Already the second quarter of the year, oh my! I'm going to try and keep this short and sweet. I picked three quilts, two new and one carryover for my Finish-A-Long list. I know I will not finish them all, but if I can just work on each a little bit it will be an accomplishment for me. So here we go:
1. Little Houses Bee Sewcial Quilt - These were the blocks I received from the first round of the quilting bee Bee Sewcial. I keep wavering on how I want to approach this quilt top. One big top or maybe an array of mini quilts that would all be hung together? What do you think? I know i will be making blocks and filler for this quilt before it can become a quilt top.
2. Blue Triangles Bee Sewcial Quilt - Here is my wild card, I don't even have these blocks in my possession yet (most aren't even made!) So right now I currently have three blocks that I have sewn and the premise of this bee is that the bee members have 6 weeks to get them to me, so by mid May I should have them all. I would really like to start construction on this as soon as I have them all as to not lose momentum.
3. Constellations City Sampler Quilt - The carryover quilt. I'm sad to say I didn't even touch this one last quarter, just didn't have the time. So hopefully I can carve out a few weeks for quilting this king sized quilt.
Linking up to the Second Quarter of the 2016 Finish-A-Long. You can find all of the details HERE. You sill have time to join in!
Quite a while ago, June 2014 to be exact, Debbie at A Quilter's Table hosted a Postcard Quilt Along based on her free tutorial. With all the good intentions in the world I planned to actually participate and finish up with everyone else, but alas my intentions didn't pan out and even though I finished up most of the blocks (and I think a quilt top) it sat un-quilted for over a year. At the beginning of this year, I added this quilt (along with one other) to my 2016 Finish-A-Long list. Now was the time to finish it up and I'm pleased to say that I did!
For the "postcard image" side of the block I used my stash of Japanese and Kawaii fabrics and chose prints that were scenes or images that might be found on a postcard. I also tried to keep the scale of these prints the same throughout and picked scenes I thought would fit the month they would be associated with. For example the June block above has an image of woodland animals at a carnival or fair, which I envision you would do in the month of June.
The "written" side of the postcard started with a Japanese calendar fabric that I currently owned and thought would be a fun addition to this quilt. I fussy cut the months and then added a pieced red/white/blue/white strip to mimic the printing you see on postcards/envelopes. I added a simple black divider and then on the right side fussy cut "stamps" (above, it is the flower) and then used a text print below the stamp to mimic the writing on a postcard.
I love rainbow quilts, so I added a solid border around each postcard bundle and then I had a completed top, which I intend for this to be a fun wall hanging.
I have had this great sewing themed fabric in my stash for quite some time and I thought it would be the perfect backing for this quilt. Just as colorful and loud as the front, haha. The quilt was small enough that a one yard piece did the trick.
I love the look of grid quilted quilts and have quilted one baby quilt in the past with this technique without much success (puckering at every intersection) so obviously I was hesitant to use this method. In the end I decided to go for it and though it is far from perfect I do love the look and I didn't have the puckering problem with this one. I used my Juki and decided to forgo the walking foot and just quilt it with the normal foot that comes with the machine. I reduced the foot pressure to the lowest setting and lengthened the stitch to around a 3.5. I used a white 40 weight Aurifil thread and started quilting by stitching in the ditch around each block. So straight down the middle and then along the top and bottom of each block going all the way across. This may have not been the best approach or I should have tried really hard at this point to get things super straight but I didn't. I had a lot of bias cut fabrics in these blocks so some of the blocks ended up pretty distorted. I didn't realize until I was about halfway done and by that point I wasn't ripping it all out, so I just went with it and smoothed everything as much as I could. I quilted a 1" grid over the whole quilt working vertically first and then finishing horizontally. I didn't have any puckering (or only one or two spots because of the bias.) So even though it is far from perfect I still love the overall affect. Each block was exactly 6" tall so the math fell just right with the 1" grid and if you ever choose to quilt a grid do the math first to make sure the lines fall where you want them to.
Once this one was quilted, I trimmed and squared it up, which was rather surprisingly easy considering my bias problems. Yeah! I had a solid blue binding already made for this quilt but misplaced it and after searching for quite some time I gave up and cut new binding from this fantastic striped rainbow print that I think was perfectly appropriate. Now I just have to decide where to hang this one in our house! Fun!
