Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Alphabet Tour {Girl's Collection}

 It's my turn for the blog tour! (yep double dose this week) So when we were planning, and designing the Fall collection we not only thought of back to school, but we decided it would both be fun and challenging (in a good way) to create unisex designs. Not boring unisex designs, but designs that look cool for both boys and girls. Let me tell you having already made a collection for Jude, I made one for Abbey, and seriously I love it just as much!
 I wanted Abbey's collection to scream fall, which is where the color pallet came from. Is there anything better than orange and yellow, and pink (of course there is pink or Abbey won't wear it) Lucky for me our fantastic sponsors for the collection had some of the most amazing fabric selections known to man. I got this awesome coating fabric from Michael Levine I LOVE the color, the vintage-y feel, and fall look. The study hall jacket is so much fun to customize with tons of options, and classic design. I fell in love with the gold zippers from Coats and Clark (gold people!) It is an awesome pop of detail to the front of the jacket.
 To work with the gold I also added some gold bias tape to the shoulder seams. I simply sewed it down in place before sewing the sleeves on. Quick easy and a great little pop that highlights the raglan sleeve.
 The jacket flows really well with the rest of the outfit, with bright pops of color perfect for this spunky pre-schooler.
 For the BBC vest, I made the "girl" version with the peplum ruffle at the waist. It's my favorite and maybe I even want one for myself?? That could be the super soft Organic Poplin that I used from Organic Cotton Plus. The plan was to dye the poplin. But the fabric was just so beautiful and soft and buttery, and oh my goodness perfection. So I left it and let the bright optic white pop off the rest of the outfit. The cool toggle is from Michael Levine. It was just too perfect to have that fun color pop on the vest, even though buttons do help the vest lay better, I still love the toggle.
 The vest has a racer back, which I am a total sucker for. Racer backs are just love at first sight, and it adds to the feminine flair.
 The W pants... where to begin, I LOVE them. They were perfect on Jude, they are perfect on Abbey, the back reverse yoke is a great place to highlight a fun pattern or color. I used a soft and amazing yellow organic twill from Organic Cotton Plus, and for the yoke I used the same floral knit from Girl Charlee Fabrics, that I used for the top. I just used a fusible interfacing to stabilize the knit (keep it from stretching all weird) I also made my first ever zipper welt pocket (way easy it will blow your mind) The pants also include a zip fly, which I may have jumped up and down and high fived my kids when I completed and it was perfection because Melissa is amazing. (period)
Last but certainly not least, I made the Recess Raglan using Girl Charlee knits, they have the absolute best knits ever, and great prices. My stash is ever growing, as is my pile of Recess Raglans. I can whip one up in about 20 min (or less) both kids have an ever growing stack and they are not all the same because not only does the pattern include TONS of options but the top has great basic lines that it is fun to customize with different prints, adding buttons, screen print, it's endless. Abbey has also worn this particular shirt 3 days in a row before it was peeled off of her so it could be washed, and it's near 100 degrees everyday... what can I say the girl just loves it to much to reason with the season. :)

So don't forget to check out the rest of the blog tour 
(I will give you a hint Stef from the Girl Inspired TOTALLY rocked the look you don't want to miss) 

Alphabet Collection Blog TourBloggers will be sewing up all 4 pieces from the collection at girl. Inspired., Shwin & Shwin, Sew a Straight Line, elsie marley, Melly Sews, Happy Together, see kate sew, Elegance & Elephants, I Still Love You, kojo designs, Petit a Petit and Family, The Train to Crazy, Delia Creates and Craftiness is Not Optional

*** The Pattern Anthology Server has been down off and on if you are having trouble you can buy the collection here now :)***

Buy now button: Add to Cart View cart button: View Cart

Monday, July 29, 2013

The Alphabet Collection {PDF Pattern Collection}

Today is the day! Pattern Anthology is releasing it's second collection! Friends, designing patterns that my kids love is fun, but designing along with friends? There is nothing better. Andrea, Kate, Melissa, and I have so much fun creating a collection of patterns. Those girls are just great. So when we were thinking about fall patterns we all thought back to school. Are you guys getting ready to send your kids back? I know I may (or may not) be counting down the days :)  So without further suspense... Pattern Anthology proudly presents...

The Alphabet Collection! It is a collection of 4 patterns:
The W Pants, Recess Raglan, Study Hall Jacket, and BBC Vest.

