SLPco Holiday Blog Tour 2019

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The SLPco Holiday Blog Tour has turned into one of my favorite traditions each year!  This is our third year joining the fun (you can see our past looks here and here).   It always pushes me to get our holiday dresses done a little earlier and my girls get to wear them through the whole season and beyond.

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This post is sponsored by SLPco, Sly Fox Fabrics, and Raspberry Creek Fabrics.  I’m so grateful for their generosity in helping make these looks a reality.

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These looks started with this amazing scuba knit from Sly Fox.  The floral is flocked onto the most vibrant red scuba knit.  I’ve always loved scuba for it’s thick, soft and squishy texture.  Throw on the velvety goodness of the floral print and I’m smitten!  This fabric was destined to be a holiday dress and so perfect for this spitfire.

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I turned to a tried and true pattern- the Adelyn.  I’ve lost count of how many of these I’ve made.  That big bow back just makes such a statement!

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The pretty puff sleeves and twirly circle skirt are details this girly loves!  I love how quickly it comes together.  The bodice is lined (I used a cotton lycra to reduce bulk) and there are no closures.  I skipped hemming on the skirt (I couldn’t get the scuba to give me a crisp press and I’m always game for anything that makes my life easier, lol).  I did an 8 with a 12 length on the skirt according to her measurements and think the fit is spot on.  I can always count on SLPco to fit just right!

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My older daughter wanted something a little more sophisticated.  We used a classic black velvet from Raspberry Creek Fabrics to create a timeless look.  I used Autumn’s Shift Dress with the shoulder ruffles for a simple dress with so much class.

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She’s off the charts for height now but this pattern was easy to add length to.  I did the bodice lined version to skip the neckband.  This is the 3/4 sleeve length as well.

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It was so fun to get together with Inara and her mom for this shoot.  Anna shot all of these group pics and I’m dying over how cute they are!  These girls love any chance they get to see darling Inara.

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Make sure to stop by all of the other stops on the tour!

11/11 Boo + LuIdle Sunshine

11/12 Kutti CouturePear Berry Lane

11/13 Candice Ayala.comIt’s Liesel

11/14 Kainara StitchesSewSophieLynn

11/15 Sunflower SeamsSew and Tell Project

Now’s your chance to grab the Simple Life patterns you’ve been crushing on.  Use code slpcorocks to save 40% off all patterns now through November 25th.

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Today’s giveaway is right up my alley!  Enter to win a fun iron-on bundle.

Day 4 Giveaway (11/14)

Enter to win Cricut Vinyl and SVG Cut Files

Riley Blake Edie Jane

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Have you guys missed seeing these cuties as much as I have?!  My sister and her family are now living in Colorado and all I wanted for my birthday this year was a trip to visit them in their new home.  I couldn’t help but squeeze in a little photoshoot with my nieces while I was there.

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This post is sponsored by Riley Blake fabrics.  I just had to get my hands on the new Edie Jane line for my own little Edie girl.  When you have a fabric line with your same name it’s a no brainer right?!  Edie in Edie- perfection!

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For these dresses, I used Edie Jane Main Teal and Edie Jane Navy Dot.  There were so many prints to choose from and I simply love all the colorways.  Teal, blush, navy, and gray are the main colors in the collection and they look so sweet together.  There are large and small scale florals, script, and triangle prints and more.

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It was so fun to pick prints that would suit their styles and personalities.   While little sister is into all things girly, big sister loves dinos, dragons, and adventures.  This subtle print is classic and just right for her.

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I sewed up the Spencer Dress from Violette Fields Threads.  I wanted a dress that could easily be layered and could take her into summer too.  The simple silhouette is so cute and the buttons up the back are such a darling detail.

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I love a simple dress to really let a fabric shine!

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This dress is the Polly Pinafore from Bebekins.  I’m sad my own girls have outgrown the pinafore look and I was dying to sew one up for this girly.  The shoulder ruffles are so cute!

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These girls were too cute on this windy Colorado day.  It was so fun to play dress up AND get to take their pictures too!  Being an aunt is the BEST!

Make sure you check your local or online fabric shops for this sweet line.  There are so many prints to choose from and the possible combinations are endless!

