Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Feeling so Fly (Fly Girl Racing Suit from Winter Wear Designs)

As I said earlier in the season, this is definitely the summer of swim here.  My daughter started the season with absolutely no desire whatsoever to wear a one piece suit, but here we are with the brand new Fly Girl Racing Suit from Winter Wear Designs...another win for the one piece!  She loves this suit!

Okay so let's do some quick pattern deets before we go into what we love about this pattern:

- Large size range:  starts at 1 and goes to 14
- Good project for advanced to intermediate sewists depending on style choic
- Two style options: racer back or strappy back
- Fully lined option for both suits
- Can be made as a swim suit or a leotard
- Layered printing so you just print what you need
- Very clear, concise tutorial with illustrations and photos
- BONUS:  Dolly size pattern for Dolly and Me suits.

We opted for the strappy version because my daughter fell in love with a store bought suit that had the straps, but she's in a size 7 with an 8 length so pretty much every one piece outfit on the shelf is a bust.  She was so bummed (we got to hear how bummed for the better part of an afternoon), and then, the Fly Girl came along.  I was so excited when Suzanne sent me the invite to test this pattern.  It's wondermous!

Being that swim fabric is slippery, it typically takes me a little longer to sew them up.  For this one, I think I took about 2 hours from start to finish.  It might have been a teeny bit longer.  There were a few moments when I was lost in the latest episode of The Flash, and I had some lost time where I don't know how 5 minutes turned into 45 minutes.  It's still a pretty quick sew considering that it's a swim suit.

As I said, we opted for the strappy version.  I would definitely agree with Suzanne's rating of intermediate for this version.  You'll want some experience with swim before fiddling with the straps and such.  I'm pretty much a hot mess when it comes to straps and binding on swim so I was a little skerred about them.   They weren't as awful as I was picturing, but, again, I would definitely recommend some swim fabric experience.  Now, the racing back doesn't require straps, and there's minimal or no binding for that one depending on what neck style you choose so it's a great project for an advanced sewist who's wanting to get into something new with swimwear.

For this suit, I blended a size 7 with an 8 length.  Suzanne provides instructions on how to blend with both a smaller girth and longer height or bigger girth and smaller height, and it's a pretty simple process to do.  The fit was spot on for the modifications we did.  Definitely measure your little before picking the size you think she needs.  My daughter seems to grow inches overnight, and I always have to double check her measurements.

We wore this suit to Thunder Fountain in Oklahoma City, and she was running in and out of the water with no creepage issues at all.  Everything stayed right where it was supposed to, and she wasn't tugging at the suit the entire time to cover up her bits.  My nugget still goes to this suit as her first choice when we are packing up to hit the splash pad or pool.  All in all, this was a major win!

So, the Fly Girl Racing Suit released yesterday, and it's currently on sale for $6.  This price won't last for long, though, so don't miss out on snagging it while it's still on release price!  For those of us on Facebook, Suzanne also has a FB group where we can get help on patterns if we hit a speed bump, get inspiration.  Just head on over to Winter Wear Designs Fun, and join us there!!  Now, go grab yourself a copy of the Fly Girl Racing Suit and sew up some love.  Don't forget to share it with us in the FB group!!  Thanks so much for reading along!

Blessings and Happy Sewing,

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

You're the one that I love...(Gina's Knot Your Everday Tee from Snuggle My Baby Patterns)

Every so often, a pattern comes up and poof…a magical idea forms in my head.  That's what the Gina’sKnot Your Everyday Tee did for me.  When Jen from Snuggle My Baby Patterns asked for testers, I jumped in with both feet, and I was so tickled when she added me to the test group!  This shirt is so easy to sew up, and it turned out so perfect for what I had in mind…

Okay, first things first…pattern deets:
- Size range starts at 2T and goes up to 16.  My daughter is topping out on most patterns so I love that Jen’s patterns go a little higher.
- Four sleeve options: cap, short, ¾, and long.  This makes this pattern really versatile and completely perfect for year round wear.
- Two hemlines:  straight or rounded back.  My daughter likes both styles so I could easily make eight different shirts with one pattern.
- Perfect for those panels that you see in a lot of the custom knit groups.  One of the testers used them, and it was like this pattern was made for panels.
- Layered pattern pieces so you can print just the size(s) you want or need.
- Full color photos with each step of the pattern for visual comparison.

So we’ve been on an oldies kick in the house lately, and the opening song for Grease came up on YouTube and PING!  I suddenly had such a great idea for a theme for my outfit.  What’s more iconic than the Pink Ladies and T Birds?  SO, I went about doing some research.  Clearly, it meant watching Grease and Grease 2 to make sure I got the look right. HA!

