GreenStyle Open Back Pullover

Do you ever look at patterns and think, I really like that, except for…?  That’s how I felt about the GreenStyle Open Back Pullover.  I like the open back, I like that there’s a deeper scooped back, as well as a closed back option.  I like that it can be sleeveless, or have long or short sleeves.  I like that there is a crew neck, as well as a scoop neck, along with a hood option.  Most people love “hoodies” and banded sweatshirts.  I am not one of those people.

Banded bottom shirts are not a good look on me.  I own one banded bottom shirt, and it hangs unworn in my closet.  I’ve tried to wear it, it looked cute on the hanger when I bought it years ago, but on me, it looks like a maternity top.  If I were an expectant Mama I would wear it and look adorable.  But since I am a Grandma and long past the age of having babies, it’s just not the look I am going for!

Luckily, it is super easy to hack the Open Back Pullover to not need a band.  You are going to want to pay attention to your hip measurement.  Make sure you measure the widest/largest part of your hips and booty.  If it falls within the measurements for the size you are making, you’re good to go.  But if it’s at the upper end or bigger than the size for your bust and waist, you will want to grade your pattern out to a larger size, starting at the waist.   Then use a ruler to add 4″ of length at the bottom of the front and back pattern pieces.

Follow the pattern tutorial, (it’s a pretty easy pattern) and instead of sewing on a band at the bottom, simply pin and press the hem up 3/4″ and zigzag or coverstitch to finish the hem.

OB frontOB side

I like that I can wear a regular bra with the high scoop back, and wear it like any other top.  The low scoop back would really show off a cute Power Sports Bra and be fun for yoga class or working out.  I thought about using powernet in the scoop opening, (there is a pattern piece for that), but the open back is just the right amount of sexy.  It would also be fun to use powernet as the upper back pattern piece for an even airier feel.

OB close

I made my top out of Circular Knit, and would totally consider a long sleeved, closed back version in Rayon Spandex or Ribbing for cooler days.  If you’re looking for a more traditional hoodie feel, Cozy French Terry would be so soft and plush!  Supplex would give a more athletic feel, and would coordinate nicely with Super G’s or Stride Athletic Tights.  I’m glad I gave the Open Back Pullover a shot.  It’s a simple, slightly sexy 😉 , comfortable look.

My shorts are the Brassie Joggers, made out of Supplex.  I purchased all my fabric from Phee Fabrics.


This post may contain affiliate links.  This means that at no extra cost to you, I may receive a small commission/credit if you purchase through my links.  As always, I only give my honest opinion.  After all, my blogpost represents me! 🙂  Thank you for reading and sharing my love of sewing, patterns, awesome fabric, and pattern hacking. ❤

Free the Cheeks

Summer is my favorite time of year. It’s filled with cookouts, drinks, and the pool. But the worst part is finding a swimsuit. I haven’t gotten a new one since right after my daughter was born. It’s really cute but not super flattering on my body type. So for the last 2 years, I’ve been shoving my boobs into tops that are too small.

I knew I needed to make a swim suit out of the new khaki steel tricot that Phee Fabrics recently started stocking. It’s such a versatile color! You can match it with just about anything. I ended up going with the white circular knit for the binding. If you’re looking for great swim material, Phee has you covered! I made some sports bras, that I also wear in the pool, out of tricot and circular knit. I wear them constantly and they still look great.

I also used the cut and sew foam from Phee Fabrics. You can purchase that here

I’ve seen lots of cute swim patterns but they just aren’t flattering on me. Since I’m a whole 5’ tall, I need things that lengthen my torso. Not to mention how hard I’ve worked the last 2 years to get back to where I used to be. I’ve been working my butt off and it’s finally showing. I found Sew Swimmingly patterns and decided to give them a try. She has some really cute, very trendy patterns.

