2 = rectangle length

Rectangle length + 1” seam allowance = final rectangle cutting length

I now need to figure out the width of each fabric panel.  The square will be divide into fifths.  I will first divide 35.5 by 5 to get 7.1 (7 1/8”).  I add my 1” seam allowance (.5“ on each side) to each rectangle for a total of 8.1 (8 1/8”).

Step 3:

New skirt dimension / 5 = rectangle width

Rectangle width + 1” seam allowance = final rectangle cutting width


I cut my 10 rectangles of different fabrics 18 3/4 x 8 1/8.  I sewed five of them together at the long sides to make a long rectangle and then repeated this step with the four other pieces.  

You will have 5 rectangle left and will repeat these steps again so you have two rows of fabric. 

Sew the 2 rows of fabric together to make one big square, making sure to line up the seams.

It will now look like this.

Fold the fabric ion half length-wise and width-wise.  Cut the waist opening pattern piece based on the chest width so the circle opening coordinates with the bodice width.  

Attach the skirt as regular and you are done!

Phonenix small header 2.jpg
Phoenix gathered circle skirt

For another fun twist to this pattern you can make it a gathered circle skirt.  In addition you can apply this same process to the method above for a totally different look.  Choose the length of you skirt based on height as usual.

Add on 3” to the measurements.

Lay the waist opening in the corner.  Mark out 3” from it all around the curve to mark your new cut line.  

Sew a gathering stitch around the opening.

Make sure to pin the skirt to the bodice at the quarter points so the short sides of the rectangle are centered on the fronts and sides of the bodice.  Gather the skirt to fit the bodice between those points and sew to attach!

Can’t wait to see what creative things you do with your Phoenix patern!