For my top, I went with both light pink and black cotton lycra.  I also freezer paper stenciled Pink Ladies on the back.  The top is separated into a yoke and bottom portion so it’s perfect for color blocking, but I didn’t choose to do that for my make because it didn’t go with my idea.  It is so ridiculously cute with color blocking, though!  I also added an inch to the length because my daughter has a ridiculously long torso, and we have to do some wangling when buying ready to wear to make sure they come down long enough for her tastes.

The pattern is rated intermediate, and I would agree with that.  Between the separate pieces for the top and the bottom and the binding on the tie at that bottom, I would definitely suggest some familiarity with knits.  That doesn’t mean that an adventurous beginner couldn’t also make this top, though.  Jen is going to be doing a video on how to do the binding at the bottom and will post that on the blog to better show how to enclose the ties and finish the keyhole edges.

We took to an area known as the Plaza District and hit up an ice cream parlor called Roxy’s Ice Cream Social for our photo shoot.  I liked the whole soda shop hangout from Grease and decided to go with that instead of the bowling alley that Grease 2 centers around.  We were there for a good hour or so, and my girl had no issues at all with moving around and jumping on things she kept seeing.  The size 7 was perfect on the fit with the exception of that tiny adjustment on the length.  The cap sleeves were perfect because it was about 98 degrees out when we were taking pictures.  I kept praying for a little bit of cloud coverage, and I got it…right as we hopped in the car to get some lunch.  Thanks, Oklahoma.

So, this pattern just released (5 July), and it's on sale right now at a special release price of $5.  This price is only good for a week so you don't want to miss out on this one!  If you aren't quite familiar with knits, you can always hop on the Snuggle My Baby FB group, and someone is always around that can help answer questions...or you can get in touch with Jen because she's pretty amazing at helping people walk through her patterns.  

The Gina's Not Your Everday Tee really is so versatile and perfect for every season!  Now go grab yourself a copy and sew up some love..and share your photos with us so that we can get some inspiration from you!   Thanks for reading along!!

Blessings and Happy Sewing,

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Summer Sewing with Laela Jeyne (Summer 2017 Collection)

Laela Jeyne Patterns just released The Summer 2017 Collection, Marisa's first pattern collection, and I am seriously in love with every single piece. With the kids home all summer long, 7 days a week, 24 hours a day, easy to make and easy to wear clothes are always near and dear to my heart.  There are six patterns in total, and I am super excited that I can make myself some staple summer pieces. I'll be ready for pretty much anything from hanging out at the zoo to a treasured date night.  I'll even have something for the lake if we get that far this summer!

Okay, so what's in the collection??  Like I said, there are six patterns that you can either buy separately or build you own bundle.  All of the patterns are on sale right now so this is a great time to get some amazing patterns as some righteous prices (food for thought:  if you buy the entire collection right now, the sale price is 40% off the retail price of the bundle).  I'm going to run through each pattern and give you my take on them.  The entire collection includes the Women's Dahlia Tank Top, the Women's Lily Woven Blouse, the Women's Rose Circle Skirt, the Girl's Rosie Circle Skirt, the Women's Violet Swimsuit, and the Girl's Vi-Vi Swimsuit

Dahlia Tank Top

I would definitely say this is a beginner pattern; it's a very fast sew and is perfect for anyone wanting to try out sewing with knits.  It was a little more form fitting that what I usually wear, but I have to say, I love it!  It is so comfortable, and I used a double brushed poly knit from Knitpop so it was so very soft.  I really loved that there were different cup sizes so I didn't have to wonder if I needed to adjust down for a good fit!

I made the hip length for this one.  I'm not quite brave enough for anything shorter yet, but there is a short option if you prefer that.  I really loved the length on me, and the bindings on the neck made for a cleaner finish that was more comfortable for me than a neckband.  The Dahlia is such a versatile top that you can easily pair with jeans for everyday wear or with a skirt/slacks to dress it up.  One blogger even made one in stretch velour!!

Lily Woven Blouse

Oh, how I love this blouse!  I made mine in a very lightweight woven from Sincerely Rylee, and it was so amazingly cool and breezy.  I also opted for a lace zipper that was a smidge longer than the pattern called for so I did have to mod the zipper lines to make sure I had the zipper in the right place.

The Lily comes with the option of an A-line silhouette or a gathered front.  I went with the A-line sleeveless option.  I am so happy with how the A-line turned out, and I wasn't quite so self-conscious while I was wearing it around!

