Mixing it Up in Flagstaff with Simplicity 8219

Hello my Introverts! It has been a crazy and busy January for me and I am so excited to share some of my other makes from the faux furever challenge last November. I am starting to feel like myself again, but I have some work to do to get back to doing Zumba and you guys know how much I love to dance. For now, I walk and that I definitely over did it this past weekend.

I spent time with some amazing ladies from Phoenix Babes Who Create. It’s a group of creative women from all walks of life, bloggers, real estate agents, advertising agents, sewists (wink wink) and more. We collaborate together and help each other reach our goals, but it is more than that. The women in this group are genuinely nice, welcoming and accepting and I saw first hand how their friendships have blossomed. There is true love there and I am so happy to have found the group.

For January they planned a trip up to Flagstaff, Arizona. I had only been in passing on my way to the Grand Canyon with Chris so I said why not. YOLO (You only live once) as the kids say, haha. For those of you are aren’t familiar with the geography of Arizona, Flagstaff is up north in the mountains. And yes it snows up there. So you guessed it. I had to take all my faux fur makes up there because it only made sense. I could actually wear something I made for the winter. Unfortunately, it’s already warming up here in the valley, so I missed my two-week window to wear them down here, thanks, Mr. Groundhog. However, the important part was that I got to get out of the house and get out of the city to collect my thoughts.

We stayed in a cabin connected to a golf course and really lucked out. There were a few patches of snow left in the area. I got to see and touch snow something I haven’t done since I was in college. It reminded me of happy memories from my childhood and who wouldn’t want that. I definitely got my steps in walking across the course to that little patch of sunshine. And I hung out with 9 amazing ladies from the group. We laughed, cried and danced. They were sarcastic like myself which is why we got along so well. Life’s too short not to have a sense of humor. Plus, you live longer if you have a good belly laugh a day. At least that’s what one 105-year-old woman said in an old article I read. If I can remember her name I’ll add it. The point is you can decide to feel lonely and act like you don’t have any friends to hang out with or you can be brave and go out and meet new people.

For my introverts just start with a small gathering so your anxiety doesn’t build up with having to partake in small talk. It’s our Kryptonite, I know. I meet some of these ladies beforehand, which is also a way to break the ice before attending a larger event. After my first meeting w3ith some of the ladies I knew I would be just fine in Flagstaff. I hope that is some encouragement to help you to get out of your own way. And you can always use clothing as a way to start a conversation and break the ice. I took Flash (my car), my faux fur vest, a positive attitude and headed on the road. Check out the details below to find out how I made the vest and the tips I have for you to make your sewing process easier.

Here’s my review of the pattern and what I used:

Pattern Description: Misses Lined Vest in Three Lengths and Scarf

(Click here to find Simplicity 8219)

Pattern Size Chosen: Large

View: B

Fabric Choice: Faux Fur

Color: White with gray roots

Sewing Tools Needed That Aren’t Mentioned:

  • Walking foot
  • 90/14 Needle (the backing on my fabric was stiff. If yours is stretchy use 80/12 H)
  • Straight edge razor, X-Acto knife or scalpel
  • Polyester or Cotton thread
  • Wonder clips

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing it? Yes it did.

Are the instructions easy to follow? Yes, they are. No problems with the instruction.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? I didn’t want the vest to ever close. I don’t know why, but I thought it was strange for a fur vest to have that feature.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made: I didn’t add the hook and eye to the front of the vest. And I had to grade in a lot at the waist. It was a lot bigger than I thought and I think the lining slipped when I was cutting it because it didn’t line up perfectly. I had to seam rip and trim some of the lining to make the notches and markings on the faux fur work. I also took in both sides by an inch. I didn’t want it fitted, but I also didn’t want to wear a tent, which is the reason for the adjustment.

Would you sew it again? Most definitely! Next year I will make a black one and make it longer. I’m trying to have multiple colors to wear with my outfits.

Tips to avoid it taking as long:

Make sure you have heavy enough pattern weights to hold the pattern pieces in place as you cut them out so that nothing shifts.

Also trim down the seam allowance like they said so that it is easier to hand stitch the side of the vest closed. Otherwise, you’ll get annoyed with how frustrating it is not to be able to see the thread to do a slip stich.

Check the lining to make sure it’s not too sheer. I used what I had because this was my test run, and you can see the folded seam on the inside, but you better believe I’m wearing that bad boy.

Use wonder clips to keep the faux fur from peaking out when you are trying to sew two pieces together. Otherwise you will have to use a hand needle to pull the fur out of the seam. That takes a very long time and what was supposed to be a 2 hour project turns into 4.

Until next time…

Ashley E signature with xoxo at the end

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If you would like to learn more about the vision for this group please visit them on www.babeswhocreate.com.

Photo Credit:

Sara Zorker

Ashley Swanson www.smashinglyashley.com

Brittney Cocco www.thecoccochannel.com


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