November 26, 2014

Black Friday Sales

I've taken advantage of some Black Friday sales to purchase some of the patterns I've been eyeing for awhile. 
Fawn Lily Tunic & Dress

I love the look of the Fawn Lily Tunic & Dress from Willow and Co. All of their patterns are on sale for 50% off. You can get the code on their facebook page. I grabbed this one today.

Violette Field Threads has everything on their website for 40% off, no coupon code needed. I've only sewn one of their patterns, but I love their designs.

Daphne Knickers PDF Pattern
I have been wanting the Daphne Pants for about as along as I've known about Violette Field Threads, and I finally went ahead and got it.

I love the look of the Vivienne Skirt, and it now comes together with the blouse pattern, so I'm glad I waited on this one!

Also make sure to check out the clearance section. They have a couple of paper patterns on sale for $3.

Happy Sewing!

Just FYI, I'm not affiliated with either of these pattern companies-I just wanted to pass the deals along. Lots of designers are having Black Friday sales, so if you've been wanting a pattern, now is probably a good time to get it.  You can find a whole bunch of PDF and fabric sales listed here.

November 25, 2014

Andover Pullover and Jacket

The Andover Pullover and Jacket has just been released from Terra's Treausres. For a limited time, it's on sale for $7.50.

My favorite part of this pattern is the pockets. I like the shape and position, and they are really cute with the optional bow (which I didn't use because the ribbon I had didn't match).

I made the pullover version, but there is also a zippered jacket option, which is really cute. 

It also comes in a good range of sizes- 6-12 months all the way up to 16. 

November 22, 2014

DIY Christmas Leg Warmers and a Giveaway

Today I’m over at Skip to My Lou as part of the Bake Craft Sew & Crochet Along. I am sharing a wonderful Christmas leg warmers tutorial perfect for holiday gift giving. In fact, you won’t want to miss all the handmade gift ideas! I have joined over 100 bloggers to share some amazing homemade gift ideas……..AND I get to be part of an amazing sewing giveaway too. Keep reading…
  sewing giveaway bake_craft_sew

One lucky winner will receive…
this amazing Baby Lock Sewing Machine ($799 Value)
Ready to take your sewing to the next level? The Baby Lock Rachel is the star of any sewing class, and she's here to help you. This computerized sewing machine is equipped with 50 stitches and push-button features to make every project easier. The value is $799. Click here for more details.
Simply wait for RaffleCopter to load and enter there!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

November 18, 2014

Stenciled Bodysuits

This little outfit was kind of a series of accidents. I was painting something for another project, and came up with idea to freezer paper stencil a triangle pattern on a bodysuit. I used my Silhouette to make it easier, just like I did here.

 I used a stitch on my machine that I've never used before. I didn't have a double needle, so I experimented. This stitch looks like a straight stitch, but it has some stretch. The picture on my machine looks like three rows of stitching, but they're so close together, you can't really tell.

 I had some navy and mint flannel in a fun print that I used to make a little skirt to go with the bodysuit. I added some shoes and voila! A cute little baby outfit. I used the pattern found here for the skirt. The shoes are made with this pattern.

This is the original project. I was making a state bodysuit. But since I'm a little paranoid, and there are creepy people on the internet, I removed the state. It's a simple little project though. Just stencil a state on the bodysuit, and add the "born" with freezer paper letters before painting.

The bodysuit pattern is the Stitchwerx pattern found here. I used Martha Stewart pearlized and metallic paints, mixed with a fabric paint medium.

November 17, 2014

Pattern Testing 101: Part 2

Want to see the first post about pattern testing? Go HERE for some tips on being chosen as a tester!

So you've been chosen as a pattern tester. And you want to be a good one, so that you'll be chosen again. But what makes a good pattern tester? That's what we're going to talk about today. Because if you're a good pattern tester, it's more likely that the designer will want you to test again.

Here are  things that make a good pattern tester. This isn't an exhaustive list. If there are things I've left off, please feel free to mention them in the comments.

1. Be reliable. If you sign up to be a tester, make sure that you can finish it within the designer's time frame. Most designers I've tested for want your feedback and pictures in about a week from the time that they send you the pattern, although that can vary. They are working on a schedule, and so it's important that they get feedback in a timely fashion so that they can perfect the pattern in time for it's scheduled release.

2. If something comes up, notify the designer as soon as possible. Sometimes things happen, like a sewing machine breaking and ending up in the shop. Let the designer know so that she can work around that, either by choosing another tester or extending the deadline for you. If other, more serious issues come up, and you can't contact the designer right away, it would still be courteous to contact the designer when you can. Trust me, if you just disappear, the designer isn't going to ask you to test again.

3. Give good feedback. Just saying "Everything is great" is nice to hear, but it doesn't really help the designer perfect her product. Be picky about grammar, and if something doesn't make sense, say so. Do you have a better method of doing something? Suggest it! You can also tell the designer what you liked about the pattern. Maybe this goes without saying, but you need to read the directions in order to do this. I know a lot of the time I skim the directions for the PDF patterns I've purchased or just look at the pictures, but if you're testing, you need to read everything carefully in order to give good feedback. 

4. Make sure you reference the designer's size chart. Your ready to wear size (or your child's ready to wear size) may not be the same as the sizing in the pattern. It doesn't really help the designer if you make something based on your ready to wear size, and then tell the designer the fit was way off. If you made the wrong size, of course it is going to be off. Also, if you needed to blend sizes to get a good fit according to the size chart, make sure to tell the designer what you did.

5. Be willing to go the extra mile. Sometimes sizing is off, or a design element just doesn't work, and the designer needs to change the pattern enough that she wants to send it through another round of testing before releasing it. If you're willing to sew up another test garment, that is helpful to the designer, and she'll know that you're a tester she can count on.

6. Take good pictures. One of the main reasons for testing is to check fit, and if the designer can't see the fit from your pictures, it's not very helpful. Make sure to take pictures from different angles too. Also, if there was a particular fit issue, a close-up can be helpful.

So there you go. Happy testing!