Introducing the Tea Party Dress by Peek-a-Boo Pattern Shop!

The Show and Tell Project team is happy to celebrate another awesome pattern release from the Peek-a-Boo Pattern Shop!

My teammate Emily and I were both chosen to test the Tea Party Dress and Top. Remember our first joint post when we tested the Very Merry together in October? We are posting jointly today to share our creations with you!

I was selected to test the size 8 top and Emily was chosen to test the size 6 dress for her little girl.

 

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Isn’t that gorgeous? Emily tested the full dress version, featuring piping, flutter sleeves, an elastic waist, and sash.

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Photo by Emily

It features a beautiful button up back view and a nice skirt that is both full and hangs well. I love the yellow print Emily chose. It is perfect for spring!

I literally started sewing within a few hours after being selected. I first made my assigned style and size. I recently purchased several yards of a coordinating collection available at Hobby Lobby to make the girls’ Easter oufits. I knew this dress was exactly what I was looking for and would go well with the fabric I had in my stash. As usual, I made a size 8 lengthened to a size 10 for my tall daughter. I followed the instructions for adding a piping accent and the flutter sleeves. The flutter sleeve pieces are very simple and quick so you won’t regret using them.

One of the things I love about Peek-a-Boo Pattern Shop’s patterns is that I can be confident that the size chart is accurate. For this loose, woven top, go by the size chart for the perfect fit. For Middle Miss, this meant making one size smaller than her usual size in RTW knits and adding length.

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After initial testing feedback, some ease was taken out of the “skirt” portion for a better fit. The fit is still generous, but look how nice and polished my second top came out? We even tried a new locale to get the perfect shot.

The fabric is Bees & Bits Spring by Millie Fleur Bari J. for Art Gallery. A local friend had finished a gorgeous dress out of it and destashed the remnant to me, and I just barely had enough to make this top, but it was worth all the fussy cutting!

Finally, no pattern test is complete for me without a sister shoot – plus it also brings me closer to finishing Easter outfits for all my girls! Head on over to The Show and Tell Project Blog Facebook page if you want to see a sneak peek of what I made for Baby Miss, too!

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Why should you head on over to PAB and grab a copy of the Tea Party Dress and Top TODAY?

  1. It is on sale for $6.50 today (2/25) only.
  2. It comes in sizes 3 mos to 12 years (sew by chest size and add/shorten where needed).
  3. Top and dress variations.
  4. Flutter sleeve and sleeveless variations
  5. Showcases woven fabrics.
  6. Optional elastic and sash.
  7. A relatively quick sew with excellent results. My pieces took about 90 minutes for the tops and 2 hours for the dress.

Happy Sewing!

(This post contains affiliate links. Emily and I each received a copy of the pattern for testing purposes. All reviews and opinions are our own).

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Vance’s Sweater Vest – Create Kids Couture

I was so excited to be able to test the Vance’s Sweater Vests from Create Kids Couture! The Vance’s Sweater Vest is available in sizes newborn through 18/24 monthssizes 2T through 8, and in a tween version in sizes 7/8 through 15/16. The sweater vest is intended for use with sweater fleece or sweater knit. This sweater vest is perfect for all the boys and young men in your life.

I tested two different sizes. My 6 year old is wearing the size 7, and my 8 year old is wearing a 7/8. The sizing for both was spot on for my measurements. My boys happen to love dressing up for Mass on Sundays, and this sweater vest is a great addition to their wardrobes. 03-DSCN6492.JPG

I was nervous before testing this pattern because I have never sewn a V-neck before. However, the instructions were clear and concise, and the pictures were great and easily understandable. The V-necks turned out great and professional-looking.  I used an argyle sweater fleece and coordinating solid from Hancock Fabrics, and I’ve already purchased more sweater fleece in a different color to make more!

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My boys and I spent the afternoon up at our State Capitol taking pictures, and they received many compliments on their vests! My 5 year old loves the vests so much that he keeps stealing my 6 year old’s and wearing it. I guess it’s time to make him one of his own.

