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Friday, June 28, 2013

The Audrey Dress Plus a Pattern Giveaway!

It's no secret that Peek-a-Boo Pattern Shop is one of my favorite sources for children's pdf sewing patterns.  I sew something from here almost every week!  Amy, the shop owner and pattern designer, has become a friend that I enjoy chatting with online and through emails.  She is such a sweet, genuine person with an amazing talent for designing and writing sewing patterns for children's clothing!

When Amy asked if I wanted to review one of her patterns for the Peek-a-Boo Pattern Shop Summer Tour 2013, I did not hesitate to say yes!  I've been drooling over the Audrey Cross Over Party Dress Pattern since she first released it, so this was the perfect opportunity to give it a try!

I am an affiliate for Peek-a-Boo Pattern Shop and was provided the pattern I am reviewing free of charge.  All opinions provided in this post are 100% my own.  

Plus I had just purchased the perfect fabric for it and found some vintage trim at a yard sale that matched.  It's such a good feeling when projects like this come together so easily!

The thing that appeals most to me about the Audrey Dress Pattern is it's simplicity and vintage style.  There are few pattern pieces required for this dress--just the bodice pieces and a little slit piece for the back opening--plus a chart providing the dimensions for cutting out the skirt.  The bodice is fully lined, and all raw edges are trimmed in bias binding, giving you an opportunity to add color or other visual interest to your new dress.

Instead of using a button, I attached a pearl snap to the back tab.  

For Ella's size 5T Audrey Dress, I used about a yard and a quarter cotton quilting fabric.  I think it is from Fabric Finders, but I'm not sure because it didn't have any markings on the selvedge.  For the bias trim, I made my own continuous bias tape using the tutorial from The Sewing Loft and a fat quarter of Kona cotton.

As I said earlier, I've made a lot of Peek-a-Boo Pattern Shop patterns, but I felt like the bodice was cut a little smaller for the size 5T than other things I've made from the shop.  I talked with Amy about this, but she said that several people had commented just the opposite to her.  I'm thinking that perhaps I overlapped the front bodice pieces too much, and she even suggested that I let it out some for more room, but I had already sewn the skirt to the bodice and didn't feel like it was necessary to take apart and do over!  The dress is a great, comfortable fit on Ella, and she adores it (as you can see in the many photos she let me take)!  It think Ella is just growing and this dress design is just a little more fitted than other things I've made lately.

The armhole openings and the skirt length are perfect and required no adjustments whatsoever.  Although the pattern suggests adding a ribbon or sash around the waist as an option, I chose to sew on two long pieces of bias tape that I sewed closed. I attached them at the side seam where the bodice meets the skirt, and then simply wrap them around her bodice and tied them on the side.  I obviously could have made them a little shorter, but Ella loves playing with the long straps--perhaps a little too much.  I can't tell you how many times I had to retie those things!

You'll find this pattern a cinch to follow and sew together.  I made this one in just a couple of hours.  Ella and I love the Audrey Cross-Over Party Dress so much that I already have plans to make her another one using some adorable prints from Ann Kelle Designs.  Can't wait to show you how it turns out!

Would you like to make your own Audrey Cross-Over Party Dress, then you won't want to miss your chance to win a 10 pack of patterns from Peek-a-Boo Pattern Shop!  Just enter using the rafflecopter widget below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I know I'm on the last day of the tour, but please make sure to check out all the other amazing Peek-a-Boo Pattern Shop patterns that were reviewed by some extremely talented sewing bloggers!
Thanks for visiting and hope you'll come back again very soon!

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Wednesday, June 19, 2013

The Jasmine Romper - Take 2

Who else loves rompers?  I know I do!  And today I'm sharing with you my Jasmine Romper - Take 2 as part of Sewing Mama RaeAnna's Romper Week.  Thanks so much for stopping by today to see what I've made for my friend's first ever blog series.

I am an affiliate of Peek-a-Boo Pattern Shop, but all opinions provided in this post are 100% my own.

Yesterday I showed you how I made the Jasmine Romper - Take 1 by taking the Peek-a-Boo Pattern Shop Jasmine Dress Pattern upper half and combining it with the Gracie Romper Pattern bottom half.  I was pretty pleased with the result, but I wasn't completely sold on the look based on the fabric I had used.  So, I decided to make another one by using some Amy Butler Lark fabrics.  This time I was in love with the result!

Again, I used the bodice part of the Jasmine Dress Pattern to create the top half of the romper.  I wanted the casing for the elastic around the top and the armhole binding to be in a different fabric from the main bodice fabric, so I made some double fold binding and sewed it onto the exterior of the bodice.  If you decide to make one similar, just remember to remove the excess seam allowance when cutting out the bodice pieces.

