Friday, May 27, 2011

In love with "Penny" and "Penelope"

Patty Young hit an out-of-the-ballpark home run with this new pattern in her line-up:  "Penny" is for girls, "Penelope" is for women, and "Penelope Plus" for a little larger woman.  

What do I like?
1.  Three pattern pieces!!!
2.  Great fit, with all the sizes anyone could have a dress.
3.  So comfortable to wear, I want one for everyday of the week.
4.  Everywhere I wear it, I get great compliments.

I made two dresses a piece for myself and my daughter.  They go together faster than you could imagine.    This pattern is for knits, so use clear elastic in the shoulder and I found I needed it around the neckline.   I sewed the whole dress on the serger.  There is little to explain, two shoulder seams, a neckline seam and two side seams.  Hem the sleeves and bottom of the dress and you are done!

As you can see below, I happened to find a bad section of fabric from Michael Miller.  I contacted them and they were happy to compensate me.  So, don't forget to wash your knits before you sew!  You might want to wash more than once.  The pink was prewashed, but it continued to distort.

Have a great Memorial Day Weekend!

You could have a dozen of these sewn up by the end of the weekend!

Saturday, May 21, 2011

"Flower Power" Top

When the book Designer Smocking for Tots to Teens came out in 2007, I was in love with this pattern (Flower Power by, Angela Bostick) and everything about it.  I quickly pleated up the front and it fell into the almost finished pile for too long.  The sizing on the outfit is for 1 to 4 years and my daughter was just passing the 4 year old size when I did a quick finish on the smocking.  So, I drafted it just a little bigger and had no problems.  I didn't attempt to redraft the pants and used Venice, by Karen Faylor Company.

My pictures and even the professional pictures in the book do not do justice to this top.  It has a wonderful drape and the back is so cute and feminine with the rounded edges at the bottom.  It is almost like a swing/smocked top and it is so cute on my daughter.  She was finicky today and wouldn't model.

The smocking was quick and easy.  Since there were only a few flowers, they don't take too long.  I did leave off a few flowers on the straps so I could finish it.  

This top is a winner!  Everyone makes a comment on it when they see my daughter in it.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Strawberry Bon Bon

This little dress is a summer treat.  It just screams sweet, little girl.  The pattern is from Australian Smocking and Embroidery, Issue No. 73.  I followed the pattern exactly, except I had a surplus of hot pink pique, so I used it as the main fabric.  

The smocking is so fast on this dress, since it is just around the waist.  The flowers on the bodice and skirt are quick and easy.  One tip I would suggest is to sew the piping for the waist to the bodice and then press it under.  Then use temporary tape to hold the piping onto the smocked portion of the skirt and sew the piping in the ditch.  It will save a few frustrating moments.

The rows of rick-rack make it so sweet.  

The back is simple.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Two Easy Knit Tops

The Sweetheart Top by Jalie is a "classic."  This is a very well done pattern for (2T) 21" to  50" bust, all in one pattern.  It fits well, looks great, and is easy to put together.  What more could you ask for?  If you have been scared of knits, this is the pattern to start using.

This skirt is another "Sassy Skirt" by Children's Corner done as a peasant skirt.  Both fabrics are from Moda and done by Oliver + S.  I love the feel of the Moda knit.  It has a lovely drape.

The green top is "Gwen" from Ottobre Design magazine (Summer 2009).  It is super fast and easy to put together. I even did the knit flower embellishment from the pattern.  I love the swinging "A" line and ruffled sleeves.  I used a cotton/lycra knit for this top and I sure wish I remembered where I got it, because I would love to have more.  It is a dream to sew.