Emily Hallman : back to basics

the TÉLIO project: back to basics / by Emily Hallman Designs

This post is kindly sponsored by TÉLIO, and the fabric was provided to me for this project. Thank you for supporting the brands that support this blog.

I used to think sewing basics was the last thing I wanted to do. I just wasn’t jazzed about the idea of tees and comfy pants, especially knowing there’s lots of perfectly good t-shirts and comfy pants out there waiting for me to buy – saving me the time I would spend making them. Turns out, the basics are just like everything else I sew because I can’t find a well-fitting or quality or pretty equivalent in retail, and they can be just as fun to make. I think my hang up for the longest time was that I just wasn’t inspired to make some the basics. It felt, well, basic. But I think an interesting thing happens on the sewing road to Handmade Wardrobe town: you start wearing everything you make and you become acutely aware of what may be missing. Plus, I think sewing becomes more fun the longer you do it, and the new projects keep the love alive.

I wanted to create a collection with TÉLIO this year that really focused on options and a handful of garments that could easily be mixed and matched. So today’s looks lay the foundation for that, even if the tee is next level with some added sparkle. An added bonus of today’s looks is that everything is so quick and easy to make. I will happily invest some serious time into my sewing projects, but I’m definitely not upset about a few speedy makes every now and then.

Here’s the lowdown on these cuties:

I made three pieces using a rayon/nylon blend ponte knit, which is considered a stable knit. You’ve seen me use this fabric before, and for good reason: it is a dream to work with, and it’s on the more substantial side in the knit category. It’s a bit beefier so you don’t have to worry so much about all the lumps and bumps showing. I’ve never felt like I needed to wear spanx with any of my ponte knit garments. It’s soft and smooth, has excellent recovery, and doesn’t pill like many polyester ponte knits.

This ponte knit (along with all the other fabrics I’m using) is available at Stone Mountain Fabrics. It’s listed as blue, but the name of the color is actually “teal peel.” It’s mostly navy, but there is a hint of teal, so just know that if you grab some.

I embellished the tee with Swarovski crystals, and I used E6000 glue to apply them. This was my first time using this glue (it’s the one specifically for gems and beads), and it is incredible. Those crystals are never coming off!

I didn’t make any adjustments to any of these patterns. I cut the tee in a medium, pants in a large, and the cardigan in a medium. I might could have sized down on the pants, but I’d rather they be a little roomier than too tight.

I used a stretch 90 needle, all-purpose polyester thread, and the stretch setting on my sewing machine for the majority of the sewing for these pieces. For the edgestitching around the neckline of the tee as well as the hems and the hem of the pants I used a straight stitch and Coats & Clark stretch thread. I went with a blind hem on the cardigan. I serged all the seam allowances.

I’m thinking about a swayback adjustment for the tee, but otherwise I really, really love the fit of all these patterns. All of them will be repeated, and I’m actually thrilled to have a quality tee pattern. I may chop the pants off to be culottes, but I’m still thinking about that. (I have culottes on the brain lately!) It’s too hot here to wear them right now, but even in winter I’m much more likely to wear those as culottes than full length pants. I’ll keep you posted. 🙂

Simplicity 8378, See & Sew 6368, Simplicity 8376

And just a reminder: next week is intermission so there won’t be any new posts for this TÉLIO project. We’ll pick back up the second week of September with the last looks and a lookbook of all the outfits mixed and matched together. Looking forward to it!

Have a great weekend,


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