Thursday, July 6, 2017

Skirting the Issue

I'm thrilled to be a part of Skirting the Issue this year. Skirting the Issue is such a wonderful cause. Simple Simon & Co and Project Run & Play are the amazing blogs behind this brilliantness. For all the information on Skirting the Issue, click over here.

I'm going to show you have to take the skirt portion of your favorite dress pattern and turn it into a separate skirt. This is such a quick and easy modifaction that you can do to pretty much any dress pattern. I'm going to be using the girl's Bluezette from Love Notions. I love this high low hem and used the ladies' version it as a skirt in the past for my teenager's homecoming dress last fall.

First, you need to measure you child to determine how long you want the finished skirt. Since most dresses have the skirt portion starting at the natural waist and most kids like to wear their bottoms at high hip, we will have to adjust the length of the skirt. For my friend's daughter, I want the front hem to be approximately 13" from the waist. We are adding a 2" tall waistband, so the skirt portion can be 12" long. Don't forget to add the hem! The amount will vary per pattern. If you pattern has a 1" hem allowance, the skirt would be 12" long in this case.

Because of the shape of my skirt pieces, I simply removed the excess length from the top of the pattern piece. Some patterns have a shorten/lengthen line you can use to adjust the length. 

After you determined how tall your skirt pieces need to be, cut your skirt out and assemble per the pattern instructions.

Now, let's make that waistband! We will be making a yoga style waistband. You will need some knit fabric that has great stretch and recovery. I prefer cotton lycra for this.

Measure your child's waist/high hip, where they will wear the skirt at. Subtract 3" from that measurement. That is how wide you need to cut your waistband. I want a 2" tall band, so double that and add 1/4" seam allowance and I'm cutting my waistband 4.5" tall. My friend's daughter has a 21" waist. So, my waistband is 18" wide. Because my fabric has great stretch and recover, I didn't add in the 1/2" for seam allowance. (1/4" for each side) If you don't want to do all this math, you can also use the knit waistband measurement from a pattern that you have that fits your child.

After you cut your waistband, sew the short ends with the right sides together.

 Then fold tube wrong sides together with the raw edges lined up.

I'm using the Bluezette pattern, which is written for a woven skirt. This style of skirt requires that I gather the upper edge of the skirt before attaching the waistband. If the dress pattern you used for your skirt piece requires you to gather the skirt before attaching to the bodice, you will have to gather your skirt before attaching to your waistband.

With the skirt inside out, slip the waistband into the skirt matching up the quarter points of the waistband and the skirt top. Pin into place with raw edges aligned.

Stretching the waistband as you go, attach the waistband to the skirt. Be careful NOT to stretch the skirt, just stretch the waistband.

And there you have it. A skirt from your favorite dress!

Note that the girls' Bluezette pattern does not have a seam down the back piece. I needed to piece the back piece to work with the scraps I was using for the project.

Seriously, how sweet is she?!?! 

She hammed it up for my camera! I may have to steal her more often. 

Now you can take all your favorite dresses and create all the skirts!! This same technique will work for women's dresses also. ;) So you can make skirts for all ages. Ladies, teens and girls. 

Monday, June 26, 2017

Sew Americana 2017

Sew Americana 2017

Wild & Wanderful is back at it again this year for Sew Americana. This is such a fun tour to follow along with! So much great inspiration for Fourth of July outfits for the entire family. Last year, I made an Americana inspired quilt for my stop on the tour. This year, I made a red, white and blue outfit for Thomas he can wear all year round. Well, not the shorts. You know what I mean.

So, this guy is seven and we are getting more and more into the "big kid" style of dress. He doesn't really go for characters or cartoons on his clothing. Which is cool. Solids and classic patterns like this red and white gingham by Riley Blake on sale at Phat Quarters are usually cheaper and easier to find.

I used Peek-a-Boo's Classic Oxford (a staple here) for a camp style shirt. I adore that touch of blue Kona cotton for the lining of the collar stand. If a boy's shirt could symbolize summer, this one would be it. 

