Chalk and Notch Pixie Tee and Dress

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Gabriela at Chalk and Notch does such a great job at making me feel like a million bucks!  Her patterns are always on trend with classic lines and great details.  The new Pixie Tee is no exception.

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The best part- This pattern is free for a limited time for Chalk and Notch newsletter subscribers, just make sure you sign up before Sunday, June 24th.  Hurry over here and click the little Newsletter sign up in the left top corner.  Easy Peasy!  Do it now so you don’t forget, you will not want to miss out on this one!

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This pattern is super versatile and so cute.  There are hem band and hem tie options and multiple sleeve lengths.  There are also top and dress lengths.  You can make a comfy knit tee dress, chic date night top, and cozy sweatshirt all from the same pattern.  I chose to do the hem tie, short sleeve, top version and love, love, love it!

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I used a beautiful double brushed polyester from Raspberry Creek Fabrics (this print is currently not available but there are a ton of other cute options!).  I love the weight and drape of it for this pattern.  There are pattern pieces and instructions for making your own woven ties but there is also an option for ribbon ties.  I used a pretty velvet ribbon for mine and love the texture it adds.

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My plan as I sewed this top was to wear it styled exactly like this.  Who doesn’t love a good jeans and tee combo?  I love that this feels a little elevated than my basic momiform and would love to make a couple more.

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I tried this tee on right before heading out the door for church and just really didn’t want to take it off!  I threw on a skirt and loved that I was able to easily dress it up too.

I can’t wait for you to see all the tester versions.  There was a huge variety and each one was so cute!  Cozy french terry versions, pretty dresses, and fun fabric combos.

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So did you get all signed up?!! Make sure you head to Chalk and Notch so you can grab this as soon as it’s released.  Such a fun new pattern!

Watch my Instagram feed for a chance to win a Chalk and Notch pattern of your choice too!

LOL Swing Top and Expansion Pack

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Our weather has gone from spring to blazing hot summer this week!  It was the perfect time to sew up the new LOL Swing Expansion pack for the LOL Swing Top from Jennuine Designs.  The fact that this pattern can be sewn up in both knits AND wovens meant the sky was the limit!

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The first version I made was an easy knit version using this darling Lemonade Stand print from Raspberry Creek Fabrics.  It was the perfect pairing to create the essential summertime top!

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We used the new pinafore option available in the expansion pack for a darling open back look.  She loves the breeziness and didn’t want to take it off after our shoot on this 90+ degree day.

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I think this will get worn mostly on pool days or lazy days around the house.  It’s not up to school dress codes and knowing this little lady we’ll have to be careful because she’s always cartwheeling and flipping any chance she gets!  This top is definitely not ‘tumbling’ proof 😉  I do think the pinafore options looks especially adorable on babies and toddlers!  All that cute baby chub is too darling in this top!

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I did skip the neck gathering on this version (not necessarily a design choice but trying to get it done quicker) and it still turned out so nicely in front.   I seriously love the volume and swing this top has!

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The second version I did was using the dress expansion.  Again, the swing of this pattern is everything!

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I used a large scale buffalo plaid I got from CaliFabrics last year and played with the direction of the print a bit.  I love the bold black and white print with the pop of color from the bias binding.  The pattern calls for narrow bias binding but I really wanted it to pop so I used 1/2″ bias for this version.

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I’m always nervous sewing up tank patterns that the underarm coverage may be lacking.  I love how this pattern fits though!  The racerback style and thick straps keep everything where it should be.

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The knit version can easily slip over the head but the woven version calls for a simple shoulder button.  This makes it easy on and off and keeps the construction clean.

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The dress version includes pockets and I had a hard time deciding whether or not to add them here.  We LOVE pockets but this fabric is slightly sheer so I chose not to do them this go round.

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You can get your copy of the LOL Top here, the Expansion Pack here for just $2 if you already own the LOL Top pattern, or get the bundle here on sale through Sunday June 10th.

Lana Top and Dress from Coffee + Thread

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The Lana Top and Dress is the latest pattern from Coffee + Thread.  It’s such a cute, on trend style and so quick to sew up!

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This pattern is a knit dolman bodice with a ruffle sleeve with both top and dress options.  It comes in sizes 2-20 and a big bonus is that a top can be made in just a yard of fabric for most sizes!  You’ve got to be like me with a huge stash of one yard cuts that you’re not sure what to do with.  This pattern is perfect for them and you can sew up a few in just an afternoon, my kind of pattern for sure!

