Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Better Late Than Never - Catching Up to #30days of Dresses

I definitely meant to do my post on how the second half of #30daysofdresses went but then completely forgot to do it.  Here we are 3/4 of the way through August and I've suddenly remembered it, so better late than never here it is!  But first, I want to share a new project with you that I sewed up in the last two weeks as well as a sneaky peak at a few projects I have coming up on the Minerva Blog this fall!

So let's get started!  First up is my new dress, the very popular Chalk and Notch Fringe Dress.  I wasn't sure I really liked the style for me when the pattern first came out.  I had only seen it on women who were definitely not my body type, so it was hard to imagine how it would look on me.  At some point they re-released the pattern with a larger size range from what I gather, so that there wasn't just a standard A/B cup bodice, but also a C/D cup bodice, and I started seeing more and more curvy sewists in the dress.  Of course being the ever fickle sewist I am, I was suddenly obsessed with the pattern despite having not given it a second glance for the longest time. So I decided to give it a go for myself.



I did need to add length of course to the bodice, but then forgot to take length off the skirt, so it does fall somewhat longer in the hemline than I think the designer would have intended.  I'm not sure I'll take the skirt off and shorten it or if I'll just leave it as is, with a mental note to shorten it next time I make the pattern.  I chose to make View A with the buttons and sleeve tabs in a size 18 C/D.  The only modification I made was to lengthen the bodice.  The dress is very simple to sew, but I took my time, sewing it in little chunks of time here and there.



I'm loving my new method of sewing in small chunks.  I find it so much more relaxing and enjoyable than trying to get things done all in a rush!  So much so that I'm planning to take part in the Instagram challenge of #seweverydayseptember that was proposed by Sheona of Sewisfaction. It'll be a great reminder to myself to slow things down and even doing a small sewing related task every day is good enough!

Anyway, back to the dress.  I sewed it using a rayon challis that I had purchased from
Fabricland earlier in the summer.  They had it in a navy colour way that I really wanted, but sadly didn't have near enough fabric left on the bolt, so I went with the black instead.  I can still pair it with my favourite red Lotta from Stockholm clogs, so I was happy.  (Does anyone else base the majority of their fabric purchases on a favourite pair of shoes?)  I can also wear it with my black pair of course but why when I can wear red?


I'm pretty happy with the dress.  It's comfy and has pockets (who doesn't love a good pocket?).  I'm just not sure about the length.  Should I shorten it?  What would you do?



This was one of the dresses I had planned to make in July for #30daysofdresses, but that didn't happen obviously. Neither did the Kielo Wrap Dress I had planned. (I should get on that one soon!) I did sew two other dresses though, so that was pretty good I thought!  Unfortunately I can't show them to you yet because they are for the Minerva Blog and won't be up for a while yet, but I thought I'd show you a sneaky peak of them today.


Now, lets take a step back in time for a moment to July and the #30daysofdresses challenge.  I'm happy to say I did it!  There were only a few times that I chose to wear my Samara Pants* instead of a dress but other than that one pattern, all other days saw me wearing me-made dresses.  There were lots of repeats.  Turns out I don't have thirty dresses in my wardrobe and quite frankly I'm ok with that.  It was quite evident that there were some dresses I obviously love more than others because they were on heavy repeat rotation throughout the month, whereas others I was happy to just wear once or twice throughout. I thought that I might immediately go back to pants and shorts as soon as the month was over, but I've found myself still wearing dresses far more often than pants. Possibly in preparation for winter when it'll feel too cold to even contemplate a dress unless I absolutely have to... lol   I was pretty pleased that I managed to document it all on Instagram too except for one day that I forgot until I was already in my pjs.  It was a repeat day anyway, so I felt it really didn't matter. (for those curious, it was my SOI Heather Dress).

So if you're still reading after this marathon post, I'll leave you with a look at how the rest of the month panned out for me.  I've put the links to the patterns below (clockwise from top left)





I'm going to sign off now, because I've got some housework that desperately needs doing and another project I'm working on right now for Minerva that is calling my name and two boys that are claiming they are starving and "WHEN IS IT GOING TO EVER BE LUNCH MOM???"