The Veronica pants are a free pattern. They are a cheeky cut and are reversible. I’ve made 3 pairs so far. They are super comfy but show lots of cheek. I don’t have a perfect fit but they are so comfy that I haven’t even bothered fixing it. Maybe the 4th pair😜. The directions are not easy to follow. There’s a video on her YouTube channel, but definitely have your seam ripper close by. It took me 3-4 tries, the first pair I made. I’ll try to explain it a little better below. Also, I may have developed an obsession with the tanga style after wearing these. Once you get that first leg done, you’re going to turn them right side out. Then at the hip seam, pull the liner piece down below it, like in the third picture down. Then you’re going to start clipping them right sides together, all the way around. Then sew or serge together with your elastic. Then the top seam. If you have a Turning tool, it will be easier. I do not. Turn them wrong side out. I like to fold those pieces down, right sides together at the top unfinished seam and secure with a clip or pin. Then you’re going to reach through the hole in your liner and pull that clip through. Keep the right side pieces together and clip it at the edges where the fold is. Then serge and add elastic. Hope that helps a little. Continue reading

UFO Sighting – Conquering “the bin”

As I am about to cut a new project I see it lurking in the corner… That bin, box, bag. We all have one and mine seems to grow exponentially at times. And the more projects that get relegated to the “UFO” bin, and the more I seem to start new projects.


UFOS a.k.a unfinished objects are such a source of stress for me. A year ago I vowed to clear them out and not become a repeat offender, but here I am again. There is a box full of Phee fabric cut and sitting in plastic bags. I decided to take a stab at conquering this box, one project at a time and try to figure out why it gets this way and how to prevent the cycle.

First up my favorite scrap busting project, UNDIES! Phee rayon spandex scraps are the base for more or less every pair of underwear my almost 4 year old son has ever worn. Some day he will know how lucky he was 🤣


These take less time than it takes to even write about this project, but somehow they ended up in the bin.

Since these went so fast and I always run out of speed, I decided to stick with underwear and work on the two pairs of Made 4 Mermaids Greta thongs I cut out when I was working on the Lana bras from my last blog. These have a no show option, FOE, elastic and bands. I was super excited for these because they have a mid and high rise option. I cut out a pair in some Cherry RS and circular knit scraps.


They were very quick to sew and I like that you can add elastic and lace straight and not in the round….however, these are the mid-rise and these babies are SUPER HIGH!! and pretty baggy for the no show so I added some elastic and it helped, but I decided to file the red pair in the circular file bin… womp womp!


On to the bigger projects – the Crimson Top from George and Ginger and a pair of P4P Peg legs with the side panel. I cut out the Crimson top during testing to make this Pinspiration… and in the UFO box it sat for months!!! I had wanted to wear this so many times but for some reason just never got back to it. I absolutely love this top – the white circular knit feels so good on and the wide mesh worked really well for the panels.


My Pinspiration

The same thing for the leggings – I made the shirt and bra to go with them back in March but the leggings, which I have made many time and hardly need the directions for and yet they just sat…waiting to meet the rest of their outfit. The funny thing is that I really needed these. I made a bunch of full length leggings but wanted to have something a little more airy and light for the spring. The wide mesh is perfect for that and of course you can never go wrong with leggings in Phee Supplex!


Here I am at the end of this project and reflecting on the process. I really wanted to figure out why I have this bin in the first place and while I know some of it is just my nature to overschedule and under estimate my time, there is something else I realized. I started sewing because as a stay at home Mom I needed something more. When I worked, there was a sense of satisfaction from completing my tasks and projects at work, but being at home those daily tasks can just become so mundane. Taking care of my son and my family is the hardest work I have ever done and gives me the most joy at times, but I am left feeling empty on some level. Sewing fills that gap – when I finish a project I love I have a sense of accomplishment that is like nothing else I do everyday.

Sadly, I did not finish all of the UFO’s in the bin (including the leggings above) – my Claire Coat from last fall is still sitting idly on my dress form half sewn and it taunts me. But that’s ok. They will get finished and I will not be adding endless projects in between but instead the ones that will fulfill me. It does not need to be about quantity, efficiency or checking off someone else’s list. This is something I do for myself and if I continue to focus on that I will have a wardrobe and craft that I love!


Note: This post contains affiliate links to products. I may receive a commission for purchases made through these links.

Making the Jalie Crop Top Sports Bra Reversible

by Kim Dickerson

Lately I have been obsessed with the Calvin Klein elastic branding on their briefs, their performance wear, well anything! I think it is because of all the 90’s trends going around. I have actually not been a fan of logo since Jessica Simpson and her colorful LV’s haha! So why not make my own?

With Melissa’s permission [Boss Lady at Phee Fabrics], I decided to start with a version inspired by Calvin’s print lettering, with Phee’s name. I have a lot of projects in mind to use a waistband like this on and settled on an athletic outfit for myself.