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I really like the fit of this top, not too fitted and loose in all the right places.  It’s perfect for those hot summer days!

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Like most tests I do, I sewed up an early tester version with all intentions of making a great final version also but yet again time got away from me.  Daily life with five kiddos sometimes puts a damper on my sewing time, lol!   The pattern was lengthened  after my version but otherwise the fit was pretty great from the get-go.  I used a yummy soft rayon spandex from an LA fabric shopping trip and it worked great for this pattern.  I love the ruffle sleeve in a lightweight fabric!

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I’m thrilled to have the perfect summer top and definitely need to sew up a couple more!  You can still grab the pattern on sale through May 10th!

 

A couple new favorites for ME

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With all the kids back in school I now have a couple of hours each day to myself.  I’ve been looking forward to this time for YEARS!  Little did I know that those two hours would fly by and seem like mere minutes each afternoon.  In that short time, I try my best to clean the house, run errands, help in the classroom, and all the other mom duties we have.  I had dreamed that every afternoon would be spent at my sewing machines!  In the last couple weeks I was able to squeeze in a bit of sewing just for me!

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The Key Largo Top from Hey June Handmade has been on my to-sew list since it went into testing!  All summer long I’ve been longing to cut into one and I finally moved it up my list as soon as I got my hands on this gorgeous Lecien fabric from Raspberry Creek Fabrics.  It’s so soft and I needed it made into a top stat!  I tell you, it’s dangerous when your bestie has one of the best fabric shops EVER!  A quick stop to visit and I inevitably leave with a stack of beautiful new fabric.  She’s the best I tell ya’!

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I’m all over relaxed, loose tops and am thanking the style gods who have made them so in fashion.  I think women everywhere are rejoicing with me!  The Key Largo has that perfect fit through the shoulders and chest and then just skims all the other bits.  It’s meant to be a bit more cropped but I added a couple of inches to mine.  I’ve got to be able to do the little half front tuck!

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My other make was with another GORGEOUS fabric- this time from Stylish Fabric.  I had won a gift certificate through Project Run and Play and waited to use it for my fall wardrobe planning.  This Old Rose Stretch Velvet is joining my closet full of all things blush/mauve/dusty pink.  It’s such a pretty color- not too pastel-y or nude.

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This pretty velvet tee was my inspiration.  I loved the cuff sleeves and relaxed fit.

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I used my go-to relaxed fit tee pattern- the Mama Ava from Made for Mermaids.  I trim an inch or two from the length and have raised the neckline a couple of inches to be more crew neck than scoop.  I think I have half a dozen of these tees in my closet now which is saying a ton coming from a pattern hoarding like myself.  I rarely reuse my patterns since there’s always a new one to try!

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Those cuffs proved to be my nemesis.  I tried a few different methods to get the look I wanted and seriously struggled.  It was one of those projects that usually takes thirty minutes but dragged into days because I had to walk away from the issue out of frustration!  I really wanted to do a cuff like the Hey June Santa Fe- a band that is sewn on the inside and flipped out and tacked on the outside.  The issue came with this velvet sticking to itself and becoming super stiff when trying to use the underside of the fabric for a contrasting look.  After multiple attempts I decided a thin, simple roll-over hem would just have to do.  I serged the edge first to keep it from sticking to itself and then just had to call it ‘good enough’.  I think lately ‘good enough’ has won over my need for perfection.  Call me lazy- I’m calling it keeping my sanity 😉

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What have you been sewing lately?  Anyone else super excited to get their sewing time back after summer (however little or long it may be!)?

 

 

Sew Americana Blog Tour 2017

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I’m excited to be here again for the Sew Americana Blog Tour, year two!  I love everything Katy of Wild and Wanderful does so of course I had to join this tour.  My sister and I had so much fun last year  we jumped on board again in a heartbeat!

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These three have grown so much in the last year and I can’t get over how darn cute they were for this shoot.  Last year my sister and her kids were moving from Alaska to Arizona and stayed here in Utah for part of the summer.  This year they’re here for the summer too and we can’t get enough of these cute cousins!

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My girls sure love doting on these little ones!

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Let’s talk about the outfits!  This teeny one is adorable in Made For Mermaids Evie Suspender Shorts and a Pistachio Top from Sew Like My Mom.  In a classic chambray these shorties are such a staple.  Super cute but so practical too!

