Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Operation Project $0 : Inspiration and Ideas...

... Better late than Never, right?!??!  I am so sorry, I know I said that this would be up on monday, and here we are late tuesday night and I am just getting to it.  Sometimes life has a habit of getting in the way ;op

The think I loved 'almost' best last year in starting up Operation Project $0 was that I forced myself to start defining my style by coming up with an inspiration board.  I still don't really know my style... sorry Project Run and Play, someday I'll figure it out.  But by creating inspiration boards, I start seeing themes of what I am drawn to. (*what I loved best was creating awesome clothes for almost nothing!)

So here is a little glimpse at some of my inspiration for this year for my kiddos:

We'll start with the boys - Overall, I'm looking for comfort with an edge of cool.  I'm completely digging stripes... but I don't have many in my stash ;o(  I am also still loving blues, reds, and fun pop colors (ok - I seriously love both the green and mustard pants in the bottom right photo) paired with grays and neutrals.  I like my boys a little preppy, but I'd love to start adding more of a note of whimsy to their wardrobe - like that bowler hat sweatshirt!
You can find direct links to all of these images on my Pinterest Board HERE
Now on to Baby Girl - I love my girl in classics, looks that are almost vintage but with a modern twist.  I need clothes that she can play in, but still be all girl... and thus my love for details.  Little things like the apple decale (that I think is going to become pockets), the mock bow tie, the bow on a tan trench, and those painted birds - sorry, not a huge fan of that flower thing, but love the birds!  Do you see that little fox.... well imaging him as a WOLF - my girl needs this year's wolfie outfit after all.
You can find direct links to all of these images on my Pinterest board HERE
So how about you?  What is inspiring you this year - is it a color, a style, a need???  I want to hear, see, and read all about it.  So write your own post about your fall fashion inspiration and link it up here (this can be kids inspiration or inspiration for your own wardrobe)!

Friday, August 23, 2013

Operation Project $0, 2013

That's right folks - Operation Project $0 is right around the corner and I have the most awesome line up of ladies who will be here sharing looks that they created for $0 (or as close to $0 as possible).  Operation Project $0 will run the whole month of September starting on September 2nd!

Check out this line up!
Frances Suzanne

You can read about the origination of Operation Project $0 HERE.

Now, last year my goal was to create a fall wardrobe for my boys and I ignored baby girl (well she was still so little and had TONS of clothes that people had given us and they boys had outgrown everything and were looking at a bare closet).  This year all three kiddos have some things that will transition into fall, but they all have holes in their wardrobe.  My goal this year for myself in Operation Project $0 is to identify those holes and fill them. So far this is what my list looks like...

Skinny Jeans for B
Regular Jeans for B
Long Sleeved T Shirts for both
PJs for both

Baby Girl:
Skinny Jeans
Coat (rain coat?)
Long Sleeved Tops
*I'm sure this list will change as I keep getting inspired by new things ;o)
One of my favorite things last year was creating an inspiration board for myself - it doesn't mean I will make all of those things, but it helps me have focus (and in the chaos that is my life, I NEED focus!).  On Monday, I will be sharing my inspiration boards for both the boys and baby girl - I'd love for you to link up your own inspiration posts too - because I love getting new inspiration!!!

I've been sewing ahead a little bit so here's a sneak peak of some of what you'll be seeing from me ;o)

I hope you'll join along and see what you can create for those you love in your life for $0!!!!

Week One:
Day One
Day Two
Day Three
Day Four
Day Five
Day Six
Day Seven
Day Eight
Day Nine
Day Ten

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Showing my love for the Run Around Pants and Downtown V Neck - Jersey Love Blog Tour and Giveaway!!!

Welcome back, I can't tell you how hard it has been for me to not share this one early!!! This summer I received an e-mail from Bonnie of Fishsticks Designs, I read said e-mail and my jaw was on the ground.  I was being invited to participate in the Jersey Love blog tour - which meant not only would I get to try out some of Bonnie's great new patterns- Jersey Love, but I would get to sew them up in Riley Blake's brand new line of knits - ummmmm, HECK YEAH!!!  I think maybe Bonnie sent it to me by mistake... but shhhhh, don't tell her!