Simple Life Pattern Co. Holiday Blog Tour

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Have you been following the Simple Life Pattern Co. Holiday Blog Tour?  I’ve been blown away by my tour mates and loving all the stunning dresses all week.  We’re beyond excited to be sharing our looks today.  Stay tuned to the end of the post for a giveaway, tour links, and sale info!

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For our dresses this year, we let the fabric inspire us.  We were lucky enough to have our post sponsored by Art Gallery Fabrics (can you say dream post? Gorgeous dress patterns in luscious fabric- count us in!).  Katarina Roccella’s newest line, Decadence, just screamed holiday glamour to me.  We picked the holiday perfect Houndstooth XIV Onyx and the dramatic Paon Plumes Rayon to coordinate.  These fabrics can be dressed up for a concert performance or worn on Sunday to church services.  Art Gallery Fabrics are amazing quality and I always feel like I’m spoiling my kids a little when I make something with them.

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Little sis is wearing Helena’s Button Back Dress with the buttons moved to the front.  I really wanted to let those gold buttons shine and there’s a little tip in the tutorial to make this dress reversible.  Easy peasy and I love the glam those buttons add to the front.

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I can’t wait for her to wear this all season long.  She loves it and I can’t get enough of her in it!  That sass really shines when she loves what she’s wearing 😉

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I did the 3/4 sleeve and modest back options.  This is a size 8 with added length for reference (her chest is 26″ and she is 55″ tall).

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My tween loves anything sophisticated and trendy and the Patricia’s Boho Dress was just meant for her.  The hi-lo hem and soft ruffles add such a sweet touch.  This dreamy rayon just floats in this dress.

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I love that this dress has no closure so it not only comes together quickly (even with all those ruffles!) but it’s just as glorious to wear.  No zippers or buttons bugging her back!

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I wish I was as elegant and charming as this sweet girl.  Major love for this whole look on her!

This is the dramatic hi-lo hem with bell sleeve version.  This is also a size 8 bodice with added length.  She also has a 26″ chest and is 60″ tall (funny that they have such similar measurements still but she’s just crazy tall for her age!).

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Sewing up these dresses has me itching for the holidays to come!  Nothing like a little sewing to get you in the spirit.  Make sure to check out all the other stops on the tour for some serious inspiration.  Are you sewing dresses for your sweethearts this season?  Can you stop at just one?  The other ladies this week have me wanting to sew another dress or two before the year is over!

 

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November 5 – Kutti CoutureSLPCO Team

November 6 – Wonderfully HandmadeAmmon Lane

November 7 – Kainara StitchesIdle SunshinePearberry Lane

November 8 – Sew TwirlySew Sophie LynnBonnie and Blithe

November 9 – It’s LieselCandice Ayala

Make sure to enter the Rafflecopter giveaway for a chance to win a $30 gift certificate to Hart’s Fabric and a $50 gift card to Simple Life Pattern Co.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

You can use the code ‘fallintoslpco’ for 30% off all patterns (excludes the newly released Betty) through November 19th.  It’s the perfect push to pick up all those beautiful patterns you’ve been eyeing.

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Thanks for joining us on our stop on the tour!  Happy holiday sewing to you!

Abbie from Riley Blake Designs

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I feel so incredibly lucky to have gotten my hands on the newest line from Sue Daley for Riley Blake Designs, Abbie.   The soft colors, dusty blue, coral, pinks and greys, are so pretty together and made it so hard to choose which fabrics to work with.

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I immediately knew I needed the Text print for my book loving daughter.  I went with the Cream background for a sophisticated, classic look.  My younger daughter looks darling in blues and pinks and I really had a hard time deciding what to pick for her.  The main print in this collection features a darling girl and her pup and was really tempting- it’s so darn cute!  I just couldn’t get this pretty large floral out of my head though and knew it’d pair so perfectly with the smaller scale Garden print.  They’re such a great combo!

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I knew I wanted to do a simple style dress to really highlight this fabric.  I turned to one of my favorite patterns, the Hey June Larkspur.  It’s a simple shift dress that always looks so chic and classic.  I added sleeve ruffles to the elbow sleeve for a little sass.  Paired with tights and booties this is a look I’d love to wear myself!

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Of course, I did an exposed metal zipper to give it a little edge.  Statement sleeves and exposed zippers just might be my ‘thing’ right now.