4 Patterns that are designed loaded with options for both boys and girls. (yep unisex patterns!)
They are all perfect for layering and mixing and matching so you can have a complete back to school wardrobe.  I made a full collection for both Jude and Abbey, but today I am just sharing the details of Jude's outfit.
 For the fully lined bomber style Study Hall Jacket, I cut the top of the front, back and sleeves off at the armpit and color blocked the top. I LOVE the way it turned out. I used some soft buttery linen from Michael Levine (a great online source for apparel fabrics) and the jacket is a full zip front with a zipper from Coats&Clark. I also color blocked the Jacket with the same super soft organic twill from Organic Cotton Plus (a great online source for organic basics)  that I used for the W pants. The W pants have a cool reverse yoke detail with welt pockets, and can I just say I am in love with the pants. They look awesome, and they are detailed enough to be special without being crazy. Melissa rocked the socks off that pattern.
 For the Recess Raglan I used an awesome knit from Girl Charlee (they have AMAZING knits) I love a pattern for a simple top that is quick to sew (like 20 min) but the pattern has tons of options to add flair, cuff options, sleeve options and the most amazingly perfect fit. Jude has requested 6 more and I already have 5 or 6 hot off the sewing machine. For the BBC Vest I used linen from Michael Levine the texture from the linen lends to an almost denim look but without the stiffness, and seriously is there anything better than linen? The vest (designed by me) has a roll collar and for the boy's vest there is a curved shirt tail hem and a back belt to tailor the fit, I love the vest with a tee, and dressed up and down.

Also because no photo shoot with Jude is complete without some awesome Jude poses. My only direction to Jude the whole time we were taking pictures? "Act Natural" He said "so should I yell? I yell a lot in real life."  Kid logic, you just can't deny.

Find the whole collection (4 patterns in sizes 12m-8years) HERE
It's only available as a full collection at a great low price for 2 weeks so snag your copy fast!

We have an AMAZING Blog tour set up, with some seriously talented ladies (seriously) You will not want to miss the amazing creations from these ladies:

Alphabet Collection Blog TourBloggers will be sewing up all 4 pieces from the collection at girl. Inspired., Shwin & Shwin, Sew a Straight Line, elsie marley, Melly Sews, Happy Together, see kate sew, Elegance & Elephants, I Still Love You, kojo designs, Petit a Petit and Family, The Train to Crazy, Delia Creates and Craftiness is Not Optional

Also check out our fantastic sponsors for the Collection and tour for ALL of the fabric used for the collection. (they are some of the best online fabric sources you will find)

*** The Pattern Anthology Server has been down off and on if you are having trouble you can buy the collection here now :)***

Buy now button: Add to Cart View cart button: View Cart

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Pattern Anthology {Sneak Peek Giveaway}

Don't you all love getting in on something early? Like a preview sale at some super awesome designer warehouse?? Well...  The Pattern Anthology Alphabet Collection releases tomorrow and Andrea of The Train to Crazy and GoTo Patterns, Kate of See Kate Sew and Melissa of Blank Slate Patterns and I are sooooo excited that we've decided to give a copy away BEFORE you can buy it! In fact, because we're saving the big reveal for tomorrow, this is all you're going to see of the collection tonight. Sneak Peek of the Alphabet Collection

Yep such a tease! All I will tell you is that it is for Boys and Girls and sizes 12m-8y :)
 So, if you just can't wait, you can enter to win by:
 Liking the Pattern Anthology Facebook page and then filling out the form below.
Contest will run for 24 HOURS ONLY - we'll draw a winner tomorrow night via at 8:00 pm CST. The winner will be notified by email and will receive 1 copy of The Alphabet Collection by Pattern Anthology. Void where prohibited by law.


Tuesday, July 23, 2013

The Miss Matilda Dress

 I love to sew, and I love to inspire others to sew and help teach them how. Designing and teaching is a true passion and honestly it is what started me on the path of making PDF patterns. You know, though I never really sew with patterns. I tried patterns when I first started sewing, you know those tissue paper patterns that you pick up for 99 cents at the store. I was always so frustrated by the patterns thinking that they must not actually want you to complete the pattern, the directions are horrible the few pictures that are included make almost no sense and I never made a single one that came even close to fitting. Why am I telling you this? Because even in the PDF pattern world I think finding a truly great pattern with a pattern designer that stands behind their work, and they offer truly unique designs, is hard to find. That's why when Lindsay from Cottage Mama, asked if I would join in on her pattern tour for her new patterns out, I was thrilled. She is such a breath of fresh air. It doesn't take long to understand Lindsay's design esthetic. She is vintage and girly, and sweet. Her designs stay true to the a vintage feel with a slight modern twist.
 Dear sweet Penny really needed a new dress so the timing was perfect and her patterns have great range (6m-10years) so I was able to make Penny the 6M size Miss Matilda Dress. The fit is perfection, a little room to grow but not overly large on her.