Linking up at the very last minute, my one finish for the first quarter of the Finish-A-Long. Though I 'm sad I never even got a chance to touch the other quilt I had hoped to finish, I am thrilled that I at least completed one, took photos and blogged about it! Insert crazy happy jazz hands right here! I'll be back in a few days with my goals for Quarter 2.
It is my turn to be Queen Bee in the quilting group BeeSewcial for 2016 and it is time to announce this month's theme! I want to start by saying I would like for you all to keep it simple, play and have fun. No stressing about the blocks this month, just make them, don't over think it.
Ok, are you ready? Here we go:
Triangles, Repeating Patterns, and the Color Blue
Simple, right? I hope so.
Block Size: 2 - 12.5" square blocks or 8 - 6.5" square blocks, please trim them and send them in this size only. This is the only thing I am asking that is "picky" this month.
Colors: All shades and variants of blue, including shades of turquoise and similar greenish blues. Please include either a dark navy or black in each block. No white or creams, if you want lighter shades just use light blues.
Texture: I am letting you play outside of Kona Solids. Want to use a textured solid in your stash, go for it, I did with my examples. If it is an Art Gallery Solid, use it. Doesn't matter to me, in fact I prefer those textured solids, so use them up. But you don't have to. Use what you own, and use up those triangle scraps.
Construction: Normal piecing, improv or even more traditional. Please no applique of any kind. I don't want you to feel like this has to be an exercise in matching points either. If you look at my blocks most of them aren't perfect/matching and are cut off. I don't care about perfect points, at all.
Primary Theme: Focus on making triangles of any kind -
Half Square Triangles
Half Rectangle Triangles
60 Degree Triangles
Even a shape that hints at or creates a triangle.
Do not feel you are stuck making a "traditional" block, if you want to create an improv wonky triangle that can't be copied exactly, then make ten of them and just think about the secondary theme below.
Secondary Theme: Focus on repeating pattern. This shouldn't be random but rather create a shape and then repeat it throughout the block. You can see by my examples that this doesn't have to fill the whole block, negative space is fine and welcome. Just consciously think about pattern and placement.
I didn't create a Pinterest board of inspiration this time, didn't feel it was necessary and honestly I think with my three example blocks you can get a good feel of what I am talking about and I tried to make three very distinctly different quilt blocks.
Got it? I hope so, I really intend for this to be playful and fun.
Now that we have the details, I will explain how this theme came to be and why we are making these blocks and hopefully that will help you create this month.
A few years ago I made a Half Square Rectangle based traditional star block that was based on this same color scheme. Blues, with a bit of turquoise and a nice solid black. My husband saw this block and (I think the only time) commented, "Are we keeping this?" I replied, "No." He replied, "Well this is my favorite block you have made." "Really, why?" He replied, "The colors. It is my favorite color scheme, blues, turquoise and that pop of black just makes everything stand out." Since that day I knew I wanted to make him a quilt based with this color scheme. My husband is a "fixer" if it is broken, he can fix it. With literally everything. He is very scientific based and has that type of brain. He isn't a big lover of the random improv, he likes structure and reason. And this is why my concept of repeating pattern comes into play. So if you can help me make structured thoughtful blocks in his favorite color scheme, then I can turn this baby into a lap quilt just for him! And since he doesn't really read my blog, I don't have to worry about him seeing this or any of your blocks as they are created. Win win for everyone. If you have any questions, don't hesitate to ask.
Make sure to tag all of your work #BeeSewcial if you are a Bee Mate and for any of you that wish to play along at home, use the #InspiredbyBeeSewcial hashtag so I can find your work in either Instagram or Ello. I really hope you decide to play along, it is a great exercise in creativity every single month and I can honestly say I learn something every month too. What is better than that?
I'm here today to show off my latest clothing finish, the Laurelhurst pattern by Straight Stitch Designs. This pattern is a super easy wrap/cardigan that can be finished in less than an hour, which I did minus the cutting time, more on that later. This is my first time making this pattern so of course I made a (thankfully) wearable muslin out of a knit that was included in a Girl Charlee Knit Fix. I can honestly say I didn't like this print very much (or at all) so it wasn't hard for me to cut into the 2 yards and if it fit, great and if not, on to Goodwill. The fabric was printed slightly off grain, and even though the pattern calls for just 2 yards (and I had 2 yards) I barely was able to eek it out because of the off grain printing and my trying to match the print on the sides. This knit is also really thin and quite stretchy and I will admit cutting this out took me hours. Trying to get the fabric to match up, trying to keep the fabric flat, it all was a nightmare. The plus side of all of this was that I had very little scraps remaining (I love that from a pattern) and what I had left I was able to use to test my serger and sewing machine stitches.
