Little Lizard King Amsterdam in Gem Stones from Riley Blake Designs

Did you guys audibly gasp at this fabric?! I mean c’mon, it’s pretty darn amazing! When I first saw the new Gem Stones Bright line from Riley Blake Designs I knew this little girl would be in heaven! There are so many colors to choose from and that ombre is to die for! We chose the Flamingo colorway but it was such a tough choice. We love the subtle sparkle of the gold squares with the bright, vibrant colors. Sooooo pretty!

I knew this fabric needed an equally stunning pattern to really showcase it so we searched our favorite makers for something new to us. I’ve always loved the Little Lizard King Amsterdam every time I’ve seen it sewed up and she was smitten the first time she saw the listing. I knew we needed a maxi dress to really showcase this fabric and I think this pattern was the perfect choice.

This project was such a fun sew. I loved working with the fabric and trying to figure out the best way to really make it shine. She requested a yellow bodice and I love how the dress feels anchored by the turquoise hem. I love sewing dresses and sewing them in quilting cotton is so nice. The stability and weight make it so easy to sew and press. The weight adds a little more body to the skirt. She felt like a princess in this dress and said she can’t wait for an occasion to wear it (with us rarely leaving the house these days she might just be wearing it to the park or a backyard bar-b-que!).

Nothing like a happy kid to make you love this hobby!

This fabric really is amazing! The ombre runs selvage to selvage and it was the perfect width for this maxi dress. My mind is racing with all of the cute possibilities with it! Thank you to Riley Blake for letting us play with this fun line!

Abbie’s Garden from Riley Blake Designs

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I’m excited to be back here on the blog today.  Sewing time is scarce these days and blogging time seems even scarcer.  The sun is shining and I’ve got a house full of kids these days so we are spending as much time outside as possible.  I do love spending a morning at my sewing machines though and this fun fabric from Riley Blake was a perfect excuse to sew!

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I always love Sue Daley’s designs and Abbie’s Garden is no exception.  The pinks and blues are just the perfect shades and I love the pop of black with them.  I always get sucked in by the florals but the darling main prints are so sweet too.

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My girls and I picked two simple prints from the collection.  My younger daughter went with Abbie’s Garden Floral in Black while my older daughter wanted something more subtle and non-floral and picked the Garden Lattice in Charcoal.  There are so many great coordinating prints with this collection!

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For this dress I turned to a free pattern from Simple Life Pattern Co., the Catalina Dress.  I always love finding great free patterns that I can recommend and this one is fantastic!  It’s a classic sundress that comes in sizes 2-12.  The elastic back means no closures so it’s a quick sew too!  It’s perfect for highlighting those special fabrics and a great base to really play around with.  I’m already envisioning a pretty stripe version or playing with the straps a little for fun.

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When she put this on and requested a ponytail, I got all kinds of 50’s school girl vibes.  I had to teach her about Sandra Dee and she loved her style!

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My oldest wanted something other than a dress and the search was on for just the right pattern.  Little Lizard King released the Cannes pattern just last week and the moment I saw it I knew it’d be perfect!  This pattern comes in sizes 12 mos.-14 and features top and dress options.  With a v-neckline in the front and back, it’s another no closure pattern.  It’s finished with bias around the neckline and arms instead of another layer or facing which makes it nice and lightweight.

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While it works great in quilting cotton, I think it’d be lovely in a rayon challis or gauze too!  Bonus points moms, there’s a ladies version as well!

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It was so fun to head to one of our favorite walking trails for these pictures.  Summertime is in the air and I can’t wait for more days like this.  We had to stop for our first snow cones of the season after this shoot and for a moment all was right with the world!

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A huge thank you to Riley Blake for sponsoring the fabric for this post.  Make sure you check out Abbie’s Garden at your local quilt shop!

Liberty Winterbourne from Riley Blake Designs

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The Winterbourne Collection from Liberty Fabrics for Riley Blake is my newest fabric obsession.  I was head over heels for Flower Show Spring and this newest collection is just as incredible.

