Monday, April 14, 2014

ROAR shirt

A while back I purchased some fabric that just called to me from the clearance area.  I thought it was beyond awesome to be so discounted, yet I could see why no one would want it.  It's pretty LOUD.

But perfect for this little one.  See, she's obsessed with Katy Perry, particularly her song Roar.  So I knew this fabric would be the perfect "Katy Perry" shirt for her and she loved the fabric when I showed her.

However, she was pretty disappointed when I didn't add Ms. Perry to the shirt itself. ("where's her face mom?!?")  And took some convincing to try it on.  (aka a lollipop)

It drives me crazy when I think I got a sewing home run and then have to hear they won't wear it.  Hopefully in time she'll get over it and love it as much as me!  Or maybe her sister will humor me, cause I love the little shirt and it's attitude.

BTW, the pattern is the Eleanor Dress/Top.  I added a little ruffle band to the bottom on the fly.

Tomorrow will be another day where this shirt will turn into her favorite, but just in case, I better start trying to iron-transfer Katy Perry's face to a tee...

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Wee Wander Izzy

Have you seen all the new Wee Wander fabrics?!?!  My favorite collection right now.  I snatched up a few prints as soon as I saw those horses, as the girls are in love with horses.  I'm in love with the bright colors.

I used the prints to test out the Izzy Top pattern before I made the Broken Chevron version.  I learned a bit about how to add the piping (which is neon green!) best and where to put the snap on the tab so the top is snug enough.  This version also never got topstitched along the bodice, which makes the skirt portion poof out a bit more.

I have the coral version of the horse print also, so I plan to make a matching top to avoid any bickering over who gets to wear this :) 

I also picked up the Summer Nights prints, but I may keep that fabric for myself…

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Broken Chevron

I was a little disappointed to skip last week's Project Run & Play challenge, but I was thankfully able to finish this week's theme - make your own fabric!  I knew exactly what I wanted to do.  I had less than a yard of navy chevron that has been waiting a year to be broken up and sewn into arrows.  

I didn't come up with this concept on my own.  It was actually inspired by a look Jessica from Craftiness is not Optional made (during the chevron challenge) as part of Project Run & Play's All Star season.  I've been wanting to recreate the wonderful arrow fabric from chevrons ever since.  

It's even more striking in person!  The pattern I used for the tunic is the Izzy Top, a free pattern.  It's a satisfying pattern to make - simple construction with gorgeous results.  The girls are probably going to get a whole spring wardrobe of them (I've already made two more).  

The arrow fabric was time consuming but really relaxing.  Lots of careful cutting and sewing straight lines…followed by pressing open tiny seams.

I used a snap for the back instead of a button.  This is the first time I've used a snap and I love it.  I don't enjoy the stress that comes with making buttonholes!

I finished the bottom with gold bias tape that matches the gold piping along the bodice.  She requested I make some leggings with bows, so I self drafted some with denim knit and added little pearl-like buttons.  I was going to add the buttons down the front of the bodice, but I wanted the design to stay simple to showcase the fabric.  

Check out the other inspiring fabrics the challengers made and vote here!

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Ikat Concert Tee

With all the Etsy sewing of kids clothing I've been doing lately, I've yearned for more things to make for myself.  Lucky me, a couple of new pattern packages specifically for women have been released!

One package is available through Pattern Parcel.  It's a fun concept to pay what you want for a bunch of patterns while also supporting charity.  I knew as soon as I bought it that I'd be sewing up Dixy DIY's Summer Concert Tee.

It's a quick and satisfying sew and perfect for a shirt I've been promising my much younger sister in-law.  The cropped front is a little shorter than I expected, but perfect for a college kid who likes to layer.

I used some rayon challis that I've been hoarding and some knit for the neckband, which worked out pretty well.  It's super flowy and the drape is pretty flattering.  I sewed a size up from what I should since it's not for me - I look forward to finding another knit to make myself one!

Monday, March 17, 2014

Purple Penguin Dress

Project Run & Play season 9 has started again and I am officially addicted to sewing along.  It must be the themes.  (Actually, it starts next week, the 24th - I can't believe I not only got the date wrong but actually made something early instead of last minute!!!) They pull me out of sewing funks and give me inspiration from places I would never expect.  The first week's theme is "Put Me In the Zoo", a challenge to design an outfit based on your or your child's favorite animal.  

