Rita Dress!

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One of my favorite parts about Project Run & Play is watching it grow as designers compete, and their patterns are added to the shop. Did you know that all the patterns in the PR&P shop were used in a season of PR&P? You can make your own designs, if you were inspired by a certain designer!

To celebrate all these new releases in the shop, I chose to sew up the Rita (nightgown) dress. Yes, that’s in parentheses, because, even though it was designed as a nightgown, it’s the perfect day/play dress!

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I love the amount of ease in it. In a world of perfectly fitting patterns that are conformed to every individual nuance of our bodies, it’s sometimes nice to sew up something to easy and breezy. And she’s wearing it as I type, tonight. After it’s been worn and washed, and worn again.

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There are a bunch of new patterns being added to the shop right now. And better yet, there’s a sale! 聽What would a pattern release be without a sale? 聽Here are the details:

Use the code newpatterns20 for 20% off your entire purchase in the聽Project Run & Play shop!If you buy 3 or more patterns, use the code newpatterns25 for 25% off your entire purchase
ALMOST EVEN BETTER NEWS is that I get to give away a pattern to one of you! The winner will be able to choose any they want from Project Run & Play, and the store is stocked!
To enter, leave me a comment here with your favorite thing to sew for summer! I’ll choose a winner on Sunday afternoon.
Here’s the rest of the blog tour line-up, you’ll want to check it out!
New pattern 6-19 Graphic

Sew Americana 2019

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I’m a sucker for holidays. I love days when we can make things a little more special, and the 4th of July is one of my favorites! Maybe because it combines one of my favorite color combos, blue and red, maybe because it means fun in the sun, with family and friends, and cooking out, and sparklers, and popsicles, or maybe just because i love my country! USA!

Sew Americana 2019 Logo

I am so excited to be on the Sew Americana blog tour, hosted by the effervescent Katy McKinley of Wild+Wanderful. She is a maker, and you will want to check out her blog, and website to see what you need. You will find something!

The other amazing Katy, Katy Kemper, from Sly Fox offered up 2 yards of fabric for the tour, and after scanning her Americana section online, I jumped at the chance! Since I decided to go overboard and sew for everyone, I grabbed a couple more yards so I could sew Sly Fox exclusively 馃檪

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So, now we sew. I made up a few of my favorite patterns. I’ve made each of these patterns before today, so it was fun to sew up some tried and true patterns that I knew would work for my kids. I’ll start at the top, and work my way down 馃檪

My oldest is in this gorgeous rayon challis print, in a Sorrento dress. This pattern is from Little Lizard King, and is quickly working it’s way to the top of my most sewn list. It helps that both of my girls love the style. This one is modified in a couple of small ways. I was working with a little less fabric than called for, so I slimmed the skirt, and added side slits on both sides, for style, and walking ease. I used the width of fabric, instead of the width it was designed to be. But I think it helps the pattern “grow up” a little, and is perfect for my tween. I added a little lace trip on the bodice for another bit of fun.

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My younger daughter is wearing the Rosie top from See Kate Sew. I love this one, and let me tell you why! First, the pattern will print on only 6 pages, even for the biggest size. It’s a dolman sleeve (QUICK!) The neckline is hemmed (QUICK!) and the hi-low design is just one I love! This print is what started it all. It comes in a couple other colorways, too, but the shades of red, white, and blue in this one were perfect for the theme.

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My boys got to match. In hindsight, I wish I’d done something a little different on each, for them, but they don’t mind! This is the Sawyer shirt pattern from Annelaine. It has a literal TON of options, but I love the hooded, color-blocked tank option this summer. It’s in the Tobasco jersey, and I love the muted tone, and the light weight of the fabric!

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The baby is wearing an Andover shirt from Little Lizard King, in double brushed poly, and some Chicka Chicka Bum Bum shorts from Peek-a-boo patterns. I took them to the fountains after photos, not planning on him getting wet, but turns out, that’s all he wanted to do, and so this is what he wore, diaper and all!

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These were a lot of fun to sew, and my kids have worn them over and over already! I’m all set for the 4th! That doesn’t mean i won’t be sewing up some more red, white, and blue in the next week, but at least round 1 is done! 馃槈

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I hope you all will check out the other amazing posts on this tour. It’s almost over, so you have lots to go back and look at! Here’s the line-up:


Monday, June 24:
Wild & WanderfulThe Petite SewistThat’s-Sew-KariStitched by JennieMarvelous Auntie M

Tuesday, June 25:
Petite Stitcheryauschick sewsSew Simple HomeSewing NoviceStriped Swallow Designs

Wednesday, June 26:
(Swimming in a) Sea of EstrogenThe Eli Monster5 out of 4 PatternsbigflynotionsStitching and Making

Thursday, June 27:
Middle River StudioIt’s LieselCrafty Curly CoutureSewing with DKitty Makes It

Friday, June 28:
Boo + LuSequoialynn SewsSeams Sew LoMade By JaimeSewSophieLynn

 

Rejects-Refashioned

Shopping at Goodwill is one of my favorite things. Mostly because I love finding things for super low prices, compared to buying new, but it’s also fun to get to choose something you wouldn’t find in stores today because the styles have moved on, and you can really curate your style without the confines of current trends. It’s just fun to go, and see what you will find!