Thomas's tank is a pattern hack that I'm currently working on. Look for it next week on the Love Notions blog! He loves these tanks and has four of them in his closet already. This light denim cotton lycra one was perfect for his Fourth of July look.

His jean shorts were an unexpected element of this look. I'm typically not a fan of denim shorts. But, I saw a pair of his dad's old jeans in my upcycle tote and the wash was just too perfect to ignore. We live in the mid-west, so it's very likely going to be 90 degrees on the Fourth, so shorts were my only option.

I used the existing hem to keep the worn look and did some random "scratches" (What Thomas calls it.) stitching in a couple of places for a distressed look. The side seam was also kept in tack. To do this, I taped the front and back pattern pieces together along the side seam, overlapping the seam allowance. Crazy quick sew! And he loves these! And honestly, I do too!

And this is Thomas's look for the Fourth. I know we will get lots of use out of these pieces both together and as separates.

Thanks for stopping by!!

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Friday, June 2, 2017

The Fighter Tee Tour Day Five

Day Five The Fighter Tee Tour

Today is the final day of The Fighter Tee tour. I hope you have enjoyed seeing what everybody has created for this great cause. My race is August 5th and that is my deadline for raising $1000 for St. Jude Children's Hospital. Because of all of you, I am nearly there!! Thank you!!

The Crafting Fiend created a shirt her daughter loves using some great dino fabric her dinosaur lover picked out.

Phat Quarters sewed up a shirt for both her son and daughter! They both look awesome!

Pattern Revolution has joined in on the fun also! Hop over to see some great shirts!

Thursday, June 1, 2017

The Fighter Tee Tour Day 4

Day 4 of The Fighter Tee Tour

Today's Fighter Tee tour stops features three more amazing bloggers. We have F&B Creations. She made her little gymnastic such a neat basic shirt any kid would love.

Jess from Gracious Threads paired her cool Fighter Tee with her new pattern, the Cache Cargos. Love these two patterns together! I can't wait to make Thomas a pair! I have gray twill waiting!

And Eleri from Sew and Tell Project made her basketball star a Fighter Tee that stands out on the court!

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

InBlue Art Gallery Fabric Tour

It's two posts in one day!

Not only is today day 3 of The Fighter Tee tour, but it's also my stop on the Art Gallery Fabrics InBlue tour. Yippee!!

It's so fun to sew for a boy. But at times, it can be a bit challenging. Especially as they get older. I try very hard to only sew things that Thomas wears in real life.

Thomas prefers solid colors and the denim fabrics in the InBlue line were perfect for him.

This guy loves vests. He recently outgrew his Schoolboy Vest, so it was definitely time for a new one. I love how it looks in the solid smooth denim Indigo Shadow. We went with a denim on denim look and paired it with some Castaway Cargos in Afternoon Sail. A Classic Polo in Art Gallery's cotton spandex knit in Graphite was the perfect shirt for this look.

I had to sneak some pattern in there so I lined his vest with Delftegels. I also gave him a fun hidden pocket!

He looks so nice in his new look!

He was still comfortable enough to play hard in this new outfit. It wasn't long before he looked like this.

Luckily, Art Gallery Fabric washes up beautifully! So it's no big deal to toss these in the washer and make them good as new again!

I always forget how wide the Art Gallery smooth denim is! So I had enough to make a denim shirt Thomas has been requesting also! Not bad at all to get a pair of shorts and a denim shirt in size 8 from a single yard of fabric!!

We paired his new Classic Oxford with another pair of Castaway Cargoes. This time in Scarlet Brick

The fabrics from Art Gallery's InBlue collection were provide to me in exchange for this post. The Scarlet Brick denim was purchased by me and in my stash.

We can't forget that today is day 3 of The Fighter Tee tour!

Thank you so much Paisley Roots, Handcrafted by RED, Ruby Rue Creations and  Free Notion for joining me today!! Please hop over to their blogs and show them some love. They created some awesome Fighter Tees and I'm so happy they joined me in this!

We have several girl versions of The Fighter Tee today! First a sweet stripe from  Free Notion.

Casey's sweet daughter got a fun new shirt that really supports the cause! Her little guy also got a new shirt! You can find them both on Ruby Rue Creations.