My favorite  part of the top has to be the front darts.  They pull the bust in a bit and made me feel elegant.  My husband kept telling me to put that one top back on after I changed into PJs because he loved how this one turned out.  He very rarely pays attention to my clothes so snaps to Marisa for this one!  I paired this with a pencil skirt I made a few months ago, and suddenly, I was wishing we were on our way to date night.  HA!

This one took a little longer to make because of the blouse's structure.  DON'T let that scare you, though!  Marisa walks through every step of construction in great detail so you can get everything put together.  I would definitely suggest some familiarity with darts and zippers, though.  It took me about an hour and a half to make the Lily, but the end result is so amazing that it makes it completely worth taking the extra time to get it right!

Women's Rose and Girl's Rosie Circle Skirt

Both of these are amazingly fast and easy to sew up. My daughter has been learning to sew and use the Rosie to make her first clothing item!  For hers, we chose a performance knit for the waistband, and it was perfect (if you want to use a woven fabric, there are also instructions to make a woven waistband).  The recovery on the performance knit was sturdy enough that Nay didn't feel like she was fighting to keep her skirt on, and she's loving the twirl factor on it.

There are three silhouettes for this pattern: quarter, half, and full skirt.  Nay wanted the half circle, and I went with a quarter circle.  We both went with the knee length, because, again, it gets HOT here.  You can also choose a maxi length if you are looking for something longer.

My Rose is a lightweight sweater knit from a mystery box from Sincerely Rylee, and it came out super comfy.  I used the same fabric for the waist, and I think I'm going to go back and change that to something a little sturdier.  I wasn't thinking right when I put that on there, and I definitely feel like I need something more to support the weight of the skirt.  I really love that my skirt is a little more streamlined because it doesn't accentuate parts of me that I don't want to highlight.  Here, I paired it with the Dahlia, and it was a perfect combo!

Violet and Vi Vi Swimsuits

Swimsuit shopping is the bane of my existence.  Nay acts like I'm driving us to our deaths so I was super stoked to see that swimwear is part of the collection.  It was perfect timing because the kids were headed to camp, and Nay needed a one piece.  Apparently, one piece suits are harder to find than the Holy Grail because we found nothing after four stores.  I made her a size 7 and added 1" to the length.  Turned out perfect!  I also made her version fully lined with the side cutouts because they were cute.  We decided to skip the ruffles on the top, but that is an option for both the Violet and Vi Vi.

The kids pretty much live in their swimsuits right now so the Vi Vi has seen a lot of love, and I am absolutely digging the crossover in front.  In looking at other photos, I think I somehow managed to get it turned around the opposite way?!?

For my Violet, I added the built in bra as well as the full lining.  I really appreciate the built in because the water is kind of cold when you first get in, and, um, yeah...My version was just a plain one piece, no ruffles, no cutouts.  I did do a low back on mine while Nay wanted the higher back for hers.  I was also a little worried about creepage, but the neighbors are happy to report that my bum stayed fully covered the whole time that I was in the yard with the kids!

Of all the pieces in the collection, these took the longest to make (mostly because I messed up a couple of times and swim wear is a booger to unpick), but man, that fit is so worth it in the end.  I can't even get CLOSE to this kind of fit on my store bought suits!

As I said in the beginning, I seriously love every piece of this collection, and I am so excited to have some go to patterns for my summer wardrobe.  Thanks so much for stopping by as we continue with the Laela Jeyne Summer Collection Tour!  There are a lot of talented ladies sharing their creations with us this week so please stop by and show them some love.  Laela Jeyne is also having a giveaway on her blog where you can win two patterns of your choice from the summer collection!  Just head on over to the Laela Jeyne blog and take a look at the daily roundup posts to see who's coming up each day and to get to the Rafflecopter link to enter the drawing!  Here's a look at who's already shared their makes and who's on deck over the next few days!


Summer of Swim (Lulu and Celeste, Sprouting Jube Jube Swimsuit Edition)

This is the summer of swim for my two water bugs.  They literally get up, eat breakfast, and roll out into the backyard to play in the pool.  It doesn’t even matter what time it is.  I realized last month that they have both grown to the point that they don’t have any suits that fit them anymore, and my daughter HATES store bought swimsuits.  It was right about this time that Snuggle My Baby Patterns released the Sunny Day Swimsuit (I did receive the pattern free from Jen Gunn as part of the testing group).  It’s a two piece but still extremely modest, which was perfect for Nay because she’s so very conservative (I’m going to encourage that for as long as possible, to be honest).   Just about this same time, Deb Zaleski posted a call for the swimwear blog tour!  It was like the sewing fairies were lining the stars up just right so I threw my name in the hat to join the tour! 