I usually go, looking for things in my kids’ or my size, so I can wear it off the rack, but sometimes I grab a dress, or something that I love the fabric on, just so I can sew it into something new. I did that just last month when I wanted to find something specifically to upcycle for Candice’s second annual Upcycling Challenge!

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As a Sewing Portfolios Diamond Ambassador, I had some gorgeous Windham Fabrics pieces to work with, and went in, without having a picture in mind of what I wanted to create, but knew I wanted some colors, textures, and/or patterns that worked with my fabrics. I had three prints from Windham, so I had to be strategic about choosing something to work with that would be able to contribute to the outfit, and not clash.

I will admit that I love the look of mixing prints, but I’m not always up for the task, and often revert to solids, or all one print for a look. Heres my tips for deciding which prints you can put together:

  1. Vary the scale.
  2. Vary the type of design.
  3. Vary the texture.
  4. Choose colors that comes from the same family, or are complimentary.

Fabric collections are designed to include options such as these, so it’s easy to make things look great together, but if you’re working from your stash, using something vintage, or old clothes, like I was, these tips can help!

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I had these three prints from the Penelope Collection from Windham Fabrics, and you can see I had some variety within my criteria already. There is a floral, and two geometric prints, even though the scattered dot is geometric, it’s also slightly abstract, and a variety of scales. At Goodwill, I found two dresses that I thought worked well, first, the coral lace overlay dress, which added a textured solid, and the windowpane plaid shirt dress, which added another geometric, but the colors were simple.

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With five different fabrics to work with, I decided to create a mini collection of two outfits for my girls. I actually did not deconstruct the pieces very much, and used the existing structure for my creations.

Here’s details on each piece:

The green shirt dress got shortened into a top for my daughter, and brought in a tiny bit so it wasn’t as voluminous on her frame. I folded the dress so the side seams were touching, and it was lying flat on my cutting mat, then i freely cut it to the proper length, slightly following the shirttail hem. That was a simple correction, but removing length made this women’s size dress a wearable piece for her. It’s paired with RTW shorts that she already owned.

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The coral dress turned into some lace overlay shorts for my younger daughter. The dress was lined, and I just cut and sewed the lining and lace as one piece for these. I wanted to keep the lace hem of the dress as the hem of the shorts, so I placed the pattern on the bottom edge of the dress, so I could keep it! I also didn’t want a side seam for the look I was going for, so instead of finding a new pattern that I liked, I put my pattern pieces next to each other, and cut it as one. These are the Lexi and Lou joggers from Made for Mermaids.IMG_20190514_074633

Trying to decide how to use the WIndham fabrics was a challenge. A good challenge. My girls and I had so many ideas, and we loved them all. I ended up choosing the plaid to create a top for my daughter. I love a plaid circle skirt, so I made the Green Street top from Lil Luxe Collection, and added a handkerchief hem circle skirt to it.

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I had been wanting to make bags for my girls, and when I went searching, I found a pattern for a crossbody purse that I loved, but it was a pattern designed to be used for charity. The Sew Powerful Purse Project offers a free pattern to seamstresses to sew and send聽to girls in Zambia, to combat extreme poverty by provide re-usable feminine hygiene supplies and health training. This enables them to attend school all month and improve their academic performance. I really felt passionate about this project, and immediately knew I wanted to use this pattern to sew, so spread awareness about this project. Yes, I looked, and they don’t mind if you sew a purse to keep, so I felt comfortable making these for my girls, and also making some to send!

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After these outfits were created, I wanted to make some purses to send, so I used some of the Windham fabric, some of the pieces left from my upcycled garment, and an shirt of my husband’s that he was ready to pass on, and created three purses that I will be sending to Sew Powerful. They turned out even cuter with all the mixed fabrics!

They take hardly any time, it’s even faster if you batch sew, and they don’t take much fabric either! If you’re looking for a small way to give back, I would encourage you to sew a purse or a few, to donate! When I made them, I just popped the video tutorial on my phone right next to the sewing machine, and paused it whenever I needed to finish a step. So easy.

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They have also recently partnered with Baby Lock, and I’m excited to see where this partnership can take them. It felt especially appropriate, because Baby Lock is one of the sponsers of the Upcycling Challenge, and you will want to get in on it!

I hope you’ve read this far, because the details are coming next!

This year, things are a little different. You can read all the details here. The main thing I want to note is that you will want to scroll to the bottom of the page, and subscribe now, because there are only 4 spots left to be eligible to win the GRAND prize, and those spots will be given to 4 random subscribers! You can still participate, and win other prizes, but go get yourself in the drawing for the MAIN PRIZES!

An extra detail you will not want to miss, is that there are 2 spots open to join the SP Diamond Ambassador team! To enter, you must be a member of sewingportfolios.com (it’s free!) and use the hashtag #CAUpcyclingChallengeSPM聽on Instagram when you sew and share an upcycled make during the duration of the contest. Your instagram must be set to public.

