Saturday, January 20, 2018

Flora Dress

You know that I prefer knit over woven and you know that I have taken a step back from testing, but sometimes you have to make an exception to all your rules. Today's dress is the result on such an exception. When Elegance and Elephants posted their testing call last year, I just had to apply. The color block on the front, the no-closure fit and puff sleeves made me lose all reason.

The Flora has three color block options, three sleeve lengths and is available in dress and tunic length, making the dress perfect for any season or event. Due to the low back scoop there is no zipper needed to get the dress over your daughter's head. The puff sleeves are adorable and make dressing in this no-closure dress easier (more room to get the arms in the sleeves).

I am not a 100% satisfied with my combination of fabrics for this dress. I took the main fabric from the "free for all" pile from our latest sewing weekend. The daughter of Sabrina went from a color addiction to a black and white lover and this cute dark pink flower fabric had to go. My pink lover was of course over the moon with this fabric and she was happy with any other pink addition. For me the contrast with the bodice color (Cloud 9 fabric) turned out a bit off. My daughter obviously loves the entire thing, so I do not really mind. The next one will be in one fabric, the pretty examples of the listing easily convinced me of that.


Saturday, January 13, 2018


Last October, we had the 2017 second edition of our sewing weekend and I posted my projects of that weekend on Instagram (and that picture even made itself into my Best9). In a month, we will go on the first weekend of 2018. Although, now that the kids are bigger, I can sew at home while they are awake, those sewing weekends create peak production (last time I think I put in 20 hours of just sewing in one weekend). This means that after such weekends I have several unblogged projects that sometimes seem to never reach the blog. Today's post is about the last set of clothes from February that I had not shown you yet. I sewed several pieces of underwear, and in the weeks after, I sewed some more that I also added to this post.

From the sewing weekend projects that I did show, several pieces were made from scraps remnants that where exchanged during the weekend. This ballet suit's fabric was from the same pile. The outer fabric is the most intriguing jersey that I ever saw. It has splots of thick glitter paint on it. Katrien just had a small piece left, but it was enough to squeeze a body suit out of it. I actually lined it with one of her scraps, but that is not visible of course. This picture is now almost a year old, and you know how it goes with these small kids. The suit therefore already moved out of our home (and into hers). The pattern is the Alley Cat from Lil Luxe patterns.

From my own scraps, I sewed two pieces of underwear, a size 3 and a size 4 for my son. It is the Suat boxer pattern, and I was not sure which size was best for him. Therefore, I sewed two different sizes to find out. I sewed many, many more a few weeks later. Here is that extra collection that also contains some pieces for my eldest daughter. I really like the pattern (and used it here as well), and it will definitely go with me on the next sewing edition. If you need plans to sew with smaller remnants pieces, underwear is a perfect project.

The last piece of underwear that I sewed during that sewing weekend was a bralette for myself. I used the free pattern by George and Ginger. I squeezed it out of a remnant from when I made this dress. But the bralette actually required a bit more fabric than I anticipated so I ended up with a color block on the back.I am used to wearing under wire bra's so the bra felt a bit too "sport bra"to me. The fit is nice, but I had to get used to it a bit. For sure I will take a decreased version of this with me for the next edition to make some for my eldest daughter.

Saturday, January 6, 2018

Regina times four

I already told you in my previous post, December was super busy, and blogging was the thing that had to go. Fortunatly, I did not let go of sewing (it relaxes me) and last month, I sewed four Regina's* (besides some other sewing), the newest pattern of Sofilantjes*. As you can understand from the name, a dress fit for a queen.

Seeing as I made four dresses already, it is clear that I once again adore the pattern. It has several features that I love. First, the pleated sleeve. I am a sucker for pleats (in jersey) or other 3D effects and those cute pleats on the front of the sleeves make a very cute detail. In the short term I already foresee a slightly hacked version with pleats on both sides of the sleeve. The pleats are most visible in a uni colored fabric, but they look great on a printed fabric as well. The pattern also includes a regular sleeve, in case you do not have enough fabric (which is why the giraffe version has regular sleeves).

The pattern comes with two skirts that fit the Solis/Litore/Montis. There is an all-round pleated version (the Solis skirt has a partial pleated skirt) and a gathered circle skirt. The latter one now competes with the high low skirt from the Litore over being my favorite skirt option. My girls love a good twirl and with a gathered circle skirt they can almost literately twirl their socks of. Both the giraffe and glitter dress have a pleated skirt. The pleats are best visible in a fabric that does not have much drape. That is why the giraffe dress's pleats look better than the glitter one. With drapey fabric I would advise a circle (Solis) or the double circle skirt.

