Forgiveness: 36 Years Worth

Happy Birthday to me!! I am so blessed to celebrate another year of life. As I celebrate my 37th year on this earth, I can’t help but look back on my first 36 years. My gift to myself is, RELEASE. I don’t often open up about my childhood, I especially never thought I would blog about it, because it was very painful. However, I have learned that in order to grow, you must look back, forgive, let go, and move forward.

I thought that I had let go of what happened to me a long time ago. I realized that I didn’t, because I had not forgiven those who did it to me. I don’t want to carry these pains anymore. Well, in my 36th year on this earth, I finally forgave the ones who robbed me of my childhood innocence.

I forgive the stranger who thought that a seven year old girl was a great target, and tried to rape her on her way home. I forgive my Godmother’s adult daughter for abusing me out of jealousy and putting scars on me that will make it hard to forget, because she could not stand how much her mom could love a little girl whom was not her own. I forgive my godmother’s husband who found it appropriate to sneak into the bed of a child and molest her. I forgive all the adults who knew what was happening, but did nothing but look at me with shame. I forgive the son of my mom’s best friend who tried to rape a 13 year old girl, whom had already been through so much already.

Most of all, I forgive my mom for never letting go of her abusive past, and taking it out on me, because I was born from rape, and looking at me was a constant reminder of that. I know that you love me mom, but the pain was so deep, that you couldn’t forget it. I know that pain, because I went through it too. I am sorry for the reminder that I was of that painful day in your life, when the man you trusted, broke that trust in the worst way. I am so glad that in my 36th year, we both found peace, and finally forged the relationship with each other, that we both deserve.

I know that some may think that this is dark for a birthday post, but this is my truth, and I wanted to RELEASE it all before I celebrated another year. Also, my spiritual counselor has told me for years that sharing my story may be a blessing to someone else who may be living their truth in silence as well.

So to all who know the truth, let’s celebrate letting go.

I am so thankful for the good childhood memories that has allowed me to remember that though we may go through times of struggles, there are reasons to smile and be grateful.

I am grateful for my sisters who gave me their blessings and pushed me to release, when I told them what I was going to write about. I am thankful to my dad, who stepped in and loved me as his own. He showed me the qualities of a great man and father. I am thankful for my husband and kids whom are a constant reminder of God’s love for me, and a reminder of what true unconditional love looks and feels like. I am so thankful for this gift of sewing that God has blessed me with, that has given me a place of peace to go to and Express myself creatively. I am thankful that this past year I was able to meet some wonderful people in the sewing community whom has strengthened my hope and belief in human goodness.

Me at 8 years old
My 9th birthday
My sisters and I Christmas 1991
My skinny self at the beach (9 years old)
I thought I was so fashionable as a teen 😂😂
I was always following my sister Simone around, she never knew it then, but I looked up to her. She was my hero.
My high school graduation
My beautiful and stylish mom in the 80s
Me at my senior prom
I was 19 in this photo
I was 21 in this pic
Me and my military battles
My mentor and my best friend
The love of my life on our wedding day.
The man who may not be my bio dad, but he stepped up and was the father I needed in my life. I will always be grateful to you Dad. I love you.
I love you mom. You sacrificed so much for us, and you loved us the best way you knew how.
Me and my daughter. My first born.
Me and my son, my little superhero.
I made it through so that I could be what I needed to be for them.

The few times I have shared me story, people always ask me the same question. “How did you make it through all of that. How do you smile so much after all you’ve been through.?” My answer is always the same. “God helped me through by placing the right people around me in the right season, and I am a strong willed individual, who will never let circumstances keep me from the life I desired.”

Today is my birthday you guys, and I am moving forward, and believing that my best life is ahead of me. This dress that I created for myself means a lot, because I created it with love, hard work, and determination. I chose blue not because it’s my favorite color, but also because it is known to be a peaceful and tranquil color. I am at peace in my life. My past will never be forgotten, but it has been forgiven.

I am a true virgo.
Thank you Lord for another year
These hands have created so much goodness, they should never be used to tear down nor destroy.
Happy Birthday lady!! Live, love, and laugh. You deserve it.
Turning my back on the past, my future is now my only concern

Thank you guys for sharing in this moment with me by reading my blog post. It was most personal and most difficult post, but I am so glad that I wrote it. I don’t know who you are, but someone was supposed to read it today. I pray it helps you in the way you need it most.

One Shirt Three Looks: The shirt that goes with everything.

Hi everyone! I hope all is well with you. Today I am coming to you with a top that has truly helped me create some wonderful looks. What I love most is that this top can be worn casually and dressy.

I found a beautiful laser cut ponte knit fabric at my local Atlanta fabric warehouse, Fine Fabrics. I am so glad that I bought quite a bit of the fabric, because I wanted to make more than one garment out of it.

