Mama Adelyn @ Sly Fox Fabric Sew-Along

Mama Adelyn Tunic 5

 

The Mama Adelyn Tunic & Dress will be on sale (25% off!) for those participating in the Sly Fox Fabrics SewAlong, which begins Monday, 11/6.

 

Participants will receive both fabric and pattern discounts and will be eligible to win fantastic prizes throughout the sewalong!

 

If you missed the Mama Adelyn during release or need the extra push to get more holiday or fall/winter clothing made, come join us! It’ll be sure to be a blast within the sewing community!

The Mama Adelyn is a full-coverage tunic (leggings allowed!) and also comes in dress length:

Mama Adelyn Point Dress Blue Floral 5

 

I’m completely guilty of wearing dresses all too often just to avoid grabbing multiple garments (i.e. top AND bottom)–sigh. I still usually throw tights or leggings underneath just to be warm in our colder Michigan fall/winters, but dresses are definitely on my go-to capsule list.

DSC_0525 And remember, there’s a baby and girls’ version too!

So head on over to the Sly Fox Fabrics SewAlong group for all of the details and discounts! I can’t wait to see your version(s)!

 

 

 

 

 

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Beginner Sewing Series with New Horizons Designs: 10 Tools for the Seamstress Tool Kit

Hey there, and welcome to another edition of the Beginner Sewing Series from New Horizons Designs! Today I’d like to chat about some of our much-used tools. To ensure that I didn’t go overboard (baby registry, anyone??), I went straight to my sewing table and picked up the items that I use each day as I sit down to sew.

Let’s get started!!…

  1. Cutting Tools

NH Tutorial 1

For a seamstress, a good pair of fabric scissors is a must. I don’t have any fancy pairs, but I make sure that mine are sharp and are only used for fabric. I grabbed all three of these with big (50-60% off) coupons from Jo-Anns. So, what are the differences?

  • The orange pair is my main pair for cutting out my garment pieces.
  • The circular blade is a rotary cutter. It is extremely sharp and can be used to also cut out patterns; it curves and produces a nice straight edge. I like how close to my pattern pieces the rotary cutter can get. But since I don’t always keep my cutting mat handy (eep–I forgot a tool–you’ll need that too!), I generally grab my orange Fiskars.
  • The small pink pair is what I use for detail like cutting threads and make precise cuts. When I first started sewing, I wasn’t happy that I could still see threads hanging off of garments a bit. It was hard for me to snip them close to the last stitch; this little guy was the key!

2. Thread

NH Tutorial 2

Because I go through so much thread, I generally just buy cones; but whether you grab spools or cones, you’ll need thread! 100% Polyester thread is suitable for most sewing projects, especially knit garments. It’s durable, and you can find thread both in most craft stores and online.

3.  Chopstick

NH Tutorial 3

I know, I know. You’re thinking, “There’s something here that doesn’t belong.” But I assure you–I went to my sewing space, and there it was! And I actually use it for loads of projects (not eating-related). Chopsticks are excellent for poking corners of lined garments and other projects (blankets etc.).

4. Basic Needles

NH Tutorial 4

Where would we be without our needles? When sewing your project, you’ll want to first consider your fabric. Woven is typically a non-stretch fabric, and Knit typically has stretch. Each fabric, though, will differ in both weight (i.e. how thick the fabric is or how much it weighs) and how stretchy the fabric is. If you are sewing a non-stretch woven fabric, you can use regular universal needles, and you’ll have to find what “size” of needle based on the thickness of your fabric. We’d use a larger needle for leather, for example, and a smaller needle for lightweight curtains.

In general, the blue size (90/14) works for most of my projects. The pack of needles shown here are called ball-point needles. Unlike universal needles, these are made for knits (stretch) and have a more rounded/ball tip. If you are sewing knits, you will need ball-point needles.

Although you can get these at most shops, my go-to place to order needles is Singer Online. The employees are great to work with, and the shipping is FREE on all orders (umm…yes please!).

5. Double Needle

NH Tutorial 9

If you don’t have a coverstitch machine, a double needle is a great tool. If you look at the bottom hem (or sleeve hem) of the clothes you have on, you will likely see two rows of stitches). These rows are intertwined on the backside of the garment, allowing it to stretch. Double needles are inexpensive and help hemlines look professional while being quite sturdy.