Tuesday, August 06, 2019

#ITSSUMMERCLASSICS

So you all know by now how much I love Itch to Stitch* patterns.  I've tested countless patterns before their release and if I don't have time to test, I almost always purchase the pattern myself at some point after the release.  I swear that Kennis Wong, the designer, creates her patterns just for me because I never really have any alterations to do besides adding some length usually or the odd tweak here and there if I'm making pants.  But I hear a lot of people say that about her patterns so I guess they're not really just for me.  LOL!

We're doing something fun over in the Itch to Stitch group on Facebook until August 7th where makers have been asked to highlight their favourite ITS patterns for summer and hashtag it #ITSSUMMERCLASSICS.  I've definitely enjoyed putting together some collages of my wardrobe staples.  It's funny to see them put together like that because I don't necessarily think about the patterns when I reach for a garment out of my closet, but you can definitely tell which patterns I love the most... hello Crystal Cove Cami and Samara Pants!  I'm looking at you!!!

I thought I would share my various collages I put together here on the blog too, so you can see what my favourites are.  So here we go!  First up is Cami's and Tanks - from top left to right the patterns are:

Crystal Cove Cami (modified to have a straight back and wider straps)
Crystal Cove Cami (same mods as above)


And then of course tops and tees:



Moving right along we have the Samara Pants.  Oh how I love this pattern so much!  I made three pairs back to back and I wear them all the time.  They have the swish of a skirt and the practicality of pants (no inadvertent wardrobe malfunctions in the wind! LOL).  

The tops that I've paired them with in these photos are all Itch to Stitch too.  From left to right they are:
Crystal Cove Cami (my modified version from above)


Let's go on to the dresses now.  While ITS has quite a few dress patterns in the shop, (a lot of which I own!) for some reason I've only made two of them so far.  Odd.  Must remedy that.  The Marbella is my absolute favourite dress in the summer.  I made it a few years ago and it's my summer time go to.  It has an anchor print that despite the fact I live on the prairies, I get seasick at the sight of a boat and have no sailing experience what so ever I am inexplicably drawn to.  Pairing it with my red Lotta from Stockholm peep toe low woods always makes me feel like a million bucks.  It just screams summertime to me. 


And then there is the Petaluma Dress



Last but not least lets talk shorts.  I have the Hermosa Shorts that I just made recently that I'm looking forward to making a second pair of as soon as I get the chance! Also ages ago I made the Liana jeans but oops! Within a few months I had managed to shrink them and they ended up way too short to wear. (I'm the world's worst laundry do-er.  I can shrink just about anything!)  So I cut them off and made shorts out of them because I wasn't going to waste all that effort of making jeans.  Once altered to shorts,  I then proceeded to live in them!  



I hope you've enjoyed my Itch to Stitch pattern selections for beating the heat of summer!  Don't forget you can always take advantage of bundle pricing in the Itch to Stitch shop if you're wanting to stock up on patterns.  No codes are necessary so the discounts will show in your cart automatically.  One small note that I feel I should address is that as you may be aware, I am an affiliate for Itch to Stitch, but this is not something I take lightly.  ITS is the only company I am an affiliate with at this time as I feel very strongly that it is important that I truly believe in a product I'm going to recommend and that it is something I am happy to use myself over and over again.  So yes, if you purchase through my affiliate links, I do receive a small commission, but you can rest assured that all opinions I present here on my blog are open,  honest and of my own. 

Monday, July 22, 2019

Kosice Top and a Bit of Blog News

Good morning all!  I'm back again with another great new pattern for Itch to Stitch.  Just releasing today, the Kosice Top and Dress* pattern is another one you'll want multiples of in your wardrobe!

It is a fairly straight forward pattern for lightweight woven fabrics and utilizes French seams so to take care of finishing those potentially delicate seam allowances.  Kennis, as usual with her Itch to Stitch designs walks you through all the steps so no need to worry if you're like me and feeling a little rusty on using French seams!  The pattern is in the usual ITS size range from 00-20 with cup sizes A-DD.



