As I mentioned in the Thalia Dress posting there are very few brands I continue to actually test for. I was very excited to see that Melissa with Bella Sunshine Designs was getting back to testing again with this very versatile and scrappy top/dress.
This pattern has a ton of features:
This pattern while offering a ton of features is a very quick sew. You might get more hung up on figuring out which version/view you would like to complete then cutting it out, spending more time on that than the actual sewing.
The most difficult part of the sewing is making sure that the triple stripes line up correctly but go slow and everything will be just fine.
I see lots of these even with the plain sleeves and dress for future makes as Sweet Pea loves a simple A-line silhouette
I have started off this year in a bit of a fog, both feeling relieved that 2020 has closed and 2021 has begun and feeling slightly overwhelmed by events and some known coming changes of the year. Prior to the year closing out, I had decided that I would join the #Sew365Project on Instagram. In this challenge, you commit to getting to your machine each day, presumably to sew a small project such as a quilt block. Because of my mental health and an upcoming cross country move, I had already decided to place less pressure on myself making this challenge a bit more my own. And that as long as I am working on a project, not just at my machine that I am accomplishing the spirit of the challenge. I would post all my makes at the end of the week on IG. I decided to approach it this way because some of my upcoming projects involve applique and just cutting all the pieces then mounting can be time consuming, and while I am not at my machine, I am working in my sewing space and creating.
Additionally, since I dabble in mixed media work, I figured I would include those projects as will since I often use many hours of a day working on them and often find that I can only work on this project for a few days in a row.
I have also committed myself to really work on quilting this year. I have signed up for a quilter’s swap, started a temperature a day block (I assume I will work this project weekly or at least a few days at a time, since I tend to cut then sew.) I did figure out I need to change up my colors because this first 3 weeks has been boring with colors😂
I sewed masks this month for Sweet Pea and now need to work on sewing up mask panels for the Bear. His are a bit more work because of his sensory issues and he needs wire in the nose piece. I’ll get his figured out soon and probably posted during a monthly catch up post like this one later!
As usual I will be in the 52 Week Sewing Challenge and may or may not actually post my makes in the group (I do usually forget but the plan is always to fall along and pray I don’t fall off before May.)is usually always organize your sewing space.
1 Jan 4-10 Organize Your Sewing Space
2 Jan 11-17 Sew a WIP/UFO 3 Jan 18-24 Make a pattern you already own but have never sewn 4 Jan 25-31 Sew Something for Your Feet or Head
Week 1 usually always consists of a sewing room clean up. This year I am in the middle of a move and don’t actually have a dedicated sewing space so I will enter it during the makeup thread.
Week 2 and 3 are a bit combined for me as I have both a WIP started AND have a pattern that I own that I have never made before (Sweet Pea typically does not like jogger/sweatpant style pants.) A WIP or UFO is the favored abreviations for Work In Progress or UnFinished Object. My WIP is a choice that I had cut the pattern but not the fabric as it arrived Monday. I used a couple of patterns from the Sofilantjes brand The Semper Sweater and Domi Sweatpants. These patterns will be featured in an upcoming showcase with Sew PDF Showcase. Speaking of the Sew PDF Showcase….I have a profile listed that’s new and will be working on guest blogging over there every now and then….which is very exciting!
I participated in the last Sew PDF Showcase, featuring the I Glove You pattern from Make It Last Patterns- you can find my blog post on it here! This makes a super cute gift for someone and goes together really rapidly!
I’m working on the another Sew PDF Pattern Showcase plus the Free Bingo that closes at the end of this month which will get me my week 4 entry that I am super excited about. You can find information about the 12 Freebie bingo on the Sew PDF Pattern Showcase Blog.
Sew I think I have caught you up on all my sewing…though I also have a couple of other projects that didn’t get listed because they are gifts and I’m not sure if the person reads the blog.
Here it is the beginning of another year and I made the promise to myself I would be gentle with myself this year and not feel bad about the lag of posting as I have in the past years. I always start out ready to be all in then end up giving up to manage my mental health. This year, I’m hoping since joining the Sew PDF Pattern Showcase I will be more inspired to share here!
