Joanne in Fire and Flood

One of my favorite things about sewing is being able to pair the unexpected. I recently made the Sinclair (affiliate link) Joanne dress with this amazing Esther Fallon Lau-designed Fire and Flood print currently on pre-order from The Fabric Snob. I love how the more casual feel of this print pairs so lovely with the more formal lines of the pattern. You won’t ever find pleats and fire and flood in RTW!

The Pattern: Joanne from Sinclair

The Sinclair Joanne comes with a multitude of options but the base pattern is a fitted faux wrapped bodice with a-line skirt.

There are options around the hem length (including a peplum!) and sleeve options (including this fun flounce in the illustration)

One of the things Sinclair is known for is the different heights in each pattern. This means less adjusting overall. I find I fit in between the Petite and Regular somewhere so I normally take just the teeniest bit of length out of the bodice and kind of play it by ear with the skirt. I ended up taking about an inch off the skirt hem and I love the result.

The dress itself came together very quickly. I really love the dot method Sinclair uses for the bodice pleats. Even if you’ve never sewn pleats before, you can do this!

The Fabric: Fire & Flood from The Fabric Snob

I used the EFL print in bamboo (95% Bamboo Rayon/ 5% Spandex Jersey Knit). This fabric is dreamy in its drape, super soft, and breathes! I live for natural fibers but sometimes cotton can feel too stiff and heavy. Bamboo is the perfect alternative and it has much better recovery and a longer life than just a plain jane rayon spandex.

It was so easy to work with and feels like wearing PJs! Seriously lush. Even better yet: $5 from each metre pre-ordered will go to the Australian fire relief effort to aid in the rehab and rebuilding efforts following the devastating bush fires. 

Styling

It has been warmer here so I decided to just pair the dress with booties for the picture. With the silhouette of this pattern, this print is now work appropriate. I can even envision cooler days including a black blazer and black tights and black booties. I’m super excited to have this breathable dress to take me through all the unexpected seasons and the crazy fluctuations of the office temperature!

This post contains an affiliate link for the dress pattern. I received the pattern in exchange for sewing it up and sharing my thoughts on the pattern. As a member of The Fabric Snob strike team, I received this fabric in exchange for sewing it up and sharing it on social media.

The Fitting Experiment – Sabrina Slims

My blogger friends and I recently started a group we’re calling The Fitting Experiment in which we will sew up patterns and showcase them on our blogs so all our sewing friends can see the looks on each body type and help determine if a pattern is for them and some of the adjustments they might need if they were to sew it up.

For our first experiment, we tried out the recently updated Sabrina Slims from Love Notions. Sabrina is a “cigarette” style pull on pant with multiple options. See the line drawing from the Love Notions listing below:

Slim fit pull-on pants sewing pattern

I kept it simple and went for the basic side seams with no pockets. I’ve never really loved pockets on anything me made for myself so that was an easy choice. I did add the back pockets because I feel like they make the pants look more like pants.

I used the fitting guide extensively. This thing is gold. It tells you exactly how you want to do your muslin to achieve the best fit and also includes really helpful details such as the amount of ease you want to achieve at each location.

I started out with a size larger than I would have normally for my muslin and had pretty decent results, definitely wearable. I did end up taking so much out that I went down a size nearly throughout for my red pair. I think part of this was user error in taking measurements. My fleshy bits around the hip can be a bit tough to accurately measure as I feel like they’ll squish up or down as opposed to measuring a more rigid point like my waist.

I also ended up taking out more length in the crotch and just contouring a bit. I plan to wear these to work. I love that they’re pull on and don’t cut my gut. For this pair, instead of adding elastic, I went down a size in the waistband and added clear elastic to the top seam when piecing the lining to the outer waistband. I haven’t worn them for an extended period of time yet but I suspect I’ll be comfortable and not need to keep pulling them up.