The Regina has a boatlike neckline and the front and back bodice pieces are the same. This means that after cutting your bodice pieces you can still choose which print placement makes the prettiest front. The neckline is finished with a jersey band, so you no not have to find a complementing ribbing color. Another advantage of a similar front and back is that of you have regular sleeves and but the seam of the neckband at the shoulder, the dress can never be backwards on your child. The same advantage as the Silva pattern. The dress in is unlined, so if you have a girls that sweats easily, this also makes a perfect summer dress.

When I was writing this post, I realized that coincidentally all four of these fabric were bought at Textielstad and they are from four different trips 9al in 2017...). Last year, I started with administrating how much fabric went out (and sometimes in) my stash. Unfortunately, I am not that good in keeping up these kind of organized routines, so after four months I stopped. This year I do not have any special plans on how to decrease the stash, but I feel I am doing fine at the moment, I feel at least my stash is not growing. I did gift myself another Bobbinhood kit (a bigger one) and I actually plan to print fabrics, instead of buying prints. This means that the uni colored fabrics in my stash are more versatile and a smaller stash should be a logical result (right?).

Feel free to leave a comment in the language you prefer (although Google translate might have to assist me if you choose something different than English, German, Dutch or Hungarian). If you buy anything through my affiliate links (*), I get a small commission (the price stays the same for you), I am very grateful for everything that feeds my fabric addiction.

Monday, January 1, 2018

Dadirri Cardigan and Nore hack

First things first, happy new year! I hope that all the good things from last year will continue and that the bad ones will quickly only be memories. I usually do not make resolutions, but this year I have at least one. My life became very busy the last months and especially in December, I simply did not have time to blog. For this year, I will continue taking up less sewing deadlines (tests and tours) such that I have more time to freestyle. My blogging and sewing relaxes me, and I will go back to regular weekly blogging. I have several backlogged projects and today I am starting with a special one. Today, I am showing you my first clothing piece within years created from yarn, the Dadirri cardigan* from Compagnie M.

When I started this blog, sewing was not my main hobby. I had sewn a few things, but I mostly crafted with yarn. Knitting and crochet were the two things that kept me busy. Since I discovered sewing with knits (already four and a half year ago), those yarn related crafts just seemed to take so much time. But there is a huge advantage of yarn crafts, you can do them wherever you are. You can take them with you or just do them in front of the tv. Sometimes I feel like "doing nothing"in the evening and just want to watch tv, and then crocheting or knitting is perfect. Therefore, I usually have a yarn project laying around (which often do not reach the blog when finished). Through the years I have made a few blankets and toys, but not clothing.

I have often sewed with Compagnie M* patterns, I love the unique twist that Marte has in all her patterns. When I heard that she was going into knitting patterns, I was intrigued. The thing that make the Compganie M knitting patterns stand out, is that you are free to choose your own yarn and needles. For every pattern there is a special calculator that creates a pattern based on your personal gauge. You make a test square per stitch type and than you sit back and just follow schedule especially created for you.

The Dadirri *cardigan front is knitted in a coin stitch, and has regular knitted sleeves and back. The yarn that I used is recommended for needle size 4-5 (I knit rather loose, so I knitted it on 3.5). You can make the front dots very obvious by using a contrasting color, but I went for a rather subtle gray. On my version, the shoulders became a bit too wide. In the test pattern (the one I used) the shoulders were wider than in the final and I had even widened the front a bit because I knew my daughter would wear it over long sleeves. I am not bothered my the slightly wide shoulders, but in case you were, than it is important to know that this should not happen in your version.

I am a craft material horder and besides a big fabric pile, I also own quite some yarn. I am a big fan of cotton, and I bought this lovely blue yarn with the plan to once knit a cardigan. In blog and Instagram land I often envious look at all the perfectly matching knitted projects, so I always have plans. I also have the yarn in red, in that color I even once started a cardigan, but after knitting the back and a sleeve the project stagnated for a year, and I pulled it all out. I turned the pulled out yarn into this squirrel.

The biggest challenge with knitted cardigans is probably finding the perfect button. I almost never  use buttons on my sewing projects am very loving the kam snap option and so do my kids. I have a very small collection of buttons and almost all buttons are tiny. I therefore decided to try making my own buttons from Fimo clay (which I also just happen to have in my craft collection). I had no clue how much clay I would need, so in the end I ended up with about 20 buttons...

For the shoot I decided to sew a dress and I hacked the Nore for kids* into to be like option B in the Nore for women. I only had half a meter from the blue tree fabric, because I bought it so long ago (I started out with buying half a meter pieces, but now I buy at least a meter). My eldest really liked the fabric, so I squeezed a dress out of it. I had to make an extra seam in the skirt.  I even had to put the trees diagonal there (due to not having enough fabric), but I still feel it either looks intentional or does not show.

