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!

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Marigold Goes to Market

Hi!  So excited to be part of today tour for the new Pattern Anthology 8 Days a Week Collection!  Today I'm sharing my version of the Marigold Dress!

And don't forget to scroll to the end to check out what patterns the others bloggers on the tour are sharing today and to get more details on the collection!


I love shirt dresses!  Secretly (ok not so secretly) I'd love to have a wardrobe full of them.  I probably have 15 or 20 patterns (many of the vintage) for various styles of shirt dresses!  In particular I'm in love with vintage styled shirtwaist dresses.  You know the ones with fuller skirts that were the common daily wear of such famous people like Mad Men's Betty Draper.


Yet I never seem to get around to sewing any!  I admit I hate the exercise of measuring and sewing buttons and button holes!  So when the Marigold came up during testing as of the patterns for the 8 days a Week Collection it was perfect!  I HAD to sew this, no choice really!  And I love the results!


The skirt is just full enough (and will be even better when I finally make a bit of a petticoat for it!) But not crazy 50's housewife full. The bodice style makes it not restrictive to wear and the elastic waist makes it super comfy!  Throw on a structured belt and bingo!   Wondering about the fabric? It's a voile from Anna Maria Horner and is super lovely and perfect for this dress!


I'm usually not a long sleeve dress person, but I made the long sleeve version button cuffs and all!  And they weren't nearly as scary as I thought!  Most of the pictures here have the sleeves partially rolled up.  I admit to being a huge fan of mid-length sleeves, and the nice thing about cuffed sleeves like this, you have the room to roll them up when you undo the cuff!  Win-win!


And wondering why the post title?  Why because I took the dress (and my silly expressions and frizzy hair!) to the local farmers market for photos of course!  The first photo was from my first attempt at photographs which ended inside a building to escape the pouring rain!  Ahh the joys of blogging!  It's surprisingly hard to get good photos of oneself when your photographer is either your distracted husband (silly kids!) or a tripod on a table with a timer (Maybe I need to buy a real tripod eh?)


Regardless, I love this dress!

Don't forget to check out these other awesome versions from the collection! 
8 Days a Week Collection is a new collection of women's sewing patterns by Pattern Anthology.  This collection includes:
  1. The Neptune Tee: A casual tee with optional triangle cutouts at the front and back neckline as well as the sleeves.
  2. The Marigold Dress: A button down dress with elastic waist, long or cap sleeve options and even a peplum option.
  3. Go To Knit Pants: 3 styles of knit pants including leggings, straight leg pants and relaxed fit pants options.
  4. McCartney Jacket: A zip up jacket with fun options and lots of style.
Buy now!
8 Days a Week is available for a limited time at a 40%+ discount.

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And Check out these other bloggers to see their awesome versions of the patterns!

Pattern Anthology presents: 8 Days a Week Pattern Collection - patternanthology.com

Friday, September 26, 2014

Selfish Sewing Week - A Zinnia

In case you haven't heard, it's the fall version of Selfish Sewing Week!  Hosted by Rachel over at Imagine Gnats, it's an excuse to focus your sewing for yourself! Thats assuming you have kids you often sew for, ha!

I sew a fair bit for myself normally, but I hoped to get through a more than normal this week.  Not much luck, busy work week and tired me meant I've mostly been lying on the couch in the evening!  And it's going to be a sunny warm weekend after a month of chilly weather so I suspect I won't get much more done! BUT I did sew up a skirt!


A Colette Zinnia in fact!  From some of the err large amount of Cotton + Steel I may or may not have snagged at Fabrications a few months ago!


Sadly, I only bought 1.5 meters, and it needs 2 meters because of the width in the skirt.  So I cheated and narrowed the width and cut it the wrong direction.  It's just quilting cotton so the drape isn't right anyway and the narrower width is probably more appropriate for the weight.


Otherwise she came together pretty easy, although I admit I sometimes detest sewing in pleats! Yet I LOVE the look of a full skirt, I may need to make more.  One of these days I also need to sew myself up a proper underskirt too, it will totally make it lay better and prevent me always wanting to adjust the pleats!


And it also has the required POCKETS.  That is all.

So in light of my lack of progress this week, I'm thinking I might just deem next week Selfish Shirt-dress Sewing Week and sew these up then then instead?


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