The shoulders are delicately gathered on Kosice, using an elastic that is then completely enclosed and the v-necklines are finished using bias tape.  With those features and the previously mentioned French seams, the insides of the garment are left neat and tidy!  I always forget how much I love a good French seam - I really should use them more often instead of always relying on my serger for finishing!


I used a shirting weight cotton that I had left over in my stash from my Penny Dress a few summers ago for my shirt version and the dress version I've not got around to sewing yet I plan on using a lightweight almost peach skin feeling polyester type dress fabric.  Can't wait to getting around to that one!! For my blouse I had a really hard time deciding on what buttons to use, but finally settled on some vintage ones I had in my stash.  I had exactly the five I needed to finish up and thought it was fate.  (that is until I was lazy and used my machine to stitch on the button and broke the last one clear in half by not being careful.  Button tragedy!!!!!  So don't look too closely... but one of these things is not like the other at all.)

Now's the time to snap up your copy of Kosice!  It's on sale over at the ITS shop for the release week right now!

In other blog news, but still ITS, if you head on over to the Minerva Crafts Blogger Network today, you can check out my latest post on how I used the Samara Pants and the Crystal Cove Cami to create my faux jumpsuit of dreams! 




Monday, July 15, 2019

Halfway through 30 Days of Dresses

Its not the first time summer time has rolled around and I've gone on a "pants strike" and worn skirts and dresses, but I think it likely is the first time I've made a point to do so.  The Stitch Sisters, Rachel and Nikki, set forth the challenge this year on Instagram to wear 30 Days of Dresses and I thought what the heck, I might as well!  I've still not bothered to count how many dresses actually hang in my closet, but there are quite a few.  (definitely not 30... at least I'm fairly certain there's not 30 in there...).

I was going to try and see how far I could go into the month without repeating a dress, but then some dresses I just reach for because they're the best for the weather or more importantly my mood.  So I'm not going to fuss about repeats.  Full disclosure time : 1) I've not worn a dress every day so far.  One day I wore my Samara Pants.  But they are darn close to skirt like so I decided they could count anyways.  LOL  2) I sometimes haven't worn a dress for the whole day.  Like the day it was so windy I thought it best in the name of public decency to change into shorts to take the boys football practice rather than risk an epic and embarrassing wardrobe malfunction. Or the morning I walked in the parade with the football team and then came home to mow the lawn.  I didn't put a dress on until much later in the day after parading and yard work and swimming had been done.

Of course I've made a couple of dresses in the last two weeks, because... well, because I can.  So why not?  I had both the patterns and the fabric in my stash already so why not? #sewyourstash for the win!!!

I'll tell you about them first and then I'll leave you with some photos of my first half of 30 days of dresses.


First up was a mash up of the Patterns for Pirates Sweetheart and Sunshine patterns.  I absolutely love my P4P Sunshine, but sometimes the crossover neckline and maxi skirt feel a bit fancy for daily wear (although I did choose to swan around in my maxi on the 5th for my birthday!).  To make my dress a bit more or a day wear feel, I shortened the Sunshine skirt to just below the knee and combined it with the bodice of the Sweetheart.  Then I added some bands to finish the neckline and armholes and boom.  New favourite, throw it on whenever kind of dress!  The fabric is a double brushed poly from Blended Threads in Saskatchewan that I purchased at some point last year.





My second dress was for the #sewcialistminichallenge over on Instagram.  I spun the wheel over on the Sewcialists blog to see what colour I had to sew and got "coral".  Perfect luck!  I've had this coral coloured Liverpool fabric sitting in my stash for a little over a year and  I've been meaning to make some more Halla Pattern Agnes dresses after living in the two I made all last summer so choosing a pattern was easy peasy!


Agnes sews up ridiculously quickly so I started this the other day then quickly finished it up yesterday in time for the deadline for the five day challenge.  I had to get a bit fancy with cutting it out - I seamed the center back and cut the front flat rather than on the fold to make sure I could make use of my less than 1 1/2 yards of Liverpool.  It's a smidge shorter than I'd prefer due to fabric constraints, so I did I tiny rolled hem on my serger to finish it off without losing
any length.  All I was left with was a tiny pile of scraps.  SCORE on the stash busting of this project!