I definitely would need to fine tune the crotch and hips further on my next pair but the main difference I would make is the pockets. Rather than waiting until the pants were constructed to put on the back patch pockets, I did it sooner based on the pattern placement marks. They’re just a bit far apart for my liking. This is a super simple fix and now I know better. When I make any pant in the future, I’ll just baste or use double sided tape until I’m 100% sure.

I learned a lot about my body and good fitting techniques by sewing two pairs of these.

A special thank you to Love Notions for sponsoring The Fitting Experiment bloggers with patterns so that we can share our thoughts with you. Love Notions has kindly provided a 20% off shop discount code for all our readers. Please use this code at checkout: FittingEXPSabrinas

In addition, Love Notions has given us TWO copies of Sabrina Slims to giveaway. For a chance to win, comment below. For more chances to win, comment on the other blogs too! You can check out their posts below:

Happy Birthday Sofiona

Welcome to my stop on the Sofiona Designs Blog Tour. We’re helping the amazing Sofiona designers Sherri and Trisha to celebrate a huge milestone – – – a whole year of beautiful designs, spot-on drafting, superior instructions, and just all-around rad members of our sewing community.

Check out some of our amazing sponsors helping us to celebrate!

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Raven Day

Today is all about the Raven. I sewed the dress version with the elastic waist, long ruffle, and back tie. This ruffle with a little lace has my heart!!!

Check out the line drawing from the Sofiona website for some of the other options:

Raven line drawing from the Sofiona website

I love the elastic casings for the waist and sleeve cuffs. They sew up so quickly and are easier for my sweet pre-schooler’s independence (and my sanity!). My daughter is just under the size chart for the waist but shortening the elastic inside the casing means I can’t even tell!

The Fabric (and a coupon code)

The Raven can be made by light to medium-weight wovens or light knits. This pattern later inspired the Sofiona Rhubarb pattern drafted specfically for knits. You can see my Rhubarb dress here.

Blush - Yarn Dyed Linen Cotton - 1/2 metre

While the Raven can be made in knits, I chose to use this gorgeous linen sponsored from The Fabric Snob. I’m completely obsessed with this blush color right now.

My first order with “the snob” was fabulous. I had a few questions that were quickly answered in the group from knowledgeable admins and fellow “Snobs”. Shipping to the US is a flat rate OR/ FREE for orders over a certain amount. The quality and color of everything I ordered is absolutely divine and the exchange rate is an extra win.

The Fabric Snob is giving 10% off orders from the entire shop Nov 4-10 with the code SOFIONA. Jump for joy:

A21 and the Balsam Bag

One of the things I love about Sofiona is that they donate a portion of their earning to A21, a nonprofit organization dedicated to ending human trafficking. To read more about the charity and Sofiona’s dedication to their mission, please click here. In addition, all profits from Sofiona’s latest pattern, the Balsam Bag, will be donated to A21. If you’ve been waiting to sew a bag, here’s a great reason to dive into it!

Balsam Bag Line Drawing from the Sofiona listing

More Sofiona Inspiration

Each day this week, two bloggers will pair up to showcase one Sofiona pattern. Follow along to see your favorite Sofiona patterns sewn “as is” by one blogger and a clever “hack” by the other.

Some of our favorite Instagrammers will also be sharing their Sofiona makes this week and they’ll be doing the same pairing up to showcase one pattern. Follow them for more inspiration:

Join us in the Sofiona Designs Fan Group on Facebook for more fun and to share your favorite Sofiona makes!

Sponsors & Prizes

Finally, a huge thank you to ALL the sponsors for joining in our Anniversary Celebration! Please participate in the Rafflecopter below for an opportunity to one of the two prize packages listed below valued at over $150 each and join us in the fan group for daily giveaways next week.

Prize Pack #1

Prize Pack #2

This post is affiliate-free. I received the pattern in exchange for sewing it up and telling you about my experience but my thoughts are entirely my own. This is a fabulous pattern by one of my favorite shops.
Check it out!

