Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Awesome, Quick and Easy: New Shorts Pattern from Elegance and Elephants!


Heidi over at Elegance and Elephants has just come out with another great pattern. Boho Trousers and Shorts is just what you need for a quick summer sew. And right now there's 15% off this new pattern...you should go check it out!
I had the chance to test the shorts and Clara is love with them...in fact I have 2 more pairs cut out and ready to sew. Just in time too, because this gal of mine was in need of some shorts.
As always, Heidi's instructions are easy to follow with clear pictures and helpful suggestions along the way. You come away with a quality product.  And for this pattern it was a very quick sew from start to finish...with the taping of the pattern I think it only took me 1 1/2 hours from beginning to end!
For the grey ones I used a light weight linen blend and some contrasting quilters cotton for the pockets along with some lace on the bottom.  This pattern is perfect for those summery airy fabrics.
The purple ones are made out of an upcycled skirt and she just loves these. For this pair I used the existing hem of the skirt for the hem of the shorts.  I wish I had had enough to make the pants out of this fabric...it would have been the perfect pair of light weight summer pants. 
We do have some plans for making the pants in the future though...just on the hunt for some light weight fabric for them.  For the shorts you can get a pair out of 1/2 a yard.  All you need is the fabric, elastic and trim if desired. For the pants you'll need a little more fabric and some elastic for the legs as well.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Not a Lot Going On Here

I would like to say I'm sewing up a storm...but I'm not.  I managed to get these curtains done before we had visitors come for Easter.  That's about all of the sewing I've done in the past little while. (Remember my post from a while back...? So I didn't go black and white, but did go geometric and simple)
The fabric is this navy blue wax resist dyed loveliness that my husband brought back for me from Ghana, way back in January. It's only taken 19 years for him to learn what I really want as a souvenir:)

I left the side edges raw (they even wax resist dyed the name and some other things on the side) and then simply used a rolled hem for the top and bottom.  I didn't want to waist any of the fabric by hemming too much.  As I was cutting it out to the measurements, last minute I remembered to make sure that the circles would line up from panel to panel...that was a close call.  I'm kind of loving how they look. Simple, yet stunning to look at. And they are simply hung with little clips on a simple rod.
As for what has been keeping me busy, besides chauffeuring my kids around, on the days it is nice outside...I love Spring...I've been outside discovering what our flowerbeds have to offer. Since we bought this house and moved in July 1st, what blooms in Spring is a nice surprise. Every day it seems like it is something new, awakening to the warm sunshine that has become more the norm.
So here are some of the surprised for your enjoyment.







 One night a couple of weeks ago, there was a chorus of probably 50-80 of these guys in our little pond...it was loud! The result is now a ton of tadpoles swimming around. The girls are having fun with daily observations...got to love backyard biology!
 And this lovely sight is from a drive on Easter around a local park. How many turtles can you count?

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Pixie Hooded Coat by BigLittle

I got to be part of the test group for the new Pixie Hooded Pattern by Big Little and can I just say what a great experience it was!  And the end result were 2 great coats for my girls, that they actually chose to wear! (Check out my other version over here).
The coat is very versatile and will cross over from season to season depending on the fabric choice. For this one I used a home decorator weight fabric for the outside (sorry, no source because it was given to me by my mom a couple of years ago) and a fuzzy blanket found on the Target clearance aisle for the lining. I also added a band of red biased tape around the hood for a little contrast/pop of color.
The pattern comes in a huge range of sizes (1-14 children's), 2 hood options (pixie or rounded) and there is also a pea coat version available as well as a women's pattern in the works.
As for the pattern itself, this would be a great beginners pattern!!! And the result will be something that will have people saying "You sewed that?!?"  There are no button holes, zippers or anything else too scary. Lisa has done a great job writing up the directions and giving great visuals as well.
The other great thing about the pattern...it comes together super fast!!! I sewed this coat together in a morning...so there is some instant gratification involved as well.  I also like this because I won't feel too bad when they outgrow it so quickly...I only invested a minimal amount of time and materials in it, but I got what I think are stunning results.
So if you are looking for a great versatile coat pattern that goes together quickly your really should check out the Pixie Hooded Coat or the Pea Coat by Big Little.
Now for a couple more pictures of my not so little Nordic Pixie (the fabric reminds me of the Norwegian/Swedish prints):