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This time I sewed up two dresses- my favorite thing to sew with Riley Blake quilting cottons.  As usually it was torture narrowing down our fabric choices.  My oldest is steering away from florals and this collection had a few beautiful prints that she loved.  My younger daughter loves pinks and blues and I knew so many of the prints in this line would look pretty on her.

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This print was such a beautiful choice.  It’s called Bankart Fresco-A and it has such a vintage feel to it.  The dark jewel tones are so pretty!

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She’s been wanting another Zoey Dress from Violette Fields Threads.    This pattern is one of my favorites.  I sewed one up for one of my very first collaborations with Riley Blake and it’s still in constant rotation.  It’s such a pretty style and one of these days I’m going to convince her she needs a maxi version because it’s just stunning!

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Those pretty sleeves get me every time!  This pattern comes together quickly thanks to that snap-front placket and bias neckline finish.  The fit is nice and easy with an elastic waist that adds comfort and a cute blouson effect.

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Little sis got a beautiful ditsy floral in the most gorgeous colors.  This print is call Primula Posey-B.  The pretty pink, soft blue, and sage green is such a great color combo.

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For her dress I used the Jilly Atlanta Marlow Dress.  I’m on a bit of a Jilly Atlanta kick.  I’ve hesitated to buy her patterns recently since my girls are at the top end of the size range but they seriously are sooo cute that I can’t help myself.  They’ve got their eyes on a couple of more of her patterns so expect to see a lot more Jilly Atlanta love around these parts.

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The Marlow is full of sleeve and skirt options which makes it a pattern that I can switch up a lot.  This is the short sleeves with vintage length.  You can do bodice or sleeve ruffles and there’s a clever front pocket to add too.  I love the relaxed fit.  It’s totally something I’d have in my closet too!

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My love for all things Liberty continues with this collection.  The collaboration with Riley Blake makes me so happy!  The lower price point makes these precious prints affordable and hopefully gets more sewists a chance to work with them.  Take a peak at all the Liberty collections with Riley Blake– so many to die for prints!

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Riley Blake Called to Serve

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This year is a year of milestones for my little family.  My husband and I will celebrate 20 years of marriage in September.  My kids will turn 18, 16, 13, 11, and 8 and so many of those birthdays will bring big celebrations and important events.  There will be a high school graduation and an elementary school graduation as well.  I’ll gain a new teenager and officially have an adult child.  Just typing that all out has me teary-eyed!  How did I get so lucky and where have all the years gone!

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When I saw Riley Blake’s new Called to Serve line I knew it’d be perfect for this upcoming year of mine.  My oldest has already started preparing to serve a two-year mission for our church, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.  He’s attending extra classes on Sunday, doing the necessary medical forms, and is getting excited to serve the Lord.  As much as this breaks my mama to send him away that long, there isn’t another thing in the world I’d rather him do.

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When thinking about what I could tuck into his suitcase, I knew a simple pillowcase would be perfect.  It folds up small, will wash up great, and will be a nightly reminder of how much his mom loves him.  Each night as his exhausted head hits his pillow, he will be reminded of why he’s there and how much he’s loved at home.  I love all of the uplifting sayings on this print and the message that he’s there to serve.  The classic simple designs are so universal and not too juvenile.  It’s just too good!

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I used the Free Roll-up Pillowcase tutorial on the Riley Blake website.  I love that the inside is full of clean finishes so I can be confident that this will hold up throughout his mission.  It was a simple project that I think I will have to use in the future too!  I think it’s a great beginners project and one my kids would enjoy sewing themselves.

pocketpillows1My youngest will be getting baptized this year and has just really begun to study the scriptures on his own.  He likes to read them at bedtime or sometimes listens to them on his devices too.  I sewed up a pocket pillow that’s perfect for holding his books or Kindle and will be a great reminder each night to do his reading.

pocketpillows2Since he shares a room with his big sister she also got a pillow too.  I let them pick out which colorway they wanted in the temple print and which coordinates too.

