May 1, 2015

Gracious Threads PDF Pattern Collection

So I promised you a few days ago that I would share another PDF Pattern Collection for Summer. You ready to see it? Jessica from Gracious Threads has been super dedicated lately and has not only released a Spring Summer Collection but also is working on 2 additional patterns and an appearance in the up coming issue of One Thimble! Oh and did I mention she is about to have a baby? Well she is and she is rockin' it lately!
With the Cousu Collection we started at the bottom so this time we will start at the top with these fast, fun and amazing scrap busting headbands. Jessica has better sense than to let me name her patterns so she calls them the Sunshine Headbands.
This pattern is simple enough that my girls we able to make their own headbands, but it still was exactly what I have come to expect from a Gracious Threads pattern. It had clear easy to follow directions with visual references. You could cut out the pattern pieces or use the cutting guide that is provided and skip the ink and paper.
 We have a lot of hair in our family and so we really enjoyed the thickness of these. They stayed put and could be worn on different positions on the head so each lady had her own look!
The base of the headband is elastic enclosed in fabric rather than two fabric tails that need to be tied. This is important for me because I hate the tears that happen when I pull those tender neck hairs as I am tying a knot.
The other great thing about this pattern is that if you are not in love with the rest of the collection, other than being silly, you can still get this pattern for free if you purchase any 2 patterns from her shop. These will make great gifts too for all the ladies in your life. And with 3 different sizes it will no matter if your head is big or small, full of hair or or sprinkled with it - the pattern will still work for you.
Next is this Rainbow Tee.  It is a knit top with two different construction options. So you can keep it simple or go a bit crazy like I did and give yourself a fun little challenge. I love how Jessica used solids to create an actual rainbow for her shirt, but I did not have the colors I needed so I thought it would be fun to play with stripes.
Here is my disclaimer - do not attempt this, with stripes, after 10:30 pm. You might get a bit dizzy in the process. But if you stick it out you will be amazed at your results in the morning. This shirt is made with View B and is another scrap busting delight!
Finish it all with a simple and ultra comfy knit skirt and you are ready for a day in the sun! The Cirrus Skirt is the third and final piece in this collection. I choose to make mine without pockets for a streamlined look that can work at the park or at Church.
The back waistband is elastic and the front has an optional faux drawstring closure for a fun and sporty look! The length of the skirt falls right at the knees and there just enough material to make twirling super fun! I can't tell you how rewarding this collection is to sew. It is fast, fun, and simple! If you want to whip a few skirts or shirts out for summer this is going to be where you will want to spend your time.
Jessica is going to help you get started by giving one lucky person this collection just because you are so amazing! All you have to do is fill out the Raffelcopter Form below. Have fun and thanks for visiting us today!

Apr 28, 2015

Bow Back Beauty Blog Hop

I am so excited to share my shirts with you today. The Bow Back Beauty by Little Kiwi's Closet is such a perfect shirt for the summer! I love how sweet it is and yet there is a funky vibe that allows it to shine. It is just like my little lady, who is growing into such a beautiful young woman.

Not only can you use this pattern to create a sleeveless or short sleeve version for the summer, but you can also make a long sleeve version, a plain back & bow version, or.........

a onesie version! Is that not the cutest thing you have ever seen?! I sewed this little beauty up for Leah's new little bundle. Whoever said that baby hair bows are the best has not made one of these yet!

As if you did not already have enough options to choose from, this pattern is not only a traditional shirt but also a peplum shirt and a dress, with a straight hem line or a high-low hem line. I choose to make the short sleeve shirt with the bow back....this time. Yet I know that this is a pattern I will come back to. 

Do not let all the options overwhelm you. Take your time with the pattern pieces and it will be worth your efforts. There are multiple pieces to this pattern and almost all of them use a binding to finish the raw edges. This gives you a great opportunity to use a coordinating fabrics like Art Gallery's Adventure Springs from Bonnie Christine's Hello Bear line and this fun Aztec art knit in green. I love how the bow bow just pops off her back! If you need help keeping all the binding pieces in order check out our post here on Binding Tips & Tricks.

I love how the back bodice drapes under the bow. It is a such a fun peek a boo that is age appropriate and beautiful. Head over to Little Kiwi's Closet and pick up this pattern then head over to our SHOP and grab your favorite fabrics, because every little girl in your life is going to want one of these for those warm summer evenings in the park!

Thanks for visiting with us today! Don't forget to follow along with this Blog Hop and enter the GIVEAWAY! 