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Make sure to pick up the Vance’s Sweater Vest over at Create Kids Couture in newborn, boys, and tween sizes! It’s a great staple piece to enhance your son’s wardrobe.

 

My Favorite Project To Date…

Hello everyone! Alisha here. Today I’m sharing my favorite project I’ve made to date. In December, my oldest son’s teacher and her husband were blessed to adopt a newborn baby girl. We were all surprised and elated by the news! I knew I wanted to make something for the new baby from her class. After thinking, I realized a handprint quilt would be a perfect gift.

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After deciding on my project, I sketched out the quilt design and calculated my fabric needs. I decided on a simple block design with sashing between the blocks. There were 21 students in his class so in order to make a square quilt, I needed 3 more blocks. Another teacher’s mother does machine embroidery. She made me 3 squares with baby’s name, baby’s birth stats, and a Bible verse I felt was fitting. The verse I chose was “For this child, I have prayed” from 1 Samuel 1:27. alisha quilt 2

After I finished the baby quilt, I realized I had enough material left to make something else. On Eleri’s recommendation, I made a Gracie romper from Peek a Boo Pattern Shop. It was a beautiful addition to the quilt, and I hope the sweet little girl can wear and enjoy it this summer!

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I delivered the quilt to my son’s teacher today. It was wonderful to share this gift of love with his teacher and celebrate the beautiful new life in her family!

SYSL 2016: Mama needs raglans…

Eleri here today! I’m sharing my entry for the Sew Yourself Some Love 2016 link-up at Pattern Revolution.

Guess what? This is the first time I’m participating in a link-up! I still have so much to learn about blogging, but I am really enjoying sharing my creations with all of you and appreciate all the support and feedback!

I don’t sew a lot for myself… I mean with four growing kids, I can fill every minute at my sewing machine making stuff just for them. At 5’10”, I am tall, but it is also not impossible to find store bought clothes that fit me well…. or well-enough.

But as I’ve worked on taking better care of myself, I’ve found joy in making  my own clothing that fits just the way I want it, too.

To have a nice theme to this post…. and because my other shirts are in the laundry, I’m going to dedicate my Sew Yourself Some Love 2016 post to three me-made raglans in my wardrobe!

Eleri raglan 4 WM

The first raglan I want to share is the Ranier Raglan and Hyde Park Hoodie mash-up I made last fall (Sh! 2015!). It took me a couple tries to get exactly the look I was going for, but this is one of my favorite pieces so I hope you don’t mind me sharing it with you today.

I made it out of the jade french terry from the PAB Fabric Shop. My measurements were spot on for the Large sizing in my bust and waist so I pieced with a slightly smaller seam allowance to accommodate for the thickness and lower stretch of the French terry.

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I used the XXL Hood Piece of the Hyde Park Hoodie and extended the tails to make a crossover hood. It was cold, and I forgot to ask The Man to take pictures of the hood which I lined with stretch lace. It is also a little snug vertically since the neckline of the Hyde Park Hoodie is higher, so if I make it again I will add another inch of height to the hood. I also added a bottom band to make it look more like a sweatshirt.

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The Show and Tell team and I have been lucky enough to kick off 2016 with testing several new releases. In between tests, I decided to really spoil myself. Last week, I decided to sew two raglans for myself using some of my favorite fabric in my stash.

::Raise your hand if you remember the release of the Riley Blake Idle Wild Collection!::

I was able to score 2 yards of the pink floral and 2 yards of the multi-color floral. I had initially planned to spoil my little girls with the beautiful Idle Wild florals and was saving them for summer outfits.

But I decided that I deserved some fabric love and made myself a Patterns for Pirates Slim Fit Raglan using the pink floral colorway and the dark coral cotton lycra from the PAB Shop.