This temple print is gorgeous!  The Angel Moroni statues are all metallic gold which I think adds such a pretty touch.  payton1It’ll be fun for them to learn about the temples and identify which ones are on this print.    As we travel around the country, we always try to stop by and visit each temple so they’ll get a kick out of seeing the ones we’ve seen in person.

payton2For this pillow I roughly followed a tutorial in Melissa Mortenson’s book Project Teen.  Her tutorial used a full size pillow but I wanted to adapt it to a small throw pillow size since my kids beds are full of all of their favorite stuffed animals.  This smaller size (12X17) was a great size to hold their book or their device and headphones too.  I loved that the pocket didn’t go across the full front of the pillow and I was able to customize their pillows with a little Cricut vinyl.  This was a great place for my kids to have some input too.  They picked the vinyl color and fonts.  I really try to let them have a little ownership over our projects in hopes that they love it all the more.calledtoserve1

As we embark on this exciting year, I’m up for any and all advice you all have!  Do you have your own missionary?  Any tips as we prepare?  What helped you as a mom prepare?  I have a feeling I’ll be sewing my emotions away!

Make sure you check out this new line at your local quilt shops.  I keep thinking of all the great gifts it could be used for- scripture totes, quilts, church bags, or temple bags.  They’re good for newlyweds, missionaries, new converts, and more.  I feel so lucky to have been able to do a project that merged so much of what makes me ‘me’- my family, my hobby, and my religion.  Wish me luck this year!

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!

 

Riley Blake Flower Market

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The Flower Market line from Riley Blake is full of all my favorite types of prints.  Bold florals, geometrics, dots, and ginghams in all of my most loved colors too!  I knew my Payton would love this line and boy, was I right!

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She fell hard for the main print on black and I got to pick a couple of coordinates to go with it.  I used the Folk Pink as the lining and my go-to knit 1/2″ black and white stripes for the hood and bands.  I can never get enough of the black and white stripes- so classic and the perfect coordinate for EVERYTHING!

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For this project, I was really looking to branch out.  I love using Riley Blake cotton for dresses, skirts, and pajamas but knew I could push them further.  When I sewed up the Senpai Jacket last month I really wanted to try it in wovens.  This bold, fun print was perfect for giving it a go.

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It is recommended to use knit for the hood, bands, and lining.  I used quilting cotton for the lining bodice and the striped knit for the lining sleeves without any issues.  I omitted the welt pockets and used inseam pockets from another pattern.  For some reason, this girly has a hard time finding her inseam pockets though.  It’s quite hilarious watching her find them every time.  Welt pockets might be good for this silly girl!

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I really love this pattern and so does she!  I like the boxy, slightly cropped fit. It has a neckband option as well if you’d prefer it without a hood.  She has asked for another one that she can add patches to.  I think it will be my go-to jacket for my younger kids.

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The snap front also makes it a fairly quick sew.  I did struggle with one step- sewing the sleeve cuffs to the main and lining arms.  The instructions don’t have the seam hidden in between the layers and I really wanted to figure out the clean finish.  After unpicking multiple times, I gave up and did it per the tutorial.  Do you know the magic way?  If done correctly this pattern could be reversible.  I love that idea!

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I absolutely adore this fabric line and think it will make the most beautiful things.  Little baby quilts, bedding, dresses, ugh!  It all would be adorable!

Love Notions Octave Coat

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The Octave Coat from Love Notions is here!  I can’t remember a more highly anticipated Love Notions pattern.  From the moment Tami first sneaked her inspiration, I knew this was going to be an incredible pattern.