I was ecstatic - I love working with knits and love seeing new pattern that work with knits. I also loved looking through the Jersey Love patterns are realizing that there were patterns for BOYS!!!  A few people may have mentioned to me recently that I have not been showing my boys enough sewing love of late, partially that is because they have clothes that still fit and baby girl has had more need, but part of it is that it is also just so dang easy to find new things to sew for girls... and a little harder for boys.  I quick e-mail later, and Bonnie gave me the go ahead to sew up both the Downtown V Neck shirt and the Run Around pants.

'Mom, stop taking pictures and let me try them on!!!'

These are both such great sews - the pattern pieces print and go together easily with no tricky jigsaw confusion.  And in no time at all, you are at your sewing machine stitching along.  The sewing is just as easy - the instructions give clear guidance each step of the way and include tons of tips if you are new to sewing with knits.  There are plenty of pictures to provide visual confirmation that you indeed are understanding what the instructions state.  Now I have to say that having the right knit makes all the difference.  Riley Blake has hit the nail on the head with a great combination of softness, memory, and weight.  This fabric is the perfect weight for this collection!  I used the 1 inch grey and white stripe, the solid aqua, the 1/2 inch aqua and white stripe, the solid grey, and the 1/2 inch grey and white stripe.
Ok, back to the patterns:  You know I can't just stick with a pattern as written - I know, I know, it is a problem.  But let's start with the Downtown V-neck.
*excuse the wrinkles in the bottom one, I literally grabbed it out of the dryer and snapped this picture

 After cutting my pants and shirt I realized I had enough fabric for a second shirt - and since I have twin boys, we just need to keep things fair!  Well, I should say I had 'almost' enough fabric.  I quickly remembered that the Charlie T by Fishsticks has cutting lines for color blocking... I simply transferred the lines to the downtown V and next thing you know I have a a color blocked V Neck - I LURVRE IT!!!  The color blocked version has standard hems on both the sleeve and the bottom hem - the great thing is that the instructions tell you exactly how to choose and create either the banded hem or a standard hem.

my husband just can't understand why I am so proud of these matched stripes

OK - on to the second shirt.  I planned on doing this exactly as written... really I did.  I decided that based on how rough my boys are on clothes I would attach the bands to the shirt right sides together and then top stitch with my twin needle - extra strength for those messy, rugged men of mine.  I really love the bands on this pattern - you can have fun with a pop of color, and can we just talk about how nice that V looks - seriously the instructions are great.  These were my first two V necks and I was a little nervous that it wouldn't be 'perfect'...I am so happy with the end results!

On to the pants!

The Run Around Pants are so perfectly names - they make my boy just want to run around, and around, and run... and run... Hahahah - he loves these pants.  They aren't constrictive at all and he just seemed so comfortable!

I went with the top pocket and one of the side pockets.  Each pocket is two layers, I chose to sew mine right sides together on the sides and bottom and turned.  For the side pockets I then top stitched the top edge leaving it raw to give that raw edge that boys love and makes this collection so fun and modern.  I also left the Side Stripes with raw edges like the pattern tells you to do - I love how they curl a bit.  By making enclosed seams on the side pockets, I was able to keep the flow of the blue stripe going all the way down - it looks so snazzy.  Seriously, he was the best dressed at church, and a tween on the playground said that his outfit was 'so cool'!  WOHOOO!!!

I can't say enough about how fun these patterns are to make and to watch your child wear.  If you have boys, you need to add both of these to your collection!

Thank you Bonnie for letting me be a part of this Tour, it has been a blast.  And don't miss out on all the other stops on the tour:
Tuesday, 8/13: Call Ajaire & Rock the Stitch
Thursday, 8/15: Shaffer Sisters & Blue Susan Makes
Friday, 8/16: Rooibos Mom & Mama Says Sew
Tuesday, 8/20: Designs by Sessa & Hopeful Threads
Wednesday, 8/21Making More with Less & Sew Can She
Friday, 8/23Little Kids Grow & Max California

You can enter below to win your own copy of the Run Around Pants or the Downtown V-Neck!!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, August 16, 2013

All A-Buzz about the Bumble Bee Top...

