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Jones Trousers Tester Makes

Hello, Hello! It has been a bit of a whirlwind with the release of the Jones Trousers. I have been blown away by the response to the pattern! I wanted to take a moment and highlight the pattern tester makes. I am beyond grateful for the time and effort that everyone put into testing this pattern, as it was essential to making this pattern the best that it can be. It’s also important for you to be able to see the pants on a variety of bodies and see what kind/if any modifications were made to achieve the desired fit.

Here is a look at everyone’s makes and sizes:

Michele: Waist – 40″ Hip: 54″ | Size made: M |

Michele selected her size based on her hip measurement. Due to the difference at the waist, she put in additional back darts to help bring in the waist. Her pants are made from heavy-weight linen (7oz). Michele noted how confident she felt while wearing them!

Alexis: Waist – 30″ Hip – 42″ | Size made: F | @helloalexisbailey

Alexis chose her size based on her waist measurement. She made her pair out of a light-weight corduroy (which does require a bit of preplanning before cutting). She eliminated the belt loops and back pockets.

Alyx: Waist – 26” Hip – 35” | Size made: A | @enderallsews

Alyx chose to size down and make Size A based on the finished garment measurements. She used a denim cotton twill to make her trousers. She eliminated the back pockets and cuffs.

Tracy: Waist – 59.5” Hip – 59.5” | Size made: P | @cotton_and_seed_handmade

Tracy made a toile out of a bedsheet to test the fit. She found that the pants were very comfortable, but the pocket openings were too small. I was able to address this issue for the final pattern.

Cindy: Waist – 27″ Hip – 37″ | Size made: D | @the_sew_sew

Cindy’s waist was a size C and hips were a size E so she made size D. She was able to modify the waist easily and the hip ease made it great to size down. She took 1″ in on the waist through back darts and side seams. Cindy made her pair out of 6 oz. denim.

Morgan: Waist – 54″ Hip – 67″ | Size made: Q | @hedgewitchmakes

Morgan chose to make a Size Q based on her hip measurement. Due to the difference between her hip and waist measurements, she made the side seams curve inwards and also made the back darts wider. Her version is made from a heavyweight cotton blend.

Erika: Waist – 25″, Hip – 34″ | Size made: A | @eruthd

Erika made a Size A and chose her size based on her waist measurement. She found that she still had plenty of ease at the hips when using the waist measurement to select a size.

Rebecca: Waist – 29”, Hip – 37” | Size made: E | @rebeccacreechcreates

Rebecca’s measured exactly in Size E. She made her version out of ventana twill and did not make any modifications to this pair.

Andrea: Waist – 35.8″/91 cm, Hip – 41.7″/106 cm | Size made: H | @andreawedley

Andrea’s measurements put her in two sizes – I for the waist and H for the waist. She chose to make a straight size H and due to the elastic back she was able to make that size work well for her. She made her final pair out of a linen-viscose mix.

Kathe: Waist – 36″, Hip – 40″ | Size made G | @tijerashomesewn

Kathe measures across 3 sizes. After discussing the options, she decided to make a pair based on her hip size and make adjustments to the waist. She did eliminate the back darts to accommodate the difference at the waist. Her pair is made from a lightweight denim cotton.

Mandy: Waist – 37”, Hip – 49” | Size made: K | @handmademandy

Mandy’s measurements put her across a couple of sizes. She chose to sew Size K which is closest to her hip size. She made no modifications to Size K and made the pants out of linen.

Jessica: Waist – 27″ Hip – 35″ | Size made: C | @jess.sews.stuff

Jessica’s measurements put her right at a Size C. She added 1″ to the front and back rise and removed 1″ from the front and back pant leg. She considered her seated hip measurement and expected range of motion when choosing a size and looked at the finished measurement chart to compare.

Amanda: Waist – 39.4″/100 cm Hip – 49.7″/126cm | Size made: K | @queen_ambrosia_

Amanda’s measurements put her between a Size K and Size L . After playing around with the traced pattern pieces she decided on a K. She used a drapey eucalyptus/linen/cotton blend.