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The back of these ties in a bow and really ups the cuteness factor.  I just love little bloomer shorts in the summer!

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I was thrilled when my oldest fell for overalls- she’s all about comfort AND style.  I love the Sydney Romper and Pinafore from Mouse House Creations.  It’s such a classic, sweet style and was perfect for the look we were going for.  I’ll never grow tired of picot trim bias, especially in a gingham!  It’s the fun pop these shorts needed but still keeps them versatile.

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We paired the overalls with a Boo! Designs Sleeved Leotard for a fun vintage look with a modern twist.   She absolutely loves this outfit!  I love that it’s perfect for summer- an outfit she can wear running around the neighborhood with friends or off to a bar-b-que.

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My other niece is all about comfort and these two pieces will be great to mix and match into her wardrobe.  The Skipper Top from Sew Much Ado is such a staple pattern for my sister and I.  It’s a quick sew and is a great base to show off fun fabrics.  In a red and white stripe, it’s great for the Fourth of July but will still be wearable year round too.

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She got a pair of Hailey Ruffle Shorts from Made for Mermaids and a Barb’s Headband from Simple Life Pattern Company.  This comfy knit outfit is totally playground approved.

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Perfect for hiding in the big ‘ol tires at one of our favorite parks!  Isn’t she just darling?!  I feel like as an aunt, I can say these things 😉  She is just pure innocence and joy!

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The last outfit we made for the tour was another one we wanted to be able to mix and match into her existing wardrobe.  These chambray Lilly Shorts from Violette Fields Threads will be great.  I love the pop of red from the bias tape!

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She lives in her Miss Mary Mack (affl. link) tees from Love Notions and I always know I can’t go wrong making her more!  This one in floral and polka dots is definitely my new favorite.  So cute and girly!

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As it often goes these days, I had more fun taking and editing these pics than I did sewing.  So I’m going to leave you with a bit of photo overload and a little wish for ya’ll to have the best holiday weekend!  I’m so grateful for this beautiful, amazing country we live in and for all those who have fought to make it what it is today.

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Make sure to head on over to all the other stops on the tour- so much patriotic goodness!

Our Amazing “Sew Americana” Tour Lineup:

Monday, June 26: Wild & Wanderful | Handmade Boy | The Wholesome Mama | Marvelous Auntie M | Sew and Tell Project
Tuesday, June 27: EYMM | Middle River Studio | SewSophieLynn | Phat Quarters | Call Ajaire
Wednesday, June 28: Simple Life Pattern Company | Sewing By Ti | Auschick Sews | Nu Me Nu You | Swimming in a Sea of Estrogen
Thursday, June 29: Adventures with Bubba and Bug | Musings of a Seamstress | Elli and Nels | Spindle and Seams | Stylin’ Stacy
Friday, June 30: Very Blissful | Stitching and Making | Wild & Wanderful | On Wednesdays We Sew | Fairytale B&T


We would like to give a special thanks to our generous sponsors!
Love Notions | EYMM Modern Designs | Rebecca Page | Patterns for Pirates | Simple Life Pattern Company | Thread & Grain | Designs by Call Ajaire | Simply By Ti | Made for Mermaids | Petite Stichery & Co. 

You can add your patriotic makes to the link-up too!

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Thanks for stopping by our stop on the tour!

Willamette Shirt from Hey June Handmade

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Meet the newest member of the Hey June family- the Willamette Shirt.

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The Willamette features three different views to keep you looking good all summer!  I chose to do view B during testing which features a waist seam that makes mixing prints or playing with directional fabric so fun!

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The Willamette is a dolman sleeve top, with a back yoke, and wide collar.  I’m a nervous wreck sewing woven tops with collars and plackets but the Willamette is a super easy way to ease into them.  The placket is simply a facing and the collar is sandwiched between the main and facing pieces- no fussy collar stand to deal with.

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This lazy sewist really does plan on a couple more for summer.  They are fairly quick sews with beautiful insides to boot- does it get any better.

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I absolutely love how loose and breezy this top is.  I like that it’s a step up from my normal tee and jeans too!

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This is my face after washing my shirt and having it come out crisp and lovely- no ironing means I really will wear this top at least once a week!  I lucked out that this LA fabric district find just happens to be almost wrinkle free- score!

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Make sure you check out the other views- there’s a simple version without the waist seam and a cute cropped version that looks so cute too!  Head on over and grab your copy today!