This time for the bottom half of the romper, I used the shorts pattern from Simplicity 1903.  I've used this before when making my Ruffle Neck Romper Tutorial.  As I recommended in that tutorial, I found it best to use at least a size larger in the shorts so that the romper will be comfortable in the stride when your child bends or sits.  These shorts are a little roomier than the ones I used to make the Jasmine Romper - Take 1, and the width of the size 6 was actually a perfect match to the width of the 5T Jasmine Dress bodice. The only other thing I modified was to add an extra inch and a half to the length.

Ella fell on a rock wall and scraped her knee while we were taking pictures, so I'm sorry I don't have too many of her wearing it to share with you.  She was a trooper though and allowed me to take a couple more photos after her accident.

For the waistband elastic casing, I cut out a strip of fabric 2 inches wide by the length all the way around the romper plus one inch.  I pressed in each long raw edge 3/8" and folded the short ends in 1/2".  I then centered the strip over the seam between the bodice and the shorts and pinned it in place so that the two folded ends met along the side seam of the romper.  I then sewed the casing to the romper and then inserted through the opening a 3/4" to 1" wide piece of elastic the length of Ella's waist measurement plus 1".

I used the same black/white fabric from the Lark collection that I made the waistband casing with to make the skinny strap and shoulder bow tie.

Finally, I hemmed the bottom, sewed on a sewVery label, and was done!

Since Ella was such a good sport and even sat at the playground so her brother could play after she got hurt, I thought she deserved a yummy treat.  Having a milk shake at Sonic definitely seemed to make her feel better!

Thanks again, RaeAnna, for inviting me to be a part of your first ever Romper Week series!  This was really an excellent idea!

Be sure to check out all the other Romper Week posts as well as share your romper creations in the Flickr group and link-up party.

Plus, be sure to check out all the adorable romper patterns offered by Peek-a-Boo Pattern Shop this week for just $6!

And finally, be sure to enter to win a pdf pattern from Elegance & Elephants!
 a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thanks for stopping by, and I hope you'll decide to follow my blog with Bloglovin!

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Tuesday, June 18, 2013

The Jasmine Romper - Take 1

When my friend, RaeAnna, first asked me if I wanted to be a part of her summer Romper Week at Sewing Mama RaeAnna, I didn't hesitate to say yes!  You see, I love rompers!

Romper Week

I immediately began thinking of every romper pattern I already owned (and some that I do not) but kept coming back to a dress pattern that I had recently acquired from Peek-a-Boo Pattern Shop.

I am an affiliate for Peek-a-Boo Pattern Shop, but all opinions provided in this post are 100% my own.

The top half of the Jasmine Dress Pattern kept sticking in my head as a great top for a summer romper, so I emailed the shop owner, Amy, to see if she had ever considered making a romper version.  She said no but encouraged me to give it a try.  The challenge was on!

This pattern hack was pretty simple actually.  For the Jasmine Romper - Take 1, I used the upper half of the Jasmine Dress Pattern and the lower half of the Gracie Romper Pattern, both from Peek-a-Boo Pattern Shop.


The shorts weren't quite as wide as the top, so I simply extended the width until they matched and added about an inch to inch and a half to the length.

For the fabric, I used less than a yard of 60" wide seersucker to make Ella a size 5T.  The romper came together very quickly, and instead of making an elastic casing at the waist and legs, I just shirred two rows at the waist and one row at the leg openings to draw up the fabric.

When I finished this test version of the Jasmine Romper (hence the Take 1), I kept thinking that it really needed more color, so I whipped up a really fast (it took like 10 minutes to make) elastic belt using some fabric scraps.  Possible future belt tutorial?  Eh, we'll see!

Overall, I like the romper, but I'm just not crazy about it due to the fabric color.  Plus, the pink of the belt matches pretty good but is just not the perfect shade to match.  None of that seems to matter though because Ella has enjoyed wearing it and always receives lots of compliments when she does.

It's definitely a great little play outfit because it's perfect for all the running, jumping, climbing, and rolling around in it she did at the ball field while my son played baseball!  The shoulder tie and skinny strap both stay up while the fit of the romper is loose enough through the body for unrestricted movement for all that playing.  The shirred gathering at the leg opening is soft and not constricting and provides the modesty needed for a little girl who likes to constantly climb up walls, fences, and bleachers!

Would I make another Jasmine Romper in the future?  Well, if you haven't figured it out yet, I already have!  When you come back tomorrow for my official Romper Week post, you'll see the Jasmine Romper - Take 2 and how I made a couple of modifications to the original Jasmine Romper design.  I think you'll really like.  I know I do!

And remember to follow Romper Week all week for more romper ideas, free romper patterns, a discount code to Peek-a-Boo Pattern Shop (which carries several romper patterns), and a giveaway!

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Speaking of giveaways, I have a giveaway for two lucky winners that ends tonight!  Each winner will receive an assortment pack of 100 clothing size and care labels from Forever Threads2!  Hurry and enter the giveaway here.  The winner will be announced in my post tomorrow! 

Monday, June 17, 2013

Romper Week at Sewing Mama RaeAnna

It's finally here!  Sewing Mama RaeAnna's Romper Week Series has officially begun today!

