Colette Moneta as a Sweater & Grainline Archer for Momiform MAKEover Tour with Baste+Gather

Mom jeans.  Well, maybe now it's mom yoga pants or leggings (essentials of the contemporary mom uniform).  Moms often have a reputation for ill fitting or just plain sloppy clothes.  I'm there many days.   So, when Lauren Dahl of Baste+Gather proposed the Momiform MAKEover Tour, I knew I wanted to participate.  I don't sew for myself very often and I wanted to take advantage of the opportunity to adapt patterns to fit  (and hopefully mask) my disproportionate midsection.  After you see my garments, keep scrolling and enter the GIVEAWAYS at the bottom of the post.  Lauren put together an awesome giveaway with over 50 winners!  Then, go visit the other bloggers on the tour, especially Scientific Seamstress, Call Ajaire, and 110 Creations who also have posts today (full schedule at bottom of post).

Disclaimer & Disclosure: No spanx or other "helpful" tools were used for this post.  The patterns (which I chose) were provided to me for free, with no requirements other than I sew them for this tour.

The outfit shown in the before picture above is pretty typical for me (especially that green shirt - I have worn it frequently for a several years now).  I love a tank or t-shirt and cardigan because I feel like a lose cardigan helps to mask my tummy.  But I look pretty sloppy in the picture (and, frankly, that green shirt is getting threadbare.  It's older than two or three of my kids).  So, I sewed up a MAKEover for my Momiform.  (Mom+Uniform=Momiform)

Things about me and my lifestyle that I took in to consideration for my MAKE over:
  • As a homeschooling mom of five kids, I tend do go for quick and comfortable.
  • I want to focus on tops right now.  As much as I'd love to make jeans and pants, I want to finish learning more first.  I need a lot of adjustments to get a great fitting pair of pants, so before I take the time, I want to know what I'm doing.  I'm taking a few Craftsy classes to help with that.
  • I live in the midwest, so the fall and winter are cold. 
  • I benefit from items that are easy to throw on and don't wrinkle and/or need ironing.  
  • My clothes still need to be nursing friendly (my youngest is 10 months old).
  • I am short.  
  • I have a highly damaged stomach from my pregnancies (10+cm diastasis for anyone that means something to), so I have to modify patterns to accommodate and try and mask that area.  I often wear a brace or something to give support and help flatten my stomach.
  • I don't sew for myself very often and I'd like to stretch my abilities.

My first MAKE over is a cropped sweater using the Moneta pattern from Colette Patterns and their tutorial for using the top of the dress for a sweater.  Since a dress isn't nursing friendly, I was eager to try their sweater version.  Have you seen how fantastic their model looks in it?  My waistline is more convex than it is concave, so the fit is very different for me.  My goal was to make a top that would be great for soccer practice and games, trips to the pumpkin patch, and other fall activities, but wouldn't be as sloppy as a t-shirt and/or sweatshirt.  The scoop neckline helps this sweater have a feminine touch, even with the heavier and darker fabrics.  I love cable knits, but I don't knit, so for the body I was able to use the remainder of a thrifted sweater that I had used for my son's Moto Jacket.  I also thrifted a rib knit sweater to use for the grey contrast parts.  As a whole, I am really happy with the result.  I'll confess it's about one inch shorter than I'd prefer, as I warped my knits the first time I serged the bottom band on and I had to cut it off to fix it.

This pattern was pretty quick to make, and has quite a few options for various collars and necklines.  I modified the side seams to increase the width of the sweater toward the bottom, since my waist is large and I didn't want the sweater to fit snugly there.  Other than, that, I made no changes to the pattern.  If you make the Moneta as a sweater, be sure to use elastic tape for the shoulder and waist seams.

