Week 3: Sew with Sweater or Swim Knits

So this is one of the few challenge rejected. I did sew a knit fabric, just not what was suggested.

I did use one of my favorite fabric company’s in a strike off fabric Cosmic Fabric Creations that will open up mid-February.

I chose to sew up new slippers for my tiny girl that always has cold feet. I went with the Canmore Cuddle Slippers from Goober Peas Patterns. I love that I can get a slim narrow for for her tiny width feet and ankles. Its the first time we have had slippers that fit more like a sock and close to her body.

Annelaine Cowl Tester

Here we are kicking off Week 1 of the 52 week challenge, sew something warm. I was lucky enough to test a new pattern for Jennifer Jones over at Annelaine patterns (Annelaine Patterns Facebook Group) with a cowl neck option. This pattern released January 1st, so hurriedly sewed up this strike off version since this fabric was just perfect to cheer a little one during such cool weather (our highs have been hovering somewhere around 0° for the last 2 weeks) and meet the weekly item goal of sewing something warm. So getting started I had to figure out what would make the best coordinate for my I wanna be a Unicorn fabric. I went with TKB mint stars (TKB stars are one of my favorite coordinates ever, I seriously love every one I buy).

Look at that cute little llamacorn, its probably my favorite out of all the horned animals on the fabric. You can get in on the preorder at Little Lady Bug Custom Fabric Facebook Group

Collage 2017-12-30 09_31_10
{Image: Collage with two photos side by side. The left photo is of two fabrics; a gray one with mint colored stars with a very pale blue fabric with unicorns, llamacorns, kittycorns, birds with unicorn horns, narwals and a little girl dressed as a unicorn. It say I want to be a unicorn with small stars, hearts and rainbows. All are in a toss all over the fabric. The right photo has a close up of a llamacorn being pointed out by a hand with pink nails, the rest of the images are blurred]

On a funny side note, I dread making cuffs. I would rather hem something any day over sewing cuffs then putting them on in the round. Because of this  I have a tendency to do them first and get them out of the way so I am less likely to put it on the back burner and end up with an UFO (unfinished object). Does anyone else have issues with bands like me?

Back to the Celebration Cowl Top, it includes:

  • 2 sleeve lengths
  • Turtleneck and cowl
  • Crossover or regular cowl
  • With or without bands
  • Shirt, tunic or dress length
  • With or without skirt
  • Sizing up to 14

On to the construction, Jennifer as always gives clear instructions but I did have to pay special attention to the crossover cowl instructions as I found the photos hard to see because of the use of the solid red fabric (and of course had I not had a pre- teen kiddo in and out of my sewing room talking to me it may have been easier to figure out the cross over portion (maybe).  As a tester, I follow instructions and sew whatever is assigned to me. For this test, I got to pick and I opted for the cross over cowl, regular shirt length with bands. I am so happy I did because this top came out adorable!

It is safe to say that the little one loves it, now to capture photos of a wiggly 3.5 year old wearing her brand new top (photos were done in Ikea because it was way to cold to be outside without a coat).

Week 4: Something for a Boy

Sewing for boys is complicated. Especially when they are heading into those complicated pre-teen years. Typically our little Bear is easy going and generally loves to wear mom made clothing but as we approach those awful middle school ages the child becomes pickier and pickier. As does the ability to find clothing patterns that match his style and sizing (kids between the ages of 9 and 14 often have the body of children but the width of small adults, which makes finding a pattern very hard. It is even more complicated with young ladies as they are beginning to start growing into their female bodies. Lets just say that once your kid reaches a size 10 it really can be hit or miss on whether or not a pattern will work for them. Yes, we could switch to adult sizing; however then I am altering the pattern length by several {6} inches as well as altering the armscye and it just a ton of work.) I was scheduled for several marketing calls and involved in 4 pattern tests so Bear and I sat down to figure out how I could accept this challenge and make something he would love that would not require a ton of alterations.

Enter the triangle bag tutorial I wrote for Pickle Toes Patterns blog page. I wrote it before the holidays because my boys were receiving new dice sets for Christmas and my mom wanted something functional yet fun for them to store them in. You can find the post here—>Triangle Pouch Tutorial. This was just a 5 or so inch pouch and perfect for storing the polyhedral dice as well as some of the other dice from various games plus makes a great stash buster and little hostess gift.