I wanted a very basic sports bra with a racer back. Something a little more masculine than the strappier version I am also dying to try. When I was searching the Jalie Pattern site I came across their Crop Tops and Gym Shorts Pattern. It was exactly what I had been looking for except the waistband was too skinny. [Yay! I love any excuse to hack and make a pattern my own.]

For the fabric I decided on Nylon Spandex. I love this fabric so much that I was inspired to make it reversible especially after I pre-read the instructions and realized how easy it would be to do with knit binding. Another bonus that comes with making this sports bra in Nylon Spandex is that it can double as swim. That is four tops in one, giving me two sports bras and two swim tops!

The specific fabrics I used are the 12.3 oz Insane in the Membrane Nylon Spandex , some scrap 9.3 oz Jade Nylon Spandex Tricot, White Circular Knit and Powernet for the optional lining layer. I personally love Phee Nylon Spandex. It truly does stand apart with its amazing hand, moisture wicking and antimicrobial properties. I have personally bought from many other vendors and this is always my go-to!

In addition to fashion fabrics I decided to add in the optional lining layer. For this the obvious choice was Powernet. I mean it is a sports bra and the purpose is support right? None of my sports bra’s ever goes without Powernet! I also chose Nude because the background of my print is White.

If you have not ever worked with Powernet I strongly suggest you purchase some to have on hand. It works for so many different things. Did you read Debora’s blog last week about her Greenstyle Sports Bra hack? Best Powernet trick ever!

Making the Crop Top Sports Bra Reversible

Once I cut out all my pieces I simply cut a second front and back in a different fashion fabric. Once the Powernet was basted on and the shoulder and side seams were sewn, I attached the two sports bras wrong sides together.  Then  basted the neck, arm and waist. Making this one solid piece by basting will make it much easier to work with.

The sports bra also called for fold over elastic to finish the neckline, arm and waistband. I personally always like to make my own out of coordinating fabrics and add elastic inside if needed. I did not add any elastic in this garment.

I chose the White Circular Knit as a coordinate because it matched both fashion fabrics and gave each side a totally different look. I cut the binding 1 6/8 inches wide by the length indicated on the “Elastics Length” Chart. This measurement gave me a finished 5/8 inch binding with 1/4 inch seam allowances. I then attached it with the same method you would attach fold over elastic or knit binding.

When top-stitching my binding I sewed as close as I could to the edge while still catching both sides of the fabrics. This can be very intimidating to execute beautifully on the underside but as long as you take the extra time to measure and pin it will all work out in the end.

Creating a wider waistband for the Crop Top Sports Bra

This was actually a very simple hack. I found the waistband on the shorts to be the exact width I was hoping for, so I cut two. Then I adjusted the length of the second waistband to the same length indicated on the “Elastics Length” chart.

Creating HTV Calvin inspired logo/ lettering

After I finished creating my waistbands I surged the small ends right sides together and then pressed the wrong sides together in preparation for attaching. I often do not press when making a waistband but because we are going to be adding wording this is very important for ensuring exact placement.

At this point I used a clear ruler and found that a 1 inch tall letter would have the scale and proportion I was looking for on my waistband. Then I decided on a font I felt resembled the overall feel of Calvin’s font. Both my waistbands would fit the wording 3x so I needed 6 in total. After that my Cricut took care of the rest!

I usually use normal HTV on my knits but the last time I purchased Black the new Stretch HTV was on sale so I had it on hand. It has a different look on the back. Instead of being flat, or all one even color it has a swirl pattern, but not anything you will see on your cut outs. It is on the underside.

Overall I really love the stuff and can see a difference in the way it stretches with my knits. But at the same time I would still use the regular too if it was what I had on hand because it also works really well on knits too. Just in case you have been wondering about the difference like I have 😁

I placed the first cut out perfectly centered on the front and then placed the other on the right and left so it was evenly spaced.TThe sports bra waistband is then attached with the same seam allowance and top-stitching as the binding.

Overall I am extremely happy with the way this worked out and love my version way more than any Calvin Klein original!

Greenstyle Solo Tank

Have you guys seen the new Greenstyle solo tank? I had the pleasure of testing it and it is amazing! I have always preferred tanks with a lower armscye and this one is just low enough. It’s low enough to have ample range of motion but also have coverage. I love it styled with a sports bra for the gym or with a strappy bralette for a night out.