Dream Tee from Amelia Lane

I had so much fun testing the new Dream pattern from Amelia Lane Designs. Our community knows ALD owners Mya Jones-Bohman and Colleen Cameli for their fabric but the Dream tee and dress is their first venture into patterns. Mya designed and drafted the pattern and ALD hired a professional to digitize and grade according to the size chart.

The Options

The Dream Tee is a dolman with:

  • Two hem lengths: tee and dress
  • Three sleeve lengths: short, elbow, long
  • Two necklines: scoop and plunge
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Inclusivity

This pattern’s inclusive size range makes it more than worthy of its name. ALD covers sizes 00-34 (71 inch hip) and was thoroughly tested throughout the range. You know the plus sized patterns that don’t fit the upper range like the lower? Not the case here. I really appreciated that I didn’t even need to make any adjustment for my upper arms.

Fabrics

You can get away with using all your favorite knits. And ALD knows fabric! I sewed versions in ITY, rayon spandex, dbp, and this grey ALD waffle knit. Basically, anything drapey goes. Some testers were discussing using a CL for the pattern. I’m not a fan of the boxy look on myself but it would technically work.

There are other helpful hints throughout the tutorial. For example, I took Mya’s suggestion for elastic in the shoulder seams for the rs and waffle.

Get Your Hack On!

The pattern is a terrific wardrobe builder. As a basic pattern (my dress is a front, back, and neckband), it is suitable for beginners. As a solid basic pattern, the Dream Tee is super easy to hack. Check out the ALD Blog for an entire series of ideas.

How to Buy

The link to the pattern is here.

Pattern release price is $7.99 through Tuesday 11/5 (retail will be $9.99 following that).

As a tester, I received this pattern in exchange for my time and feedback towards the successful final product. I also accepted ALD’s offer of deeply discounted fabric for my final (the grey waffle knit). My opinions here and throughout social media are entirely my own.

VIA!

I recently helped test the Via Top, Tunic, and Dress pattern from Sofilantjes Patterns that is currently being released as part of the Street Style Bundle over at Project Run and Play.

I normally sew more fitted bodices for my daughter so it was fun to try out a more straight fitting style and the seaming is perfect for color blocking (though I chose to use a singular color).

I found the pattern pieces and instructions easy to follow. I really like when designers include blending paths because my kiddos are rather slender for their height and blending across more than 2 sizes can be a chore.

The hardest part was finding appropriate fabric. Via calls for French terry/summer sweat with min 30%, max 50% stretch. I am realizing how heavy my stash is on drapier fabrics with more stretch. Luckily, I had a few options for miss 4. She chose this blue cotton French terry I had been saving for joggers for myself (mom life, huh?). We added this fun DBP for the neckband and cuffs. These were fussy cut scraps from this dress.

Because of the fabulous seaming and using just one color, I definitely wanted to topstitch to help draw attention to the pattern’s lines. I used a navy blue to contrast. Looking back, I wish I had stitched the reverse side but I was in auto-pilot mode listening to podcasts.

We had a blast taking these pictures. This flood wall was built to help protect the local shopping district and has a bunch of child-friendly graffiti art.

Sewing for Fall

I got a head start sewing fall wardrobes this year. It was still 90+ degrees when I photographed most of these long sleeve loves. Good thing, because fall came virtually overnight.

I made myself a fall dress using this lovely Art Gallery cotton lycra. I used the Bella Sunshine Designs (affiliate link) Emmaline bodice and popped on the Sahara skirt. This pattern is so lovely. Fits like a dream and super fast because you’re using bands instead of lining. BSD is actually running a mash contest right now. Check out more details here. Hey, I recognize that lady!

My son got several pair of Railway Joggers. I love Sofiona for their terrific fit and superb contruction. There are always fabulous design elements that give even basic things like pants a little extra style. Isn’t he the coolest looking little dude styled up in this P4P free beanie and sneaks? I used a sweater knit for the hat and the joggers are actually an old sweatshirt of mine. I love how they have just the right amount of structure.

