Monday, May 18, 2015

A Double Gauze Bonnell!

You all now I love dresses, so naturally I jump at any chance to test a pattern for something new and fun!   So when Dixie over at Dixie DIY posted about her new dress pattern, the Bonnell, I knew I wanted to join in and she kindly let me!

I had actually just gotten in some delicious Nani Iro Double gauze in from the fabulous Miss Matatabi and was looking for a pattern to use with it, and so BAM, it was a perfect match if I do say so myself!

I'm also secretly (ok not secretly) sewing a mini capsule wardrobe of soft pretty dresses for a trip to Prince Edward County Wine country in July (our first trip over night away from our boys!)  So again, PERFECT.


I had also wanted to get out of my habit of making loose fitting, or knit dresses and attempt to fit a woven bodice again, so this dress gave me a chance!  I didn't do the best job and had to do some post construction adjustments, but I mainly blame that on the fact I have no dress form and it's hard to fit something on yourself with a back closure, oops!  It still worked out, and I'm inspired to actually spend the time next time and do a proper Small Bust Adjustment.  Oh and Dixie has basically done the best thing ever and written up the best tutorial ever on how to do this!  Most tutorials out there are on Full bust adjustments and so I just never felt like figuring it out, and usually just do side seam and bust dart length adjustments, so I'm excited to try her tutorial next time and it get a perfect bodice fit!  


I was super impressed by the direction and pattern too, loved the diagrams and it was all easy to follow! Aside from the bust/bodice adjustments, which were well with the realm of what I would expect to do with any pattern for my measurements, I added my standard 1 inch to the bodice, and 1 to the skirt as well to adjust for my 5'8" frame.


It even has POCKETS, all dresses should have these.


The cutouts are so fun and unexpected!  The double gauze did make it a bit hard to get the crisp corners I would have liked (soo shifty sometimes!)  but it makes it so soft and lovely wear!


And the V in the back is perfect with the neck in the front!  Oh and I totally can put in an invisible zipper without flinching now!  So odd to think they used to freak me out!

All in all, a good kick off to summer dress sewing!  Goodbye snow, hello sun!

The pattern releases TOMORROW May 19!  Go check it out!  And tell me, what kind of dress would be on your winery vacation list?

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

A Posie in flight!

Yes, I know it's Kids Clothes Week, and I got posts lined up for that later this week!

In the meantime I thought I'd blog one of the many dresses I've made for me lately!  I'm thinking I'm gonna do a series of brief posts on each so they are at least recorded for posterity eh?

I'm particularly in love with making dresses in knits.  They are usually pretty easy, quick, cute and comfy, like wearing your pajamas to work.

 Don't worry, these pictures are almost a month old so the snow is gone now ;)

The Pocketful of Posies dress from Blank Slate Patterns fits this bill very well.  It's loose fitting dress, so definitely comfy, and also adorable.  I'd had the pattern for a while and wasn't sure what fabric to use until I remembered I'd been hoarding a couple meters of this organic Birch knit in the flight pattern I picked up a Simplifi Fabric last year.  It's a slightly heavier interlock, so the perfect weight for this!   And since I have a colour problem and the flight knit was just grey, I had to add a coloured ribbing!



I wasn't 100% of the style on me, but after making this one I'm sold.  I love the big pockets and the easy comfy wearing.  I tend to wear flats, but I could see myself dressing it up with heels or boots depending.  It's a pretty good transitional piece too with the medium length sleeves, but loose enough it'll last well into summer and then again in the fall!


And with all of Melly's patterns, the instructions were great and it was easy put together!

So whose with me on the awesomeness of knit dresses?  It feels a bit like cheating when I wear them to work, but I'm gonna keep doing it!

Monday, March 16, 2015

Selfish Sewing Week (and look, I'm still here!)

I'm still a lazy blogger.  I'll continue to admit it, but I'll still say I will blog occasionally.  Just not that last word.... occasionally.  So once every 3 months seems normal then right?

I think I've found the source of my slow blogging, photo editing!  hate it, hate having to find the camera cable and upload, ha.

So in the intervening months, you should just follow me on INSTAGRAM.  I post everything there, sometimes as bad selfies, sometimes as better photos.  I've discovered the community on instragram is sooo awesome!  So many designers and bloggers all interacting quickly and easily.  So quick and easy to find others versions of patterns and brief commentaries too. Love it!  And even if you don't wanna contribute or don't have a good device for it, you can sign up and follow me! (link on the right!)

Here's a peek at my feed! sewing and cute kids mostly ;)



However in honour of spring Selfish Sewing Week, I'll blog the three things I finished this week, mmmmm k?