Eleri raglan 1 WM

I loved the fit of my Ranier Raglans that I made last fall, and I had also seen the original P4P Women’s Raglan and add-on pack. I loved the concept, but I did not care for the loose-fit of the original raglan for my body. I have a few kids, and I always feel looser fit shirts invite “Time for another one…?” comments. On the flip side, shirts that are too tight around my midsection also make it look like another one is already in the works… but I digress.

As soon as I saw the tester album of the P4P Slim Fit Raglan, I knew I had to give it a try even though I already had a tried and true raglan in my stash.

I am glad that I decided to give a new raglan a try! It has the perfect fit and several options to mix things up for me. I made the Large 3/4 length sleeves option with the tunic length. I did not add any additional length to the tunic. The result was fitted and body skimming where I wanted it, and forgiving where my body is still blooming from four beautiful children. I particularly like how the pattern is drafted between the arms and bust line.

Since I was so happy with the fit of this, I decided to use my beloved fantasy floral and “Have Courage and Be Kind” panel from the PAB Shop. I have never used an adult size panel before. The panel was not tall enough for me to do another tunic, so I added a little bit of length to the banded cut line on the P4P Slim Fit Raglan, and then added a band to get the length I wanted.

This has been my favorite fabric and it is still a limited quantity in stock if you want to get your hands on it here.   I have four more outfits to share with you (hopefully next week) that I made from this fabric and panels for the pint-size ladies in my life.

But sometimes, Mama just needs a raglan, so here’s to sewing more for us!

Now Sew Yourself Some Love!

 

Legacy Wedding Gown to First Communion gown…

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Welcome to the third and final part of my series on transforming my mother’s wedding gown (which was made by her mother) into a keepsake First Communion gown for my daughters. If you are just joining us, check this post out for details on the original gown and this post out for the pattern inspiration and process I used to update the gown.

To refresh your memory, I started here. My grandmother made my mother’s gown out of crepe chine and polyester lace.

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What are some tips I would like to share with you if you undertake something similar?

1. Be totally free and completely detached from the results. This was important to me to have my mother’s complete blessing to attempt this. I was at peace if it did not work out.

2. I dressed my dress form in the gown for several days so I could plan my project. I had to think outside the box to get the ENTIRE dress (except bodice lining and sash) out of the original gown. Do not be surprised at how much fabric you use. I had almost nothing left over of the original dress when I was done except the lace sleeves and bodice scraps.

3. I recommend planning on a lot of hand sewing to avoid damaging older, more fragile fabric. I also had to rely on advice from friends and Facebook groups for getting the perfect bridal quality finish I was going for with my project. Read the captioned close-ups below to see how I altered the Very Merry Pattern by Peek-a-Boo Pattern Shop to get the perfect results from my gown. While my daughter and I are THRILLED with the results, I will also share a few things I wish I had done differently.

4. I did make a muslin. I don’t usually make a muslin if I am confident in the size chart of the pattern maker. I am very confident in Peek-a-Boo Pattern Shop’s size chart, but I did not want to mess this up. I could have taken in the gown a bit more for my oldest, but I left a little ease to accommodate two more months of growth and also to leave more room to adjust for her younger sisters.

5. Start early. I probably spent 25 hours total on this project. Only about 6-7 was actual sewing, but I spent a lot of time researching and taking breaks. I make big mistakes when I am tired and did not want to rush any of the steps. Starting early also allowed me to order new supplies if something didn’t work out. I also wanted to make sure I had time to order a veil and shoes when I was done. I had our veil custom made by Mousebee Couture on etsy and I was thrilled with the results! I also made a floral headpiece to keep with the vintage feel of the dress.

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I made my pintucked sash out of bridal quality taffeta. I wish I had used satin for a better drape.
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At the recommendation of a bridal wear expert, I used lace hem tape and stitched the blindhem by hand. I have never done a hem by hand before. It took THREE hours of Netflix for me to get it done. You can also see that I kept the lace panels my grandmother sewed totally intact hence the unfinished, pressed open, seams. Because this will only be laundered a handful of times, I chose not to risk damaging them with my serger.