Once I had finished cutting it out, sewing this pattern, literally took less than an hour. The way in which the neckline for this pattern is constructed is the most unusual and clever thing I have sewn in a while, you just have to trust me, so neat. The longest part of the construction is the set in sleeves, but I've done that a million times and they both went in smoothly. I used my serger for all the seams, with the exception of the one little seam on the neckline that I used my regular sewing machine for. This pattern is designed to leave the edges raw, no hemming! Be it that it is made for knits and knits don't ravel like a woven fabric, all you do is carefully cut those edges super straight and you are good to go. This being said, I do plan to hem this one on all raw edges soon because after several washes this knit did some funky raveling thing in spots. Since I left the sleeves a tad long, I have plenty of fabric to turn under so why not just go ahead and do it. Based on my measurements I should have cut out a size 18, but since I knew there was plenty of extra fabric in the front I cut out a 16 and next time I might even try a 14 because I found there was a little too much fabric in the back. It really is a forgiving pattern in regards to size and fit (which is fantastic for a beginner.)
Remember how at the beginning I said I didn't like this fabric very much, or at all, honestly. Well the best part of this whole endeavor is that after it was finished and I was wearing it, everyone seems to love it on me and has given me tons of compliments. What is better than that? When I told one of my friends that I made it, she couldn't believe it and she knows what a serious sewist I am. She just couldn't believe it wasn't ready to wear. I can't say enough great things about the pattern and have plans to make a ton of these. In South Louisiana where the winter is mild, add one of these to a short sleeved shirt and you are set for the winter, not to mention the spring and fall, so basically half of the year.
The photo above was me trying to do my best Tyra Banks or "model" shot, thus the photo below is me busting out laughing at how stupid I look when making all these "staring into space" photos. Oh well, just keeping it real folks.
I am checking in and linking up with Quilter in the Closet's 100 Day Challenge as we are at the 60 day mark. I have met 2 of my 3 goals thus far, blogging at least once every month, which I have barely managed to do. The second goal was to sew something selfish for myself or my daughter and blog about it, which I have now done twice (both for myself, didn't realize I was so selfish.) Now if I can just get some time to start quilting that big Constellations quilt I might actually meet my goal. Wish me lots of luck.
Just as I was drifting off to sleep last night I startled in a panic, "I didn't blog for the month of February! I'm already failing at one of my first quarter goals!" Whew, breathe sigh of relief, Leap Year, a chance to redeem myself. I was actually on track to post these photos three weeks ago when I took them, but it always seems like something happens to distract me. My husband and I spent a pretty afternoon outside taking these photos (and others) and I was feeling pretty good and then I walked into the house to find my middle child puking on the living room floor. Oh no! Then that night the dreaded stomach virus hit me and then took turns with the rest of the family for the following week. It took us all almost 2 weeks to fully recover. It was bad. So by this point I had forgotten about the photo shoot and all my goals to be perfectly honest. Thankfully we are all healthy at the moment and now I'm ready to share some selfish sewing that I did for myself.
Earlier this year Kimberly over at Straight Stitch Designs released her brand new Montlake Tee Pattern and I instantly knew it was the perfect style/fit for me. I always like to make a muslin (preferably wearable) to check for fit and this t-shirt that I am modeling is just that, my wearable muslin.
My lovely sister-in-law had a bag of clothes ready for Goodwill and I convinced her to give them to me instead. Most of the clothes were a size or two too large but I saved them because the fabric was nice on almost everything. This tee is made from a lovely draped neck dress that I just couldn't modify to fit me, so I decided to use the fabric from it instead.
I was able to cut out the pattern in such a way that I was able to use the existing hem on both the bottom of the shirt and the sleeves. The only issue was that the dress wasn't quite big enough at the bottom to cut out the size I measured at (18.) So I cut the top out at 18, and then graded down to a 16 at the bottom. The same happened for the sleeves, they are cut out at a 16 (at the hem) and then (kinda/sorta) graded out to an 18. Because of this I can't really call this a true muslin or a true Montlake Tee because the fit really is totally different. Though I am pleased to say that it does fit and now I know how I will cut out my next one for a perfect fit, win win!
