Liberty Flower Show Spring for Riley Blake Fabrics

GroupI’ve been a lover of Liberty fabrics since I started sewing regularly almost ten years ago.  I dragged my husband to the Liberty flagship store many years ago on a trip to London and I wandered the store for far too long for someone as cheap as I am!  I left with a few small trinkets (fabric buttons, a handkerchief, and some gorgeous bias tape) and vowed to one day splurge on actual yardage when I felt confident in my sewing abilities.   When I saw that Liberty has partnered with Riley Blake to offer affordable quilting cottons, my thrifty little heart rejoiced!  You get the same iconic prints and Riley Blake’s quality cottons.

Group2I’m excited to introduce you to the Liberty Flower Show Spring line.  There’s an amazing variety of prints- from the vibrant and bright spring florals to the subtle tone on tone prints.  I requested a few different prints that I fell in love with.  I knew I needed something for myself and was torn between which children deserved this goodness.

Newport2Payton needed a dress in this happy floral print. I’ve been wanting to make a Simple Life Pattern Co. Newport Dress since it released and I knew this print would be great for it.  I love the simple lines of this pattern and those pockets are the coolest thing EVER!  The construction is unexpected but the look really adds so much to this dress.  I sewed up a straight size 10 (she’s right in between an 8 and a 10 size-wise but I want her to be able to wear this through the summer too) with added length that I ended up taking out by doing an extra wide hem.  I always think I want dresses to hit below the knee so she can wear them longer but in the end I decided that I like the look of slightly above the knee so much better.  With a wide hem, I can just let it down when she grows!  The joy of sewing your own clothes!Newport1Newport4I paired the Malvern Meadow print with the Wiltshire Shadow Collection Custard for the lining and pockets lining.  The colors in the Malvern Meadow print are so fun and cheery.  They bring a bit of sunshine to our gloomy winter days.  I made a warm weather dress for an upcoming vacation and know she’ll be happy to wear this come spring too!

GymShorts1This print, Yorkshire Meadow, had me so torn.  First, it was going to be a tie for one of my boys.  The subtle print and muted colors make it a floral that works great for anyone.  I finally settled on shorts for my oldest daughter because it was the most practical.  As we get ready for our trip I noticed she’s grown about a foot and her shorts are a little extra short now.  These will be perfect for throwing on with a swimsuit and wearing while we do a little sight seeing too.

GymShorts3GymShorts2I used the Free Purl Soho City Gym Shorts pattern.  I love this free pattern!  It’s quick and the racer styling never goes out of style.  She’s in the largest kid size for her waist and I added an extra inch to the inseam length.  I used store bought bias tape and 1.5″ elastic instead of the 1″ the pattern called for.  They offer this pattern in children’s sizes 2-11 and women’s waist sizes 33-46″.  It’s such a great lounging pattern and works well with lots of different fabric types.  It’s fantastic for beginners too!

MelodyFor my top, I used the Arley Gardens print (not available on the website but it should hit your favorite quilt shop soon!).  These colors are divine!  The rosey-pinks and dusty blues- c’mon!  It feels a little more grown-up and not so flashy.  It’s just so darn pretty!

Melody2smallMelody3Melody4I used the Melody Top from Love Notions (affiliate link).  It’s the perfect beginner friendly button-up.  No finicky plackets to mess with and great, detailed instructions.  I sized down to an XS this time as I was afraid it would look too boxy in this heavier weight cotton.  I love that the Melody looks amazing in so many different fabric types.  I made one slight change to the pattern and cut the back piece straight across instead of the shirt tail hem.  I plan on tying the front whenever I wear it and I found with my last Melody that my back hem just naturally bunched up in the back.  Cutting the shirt tail curve off will reduce the bulk back there.

Group1FlatLayAre you itching to get your hands on some of this line now?!  If you’re looking for the Liberty lawn feel, this isn’t going to work for you.  It has the same feel and weight as a high-quality quilting cotton.  It will be great for lots of home and apparel projects as well as nice on your bank account too!  If you’re like me that means you can just buy ALL the prints then!

 

Holiday Plaid Inari Dress

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As the holidays approach I usually sew my girls a new dress or two for the occasion.  I love seeing them all festive and dressed up each Sunday.  I didn’t want to be left out this year and sewed myself a fun new dress just for me!

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I’m super lucky to have a Hobby Lobby just a few minutes from my house and every time I go I get sucked into the fabric section.  I love their seasonal apparel fabrics and this plaid flannel just had to come home with me.  I love the white background and bold red color and can’t seem to find anything like it in other shops.  I love that it’s perfect for the holidays but I will also continue to wear it all winter long.