Paisley Roots made a pretty little tee for her daughter also! I absolutely love the floral!

Handcrafted by RED made her little guy a fun tee! His smile is so contagious!

Thank you to everybody who has helped me do this.

Monday: The Wholesome MamaMy Creative RoomWild & Wanderful

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Fighter Tee Tour Day 2

The Fighter Tee Blog Tour Day 2

I do hope you are following along on The Fighter Tee tour! I feel so honored to have so many great people join me in supporting St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. Remember 100% of the proceeds from the sales of The Fighter Tee are going towards St. Jude. 

Today we have talent of Jenn from Jenniune Life.

Super cool Lindsay from Doodle Number 5

And the fabulous Tami from Sew Sophie Lynn.

Thank you to everybody who has helped me do this.

Monday: The Wholesome MamaMy Creative RoomWild & Wanderful

Monday, May 29, 2017

The Fighter Tee Blog Tour

Introducing The Fighter Tee

It's been quiet here on the blog but not so quiet behind the scenes! A couple of weeks ago I released my first pattern, The Fighter Tee. The Fighter Tee isn't just any pattern though. 100% of the proceeds are going to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.

That's right. 100% of the proceeds.

This is my first year as a St. Jude runner. By signing up as a runner, I promised to raise $1000 for St. Jude. I wanted to combine my passion for sewing with my passion for running. And what better way than to create a pattern and donate the sales to my run.

St. Jude Children's Research Hospital is dedicated in helping children fight life threatening illnesses. No family is ever given a bill. I am doing a very small part in helping raise money for this organization. But every little bit helps!!

If you would like to give directly to St. Jude, you may do so through my runner's affiliate link. 

The Fighter Tee is a unisex pattern and available in sizes 2T-12. It's relaxed fit and really great for knits with drape, such as athletic fabrics. But it works well with your favorite cotton lycra, also! The Fighter Tee features side accent panels on the body and sleeves. This makes the main portion great for those custom panels you may have in your stash! If you or your child prefer a less relaxed shirt, you can size down a size. The Fighter Tee was drafted professionally by Tami, the designer behind Love Notions Patterns. Tami donated her time in helping me draft this pattern and I can't thank her enough for everything she did.

Thomas loves the fit of this shirt. He likes a looser fit usually.

To help spread the word about The Fighter Tee, I've called in some amazing bloggers to do a little blog tour. I can't thank these ladies and their kids enough for helping me do this.

I also had some amazing help from testers. Many of them joined me on the blog tour and I'm so excited to have them be a part of this!!

Thank you to everybody who has helped me do this.

Monday: The Wholesome Mama, My Creative Room, Wild & Wanderful

Monday, April 17, 2017

Growing Up Handmade Tour

Growing Up Handmade Tour

How to Sew for Tweens and Teens

(This post does contain affiliate links.)
Sewing for little kids can be pretty simple. Cute fabric, cute pattern, put them together and bam, cute dress on a cute kid. I know not ALL little kids are that easy, but hey, babies are. ;) As kids get older, they start to develop into their own little identity. They start to figure out what they like, and what they don't. And they get opinions on what they like to wear. When they are teens, they usually have developed a fashion sense and don't allow their mom to play dress up with them anymore.

If you are a mom who enjoys making your child's clothes, you may be fearing that a time will come when your child doesn't want handmade clothes anymore.

What if I told you that you don't have to worry about that?

This is Kate.

Kate is 12 and a seventh grader. She is the third born of four children. She is wacky and silly and takes way too much joy in annoying her younger brother. And her old sister for that matter. Kate has had her very own taste in fashion since she was a toddler. She loved twirly dresses in bright colors and lots of crazy patterns. And she loved to accessorize.

(store bought clothes! I really only made Halloween costumes back then)

This bright bold phase lasted until she was about 9. Then, she decided solids were her favorite pattern.