The sleeves being cut at a 16 are perfect and the top could be cut out at a 16 also, but I will be adding in some extra for the bust area and down to the hips, so I will grade out to the size 18 next time. This dress/now shirt was a very stretchy ITY knit so it is super slinky and obviously every single pull or bra (or gut) bump shows but I still love it and wear it a lot. It is just so soft and comfortable.
I used my serger to put this top together and it was a breeze (less than an hour.) I struggled to get the neckline perfect and that took a few attempts but was worth the extra effort. I then used my regular sewing machine to straight stitch around the neckline just to hold the seam in place and give it that nice professional look. Since I was able to use the existing hems from the dress, that step was already finished and made the whole thing come together even faster.
I look forward to making many more of these t-shirts because honestly as a stay-at-home mom it is pretty much what I live in. I was really happy that the shirt was a success because when I started cutting up that gorgeous dress (wished I had taken a photo) I started feeling guilty that I should have just donated it for someone else to wear just as it was. I mean, I really felt guilt over this, but in the end decided to go for it and then if the shirt didn't fit me, I could always donate that. Thankfully it ended in success and the best part was that I had very little fabric left over, very little, so the little that was left became a sweet headband for my daughter and then the remaining scraps I saved to test my stitches with my serger and coverstitch machines in the future.
So now I have met one of my three goals with the 100 day challenge hosted by Quilter in the Closet. Selfish sewing, yeah! I'll try to be back in a few days with the second selfish sewing item I completed, the Laurelhurst by Straight Stitch Designs, and just a little hint, I love it too!
Oh my, I blogged twice in one week! Crazy times folks, crazy times. I am here today because I really want to participate in the Finish-A-Long this year because it is hosted by so many of my (thanks to Quiltcon) real life friends. I am really sad that I didn't get to play along any last year with host Adrianne from On the Windy Side because I had the pleasure of meeting her at Quiltcon and she is absolutely a doll. So I am jumping back on board and setting obtainable goals this time, (not crazy long lists) in hopes of actually getting some of my WIPs finished. Now if you read my blog post on Wednesday (the 100 Day Challenge) you will see that some of these goals overlap and the time frame is around the same time, but the challenges are different and the finish-a-long focuses on preexisting works in progress. So that is what I am here to talk about today. I am going to focus on finishing two projects.
1. My Constellations City Sampler Quilt - The top finished for over two years, basted and ready to quilt. I have a plan to quilt it and the thread, no excuses, get this baby DONE.
2. My Zakka Postcards Wall Hanging Quilt - The quilt top is finished and if I remember correctly this one is basted too. My first goal will be finding it, because I don't know where it is right now. Yikes, that is how long it has been sitting (so sad.) So this photo of it is obviously old, sorry about that. *Edited to add: I have found the missing quilt since writing this and yes it is basted and looks exactly like the photo above (for some reason I thought I added borders, guess not.)
That is it. Two goals, get them both quilted, bound and then blog about them, which is actually harder for me to accomplish these days, but even if I have to stay up all night long to do it, by golly I will.
You have plenty of time to join along with the Finish-A-Long if you wish, just click on the image below to find all of the detail and information. Hopefully next time I am blogging it will be about a finished project.
Happy New Year! I hope you had a wonderful holiday season and now are looking forward to all that the new year brings. I'm happy to be here blogging again and setting goals, goals I intend to keep and accomplish! I'll be joining along with the Finish Along that has been running for a few years now, but when I read that Quilter in the Closet was hosting a 100 Day Challenge, I figured I would play along too. You can read all the details on Jen's blog, but basically you set 3 crafty/quilty goals to accomplish in 100 days, because 100 days is a better time frame than a goal or resolution for an entire year, right? I thought so, so here I am, putting these goals or resolutions here in my little bloggy world. Ready, set, go...
My three goals for this 100 Day Challenge:
1. Quilt my Constellations City Sampler Quilt. It is basted and ready to quilt, sitting for almost two years now. (Insert EEK face!) I want it finished and this is my big goal to complete.
2. Blog more consistently. So I am making it my goal this year to blog at least once a month, hopefully more. My goal for this challenge also includes blogging about the projects I finish, thus they aren't finished until I blog about them.