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This picture suddenly had me flash forwarding five years and seeing her sweet sixteen and headed off to her first dance.  Can we please slow things down?!!  She did bring me back to reality by sitting in church the next day trying to read the script on this print and giggling like the little girl that she is.  I’ll take all those moments I can get!

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Little sis got a Violette Fields Threads Pixie Dress, one of my favorite dress patterns to use for quilting cottons.   The bodice is also a great place to use those cute trims you’ve been hoarding (this lace is from Hobby Lobby, my go-to for trims).

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The evening of this photo shoot was one of the first real fall days we’d had and temperatures were hovering around 40 degrees.  These kiddos were such troopers!  I love this shot because she nailed the pose but I see the clenched teeth “Mom, can we please be done already?!” frozen look on her face.  True pro right there!

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Make sure you check out ALL the cute prints and colorways with this darling line.  I think this line would make the cutest nursery or little girl bedding and decor, spring dresses, and gorgeous quilts.

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Thanks for stopping by my little stop on the Abbie Blog tour.  Thanks to Riley Blake Designs and Sue Daley for the chance to share this darling fabric will you all!

Project Run and Play Week Three: Shine Bright

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It’s week three! What a ride it’s been!  I’m thrilled to have made it this far in the competition and have been loving my competitors creation’s each week.  Make sure you head over to Project Run and Play to check out their looks and to vote for your favorite.

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The theme for this week is “Astronomical Proportions’.   I really, really struggled with this one.  I love that this competition pushes me to try new things and to be adventurous but I also want to be true to my own design aesthetic and style.  As designers we pondered the double meaning of the theme; outer space and also big dramatic proportions or style elements.   Trying to go with both meanings and stay practical and wearable was my big hang up.  I decided to go ‘big’ in my own way.

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I kept thinking of the stars- both in the sky and on the silver screen.  We are channeling the bright, shining stars in the sky and also our favorite Hollywood movie stars.  It made for a fun week sewing and an especially fun photo shoot.

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Fabric played a huge part in this week’s look.  I used mostly fabric I’ve had forever and that I picked up for a steal.  The sequins, lining knit, and neon pink scuba knit are from LA that I grabbed last year.  The sequins were a screaming deal at $5/yard and the scuba was a remnant that I got to dig for ;).  The faux leather knit came from a local home decor warehouse for $3/yard and the space knit was a Joann remnant for a couple of dollars as well.  Serious savings!  While it was amazing finding just the right fabrics in my stash it also meant I had to work with the yardage I had.  It proved a bit challenging on the main pieces but worked out in the end.

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This dress was such a learning experience.  It was only my second time working with sequins and my first big project with them.  I only broke ten needles in the process- haha!  The sparkle and shine are so worth it though!

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The real showstopper is that skirt!  I added fairy lights for extra wow factor and love the results.

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I wanted this dress to be both playful and sophisticated and to really suit her style.  I loved this dress and this one as well and wanted to use elements of them in our look.  I love the blouson top and wanted a circle skirt to really showcase those twinkling lights.  I love the bishop sleeve of the second dress but unfortunately didn’t have enough fabric for long sleeves.  The slight flutter sleeve is my compromise!

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The dress is lined in a super soft grey rayon jersey knit.  It’s comfortable and helps retain the drapiness of the sequins.  I did an elastic casing on the bodice lining only to avoid an extra seam on the sequins.  The elastic had to be nice and snug to hold up the weight of the sequins and battery pack.

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The lights are removable and took a lot of time to figure out.

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I created a zipper pouch in the pocket to hold the battery pack.  There is a buttonhole on the other side of the pocket for the light strand to feed out of.  The lights are hand tacked to the inside of the sequins and are just loose enough that they can be removed easily.

If I were to create this dress again (hello, future me!) I’d do a couple of things differently.  This was my first time making a light up sequin dress after all!  Hopefully someone else can use these tips to make their little princess’s dreams come true.  The battery pack is a little too heavy and bulky in her pocket and I think I’d either do a separate pocket in the back of the bodice or since I knew she’d be wearing shorts underneath it would be ideal to put the battery pack in a pocket there then do a buttonhole on the skirt lining for the lights to feed through.  The fairy lights were lightweight and the wire was pliable and worked well with the weight of the sequins.  The lights add just a bit of fullness to the skirt which worked well for this application.  How fun would a light up dress be for a night of fireworks at your favorite theme park?  I think there are lots of possibilities with these fun lights!