I bought a few named-brand double needles from the face-to-face large craft stores, and I had several break quickly after the first use. So I ventured out and found these ones, and I’ve had very good luck with them. My stitches don’t skip (unless my machine needs a little coconut oil), and I have consistent hemlines. Many complain about hemming brushed poly with a double needle, and I use these ones daily on brushed poly. They do, though, ship from overseas–so you have to be willing to wait.

There are several online videos about how to use a double needle. You really just thread it like your regular needle, using one extra spool of thread. Or in my case, I use a bobbin of thread along with my cone to thread my needle. This brings me to the next tool…

6. Bobbins

NH Tutorial 5

I should probably buy stock in bobbins  I started with a few…and then bought 20 thinking that I was stocked for life…and then 20 more… I love bobbins because it makes stitching the double-needle hem very easy. I take my spool color, fill a bobbin with it, and viola!–I have my thread ready for my hem or topstitching (bobbin + spool). I usually use the same color for my bobbin that creates the stitches beneath, as well but if it’s different and a neutral, sometimes I leave it. But I’ll advise you to be consistent with all three colors 

I also order my bobbins through Singer Online (linked in #4). Their crew was extremely helpful when I was trying to figure out a bobbin issue. Many of the clear bobbins, sold a Singer in the main craft stores had square openings on the bobbin rather than circular. My thread started becoming a crazy, tangled mess, and I couldn’t figure out why. I ordered the “real Singer” (imprinted with Singer) with circular openings, and the issue was resolved immediately. Oh…and they were the same cost as the others–phew!

7. Seam Ripper

NH Tutorial 6

The avid seamstresses reading this will be breathing a big sigh of relief… “Thank God she didn’t forget the seam ripper!!” It’s true…this baby will become your friend. If you accidentally stitch where you shouldn’t, you use this tool to “erase” the dreaded error.

You’ll use your seam ripper with the ball part up, and you’ll guide your stitch to the center curve, which is the sharpest part of the seam ripper.

8. Glue Stick

NH Tutorial 7

I should have included regular scissors in my scissor photo…but never should paper scissors and fabric scissors be together  Paper scissors and glue sticks (or tape) will come in handy when assembling your PDF patterns. This is part of the sewing process that I wish would magically just do itself, but glue sticks does make the job much easier!

Another way I use glue sticks often is for pocket placement or other item that is hard to pin to my fabric accurately. There are actual glue sticks that are fabric safe, but I haven’t had any issues using my regular ole gluesticks. I simply swipe a small amount on the corners of my pocket, press to my garment where it should be, and stitching is much easier!

9. Pins and Clips

NH Tutorial 8

Many seamstresses have strong opinions about whether they like clips or pins better for their projects; although I like them both for different projects, pins are my go-to. Either way, these tools help assure accuracy when we’re sewing. We first pin the shoulder seams of our garment or pin down the sides of a dress or the sides of a legging, making sure that they evenly meet at both top and bottom. We pin our neckbands to the neck opening. We use these beloved tools daily! In fact, maybe I should print the picture above and frame it near my sewing space; those little guys deserve it!

10. Iron (preferably with steam)

NH Tutorial 10

You’ll of course need your ironing board too, but keep an iron right next to your sewing machine. This will become your best friend after each row of stitches. It might seam like a hassle to jump up and press everything nicely before continuing to the next step–but take it from me (who learned the hard way)–it’s a must!…and so worth it!

  • Have a bunched or wavy neckband? Steam and press that baby!
  • Have a bottom band of a sweatshirt that went on tight and created some puckers? Steam and press that baby!
  • Have a sleeve opening (armscye) that isn’t lying flat? Steam and press that baby!

An iron is a magical tool.

That wraps up our 10 must-have tools! Thanks so much for hanging out with me today to learn about some of these great tools. Happy shopping as you gather your supplies, and be sure to reach out to the New Horizons team with your tool questions; we have a great crowd that can surely help. And be sure to check out the rest of the Beginners’ Series posts on the New Horizons Designs Blog.

Happy tool hunting!

 

 

Adelyn Point Dress + A Sneak At The Mama Adelyn Coming Soon!

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The girls’ Adelyn Point Dress has quickly become my girls’ favorite dress and tunic–the one they ask to wear daily and choose for school pictures. I’m still in awe that I needed to sew a size 6 length for this gal; she’s growing up too quickly!

 

 

 

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That point is one of my favorite features.

In fact, after sewing my first Adelyn, I knew this would be an essential dress in my closet as well…so the Mama Adelyn Tunic & Dress was born! That’s right, I dove into the designing world [insert happy dance/exhausted dance/elated dance here].

