Pattern Hack: Adding a Lace Overlay to the Brooklyn Brief

There is nothing I love more than a versatile pattern! The more looks I can get from one great pattern the better so when a spark of inspiration ignited for a way to make my beloved Brooklyn Brief sewing pattern have any more design options I was at my sewing machine so fast I actually made myself dizzy.

I have shared a few of my favorite Brooklyn Briefs made from Phee circular knit in the past including this striking hot pink pair which I actually made three exact copies of because I love them so much. I find myself wanting something a little bit … more than the sporty look the Brooklyn gives. And “more” for me means lace, AAAALLLLL of the lace!

Turns out hacking an all lace back and even a lace over lay from the View A Brooklyn Brief pattern pieces is super easy! The tutorial for switching out the view A back for an all lace version is a Phee exclusive pattern add on you receive when you download the pattern so I am not going to be sharing that here but I do want to share how to do the front lace over lay. It is super quick and makes the panty look super sweet!

If you want to make your own, here is what you will need….

Since this is a two in one tutorial I wanted to break it down and include both video and written tutorial for adding the lace over lay, check out the video below and keep scrolling for the write up!

So here is what you do! Begin by cutting out a panty view a front piece out of your main fabric. Then take your view B center front piece and add a 1/4 inch seam allowance to the side you would normally cut on the fold. Then cut out two separate, mirrored lace pieces using your now adjusted view b center front piece, placing the x edge along the scalloped edge of your lace.

Place your two pieces on top of each other with right sides together and matching the scalloped edges. Use a small zig-zag stitch to sew down the side you added the seam allowance to 1/4 of an inch away from the edge. Press the seam open and top stitch if desired.

Place your view a panty front piece right side up on your work space and then place your lace piece right side up on top of that. Align the crotch curve, top and leg openings and pin in place.

Use a small zig-zag stitch to secure the lace to the panty front along the scalloped edges. Baste the remaining edges together using a long straight stitch and then finish your panty as normal! Easy as that!!

Happy Sewing, Nicki @

Valentine’s for us single gals

Hello again!

It’s almost that month where everyone turns lovey dovey, flower sales go up and chocolate is everywhere. Well this year I’ve decided that instead of eye rolling at this holiday I’m going to embrace it! Now I am a single gal of four years, I am happy single and felt that this holiday can be for single gals too!

So here it goes. I am going to share with you fun things to do on Valentine’s Day! (Single lady style and you could even grab a friend to join!)

❤️ Mani/Pedi

❤️ Massage

❤️ How about try a yoga class (I love hot yoga personally)

❤️ Take out and a movie at home (my usual, which I share my dinner with my handsome pup name Tater!)

❤️ How about go to a movie by yourself. Cause why not?!

❤️ A day trip to someplace you’ve never been but wanted to check it out for a while or just drive till you find a destination (hey maybe you’ll be your next love there!)

❤️ And last how about a cooking class, look to make something you’ve never been able too or learn a new cooking skill!

With all the options for couples out there, that doesn’t mean that single ladies can’t embrace the holiday as well!! Single doesn’t define us, so let’s not let a holiday do the same.

And buy yourself flowers and chocolates!!


Alisha ❤️

I’ll be wearing my super fun red supplex Chelsea’s and modified pacific pullover (in black polatec, which is no longer available but fingers crossed it will be back!) from Greenstyle for my Valentine’s Day!

Pattern Hack: Adding a Zippered Pocket to a Legging Waistband

Pockets. Oh, pockets.

There great scandal of the lack of pockets in women’s apparel is still raging in the ready-to-wear world but how lucky are we as sewists to get to add pockets to literally anything we desire!? Even to leggings, a traditionally pocketless garment that is so lovely in so many other ways.

Today I wanted to share with you how I quickly, and easily add a zippered pocket to the back waist band of your very favorite legging pattern, perfect for keeping keys safe and secure when you are exercising (or shopping, I don’t judge!). The only thing besides your fabric and pattern you need for this hack is a 7″ zipper in a color of your choosing! Let’s get started!