I love the laser cut detail.

I used my favorite hackable pattern to create the top, McCalls 6886. I cut it about three inches below the waistline mark on the pattern paper. For the sleeve and hem, I stitched the solid border of the fabric to the end of the sleeve and the hem of the top. Next was deciding what I wanted to create to wear with this versatile top.

I found a very pretty gingham fabric at Jo-Anns, and I knew right away that I wanted to make pants using my favorite jeans pattern, the Ash jeans from Megan Nielsen. I am a stickler for matching stripes, so I cut each piece one by one, and slowly.

Next I created white pants from the laser cut ponte knit fabric using my favorite pants pattern of the summer, Simplicity 8841. These pants were so very easy to make, I added lining of course, I don’t need anyone seeing my private locations 😂😂.

The final look is my most favorite. I absolutely love my skirt, and the blast of color that it gave to my top. I used Simplicity 1369 to create my skirt. The only modification I made was by adding about 6 inches to the width of the skirt, and about 18 inches to the length.

I had so much fun creating these looks for my upcoming birthday, and I will be wearing them until the Atlanta weather tells me it’s too cold, and maybe then I’ll just add a coat and still strut 😂😂.

Thank you all for taking the time to read my blog. I hope that I have inspired you to create something beautiful.

Pattern Mashup: Simplicity 8841 & Mccalls 7955

Hello everyone!! I hope all is well with you. Often times when we look at patterns, we see the photos on the envelope and set out to recreate it. How many of you look at the patterns for what it could be, and how many ways we can use that pattern to create your version of a look? For me, I often look at patterns as a foundation, a starting point to get me to the design that I have pictured in my mind, or was inspired by.

Two wonderful ladies in the sewing community on Instagram created a challenge called the #sewcialmashup challenge, and it was right up my alley you guys. I found a gorgeous cotton crepe fabric at my local fabric warehouse, Fine Fabrics here in Atlanta, so I decided to use it to create a jumpsuit by using my favorite pants pattern, Simplicity 8841 and for the bodice, I used McCalls 7955.

I cut the bodice at the waistline, which is marked on the pattern, omitted the drawstring on the side of the bodice and added an invisible zipper. For the pants, I made no alterations, I just omitted the waistband. After sewing each piece separately according to the pattern instructions, I attached both pieces together.

This was such a fun project and I absolutely love the outcome. I don’t know about you guys, but I always feel so beautiful and glamorous wearing beautiful clothes, especially when it is made by me.

Thank you guys for taking the time to read my blog. I hope it inspired you to create something beautiful of your own.

Misty Cami: Hack it My Way.

Hi everyone, I hope all is well with you. Today I am coming to you with the Misty Cami by Sew Altered Style.

When Sew Altered style approaches me about joining their Misty Cami Hack tour, I was excited. I have never made a cami before, and I love a good hack. I really appreciate a pattern company who embrace the idea of sewists using their patterns as a stepping stone to their ideal garment.

From Cami to Maxi

I will start off by admitting that I have not been the biggest pdf pattern fan. Printing all of those papers and taping them all together seemed so very tedious. However, I must say, it was not as bad as I thought. It took me about 30 minutes to tape all of the paper together. There was a total of 64 pages.

I knew right after I saw the pattern pieces that I wanted to create a maxi dress, I mean, it is a summer staple. I used view A. I wanted the dress to be fun, feminine, and bright, hence my fabric choice. I used a yellow cotton eyelet that I purchased a while back from Jo-Anns before I was even asked to do this project, talk about fate huh.

I always drape my fabric in my dress form when I bring it home.

To turn the cami I to a maxi dress, I did not have to make many alterations. I just added 10″ to the length of the dress pattern, added a casing to the inside of the dress, and created a double elastic waist just below the bustline. I also liked the fabric rather than do facings as the instructions suggested. Considering the material I used, lining was the best choice.

I did not have to make any fit adjustments, which made me a very happy girl. The size suggestions in the pattern was true to size. Great job on that ladies. Overall, I am very pleased with the pattern, sizing, and hackability. I am definitely creating this pattern over and over again.


I had to throw in the turquoise converses 💙💙

Thank you guys so very much for taking the time to read my blog post. Go out and support Sew Altered Style, and get this pattern, you will be so very happy to did. Until next time you guys, make what you want to make.

TWEED ALL ABOUT IT

Hi everyone! I hope all is well. I have not always been a big fan of tweed, but I must say that I have been converted, and I hold Pinterest responsible. I  saw so many gorgeous tweed looks on Pinterest that I was inspired to create my own modern twist on the tweed trend. I must admit that I was also moved to create a look due to the passing of the late great Karl Lagerfeld, who did wonders when he took over as Creative Director of Chanel’s Haute Couture and RTW line. In my opinion, he modernized Chanel.