That’s right….Mama/Me bundle is coming soon! (like…the beginning of the week!)

See it back there? Are you ask excited as I am?

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…okay, let’s get a little closer…

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…and closer yet…

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I used Art Gallery Fabrics’ Floret Honeydew by Dana Willard and Willow Blooms Spices by Pat Bravo because I love how beautiful they look together.

Be sure to head over to the Petite Stitchery & Co. Facebook group for a chance to win the Mama Adelyn before it releases and for all of the details on the upcoming Mama/Me bundle! And while you wait, you can go swoon over (or buy!) the girls’ Adelyn pattern and get started on your creations!

Be sure to use hashtag #PSAdeline for all of the girls’ creations and #PSMamaAdeline for the mama version. We don’t want to miss a thing!

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Back to School Blog Tour: Kinder Style

Welcome to Day 1 of the Lulu & Celeste and Sprouting JuJube back-to-school blog tour! I’m grateful to be part of the tour and have chosen some wonderful shops to highlight as part of our preschool and kindergarten wardrobe gear-up!

All designers mentioned in this post donated my choice of patterns for this feature, so a big round of thanks goes to them! Now, let’s check out some of this Kinder (and Pre-Kinder) fashion!

Phat Quarters: Willow

When I selected my patterns, I wanted to highlight both a knit pattern and woven. “Willow” from Gemia of Phat Quarters was my woven of choice. The pattern might not yet appear on her website, but she is working to get them up soon (previously of Petite Stitchery). This gorgeous boho-styled top was just calling for chambray, so I decided to use my daughter’s two favorite colors: green and blue.

Wren Willow Top

I modified the front of the top to exclude the tie. It’s actually one of the most darling features of the top, but my daughter is sometimes picky about ties. So I slightly widened the neckline to ensure it’d fit over her head. In the end, I could have likely left it as-is because she has plenty of room. For the front of the top, I chose “Cool Foliage” chambray by Art Gallery Fabrics.

Wren Willow Top 4

The most striking feature of the Willow is the curved back yoke. I chose soft hand-dyed Shibori fabric from Seamingly Smitten as a modern, stylish accent. This style perfectly compliments my daughter’s free, explorative personality.

Jalie: Drop Pocket Cardigan

Jali Floral Cardigan Brielle 2

One of the most-used garments in our fall/winter wardrobe are cardigans. It helps with that transition between fall and spring, especially in Michigan. I throw a tank or tee under, and the cardigan is the perfect top layer. When I saw the gorgeous low pockets with the Jalie, the Drop Pocket Cardigan was my pattern of choice; and bonus that Jalie patterns go from girls to women’s! That means mama gets a cardi for bus/school runs.

I used soft French Terry for this piece, floral from Pretty Posh Prints for the main outer, and solid burgundy from Raspberry Creek Fabrics for the pocket accent. The cardigan is made by using double front pieces and folding them back to form a pocket; I loved the construction idea and end appearance. This is one of our favorite cardigans to-date.

Phat Quarters: School Bus Fabric
Sew By Pattern Pieces: Sunshine Tunic

school bus sunshine tunic 9

As part of the back-to-school tour, I was eager to use my amazing school bus knit fabric from Phat Quarters. My girls were gaga over it from the moment they saw it.

And although Sew By Pattern Pieces isn’t an official sponsor of the tour, I knew the Sunshine Tunic would be the perfect pattern to use to make this a staple in her Kinder closet. The pattern released only recently, and we have 3 of these tunics already in the closet. It has a beautiful hi-low, fantastic fit through the arms and bodice, and on-point neckline. And it also comes with color-blocking pieces to actually make the shirt look like a sunshine if desired. I might need to do that for my other daughter with the rest of the school bus fabric and mustard stripes!

School bus sunshine tunic 7  school bus sunshine tunic 8

I hope you enjoyed a peek into just a TINY bit of my back-to-school sewing. There is a great number of seamstresses taking part in the tour, so be sure to make your way through the list below throughout the week!

Happy new school year!!