Check out little dude in his Hip 2 B Square top (affiliate link) from Goober Pea Designs. Yep, this hat gets around! I had some scraps from Simply By Ti’s striped cotton lycra and it was a great feature fabric for this pattern.

Don’t worry, Diva Girl was NOT left out. By any means. This dress hound settled for a skirt and a top. The skirt is Arcus (affiliate link) from Sofilantjes and made from FT scraps with a DBP waist. The top is a 3/4 sleeved Maggie (affiliate link) from BSD in baby FT.

Image may contain: 1 person, shoes, child and outdoor

I also recently made her a long sleeved Rhubarb dress from Sofiona. This is made from Art Gallery CL. I think it was 100 degrees this day in the park but she had so much fun all dressed up and playing in the stream. Oh child!

Pre-school Dress Love

PettyBecky-DH-EveryWhichWaySlim-3

I used the popular Every Which Way Dress from Duchess and Hare to make my daughter a few dresses awhile back. I’m so happy I am finally remembering to share them!

I made the dress with a collar and a vintage length and I adore the result. The way the dark chambray mixes with this gorgeous floral makes the pattern sing.

My miss has grown a full inch over the summer though so I decided to make an extra long skirt for her second one and wanted lots of twirling fullness so added to the width as well.

PettyBecky-DH-EveryWhichWaySlim-2

Both versions are totally twirl-worthy!

The main fabric on both dresses is quilting cotton. I love using quilting cotton because it is so widely available locally and there are tons of adorable prints and is often at a lower price point. I rarely iron either, I find that simply hanging the dress and hand pressing out the wrinkles while wet mostly does the trick. Phew, this mom doesn’t have time to iron everyday wear.

PettyBecky-DH-EveryWhichWaySlim-5

These two dresses are worn for school, play, painting, for life. I imagine they would constitute as church or other dress up wear for other little ladies but She lives for pretty dresses so why not enjoy them daily? I imagine this pattern would be super spectacular in special occasion fabrics too!

Sew Americana 2019

The 4th of July in 1776 was when the United States adopted the Declaration of Independence, declaring ourselves as idependent but unified colonies. It is pretty spectacular to sit with this thought.

It is a national holiday so many American families celebrate with cookouts, parades, and fireworks. And, we wear a little (or a lot!) red, white, and blue.

This year, my kiddos are ready in advance and have already worn their patriotic outfits a few times. Shocker, I’m sort of the WAIT-AND-SEW-IT-AT-THE-LAST-MINUTE kind of momma. I’m also quite miserly with my fabric usage (hoarding IS a hobby!) so am pretty thrilled to have eeeked out both outfits from just one (ONE!!!) yard from my stash.

Patriotic Pearlie Dress

I knew I wanted my daughter to wear a dress with the top as the stripes and the bottom as the stars. The Pearlie from Peach Patterns was such an easy decision. I’ve made tons of this dress before —- check out here and here so I had the pattern ready to rock and roll.

The non-fussy dolman sleeves are fabulous and I just love a good curved hem. As soon as this pattern released for ladies, I was in heaven. We even have matching Pearlies that we (not infrequently) wear together.

Red (White and Blue!) Ringer Tee

The Ringer Tee from Brindle and Twig was a new-to-me pattern (and FREE!). I didn’t have time to muslin it for my lankey dude so just blended between the two sizes I thought he might need based on the measurement chart. BINGO – the fit is exactly what I wanted for him. His dad used to wear a few very old and super soft ringer tees so this is completely nostalgic in all the right ways.

I added a pocket from another designer’s pattern and I’ll lower it a touch if I use it again but he loves any spot to sneak a car. My typical placement rule of thumb is 1/3 to halfway up the height of the armscye and centered vertically if you were to quarter the bodice piece.

I really love how this came out and plan to purchase this cardigan next. How adorable, right?