As we start January off right, the Featured Pattern Showcase this week is the I Glove You Mitten from Make It Last Patterns. I was pretty excited to get to sew it up for my kids since I have made both the cufflet and the cufflet with phone add on as well received gifts for swapping! My littlest has low vision and so I was intrigued hoping she can hold hands walking around our property, so this would not only be a fun sew but also very functional for us living in New England!
The children picked a cotton lycra outer with a bamboo French Terry cuff and lining. Both fabrics come from Shear Madness Fabrics. The murlocs are no longer available but there are other WOW inspired prints still available, you can find those here. The digital blocks will be available for retail soon (the round just closed last week or so.)
I really enjoyed sewing this pattern. It was a very quick sew. I love it when it takes me more time to cut out the actual fabric than to sew the pattern together. Total sewing time (including cutting, sewing, and interruptions from kids) ran roughly 40 minutes.
This pattern comes in 3 sizes:
Small- child sized or small wrists
Medium- fitting an average sized wrist
Large- for larger sized wrists
Sweet Pea is very small (her wrist size is about 4.5 inches) and the Bear is starting his teen growth spurt so he actually falls between being a small adult and more average sized wrist. I opted to go with the small sized mitten but do the medium sized wrist band for him. The fit was expected for Sweet Pea, a tad large, and for Bear, which was right on the perfect size for him so he won’t get much use out of it once he has the next growth spurt. But he has asked if there is a way for me to keep the small size for her but make his whole side the medium.
I told him that since it is a cut on fold pattern, I should be able to modify it so that he has something he can use for a longer period of time with his sister. I think this is a fun couples gift and makes the perfect Valentine or accessory sew that you never knew you needed!
Oooh it’s been a minute- I have been sewing weekly but it is that chaotic time of year where it’s the perfect storm of sport seasons changing, annual appointments for all of Sweet Pea’s specialists and now with the self quarantining and having to teach school. I’m going to be doing something I have never done before and if you read all the way to the end AND COMMENT, I’ll draw a name for a free pattern from Goober Peas Designs Patterns (the pattern company I used for this post today!)
I love when spring comes. It feels so delightful to be outside with a light weight jacket after being bundled up for so many months on end. But with that shift in weather comes digging through my children’s closets to ensure they have what they need for the weather transitions.
This year Sweet Pea asked for ALLLLLL the dresses. Which isn’t all that unusual for her, she loves dresses. She added she wanted length and twirly to the request.
So this means figuring out new patterns or even better, with all the uncertainty currently going on, digging through the depths of all my patterns and creating fun mash ups.
I decided to fill the request of the wee one I wanted to use bits and pieces of a couple different patterns from Goober Pea Designs Patterns to create a whole new look for her.
I started with the Hip 2 B Square tee which has a ton of features:
Youth sizing of 0-3mo to size 20
Short and long sleeve options
Sleeve colorblocking with optional venting
Full or partial color blocking of the bodice
I opted for the short sleeve (Sweet Pea is not a fan of long and it would have been my preference due to the time of year but she was having none of that) with colorblocking of the sleeve and bodice. I left off the bottom colorblocking panel on the bodice and trued the back to match since I was attaching a skirt to the hemline. I also lengthened the sleeve a bit because Sweet Pea prefers elbow length sleeves.
Next to work on the twirl factor and make a dress from the top. I could have gone with the Addison/Sadie add on pack that would have added a circle skirt but I knew with the request of maxi dress length it meant making an adjustment. So I decided to hack/mash it with the Talia Tiered Dress (which is free to newsletter subscribers.)
Talia has a few fun features:
Sizing from 0-3mo- size 14
Sleeveless, short sleeves, long sleeves
1,2 or 3 tiers to make peplum, tunic or dress length
Since the 3 tiers puts the dress at close to a tea length, I knew it would be easy to add a 1.5 inches to each tier to get close to ankle length. It was soo much gathering. I also added clear elastic when attaching the skirt because I was worried about the weight of the skirts with the added length.