The pattern is easy to follow with beautiful pictures and simple steps. The pattern itself is gorgeous and comes with a super yummy recipe, you can feel the love that Lindsay poured into the pattern, and that says a lot because it's not always the case. I made the "simple version" omitting the neck ruffle, however I did include the front ruffle because I like a little ruffle and it was just too sweet not to include. I also was perhaps a bit lazy and so the width of the skirt was longer than the pattern suggested, even though I kind of like the added fullness. 

 As for Miss Penny? She loves the Miss Matilda Dress because it ties in front and that means she has something to play with...
and eat... yum yum yum. (it's either the sash or her toes these days :)

So if you haven't tried a Cottage Mamma pattern yet I strongly encourage you to check them out, the patterns are lovely, Lindsay is superb and her designs are so unique and detailed, and her patterns are written with such detail she does not leave anything out.

You can also check out her blog to follow along with the rest of the blog tour, some really pretty variations out there.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

The Pepper Pinafore&Cami {New PDF Pattern}

 Well you guys I did it, I finished the last summer pattern. Still summer so it counts right? Right. It's one of my new favorites. I have made 4 for Abbey and one for Penny (you will see that in a later post) A cute little Pinafore, it's an apron style top in that it slips on and then buttons in back to secure. However it has a built in cap sleeve.

The Pepper Pinafore and Cami can be found HERE

 I styled this one for fall worn with jeans and boots, (since fall is coming) I think it would look equally cute with a long sleeve tee under. I had asked an opinion on Instagram a while back to see how people felt about the back being bare under the top. The vote was no. Which is what I had thought, I always put a top under for Abbey. So I went ahead and included a simple cami with the pattern that can be worn under the pinafore (shown worn with all of these tops)
 The pinafore has lots of options. This is the single layer top, with the optional pockets. The single layer is great for hot days, but it also takes less fabric, and sews up nice and quick.
 There is also the option to add ruffles or pleats to the top. This one came about when I was saving all the work I put into a pleated skirt piece I was making for my project run and play, but I never finished it then, so I used the pleated skirt part for the pinafore and fell in love. This one also has the extended bodice. The pattern has a marking on the bodice so that you can make the arm opening wider and the bodice longer. I like both options really although the sleeve fit Abbey better with the regular bodice she will have more room to grow in this version which is nice after all that time with the ruffles :)
 The pleats (or ruffles) add a nice feminine flair to the top.
 The last option for the top is reversible. Yep whats not to love about a reversible pattern? It's 2 tops for the work of one. I love how you can have two totally different looks out of one top. The pockets can work for the reversible option as well. My favorite thing about a reversible top is that when kids spill on the front of one you can turn it around and bam clean shirt! Because honestly what kid doesn't spill all over their top?
So the Pepper Pinafore and Cami pattern avalible in sizes 6-9m-8years can be found here in the shop.
Perfect for all the seasons since it is great with layering, and it's fun to mix and match different fabrics and styles I love a pattern that can offer so many different looks.

Fabrics used can be found here:
Linen Wide Stripe found from Mood Fabric

Chambray Linen found from Mood Fabric

Pink and White Stripe found from Fat Quarter Shop
Grey and White Polka Dot found from Fat Quarter Shop

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Pretty Purple Pinafore {Color Your Summer}

 Hey Friends, it's Color Your Summer over at KoJo Designs and Delia Creates! Don't you just love color your summer? All bright and colorful and some of the most beautiful and stunning creations, food, crafts, sewing projects, they have it all. So what did I make for Color Your Summer? A pretty Purple Pinafore.
 Because Abbey LOVES purple, and I find ways to tolerate it, :) I even included a free pattern for you!