 

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I wanted the new dress to resemble the original wedding gown. I carefully cut out a lace placket and attached it carefully to the bodice. I then topstitched (after adding the lining) along the lace placket portion of the neckline only. This was to help keep the neckline from shifting and the lining peeking out.
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The helpful members of the PAB Facebook group gave me this tip. I finished the sleeve openings with bias tape that I made from crepe chine. I attached it by machine to the seam allowance, and then flipped it over and handstitched.
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I had to install the zipper THREE times to get it even. The third time, I hand basted it and then sewed and it behaved for me. If I were to do it over, I would have handpicked it like the original gown. This was also suggested to me in the PAB group, but I had already assembled the bodice and skirt assuming I would be doing an invisible zip and wasn’t sure how to change things.
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The third and final try of installing my invisible zip… I accidentally sewed the zipper stop into the seam allowance. I did not want to risk ripping the fabric so I used embroidery floss to make a new zipper stop up top. I also installed a hook and eye. I will get my hands on white embroidery floss before the big day 🙂
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The skirt lining. The Very merry does not have a lined skirt, but the original gown did. I shortened the lining, and then attached it to the seam allowance between the skirt and the bodice. I then handstitched the bodice down over the skirt lining. I am thrilled with how finished it looks on the inside. You will also notice that I did a gathered skirt instead of the pleated skirt on the original pattern. Amazingly, the dimensions of the original skirt width were very similar to the dimensions of the Very Merry skirt. However, the pleats obscured the lace panels, so I stuck with a gathered skirt.
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I initially hemmed the sleeves by machine. The thin material shifted and there was puckering. Since the skirt hem turned out so well, I also used lace hem tape and hemmed the sleeves by hand as well.

So, there you have it. I am finally done with this project. She won’t get to wear it until April, but I am thrilled with the results.

I am even more thrilled that we will get to continue a beautiful story with a dress that is becoming part of our family’s history.

May God bless and keep you, my Child.

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Sofilantjes Nivalis Dress and Tunic release!

 

 

A few weeks ago, I had the realization that some of my old standby patterns were no longer appealing to my oldest child. I started browsing around for the perfect pattern to appeal to her and fell in love with a new design from Sofilantjes.

I sewed up the Hibernis cowl shirt in testing for my oldest daughter. I then made a second one for Middle Miss out of a Riley Blake floral and Art Gallery as accent.

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A quick shot of Middle Miss. Thanks, kids!

The pattern was so amazing, that even though I’m in the middle of my big First Communion dress project, I jumped at the chance to test The Hibernis’ sister pattern, The Nivalis Dress and Tunic.

Since Big Miss has gotten most of my sewing room attention lately, I applied to test the collar option of the Nivalis for my Middle Miss. She really enjoys picking fabrics and creating outfits out of her handmade wardrobe.

My version below is View B, tunic length, with long sleeves and the collar. I used a mint solid and Riley Blake Roots and Wings for Middle Miss’ tunic length top.

 

Why should you add the Nivalis to your pattern stash?

  1. Two dress lengths: Tunic and Dress length
  2. Three sleeve lengths: Cap, 3/4, and Long
  3. Two neckline options: 3 neckline options – neckband, hood, and collar
  4. Solid and Colorblocked dress options
  5. Adorable accent tabs and clear instructions to perfect these details.
  6. European sizing (I love having the “in between” sizes that U.S. sizing often skips). Pattern comes in size 12m/80 to 14/164.
  7. Pieces are also interchangeable with the Hibernis Cowl.

I cannot wait to sew up many more variations for my girls!

Makes sure you head on over to Sofilantjes from 2/8/2016-2/9/2016 (Central European Time) and grab your copy while it is on sale for $5 USD!

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(Post contains affiliate links which support The Show and Tell Project. I received a free copy of the Nivalis in testing. All opinions and content are my own.)

 

 

 

 

Introducing the Piper and Pipsqueak Pencil Skirts from Peek a Boo Pattern Shop!

