Sunday, March 23, 2014

The Bella is Back~ More Sizes and It's FREE for just ONE WEEK!

I will no longer be posting to Fresh Off the Bolt so please go HERE for the pattern and tutorial for this dress! Thanks so much!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Kid's Clothes Week Day Two: Thermal Owl PJs!

Good morning! I've been in denial that it's no longer summer so I've held off making warm-weather clothes for as long as I could. THEN- we got hit with barely-above-freezing temps and I realized my poor babies were unprepared to battle the cold nights. They love their summer pjs but they don't keep the kiddos warm anymore. Plus- we live in our jammies most of the week so it was an obvious choice to make pjs next for my KCW Fall challenge. 

I used the Fancy Pants leggings pattern from Titchy Threads. I highly recommend this pattern! It's easy and you can use contrasting fabrics to make them interesting and you know how I love to mix patterns and fabrics! I drafted the top myself and added a little girly detail with the ruffles at the shoulders.

K doesn't like black that's why I needed to add the ruffles!

The thermal owl fabric is from Girl Charlee and so is the black ribbed knit. 

I think she's darling in these pants! I think they'd look great on any kiddo and they're super comfy! I actually went a size up for K because I wanted them to last all winter long and if you live in the Midwest, you know our winters last longer than the calendar claims it does!

Yep-so that's what I made for Day 2! I'm out of knit fabric for boys so I'll need to get some to make some jammies for my boys too. They just don't have very many cute prints for boys- at least I haven't found many that I actually like. Any recommendations???

Thanks for stopping by my little world! Stay tuned for my KCW sewing adventures- hopefully I'll be able to eek in a few more projects before the week is over!

xoxo~ Julia

Monday, October 21, 2013

Our 2013 Halloween Costumes: Adventure Time!

Happy October, everyone! I think I've posted all of two times only this month! I feel guilty although I know I shouldn't- I try to remember that my true full-time job is motherhood, not bloggerhood. But still, I feel like I need to post something every once in awhile because I have some great people reading my blog for inspiration --err--- why do you read my ramblings anyway? =) 

So yes, it is October and time for costume-mania! My kiddos must've changed their minds at least four times before they settled on their current obsession: Adventure Time. Luckily, that show has enough characters to cover even the largest of families! I made my three kiddos into the three main cast members of the show and man, I really think I have a future in COSPLAY!!! Whaddya think??? Lol!

I'd say out of the 50 pictures I took, the above one was the only truly good one of all three together. Kids are impossible to photograph well in groups. They were all pushing and shoving and playing with the pink wig.

Speaking of pink, well...K is mighty obsessed with that color so it's no surprise why she chose Princess Bubblegum. She even helped to choose the fabric at Joann's! 

My oldest is dressed as Finn the Human. I'm kind of proud of the backpack- I flew by the seat of my pants making those. I didn't even draft a pattern because I was lazy. I'll even share my tutorial for how I stitched it up without a pattern and you'll be making your own mini-backpacks the same way! You can make them into themed backpacks as well, which pssst, I plan to do for Xmas for the kiddos in my family! They're a quick sew and then I can stuff cute little toys or pjs inside them. I seriously have so many ideas that I can barely contain them!

And lastly, some bloopers because we know there will be many of those when shooting pics of kids, right? 

 If you're interested in the patterns for any of the costumes, let me know. I hand-drafted the boys' costumes and for the princess costume, I simply used pieces from patterns I'd created before since I make so many dresses for K. Eventually, I'll get around to tutorials for each one- before next Halloween, ha! 

Thanks for stopping by today! Have a lovely Halloween!

xoxo~ Julia

I've posted this as part of KCW Fall 2013! Come see my profile here!

kid's clothes week

Friday, October 11, 2013

Free Kayla Dress Pattern in 4/5T PLUS Tutorial!

I've completely updated this post to include the tutorial instead of writing up another post and linking to it. I've made the shorts version of the Kayla pattern in a woven fabric this time, just to see how the pattern fits in material other than the knit that I used in the dress version. Oh yeah, I do also loooove this sheer cotton woven I found for cheap at Walmart as well (see below in tutorial pics.) I bought two yards of it to test patterns with since it was under $2/yard and if it happens to turn out nice- bam, new wearable outfit! =)

Because it's a sheer cotton, I plan to layer it over cable knit stockings in the fall with a cardi over the top.

So here's the link for the download.

The materials you'll need are: your fabric of choice in knit or woven, bias tape, lace trim (optional), three-four buttons, and fusible interfacing.
The finished waist size is approximately 20" using a 3/8" seam allowance (which is included in all pattern pieces).
Just an FYI: if using knit, the size is closer to a 4/5T; if using woven, non-stretch fabric, it'll be more like a 3/4T.

1. Cut out the pieces you want to use. In this case, I'm using the 3/4 sleeve and shorts in woven cotton.

2. Apply 1" width fusible interfacing to button placket on the front bodice pieces. This will help stabilize it for when the buttonholes and buttons get sewn in. Then fold the placket in half and press with hot iron.