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I made this Named Inari dress earlier this fall and it’s been in constant rotation.  I added inseam pockets and skipped the side slits for a look that’s comfy and so easy to throw on.  This version was made in ponte knit from Raspberry Creek Fabrics.  I’ve loved this version so much I’ve been anxious to make another one for months!

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I sewed up a size 6 and added 2 inches at the waist line.  I used a pocket piece from another pattern because pockets are a must at church (almost every musical number will bring me to tears so I’ve got to keep tissues handy!).  I used the same pattern pieces for both the knit and woven versions except for the neckline, opting for a facing with the flannel over a neckband.

I love this cocoon silhouette.  It’s nice and relaxed without being too oversized.  I think it will look great with a long cardigan or even a jean jacket.

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I can’t express how much I loved this project.  My schedule is full of deadlines and ‘must sews’ that I rarely take a moment to sew something just for fun.  This pattern is quick and easy to sew (no closures to mess with makes it simple to sew but also so comfortable to wear).   These kind of projects make me remember why I love sewing in the first place.  Just me, my favorite podcasts, and my sewing machines= pure heaven!

Are you taking a little time to sew for yourself this holiday season?  It feels extra indulgent but oh so good!

Thanks for stopping by!

 

 

Love Notions Secret Sewist Exchange

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I have the opportunity to work with the loveliest ladies around as part of the Love Notions team.  This year, Tami and Tessa created the most fun exchange for all of the Love Notions Ambassadors and today is the big reveal!

*This post contains Love Notions affiliate links.  If you choose to purchase through those links I receive a small commission.  Thanks for keeping this blog going!

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Ready for all the details?!  Tami and Tessa arranged a ‘Secret Sewist’ gift exchange.  Each member was given the name of another ambassador and a fabric budget to shop for them.  We got to pick out fabric and recommend a pattern for them to sew up.  This part of the exchange was soooo stressful!  I stalked my partner to try to get a feel for her likes and recent makes.  My partner lives in a totally different part of the globe so it was fun to see what works for her and her environment.  I had to pick fabric from a site in a foreign language which added another layer of trickiness (I feel like I barely know fabric terms in English, lol!).   Our Secret Sewists are being revealed over on the Love Notions blog today and I can’t wait to see what she thinks and to find out mine too!

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My fabric from my Secret Sewist arrived so quickly!  Those Sly Fox girls are fast!  I received 3 yards of this pretty floral double brushed poly with a note to sew up a Willow Wrap dress.  I had just sewn up this maxi Willow Wrap that very day and was already wanting another one!  I was ecstatic with her pattern recommendation!

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This time I used Katie’s maxi tutorial on the Love Notions blog to add a gathered maxi skirt to the bodice.  I also fully lined the bodice to give it a little more weight.  This is the plain bodice with short sleeves in a size small.

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This fabric was so perfect for this pattern.  Little did my secret sewist know but we are headed to the islands after the holidays (if you know me in real life shhhh! It’s a surprise for the kiddos!).  It’s become somewhat of a tradition to gift our kid’s experiences or trips for Christmas instead of more toys and gadgets that will inevitably get lost or forgotten.  This year we’re headed somewhere tropical and this fabric was just meant for it!

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I can’t wait to wear this out sightseeing or to a night out.  I live in dresses on vacation and this maxi version will be so comfy!  I didn’t want to take it off after these pics even if I did look a little ridiculous at the grocery store in near-freezing temps, lol!

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I’m already pretending I’m on a beach somewhere drinking a mock-mojito!  I can’t wait for a little bit of sunshine and sand!

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I feel so lucky to be a part of the Love Notions team.  Tami, Tessa, and Kelly are the most encouraging, thoughtful gals and I’m so grateful I get to work with them.  The Ambassador team is a group of the most talented, kind, and inspiring women on the internet.  It’s amazing to watch the behind the scenes as they cheer each other on and support each other and their creative makes.  The internet is a crazy place that can bring together makers from all over the world and the Ambassador team is a great example of that.  What a privilege it is to be a part of this community!  Make sure you head on over to check out the first batch of makes and to hear all about our Secret Sewist experience.