We live in Oklahoma, and summers are VERY HOT…I’ve seriously considered climbing in the freezer a few times to get away from the heat.  We also live in Thunder country, and both my niece and my daughter are crazy for anything Thunder.  When I took them to the store to pick out some swim fabrics, they both immediately beelined it to the orange and blue so Thunder suits it was!

The Sunny Day Swimsuit is such a great pattern because it offers the ease of a two piece while still covering up and keeping everything modest.  The front of the top and the bottoms are lined so that there’s no worry about seethroughedness (real word…I’m vouching for it!) when the suit gets wet. 
I was pretty excited that this pattern ranges from 2T to 16 so I’ll get a lot of mileage from this one.  Nay is starting to hit the top of the size range for a lot of the patterns that I have for her so I’m always looking for some that will give me a little bit more use as she continues to grow up despite my attempts to stop the process.

I was a little worried when the girls started playing that they would get some creepage going on in the back, but there was solid coverage that stayed in place even while they were running around the yard.  I added the basketball appliques to the front of the shirt to add a little fun to their suits (this is not part of the pattern). 

As far as the pattern goes, I would definitely say this is an advanced beginner pattern due to the swim fabric and the lining.  I think that an adventurous beginner could give it a go and do fine, but there might be a bit of trial and error with working with swim fabric.  I really loved that this pattern includes layering so that I could only print the sizes that I needed/wanted.  There were also photos for every step of the tutorial so that I could see what my suit SHOULD look like and catch anything that looked like it might  be off before it became disastrous. 

This was a very quick sew.  I made four suits in two days, and I was able to add a little bit of fun to them with relatively no major work.  After she got her Thunder suit, my daughter asked for a Star Trek suit (gold because that’s what the bosses wear. HA!) and a red Power Ranger suit.  Challenge accepted so I made her a couple more.

My son was a bit put out that I didn't make him a suit so I snuck a quick sew in for him as well and made him the Dominic's Board Shorts, also from Snuggle My Baby Patterns.  This pattern ranges from 2T-12 so, again, there's a large range of sizes!  I used board short fabric for this pair, but I've also used Dominic's to make regular shorts as well.  My son loves anything with pockets so he has a place to stuff his treasures so these work well as regular shorts.  This is another very quick sew, and it also includes photos for every step of the tutorial.  It's a little bit of an earlier pattern, and it was released prior to Jen's move to layered patterns.  There aren't very many pages for the entire pattern so it's not really a show stopper.  The pieces are also nested so you can still go through and cut the sizes you need pretty easily.  My son couldn't give a toot about themed swim gear so he picked out some skull and cross bones for his shorts.  I've had it in my stash for ages, and he finally decided this year that he wants to use it so I'm happy to oblige!

Alright, so as with all of the LL&C, SJJ tours, there are some awesome prizes and contests going on so let's get some info out there for you to get entered into some prize drawings!

Today's Rafflecopter giveaway prize pack is a PDF pattern of choice from Gracious Threads and a $50 (USD) gift card from Raspberry Creek Fabrics.  You just need to click the link below to get yourself entered for the daily drawing:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

There's also a grand prize giveaway that you can enter!  This is a pretty sweet prize pack as well: a $25 (USD) gift card to Phat Quarters, a $100 (AUD) gift card to Boo! Designs, a $20 (USD) gift card to Simply By Ti, AND the PDF swim bundle from Made By Jack's Mum (this is four patterns total):

a Rafflecopter giveaway

You can also enter the grand prize drawing by joining the Instagram contest!  This is the first time LL&C, SJJ has done this type of contest, and it's a great way to join in and share some of your own swim creations!  Here's how you can join in on Instagram:

1.  Post your own creation on your Instagram account and use the hashtag #TheSwimsuitEditionTour.  Also make sure to tag @luluandceleste and @deborahzaleski
2. REPOST the contest pic: Swimsuit Edition Contest Pic

AND for an extra entry, tag @phatquarters, @simplybyti, @boodesigns_kristie, and @madebyjacksmum on the pic of your creation!

If you do decide to join the Instagram contest, please take note of the following:

- Mark the photo public so that everyone can see your photos
- Make sure you share your photo on IG between June 26, 2017 at 12AM EST and July 2, 2017 at 1159PM EST only
- You must have sewn your suit in the month of June 2017.
- Can be any swimming item you WEAR...men, women, children, swimsuits, caps, coverups
- Can be something you've shared before (as long as it was sewn in June), but you need to repost it during the week of the contest with the hashtags and tags.
- Does not need to be modeled.  You can post photos of flats if you prefer.