Lenzy: Waist – 30″ Hip – 40″ | Size made: G | @thepetitepearsews

Lenzy’s waist and hip fell into two different sizes. She selected a size based off of her hip measurement and adjusted the waist by increasing the darts and pleats, and the side seam allowance from the hip to waist. She also shorted the legs to accommodate her height. Her version is made from slub linen.

Jess: Waist – 48″ Hip – 62″ | Size made: P | @jessicarosesews

Jess made a Size P based off of her hip measurement. For her next pair she plans on grading the waist so there is less excess fabric in the back.

Laila: Waist – 42.9″/109cm Hip – 53.4″/137cm | Size made: M | @La.ila.creates

Laila made a Size M based off of her hip measurement. To adjust for the waist difference, she made the back darts each .75″/2cm wider (but kept the length the same) and tapered the center back seam to .75″/2cm at the waist.

Carolyn: Waist – 30” Hip – 34.5” | Size made: B | @Carolynchen403

After making a toile, Carolyn noted some adjustments that she wanted to make. She made leg gusset smaller and made front pleat a little smaller to accommodate for a larger waist measurement my larger waist. She also took in more at center back to work better with her body.

Hopefully seeing all the different sizes is helpful for you when picking a size for your Jones Trousers. You can see that the pattern is pretty forgiving in terms of fit. You may select your size based on your hip or waist measurement or in between. Be sure to refer to the finished garment measurements when selecting a size to be sure you are happy with the amount of ease.

Once again, thank you to all my amazing testers! Going back through all the photos has me feeling so grateful for everyone who is so willing to help making sewing patterns better. If you have any questions about selecting a size please don’t hesitate to reach out to me:

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Introducing the Jones Trousers

I’m thrilled to introduce the Jones Trousers. These pants have become a staple in my wardrobe since I nailed the design. The pants are designed using zero-waste cutting techniques, leading to an unconventional pattern layout that is fun to sew! Over the past six months, it has been a challenge to tweak the design to include 19 sizes, ranging from 33″(83.8cm) hip to 72″(182.9cm).

I have been searching for my “perfect” pants for a while. I knew what I didn’t like about the ones I already owned and ideas about what my ideal pair should be, but I couldn’t quite seem to find them. A few sewing patterns came close, but there was always a little something missing, something that stopped me from spending my time making them.

My goal when designing these trousers was to create an elevated basic – comfy, everyday pants – that would fill a hole in my wardrobe. I wanted pants that not everyone had. A pair of pants with a little something extra without being over the top. Ease, movement, functionality, and style were key elements that I wished to incorporate. I wanted to feel comfortable bending over, sitting on the floor, going on a walk, or going out to dinner. There were also design elements that I wanted wanted to include, e.g. fitting at the natural waist, with plenty of ease throughout the hips and inverted box pleats to add a bit of drama. Finally, I challenged myself to bring all my ideal details into a zero-waste layout. With these thoughts in mind, I began looking at inspiration in ready-to-wear pants (check out this Pinterest board) and started the design process.

Six months, lots of research and samples later, the Jones Trousers are now a garment you can make. I’m pleased with how these pants have evolved. I can’t believe that I checked all my boxes and I now have pants I can wear effortlessly. I feel good when I wear them, and I can look fancy or casual, funky or professional.

Fabric selection plays a vital role in the final look of the Jones Trousers. A drapey, lightweight fabric (e.g. Tencel Twill – 6oz.) will flow down the waist and around the hips. Because the material has a more fluid drape, the pants will fit closer to the body, and the amount of ease designed into the pants is not as evident. A heavier weight fabric with more structure (e.g. brushed denim – 9oz.) will highlight the shape of the pants more clearly. The ease is more evident because the fabric sits away from your body. A pant made of mid to heavy-weight linen (e.g. 6-7oz) will fall somewhere in the middle.

One of the funnest parts of designing using zero-waste pattern cutting techniques is trying to figure out the little details that can really elevate a garment. For these pants that includes the unique shaped zipper fly, the button loop and eliminates the need to sew a button hole, interior cell phone pocket, and the leg gusset.