I am using the Patterns for Pirates contoured waistband for the Peg Leg pattern in this tutorial but this technique would work for any legging pattern you may have.

Begin by finding the center point of your back waist band both vertically and horizontally. Mark that point with a washable marker (I still use crayola, it has never failed me!).

Draw a box 5 inches long and 1/2 inches tall around that center point with your washable marker and a point 1/4 of an inch in from each short edge in the middle of the box.

Using small fabric scissors cut a line straight down the middle of your box stopping at the 1/4 point marks. From those points, make small snips at an angle toward the corners of your box.

With your zipper open, place the right side of one zipper half against the cut slit and pin in place. Flip the zipper to place the edge of the other zipper side against the other edge of the slit and pin in place. The teeth of the zipper should be facing down and outwards.

Stitch the zipper to the waist band piece using a straight stitch down the middle of the zipper tape. Flip the zipper ends and pull to the wrong side of the waistband, tucking in the end tabs of the waistband as well. Press well (but be careful not to melt any of the zipper teeth).

Top stitch around the entire zipper 1/8 of an inch from the folded under edges. Be sure to secure stitches at beginning and the end.

Continue to assemble both your inner and outer waistbands as instructed in your pattern through attaching them together with a top seam.

Once joined, flip your waistbands so that both the inner and outer waistbands are facing outward and press the upper seam. Use your washable marker to draw parallel lines equal distance from the ends of your zipper, mine are 1 1/4 inches out for reference. using a stretch stitch on your sewing machine (a small zig-zag or the lightening stitch work)sew down those two parallel lines and finish your leggings as your pattern instructs!!

See how easy was that!

I am wearing my new olive supplex leggings (with zippered pocket!) with a winter white Rayon Spandex Madelyn Top, both fabrics are two of my favorites from Phee!

The Madelyn has a straight hem option included but to give it a sportier vibe I added a a multi length curved hem,another super quick hack you can find here!

Phone Sized Pockets

GreenStyle Creations Brassie Joggers are a quick sew with a comfortable fit.  But they have a small problem- modern technology!  Most women will comment about clothing that “Pockets are life!”  Ready to wear women’s clothing rarely has pockets.  Or if they do, they are tiny little decorative pockets.  About the only RTW clothing item that consistently has pockets are denim jeans.  Real women need pockets!

Menswear has pockets, and I get it that men have to carry wallets, and most women carry purses.  But you can’t carry your purse around all day.  When I go for a walk, I take a house key and my phone (and my water bottle, I get thirsty!)  So I need pockets for my stuff.  And if you have little ones, pockets are a necessity.  “Mama, look at this pretty rock.  Hold it for me.”  Toy cars, snacks, rocks and sticks, you name it, Mama is expected to carry it in her pocket.

The real necessity of course, is your cell phone.  Modern technology has conditioned us to feel lost without our mini-computer.  And if you prefer a larger screen so you can see all those cute photos on your Facebook feed, forget it!  That phone isn’t going to fit in most pockets.  And adding a phone case makes it even more of a challenge to fit.

The Brassie Jogger pocket is a decent size, it just doesn’t feel deep enough to hold my phone securely.  Altering the pocket may sound challenging, but really, it’s an easy modification.  The opening at the top of pocket pieces is around six inches, to give you room to take your hand (and stuff) in and out of the pocket.  So however you alter the shape of the opening, you need to maintain that six inch opening.

I wanted the pocket opening to start about two inches higher than it does.  The purple pocket edge line shows the original shape.  I lined the pocket pattern piece up under the pants front to maintain the proper hip curve.  Then I took my measuring tape, held one end two inches up from the original spot and curved it up toward the waist.  I maintained the six inch opening for my hand, and traced my new pocket opening.  The new opening is shown in turquoise.