Fast forward to this week and I got some fun emoji fabric from one of my favorite fabric places (check out their group  Central TX Fabric and Craft Supplies FB group or the website Central TX Fabrics. Pop by the group and say hi to Brehan or Justina, join in one of the many group games in the FB group where you can win prizes- or hang out for the $2.00 Tuesdays and occasional Flash Sale Friday!) and Bear has been hassling me to make something from it and to make him a storage bag for his Beyblades, so I finally took that triangle tutorial and basically blew it up!

[Image: Triangle shaped bag in profile so you can see rows and rows of emoji images.]

The bag I made for Bear changed dimension from those listed to 18×16 to create a bag that he can eventually add smaller bags or more of his toys to. He is thrilled (cant you tell in that photo-lol).

[Image: smiling boy holding his huge emoji bag]
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Week 3: Sew Something to Make Sewing Easier



This week is week 3 and the challenge this week seems to leave some confused on what to make. I was lucky, I was gifted the Sew Together Bag by Sew Demented from and I knew that if I accepted the challenge, I would be sewing it up since I had amassed a collection of hexie making supplies in the attempt to have a portable craft to take with me places.

This bag is a bit intimidating partially because it is a bag and partially because there are so many zippers and pockets in the bag. I have sewn my fair share single zip pouches and bags, I even have a lovely oversized camera bag started (lets see if I ever finish it), but this smaller bag with all of its pieces is really scary to me.

So this bag is not designed with the beginner in mind. If you have worked with zippers before you should be good; however if you are a visual learner you will need to go in search of some videos to help with the instructions as there are very few images in the instructions.


After some frustration on trying to figure out how to piece things together, a friend of mine pointed me in the direction of Quilt Barn Sew Along which offers some good step by step help for those that are more visual like me!

In the end I finished this project in about 3hrs, not terrible for a first time with a bag that has instructions I found very hard because of the lack of images. Additionally, I found the steps for the binding very hard to follow (it could be how the instructions actually read or it could be the lack of images), I even involved my husband to see if I was just not getting it and he was wrong too. He was stumped as well and as someone that builds furniture, often his instructions do not have pretty detailed pictures so if he struggles with it, it is not just me- thank god. It is not a cheap project however, I adore the copious amounts of storage and my husband, the bugger, ended up taking the bag to store cords in temporarily so I am off to cut out another version to see if it gets easier as you go.

[Image: Open Sew Together bag where you can see the lining of one of the pockets.]



Post at a glance:

Pattern: Sew Together Bag from Sew Demented

Fabric: gifted fabric

Sewing level: Intermediate/Advanced (being familiar with zipper instillation is helpful but not necessary, knowledge of how to install binding is helpful but not required.)

Time start to finish 3.5hrs (this includes cutting and interfacing timing, plus having to stop twice for my toddler).

Recommend pattern: Yes but not without including the Quilt Barn Sew Along link above. Had I not already made several bags, this project could have ended in tears and an UFO. I watched the sew along at the very end of bag completion, so it is not absolutely necessary to have it, however if someone is a novice sewist or bag maker it would be very helpful to have this information before beginning to sew.

Week 2: The Last Fabric I Bought…

So here we are getting close to finishing up Week 2 of the 52 Week Sewing Challenge and this time its all about using your fabric up. Specifically the last fabric you purchased, which for me happened to be a set of strike off fabrics from K’s Closet Hillsborough. Challenge Accepted!


Aren’t these just the cutest!

Sweet Pea is all about unicorns and llamacorns so I knew she would be super excited about getting these in. #hippocorns are super fun!

About the fabric itself, this was my first time purchasing from K’s Closet. The cotton lycra has a nice in hand weight, and the colors look like the water colored design the artist was going for. After washing there was a bit of shrinking but not anything that is out of the realm of normal for a custom printed fabric. Take a minute to check them out, they are running a fantastic sale right now for $5 off current retail. Check out their K’s Closet Facebook Group here.

I decided I was going to go with the Sofilantjes Regem shirt (I have made this for my big but never the littlest one) because I felt like the colorblocking would look amazing with the rainbow and hippo coordinates. And I believe that I was not disappointed. Sofilantjes is an International pattern designer but she offers patterns in English. Her stuff comes together beautifully and she offers a large variety of sizing (my preteen is even able to still wear this shirt and he straddles children and adult sizing). Don’t be afraid to take the leap to do color blocking because the instructions are thorough and the results are lovely.