Hey lovely readers - I have to say that one of my favorite things about blogging is meeting other women who share my passion for sewing, the insanity of sewing with children, and the desire to make sure those insane children are clothed!  Most of the blogging community is a very supportive and uplifting place and I am so thankful to have begun numerous friendships through this venue.
One of those friends is Raeanna of Sewing Mama Raeanna - I got to test her very first pattern, the Sweet & Simple bloomers, I was hooked and left waiting for more.  I didn't have to wait long, I was ecstatic when I heard that she was coming out with a new pattern. (*She also has the Scrubby Jams available too!

Her newest release is the Bumblebee dress and I am in love, so lets break it down:

  • This dress includes two variations (one with vertical ruffles on the bodice and one with ruffles along the neck and back closure.)  You have the option for sleeveless or 3/4 length sleeves.  There is also an adorable ruffle for the bottom of the skirt included with view B - but it could easily be added to view A as well.
    View A(Left) and View B (Right)
  • The Back closes with a button or snap (but I did a bow... be on the lookout for a tutorial soon!)
  • This dress is adorable on its own or can be paired with leggings or pants for the perfect fall look.
  • Sizes 3m-6T
  • Pieces are nested together
  • Pattern pieces print on 6pages and are easy to tape together
  • Measurements for all rectangular pieces are given in a chart
  • Instructions are clear and accompanied my photographs to walk you through step by step
  • The pattern also includes a measurement chart to determine sizing and yardage requirements
I made the classic view A in all one color - it is so fun to see all the different versions made out of coordinating  and contrasting fabrics to create truly unique looks each time!  This is the 2T and I think the fit is spot on - my daughter is between sizes at the moment, so I am making all 2T's at the moment to make sure what I make fits through the fall and winter ahead.  The dress fits now and has enough growing room that I can hopefully get all the way through winter, fingers crossed!!!

I love the length on baby girl - it hits right at the knee meaning she doesn't catch it when climbing stairs or crawling.   You can add length to the pattern pieces or you can gain extra length by adding the included ruffle.

I can't wait to make more of these.  I can envision it in many types of fabric, with lace trim
 or piping, and even cut short to be more of a tunic top.

Have you sewn up a Bumblebee Dress???  Link it up  over at Pattern Revolution so we can all share in the cuteness!!!

Monday, August 12, 2013

The Skipper Top and an Announcement

I was so excited to get to test the Skipper Top from Sew Much Ado.  I really need to try the Seafarer at some point for myself, but since most of my sewing is for my three babies, this was the perfect thing for me to test.

First I love the casual style of this top - you can use a variety of knits and even upcycle.  With optional bands at the neck waist and arms and two different pockets, there is a world of variety packed into this one little top!

My first version was a quick upcycle of an old Tshirt - I love the 80's throw back feel of this one (I think it is the white leggings that make it  - these are the Lollipop Leggings by Peek-a-boo)

yep - it is a peanuts shirt - how stinking cut is that!

My second version used some of the new Riley Blake knits - so soft and comfy!!! I used a scrap of quilting cotton in my stash for the pocket and made some pants to match (ummm  I'm on a white pant kick, what can I say - these are the new Rosemary and Thyme pants by Stitchwerx)

Now speaking of Upcycles..... Be on the lookout for more info coming about this year's Operation: Project $0.  This was my first blogging series I ever tried last year and this year is going to be WAY cooler.  I have an amazing line up of awesome guest bloggers, and of course I want to see what you make for your kiddos too!  Now Project $0 doesn't have to be an upcycle, it just has to cost you as close to $0 to make... so put those thinking caps on and be on the lookout for some of my inspiration coming soon!!!  (Operation:Project $0, 2013 will run the month of September)


Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Leggings Leggings EVERYWHERE!!!!

This week there is an awesome link up going on over at Pattern Revolution!  If you love leggings as much as I do, you will want to check it out.  Have you sewn leggings by Jocole, LilyGiggle, or Peek-a-boo????  Link up your creation for a chance to win a free pattern from one of the designers.  Show off what you have made and get some new traffic to your blog!

Plus I am doing a comparative review of all three pairs tomorrow - I'll be talking fit, rise, diaper bums/cloth diaper bums, along with all the other basics like printing the pattern, instructions and versatility.  Super Fun, Don't miss it!

Hugs to ALL ;o)