Apr 27, 2015

Binding Tips & Tricks

We have something fun to share with you in a few days, but until then I just wanted to give you a little trick that has saved my sanity while working on this project. We are going to be part of the Bow Back Beauty Blog Tour hosted by Little Kiwi's Closet. This is a great shirt and you are not going to want to miss the post about it. But creating this 'beauty' requires keeping track of a lot of binding pieces. I often have to step away from a project multiple times before it is complete. This is not because I get stuck or frustrated but rather because someone needs something and the world might possibly end if they do not get it!. With five kids running around this place it is not uncommon that as soon as I am helping one, the other is using a piece of my project for their own creations. This is exactly what happened the other day. I ran off to help one and came back to find that the binding pieces I had just cut and laid out neatly were being used as lasso by another. To prevent this from happening again I printed out the Binding Cutting Chart and pinned each of the pieces of binding to their column on the chart. 
As I continued to sew each binding piece onto the pattern pieces I simply unpinned the binding that I need and sewed it on. This way I could walk away from the project, for the most unnecessary reason that a 2 & 4 year old can come up with, and when I returned 2 minutes or 2 hours later my binding pieces were still on my table and better yet I knew which piece is which.
What tips & tricks help you keep things in order when you need to walk away? We would love to know about them so please share in the comments below. And don't forget to follow along with this Blog Hop! Thanks for visiting today.

Apr 24, 2015

Sew Straight & Gather Cousu Collection

Every now and again I fall in love with a pattern or fabric and want to make matching outfits for all my kids in 3 or 4 different prints. It is so addicting! That is exactly what happened about 10 minutes into testing patterns for Terri Olson from Sew Straight & Gather. Instantly I was in love! It is called the Cousu Collection and it is just the thing you need to brighten up your day!
Terri's patterns are professional and well written. She is clear in her wording and uses photos to help explain each step of the process. She was great to work with and has great style. I was so thrilled with the outcome of the garments that I made from her Cousu Collection. I can not say I have a favorite piece, but rather I adore each element of this collection. Lets start at the bottom and work our way up shall we.

First is the Cousu Trousers & Gauchos. die for! This is my favorite pair of girl pants that I have made yet. I love the length of the Gauchos, I love the cuff, I love the pleats. I kinda really love it all. This is a lined pant with an over-sized cuff that adds a great laid-back look. It is effortless style.
Come winter I will be making the trouser length; but for now we will stick with this below-the-knee-length perfection. (I know I am gushing but I really love it!)

Next is the Cousu Top & Dress. Again, delicious! This top is a fully lined knit top with great details in the front bodice.
 The two sets of bands create a fun fitted but baggy style top that looks great on different body types. The knit, of course is flexible and with all the new prints available in our SHOP you have no problem fining the right print.

Top it all off with the fantastic 3/4 length sleeve Cousu Coat. This coat is perfect for spring weather up here in the PNW. It is a lined coat with simple pockets and a button front.
The 3/4 length sleeves are so fun and different that you will want to make one for every girl you know, hopefully an adult version will happen one day. I choose to use a natural linen for this coat and I could not be happier with the outcome. It has a great length, a lovely weight and completely ties together the collection.

Terri has these patterns available as a collection set or individually in her shop, Sew Straight & Gather. You WANT this collection for your Spring/Summer sewing. It is going to be a staple in our house!

Apr 16, 2015

Sewing for Service: April Showers

When Jeanine from Scientific Seamstress challenged us to shower some babies with love this April, I was happy to join along.  She’s coordinating with some missionaries who are currently working & serving in Haiti.  They do a lot of work in the community, including in the local hospital where there are many parents who have literally nothing with which to wrap or clothe their newborns.
Jeanine is offering up her Poofy Pants pattern in size 0-3 months for FREE.  It’s perfect for baby gifts, your own sweet little one at home, and especially for some newborns in need. 
Of course, I had to make some for my new tiny girl (I can’t believe she’s nearly two months!).  I was thrilled to discover that the style of these pants is perfect for fitting around her fluffy cloth-diapered bum.
Because Haiti is so hot, Jeanine suggests we make the Poofy Pants out of a light weight material & also make them unlined.  She provides a tutorial for finishing the unlined pants on her blog. So, I pulled out some of my favorite vintage sheet cuts as well as another cotton print from my stash.  I used one of the vintage sheets for PJ pants for myself a while back, so now we both have matching comfy pants. This was an easy pattern & stitched up quickly.  I already made a pair for my daughter as well as a few pairs to bless some babies in Haiti.
We encourage you to help with the April Showers and make and donate some Poofy Pants.  You’ll find the free pattern as well as the information needed to send them, in the Scientific Seamstress Lab Group on Facebook.  You will mail the pants to the US mission base, who will then send them off to Haiti, so you don’t have to worry about International shipping.

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