Thursday, May 11, 2017

Season of One Thimble!

Click here to visit One Thimble

Funny enough this Spring has really been the Season of One Thimble (affiliate link).  It started off really innocently, I signed up for a pattern test with Gracious Threads and then she announced that pattern was going to be in Issue 15.  Then I answered Winter Wear Designs call for some boy testers and bam, pattern number 2.

So I'll start with the Dax Trousers from Gracious Threads.  I tested these on my smaller boy child.  They are a slim fit dress up trouser.  For us that means they are the perfect pants for church, thats about the only place we dress up these days.  I could definitely see them even more dressed up- and you can too in the sneak peek for Issue 15 (affiliate link).

As usual, the directions and drafting from Gracious Threads is excellent.  This pattern walks you through a working fly and a bonus technique sheet is available for extra help free on the Gracious Threads site.

The pants also have a nice clean finish on the inside, big deep front pockets and classic welt pockets on the back.  

This pair here was actually made from an old pair of my husband's so I recycled the belt loops, buttons and used the existing hem.  I tried to use the zipper but ended up accidentally cutting it at the wrong spot.  He wore these on Easter Sunday with his Pete the Cat Shirt (made from a Buttericks pattern).  

So then I moved on to the big brother.  He got the new Metro Blazer from Winter Wear Designs.  It was surprisingly fun to test the blazer.  We are not blazer wearers here- even my husband has only worn one a handful of times since I've known him.  Still I thought it would be fun to see my oldest dressed up for a change.  When I went to photograph the blazer though it didn't seem natural to dress him up.  What I did end up with made my mama heart ache a little.  My baby is so grown up!

Before I show him off though, let me say a few words about the pattern.  The directions are clear and well written.  One thing, I'll admit that threw me is the sizing.  I'm so used to just sizing up when me kids are between sizes.  If you're familiar with Winter Wear patterns, then it will not be a surprise to you that you actually need to go down.  So my first version swam on my thin 12 year old.  I had to cut it down to get the right size.  Unfortunately I forgot that he was also tall so mine turned out a tad shorter than I think it should be.  There are directions in the pattern to customize the fit as well.

The finished blazer is just awesome.  It has a lining, wonderful slimming darts along the front and options for color blocking, either the large segments or just the yokes and collar like I did.  There are also welt pockets on the front.

Seriously, when did he get so big.  

Don't forget to head over to One Thimble (affiliate link), check out the magazine.  Its a super deal for all the wonderful patterns (plus for us here in the US, the poor Aussie dollar makes it an even better deal!).  If you really only want these two, you can also purchase them separately- Dax Trousers and Metro Blazer (affiliate links).

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

More Musings on the Amuse!

Okay so this was supposed to be one post but I rambled too much and felt it was better to break them up.  So if you haven't seen the first post, check it out- Amused.  I made up the Winter Wear Amuse Dress Version just as the pattern is written and loved it.

For the blog tour I really wanted to try out a knit version.  There are actually quite a few knit versions on the tour: Sweet Pea and PumpkinsIdle Sunshine and Connected by a Thread.  They are all fabulous!  In fact Brook from Middle River Studio is sharing her knit version in the same fabric I have from our fabulous fabric sponsor Fab Clique Fabric Shoppe.  How funny is that.

Well I saw Brook's version and just loved it.  So excited to make one just like it.  I decide though to try the contrast yoke with some lace over it.  Unfortunately my version did not quite work out.  Definitely not the look I was going for.  I tried the top version with the flat back so it wouldn't have as much fabric all around.  Uhm... I hadn't even had a big lunch!  Eeeeck.  So another mistake I made was to go down 2 sizes.  The knit is very thin and stretchy so I thought it would be okay.  It wasn't- the instructions do say only go down one, thats what I get.  Back to the drawing board.

 I still wanted a knit version.  I decided to flip the style- flat front gathered back.  First I marked the seam lines on the yoke and yoke opening.  I laid the yoke down on the front piece and cut off the gathered section.  You could just mark it and fold if you want.

Easy peasy.  Cut my new pieces and viola! I did go ahead and do the tunic length as the top length was just not working.  I used the same fabric for a band neckline per instructions in the pattern.

I cut the yokes and sleeve cuffs from woven rayon to add a little contrast.  Then I felt like the front was a big gaping hole so I added an appliqué.  Just love how it turned out.  It will match perfectly with my burgundy jeans or cords in the fall.  

Oh and look- no weird questions coming from this version.