Peek-A-Boo Pattern Shop has done it again! The Piper and Pipsqueak Pencil Skirts are adorable Mommy and Me skirts.  You cannot go wrong with an classic knit pencil skirt! These will surely become a staple in your wardrobe. The patterns are on sale (15% off!) today only for release day at Peek-A-Boo Pattern Shop. Add both to your cart and save an extra $2 with the code “PENCIL”.

Pipsqueak Pencil Skirt

Sizes 3 months -12 years

Enclosed Elastic, Exposed Elastic, and Yoga Waistband

High or Low Rise

Piper Pencil Skirt

Sizes XXS-XXXL

Enclosed Elastic, Exposed Elastic, and Yoga Waistband

High or Low Rise

Above Knee and Below Knee Length

You can see the variety of options in each skirt. You could make a whole wardrobe full of pencil skirts and no two would look the same! Depending on your fabric choice, these could easily be dressed up or down.

I tested the Piper Skirt in the low rise, yoga waistband option that fell above my knees. I used a houndstooth knit I found at Joann’s, and I love the versatility of this classic shape!3-DSCN6527.JPGBoth the Piper and Pipsqueak are fast and easy sews! I whipped mine up in under thirty minutes including cutting and hemming!

Genie sewed the Piper skirt up for her tween daughter in the high rise yoga version. I love the sweater fleece she chose! 12646631_10153295401961373_4652744428567130123_o.jpg

Neither Genie or I tested the Pipsqueak version, but the women who sewed for their children made adorable skirts! Make sure to head on over to Peek-A-Boo Pattern Shop and get your copies of the Piper and Pipsqueak Pencil Skirts today while they are on sale!

 

(Post contains affiliate links. All opinions are my own.)

Happy Birthday, Simple Life Pattern Co.!

 

 

Join me in wishing Simple Life Pattern Co. a Happy Birthday! Can you believe it’s been one year since they launched their expanding line of on-trend patterns? Head on over to the Simple Life Pattern Co. today to check out their patterns as well as TEN new releases including the Lexi Strappy Back Dress which I had the privilege of testing.

Want to sweeten the deal? All NEW releases are 25% off and older styles are 40% off. This also works with their tiered pricing, so stock up on patterns and save!

Don’t forget to read to the bottom for a link to the awesome GIVEAWAY that #SLPco is hosting to celebrate it’s 1 Year Anniversary! Giveaway closes Midnight, February 2nd, so get your entries in.

Now for the details on Middle Miss’ new dress….

As my two oldest kids get older, they are also developing their own styles and personalities. For the most part, they share clothes without complaint, but I sometimes find that I am sacrificing trying new patterns or fabric choices so both can be happy.

As Big Miss has gone away from wearing dresses in favor of pants and cute blouses, Middle Miss has been in need of a new dress for this spring! The Lexi Strappy Back has been perfect for her style and to showcase bold prints.

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Why does Middle Miss (and her mama) adore the new Lexi Strappy Back Dress?

  1. Clear instructions and layered printing. This is a huge timesaver for me, particularly when tracing pattern pieces, and because I don’t have a color laser printer.
  2. It has simple, clean lines that showcase prints beautifully.
  3. Pattern includes options for a pintuck skirt as well as pockets!
  4. The fit is spot-on. I measured Middle Miss and she fell right at a size 6 for the Lexi. I added additional length to the skirt to accommodate her height.
  5. This really fills a big hole in our wardrboe. My children have all been on the slender side, so it is nice to have a pattern that is elegant but doesn’t have any gaping at the sides like store bought dresses often do for them.
  6. Finally, the gorgeous back view. It is easier than it looks, and the instructions are clear for even the beginner sewist. The strap measurements are precise for a perfect fit.

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And just so you don’t think Big Miss is left out of the #SLPco love, I am making her Emilya’s Skinny Pants and a newly-released Braxton’s Blazer for a spring look that suits her personal style.

Head on over here to join the giveaway, and head on over to the shop to find a look that suits every girl in  your family!