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The spin factor with the lights is our favorite! I love that she picked Chucks to really play up the playfulness of this look.  Perfectly suits my soccer loving, book-worm, old soul of a daughter!

sophie4.1I used the Nina Blouse from Coffee + Threads as my basic bodice pattern again.  I eliminated all closures and did a slight boatneck to fit over her head.  I redrafted the sleeve to have as much flutter as I could fit on my remaining fabric.  I just love that drape!

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I used the Love Notions Leggins’ pattern to make a pair of shorties to wear underneath to allow her to spin to her heart’s content!  I added height to the waistband and cut them to hit mid-thigh for coverage but to stay hidden too.  This fun space print was perfect for the theme and I love when they peek out a bit as she twirls!

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Overall, I’m so happy for the push Project Run and Play gave me to cut into my beloved sequins.  It was worth all the broken needles in the world to see this little miss feel like a star!

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This girl is my little sassy one.  She’s full of spunk and I wanted an outfit that captured that.  A neon pink top with faux leather leggings sure did the trick!

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For her blouse I used the Hey June City Park tee as my base.  I sized up and redrafted the body for a boxy, loose fit.  I added wide blouson sleeves for our take on ‘astronomical proportions’.  I love the drama of the sleeves and finishing them with an elastic cuff keeps them a little more practical.

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Just about as puffy as this simple mama gets 😉  She’s in love though!

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I did a slight high low hem to add to the dramatic feel.

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Gold foil stars add the finishing touch.  My Cricut and I are becoming BFF’s this competition too.  As I searched for star fabric all over the internet it hit me that my Cricut could give me just the look I wanted.  I was able to use the bright fabric I wanted and add just a spattering of stars to tie it in with the theme.

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Her pants are simple leggings with a few modifications for a sleek fit.  I used the Peony Leggings from Sew Like My Mom.  I slimmed the legs even more for a second skin close fit.  I added height to the waistband for a high-waisted silhouette.

payton19.1They’re cropped just at the ankle for a retro feel.  Really wishing I could rock the pleather pants like this girl!

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Our shoot day was another one for the books.  After six soccer games and a birthday party, we had a fun shoot planned in front of this cool wall.   Mother Nature had other plans as the skies turned grey and it started raining then turned to slushy snow.  Perfect photo conditions!

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Luckily I had a backup plan and we headed to a ‘fancy’ parking garage for a high fashion photo shoot- complete with natural wind machines and an audience.  These girls loved getting glammed up and really turned on their inner movie stars.  A little makeup and a rocking hairdo go a long way in making them feel confident and really bring them out of their shells.  Yet again, the photo shoot turned out to be my favorite part of the process.  These girls crack me up and we just have a blast each time!

Make sure you head over to Project Run and Play to vote for your favorite look!  Voting is open until 8pm EST Thursday, March 29th.

2017 Hits and Misses- Women’s Edition

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2017 has flown by and like everyone we’ve had our share of ups and downs around here.  It’s so nice to sit back and reflect on all our blessings, everything we’ve accomplished, and also the mistakes and trials we’ve had and how we have grown because of them.  For the first time, I’m sitting down and really analyzing this little ‘hobby’ of mine and what I’ve learned this year.  There are a few super memorable makes and a lot of forgotten ones too.  Let’s start with the good things shall we,

1- Velvet Wrap Dress

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This project was one of those that I had in my head for months and it came out even better than my vision.  It was out of comfort zone in many ways.  It was my first wrap dress- I’d never even tried one on, so I was nervous the style just wouldn’t be my thing.  It’s also a much trendier look than I tend to gravitate to.  Despite my trepidation it turned out to be one of my favorite things I’ve ever sewn.  Being able to customize the fit just how I wanted it made this dress perfection in my book.