And before I go here's July 1st through 7th (Clockwise from the top left hand corner not necessarily in order worn - I've included links to the patterns)







And July 8th - 14th (Again clockwise from the top left hand corner not necessarily in order worn - with links to the patterns)





And the halfway point today!  July 15th



So there it is - that's the first half of the month done.  No guarantees I'll do the next fifteen days in dresses, but I'm going to give it a shot anyway!  I'll check in with you again at the end to let you know how it went and if I find time to sew up a few other dresses that I've got fabric and patterns at the ready for...

Saturday, June 22, 2019

You Had Me At Floral

Hello all!  Here I am again already.  Just a quick drive by post again to let you know I'm back on the Minerva Crafts blog today!

Minerva Crafts is definitely one of my favourite fabric shops (maybe you could tell...). I love the huge selection, the prices are always really reasonable and shipping is phenomenal so I have shopped there for several years now.  I really appreciate having the opportunity to be a part of the blogger network, even if I sometimes feel ridiculously out of my league when I see the other sewists that are featured.

Anyway, enough rambling!  Today's post is featuring a gorgeous cotton lawn that is, of course, floral. (was there any doubt it would be?  LOL) When the list of fabric choices came out, I saw it and that was it.  No need to ponder over any other choices.  They had me at this one.  I think we all know by now a pretty floral fabric is my weakness.


I used mine to make none other than Selkie Pattern's debut London Dress!  I hope you'll hop on over to the Minerva Crafts blog to read all about this latest project!






Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Adventures in Trouser Making!

Hello again!  I told you I'd be back on the blog really soon and here I am!

Just a super duper quick drop in to let you know that I have a new post up on the Minerva Crafts Blogger Network this morning.

Ultimate Trousers Front View


I decided to use the stretch cotton sateen, that was generously provided to me by Minerva Crafts, to make the Sew Over It Ultimate Trousers.  I've been wanting to sew up a pair for a few years now and since this somehow seems to have become the season of sewing pants for me I thought I'd give it a whirl.

Head on over to the Minerva Crafts Blog to read about my adventures in trouser making and see all the pattern and fabric details!

SOI Ultimate Trousers back view

Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Hermosa Shorts

Hey!  It's been a bit since I've posted.  June is flying by at break neck speed and somehow here we are  less than two full weeks until the end of the school year here.  I'm crazy busy at work trying to get all the books back and shelved so I can inventory them before I leave - I'm transferring to a different school in our division this August to a permanent position (YAY!!!) - so I want to make sure I leave everything tickety boo for whomever will be coming into to replace me in the fall.  The little boys were also back in a football training camp the last few weeks which adds to the busy.  Life has been, as per usual, chaotic.  Good, but definitely chaotic.  I've been employing my new method of sewing in snippets instead of waiting for larger chunks of time and it's been a total game changer.  (And realistically the only way to get things accomplished right now! LOL)

It's going to be a bit of a busy week here on the blogsphere for me!  Today I want to tell you about a new pattern that is being released, then I've got a couple of blog posts coming up on the Minerva Crafts Blogger Network as well, so you'll probably here more from me over the course of the next few days then you normally do in the span of a couple of months!

So onto that pattern release I mentioned!  Full disclosure : I tested this pattern.  Spoiler alert : It's Itch to Stitch*, so I probably don't even really need to tell you that I really like this pattern.  Has there been any ITS pattern I've made that I didn't like?  I don't think there has to be honest.  It's part of why I love testing for Kennis.  I know that her designs are super wearable, often need minimal altering to fit me and the attention to detail is always there.  So without further ado, let me introduce you to the Hermosa Shorts!


These, admittedly, were a wee bit more challenging than the last pattern I tested for her, which was the Samara Pants (that I've now made three versions of and have no plans to stop).  Where the Samara's were loose and flowy, so minimal fitting was needed, the Hermosas are closer silhouette so need a bit more attention paid to the fit.  The pattern itself is not hard and there is lots of information to be had online about fitting to your particular body shape if need be. There's lots of top stitching which does make sewing them a bit more involved, but very much worth the effort if you ask me! Designed for fabric with a touch of stretch for comfort, the pattern has three length options, large patch pockets and your choice of button or zipper fly.  I chose to do the button fly and medium length option for mine!