 

 

JillyAtlanta Agatha Dress

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One of my favorite school projects has always been the 5th-grade wax museum.  It’s a chance for students to pick someone from U.S. history to learn about and really get to know more about the amazing people in our country past and present.  Sophie came home so excited and immediately googled “important women in the United States”.  She wanted someone strong who really made a difference in our nation.  I’m not gonna lie but her fashion sense was also key.  Knowing she’d get to dress up like her subject really got this fashionista excited!

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She stumbled across a few articles on Nancy Reagan and knew that she’d be a unique choice.  After reading about her work with the ‘Just Say No’ initiative and scrolling through countless glamorous pictures, she’d found her match!  We used this iconic picture as our inspiration for her wax figure day look.

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I turned to the JillyAtlanta Agatha Dress to recreate the pussy bow dress in the photo.  The pattern is full of options and I loved the timeless style of it.  I used a red linen blend from Joann’s (I would have loved to find a more lightweight solid red but you work with what you can get).  Simple red buttons really keep with the classic style.

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The details with this pattern are incredible.  I love JillyAtlanta’s aesthetic and hope I can sew up more of them.  The back pleated bodice and bishop sleeves are my favorites!

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We happened upon the Healing Field while out doing photos and it was the perfect backdrop for this dress.  Our city sets up a field full of American flags, one for each person lost on 9/11.  It’s a humbling sight to see and was such a great opportunity to share the events of that day with my kids.  It opened up a conversation about love, healing, and the incredible people of this country.

I told her this photo could be her campaign picture when she runs for president!  It captures her heart and represents so much love and hope for our future.

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And this one is just her… trying to hold in her smile as she quietly glides through life.  She’s destined for greatness and I’m thrilled to be along for her ride!

 

Coffee and Thread Madrid Tour

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I love a good blog/Instagram tour, especially when it’s for one of my favorite designers.  I jumped at the chance to join the Madrid Dress tour for the lovely Olga of Coffee and Thread patterns.  I’ve been wanting to sew up this pattern since it came out and this was just the nudge I needed.

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The Madrid Dress and Top is a faux wrap bodice with multiple sleeve styles and three length options.  It comes in sizes 2-20 and the tutorial is top notch.  Olga always does an amazing job with her patterns and I know I can count on them to fit great and come together smoothly and easily.

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For my dress, I used a beautiful crepe from La Finch Fabrics.  I snagged this fabric as an end of bolt deal (it’s out of stock but keep your eyes peeled for another end of bolt deal) and wasn’t quite sure what it was going to become.  As soon as I had it in my hands I knew it needed to shine as a dramatic maxi dress.  The print is so pretty and full of my favorite colors (that navy and yellow combo never gets old).  The weight and drape make it so nice to wear.

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For my version, I had a little fun with the pattern.  I switched up the tiered skirt to be one full-length skirt.  I used the full width of fabric for both the skirt front and back making it feel like a princess gown!  It’s so full and twirly but the lightness of the fabric keeps it from being too poofy.

I did a full bishop sleeve using the existing long sleeve pattern piece.  I straightened out the sleeve taper on both sides and added an inch for the elastic casing.  I love love bishop sleeves.  They add a little drama but the cinched elastic at the wrist keeps them practical and out of the way.

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I had so much inspiration for this dress.  It all started about a year ago when I spotted a gal out and about in a gorgeous bishop sleeve wrap front maxi dress.  It looked effortlessly chic and oh so comfortable.  I couldn’t get it out of my head.  This version, this pretty short version, and this cute hi-low beauty convinced me I needed my own boho-inspired dress.  I love being able to take all the little details of my inspiration and make them a reality that fits my needs and vision.  This dress exceeded all my wildest dreams.

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You can follow along the tour with Coffee and Thread on Instagram and use code ‘madridtour’ to get 25% off any pattern in the shop.  I can’t wait to see all the lovely versions of this pattern!

DIBY Club Helen Dress

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This post is sponsored by DIBY Club and Raspberry Creek Fabrics.  I was contacted by DIBY Club to try their patterns and review them but all thoughts and opinions are my own.  To read my DIBY Club Rosa Dress pattern review head here.

When choosing which patterns I wanted to review and sew up I was drawn to DIBY’s dress patterns.  They all were cute, easily wearable patterns that looked amazing on all the testers.  I sewed up the Rosa Dress as a pretty church/date night look.  I wanted a more casual summer dress and especially wanted one that would work well as a swim cover-up.  The Helen Dress was just what I needed.