3. The placket should overlap each other when the shoulder seams are matched up with the back bodice. Pin shoulder seams together and sew.

4. Press the shoulder seam (finish it off nicely too if you're not using knit) and this is what you should have.

5. Take a sleeve and line up the center of the sleeve with the shoulder seam. To find the center of the sleeve, I press the sleeve after I cut it on the fold so the fold line tells me where to line it up with the shoulder seam.

6. Pin all the way around the curve, making sure to line up fabric as closely as possible. Then sew carefully and slowly to follow the curve. Finish the seams if not using knit.

7. Press the seams when finished. Repeat step 6 and 7 for other sleeve. I also finished the sleeve hem here as well but I would recommend doing it after the top is sewn completely together to give it a clean finish.

8. Flip your top around so right sides are facing each other. Line up the seams in the armpits first and pin then pin down the sides and sleeves. Sew using 3/8" seam allowance.

9. Flip right side out after finishing and pressing seams and this is what you'll have! Almost done!

10. Pin your shorts right sides together and sew down the curved sides only. For the skirt option, simply cut the rectangle and sew into a tube with right sides together.

11. After finishing and pressing seams, lay the shorts flat so the front and back seams are lined up. Pin the center seam together first and then pin the rest of the curve. Sew and finish seams if needed.

12. I placed two 1/2" pleats on the front side of the shorts. Simply measure to see where the center of each leg is then pinch a 1/2" of fabric from the outside of the shorts leg inwards and pin. Sew a basting stitch over each pleat to keep them in place. 

13. Flip the shorts inside out with the front facing you. The top should be upside down with right sides out. Push top down into the shorts and pin the waist seam together.

14. You can mark where the center is on your bodice piece (both front and back) so you know where to line it up with the shorts. The seams on the shorts should line up with wherever you marked the center on your bodice.

15. Finish your seams if needed, press, then flip and almost done!

16. I added vintage lace trim to the bottom hem of my shorts. It's just so pretty, I couldn't resist. You can simply fold it in twice, press, and sew to finish the hem instead if you like.

17. Preeeettty!

18. I finished the collar with bias tape but you can also fold in twice, press and sew to finish as well.

19. Sew buttonholes and fun, colorful buttons and you're finished! I'm using large 1" buttons here so I only needed three but if using smaller buttons, you'll need at least four of them.

I love this fabric and the vintage lace together. So pretty! I can't wait to show you K's modelling pics in this outfit! They're still being edited right now but she's a doll in this one! 

Thanks for being so patient with me on this one! I eeked it in just on time because this week is midterm finals and I'm gonna be swamped all this week! 

And below is just a reminder of the skirt version! I still have yet to try out the flutter/short sleeves but I think I will save those for next spring! 

Thanks so much for stopping by today!

xoxo ~ Julia

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Pattern Preview: The Kayla Dress

Hi everyone! This week is starting out pretty darn good for me. If you read my last post, I mentioned how I had a paper due at the end of the week but guess what??? It was due today! That's a good thing though! I managed to write it up and send it in late yesterday afternoon which left my whole evening open for SEWING!

I started this dress over the weekend and had to set it aside for more important things. I know, I know- what's more important than sewing?! But yes, there were actually more important things that needed doing- like buying a new car- that just had to happen before I could sit down before my sewing machine and test my patterns. So let's dive right in!!! I'm so in love with this simple fall dress!

My daughter named this the Kayla dress and this is just the first version I've made of it in some gorgeous Girl Charlee knits. I designed three different sleeve options as well as a skirt or short option. 

I also plan on adding a peter pan collar and an optional ruffle collar for a woven version. My next sew-up is the shorts version of the Kayla with possibly the peter pan collar. There are so many combinations to this pattern- it may take longer than I had planned!

I just love lace trim! Can you tell? I use as much of my vintage lace trim as I can! It's so pretty, who can resist? 

And I also love contrasting buttons. There's something so fun, quirky, and sweet about these colored buttons.

I love sewing with knits! It's so fast and easy, I don't know why so many people are afraid to sew with it. The best thing about knits: no fraying! 

Remember, this is just the first look from my Kayla dress pattern. I'll be adding another preview on Thursday of a second look and then I will put the pattern and tutorial up over the weekend! Later on down the road, I will add two additional sizes to this as well! I've decided to make a couple versions for my nieces so everyone else gets to benefit from that, ha! Lucky you!

All right- I gotta really jet out of here- got places to go, things to do! Hope you enjoyed this little sneak peek! Please let me know what you think!!! Suggestions for the overall design? Tell me! I wanted to add pockets on the skirt or even a little one on the bodice but I like doing a simple version the first time around.

Thanks for stopping by!

xoxo ~ Julia

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Fall Sewing and Pattern-Making

Hello, hello! Yes, I'm still alive! I haven't had much time to sew lately due to a whole bunch of reasons that I'm happily putting behind me now. But I'm telling you now that I haven't been slacking- I've actually been testing out some patterns I've been wanting to make for fall in preparation for the fall Kids Clothes Week challenge. I will be releasing one pattern every week starting later this week up until KCW, which is taking place the week of October 21-27. That's THREE free patterns I've promised and I'm well on my way to accomplishing that! I've already got two designed and one is in testing!