My denim fabric was a bit lighter than I had wanted for this pattern, more like a chambray weight and I feel like they wrinkle if you look sideways at them, but they are pretty comfy and I'm sure will see lots of wear this summer.  I really want to re-visit this pattern when I have the time to make another pair in a heavier twill.


If you want to try out the pattern for yourself, you can grab it on sale right now over on the ITS site! I highly recommend these as a summer wardrobe staple!


Friday, May 31, 2019

Llama, Llama, Whose Got New Pyjamas?

Me! That's who!

Ok.  Disclaimer here.  New is a bit subjective. I've actually had these pjs for a few months now and been absolutely living in them.  I just haven't been able to share them here because they are my next make for the Minerva Crafts Blogger Network and I had to wait until now for the post to go live.  It feels a little silly showing off flannel jammies at the end of May, especially when you can clearly see snow in some of my photos on the Blogger Network, but such is life.  (I assure you there is no snow here - let's hope it stays that way.  Prairie weather is weird.  You never know...)  But I really love these pjs and really do wear them ALL THE TIME - now that it's warming up a bit I often just pair the bottoms with a t-shirt for bedtime instead of the flannel top, but if the temp drops down cool enough, that top comes back out again too.  No matter how many times these go through the wash, the flannel is every bit as soft and fluffy as it was when I first made them, which is impressive.




For my Llama Pyjamas I chose to make the Nina Lee Piccadilly pattern. It was my first time with a Nina Lee pattern, but I can tell you it's not likely to be my last.  I really appreciated the careful attention to detail, the clear instructions and the easy to put together PDF pattern.  I'm still on the hunt for the perfect fabric for a summer pair of Piccadillies.

For all the details on the fabric, pattern and my sewing experience as well as more photos hop on over to the Minerva Crafts blog!

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Knitting!!!!!

Wait, what?!?!  Knitting content on a blog named "Prairie Girl Knits"?   What is this sorcery???

It's been so long since I've been able to show off a finished knitting project here on the blog and today I have two!
Golden Hours Shawl photo 1

The first I want to show off is The Golden Hours Shawl from Andrea Mowry of Drea Renee Knits.  I started this shawl back in the deep dark days of January.  Of course I was thinking a worsted weight shawl would fly off the needles and I'd be cozy warm in no time for the rest of winter.  I was excited to start and chugged along at a good pace at the start, but then, as seems to be par for the course lately, I found it to be a struggle to keep going. I wanted the shawl but the knitting took significantly longer than anticipated.  Once thing I did do was to weave in the ends as I went so it wouldn't be such a daunting task upon completion of the knitting and boy was I glad when I finished the cast off to only have a few ends left to go.

Golden Hours Shawl photo 2

I actually finished this shawl mid-April on the drive into the city for the little boys skills camp morning put on by the Blue Bombers.  The boys had to be on the field at 8:30am, there was still snow on the edges of the field and a crisp breeze was making the 0 C temps feel even colder.  I was ever so glad to be able to throw my shawl on as an extra layer of warmth while I watched from the stands.

Wrapped up in the golden hours shawl

... and then it took me more than a month to actually block it.

Despite my struggles, The Golden Hours is a straight forward, easy to knit pattern.  I chose to use stash yarns for mine and I love how it came together. The teal blue came from my Mom actually, left over from a sweater she knit a few years ago (that also came home with me!).  The purple was a random skein I'd picked up at the LYS at some point and the light blue/green was very old stash from about ten or more years ago.

The Golden Hours Shawl full wingspan

My other newly finished project is the Dubois hat by Andi Satterlund of Untangling Knots.