Blog Tour Inspo

Check out more inspiration from Sew Americana bloggers:


Monday, June 24:
Wild & Wanderful · The Petite Sewist · That’s-Sew-Kari · Stitched by Jennie · Marvelous Auntie M

Tuesday, June 25:
Petite Stitchery · auschick sews · Sew Simple Home · Sewing Novice · Striped Swallow Designs

Wednesday, June 26:
(Swimming in a) Sea of Estrogen · The Eli Monster · 5 out of 4 Patterns · bigflynotions · Stitching and Making

Thursday, June 27:
Middle River Studio · It’s Liesel · Crafty Curly Couture · Sewing with D · Kitty Makes It

Friday, June 28:
Boo + Lu · Sequoialynn Sews · Seams Sew Lo · Made By Jaime · SewSophieLynn

Happy 4th!

Hope everyone enjoys their 4th, here’s a little red, white, and blue hug from my family to yours!

This post contains NO affiliate links.

Sew Free for Summer Blog Tour

School is out and the pools are open! This is the official start of daily dress weather and more daylight for extra playtime! As part of the the bigflynotions stop on the Rebecca Page Sew Free for Summer Blog Tour, I sewed up two FREEBIE patterns: the Dollies Diaper and the Paris Party Dress top.

Dollies Galore

There are far more dollies than people in my house. Dollies live upstairs, downstairs, in the car, at preschool, in her bedroom, on my couch (ever sit on a dolly foot or hand – – OUCH!). Dollies come with us to the pool, to the grocery store, to bed. I was brushing my teeth the other day and saw a dolly chilling next to the sink. So, its only right for dollies to have a suitable wardrobe, under pieces included.

I used quilting cotton and linen to create each of these three diapers. I really like this pattern because it uses elastic around the legs so you can get a pretty good fit. Each of these diapers is used for a different doll, two 18-inch dolls (the Gotz and the American Girl Doll shown in these pictures) and then a slightly smaller dolly.

Note: While the dolly diaper can be done up to suit your preference, the correct method for closure is with the back piece covering the top piece. (such as in the images for the solid pale pink diaper). This sleep deprived grand(?!?!?)mother failed to pay attention during the snap application phase as the mom (!) was quite eager to clothe her babies.

The pattern calls for velcro but I used snaps as a way to sneak in a little extra fine motor. These are the same size 20 KAM snaps I used on her clothes so I’m hoping it’ll transfer nicely to getting dressed a little easier.

Next up: this child needs a diaper bag for all these diapers. I plan to make this one (image below from listing).

Paris Hack

I’m quite obsessed with the Paris Party Dress, as evidenced here and here and here. That last link is actually a garment I made myself during testing over two years ago!

This was a simple hack, based on the blog post I wrote here. This time, I made the swing part of the dress even more dramatic (at least, as much as the width of this scrap would allow). To help squeeze it onto the fabric, I put a seam down the back, adding a teeny bit for seam allowance.

I used a lovely jersey I had leftover from a few projects I made for myself. It created a dress that is perfect for lounging, twirling, and, of course, changing baby diapers.

I promise she didn’t learn this baby holding technique from me:

More Inspiration

Please visit all the stops on the Rebecca Page Sew Free for Summer Blog Tour for more great inspiration:

Prizes

We will be giving away a pattern bundle of choice each day PLUS an overall grand prize of a $50 pattern credit. To stand a chance to win, all you have to do is comment on each blog, each day so stay tuned to the Rebecca Page Sewing group for updates from our bloggers!

Happy Sewing!

This post contains affiliate links for which I receive 
a small commission when buyers use my link to make a purchase. 
Thanks for supporting my blog!

Springing Towards Summer

It has been raining in the Midwest. Nonstop. No joke. My friends have flooded basements and there looks to be a pond in my backyard. And little people have been inside for days upon days. (My mom sanity is running thin.)

My daughter asked why it is raining. I had more than one smart comment in my brain. But 4yo brother had the perfect answer “Because the grass and birds need a drink. And then it will be sunny again”.