As you may have figured out, my favorite animal is a penguin.  

A black and white dress like an actual penguin would've been really fun, but the girls are more into color, specifically purple.  So I took the lines of a penguin's shape and played with color blocking instead.

Can you see the subtle sweetheart in the top like a penguin's face, and it's beak?  

The bodice was made from modifying the Cottage Mamma's Party Dress pattern. (free updated pattern for newsletter subscribers!!)

And of course I added wings/flippers/giant pockets!!!

The back is all purple with fun little snowflake buttons.

Finally the bottom band is to mimic feet.  

What does the penguin do???  (waddle waddle waddle)

This was my first experience playing with color blocking.  I hope the trend is not over yet because I'm hooked!  I can't wait to see what the competitors come up with this week - they are a creative bunch!

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Project Sewn - Peplum and Cardi (Signature Style)

I was so close to naming this post, AND I'M DONE, because I didn't think I could possibly finish these pieces before the link up deadline for Project Sewn this week, but I did it!  I know I don't have to sew along, but really, I just had to.  Project Sewn is one of the only reasons I make time for any items for myself.  It's more challenging for me to make items for myself than the kids.  I need to learn more about sewing for women - which means I need to sew more for me!  end of rant/babbling.

The theme for this week is your Signature Style.  I knew from the start that I wanted to try out the Ladies Caroline Peplum/Dress and Julia Cardigan sewing patterns from Mouse House Creations.  I haven't sewn something like either before and it looked just like something I'd gravitate to at the store.  

I bought this beautiful floral rayon challis in the redtag section of JoAnn.  I've only found rayon challis in that section.  Where the heck do they hide this stuff at regular price in the store?!?  Unfortunately there was not enough fabric left to make the dress, so I went for the Peplum.  I made it sleeveless because I think sleeveless tops are more versatile.  I can wear them year round, just with a cardigan when it gets cold.  

The top is unlined.  I finished the armholes and neckline with red bias tape, a first for me.  I had to take in the seams quite a bit and it's still a bit too big in the front.  This is likely due to the fabric choice, but I couldn't help myself.  I'm the worst when it comes to using the right fabrics for the right patterns.  I just fall in love with things and try to make it all work instead.  Some day I'll learn…

The cardigan is pretty darn cool.  I made it with the same sweater knit I used for this Plantain tee.  I ran back to the store and they had just enough left to make this.  It's tough to see in the pic, but the cardigan is made with an oversized collar that drapes so beautifully.  I really like it and can't wait to sew up the extended cap sleeve version.

The back is super great too, since it covers a lot of the tush!

So here we are, the end of sewing along for Project Sewn this season!  I'll try to keep up the motivation for sewing for myself while waiting for the next season to begin.  There is so much I want to learn about sewing women's patterns!

Friday, February 21, 2014

The Betty Skirt

I'm so excited to let you know that the wonderful Shaffer Sisters have debuted their first pattern e-book today, the Betty Skirt! 

The skirt features a deep yoke with several skirt options.  There are instructions in the pattern to make a gathered skirt, 8-pleated skirt, 16-pleated skirt, or skirt with center placket.  SO many options!

I was lucky enough to be one of the testers for the 8-pleated version.  This is the kind of pattern that I love.  I only had to print one pattern piece, and that was the pleating template.  The yoke and skirt could conveniently be cut with my rotary cutter.  The four pattern options are also organized efficiently so that they are easy to find and print out as needed. 

The Shaffer Sisters have made sure that every possible fit issue could be avoided while sewing this pattern.  There are helpful diagrams and size charts to help you measure and cut for the perfect size.

I had fun picking out fabrics for the skirt. I had just enough left of the floral sateen from this dress to use for the yoke.  The pleats are really allowed to shine with the solid pool fabric, yet I was able to put some personality into the skirt with the floral yoke.  The skirt is absolutely adorable on my girls and they have requested to wear it several times - I suspect because it twirls nicely with all the pleated fabric and is fancier than most skirts I've made them. 
And they're totally into fancy right now.
I can't wait to try out the pleating again and maybe sew up a skirt with a placket!  If you wan to know more about the pattern and show them some love visit Pattern Revolution and the Shaffer Sisters.  
The pattern is available on craftsy for $5 (regular price will be $9) through the weekend (Sale ends 11:59 AM MST Sunday, February 24).