The second garment I made was an Archer button down shirt from Grainline Studio.  I've wanted to do a lace inset in the back pleat of a top like this for a while, so I decided this was the time.  This project was a big bite for me to take.  I'm not sure what I was thinking.  I've never made a button down shirt before, never done a true collar, never worked at matching plaids, never done cuffs or sleeve plackets, and I drafted my own pattern hack to add the lace.  The result I am pretty happy with, but it isn't perfect.  I had the most difficulty with the sleeve placket, actually.  I'll need to work on that some more.  I did learn a lot and next time it'll be a breeze if I use an easier fabric.  The fabric I used is a 100% cotton Italian fabric that I purchased a while ago at The French Seam, a favorite fabric boutique in Indianapolis.  It is a very thin fabric.  I am thankful that the instructions and sew along information for Archer are so detailed.  I highly recommend trying the pattern if you have interest in sewing a button down.  This top will not meet my desire for clothes that do not wrinkle or require ironing, though!

I like that a button down shirt is very easy to nurse in, but a problem I often have with button downs is that they are too snug around my middle and the buttons show it by pulling, which is not a look I am going for.  So, to get a specialized fit for myself, after making a rough muslin (one sleeve, not cuffs or collar) I sewed a size 6 at the top, but then graded the pattern from a 6 under the arms, to an 8 around the high waist, to a 10 from the midsection down.  I reduced the length on the shirt fronts and back by 1" and the sleeves by 1/2".  I also brought the top of the armscye in about 3/8" (toward the neck).  Archer is drafted with a 1" box pleat in the back, but for the lace inset, I wanted a 3" pleat of lace, so I made that adjustment.

Do you know how difficult it is to photograph plaid garments?!  These lines match, I promise!

I definitely enjoyed sewing for myself and hope to do more of it.  I enjoy the ability to customize fit and detail according to my own body type and preferences.  And now I have a few pieces in my wardrobe that help bring my Momiform up a notch!
Momiform MAKEover
REMEMBER: Scroll to the bottom of this post to enter the two separate Rafflecopters! 50+ winners will be selected! Get 10% off your fabric order from now through October 1 at Michael Levine/ with code: Makeover10
Get 20% off your pattern order now through October 1 at UpCraft Club with code: MOMIFORM Are you MAKE-ing over your Momiform? Join the fun on Instagram with hashtag #momiformmakeover

Be sure to check out all the awesome series participants to get lots of momiform inspiration!

momiform major sponsors
Special thanks to these major sponsors who generously donated the following items for the giveaway:
(There will a different winner for each line item so we can spread the love around!)
Janome - One Skyline S5 Sewing Machine* Indiesew - Four $50 gift certificates (four separate winners) Michael Levine / Low Price Fabric - Four $25 gift certificates (four separate winners) and 10% discount for readers through October 1 - code: Makeover10 UpCraft Club - Two $25 gift certificates (two separate winners) and 20% discount on patterns through October 1 - code: MOMIFORM
And the following pattern designers who graciously provided patterns for the series participants and/or contributed the following items for the giveaway:
Grainline Studio - Two patterns of your choice True Bias - Hudson Pants & Southport Dress patterns Colette -Two patterns of your choice Closet Case Files -Two patterns of your choice Sew Much Ado -Two patterns of your choice Sew Straight & Gather - Three patterns of your choice Golden Rippy - Two patterns of your choice 110 Creations: A Sewist's Notebook Patterns for Pirates - Two patterns of your choice Itch to Stitch - Two patterns of your choice Mouse House Creations - Two patterns of your choice Hey June Handmade -Two patterns of your choice Peekaboo Pattern Shop - Three patterns of your choice Go-to Patterns - One women's pattern of your choice GreenStyleCreations -Two patterns of your choice Puperita - One pattern of your choice Sofilantjes - Two patterns of your choice Charlotte Kan - One pattern of your choice So Sew Easy - Two patterns or one bundle of your choice OUSM Designs - Women's Thumbs-Up Tee pattern E-Beth Designs - Two patterns of your choice Muffin Head Patterns - Any pattern of your choice up to $10 GrayDay Patterns - Sandpoint Top or Athena Top pattern (your choice) Scientific Seamstress - One pattern of your choice Stitch Upon a Time - $20 gift card 5 out of 4 - Two patterns of your choice Frianki Patterns - Two patterns of your choice KZ Jo Studio - Two patterns of your choice Straight Stitch Designs - Full collection of patterns Sewing Patterns by Aivilo Charlotte - Two patterns of your choice Striped Swallow Designs - Two patterns of your choice Rose and Lee Designs - Two patterns of your choice Sewing Geek Patterns - One pattern of your choice Filles a Maman - One pattern of your choice Bella Sunshine Designs - One pattern of your choice Liola Designs - One pattern of your choice Cali Faye Collection - One pattern of your choice Tinman Patterns - Orbit Skirt pattern Felicity Sewing Patterns - Two patterns of your choice Winter Wear Designs - Two patterns of your choice Ellie Inspired - Three patterns of your choice Love Notions - One pattern of your choice a Sparkly Baby - Two patterns of your choice Terra's Treasures Designs - Two patterns of your choice
*Janome giveaway winner must be located in U.S.A. and is therefore on a separate Rafflecopter below. Machine must be picked up at a local dealer; it cannot be shipped.
This second Rafflecopter includes all the other sponsor items since they can be awarded internationally! You must enter both Rafflecopters in order to be entered to win both the sewing machine and the rest of the giveaway items. All patterns awarded will be in PDF format. Enjoy!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