She literally wore this dress for a week straight once it came off the machine so I would say this ended up being a successful mash up!
Welcome to the Spring Fling Blog Hop!
Sew Much Charm kicked off the Spring Fling with the Spring Fling Giveaway! A huge congratulations to the winners: Lorna P. of England & Patti V. of Texas! Each prize package had a retail value of $191!
Let’s keep the fun rolling this week with more sewing and more fun. Sew Much Charm is now also hosting the Spring Fling Blog Hop and I’m going to introduce to you our Bloggers for the Blog Hop!
Be sure to check each day by 6AM (Central Standard Time)! Each day there will be a blogger (or more) doing a giveaway! So be sure to check each blog post & just comment on their blog post from this blog hop and you are entered to win!
I sometimes am lucky enough to get fabrics that my kids get super excited about, like this Ladybug fabric (opening soon from Shear Madness Fabrics) and like to try to use up every last scrap. This is so when they outgrow that epic hoodie or dress or whatever I have made them, they get to keep a piece that isn’t just for wearing. Favorite ways to preserve these fabrics in the past has been using them for chapstick holders, small bags, pencil bags.
I recently got into making patches with the fabric that has larger artwork and it’s something Baby Bear really loves. Here is a tutorial using hot glue and painting but you can easily do the same with fabric. My favorite method is similar to this tutorial using a regular sewing machine. If you are using fabric I would recommend using heat n bond in between the decorative fabric and heavier weight interfacing then stitch around the design. My son prefers a more flexible patch so I just heat and bond the back of the fabric but for a more traditional weight patch, you would need to use the heavier interfacing. Make sure to use a heavy duty, jeans or leather needle as the interfaced fabric can be thick and universal needles will sometimes skip based on the decorative fabric with the interfacing.
And now that Sweet Pea is getting older, I am hoping to get her into patches too. But for now I am happy with inventing a new way for her to play. I took this fabric and fused it with heat and bond then fused to felt for felt story board play.
I sewed around the characters then cut them out as close to the stitching as I could.
And since I gave these to Sweet Pea, she has already engaged in several hours of fun.
Don’t have a felt board like we do, no problem. You can cover cardboard, or poster board with regular eco felt. You can even get fancy and duct tape 2 pieces of cardboard together then cover with felt so that it is a collapsing storyboard to take places with you.
Hours of fun, entertainment, and storytelling just by using a few scraps.
It’s that time of year when we start working on holiday gift ideas. I really love including at least one handmade gift for my children so this year I am making several gifts from the Winter Wear Designs 12 Days freebie items to figure out what I actually want to make.
This post I am all about the stocking stuffers and small gifts that won’t take very long for last minute gifts….
I wanted to work on a variety of projects that will free me up from last minute rushing that seems to always happen at the beginning of winter break. I listed my projects in order of published dates but I worked on them 20 minutes here and there over a few days.
The Animal Scarf: I really love this pattern. It is super cute and quick (except for trying to decide which features to give the critter you pick.) I went with knit for the accent pieces because Sweet Pea wanted her unicorn scarf to be a rainbow unicorn. I also used minky which while it created a plush cuddly scarf, its quite fiddly and I would recommend gluing the seams so they don’t slip or shift. I love the length for child size so I know for the few adults I’m gifting these to, they’ll be a great length. The knit fabric is from TKB Prints.
This project took the longest out of all the projects I made. It took me roughly an hour because of the choices that Sweet Pea chose.
The Wine Bottle Gift Bag: This is a gift that will be paired with a spiced holiday wine called gluhwein in a gift pack. This freebie has htv files so you can decorate with some fun sayings, take a look below.
Or you could go with a fun or funky fabric for something a bit more playful like I did.
This sew took 15 minutes and that’s only because I had to change my sewing feet to create a button hole. If you opted for tying the ribbon around the neck instead of making a casing for the ribbon, this project would take just a few minutes.