TOUR SCHEDULE

Monday, September 25, 2017

Host: Sprouting JubeJube

Sewing by Ti * mahlicadesigns * Momma You Can Make It * Kutti Couture * MoonStar – Wondermirakel * Call Ajaire

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Host: Lulu & Celeste

Sew and Tell Project * From-a-Box * Ronda B. Handmade * MeMade * House of Estrela * My Heart Will Sew On * Tales From A Southern Mom

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Host: Sprouting JubeJube

mahlicadesigns * Gracious Threads * Adventures With Bubba and Bug * Elli & Nels * Bellevi * Little Heart Threads * Sewing By Ti * Lulu & Celeste

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Host: Lulu & Celeste

Paisley Roots * The Crafting Fiend * Sewstarly * It’s Liesel * Tales of a Tester * Kaleidothought * auschick sews

Friday, September 29, 2017

Host: Sprouting JubeJube

SewSophieLynn * Sew Haute Blog * mahlicadesigns * Sew and Tell Project * RP Custom Fabrics Blog * FABulous Home Sewn * Sewing By Ti * Phat Quarters

 

Petite Stitchery Knit Point Dress Release

Point Dress Wren 1

 

 

The clouds decided to greet our stars as we geared up for pictures of the new knit Adelyn Point Dress from Petite Stitchery & Co.

Although my camera settings weren’t adjusted for fog and the pics weren’t crystal clear, I had to keep these because of the beautiful greeting the fog gave us that morning.

 

 

 

 

The new Adelyn point dress is a quick and beautiful sew, with a neckband and basic top/dress construction. The bottom of the dress comes together in points at the front and back for a darling feature. This requires only a basic hem, so you won’t need to add an extra hem lining etc. (bonus for this mom!). This has quickly become my daughter’s favorite dress to grab for school.

I used soft brushed poly in blue stars from Sly Fox Fabrics; the scattered star placement aesthetically worked great with the free-flowy style of this dress. This dress would also be gorgeous in a rayon-blend French terry or cotton spandex.

Point Dress Wren 8

 

 

 

And even with the points, this dress has major twirl!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


The Adelyn dress will be available tonight on the Petite Stitchery website along with another knit release, Belle, which can be mashed with the Adelyn.

Grab your patterns, and be sure to share your creations in the Petite Stitchery Facebook group!

 

 

 

10k Giveaway: Free Women’s Movie Night Pajamas by Sew a Little Seam

Movie Night Pajamas Jeremiahs 8

 

Did you hear the incredible news? The shop Sew A Little Seam just reached 10k members and is offering a free pajama pattern for women as a thank you (read below for details)! Now let me tell you, this is no ordinary group. For those of you who see me post all of my Constance creations, that’s from this pattern designer as well. 100% of those proceeds go to the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation.

Then last year, she offered a free pajama pattern for kids–just in time for the holidays. So now… we have pjs for the entire family!

Movie Night Pajamas Jeremiahs 12

We are so ready for the holidays!

Movie Night Pajamas Jeremiahs 1

I just love the graciousness of this company! And to top it all off, the fit of these patterns are fantastic. So let me start with the new women’s pattern:

Movie Night Pajamas Jeremiahs 7

This is a fitted pajama pattern, and I used brushed (i.e. heavenly!) sweater knit from So Sew English Fabrics. I built up my stash last year in hopes that my girls and I could have matching cozy creations, and voilà!

The fit of the bodice, armscye, leg width/length etc. are all on par. I’m 5’7.5” and didn’t need to add extra length; everything fits as intended (i.e. great!).

 

 

 

The kids’ pattern also got a facelift and now includes a yoga waistband (wahoo!). Both patterns are FREE with a code in the Sew A Little Seam FB group. If you have any trouble downloading the patterns, you might just need to wait a little while and try again since the website traffic has been enormous.

Movie Night Pajamas Jeremiahs 15

Enjoy this new pattern and a way to bring our families together! xo Jennifer

M4M Cora Culotte Shorts + Hurricane Relief

Cora Culottes Shorts P4P 3

 

 

The Made for Mermaid Cora Culottes are now available–and just $3 through Sept. 30th, 100% proceeds going toward Hurricane Relief.

When we started testing this pattern, the hurricanes hadn’t plagued our nation, so the focus was solely on the the cuteness of shorts that have the swing of a skirt. And now–ordering this pattern can help many in need.

So…those pattern details…

 

 

Let me just say that when I saw yoga waistband + swing shorts of various lengths, my response was: 🙌🤸🏽‍♀️🙋🏼. My daughter is growing, so we stick with tunics to wear over leggings and use bike shorts to wear under dresses. She loves adventure! Having flowy shorts with the look of a skirt was B.i.n.g.o. I mean, we can totally pair them with tights through fall and winter!

Cora Culottes Shorts P4P 13

The pattern, instructions, and fit are all on-par. There is no scrunching when attaching the waistband to the shorts, which was a huge (+) or me; the measurements of the shorts top and the waistband are accurate, so you can get a nice smooth waistband connection. I used brushed poly from Pretty Posh Prints and made a coordinating top because we lack solids in her wardrobe.

