Thursday, June 1, 2017

Designer Stitch First Anniversary Blog Tour

I have been a DesignerStitch fan for almost a year. I started testing for the fabulous Ann Grose about 10 months ago with the Kerry Capelet and fell in love with her patterns. Most of my wardrobe is something she designed. When I had the opportunity to join this blog tour to celebrate her very successful first year, I jumped at the chance.

The patterns I have made are all able to be printed in layers. The pages do need to be trimmed, but my kitten helps with that. There is
also the possibility of the print shop files as well, but I have never used those. The instructions are so clearly written, I have not had one issue stitching up any pattern. Everything you need is listed in the materials section, even the seam allowance for each step is clearly labeled. The diagrams are very useful as well.

It is no surprise that I fell in love with the Eleni top, and wrote about it here when it released. I have been dying to make another since I wear
that one all the time, and this birthday celebration was the perfect opportunity to do so. I skimmed my inspiration photos and found a version of the Eleni I had been drooling over for
months. With my inspiration in hand, I challenged myself for the first time ever to find a way to make it happen using only the Eleni pattern.

My Inspiration 
 I printed the pattern in my size 4 and put everything together as normal, no other alterations or grading. I printed the Gathered Cuff sleeve insluded in the pattern.
Here is where my slight alteration to the pattern began. Both the long and short tier are lined up perfectly on top of
each other, making a large rectangle. For ease of cutting the fabric, I folded this rectangle in half with the intent to place it on the fold. From there, I used my ruler and marked the new cut line for the hem of this longer bell or flutter sleeve. I knew I would have to make some adjustments once I started sewing, but this gave me a great starting point.

During construction, I followed the directions as they were written, since the only thing changing was the sleeve hem. I had almost forgotten how
easy adding the elastic was. I am not a huge fan of casings, which is an option, but I found Ann's way so much easier. No need to feed the elastic.  You do want to be certain to use a soft elastic, or the top would end up quite uncomfortable. In measuring for my elastic, I just subtracted 4 inches because I like it a little snug so it doesn't fall. (I host Karaoke and need to make sure no wardrobe malfunctions while setting up or tearing down the equipment).

For the hem on the sleeves, I went back and forth on what to do. From here I could make it more circular, or attempt a point. I found a great tutorial online here for the mitered corner, and went for it. I just shifted the point slightly from the seam to make it easier.

I tested the top out on the town. Wore it for date night at a local event. All night, nonstop, I received compliments. I had never been more proud of something I made. In case you are wondering, the fabric was a Nicole Miller stretch chiffon floral  print I picked up from Joann' s.

Pick up your copy of Eleni Top Tunic Dress.
If you have not tried any of the great DesignerStitch patterns, now is your opportunity to try them for 50% off.

You can also join in the month long celebration in the DesignerStitch Support Facebook page.

Please be sure to stop in the other blogs on the tour. Everyone has some great inspiration to share with you!

June 5, 2017 

June 8, 2017

June 9, 2017
Please note that this post contains affiliate links. If you choose to make a purchase, I will get paid a small portion of that purchase

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

The Amazing Amelia

I am always honored to test new patterns, and was thrilled when I was invited to join in testing Bella Sunshine Design's latest Amelia Maxi, Dress, and Top.

I consider myself still a beginner, a more advanced one, but I always seem to learn something new with each pattern I sew. I am very certain a confident beginner could be quite successful with this pattern. Regardless of skill, you will love Amelia.

Amelia is available in both Womens sizes 0-30, and Girls 6mo-12, so an opportunity for a Mommy and Me pattern. My daughter falls in between both, and I feared I wouldn't meet the deadline needing to alter the pattern to fit her, so I stuck with just the Women's size 8 short sleeve top and dress length, without a single deviation from the original pattern.

Both the Girl's and Women's version of Amelia include three lengths (top, dress, and maxi), and four sleeve options (sleeveless, short,  3/4, and long). The Women's already includes a Full Bust Adjustment option if you need it, I did not. The knit bodice in both versions can be paired with another knit or woven, I did both. I was a little concerned making the 8 because my hips measure 41 inches, but as you see there are no fit issues there.

The instructions were easy to follow and illustrations clear. I did get hung up my first time reading the band instructions, but when it came to construction it became easier to understand. Printing is also offered in layers, and there is a chart showing the pages needed to save paper.

I am so comfortable wearing either the top or dress. I even wore this to my job hosting karaoke and didn't have one wardrobe malfunction, but did get loads of compliments. I will be making one for my daughter, and a maxi for me as tge weather cools. I even have an idea on combining this with another BSD pattern, that post is coming soon.

Pick up your copy of the Amelia in Women's version on sale for $6.50, and the Girl's for $5.50, no code needed. This sales price is good through May 24th at Midnight EST.

Monday, May 8, 2017

My Angel's Love for Dublin

My daughter is not easy to shop for, it has nothing to do with her choice of style, but finding the right fit. Everything is too big or small, and I know I am not the only parent with this problem.

