October 14, 2014

Grace Ladies Top and Dress

This is the Grace Ladies Top and Dress from new designer Rose and Lee Designs. I was a tester, but rather than sewing the pattern up as designed, I altered it a little to make it maternity-friendly.

It has lots of different option. Because I'm lazy, I'm just going to quote the pattern description. Here you go: 

Grace is a beautiful pattern, designed for knit fabric, with a deep-v yoke that will flatter your shape without showing too much skin. With length options including top, tunic, knee length dress, and petite, average, and tall maxi and 4 sleeve options including sleeveless, short sleeves, 3/4 length sleeves, and long sleeves, this is an extremely versatile pattern you can wear all year!

This pattern is great for any body type and comes in a wide range of sizes from XXS-XL Misses and 1x-5x Plus! 

To make it maternity friendly, I took my bust and waist measurements. Then I used the size indicated by my bust measurement, with one exception. I altered the front piece only (not the back piece) to my pregnancy waist size to give my belly some room. So I ended up making a size M, and blending up to a size XL from a little above the waist down.

I made this near the end of my pregnancy, and it worked great, so I would say this is a pattern, with some simple alterations, that would be great for the whole nine months, and even beyond.
This shirt also works well for postpartum. The loose fit from the larger waist area makes it perfect for skimming over a post-pregnancy tummy.

October 10, 2014

Welcome Baby!

Back when I made this family for my daughter for Christmas, I also got an additional wooden peg doll. Since our real family has grown, it was time for the wooden family to grow too. I painted her to match the newborn outfit my daughter picked out for her.

Here's the original. Isn't she adorable? The whole family loves her.

Speaking of the whole family, here she is with the whole family.

And here is our updated family portrait. For now. Maybe we can use this for our Christmas cards this year if we don't get around to getting an actual one. I'm not the best at family portraits. Last year, it was just the camera on a tripod with the automatic timer.

October 02, 2014

Elf Shoe Pattern

I was a pattern tester for this cute little Elf Shoes pattern that is a quick sew. It would be so cute with some new Christmas pajamas, or you could get it now and use it for Halloween too. With the movie Frozen being so popular right now, I'm thinking this could make some great Kristoff shoes.

I sewed them up for the newest addition to our family, and they look so cute and cozy on her tiny little feet!

The pattern is on sale for 40% off through Saturday. There is also a matching elf hat that you can bundle with the shoes. Check out Kelly J Designs here.

September 30, 2014

Pattern Parcel #5

Disclosure: I received these patterns for free in exchange for my review. I also get entered in a drawing for free fabric if you click on the links. I don't get any other compensation for this post.
It's time for another Pattern Parcel! This one is for toddler, girls and tweens! If you haven't seen a Pattern Parcel before, it's a great way to support Indie Designers and also give to classrooms in need. You name the price you pay, and also choose how much of the price goes to the designers and how much goes to donorschoose.org. 
I chose to sew up the Playhouse Dress. The long sleeve version seemed like the perfect choice for fall. Also, I've sewn a Fishsticks Designs pattern before, and liked the results.

And I wasn't disappointed. This is a cute, comfy fall dress. I changed up a couple of minor things from the original pattern, but it's sewn basically as the pattern instructs. I added a bow in the front, and I cut the neckband and wristbands on the bias, mainly because I really like how striped neckbands look when cut on the bias.

When she saw it, my daughter's response was: {Gasp!} "Is that a twirly dress? I want to wear it for the rest of the day!" So she did. Until she got dinner all over it.

 It was a fairly simple sew. The side seams did give me some trouble. With the curved bottom of the bodice, it is kind of finicky. Just make sure you pin and check what you've pinned to make sure everything lines up and lays well.

Also, the pattern does suggest hemming before you do anything else if you're using knits. I've never done that before, and I didn't end up doing that, because I didn't check the finished length (the pattern does give finished measurements), and wanted to be sure it would be long enough. It hits right at the knee, which is exactly where I wanted it.

The patterns included in the bundle are:
Pattern Parcel #5: Choose your own price and support DonorsChoose. Win/win!

Want to purchase? Click the link below:

Pattern Parcel #5: Choose your own price and support DonorsChoose. Win/win
If you pay $28 or more, you automatically get the Bonus Pattern. This time its the Sunki Dress by Figgy's.

Pattern Parcel #5: Choose your own price and support DonorsChoose. Win/win

Check out what these other fantastic bloggers have been sewing!