3. Selfish sewing. I want to sew at least one item of clothing, either for myself or my little girl. Patterns and fabric have already been chosen and washed. I really want to make the Laurelhurst by Straight Stitch Designs, shown below.
There we have it, my three goals for the 100 Day Challenge, ending April 15, 2016. Feel free to play along, head on over to Quilter in the Closet's blog, (click on the image below) for all the details. See you guys soon because it makes me awfully sad that I blogged two times last year. So here is to a New Year!
Hi guys! I'm dropping in today to let you know that I am guest blogging over at I'm Feelin' Crafty. Louise kindly asked me to play along this year (my first time) and I was thrilled to participate. This year is her 5 year anniversary of the event based on sewing and games. How fun! I created a tutorial for fabric Bocce Balls, making the game safe for all ages to play. Even if you don't want to play Bocce, hop over to learn how to sew a great fabric ball that all kids would love to receive. So if you have a minute, scoot on over HERE to see my post and tutorial. Thanks so much Louise for having me, it was a fun project.
Here’s the list of amazing creators that are playing along this year! Be sure to join us often!!!
Sept 7th- Debbie from A Quilter's Table
Sept 9th- Jennifer from Busy Being Jennifer
Sept 11th- Ari from Max California
Sept 16th- Stacey from Boy, Oh Boy, Oh Boy Crafts
Sept 18th- Karly from Paisley Roots
Sept 21st- Louise from I’m Feelin’ Crafty
Sept 23rd- Narelle from Cook, Clean, Craft
Sept 25th- Al from Shaffer Sisters
Sept 28th- Rachel from Let's Begin Sewing
Sept 30th- Marci from Marci Girl Designs
Almost a year, not quite, but too long really. A lot has changed in my life personally. I promise, all good, but I do find I'm a wee bit busier these days and blogging just had to take a back burner for a while, but hopefully I am back. So enough about all that, let's get to business today as my time is limited!
I am here today to show off my latest finish, my Modern Quilt Guild Fabric Challenge project. If we signed up we were sent a bundle of six, fat eighth fabrics from the line The Cottage Garden designed by The Quilted Fish. The six fabrics were from the aqua colorway and we had the option to add in Riley Blake Fabrics solids or any other prints from the line. One of the requirements of this challenge was to do something we have never done before with this fabric, so almost instantly I knew I wanted to try out patchwork/quilted clothing as this is something I have never done before. So I hopped online, saw the pink colorway, ordered more fabric and set out on a plan.
I looked through the patterns I already owned, as one of my missions this year was to sew my own stash/pattern stash and use what I already have. I found the Anna Maria Horner pattern, All Set and decided I had to make the super cute jacket included in the pattern. After reading through the pattern instructions I decided that I could make this jacket reversible, fairly easily, so why not. One side in the pink colorway and the other in an aqua/pink mixture. And if you were wondering, yes, this is for a girl and maybe that has something to do with why I haven't been blogging! I quickly set to work cutting fabric, decided on a simple 2" x 2" patchwork and several parts of the jacket I decided to cut out as whole pieces, like the top/back of the hood and the front button plackets simply so it wouldn't be too busy. I cut out all my fabric only to discover I didn't have enough and had to order more. Live and learn.
Once I received the second shipment of fabric, I finished cutting and then started piecing all those 2" (finished size) squares. I made chunks of patchwork fabric just big enough for each jacket pattern piece to fit on, and then cut out each piece from the "created" fabric. I had to cut two of each piece so that it would be reversible, with the exception of the button plackets, they worked as is. I then dug through all my cotton batting scraps and cut out each piece from the batting, which was a great use of those scraps by the way. So now I officially had a quilt, a "front", batting middle and a "back." It took a bit of manipulating to cut out each piece identically on the front and inside as I wanted the squares to line up on both sides the same, does that make sense? I hope so. I also had to change the construction method of the jacket as I was making it reversible but since I've been making clothes FOREVER it wasn't hard for me to figure out.
I sewed the jacket together, mostly following the pattern directions, treating the front and batting as one layer and the back patchwork piece as the lining. Some of the steps were easier as I didn't have to hem the jacket or sleeves, some were a pain trying to line up, but overall I would call it a success. The button placket was one of the last steps and I even used the Riley Blake ribbon that tied the bundle of fabric together to create the button loops. I love that detail! On the other side I used scraps of the aqua text to create the button loops. Before I knew it the jacket was together and all it needed was buttons and some quilting to officially make it a quilt!