My pattern testers did an amazing job of bringing the Jones Trousers to life. They helped bring this pattern to the level that it is at now, pushing me to make it the best possible. I will be sharing their versions over the next few weeks, both on Instagram and the blog.

I’m looking forward to seeing everyones versions of the Jones Trousers. Use the tags #goldfinchjonestrousers #jonestrousers and @goldfinchtextilestudio to share your makes. I love seeing people’s different versions of the pattern. If you have any questions about the pattern please don’t hesitate to reach out to me at Thank you for your support!

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Zero Waste Gifts – Modified Sam Apron

I try to make some kind of Christmas gift for my family every year. Some years the gifts are more elaborate than others. Sometimes I have an idea well before Christmas, other years it feels more last minute. I’m sure if you have made handmade gifts you know this feeling well. And even though the official gift-giving season is over, for now, I thought I would talk a bit about the gifts that I made this year because really any time of year can be a time to give a handmade gift to a family member, a friend, or even yourself. Luckily, this year I managed to not only have an idea, but I had “plenty” of time to get it done. I say “plenty” because I did have lots of time to get the gifts done, but I still felt a bit of pressure – such is the nature of working in Santa’s workshop.

When Helen’s Closet released their pattern for the Sam Apron (free when you signup for their newsletter), I was hooked. For years I’ve been telling myself that I need to make myself a full apron – I had been sporadically wearing a half waist apron – and this was the perfect opportunity to finally get it done. I thought it would make the perfect gift for my family members as many are great home chefs and/or work in workshops where an apron would be readily used.

After reviewing the fabric requirements, I ordered some heavyweight linen hoping that I would be able to adjust the pattern to work with the width and yardage that I purchased. Since I was making aprons for a variety of people – different heights and sizes – I knew I needed to figure out a way that I could adjust the pattern so I won’t have a bunch of random pieces of leftover fabric. When I ordered the fabric I did not have a full plan yet, I was just hoping that I would be able to figure something out easily.

The pattern provides you with very helpful guidance on selecting a size. Because I was making these for people who were not standing in front of me, I needed to make some guesses. When selecting the sizes, I also wanted to take into account my fabric length and width so I would be able to maximize my fabric. Fortunately, I was able to divide the sizes of 6 individuals into 3 apron widths, i.e. 2 aprons at 31″ wide, 2 aprons at 33″ wise and 2 at 36″ wide. For the length, I decided to make them all the same by dividing the fabric width of 57″ in half and cutting the aprons out on the cross-grain. This allowed me to get 2 aprons for each width that I needed. This also meant that the aprons ended up being a bit short.

To solve this problem, I dug into my linen scrap collection with the idea of adding scrappy patchwork at the bottom of the aprons to make up for the missing length. Past me must have been planning for this because I found some already pieced-together linen that happened to be just about the sizes I needed. Needless to say, I was very excited about this find. It ended up being a huge time saver! I just sewed these patchwork strips at the bottom of the aprons and made the lengths different based on everyone’s height. This solved my length issue perfectly.

The next decision was to decide how to use the bib cutouts. I knew that I wanted to incorporate them into the apron somehow. For a bit, I thought of using them to lengthen the aprons, but that wasn’t going to work. Then I started playing around with various pocket ideas. The original pattern comes with ample pockets and I wanted to make sure the ones I made did too. In the end, I made a patch pocket out of the cutouts. I sewed the cutouts right-sides together, leaving a small opening so I could turn them right-side out. Once turned out and pressed, I had a nice lined patch pocket made for the apron offcuts. I sewed down the top edge and added a little indigo tag to each pocket.

I used more scrap linen for the top pocket and the towel loop – which by the way is an amazing addition to any apron! I also made it easier on myself and used twill tape for both the cutout finishing edge and the straps. I would have been able to piece enough scrap linen together to make the straps, but that would have increased my time spent by a lot.