2- Willamette Shirt

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This Willamette Shirt from Hey June turned into my most worn piece all summer.  I can’t wait to sew up a couple more for spring.  It was a game changer for me.  After sewing this up and seeing how much more flattering this top is compared to my knit tees I realized that woven tops were where it’s at.  I love button ups all fall/winter so it makes sense to want to wear something similar in warmer weather.  I need to fill my closet with these, Key Largos, and Shoreline Boatnecks.  Bonus that they’re pretty quick and easy sews too!

3- Cardigans

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I’m embarrassed to admit that this simple piece is easily my most worn handmade item.  A simple Boyfriend Cardigan in the coziest french terry ever just doesn’t get much better.  It’s a year-round staple and looks great with jeans, joggers, even a cute knee-length dress.

These two new cardigans have quickly become go-tos also.  They are oversized and cozy without looking sloppy- a fine line I feel like I’m always walking.  These three cardigan patterns are essentials in my book and will continue to be must have layering pieces in my wardrobe.

4- Love Notions Bluezette

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While I love to make dresses for my girls, I feel like I struggle finding the right style and fit for myself.  I’ve made dozens of dresses this year and while I still wear a lot of them, many just sit in the back of my closet.  Finding a flattering fit on my body type has proved to be a challenge.  The Bluezette from Love Notions is pretty darn near perfect for me though.  With an elastic casing at my natural waist, a tiny bit of blousiness in the bodice, multiple sleeve lengths, and a pocket modification this dress just gets me.  It’s comfort and style all in one.  This is one I can’t wait to sew up again in the coming year.

5- Camila Swimsuit

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In all my swimwear sewing this year, I made myself four suits and this was by far my favorite.  I can’t say it’s the most flattering (let’s face it though, no swimsuit is going to magically make all my flaws disappear) but it’s the suit that I feel the best in.  The on trend style, amazing fabric, and the option to wear the ruffle off the shoulder or under the arms makes this suit the first one I grab.  It’s such a quick sew too and the first pattern I’d recommend to anyone wanting to venture into swimwear sewing for themselves.

 

You might have noticed I’ve left off all my hoodies and tees from this list.  It’s no question that I’m a HUGE lover of all things french terry, brushed poly and cozy and they are left off the list because they are just too obvious.  Nothing groundbreaking and learned by making my tenth Halifax or Sloane Sweater.  If YOU haven’t made one though I challenge you to add it to your 2018 line-up stat!

 

Ok, are we ready for the misses?  These are things that just aren’t getting the love they deserve.  They linger in my closet, unworn for various reasons.  Some are just not that practical for me.  Some are too far out of my comfort zone.  I will tell you that these are all fantastic patterns from amazing designers but they just don’t work for me.

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I mentioned above how much I struggle with dresses.  I love, love to sew them up and I’m always game to try a new pattern and style.  These dresses in theory should work for me.  Like the Bluezette, the top two dresses feature an elastic waist with a loose fitting bodice.   The Catalina Dress on the upper left is just a matter of fit on me.  The loose, wide neck and arms just don’t work with my modest style.  I wear it with a undershirt and it’s fine but not ideal and so it’s not one I reach for.  The Timeless Dress on the upper right is just a matter of wrong fabric choice I think.  I had visions of chambray and lace but it quickly turned too ‘Little House on the Prairie’ for me and I just can’t get over it.

That Olympia on the lower left is stunning in real life too.  This dress is a matter of tester girl problems.  This was a test dress that has a slight issue in the shoulders that was addressed and fixed in the final pattern.  During testing it’s our job to point out any and all weird fit issues and then when you wear those garments it’s hard to ignore those issues however minor they may be.  The solid color makes the issue harder for me to ignore and also makes any body issues more difficult to hide.  This is a sad one for me to see sitting unworn because it’s a beaut!

The Cadence in the lower right is just a matter of not being my style.  It’s super cute and an easy to wear silhouette but falls into the too casual for church category.  Like my girls, I always think I’ll wear dresses during the week but rarely actually do.  Every single tee-shirt dress I own just sits in my closet reminding me that no matter how much I want to be the cute mom in sneakers and a dress- it’s just not me.  This little rayon dress is a step above the knit dresses I own so I thought it’d be worn but alas, I reach for my other dresses first everytime.  This could be more of a matter of having too many other choices too 😉

2- Tallinn Sweaters

Guys, these two Tallinn Sweaters are so, so good!  Like, I look at these pictures and totally want to wear them everyday.  It’s such a cute style and the pattern is so well done. That pretty cream sweater though brings out my inner toddler.  The turtleneck is buggy and itchy, the sleeves seem too tight and the open flap means I feel the need to wear an undershirt and another too warm layer.  Totally my own issues and not the patterns and I still drool over every Tallinn Sweater I see.  I’m hopeful that lovely blush version will get worn this spring though.   Without the turtleneck and added width in the sleeves it’s comfortable and so cute- problem is it’s a little ‘too cute’ for me.  Not too crazy girly though so I’m not giving up on her yet!