Dubois hat WIP

This one I started in February as soon as the pattern was released.  Being a hat I honestly assumed it would take me no more than a week to knit.  I wildly underestimated how long it would take, and had to completely rip it out and start again a month ago because between my lagging knitting mojo, my inability to focus and a pattern that had a few different cables going on left me thoroughly lost where I was and a with a whole lot of mistakes.

The Dubois Hat

I felt pretty discouraged that I had to rip it out, but once I got going again it went much easier.  Still slow going, but at least with no confusion and the cables seemed a lot more intuitive the second time. I cast this one off on Saturday evening and set it to blocking first thing on Sunday morning! (having, of course, learned my lesson with the shawl blocking procrastination! LOL) I'm going to really love the warmth of my Dubois and it'll be so nice to have a fresh new hat to make life more bearable when the temperatures plummet again next winter!

The Dubois Hat top view

I'm going to continue to try and knit regularly.  My favourite "along"  the Untangling Knots Outfit Along, has been announced recently and will start June 1st.  Instead of having an "official" set of patterns - although we were always welcome to choose our own anyway - this year's OAL theme is Works in Progress.  I don't have any sewing WIPs, but I have my Populuxe Cardigan that just needs sleeves and my Mary Mead Cardigan that is part way through the body.  Both cardigans were started during previous Untangling Knots knit alongs over the past year so I'm hoping to finish both during the OAL.  I'm not sure what the sewing component will be yet, but likely a dress of some sort.

Here's hoping for more frequent wooly posts in the future months to come.  I'm really hoping that these two finished projects will really kick start my mojo back to where it once was.  Maybe I'll even start spinning again one of these days...

Monday, May 13, 2019

Samara Pants

I've been very much on the fence about palazzo pants and culottes.  While the rest of the sewing blogger universe has been rocking them for ages, I've been very hesitant if I'd like them for myself.  At first the answer was "Nope.  Not for me."  But then Kennis did what Kennis does and came out with the latest Itch to Stitch* design, the Samara Pants.



Pants make me nervous.  Let's be real here for just a moment.  There are a lot more potential fit problems with pants than I care to think about most days.  I know I can make pants.  I've made jeans for goodness sakes and my Lander Shorts of last summer turned out pretty well.  Still... the thought of pants.  Eeeek!  Plus I've been so busy lately, I was worried whether or not I'd have time for sewing pants. But with the disclaimer that you could shorten the Samaras to any length you chose, the suggestion that they were easier to fit thanks to the flowy style of them, not to mention the promise that they were a quick sew, I was starting to be tempted to give it a go.  I was still wavering up there on my pants making fence, but then I started thinking about a cropped pair... a floral cropped pair at that and there you have it.  I was in hook line and sinker.

For my first pair, that I hoped would be a wearable muslin, I used a drapey rayon poplin.  What my overtaxed and overtired brain didn't alert me to at the time was that my poplin had stretch to it and not just an insignificant amount of stretch at that.  I sewed them up minus the zip and waistband and tried them on.  They fell off.  Oh the disappointment and the "see, I told you pants were too much work" self talk going on in my head.  Then I remembered that stretch would make a difference to fit and that with stretch I'd probably want to size down.  It's not like this is my first fabric rodeo.  How do I forget these things?

The good thing was, despite the loosey goosey nature of my stretch Samara's, I could definitely see what I needed to tweak - a swayback adjustment of 1/2", a touch longer hem and smooth out the side seam just a touch where I blended it between the size 18 waist and the size 16 hip.  That was it.  Nothing else was needed.  I was confident enough that I decided it was time to abandon the stretch pair for the time being with the intention of taking them apart and making my adjustments at a later time and move straight onto the good fabric.

But first I had to find the good fabric I had in mind.  I bought the floral rayon from Minerva Crafts two summers ago with intention of making a dress, but hadn't bought enough so it had gone into stash and my stash was relocated from the sewing room into bins in the crawl space a few months ago when we cleaned up the basement.  Now, don't get me wrong.  I love the clean, clear space to work in, without having to manouever around bins and haphazard piles of fabric spilling out all over the place, but getting in an out of the crawl space under the stairs is a pain in the butt.  Trying to dig around bins even more of a pain.  But I was smart.  Most of the bins got labeled when they got put under the stairs.  So I plunged headlong into the crawl space and straight for the bin that the rayon should be in.  Thankfully it was a bin close to the door and fairly easy to access.  The fabric was not there. So I shimmied and wriggled my way further in amongst the bins and checked another.  Nope.  And another.  No.  And another...  Finally I had to drag all the bins out into the sewing room and check.  Nope, nope and nope again.  Eventually after wasting more than an hour searching  I checked the first bin again for about the third time.