*I received the pattern and fabric in this post for free in exchange for promotion.  This post contains Love Notions affiliate links.  If you purchase through these links I receive a small compensation that keeps this hobby of mine going 🙂

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This was my first ‘real’ coat I’ve ever made and it was the perfect pattern to start with.  I think my Joy Jacket and this Decklyn Jacket were by far more complicated projects.  As far as coat patterns go, this has got to be on the easier side of things.  I’d totally recommend this pattern to an adventurous beginner, especially if you start with the unlined version.  Tami always does such a great job with her tutorials and this one includes videos to help you through some of the more difficult steps.

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Ready for all the pattern details?!  It comes with a shawl collar (what I did) and hood option.  You can do it lined or unlined and there is an optional belt too.  The size range is huge- XS-5X with full bust pieces included!  As always, the pages are trimless and layered making putting together this pattern easy.  This pattern can be sewn up in a medium to heavy-weight woven like wool, boucle, or bonded suede or a sturdy heavy-weight knit like sherpa, sweatshirting, and fleece.

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When this test was announce I reached out to Riley Blake and they generously sponsored this project and sent me this beautiful Nutmeg wool to sew up.  It’s the perfect weight and so easy to work with.  I’d been dying for a pretty camel-colored coat and this was just what I was dreaming of.  I’m pretty thrilled with how close it comes to these Pinterest looks.

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I lined my coat in fun leopard print stretch crepe from Raspberry Creek Fabrics.   I love the sassy punch it gives.  A little preppy on the outside, party on the inside.

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I sewed up a straight size small.  I added an inch to the sleeves because my rtw coats are always short (any rtw long sleeves really) but I think I could have skipped that.  My wrists will just be extra warm!  I also added a little bit of topstitching for a finished look and also to make the seams lay flatter in this thick fabric.  I love the oversized, boyfriend look of this coat.  I may size down in the future, especially with knits, but this version will layer well over chunky sweaters and hoodies.

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I had three yards of 45″ wide wool and had to do a little mind-bending Tetris to fit all the pieces.  My hand is strategically hiding a seam on one side of the shawl collar here (it’s hidden when it’s buttoned).  I’m still debating whether I should hit my local fabric shop for more wool so I can make a matching belt.  Wait until you see the belted versions!  It’s such a cute addition!

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Who else is ready to sew all the coats?!  I really, really want a fluffly fleece version.  The testers were amazing and with each new version posted my love for this pattern grew.  You can pick up your copy of this pattern on sale now!

 

 

Quick and Cute Mime Costume

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Who else loves a great last-minute Halloween costume idea?  This costume came together quickly and I bet you have most of the components in your closet and dress-up bin.

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I had to giggle when this chatty girl wanted to be a mime this Halloween.  She’s ever the performer and has been ‘practicing’ her silence for a couple of weeks in preparation.  The whole family is loving it, lol!  We snapped these pictures on her way to dance (yep, it was snowing brrrrr!).  Upon picking her up, she said her dance team LOVED her costume and insisted she stay in character all night.  I’m thinking her school teacher might appreciate her commitment to her costume as well!

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For this look, she is wearing an Ocotillo Leotard in Riley Blake knit and suspenders from this shoot paired with black pants.  We picked up the scarf, gloves, and beret at the costume store and I was surprised we didn’t already have them in our own dress-up bin.  I think they’ll come in handy in the future and will work for so many other simple costumes.

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We went with simple make-up.  I am definitely not a make-up artist.  I need some You-Tube lessons stat!  Luckily, she’s not picky and the teardrops and red lips were perfect for her.

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I’m secretly jumping for joy that my girls picked striped costumes.  That’s my girls!

 

 

Easy Halloween Costume featuring Riley Blake Stripes

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Halloween around these parts is pretty low-key.  I’m not the mom that loves to spend hours creating masterpieces.  I adore seeing other amazing handmade costumes but for me, I’m all about keeping things simple.  My little man wanted to be Captain America this year and I almost danced to the register to spring the $20 on a store-bought costume- done and done!  When Sophie said she wanted to be Wenda from the Where’s Waldo books we love, I was all on board.  I knew I could whip up a tee and beanie in no time.  My kinda costume!