Pattern: Greenstyle Solo Tank

Solo Tank – PDF Sewing Pattern XXS – 3XL

On sale for $8.50 until October 21st

Sizes: XXS to 3XL bust measurements 32-47 inches

I used the burgundy rayon spandex for mine but any of the circular knits, tricot, or rayon spandex would be perfect!

I’d love to make one in the the emerald rayon spandex. *swoon*

-Whitney IMG_0404.png7522816640_IMG_3609.jpg


S.U.A.T. Brazi/Calista Mash-Up

I love the Stitch Upon A Time Brazi pattern.  I was so intimidated to try making my own bra that I eyed it for a month before I finally bought the pattern!  Since then I’ve made several workout bras for myself, a nursing bra for my daughter and a Brazi dress that I wear all the time.  I’ve hacked it for straight straps and removable bra cups and decided, why not mash it with the S.U.A.T. Calista?  Once you feel comfortable with a pattern and know the best fabrics to make it with, it is easy to branch out and try something new with it.

Brazi patternPlease note that out of respect for the designers, and protection of their intellectual property, I will not show full pattern pieces.  I bought the cross-front add-on when I bought the Brazi pattern because I love the look and knew that it would be the most flattering for my body type.  But you can do the straight strap hack on the original pattern.  I simply marked my pattern where it curves from cup to strap, and folded it under 1/2″ above that.  I folded the back straps under and cut out my modified pattern pieces.  I cut four 2″x13″ rectangles out of my fabric as my strap and strap lining pieces.

Choosing the perfect fabric is always the fun part of sewing.  And using high quality fabric is key when making a supportive and functional bra.  I love using Phee Fabrics circular knit, nylon/spandex, and rayon/spandex for my Brazi’s.  But the not-so-secret part to trim powernetbeing successful at supporting “the girls” is powernet.  And I’m not talking the decorative looking mesh stuff I’ve seen at a national fabric and crafts store.  Phee Fabrics powernet is legit!  It holds everything where it belongs.

I cut out my pattern pieces using the same fabric for the main and lining pieces and also cut all my pieces out of powernet. I trim the powernet 1/8″ to 1/4″ smaller on all sides except the side seams.  

pin powernet

Pin the trimmed powernet pieces to your lining pieces and baste in place.  Do not baste along the side seams!  To make the pocket for your bra cups, lay your cups on top of the bra front and mark the height.  Sewing a horizontal line across the height mark will keep your cups from shifting out of place.powernet basted

cross-frontSew your main and lining front pieces right side together.  The pattern tutorial recommends using elastic along the front edge of the cups.  Using the elastic adds another layer of security if you are concerned about anything showing when you lean forward.

back opening

I marked and pinned my back pieces together and left the center 4″ open when I sewed the top seam so that I would have room to insert the straps later.

sewing sideseamside seam sewn pinnedOpen up your front main and lining piece and match it up with your back main and lining.  Here’s the tricky part: sew the outer main fabric together, sewing down about an inch into the lining and then sew the bottom inch together.  Pull the lining fabric of the bra front out of the seam line and tuck it out of the way as you pin the powernet and back lining pieces together.  You may need to use your finger to hold the fabric out of the way as you sew the other 3 layers together.  This will give you the opening on the inside of the side seam for you to insert and remove a bra cup.

bra cup accessRepeat the process with the other side seam.  At this point you can follow the pattern directions about matching your center front notches, adjusting strap length, sewing on your bra band or skirt and adding the elastic.

hem dipSince I was adding the Calista skirt to the Brazi top, and the bottom of the two bras are different shapes, I knew that I might need to make some adjustments.  You might like the look of the dipped hem my mash produced, but I am kind of old school, and like my hems to be level with the floor.  I had an easy fix for my problem.

alter hemtrimmed hem

I laid the skirt pattern on the skirt, pivoted it up from the center front fold to 2″ above the side seams. I flipped the pattern over and repeated the process on the skirt back.  I hemmed the skirt and my Brazi/Calista mash-up was complete!

Although I can add bra cups if I want, I wore my new dress all day and took these photos without using any cups.  THAT is how well quality powernet works!  So hack and mash and sew away!  And enjoy wearing your comfortable, personalized creation.

Brazi Calista backBrazi Calista1