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

EZ Wrap wallet

After sewing the Bazinga back pack, I really wanted to try the EZ wrap wallet from Flossstyle. My son has been asking for long, maybe even more than a year, for a wallet. He already would have been satisfied with a simple zipper pouch, but seeing that he had to wait so long, I wanted to make him something special.

The EZ wrap wallet comes in three levels of complexity and in two widths. I made the narrower width with several options and I hacked a bit extra. The official options that I used are the transparent ID pocket, the zipper middle pocket and the wrap. I had a lot of fun combining my scraps into this wallet. Due to the card slots, the inside piece is rather long, so you need a relatively big scrap for that piece.

What I added /adjusted was that I only did the card slots on one side of the wallet, my son does not have any cards that he needs to store, so these five slots are more than enough. My son only has coin money (he will have spend his savings on Lego's before he reaches the 20 euros) so I wanted an extra zipper pocket. Instead of having a phone pocket, I created a welt pocket on the back. This way he can reach the coins without opening his wallet. Lastly, I used a snap instead of a button or magnetic closure.

My middle daughter immediately ordered another, and I was totally planning to immediately sew another, but than December madness started. I will definitely sew more but I am showing this one already because it is a perfect Christmas present as well! My son wanted to model with the wallet (he does not really like modelling so that shows how much he likes it), but in the end we decided that his best friend would model instead.

Saturday, November 25, 2017

Christmas in Michael Miller

In April, I added a lovely new badge to the right side of my blog without talking about it. Since spring I am a Sewing Portfolio's Ambassador. Sewing Portfolio's is the initiative of Candice who became fed up with the hassle of applying for testing or other contact with pattern and fabric designers. People were telling and showing the same thing over and over again and she thought it should be easier. Sewing Portfolio's therefore is a place to store all your best work in one place and besides easily sharing this info through one link, pattern and fabric designers can also actually find you without you knowing they were on the look out for someone with your profile.

Being a Sewing Portfolio's member became even more attractive when Candice decided to share the fabric goodies she received to show the world, with selected ambassadors. She is regularly searching for new sewing ambassadors, so when you start out as a member and have your portfolio up to date, make sure you check her ambassador calls. In August, I received three yard of Michael Miller Christmas fabric. The fabric arrived too late for the Christmas in July party, so now, after Thanksgiving, I thought it was high time to show you what I made! I turned the Nutcracker fabric designed by Sarah Jane into four garments, one for each of the kids. I love Michael Miller fabrics, the fabrics remain beautiful after many washes and the prints are awesome. This dress from Michael Miller fabric is still one of my most favorite makes ever and it still looks awesome after many many wears and washes.

Although three yards is a significant amount of fabric, I still had to be innovative to make it into three dresses and a shirt. I used three dress patterns by Straight grain, the Tinny, the Laure and the Ishi. For my son I made a Theo from Zonen09. The Tinny dress was the only pattern that I had not used before. Due to fabric scarcity I ended up adding a color block to the bodice of the Tinny and I winged the skirt piece based on the amount of fabric that I had. I made the pocket on the Theo a bit bigger such that the little boy from the panel could fit on it.

I of course planned to have a shoot with four kids happily watching the camera like little angles and showing of their clothes. I should have known better, I always forget that having them all watch in my direction is already almost impossible, but somehow every time I think it will be better now that they are older. During the first shoot with these garments I had more garments to shoot and this resulted in rather tiered kids so the picture that I posted on Instagram was a good indication of the  quality level of the group pictures during that shot. This is another gem from that session.

A week later I tried again and decided that I needed two type of pictures, one from the garments and one for our yearly Christmas card. At the end of that shoot, I had both. So today, I am mostly showing you pictures of the kids individually, because that was the best way to show of the clothes. Maybe next year, I can do both objections with one set of pictures, you know, when they are older... and when I gifted myself a bigger background.

During the second shoot I let my kids come up with their own idea's for the shoot. The picture of, my our middle daughter angrily standing on the chair is a picture of a conflict in their artistic process. The picture of our eldest in front of a very crowded table was the end result of that shot and somewhere in the middle I got the perfect Christmas card picture. I am not showing you that one yet, but it does not show of any of the garments well, so you are not missing out on that front. I will post the final pictures over Christmas on Instagram.

These three green fabrics are part of the Michael Miller Nutcracker act 1 collection. Besides this green color scheme there is also a blue and red one and coordinating plaid fabrics. I always have a weak spot for gold metalic paints and in all three of mine fabrics there were golden details. You can check out the entire collection here. I did not have enough fabric to make a blind join over the zippers, but to show you that I have the skills, I am showing you the join that I made on the panel.