3- Farrah Blouse

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This is another AMAZING pattern by an amazing designer.  The Farrah is one of those patterns that the more I see it the more I love it too.  It taught me a lot though.  It’s so hard to see everyone looking stunning in their garments only to realize it just doesn’t work for you.  I will still wear this cute top but thought I’d share my thoughts on it with you.  First, it’s not very practical for me.  I need to wear sleeves for modesty issues and these cute flutters just don’t cut it.  I wear a cap sleeve undershirt with this and it works but it’s just not comfortable.  My other issue with this top is completely my own body issue.  I struggle with my upper arms and my small chest just accentuates my larger than normal guns (haha- if only it was all muscle ;).  If you notice, I tend to gravitate towards elbow sleeves and shy away from any kind of puff shoulder or cap sleeve.  Add in the fact that the ruffles make it hard to layer with this top and it’s just not a piece I wear.  Sad, huh?!  It’s so hard to not want to sew up every hot new pattern but this has taught me to really think about my pattern choices.  Does it work for my body type and lifestyle?  What I’m really asking is, “Will a lazy, stay-at-home middle age mom really wear this?”

4- Quilting Cotton and Cotton/Lycra Tops

Tell me I’m not the only one that falls for all the cute prints available in quilting cotton?  Whenever a new fabric tour rolls around I always want to sew up the pretty prints for myself.  I think what I’ve learned with the thicker quilting cotton is that they need structure and clean simple lines.  That darling Shoreline Boatneck in the upper left would make a great maternity top judging by the fact that it totally makes me look six months pregnant.  The fabric is just a too stiff for a gathered peplum style.  The Beatrix in the upper right needs just a couple tweaks to really work.  My main issue is where the sleeves hit and that the fabric is too thick at the elbows making it super uncomfortable.

Now onto cotton/lycra.  I really love the feel of it.  Raspberry Creek Fabrics makes some of the best and it’s like the softest stuff ever.  Art Gallery fabrics prints are so beautiful too!  It’s a dream to sew with- nice and thick, doesn’t curl, and presses well.  It makes a perfect fitted tee, problem is I don’t like wearing fitted tees.  My preferred loose boyfriend tee style just doesn’t work well with the thickness of cotton/lycra.  This is a sad thing for me to come to grips with but those unworn tees in my closet just can’t be ignored.  I will continue to sew up ALL the cotton/lycra for my kiddos and I’ll be on the lookout for the perfect top pattern for me too.  Do you have any suggestions?  What’s your favorite adult pattern to use up all those pretty cotton/lycra prints?

5- Floral Jumpsuit

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Oh man!  This outfit may possibly be the most comfortable thing I’ve never actually worn 😉  I’d been wanting to make a jumpsuit and thought a simple knit version was the perfect place to start.  It’s just too much guys- just looking at these pictures makes me cringe.  I was super sick and just couldn’t hide it too.  Maybe that’s why the outfit is tainted for me.  Dressing up and heading outside in freezing temps while feeling icky and out of my comfort zone was probably too much for me.  This print is fantastic but I know I should have stuck with a simple solid when trying out something so new to me.  Jumpsuits looks incredible on the young and hip but this just made me feel old and so uncool.

This is another lesson learned.  It’s so fun to try new things and push our boundaries.  Nothing was really lost in this failure and I get a good laugh when I think about this day.  That’s what sewing is to me- A chance to learn and grow, to find what works for me, to really learn about myself and my own individual style, to try new designers and silhouettes, and to really increase my sewing knowledge.  With every success, I get more confidence.  Every failure, brings lessons too.  Thanks for joining me on this journey and I can’t wait to see what 2018 will bring!