Friday, February 13, 2015

Free For All Flip--Pleated Kick Pleat Skirt

The lovely ladies over at Frances Suzanne are changing up their FLIP Series a little this month. All month long they are spotlighting FLIPs of free patterns/tutorials.
So here is my most popular post...all time, my tutorial for a Kick Pleat Skirt (it's also one of my favorite things I've made).  So if you need a reminder here is a picture of the original finished skirt.
For my FLIP I turned it into a dress and changed up the kick pleats.
It's really hard to tell in the pictures, but I pleated the small panel used in the kick pleat. I did this by using the stripes in the fabric as a guide and just kept pleating so that only the maroon shows.  It also gives the kick pleat more of a...kick so to say. Even though the skirt is kind of fitted she has no problem walking in it.
As for the top, I just used the Ethan Shirt pattern again (other versions here and here), so you could say this is a double flip:)
I kind of like how she can dress this up or down.  My original vision was more flapper girl/20's style...but it turned out a little different after consulting Sophia.
Here's a picture where you can see the pleats a little better. We also went sans bow because it just didn't go well with the style of the dress or with the busyness of the stripes...running down the middle of the white stripes is also a silver stripe that doesn't show up in the pictures.  It really is a pretty fabric (JoAnn's in the red tag fabric section) and is kind of a nod to the Pantone Color of the Year--Marsala. The stripes aren't quite maroon (I know that because I couldn't really find buttons to match), but more of a wine color, just like Marsala.
Make sure you check out the Kick Pleat Skirt Tutorial if you want to make a fun yet little more 'grown up' looking skirt! And make sure you check out the other fun creations and look at the crazy/amazing list of FREE!!! tutorials and patterns over at Frances Suzanne!

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Have You Heard?

Have you heard...there is a new online magazine happening and I'm a guest contributor today?
SKG Magazine - The Lifestyle Magazine for Creative Moms

Friday, January 30, 2015

Zoe Raglan Top

Back last year I had the chance to test the Zoe top by Liola Patterns and I just realized that I never blogged about it. Something to do with kids starting school and life getting crazy. So here it is...
It is a great and easy sew and oh so comfortable. I loved the curved hem line and the pleats on the sleeve...just something a little unique and different for your basic raglan. I also loved that the sleeves and hem line were long enough without me having to alter it...something nice for this long torsoed/long armed gal. It however, would be rather easy to make it without the pleats if you want just a basic shirt.  Really if you are looking for an easy to follow pattern for a basic comfortable shirt, you should check out the Zoe.
Photos thanks to my 11 year old:)

Friday, January 9, 2015

In Black and White

So it's been a while...with the holidays (can you say 3 different concerts?!), camera not working, sick kids, life...and...and...it's been a while. But I am going to be better...

I thought I'd share what is on my mind at the moment though...it's cold here and I still haven't put up window coverings of any kind. While we have fairly good windows, I wonder if having some sort of curtain up would help in the whole heating department.  Not sure if it would or not, but it sure would help in feeling that the rooms were "completed". 
That's what I have on my mind...curtains.
I've ventured into curtains before and plan to reuse those, but I need some new ideas as well.
These I made from some vintage handkerchiefs...still love how they turned out!
I find that I'm still drawn to the simple white with black lined details, like this one from Ikea
SISSELA Fabric IKEA
Or this one from Ikea:
STOCKHOLM Fabric IKEA
And not only am I drawn to black and white, but to the more organic looking designs verses the actual patterns.  This is probably why I'm drawn to doodling like this: 
My Christmas present to myself, found on Amazon.
So my thinking is going down this road: I wonder if I could design/draw my own fabric. I have a bunch of white (same fabric used in the handkerchief curtains actually) and I'm thinking with a sharpie I could come up with something that is not only really cool, but really unique.
The question is, is it doable? 

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