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  1. Hey Bethany, very cool that you're a homeschooling mama of 5 as well! I love, love the sweater you made--the fabric combo looks amazing.

    1. Thank you, Fenna. Sounds like we are kindreds - we even match with the 3b/2g combo!

  2. Oh that Archer turned out awesome!
    I feel you on the plaids. I swear I spend a million hours to line everything up and they're perfect. And then I take a picture and it looks like they're all wonky when on. Darn buttons and bodies making things shift slightly!

    1. So true! If only everything looked as perfect as we work to make them.

  3. Both tops look amazing! You did a great job and I love the lace inset. Cute fabric choices too. You will get lots of wear out of both pieces this fall and winter.

    1. This is the first time I've sewn something for myself and thought, I think I really will wear these often. I've only made two other things for myself and both get worn, just more for kicking around. I have plans to wear the archer twice this week! (with a washing)

  4. I love the Archer! AMazing!
    So many awesome patterns in the giveaway!
    And the sewing machine? Anything auto with so many functions is better than my cheap walmart singer simple!

    1. I love that there will be so many winners in the giveaway! Lots of happy people. I have a nicer Janome I like alot, but it doesn't have nearly as many functions as this model!

  5. I love your Archer! The lace inset is amazing.

    1. Thank you, Katie! I was really on the fence about the plaid even in the store and afraid it was too dark and too masculine. I was hoping the lace would help soften it.

  6. That machine looks amazing! I really want to play with all the electronic stitches.

    1. I agree! I love that it has 91 needle positions and such a long stitch length option (up to 9mm). I use those features a lot, and my current Janome only goes to a 5mm stitch length and 7 needle positions. Plus the bright lighting would be handy.

  7. This is an impossible question to answer. But I guess the top of my sewing list right now is the Straight Stitch Laurelhurst, Greenstyle brassie joggers, and the Lola by liola

    1. It is difficult to choose! I think I am eager to try the new Lark Tee from Grainline, Lane Raglan from Hey June, and I have Taylors from Greenstyle still to make.

  8. Great looks! Your archer turned out beautiful!

  9. You are just gorgeous... and from a mama of 5 I appreciate the "background noise" in your photos haha. These kids are so darn rambunctious, I mean wonderful.

    The pieces turned out amazing. I love what you did with the Archer. Everything looks fantastic on you.

  10. I really like my Janome 4618LE but automatic needle positioning and thread cutter sound so luxurious.
    Thanks you sponsors. I'd like to make Hey June's Aurora tee and Lane raglan tee.
    melissa evans of mahlicadesigns

  11. Such a great idea that lace in a shirt! I am joining the give away part that is international! :) Greetings from Lindsy

  12. oh my WORD! Now, I need to make an Archer shirt! That is the most adorable shirt evah!!


What do you think? I would love to hear!

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