Let's Talk Fabrics

 I sew Kate's clothes in solid colors. Because, that is what she likes. I wouldn't go BUY her clothes she didn't like and wasn't her style, so why would I take the time to sew them? Pick fabrics similar to what your child would pick with store bought clothes. Yes, the cutesy character stuff and rainbows and unicorns and stars and stripes are all FUN. But what good is it if you child doesn't LIKE it? Buy fabrics your kids will WEAR. Now this is the fun lesson. Buy what they will WEAR not what they LIKE. There is a difference!!! Kate LIKES the cute, fun, loud custom fabrics. But, she won't WEAR them. Because they don't look like what her friend's clothes look like. We reserve fun fabrics for pajama pants. Her everyday clothes look very similar to what you will find in the store. But, they fit her better and you can't actually find them in the store. ;)

Kate's favorite colors to wear are black and gray. So, that is what I sew. Is if fun and exciting fabric? No. But, she loves what I make. And THAT is fun and exciting! Nothing beats when the kids come down and see me working on a project and they ask "Is that for me?" And the actually WANT it to be for them. That makes sewing fun for me. It's more about creating something my kids love than using fabrics I love. I can do that when I sew something for me. ;)

What patterns work for tweens and teens?

Now as for patterns for tweens. You may be shocked, but many of the patterns that you used for your daughter when she was younger work beautifully for a tween/teen as long as the sizing goes up high enough! It's ALL about the fabric when sewing for older kids!

Love Notions is a great place to find patterns that transition well for older girls. The patterns usually go up to a size 14 or 16 and the women's patterns start at an xs which is very similar to a girls 16. Tami, the designer for Love Notions has a tween daughter and she definitely keeps her daughter's style in mind when she designs. 

For Kate's viola solo/ensemble competition this year, she wore her Love Notions Girl's Prism Dress (the simple A-line version) with Love Notions Ladies' Canyon Cardigan layered on top. She looked professional and age appropriate yet was very comfortable in her clothes. The Prisma was made from double brushed poly and is so so soft!! 

What makes her basic black Prisma so great is how versitile it is! She can take that same dress and pair it with a store bought flannel for a much more casual hipster look.

Hey June also has a great line of tween/teen patterns. Kate's silly side came out when she had the opportunity to have a tiger shirt made from the Camden Raglan pattern. She let's me sneak some fun stuff in once in a while. 

My 15 year old, Jillian, got a Camden Raglan also. It's one of her favorite shirts. Jillian LOVES handmade shirts. She loves when she wears them and her friends ask where she got it from and she can answer "my basement" or "my mom".

Sew Straight and Gather has a very modern clean style of design that works beautifully for older kids. She has a new line coming out soon you will want to watch for!

For a girl who loves solid black and gray though, she does have a soft place in her heart for lace. She's sporty and active but does have a feminine side. She was the preschooler climbing the tree and playing in the mud in tutus and twirly dresses.

Peek-a-Boo Patterns are another one that has transitioned well for us. Kate is out of their children's sizes now. But she easily wore PAB children's patterns until she was 10/11 years old. Now she can wear the women's xs patterns.

The Peek-a-Boo Sugar and Spice was one of my favorite patterns to make work for a tween. It's so unexpected! But done in a simple khaki linen, with some white detail stitching along the bodice, it turned into a stunning piece very easy for a tween to wear. She wore this all the time! I was very surprised at how much use this shirt got. This is a size 12 on her at 10 years old.

The Rio Tank was another pattern that transitioned well.

Made for Mermaids has a lot of cute stuff that works well for older girls. Same with Patterns for Pirates. Many of their ladies patterns will work well for tween/teens if they have sized out of the girls sizes. But the girls sizes do go up pretty high, usually to a 14/16.

There are SO many other great designers and patterns for tweens and teens. I hope this post helped show you that can continue sewing for your kids as they grow older. My 19 year old son still requests handmade clothes. He actually asked me to sew his tux for prom this year so he could have one that actually fit him properly. Yeah, that's not happening. He's renting. But he did asked and that shows me that even teenage boys can appreciate well fitting handmade custom clothes.

For your chance to win some great patterns for your tweens enter the rafflecopter giveaway!

Thank you to our host Beri Bee Designs for this awesome tour!

To see other great bloggers sharing how they sew for their tweens. Hop on over!

Friday - April 21st Round Up and Giveway Winners

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