Spoiler alert: I found the fabric.  In the bin.  Right where it was supposed to be.




Some bad words were said as I repacked the bins into the crawl space and then finally I was able to start on the second pair.  Cutting them out and sewing them took a fraction of the time that hunting for the fabric took.  They really are that easy to go together.  A couple back darts, a few seams, a zip and a waistband and they're done.  I tried them on before closing up the waistband and hemming them and they were so comfy.  I was happy to see that my tweaks I did were all that were needed.  I'm going to love wearing these floaty Samara's in the heat of the summer!  I paired my floral pair with a Cartagena Cami, but I'm planning on making a black Isidro to make it a bit more work appropriate. My mind keeps wandering to making a matching cami or top of some sort that I could then wear with the pants as a sort of "faux jumpsuit" look.  (Who am I?  First palazzo pants.  Now jumpsuits?  What is happening???)

After finishing up the floral ones, I did go back and re-do the first pair.  I think they'll be in high demand this summer too.  I love wearing skirts and dresses, but they are just so impractical on windy days.  I think the Samara Pants will be the perfect solution! For the blue pair I paired it with my Plitvice which makes it easily work appropriate with the ditzy floral print, but am thinking I'll make either a Cartegena or Isidro in a bright bold print just to punch things up a bit.


If you'd like to get a copy of the Samara Pants, now is the time to take advantage of the pattern release sale!  It's currently 20% off over on the Itch to Stitch site and don't forget even with the discount you can still take advantage of the bundle pricing discounts if you've had your heart set on a few.

As for me I'm feeling bold after my Samara Pants success and I'm now eyeing up ALL the pants patterns!

Monday, April 29, 2019

Jurassic Hoodies

It's been a long time since I've done much sewing for the little boys that didn't involve a Halloween costume or Christmas Eve pjs, but I've had this dino fabric sitting in my stash for almost a year now.  It was a pre-order from Saskatchewan based Blended Threads last spring and since the boys were obsessed with anything Jurassic Park/World this seemed like the perfect fabric for them.  I meant to make them hoodies last year and then got distracted by a million other projects and left it sitting in my fabric bin thinking I'd get to it "next".

Well, I finally got to it just before the Easter weekend. Now I should do something with the batman, hockey, wildlife, etc lengths of fabric I've bought for them over the last two years too... When I mentally take stock of all that fabric I've bought with all the best intentions I realize how really bad I am at this "stick-to-it-ive-ness" thing when it comes to plans.  LOL



Baby steps.  We'll go with that.  One fabric at a time... So starting with the dino fabric, which is the same great quality as all the fabrics I've bought from Blended Threads, I decided to make the New Horizons*  Summit Peak Hoodie.  The Blended Threads Facebook group had recently done a Summit  sew along and I was feeling pretty inspired by all the great hoodies I had seen during it.

Having not made any kids patterns from New Horizons before, I thought it would make sense to make the 12 and try it on both boys first and see how the sizing looked before making the second one, figuring it would be easy to go up a size or down a size depending on which kiddo that the first one didn't fit. In the end it fit both of them pretty well, so the first one became Baby Boy's and while it's a touch long on him, it actually fits really well.  I also made a size 12 for Little Man, but added length to it, because although he's slender, he's long and lanky, gets taller by the minute and if it fits him around, it's almost guaranteed to be short on him in no time at all.


I had two metres of the dino fabric and then a yard of the charcoal grey from The Fabric Snob and a yard of the khaki green from Midnight Mountain Fabrics.  Both are a cotton/lycra blend and both are the same nice quality as the cotton/lycra dinos.