Knock it Off Tour

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The Knock-it Off Tour hosted by Sprouting Jube Jube and Lulu and Celeste is for all you do-it-yourselfers.  You know who you are.  You walk through the mall and all you can think is, “I could make that so easy!” or “Man, that top would be so cute if only it was two inches longer/shorter/had sleeves/a v-neck/hood/ruffle/stripes/butterflies/etc…”.  Chances are if you’re a seamstress of any level you will be thinking this on EVERY single shopping trip!

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My inspiration comes from a no longer available Anthropology top I came across during the Tallinn testing.   I loved the simple ruffle and knew the Tallinn was just the pattern for it!

Try not to spit out your soda at my awesome recreation of the pic.  I’m pretty sure this model is a size negative 20 and hasn’t seen a donut in her life.  It’s like I’ve found my long lost twin 😉

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I was really thinking this would be an easy hack.  The Tallinn sweater features the same overlapped front but is a straight angled top piece.  The bands are done in two pieces and the neckline features a turtleneck or slouchy cowl.

Now there’s a reason I don’t really do tutorials. #1- I rarely ever hack patterns.  I can usually just find a pattern that suits my needs.  #2- I definitely don’t have the sewing skill to share with you.  I learn from doing and would hate to teach techniques wrong.  #3- I don’t have the patience to take all the needed pics to properly show what I’m doing.  Now with that out of the way I’ll do my darndest to explain what I did to create this look.

My original mods to the actual pattern pieces were fairly simple.  I used two right front pieces and altered them to be wider at the shoulder and curved at the hem.  I used my french curve for the curve and added 2.5″ at the shoulder seam.  I slashed and spread my sleeve piece to make it a bit looser like the inspiration and made it 3/4 length.  I’m sure I could have just sized up that piece to make it easier.  I also cut the neckline right in between the turtleneck and cowl necklines and made a neck binding piece 1.75″x 80% of the neckline circumference.

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I had to get a little creative sewing it up.  The Tallinn has separate hem band pieces for the front and bottom.  I struggled wrapping my mind around getting one continuous ruffle sewn on since it’s included in the shoulder seam.  I didn’t want the bulk of the ruffle under the other shoulder so my ruffle tapers off underneath and is not included in the right shoulder seam.

So, I got a little crazy and sewed up the right shoulder then sewed about an inch of the outside left shoulder seam.  I then added the sleeves and sewed the side seams.  I could then add the ruffle to the outside hem in one continuous piece.  (My ruffle is 2″ by 2 times the length of the full hem.)  Once the ruffle was on I could then finish the left shoulder seam and attach the neck binding.  Not mind blowing sewing but it did stretch me a bit.

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I honestly wasn’t in love with this when we first took these pictures.  I couldn’t figure out what it was.  I found the original top and read some of the same thoughts in the reviews- not flattering was a general consensus.  For me, it really highlights my broad shoulders.  Not something I usually go for.

That night as I laid in bed I had one of those hallelujah moments.  I knew the ruffle needed to come in on the shoulder to cut my shoulder in a bit and it was as simple as pleating the shoulder piece.  I really didn’t want to unpick all the ruffle and topstitching to fully alter the whole front piece!

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It’s not a huge difference- before altering on the left and after on the right, but I think it helps a ton.  I really love the final top and think it’s such a great transition top for spring.

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For this top I used a super soft blush french terry from Stylish Fabric.  It looks like this shade is out of stock currently (glad others are sharing my current pink obsession) but there are a ton of other beautiful colors to choose from.

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I’m so excited to pair this top with jeans or my favorite new Brassie joggers.  It’s such a great, comfy mom outfit.

BTW- The Tallinn is a great nursing top and this little hack is a great way to switch it up a bit in case you need a closet full of them.

 

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You can catch all the amazing Knock-offs this week here:

Monday, April 24

Lulu & CelesteCall AjairePaisley RootsAdventures with Bubba and Bug

Tuesday, April 25

Sprouting JubeJubemahlicadesignsSew and Tell Project

Wednesday, April 26

Lulu & CelesteSewSophieLynnNini and AshLittle Heart Threads

Thursday, April 27

Sprouting JubeJubesewingbytiInspinrationHouse of EstrelaBeri Bee Designs

Friday, April 28

Lulu & CelesteDuchess & HareCreative CounselorFilles a Maman (FAM)

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