I then took about a two month break for personal reasons (hint, hint) and then found a free moment to run to JoAnn Fabrics for the buttons as I had NOTHING in my stash that would even closely work. After a bit of debate I settled on some super shiny pink crystal buttons for one side and some awesome plastic crystal clear ovals for the other side because in order for this thing to be reversible it needed buttons on both sides. I hand stitched on the buttons, careful not to let the stitching show through to the other side. I then took another long break for no real reason other than the fact that apparently I like doing everything at the last possible minute. So two days ago I decided to quilt this thing!
I have never quilted clothing before, much less quilted anything that was 3D of sorts, and by that I mean the fact that I decided to start on the front, quilt over the shoulder and continue onto the back. So I basted with pins around the shoulder area as this area would need the most manipulation and just went for it. I chose a simple five petal flower and loops in a line following inside of the patchwork squares. This post was titled, "It Has Been A Long Time," for another reason too, I haven't free motion quilted in around a year. Crazy right? Especially considering that I LOVE IT. Well just like riding a bike, I hoped back on and thankfully with no problems and great tension I quilted this jacket. I kept it simple and basically quilted three lines of design on the jacket body and two short lines on each side of the hood. It went so quickly I wondered why I waited so long to do it, (I was scared, honestly!)
I loved the end result, buried the threads and this reversible jacket sized for a 2 year old girl (who won't wear it for another 2 years, hint, hint) was all finished. The pattern and the instructions were great, the fabric is pretty and super girly and the challenge was fun. As always I'm thankful for the Modern Quilt Guild and these challenges as each time I stretch my limits, knowledge and learn something new.
I also wanted to thank Riley Blake Fabrics and The Quilted Fish for hosting this challenge. As an individual member these are just the sorts of things that make the Modern Quilt Guild feel like more of a community for me and allow me to participate in these challenges that used to be reserved for group members only. So thank you, it is fun! Also thanks to all my followers that are still here for being patient with me while I took this much needed time off.
It is time for me to show off my creation with Jessica Levitt's brand new line of fabrics, Cascade by Windham Fabrics. I was sent these fabrics a few months ago and I decided to create a little outfit for my youngest, which will also be displayed in Jessica's Quilt Market Booth. I felt the fabrics just seemed perfect for a little boy's outfit, cool and sophisticated blues.
i chose one pattern that I made lots of times, the hat, which is a free pattern from Oliver + S, the Reversible Bucket Hat, and two patterns for the shirt and pants that I had not sewn from before, both by Blank Slate Patterns. The shirt is the Prepster Pullover, and the pants are the Coastal Cargos. Both of these patterns can be purchased HERE.
I think they turned out really cute on my little guy. The fabric and fabric print scale suited these patterns perfectly and created a dressy outfit for my little man. Too bad of the 200+ photos that I took of him at the park, these three were the best of the day. He just wasn't wanting to pose that day. Both the pants and shirt have the option to roll up the sleeves and pants hem, which I did for these pictures, isn't that a cute detail.
If you are interested in reading my thoughts and further details of each of these patterns, then keep on reading below and stick around for a fantastic giveaway at the end of this post. I took a lot of photos of the outfit itself and have them in slide show style below because there were just so many pictures!
First up is the Prepster Pullover by Blank Slate Patterns. This pattern is labeled as intermediate and I would say that is exactly right. The instructions are step by step and very clearly shown with photos, but there are a lot of techniques and some of the steps (like installing the cuffs or collar) would be very difficult for a beginner. I chose three prints from the Glacier colorway for the shirt, and one of the best things about this fabric line is that Jessica created solids that match perfectly with each of the colorways. I chose to use one of these solids in the placket and collar of the shirt, which I think creates a really nice contrast. I also have to say that the placket construction in this pattern is the easiest and best looking that I have ever done. It really is genius and my favorite detail of the shirt.
This shirt has a lot of buttonholes (7,) which is also not for a beginner because it is nerve wracking to have to stitch all those buttonholes on a finished garment. Thankfully my machine makes a beautiful buttonhole and I didn't have any problems with getting really nice professional looking buttonholes. I used simple opalescent white buttons on the shirt, I didn't want to distract from the fabric and I didn't want the buttons to necessarily stand out, but rather blend in.