I have seen quite a bit of tweed around, and it’s often been in the form of a dress or jacket. However, I wanted to stray from the norm. Therefore, I decided to add my own touch to my tweed design and I used one pattern and beautiful tweed fabric that I purchased from my local fabric warehouse, Fine Fabrics, here in Atlanta, to create two looks. That pattern is New Look 6524.

FIRST LOOK

My inspiration
Top made using New Look 6524
I wanted to add the button touch to the back. Shout out to my son for picking the buttons.

After creating my top, I decided to make a whole outfit, so I used McCalls 6930, my TNT (tried and true) to create shorts to complete the look. Once I realized there was extra fabric left over, I decided to create shorts for my mini me as well using the same pattern. She was so happy, she loves when we wear mommy and me looks. I sure hope that she still enjoys it once she starts middle school next year 😢 (they grow up so fast). If not, I can create her singular looks that fits her ever changing style.

Be still my heart ❤

This look came together in the end, but there were a few changes made before I came to a final decision, which often happens in the planning and creating stage of any project. After trying on the top below, I just did not like the way it looked with the Peplum (it’s so important to constantly try on projects as you sew). I also decided to create gathered sleeves to complete the top.

This was my first idea for the top, but the Peplum was flat and was just overkill in my opinion. I decided to remove it and just keep it simple with the top.

LOOK TWO

For my final look, I decided to create a dress with a cute detail. My inspiration was this very cute dress that I saw on Pinterest. I did not want my dress to look exactly like my inspiration, but I did love the Peplum look on the bottom of the dress.

My inspiration
My version

With this look, I had extra fabric left over, and rather than throwing it to the side, I decided to get creative and make a head wrap with it. I think that it pulled the whole look together.

TWEED TIP

When working with tweed, it is very important that you serge the ends before washing and/or before starting your project. Once you cut out your pattern onto your fabric, make sure that you serge the ends then too. If you do not serge the ends of the fabric it will fray badly and fall apart depending on how long you have it sitting before you complete your project.

Thank you all for taking the time to read my blog. I hope that it has inspired you to start or continue sewing. That feeling of “I made it,” never goes away no matter how many things you make. Be blessed you guys, and remember to do everything with a purpose and with good intentions. Please like and comment below.

Mommy Makes It

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Hi everyone!! I hope all is well with you. It has been a while since I created a blog post, but life has been so busy with work, life, and everything in between. If you all have been following my blog long, you know that my daughter is the reason that I started sewing. She loves fashion, but I am very careful that she expresses herself with fashion while still looking age appropriate. One of my favorite things to do is sew mommy and me looks for my her and I, and sometimes, my son gets in on the fun. I truly treasure these moments, because I know that one day, they will grow up, and may not want to dress alike any more, at least I know for a fact that my son will not. However, as of right now, they love when I make their clothes. When asked by others where they got their clothing, they would proudly say, “my mommy makes it.” Seeing them so proud to wear what I make in a time when so many are label driven, makes me feel wonderful and accomplished.

For this mommy and me look, I used New Look 6487 for my daughter’s dress, but I did a few modifications such as adding a zipper to the front instead of buttons, and adding ruffles to the bottom to make it a bit more unique to her taste.

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I created a few pieces for myself out of the fabric that I used. The first thing that I created is a spring jacket using M7730 view A from McCalls Pattern Company. I did not make any modifications with this look, because it is one of those patterns that is beautiful just the way it is. I also made shorts using M6930 view A. I have made these shorts a few times. I also made a ruffle shorts DIY with this pattern. I have a tutorial up on my YouTube channel. I also have a sleeve tutorial on M7730 on my channel as well.

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People always tell parents to enjoy their kids, because the days are long, but the years are short. I must agree, because my little girl whom I was just holding in my arms feeding what seems like yesterday, just turned ten and I find myself wondering where the years went. My son will be taller than me by his tenth birthday, and I have been investing in more heels for this occasion. I feel blessed to watch them grow, and I pray for the world that they are growing up in everyday. However, I will continue to enjoy everyday, and hope that they remain long, and I will take more opportunities to share many more mommy and me moments with them while I can. Thank you for taking the time to read my blog, I hope you all have a blessed and joyful day.

continue scrolling down for more photos. I also added a photo of our me made looks that I created for Mother’s Day at the end.

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MOTHER’S DAY EXTRA

For Mother’s Day, I created a shirt for my sun using Simplicity S8180 view A, I modified S1453 view A and turned it into a peplum top for my daughter. I also modified Megan Nielsen’s Matilda Dress pattern and turned the bodice into a cropped spring jacket for myself. I will be doing a YouTube tutorial on this at a later date, so subscribe to my channel to stay on top of new uploads.

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