I had initially planned on doing both the hoodies with the green, but then decided to go with the grey partly because I was worried I'd be cutting it close with the amount of fabric (I think I figured I'd be short by about half a waistband if I remember correctly) and having a slight difference would save a whole lot of "HE'S WEARING MY HOODIE" type arguments.



I love how the hoodies turned out.  More importantly the boys love them!  Being cotton/lycra they've been perfect for the on again off again spring weather we've been having too! They were really quick to sew (always a bonus!).  The instructions were really straight forward - I did do a bit of head scratching at first over the pocket, but then watched a quick YouTube video on how to sew it, and after I watched it of course the instructions seemed perfectly clear and I have no idea why I was confused in the first place.  I think it was a case of over thinking things too much.  I put eyelets in the hoods for a draw string, but haven't managed to actually thread one through yet.  I should really do that one of these days.  (I was just planning to cut a strip of the solid CL and yet somehow as simple a task as that is, I haven't quite got around to it... )



I do have all three of the Summit Peak Hoodie patterns so want to make the adult sized versions too.   I want a pullover hoodie for myself and have quite a nice stash of floral french terry I could use (my french terry Halifax hoodie, that I'm pretty sure I never blogged about, is one of my most worn tops - in fact I'm wearing it today as I type this - so I'd love another design in french terry!).  For my husband, I think I'll do the zip up version and need to order a suitable cotton lycra or french terry for his.

First things first though. I'm in the middle of a pants sewing endeavour right now and must focus on that before I dive headlong into any new projects.  Someone get the mental blinders on me quickly so I don't get distracted by all the other ideas floating around my head...







Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Isidro

So, after taking a bit of a break from pattern testing I dove back in recently and I'm happy to report that during my hiatus nothing has changed with Itch to Stitch* designing and pattern drafting.  It's still the same amazing quality as always, with the same careful attention paid to every detail!  I'm always so impressed every time I sew an Itch to Stitch pattern.

This time around I tested the Isidro top, which is releasing today, and I'm telling you that this is a top you will definitely want need in your wardrobe all summer long and can tell you one of the testers, who lives in the Southern hemisphere, and I were just chatting in our Facebook group about how Isidro layered with a cozy Aveiro cardi would be perfect for getting you through the colder months as well!


Itch to Stitch Isidro


Let's get down to all the important details!  Isidro is a simple little knit top that features gentle gathers at the centre front of the neckline.  It can be a sleeveless top finished with bands along the armscye or you can add sweet gathered butterfly sleeves.  I love the practical layering potential and perfect for warm weather sleeveless version, but I also love the feminine touch the gathered butterfly sleeve too which feels like a dressed up version of a comfy summer t-shirt!  The best part of the butterfly sleeve is that the inside of the armscye also uses the same bands as the sleeveless version giving it such a polished finish.



My first version was made from a random clearance purchase - pretty sure it was from Marshall's Northwest, but maybe from Fabricland - it's of unknown fibre content, and quite thin but despite it's thinness it has a bit of structure too it.

Itch to Stitch Isidro Photo 2

The pattern was so quick to sew up - which in my books is always a bonus when I'm busy going in a million different directions at once.  While it's nice to be able to sew something a little more involved when I have the chance, there is something definitely satisfying about an instant gratification project that can be sewn in a fairly short chunk of quiet time!  As per usual too, the fit was pretty much spot on for me.  My standard 1 1/2" added length to accommodate that 10" waist length I possess and a bit of blending sizes at the hip and I was good to go!

My second version is made from a tri-blend jersey I picked up from the "affordable knits" section of The Fabric Snob several months ago likely on sale as well (I'm nothing if not thrifty! LOL)


The fabric is very soft, and has a lovely drape to it, which made it perfect for the butterfly sleeves I thought!  I can't seem to get enough of fluttery sleeves these days.  They really are my favourite!


I have so many more versions I want to make because I really think this will be a wardrobe staple for me!  If you want to get your copy of Isidro while it's on sale for the release week, head on over to the Itch to Stitch site!  It's 20% at the moment and I think you'll find you're just as happy with it as I am!  I highly recommend it!