Be sure to follow along for amazing romper inspiration from five different bloggers, including yours truly, each day this week.  Plus begin adding your romper creations to the Flickr pool and the link-up party.  

In honor of the event, Peek-a-Boo Pattern Shop (affiliate code) has all romper patterns on sale for just $6!  Just click this link and then click the Romper tab at the top of the page to see all the patterns on sale. No coupon code required!

And finally, be sure to enter the rafflecopter giveaway below for a chance to win a pdf pattern from Elegance & Elephants!  Wow!

a Rafflecopter giveaway
I'd also like to invite you to follow my blog using Bloglovin by clicking the button below.  GFC will be going away very soon, and I want to make sure we stay in touch!  You can also sign up to follow sewVery via a number of other social media outlets as well as email by clicking the links in the side bar.

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Although I am officially participating in the Romper Week tour on Wednesday, I have a romper outfit to share with you tomorrow, so be sure to stop back by!

And one final note, I have a giveaway for an assortment pack of 100 clothing size and care labels from Forever Threads2 that ends tomorrow (Tuesday) night.  Be sure to enter!

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Girl's Halter Top Sundress Tutorial

I'm excited to be sharing my Girl's Halter Top Sundress Tutorial with you today!  

My friend, Melissa from Melly Sews and Blank Slate Patterns (affiliate link), is hosting her ever popular series of 30 Days of Sundresses, and I get to play this year!

I had no trouble deciding exactly what sundress I wanted to make for this series.  In fact, I've been wanting to make this halter sundress since earlier this summer when I participated in Elegance & Elephants Knock-it-Off Series.  You see, my Girl's Halter Top Sundress is my version of the Halter  Dress from Kelly's Kids, but I made it for a fraction of the cost!

Halter Dress from Kelly's Kids
For my Girl's Halter Top Sundress Tutorial, you can make a size 5T version using the measurements and details I have provided.  However, you could easily make one in any size if you have a peasant top or pillowcase dress pattern in your child's size plus this circle skirt tutorial from Made.  

Here we go!

Download the Armhole Cutout Pattern Piece (affiliate link).  Fold the Front Bodice piece so it is now 15" x 9" and align the armhole cutout pattern piece straight edges with the open edges of the bodice (not on the fold).  Trim away these pieces of fabric to form the armhole openings for the halter top.

Next, finish the Tie by following the directions in the picture below, then complete the Back Bodice as described.

Before you press and sew the casing for the Tie on the Front Bodice, either hem the armhole openings with a 1/4" hem or trim the opening with bias tape.  I did the latter.  I cut strips of fabric 2" wide x 12" long for each side and pressed to make double fold bias.  I then sewed each bias strip onto the armhole opening to encase the raw edge.  Trim off any excess length of bias before proceeding.

Once you've finished the armhole openings, then create the casing for the Tie by following the instructions below.

To create the skirt of the Girl's Halter Top Sundress for a size 5T, I used one yard of fabric.  First, fold the fabric so the selvedges are lined up.  Next, fold the yard of fabric in half so the length is now 18" long x the width of the fabric.  You'll have a fold on the left and at the bottom while the top and right side are open.  Now trim the excess fabric from across the top so you create an 18" x 18" square.  Take your ruler and mark a radius of 18" from the folded corner of your box.  Alternatively, rig a marking pen or pencil to a piece of string and mark the 18" radius by firmly holding the string at the folded corner while marking the fabric from the bottom right edge up and to the left to meet the top left corner of the fabric square.  Trim along this line.

Using either method above, mark and cut out the fabric for the skirt top as instructed below.

If you choose to make a size other than the 5T, you'll need to determine the radius of the circle to cut out for the waist opening.  To do that, wait until you've completely assembled the bodice, then measure the length of the front plus the back bodice at the bottom (this will be circumference).  Take that number and divide it by 6.28 (which is 2 x Pi).  The resulting number will be the radius of the small circle to cut out for the waist.

Now all that remains is to run the Tie through the Bodice casing and hem the skirt.  I am not fond of pressing curved hems, so I opted to used a package of narrow double fold bias tape.  It is very important to calculate the yardage of bias tape you'll need before you begin.  For the 5T version like I made, approximately 113 inches or 3.14 yards of bias tape are needed.

And there you have it!  A lovely Girl's Halter Top Sundress just perfect for twirling in the summer sun!

Ella loves wearing this dress, and I think it looks so feminine and sophisticated on her!  She looks ready for Sunday brunch!

Thanks for stopping by today, and I hope you'll decide to come back again.  I'd love to have you follow along through Bloglovin' (just click the button below) or any of the other social media links shown at the top right of the blog page.  Also, be sure to check out my giveaway and a special coupon offer for clothing size and care labels.  Giveaway ends at midnight CST on June 18th.

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And for more great, free sundress tutorials, follow along with the 30 Days of Sundresses Series at Melly Sews!  Thanks again, Melissa, for inviting me!

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