In the end, I am very pleased with the outcome and so are the recipients. I even remember to wear mine while cooking – mostly! I would highly recommend the Sam Apron pattern – for yourself or as a gift. I enjoyed the process of taking a pattern and reimagining it as a zero-waste pattern. This one was simple and easy to do and I look forward to challenging myself more this year with this kind of work. I hope to share more of this in the coming months. If you have done the same, I would love to hear about it!

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Scrap Happy

Over the past couple of years I have collected a vast amount of scrap fabric; both from my own personal sewing and from small, sustainable clothing brands. I have big dreams for many of these bits, but I haven’t been putting the attention I need into using them. They are taking up space in our little house and I want to start actively using them, not just dreaming about the possibilities. When I originally began collecting these fabric scraps and cutoffs, my goal was to make various products to sell in my shop and at craft markets. Due to many factors, I have not been participating in markets and decided to shift the focus of my work. So now I have a ton of scraps and a long list of personal projects I want to work on.

At first, I had hoped to come up with some new and interesting ideas to use the scraps, but through my research, I have found tutorial after tutorial on how to make scrunchies and zipper pouches; nothing too new or exciting. I decided that I would like to approach my scrap projects from a different angle; not a tutorial, but more inspiration to get your scraps out and make something useful. My goal is to work on a scrap project at least once a month and document it. I’m excited about putting some direct focus into using these scraps as there some items I’m really looking forward to making.

My first project is a water bottle carrier. While taking a walk one evening, my partner mentioned that he had seen a water bottle carrier at the co-op made from parachute fabric. I instantly thought that I should make one for our walks. I am notorious for forgetting water when we head out on a walk. Sometimes we take a wagon to carry extra stuff, but many times we head out on a quick walk to the lake and we don’t want to bring the wagon along. And more often than not, I end up carrying my 3-year-old home on my shoulders so having to carry a water bottle also is something I just never want to do.

I received some upcycled cotton canvas from Summer at Tiger Owl and I have been hoarding it waiting for the right project. This water bottle carrier seemed like the perfect place to use some of it because it’s sturdy and I love the little speckles of color throughout the neutral canvas. I decided to make a simple, lined box bottom bag to the dimensions of the water bottle we use most. I added a pocket on the exterior just in case I don’t have pockets in my clothes that day and an adjustable strap.

I’m very pleased with the end product. It is so easy to throw this carrier over my shoulder and head outside. While I haven’t used it a ton yet, it seems like it will be easier for me to remember to bring along and much easier to adventure when I have both hands at the ready.

I’m looking forward to working my way through my scrap project list. This water bottle carrier was a nice challenge and distraction from the pattern that I am currently working on. I hope that making some dedicated time for personal, fun projects will give me some time to clear my brain and a chance to be extra creative. Do you have any scrap projects you are working on or dreaming about? I would love to hear about them!

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Hack: Patchy Cropped Lawrence Top

When my friend Jamie (@reclaimedcraft) asked if I was interested in some fabric cutoffs from her time working at Elizabeth Suzann, I jumped at the chance. I have a never-ending supply of fabric scraps, but the opportunity to use high-quality fabric is hard for me to turn down. I have a couple of idea swimming through my head of what I will be doing with these scraps, but my first desire was to create a patchy, cropped Lawrence Top.

Upon opening the boxes of scraps, I was immediately drawn to the olive linen. I had visions of a monochromatic top with a few pops of contrast. The navy linen was the perfect pairing with the olive. I began by sorting and ironing out the scraps. The next step was to straighten all the edges. In the past, I have tried to work the various curves and diagonal cuts into the finished whole cloth, but for this project, I wanted to work with only the straight lines. I now have a pile of smaller cutoffs, but I have a few ideas running through my head about what to do with those.

Once the fabric had been prepped, the fun part could begin. Based on the amount of scraps I had, I decided to make some changes to a few elements of the design. First, I used a large inverted box pleat on the back panel instead of smaller pleats or gathers. When working with all the seams of the patchwork, it can sometimes be a little tricky to get the fabric to drape well so I wanted to eliminate a bunch of pleats/gathers that might interfere with how the fabric hangs. I also decided to anchor the pleat 1″ down from the yoke to create a more dramatic effect.