Alpine fingerless gloves: This pair specifically was sewn for the little Sweet Pea who is a children’s size 3/4 in width and 5 for length on things. The Alpine gloves begin at childrens 8-12. Since she is just outside of the range and the seam allowance is 1/4 inch, I know doubling the seam allowance would decrease the sizing over all by 1 inch and would probably work. I did have to rework the construction a bit because the sizing was so small. I started with sewing the thumb seam (using the 1/2 inch seam allowance instead of the original 1/4 inch one.) Next, I hemmed the thumb and finger holes. I then sewed up the side with the thumb hole with a 1/2 inch seam allowance, hemmed the bottom and finished with sewing up the last seam with the same 1/2 inch allowance.
This project took me 20 minutes start to finish even with changing the construction for the smaller size.
Christmas Cactus: This was a freebie was a bit more time consuming. In 35 minutes, I made these 4. I did not use full felt because I had a fun fat quarter of Christmas lights fabric and thought it might make the cactus look decorated. So I chose to use fray check on woven edges and backed with felt. I also used Pellon EZ5S Easy Steam Fusible Webbing to bind everything together prior to stitching. The bulk of the time I spent on these was the detail stitching, you could skip it (as well as stick with felt or fleece fabrics) and this would make a 20 minute or so project giving you 4 small gifts. These will go on containers of chex mix with tags for the kiddos teachers.
Earbud case: This was a super quick sew. I knocked 2 in about 20 minutes. I will eventually make 12 more for friendship gifts for the kids and wanted to try both the snap and the zipper to see the kids’ preferences for their friends. The beautiful Chibi Sailor Moon cats is a current preorder from Cosmic Fabric Creations. This preorder includes Sailor Moon, the Valentine Glitter hearts I showed off in the last blog I did and coming soon Baby Kevin. This project also comes with HTV emoji faces to decorate and has the button, zipper and snap options plus a hanging or wrist strap option.
The Hipster pack: This one might be my favorite gift so far. The pattern is straight forward and easy to follow. Typically, I muslin everything but went straight into using a beautiful hand dyed knit from Over the Selvage that is a current open preorder. The fabrics in this round are all designed to be dyed, colored or painted. I really don’t want to give this gift up because it is amazing.
This project took me roughly 30 minutes.
So there we go, half of our handmade Christmas gifts are all done! Which freebie do you like best?
I was really love One Thimble Magazine. So I was gobsmacked when a call for a blog tour came out and I got to apply for it and I was accepted to create a post. I feel like One Thimble does a great job getting designers that create designs that work for my little Sweet Pea.
I opted to start out with the Oceaan Shorts from The Eli Monster because I had lots of successs with the Neuix Tunic and Reizen pants (and Sweet Pea really wanted a new pair of shorts), you can see my notes on those patterns here–> Sew Fab Blog Tour. Sweet Pea settled on this lovely fabric from Cosmic Fabric Creations.
And off I went. As usual, the instructions have been amazing and we really love the button deals.
It was 6° outside so we had to go for an indoor photo shoot and still needed sweatshirts and tights.
I also got to sign up for the as Gentleman’s Polo which (yes, I made for my sweet girl) from Orange Daisy Patterns. I have never used any of this designer’s patterns and was hoping Sweet Pea would pick the long sleeved version. She opted for the midsleeve length, which is not a length we usually go for but I really like how it comes all the way down to the elbow. The placket construction was slightly different than I was used to but was quite easy to follow. We used the skirt from the Hickory & Spice Henley and colorblocking on the shoulders because Lolli was insistant upon it. The collar fit on the pattern quite nicely and I was quite proud to get nice sharp points, though I realize now after looking at the photos Lolli tucked the collar in so you can’t even see them🤦♀️
I’ll need to update with some more photos in a day or 2 to show off the really lovely collar. I really enjoyed the chance to work on this blog tour, get to discover a new designer and create fun stuff for my daughter to wear!
For your chance to win a copy of the new One Thimble Issue 22 – Summer 2019 please enter the rafflecopter prize draw here.Open until 12am Wednesday November 20th AEST
I love fall. It’s my favorite time of year. Here in New England the cool temperatures lend itself super well to layers. And since I have kiddos it frequently means my sewing is all about filling in their wardrobes!