 Summer is coming and after a failed trip to the store, I decided to give New Horizons Designs Dublin Dolman a try. This pattern literally has endless options, so there was sure to be something that fit her and looked great doing it.

Available in the Dublin Dolman Pattern are both a tee and tunic length, which could easily be turned into a dress length too. The sleeves options are long, short, 3/4, and banded or not. The banded bottom can be tall or not, and neck binding or band as well. There is a gathered front and back option as well. The sizing starts at 6-12 months all the way up to 16, with a bonus 18" doll size. Even better is the option of purchasing the bundle at a discounted price and make a Mommie and Me top. They advertise this top as the last dolman pattern you will need, and they are 100% correct.

In sewing these tops I decided on the gathered for one, and banded tunic length for the other. I made this with a size 14 bodice and graded out to a 16. As for fabric, I used a poly knit for both following the suggested fabrics which include cotton interlock, cotton poly blend, cotton lycra blend, french terry, or any other knit with a good stretch.

I did embellish the neck band with some buttons I found. I wish it was because of a creative idea, but I accidentally stitched the band on backwards and the seam was in the front. I decided the buttons would be perfect to cover up my little mistake and I was right. She also loved the addition and has no idea the reason behind it.

My daughter absolutely dislikes taking photos, especially if asked to model, but she loved these tops so much I could have taken her photo in them all day.

This month New Horizons Designs is running a sewing contest and the details are in their Facebook Group, but here is some of the information. Now is a good time to grab this pattern and sew up all the Dublins.

                   Please note that this post contains affiliate links. If you choose to make a purchase, I will get paid a small portion of that purchase. 

Down by the Bayside

Summer is my favorite time of the year. I fill it with as many outdoor activities as I can. Finding weather appropriate clothing though is another matter. Ready to wear clothes may look cute, but the fabric content make them too warm sometimes to really enjoy the summer heat. When I had the opportunity to test the New Horizons Designs latest pattern the Bayside Romper and Dress, I saw an opportunity to fill my closet with hot weather wear.

I used a poly knit and cotton knit for the two Bayside Mini Dresses I made, both fabrics in my stash possibly 10 years ( I wish I was exaggerating). The recommended fabrics for the Bayside are Jersey, Cotton Interlock, Cotton Poly Blend, Poly Rayon, Brushed Poly, or basically any knit with good drape and stretch.

This pattern came together incredibly easier than expected. I was concerned about the cross over in the back, since this was a new method for me, but following the well written instruction and I had no issues.  I made no alterations to the large size and I am 5'9". My next Bayside I am planning a top version that I will share with you shortly, so stay tuned.

The options available in this design are endless, especially if you are looking for a great addition to you capsule wardrobe. You have your choice of bottoms, shorts, pants, and a variety of lengths for a dress. It has both short sleeves or tank style, and then there are pockets. As for sizing, the Bayside starts a xx-small up to a 3x. The no trim pages are a bonus as well. 

Now is the perfect time to grab this pattern, not only is it on sale for $8.00, but New Horizons Designs is running a contest for the entire month of May. Any pattern you sew and post with #NHmaysewingcontest earns you an entry. Further details are in the New Horizons Designs Facebook Group

                        Please note that this post contains affiliate links. If you choose to make a purchase, I will get paid a small portion of that purchase. 

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

LKC Straight Skirt Tour

I am so excited to be part of this special celebration for Little Kiwis Closet. Hitting 5000 members is quite the accomplishment. Congratulations!

My little helper and I decided to celebrate our way by stitching the newly released skirt, free with code from the Facebook Group. The Straight Skirt was perfect for this knit fabric I had stashed away, honestly I just was afraid to use it before due to all the stripe matching involved.

I highly recommend printing your pattern pieces in color so the sizes and cut lines for waist and hem are easier to see. If thats not an option I would highlight your size before cutting the pattern.

The Straight Skirt ranges in sizes from 12 months to 14 years. The options available will leave you with nearly endless possibilities. First, there is the yoga or elastic waist, our favorite being the yoga waistband. Second, this pattern has two pocket options, both are easy to assemble. Third, two hem options of banded or folded up. Last, the length has the option of above or below the knee. You can even find out how to add the Kaboodle Shorts here.

I chose a size 5 without the need for grading, the fold up hem, and short length with the yoga band. Of course pockets.

She couldn't wait to try it on for a few pictures, and wouldn't take her hands out of the pockets no matter the bribe. The fit was perfect throughout the waist, and the short length ended up just below her knees, but she is on the shorter side.

You can even see how well it fits while she is pulling on the pockets. 

I had a lot of fun sewing this skirt and see many more in our future. Please be sure to check out the other reviews of this great skirt from the rest of the tour.

Be sure to visit the Little Kiwis Closet Blog for you chance to win a pattern from each of these great PDF designers!

Happy Sewing!

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