For the front panels, I decided to make them the same width as the yoke and eliminate the pleats/gather all together. There is still plenty of ease for me, but if I had been making the tunic version I probably would have stuck to the original dimensions. The only other change that I made to the pattern was using snaps instead of buttons. I really like that clean finish of the button band. Once you have an understanding of how the pieces come together, it is easy to make adjustments that work for your body and the fabric you have.

The process of piecing the fabric together is simple but does take some time. Once I got into a rhythm, it went pretty quickly. I find that it is helpful to layout some fabric pieces and have a general idea of how one section might go together. For example, if I know I need to have a finished piece of 12″ X 22″, I will see what pieces I have that fit within those dimensions and see how they layout. I attempt to have a bit of a game plan before I get sewing.

To begin the patchwork, I first sew my fabric pieces together and trim any excess fabric. I then finish the raw edge with a zigzag stitch. Next, press the seam to one side and topstitch the seam in place. I continue on like this, building the piece of fabric to the desired dimensions. Once I have the size I need, I treat it just like a pattern piece and sew everything together.

Working through this process is time-consuming, but also very rewarding. This top was created from waste and it feels good to be able to make something fun and beautiful with these leftovers. By using the Lawrence Top pattern as a guide, I hope to make more patchwork tops – maybe something with more color/pattern mixing.

Thank you again, Jamie, for taking the time to save the scraps, sort them and send them my way. If you have any questions about this process or the pattern please don’t hesitate to email me – If you try this process or any other hacks, I would love to see your final top. Email me photos or post on Instagram using #zwlawrencetop and #goldfinchlimited.

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Lawrence Top Tester Recap

I wanted to put together a special post to highlight my testers final garments. I would not have been able to complete the Lawrence Top sewing pattern without their wonderful help. I really enjoyed working with these women and seeing their finished garments makes me very happy. Thank you again for all your help!

What is great about the pattern is it’s versatility; not only in how you wear the garment, but also how it can work with different types and sizes of fabric. Seeing all the tester versions next to each other really highlights how flexible this pattern is.

Andrea made View B in a lightweight viscose from her stash. Due to the size of the fabric, she didn’t make the low/high hemline. She also used a different piece of lightweight fabric for the interior yoke. Both of these mods are great places to change up the pattern if you have less fabric than recommended. If you click through on her post, you can see her pattern pieces all cut and laid out, along with the very minimal waste she has when finished.

Eli made View A in a more structured gingham cotton. I love how she styled the top in a variety of ways; over jeans, layered with a cozy scarf, and open as a jacket/cardigan. I really enjoy wearing oversized button-up shirts over tank tops, so this will definitely be my go to way to wear the tunic this spring.

Sarah made View A in viscose rayon. She used a wide cut of fabric and was able to lay out her pattern pieces with the fabric grain, as apposed to cross-grain that the pattern calls for. The top is wonderfully drapey and looks good open or closed.

Rebecca made View A in a crisp, white linen. Rebecca styles the tunic with and without a turtleneck showing that the top can be worn throughout many seasons. Rebecca has plans to make another tunic, but making it a bit narrower by adjusting the width of the front and back panels. She also mentioned the idea of modding the pattern into a dress and now I’ve been thinking about ways to make one for myself.

Rose made View B out of a beautiful piece of linen. She made size 2 as her bust size fits right on the lower end of the size range. I love how she styled the cropped top with cozy linen pants. I can’t wait to see her tunic version.

Michelle (@zoetemeyer) made View A in a drapey rayon. Due to the size of fabric she had, she rearranged the pattern pieces and ended up making a longer, narrower version of the top, with a low/high split hemline. She also omitted the seam facing details and instead used this leftover fabric to test her buttonholes. It’s nice to see how she took the pattern pieces and moved them all around the fabric she had to make it work.

Elana (@the_solstice_studio) made a View B of the top. She had a lot of wonderful ideas to mod/hack the pattern: “I thought of a number of ways to use excess fabric or mistakes to keep the top zero waste including ruffles, a tied bow at the front, sleeve details, making an even longer top that’s actually a dress (I fantasized about a dress version of option B the entire time I worked on it, cinched at the waist with a ribbon made from excess fabric or a belt), or even longer sleeves for a winter version of option B.”