We paired her outfit with a couple of accessories: darling sandals from The Humble Soles and a boho necklace from Ali Jane & Co. It’s the little things that make my little girl feel like a princess!

A princess who loves to have fun!

So go grab your Cora Culottes, and report back with hashtag #m4mcoraculottes. I want to see all of your creations!

Cora Culottes Shorts P4P 18

Bitty Bee Daydreamer Collection & M4M Juliet Dress Hack

Bitty Bee Strike Off Rainbow Hair Juliet Dress 4

You might see me posting here on my blog or in the pattern/fabric groups almost daily; I sew often! You won’t, though, see too many fancy boutique-type creations. The reason is: I’m very.practical. I want to sew beautiful things that my daughters will wear. So when my daughter asked for a dress that touched the ground, I thought, “Okay–it’s time to pull out that Juliet pattern!” I had my fingers crossed that this would be a creation that didn’t just sit in the closet. And guess what? My daughter wears this dress almost daily–or half-daily, until she throws on climbing clothes for rougher play 🙌

That Fabric

Now…I know you’ve been eyeing the fabric. Maybe you’re even here for the fabric. I honestly couldn’t take my eyes off of it when Bitty Bee announced the #Daydreamer collection and I saw glittery rainbow hair. The entire collection is like a fantastical fairyland: elephants, mushrooms, hot air balloons. I could live in this collection if I could. You can find the pre-order HERE, which ends soon — July 29th. I used brushed poly, and the quality is absolutely excellent.

Bitty Bee Strike Off Rainbow Hair Juliet Dress 5

Bitty Bee Strike Off Rainbow Hair Juliet Dress 7

The Pattern

The pattern I used for this dress is the M4M Juliet Dress with slight mods. When cutting the skirt portion of the dress, simply cut maxi length for front and back and dress length on the sides. It creates such a beautiful drape and stunning hi-lo visual.

Bitty Bee Strike Off Rainbow Hair Juliet Dress 8

Keep enjoying those summer days with your little Daydreamers!!

 

Feature Friday: Maize Dress Pattern Mods for a Hi-Low Keyhole Dress

Maize Dress Hi-Low 19

Today is Feature Friday over at Petite Stitchery, which means they highlight a pattern and offer it for $5 for 24 hours. The pattern this week is the beautiful Maize Keyhole Tunic an Dress.

To celebrate the Feature, I decided to do a few mods. Please pardon my picture overload; I couldn’t get enough of this dress!

 

 

 

 

 

 

What Changes I Made

To get the hi-low look and keyhole front, I made a few changes to the construction of the pattern.

  1. I narrowed the shoulder since I wouldn’t be adding sleeves
  2. I switched the front and back bodice so that the keyhole would show in the front
  3. I created a dramatic hi-low design using the skirt template provided in the pattern

Maize Dress Hi-Low 6

The first two steps don’t require additional instruction; however, if you wanted to construct the front/back bodice properly, you could interchange the armscye/opening and width. I kept it as-is, and it worked for us! So I’ll move to the third, creating the hi-low. You’ll first want to determine how dramatic of a hi-low you’d like. I added at least 4” to the skirt cut chart and used the skirt guide to create the curved hem.

Back

Maize Tutorial 2.jpg

I created the front piece in a similar way, but you’ll flip this one upside down so that the curve goes up toward the center.  Use the same size fabric piece as the back skirt because you’ll need to connect the side seams (side seams are on the right of this pic). As you cut the top of the curve, gradually cut down toward the bottom of your fabric (not shown).

Front

Maize Tutorial 1

The end result is stunning from both back and front and such a fun way to use the pattern in a new way!

And who doesn’t love a perfect flower-picking dress??

The fabric I chose for this pattern was a boarder print called Beds of Roses by Michael Miller that I ordered from Punkin Head Threads. I absolutely adore boarder prints and actually ordered this print in all 3 colorways for my 3 girls. I can’t wait to get all three of them together (one dress at a time…) 😍

So grab your pattern here for just $5, and be sure to share your creations on the FB page! I’m inspired here every.single.day.

 

Disclaimer: The pattern links in this post are affiliate links; I’m so happy that you were inspired to buy the pattern via my creations! I am affiliated with most of the pattern companies I test for, and this in no way shapes my response or promotion. I only test for companies I respect and only share patterns I adore!

 

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