A Tunic and 2 Dresses ~ Sinclair Dakota & Joanne & a mashup

(health update at the bottom of the post)

Pattern: Sinclair Dakota Tunic


Date started: 11/19/20

Date finished: 01/16/21


My measurements at the time: 39 Bust/ 32 Waist/ 45.5 Hip

Size Sewn: 12 B/W and 16 Hip


I used Tunic, short sleeve, crew neck, placket, and standard waist

Alterations: 1/4” square shoulder (I usually do 1/2” but the shoulder on this looked high enough)


Cut on the 16 Height line for peplum; 16 width for sleeves which made the sleeves 1/2” bigger on each side so I added 1/4” to the bodices at the armpits to account for this – it gave me the perfect width for my larger biceps


Fabric: Double brushed poly Butterflies, 1.5 yards used, Purchased this on Aug 9th, 2019 in a Knitpop fabric auction for $5/yard. So $7.50 total to make the top. 


Thoughts: I LOVE this top!  It makes all my 90s teenager dreams come true. It fits great. I love the length with leggings. I love everything about it. I have no complaints.  Sinclair instructions are awesome. I had zero issues sewing this and the placket went together easily too.  I want like 10 of them. Open-mouthed smile



Pattern: Sinclair Joanne Dress


Date started: 12/14/20

Date finished: 01/23/21


My measurements at the time: bust 40, waist 32, hips 47

Size Sewn: 12 Bust/Waist and 16 Hip


surprise belt matching to the dress!


Alterations: 1/2” forward shoulder adjustment – normal for me. and 1/4” bicep adjustment to sleeves (I cheated here and just added 1/4” to each side and they fit in place just fine).


Fabric: Double Brushed Knit Prints Floral Navy Blue/Red/Pink/Orange/White, purchased 06/17/20 from fabric.com for $5.38/yard so $13.45 total for the dress.


Thoughts: Awesome dress. I love it lots.  I feel like the belt is WAY too skinny but everything else is awesome. No complaints! Easy sew, no issues with instructions. I can throw it on quick and it looks nice without any effort.


Pattern: Renfrew/ Lady Skater Mashup Dress – for Miss K


Date started: 02/28/20

Date finished: 02/28/20

Size Sewn: 4

Alterations: added 1.5” to skirt hem – K wanted it longer

added 1” to sleeve hem length and no cuffs per K


removed 1” from modified bodice so it met the skirt as it should.

removed 2” from bodice height so it would hit K at the right spot on the waist.

took in 1/2” at shoulder by neck to 0” at shoulder point for K’s sloping shoulders.

(It needs a shorter neckband now by 1/2” due to the sloping shoulder adjustment).

Fabric: a charcoal poly blend knit jersey. I think I grabbed it from the Walmart mystery fabric bin.  I used 2 yards.

Thoughts:  K asked for this dress to be made last minute for my Aunt’s unexpected funeral Feb 2020 and she doesn’t ask for much anymore so I made it that day on the spot. She looked great in it but she will not allow any photos of her in it to be posted.  I am double the size of K so its a bit stretched out here on my dress form. She doesn’t wear ANY dresses anymore so this was a special dress to make for her and I’m glad I did it right!

Now for the health update.  I wish I had better news, and I’m going to keep this very real.  Brain tumors and craniotomies are no fun.  Recover has been viciously hard.  I have been dealing with a completely locked up stomach for almost 4 months.  I can’t eat any solids without excruciating pain.  I only get about 900-1100 calories a day from nutrition shakes and bananas. I’ve lost 35 lbs these 3.5 months and GI doesn’t think there is a reason why.  The GI says its from the brain surgery and the Neuro says no way.  So I’m stuck in a medical crack and struggling.  Gobs and gobs of my hair fall out all day long and it makes me so depressed.

My seizure meds damaged my liver so I am now unmedicated and dealing with weird episodes.  My kidneys decided to act up.  My heart too.  I’m being told again I possibly have Lupus.  I can’t look down without fluid dripping out my nose but the Neuro swears I have no cranial leak.  On top of all this I had my 3 mo MRI and it shows FIFTY percent of the tumor is still there! It’s wrapped up in my midline and around my carotid artery.  I will need LOTS of radiation and they don’t really know how my body will survive that since I can’t even eat and I don’t tolerate meds.   I meet with them beginning of Oct to re-MRI and set up the plan. They are trying to figure out my episodes – if they are seizures or not seizures and how to medicate me when my stomach won’t tolerate any meds.  I want to bury my head in the sand like an ostrich and forget all this crud.

Honestly I’m completely broken as a human being.  I’m massively depressed and angry and not coping well. I lay around a lot and I cry a lot and I miss my old life.  I’m having tons of PTSD and trauma issues both from the surgery and things in my past – apparently major life surgery can bring up past demons.

I miss my sewing room. I miss my old life – even with the chronic health stuff.  I miss living.  I don’t feel much like I’m living right now.

There has been some progress in the gray skies – I can now walk fully without a walker or cane. I can spend some time looking at a screen.  I embroidered a little bit at my machines last week.  I’m slowly trying to emerge from this cocoon of hell. I can do a few household things again like laundry and dishwasher.  I didn’t grasp how slowly healing would be after this kind of an operation.  I have a short window of energy and time before I need to lay down again.  I just feel bad. All the time. I’m not ok.  Maybe someday I will be. It seems so long from now though.

So I figured I might as well try to catch up on as many older makes as possible since I can’t sew just yet.  I have a ton of things I never got posted to the blog.  Some pics will be pre-surgery and some will be now. I can’t do my makeup as the entire right side of my face feels weird and hurts from the brain surgery. I have 2 very large dents on my right temple and you can see (and I can feel) one of the plate screws there. They had to cut my facial nerves on that side and said it will take time to feel “normal”. Whatever that means anymore Smile  So my pics will have to be what I can muster up right now.

Thanks for reading and being with me on my crazy journey!  Look for a slew of new blog posts in the next coming weeks!  I miss you all!!



  1. Kristin,
    Much love to you! I’ve read your blog for years, and my heart goes out to you. I can empathize with health struggles. I hope you are able to find some hope and peace in the midst of this!


  2. What you are going through sounds unimaginably hard. I hope you can figure out the food part of things–that seems like it will be key to your feeling better.


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