**The contest is in no way sponsored, endorsed or associated with Instagram.  By entering, you are confirming you are 13 years of age or older, release IG of any responsibility, and agree to IG's terms of usage.

All contests are open worldwide.  Please note when redeeming your fabric gift certificates that you are responsible for any purchase amount above the amount of the certificate, to include shipping costs.  You are also responsible for customs/duty fees as applicable to your country of residence.

Now there are a lot of stops on this tour, so be sure to check out the other bloggers and see what wondermousness (another real word...) everyone has sewn up for the tour.  There are some pretty amazing creations out there that you can read about:

Monday, June 26

Tuesday, June 27

Wednesday, June 28

Thursday, June 29

Friday, June 30

Finally, thanks so much to the sponsors who provided prizes for some awesome giveaways and for providing patterns to bloggers on this tour!  Please take some time to show them some love as you are visiting some of the stops along the tour!

Thanks so much for reading along!  I can't wait to see your creations on the Instagram contest!  

Blessings and Happy Sewing,

Saturday, May 27, 2017

No weeping for this Willow (Willow Dress and Tunic from Petite Stitchery and Co.)

My daughter has finally grown out of ruffles and ribbons so I am constantly looking for patterns that she is willing to wear, especially when it comes to dresses!  When Deb Zaleski from Lulu and Celeste, Sprouting Jube Jube Productions asked if any of us had tried out Petite Stitchery and Co, I got a little excited.  Was it possible there was a designer out there that I hadn’t tried yet??  Surprisingly, I had NOT tried any of their patterns, and after looking at their catalog, I still don’t know if I could pick a favorite.  I finally landed on the Willow Dress and Tunic (DISCLAIMER: I was provided the pattern free by Petite Stitchery and Co. but my thoughts are my own.)

Let’s go over some quick pattern details before I get too far along:
- Large size range: 2T through 12 (I appreciate this since my daughter is going to be topping out on the size range of many patterns I own)
- Rated as a beginner pattern
- Two length options: tunic or dress
- Three sleeve options: long, 3/4, and short
- Two neck options: simple or tie closure
- Layered pattern pieces so you only print what you want/need

Based on the measurements, my daughter was a size 7.  The sizing for this was spot on for ready to wear, and the fit was perfect on her.  We urgh’ed and argh’ed over fabric for a hot minute and finally landed on a drapey black with pink medallions.  I tried to talk her into a second color for contrast, but Nay was having none of it so we ended up doing the whole dress in the same fabric.  The pattern itself has panels in the back so it lends itself to colorblocking or an overlay on the back. 

We also opted for the ¾ length sleeve.  That’s usually the standard when I ask Nay what length she wants.  The ¾ length is almost perfect for us right now.  It’s the end of May, and the temperature was almost up to 100 degrees today.  Like I stated above, there are also two other sleeve options you can choose from.  You can also choose to add a sleeve cuff, elastic, or standard hem.  Nay chose the standard hem on her sleeves.  I also chose to do a simple finish on the neck due to my daughter’s sensitivities with things against her neck.

I really love the fabric for this dress.  The drape gives the dress such a dreamy feel.  The pattern calls for lightweight fabrics like cotton lawn or voile.  I wish I would have paid attention to what this fabric is when I bought it from SincerelyRylee a couple of months ago.  It was perfect for this pattern and sort of just flowed when Nay put the dress on.  There are also tips in the pattern on how to make fabrics less sheer if you have a somewhat see through fabric that you want to use for the dress.

The pattern is rated as a beginner pattern, and I do wholeheartedly agree with that!  If you know how to gather fabric, that’s the most difficult part of construction.  I think this dress came together in about 2 hours for me, so it was a relatively quick sew.  The tutorial was very well written with clear, concise instructions and photos for each step so you can compare your steps with what it should look like during the process. 

Overall, I loved the pattern and was very pleased with how easy it was to follow along.  I am so excited to have a new company that I can get patterns from as my little becomes not so little.  You can check out the Willow and all of the other patterns in the Petite Stitchery and Co. lineup at their webstore: Petite Stitchery and Co.  You can also follow all of the designer’s happenings by following their Facebook page: Petite Stitchery and Co FB.

Thanks so much for following along!  Now, go check out some of the amazing patterns at Petite Stitchery and Co, and sew yourself up some love!

Thanks again and Happy Sewing,