Okay so flush on the success of this version, I went ahead and sewed up one more- for now.  This time I closed up the front all together and went with woven Rayon from JoAnns for the front and back yokes.  I used this knit rayon from Walmart I've had stashed, not sure how long it will last as it had small holes in it.  Oh well.  I went with bias binding for the neckline here too.  I also took off about 4 inches to make it right between the top and tunic length.  Worked out perfectly!  This one reminds me of a ready to wear top I have from Target that I just love- woven front to skim over and knit back for ease of wear.  Perfect combo.  I definitely will have more of these in my wardrobe really soon.

Don't forget to head over to the Winter Wear Designs Blog for the details on how to win a fabric bundle from Fab Clique.  While you're there you can pick up the pattern this week for 20% off with the code AMUSEME.  (Sale is over)

Check out all the stops on the tour:
Marta Glogger (guest blogger at Winter Wear Designs)


So the sure fire way to get me back on the blog is to sign up for a blog tour.  When Suzanne from Winter Wear Designs asked if anyone was interested in blogging about the Amuse Boho, it turned out that I could kill two birds with one stone- back to blogging and making the Amuse!

This tour is to welcome the Amuse Boho Top and Dress pattern on to the Winter Wear Designs site.  There are prizes and a discount code to be had, so be sure to head over to the Winter Wear site to get all the details.

Originally, as you likely know by now, the Amuse pattern was offered in the One Thimble Magazine, issue 14 (affiliate link).  I have to admit that I bought this issue secretly for this pattern.  I say secretly because the photos are clearly showing a pattern with design details I try to avoid.  There are other great patterns in this issue so it was easy to pretend I wasn't buying it for this pattern.

I am always drawn to the easy breeze style of the Amuse.  Trouble is I carry my weight in the middle and silhouettes with no waist definition just add pounds where I don't want it.  This top has gathering right at the empire line and then the option I liked the best also has fullness along the back.  Thats a lot of fabric!  Doing the plain back would eliminate some but I'd still be dealing with the gathering in the front.

That said, I still fell in love with the pattern as is and decided to make it first with no adjustments.  I picked out this wonderful rayon challis at JoAnn Fabrics and went to work.  I decided on the short sleeves for summer time and went with a dress length.  The fabric is perfect for the pattern, very drapey, gathers well and skims over the body.

When I put it on the only adjustment I ended up making was to close up the armhole a little.  I made the XL based on my measurements- 42 full bust- but the armholes ended up too low.  I just did a quickie adjustment that solved the problem.  I closed the armhole and then blended down toward the bust line.

The pattern itself is great, all the pieces fit nicely and the construction makes sense.  I did struggle to make my yoke piece on the front neat and tidy but I'll admit I was rushing.  I used bias binding on the neckline for a simple clean finish.  It is one of the options for the facing.

I love the back yoke which has the gathering sandwiched between the outer and the lining- such a nice clean finish.

I was thrilled when I put it on.  Its so comfy!  I want to put a disclaimer here before you go forward.  The Amuse Boho Pattern is wonderful.  The dress fits just as the design is intended to fit.  My size fits the shoulders and bust perfectly.  The issues I will discuss next have more to do with pattern and body mismatch.  I am always drawn to these flowy shapes.  I don't know if its a latent hippie gene or growing up too close to Santa Cruz.  They just draw me.  Unfortunately they are not my best silhouette.

So when I looked in the mirror, I was less than pleased with the overall look.  So much fabric!  From the side, I was thinking I'd be asked when the twins were due!  Oy.

So to tame the fabric I went with my old standby- a belt.  Yep, I wear belts more than I used to as my waistline seems to be disappearing.  I used to be a curvy hourglass shape with a belly but as I climb fully into my 40s, that hourglass is becoming more and more rectangle.  Time to experiment!

Which do you like?  Options 1 and 2 are definitely hugging my belly too much.  The belt in Option 2 is too loose, it might work if I punch another hole and get it to stay just a fraction higher.  Really though I'm loving Option 3.  I bloused the sides a little much in this picture but the proportions seem good to me.  

See, now I'm ready for a Summer date night!  Who wants to babysit 3 semi-feral kids?  

PS- the Amuse Boho Dress can be purchased at Winter Wear Designs, use the code AMUSEME for 20% off. (Sale is over)  Don't forget to head over to the blog, if you didn't come from there, and sign up for the give away.  

Check out all the stops on the tour:
Marta Glogger (guest blogger at Winter Wear Designs)

Season of One Thimble!

Funny enough this Spring has really been the Season of One Thimble  (affiliate link).  It started off really innocently, I signed up for ...