My third pattern will be for boys- they wear clothes too, right? I've got two boys so I will be offering two sizes for that pattern. I've been wanting to make matching slim-fit cardigans in a fun knit fabric for them- what do you think? They'd be so awesome for fall photos!

As for the other two patterns, one is a dress that comes with three different sleeve options, a skirt or short bottom, and a cute ruffle collar. That will be in a size 4/5T and then the other pattern in testing right now is the ruffle waist pants (perfect for wearing with boots!) I'm making that available in a size 2/3T and 4/5T. Perhaps a 6T too if I have time to make and test it properly. I don't want to promise too much- I'm a busy woman already as it is but I love designing and sharing my work with you so I will try my darndest to get that 6T made if there's enough interest in the pattern. =)

Anyway, I also wanted to share an awesome version of my boy's reversible piped vest that Beth from Beth Being Crafty made for her little boy.

She sewed it up for a casual wedding. Doesn't it look so smart and styling without being too dressy? I love how it coordinates with her daughter's dress as well. Super nice job, Beth! Definitely hop over to her blog and check out her great post! Her kids are super darling and such wonderful models!

Well- that's it for me! I need to get back to cutting pattern pieces so I can hold to my promise of a new pattern release this week. I'm aiming for a Friday release but I also have a big paper due on Saturday for school so we will see. It may end up being a Saturday release after that big paper is finished and turned in but I do promise it will be this week! I really can't wait til you see this cute fall dress I'm putting together! And the ruffle waist pants are uber cute too! I think I may need to create a top to go with it...hmm...

Thanks for stopping by today! 

xoxo ~ Julia

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

The Rarity Tunic/Dress Free Pattern and Tutorial

Ok- first, I have to say that this was a challenge to get done and ready for posting this week. I snuck it in late at night after the kids went to bed so please forgive me if anything seems unclear. I had a hectic day and trying to make sense is a challenge when one is half-asleep already. Luckily for you, the dress/tunic is so simple to sew, you could probably make it without a tutorial, right? ;-)

Before we start the tutorial, lets share some pictures! I made a second dress for K in a graphic striped black and white jersey knit from Girl Charlee and instead of the notched neckline, I added ruffles in a mint linen fabric. 

She looks fab in black- it's too bad she doesn't particularly care for the color right now. 

And here's a new pose she came up with herself. Haha! It totally came out of nowhere and I have no idea where she saw such a thing- but it's so cute, I just had to share it!

All right- enough of K! She is darling but I know you want your pattern and tutorial, right? 

First things first: this pattern comes in combination sizes of 2/3T and 4/5T. I've used the pattern with both knit and woven fabrics and personally prefer the knit version but I do think if you want a ruffle collar or stiffer flutter sleeves, use a woven fabric for those. I attempted a knit ruffle at the neckline and it falls flat and looks odd. 

If you choose to do the notched neckline, you'll need bias tape in either woven or knit fabric. You can also use lace trim at the bottom hem, if you'd like. 

Other materials you'll need: if using woven fabric, you'll need buttons for the back bodice piece. And other than your fabric and thread, that's it!

I will do a separate tutorial later on for the woven version of this dress.

Now for the pattern: DOWNLOAD IT HERE!!!

I am providing a tutorial for the above dress version with the ruffle neckline and flutter sleeves. If you decide to use the puff sleeves, there is a similar tutorial for that here. For a notched neck line, just apply bias tape around the unfinished edges.
I think that's it- so shall we begin?

Cut out the pieces you need for your version of the Rarity tunic dress. For a notched neck line, have coordinating bias tape ready.

Skip the next couple of steps if you're doing the notched neck line.

I didn't photograph the skirt step but it's simple enough. Just fold the rectangle in half lengthwise and sew to create a tube. Sew a gathering stitch on one side and pull strings to gather it to the size of your top.

For this version, I also gathered my bodice at the front bottom hem before attaching it to the skirt. I liked the gathered effect it creates at the waist.

Flip right side out and you're done! You don't even have to finish seams if you used knit fabric- making this a quick one hour project! Isn't that awesome?! I love almost-instant gratification- especially when the results are this adorable! 

Oh yeah, you could add the lace trim to the bottom hem like I did in the first picture at the top. Sooo pretty, don't you think? But this black and white one below already had a lot going on at the neck line so I left the bottom hem alone. 

The gathered waist is super adorable too. I'm glad I decided to do that for this version instead of making a separate belt like I did for the first one. They're the same dress pattern but with two different looks- I love 2-for-1s! And both versions can be worn through the fall too if layered over leggings and long sleeves. So many possibilities! 
If you make one, please share with me! Use the email address in the right column to contact me!
Thanks so much for stopping by today- happy sewing!

xoxo~ Julia

You can find this post linked to: You Flew Tuesdays at Feather's Flights.