Thank you again to my testers! I hope seeing these finished tops gives everyone some inspiration and I look forward to seeing many more finished Lawrence Tops. I would love to see not only your finished garment, but also your process – post on Instagram using #zwlawrencetop and #goldfinchlimited.

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Growing Color: My First Dye Garden

Freshly planted marigolds

With the gardening season coming to a close, I want to take some time to look back on my first attempt at growing my own natural dyes. We have limited space and my thumb is not very green, so when I began thinking about planting a dye garden I knew I needed to keep it simple. I selected a couple dye plants based on the colors that I was hoping to achieve and how hardy they were.  I decided to start with marigolds, dyer’s coreopsis, and hopi black dye sunflowers. I purchased my marigolds at the nursery already started and I bought the dyer’s coreopsis and hopi black dye sunflower seeds from

Throughout the summer, with the help of my husband and kids, I was able to keep these flowers alive. We also grew some vegetables and the kids love picking fresh carrots and watching the plants grow and develop over the course of the season.

Every other evening we would pop the dyer’s coreopsis flower heads off the plant and strip the petals into a bowl. By the next day there would be a whole new crop of bright, yellow flowers to pick. The petals were left to dry out overnight and now I have a large jar of color just waiting to be used all winter. I also collected seeds from some of the flowers with hopes that next summer they will develop.

I collected the marigolds as they died and let them dry out as well. Next year I would love to make a marigold garland. This seems like a beautiful way to collect and let the flowers dry out. I would also like to try another variety of marigolds, but I’m undecided about which one yet.

As for the hopi black dye sunflowers, they were a bit slow to start and I wasn’t sure if they were going to produce any flowers. Sure enough they grew and grew and flowers began to emerge. They did not get as tall as I have seen and the heads were only about the size of both of my fist, but they were beautiful. Once the heads died, I cut them off the stalk and let them dry out a bit. Then I harvested the seeds into a bowl to let them further dry out. I haven’t done any experimenting with them yet, but I’m looking forward to seeing what colors can be achieved.

Once again, growing a garden has taught me to be more patient; to be mindful and intentional in the hopes of getting something that will serve me well in the future. I am very much looking forward to using all the color that we collected this summer throughout the winter. Next summer, I have hopes to add a couple more dye plants to our garden. I would love to try pin cushions, goldenrod, and indigo. I’m sure come April, when I’m ready to see green again, I will have a long list that I will need to edit back in order to fit it all in.

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Out and About

Happy Friday! It’s been a whirlwind of a week with little sleep. I have been doing a lots of knitting (see above walk with kiddos…having knitting will travel, right?) and planning for future dye projects, but don’t have much to share at the moment. Teething baby has left me with lots of nursing time and I have been reading and researching during much of that time. I’ve been coming across and collecting articles and links related to sustainability and the fashion industry. So I thought I would compile a list regularly for you to peruse at your leisure. I don’t want to limit this collection to sustainability and fashion, but also include natural dyeing, small business development, mindfulness, etc. If you find anything around the web that might be of interest please hit me up at

  • Fabric made from wood – This sounds very interesting; especially the potential of a closed loop system. I wonder how it would take natural dyes?
  • Fast fashion = modern-day slavery – It’s so easy to look over and not think about and I know there are many layers and facets, but it’s something that needs to start being talked about more.
  • A sustainable vision for fast-fashion? – This article really breaks down the emergence of fast fashion and it’s environmental and social impacts. It discusses ways some of the fast fashion companies are attempting to reduce and improve these impacts.
  • Way to go Columbia – ReThreads: Clothing Recycling Program
  • EF Renew – A take-back program that uses damaged and unwanted Eileen Fisher and turns them into new garments.
  • More ways to avocado pits – This makes me wonder if you could still use them to dye with after making broth and/or if you will have pink soup.

Enjoy and I hope everyone has a good weekend!