Parcel #5 Inspiration Tour Schedule:

Friday, September 19 Pienkel || Cookin' and Craftin'

Saturday, September 20 Sew Busy Lizzy || The Life Of A Compulsive Crafter

Sunday, September 21 Keep Calm and Carrion || Felt With Love Designs

Monday, September 22 Radiant Home Studio || Sewing Sober

Tuesday, September 23 Sew Fishsticks || La Pantigana || Amanda Rose

Wednesday,September 24 Shawnta Sews || Sprouting JubeJube || Knot Sew Normal

Thursday, September 25 Make It Perfect || Mimi's Mom || Climbing the Willow

Friday, September 26 Needle and Ted || Our Family Four

Saturday, September 27 Froo & Boo

Sunday, September 28 Stitches by Laura || Vicky Myers creations

Monday, September 29 Cookin' and Craftin' || The Crazy Tailor

Tuesday, September 30 mama says sew || FABulous Home Sewn || The Inspired Wren

Wednesday, October 1 lady and the gents || That's-Sew-Kari || Sewing Sober

Thursday,October 2 Gracious Threads || Blogs Like A Mother || SewsNBows

Friday, October 3 sew chibi || Lulu & Celeste || Made by Sara

September 24, 2014

"W" is for Wardrobe

This is a repost of a tutorial for The Ribbon Retreat as part of their A-Z Series. Thanks to them for providing the supplies for the project.

Also, go check out their blog. There are tons of free tutorials that you can use to create with their products.

Hey everyone! I'm Terra and I blog over at mama says sew. I'm excited to be here at the Ribbon Retreat Blog as part of this fun series today!

When I got the letter "W", I wasn't coming up with anything other than watermelon. So I did a quick search for words that start with "w" and one of them was wardrobe. Well, every little girl needs some skirts in her wardrobe, and I thought it would be fun to do a color-blocked one that she could wear at school.

Since it was going to be for school, I wanted to include some shorts. These are sewn right in to the skirt, so on busy school mornings, she doesn't have to search for both the skirt and the shorts.

And every good wardrobe needs accessories. So I used some other supplies from The Ribbon Retreat to make a flower headband to match the skirt. The flower is on a clip, so she can wear it in her hair (like the picture below) or on her skirt (like the picture above).

It is attached to a glitter elastic headband. And the flower comes with some bling!

Here are the supplies I used. 
(The skirt I made was about a girls' size 6. Your fabric requirements may be more or less depending on the size of skirt you make and the number of colors you use.)

September 18, 2014

Ruffled Cupcake Backpack

I came across the Cozy Cakes Backpack Pattern when it was on sale, and on an impulse, decided to buy it. Later, I was looking for something for my daughter for her birthday and remembered this pattern. So I decided to get all the supplies and make it. Oh, did I mention that her birthday was the next day? And it was already 8 o'clock at night? Yeah. Probably not the smartest idea.

I decided to make the frosting in different shades of pink. The cupcake wrapper fabric I already had, and as a bonus, it was similar to the cupcake wrappers I used for her birthday cupcakes. In fact, the whole thing looks a lot like her birthday cupcakes, complete with the cherry on top.

See? Almost an exact replica. Almost.

This pattern calls for a LOT of notions. I couldn't find D-rings, so I used parachute buckles, which I think turned out better. They're a little more secure. Also, this pattern took me about seven hours from cutting to finish. And I started at 9 PM. So I was pretty tired by the time I finished it. 

I love how it turned out. My daughter loves it too! She puts her little treasures in there and carries them everywhere.

As far as the pattern goes, it was pretty well written. I didn't have any major issues, even though I was making it in the middle of the night, and my vision was starting to blur. Literally. 
And that cupcake design was amazingly cute. I also really liked how the straps were constructed. They are padded to make it more comfortable to wear. The zipper instructions were great too. There's also a little pocket on the inside. And the cherry on top is just icing on the cake. Ha, ha.

There were a couple of things about the pattern that were a little odd. There were several times during the construction process where I was like, Huh, I've never done that before. It is a unique design, and so I guess it calls for unique ways of doing things. 
The inside is unlined, so it looks a little messy. If you have a serger, I'd recommend serging the edges. I only have a regular sewing machine, so there is a lot of zig zag stitches that look messy on the inside. The tutorial does say you can finish those edges with bias tape, but that would make an already lengthy process even lengthy-er. 
The cupcake ruffles aren't finished on the ends. Unless I missed that step, which is entirely possible. I think it looks better, but I am a little worried about how well the ruffles will wear, since the raw edges are just folded under.

Also, keep in mind that this is a pretty small backpack. Great for a preschooler, maybe not so much for an older girl.

Bottom line: I love the uniqueness and all around adorableness of this backpack. I would definitely make it again, and I recommend the pattern if you're willing to make the time commitment.

September 12, 2014

Town Square Dress and Top

I made a Town Square top for my daughter for back to school. I also made her a dress. Both were part of testing the pattern. The dress is a little lower in the front than the finished pattern, so just keep that in mind. I ended up adding an extra piece at the top to raise the neckline.

It's a really cute design that comes with quite a few options. You can make a dress or top. You can make the top with or without the peplum. You can make the dress or the top with short sleeves or long sleeves. 

And she loves how it twirls! I made her a pair of shorts to wear under it so that she can safely wear it at recess.

It's kind of hard to see in the pictures, but there is a band at the top made of the same striped fabric as the skirt. I really love how all the different pieces of this top/dress allow you to create a completely custom look.