It's still snowing here in Canadia, although it's finally hovering around and just above 0, after a RECORD breaking cold winter.  So cardigans are still a must.

I love the idea of the woven accent on Shwin Designs Beautiful Dream Cardigan when she first released last year, and I finally sewed one up!  I got a scrap pack of Japanese fabrics from Miss Matatabi last fall too, so this was perfect for my little piece of Nani Iro double gauze.



I'm part of a Facebook group that has monthly sew alongs for NON-English Patterns, and this month it's a couple patterns from the Dutch pattern magazine Knipmode.  The instructions.... aren't easily translated, even for my Dutch Mother!  But with a decent knowledge of proper garment construction I was able to pull of this knit skirt from some glorious navy french terry bought at L'oiseau Fabric.  Not the best pic, but it's like wearing track pants, but a skirt!


Lastly, I finally used up this awesome bicycle fabric I picked up on a visit to Simplifi Fabric last year.   I wasn't convinced of this pattern, the Marianne Dress from Christine Haynes, but it seemed perfect for a directional fabric like this and BOOM, I love it, it's perfect.  Next time I need to size up the sleeves (a bit snug on the XS) but seriously, I need the snow to melt so I can get to my shed and BIKE!



Also, I HATE taking pictures inside, my house is too dark, I can never take a good photo unless it's outside!  Hurry up SPRING!

How's your spring sewing going?

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Sewn in 2014

I know, you've all missed me.  I admit, I'm lazy and usually just post in instagram these days.  However today you're all in luck!  I've written a 2014 wrap up post!

I won't add too much commentary, but will mention my favorite makes from each bunch.  And yes, I've sewn a ton more this year than last, so I've categorized them.   And yes a ton of these have not been blogged (and some aren't even pictured at all!)

Sewing for Me - Shirt-dress edition

I'm probably the proudest of these.  I love shirt-dresses as wear each of them regularly.  The Alder is probably my favorite and I have an second on my spring sewing list!


Sewing for me - Knits edition!

since getting a better machine and later a serger,  knit projects are quickly becoming my favorites!  So quick and easy wearing!  I made a second Sewaholic Saltspring this year, but the Colette Monetta is becoming a favorite for dresses. 


Knit shirts are sooo quick!  My nani iro Lane Raglan is probably my fav or this bunch!  My blue and green cardigan is sadly my least worn, a bit too small and a bit too bright!


 Sewing for me - The Rest

I made a bunch of Wiksten Tanks this year.  I can squeeze them out of a meter and they are so quick!  Also made my first Jacket, thanks my pattern testing experience with the lovely ladies at Pattern Anthology!  I plan to make a ton more blouse/woven tops in the near future, probably including  more Wiksten and more Zippys!


 Sewing for Boys - Knits Edition

This year I discovered the rabbit hole of Euro knits and custom knit fabric groups.  I had no idea there were sooo many beautiful patterns out there and lets just say I've accumulated quite a collection.  Good thing sewing up shirts, hoodies etc. from knits is so quick and fun!


 Sewing for Boys - The Rest

I got to sew my first button down for my boys this year, and I hope to make more, nothing is cuter!  I also hope to make them more pants, because... I didn't make them any this year, ha.  


And last but not least...

Sewing for my Man

I finally got around to sewing him up a few things just before Christmas this year.  And I plan more now that having a serger makes these projects quick sews!  Too bad their size means they still take forever to cut!

Plans for Next Year - I'll keep it simple again

1.)  SEW FROM MY STASH.  I said this last year, but my stash is significantly larger, so seems more reasonable.  But that said, I looove supporting my local store Fabrications and the several awesome online Canadian stores.... so I suspect I'll still buy a bit.
2.) Make more things for my Man.
3.) Make more basics (ha)  I looove pattern, but I'm hoping to make me and my boys wardrobe almost entirely handmade by adding a few more basics!

So how was your 2014, and whats up for 2015?

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Baby Jaguars!

With M getting older, I'm always a bit worried he's going to request some crazy costume that will be difficult to make.  So when he asked to be a jaguar, I jumped on that suggestion!

Originally little E was going to just wear M's costume from two years ago (a blue dinosaur) but I couldn't resist making a second jaguar costume!

And when a local photography friend of mine, J.Sparks Photography offered me one of her Halloween mini sessions?  Again I just couldn't resist.  She's photographed my kids (and myself!) several times always with super awesome results!  Oh and she's also a super awesome mom, so glad to know her!  Thanks Jenna!


Seriously, these kids?  that smile, I melt!