I hope you loved my projects, and will consider sewing for Sew Powerful, maybe you could even upcycle something for your purses, and please join in Candice Ayala’s Upcycling Challenge. It is the most fun, it’s a great way to take something from trash to treasure, and there’s prizes to be won.

I can’t wait to follow your upcycling journeys!

 

Sister pictures are my favorite. They have such a close relationship, and being able to capture that is one of the best parts of sewing and photographing to share. 鉂

I recently was included on the Fabric Fairy promo team, and this is

Monochrome

When your daughter’s eyes match her dress which matches the wall. My monochrome entry into the current season of Project Run and Play was her idea.

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How I ended up with three kids with bright blue eyes amazes me, and enthralls me.

This blue is 100% cotton interlock I picked up from the Fabric Fairy, and it was perfect to make into her favorite dress pattern.

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I’ve probably made the Waterfall dress from Chalk and Notch more times than any other pattern. And it’s her most worn. She asked me for a rainbow of solid colors of these, and this was the first up.

These are some quick snaps in our backyards after getting home from a “real” photoshoot, so her dress is wrinkled form the seatbelt in the car, but this fit the monochrome theme best. 鉂

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For beautiful eyes, look for the good in others; for beautiful lips, speak only words of kindness; and for poise, walk with the knowledge that you are never alone.

(Audrey Hepburn)

Jalie 2019!

I love the genius way that Jalie releases all their patterns for the year in one fell swoop, because it’s like getting 12 Christmas presents under the tree, and unwrapping them all at the same time!

At the same time, it also means that I have to wait patiently for Jalie Christmas all year, but it’s absolutely worth it!

I chose three of their new patterns to sew up, and I’m going to share them all in one post!

I wanted to remind you about the wishlist feature on the Jalie website. If you log in when you’re shopping, than you can jut click the little heart that pops up when you hover your mouse over a pattern, and it will be added to your wishlist. This makes it really handy to always have a second and third pattern to add to your cart whenever you’re shopping, so you can take advantage of the discount when you buy 3 or more patterns!

I’ll share them in the order I sewed them, and first up is Kate. Now you might go check out the listing to see what can actually be done with this pattern, because I made a basic black version, but it’s what my daughter needed for her ballet recital, and I love the extra subtle detail the seaming on the front and back bodice adds. The pattern doesn’t come with an elbow length sleeve, but I cut the sleeve piece on the lengthen/shorten line, and it came out like this!

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Jalie has perfect fit every time. I graded between sizes for her chest, waist, hips, and height, and it stays in place perfectly! I used black cotton Lycra from Raspberry Creek Fabrics for this one.

Next I sewed Michelle. This pattern includes a tank blouse, and dress, but since my daughter is still on her no-dress kick, I made the top for her, and she wore it for days! This is a simple v-neck pull over woven tank. I love how easy it is to whip up, and how easy it is to wear. Everything hangs perfectly without constant adjusting. Made in rayon, it will be so cool for summer! This rayon challis is from Raspberry Creek Fabrics.

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My third make was the cool color blocked Alice top! I love the triangle shape that’s created, and it would look just as cool in all one fabric, with just a seam detail!

This one I was able to get made out of some really old scraps of rayon and polyester. The red is a rayon that I picked up from the flat fold table at Hancock, when they were still around. I had used it to make a dress for a friend’s little girl, back in my earlier days of sewing. Before I really knew how to work with rayon, and before I had a serger. I am glad I saved the scrap, because it was perfect for this animal print poly from JoAnn that I had left over from a shirt I made myself!

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I did not do the optional button closure in the back, and it goes over her head just fine!

Now go make your wishlist, and buy at least three to get started! All of these were quick to put together, and have the highest quality you know you can expect from Jalie 鉂

#JalieKate #JalieMichelle #JalieAlice #MaVieEnJalie #JalieLife

Sorrento

 

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I’m back again, twice in a row, with another Michael Miller Fabrics creation! This collaboration between Sewing Portfolios, and MMF has been so fun, and I’m absolutely in love with this creation from the Paradise Dreams collection!

The Sorrento from Little Lizard King was an instant classic. I bought it at release, and sewed it up almost as quickly. That almost never happens! And now I’m sewing it again! I absolutely love the design.

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A good circle skirt is my favorite. A gathered circle skirt is even better, because there’s no such thing as too much twirl. The elastic waist gives this circle skirt a little bit of extra gather, and it’s perfect!

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I guess these projects have a way of making me want to try something new, so I used the bias tape hemming method on this skirt. I don’t mind hemming a circle skirt, they go pretty easily, if you ease it in place all the way around, and I zip through them without any thought. But I love the extra dimension that’s added with a bias tape hem, and so I ordered a little bit of the yellow coordinate from this collection to make some bias tape to hem with.

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I will say that it is an extra step or two than just hemming it, and I will probably keep hemming like normal for most projects. But I really love the look of this, and am glad to have this technique in my wheelhouse.

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If you haven’t yet created your profile on Sewing Portfolios, go do it now! It’s a completely free way to open up the chance to collaborate or be hired by businesses in the sewing industry who are looking for people like you!