Additionally, since the designer of  Rad Patterns is a big fan of unicorns and a hippocorn is her favorite critter, I made our very favorite lounge pants from her line- The Long John Jammers. I did perform a bit of a hack for them and added a skirt because my daughter is into all things roller derby and was insistent upon a tutu added to them. In this case compromising with an almost 4 year old allowed me to get away with just adding the skirt. I love this pattern because the legs have a relaxed rather than tight fit; fitting more like a jogger than traditional legging, which allows for lots of running, playing and exploring which is important to Baby O.

The hack of this pattern was super simple, I took Sweet Pea’s waist measurement divided by 4 for the waist part. I then measured how long from her waist to the point I wanted her skirt to stop. I transferred that measurement (in this case 8 inches) to each side of the waist measuring down in several spots along the waist. After that I filled in the lines and cut out the skirt. When attaching it, I sandwiched the skirt between the pants and waistband when attaching.

I had no idea that Sweet Pea would love this outfit so much but she said that she is a Roller Derby Queen in it and I couldn’t agree more!


And a few more just because I am super tickled with how adorable this fabric is.

Week 1: Something warm for my New Sews for the New Year

Here we are kicking off Week 1 of the 52 week challenge, sew something warm. Which comes just in time with the very cold weather here in Vermont! So I got started on both a top and pants for the littlest human in the house, since she appears to be the one in need of the most amount of warm clothing. I decided I was going to use some wonderful, cuddly blue French terry from Central TX Fabrics & Crafts Facebook Group (who has the best admin team and awesome deals on a variety of fabric types – and she tries to source from US companies) and some funky animal print French terry from Opulent Monsters Fabric and Pattern Facebook Group (there are custom prints, adult prints and LA fashion fabric- which is where this fabric came from). Even though I have been hording these fabrics when the Sweet Pea picked these it caused a bit of panic because even though I have had these fabrics for a while, I have never worked with French terry before.

So French terry has a bit less stretch to work with, in this case one is 2 way stretch and the other has little to no stretch. However both get more cuddly as they are washed, which makes French terry a great choice for the cold New England winters.

[Image: Two stacks of fabric on a cutting mat. On the left is a stack with folded blue colored fabric sitting on top of green multi colored folded fabric. On the right is a pile of cut fabric with lime green, bright blue, pink and gray leopard and zebra animal print on top of blue fabric].
After looking through all my patterns I went with one pattern I have never made in my child’s size and one that is my husband’s absolute favorite for our daughter. I opted for the Paradise Pullover  from Opulent Monsters pattern line and the Sansa Pant from Bella Sunshine Designs (my husband tells me any time Baby O wears these pants that she needs more!)


On a funny side note, I dread making cuffs. I would rather hem something any day over sewing cuffs then putting them on in the round. Because of this  I have a tendency to do them first and get them out of the way so I am less likely to put it on the back burner and end up with an UFO (unfinished object). Does anyone else have issues with bands like me?

I love the construction of the Paradise Pullover and the way the pockets look with just a peek of color which you could use with fun contrasting colors. I opted for the collar with the front pockets in a size 3/4 (sizing runs 3/6m- 13/14) and doubled the waistband width to allow for a bigger band at the bottom.

The Sansa pants run 6m-12 for the girls and 0-30 for ladies. I am totally going to have to get me some more of the blue French terry so Baby O and I can be twinsies. They are the cutest flare shape and fit my tiny girl perfectly, even with using the French terry with less give. I did 2t waist (she measures the 18mo) blended to the 3t height and rise length (since she’s still in diapers.)

I truly loved making this outfit for baby girl because of the funky print but also because of the fit. The Opulent Monsters pattern is a nice gender neutral top that is slim cut, which is very nice for a more petite child , like Sweet Pea. Bella Sunshine Designs does a fabulous job drafting patterns and making sure that the pattern instructions are clear and well thought out. I love the slim through the thigh fit and look of these pants. What is even more impressive is that from taping to finished product this outfit took 2hrs and 3 minutes (it only took me 18 minutes to sew the Sansa pants, and I assume would probably take way less time if I wasn’t one to press my items all the time).

I am pretty sure that this outfit is a success since she saw it, said for me and immediately stripped down to put it on. I love the fit of the entire outfit and was pleasantly surprised at how much more stable in hand the French terry feels when sewing than a regular cotton lycra does- if you decide to make either item, let me know how it goes and what you think!

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Want to stay up to date on the rest of the blogs covered this month in Sewing by Ti? Check them out below!


Sunday, January 7th: Minn’s Things

Sunday, January 14th: Sew Like a Sloth

19th Ma Moose


Sunday January 21st: Flaxfield Sewing

Sunday January 28th: Sew Haute Blog



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