Oh, he’s a clever one.

Summer is Coming

So, I’m starting to sew for those sunny days. I recently helped test the new Moss dress/top pattern from Sofiona Designs. It has several length options and can be made with or without the hood. Check out the line drawing (source).

My version reads cool dress than swimsuit cover up but it was designed to suit (#mompun) both functions. The Moss is actually being released as a bundle with the new Sofiona Narwhal swimsuit. Check out the amazing binding options on that btw (source)!

My version reads cool dress than swimsuit cover up but it was designed to suit (#mompun) both functions. The Moss is actually being released as a bundle with the new Sofiona Narwhal swimsuit. Check out the amazing binding options on that btw!

I love the deep back V on this dress. This is the higher cut line. It is gorgeous.

The construction is uber thoughtful throughout. The binding facing on the neckline is super clever in how it finished the optional hood and turns the ties. While totally dreamy (bindings ARE dreamy!), it might be better suited for an intermediate seamstress or adventurous/patient beginner.

I love this relaxed, almost raglan looking accent on the front:

My divalicious daughter selected maxi length which hits right at the ankle bone for the size 3 length. This means, she reaps the drama of the length without the mobility accidents. Fantabulous!

Tea Time

Last year was the beginning of a tradition where my daughter and I go to a fancy tea at the local butterfly house. Naturally, we wear coordinating outfits. This was our attire from last year. Tea 2019, we went for this fun yellow floral. I think it is some sort of cotton feel poly blend.

We had a total blast and the Moss clearly goes well with delicious red velvet cupcakes!

This post does NOT contain any affiliate links. I received a copy of the pattern in exchange for testing this pattern, which includes sewing up multiple versions and providing feedback on things like fit, construction, and tutorial edits.

Pattern Mashing Bliss

Welcome to my stop on the Rebecca Page Double Duty Blog Tour. I’m excited to show you how I mashed the knit top from the FREE Paris Party Dress (affiliate link) with the knit Stevie skirt.

The Paris Party Dress was my first ever Rebecca Page pattern and the beginning of my RP obsession! I’m such a fan of quick knit pieces and have used the Paris top multiple times (like here and here)

Stevie was a fast favorite in my house too! Even the doll has one (picture evidence!). This is the Paris top in cotton lycra with lovely stretch lace trim that makes Miss 4 go a little wild. The Stevie skirt is the knee length version and made in this yummy soft drapey rayon spandex from Mily Mae with the band in the same CL as the top.

My daughter loves her Steve skirts and Paris Party Dress tops and I love how fast they come together! Being able to mix and match is the best part about separates but we’re huge fans of dresses too. This is how Stevie Goes to Paris was born!

Onto the Mash!

This is a super simple mash. All I did was lay one pattern on top of the other, lining up the waist on each and drew a continuous line (shown in pink below) from the waist down to the hem of the Stevie. I smoothed out the line a bit and, tadah: Stevie goes to Paris!

I used the same stretch lace trim to embellish the Stevie Goes to Paris. The body is a French terry and coordinating cotton lycra sleeves and neckband.

More Inspiration

Please visit all the stops on the Rebecca Page Double Duty Blog Tour for more great inspiration:

Prizes

We will be giving away 7 one-month subscriptions. Each one-month subscription prize contains:

  • Ladies XXS to 5XL Strappy Cami pattern
  • Bonus Ladies XXS to 5XL Comfy Cowl pattern
  • 1 pattern credit to use for a pattern of choice during the month of subscription
  • A further 20% discount on any other patterns (including those already on sale) during the month of subscription

For a chance to win a One-Month Subscription, please comment on the blogs each day and enter the Rafflecopter giveaway

This blog post contains affiliate links. While these links do not cost any more, I do receive a small commission for the referral.
As a Rebecca Page Brand Ambassador, I received these patterns in exchange for sewing them up and sharing my work.