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I reached out to Riley Blake and they generously sent over these perfect red and white stripes.  After searching the net for the perfect fabric I was happy to see that Riley Blake’s stripes were the best match for what we needed.  It’s a bonus that they’re soft and comfy too!

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I used the Love Notions Girl’s Classic Tee (affiliate link) for a simple silhouette that fits Wenda’s style.  Throw in the free Patterns for Pirates Slouchy Beanie with a couple of mods and Wenda is complete.  I added length to the beanie and lined it so she could flip up the bottom and made a pom-pom for the finishing touch.

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I love that she can wear this costume to school and be comfortable and not too flashy.  Perfect for a middle schooler!  What are your favorite quick costumes?  I’ve got one more to share this year that the whole family is loving!

Riley Blake Designer Knits for the family

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I love working with Riley Blake Fabrics and get excited with each new release.  As a garment sewist, I get especially excited by their new knits.  This latest collection has me giddy!  There was something for the whole family and I had to decide which kids I liked best that got in on this goodness, lol.

Riley Blake knits are similar in quality to other custom knits.  It’s a little lighter in weight than our Raspberry Creek Club knits which give it a bit more drape.  It has a similar softness and stretch and is a 95/5 cotton spandex blend as well.  We LOVE our knit garments and these will fit right into our wardrobes.

Charlie2This boy is soooo picky when it comes to how his clothes feel.  I think I’ve spoiled him by sewing him only the softest knits and this Riley Blake fabric is no exception.  He wanted this top to be a pajama shirt because he only wants the comfiest things to sleep in.  When I told him he can wear it all day AND sleep in it, he thought he’d hit the jackpot!  Charlie4I sewed up my new go-to tee for him, the Titchy Threads Rowan Tee.  The pattern is full of options and fun details.  This was my first time skipping all the extras and making a plain ol’ long sleeve tee.  The fit is so good on him, slim but not tight.  It’s just so perfect for really highlighting this fabric.Payton2This little miss absolutely loves to browse the Riley Blake site with me and pick her favorites.  She was immediately drawn to these blue flowers (she’s narrowed down her favorite colors to wear and we’re lucky that blue is one of them!).  I’m still loving a good floral and stripe combo so we paired it with some navy stripesPayton3She requested another Little Luxe Collection Palmetto Pullover.  We both can’t get over those adorable cuffs (dad even mentioned how cute they were)!  We did the mock neck version this time and I love how sweet it turned out.  I love that it’s not just a basic tee but that all those little details really elevate it to a whole new level.Mom3I honestly debated on getting any fabric for me.  You guys know I’d much rather be behind the camera but I couldn’t get this print out of my head.  I’ve really been wanting an easy to throw on maxi dress and I knew this print was too perfect for my vision.  Those colors are just meant for me, right?!  How much mustard, navy, grey, and pink can a girl have?  Never enough!Mom1For this look, I turned to two of my favorite Love Notions Patterns, the Willow Wrap dress and Olympia Dress (affiliate links).   I really love the wrap style bodice of the Willow but the maxi skirt with built-in pockets of the Olympia is the skirt of my dreams.  The combo of the two of them- my ideal comfortable and cute dress!  I sewed up a size small in both patterns and the waist seam matched up perfectly.  Easiest ‘hack’ ever!  I sewed it up using the Willow tutorial for a quick and simple sew that I know I’ll be making up more of.Mom5Mom4This print matches the dreamy autumn trees in my front yard, bright mustard yellow and so happy and crisp.  This dress is so great for fall but will definitely work year-round.  It’s one of those dresses I’ll throw on Sunday morning for church then lounge in all afternoon because it’s even more comfortable than the sweats and tees I usually wear for a lazy day at home.Trio2mom6Charlie1Payton1Mom2Charlie3Trio3A huge thank you to Riley Blake for the chance to work with these fun fabrics.