You can find the Pattern HERE
Hop on over to Color Your Summer at Kojo designs for the instructions

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Living Room Makeover Reveal

 2 years ago we bought a house. We knew unlike our first home that this would be our long time home. We knew we had space to expand, and grow, play, and have fun as a family. It was our dream home. An ugly 70's home with awesome bones, and hideous decor just waiting for some love. For the living room we had BIG plans. We knew it would be awhile before it all happened, but the time has finally come and I love the outcome.
 So we did most of the work ourselves (we left the floor to the experts) I thought I would share a few things here. Making over old homes is a lot of fun, and a lot of work (hence the spotty posts around here)
 So first, some fun before and afters... When we moved in the entire house had some lovely pink carpet. Seriously the entire house... (it's almost all gone we are just still picking tile for the bathrooms) We replaced the carpet upstairs with laminate wood floors. We decided hand scrapped laminate so it had the real wood look and feel but, with 2 dogs and 3 kids laminate was a better option. Also the floor to ceiling windows cause 30 degree temperature changes in the room on some days, and so real wood wasn't an option. We also painted the walls Grey Opal by Valspar. It's my favorite color ever. Pale blue grey, so calm and relaxing and bright.
 We stripped the windows bare of the ugly floral treatments and alluminum blinds, and we added a curtain rod along the trim of the window. This allows us to still have privacy when we want it, but bright sunlight the rest of the time. We also had my dad install fans into the beams in the ceiling, he is awesome like that.
 (the before above is mid-point before we had already painted everything)
The floors and painted railing brightened up the whole room. To paint the railing we removed it since we had to for the flooring to go in anyway, and sprayed it.
 Before we had a huge awkward closet right when you walked in the front door. Cons it was a strange island that blocked the flow and view from the front door. Pro, tons of storage space, and there are never enough closets. However we decided to cut it down anyway. We also had a photo wall that we had painted a brown as an accent wall and painted frames in different sizes and styles yellow to put on it. It was fun, but I was ready for change.
 So we ripped the closet out and then re-built a smaller cabinet.
I topped it with vases I found at joanns, I added stripes of painters tape and then spray painted a light spray of white over the whole vase, removed the tape and had some faint stripes. It was perfect. I added some fake grass for a pop of color.
 We re-did the photo wall using frames from Ikea they are 20"X20" which is awesome and huge, I printed the pictures (12X12) at costco. It was fun to see all the pictures of the kids, they are wearing handmade clothes in nearly every picture and that just makes me smile. We also were searching for the perfect light we finally found a round flat ceiling light that was perfect for the wall, the kids call it the moon :)
 The front of the cabinet we built cubbies, for large baskets. That way we still had shoe storage and winter gear storage. The top cubbies are for decoration but we can use them for storage later if we need to.
 One of the things we did was add all new baseboards. I love tall baseboards, clean and fresh and nothing makes an old house feel new again like new trim. We used MDF trim from a local supplier (not the big box stores) Doing this we were able to put all new trim through the upstairs for around 60 bucks  not bad at all. We left most of it clean and simple just adding caulk and paint.

 However in a few areas we had issues with uneven flooring see the big gap? So we added some quarter round along the bottom and it fixed the issue and looked great.
 The other transformation of the room was furniture. We knew we were going for clean modern and simple with a mid century modern vibe. We were pretty lucky with most of the finds. We picked up these two matching rockers from my husband's Grandpa. I want to recover them, my husband is pretty dead set against it... so maybe someday but they are awesome and we love them.
 The wall art was painted by a friend, the rug was a great find at costco, super soft and plush and it was 8'X10' which was hard to find especially at a great price. The couch was a great find from Thrive Furniture out of California but they ship for FREE! Made in the USA and they are great to work with. The color and style were perfect and it's nice and long perfect for taking a nap :)
 The old radio, was a great find at a thrift store. It works if we get one piece for it, but it's in perfect condition. The deer head is from White Faux Taxidermy. I wasn't so sure about it at first, but now I love it, and the glitter made me nervous because I hate glitter (it sticks to everything) However it doesn't come off. I highly recommend  White Faux Taxidermy, they were great to work with and have some really cool stuff. (Jude wants the T-Rex)
 Our friend made these super cool cement planters with gold leaf on top, and succulents to go inside. They are amazing. (I am trying to link to his store but I can't find it so I will get back to that)
To finish it off, we picked up this knock off Eames Rocker, just as cool as the original but a fraction of the price and I love it. The pillow is from Target. (don't you love target)

Whew! Ok that's it, the living room makeover that is finally over! Now just a small break before we move onto the next major project :) When you buy an old house they never end, but the results are so rewarding.