As for the details on the costumes.  I used for the 3rd year now, the Woodland Animal Costume pattern from Running with Scissors!  I just added my own tail and ears!  Such a versatile suit that can be customized a million ways!  I do wish I hate cut out the larger hood size for E, as he apparently has a large head!  It worked ok, and they love them!  They were being worn around the house for days until they had to get washed! 


Happy Halloween everyone!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Fall KCW - Sewing with Knits

Full disclosure up front.  I'm using this post as an excuse to share a few things that I've sewn for the kids over the last err months.  I'm actually terribly behind in blogging my projects.  Most seem to only ever appear briefly on my instagram.  They then get worn and never photographed further... oops?

So I thought I'd use the excuse of Kids Clothes Week to blog about how much I LOVE sewing with knits for kids!!  I've developed a slight knit fabric obsession over the last 6-12 months.  I blame the internet mostly, and as a result have realized how easy, cute, comfy and quick sewing things up in knit is.  I also finally have a working SERGER which basically changes the game of sewing with knits completely.

The internets are covered in cute knit fabric and adorable patterns to use them with.  My Pinterest Boards has some links and I'll share a few more with my projects below!

But first a few of my favorite stores for knits!  I'm personally obsessed with all the cute prints that come out of Europe and  L'Oiseau, Simpli Fabric and Duncan and Kate are my Canadian Favs.   I also order sometimes from some custom print groups on Facebook, a few now have non Facebook presences like The Fabric Snob and Sweet N Charmed.   My local shop Fabrications is now getting in Art Gallery knits and should have them online soon too!

Raglan tees - probably my favorite sew for the boys, and I've made a bunch.  My go to pattern is See Kate Sew's Recess Raglan.  Quick and an awesome fit of my guys!  Here are a couple of my favorites:



Oh and that's me in a See Kate Sew City Girl Frock in my Mother in Law's house back for Easter!  Not my decor style...

And the companion to that R2D2 shirt would be these pants from Max and Meena's Maxaloones pattern.  They are all the rage in the cloth diaper world for their roomy butt fit and general adorableness.




And now that I've reminded you all of summer,  here are a few pictures of the adorable tanks I made for the boys.  After I made little E the bus shirt, he just ran around saying bussssss, busssss.  These guys are too much some days!  These were made using the FREE Fishsticks Tank pattern!  I'm thinking I can layer them over button down shirts for the winter.  That wouldn't be too much would it?





Recently I also made a second Bimaa Hoodie for my oldest first every school picture day!  Sadly it may be the only time he wears it as he's recently declared he no longer likes knights...  argh!  good things his little brother will fit in it soon!



And I've recently started sewing up a few girly knits for little friends.  Most recently this Raglan Pocket Dress by Brindille & Twig!  


And LAST but not least, something I actually sewed during this KCW!  Pajamas!  Used the top and cuffs from Peek-a-boo Patterns Alex and Anna Winter PJ's.  But used the Clean Slate Pants from Blank Slate Patterns as a starting point for the flannel pants. I've decided PJ's are the perfect knit fabric stash buster!  you can use crazy colour combos that work as PJ's, but not necessarily as other clothing!


So I'll end this with a link to Made by Rae's awesome Sewing with Knits series.  Full of excellent tips on sewing with knits.  Have a good KCW everyone!




Monday, October 6, 2014

8 Days a Week - Last Chance Knit Pants..... And a Zippy Top

Quick, only 12 hours left to get in on the great deal that is the 8 Days a Week collection from Pattern Anthology!  I'm finally sharing the last pattern I test for this collection, the knit pants!

This pants pattern is pretty much every pair of knit pants you'd ever need to make in one pattern!  I made up a pair of leggins, but the the lounge pants are on my list!


I live in leggings on weekends, and had not yet gotten around to making my own.  And I'm glad a did!  They are a super quick sew!  I may never buy leggings again! 

I used some luxuriously soft bamboo knit from Fabrications and it is kinda the softest stuff ever, perfectly stretchy for these!



Oh and the top?  While it's not part of the collection, it is a pattern by one of Pattern Anthology's designer See Kate Sew!

It's the super versatile Zippy Top!  I wanted a simple top pattern I could use with some of my errr crazier quilting cotton fabric peices and this pattern fitted the bill perfectly!


It says to use lightly wieghts, but the heavier quilting cotton just makes it a bit boxier which I still love!  However.... I really should remember to iron it...


I looove this fabric by the way, turquoise horses?  Yes please!  Thanks Cotton + Steel!

Oh and don't forget to check out the Pattern Anthology before the bundle is gone!
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