I originally made a muslin in a size 2T (which is the size I should have made based on my son's measurements) but when I tried it on him, it was a wee bit too tight. So for the final version here I upped it to a 3T, which was perfect. I found that it being a pullover shirt the fit was a little tight through the chest and armhole area, so increasing a size fixed this problem. The only change I made to the pattern was adding the little contrasting loop to the back of the shirt, I thought this was just a nice little extra detail, it doesn't really serve a purpose, it just looks cute.
I had one problem with the pattern when it came time to doing the cuffs, so I emailed Melissa (of Blank Slate Patterns) and she responded within the hour with help, which was really nice. I didn't expect a response that quickly. So the problem was solved and I was thoroughly impressed.
Overall it is a great pattern, easily customizable for a ton of different looks. It comes in a large range of sizes, 18m to 8 years, so it can be used for a long time! If you are looking for a really classic shirt for a little boy, then I highly recommend this pattern.
The pants are also by Blank Slate Patterns and are the Coastal Cargos. I adore these pants and plan to make plenty more in the future. I used two fabrics from the Glacier colorway, and decided to use the solid as the main fabric, it has such a nice soft but sturdy hand to it and in the end I think it made a really classic pair of pants.
This pattern is also labeled as intermediate, and as before I think that is exactly right. Just difficult enough that a beginner might really struggle. These pants are really customizable with the option of adding welt pockets to the back, front pockets, side cargo pockets, belt loops and the side and inner seam details. All of these items can be left off, making for a quicker easier make, but honestly they are just so darn cute why would you want to leave them off. This pattern also ranges from 18m to 8 years, so you will use it for a long time.
Honestly I had never sewn a welt pocket before and was pleasantly pleased at how easy and professional looking they really came out. I had no problem installing them and the step by step instructions really were simple and clear to understand. This pattern does feature an actual zippered fly, but since my little one is still in diapers, I chose to make a faux fly instead, which I think looks just as nice, it just isn't functional. Every step of the pants is pretty straight forward and just a matter of taking one step at a time.
I made a muslin first in a 2T (which was based on my child's measurements) and I found the fit really spot on, so for these pants I also made a 2T, the overall size and length were perfect. I love the fact these pants have an elasticized back waist band, which really makes getting the perfect fit so easy.
I used the small raindrop print as the side and inner seam detail and I just love how that turned out, like perfect little raindrops flowing down the sides of the pants. Once again I would highly recommend this pattern, it is very customizable and creates a really great pair of pants for a little boy.
Last but not least is the matching bucket hat for the outfit. This is a pattern from the book, Little Things to Sew by Oliver + S, but is offered as a free download as a promotion for the book. I have made this hat around 7 times before and knew that it was a great pattern and I thought it would just be the perfect addition to this little outfit.
I think this pattern would suit a confident beginner to intermediate only because the entire hat is composed of sewing curves. If you take your time you can totally do it, but you just have to sew slowly and pin a lot. This pattern comes in four sizes and you really have to measure your child's head to get the right size, and in my opinion, when in doubt, always go a size up!
It is a great pattern for boys or girls, completely reversible, which is great and you get two fantastic looks instead of one. It also sews up really quickly, like a 2 hour project start to finish. I highly recommend it!
Giveaway closed, thank you to all that entered!
Now it is time for the giveaway! Windham Fabrics has graciously agreed to giveaway a Fat Quarter Bundle of these not yet released (February 2015 is the estimated release date) fabrics. To enter my giveaway follow me on Instagram (@Marci_Girl) and come back here and leave me a comment that you are a follower. My blog followers get the chance for a second entry, so if you are a blog follower leave a second comment letting me know! Easy enough! They are giving away a bundle of these fabrics at each stop of the tour, so make sure you visit the other stops, plenty of chances to win! You have until October 23, 2014 at 11:59 CST to enter so don't delay.
Thanks so much to Jessica for letting me have the chance to create something for her Quilt Market Booth and to have the opportunity to play with these really gorgeous fabrics before anyone else even got to see them. It was really fun and I hope she liked the finished product as much as I did. Now I just can't wait to start seeing all the photos from Quilt Market next week!
A feisty mom designing, sewing and blogging her way through everyday life!