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The Helen Dress is a drawstring waist dress with multiple lengths, cap sleeves or racerback tank options, and scoop or crossover necklines.  It comes in sizes 00-36 and the patterns feature layers and trimless pages making it a cinch to print and put together.  As with the Rosa Dress, the tutorial is amazing and walks you through any alterations you may need to get the best fitting garment.  This pattern would be a great place to start if you’re new to sewing or just trying knits for the first time.

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I did the scoop neckline, cap sleeve, knee length options.  I sewed things per the pattern instructions until it was time to do the drawstring.  Since I am planning to wear this as a swim coverup I opted to use elastic in the drawstring casing and added a faux drawstring for looks.  I find elastic more comfortable than drawstring and hate losing them in the wash.  It was a personal choice and one that worked for this super casual dress.

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I used lightweight french terry from Raspberry Creek Fabrics.  I am in love with the CLUB dots and rugby striped poly rayon spandex french terry and it works so well as lightweight sweaters, shorts, and especially after-swimwear when you’re just a bit chilled.  It was such a good match for this pattern.

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I am so excited about this dress.  I love that I can wear this from the pool to the store or snow cone shack and feel totally comfortable.  It’s going to be the first thing I pack on my beach vacations too- from beach lounging to lunch on the patio, I love a little more coverage and this just nails it.  I’m counting down the days until my kiddos are out of school and we can hit the pools and splash pads all day, every day.

Thank you DIBY Club for giving me the opportunity to sew up these patterns.  They just released the new Emmeline Dress and it’s another one I’m adding to my list.   It feels great to find another pattern company I can trust with great fitting patterns, comprehensive tutorials, and super cute styles.  You can check out their women’s patterns, or try a pattern for free!

DIBY Club Rosa Tulip Dress

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When the gals at DIBY Club contacted me about partnering with them and reviewing a couple of their patterns I was thrilled and jumped at the chance.  I’d heard amazing things about their patterns and their Facebook Group is such an incredible, supportive community that I love following.   Their patterns are always popping up as favorites of my sewing friends and I had been wanting to try them out for myself.

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When scrolling through their pattern library, I was amazed by the variety.  They have a dozen free patterns if you’re wanting to try one out for yourself.  They have men’s, women’s, and children’s patterns but I knew I was going to be selfish with this one- I wanted to sew up something just for me!  Heading into summer, I’ve been wanting to add a few more dresses to my wardrobe.  I settled on the Helen and Rosa Dresses, two knit dresses that will be great additions in my closet.

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I sewed up the Rosa Dress for this review and couldn’t be happier with my new dress.  The Rosa is a beautiful dolman sleeve bodice with a fun tulip, crossover skirt.  The pattern comes in sizes 00-36, features multiple sleeve lengths, crew and scoop necklines, and shirt, knee, and maxi lengths.  It’s rated for experienced beginner sewists and is full of amazing tips throughout the in-depth tutorial.  Before beginning, I looked over the tutorials for both the Helen and the Rosa.  I was so impressed by the attention to detail, the thorough fit and alteration sections, and the clear illustrations.  I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend these patterns to someone just starting out sewing.  These patterns offer a little more ‘hand holding’ than some making things so easy to understand.

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The measurement charts are in-depth and help to achieve the perfect fit.  I fell into a 4 chest and hips with an 8 waist.  I used the instructions to grade the waist out (the pattern pieces include so many reference points so it’s easy to determine where to grade) and also added length to the bodice and skirt pieces according to the tutorial as well.   I’ve found that as I sew up patterns, I tend to change lots of construction methods just for my own personal preference.  With this pattern I changed two simple things- I tacked the sleeve cuffs with my machine instead of by hand (hello lazy sewist) and I sewed the belt altogether right sides together and left a small hole to turn it instead of sewing one long side after you’ve sewn and flipped the other three seams.  I think this says a lot about the construction and tutorial of this pattern.  Not that the way I do things is neccesarily the ‘right’ way but that I trusted or would have naturally done things per the tutorial made it an easy, comfortable sewing experience.

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The waist sash is one of my favorite details!

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I also really adore that the back skirt piece has some shaping with the center back seam and is not gathered.  This creates a sleek, flattering silhouette.

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My fabric came from Raspberry Creek Fabrics.  I love that these colors feel seasonless and I can wear it layered under a cardigan or denim jacket in cooler weather.

I’m lovin’ my new dress and am excited to sew up the Helen.  I’ll for sure be turning to DIBY Club in the future and would totally recommend giving them a try.  Great pattern, amazing tutorial, incredible fit, and beautiful finished product!  What more could you ask for?!

Check out their free patterns here, all their women’s patterns, or grab a dress pattern or two!