Since I also wanted a higher rise (I am tall, and low or mid-rise pants don’t fit well) I added an inch at the top of my pattern pieces.  The pattern currently has layers for low and mid-rise.  I think I’ve read that GreenStyle plans to update the pattern to add a higher rise, but I want to make this pattern now.  I could have used the slash and spread method to add an inch to the rise, but adding it at the top worked.  Bonus- it also made the pocket an inch deeper!

I also traced my new pocket curve onto my fabric and made a one inch wide pocket facing.  I prefer a facing to just turning the top edge under and stitching.  I think it adds crispness and stability to your pockets.  I lengthened the inseam of my shorts to six inches, as it’s a good length for me.  Other than these simple modifications, I simply followed the pattern directions.

Brassie pocket

When Phee Fabrics started carrying Polartec, I wanted to try some.  It is an interesting fabric, NOT the bulky polar fleece stuff you might be visualizing.  It’s a technical anti-microbial fabric with a moisture wicking “power grid”.


The power grid design also makes it super easy to see your grainline and ensure that you are laying out your pattern pieces properly!
power grain

The Polartec Powerdry fabric is lightweight and breathable, so I knew that I would be able to make cute and comfortable shorts out of it.  I hope I have enough of this fabric left to make some joggers or lounge pants, because it is comfortable!

If you’re interested, the top I am wearing is made of Phee Fabrics rayon/spandex using the P4P Essential Tank pattern with the curved hemline.

Brassie tank

So go ahead and add some pockets to your life! 🙂

Steven Universe-al Wear

After all of these years of making, I have never sewn a costume for myself. I’ve just never had much of a reason to dress up on Halloween or for any other event. However, this year, my brother nearly had me convinced to attend DragonCon in Atlanta. I wasn’t able to attend, but the invitation started my brain thinking about creative costumes.

I’m personally much too practical to invest my time and energy into garments that can only be worn once or twice per year so I began searching for ideas that I could incorporate in my regular routine.

That’s when I remembered Pearl, from a Cartoon Network show called “Steven Universe.” My kids used to watch it… I have no personal affinity for the show or the character. I felt, though, that her character could easily translate into multifunctional additions to my own wardrobe.

{Not only that, her character seems pretty high on anxiety… she may actually be modeled after me!}

All I needed to sew was a cute peplum top and a pair of tangerine shorties. I matched it with a pink wig and socks, both purchased from Amazon, and attached a little yellow felt star with double-sided fashion tape.

I made the top by mashing together the Made for Mermaids Mama Fiona and Mama Joy. I gathered the peplum, rather than pleating. I self-drafted the funnel neck by increasing the neck binding by three times the width of the pattern.

I used a dreamy circular knit from Phee Fabrics for the top. It was my first experience with the fabric that everyone adores. And, I have to agree, not only does it feel amazing, it worked up like a dream. It is the perfect fabric for activewear and daily wear alike!

The pants I’m wearing here are also me-made… Vogue 1517 by Anne Klein. These pants really deserve their own post. MAJOR learning curve to share!

For the shorties, I used the Patterns for Pirates Peg Legs pattern and lengthened the inseam by two inches. I actually made these twice… the first time with a gusset. And, holy moly! The fit was so terrible on me that I was embarrassed to look at myself in the mirror. Thank the sewing gods that I had just enough fabric to complete a second pair – sans gusset!

I used a gorgeous nylon/spandex tricot in tangerine for the shorties. This is the perfect performance fabric! As a runner, I will definitely get a lot of use out of these cuties! This was my second project using tricot and it won’t be my last! Word of advice when making these shorties with tricot – size up, ladies! This is a compression fabric.

My last accessory was my very own little Steven Universe. He was super excited to channel the energy of his character and decided that bubbles were a must have in our quick photo shoot.

I really couldn’t be more pleased with the outcome of this month’s sewing challenge. I loved the opportunity to think creatively about how to assemble a costume that will blend into the everyday.

And, who knows, it may get to make an appearance at DragonCon 2019.

What’s on your cutting table for Halloween this year? Please tell me all about it!