This year Sweet Pea has been very specific about her likes and dislikes when it comes to clothing so we frequently have to scour pinterest to find styles for her with an overall look then try to replicate pieces of the look with adding fun custom pieces.
She has been super big on the patterned jacket look and I have to say I fully support that! Her favorite picture she keeps going back to is this one below. I knew immediately I wanted to revisit the Phresh Blazer but go with the regular sleeve and no ruffle design.
I got some really amazing fabric to work with from Cosmic Fabric Creations (House Owls are currently on preorder until November 7th and Jennifer has all your houses covered.) If you want more updates on this round check out Cosmic Fabrics Facebook group to stay up to date!
I knew this fabric was destined to be a part of the pin-spiration look I was going to go with and would be the perfect layering piece!
Size made: 6, chosen to be able to layer sweatshirts as winter comes and heavier layers are necessary.
As I’ve made this pattern several times (I think we have 4 Phresh blazers), I won’t go into a review of the pattern because we love it in this house. But I will say this is the first time I made a plain version (every other one has puffed sleeves and or ruffles.) And I am no less smitten by it as I was the first time I made one (you can check out my original post here where I talk about hacking the Phresh Jegging pattern too.)
These photos were taken “hot off the pressing table.” I think Sweet Pea did a great job picking her accompanying items to look like her pin board.
Check back with me on Friday to see how this jacket does double duty with a fun new dress😊
It’s the end of the summer, and the kids are finally back in school- yay! And most of us that sew are starting to shift our focus sewing on Halloween costumes and Christmas gifts.
This year rounding out the summer sewing for me are a variety of capsule style items that can be used with layering pieces. Sweet Pea loves dresses so long sleeve bodysuits and skirts that are longer and paired with leggings and leg warmers underneath allow her to still feel like a princess but be fully covered.
This year I decided I want to do a series of photos of Sweet Pea embodying different types of Goddesses and fairies. And I knew this was the perfect opportunity to start that series. As we go into fall my inspiration uses beautiful dark rainbow watercolor fabric from Cosmic Fabric Creations.
We sat down with some croquis and tried to figure out what would fit the guidelines for the end of the summer- it needed to have sleeves yet still work for layering, otherwise as we are going into very long months of cool weather there would be very little wear of a fabric Sweet Pea absolutely adores.
In the end this is what my daughter decided on.
I started with picking out the green so I knew what kind of body suit to go with. In the end Sweet Pea chose a muted green which was perfect for the new Logan Bodysuit from Rad Patterns. This is a snap crotch lapped bodysuit going from newborn sizing all the way up to a size 20+ in childrens (plans for an adult version are in the works currently.) It is part of the accessibility line that Rad Patterns offers. And it is currently on sale so get it before it goes to regular price.
I love it because the fit is amazing (I graded between a size 3t width and 5t length and I imagine I will have to make several more to go under overalls, dresses and skirts. And when she wears skirts and dresses we can leave off the bloomers and she can get in and out of it on her own to use the bathroom.
After that it was on to the skirt using that beautiful fabric above. The Kaleo Skirt from Eunoia patterns seems like a perfect fit. Since it had lots of gathers and was long like a princess skirt. Now Sweet Pea has a beautiful princess dress to wear for school fall music concerts and for when she just wants to be a princess. The Kaleo has excellent drafted instructions and since the skirt pieces are rectangles, offers both pattern pieces and a cut chart. The pattern also includes a slim cut top that can either be a crop or long and have short or 3/4 sleeve. I would have used it since it came with the pattern but Sweet Pea wanted something that would stay tucked in while playing.
She added a paper flower crown and I think she looks like a woodland fairy or Goddess and I feel like this looks almost exactly like the croquis above😍
We’re kicking off the Sew Long Summer blog tour this week. We have some really fun and inspiring creations for you again this year.
Sew Long Summer is all about getting those transitional wardrobe pieces ready; finishing up all those things we meant to make this summer; and well, basically whatever Sew Long Summer means to you.