Project Run and Play Week One: Modern Mayan

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It’s week one of Season 15 of Project Run and Play and I’m thrilled to be back!  I had so much fun last time and learned so much.  This go around I’m so happy to be joining some of my favorite seamstresses and know you’re going to be blown away by their creations.

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The theme for this week is the 7 Wonders of the World.  I hit the internet and was immediately drawn to one of our favorite sites we’ve ever visited- Chichen Itza, Mexico.  If you’ve followed me for very long you know we have a huge place in our hearts for Mexico and love our vacations there.  We love learning about the culture and people and I wanted to celebrate that in our look this week.

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Our first vacation post kids was with my husband’s family to Cancun, Mexico (that’s me with the bob kneeling in front- we were so young!).  We toured the Mayan ruins of Tulum and Chichen Itza and it was such an amazing experience.  Back then you could climb to the top of El Castillo, the iconic pyramid.  It was at the top that my fear of heights kicked in and I seriously contemplated what life would be like living in that big stone room since there was no way in the world I was going back down those steeeeeeeeep stairs!  Lucky for you I conquered my fears so I could be here today to share with you our first look!

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I love the bright colors of Mexico, from the turquoise ocean waters, to the lush green jungles and the clear blue skies.  The vibrant colors really bring our look to life.  I did three different pieces and topped it all off with a fun felt floral headband.

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My main piece is a woven front bodice dress, designed to mimic the stairs of El Castillo.  To create this look I used a reverse applique technique and fabric weaving.  A little geometry came in handy to get this just right.  I love that this dress is perfect for the theme but also totally wearable and not too costume-y.

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I brought the same staircase look to the back of the bodice too.  I love the subtle detail!

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I did a split sleeve with a built in bow because I simply can’t get enough of the statement sleeves!

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A hi-low hemmed skirt and pockets finish off the dress.  I used the Lil Luxe Collection Lil Luxe Dress as a base for the bodice then drafted a new neckline, sleeve, skirt and pockets.  The fabric for this dress came from our sponsor CaliFabrics.  This ocean blue chambray was just perfect for this dress.

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Little sis is rocking my take on tourist chic.  I wanted to bring in the vibrant greens of the jungles that surround Chichen Itza and also wanted to use a print that would be reminiscent of the gorgeous flowers that you find there too.  This floral was a LA find and the twill for the shorts was a Joann’s score.  I really want this outfit for myself!

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I used the Nina Blouse from Coffee + Thread as my base for the top.  I cut the front on the fold and added facings instead of the collar and bias binding.  I added a flounce to the sleeve and chose to keep the hem raw to preserve the movement of the fabric.  This fabric is pure heaven- it has the drape of a rayon with quite a bit of stretch and doesn’t fray when cut.  I’d buy a million more yards if I could!

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I added a big bold exposed zipper to the back.  I’m always drawn to exposed zippers and try to keep a bunch of pretty ones on hand just so I can bring a bit of drama to a garment.  The bias bound hem adds a little stability to the hem and I love the contrast it gives too.

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I used the Linden Shorts from Sew A Little Seam for the shorts.  I drafted a new waistband and added a ruffle to the top.  I also used a side invisible zipper as closure.

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I drafted new, longer and wider pockets and brought the angle closer to the side seam.  I lined the pockets with sarape stripe fabric that I wanted to incorporate into our look somehow.

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I did a longer gaucho style length so hopefully she’ll get to wear these to school and through the summer.  My kids and their crazy long legs make buying shorts near impossible so I know I’ll be making many more of these this year!

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The felt floral headband was just the right finishing touch.  I used wool felt from Etsy and had a blast trying out different flowers.  The bold colors and big flowers are such a fun addition to this look.  Their shoes were Target finds and couldn’t be more perfect!

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These girls made this shoot so much fun!  It wasn’t easy to find a ‘Mayan-looking’ backdrop in the middle of a Utah winter.  We headed to our State Capital Building and these girls did their best pretending it was a balmy 80 degrees instead of the frigid 30 degrees it was the evening of our pictures.

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Thanks for stopping by and make sure you head back to Project Run and Play to check out the other looks and to vote for your favorite!  Voting ends Thursday at 8pm EST so run on over!

 

Nina Blouse from Coffee + Thread

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I’ve been trying to cut back on pattern testing and it takes something pretty special to pull me into a test.  The Nina Blouse from Coffee + Thread was one of those patterns!

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A sweet peter pan collar, shoulder pleats and multiple sleeve options make this a classic pattern that can work year round.  It’s so feminine and sweet!

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The optional neck ties add such a charming touch.

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This pattern is beginner friendly and is great for those like me that are a bit timid when it comes to sewing button-up shirts.  I’m always nervous to tackle what I think are intimidating projects but this pattern really was a fun sew.  Not too difficult and the tutorial was excellent.  There’s nothing better than the feeling of accomplishing something that scares you!  These tops are some of my favorite makes because I pushed myself a bit out of my comfort zone.  Easy knit projects are great but these blouses took just a little longer and the reward is so satisfying!

The list of recommended fabrics for this top is long.  Light to mid weight woven fabric such as lawn, rayon, linen, and quilting cotton are all great choices.  I used a pretty rayon challis from Raspberry Creek Fabrics for the long sleeve version and a light swiss dot from LA for the cap sleeve blouse.  Different looks to bring us into spring.  I’m excited to use my favorite quilting cotton prints too!

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You’ll also be happy to know that the size range is amazing! 12 months to 12 years- hallelujah!   It’s absolutely adorable on the littlest ones and still chic and classic on the oldest girls.  It’s such a timeless pattern you’ll turn to again and again.

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My biggest critic absolutely loves her new tops!  She was so excited to wear it to school the next day.  It looked great with jeans and know it will be darling paired with a skirt and knee highs for church too.

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The pattern is on sale through Tuesday, February 13th for $6.50.  I know you’ll love it as much as we do!